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Law entrance dispute: SC grants candidates’ petition special leave

Oct 13 (Island) Supreme Court recently granted special leave to a petition of appeal filed by twenty one students who sat the Law College entrance examination, hoping to enter Law College for the academic year 2014. They have appealed against a Court of Appeal Judgment which refused to issue notice on the Attorney General, the Incorporated Council for Legal Education and connected authorities. The petitioner students have complained that they scored 64 to 65 marks. more..

New traffic plan in Rajagiriya a success: DIG

Oct 13 (CT) The new traffic plan that was implemented in the areas surrounding Rajagiriya has proven to be a success according to DIG Amarasiri Senaratne of the Motor Traffic and Road Safety. Traffic DIG Senaratne said, while the new traffic plan around Rajagiriya was a success, the Police have yet to monitor the traffic area around Maharagama to gauge its success. However, the public feedback regarding the traffic in and around Maharagama is not positive. more..

Cairn India to exit Sri Lankan block

Oct 13 (PTI) Cairn India will by month end exit its Sri Lankan gas block after two discoveries it had made were found to be commercially unviable. Cairn, whose main asset are the oilfields in Barmer district of Rajasthan, will relinquish the 2,912 sq km block SL-2007-01-001 in the Mannar basin after expiry of exploration period at end of October, sources privy to the development said. Company has so far drilled four wells on the block more..

280 docs ignore PSC approved transfer orders

Oct 13 (Island) Govt Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) yesterday urged the doctors who had failed to take up their annual transfer orders to comply without further delay. Addressing the media at the OPA building, GMOA Secretary, Dr. Nalinda Herath said the number of doctors who had failed to accept their annual transfers had reached 280. They had been given transfers according to the Annual transfer lists (2012 to 2014) approved by the Public Service Commission (PSC). more..

NPC members stage fast backing Tamil prisoners

Oct 13 (CG) Northern Provincial Council (NPC) members staged a fast in Jaffna today backing the Tamil political prisoners who had launched a hunger strike yesterday. NPC Chairman CVK Sivagnanam as well as TNA and EPDP members of the NPC took part in the fast. Tamil political prisoners at key prisons around the country began a fast unto death on Monday, demanding their release. Prisons Department said that Tamil political prisoners at the Welikada prison were among those who more..

Video: Will continue to eradicate drug trafficking: Ruwan

Oct 13 (DM) State Minister of Defence, Ruwan Wijewardene today said Sri Lanka would continue working with countries in the Indian Ocean Region and the Global Maritime Crimes Programme of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to eradicate drug trafficking and maritime crimes from the region. At a Colombo meeting organised by the UNODC and the Ministry of Defence and attended by Senior Drug Enforcement Officials of more..

Indian Ocean Region’s Senior Drug Enforcement Officials meet in Colombo

Oct 13 (GDI) The Meeting of Senior Drug Enforcement Officials of the Indian Ocean Region commenced under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena today at the Taj Samudra Hotel in Colombo. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Global Maritime Crime Programme (GMCP) and the Ministry of Defence co-host the Meeting held from 13-15 Oct 2015. Over 60 delegates at the level of the head or deputy head from 21 countries in the Indian Ocean region more..

Demo in France by former detainees: TNA

Oct 13 (DM) TNA said that last Friday's demonstration in France against a meeting between its MPs and TELO provincial councillors, was carried out by some of those who had been harassed while being detained in TELO camps in the 1990s. TNA MPs Selvam Adaikalanathan, A.K. Kodiswaran, Northern Provincial Councillor M.K. Sivajilingam and Eastern Provincial Councillor Kovinthan Karunakarum of TELO had attended the meeting held at a restaurant in La Chapelle, Paris. more..

SL loses two outstanding Tamil leaders

Oct 13 (ENS) Within the last two days, Tamils in Sri Lanka have lost two of their outstanding leaders, who had toiled for them tirelessly in a non-militant Gandhian way. Dr. S.A. David, a Gandhian social worker who was known as Gandhiyam David died in Kilinochchi on Sunday, aged 92. On Tuesday, the community lost K.Velayutham, a trade union leader and former Plantation Industries Minister, best known for getting for estate more..

Development or Destruction

Oct 14 (CT) Since Vas go De Gama attacked and took over the peaceful international Spice market in Calicut , Asia embarked on five centuries of violence and subjugation that continues to this date. At the time 50% of the worlds GDP was of India and China. Today the joint percentage of GDP is about 20% after the recent increase in economic activity china vastly improving its status to 16% but with a greatly increased environmental damage that was not evident then. more..

Compassion for a few, gallows for the rest

Oct 14 (CT) Impatience is a luxury victims of state violence can ill afford. The state is often the victor; and victors hold the pen. They write the story. They define it for posterity. In 2015, Miriam Gebhardt did the unthinkable. Her book, When the Soldiers Came, claimed that American soldiers raped thousands of women during the Allied occupation of Germany following the Second World War. The claim was largely based on records meticulously kept by Bavarian priests. more..

Airtel to ring greater success with the Youth

Oct 14 (FT) It’s been just two-and-a-half months since Jinesh Hegde took over as CEO of Bharti Airtel Sri Lanka, but he has already covered a greater part of Sri Lanka to engage with his superhero employees. Working shoulder to shoulder with them and even dancing to local tunes with those who work on ground at road shows, Jinesh has been very busy to bring Bharti Airtel Sri Lanka to a commanding position. more..

Justice lynched

Oct 14 (NS) The blame, if one is tuned into social media punditry, is on two entities: the police and the media (mainstream, of course). The police and the media not only raped and murdered a 5 year old girl again and again and again, but together they also lynched a whole bunch of suspects who, as the adage goes, have to be considered innocent until proven guilty. There’s media and there’s media, both mainstream and social. Different ways, different audiences, different alibis and excuses, more..

Consumer given the pre-Budget hatchet!

Oct 14 (NS) It’s that time of year again when the State’s fiscal back-room boys have for months been burning the midnight oil. They have all been busy, computing and totting up the checks and balances before the Government opens up the nation’s accounts for everyone to see. You may have guessed by now what it’s all about. The days are getting shorter as the fiscal winds will soon be blowing in the National Budget 2016 to be tabled in Parliament on November 20. more..

'Work or be replaced'

Oct 14 (CT) State Minister for Labour, Ravindra Samaraweera is in a quandary as to how one would balance worker rights and employer needs. He stressed that if we do not get people in the country to work more, the day where we would have to look for migrants to take our place won't be far away. Q: Plantation workers have started agitating for an increase in their basic salary which is at Rs 450 per day at the moment. more..

Collecting revenue, govt way

Oct 14 (Island) The present govt has, since last January when it took office, used all the wrong imagery in relation to govt finances. The interim budget of February was hailed as a Robin Hood budget where money would be taken from the rich and distributed to the poor. And indeed the interim budget did make some revenue proposals which resembled what the legendary Robin Hood did – take money from the rich and distribute to the poor. All those who owned mansions over more..

Ranil’s salvo targets our diplomats

Oct 14 (ST) While it could be anticipated that the PM would chose India for his first official visit, the intriguing question was where he would go next. Would he turn west or east? As it happened he turned east but not to visit China, as many expected but to Japan, a country with which Ranil Wickremesinghe’s UNP has had historic and close relations. His uncle J.R. Jayewardene, then finance minister representing Ceylon at the post-World War Two San Francisco peace conference, more..

It's not about sex, it's about rights

Oct 14 (SO) Sex workers in Sri Lanka face a constant risk of abuse. This is not news. Nor is it news that they are an extremely marginalized group of people, frequently forced to live outside the law. But when a group of them get together to fight for their rights, it becomes a sit-up-and-take-note kind of news byte, not so much because human rights of the sex workers is something that has been accepted and more..

Editorial: Yahapalana kick

Oct 14 (Island) Four religious dignitaries, representing Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and Christians, have moved the Supreme Court against a govt decision to facilitate the proliferation of toddy taverns in Colombo. They want a recently published gazette to that effect cancelled. Whether the arguments in their petition against the govt move stand up to judicial scrutiny or not remains to be seen. After all, that is a matter best left to the learned judges. more..

Chinese corporate to inject US $ 75 m here

Oct 14 (CT) Chuanglong International Agricultural Equipment Co. Ltd of China will shortly inject US $ 75 Million into an agricultural equipment manufacturing facility in Sri Lanka which will manufacture for both local and export markets. This company, which will bring the investment here as a 100% Foreign Direct Investment, will manufacture a series of agricultural equipment which will be in a factory in Anuradhapura, the heartland of Sri Lanka's agriculture, President of the Sri Lanka-China more..

Expectations from Budget 2016

Oct 14 (NS) As Sri Lanka gears up for its next budget proposals, the business and corporate community have already begun to come up with suggestions, concerns and proposals that could help create a wholesome strategy for the next year. Govt announced that it would present the budget proposals for 2016 on Nov 20. Even though the upcoming budget will not be the first time where Minister Ravi Karunanayake would be more..

Increased taxation vital to decrease fiscal deficit

Oct 14 (ST) The sudden imposition of excise duties last week was not surprising. The deteriorating fiscal situation this year made such taxation measures inevitable. These unplanned and unimaginative excise duty hikes, together with the finance bills presented to parliament, were financial patchwork for the govt’s fiscal survival. What is needed is not such unplanned taxation to tide over difficulties from time to time but a rational comprehensive taxation system that is capable of more..

Anushka Wijesinha appointed chief economist at Sri Lanka biz chamber

Oct 14 (EN) Ceylon Chamber of Commerce has appointed Anushka Wijesinha, as its chief economist to run its economics intelligence unit. "Joining the Chamber as its new Chief Economist gives a unique opportunity to provide business-relevant insights and guidance from a macroeconomic perspective," said Wijesinha. He said the economics intelligence unit of the chamber will be re-vamped. "The work of the EIU is being realigned to better serve the country’s economic development more..

She made her father exchange his bed for kennel

Oct 14 (DN) A 42-year-old mother of two in Panchapitiya, Kengalle who allegedly ill treated her aged father by confining him to a kennel while allowing her pedigreed dogs to enjoy all comforts including her beds was arrested by Police. The woman whose husband and mother were abroad, lived with her two children and 73-year-old father. She had said she confined the father to the kennel because he used to defecate in the bed & soil more..

Around 70 PHEVs await Custom clearance due to classification issue

Oct 14 (ST) At least 70 Plug in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) have been blocked from clearing by Sri Lanka Customs as it is still to determine specific classification/HS code for those vehicles, motor traders complained. Previously importers who made PHEV custom declarations on the basis of electric car have been permitted to clear PHEVs by paying duty of electric car and keeping a bank guarantee for the difference of duty between and hybrid car and an electric. more..

Tourism: Supply bottlenecks need to be addressed

Oct 14 (CT) Tourism promotion and tourism development need to go hand in hand if the industry is to be successful, market sources said. They should not operate in isolation, the net effect of which would be a huge waste of taxpayers' money, they said. There is no point getting tourists down if they get stranded in national parks because the ticket seller is absent, they said. This has been the recent experience of tourists visiting the Horton Plains National Park, the sources said. more..

Govt wants active private sector role in disaster risk reduction

Oct 14 (FT) Govt reiterated the importance of getting private sector participation in disaster management, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction to drive the country for prosperity and development. Addressing a gathering to mark the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015 in Colombo, yesterday, Disaster Management Minister Anura Priadarshana Yapa said that Govt was always prepared to more..

Japan to boost northern agri sector

Oct 14 (FT) Ambassador of Japan Kenichi Suganuma said that the Japanese Govt would like to extend its investment into agriculture development of Northern Sri Lanka. He noted that the Embassy of Japan has already cooperated with the Agriculture Department of Jaffna University in order to conduct agriculture development projects in Northern areas. He went on to say that Japanese investments in Sri Lanka would be carried out through official or private investments. more..

Thilanga leads Sri Lanka delegation to IPU

Oct 14 (FT) Deputy Speaker of Parliament Thilanga Sumathipala will lead Sri Lanka’s delegation to the 133rd Inter-Parliamentary Union’s (IPU) Assembly, scheduled to commence on 16 Oct in Geneva, Switzerland. The sessions will end on 21 Oct. MP Ranjith Aluvihare will be the deputy leader of the delegation. Also accompanying the Deputy Speaker will be the Deputy Minister of Petroleum and Hydro Carbon Gases, Anoma Gamage, and MPs Bimal Ratnayake and Shanthi Sriskandarajah. more..

Oil hedging and Greek Bond issues to head matters to be probed by PSC

Oct 14 (Island) The govt has appointed a Parliamentary Select Committee to inquire into the activities of the Central Bank during the last decade. It will probe mainly the oil hedging issue and the Greek Bond issue, which cost the country more than Rs 14 billion. PM Ranil Wickremesinghe informed parliament last week that a committee has been appointed to probe many issues relating to the Central Bank, including more..

President meets Sri Lanka Press Institute representatives

Oct 14 (PMD) A group of representatives of Sri Lanka Press Institute held a special discussion with President Maithripala today (13) at the Presidential Secretariat. Attention was paid on the actions to be taken to strengthen the self regulation process of the media. Minister Mass Media Gayantha Karunathilaka and the Secretary to the Ministry Vajira Narampanava, Chairman of Wijaya Newspapers Ranjith Wijeywardena, Managing Director of Upali Group, Nimal Welgama, more..

China, Taiwan to set up mobile plants here

Oct 14 (DN) Two leading global mobile manufacturers from China and Taiwan have shown interest to set up smart phone and tab manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka. Minister Harin Fernando said that the govt plans to increase the ICT usage in the country and hopes to offer tabs at affordable rates to public. “The govt plans to offer around one million tablets under Rs. 10,000 each,” he said addressing the e Health Asia 2015 conference more..

SL-India power project to get green nod soon

Oct 14 (Hindu) Decks will be cleared soon for the take off of the 500MW Sampoor thermal power project, a joint venture involving Sri Lanka and India, with Central Environmental Authority (CEA) moving closer to giving much-needed environmental clearance. “At present, the evaluation committee is scrutinising a report on environment impact assessment (EIA). As soon as it is over, our Board of Directors will take a look at the matter, more..

Police take over probe into Avant Garde

Oct 14 (CG) The police have taken over investigations into the Avant Garde vessel after the Navy filed a complaint in Galle today. ASP Ruwan Gunasekera said that the Navy had filed the complaint with the Galle harbour police. He said that as a result of the complaint the Galle DIG has initiated investigations over the vessel. The vessel was said to have been carrying 816 T-56 weapons and over 200,000 bullets at the time it was seized by the Navy when it entered SL waters off Galle. more..

Code of conduct for MPs soon: Speaker

Oct 14 (DM) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya is reported to have told a delegation of civil society representatives that he would introduce a Code of Conduct for MPs soon. He said this when the March-12 Movement, a collective of civil society groups met him. PAFFREL Executive Director Rohana Hettiarachchi said the movement commended the Speaker on his decision to allow the live telecast of parliamentary sessions. He said that the Speaker prepare the Code of Conduct for MPs soon. more..

International mechanism risk remains: JVP

Oct 14 (FT) The JVP yesterday asserted that the risk over the establishment of international mechanisms into war crimes investigation is still remains. Conducting a public lecture called Geneva Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva stressed the resolution co-sponsored by the US and Sri Lanka, which passed in the UNHRC, at Geneva is calling for a special consultancy office more..

Sri Lanka arrests 24 fishermen

Oct 14 (Hindu) 24 more Indian fishermen were arrested by the Sri Lanka Coast Guard and Navy near Talaimannar on Monday night for allegedly entering territorial waters of Sri Lanka and fishing illegally. Four fishing boats have been impounded. With this, the number of arrested fishermen has gone up to 78 and that of impounded boats to 38. On the eve of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe’s visit to India a month ago, 16 Indian fishermen were released by the Sri Lankan authorities. more..

Electric vehicle registrations soar to all time high in September; Leaf leads

Oct 14 (EN) Sri Lanka's new electric vehicle (EV) registrations hit a new high of 471 units in September 2015, up from just 15 units a year earlier, including a number of upmarket and super performance vehicles, an analysis of vehicle registry data shows. Among the EVs registered in September were three BMW I3s, two Mercedes Benz B class vehicles and four super performance Tesla electric cars, an analysis of Sri Lanka's vehicle registry data by JB Stockbrokers shows. more..

'Hitherto unknown war crimes witnesses likely to testify before proposed court'

Oct 14 (Island) Attorney-at-law J. C. Weliamuna says some of those who complained regarding accountability issues here to UNSG Ban Ki-moon’s Panel of Experts (PoE) on the condition of anonymity are likely to give evidence before the proposed domestic mechanism with foreign participation. The PoE comprised Marzuki Darusman (Indonesia), Steven Ratner (US) and Yasmin Sooka (South Africa). more..

Certain media took money from Avant Garde

Oct 14 (LT) The revelation he made in Parliament regarding Avant Guarde transaction was not published in most of the media and websites as it had been possible to buy them from Avant Garde money says the Chief Opposition Whip JVP MP Anura Dissanayaka. Mr. Dissanayaka said there should be some sort of interference for his revelation in Parliament not to get even an inch of a column in certain media while certain other media published it as the main item of the day. more..