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Query over blood ivory disposal

Oct 5 (SL) Questions have been raised as to why the new govt has not yet considered disposing of the shipment of contraband blood ivory that was seized by the Sri Lanka Customs in May 2012, while being transshipped to Dubai from Tanzania. The stock of this contraband blood ivory it is learnt is still lying at the Customs warehouse. In the event the govt does not want to dispose the stock, the shipment has to be sent back to more..

Great expectations in Sri Lanka

Oct 5 (Hindu) The unanimous adoption of a resolution by UNHRC on Sri Lanka is notable for the pragmatism that informs it. Idea of an external investigation into the conduct of the military and the political leadership has been bearing down on the island nation for some years now. The erstwhile Rajapaksa administration responded with defiance and belligerent opposition to any move towards accountability, except one that was formulated and executed by the govt on its own terms. more..

Symbolic Army flag blessing held

Oct 5 (SLA) Members of the Maha Sangha, headed by Ven Pallegama Sirinivasabhidaana Nayake Thero, Atamasthanadhipathi, Incumbent for eight places of worship in Anuradhapura chanted Seth Pirith and invoked blessings on all Army Flags Friday morning during the annual Anuradhapura Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi flag blessing ceremony that got underway on account of the forthcoming 66th Army Anniversary and the Army Day (Oct 10). Friday’s (2) Buddhist ceremony, the second in sequel more..

CPC to be made a self financing entity

Oct 5 (ST) SL’s huge loss-making Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) is making another attempt to structure its business model by divesting stakes in distribution and imports. Previous attempts of a similar kind to make CPC a self-financing entity have been blocked by unions, workers and political parties fearing it would increase prices. Officials said govt is considering a budget proposal to restructure CPC by divesting more..

Pinnawala Express twice weekly luxury bus service

Oct 5 (ST) In an effort to further promote the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, already a must-stop for many tourists visiting Sri Lanka, the Tourism Ministry has launched a new, twice-weekly luxury bus service between Colombo and Pinnawala with effect from last week. Dubbed the Pinnawala Express, the new service was launched by the Minister John Amaratunga at the gate of the SL Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management (SLITHM), Kollupitiya on Saturday (27) more..

Charith's unbeaten 184 powers Sri Lanka youth to 330/7

Oct 5 (DN) An unbeaten 184 runs off 257 balls with 25 boundaries by skipper Charith Asalanka helped the Sri Lanka under 19 team end day one at a commanding score of 330 / 7 in their first three day game against the visiting Pakistan under19 team at MRICS Soiriyawewa yesterday. Charith would be looking forward to registering a well deserved double ton when play resumes this morning. Sri Lanka electing to bat first lost opener Salinda Ushan for a duck in the second over of the day. more..

Top Cabinet minister threatens Police

Oct 5 (CT) Ceylon Today learns that a top Govt Cabinet Minister has started to pressurize and threaten senior police officers in Colombo and adjacent areas demanding the release of his supporters who have breached the law. Police said they had received reports that this powerful Cabinet Minister pressurizes top police officials over the phone whenever his supporters or their relatives were arrested for breaching the laws. more..

Agony for Nadeeka

Oct 5 (CT) Javelin Queen Nadeeka Lakmali faced an unfortunate situation as international ruling ruled her out from a medal position even though she finished as third best thrower in the javelin throw women's finals of the 6th CISM World Games continued at Mungyeong Korea. Lakmali threw 55.76m and was third best thrower after the finals, yet as for the rule book of the competition which says there will be only two medal positions for an event which has six or less number of more..

Sri Lanka’s growth to increase to 5.6% in 2016: World Bank

Oct 5 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s growth is expected to increase to 5.6% in 2016 with the increase in state sector workers and disposable income, a World Bank report said. “In Sri Lanka growth is expected increase to 5.6% due to higher public sector wages and higher disposable incomes,” the report said. However, it says the looser fiscal stance behind this strong domestic demand is also putting pressure on the external balance. “Maintaining the growth momentum will require higher tax revenue, more..

Ekneligoda case: CID granted leave to investigate Army camp

Oct 5 (DM) Homagama Magistrate granted leave to CID to photograph the Girithale Army Intelligence Corps Camp, where journalist Prageeth Ekneligoda had been allegedly detained, and to examine the books and documents maintained by the camp authorities. The magistrate also ordered the Army Commander to provide all necessary facilities to the CID officers and also to detail Military Police officers to provide security for them. more..

University admission cut-off marks today

Oct 5 (CT) The cut-off marks for the university admission 2014/2015 relating to those who sat for the GCE A/L exam in 2014, are to be released today, UGC Secretary Dr. Priyantha Premakumara said. Accordingly, students can obtain the minimum Z Scores required to the university entrance and all the information required regarding the university entrance via the web site 296,313 candidates sat for the GCE A/L Exam 2014 of which 234,197 are school applicants. more..

Couple nabbed with Rs 50 M worth heroin

Oct 5 (CT) Two Sri Lankans who arrived from Chennai were arrested by the Customs Narcotic Control Unit at the BIA with ten packs of heroin worth Rs. 50 million in their possession yesterday. Estimated street value of the seized heroin of 5 kg was over Rs 50 million. Heroin was concealed in spice packets. Suspects had concealed the heroin in their luggage, as they arrived aboard a flight UL 126 from Chennai. Suspects were a 45-year-old male and a 60-year-old female. more..

SriLankan for full re-fleet despite Rs 130 b loss

Oct 5 (ST) SriLankan Airlines will embark on a re-fleeting programme despite its accumulated losses reaching a staggering Rs 130 billion by April this year. In the first four months of this year alone, the Airline recorded a loss of Rs 4.9 billion, adding to its already heavy losses, according to the Midyear Fiscal Position Report of the Finance Ministry presented to Parliament recently. However, the same report states that SLA will embark more..

Explosion on Maldivian President's boat: Lankan experts too in probe team

Oct 5 (DN) Sri Lanka sent a special team comprising a number of experts to Male to assist in the investigations related to the explosion of the boat carrying Maldives President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom and First Lady Fathimath Ibrahim on Sept 28. The special team comprise four detectives attached to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and forensic experts. They left for Male on October 1 and have joined with the local investigation team in Male, the sources said. more..

Sri Lanka moves up five positions in Global Index of World Economies

Oct 5 (GDI) Sri Lanka has moved up five positions to rank 68th in a global index of world's most competitive economies for the year 2015-16. Switzerland topped the table for the seventh consecutive year. The Global Competitiveness Report 2015-2016 assesses the competitiveness of 140 world economies. According to the Global Competitiveness Report of 2014/ 5 Sri Lanka secured 73rd position out of 144 countries. Emerging and Developing Asia has been more..

Seya murder: Kondaya says brother is the killer

Oct 5 (DN) In a new twist to the rape and killing of 5-year-old Seya Sadewmi, the main suspect arrested in connection with the murder, Dunesh Priyashantha alias Kondaya told Police that it was his brother who had committed the murder. Police without revealing the identity, announced that they arrested a fourth suspect in connection with the shocking crime on Saturday. It has now come to light that the fourth suspect arrested is a more..

If we kill animals, do we have a right to live?

Oct 5 (DM) In an era, when world leaders are implementing eco-friendly policies to save the world from a catastrophe, the international community yesterday marked World Animal Day, which called for deep reflection on the need for a paradigm shift to maintain the vital balance in the eco-system. Just as human beings have rights, so do the environment and nature including often helpless and vulnerable animals. World Animal Day is an international day of action for animal rights and welfare. more..

Liberate education from political control

Oct 5 (DM) Recently published reports on the average IQ test scores for countries across the world show that Sri Lanka’ s average score is very low in comparison to many other countries in Asia and elsewhere. The highest and the lowest scores reported are 108 (Singapore and Honk Kong) and 59 (Equatorial Guinea) respectively. Sri Lanka stands at 79, closer to the lower end of the spectrum. Among the Asian countries, Sri Lanka is ahead of only Nepal. more..

Yahapalanaya and Cutout palanaya

Oct 5 (DM) In the Buddhist folklore, there was this monkey that a king reared as his trusted companion. The king had full faith in the ape, who accompanied the sovereign anywhere he went. On one fine day, after attending the affairs of the State, the king took a short afternoon nap, leaving his sword with the ape. The monkey sat next to the sleeping royal, ever vigilant to guard his master against undesirable intruders. more..

Post Geneva: Torture claims and Historic win

Oct 5 (SL) The UNHRC concluded its 30th session last week with the Govt scoring, what it claims to be a historic victory by being able to win the support of the entire Council for the resolution on Sri Lanka. However, that historic victory got off to a bad start with the police being accused of alleged torture in the Seya Sadewmi rape and murder case. The 17-year-old boy arrested as a suspect in the case had claimed that he was tortured and more..

Abortion: The freedom of choice

Oct 5 (CT) Kumari, a 42-year-old woman at the time, is from Colombo. She is the mother of two girls, 18 and 8. Kusuma is from Anuradhapura. She has five children and struggles to make ends meet as a farmer. Lakshmi is a 22-year-old student from Batticaloa. She came to Colombo for university education and chose to stay at her cousin's house for safety. Anandhi is 16. She is from Nuwara Eliya and was brought to Colombo under dire more..

Sri Lanka’s first metro rail project to be completed in 2018

Oct 5 (Island) Sri Lanka’s first Metro High Speed Electric train system is expected to be complete in the year 2018. Initially running between the Airport and Colombo, it would provide high capacity public transport characterized by high speed and rapid acceleration. The proposed train would have a capacity to hold 400 passengers and conduct nine journeys per day. The iconic project is said to provide safety, comfort and ease of travel more..

Sampanthan tells Tamils not to fear investigations based on UNHRC resolution

Oct 5 (Island) Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan on Saturday said that Tamils should not harbour any doubts or fears as regards the proposed investigations into alleged war crimes. He said that various opinions had been expressed in the media following the release of the UNHRC report and the adoption of a US sponsored resolution on Sri Lanka, but Tamil people should not take any of them seriously. more..

Video: Don’t allow govt to use Geneva to obscure burning issues: JVP

Oct 5 (LT) The govt should not be allowed to sweep under the carpet the burning issues confronted by the masses by bringing up the human rights issue taken up in Geneva and having various dialogues about it says the General Secretary of the JVP Tilvin Silva. He said said, "As the resolution regarding Sri Lanka was adopted in UNHRC in Geneva the govt defines it as a victory it has achieved. more..

TNA pledges fullest support for implementing UNHRC resolution

Oct 5 (Island) Welcoming the UNHRC resolution calling for a probe into the alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka, TNA pledged its fullest cooperation for implementation of the recommendations therein. Full text: TNA welcomes the passage of today’s resolution on Sri Lanka at the UNHRC. We welcome, in particular, Sri Lanka’s co-sponsorship of the resolution indicating their willingness to implement it in full. more..

Meticulous planning, ruthless execution net Rs 5.5 m sampath for a robber

Oct 5 (ST) Last Sunday’s bank robbery at Dharmapala Mawatha Colombo 7 lasted just two minutes, indicating the robbery was meticulously planned by the lone robber who got away with Rs 5.5 million, an officer involved in the investigations said. As the hunt was on for the robber, a week after the incident, CCTV footage from cameras fitted in private buildings, as well those installed at central locations by the police, more..

FCID grills MRs personal physician Eliyantha White

Oct 5 (CG) The FCID questioned Dr. Eliyantha White today over his residence which is being used by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Eliyantha White is a spiritual healer who treats only VIP’s and also uses herbs, and is considered to be the personal physician for former President Rajapakse. He claims to have healed ailments in many cricket players including Lasith Malinga, Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar more..

Ravi to urge IMF to increase annual aid to SL

Oct 5 (CG) Minister of Finance Ravi Karunanayake left the Island to attend the 2015 Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund which will take place in Lima, Peru, from 9-11 October 2015. He was accompanied by the Governor Central Bank of Sri Lanka Arujuna Mahendran and the Secretary to Treasury and the Ministry of Finance Dr. R.H.S. Samarathunga. more..

Manioc, Katta sambol and foreign policy

Oct 5 (Island) President Sirisena has taken another swipe at his bęte noire, former President Rajapaksa, who, he says mismanaged the country’s foreign policy and antagonised world powers unnecessarily. Claiming that the new govt has won back the international community, he has faulted the Rajapaksa govt (of which he was a powerful minister) for subjecting foreign dignitaries to indignities. He has said Rajapaksa, while in power, boasted of having made some foreign more..

'Tapping emerging markets key to boosting exports'

Oct 5 (Island) Identifying the reason why Sri Lanka's exports are contributing less to GDP and what can be done to reverse this trend are two of the issues explored by Mohan Pandithage, the Chairman and CEO of the multinational conglomerate Hayleys, in an interview given to global publishing, research and consultancy firm Oxford Business Group (OBG). Pandithage told OBG that a number of factors had led to exports falling from 15.4% of GDP in 2013 to 14.9% the following year. more..

Wimal Weerawansa

Bob Rae denied permission to enter SL

Oct 5 (Island) Bob Rae was once the Premier of Ontario and later became the shadow Foreign Minister of the Liberal Party. He also had leadership ambitions though many in Canada knew he would never get to become the leader of the Liberal Party since he was one of the greatest failures as the Premier of Ontario. Rae was also known for his sympathy for the Tamil Tigers in Canada because he, too, played politics like many Canadian politicians at the time, to get elected. more..

Millions of tourists, millions of opportunities

Oct 5 (IPS) This year´s World Tourism Day highlights the global potential of tourism for socioeconomic development. “With more than one billion international tourists now traveling the world each year, tourism has become a powerful and transformative force that is making a genuine difference in the lives of millions of people” says UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. With the tourism sector booming, tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka are expected to increase by another 1.6 folds by more..

'Sri Lanka to apply for GSP Plus by year-end'

Oct 5 (EN) Govt will apply before the end of the year to have the GSP Plus trade concession to the European Union restored, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Harsha De Silva said. “Before the end of the year we will make formal application and regain GSP Plus by the middle of 2016,” he said. UNHRC resolution on Sri Lanka adopted last week for a foreign-supervised investigation into alleged war crimes more..

Nepotism grows: FM Ravi K set to appoint his BIL to Sri Lankan Airlines top post

Oct 5 (CT) Minister Ravi Karunanayake is all poised to hand over the post of Sales Manager United Kingdom to his Royalist brother in law Gihan Malalasekara, especially with the post advertised in a tailor made manner a second time around, to suit the former Flight Attendant and make all other senior staffers ineligible to apply for the post, sources from within the airline’s Commercial Department told CT. The job which was advertised first in Feb 2015 was re-advertised again with more..

Close to Rs 10 M spent to welcome President

Oct 5 (CT) Close to Rs 10 million are reported to have been set aside for a special celebration welcoming President Sirisena’s return to the island after attending the sessions of the UN General Assembly. It is reported that SLFP stalwarts S.B. Dissanayake, Nimal Siripala de Silva and Nimal Lansa had pressurized the Chairman, Airport and Aviation Services Authority Ananda Wimalasena to foot this enormous bill. Chairperson is reported to have said that Authority is not in a position more..

Japan will back SL’s domestic process

Oct 5 (CG) The Japanese Govt says it will back Sri Lanka’s domestic process to address issues related to the war, the office of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said today. Wickremesinghe had talks with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida in Japan today while on a five day visit to the country. At the meeting, the Japanese Foreign Minister had noted the efforts of the new Govt to win the confidence of international community. more..

Video: Another crocodile captured

Oct 5 (DM) One of the crocodiles spotted in the sea areas off Dehiwala, Bambalapitiya and Galle Face Grounds during the previous weeks, was captured today by the wild life and environmental officials. The crocodile-said to be 13-foot long in length-was captured near the pier at the Galle Face Ground. The Sri Lankan saltwater crocodile is the largest carnivorous reptile in the world and is generally at the top of the predators in their ecosystem. more..

SL offers US$ 75mn 1 and 3-year bonds

Oct 5 (EN) Sri Lanka called offer to sell US$ 75 million of 1 and 3 floating rate and 5-year fixed rate dollar denominated bonds which will pay interest every six months. Bids for the debt, styled Sri Lanka Development Bonds, are closing on Oct 15, and settlement will be on Oct 19. The state debt office is offering 12-month and 15-month floating rate bonds and 4-year 8-month fixed rate bonds. In the past, the debt office had tended to accept more bids that the volume offered. more..

Working with Asia’s miracle, critical for Lanka’s scientific progress: Ranil

Oct 5 (Island) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday called for a comprehensive Science and Technology partnership with Japan, which he described as Asia’s miracle in the field. Addressing the 12th Annual General Meeting of the Science and Technology in Society (STS) Forum at the Kyoto International Conference Center, PM who is on a five day official visit, said that scientific and technological cooperation with Japan more..