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Manjula to lead Sri Lanka at SAG

Jan 29 (CT) Olympic high jumper Manjula Wijesekara will be the flag bearer of the country as the veteran athlete has been appointed captain of SL contingent for the forthcoming South Asian Games (SAG) to be held from 5-16 February in Assam, India. In addition, weightlifter Sudesh Peiris have been appointed as the Vice-Captain. Sri Lanka will field a 450 plus contingent while representing in 23 sports for the 12th edition of the SAG which is held after a lapse of six years. more..

'Geneva Resolution is a mutual agreement'

Jan 29 (CT) “The resolution co-sponsored by our govt at the UNHRC is a mutual agreement entered into by Sri Lanka, as a sovereign member state of the UN, which recognises our responsibility to embark on a process of reconciliation among communities that will foster peace and prosperity.” says the Friday Forum. Issuing a statement last night the Friday Forum said; “This resolution is an opportunity to do what is right, by ourselves and for ourselves, and for our future generations. more..

Indian poaching: Sri Lanka’s first formal condemnation

Jan 29 (Island) Exasperated by the unabated poaching by cross border flotillas from India people of Mannar District, which is one of the richest and most diverse fishery spots in the Asian Pacific Region, have decided to take their case all the way to the Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka. A regional resolution condemning poaching by Indian fishers has now been adopted for the first time in Sri Lanka. Minister of Industry and Commerce, more..

Dematagoda accident: mother, son granted bail

Jan 29 (DN) 15-year-old boy and his mother arrested on the charge of knocking down a 10-year-old girl and her 47-year- old mother at a pedestrian crossing in Dematagoda were yesterday ordered to be released on bail by Colombo Additional Magistrate Chandana Kalansuriya. The 15-year-old boy and his mother were ordered to be released on a cash bail of Rs.10,000 each with two sureties of one million rupees. Meanwhile, Court directed the suspects that compensation of Rs.100,000 more..

SLN uses 15% of country’s fuel

Jan 29 (CT) Sri Lankan Navy uses 15% of the fuel consumption in the country, Director General, Rear Admiral Dharmendra Wettewa revealed. He said the Navy was looking to increase their capacity and capabilities to combat various other maritime threats like drug trafficking and human smuggling in the post-war era. Navy Commander Vice Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne said SL Navy had managed to intercept and stop all boats carrying immigrants to Australia for the past three years. more..

Special Intelligence Unit to raid illegal drugs

Jan 29 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena has given instructions to relevant officials to establish a Special Intelligence Unit to raid illegal drugs. Even though the officials raided illegal drugs at number of times and confiscated huge stocks, statistics show us that the consumption of illegal drugs like heroin has not reduced, President said. He has also instructed the officials to immediately provide him a report in this regard. more..

BJP wants to become Sinhale People’s Front

Jan 29 (DM) Bodu Jana Peramuna (BJP), political wing of the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS), has requested the Elections Commissioner to rename their party as the United Sinhale People’s Front (USPF), its Secretary Nath Amarakoon said. The request was made three weeks ago and the intention of changing the name was to specifically include the term Sinhale into the name of the party. He said the BBS which previously contested at the General Elections as BJP would be contesting individually more..

Sihala Ravaya to save Gnanasara Thera

Jan 29 (CT) The Sihala Ravaya informed that the socially active Buddhist clergy would soon go in for strong action if General Secretary of BBS, Ven. Gnanasara Thera was not granted bail. President of Sihala Ravaya, Ven. Akmeemana Dayarathana Thera admitted that Gnanasara Thera's recent comments made at the Homagama Magistrate's Court amounted to contempt of Court, and constituted a violation of the law through statements which could not be condoned. more..

Deviation from Chinese-led development drive costs Sri Lanka dear: Joint Opposition

Jan 29 (Island) Having realised that Sri Lanka couldn’t rely on Western funding for development projects, the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe govt was now seeking Chinese support, the Joint Opposition said yesterday. It alleged that the govt had shunned the Chinese, having condemned all Chinese-funded projects, including the USD 1.4 bn Colombo port city development launched during the previous administration. MP Dinesh Gunawardena, more..

Vehicles stoned on expressway: Police look for suspects

Jan 29 (DM) Police are seeking to arrest a gang of hooligans that caused mayhem by pelting stones at moving vehicles on the E1 Southern Expressway near Gelanigama on Tuesday night, causing serious damage to eight cars. Eight motorists had lodged complaints with both the Gelanigama Interchange Police Post and the Kalutara North Police that an unknown gang had pelted stones at their cars when they were bound for Colombo from Galle. The windscreens, rear windows and side windows more..

Public consulation on constitution reforms in Sri Lanka to begin from Feb 1

Jan 29 (Hindu) Billed as the first in the history of constitution-making in SL, the process of seeking views of the public district-wise on constitutional reforms will begin on Feb 1. On Monday, two groups of the 20-member Public Representations Committee on Constitutional Reforms, meant for obtaining views of the public on the issue, would visit Gampaha and Kandy. In each district, the panel will hold its sittings at least for two days, according to Lal Wijenayake, chairman of the committee. more..

Ford signs up for second spell as Sri Lanka cricket coach

Jan 29 (AFP) Graham Ford has agreed to return to Sri Lanka for a second spell as coach, his English county championship employer Surrey announced. 55-year-old South African previously coached Sri Lanka from 2012 until 2014, before taking over the reins at Surrey. "We are extremely disappointed to be losing Graham Ford, who has not just been an outstanding head coach but has played an integral role in progress more..

Requests made to PM to nominate Fonseka

Jan 29 (DN) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has received a number of requests from members of civil society organisations, religious leaders and Ranaviru organisations to nominate Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka to fill the Parliament seat which fell vacant due to the passing away of Minister M.K.A.D.S. Gunawardena. He contested the 2015 parliamentary elections under the UNP ticket but failed to secure a seat. Following the victory of UNP, he was appointed to parliament through National List. more..

'Lady justice bent for Sari but not for Sivura'

Jan 29 (AD) NFF leader MP Wimal Weerawansa today charged that lady justice did not bend to the Sivura (saffron robe) the same way she did to the Sari. “What the people are saying is that lady justice did not bend to the Sivura the same way she did to the Sari,” he told reporters in Colombo. For the Sari, bail was given within 15-20 minutes on a Saturday and lady justice did the needful, he claimed in possible reference to the arrest of MP Hirunika Premachandra. more..

Skeletal remains found in secret Navy Prison

Jan 29 (CT) Colombo Chief Magistrate Gihan Pilapitiya ordered the CID to launch a probe into the discovery of skeletal remains in the underground prison named Gunside located within the Ocean Science Faculty premises of the Naval Command in Trincomalee, during the visit there of an overseas monitoring group that was probing disappearances in the East. CID also told Court that a Dolphin Mitsubishi vehicle more..

'UNP victory at provincial polls definite'

Jan 29 (DN) UNP will win the forthcoming provincial election, Minister Lakshman Kiriella said. He said there was no Opposition in the villages today and that the Opposition activities have all been halted. Members of UNP's rural organisations are working hard for victory at Provincial elections. Supporters are queuing up to join the UNP and make the party victorious, he said. "It is for the first time in SL history that two major political parties have joined together to create a conventional govt. more..

Sri Lanka's largest granary opens in Buttala

Jan 29 (DN) Sri Lanka's largest granary with state-of-the-art facilities constructed in Buttala, Monaragala will be opened on Sunday. The project funded by the World Bank constructed at a cost of Rs. 260 million. Complex can store 20,000 metric tons of grains. Grains trucked to the facility will be subject to strict quality control process to ensure durability. During the cultivation seasons where there are buffer stocks, the surplus stocks can be stored at this facility. more..

Video: Ranil rips up the press!

Jan 29 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe denied reports that -- at an interview with Channel Four -- he had said the Sri Lankan Govt had not ruled out a foreign judicial inquiry on alleged human rights violations in Sri Lanka. He said in Parliament he had never told such a thing during the interview he gave to Channel Four. Mr. Wickremesinghe said some media including Daily Mirror & Island are unnecessarily concerned more..

Action on corruption

Jan 29 (DM) One of the former regime’s biggest alleged acts of corruption has been widely known about and reported during the past year. But when JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake gave details of the secret Dubai bank accounts in Parliament, the extent of the plunder of public money was staggering and shocking. Mr. Dissanayake accused the new National Govt of lethargy in allowing the Rajapaksa regime VIPs to get away with the wholesale plunder of the people’s money. more..

In politics, authenticity matters is Maithri a personification of authenticity?

Jan 29 (DM) Leadership in politics has been a subject many psychologists and social scientists have attempted to analyze, dissect and write about over and over again. These analysts and writers have ascribed strong leadership in politics to many a politician and history alone stands as the sole judge as to the validity and legitimacy of those claims. However, when leadership is challenged, when it is questioned and probed, those who come out as deserving and great are those who more..

Bickering over SLFP split keeps everybody on their toes

Jan 29 (DM) The allegation about attempts to compromise the country’s national interests persists. But, President Sirisena asserted in the past few days that he would not jeopardise national security come what may. A furore erupted at the SLFP’s executive committee meeting on Tuesday over remarks made by sections within the party that the proposed constitution making exercise would make way for the partition of the country at more..

Billion-rupee rice racket revealed

Jan 29 (SL) Ceylinco Insurance has refused to sanction compensation for the loss incurred by Lanka Sathosa in the importation of 100,000 metric tons of rice. The said stock is under scrutiny as it is believed to be part of a racket in connection with the ongoing probe into 300 containers of rice gone missing and found unsuitable for human consumption. It was revealed that one of the state institutions of SL that deals with public funds more..

President congratulates GCE A/L top scorers

Jan 29 (PSL) President Sirisena extended his warm congratulations to the students who excelled at GCE A/L – 2015. The students who won first, second and third places in biology, physics, commerce, arts, engineering technology, bio system technology and common subject stream of AL – 2015, met the President today (27) at the Presidential Secretariat. President who appreciated the skills of these students more..

Video: This story of a Sri Lankan drummer boy will tug at your heartstrings

Jan 29 (Telegraph) Last February, a YouTube video touched the hearts of thousands. It showed a young boy, barefoot in blue shorts, playing drums outside a basic brick hut in a clearly hot, but unknown, country. His kit was obviously home-made, constructed from old tin cans, plastic bottles & scaffolding poles, with random scraps of wood & sticks for pedals. Yet what made clip so memorable wasn’t so much the makeshift equipment, more..

‘Players, administrators should debate future of cricket’

Jan 29 (Hindu) Kumar Sangakkara is part of the Gemini Arabians team in the Masters Champions League (MCL) that began in the UAE on Thursday. Talking to The Hindu from Dubai, the 38-year- old Sri Lankan wicketkeeper batsmen, who retired from international cricket after playing the second Test against India in August, said that there has to be very good rapport and co-operation between players & administrators in order to more..

Sri Lanka's missing thousands: one woman's six-year fight to find her husband

Jan 29 (Guardian) Sandhya Eknaligoda has had a date at court in Homogoma, every month for the past six years. 52-year-old counts the number of appearances at more than 90 and they are aimed at securing one thing – finding her husband. Journalist and cartoonist Prageeth Eknaligoda disappeared without a trace on 24 Jan 2010 after a mysterious telephone call led him to an equally mysterious meeting. more..

NE housing projects: Local builders under Rehab Ministry bulldozer

Jan 29 (ST) Govt’s initiative to build 65,000 houses for the displaced in the North and East has run into more controversy, this time from the construction industry. The Construction Association said the Ministry of Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs (which called for bids) had shut out all local companies from prequalifying for the controversial project by insisting on making it one big contract instead of several packages. more..

PM denies threatening media in Parliament speech

Jan 29 (CG) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe today denied that he had threatened the media during a speech he made in Parliament yesterday. Speaking in Parliament today the Prime Minister said that he has a right to name journalists and raise concerns over their actions like journalists name Parliamentarians in their articles. The PM said that some journalists had complained that he had threatened them through his speech. more..

Geneva Resolution: Prez not properly briefed, alleges GL

Jan 29 (Island) Former External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris alleged that President Maithripala Sirisena hadn’t been properly briefed on the Geneva Resolution that dealt with the alleged accountability issues during the war. He said President Sirisena had recently contradicted vital sections in the Resolution unanimously adopted on Oct 1, 2015, prompting PM Ranil Wickremesinghe to reiterate the country’s commitment to it. more..

Isaipriya’s family oppose film release

Jan 29 (Hindu) Opposing the release of a Tamil film based on the life of a slain Sri Lankan Tamil journalist Isaipriya, titled Porkalathil Oru Poo, her mother and sister have approached the Madras High Court seeking to restrain the director from releasing the film. Isaipriya’s mother Veda Ranjana and sister Dharani on Thursday moved a plea to implead them in the petition moved by film’s director, K. Ganesan, challenging more..

SL’s balancing act between India & Pakistan

Jan 29 (AT) After coming to power, Sri Lanka’s President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe had been busy mending fences with countries in the West and South Asia that got snubbed during the rule of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa. While renewing Sri Lanka’s ties with the world, they paid special attention to balance their ties between India and Pakistan. As part of this balancing act, Sri Lanka recently hosted Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif on an official 3-day visit, more..

Police spokesman missed if in doubt-leave it out principle

Jan 29 (DM) The infamous Embilipitiya incident turned yet another page of the story of the Sri Lanka Police on many fronts; professionalism being the foremost factor. Entire episode depicted how unprofessional our police force had been in handling a crisis and the damage controlling efforts in its aftermath. There seem to be two clear sets of officials when it comes to their professional conduct. The most senior officials including the IGP handled it in a professional manner without attempting more..

පැතිකඩ වැඩසටහන

Sinhala fundamentalism tries a fast one-once again

Jan 29 (CT) Writing to Colombo Telegraph, Sharmini Serasinghe, has this to say: “It is indeed ironic and tragically hilarious, that while Sri Lanka boasts of a 2500 year-old culture, and one of the highest literacy rates in Asia (the ability to read and write), those claiming relationship to a four-legged beast (lion) today; its Sinha-Le tribe, is unable to separate allegory and myth, from fact. After all, the ability to read and write doesn’t guarantee intelligence, common sense or wisdom, does it? more..

Sri Lanka can be foremost economic, maritime hub: Governor

Jan 29 (DN) Sri Lanka has a high potential and all advantages to be developed as the economic hub of Asia and to be developed as a maritime hub of the world, Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran said. The Governor was addressing the Second International Investment Promotion Forum of the Eastern Province yesterday in Colombo. The form was held under the theme "Creating Conducting Environment for Investment and Employment Creation in Eastern Sri Lanka". more..

LIOC with 18% market share earns profit of Rs 200 mn; CPC suffers loss of Rs. 13 bn

Jan 29 (Island) Lanka Indian Oil Company (LIOC), which has a 20% market share has earned a net profit of about Rs. 200 mn while the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC), which has 80% of market share has incurred a loss of about Rs. 13 billion. LIOC Managing Director Shyam Bohra said that the latest statistics showed that it had earned a net profit of about Rs. 200 million, while its total market share was around 18%. more..

Sri Lanka Navy pledges support to counter piracy operations

Jan 29 (SLN) The newly appointed Commander of the Combined Task Force 151 (CTF 151), Commodore Zahid Ilyas of the Pakistan Navy, called on the Commander of the Navy, Vice Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne at the Naval Headquarters. Commander of the Navy expressed his appreciation of the Pakistan Navy’s assumption of command of the coalition force responsible for counter piracy operations off the coast of Somalia and the Horn of African region and pledged SLN’s support more..

Govt in fertilizer conspiracy: JVP

Jan 29 (CT) JVP charged that govt was planning to release fertilizer stocks to the market only in March and then too at exorbitant prices. JVP's North Western Provincial Councillor and National Organizer of All Ceylon Peasants Federation, Namal Karunaratne said that upcountry farmers (especially of vegetables and yams.) have threatened to stage a massive protest demonstration if the govt went ahead with this plan. A public petition is also being signed to add strength to the demonstration, more..

STF seizes container released by RTF

Jan 29 (Island) A 40-foot container registered as CRTF-11/2016/CCR16 with the Customs Revenue Task Force (RTF) division was released in contravention of established procedures on Jan. 19. It was later taken into custody by the STF at Siyabalampe, Biyagama, on the same day and handed over to the Customs. A UNP MP representing Colombo (name withheld on legal advice) had intervened to secure the release more..

Former Development Lotteries Board Chairman to appear before CIABOC

Jan 29 (AM) The CIABOC filed a case with the Colombo Magistrate's Court against former Chairman of Development Lotteries Board Chandrawansa Pathiraja on charges of corruption. He is accused of acting in a manner of incurring a loss to the Development Lotteries Board by violating the tender procedure in awarding an advertising contract to an institution named D2S2. The said violation of tender procedure has allegedly taken place on May 15, 2012, when the advertising more..