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'Let’s bring back the country’s saviour voted out in Jan. due to conspiracy '

Aug 5 (Island) UPFA Colombo District candidate S.A.D. Jagath Kumara said that US, Europe and West Asian countries had failed to eradicate terrorism, but former President Rajapaksa, who crushed the scourge of terrorism which ruined the country for 30-years, was voted out by the masses. Addressing a pocket meeting he said PM Ranil Wickremesinghe in 2001 had signed an MoU with LTTE leader V Prabhakaran paving the way for Tiger courts, police stations, banks & kachcheris. more..

NSTUF pledges support to UNF

Aug 5 (CT) 32,000 public sector workers, who were allegedly harassed during the tenure of the previous government, will be given relief through the United National Front election manifesto, the United National State Trade Union Federation (NSTUF) said. Speaking at a media briefing Spokesman of NSTUF, Sunil de Silva claimed that the people of Kurunegala have already rejected former President and UPFA Kurunegala District candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa. more..

Man in three-wheeler stabbed to death in Wattala

Aug 5 (CG) A man was stabbed to death by men who had followed him in a three wheeler this morning in Mabola, Wattala, police media unit said. Police said that the man had been travelling in a three-wheeler with his son when men in another three-wheeler had blocked his vehicle. Unidentified men in the three-wheeler had got off and stabbed the man in the other three-wheeler and fled. The police said that the son was not injured. more..

TNA seeks Muslim support

Aug 5 (CT) TNA leader Rajavarothayam Sampanthan addressed a well attended election meeting organized by the Muslim people of the Muttur area in support of the TNA candidates contesting in the Trincomalee Electoral District at the upcoming Parliamentary election. The meeting was chaired by former MP A.M. Thowfeek of the SLMC. Thowfeek said a good leadership for the SLMC should be found. Till then his aim was to defeat the current leadership of the SLMC. more..

UPFA seeks clarity from UNFGG on devolution

Aug 5 (CG) UPFA today sought clarity on the proposal of the UNFGG to devolve powers to the provinces. UNF member and SLFP General Secretary Anura Priyadharshana Yapa said that it was not clear as to what extent powers will be devolved to the provinces. He also asked if the UNFGG is agreeable to devolve land and police powers to the provinces. Yapa also sought clarity on the UNFGG stand over the comments made by the TNA that it will not have talks with more..

Move forward with January 8 victory: CBK

Aug 5 (DM) Breaking her silence, former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, today in a statement, requested people to vote for the candidates with integrity to march forward with the mandate given on January 8. She said she decided to place the country before her party at this moment. In a lengthy statement issued to the media, she said a silent revolution took place on Jan 8 in the country, and it was a victory more..

MPs must have access to education

Aug 5 (CT) Access to education for Members of Parliament, with a focus on developing themselves professionally, should be put in place after 18 August, Attorney-at-Law Dr. Prathiba Mahanamahewa pointed out. He said that the Speaker had a major role to play in creating an educated Parliament, with the involvement of political parties. How many MPs ask questions in Parliament and how many, use the Parliament library after hours? He queried. more..

Ex-Eastern Province Chief Minister arrested

Aug 5 (AD) UPFA Trincomalee District candidate and former Chief Minister of the Eastern Province, Najeeb A Majeed, has been arrested for forcefully entering the postal voting center at the Kinniya Divisional Secretariat and intimidating voters. Police said that Majeed and one of his supporters were arrested after they illegally entered the postal voting center, intimidated voters and manhandling a state sector employee at around 10.15 am today. Former CM and his supporter have been released more..

MPs and other candidates to be provided secuity

Aug 5 (DM) The security of former parliamentarians will be restored concerning the grave threat posed to their lives in the aftermath of the Kotahena shooting which killed two UNP supporters and injured 12 others, the police said. ASP Ruwan Gunasekara said Police Chief N K Illangakoon is expected to restore the security of more than 40 former MPs who have made a special request from the EC Mahinda Deshapriya. more..

'No internal inquiry on Kotahena shooting'

Aug 5 (DM) No internal inquiry was being carried out regarding the Kotahena shooting, in which gunmen fired at hundreds of people led by Minister Ravi Karunanayake during an election campaign, UNP candidate Ajith P. Perera said yesterday. When asked by a journalist, he said the UNP had not such power to carry out an internal inquiry though their supporters were killed and injured during the shooting. “As a political party, we are not authorised to hold such inquiries. more..

Bogus Facebook account to discredit JVP

Aug 5 (LT) A complaint has been filed today by the JVP at the office of the Election Commissioner stating that an organized gang is maintaining a Facebook page to sling mud at the JVP at a time propaganda for the election campaign has intensified, bogus documents in letter heads that look like the ones that belong to the JVP and counterfeiting the signature of the General Secretary of the JVP Tilvin Silva have been published to bring disrepute to the party. more..

'Arrival numbers not important, but $250 tourists are'

Aug 5 (eTN) Whist Sri Lanka Tourism industry can be proud of the end July performance of 2015 at end July visitor arrivals up 16.8%, crossing the 1 million visitor arrival mark with July recording a 31.2% Chairman SLTBP Dr. Rohantha Athukorala voiced that "Sri Lanka must stop chasing visitor arrival numbers but focus on attracting the $250 per day guests into the country if we are to make the industry financially viable" more..

Provincial participatory role symbolizes good governance

Aug 6 (CT) The issue at the coming General Election is whether Good Governance will be given priority. Promising of a new constitution to demonstrate good governance would be meaningless, as any new constitutions will have to abide by the Indo-Sri Lanka Peace Accord, unless it is abrogated by both India and SL. Purpose of the Indo-Lanka Peace Accord is to promote Provincial Participatory role to encourage good governance and discourage the call for secession. more..

Can LTTE win or lose elections one more time?

Aug 6 (SL) When President Mahinda Rajapaksa won the post-war polls in January 2010, his critics wanted to believe that the LTTE’s complete rout had more to do with the results than the incumbent’s contributions to rural development while in office through the previous five years. When in January 2015, he lost the presidential polls, the Rajapaksa camp too seemed to have concluded like his critics that good governance and not LTTE terrorism was the issue. more..

'SLFP can never win without Mahinda'

Aug 6 (FT) Mahinda Rajapaksa is the most outstanding candidate in this election and the UPFA can never win without him, noted Deputy Minister Thilanga Sumathipala. He pointed out that once someone gives leadership to a campaign and wins the election, one cannot let a third party come in and become the PM. “Rajapaksa is the Chairman of the UPFA General Election Committee. more..

It is a national disgrace

Aug 6 (CT) It is not an exaggeration that Sri-Lanka is reputed throughout the world, to be the repository of the earliest Buddhist scriptures and where the majority are practising Buddhists. Buddhism as far as I am aware, is the only religion, where there are no commandments and rules to obey and not even a dress-code, unless one is an ordained Buddhist Monk. The Buddha invited people to come and see his philosophy, which was based on freedom of the individual, honesty and openness, more..

Hopeful signs amidst the losses

Aug 6 (SL) To say that Sri Lanka’s victory over Pakistan in the final ODI was only of consolation value might be factually correct, but it’s rather an incomplete interpretation of last Sunday’s success. Admittedly, the fifth encounter was rendered inconsequential by Pakistan’s unbeatable 3/1 lead after the fourth game, and no one would’ve been unduly surprised had the visitors enlarged the eventual margin to 4/1. That seemed the most likely outcome given the hiding Pakistan more..

Packing a murdered lover in a body bag

Aug 6 (SO) Rangan Karthika, the 34-year-old woman from Vaddukodai, Jaffna at the end of her life became known as the body in the bag. According to the latest findings, following police investigations, the murder suspect of Karthika is none other than her secret lover. However, the violent Romeo is still at large. Police preliminary investigations, carried out in the aftermath of discovering her body at the Pettah bus stand more..

Editorial: Democracy gets ambulance ride

Aug 6 (Island) Politicians say they spend colossal amounts of money during elections. Yes, they do! But, they won’t tell you how funds are raised and that campaign expenditure is an investment with very high returns. Else, those who rode rickety bicycles wearing flip-flops when they entered politics wouldn’t have been able to own palatial houses in the city, fleets of luxury vehicles and estates and mansions overseas and millions of dollars in offshore accounts. more..

Train, station and Wonder of Asia

Aug 6 (Island) It was last Poya Day that I decided to take the Mannar train to wherever I was going to for the long weekend. The Fort Railway station was a mess as usual. The person at the inquiry counter was not very helpful because he was busy with his mobile phone. He must have been chatting with someone near and dear to him. So, why bother to help me? Then I joined the queue to buy a Class II ticket. (After all we are second class citizens in our own country!) more..

Last Week: August 5, 2015

The road to becoming an energy independent country: Can we deliver?

Aug 6 (IPS) Sri Lanka annually imports 2 MMT of crude oil, 4 MMT of refined petroleum products and 2.25 MMT of coal. This costs approximately US$ 5 billion and covers 44% of the energy requirements. It also accounts to 25% of the import expenditure and almost 50% of the total export income. As a result, SL’s energy demand puts immense pressure on the national budget and on exchange rates. In addition, oil burning emanates various gases, intensifying air pollution. more..

The culture of impunity and immunity

Aug 6 (Island) We have, during the last twenty years, descended to the lowest levels of civility and relegated to limbo whatever respect there may have been for the law of the land. It has turned out that the rule of law has become a mere slogan at various forums, where pseudo intellectuals parade their learning to an equally snobbish audience as if to help them digest the food served to them by the organizers of such seminars, with foreign funds. Their sermons are of no use to the people more..

The new political order

Aug 6 (FT) In the wee hours of 17 May 2012, police encountered a burning vehicle on Park Road, Colombo 5. The car crashed into a ditch outside Shalika Grounds and exploded on impact even though nobody reports hearing an explosion in the highly residential neighbourhood that night. The charred remains found inside the burning car were identified in due course as a popular young SL rugby player who had formerly captained Havelock more..

India bowling coach upbeat on fast bowling potential

Aug 6 (CI) Sri Lanka has usually offered climes and conditions roughly familiar to India's cricketers. On the face of it, this tour is their best chance to snap a four-year stretch in which they have not won a series overseas. Batsmen may have arrived on the island slavering at the idea of playing a foreign Test with the sun on their backs and a tawny surface underfoot. But they have arrived at the Premadasa Stadium one day ahead of their tour-match here, and, oh dear, the sky is grey. more..

Shaken Sri Lankans resume cricket after Pakistan ordeal

Aug 6 (Island) Sri Lanka were completely outplayed in the recent bilateral series against Pakistan as the home team suffered heavy losses in Test, ODI and T-20 series. Some observers have tried to brush aside these defeats as ones that could be expected when the team is in transition. Pakistan too are in transition. During the bilateral series, they got many things right while Sri Lankans faulted. The home team faltered big time in team selections. More than six weeks prior to the two T-20s, more..

'Sangakkara shaped by attitude, approach'

Aug 6 (TOI) Kumar Sangakkara, the Sri Lankan legend born to a family of lawyers and himself a member of the bar, a collector of some of cricket's worthiest records and a gentleman par eloquence, will end his phenomenal Test career at Colombo's P Sara Oval later this month. And while he's busy doing that against India, his very good friend, former team-mate and business partner Mahela Jayawardene will be there at the Oval too, more..

Afghanistan-A win friendly four-dayer in SL

Aug 6 (PAN) Afghanistan-A cricket team defeated Sari Lanka Cricket Development XI by 69 runs in a four-day practice match played in Colombo, the nation’s capital, an official said on Wednesday. Afghanistan Cricket Board spokesman Farid Hotak told Pajhwok Afghan News the Afghanistan-A in their first innings scored 158 runs for the loss of all wickets and the Sari Lankan team 284 runs in reply. Afghan bowlers Yamin Ahmadzai and Hamza Hotak shared three wickets each. more..

Mahela finds nude cricket match funny

Aug 6 (in) Former SL skipper Mahela Jayawardene had something bizarre to welcome his Twitter followers on Sunday morning. He posted a video of a nude cricket match where a streaker fully dressed in suit and tie obstructs play. He shared the video with a good morning wish. Mahela Jayawardene wrote on his twitter page, “This is too funny ha ha. Happy Sunday guy.”. there have been various instances of streakers obstructing the field in a game of cricket, but nothing quite like this. more..

Green light for noodles

Aug 6 (DN) There was no lead found in the 140 samples of Sri Lankan noodles tested and therefore the Director General Health Services, Dr. Palitha Mahipala declared them safe for human consumption. Health authorities obtained 201 samples of instant noodles available in the SL market and also another 14 samples obtained from noodles imported to SL. Govt Analyst's Department and the ITI tested 140 samples more..

Tendulkar’s joke on how to face Malinga’s yorkers

Aug 6 (SK) Lasith Malinga has been one of the 21st centuries greatest fast bowlers, and one of the reasons why batsmen all over the world have been made to look foolish by his toe-crunchers is his highly unorthodox bowling action. But Malinga’s secret weapon is something else, according to Sachin Tendulkar. Speaking at an event in Hyderabad, his Mumbai Indians teammate Sachin Tendulkar let in audiences on to a little secret about how to play his yorkers. more..

Overseas Realty records Rs. 1.5 bn profit end of 2nd quarter 2015

Aug 6 (Island) Overseas Realty (Ceylon) PLC in its performance, reported a Group Net profit of Rs 1.5 billion for the first 6 months ended 30th June 2015, a marginal decline of 2% over the corresponding period of 2014. The Group recorded a Revenue of Rs 1.8 bn which was a decrease of 31% over the corresponding period of last year, due mainly to the recognition of lower apartment sales at Havelock City. The revenue from Leasing grew by 15% to Rs. 984Mn in comparison over last year more..

Monitors say UNP supporter had links with Wattala killers

Aug 6 (Island) The CMEV accused Minister John Amaratunga’s supporter, former Deputy Mayor of Wattala Urban Council (UNP) Faiz Rizwan of having links with the suspects who hacked to death, Mohammed Abinza, at Mabola in the Wattala police area yesterday morning. The CMEV based its claim on a statement made by the victim’s son, Abdul Nazal, who witnessed the incident along with his uncle. more..

Vidullanka inks agreement with Uganda power grid

Aug 6 (FT) Vidullank Plc said its subsidiary had entered into a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Uganda’s energy authority to supply power from a 6.5 Mega Watt plant to Uganda’s national electricity grid. Vidullank’s subsidiary, Muvumbe Hydro (U) Ltd. has entered into the PPA with Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Ltd. (UETCL) on 28 July 2015. Uganda Electricity Transmission Company is a govt-owned company responsible for the power purchase more..

How did Namal come to own CSN?

Aug 6 (DN) Former MP Nalin Bandara questioned how MP Namal Rajapaksa come to own the CSN Television Channel and Govers Cooperate Pvt Ltd., being an ordinary MP. How is it possible for an ordinary MP to own these companies considering his financial earnings asked Bandara. MP Namal Rajapaksa is the owner of the CSN channel and the Govers Cooperate Pvt Ltd. It is a registered company. It was in 2012 that he purchased another company named Hello Cope more..

Archbishop shuns politics of race & religion

Aug 6 (CT) Archbishop of Colombo, Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, at a media conference led by Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic, Christian and Catholic leaders expressed critical sentiments about established political parties and recently formed ones which clothed themselves with ethno-religious overtones. He added that many candidates contesting the Parliamentary Election were also drug dealers, gamblers, thieves and rapists. more..

'Champika an opportunist'

Aug 6 (CT) JHU Leader Champika Ranawaka is an opportunist who does not practise principled politics, UPFA General Secretary, Susil Premajayantha alleged. Commenting on a statement made by JVP Colombo District candidate K.D. Lal Kantha who had reportedly stated it was nauseating to hear that Champika Ranawaka was joining the UNFGG, Premajayantha said: "If JVP's Lalkantha feels that way, then how should we feel? After all, Champika Ranawaka entered Parliament through more..

SF urges public to support good governance

Aug 6 (CG) Democratic Party leader and former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka urged the public to back good governance at the parliamentary election this month. Speaking at an election rally Kandy, Fonseka said that the public should not be misled by corrupt politicians. He said that those who had been accused of corruption and fraud are now attempting to deceive the public by seeking their votes at the election. “These people do not want good governance,” Fonseka added. more..

Protect Jan 8 mandate: CBK

Aug 6 (DN) Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, in a special statement issued yesterday, urged the nation to defeat the elements trying to reverse the January 8 mandate and vote for honest and respectable candidates. "At this decisive juncture, we need to decide whether we want to support elements trying to destroy our party's ideals or we need to give strength to candidates who have vision and commitment more..

'Politicos should not tamper with business'

Aug 6 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena said the govt will create an environment where the business community should be able to operate freely without interference from politicians. President Sirisena was addressing the closing ceremony of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce hosted Economic Summit 2015. It was not suitable for politicians to interfere business activities and the Govt will create the environment where the state and the private sectors should be able to operate more..