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Mahela appointed Mumbai Indians coach

Nov 19 (CI) Mahela Jayawardene has been appointed head coach of the Mumbai Indians franchise. Jayawardene will replace former Australia captain Ricky Ponting, whose two-year contract in the role will expire soon. Jayawardene's contract is reportedly for more than one year, but the franchise did not reveal the details. "Mahela Jayawardene's appointment has come in the wake of Ricky Ponting - coach for more..

A win-win possibility in health sector

Nov 19 (NS) As exclusively reported by the Nation last week, a proposal has been made by the health ministry to start paid channelling of doctors in govt hospitals after 4pm. This will encourage patients who are able to afford a reasonable fee to consult doctors of their choice in the evening while it will help poorer patients by shortening the long queues in the mornings. Currently channelled practice is confined to popular consultants who have established themselves in private hospitals more..

Sri Lanka’s UN Fiasco

Nov 19 (HP) UN Committee Against Torture (UNCAT) is holding its 59th session from Nov 7 to Dece 7 in Geneva, Switzerland. Sri Lanka was recently under the microscope of the committee and, to put it mildly, things did not go smoothly. The fact that Sisira Mendis, Sri Lanka’s chief of national intelligence, participated the two-day affair didn’t help matters. Frankly, Sri Lanka’s inclusion of Mendis in the official delegation is truly alarming. On the other hand, SL govt might argue that, more..

SLC invests Rs. 264m on Premier tournament

Nov 19 (DN) Sri Lanka Cricket announced on this week that it has allocated an impressive sum of Rs. 264 million to conduct the Premier Tournaments of 2016 which will commence on Nov 25. Tournament which consists of League tournament, Limited-Over tournament and a T20 tournament will field 24 teams divided into two tiers and will be played across 8/9 weeks ending in Feb 2017. In the league tournament Tier ‘A’ clubs more..

'Name the Giant Alligator a national heritage'

Nov 19 (DM) The giant alligator measuring about 18 feet in length which was recently caught in the Nilwala River should be conserved after being declared a national heritage, Dr. Anslem de Silva, the Regional Chairman, Crocodile Specialist Group, South Asia and Iran, of the Int'l Union for Conservation of Nature/Species Survival Commission (IUCN/SSC) said today. He said this at a conference held under the theme, Let’s protect Bio Diversity in Sri Lanka organized by more..

Central Bank says that Sri Lanka’s debt has increased by Rs.70.1 billion

Nov 19 (NF) The Central Bank of Sri Lanka says that the country’s debt has increased by Rs.70.1 billion due to the issuing of securities including bonds for higher rates. According to the latest statement released by the Central Bank, the country’s debt after the first seven months of the year stands at Rs.9382 billions. In a report released by the Central Bank in line with the 2017 budget, it is stated that the country’s debt stood at Rs.8503.2 billion at the end of 2015. more..

Sri Lanka’s historic crafts to go high-tech, get SME funding

Nov 19 (FT) Sri Lanka’s historic craft traditions are set to go high-tech while the craftsmen themselves are to receive international craft exposure.  Country’s national crafts expo series has for the first time expanded to include SAARC region’s arts and crafts.  “It is time we bring in new technologies to this sector. Together with Ministry of Telecom & Digital Infrastructure, we are planning to introduce new tech to SL crafts sector,” more..

CSN challenges revocation of its license

Nov 19 (FT) Court of Appeal has extended till 15 Dec its order to maintain status quo (existing state of affairs) in respect of the licenses issued for four frequencies allocated to Carlton Sports Network (CSN) allocated by the TRC. Court has already issued notices on Mass Media Ministry Secretary, Minister Gayantha Karunatillake, TRC and its Director General pursuant to a Writ petition filed by CSN. challenging the impugned decision to revoke its TV Broadcasting License. more..

Thajudeen’s friends to be questioned

Nov 19 (NS) CID is now calling in the main suspects allegedly involved in the killing of rugby player Wasim Thajudeen for questioning including his friends and acquaintances. Attorney-at-Law for the Thajudeen family, Sathar Misbah said that the relevant law enforcement agencies were looking at Thajudeen’s friends and acquaintances who were in touch with him on the day of the incident and the day prior with regard to whether they possessed any knowledge about the killing. more..

Sri Lanka economy stabilizing says IMF; US$ 162mn released

Nov 19 (EN) IMF has released US$ 162 million under its three year program with SL saying economic conditions have started to improve and tax hikes are helping improve budgets. "SL’s performance under the Fund-supported program has been broadly satisfactory despite challenging circumstances," Dy Managing Director, Tao Zhang. "Macroeconomic & financial conditions have begun to stabilize, inflation has trended down, more..

Customs nab currency smuggler accompanied by minister’s co-secy

Nov 19 (Island) Customs recently thwarted an attempt by a businessman to smuggle out foreign currency worth SLR 4.5 mn. The businessman was accompanied by two others including a senior minister’s coordinating secretary. Sources said the foreign currency had been confiscated and the businessman fined Rs.100,000. The detection was made several days ago when the trio were on their way to Singapore. Incident had been brought to the notice of the minister concerned, they said. more..

Speaker warns UNP MP Nalin Bandara

Nov 19 (DN) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya warned UNP MP Nalin Bandara Jayamaha not to disturb proceedings. Speaker also warned Jayamaha that he would name him if he did not return to his seat. Speaker Jayasuriya warned when Jayamaha was engrossed in a crosstalk with JVP MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake yesterday while Minister Malik Samarawickrama was on his feet to respond to a special statement by opposition member Douglas Devananda under standing order 23(2). more..

'PPP initiative not suitable for H’tota Port'

Nov 19 (DN) Private-Public Partnership (PPP) initiative is not suitable for the Hambantota Port, JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said in Parliament. He pointed out that handing over 80% of ownership to the Chinese company while retaining 20% with the Ports Authority is no different to selling Hambantota Port. “Minister Arjuna Ranatunga said a USD 1.5 billion loan had been obtained to construct H'tota port, more..

Video: Age limit for trishaw drivers

Nov 19 (DM) Legal age limit for trishaw drivers who provide public transport should be increased to 25, Chairman of the National Council for Road Safety, Dr. Sisira Kodagoda said. He said those who were below 25 years of age should not be allowed to transport people considering the safety of the passengers. He said a probation period of at least two years should also be given to them. He said the National Council for Road Safety would inform the relevant govt authorities to more..

SL to finalize H'tota port deal by next month

Nov 19 (LBO) SL expects to finalize the deal with regard to the loss-making Hambantota port within three weeks, Minister Arjuna Ranatunga said. He said that under the new arrangement, port will be operated as a PPP venture project between SL and Chinese investors. “A Chinese company valued the port around USD750mn; but we have obtained USD1.5bn loan with a high interest rate to build this port,” he said. “We are currently negotiating with them to get the best benefit to our country.” more..

Justifying corrupt deal: Ravi defends decision to give MPs vehicles

Nov 19 (FT) Minister of Finance Ravi Karunanayake denied allegations raised by JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake in relation to obtaining 58 vehicles on operational leases, which is supposed to save the state money. Highlighting the rationale behind obtaining vehicles on operational lease against outright purchase, he said: “When you purchase a jeep for Rs. 33 million, govt receives Rs. 25 million as tax. more..

Plantation companies fail to adhere to new Collective Agreement: Thondaman

Nov 19 (DN) CWC leader Arumugam Thondaman said that the plantation companies have failed to adhere to the new Collective Agreement signed between plantation trade unions and the Ceylon Employers’ Federation last month, to increase the daily wage of estate workers to Rs. 730. “Several plantation companies have violated the clauses mentioned in the Collective Agreement by arbitrarily changing the normal quantity of tea that has to be plucked without consensus,” he said. more..

Over 500 free cataract surgeries at state hospitals in next two months

Nov 19 (DN) Arrangements will be made to carry out over 500 free cataract surgeries within the next two months with the assistance of the Chinese govt, Health minister Rajitha Senaratne said. According to the Minister, Sri Lanka has 150,000 blind persons although the Vision 2020 Programme commenced in 2007 to prevent blindness in the island. He was addressing the gathering after handing over degree certificates to 49 eye technicians at a ceremony in Colombo recently. more..

Govt alleges foreign extremists teaching at international schools

Nov 19 (Island) Alleging that 32 SL Muslims had joined the ISIS, Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakse said that foreigners were propagating extremism among Muslim children here. He said that extremist foreigners had entered Sri Lanka under the guise of teachers. Minister warned that govt would take appropriate measures in accordance with the PTA though a section of the int'l community was opposed to implementation of existing law. more..

UNP and SLFP miserably failed the country Inevitable need for third political force

Nov 19 (DM) People in general are fed up and disgusted at the govt’s refusal to fulfil its pledge to bring to book, those involved in crime, corruption, amassed wealth illegally, plundered the country, waste and other such activities during the previous regime. On 8 January 2015 they voted with great enthusiasm in the hope that both President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe would be sincere in their election slogans to punish all who plundered country’s wealth. more..

What we want for every child

Nov 19 (DM) Tomorrow, Nov 20, is the Universal Children’s Day as declared by a resolution approved by the UN’s General Assembly (UNGA) in 1954. It is a day of worldwide fraternity and understanding among children, with activity devoted to promoting the ideals and objectives of the Charter and the welfare of the children of the world. It was on Nov 20 that the UNGA adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1959 and the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989. more..

Aged crisis facing SL: Govt starts to act

Nov 19 (ST) Last week, Bandaragama police were confronted with the problem of finding accommodation and care for an abandoned 80-year-old mother found by the roadside. She said she had distributed her wealth and property among her seven children and now they did not want to take care of her. The children were summoned to the police station but refused to take her back home. Many elderly parents are today being abandoned by children who either more..

Millions spent to upgrade rejected facilities

Nov 19 (SL) Yet another Cricket Board scam has now come to the fore, this time how Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) had released several millions of rupees to upgrade infrastructure facilities at Colombo Cricket Club (CCC) which is headed by none other than their Treasurer. CCC was selected to hold one of the warm-up matches during Australian Tour in July/August and SLC was to release necessary funds to upgrade the infrastructure facilities. more..

Police battle HR allegations

Nov 19 (SL) The topic of human rights has once again become a much discussed topic in the country. As the assurance of human rights was among the key promises of the good governance govt during the election many electronic and print media organisations  as well as social media networks have started to give alot of publicity about the inefficiency of the good governance administration in establishing human rights in the country. more..

'If requested, President may seek a 2nd term'

Nov 19 (Island) SLFP Youth Front Chairman Shantha Bandara said that the symbol of the newly formed Sri Lanka People’s Front (SLPF), flower bud was not a winning symbol. He stressed that there was no need to compare former President Rajapaksa and President Sirisena as they would not run against each other at another election in the future. Former President Rajapaksa would never be the President of this country again more..

Prehistoric man stirs to life as scientists find clues to the past in ancient caves

Nov 19 (ST) Our pre-historic humans took refuge in caves that hide many secrets that are helping archaeologists piece together how humans evolved thousands of years ago, the respected archaeologist, Professor Raj Somadeva said. Recent excavations in a number of caves have produced archaeological finds showing how prehistoric humans, initially living as hunter gatherers, gradually moved to agriculture. more..

'Bilateral agreements can be annulled in six months'

Nov 19 (DN) Any bilateral trade agreement presently being negotiated, including the ETCA with India can be terminated by giving about six months’ notice, if there are unexpected losses to the country, Minister Malik Samarawickrama said. He said the relevant clauses have been added to the proposed agreements. Minister commenting on the claims of loss of employment opportunities under ETCA more..

JHU opposes referendum on new Constitution to be made

Nov 19 (Island) A referendum on a new Constitution was unnecessary, but it would come through the consent of all in Parliament, Minister Champika Ranawaka said. Ranawaka said a referendum would not reflect the public opinion on the issue as the people will be influenced by other factors such as their political affiliations etc in casting their votes. Citing Brexit referendum as an example, Minister said that also led to several more..

Was not aware of Rajiv Gandhi assassination plan, Nalini writes in 500-page autobiography

Nov 19 (PTI) Rajiv Gandhi's assassin Nalini Sriharan is back in news with her tell-all autobiography. In jail for more than 25 years now, the world's longest serving woman prisoner has put together the 500-page book in Tamil that will be released on Nov 24. Nalini, who married LTTE operative Sriharan in April, 1991 after a brief courtship, was 2 months pregnant when arrested in connection with 1991 assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. more..

Muslim Council objects to Wijedasa’s statement on Lankans joining IS

Nov 19 (AD) Muslim Council of Sri Lanka (MCSL) says that it is seriously concerned about the statement made in Parliament by Minister Wijedasa Rajapaksa, regarding Sri Lankan Muslims joining the Islamic State (IS) in Syria. “Minister has implied that 32 Muslims have joined the ISIS recently. We strongly object to this misplaced statement,” MCSL President N.M. Ameen said .  He says that the facts given by the Minister more..

'People will get chance to approve Constitution'

Nov 19 (PTI) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe on Saturday assured Parliament the new Constitution will be drafted in consultation with all political parties and people would get a chance to approve it. He made the remarks while presenting the reports of six sub-committees to the Constitutional Assembly. The sub-committees were appointed to look into matters pertaining to the new Constitution. more..

SL adopting pace and bounce is a plus

Nov 19 (CT) Sri Lanka showed its weakness playing against the faster West Indian bowlers, on the same wicket, that they thrashed the Zimbabwe bowlers only a week ago. The Sri Lanka team without their regular batters looked so ordinary against an average pace attack lacking experience except Holder. Holder getting bounce on the Harare wicket was not used to that level by the slow medium pacers of Zimbabwe playing those three Test matches, recently. more..

Photo focus: Victims… of poor planning

Nov 19 (ST) The agricultural colony of Neelabemma, in Karuwelagaswewa in the Puttalam District has been subject to constant intrusion by wild elephants which roam the Wilpattu National Park Reservation. Neelabamma itself is the dam across the Kala Oya, stretching 13 km up to Ottupallama and is a part of a massive two-stage irrigation project. Stage One of the project covers 500 acres of paddy and chena cultivation. From the time the project commenced it has been subjected to more..

චමින්ද වාස්ට නායකත්වය අහිමි කළේ කවුද?

Buddhism, Sri Lankan Trump supporters & The pedagogy of the oppressed

Nov 19 (CT) To all genuine followers of Buddhism, and everyone else who believes in equality, the US election was a punch in the gut. A man who ran on a campaign of racism, taking American jobs away from immigrants and foreign nationals, a man who took pride in not paying his share of taxes and swore to implement a regressive tax policy, cutting taxes for the rich, putting the burden of funding govt on the poor, a man who was caught on tape talking about raping women, became leader of free world. more..

'Govt stable despite JO’s coconut curse'

Nov 19 (CT) Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe, remarked in Parliament Thursday that dashing coconuts would no longer invoke the favour of the gods to overthrow govts or ensure politicians who were elected. He made this observation while participating in Thursday's debate. He said that it was a useless effort by the Joint Opposition (JO) to dash coconuts hoping for a political victory, adding that the process of formulating the Budget 2017 had further strengthened the coalition govt. more..

Cold response to burning problem

Nov 19 (ST) An inferno swept through the Kilinochchi market on the night of Sept 16. Desperate calls had been given to all quarters. The town had no fire service. The nearest was the Jaffna Municipal Council’s fire brigade, almost 1 ˝ hours away. By the time it arrived, over 120 shops had been gutted. There was agreement that the damage could have been contained had there been a firefighting unit in the area. more..

Farmers await rains in Polonnaruwa

Nov 19 (CT) An estimated, 1500 acres of agricultural land in the Polonnaruwa District are plunged into jeopardy as they cannot be cultivated owing to the lack of water, a farmer's group warned yesterday. T. B. Sarath, Secretary of the All-Island Lanka Farmers' Federation (AILFF) said that the farmers are faced with a dilemma as the scheduled rains have held back and the water levels in the reservoirs are on the decline. He made these comments at a media briefing. more..

Namal had monopoly over Mihin?

Nov 19 (CT) A young parliamentarian who was a member of the Rajapaksa Govt, had manipulated employment openings in Mihin Lanka, Minister Vijith Vijithamuni Soysa said. He made this comment at a SLFP media briefing, adding that the then Civil Aviation Minister Priyankara Jayaratne could not appoint anyone whom he deemed suitable for any specific position. When a journalist asked whether this young MP was connected to the now disbanded SLFP youth movement – Nil Balakaya – more..

I couldn’t kiss the Lion: Malinga

Nov 19 (CT) “I couldn’t kiss the lion! If I kept kissing the lion after taking wickets, I would have been a hero. I didn’t learn to do such fake display. I just wanted to take wickets. If I took two wickets yesterday, I wanted to take four today. I didn’t want show a different face to the media. I have the same face within and beyond the boundary.” say speedster Lasith Malinga. He made above remarks during an interview with Ravaya newspaper. more..