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Scholarship cut-off marks revised

Jan 21 (DM) The cut off marks of the Grade 5 scholarship examination had been revised for the following schools due to the addition of an extra class for the grade at Colombo Royal College by the Education Ministry. Officials said the Education Department had taken steps to direct the selected students to relevent schools. Cut-off marks for the rest of the schools would not change, they said. The cut off marks released are as follows: more..

Video: Sri Lankan economy: 'An upward trend from about 2017'

Jan 21 (DW) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe is currently attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. He spoke to DW about the country's reconciliation process and economic outlook. DW: PM, people say that the reconciliation process is crucial for your country's economic success. What measures are you taking? RW: Well, we've started the whole process of bringing them [all political groups] together. more..

Sri Lanka’s pluralist ethnic fabric under threat as anti-Muslim drive gains pace

Jan 21 (AT) An intimidating slogan Sinha le, literally lion’s blood in Sinhala, the language of the majority of Sri Lankans, has triggered fear among the island’s Muslims. The slogan was first seen spray-painted on the gates of Muslim homes in Nugegoda, a suburb of the capital, Colombo. Since then it has appeared as wall graffiti in other parts of the city as well as on stickers and posters on private and public vehicles. The Sinha le campaign is gathering momentum in social media too. more..

Wariyapola hit by HIV

Jan 21 (DN) Kurunegala district has the second largest number of HIV infected cases among all districts in the country and of them, the majority has been reported from Wariyapola, SDT consultant Aruna Shantha Ratnamalala of Wariyapola MOH Office said. He disclosed this at an awareness programme at the Minuwangoda Bodhirukkarama Viharaya recently. He said a child is sexually active between the ages of 10 to 12 although he or she is not mentally strong to enter marriage. more..

Vaas to assist Ireland during World T20

Jan 21 (CI) Ireland have appointed Chaminda Vaas, the former SL seamer, as their bowling consultant ahead of the World T20. Vaas will begin his short-term assignment during Ireland's visit to Abu Dhabi, where they will play two T20Is against UAE on Feb 14 and 16, and remain with the squad until the end of the World T20 in India. "I'm very excited to be joining the backroom staff of the Ireland team," Vaas said. more..

JVP Reads Lenin

Jan 21 (LT) The commemoration address and the exhibition under theme Let’s read Lenin – the man who changed the world will be held at the premises of Colombo Public Library tomorrow (21). The programme that begins at 10 a.m. tomorrow would be participated by diplomats from several countries, artistes, political leaders, trade union leaders, representatives from civil organizations and many others. Commemoration address will be delivered by General Secretary of JVP Tilvin Silva more..

Sri Lankan artist who paints on actual maps

Jan 21 (HT) Google’s clinically precise maps may have successfully replaced the good old atlas and hard copies of road maps during trips, but Sri Lankan artist Pala Pothupitiye still finds artistic inspiration in them. He has been using topographic sheets — actual maps as well as recreated ones — since his debut exhibition in 2003, to map the psychological and cultural framework of people living in the country. Ahead of his maiden solo show in India, SL: Mapping Post-Colonial Ceylon, more..

'TNA reneged on commitment to self determination'

Jan 21 (ENS) Northern Province CM C.V. Wigneswaran on Wednesday strongly denied that Tamil Makkal Peravai (TMP), which he heads, is a political organization in competition with the TNA. But at the same time he pointed out that the TNA has reneged on its commitment to securing for the minority Tamils the right to self-determination. Speaking at a meeting of members of NPC belonging to TNA in Jaffna, more..

Video: Bribery Commission files action against Welgama

Jan 21 (AD) The Bribery Commission today filed action against former Minister and MP Kumara Welgama on charges of illegally paying Rs.3.2 million to the former Vice Chairman of the Sri Lanka Transport Board. Bribery Commission Director SSP Priyantha Chandrasiri said the commission had filed a case at the Colombo Fort Magistrate against Mr. Welgama for having illegally paid this money to L.A. Wimalaratne who was the Vice Chairman of the SLTB during the time. more..

Gota ready to enter politics; Wimal says new front almost ready

Jan 21 (CG) Former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa says is prepared to enter politics if the public want him to. Speaking to reporters outside the Presidential Commission on large scale fraud today, Rajapaksa said that country needs a strong opposition. He said that TNA leader R. Sampanthan cannot be accepted as the opposition leader. Meanwhile NFF leader Wimal Weerawansa said that a new opposition political front is being formed and that is is almost ready to commence work. more..

Sri Lankan PM beckons Chinese investors as rupee takes a beating

Jan 21 (AT) In an effort to boost the country’s economy, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has extended a fresh invitation to Chinese investors to invest in his country. Addressing a news conference in Davos, Switzerland, at World Economic Forum, Wickremesinghe appeared to be slowly leaning towards China for the first time since coming to office over a year ago. He also announced that Sri Lanka will go ahead with more..

Sri Lankan shares recover from over 20-month closing low

Jan 21 (Reuters) Shares rose more than 1.4% on Thursday led by heavyweight stocks, recovering some ground from its lowest close in more than 20 months in the previous session. The market had fallen for the four previous sessions as some investors sold their holdings to settle margin calls and others switched to treasury bills amid rising debt yields, brokers said. The main stock index closed up 88.53 points at 6,349.71. "It was push-up on large cap shares after margin calls," more..

TNA MPs and TNA PC members hold key meeting

Jan 21 (CG) Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Members of Parliament and TNA Provincial Council members held a key meeting today. TNA Provincial Council members from the North and East attended the meeting headed by TNA leader R. Sampanthan. Issues related to the TNA, the policy of the party and a political solution were among the matters discussed at the meeting held in Kilinochchi. The proposed new Constitution was also discussed at the day long meeting. more..

EU recognizes significant progress in SL

Jan 21 (EU) Working Group on Governance, Rule of Law and Human Rights under the EU-Sri Lanka Joint Commission concluded its first meeting in Colombo on 21 Jan. The meeting was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Colombo with the participation of senior officials from Sri Lanka and the European Union. The delegation of the European Union was led by Ms. Paola Pampaloni, Head of Division, Asia and more..

Korea EXIM Bank opens office in Sri Lanka

Jan 21 (EN)Export-Import Bank of Korea, an official export credit agency of the Republic of Korea, has opened their representative office in Colombo. “This new presence comes in response to increased bilateral ties between the govts of Korea and Sri Lanka, in trade, foreign direct investment, development assistance, cultural affairs, and personnel exchanges,” a Korean embassy said. Chairman of Korea Eximbank Duk-Hoon Lee said the bank will increase its financial support more..

'Gammanpila allegedly sold property valued at Rs. 190 million'

Jan 21 (DN) R.P.L.I. Perera, the Power of Attorney holder for wealthy foreign businessman Brian Shaddick, lodged a complaint with the Police yesterday alleging that MP Udaya Gammanpila had fraudulently sold a property valued over millions of rupees belonging to the businessman. The property including a tea factory named Brombil had allegedly been sold for Rs. 190 million to another company by forging fake documents. The complaint had been made while investigations are going on over more..

Video: Mega City Structure plan launch on Jan 29

Jan 21 (DM) The consensual govt’s US 30 billion Mega-City Structure Plan that will transform Sri Lanka into a higher income Smart City or the Center of Excellence in Asia by 2030 will be unveiled on Jan 29 at the Independent Square under the patronage of President and PM. Minister Champika Ranawaka said that the highly ambitious project that envisages to launch 160 mega projects that will cover entire private and state sector more..

Tackling the burden of suicide in Sri Lanka

Jan 22 (CT) Over 800,000 suicide deaths are reported every year, 75% of these origination from the lower and middle-income countries predominantly within Asia. Sri Lanka was listed as having the 4th highest suicide rate in WHO report of 2014. Conflict-ridden history of the country has meant that suicide has been a major burden of the previous three decades, nevertheless the measures and interventions implemented by the governing body has shown to positively impact more..

The Liberal Party after 29 years

Jan 22 (CT) Liberal Party (SL) was formed on 19.01.1987 in Colombo. It was a period of great unrest both in Southern and Northern SL owing to two insurrections. Both these insurrections though had peculiar characteristics were a challenge to the decaying liberal democratic political tradition which we inherited from the British colonial masters. Yet in fact, the challenge to the liberal democratic tradition was fuelled by both 1972 and 1978 constitutions and then political leadership of the country. more..

Gasp, puff, pant!

Jan 22 (SO) Returning from an overseas visit no sooner I stepped out of the flight at the BIA, I was overwhelmed by the feeling of a heavy chest. It wasn't that I disliked coming home but the Colombo's air felt unusually thick as I breathed in. As a regular user of an inhaler for wheezing, I am familiar with such a feeling. But it was surprising that I did not have to touch my inhaler during the 30- day stay Down Under. more..

Third republican constitution

Jan 22 (SL) The latest political maneuver of the UNFGG at present is to bring before the people a new people-centric Constitution. Three committees have been appointed thus far, of which Dr. Jayampathi Wickramaratne heads the committee entrusted with the task of drafting the new Constitution. Attorney-at-Law Lal Wijeratne chairs the committee mandated to engage the participation of civil society organisations together with the public at and thereby ensure that there is good more..

Western region megapolis project: Pipe dream or smart reality?

Jan 22 (SL) Blue-print of the ambitious Western Region Megapolis Project scheduled to be presented this week envisages the greatest development programme Sri Lanka would see in its two and half millennia of recorded history. Minister Champika Ranawaka earlier told the Business Leader that the legal framework for the magnanimous project – the proposed Megapolis Development Authority Bill – would be formulated after having interactive consultation between more..

'Country shouldn’t repeat mistakes of 1978 Constitution'

Jan 22 (FT) “Country shouldn’t repeat the same mistake that happened with the 1978 Constitution. If we say that was J.R. Jayawardena’s Constitution, why are we allowing Ranil Wickremesinghe to do the same?” queries JVP MP and Chairman of COPE Sunil Handunnetti. PM Ranil Wickremesinghe wants to have his own way when enacting a new Constitution, Handunnetti claims, adding that the JVP will only support a new Constitution if more..

Editorial: Ex-prez raps the press

Jan 22 (Island) Mahinda Rajapaksa, whether he is in power or not, rarely misses funerals. He even attends those of his arch political rivals. One may argue that he is not the only politician who does so; there are said to be more politicians than ghosts at cemeteries in this country, waiting to pay their last respects to total strangers. We are reminded of an apocryphal story. A political big shot in the 1980s attended the funeral of a vedamahattaya (native physician) he did not know more..

Revolution or evolution?

Jan 22 (Island) From the word go astute political analyst Izeth Hussain characterized the political change that occurred in our country on the 8th of Jan 2015 as a revolution. To mark the first anniversary of the Jan 8th change, the Presidential Secretariat has produced an ostensibly scholarly publication titled One Nation Great Power. Some 25 political heavyweights have pondered over the nature of the momentous change. Besides several key professional politicians, more..

Chandran Rathnam

Sri Lanka remains a country without a water development policy

Jan 22 (ST) A water development policy is a critical need in Sri Lanka but despite many discussions in parliament and the govt, nothing has happened in formulating one, says Parliamentary Speaker Karu Jayasuriya. He made this statement while addressing the 8th International Perspective on Water Resources and the Environment (IPWE) Conference held at the Cinnamon Grand in Colombo last week. Mr. Jayasuriya said, “In March 2000 a water development policy document more..

Sri Lanka's last chance for equality

Jan 22 (HP) I was born in 1984 at St Michael's Nursing Home in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Then a small, but bustling metropolis, Colombo had already experienced its first taste of societal division. In 1983, race riots largely targeting the Tamil minority population engulfed this once picture perfect paradise in flames -- flames which would continue to torch the land that was my home for the next 26 years. Sri Lanka's civil war ended 100,000 lives and destroyed much more than that. more..

So far, so good

Jan 22 (FL) Maithripala Sirisena’s first year as President has loosened up the political climate, made dissent possible and soothed the feelings of the Tamil people. It remains to be seen whether he can meet his govt’s long-term goals. Polonnaruwa, a region with a history going back to ancient times, has not produced very many political stalwarts in post-independence Sri Lanka. C.P. De Silva, who was prevented by circumstances more..

Cisco eyes Sri Lanka’s transformation into a digitised nation

Jan 22 (ST) American multinational technology company Cisco Systems Inc is very keen in deploying many of its advanced modern digitised technologies and services in Sri Lanka. The company is in discussions with the govt on implementing some of its new services, Amit Malik, Cisco Director for India and SAARC said on the sidelines of the Cisco Summit held in Rajasthan, India recently. Mr. Malik noted that digitisation is taking place everywhere in the world more..

Tea Auction sees improved demand after holiday lull

Jan 22 (FT) This week’s tea auction was met with improved demand with the quantity recording a significant increase and totalling a 7.4 million kg vis-à-vis six million kg last week. Increased volume reflects the extended closure of catalogues on account of the holiday period in December, they noted. High and medium grown small leaf teas met with improved demand whilst the low growns witnessed a bearish sentiment, observed the Forbes and Walker weekly tea report. more..

Sri Lanka economic crisis one of mis-management and governance: economist

Jan 22 (EN) Though Sri Lanka's looming economic problems are explained as a fiscal, debt or an external crisis, the real problem is a crisis in governance and mis-management, an economist has said. "That is the problem of governance," Nishan de Mel, head of Verete Research, a consultancy, said at a forum organized by Asia Securities, a Colombo based brokerage. "The mis-management is really the key issue. more..

‘Japan emerging as great market for Sri Lankan gems and jewellery’

Jan 22 (Island) With the economic recession taking hold in Japan over the last few years, Sri Lankan gem and jewellery institutions' participation in related events in Japan was limited to two booths. Sri Lanka conducted 10 to 12 booths before the recession. This number would increase significantly with a revival of the Japanese economy, International Sales Director Reed Exhibition, Japan, Satoshi Watanabe said. "At one time Sri Lankan buyers' and exporters' participation was very high but more..

Alleged non declaration of assets: Ex-CJ in courts to answer summons

Jan 22 (Island) Colombo Chief Magistrate Gihan Pilapitiya, fixed the next date of trial, against the retired Chief Justice, Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, for Feb. 19, 2016. The complainant is the Permanent Commission to Inquire into Allegations of Bribery or Corruption, for alleged non declaration of assets, against Dr. Bandaranayake. President’s Counsel, Nalin Laduwahetty appeared for Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, who was present in Court to answer summons. more..

First Japanese bank enters local financial industry

Jan 22 (FT) Japan’s Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (MUFG) announced the commencement of its business operations at the representative office in Colombo to promote investment between the two countries. Noting that Sri Lanka is one of the countries where Japanese direct investments have been growing, MUFG CEO Go Watanabe said they intended to establish a presence locally which would not only benefit BTMU, but also contribute to more..

Kelaniya Duruthu Perahera final day today

Jan 22 (Island) Final Day of the Annual Kelaniya Duruthu Perahera will be held tonight. The historical Kelaniya Duruthu Maha Perahera dates back to 1927. It came into being due largely to the efforts of philanthropist Don Walter Wijewardene, son of Helena Wijewardene Lamathani. This religious cultural pageant has evolved over the years to a permanent position, as the country’s most elaborate and grandest low country pageant in its category. Kelaniya Rajamaha Viharaya, more..

SL's IT talent to be showcased in Japan

Jan 22 (DN) Sri Lanka's IT talent is expected to be showcased in an IT promotional event scheduled in Minami Uonuma City, Japan in June. Director, V.P. Marketing, Adam-i Consulting Japan, Kaushal Wawlagala said that they want more Sri Lankan IT companies to participate in this IT promotional event, so that they can get a very attractive rental package and tax incentives and business development support. IT companies can get information about Japanese IT industry and more..

Sri Lanka cricket will be left behind warns Ten Sports CEO

Jan 22 (DN) Sri Lanka cricket will get left behind unless the corporate sector steps in and starts investing money to help develop the domestic structure warned CEO of Ten Sports Taj Television India Rajesh Sethi. "Corporate have a role to play you cannot expect the govt to step in all the time. Corporate must step in and develop the league and the domestic structure and start investing money. It is very sad that in SL matches more..

Sweden pledges full support to restore GSP facility and withdraw fisheries ban

Jan 22 (ITN) The Swedish Prime Minister has emphasized to his Sri Lankan counterpart that Sweden will extend its maximum support for the restoration of the GSP plus and the lifting of the fisheries ban imposed against Sri Lanka. This was revealed during a meeting of the two Prime Ministers. PM Ranil Wickremasinghe and Swedish Prime Minister Stephen Lofven had a meeting on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum that is in progress in Davos, Switzerland. more..

Tourism will strike gold in the East

Jan 22 (CT) At a recently held press meet Chief Minister Eastern Province Naseer Ahamed said the Eastern Province which has enough resources and labour is vying for investment. Naseer said, today the East is well equipped to handle a wide range of investment. We have a well educated labour force. The province has enough resources to attract investors from many sectors. We have over one hundred and fifty thousand youths of which there are around four thousand graduates. more..