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'SL maritime industry needs proper policy'

Sep 25 (LBO) Minister Arjuna Ranatunga says that the maritime industry progress has been held back due the lack of clear policy and its implementation. “I strongly believe that we can develop the maritime economy into hub status with the assistance of the stakeholders of the industry,” Ranatunga said at the inauguration of the Colombo International Maritime Conference 2015. “I’am aware that shipping policy was developed in the more..

Ex-Foreign Secy. frowns on draft resolution

Sep 25 (Island) Veteran career diplomat and one-time Foreign Secretary Bernard Goonetilleke frowns on the draft of the proposed Geneva resolution currently under discussion. Pointing out that the draft resolution contained 24 preamble paragraphs and 26 operative paragraphs, Goonetilleke said, It looks like a novel to me. Goonetilleke basically echoed Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to UN in Geneva, more..

Resolution on SL an important step: Kerry

Sep 25 (CG) US Secretary of State John Kerry says the resolution on Sri Lanka submitted to the UNHRC yesterday, marks an important step toward a credible transitional justice process, owned by Sri Lankans and with the support and involvement of the international community. He said the resolution lays out a path to provide truth, justice, reparation, and guarantees of non-recurrence that the SL people deserve while more..

TNA welcomes resolution at UN

Sep 25 (IANS) Sri Lanka's main opposition welcomed the draft text of a resolution on Sri Lanka tabled by the co-sponsors at the UNHRC in Geneva. The TNA, also the main Tamil political party in the country, said that resolution constituted a significant victory for justice in Sri Lanka. The resolution, which was tabled in Geneva on Thursday, backs a domestic process with foreign assistance to investigate and prosecute those accused of more..

Combating Child Crime

Sep 25 (CT) Media yesterday reported that a serial sex offender has been taken in to custody in connection with the rape and murder of five- year-old Seya Sadewmi of Kotadeniyawa, Gampaha earlier this month. This arrest is in addition to two other suspects, an 18-year-old schoolboy and a 33-year-old man who had been earlier taken in to custody in connection with this crime. In the developed world, i.e. in countries like the USA and UK, serial sex offenders have to register with more..

Keels Super patrons score with eco-friendly bags

Sep 25 (ST) John Keels supermarkets, ‘Keels Super’ has introduced a novel concept to encourage patrons to use eco friendly bags when shopping at their outlets. Assistant Manager- Operations, Amila Kuruppu said customers who come with cloth bags or any traditional woven bag, to shop at their outlets islandwide will be rewarded with points. Accordingly, every customer will receive four points on their loyalty Nexus card for coming in with a bag for their purchases. more..

US draft resolution: What the Ranil–Sirisena govt will not tell you!

Sep 25 (CT) A US-sponsored draft resolution against Sri Lanka is back on the UNHRC agenda, this time with a vengeance and despite the Ranil – Sirisena govt’s conciliatory and obsequious pro-Washington, pro-Western stance! There is no more Mahinda Rajapaksa to blame, no more pro-Beijing foreign policy, no more Non-Alignment, no more megaphone diplomacy or megaphone diplomats, no more corruption. more..

Dark day coming: The US-SL joint resolution

Sep 25 (CT) While the penumbra of the US resolution on Sri Lanka has softened, the core, the essence, remains. The Sri Lankan side has succeeded only in watering down the inessential, or to switch metaphors, in changing the décor. The crux of the matter remains unchanged. The core remains intact. The essence is unchanged. It is deeply inimical and insulting to Sri Lanka. There will be a Special Court with the Special Counsel and if this isn’t bad enough, more..

Stocks edge lower, turnover picks up

Sep 25 (LBO) Sri Lankan stocks closed lower 0.06% on Friday with investors concerned over domestic economic conditions. Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index closed down 4.03 points at 7,110.80 lower 0.06%. S&P SL20 closed 2.30 points lower at 3,889.52 down 0.06%. Turnover was 1.2 billion rupees, up from 747.5 million rupees Wednesday with 67 stocks closing positive against 88 negative. “Trading volumes were up today on institutional activity,” Lanka Securities said. more..

Sri Lanka maintains loose monetary policy amid currency slide

Sep 25 (EN) Central bank has maintained its low policy rates in a September monetary policy decision amid a slide in the currency, forex reserve losses, capital flight, rising domestic credit, and an expanded budget deficit. Central Bank said year on year inflation was -0.2 in August, but core inflation had risen to 3.9% in August from 3.5% a month earlier. Private credit has grown 21% in July with 40.9 billion rupees more..

The UN needs to help Sri Lanka come to grips with its 26-year civil war

Sep 25 (QZ) When the General Assembly of the United Nations meets at the end of September, it will vote on whether or not an independent body should investigate alleged war crimes committed by the govt of Sri Lanka during its 26-year civil conflict. The govt of the newly elected president Maithripala Sirisena has insisted that a domestic truth and reconciliation commission—not unlike that instituted in post-apartheid South Africa—will be sufficient; but others disagree. more..

Galle DIG probes SSP for alleged harassment of two businessmen

Sep 25 (ST) The Deputy Inspector General’s office in Galle is investigating a Senior Superintendent of Police for allegedly harassing two businessmen by making them walk on their knees. The complaint about the harassment was made to DIG Galle, S.D.A.S. Gunewardene, by two businessmen from Hikkaduwa. The two businessmen had gone to a restaurant in Arachchikande, Hikkaduwa, to complain about the food they had bought from there, as a child had fallen sick after consuming it. more..

FCID DIG's phone and bill should be investigated: JVP

Sep 25 (DM) Questioning the genuineness of Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID), the JVP had called for a special investigation on the mobile phone belonging to the DIG who is in charge of this division. JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said both the mobile phone and the bill should be subjected to an investigation. This he said is necessary in order to determine the extent of more..

Four dead in accident at Athurugiriya

Sep 25 (NS) Four members of a family were killed this morning in the Athurugiriya area following a head on collision between a private bus travelling on the Malabe main road and a three wheeler that had entered the main road from another by road. The four passengers including the eight year old daughter of one passenger were fatally injured in the incident which occurred at 5.10 AM while the driver of the three wheeler sustained serious injuries and is currently undergoing treatment more..

Susil distances himself from MR's claims

Sep 25 (DN) Former UPFA General Secretary Susil Premajayantha distanced himself from former President Mahinda Rajapaksa's claims that the party and its authorities were responsible for non-payment of dues to ITN for broadcasting election ads. Former President Rajapaksa attributed the non-payment of bills to party authorities when he was questioned by the Presidential Commission of Inquiry to investigate and inquire into Serious Acts of Fraud, Corruption and Abuse of Power, State Resources more..

Main suspect arrested in Kaduwela Court shooting

Sep 25 (AD) The main suspect in the recent shooting incident at the Kaduwela Magistrate’s Court premises has been arrested in the Dompe police area. He was arrested by STF personnel in the Dompe area. A person was wounded and hospitalised following the incident on Wednesday morning. Police said that a suspect who was brought to court to be produced before the magistrate was injured when the gunman opened fire at him more..

Weli-Oya farmers get water filter under President’s directive

Sep 25 (PSL) By fulfilling the President’s promise to provide solutions to the issues of Weli-Oya farming community a water filter was offered to them yesterday by Major General Boniface Perera. President made an observation visit to Weli-Oya colony in July to seek about the issues faced by the farming community there. When the people informed about their problems to the President, he promised to take immediate actions for the issue on drinking water; one of major problems faced by them. more..

Sri Lanka increases money to catechists, but not enough

Sep 25 (UCAN) The govt has boosted its budget for paying Sunday school teachers, but catechists said the gesture falls short of what is required. Christian Religious Affairs ministry allocated US$98,508 for catechists of Colombo archdiocese, up from $60,600 last year. The money is to cover expenses for 6,403 catechists, which amounts to about $15 per catechist for the entire year. John Amaratunga, who heads the ministry, understands that the money is a little allowance and said he will work to more..

Govt committed to implement resolution

Sep 25 (CG) Govt says it is committed to implement the resolution submitted to the UNHRC in Geneva. Minister Mangala Samaraweera said that the resolution signifies a path-breaking success for Sri Lanka in the UNHRC in Geneva at the current 30th Session. He said that for the last several years, Sri Lanka was repeatedly humiliated by the international community with Resolutions that censured the conduct of our country. more..

Bahu hails his one time hate figure

Sep 25 (DN) It was former President late J.R. Jayewardene who devolved power and gave citizenship to people who did not have a country of their own, NLF leader Dr. Vickramabahu Karunaratne said. He said the late President eradicated cast based discrimination that existed in the Sri Lankan political arena especially at elections. He said that in the past there was a belief that only persons belonging to the Govigama caste should be appointed as country's PM and the President. more..

CIC Holdings signs agreement with SLINTEC

Sep 25 (Island) CIC Holdings recently signed a research agreement with the Sri Lankan Institute of Nanotechnology (SLINTEC), to develop a novel herbicide formulation for CIC's Crop Solutions Division. This initiative is one of the very first attempts in the industry to locally synthesize and formulate a herbicide in SL. SLINTEC is a public-private partnership between the govt of SL and major players in the private sector, namely MAS Holdings, Brandix, Dialog, Hayleys, Loadstar more..

10-year-old hacked to death

Sep 25 (DM) A 10-year-old schoolboy living at Kapurugoda in Panagoda is reported to have been hacked to death today and his body was recovered from an abandoned house in the area. Victim Kavindu Kapuruge was a grade-five student at Panagoda Sri Parakrama Vidyalaya. They said the body was found in a pool of blood in the abandoned house, which had been occupied by a quarry worker from another area. more..

Former military man caught with ganja

Sep 25 (CT) A former Army Major who was transporting 35 kilograms of cannabis was arrested by the Unsolved Crimes Division of Panadura Police yesterday. Officers of the division had stopped the former Major's vehicle at the Bandaragama departure point of Colombo- Bandaragama expressway; where they found 35 kilograms of cannabis concealed inside manure sacks. One of the suspects is a former Army Major who had been dishonourably discharged from duty more..

Give priority to animal welfare: Minister

Sep 25 (CT) The Sustainable Development and Wildlife Minister, Gamini Jayawickreme Perera, has requested the Zoo authorities to give priority to animal welfare after he completed an inspection tour at the Dehiwala Zoo yesterday. Ministry Media Secretary Dumindu Bandara said that Minister Gamini Jayawickrama Perera has instructed Zoo authorities to give priority to protecting the animals at the Zoo and construct natural environments to create a better habitat for them. more..

Prof. Vitharana rejects UNHRC report

Sep 25 (DM) LSSP Secretary Prof. Tissa Vitharana rejected the content of the UN report on Sri Lanka and the manner of its preparation by the OHCHR. “We shall support all genuine efforts made by the present Govt to achieve reconciliation and national unity, provided no outside interference is permitted. The taking of action against those guilty of alleged war crimes is an internal matter that we are capable of handling. more..

Video: Police nab fake MG Danushka

Sep 25 (AD) An individual who defrauded several people by impersonating Derana Dream Star Season 5 winner M.G. Danushka has been arrested by Negombo Police. Suspect had allegedly deceived organizers of musical shows by claiming he was the popular artists and had obtained payments to perform. He is also accused of deceiving young female fans of the singer via the internet. He was arrested at the Negombo bus stand today following a complaint filed by actual M.G. Danushka. more..

Indian fishermen arrested

Sep 25 (PTI) The Sri Lanka Navy today said it has arrested six Indian fishermen for allegedly fishing in Lankan waters.The Navy said it assisted the Sri Lankan coast guard in the seas off Kovilan Point to nab the fishermen last night. “When the arrest was made the Indian fishermen had been fishing 3.5 nautical miles and 5.2 nautical miles off northwest of Kovilan Point,” the Navy said. The fishermen and their trawlers have been taken to Karainagar, it said. The arrests came days after more..

Kochi Police arrest SL refugees attempting to migrate to Australia

Sep 25 (TOI) Nine Sri Lankan refugees' bid to set sail for Australia was foiled on Wednesday night when the police arrested them along with four suspected agents of a human trafficking racket. Five of the refugees were sleeping aboard a boat, Sr Krishna C, which they were planning to buy on Thursday at Munambom, when the police swooped down on them. The boat belonged to a man identified as Chakkanalil Salim, more..

Navy rescues missing Indian fishing trawler with 6-member crew

Sep 25 (SLN) Sri Lanka Navy rescued the missing Indian fishing trawler with the six-member crew drifting as a result of a mechanical problem and anchored at a distance of five nautical miles west of Iranativu Island on 23rd Sept. Since the fishermen onboard were in an exhausted condition due to rough seas in the area and the defect was beyond repairs, the trawler along with the fishermen were safely brought to Thalai-mannar by an SLN craft which had sighted the defective trawler. more..

Sri Lanka's older container terminals lose to new Chinese firm

Sep 25 (EN) Sri Lanka's older container terminals have seen their business plunging in 2015 as a newly built deep water Chinese facilty took their business, amid overall anaemic growth in Colombo. Parakrama Dissanayake head of Aitken Spence Shipping said the oldest two terminals owned by state-run SLPA has seen their volumes plummet 12% up to August and seen an 18% plunge in the final month. Jaya and Unity container terminals (JCT/UCT) are the oldest in Colombo more..

Sri Lanka likely to dodge international war crime probe

Sep 25 (AFP) Sri Lanka appears set to avoid an international inquiry into atrocities committed during its lengthy civil war if a new UN resolution is adopted next week. Colombo has lobbied successfully for a watering-down of an earlier motion demanding foreign involvement in any probe into human rights abuses during the 37-year conflict. The draft resolution, which is likely to pass unanimously next week, refers to the more..

Reassessing SWRD Bandaranaike

Sep 26 (CT) Icons are loved and loved. They are also vilified. More commonly, history is coloured by those who insert political frill into it, and the line between statesmanship and power politics blurs. This means, naturally enough, that icons come with that proverbial pinch of salt, particularly from the political camp. Their lives are celebrated no matter what they are remembered for, and for good reason. Just as much as no politician’s imperfect, and just as much as we haven’t had more..

Editorial: Trojan horse’s belly

Sep 26 (Island) The draft resolution on Sri Lanka has been tabled at the UNHRC. The US, the UK, Macedonia and Montenegro have jointly moved it. Some govt politicians here have claimed that they have succeeded in having the initial resolution watered down. They are cock-a-hoop because the resolution says it reaffirms its commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. True, the draft resolution praises new govt which is in the good books more..

An analysis of OHCHR report on Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (Island) In 2014 UNHRC by resolution A/HRC/25/L.1/Rev.1 authorized the High Commissioner for Human Rights "To undertake a comprehensive investigation into alleged serious violations and abuses of human rights and related crimes by both parties in Sri Lanka during the period covered by LLRC, and to establish the facts and circumstances of such alleged violations and of the crimes perpetrated with a view to avoiding more..

Politidbits of the week

Sep 26 (NS) Nomenclature: Some were silent during MR’s time. It was called censorship. Some said fear-culture. Those who were silent then aren’t loud now. Jehan Perera says this is because of transition. From what to what? Bad to bad? Maithri is hanging on: He bragged he would do this and that. Finally, he has had to hang on to the hangman’s rope! Maithri’s moods: The man jokes (doesn’t mean he’s a joker). Pruning presidential powers, electoral reforms, Right to Information Act, more..

Heartbreaking news from Kekirilanthaya

Sep 26 (NS) China and Gota’s Army vow to eliminate Cormorants and Pelicans: China says India has no reason to worry about upcoming joint-military exercises between China and Gota’s Army. “We are only targeting the cormorants and pelicans in the Beira Lake, for crying out loud! Modi needs to calm down and hold on to his neon orange tights,” said Senior Colonel Chenglin who will be directing the cormorant and pelican eliminating exercise. Sasthara woman returns: more..

First female driving instructor in Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (CT) Daya Rupasinghe was only 22 when she started her own Driving institute in Sri Lanka, in 1966. Armed with only skill and determination, she became the first female driving instructor in this country. The Driving institute, Daya Learners is now a thriving business which celebrated its 50th year in service. Rupasinghe, a driving force which has taught a large number of drivers, both male and female, more..

Foreign judges no strangers to Sri Lanka

Sep 26 (CT) Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka, the title given to the resolution tabled at the UNHRC by the United States of America on Thursday itself clearly emphasized the need of Sri Lanka traversing in the right path of strengthening its unity, integrity and sovereignty. Unlike the previous three resolutions brought out successfully by the US against Sri Lanka during the Rajapaksa regime, the latest resolution of the US has called for a credible justice process more..

Co-sponsorship means outright capitulation

Sep 26 (NS) It could have been worse is not a victory claim. It is but the whimper of someone who believes he got a consolation prize. President Maithripala Sirisena says it could have been hundreds of thousands of times worse had Mahinda Rajapaksa won on January 8. He was referring to the US-sponsored resolution on Sri Lanka. This was a week ago. He is correct. The final draft is not as odious as the one circulated a few days ago and even that one would appear to be less more..

Varsity subcultures do not count as harassment; We’re against ragging: IUSF

Sep 26 (CT) A new convener recently was appointed to the largest student body of undergraduates; IUSF. Ceylon Today thus interviewed the convener of IUSF Lahiru Weerasekara. He emphasized that the union is against the privatization of education. IUSF wants more students enrolled at state universities. He further said although the universities have sufficient material and human resources more..