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'Economy in top gear'

June 3 (DM) The 30-year Treasury bond auction opened on February 27 to raise Rs.1 billion saw the new Central Bank governor Arjuna Mahendran at the centre of a controversy, with charges of insider trading and favouritism directed at him. A three-member probe appointed by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe later cleared the governor of any misconduct in connection with this bond issuance. PM recently tabled in Parliament the report more..

'Customs under probe for malpractices, losses'

June 3 (Island) Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake said that the Customs were under probe over malpractices and heavy losses. Asked what the losses and malpractices were, he said that they would be made known to the public soon and it was the right of the people to know them. "Under the new Director General of Customs all would come to light and wait until that moment," he said. When queried about the probe being conducted, Customs Media Spokesman said on Monday that he was not more..

Sri Lanka expresses condolences on China ship capsize incident

June 3 (GDI) Sri Lankan Ministry of Foreign Affairs issuing a statement expressed condolences on the capsizing of a Cruise Ship in the Yangtze River in China. Statement said "Govt and the people of Sri Lanka express their heartfelt condolences to the Govt and the people of China on the tragic incident of the capsizing of a cruise ship in the Yangtze River in the Hubei Province, where many people are feared to have drowned, with several hundreds, still missing. more..

Govt, Speaker proposes dissolving Parliament

June 3 (CG) The Govt and Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa today proposed in Parliament that Parliament be dissolved and elections be held. The issue over the Central Bank Governor arose today during Parliament sittings and this led to a heated exchange of words between the Govt and the opposition. The opposition questioned the Govt on the right Arjuna Mahendran had to continue as the Central Bank Governor. more..

Parliament adjourned with no agreement on Constitutional Council

June 3 (AM) Parliament was adjourned without a decision on the three members to be appointed to the Constitutional Council. Special session in parliament convened this morning for the purpose of approving the three civil society members for the Constitutional Council. However, a debate arose in the House on the controversial Central Bank bond issue. During the debate, the Leader of the House proposed that MPs who support the dissolution of parliament should rise & show their support. more..

Veteran actor JH Jayawardena passes away

June 3 (AM) Veteran actor J.H. Jayawardena passed away at his residence in Kandana at the age of 94. Jayawardena was known for several roles in Sri Lankan cinema and radio and tele-dramas. His role of a chief monk in the film Adishtanaya earned him the Best Supporting Actor Award. Born in Kurunegala, he entered Kurunegala Maliyadeva College and represented its cricket team as an opening batsman. He entered Radio Ceylon with help of P. Welikala, friend from school days. more..

President in a shoe shop

June 3 (CT) Especially in the recent past one of the most repetitious complaints we've heard from the public have been about the ostentatious lifestyle of our political leaders, the opulence surrounding their lives the waste at the expense of the coon man. There was the obscene ostentation with public funds always three for the asking. Living in opulent luxury was the norm. Spending in hundreds of millions of rupees per day on Royal family more..

Sajin re-remanded

June 3 (NS) UPFA MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardana was further remanded till June 17. He was in remand custody for questioning over a charge of having misused several vehicles belonging to the Presidential Secretariat. MP Gunawardana who was the Monitoring Minister for Foreign Affairs of the last regime was arrested when he appeared before the CID to make a statement over the charge. He was initially remanded till May 20 by the Fort Magistrate and later again remanded till June 03. more..

Mosque attackers to be identified from CCTV

June 3 (Island) Police trying to identify the suspects in the Borella Mosque attack could not proceed with their investigations yesterday as the Uni of Mortuwa which was to examine the CCTV footage was closed on account of the Poson Poya Day. "We wanted to submit the footage of CCTV cameras for the scrutinising by IT experts of the Moratuwa University. We hope to continue with our investigations after the university officials provide us with a report and those responsible more..

Video: Pass 20A now: JHU

June 3 (DM) JHU urged the political parties including the UNP to support to get the 20th Amendment passed without holding it up in Parliament. General Secretary of JHU Champika Ranawaka insisted the govt to keep the election promise that was made by the President to change the existing electoral system since it lets unsuitable people get elected. “There is a group who are geared up to sabotage this process of 20th more..

Pope appoints new Bishop of Trincomalee

June 3 (CG) Pope has accepted the resignation presented by Bishop Joseph Kingsley Swampillai, from the pastoral care of the Diocese of Trincomalee, in accordance with canon 401 § 1 of the Code of Canon Law and has appointed Rev. Noel Emmanuel Christian, presently Episcopal Vicar and General Treasurer of the same diocese as the new Bishop of Trincomalee. Rev. Dr. Christian Noel Emmanuel, was born Dec 25, 1960, in Trincomalee. After secondary school, he entered the more..

CID to file charges against Tissa

June 3 (DM) The CID today informed the Colombo Fort Magistrate that it would file a charge sheet against former UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake for allegedly presenting a fake agreement during the presidential election campaign using forged signatures of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and President Maithripala Sirisena. The CID told that it would file the charge sheet under the Civil and Political Rights Act no. 2007. The Case was fixed for hearing on August 5. more..

Sri Lanka in a Guinness Record initiative

June 3 (eTN) In a unique tri-party partnership of making Sri Lanka a power brand globally, Sri Lanka Tourism- Sri Lanka Tea Board and Sri Lanka Airlines initiated a Sri Lanka Guinness Record initiate on the side lines of the Asia Pacific Onboard Travel partners congress 2015 that had selected Sri Lanka as it's venue for the once in two year conference. The Founder of APOT Keerthi Ranasinghe voiced at the last conference in more..

Sri Lankan shares at over-5-week low

June 3 (Reuters) Sri Lankan shares ended at their lowest in over five weeks on Wednesday led by financials as concerns over political uncertainty before a parliament election dented sentiment, while foreign investors exited from risky assets. The main stock index fell 0.64% to close at 7,149.46, its lowest finish since April 28. The fall, for the third straight session, was the worst single-day loss since March 30. "Mainly it's the political uncertainty," said Dimantha Mathew, research manager more..

Man’s body found near Polduwa bridge

June 3 (DM) The body of the man who had drowned in Diyawanna Oya near the Polduwa bridge was recovered by the Navy divers, the Police said. During investigations Police found a Cannula piercing on his left arm. Eyewitnesses told Police that the victim, who had been bathing just disappeared and that they immediately drew the attention of the Police. The body was referred to the Colombo National Hospital for identification and postmortem examination. more..

Sri Lanka Nestle unit assures MAGGI meets food laws

June 3 (LBO) Nestle Lanka, a unit of a Swiss-based food group said, that the company’s product Maggi Noodles which is manufactured locally, meets all the food laws in the Indian Ocean Island. “The quality and safety of our products is the top priority for the company,” Nestle Lanka said. “MAGGI Noodles is locally produced at our factory in Pannala, Kurunegala, maintaining all the food laws and regulations applicable for Sri Lanka.” more..

Decline in debates, discussions, dialogues in law making meetings: PAFFREL

June 3 (CT) The socio-political crisis in the political culture which renders the people's sovereignty meaningless is reflected in the gradual decline in quality of the debates, discussions and analytical dialogues at Parliamentary, Provincial, District and Divisional Council meetings and sessions, polls monitors said. As secondary level requirements expected from those seeking political office, leadership qualities and effective communication skills, a cautious approach more..

Khuram Sheik case: Ex-Tangalle PS Chairman seeks bail

June 3 (DM) Colombo High Court today fixed for June 26 the inquiry into the bail application filed on behalf of former Tangalle PS Chairman Sampath Chandrapushpa Vidanapathirana who was convicted in the killing of Britisher Khuram Sheik in 2011. High Court Judge Lalith Jayasuriya to fix the case on a further date so as to file objections. Lahiru Kelum, Saman Deshapriya, Sampath Vidanapathirana, Prageeth Chaturanga and W. Chaturange were sentenced to jail after being found guilty more..

Dipped Products second Sri Lanka factory in court over pollution allegations

June 3 (EN) A second factory in Dipped Products, a unit of Sri Lanka's Hayleys group is embroiled in a court battle over pollution allegations, it has been revealed. Dipped Products, in a note to accounts on its 2014 annual report said a court case was filed against Hanwella Rubber Products Ltd by police, but the order had been appealed. "In this regard, the Avissawella High Court stayed Magistrates Order on Hanwella more..

'Govt bribery probes Insidious'

June 3 (CT) Asgiriya Chapter said govt was using the law as a weapon for political purposes and was presently targeting political opponents through the FCID with the objective of gaining political mileage at upcoming General Election. Committee Member of Asgiriya Chapter Ven. Dr. Medagama Dhammananda Thera said govt had quite insidiously desisted from timely action against those charged with fraud & corruption and had deliberately delayed the process until an election was imminent. more..

No move to evacuate Lankans in Najran

June 3 (CG) The Foreign Ministry says there is no immediate move to evacuate Sri Lankans employed in the Saudi Arabian city of Najran. Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that officials from the Sri Lankan Consulate in Jeddah had visited several hospitals in the Saudi – Yemen border where Sri Lankans are employed. The officials have had talks with the management of the hospitals and other companies in the area where Sri Lankans are employed on evacuating Sri Lankans if need does arise. more..

Smoky Killer: Is the cigarette lobby too powerful in Sri Lanka ?

June 3 (CT) According to statistics, nearly 60 people die daily in Sri Lanka due to smoking. Thus nearly 60% of cancer patients are smokers and as the President; who was the former Health Minister claimed, the govt spends about Rs 4,500 million to treat those diagnosed with various diseases related to smoking. Total amount of deaths reported due to smoking in Sri Lanka amount to 21,000. It was World Tobacco day yesterday and today, more..

Archer Daniels Midland to close Sri Lanka Chemcel unit

June 3 (EN) Agribusiness multinational Archer Daniels Midland plans to close its Sri Lankan specialty chemicals manufacturing unit Chemcel in which Chemanex has a stake. “Archer Daniels Midland Europe BV, the main shareholder of Chemcel, has informed us that Chemcel will cease operations based on a number of considerations,” Chemanex said. “We currently own 23.15% of Chemcel and it is reflected in our books at an investment value of 272 million rupees,” more..

Strengthening Dollar worries Pettah traders

June 3 (CT) The prices of several consumer goods including potatoes, salt, dhal, dried fish and salmon are likely to shoot up by 5 -10 %, Pettah wholesale traders warn. They attribute the impending price hike to the minor rupee-dollar depreciation of Rs 137.93 to the dollar yesterday to Rs 134.30 on 15 May. Deputy Minister Harsha de Silva however said, this is normal, explaining that during the previous regime world trends were such that the dollar sold at Rs 110 though it has now jumped to Rs 135. more..

Udayanga visits SL embassy in Tehran

June 3 (DM) In a strange turn of events, Sri Lanka’s former Ambassador to Russia Udayanga Weeratunga, whose name has been implicated in an arms deal controversy, has visited the Sri Lankan Embassy in Tehran with a request to certify a power-of-attorney copy in order to get some of his heavy baggage in the Colombo port to be cleared. His visit to Tehran embassy was confirmed by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson today more..

President please re-introduce death penalty

June 4 (CT) President Sirisena has announced that he is considering the re-introduction of the death penalty. It is a very timely decision indeed considering the heinous crimes committed daily in our country. President will be remembered for this salutary decision if he implements it forthwith. Man fears death more than anything else and the more heinous the death greater the fear. This is probably why the ancients resorted to methods of killing criminals which we think today are heinous. more..

China jumps the redline

June 4 (CT) A three-wheeler taxi caught up in the traffic jam in Colombo displayed a sticker in the rear which read: We support the Colombo Port City Project. It had a photograph of the completed Colombo Port City Project at the centre. When the journalists inquired, the three-wheeler taxi driver claimed he was paid to display the sticker. Hence, a large sum of money would have been expended to display that sticker on 3-wheeler taxis. Chinese Govt had started to throw large sums of monies to more..

chilling tale of D.A. Karunadasa's abduction and subsequent rescue

June 4 (SO) The news of a Sri Lankan being kidnapped in Nigeria a few days ago, cast a chilling spell, bringing into vivid recall tales of abductions and violence unleashed by the Nigerian Islamist militants, Boko Haram. The moment the news reached Sri Lanka that D.A. Karunadasa, a senior civil servant and qualified engineer working for an Italian company in Nigeria had been kidnapped, first reaction was that more..

Can Sirisena ride the storm in Sri Lanka, or will Rajapaksa claw back?

June 4 (CT) President Sirisena, or Mi3 as scribes refer to him, is continuing his perilous political journey of going ahead with the constitutional reform process though it has overshot the 100-day deadline he had set. His episodic journey, not unlike Tintin, Herge’s immortal comic hero, is moving from crisis to crisis. Most of his political problems emanate from the SLFP which he is supposed to lead. It is behaving very much like the Captain Haddock, tipsy master of Tintin’s ship. more..

It’s a long wait for the hangman!

June 4 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena has announced that he is considering the re-introduction of the death penalty. It is a very timely decision indeed considering the heinous crimes committed daily in our country. President will be remembered for this salutary decision if he implements it forthwith. Man fears death more than anything else and the more heinous the death, the greater the fear. This is probably why the ancients resorted to methods of killing criminals which more..

'FCID should treat everyone equally'

June 4 (CT) Minister for Social Services, Welfare and Livestock Development and UNP frontbencher, P. Harrison who hails from the Anuradhapura District is all geared up for the general election. He is also positioned in the most ideal ministry to help the voters in his district. The ministry deals with welfare services, aid to kidney patients in the area and develops livestock, benefits needed by voters in the Anuradhapura District. more..

Women & transitional justice processes in SL

June 4 (GV) During a recent conversation about campaigns to eliminate violence against women, and the participation and role of women working at the community level in these campaigns, particularly their ability to influence and shape the form and manner of these initiatives, a friend, who for many years has worked on issues of violence and justice, mentioned she was concerned about what is represented and what is made invisible in the narratives about these campaigns. more..

Plantation Community: A status revisit

June 4 (GV) Disenfranchisement of the Indian Origin plantation workforce in the year 1948 after independence stalled the development of the ‘plantation community’ (PC) in contrast to other communities in the country. Memoirs and research papers on labour movement and Trade union struggle of Plantation workforce is not new and many have attempted to describe the disenfranchisement of the PC and its impact for years. Basic human needs were at a distant more..

Kusal Perera a very special cricketer

June 3 (NS) It is nearly four years since Sanath Jayasuriya played his last game for Sri Lanka against England at the Oval ending a glittering career that was capped with a World Cup win in 1996. The past two years has seen a cricketer almost in the Jayasuriya mould hammering the bowlers to all parts of the outfield and playing shots reminiscent of the Master Blaster himself. Kusal Janith Perera has all the makings of another more..

Editorial: Idiot Box monsters

June 4 (Island) It is said that if one is to survive, let alone achieve great heights, in the film/tele-drama industry, one should be biddable and beddable however talented one may be. Now, no less a person than Media Minister Gayantha Karunatileka informs us that sexual bribes had to be given for prime-time slots to be allocated for soap operas aired by the govt-controlled television stations under the previous regime. Critics averse to the proliferation of third rate soap operas more..

Kotakethana murders and their aftermath

June 4 (Island) The people of Kahawatta were traumatized and reviled at the acquittal of three suspects who had been indicted by the AG for the murder of two women, Liyanagahahevage Premawathie (63) and her daughter H. P. Kumari (23), on OR ABOUT the 17th of June 2012, at a place called Kotakethana in Kahawatta. The reason for such mayhem and agitation was that, in or about that time, when this double murder took place, there were serial killings of women in Kahawatta. more..

Rhodes sees Test role for Mubarak the fielder

June 4 (CI) Jehan Mubarak's fielding has caught the eye of former South Africa batsman Jonty Rhodes, who is in Sri Lanka to conduct a 10-day training camp. Rhodes has been training national A team and U-19 players, and said Mubarak could be an asset to Sri Lanka in the field in the upcoming Test series against Pakistan. Mubarak, 34, hasn't played a Test since 2007, but is in firm contention for a place in the squad more..

Sri Lanka bourse improves online services for investors, listed firms

June 4 (EN) Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) plans to introduce more online services to give easier and quicker access to both investors and Sri Lankan listed companies, its Chief Executive Rajiva Bandaranaike said. One measure is enabling investors to make applications for new shares online, he told a news conference held to outline the CSE’s strategy for the next three years. “We’re hoping to facilitate introducing initial public offer (IPOs) applications using the internet so that more..

National Nutrition Month celebrated on a grand scale in Kalmunai

June 4 (CT) National Nutrition Month declared by the Ministry of Health was celebrated in Deegawapiya Health Centre, coming under the purview of Addalaichenai MOH Office in the Kalmunai Regional Directorate of Health Services, in an impressive manner on Monday. The programme organized by the Kalmunai Regional Director of Health Services in collaboration with the Medical Officers of Health assisted by the Midwives of the area & Grama Niladharies commenced with more..

SL Athletics in chaos: IAAF doesn't recognize the present officials of AASL

June 4 (CT) The sports election saga took another turn yesterday as the world governing body of International Athletics 'IAAF' sent an email to its local body stating that the IAAF does not recognize the present office-bearers. According to the email sent from IAAF to Athletics Association of SL (AASL), the world governing body had asked to conduct an election according to their constitution without political involvement, as they do not more..