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Wimal predicts govt won’t last until 2020

Oct 2 (CT) Leader of the NFF and UPFA Colombo District MP, Wimal Weerawansa has always been either a vociferous supporter or critic of some cause. In an interview with Ceylon Today the MP said he, along with his party, would not belong to the UPFA as long as President Maithripala Sirisena holds the mantle. He added that he will form a new alliance in the near future to keep the international forces away from Sri Lanka. more..

When genocide became just horrific crimes

Oct 2 (SL) By declaring both in the national Parliament and at the informal member-discussions on the US draft resolution at Geneva, Sri Lanka has shown near-unanimity in rejecting UNHRC probe’s core recommendation on setting up a domestic hybrid court with international judges to probe war crimes and accountability issues. With this one stroke, the new, western-friendly govt of President Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has demonstrated that on core issues of more..

Death penalty or right to life?

Oct 2 (SL) With the increasing number of murders, sexual offences and drug smuggling in the nation, President Sirisena recently spoke of re-introducing the capital punishment with the approval of parliament in a bid to eradicate these crimes. Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said the govt was willing to implement the death penalty if it was necessary to avert the increasing trend in serious crimes in the nation and stressed the need to expedite investigations and punish offenders. more..

Capital Punishment Vs. Stronger Systems

Oct 2 (SL) Public platforms around the country have been dominated in the recent weeks by the debate over whether or not the country should re-introduce the death penalty. The issue of the death penalty arose in the past couple of weeks following the abduction and gruesome murder of Seya Sadewmini, a 4-year-old child from Kotadeniyawa. Upon learning of child’s abduction, residents in the area immediately took to more..

Editorial: Ghosts, ahoy!

Oct 2 (Island) If there is anything outstanding about our politicians it is a thumping bill. Minister Susil Premajayantha has got into hot water over an unpaid bill for presidential election advertising on the state-owned ITN during his tenure as the UPFA General Secretary. Having faced a presidential inquiry, he told the media, that the UPFA had a bank balance of only Rs. 10,000. He added in the same breath that there were ways and means of raising funds for elections. more..

Tough task for Windies in Sri Lanka

Oct 2 (DN) Once the most dominant force in world cricket, the West Indies team arrived in the country yesterday, hoping to put aside their on and off field controversies and to redeem some of their lost prestige during the series against Sri Lanka. West Indies led by Jason Holder will start their 44 day tour with a three-day fixture against the SL Board President's XI on Oct 8, at the SSC ground. The first Test will be played from Oct 14-18 at the Galle International Stadium. more..

US Green Card lottery program begins

Oct 2 (CG) The US Embassy in Colombo today announced the start of the 2017 Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program. Also known as the Green Card Lottery, the program will be open for on-line registration from Oct 1, 2015 to Nov 3, 2015. The Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery allows randomly selected applicants the opportunity to interview for an immigrant visa, and if qualified, become legal permanent residents of the US. more..

SLPA junks attempt to manage e-junk

Oct 2 (Island) Since Nov 2012, the Sri Lanka Ports Authority is said to have ignored an attempt made by an e-waste management company to obtain the official junk-licence required by the company to enter the Colombo Port and collect e-waste from ships calling at the Port of Colombo despite the fact that there is a demand from the ships to turn over their e-waste for recycling. This was revealed during the Doing Business forum presided over by Minister Ravi Karunanayake at MILODA, more..

Upul allowed to go abroad

Oct 2 (DM) Hambantota District Provincial Councillor D.V. Upul who was charged with threatening FCID officers in a speech made by him, was today allowed by a Colombo Magistrate, to go abroad upon furnishing a surety bond of Rs 500.000. He was earlier charged with making a threatening speech on May 31 this year stating that officers of the FCID should be stoned to death. Yesterday when the case was called before Colombo Chief Magistrate Gihan Pilapitiya, the Counsel who appeared for more..

CB confirms 5 foreign banks to enter SL

Oct 2 (FT) Central Bank confirmed that five foreign banks will make an entry into the country’s financial industry in the near future. “We have received five applications seeking approval to commence foreign banking operations in Sri Lanka,” CB Governor Arjuna Mahendran said. The recent developments took place in the country’s political and economic arena has created a surge of interest from foreign businesses that more..

Hosts look to experiment with bowling

Oct 2 (Island) Sri Lanka Under-19 will look to experiment with their bowlers when they face Pakistan Under-19 in two three-day matches starting in Hambantota on Sunday. While two lower division bowlers, namely spinner Lakshan Fernando (De La Salle) and paceman Dilshan Sandaruwan (Rahula, Matara) have been picked for both matches, the rest of the bowling department will change for the two matches. Spinners Thilan Nimesh (Prince of Wales) and Nishan Pieris (St. Peter’s, Negombo) more..

Framing a new Constitution: Avoid hidden tyranny of democracy

Oct 2 (Island) What happened in the past offers a lesson for the current dispensation in its effort to formulate a new Constitution. That is that the participation of sitting MPs in the formulation process is bound to distort it in the clash of their private interests with those of the public. This could happen by elimination or inclusion of provisions that upstage the interests of the legislators over those of the citizens, as the former become judges in their own cause. more..

Govt plans to intervene in tea prices with purchases of Rs300mn

Oct 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s plantation ministry said that it plans to buy tea worth 300 million rupees from the auction to artificially raise the price of tea with savings from the money that govt subsided for tea small holders. “We have passed this proposal to ministry of economic affairs and policy which is under the PM,” minister Navin Dissanayake, said. “The guaranteed price of 80 rupees per kilogram of green leaf more..

Special dress for prisoners during PT

Oct 2 (DM) Prisons Commissioner Rohana Pushpakumara said today they were considering to introduce a new dress, a T-shirt and a track bottom to the prisoners when they engage in physical training activities during rehabilitation programmes. Mr. Pushpakumara said the decision was taken as the prisoners find it difficult to engage in physical training with the traditional dress jumper worn by them. “We have discussed the possibility of changing the prison uniform when more..

Big draw for SL Investor Forum in Tokyo

Oct 2 (FT) Sri Lanka Investor Forum organised by NWS Holdings, in Tokyo, Japan on Monday has drawn widespread interest, with record investor participation. This is the sixth road show and investor forum organised by NWS Holdings, but this year, the response has been overwhelming thanks to support from the Japanese officials as well as SL Embassy in Japan. “We are expecting around 300 Japanese investors who have actually invested in Lankan Govt securities (Treasury Bonds) and more..

Tourists replace rebels as Sri Lanka national park blooms

Oct 2 (AFP) Lokaiya Peremadasa shudders as he recalls the havoc Tamil rebels used to wreak on his beloved wildlife park during Sri Lanka’s brutal 37-year-long civil war. “They would come down and shoot the animals,” the guide told AFP, his jeep bouncing around on the bumpy dirt tracks of Yala National Park in the island’s south. The 48-year-old tells how he even came under fire himself, while wildlife spotting in Sri Lanka’s more..

Mitsubishi-SINGER showcase ‘World class air-conditioners’

Oct 2 (Island) Up-scaling the central and split-type air-conditioning business to be one of the top 7 product lines of the company, Singer Sri Lanka PLC, entered into a partnership with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries - Mahajak Air Conditioners Co., Ltd. at a gala launch ceremony held at the Kingsbury in Colombo on Wednesday. This move will help SINGER consolidate its market leadership in the air-conditioning industry; serving both retail and commercial establishments of all sizes more..

Frontier Markets: A new Sri Lankan investment opportunity

Oct 2 (NASDAQ) The other day, I received a call from a couple of fund managers in Sri Lanka, Tharanga Gamage and Asanth Sebastian of Arpico Ataraxia who had read an article I had written about their country and wanted to add a little color. As I was talking with them, I could hear in their voices the excitement that seems to overtaken the country, especially after the recent parliamentary elections. Back in January of 2015 in the Presidential election, the then president Rajapaksa was defeated more..

Courts to be moved against JVP member’s appointment to CC

Oct 2 (Island) The Opposition intends to move court against the appointment of JVP MP Vijitha Herath to the Constitutional Council without consulting members of parliament except those representing the UNP and the TNA. The UNP parliamentary group comprises 106 members, including 13 National List nominees. In addition to them, one member elected on the SLMC ticket sits with the ruling party group. more..

NCP Governor collapses

Oct 2 (CT) Governor of the North Central Province (NCP) P.B. Dissanayake was admitted to the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital yesterday after he had fallen to the ground unconscious while addressing a national function held to commemorate the Elders Day at an Elders Home in Saliyapura, Anuradhapura. After the conclusion of his speech, the Governor had collapsed on to the stage and was immediately taken to the hospital where he was subjected to a CT Scan. more..

Risk of landslide on Southern Expressway

Oct 2 (DM) The National Building Research Organisation (NBRO) today warned that there was a risk of landslide near the 114th km post on the Southern Expressway between Imaduwa and Kokmaduwa due to the adverse weather prevailing in the Southern Province. NBRO Landslide Research and Risk Management Division head R.M.S. Bandara advised motorists to take care when close to the 114th km post. “We have already informed the RDA about the situation more..

'Implementing UNHRC recommendations problematic'

Oct 2 (DM) The implementation of the UNHRC, recommendations including the establishment of a war crimes tribunal, would create many legal issues in the country’s judicial system, as a new Constitution and a referendum would be required to implement the recommendations, the SLFP said today. SLFP's senior vice president, Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said the highest court in Sri Lanka was the Supreme Court and more..

Telecommunication Levy Act (amendment) Bill challenged

Oct 2 (DN) A Special Determination petition challenging the proposed Bill which envisages to amend the Telecommunication Levy Act was filed before Supreme Court seeking a declaration that the Bill shall become law only trough a two-thirds majority in Parliament and the approval of the people at a referendum. This special determination petition was filed by MEP Vice Chairman Somaweera Chandrasiri. The petitioner stated that the Bill titled "Telecommunication Levy more..

Sri Lanka presents formal bid to hold SNAV Congress 2016

Oct 2 (DM) Backed by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) and Embassy of Sri Lanka in Paris, the Sri Lanka Convention Bureau (SLCB) made a formal presentation of Sri Lanka’s bid to hold SNAV (Syndicat national des agents de voyages – National Travel Agents Association of France) Congress in Sri Lanka in 2016 to SNAV President Jean Pierre Mas. The event took place at the Sri Lanka stand at IFTM (Top Resa) travel fair currently taking place in Paris from Sept 29. more..

Wide ranging talks with Japanese Emperor, PM, during PM Ranil’s visit

Oct 2 (Island) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe is scheduled to arrive here on Saturday on a five day official visit, which includes an audience with Emperor Akihito and wide ranging talks with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe. Cathay Pacific flight CX 508 carrying the PM and his entourage is expected to land at the Osaka Kansai Airport around 3 p.m. Kyoto is a city located in the central part of the island of Honshu, Japan. more..

SLMC, TNA must honour their promises

Oct 2 (CT) SLMC and TNA should not become double barrel guns without cartridges as the opportunity has come for them to work to achieve a political solution for the grievances of Muslim and Tamil communities, Eastern Province Minister M.S. Uthumalebbe, said, addressing an event held in Batticaloa. Referring to the speech made by the Provincial Minister of Agriculture and the General Secretary of the ITAK K.Thurairajasingham at the recent EPC monthly meeting more..

Video of two men assualting girl goes viral

Oct 2 (DM) A video showing two youths assaulting a young woman mercilessly has been going viral on Facebook since this evening. The reason for the assault is not clear, but it seems that these young men and the woman had gone on a picnic together and some incident had led to this assault. If information is made available regarding this incident, the authorities could be made aware and action taken. Young woman, victim of the assault is seen falling unconscious at the end of the video. more..

'Police beat me; took nude photos of me'

Oct 2 (DM) "After being held at the Kotadeniyawa police station for three days, I was beaten and accused of committing this crime. They later took photos of me in the nude,” said the schoolboy who was discharged after being on remand for 12 days on suspicion of having killed Seya Sadevmi. After he was disharged by Court he made this revelation. “On Wednesday (16) four policemen came to my home. more..

Sri Lanka agrees to give powers as per 13A

Oct 2 (ENS) The UNHRC adopted a resolution on Thursday calling for international judges and lawyers to be part of a war crimes probe in Sri Lanka. While the resolution included measures for rehabilitation and bringing perpetrators of war crimes to justice, it also spoke of the other side. Not to forget the human rights violations perpetrated by the LTTE, the resolution said that accountability and reconciliation mechanisms should cover the doings of the LTTE also. more..

New urban agglomeration emerging in southern Sri Lanka

Oct 2 (EN) Sri Lankan cities are more liveable than others in south Asia but it has the fastest urbanisation rate with new agglomerations emerging in southern Galle – Matara in addition to the existing one around Colombo, World Bank said. “We begin to see in Sri Lanka not only the growth of individual cities but multi-city agglomerations,” said Ede Jorge Ijjasz-Vasquez, senior director of the World Bank. Cities are being connected with ribbon growth along road connections between cities, more..

'MR’s failure to address int’l concerns no reason for external intervention'

Oct 2 (Island) PHU Leader Udaya Gammanpila said that failures and shortcomings on the part of the previous govt in handling accountability issues was not the reason for external intervention by way of a hybrid court to inquire into alleged atrocities committed during the conflict. The military had brought the war to a successful conclusion in May 2009 and since then, the US had moved three resolutions more..

Children have virtue of trusting faith, don’t let them down

Oct 2 (DM) The well-known American anthropologist Margaret Mead has said children must be taught how to think, not what to think. According to Russian philosopher and journalist Fyodor Dostoyevsky, the soul is healed by being with children. Coming closer home Mahatma Gandhi, the apostle of non-violence, has told us that if we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children. more..

Policemen are not different human beings

Oct 2 (DM) I was flagged down by two traffic cops somewhere down South last week for speeding. I was pretty sure I was running below 60 as I was blocked by two three-wheelers in front of me. But the cop showed me 76 on the screen of his old speedometer which could have been at least two decades old. I had a good case to argue, but would I be successful? I decided to compromise. Instead of writing the charge sheet, one cop started more..

Wildlife minister orders multiple probes to clean up zoo

Oct 2 (ST) Wildlife Minister Gamini Jayawickrama Perera has ordered National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwala zoo) authorities to take action within two months to address a string of short comings. The order was given following an eight-hour inspection tour by the Minister and his officials on Thursday. “I have received complaints from the people, environmentalist and several organisations about the lack of facilities, the health of more..

Battle by committed docs against dreaded diabetes to begin

Oct 2 (ST) Meticulous plans have been drawn up and the stage set with many firsts by a group of committed doctors to battle the stranglehold that endocrine diseases and diabetes is gaining over Sri Lanka. The 7th annual academic sessions of the Endocrine Society of Sri Lanka (ESSL) will be inaugurated with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as chief guest and Prof. Susan Davis, a world renowned Consultant more..

CaFFE, CHR call for release of findings of Udalagama, Paranagama Commissions

Oct 2 (Island) CaFFE and CHR have requested the govt to release the reports of the Udalagama and Paranagama Commissions on alleged human rights violations in Sri Lanka, as has been promised. The two organisations, making an open request from President Sirisena, said the best way to open a dialogue on alleged human rights violations during the Rajapaksa Regime is to publicise the Udalagama and Paranagama more..

Helicopter joy rides for all on World Tourism Day celebrated at Arugambay

Oct 2 (DM) An unprecedented crowd from all parts of the East including the tourists from various countries thronged to the tourist resort of Arugambay to see for themselves and enjoy in taking part in the Special helicopter Tour (Joy rides) flying over the natural beauties of Arugambay, Tourism's attractive spots and places of historic importance were the highlights of the World Tourism Day which coincided with the Hadjj Festival more..

Genuine GoSL cooperation needed to implement resolution: GTF

Oct 2 (Island) Global Tamil Forum (GTF) President Rev. Father S.J. Emmanuel said that the success of the process would largely depend on the Sri Lankan govt’s genuine readiness to cooperate. Rev. Father Emmanuel has sent us the following statement: "We give a cautious but hopeful welcome to this Resolution. We thank the High Commissioner and his team for the Report – a historic document in promoting Truth, more..

UNHRC resolution: Academics stress need from learning from South Africa, Cambodia

Oct 2 (Island) A group of Sri Lankan academics has, in a letter to President Sirisena, PM Wickremesinghe, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Bin Ra’ad, Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan and Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera on the UNHRC resolution on Sri Lanka, stressed the need for learning from the experience of the countries such as South Africa and Cambodia and more..

At U.N. Assembly, Sri Lankan leader aims to lift country’s stature

Oct 2 (NYT) Nine months after he was elected to bridge bitter ethnic divisions at home, Sri Lanka’s president, Maithripala Sirisena, spent the better part of this week in New York trying to reassert his country’s place in the world. On Monday, he offered five infantry battalions for UN peacekeeping missions, a gesture that was welcomed at a summit meeting chaired by President Obama. That was in sharp contrast to more..