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No more polio shots for Sri Lankan children

Apr 25 (CT) The triple vaccine provided for children to prevent Polio would be replaced with a dual vaccine from this year onwards complying with the international practices. A new vaccine will be introduced on 30 April. Health ministry noted that triple vaccine is no longer necessary as the Polio Type 2 was eradicated from the globe. The Ministry added polio was eradicated from Sri Lanka in 1993. WHO states that 'poliomyelitis (polio) is a highly infectious viral disease, more..

Exporters slam forex return policy

Apr 25 (FT) Exporters urged the govt to deal with dollar earnings kept overseas on a case by case basis without making knee jerk policy decisions that could upset the regulatory framework and send mixed signals to investors. Exporters had aired their concerns during a meeting with PM on Saturday just a day after Central Bank announced new policy measures to push exporters to bring all their earnings immediately to SL by freezing more..

IMF loan contingent on privatisation of key state institution: JVP

Apr 25 (DN) The JVP said the govt has given an undertaking to the IMF that it will privatise several loss making state institutions including the CPC, CEB and SriLankan Airlines. JVP MP Vijitha Herath told journalists that the above was one of the conditions laid down by the IMF in exchange of a loan facility which the got has requested. Herath predicted that the privatisation of these institutions will happen in stages so as not to earn the immediate wrath of the public. more..

Unidentified gang abducts ex-LTTE commander in East

Apr 25 (Island) An unidentified gang yesterday abducted a former LTTE commander identified as Ram at Thambuluvil in the Ampara district. Security sources told The Island that Ram had been rehabilitated after the conclusion of the conflict in May 2009 and released in 2013. Sources said that Ram had been a senior LTTE commander involved in many battles. The police said that Ram’s wife had lodged a complaint with the police and the alleged abudction was being probed. more..

Second bond scandal costs EPF dear: JVP

Apr 25 (Island) JVP said a Central Bank racket had resulted in a huge loss to the EPF. Former JVP MP cum convenor of the Anti-Corruption Voice, Wasantha Samarasinghe alleged that a company owned by a person close to the Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran was involved in the scandal. Samarasinghe said losses incurred by the EPF due the scandal must be the biggest issue to be addressed on May Day. more..

Grenade and NIC of politico found in drain

Apr 25 (CT) A hand grenade and a NIC of a politician was recovered from a drain in Vavuniya on Saturday , said the Police. The grenade was recovered on a tip-off received by the Intelligence Service along with the National Identity Card of a politician inside a small bag, under the concrete slab in a drain by a goods shed. According to the Police Media Spokesperson, the STF defused the grenade. The Vavuniya Police are conducting further investigations into this incident. more..

Demand for federalism: Kiriella asks media not to set country ablaze

Apr 25 (Island) Extremists were asking for federalism. Such moves should not be taken so seriously. They must be ignored, said Minister Lakshman Kiriella in Kandy on Saturday. He said the media should not should not use such demands to set the country ablaze. Addressing the media, Minister Kiriella said there were extremists in all communities. There were Sinhala extremists, Tamil extremists and Muslim extremists. But among the masses at least 95% were for peace. more..

NPC resolution should be examined like any other proposal: TNA

Apr 25 (Island) Jaffna District TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran said that a resolution seeking the re-merger of the Eastern Province with Northern Province adopted by the TNA-led NPC on Friday could be considered by the govt as well as all other political parties represented in Parliament. TNA comprises ITAK, TELO, PLOTE & EPRLF. Sumanthiran emphasised the need to take a look at the NPC’s proposal. It could be considered like any other proposal, he said. more..

Rs. 2 million jacket and US$ 5000 housing allowance; Is this Yahapalanaya?

Apr 25 (DM) Over the past 40 years, the gap between the poor and the rich has grown to monstrous or mountainous levels with the social justice movement Oxfam recently issuing a shocking report that 62 of the world’s top multi-billionaires own more wealth and resources than half the World’s population of about 3,500 million people. Many analysts believe this is one of the reasons why the United States’ Democratic party’s social justice candidate Burney Sanders is attracting more..

PM’s liberal universities: How to make them?

Apr 25 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has called for creating a liberal culture in our universities. A noble goal, indeed. Still better if he advocates a liberal society at large in this country. That would be much easier since his govt has at its disposal a parliamentary majority to make laws and policy and to revoke discriminatory laws that put the vulnerable communities at harm. He can abolish those antiquated laws such as Penal Code Article 365 A, and launch a public advocacy against more..

Laggala Police firearms robbery: Sleuths zeroing in on suspects!

Apr 25 (CT) The Police are zooming in on those who stole weapons from Laggala Police Station on 14 April, highly placed sources said. Police have also sent the blood samples of the policemen on duty at the time of the theft of weapons into the Govt Analysts Department. Police sources said that while no suspects have been arrested as so far, investigations are being carried out and the suspects will soon be in custody. more..

Inter-Club Rugby: Foreigners barred

Apr 25 (CT) The newly appointed Secretary of the Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union (SLRFU), Nazim Mohamed, claimed that foreign players are unlikely to be part of the country's Inter-Club Tournaments in the coming years. A number of top overseas players in the calibre of Pio Tuwai, Apisai Naqaliva, Oscar Ouma and Koto Pongi featured in the 2014/2015 season, although the SLRFU ruled out any chance of them more..

Panama Papers expose SL’s loopholes

Apr 25 (SL) The exposures of Panama Papers, which have stirred up many a hornet’s nest in Sri Lanka and elsewhere, will result in investigations by both the country’s banking watchdog as well as Sri Lanka Police criminal investigation arm. Governor of the Central Bank Arjuna Mahendran stated that the banking watchdog had requested original documents from Panamanian counterpart for further investigations. more..

Special monitoring to oversee construction of houses in N&E: Ministry

Apr 25 (ST) Special monitoring, evaluation and supervisory arrangements will be established to oversee the construction of 65,000 houses in the North and East by steel company ArcelorMittal, a press release from the Ministry of Rehabilitation and Resettlement said this week. The communiqué was compiled in response to concerns raised earlier this month by the TNA, a note from Minister of Rehabilitation and Resettlement more..

Video: Govt focused on getting the private sector to invest more: Ravi

Apr 25 (AD) The new administration is focused on getting the private sector to invest more in Sri Lanka, explains finance minister Ravi Karunanayake. “The last Govt, they believed in spending where the private sector should have done so and as a result crowded out the private sector. Today we are changing that cause,” Karunanayake told CNBC. India and China are Sri Lanka’s biggest import markets, count among the top three more..

FCID singles out 20 high profile cases

Apr 25 (DN) The FCID has singled out 20 high profile cases in a bid to fast track its investigations. A senior officer attached to the FCID said concluding the 20 investigations would be the FCID’s top priority in the coming weeks. The officer, however, declined to disclose the 20 cases saying that would hamper the progress of the inquiries. “But, some of those cases received wide publicity in the recent past. more..

Ragging: Ministry mulls Indian model

Apr 25 (DM) Higher Education Ministry has instructed university authorities to explore the possibility of setting up a system outside their purview, as in India, to entertain complaints by freshers subjected to ragging, Minister Lakshman Kiriella said. He said that an Indian academic had, at a recent seminar, outlined how the Indian SC had ordered the setting up of a mechanism whereby aggrieved students could complain to an authority outside more..

Udaya challenges IGP to arrest Sampanthan

Apr 25 (DN) Pivithuru Hela Urumaya Leader and MP Udaya Gammanpila challenged the newly appointed IGP Pujith Jayasundara to arrest Opposition Leader R.Sampanthan to show his impartiality when implementing the law. He said Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan along with several TNA MPs and a group of NGO representatives had forcefully entered an Army Camp belonging to the Gajaba Regiment more..

Worries over VAT hike

Apr 25 (FT) Despite Govt efforts to selectively impose a VAT hike from next week its impact on private healthcare and education would be contradictory to the country’s goals of creating a knowledge economy, analysts warned. Govt last week rolled back the VAT increase from 11% to 15% on essential foods, medication and electricity but noted it would be imposed on private healthcare services & private education including tuition. more..

JVP: Workers’ rights being suppressed in unprecedented manner under present govt

Apr 25 (Island) JVP said that May Day being celebrated as the international workers’ day had been tragically reduced to a question of whether workers should go to Kirulapone or Galle rallies. "The day is of utmost importance to the workers of the country, but this year’s May Day has been eclipsed by the Kirulapone-Galle issue," JVP Trade Union Wing Leader K.D. Lalkantha said. He said country’s workforce were subjected to more..

NPC calls for return of fishers to Northern HSZ

Apr 25 (Island) The importance of conforming to international standards has been borne out by the lifting of the EU ban on Sri Lankan fish and fisheries products, the National Peace Council said in a statement issued yesterday. The following is the full text of the statement: "The ban was imposed due to the failure of the previous govt to comply with international standards and adequate control systems to tackle the problem of illegal fishing. A European Commission statement in Oct 2014 more..

Transforming from Ethnicity to Common Humanity: The long march necessary

Apr 25 (CT) There is no mystery about ethnicity. Ethnicity is a product of social history and there is no eternity about it. Evolution of a language, sometimes a religion or religious beliefs, living together in a geographical proximity, development of a close customs and traditions, and political formations, if not states, are the forces that create ethnicities or ethnic communities. There are over 5,000 identifiable ethnic communities in the world, but all are not in conflict. more..

පැතිකඩ දේශපාලන වැඩසටහන

Sri Lanka shares end near 2-week low

Apr 25 (Reuters) Shares fell to a near two-week low on Monday as cautious investors waited for cues from the central bank's decision on interest rates and talks on a loan deal with the IMF. The central bank's April monetary policy announcement is scheduled for 1130 GMT on Tuesday, and expectations are that it would keep key interest rates steady, a poll showed. However, a surprise hike is not ruled out as five out of 11 analysts expect the central bank to raise the policy rate to keep more..

Policing Police!

Apr 25 (CT) The new IGP Pujith Jayasundara was tasked with handling a special unit to curb the underworld menace a few weeks prior to his appointment as Sri Lanka's 34th Police Chief. Now with the assumption of duties as the top cop last Friday, to the great pleasure of the majority of Police personnel and the law-abiding citizens in the country, the new Inspector General of Police has announced several measures to transform the Police Force into a trustworthy institution. more..

Video: Finance Min. can't implement ACR fee

Apr 25 (DM) The Finance Ministry did not have the authority to introduce the new Annual Company Registration (ACR) Fee under the Companies Act, Joint Opposition MP Bandula Gunawardane said. He said the new registration fee would be annually implemented on private companies with a fee of Rs. 60,000. “For public companies the fee is Rs. 100,000 and for listed public companies the fee is Rs. 500,000,” more..

18 bikers arrested

Apr 25 (CT) Eighteen suspects were arrested in the early hours of yesterday morning by the Piliyandala Police for illegal street racing. The 18 suspects were arrested along with their motorcycles. It was further revealed that they were using the Kesbewa new route where they were apprehended for racing purposes. Furthermore, the police added that the suspects had changed the original settings of the motorcycle silencers to create louder noise when riding them. more..

Investing in SL offers opportunities & pitfalls

Apr 25 (CNBC) After the end of a long-running civil war and the beginning of a fresh govt, Sri Lanka's market offers both opportunities and pitfalls for investors. The market certainly has its boosters. Dumith Fernando, executive chairman at Sri Lanka brokerage Asia Securities, highlighted the positives. "You're talking about 5-6 percent economic growth, fairly robust earnings growth and in that context, right now the forward price-to-earnings multiples are under 10 times," he says. more..

UNP brats brawl over birthday girl

Apr 25 (EN) A ruling legislator was assaulted during a birthday party of a daughter of another party stalwart at Colombo's Cinnamon Grand hotel over the weekend with all brats ending up at the nearby police station. UNP MP Kavinda Jayawardana was set upon by the son of another UNP politician Kithsiri Kahatapitiya at the party of another UNP politician Upali Piyasoma's daughter. The de luxe party at the Sequel, more..

Pilots Guild wants SriLankan Airlines’ CEO Capt. Ratwatte to go !

Apr 25 (CT) Members of the Airline Pilots Guild of Sri Lanka disgusted with the behavior of its CEO Capt. Suren Ratwatte of SriLankan Airlines at the meeting held on the 21st April 2016, has called for an emergency meeting to discuss means of having him ousted, Colombo Telegraph reliably learns. At the concluded meeting the former Emirates Airline pilot and now CEO of SriLankan Airlines Capt. Ratwatte had openly blackmailed senior pilot Capt. Sujith Jayasekara. more..

Improved climate forecasts help farming, health: Sri Lanka Met chief

Apr 25 (EN) Improved climate forecasts are helping Sri Lanka’s economy across a wide range of sectors, from farming to health and electricity generation, head of the Met Department said. “The science behind the Asian summer monsoon is quite complex and as such prediction of monsoons is still considered a difficult task,” Director General of Meteorology Lalith Chandrapala said. But the last few decades have seen remarkable advances in climate change forecasts, more..

Paranthan Factory reconstruction starts this year with Rs 525Mn

Apr 25 (LBO) A now defunct Lankan chemical pioneer is to be revived and construction work shall start before the end of this year to revive the historic manufacturing giant, a minister said. “We have earmarked Rs 525 Mn to start work on the Paranthan Chemicals Factory in Kilinochchi, The construction work will begin before the end of this year,” said Minister Rishad Bathiudeen. Minister made the announcement on 24 April while more..

Petition challenging the appointment of SF as MP fixed for support

Apr 25 (DN) Supreme Court fixed for support on April 27, a petition filed by retired Army Officer and former Southern Provincial Councilor Ajith Prasanna challenging the appointment of Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka as a MP. The petitioner had sought an order in thenature of a Writ of Quo Warrant declaring that the DP leader Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka is disqualified and not entitled to be elected as a Member of Parliament of the UNP and thus not entitled to hold office as a MP. more..

SLFP begins interviews for party organizers

Apr 25 (AM) Interviews are set to begin today to select new electorate organizers for SLFP at party headquarters in Colombo. Former PM D. M. Jayaratne, Ministers Susil Premajayantha, W.D.J. Senewiratne, and Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, and former MPs Athauda Seneviratne, and Jagath Pushpakumara have been named for the interview board. Purpose of this measure was to remove electorate organizers who were not committed for benefit of SLFP & to appoint new organizers. more..

'Joint Opposition May Day rally as planned’

Apr 25 (DN) Joint Opposition May Day rally will be held as planned despite the cancellation of the reservation of Shalika Grounds in Narahenpita, MP Udaya Gammanpila said. He said the May Day procession would commence at Shalika Grounds in Narahenpita and end with a rally in Kirulapone Grounds. Gammanpila said the govt obstructions to the Joint Opposition rally demonstrated its fear for the Joint Opposition and stressed more..

Geetha Kumarasinghe to participate in Joint Opposition May Day rally

Apr 25 (DN) Galle District MP Geetha Kumarasinghe said that she will participate in the May Day rally organised by the Joint Opposition in Kirulapone. Kumarasinghe said that threats of disciplinary action will not deter her from taking part in the joint opposition rally likely to be held under the leadership of former President Rajapaksa. She went on to say that she had reliable information that over 40 UPFA MPs have already decided to participate the Kirulapone rally. more..

Rehabilitated LTTE regional leader Ram in TID custody

Apr 25 (AM) Rehabilitated former LTTE regional leader Ram has been taken to the Terrorist Investigation Division custody, the police said. The Thirukkovil Police received a complaint from Ram’s wife on Sunday that an unidentified group abducted him in Ampara. Ram was released in 2013 after rehabilitation and was engaged in agriculture in Ampara District. He was a Colonel in the LTTE ranks. He became famous for holding out in the jungles of the Ampara District more..

SLFP opposes Federal solution

Apr 25 (PTI) SLFP led by President Sirisena has rejected the TNA's call for a federal solution to the minority community's political independence, saying it is unconstitutional and will strengthen extremism. "SLFP is very clear in its policy to oppose a federal solution. Such a solution would be unconstitutional and would lead to disturbances by strengthening extremism", said Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe, more..

Cabinet ready to take on NPC: Kabir

Apr 25 (CT) Cabinet of ministers will take necessary steps if the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) is taking irresponsible decisions, UNP General Secretary Kabir Hashim said. He made this statement responding to a question posed by a journalist regarding a recent resolution passed by the NPC demanding a Federal Constitution for SL, and the merger of Northern and Eastern Provinces to form a single Tamil-speaking State with an autonomous sub-unit in it for Muslim minority. more..

Train services between Galle and Matara halted for 3 days

Apr 25 (DM) Train service between Galle and Matara would be cancelled from May 6 to May 9 due to maintenance work of a bridge, Railway Department said. Due to the reconstruction work of a bridge between Unawatuna and Katugoda railway line, the train service would be suspended from 10pm on May 6 to 3am on May 9. Trains arriving from Maradana and Kandy would be restricted to Galle railway station while train service which begins from Matara will begin from Galle instead. more..