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Paradise lost, will it be regained?

Oct 25 (FE) There cannot be a better moment for our closest neighbour Sri Lanka where all the planets seem to be smiling in the right houses. Before 1947, the phrase neighbouring country stood for Sri Lanka and, some distance away, Burma. Pakistan and Bangladesh are latter-day neighbours. We had little contact with Bhutan until Jawaharlal Nehru made his famous visit riding on ponies for several days. Nepal was a reclusive kingdom. more..

Red Cross case in Police Chief’s hands

Oct 25 (ST) The case against the Red Cross official accused of soliciting sexual favours from a woman who came to receive tsunami housing aid now rests with the Police Chief, although the official has been cleared by an internal investigation. Law and Order Ministry Secretary Jagath Wijeweera said the documents relating to the complaint against the Sri Lanka Red Cross technical officer had been forwarded to the IGP for further action. more..

A Rs 1.35 trillion hole in the Budget

Oct 25 (Island) The govt has tabled estimates of expenditure for 2016, the first reading of the Budget, and a short summary dated 9 October is available on the Finance Ministry website (Appropriation Bill for year 2016 approved by the Cabinet of Ministers). A deficit of Rs 1.35 trillion (million-million) is expected; at 11.8% of GDP this is appalling! The number is so large that it is more comprehensible in dollars - $ 9.51 billion at Rs 142 to a $. The job of finance minister Ravi Karunanayake and more..

Sir Cyril de Zoysa: His Foresight and His Services

Oct 25 (Island) Among the great lay Buddhist leaders born in Sri Lanka Sir Cyril indeed commands a unique place, and this, for no other reason but for the invaluable services he rendered to the Sambuddha Sasana and the Sinhala community. His services were not confined to any one single arena. It is my conviction that the reach of the call that steered him from the past to the present and from the present to the future remained equally steady. Among the unsurpassed services he has rendered, his efforts to preserve and conserve the Kalutara Bodhi have earned a very special place. more..

Vasudeva Nanayakkara

Persistent rain wipes out fourth day

Oct 25 (CI) Persistent rain forced the umpires to abandon the fourth day of the second Test at the P Sara Oval in Colombo at 3pm local time. The morning session was scheduled to start at 9.45am, after the final session on the third day was washed out, but a steady rain, to add to overnight showers, meant that no play was possible at all. Chasing 244 for their first win in Sri Lanka, West Indies had lost Kraigg Brathwaite lbw to Dhammika Prasad for 3, minutes before rain forced an early end more..

Open School Unit of National Institute of Education bags UNESCO -2015 Literacy Award

Oct 25 (Island) Since 1967, UNESCO has offered an annual award with the objective of encouraging production of innovative programs in literacy at international level. Sri Lanka was among the 63 countries that applied for this prestigious award for 2015. It was the Open Schools Unit of the National Institute of Education, Maharagama that made this application on behalf of Sri Lanka. The Unit operates 20 regional centres, both in Sinhala and Tamil mediums, across the country. more..

Mobitel hierarchy at loggerheads within

Oct 25 (ST) There’s trouble brewing at Mobitel with differences breaking out among some of its Board members. Unresolved disputes have pitted a group led by Mobitel Chairman P.G. Kumarasinghe against another which has been protesting against the continued presence of certain officials in senior positions. The problems started several months ago, after the Presidential election, when objections were raised against Mobitel CEO Ranjith Rubasinghe by certain more..

Govt goes to China not forgetting india

Oct 25 (CT) In a week of complex political issues that surrounded the political centre stage, Chinese Port City Project and the Reports from Udalagama and Paranagama featured prominently as firebrand Opposition politician Wimal Weerawansa was nabbed with an invalid passport in the early hours of last Friday, while trying to emplane to Italy. Weerawansa was held by airport authorities until the CID moved into investigate the matter. Weerawansa had produced a lost and found passport to more..

Hoodwinking Tamil Nadu Police, Prabhakaran flees

Oct 25 (CT) Amidst all these development taking place, Prabhakaran neither did forgive Uma Maheswaran nor forget him. Although not a long time passed following the fighting episodes that took place in Madras, such violent activities gradually began to occur in Jaffna. Uma Maheswaran and his supporters were suspected of being behind those increasing numbers of murders committed in Jaffna.On hearing about those murders, Prabhakaran was furious and wowed that he would take revenge for more..

Political killers in Kotakethana

Oct 25 (CT) Continuing our investigation, we were able to discover that the murder spree re-emerged over with the intercession of political figures and the inexorable convalescence of the law enforcement authorities. The villagers of Kahawatte and Kotakethana, living in utter trepidation for their lives, complain about killers who have come back to slaughter and rape the innocents with the blessing of political power-houses. more..

Late Minister Gamini Dissanayake dedicated his life, political career for this country: MS

Oct 25 (ST) Late Minister Gamini Dissanayake dedicated his life and political career for the improvement and betterment of the lives of the people of this country, while showcasing immense talent to discuss and answer questions that arose in Parliament, cordial nature, intelligence and knowledge, said President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday. He made these remarks addressing the gathering at the 21st death anniversary commemoration ceremony of late Minister Dissanayake held yesterday evening more..

Call to appoint Special Commissioner to run KMC

Oct 25 (ST) The Organisation for the Protection of Public Property, in a letter to President Sirisena has requested him to appoint a Presidential Commission to inquire into the workings of the Kandy Municipal Council. They allege over the past few years large-scale corruption has taken place and demand the appointment of a Special Commissioner. The organization alleges that at its last meeting on 14.10.2015, the Council passed resolutions allocating lands to a certain category of more..

‘Tea factory owners come to me when they have problems, but ignore the Ministry when profits soar’

Oct 25 (Island) Plantations Minister, Navin Dissanayake, chief guest at the AGM of the Sri Lanka Tea Factory Owners’ Association, said that as the minister in charge he would do whatever possible to correct the uneven position of poor prices affecting the tea industry. "When things are bad, you come to the government to bail you out, but when you are doing well, you ignore the Ministry. Neither of you in your Association have ever come forward and more..

Bullet Mahinda conducts a surgery in the jungle

Oct 25 (CT) Sira who went with plenty of time in hand, to the marketplace had brought back two or three empty Arrack bottles and several empty cigarette packets and some used Salmon tins which he had gathered from a garbage heap. These were strewn in the jungle some way beyond to indicate that this robbery was not the work of a political group but something carried out by a group of ordinary criminals. The final instructions of being careful not to injure anyone were given. more..

We have the right to fight as happened in Indonesia

Oct 25 (CT) Cross examination of Rohana Wijeweera continued. Chief Justice: You mentioned several armed revolutions which were successful during your fifth lecture. Rohana Wijeweera: Yes, I did mention them. Chief Justice: You mentioned Communist parties in certain countries which succeeded in their revolutions without engaging in violent acts. Rohana Wijeweera: I have said that, Communist Parties in certain countries have come to power peacefully. more..

India offers Sri Lanka Tejas to counter Pakistan’s JF-17

Oct 25 (ENS) India has offered to Sri Lanka its Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) to counter Pakistan’s earlier bid to sell to the island nation its JF-17 fighters developed in collaboration with China, the Colombo-based Sunday Observer says. Independent sources confirmed to Express that both Pakistan and India have made their respective offers in the light of the Sri Lanka Air Force’s bid to replace its ageing Israeli Kfirs and MIG 27s. more..

Pera and Costa Rica Universities join to set up reptile anti-venom plant

Oct 25 (ST) Peradeniya University and the University of Costa Rica are to team up with two international institutes to set up a reptile anti-venom plant costing over a billion rupees in Sri Lanka. Peradeniya University Vice Chancellor Professor Upul Dissanayake said this project is in collaboration with the Institute Clodomiro Picado of the Universtiy of Costa Rica and Anti Venom Research International based in the USA. The anti-venom plant is to be set up with clinical trials more..

Barry school pupils help charity in Sri Lanka

Oct 25 (CT) Barry Comprehensive School teachers Vicci Rowe and Paul Burman along with eight year-12 students, embarked on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Sri Lanka in partnership with the charity Help Lanka. The purpose of the two-week trip was to contribute to bettering communities, in particular those most disadvantaged. Team Lanka 2015 spent weekday mornings teaching at Uggalbodda Primary School and were responsible for delivering lessons to children aged between five and 11 years old. more..

Presidential Task Force for child protection

Oct 25 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena says he would appoint a special Presidential Task Force for the protection of children of the nation. “As a comprehensive social discourse has been raised on the safety and protection of children, the Presidential Task Force will be implemented by engaging it directly. The President made these remarks at the opening ceremony of newly built 3-storied building at Urapola Vidyalaya, more..

Nightclub owner in A’pura murdered

Oct 25 (DM) An owner of a nightclub in Anuradhapura, Wasantha Soyza was stabbed to death by an unidentified gang, who stormed the nightclub last night, police said. Three other persons who were also injured during the attack and are currently receiving treatment at the Anuradhapura teaching hospital. The 57-year-old nightclub owner was also a Karate champion, holding a Guinness Word record of breaking 12 slabs of concrete in one go. Police said that a group of 20 masked more..

Roshana Jalagge appointed as Consul for Sri Lanka in Western Australia

Oct 25 (GDI) Millionaire leading businessman Roshana Jalagge has been appointed as Honorary Consul for Sri Lanka in Western Australia. Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Sri Lanka confirmed the nomination of Rosh Jalagge for the Honorary Consul post. He has been handed over the Letter of Commission by Minister of Foreign Affairs Mangala Samaraweera on 21 October 2015. Jalagge is one of the largest and leading service providers in Western Australia in health sector. more..

Heavy fines coming for Indian poachers: Amendments soon

Oct 25 (ST) Amendments to the Fisheries Act will be introduced soon to impose severe penalties of up to Rs 150 million on foreign fishing vessels poaching in Sri Lanka’s territorial waters, Fisheries Director General said. He said existing laws against poaching were not strong enough. Last week, Cabinet approved a proposal to impose heavy fines on local fishermen, who violate the national jurisdiction of another country and engage in more..

Washout gives Sri Lanka u19 ODI series 3-0

Oct 25 (NS) Sri Lanka won the five-match under 19 limited-over series 3-0 when the fifth and final match against Pakistan was washed out by rain without a ball bowled at the SSC grounds. Sri Lanka won the first, third and fourth matches while the second ended in a no-result due to rain. Sammu Ashan was the leading run scorer for Sri Lanka with 189 runs (avg. 94.50) inclusive of one century while Charith Asalanka and Jehan Daniel captured the most wickets with six (avg 9.83) and five more..

New Zealand A send Sri Lanka A bowlers on a leather hunt

Oct 25 (NS) Sri Lanka A bowlers were sent on a leather hunt by Dean Brownlie and Henry Nicholls who both hit centuries as New Zealand A made a strong reply on the second day of the second 4-day unofficial test played at Lincoln. Reply to Sri Lanka’s first innings of 303, New Zealand finished the day on a healthy 402-3, a lead of 199 with two more days left in the match. Brownlie scored 113 off 151 balls with 12 fours and two sixes and Nicholls was unbeaten on 105 at stumps having hit more..

Mahinda reiterates concerns on Geneva resolution

Oct 25 (CG) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa today reiterated his concerns over the resolution on Sri Lanka adopted at the UNHRC in Geneva recently. Rajapaksa told members of the clergy at the Abeyrama Temple that there are many dangerous operative paragraphs in the resolution, three of which are the most serious and unacceptable. “According to operative paragraph 6 of the Geneva resolution the govt has agreed more..

Yahapâlanaya has betrayed the Muslims

Oct 26 (CT) The Sirisena-Wickremesinghe nexus Govt that the Muslims voted overwhelming (believed to be over 95%) to cause the astonishing regime change from the decade long rule of Mahinda Rajapaksa has totally betrayed the Muslim community by ignoring the plight of the Northern Muslims. These unfortunate IDPs were forcibly evicted from their homes in 1990 by the fascist LTTE with 48 hours notice and in the case of the Jaffna Muslims, it was just a mere two hours notice. more..

Down–to-earth: Hard truths of Eelam war IV

Oct 26 (CT) Guided by a series of studies that I have indulged in over the years 2010-15, let me summarize my findings in point form. The focus is on the period 2008-to-May 2009. However, four facets of the broad historical context must be stressed initially: (I) Prabhâkaran had one goal only: Eelam and a separate state; (II) the LTTE used two ceasefire periods in 1995 and 2001-06 as recuperating periods for renewal of their war effort; (III) as Ben Bavinck and the UTHR reports more..

'Paranagama Report self-contradictory'

Oct 26 (SO) Leader of the EPRLF, and former Jaffna district MP Suresh Premachandran said that the Maxwell Paranagama Commission report that PM Ranil Wickremesinghe tabled in Parliament Tuesday was self-contradictory and held the Sri Lankan army, a responsible state institution, on a par with the LTTE, a militant movement. The next follow up action of the govt on the report would be establishing a judicial more..

Big bribes for customs and Yahapalanaya

Oct 26 (GV) The largest ever bribe in Sri Lanka to date seems that which was offered to three top officials in the Customs Department on 14 Oct, in a place somewhere in Maradana. The Director General of the Commission to Investigate Allegation of Bribery or Corruption (CIABoC) Ms. Dilrukshi Dias Wickramasinghe told media it took three weeks of planning to nab the officers and two more are under investigations. This bribe had initially been fixed for Rs. 150 million. more..

Running in the families, a haal messas’ alliance and a hero’s selfie

Oct 26 (SO) The minor political parties who cling to the UPFA tag in the Opposition are now holding discussions to form what they call a grand coalition for the Local Govt elections in March. They had originally hoped to get the former king as their vote-catching king-pin but they seem to be failing in this desperate move to prop up their political future. Apparently, the former king has shied away from this haal messa alliance and now the lion cub of Boralugoda is entrusted with more..

'Govt not taken decision on UNHRC resolution'

Oct 26 (SL) Several opposition members in parliament last week called for a referendum to decide on the judiciary mechanism proposed by the UNHRC resolution. Speaking to The Sunday Leader, Minister of Law and Order and Prison Reforms Thilak Janaka Marapona said the govt has not yet taken a firm decision as to how they would implement the UN resolution and whether a referendum is necessary. more..

Time for a bright new start between Sri Lanka and Canada

Oct 26 (Island) Stephen Harper, too, has lost power in Canada after holding on to power for nine long years. Routed by the young Justin Trudeau, Leader of the Liberal Party, Harper seem to have lost it all though he is only fifty six years of age unlike Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is nearing seventy. Will Harper make a political comeback as Mahinda, who is still in active politics. What happened to him in my view and what made him support the pro LTTE diaspora later, talk tough on human rights, more..

Richie Rich: The nagging quandary of Lanka’s own poor little rich boy

Oct 26 (ST) Imagine this Sunday morning you had arisen from your bed to discover that you had a secret off-shore bank account in Dubai. Shocked? Surprised? Then imagine further it had one billion US dollars stashed in it in your very own personal name. The account is so hush-hush that, until this morning when you stumbled out of bed, even you did not know of its existence or that Ali Baba’s treasure trove was deposited in it. While you are still wondering whether it’s all part of a dream that more..

Somawansa spills the beans

Oct 26 (CT) In an exclusive interview Somawansa Amarasinghe, the former leader of the JVP reveals many facts hitherto unknown to the public. He was the only politburo member to survive the 1989 suppression. He sat with the leaders such as Rohana Wijeweera and Upatissa Gamanayaka in the last politburo meeting held before their death. Q: Do you remember the last politburo meeting attended by Rohana Wijeweera? A: Yes. more..

Editorial: Talks on fait accompli

Oct 26 (Island) Last week’s all-party conference on the Geneva resolution has been hailed as a success in some quarters. True, the best way to settle a vexed national issue is to adopt a collective approach and reach a consensus among all stakeholders. But, the question is why the government did not care to hold such a lekgotla before deciding to go out of its way to co-sponsor the resolution at issue. In fact, there was a pressing need for an imbizo as well for the govt to more..

On preposterous claims & respecting the law

Oct 26 (ST) In the wake of the turbulence caused by the September report of the Office of the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) on Sri Lanka, it is uproariously funny to see Rajapaksa propagandists exerting all their strength to lambast the filing of individual petitions by Sri Lankans before the Geneva based UNHRC (the Committee). Indeed, the more outrageously inclined among them have gone so far as to equate this to the right of appeal to the Privy Council, more..

Cops love prostitutes

Oct 26 (CT) The Abhimaani Kaantha Ekamuthu Sangvidanaya (Proud Women's United Organization) is an Organization that seeks to fight for the rights of those in that oldest of all professions – commercial sex workers (CSWs). The Organization represents about 700 CSWs, 90% of whom had fallen into the profession when they had initially come to a city looking for employment. Organization deals with those in more..

When part-timers became headliners

Oct 26 (CI) Kraigg Brathwaite had three first-class wickets before his 6 for 29 at the P Sara Oval. ESPNcricinfo looks back at other standout performances by the occasional bowlers. Allan Border: 7 for 46 v West Indies, Sydney, 1989. The ball turned from the start in Sydney, but West Indies would have not been perturbed by the prospect of facing Allan Border, who had taken 16 wickets in his 100 Tests till then. Australia were playing two specialist spinners in Peter Taylor and more..

Time to get rid of interim committees

Oct 26 (DN) Local cricket world was shocked last week with the stunning disclosure of leaking of some sensitive Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) documents to a third party. It was alleged that some sensitive and confidential SLC files relating to key sponsorship agreements have been taken away by a third party on verbal instructions to its marketing division by a top SLC Interim Committee official. Reports said that the necessary prior approval of the entire IC membership has not been obtained to more..