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Message for a globalized world

Apr 3 (Island) Over the past three decades the world has been dramatically transformed in ways that none but a handful of prophets and visionaries could have foreseen even a hundred years ago. From a multitude of loosely connected nation-states it has quickly evolved into a tightly knit global community linked together by rapid means of transportation and instantaneous media of communication. Old barriers of space and time have dropped away, confronting us with new vistas of more..

Today is Good Friday

Apr 3 (DN) Today is Good Friday. Catholics of the Universal Church and devotees belonging to mainstream Christian Churches the world over observe this day as the Day of Salvation to humanity through the sublime sacrifice Jesus Christ made on the Cross at Calvary. The blossoming 33-year old youth, a rebel in the eyes of misguided masses, he was there to offer himself as the sacrificial lamb to God, His Father. more..

'Govt has completed 78% of main projects'

Apr 3 (FT) Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake on Wednesday claimed that the current Govt has completed 78% of its proposed projects within 67 days. “We have proposed 100 projects to be done within 100 days and we have now completed 78% of the projects. We took 67 days to complete those projects and through them we are hoping to create new job opportunities for Sri Lankan youth. We have also provided more donations to Samurdhi receivers and prevent them from beggary,” more..

Billions brewing for Ceylon Tea

Apr 3 (CT) A massive government and private sector effort is about to commence to rescue the crisis-stricken Ceylon Tea industry by pumping billions of rupees into overseas promotions. This will include a Rs 1 billion Campaign for Brand Promotions and another Rs 3 billion for a Global Promotion Campaign. The Rs 4 billion would be incurred from the Tea Fund, where the exporters have been contributing Rs 3.50 per kilo from every kilo of tea exported. more..

Today is Bak Poya

Apr 3 (DN) The significance of Bak poya is historical, since it marks Buddha's second visit to Sri Lanka. This is noteworthy, as Bak is a month of national importance as well. According to Mahavamsa, Buddha could foresee an imminent war between two Naga Kings Culodara and Mahodara, uncle and nephew, over a jewel-studded throne that made Him think of visiting Lanka for the second time. Professor Wilhelm Geiger explains more..

Sri Lanka consumer confidence surges

Apr 3 (DM) The confidence of Sri Lankan consumer is at an all-time high amid the expectations on the state of their personal finances and the likelihood of having more money to spend continue to improve, according to a leading market research company in the country. In its latest edition, the Nielsen Consumer Confidence Index is up by three points from the prior month, to touch an all-time of 87 - as it did back in December 2011. “Consumers now seem to have more money in their hands and more..

UDA continues to make Peliyagoda a modern market and trade city

Apr 3 (ST) Urban Development Authority (UDA) will be continuing the development work in Peliyagoda to make it a hub for modern markets, trade and industry under the Colombo City Development Master Plan, UDA officials said. The reallocation of the Manning Market from Colombo to Peliyagoda will soon get underway where a market complex with all facilities in a 25 acre-block of land near the Peliyagoda wholesale fish market will be established, a senior UDA official said. more..

Sugathadasa track to be re-laid; Race Course and Torrington to get new Synthetics tracks

Apr 3 (CT) After a number of media reports and days after his appointment, Minister Navin Dissanayake finally decided to inspect the worn out track at Sugathadasa Stadium yesterday, where he said he will work to lay a brand new track as soon as possible. "I didn't imagine this to be bad as this. I'm very disappointed and sad about what has happened to the Sugathadasa track, which is a national treasure," said minister more..

TAs with India and China: Potential for SL

Apr 3 (DM) Sri Lanka has various levels of trade agreements (TAs) with both India and China. A new TA with China was mooted in 2014 and the appetite for that continues in the new presidency and policy context of 2015. While statistics suggested a high potential for the TA with India, in practice it has not generated a sustained growth in exports. The TA with China, therefore, needs to examine for the practical potential as well. This ‘Insight’ suggests that Sri Lanka’s apparel and more..

'SL has potential to export electricity to India'

Apr 3 (Island) Sri Lanka has all the potential to export electricity to India and to become a regional hub in the energy sector, an industry expert said. Gamesa Lanka and India Managing Director Ramesh Kymal, who is senior Mechanical Engineer of the USD six billion Gamesha Group, Spain, one of the leading supplier of wind power technology in the world, stressed that the brainchild of Minister Champika Ranawaka titled 'SL Energy Sector Development Plan for a Knowledge base more..

Sri Lankan scientist develop perfume which smells better the more you sweat

Apr 3 (PO) The first-ever perfume delivery system to ensure the more a person sweats, the better they will smell, has been developed by scientists at Queen's University Belfast.Researchers in the Queen's University Ionic Liquid Laboratories (QUILL) Research Centre have developed a unique new perfume delivery system which releases more of its aroma when it comes into contact with moisture, meaning a person smells nicer more..

SLIIT ranked Sri Lanka’s highest private educational institution

Apr 3 (Island) Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT), the nation’s premier degree awarding non-state university broke new ground when it was ranked No. 1 among Sri Lanka’s Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the latest Webometrics Ranking of World Universities announced recently. According to the published rankings, SLIIT towers tall, ranking 9th overall among Sri Lankan Universities. This prestigious achievement is in line with SLIIT’s vision of more..

National Engineering Council Act: President promises to expedite process

Apr 3 (DN) President Maithripala Sirisena said that he would personally intervene to expedite the process of passing the National Engineering Council Act. The President was addressing the inaugural session of the National Engineering Conference 2015 in Colombo yesterday. While admitting that there is a certain delay in passing the National Engineering Council Act, the President said measures are being taken to expedite the passing of the Draft Bill for the setting up more..

‘Rs. 124 mn per-kilometer consultancy fee for extended Southern Expressway’

Apr 3 (Island) To build part of the extended Southern Expressway, the previous govt had arranged to pay Rs.124 million per kilometer as consultancy service fees alone, Minister Kabir Hashim, said. He pointed out that the total consultancy fee for the part of the project was US$ 90 million. "Present govt will not build roads for the sake of building them in an extravagant way. Despite the fact that we have new roads, more..

International Day of Sports 2015 on 6 April

Apr 3 (CT) The International Day of Sports 2015 organized by the Minister of Sports and Tourism together with the Ministers of Education, Health, Public Administration, Social Service and officials of the UN commemorated will be conducted Nuwara Eliya Race Course on 6 April. Over 500 children will participate in this event. Marathon for school-children and the veterans Marathon, Gymnastic, Wheelchair Sports events, Mountain Bike Cycle Cross and Wushu events more..

Lunar eclipse tomorrow

Apr 3 (DN) Sky watchers in Sri Lanka are in for a treat as they will be able to watch a total lunar eclipse from 2.30 pm to 8.30 pm on Saturday. If clear weather prevails, Sri Lankans will be able to watch the event as a partial lunar eclipse in the eastern skies, as soon as the Sun goes down, Sri Lanka Planetarium said. The eclipse will be visible until 7.14 pm. A lunar eclipse happens when the sun, Earth and moon form a straight line in space, with the Earth in the middle. more..

Main parties agree on 250 member legislature

Apr 3 (DN) The majority of political parties have expressed support to increase the Parliamentary seats from 225 to 250, Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said. According to the new system, the number of seats in Parliament will be increased to 250 from the current 225. There will be 140 seats through the First-Past-the-Post system, 80 through a District proportional representation system and 30 seats from the National List. more..

Comm Bank & HNB begin IFRS roll-out

Apr 3 (CT) Commercial Bank of Ceylon (CBC) and Hatton National Bank (HNB) announced, they have selected the OneSumX Finance solution to integrate International Finance. Reporting Standards (IFRS) in the ensuing nine months. CBC Managing Director Jegan Durairatnam said the country's banks are ready to enter the global market by following accounting standards that are being accepted as the global benchmark. OneSumX, developed by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services (WKFS), more..

Ampara to get kidney hospital

Apr 3 (CT) Minister of State for Health M.T. Hasan Ali laid the foundation stone for a state-of- the art kidney hospital at a cost of Rs 50 million at Dehiattakandiya in the Ampara District. Provincial Council Minister of Health (Eastern Province) M.I.M. Munsoor, Chairman of the Eastern Provincial Council – EP, Chandradasa Galappaththi, Provincial Director of Health Services Dr. M. Muruganandan and other medical personnel attended the ceremony. more..

Video: Did China profit from corrupt Sri Lanka deals?

Apr 3 (CNN) Mahinda Rajapaksa, the former president of Sri Lanka, was the driving force behind such a project, a $1.4 billion crown jewel to be built near Colombo by a state-backed Chinese construction firm. But in the three months since Rajapaksa was unseated in an election stunner, the project has been put on hold, and allegations of possible corruption in the bidding process have tarnished the former president's reputation. more..

Lankan refugee murdered

Apr 3 (Hindu) A Sri Lankan refugee was hacked to death in his house at Puliampatti refugee camp near Palani on Wednesday. The deceased was identified as Kamala Nathan (35), a daily wage worker engaged in painting work. Acting on a complaint filed by Kamala Nathan’s wife Naga Rani, who works in a private dairy farm in Palani, police arrested Dhandapani (25) of Palani. When she returned home around 11 p.m., Naga Rani saw Kamala Nathan lying in a pool of blood. more..

Elephantine zeal

Apr 3 (CD) Wild elephants enjoy fun in the water in the forest in Yunnan province, one of the few habitats of the endangered species in China. Natarajan Ishwaran has a special affinity for the Asian elephant. It roams wild in his country, Sri Lanka, where domesticated ones are used to take tourists around. He studied the animal through his doctoral program. Now he uses state-of-the-art technology to promote the conservation of natural habitats for them and other creatures. more..

Counsel oppose rigid control of private media during polls

Apr 3 (Island) State should not rigidly control private media institutions, especially during the time of a poll. All the broadcasting and telecasting stations will deliver the same message favourable to the regime of the time, Counsel Sanjeewa Jayawardena President’s Counsel told the Supreme Court yesterday. Counsel was referring to the proposed 19th Amendment to the Constitution. Petitions against and some interventions more..

Missing persons: Justice Minister denies allegations

Apr 3 (Island) Dismissing much-touted allegations that thousands had been still held on terrorism charges, Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, PC, said that there were only 210 persons in custody. The minister stressed that nine held on terrorism charges had been given bail. The Justice Minister was addressing a gathering of religious leaders at his ministry. In the run-up to the presidential election, the TNA, overseas LTTE groups and some civil society organisations accused more..

'Reporting for Work on time' warns MR

Apr 3 (CT) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa is in no undue hurry to hit the campaign trail once again. In expansive mood he quips " I will report for work at the right time" So what's he doing these days then ? "I'm relaxing these days " he retorts with a grin. Rajapaksa candidly admitted that " various individuals and groups are meeting me and pleading with me to return to politics .'I am however relaxing, but at the right time, I shall report to work! he exclaims. more..

Jaffna Bishop regrets Ranil-Wiggy cold war

Apr 3 (CT) The now much hyped 'cold war' between NPC Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe does not vibe well with Jaffna's Catholic Bishop Rt. Rev. Thomas Savuntharanayagam. At a meeting with German Ambassador Dr. Jürgen Morhard over the 'cold war' between the Northern CM Wigneswaran and PM Wickremesinghe, which had prevented them from meeting each other during more..

A message of love and compassion

Apr 3 (DM) As a new Sri Lanka evolves with multi-party, multi-religious and multi-ethnic unity on an unprecedented scale it is significant that as Buddhists mark Bak Poya today, Christians commemorate Good Friday. According to the Mahawansa, it was on such a Bak Poya day that the Buddha, in the fifth year of his Enlightenment, visited Nagadeepa to peacefully settle a dispute between two Naga kings mainly over a gem studded throne. The two warring parties listened to more..

China looks to improve ties with SL

Apr 3 (DM) As President Maitripala Sirisena remarked to his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping that no problem lay with the Chinese side in the execution of the Colombo Port City project and it was suspended as a temporary measure to sort out some issues, he tried to address a key concern that marred Sino-Lanka relations, maybe for the first time since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1957. The Port City, an offshore development on a landmass to more..

Abolition of the Executive Presidency is a national need

Apr 3 (DM) Civil society forces teamed up to bring about a striking change in the country’s politics Ven. Maduluwawe Sobhita Thera, Viharadhipathi of Naga Viharaya, Kotte played a decisive role as the leader of the Movement for Social Justice at the last Presidential poll. In an interview with our sister paper Irida Lankadeepa the prelate expressed his views on the present political situation in the country. Excerpts. more..

MP says National security at risk

Apr 3 (CG) SLFP member Namal Rajapaksa, the son of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, says the Govt has placed Sri Lanka’s National security at risk. He said that while positive steps are being taken toward strengthening national reconciliation, there is a concern that not enough is being done to also strengthen national security. “For example, the Govt has started eliminating high-security zones. more..

Demanding real change

Apr 3 (SL) Tamils from eight districts in the North and East staged a protect last week opposing the proposed domestic probe into alleged war crimes and demanded a proper international inquiry. Despite the fact that the UNHRC has given some space for the new govt till September to start a credible local process, people from the North and East claimed that they have not felt a real change after President Maithripala more..

'Govt has given portfolios to corrupt politicians'

Apr 3 (CT) TNA MP S. Yogeswaran has criticized the new govt for giving portfolios to corrupt politicians who had put the country in total disarray in the previous govt. "The new govt came to power declaring that they would abolish all sorts of corruption in the country and take action against the corrupt politicians in the previous govt. However, the corrupt politicos of the previous govt are well protected by the new govt more..

More than 340 plants identified for snake bite treatment

Apr 3 (Island) More than 340 plants had been identified as antidotes to the bites of top five venomous and mildly venomous snakes in the country, a top scientist said. Ex- Situ conservation, ITI Principal Research Scientist, Dr R.M. Dharmadasa said his study of 150 native medical practitioners in the Western and Sabragamuwa Provinces had revealed that if victims were treated with those plants/herbs within 3 to 4 hours more..

Sri Lanka seeking more US military training opportunities

Apr 3 (Island) Sri Lanka is exploring the possibility of securing more training opportunities for senior military officers in the US. Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya yesterday explained Sri Lanka’s requirements to US Defence Attaché in Colombo Lt. Col. Robert Ross. Gen. Jayasuriya had requested for a review of US stand on Sri Lankan officers’ participation in US programmes. more..

Uma Oya Project sees some light at the end of the tunnel

Apr 3 (ST) Two expert reports on the controversial Uma Oya Multipurpose Project have recommended steps to mitigate negative impacts that could arise in the future while also putting forward solutions to the current problems, Environment Ministry secretary Nihal Rupasinghe said. One report was by a 120-member expert committee that comprised officers from the CEA, NBRO, GSMB and and academics from more..

Chandrika calls for national reconciliation

Apr 3 (Hindu) The govt’s efforts to promote national unity in Sri Lanka will break down unless there is reconciliation, according to the former President Chandrika Kumaratunga. “I think it is absolutely crucial,” Ms. Kumaratunga said. Recently invited to head a special presidential task force on reconciliation, she said it would be transformed into a permanent office on national unity and reconciliation. more..

CIABOC case against E01 cop malicious

Apr 3 (CT) Colombo High Court Judge Lalith Jayasuriya determined that the Bribery Commission filed a case against former Police Constable Suminda Saman, who handed a fine to Former Deputy Minister Hemal Gunasekera on the Southern Expressway (E01), after a lapse of five years with malicious intentions and determined that the defendant be released from all charges. The Bribery Commission had filed legal action more..

Jayasuriya resigns as Chairman of Selectors

Apr 3 (DM) Jayasuriya, in a letter to Minister of Sports Navin Dissanayake, cited the impending end of his tenure as the head of the selection committee as the reason for his resignation. Under his tenure Sri Lanka enjoyed success, by winning the World T20 2014, Asia Cup and a Test series in England, also reaching the semi-finals of the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013. But Jayasuriya came under fire for his selection in more..

History to repeat itself

Apr 3 (CT) Tuesday, 7 April, will be 'D' Day in the annals of Sri Lanka's parliamentary history.On that day Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa will decide who the Opposition Leader in Parliament is going to be. This constitutional crisis has been created after a certain section of MPs recently petitioned to the Speaker that the current Opposition Leader in Parliament Nimal Siripala de Silva, who is also one of four Vice Presidents of the SLFP, is unfit to hold that post. Their argument is that the SLFP is in govt. more..

A proof of feasibility of accommodating FPP within the PR system

Apr 3 (CT) Reforming of the electoral system is a hot topic these days. Even abolishing or reforming the executive presidential system might (or threatened to) depend on finding a feasible reform for the electoral system. There are some who want to get back to the old first past the post (FPP) system. There are others who prefer or want to stick to the proportional representation (PR). The general thinking for a long time has been to employ a mixed system which is again controversial more..