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'Govt to look after interests of labour force'

Sep 8 (DN) Although the Govt follows a capitalist system, it will also be equally concerned about the labour force and will treat them in a proper manner with reasonable salaries and wages in the future. This will allow them live a comfortable life, Former Deputy Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva said. "UNP has taken note of the labour force and will treat them in a equal manner enabling them to live a decent life. more..

A dockyard at Hambantota Port

Sep 8 (DM) The government in a bid to make the Hambantota Port a viable commercial venture, has decided to develop dockyard facilities at the port at an estimated cost of Rs. 2 billion. A Chinese Company has responded positively to Ports and Shipping Minister Arjuna Ranatunga’s call for expression of interests from potential investors to build dockyard facilities at the Hambantota Port, a ministry source said. more..

President pays special attention to matters related to medical professionals

Sep 8 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena has paid special attention to the professional matters of the Govt Medical Officers. The president discussed issues related to doctors when representatives of Govt Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) met with him at the Presidential Secretariat today (7). The GMOA requested the President to provide solutions to their salary anomalies in line with the State salary policy. more..

President at the 33rd National Information Technology Conference

Sep 8 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena was the Chief Guest at the 33rd National Information Technology Conference (NITC 2015) held at Galadari Hotel, today. This key annual Information and communication Technology Conference is intended to provide a forum for industry practitioners and academia, to keep up to date with current technology trends, interact with industry experts and network with peers. more..

'Allocation of 6% of GDP for education within five years'

Sep 8 (Island) Newly appointed Education Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said the present govt would increase the funds for education up to 6% of the GDP step by step within the next five years. After assuming duties at Isurupaya, he said that his aim was to invest funds allocated from the budget to education without waste and corruption. Kariyawasam said that he expected to develop schools in remote areas just like privileged more..

Chief Ministers appointed for Western, North-Western provinces

Sep 8 (AM) New Chief Ministers have been appointed for the Western and the North Western Provinces. Accordingly, Isura Devapriya was appointed as the Western Province Chief Minister while Dharmasiri Dassanayake was appointed as the North Western Province Chief Minister. These decisions were taken following the meetings held between President Sirisena and UPFA members of two provincial councils. more..

Dullas grilled at Presidential Commission of Inquiry

Sep 8 (AD) UPFA Parliamentarian Dullas Alahapperuma has been summoned by the Presidential Commission of Inquiry appointed to investigate serious acts of fraud, corruption and abuse of power, state resources, and privileges. The former Minister is currently being questioned regarding money owed to a state media institute for advertising during the last Presidential Election, the secretary of commission Lesil de Silva said. more..

Paddy storage: Farmers complain but PMB says all going well

Sep 8 (ST) In the ongoing paddy-purchasing crisis, farmers complain they are still finding it difficult to get their stocks cleared, although the Paddy Marketing Board (PMB) said efforts have been stepped up to purchase the stocks. PMB chairman M.B. Dissanayake said the target was to purchase 120,000 metric tonnes of paddy from the Yala harvest and so far they had succeeded in buying 86,000 metric tonnes. more..

High level delegation to head to Geneva

Sep 8 (CG) A high level Govt delegation will head to Geneva to gather support for the resolution on Sri Lanka to be co-sponsored by the US at the UNHRC. Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera and Justice Minister Wijedasa Rajapaksa will be part of the delegation which will be in Geneva in time for the 30th session of the UNHRC, sources said. The delegation is expected to hold talks with foreign envoys based in more..

ITAK and foreign probe

Sep 8 (DM) ITAK Leader Mavai Senadhirajah has scoffed at his party colleague and Northern Province CM C.V. Wigneswaran’s call for an international investigation into the allegations of war crimes committed during the last stages of the war, according to a front page story in yesterday’s Dailymirror. In a related news item in the same newspaper it was reported that three out of remaining four constituent parties of the TNA -- the TELO, PTOLE, and EPRLF had sent a letter more..

Mobile technology detects, prevents disease outbreaks in Sri Lanka

Sep 8 (MX) A project co-funded by International Development Research Centre (IDRC) helped to create the Sri Lankan Wildlife Health Centre to monitor animal health. The findings also moved the national government to expand the role of their veterinarians into areas such as antibiotic resistance and farm practices. In Sri Lanka, mobile phones are now much more than just a way to stay in touch or check the Internet. Field veterinarians with limited resources are now using mobile phone more..

Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka

The Sampanthan hour

Sep 8 (CT) R Sampanthan MP (RS) has been appointed as Leader of the Opposition of 8th Parliament of SL. MP since 1970, RS also deserves the title Father of the House. Even analysts not generally sympathetic to the political ideology of Tamil self-determination concur that RS has a track record of acting with decorum and dignity in debate. This also applies to his party colleagues, who, unlike many a Sinhalese & Moor MP, conduct themselves gracefully inside and outside Parliament. more..

Stocks close down 0.3%; seven week low

Sep 8 (LBO) Sri Lankan stocks closed down 0.35% on Tuesday on a seven week low with the losses in John Keells Holdings. Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index closed down 25.24 points at 7,122.46 lower 0.35%. S&P SL20 closed 16.96 points lower at 3,914.04 down 0.43%. Turnover was 430 million rupees, down from 599 million rupees, Tuesday with 49 stocks closing positive against 99 negative. “The main index was dragged down mainly by JKH and the market witnessed a thin more..

Nilanga Dela appointed Diyawadana Nilame

Sep 8 (AD) Pradeep Nilanga Dela has been appointed as the Diyawadana Nilame of the Sri Dalada Maligawa. The election to elect the next Diyawadana Nilame was held today. Pradeep Nilanga Dela has been appointed with 205 votes while Gayan Heenkanda received 53 votes and Neranjan Wijeyratne 31 votes. Earlier, the Commissioner General of Buddhist Affairs Chandraprema Gamage appointed more..

No bail for Sajin Vass

Sep 8 (AD) UPFA MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena, who was arrested for allegedly misusing vehicles belonging to the President Secretariat Office, has been further remanded until Sept 22 by the Fort Magistrate’s Court, today. A bail application, which was filed by a Counsel on behalf of the former UPFA MP, was dismissed by the Colombo High Court earlier. The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) summoned Gunawardena to record a statement on May 11 where he was subsequently arrested. more..

US stand on SL perverts international justice

Sep 8 (AC) At the UNHRC in Geneva next week, the US is to sponsor a resolution on war crimes in Sri Lanka, in collaboration with the Colombo government. This is despite wide recognition that Sri Lankan leaders are implicated in these war crimes. The resolution is said to ask for a domestic process of accountability with international technical assistance, which essentially means Sri Lanka will investigate itself. On a visit to Sri Lanka with colleague Tom Malinowski, more..

TELO leader to take out march on war crimes

Sep 8 (Hindu) TELO’s national organiser and the TNA’s member in the NPC M.K. Shivajilingam has decided to take out a march from Killinochchi to Nallur in Jaffna, demanding the institution of an international mechanism to go into alleged war crimes. Clarifying that he along with his supporters would be undertaking the march in individual capacity, Mr Shivajilingam said that he would begin the march on Thursday. more..

TRC achieves cost cuts in fuel consumption!

Sep 8 (Island) Telecommunications Regulatory commission of SL under the new administration headed by President’s Secretary P.B. Abeykoon with M.M. Zuhair PC as Director-General, since assuming office on 1st Feb 2015, had achieved substantial cost reductions in fuel consumption and overtime payments, in the regulatory organisation, during the first six months ending July 2015. This was in line with yahapalanaya policy of cutting down on waste of public funds in President. more..

Contempt of Court case against Champika

Sep 8 (DM) Three attorneys-at-law have filed a Contempt of Court case in the Supreme Court against Minister Champika Ranawaka seeking an order to punish him for making a malicious and contemptuous statement on the conduct of the Supreme Court. The petitioners -- Roshan Devinda Ranaweera, Ranjith Ranasinghe and Nimal Weerakkody said a private TV channel on July 26 this year telecast a news bulletin at 8.00 p.m. referring to the conduct of the Supreme Court more..

High speed broadband to link state buildings

Sep 8 (EN) All govt buildings in Sri Lanka are to be linked by high speed broadband to enable officials to share data and work in a collaborative manner, the head of Information Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) said. “In the past we were not connected,” said Muhunthan Canagey, CEO of ICTA. “The new govt’s aim is to get all state buildings linked across so we could work together.” more..

Eight unauthorised eateries in Pettah fined

Sep 8 (Island) Maligakanda Magistrate, Jayaki de Alwis fined the owners of eight unauthorised eateries on Bastian Mawatha, Pettah private bus stand following legal action taken by the Public Health Department of the Colombo Municipal Council (PHD-CMC) under the Food Act, No. 26 of 1980. Each eatery had been fined Rs. 3,000. Legal action had also been taken against a canteen which had been functioning inside the Fort Railway Station in February this year. more..

Video: Police release images of two persons who robbed pawn shop

Sep 8 (DM) The police today released images captured by CCTV cameras of a robbery where Rs. 600,000 was stolen along with Rs. 53,760,000 worth of gold jewellery from a pawning centre at Ja-ELa on August 15. They sought public assistance to identify the two men who carried out the robbery. The thieves had threatened the two female employees at the pawning centre with a knife and had proceeded to rob the place after having tied them up. The police had recovered the video footage off more..

NHRC takes cognizance of death of Lankan refugee in police custody in TN

Sep 8 (ANI) The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has taken suo motu cognizance of a media report alleging death of a Sri Lankan refugee, Mohan, aged about 45 years, in the custody of Pallikaranai Police here on Sep 4. Notices have been issued to the Chief Secretary and Director General of Police, Govt of Tamil Nadu calling for reports within four weeks. Justice D. Murugesan, Member, NHRC has observed more..

Udaya to form new alliance

Sep 8 (CT) Leader of PHU and Colombo District MP Udaya Gammanpila said that several members of the UPFA have agreed to form a new alliance to contest in the upcoming local govt election. He further added, "We do not have an issue R. Sampanthan being appointed the Opposition Leader but we do have an issue when President and Chairman of the UPFA Maithripala Sirisena takes arbitrary decisions. We get to know about the situation of the UPFA through the media." more..

Armitage and President Sirisena hold talks

Sep 8 (CG) Former United States Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage met President Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat today. In an OP-ED contribution to Wall Street Journal in January following the Presidential election, Armitage strongly advocated that the U.S. move quickly to take advantage of the opening presented by the newly elected govt (of President Sirisena) while laying down a trajectory for the revival of Sri Lanka-US relations. more..

KP welcomes internal investigation

Sep 8 (CT) LTTE's former International Coordinator Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP welcomed the internal investigation into the alleged war crimes with the backing of the International community instead of demanding an International investigation. KP presently manages an orphanage called Sencholai in Kilinochchi said that commissions and other form of local investigations were carried out in the past with regard to more..

JVP lashes out at govt

Sep 9 (Island) Lambasting the appointment of a jumbo cabinet, JVP accused the govt of having adopted the previous govt’s tactics to further its own political interests. The present govt had not designed ministerial portfolios based on a scientific method. They had been create to please the loyalists of the leaders of both parties, JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said. There were only 17 ministers in China for 1.37 bin people and only 36 ministers for 1.27 billion people in India. more..

Port city project still on hold, discussion positive says CHEC

Sep 8 (LBO) The builders of Sri Lanka’s Chinese-funded port city project say discussions are still ongoing and they await a positive reply from the government after the suspension of work. “We are actually at the discussion level,” Liang Thow Ming, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, of CHEC Port City Colombo (Pvt) Ltd said. “What I can say is the discussions direct at a positive level,” the official of the China Harbour Engineering Company said. When asked whether the govt has given more..

Video: Reporter trampled to death by an elephant in Minneriya

Sep 8 (AD) A provincial reporter, who was covering an incident of Wild Life officials attempting to drive away wild jumbos in a village in Minneriya, has been killed by a charging elephant, the police say. “The reporter was killed while he was covering the incident in Papisiya Wewa area in Minneriya,” the Police Spokesperson said. Priyantha Rathnayake, a correspondent attached to Derana TV, was 46-year-old at the time of his tragic death. more..

Factories on upper Kelani River to be scrutinized

Sep 8 (CT) Over a 100 factories that are located close to the upper part of the Kelani River from Ambatale Water Purification Plant will be examined by the National Water Supply and Drainage Board (NWSDB) to check whether the effluents from them are polluting the water in the river. 150 of the main industries from the Kelani River to the Ambatale Water Purification Plant will be put under strenuous examination following the contamination of the Kelani River where a beverage more..

Army chief briefs new ICRC head on post war situation

Sep 8 (CG) The new Head of the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) in Sri Lanka Ms Claire Meypraud had talks with army commander Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva at the Army Headquarters today. Ms Meypraud, accompanied by her Deputy Head of the ICRC delegation, Irfan Sulejmani during her meeting with the Commander of the Army, was enthusiastic in receiving an update on the roles and tasks of the Army versus its interaction with the ICRC and Red Cross more..

Moderates & Radicals clash in Jaffna politics

Sep 8 (ENS) For the first time after the exit of the LTTE from the Sri Lankan Tamil political scene in May 2009, Jaffna district politics is witnessing a clash between moderates and radicals on the ethnic issue. The clash could reach a high point if the Central Committee of the moderate TNA entertains a discussion on the recent anti-party activities of the increasingly radical Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran. more..

SL Cricket returns to profit in 2015 first half

Sep 8 (EN) Sri Lanka Cricket said it had made book profits of 1.5 billion rupees during the six months ended June in turning around from a loss of 393 million rupees for the full year ending December 2014, with sharply higher revenues and lower spending. Income from international tournaments rose to 2.4 billion rupees in the first half of 2015 compared to only 2.51 billion rupees or the full year 2014. Other income was 622 million rupees for the half year, compared to 715 million rupees for more..

Lawyers take jewellery in lieu of fee

Sep 8 (DN) Colombo Chief Magistrate Gihan Pilapitiya severely warned two female lawyers who had taken the earrings of a 18 year old woman as she did not have the required money to pay for their services. Magistrate Pilapitiya had intervened in the matter after some people within the Court premises who were witness to the incident had informed the Magistrate. Magistrate Pilapitiya who had severely warned the two female lawyers had given the earrings back to the young woman. more..

Video: Rs. 2.6 mn worth snuff seized

Sep 8 (DM) About 75,000 tins of snuff (Dunkudu) had been seized from a Customs warehouse in Peliyagoda, Customs Spokesperson Leslie Gamini said. Each tin contained 10 grammes, he said. “The contraband worth Rs. 2,638,440 was weighing 750 kilograms and contained in 30 cartons,” he said. The consignment had been imported by a company in Colombo 13 from Madurai, India on August 24, he said. more..

National Govt: A golden opportunity to resolve the national question

Sep 9 (CT) The inaugural sessions of the 8th parliament took place on September 01, 2015. After the election of speaker, the deputy speaker and the deputy chairman of parliament committees, newly elected members of parliament took oaths before the speaker. There were 60 new faces, almost a third, compared to the last parliament. For the first time in history the LSSP failed to secure even a single seat in parliament. Sri Lanka Communist Party did not fare better. more..

On the concept of the Criminal State

Sep 9 (CT) Recently, there has been some discussion, and even agitation, over the introduction of this concept of the Criminal State, by Dr. Kumar Rupesinghe. The author’s intention, by expressed design, is to bring out the particular features that distinguished the Lankan State under the previous Rajapaksa regime as being criminal. That is, a State where the primary means of sustenance of its dominant ruling regime is through criminalization of politics and the illegal and extra-legal more..

Paying for contamination

Sep 9 (SO) Hounded by an increasingly restive public affected by the leakage of oil into the Kelani River from the Coca Cola manufacturing company at Kaduwela on Aug 17, water officials have finally decided to make the offending company pay for its sins. A few days ago, the Central Environmental Authority (CEA) said, the company had suspended its licence and has required it to pay all damage costs. more..

The King is dead; Long live the King

Sep 9 (SL) The King is dead. Long live the King. In Britain, the passing away of the old monarch and the advent of the new is heralded by these words. In Sri Lanka, Vijithamuni Zoysa, Member of Parliament, echoed these same thoughts, in somewhat cruder terms in his infamous Appachchi Mala speech. After the parliamentary elections, the speed at which scores of MPs from the SLFP switched their allegiance from the former President Rajapaksa to President Sirisena marks more..