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Postal strike ends

Dec 22 (DN) The token strike of the postal service trade unions was terminated from midnight yesterday, after a letter was handed over to the Presidential Secretariat to be forwarded to the President. Co-convener of Joint Trade Union Collective of Postal Services, said that all the employees of the postal services will report for duty from today as usual. It has been scheduled to deliver all letters and parcels dumped at more..

Age reduced on badminton national squad

Dec 22 (CT) Suraj Dandeniya, President of SL Badminton Association said that players over 25 years will not be eligible to be enrolled into the badminton national squad in the future. The rule will be effective from 1 Jan 2017. "If we had taken this step earlier, we could have found the best players. Badminton Association has decided on the criteria that if a player is ranked within the best three at national level or ranked 150 at int'l level, that player will be considered to be more..

Planning a head count change for a regime change?

Dec 22 (DM) It was the former strongman who said the other day that a regime change could be brought about by a change in the head count in the Diyawanna council. It appears that the Greens have taken a cue from the proposition made by the war horse. For there is talk that an enthusiastic group of Greens bent on forming a govt of their own is busy trying all means of raising their present head count of 106 to 115. Duggie from the North and the cockerels from the hills are said to be more..

PM urges celebration of uniqueness of Sri Lankans for lasting peace & reconciliation

Dec 22 (FT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday called on all of the country’s citizens to put the past behind them in order to celebrate their unity and diversity and progress towards lasting peace and reconciliation. Inaugurating the second edition of Tourism Fest at the Independence Arcade in Colombo, he emphasised that 2017 would be a crucial year for the country and it was important to build more..

Sanath's praise for Kohli

Dec 22 (TT) SL legend Sanath Jayasuriya said that Virat Kohli's spirited captaincy has enabled the Indian team to find the perfect rhythm against England in the just-concluded Test series. "Team India is in rhythm... Defeating even a strong team like England comfortably," Jayasuriya, who was here to attend a promotional, told reporters. The Sri Lankan cricketer, who was known for his explosive batting, attributed India's stupendous performance against England to spirited captaincy of Kohli. more..

SriLankan Airlines punctuality improving

Dec 22 (EN) SriLankan Airlines said it has begun to be consistently ranked among the most punctual international airlines by the global flight data monitoring organisation Flightstats, with its punctuality improving in the last five months. SriLankan was ranked 6th most punctual in the world for July 2016, 14th in Aug, 16th in Sept, 6th in Oct and 11th in Nov, according to an analysis of data by Flightstats (, a statement said. more..

Constitution making process: JO spells out non-negotiable conditions

Dec 22 (Island) JO stressed that its participation in the ongoing constitutional making process would be subject to 14 non-negotiable conditions. JO grouping comprises 51 members of parliament elected on the UPFA ticket at Aug 17, 2015 parliamentary polls. JO leader Dinesh Gunawardena and former minister G.L. Peiris said that JO had explained its position to govt, which, they said, was divided over proposed constitutional reforms. more..

Youth Asia Cup: Sri Lanka qualify to meet India in final

Dec 22 (DS) Bangladesh were eliminated from the ACC Under-19 Asia Cup after they lost their rain-curtailed semifinal match against hosts Sri Lanka by 26 runs in Duckworth-Lewis method. Batting first on winning the toss, Bangladesh were bundled out for 194 in 48.3 overs in the day-night affair at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. Sri Lanka made a strong reply and were 106 for the loss of two wickets when rain intervened and forced the match to be decided by the D/L method. more..

Red Cross housing project continues to make excellent progress

Dec 22 (RC) The Sri Lanka Red Cross Estate Housing Project, that began mid this year is moving ahead with beneficiary selection and providing the ground work for over 1600 families to get permanent housing. These houses will enrich and enhance the quality of life of the estate worker who currently live in line houses. They are just a block of houses where over 80 to 90 people cramped up in one single block. Yesterday the Acting High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka more..

Indian embezzlement suspect planned a bank in Sri Lanka, met President

Dec 22 (TOI) The investigation carried out by the special operation group (SOG) of Rajasthan police, which revealed that Rs 16 crore was embezzled at Alwar Urban Cooperative Bank, brought to light plans hatched by the accused, which included starting a bank in Sri Lanka. The 37-year-old BBA graduate and mastermind in the case, Abhishek Joshi, had not only allegedly met the president of SL in Goa, he was also in touch more..

The exotic isle of SL is the ultimate Insta-trip

Dec 22 (MO) Bursting with colour and full of life, Sri Lanka is the ultimate show-off destination. From national parks and botanical gardens, to beaches and ornate temples, the attention-grabbing isle, located south of India in the Indian Ocean, has plenty to see and share with your friends back home. The Royal Botanical Gardens in Kandy create the perfect selfie backdrop with a catwalk bordered by tall palm trees and 4,000 colourful plant species. Get snap happy at the Loolecondera more..

Japan to provide naval craft to Sri Lanka

Dec 22 (DM) The Japanese govt has decided to provide a naval craft and training to Sri Lanka in the future to strengthen its maritime security, Japanese vice Minister of Defence Hiroyuki Miyazawa said. The defence ministry said in a statement that the visiting Japanese minister revealed this during the Japan-Sri Lanka Defence Cooperation Dialogue 2016 held at the defence ministry in Colombo. Sri Lankan delegation was led by State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene. more..

Heavy fine on illegal fishing is a European Union requirement: SL Fisheries Ministry 

Dec 22 (ENS) Imposition of a heavy fine on those who indulge in illegal fishing is a European Union (EU) requirement, and therefore, there is no way Sri Lanka can exempt TN fishermen from being fined heavily for poaching in SL waters and using banned methods of fishing, the Secretary to Ministry of Fishing, Mrs. W.M.M.R. Adhikari, said. Official said that a new tough law to regulate Sri Lankan and foreign fishing is in parliament more..

NWP health workers strike demanding dues

Dec 22 (Island) Health Workers in the North Western Province struck work yesterday, calling on the Provincial Council to pay them their overtime and other allowances for the festive season. Hospital sources said that except for medical officers, all other categories of health staff serving under the North Western Provincial Council (NWPC) had been affected. The SL Janaraja Health Service Union and other health employees of the province warned that they would continue their strike more..

Woman IP prevents suicide attempt

Dec 22 (DN) Head of the Women’s and Children’s branch of the Matara Police IP Waruni Bogahawatta mannaged to persuade a widowed mother of six children (one boy and five girls) from drowning herself in the Nilwala river yesterday morning. The woman who was widowed three years ago was greatly distressed that she was unable to fend for her six children whose ages ranged from six to seventeen and decided to end her life. She had brought the four youngest children with more..

Radical Cabinet shake-up imminent

Dec 22 (CT) A Cabinet reshuffle is under serious consideration with a view to ironing out irritating ruffles in the govt ahead of Local Govt elections to be held early March next year. Insiders say this is specifically aimed at snuffing out the cold war among the ministers and MPs. The reshuffle will be limited to a reshuffle and without creation of a single new portfolio, but it will involve shuffling the pack of ministers, deputies and state ministers. more..

Treasury short circuits CPC financially

Dec 22 (Island) Central Provincial Council would be in financial difficulties in 2017 because the govt had curtailed allocations by 57%, said chief minister Sarath Ekanayake in his budget proposals for the year 2017. For 2016 the govt’s grant as capital to the Cental Provincial Council was Rs. 5,174 million. It had been reduced to Rs. 2,222 million for 2017, a reduction of Rs. 2,952 million, chief minister Sarath Ekanayake said. The CM said there was a financial problem affecting the recurrent expenditure more..

Olive Branch to Ali: SLMC National List MP?

Dec 22 (CT) SLMC General Secretary Hasan Ali reportedly visited the Party Head Office yesterday after a lapse of precisely one year. Ali withdrew from his official duties as the SLMC Secretary as official duties devolving on that office had been assigned to another person. He also took a sabbatical from active party politics in a mark of protest against the move by the SLMC. However, it is learnt that SLMC leader Rauf Hakeem had offered Ali a national list MPs position at a recent discussion with him. more..

7 CMs oppose proposed super ministry

Dec 22 (Island) Seven Chief Ministers had already expressed their vehement opposition to the proposed Development (Special Provisions) Bill, which would confer extraordinary powers on a super ministry to curtail the powers vested in the provincial councils, Western Province CM Isura Devapriya said. He stressed that though the bill had no effect on the WPC, he would oppose it for the sake of other councils as it was aimed at more..

Video: There is some truth in the audio: MR

Dec 22 (DM) Former president Rajapaksa said that there was some truth in the audio of a telephone conversation between himself and former Sunday Leader editor Lasantha Wickramatunga which is circulating in the social media. He said he could not remember whether he said exactly what was in the audio. “There is some truth. I frequently spoke to him. It was not a new thing. I can’t exactly remember whether I said this. I know he had a habit of recording all his conversations,” he said. more..

SLTB workers and commuters attacked during private bus strike compensated

Dec 22 (DN) Compensation was granted yesterday to 23 persons including passengers and Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) drivers and conductors assaulted by thugs during the private bus strike on December 1, at the SLTB headquarters under the patronage of Transport and Civil Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva. Four passengers including the Lance Corporal of Sri Lanka Army who sustained injuries after stones were hurled at a SLTB bus were compensated. more..

Video: Govt to set up Development Zone in Trinco with India's assistance

Dec 22 (DM) Along with the development of Hambantota under assistance from China, the govt is to implement a development programme on similar lines in Trincomalee including the operation of the Port there with India's assistance. Minister Malik Samarawickrama said this in response to a question raised by journalists as to whether India will react adversely against the Private Public Partnership model proposed with more..

Cheating Sinhalese in proposal and Tamils through outcome

Dec 22 (DM) JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake has made two statements regarding reconciliation via constitutional reform. Firstly, he has said that a referendum on a new constitution should not be approached the way the Presidential Election was fought. In that election, the Northern and Eastern Provinces voted overwhelmingly for President Sirisena, who was the default candidate of the UNP and as such was backed to the hilt by the coalition led by that party. more..

Coconuts have a lot of iron, make us strong like a lion

Dec 22 (DM) Instead of importing junk foods and processed rubbish at a high cost in foreign exchange, Govt has launched a three-year mission to grow our own nutritious food -- Grains vegetables and fruits -- in our own country. This will be done hopefully without the use of imported agro-chemicals and preservatives, some of which are known to be toxic. Even in the field of medicine, closely related to health, the govt says it hopes to sign public-private- partnerships to manufacture more..

Bonanza for coconut growers with subsidy, loan programs

Dec 22 (DN) Instead of importing junk foods and processed rubbish at a high cost in foreign exchange, Govt has launched a three-year mission to grow our own nutritious food - Grains vegetables and fruits - in our own country. This will be done hopefully without the use of imported agro-chemicals and preservatives, some of which are known to be toxic. Even in the field of medicine, closely related to health, govt says it hopes to more..

CMC capturing cared for dogs saying they’re rabid: Animal Welfare Trust

Dec 22 (ST) The Animal Welfare Trust (AWT) alleged that the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) is picking up dogs cared for by people, saying they are rabid. In addition, the Trust claims that this creates a complete breakdown of the Catch-Neuter-Vaccinate-Release (CNVR) plan that has thus far been making significant progress. Also, the recent Cabinet approval to build shelters for street dogs, was criticised, as there were more..

'Sri Lanka in danger of falling back into Rajapaksa tyranny'

Dec 22 (DM) Despite the progress made over a few minor matters, since the silent revolution on Jan 8, 2015, which established the coalition govt, no good governance has been established thus far and Sri Lanka is dangerously getting closer to relapsing into a Rajapaksa dictatorship, a renowned economist warned this week.  According to Institute of Policy Studies Chairman Prof. Razeen Sally, Sri Lanka is currently just drifting more..

Practicality in code of ethics for MPs questioned

Dec 22 (SL) Parliament recently adopted a code of ethics for MPs. Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said the code was adopted after studying the opinions of both local and foreign experts and following the practices of legislature in developed countries. He said that the code has been brought about to increase the level of excellence of MPs so that the public could have more faith and trust in their representatives. more..

TN fishermen announce indefinite strike from today

Dec 22 (ANI) The fishermen from Pamban, Tamil Nadu have announced indefinite strike from today urging the immediate release of fellow fishermen lodged in Sri Lankan jail. The Sri Lankan Navy had apprehended 29 fishermen from Ramanathapuram and Thoothukudi districts yesterday. The local fishermen are demanding immediate release of the fellow fishermen arrested by Lankan Navy. more..

Raviraj Murder: Prosecution concludes giving evidence

Dec 22 (DN) The Colombo High Court special jury hearing the Raviraj murder case today concluded hearing the prosecutions evidence. The defence will have the opportunity to call its witnesses when the case resumes tomorrow (22). When the case pertaining to the murder of the former TNA MP Nadaraja Raviraj came up before High Court Judge Manilal Waidyatilleke, senior Deputy Solicitor General Rohantha more..

JHU demands govt to divulge bare facts about H’tota port deal

Dec 22 (Island) JHU spokesman Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe called upon the govt to reveal facts about its agreement with a Chinese company on the Hambantota Port, which PM and the team had decided to sell for a meagre US 1.1 billion. JHU spokesman, said there was no transparency in the deal with China and key politicians of the govt were making contradictory statements about the agreement. more..

58 MPs want Nimal Bopage out

Dec 22 (DM) Fifty Eight MPs are to hand over petitions to the President and the Prime Minister asking them to remove Nimal Bopage, the Secretary to the Ministry of Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media from his post with immediate effect. This development comes after Mr. Bopage said he would not sign the agreement to provide 58 MPs with new vehicles. A govt source said MPs were of the opinion that Bopage should be removed more..

PM offers worship at Tirumala temple

Dec 22 (PTI) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe on Thursday offered prayers at the famous hill shrine of Lord Venkateswara at nearby Tirumala. On arrival at the ancient shrine, Wickremesinghe and his wife Maitree were accorded a traditional welcome by the temple priests and functionaries, who later conducted them to the sanctum sanctorum of the 2000-year-old shrine, Chadalawada Krishnamurthy, more..

Central Bank independence; time Treasury representation to end

Dec 22 (EN) Sri Lanka's central bank should be reformed to insulate it from political meddling and the time has come to end finance ministry representation in its governing board, a top economist has said amid concerns over threats to its independence. Central bank was perceived as having been politicized over the last decade, though there has been concerns over fiscal dominance of monetary policy where more..

SLFP tells UNP not to use President Sirisena for propaganda work

Dec 22 (Island) Western Province Chief Minister Isura Devapriya lashed out at the UNP for using President Sirisena for its political activities. He told the media in Colombo that UNP politicians should not use President Sirisena’s photographs for their election propaganda work. "We all agree that the UNP supported President Sirisena at the last Presidential Election, but it was because the UNP had no proper leader capable of defeating former President Rajapaksa," Devapriya stressed. more..

Assault on Malaysian Ambassador: Trial in late January

Dec 22 (DN) The trial of the men arrested on suspicion of having assaulted SL’s High Commissioner to Malaysia in Sept, will begin late Jan next year, Foreign Ministry sources said. Attorney General Jayantha Jayasuriya has been advising Ibrahim Sahib Ansar helping him monitor the ongoing procedures in Kuala Lumpur. Senior Additional Solicitor General visited Malaysia in Oct and met with relevant Malaysian authorities to comprehensively review the case. more..

එදා සුපිරි තුන් ඉරියව් ක්රීඩක රවි රත්නායක

Good Guy Bopage

Dec 22 (CT) Sri Lankans have a disgusting tendency to grant power to those who don't require it and venerate them until the power gets to their head. The power corrupts the individual and in return they gradually destroy the person who brought them to power. Politicians are the perfect example for this. It has become such a common occurrence that you, the reader, probably have a few examples in your head while reading this. We have this notion that people who control more..

Curb your enthusiasm

Dec 22 (FT) Curb Your Enthusiasm is the title of a highly-acclaimed comedy series that would fall in to the genre of black comedy. Larry David, the producer and main actor in the series, plays the role of a neurotic but candid character pursuing what he considers the right course of action in various personal as well as social encounters. The effect of his bungling approach is disastrous; leaving a well warranted impression of an irascible and maladjusted personality. more..

Sri Lanka to introduce separate bus lanes to ease traffic jams

Dec 22 (EN) Separate lanes for public buses will be introduced in Colombo next year among plans to ease traffic jams which have reduced vehicle speeds to 8 kmph, the Finance Ministry said. Two new roads will be built along with a new Light Rail Transit (LRT) system and extension of existing rail lines to help cope with the flood of vehicles clogging the roads, it said in a statement.  The number of vehicles in the island had more..