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Conflict over FCID's new term

June 13 (DN) Two conflicting views have been expressed by the Govt and some Opposition parties regarding the future of FCID with the former saying that the term of the FCID will be extended and the latter predicting a shut down at the end of the Unit’s current term. Term of the FCID will definitely be extended for another six months and there are no plans whatsoever to discontinue it, Dy Minister Karunarathna Paranavithana said. more..

Vehicle market to get stable

June 13 (DN) Vehicle Importers Association of Sri Lanka (VIAL) and Vehicle Importers Association of Lanka summoning a joint press conference on Saturday welcomed the pledge made by Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake to waive the 10% vehicle re-export tax. The Finance Minister gave this assurance to vehicle importers when they met him on Saturday to discuss issues faces by the industry. Sampath Merenchige President, VIAL speaking to media at the press briefing held after meeting more..

Sri Lanka asked to remove national flag from Lord's balcony

June 13 (DM) MCC instructed the Sri Lankan dressing room to remove their national flag from the team balcony on Sunday after the tourists unfurled it in protest at an umpiring decision. SL complained to the match referee after seam bowler Nuwan Pradeep was deprived of the wicket of Alex Hales because umpire Rod Tucker had wrongly signalled a no-ball. Not long after, SL flag was draped over the railings of their balcony, where it stayed, in contravention of ground rules, for 45 minutes. more..

JO: Use funds set aside for luxury cars to help those affected by Salawa inferno

June 13 (Island) The Joint Opposition is planning to move a motion to urge the govt to utilise the funds allocated for purchasing new super luxury cars to build houses for those who lost their properties during the recent fire and explosions at the army’s central armoury in Kosgama. The Joint Opposition had started collecting signatures of MPs for the motion to be handed over to the Speaker next week, party sources said yesterday. more..

To be a child is a right

June 13 (DM) Spiritual leaders have told us that if anyone harms a little child he or she should be thrown into the deepest ocean with a millstone tied around the neck. Most social analysts also believe that if premeditated murder is the worst crime, then child labour, which often leads to physical or sexual abuse, must come next. Yesterday, was the World Day Against Child Labour. International Labour Organisation (ILO), affiliated to the UN, generally deals with issues relating to working class. more..

Crisis due to impunity

June 13 (DM) A report issued by the UN during the former regime had pointed out that the criminal justice system in Sri Lanka was ineffective in combatting a culture of impunity, citing a lack of political will. Corruption therefore cannot be minimised unless there is a strong political leadership, commitment, focus and institutional support. Does the present govt too continue to disburse govt funds recklessly? They should also select priorities through a cycle of planning more..

Wildlife chief’s resignation still in the balance

June 13 (ST) The cloud of uncertainty over this week’s resignation of Dr. Sumith Pilapitiya, Director-General of the Department of Wildlife Conservation (DWC), is yet to clear, with the Minister continuing to refuse to accept the resignation and the official unavailable for comment as to his next move. Independent wildlife conservation groups along with a union of the department are strongly urging the govt to more..

No time to experiment with Cricket jigsaws

June 13 (ST) Roshan Mahanama was barely fourteen plus when he played his first division one game against Colts. He said what he vaguely recalled was that his club, Bloomfield, was losing wickets and he had to prop up the inning with another former Nalandian stalwart — Anura Ranasinghe who was the senior member — and they somewhat accomplished the assigned task. Yes, at that time there were some schoolboys more..

Not what friends are for

June 13 (SL) The conduct of Gangodawila Magistrate Kanishka Wijeratne at the hearing of the very controversial case against former Colombo Additional Magistrate Thilina Gamage is shameless and shocking according to legal luminaries in the country. According to them, Wijeratne has not only brought the country’s entire judicial system to shame but has made law-abiding citizens believe that more..

Bail granted to former Colombo Additional Magistrate suspended

June 13 (AD) The Colombo High Court today temporary suspended the bail order granted to former Additional Magistrate Thilina Gamage by the Nugegoda Magistrate’s Court. The order was issued following a revised application filed by the Attorney General’s Department. The AG filed the revised application with the Colombo High Court seeking to annul Nugegoda Magistrate’s bail order. The application has also sought an order to more..

Lal Kantha faults Prez for not taking Doorian to Obama, Waraka to Merkel

June 13 (Island) JVP trade union wing leader K.D. Lal Kantha has urged the govt to make use of ganja taken into custody to make medicines and generate income, instead of just destroying the narcotic. Addressing a seminar titled Naya, Badu Bara and Bindavetena Aarthikaya (Debt, tax burden and collapsing economy) at Godakawela on Saturday, Lal Kantha frowned on govt’s policy of borrowing from rich countries more..

Now, people protest against nuclear lab fearing explosion

June 13 (Island) Hundreds of residents of Malabe blocked the new Kandy Road at the Talahena Junction in protest urging the govt to abandon its plan to set up a laboratory of the SL Atomic Energy Authority in the Halbarawa village. The laboratory posed a serious threat to the people living around it like the army’s central armoury which exploded recently, protesters said. They said the situation would be far worse than more..

Video of young Lankan girl controlling elephant goes viral

June 13 (DM) Astonishing footage of a modern-day David vs Goliath confrontation has emerged - with the underdog being a small girl. In an almost spooky fashion, a child has been filmed walking right up to an approaching elephant on a road and seemingly controlling it by showing it the palm of her hand. Dramatic scene unfolded in SL, with the girl showing absolutely no fear as she walks towards the creature gazing down upon her. more..

Sri Lanka govt, private outfits linked to illegal wild life trade

June 13 (EN) Organised criminals doing a thriving illegal wildlife trade in Sri Lanka are operating with the connivance of certain govt and private sector institutions, a former senior Customs officer has charged. Sri Lanka has become a transit point for the illegal trade in wildlife given its location on the main East-West trade route and good shipping connections, said Samantha Gunasekera, former Deputy Director of Customs. more..

Sri Lanka: Enforce commission directives on terror detainees

June 13 (HRW) The Sri Lankan govt should abide by National Human Rights Commission guidelines on arrest and detention while taking urgent steps to repeal the draconian Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), Human Rights Watch said today. Sri Lankan authorities have continued to use the PTA to detain individuals without charge, despite pledging to revoke the law at the UNHRC in Geneva in October 2015. more..

Mahanayake wants army camps to remain

June 13 (Island) Most Venerable Mahanayake of Asgiriya Warakagoda Sri Gunnaratana Thera wants the army camps in the North to remain there. Most Venerable Sri Gunaratana Mahanayake Thera told Minister Mahinda Samrasinghe yesterday that the army camps in the north should not be shifted despite calls from some quarters for their removal. The prelate in the course of a conversation with Minister asked whether more..

Geneva Sessions

June 13 (CT) UNHRC's 32nd Session which commences today is expected to focus on the progress made with regard to the resolving of post-civil war humanitarian issues in the North and the East and on the government's stance over investigating into the alleged war crimes which were believed to have been committed extensively during the last lap of the civil war in the island. Last February UNHRC High Commissioner Prince Zeid Raad Al-Hussein visited the island and more..

Govt should take stock of the post-war situation

June 13 (CT) I would submit that the Govt should not be deterred in taking action in regard to some of these matters by some of the imaginary, fabricated and exaggerated fears that are expressed by people with jaundiced thinking, the thinking that is communal in nature, not intended to achieve unity in this country, but to preserve disunity in this country for their own political reasons and for their own political advantage. The Govt, which has been returned to power on the basis of more..

ජයන්ති කුරු උතුම්පාල සහ යොහාන්

Shares close at more than 1-wk high

June 13 (Reuters) Shares closed at a more than one-week high on Monday as investor sentiment remained upbeat following approval of a key loan by the IMF, but concerns over rising interest rates and foreign fund outflows capped gains. IMF's executive board approved a three-year, $1.5 billion loan to support Sri Lanka's economic reform agenda, the global lender said on June 4. Treasury bill yields have risen between 16 and 36 basis points to near 3-year highs in the last 3 weekly auctions more..

Rs 14.5 Million to develop Vavuniya temples

June 13 (CT) A programme to donate funds, for the development of temples in the Vavuniya District, was held under the patronage of the Chief Prelate of Asgiriya's Shyamopali Maha Wansha, the Most Venerable Warakagoda Dhammadassi Sri Gnanarathana Mahanayake thera, on 10 June at the Mahakachchakodiya Ancient Gallen (rock-cave) Vihara in Vavuniya. Chief Prelate was welcomed by the Chief Sanghanayake of the Northern and Eastern Provinces and Chief Incumbent of more..

Video: We too need FCID: Yapa

June 13 (DM) The FCID should not be dissolved as the UPFA too had complaints to lodge against officials of the current Govt, UPFA MP Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena said. Addressing a news conference, he said they would lodge complains to the FCID against Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran, as well as the Secretaries of the Finance and Defence Ministries under a UPFA govt. more..

'LG polls: 13 parties ready to join UPFA'

June 13 (Island) UPFA General Secretary and Minister Mahinda Amaraweera says 13 parties have expressed their willingness to coalesce with the UPFA to contest forthcoming elections. The parties had sent their applications to join the alliance and the UPFA was conducting interviews to see how to accommodate their demands, the minister said. Among those parties which had applied for UPFA membership were the EPDP led by Douglas Devananda, the CWC headed by more..

Murder suspect arrested a few hours after crime

June 13 (DN) A man suspected of stabbing a man to death on Saturday afternoon was arrested within a few hours in Anuradhapura yesterday. The incident occurred at Thorawela Para in Mahabulankulama in Anuradhapura when a 38-year-old man was stabbed to death by another after an argument while consuming liquor. The suspect had then escaped. Anuradhapura HQI C.I. Jayapadma alerted nearby police stations. A team of officers of the Mihinthalaya and Medawachchiya police on duty more..

Sri Lanka reiterates not to allow foreign judges in war probe

June 13 (Xinhua) Govt reiterated that it will not agree to have foreign judges in the domestic accountability process over its civil war and only accept technical assistance. Minister Faizer Mustapha said that President has been very clear that war crimes did not take place in SL. He said that some groups are however attempting to give the impression that a war crime investigation will take place with participation of foreign judges. more..

SL enacted two significant laws on wages towards decent wage setup - WDJ

June 13 (DN) Sri Lanka in the 1st quarter of 2016 enacted two significant laws on wages geared to decent wage set up, Minister W.D.J. Seneviratne said. He said the National Minimum Wages Act No. 3 of 2016 is a historic event by which for the first time in the country mandatory national monthly minimum wage was fixed (Rs.10,000/-) payable to all workers by all employers in the country. The other parallel law was the Budgetary Relief Allowance of workers Act No.4 of 2016 more..

Salawa blast: CID records statement from over 40 Army personnel

June 13 (CT) CID which commenced investigations into the Kosgama, Salawa Army Camp fire has recorded statements from over 40 army personnel who were at the premises at the time of the incident. Meanwhile, the govt will commence paying compensation from June 14 onwards, to the victims who lost their houses as well as those whose properties were damaged due to the fire and subsequent explosions from the Army Camp. Govt has deployed over 75 valuation officers to more..

Rajitha Senaratne defends Rs 1,180 million vehicle project

June 13 (AM) Minister Rajitha Senaratne said that it was not fair to compare Ministers of European countries with SL Ministers as the ministers in Europe do not have to travel around. Speaking to BBC on the plans to buy vehicles at a cost of Rs 1,180 million for a number of ministers, he said that MPs have to attend various functions in their districts. Ministers on the other hand, have to travel around the country, he added. more..

Outfit meant to be alternative to TNA disintegrating

June 13 (Island) Within five weeks of its formation, the Democratic Tamil National Front (DTNF), a new Tamil alliance to win the rights of their people, has begun to disintegrate, shattering its hope of becoming a formidable alternative to the Tamil National Alliance (TNA). A moderate Tamil politician yesterday chided the leaders of five Tamil political parties who reportedly deserted the DTNF and signed agreements with the SLFP-led alliance a few days back. more..

Sri Lankan selected by the NSW Labor Party to stand for a Senate Seat

June 13 (AD) The Australian Labor Party in New South Wales (NSW) officially announced that Jagath Bandara has been nominated by the NSW Labor Party to the Senate ticket for the Federal election on 2 July. Jagath is originally from Sri Lanka and he is the first ever Sri Lankan person of sub continent heritage and the community to be nominated for a Federal Senate ticket by the NSW Labor party. Senate Candidate Jagath Bandara in his statement to ‘Ada Derana’ said, more..

SLMC calls for removal of excess military camps

June 13 (Xinhua) SL's main Islamic political party, SLMC, called for the removal of excess military camps in the former war zones in the north of the country. SLMC leader and minister in the govt, Rauff Hakeem said that his party does not agree with the proposal that the army should be fully withdrawn from the north. He said there is a concern by the public in the north that the army is still occupying property it does not require. more..

Swaminathan hails govt

June 13 (CT) Govt has paid special attention towards the people of the North and East, who have been victimized by the 30 years long war, Minister D.M. Swaminathan said. He said govt has allocated Rs 14,000 million to resettle and rehabilitate people. "The allocated Rs 14,000 million is being utilized for the rehabilitation and resettlement of all the innocent people including resettled people of N&E, refugees repatriated from India, and war-affected Sinhala border villagers. more..

Udayanga surfaces with Mahinda

June 13 (LT) Udayanga Weeratunga, accused of supplying arms to Ukraine rebels while he was the Ambassador of SL in Russia during Rajapaksa regime, is a member of Mahinda Rajapaksa retinue in Japan. Earlier too he joined Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa when he visited Thailand and media reported that he was seen with Mr. Rajapaaksa in Uganda as well. Udayanga Weeratunga had released a media announcement criticizing the legal process of the present govt and stating more..

Who is responsible for war crimes?

June 13 (CT) Rajapaksa administration had been categorical that the military did not commit any irregularities. Despite the mounting pressure by the US-led sect of the international community, they refused to blink. Yet, even some Sri Lankans take the much talked about humanitarian operation, zero civilian casualties with a pinch of salt. With the change of govt, Sirisena-Wickremesinghe administration have agreed more..

Railway workers signal strike

June 13 (CT) Railway employees are threatening to launch a countrywide strike, within this week, if their salary arrears are not paid, Joint Trade Union Alliance (JTUA) of Railway employees said. Convener of the Alliance Janaka Fernando said that although the govt claimed that the salaries of public servants were increased, employees attached to the SL Railway had not received salary increments. "We have been receiving the unrevised salaries throughout this year. more..

People’s Bank unveils solar power loan scheme

June 13 (LBO) People’s Bank has launched a solar power loan scheme to promote the use of solar energy as part of its drive towards being a carbon conscious bank. Launched on World Environment Day which falls on 5th June 2016, People’s Bank now offers loans to customers who would like to install solar power facilities in their homes and offices. “As a socially responsible financial institution, People’s Bank has embarked on a powerful sustainability journey to measure, more..

SL boat headed for Australia marooned in bad weather off Indonesian coast

June 13 (SMH) A boat with 44 Sri Lankans who claim to be headed for Christmas Island remains marooned in bad weather off the Indonesian province of Aceh. Indonesian authorities have provided the Sri Lankans with food but will not let them disembark because they do not have passports or valid travel documents. "There is one who showed something like a refugee document but it is not from the UNHCR," more..

New Delhi-TN relations and India’s SL policy

June 13 (IPCS) “Could a state hostage the central govt’s decision especially affecting its foreign policy towards another nation? State can’t put pressure for the central govt decisions. I am tired and like Muhammed Ali I will allow them to punch me continuously but wait for the right moment to strike,” said Salman Khurshid, the then Indian external affairs minster, at the Asian Relations Conference held in 2013 at the Indian Council for World Affairs, New Delhi. more..

John Keells mulls more port investments

June 13 (EN) John Keells Group has said it's considering more investments in the ports business given govt plans to build more cargo handling infrastructure. The conglomerate has particularly indicated interest in the East Container Terminal (ECT) of Port of Colombo’s new South Harbour, for which the govt has called for expressions of interest. ECT could complement operations of South Asia Gateway Terminals (SAGT), Colombo’s first privately operated container facility more..

Sri Lanka commits to strengthening relations with the Czech Republic

June 13 (CG) Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera on a visit to the Czech Republic at the invitation of Minister of Foreign Affairs of Czech Republic, Lubomir Zaoralek, reaffirmed Sri Lanka’s commitment to strengthen relations between the two countries. Discussions with Foreign Affairs Minister Zaoralek included reviewing ongoing bilateral cooperation and identifying new areas for partnership in sectors such as more..