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SL will lose world’s best cinnamon producer status: Buddhika

Oct 26 (Island) UNP MP Buddhika Pathirana is scheduled to raise, in Parliament, a question about Sri Lanka’s cinnamon exports, seeking an answer from the Minister of Plantations Industries. The MP says that the cinnamon industry is faced with the risk of collapsing owing to fraudulent activities of the merchants who export substandard cinnamon products. Some consignments of substandard cinnamon products exported during the recent past have been returned, he says. more..

Police torture in SL remains a major problem

Oct 26 (TD) Human Rights Watch (HRW), a leading international human rights organization, has come out with a new report that deals with police torture in Sri Lanka. In the summary section of the report, HRW lays out the grave nature of this problem clearly: In this report, Human Rights Watch investigated allegations of police torture and other serious human rights violations in various parts of the country against criminal suspects. We found that police frequently use torture to try to obtain more..

President joins walk of child protection

Oct 26 (PSL) A walk organized under the national program Daruvan Pana Men Surakimu (Protect Children with Our Lives) commenced this morning (25), with participation of President Maithripala Sirisena. This has been organized by SL Rupavahini Corporation for the betterment of the children of the nation. Program aims at protecting the rights of children, creating a better future for children and protect them. more..

Shares end steady; turnover at 6-wk low

Oct 26 (Reuters) Sri Lankan shares ended steady on Monday, but the day's turnover slumped to a six-week low ahead of a holiday as investors awaited clues from a key policy statement by the govt. The main stock index ended up 0.03% at 7,083.48, its highest close since Oct 12. It gained for a fifth straight session, closing at its highest in nearly two weeks. Turnover slumped to its lowest since Sept. 11 ahead of a holiday on Tuesday. The day's turnover was 481.4 million rupees, more..

We need to work on our temperament: Holder

Oct 26 (CI) Jason Holder lay the blame for West Indies' series loss largely at the feet of his batsmen, and marked out the top order's Test-match temperament as an area much in need of improvement. West Indies' highest score of the series was 251, and they fell well short of 200 in both innings at the P Sara Oval. The visitors did make regular breakthroughs in the second Test, restricting Sri Lanka to 200 and 206, and conceding only one opposition half-century. more..

President assures protection for the military

Oct 26 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena says the govt is bound to protect the dignity and pride of the defence sector including our tri-forces while confronting the alleged human rights violations purported to have happened during the last phase of the war. He added he would never let the security sector including tri-forces to be weakened in any way. He made these remarks at a Colours Awarding Ceremony of SL Army more..

Newly appointed NPC gets down to work

Oct 26 (DM) The newly appointed National Police Commission (NPC) had decided to investigate 120 complaints lodged against police personnel serving in various police stations around the country. Acting Secretary of the Commission, Ariyadasa Cooray said that most of the complaints were about the lethargic and biased actions of police personnel of various ranks He also said that the complaints lodged at the provincial level would be investigate by the provincial offices of more..

DB Schenker announces new forwarding partner in Sri Lanka

Oct 26 (LLL) DB Schenker has announced a new exclusive forwarding network partner for Sri Lanka and the Maldives, DBS Logistics. DBS Logistics was formed to solely represent DB Schenker in Sri Lanka and Maldives for air and ocean freight as well as project cargo. It was set up DBS by Aitken Spence, a publicly listed conglomerate founded in Sri Lanka in 1868. Aitken Spence has diversified interests, which include maritime cargo logistics as well as strategic investments and services. more..

Video: Surprising that confusions on CEPA aren’t clarified: HC Sinha

Oct 26 (DM) Indian High Commissioner Y.K. Sinha today expressed his surprise at the lack of efforts to clear the misinformation and misimpressions that have been disseminated on the CEPA (Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement) that have been in the works for several years but yet remain to be signed by the two countries. Speaking at the Annual Research Symposium 2015 held at Colombo University more..

We want more members in COPE: Udaya

Oct 26 (DM) PHU General Secretary MP Udaya Gammanpila today opposed the quota given to the JVP when allocating its members to the Parliament Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE). He said the JVP has only six parliamentarians but they have been given two members in the 12-member Committee. “We, the other 11 MPs left in the opposition had only been given the opportunity for one member. However, the JVP had been given two quotas though it has only six MPs. more..

MR was firmly against RTI Act says Thilanga

Oct 26 (CG) Former President Rajapaksa was firmly against the Right To Information RTI Act says Deputy Speaker Thilanga Sumathipala. Sumathipala told local television that he had made an attempt to present the RTI Bill in Parliament when Rajapaksa was President. However he says Rajapaksa had opposed the move and told him there was no need for such an Act and told him not to go ahead with it. Sumathipala claimed that he had told the former President that the RTI would be helpful more..

UN offers to work with Sri Lanka for stability

Oct 26 (CG) United Nations (UN) has expressed readiness to work with the Govt and people of Sri Lanka towards the common goals of stability and development in the country, a UN statement said. The statement said that the comments were made by UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Miroslav Jenča who just concluded a visit to Sri Lanka. During the visit, he met with PM Ranil Wickramesinghe, more..

Indian Coast Guard arrests 29 Sri Lankans

Oct 26 (TOI) Indian Coast Guard Ship Samudra Prahari apprehended two Sri Lankan trawlers namely Holy Cross III and VI along with 29 Sri Lankan nationals on Saturday around 4.30pm in Lakshadweep waters for poaching of endangered marine species, sea cucumber. In a swift air-sea coordinated search these fishing boats were located 18 nautical miles or approximately 35-kms West of Chereapani reef, Lakshadweep islands. Thereafter, ICGS Samudra Prahari apprehended both more..

Rameswaram fishermen call off strike

Oct 26 (Hindu) The local fishermen have decided to call off their indefinite strike and resume fishing from Monday after the TN govt announced that all the 86 fishermen arrested by the SL Navy on charges of poaching would be released on October 28. After TN Fisheries department confirmed the news about the release of the fishermen, leaders of 11 fishermen associations met here on Sunday and decided to call off the strike, Mr P Sesu Raja, leader of a fishermen association said. more..

Karuna to resign from SLFP and join TULF

Oct 26 (ENS) Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Colonel Karuna, who was the LTTE’s Commander for Batticaloa and Amparai districts till he defected to Sri Lankan govt side in 2004, has expressed a willingness to join the moderate and pro-India TULF led by the veteran Tamil politician, V.Anandasangaree. “I wish to join the TULF. I am currently consulting others. I expect to announce a decision soon,” Karuna said. more..

BOI hosts a delegation of Japanese Multinationals from Kansai

Oct 26 (GDI) BOI hosted a delegation from the Kansai region of Japan which consisted of many Japanese multinational companies. The delegation which was on a fact finding mission was led by Mr. Masuyuki Matsushita, Vice Chairman and Chairman International Committee of Kansai Economic Federation, Kankeiren, and also Vice Chairman of the Board of Panasonic Corporation. Delegation also consisted of Senior Executives of Kansai Economic Federation, representatives of JICA, more..

'No FEM officials to serve more than 2 years abroad'

Oct 26 (DM) Foreign Employment Ministry (FEM) officials attached to all embassies will not be allowed to serve for more than two years abroad, Minister Thalatha Athukorala said. She said this when she met a group of FEM officials who went abroad recently. She said though there were many FEM officials keen on working at our embassies they were not interested working for the betterment of Sri Lankans abroad. She said approved period of service in foreign embassies was two years; more..

'Lankan fisheries minister didn’t threaten to impose fines on Indian poachers'

Oct 26 (ENS) Sri Lankan Minister of Fisheries, Mahinda Amaraweera, never threatened to impose fines on Indian fishermen who poach in Sri Lankan waters, the Minister’s Advisor, Claude Fernando, said. Responding to a story in Sunday Times which said that the Minister had threatened to impose “stiff fines” on poachers from Tamil Nadu and Puduchery, Fernando said that at a meeting with Tamil fishermen from Northern more..

Eight arrested over murder of Anuradapura nightclub owner

Oct 26 (AD) Eight members of the gang, who are suspects in the murder of a Karate champion and an owner of a nightclub in Anuradapura, has been arrested by the Anuradhapura police. The preliminary investigations into the murder have disclosed that a personal dispute between the suspects and the nightclub owner had led to the incident, according to the police. The incident had occurred at the night club down Muditha Street in Anuradhapura at around 11.45 on Sunday. more..

President to pay official visit to Thailand

Oct 26 (Xinhua) President Maithripala Sirisena will pay a four-day official visit to Thailand next week. Sirisena's visit comes after an invitation by the Prime Minister of Thailand, General Prayuth Chan-o-Cha, and the visit also coincides with the 60th anniversary celebrations of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and Thailand. During the visit, Sirisena will be received in audience by Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, and bilateral discussions more..

Mathews hails great find Siriwardana

Oct 26 (CI) Angelo Mathews has hailed man-of-the-match Milinda Siriwardana as a great find following SL's 72-run victory over West Indies which sealed a 2-0 whitewash. "Milinda is a great find for us - he has contributed with bat, ball and on the field," Mathews said. "He's been a brilliant player in past couple of months in ODIs, and coming into Test arena showed no nerves at all. He was just cruising through with his batting. more..

Reform Or Perish

Oct 27 (CT) The Institute of Policy Studies, better known as IPS, has just released its Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2015 with a sub tagline Economic Reforms: Political Economy and Institutional Reforms. The release of the IPS report on the economy is timely due to two reasons. One is that PM Ranil Wickremesinghe is about to announce the new Govt’s economic policy and he could consider drawing on the IPS report when outlining the govt’s economic reform agenda. more..

Bribery & Corruption; Main enemy of nation

Oct 27 (CT) It is all over in the society. it is cancerous rampant and all over as air and breath. It is worldwide and taking place every minute all over the world- in style in the West and developed nations and more openly in crude form in the developing world. it is a way of life and considers a part of life in the most inefficient system of administrations immersed in bribery and corruption. It is difficult to eradicate completely but our efforts should be to minimize it. more..

'Darusman Report inflated estimates'

Oct 27 (SO) Chairman of the Missing Persons Commission, retired High Court Judge Maxwell Paranagama, said although it was extremely difficult to cite a definite figure of civilian deaths in the final phase of the war, the Darusman Report has greatly inflated estimates. On the Channel 4 footage, he said, "We are not shedding our responsibility merely on technical grounds. There should be other evidence to confirm if this more..

Legal issues of Geneva resolution

Oct 27 (CT) "We won the confidence of international community". "We were able to unify the international community". These are the slogans mostly repeated by the governmental propaganda machinery. Unfortunately, the reality is far from these slogans. Sri Lanka was in total isolation among its Third World colleagues when a resolution in respect of SL was adopted by the UNHRC. When the resolution was first introduced, there were 12 sponsors. Except SL, all were Western nations. more..

The story of the Mace and Dinesh

Oct 27 (CT) The Mace is the symbol of authority of Parliament. It signifies the authority and responsibilities entrusted upon the Speaker who is the Guardian of all MPs. The walk up to the Speaker's podium by the Sergeant-at-Arms on days that Parliament sits with the Mace on his shoulder is a tradition and respect that announces the day's sittings. When it is placed on the special holder it remains as the symbol of authority of Parliament. When the Speaker sits in the Chair, more..

The devil is not so dark

Oct 27 (CT) Former Defence Secretary Austin Fernando describing the Geneva Resolution on Sri Lanka war crimes said the devil was not so dark as it was thought and noted that President Maithripala Sirisena and Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe were more dedicated towards meeting that challenge than former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Q: The people may have forgotten you. Who are you? more..

From paediatrics to geriatrics caring for health needs

Oct 27 (ST) The rapidly rising ageing population is increasing the demand for healthcare for illnesses associated with longevity. The country’s public health system that has achieved much in the past is heavily geared to improving maternal and child health and fighting infectious diseases. There is now a need to shift the emphasis from paediatrics to geriatrics and to non communicable diseases associated with old age. Simultaneously, the ageing population and social changes are escalating more..

Impartiality and truth are not western monopolies

Oct 27 (ST) It is not of such profundity that great minds grappling with the physical and metaphysical problems of the world are needed to expound it. It is a simple truth, it is something that is experienced in the life of an average man (DH Lawrence said there was no such animal but never mind). Experience shows that things are not always what they appear to be. What is white to some might not be as white to others. What is black to some could well appear as charcoal grey to still others. more..

Thamilini's forte: Tamil women's liberation

Oct 27 (CT) Thamilini was a rehabilitated LTTE terrorist who resumed life in society. As a terrorist she wore a cyanide capsule around her neck. Let us not speak about her as a suicide bomber. Terrorists fought for a cause and mobilized themselves in the most ruthless manner. Eventually, the armed forces annihilated them. Some of the LTTE cadres were arrested and rehabilitated. Weapons were confiscated. more..

A discipline of sobriety

Oct 27 (Island) Several months ago I went for a two-week retreat to a hermitage in the low country highly respected for the austere, meditative life of its monks. Each day a different group of dayakas (donors) comes to the monastery bringing almsfood, often from remote towns and villages. They arrive the previous evening, prepare an early breakfast which is sent up to the refectory, and then, in the forenoon, offer alms directly to the monks when they come down on alms round. more..

Rightful rain retreat

Oct 27 (DN) In Bihar and the lands where Buddha had lived, the rainy season had been the South West Monsoon, from around June to September. There had been mendicant monks in India for many centuries before the time of the Buddha. When the followers of the Buddha Dhamma received ordination as Bhikkhus, they too had left their household life and income and depended on the lay devotees for all their needs. They roamed around the country, on foot, carrying the teachings of more..

Today is Vap Poya

Oct 27 (DM) Thai Theravada scholars Dr. Mettanando Bhikkhu and Ajahn Sujato believe the Garudhammas, the eight rules that restrict, rather constraint Buddhist nuns [Bikkhunis], including the rule that is more Jainist than Buddhist which says, a bikkhuni, irrespective of her seniority, must bow down to every novice male monk, was introduced by prejudiced and anti-women participants at First Council after the Buddha. more..

SL style matched Windies calypso cricket

Oct 27 (CT) The West Indian great Sir Garfield Sobers recently told the press that he had known at the time he coached the Sri Lankan team in the eighties that they had cricket in them. Then he had predicted within 10 to 15 years Sri Lanka would win a world title. Just before Sir Garfield took over the coaching of Sri Lanka, early in 1979 a West Indian side under Alvin Kallicharan visited the island. Prior to coming over they had been beaten by the Indians in the Test encounter between them. more..

Sri Lanka's latest go-to man

Oct 27 (CT) Playing in only his second Test match following a batting failure on debut, Milinda Siriwardana walked in to bat when Sri Lanka were down and out at 59 for four in the first innings, and batted as if he was playing his 100th Test match. Chasing 244 to win, the Windies were 80 for one looking good to reach the modest target, especially playing the premier spinner, Rangana Herath very well. Captain Angelo Mathews threw the ball to his latest trump card, Siriwardana who struck more..

Currency chitchat

Oct 27 (FT) Govt intervention in defending the rupee remains a talking point even as the currency steadied in trading on downward pressure yesterday, with experts voicing concern over moves by officials to excessively oversell the rupee. “I don’t think that it’s the correct time for the officials to be bearish about the rupee at the moment. The current rate around 140-141 is far too much overselling. more..

Editorial: A question of refuse

Oct 27 (Island) UNP MP Buddhika Pathirana, who had the rare honour of not being appointed a member of the jumbo Cabinet of the incumbent govt, has sought to raise a very important issue in Parliament. Pointing out that Sri Lanka’s image as the best cinnamon exporter in the world has been tarnished by a racket which has come to be taken for granted, he wants to know from the Minister of Plantation Industries what action the govt has taken against the racketeers concerned. more..

Address Muslim issues through Geneva process

Oct 27 (Island) This week marks 25 years since the Muslim people inhabiting the north were evicted by the LTTE in a matter of hours that ranged from two hours to two days. Their treatment in Jaffna, the seat of Tamil civilization, was particularly harsh as there they were given only two hours to leave. Those who tried to take their valuable possessions with them, such as deeds to their land, jewellery and money, were stripped of them at LTTE checkpoints. In many places their Tamil neighbours intervened more..

'SL needs to strengthen social security in view of rapidly aging population'

Oct 27 (Island) Sri Lanka needs to strengthen its social security system in a sustainable manner, because the population of the country is aging at a rapid pace, Executive Director IPS Dr Saman Kelegama said. "A lack of retirement income coupled with dwindling family support will expose large numbers of older persons to economic vulnerability. To overcome this impeding complication, Sri Lanka requires more..

GK repayments on hold till budget

Oct 27 (CT) The govt will hold on to the second phase of the failed Golden Key Credit Card Company's (GK) repayment procedure until the 20 November, 2015 budget is presented, govt officials said. "We have to carefully monitor this process, but the Treasury is busy with budget preparations. So it will take time to release this money most probably until the budget is over," the official said. The cabinet a few days ago approved the release of Rs 3.94 billion from the Treasury more..