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Army establishes new Museum in Trinco

Sept 22 (DN) The Army opened the Orr’s Hill Army Museum at the 22 Division Headquarters Trincomalee on Monday. At the invitation of the 22 Division Headquarters of the Security Force Headquarters - East, Army commander Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva, declared open the new Museum. The open air Museum, the first-ever largest of the kind in the country, boasts of architectural marvel, situated atop the popular, Orr’s Hill, overlooking the Trincomalee harbour. more..

SLC hunts professionals

Sept 22 (DM) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), the governing body running the million-dollar business, have kicked off a recruitment drive as part of a major restructuring process. Accordingly, a print media advertisement published in Sunday newspapers called for selectors, talent scouts, team managers, consultants, specialized administrators, professionals, liaison officers, volunteers, advisers and any other professionals to register more..

The state of reconciliation

Sept 23 (CT) Despite the intensity of the ethnic conflict, reconciliation always remained an attractive scheme or slogan for many civil society actors and political figures in Sri Lanka. With the end of the war in 2009, reconciliation transformed into an integral part of the political discourse. Many believed that the termination of the LTTE, bestowed an opportunity to bring the hitherto divided communities together through political means. Govt headed by President Rajapaksa, who defeated the LTTE, more..

Gnanasara and Sinhaley alt-right antics

Sept 23 (CT) Listening to the video recording of Galagoda Atte Gnanasara (Thero)’s anti Muslim hate speech in South Korea, I began to realize how well he fits into the title of a Modern Devadatta. Devadatta tried to assassinate his cousin Buddha . However this modern Devadatta version in saffron robes has already killed the spirit of the message of peace enunciated by the Buddha. This racist bigot and lunatic suffers from a delusion of putting an end to the rise of Islam and the Muslims, more..

'SL economy a case study at Harvard'

Sept 23 (CT) Minister Sujeewa Senasinghe says that if Mahinda Rajapaksa won the war and then developed the economy, the people would not have defeated him and sent him home. Q: What did you do in America during your recent visit? A: I attended a study programme on International Trade & Economy, at Kennedy Centre at Harvard University; on a scholarship. It was a very successful study; more..

Editorial: Poachers and gamekeepers

Sept 23 (Island) Politicians, in our book, are of two kinds—poachers and gamekeepers. When they are ensconced in power, enjoying legal immunity, they are poachers. They become gamekeepers upon being kicked out of office. The hapless game (read the general public) is left with no alternative but to repose their trust in the poachers turned gamekeepers, hoping against hope. Those who pretended to be knights in shining armour on an anti-corruption crusade before last more..

Thriving abortion clinics: Decaying values

Sept 23 (CT) Most places operating as massage clinics operate as ayurvedic massage clinics or homeopathic clinics. Police say nothing can be done as they have the licence to do whatever they want. Massaging is an elastic word; and they are aware of it and know nothing can be done. With the fall of the UNP in 1956 and the coming of the SLFP the system of govt changed. The British Govt had created and put in place a govt with the Kachcheri system; where the Governor was in charge more..

Drones to fight water borne disease

Sept 23 (SO) From weapons of war to assessing crop health; from tracking exact locations of the tiny dengue and Zika carrying Aedes Aegpti mosquito, to physical interventions in safeguarding crop health, drone technology has come a long way in its chequered history. And, while the technology itself is not new, it has certainly crossed traditional thresholds pressured by the demands of modern society. more..

Heal thyself

Sept 23 (DN) The trade union representing govt doctors, the GMOA has never been known for toeing the govt line and that is as it should be: a trade union of professionals, protecting their own rights and interests instead of pandering to the authorities. However, in recent times, the GMOA has been indulging in tactics that would have been comical if not for the tragic effects it has on the fate of millions of people who are dependent upon the state health sector to keep them alive and well. more..

Silent struggle

Sept 23 (DN) As the testimonies of survivors of sexual violence in Sri Lanka’s long war enter the public domain and the govt designs transitional justice mechanisms, is an end to impunity in sight? SL govt is currently designing transitional justice mechanisms to address human rights abuses connected to the three decade long war which ended in May 2009. But a key question is whether victims of sexual violence and rape committed in the context of the war will come forward and use more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Incorporating international crimes into Sri Lankan Law: The need for legislative reform

Sept 23 (GV) In a paper published recently, Eleanor Vermunt and I argued that international crimes must be incorporated into Sri Lankan law with retroactive effect in order to enable meaningful prosecutions of atrocity crimes allegedly committed in Sri Lanka. Since the end of the armed conflict, allegations of violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law have been reported by various official and unofficial sources. According to several UN reports, more..

Right to know the health of Maithri, Ranil and Mahinda

Sept 23 (CT) Democratic Candidate of the American presidential election Hillary Clinton had to face a mishap recently. This was because she contracted Pneumonia during the campaign for the presidency. It was a controversial news for the media of that country that she disappeared for medical treatment. With that, the media and civil organizations presented a new battle slogan on behalf of the American President. That is, that, candidates contesting the US Presidency should more..

First People’s Tribunal on agrochemical companies

Sept 23 (CT) Colossal amounts of State revenue had been pocketed by a few politicians, according to recent revelations, Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama hit out at the former govt. "There should be an investigation upon these revelations because it seems to us that few politicians have pocketed massive amounts of State revenue collected from Customs, income taxes and excise during the time of former govt," he stressed, more..

Book Review: The Lion’s Roar

Sept 23 (Island) "When I was about eight years old, my father took me to a carnival in Kandy around the time of the Esala festival. He bought me a ticket for a lantern show that was drawing large crowds. When my turn came, I peeped through the lens and saw a series of coloured slides of Budhagaya, the Mulaghandhakuti in Saranath, some famous Buddhist sites in India and finally a slide of a handsome middle aged man in a yellow dress. That was Angarika Dharmapala." more..

Senaka Bibile:The God of small things

Sept 23 (Island) On 29 Sept, the country will commemorate the 39th death anniversary of Prof. Senaka Bibile. One of the most erudite scholars ever produced by Sri Lanka, pharmacologist Bibile was world famous for his untiring efforts for making good quality medicinal drugs accessible and affordable to the world masses. What Prof. Bibile aspired for were not technology intensive, expensive big things, but small things like prescribing drugs in generic names and inculcating rational drug prescription more..

Colombo Int’l Maritime Conference begins

Sept 23 (DN) Second annual Colombo International Maritime Conference (CIMC) began last Wednesday with over 400 international invitees. PM Ranil Wickramaisnghe was the Chief Guest yesterday. Theme of the event is Maritime Education and Training. Over 17,000 acres have been allocated for a new industrial zone in the South with mega development activities in the region coming under the purview of a newly more..

15-year-old brewing Goda

Sept 23 (CT) Three persons including a 15-year-old boy were taken into custody Wednesday after they were discovered brewing Goda in Periyamkulam, Kattakaadu in Kilinochchi. Acting on a tip-off, Dharmapuram Police raided the illicit brewery in which there were 12 barrels of Goda and 20 bottles of alcoholic spirits. Teenage boy had dropped out of school to take to manufacturing kasippu. The hooch manufactured by the suspects had been marketed in Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi. more..

Two centurions on first day of Murali Harmony Cup

Sept 23 (Island) In an exciting start to this year’s Murali Harmony Cup, R. P. C. Milan from Seenigama Combined Schools and R. Kelly from St. Joseph’s College both scored centuries for their teams. Seenigama Combined Schools scored 231 runs in their 120-run win over Up Country Combined Schools for the loss of just two wickets. St. Josephs College who are participating for the first time in the tournament won their match against Jaffna Central College by 32 runs. more..

Govt spends Rs. 14 b for Grama Niladari level development

Sept 23 (FT) As Local Govt elections inch closer, Govt has already spent approximately Rs. 14 billion on all Grama Niladari divisions to complete pending development projects that were started by the previous administration, Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said. He said the Govt had allocated Rs. 1 million to each Grama Niladari Division to continue the development of roads and other infrastructure facilities. more..

Sri Lanka plans for 35mn TEU capacity with north port

Sept 23 (ET) Sri Lanka's state-run ports agency has plans to expand Colombo to handle 35 million containers a year by 2040, with a North Port being built inside a new breakwater, a top official said. A base case scenario for capacity developed in 2004 had proved to be remarkably accurate. The Colombo Port now has a capacity of 7.1 million twenty foot equivalent unit (TEUs). An expansion of the exiting Jaya Container Terminal will take Colombo to 7.7 million TEUs. more..

Finance Minister Ravi K’s novel idea of bottom-up approach for budget making

Sept 23 (FT) Efficient budget management in any economy depends upon information flowing strongly both top-down, imposing macroeconomic constraints and broad national policies and priorities, and bottom up, with information on the costs and benefits and performance of present and potential future expenditures. Minister of Finance Ravi Karunanayake has come up with a novel idea of bringing in more of our intelligentsia for bottom up approach budget preparations. more..

Govt aims for hi-tech with Techno City

Sept 23 (FT) A confident PM Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday sounded determined to lead Sri Lanka to achieving knowledge-based innovative economic growth, as the country is ready to explore new frontiers in science and technology. Addressing the launch of first phase of the Techno City in Maha Henawaththa, Pitipana, Homagama, which is estimated by the Megapolis Ministry to be worth around Rs. 2 billion under more..

Sri Lanka's Fleeing Tamils

Sept 23 (WP) In early June of this year, a boat with a failed engine carrying five children, 22 women, and 13 men was found in the water by fishermen off the coast of Aceh, Indonesia. One of the women on board was pregnant and one of the children was an infant. Those on board were all ethnic Tamils who had recently fled from their native Sri Lanka and were now seeking asylum. At the same time, human rights observers documented evidence of increased persecution & horrific torture against Tamils more..

‘Pain and agony of one community shifts to another community’

Sept 23 (ST) Garbage in many countries has been transformed into a productive and environmentally-friendly exercise. However in Sri Lanka dumping of garbage is still a major issue. The big land mudalalis cash in by offering marshes they own particularly at Muthurajawela from Wattala to Negombo to reclaim the land by dumping garbage after which workplaces and factories are built on. It is also known that these millionaire mud-sellers have powerful political connections with one example at more..

Wigneswaran urges Tamils to join mass protest in Jaffna tomorrow

Sept 23 (FT) Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran has urged Tamil people to participate in a demonstration scheduled in Jaffna tomorrow, to oppose the systematic settlement of Sinhalese people in the Tamil dominated region and the erection of Buddhist statues in an area devoid of Buddhist devotees. “Tamil speaking brothers and sisters, I urge you to participate in the Ezhuga Tamil demonstration,” a letter by CM Wigneswaran more..

Bird smugglers nabbed

Sept 23 (CT) For the first time in Sri Lanka's history, Customs confiscated a shipment of birds that were to be smuggled out of the country through the Colombo Port. Two Maldivians were arrested on Tuesday by Customs while trying to smuggle out 11 parrots, six love birds and 10 red-vented Bulbul, concealed in a box. Unfortunately, 10 parrots and four love birds had died in the box. The suspects, were fined Rs 200,000 and the birds were confiscated. more..

12 employees file Writ Petition

Sept 23 (CT) Twelve employees of the SL Ayurvedic Drugs Corporation filed a Writ Petition in the Court of Appeal seeking a Writ of Certiorari quashing the decision and direction of the Minister of Health and Indigenous Medicine to close down the factory and premises. Petitioners have cited the Minister of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine, Ministry of Health, Chairman of SL State Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Managing Director and two members of the Board of Directors of the Corporation, more..

Govt frowns on media organisations collecting, distributing disaster relief

Sept 23 (Island) Director General of Govt Information Department Dr. Ranga Kalansooriya said that the collection as well as distribution of donations was not the responsibility of the media organisations; instead they should provide accurate information to the public and also make govt institutions aware of their weaknesses. Addressing a workshop on Media Sensitivity in Emergency Responses & Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) more..

Thilan Samaraweera: 15 facts about the crisis man of Sri Lankan cricket

Sept 23 (CC) Born Sept 22, 1976, Thilan Thusara Samaraweera is a former SL cricketer who represented their national team in 81 Tests and 53 limited-overs matches during a career spanning a decade and a half. A solid middle-order batsman, Samaraweera was a vital cog in the Sri Lankan batting line-up that had illustrious names such as Mahela and Sangakkara for almost entire part of the first decade of 21st century. A fighter both on and off the field, he took a bullet on his body during more..

Sri Lanka embraces India's Sagarmala, to use para diplomacy to link Southern states: PM

Sept 23 (EN) Sri Lanka will support India's Sagaramala program of building ports around the country, and will use para diplomacy to build stronger links with the key Southern Indian state, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. "Joining the Sagarmala is an advantage for us, not a disadvantage," he told Colombo International Maritime Conference. SL was also planning to engage in para diplomacy directly with Southern states in India to closely integrate with their economies, he said. more..

Sports Minister tells Ranatunga to mind his own business

Sept 23 (DN) Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera has told Minister and former World Cup winning cricket captain Arjuna Ranatunga to concentrate on attending to matters concerning his Ministry rather than criticize on sports at every turn. “Everyday Ranatunga is blabbering something about sport but there is no contribution from him to develop it,” said Minister Jayasekera at the media conference held in connection with National Sports Festival. more..

'Drought won’t interrupt supply of electricity'

Sept 23 (CT) Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said his Ministry is prepared to maintain the supply of electricity uninterrupted under proper management even in the face of the severe drought that has affected the island since last month. He said prevailing dry weather conditions had caused a drop in power generation compelling the use of alternative sources to meet the shortfall. He gave this assurance at talks on Wednesday with Minister of Petroleum and Petroleum Gas more..

COPE orders AG to submit detailed report

Sept 23 (CT) The COPE ordered AG's Department to promptly submit a detailed report on the controversial digitization project of the People's Bank. COPE also requested the PB Board of Directors to hand over to the AG's Department all the documents related to the case. PB Board appeared before COPE yesterday and was questioned at length about the entire digitization process. COPE sources said the Committee had not been convinced with the replies given by more..

With retiring officers re-joining service: Tensions rise between Ravi, Customs unions

Sept 23 (DN) Tension between Minister Ravi Karunanayake and Customs unions heightened as Director General of Customs invited retired Customs officers to re-join the service on a one-year contract basis. “We are simply trying to ensure that development goes on, and we will not be distracted by the self-serving activities of a few individuals,” minister said. He was speaking in response to the decision to get retired more..

Govt. loses Rs.1bn a day due to high-handed attitude: JO

Sept 23 (DM) Govt's high-handed attitude had triggered trade union action crippling the activities of three main revenue-collection institutions causing a loss of one billion rupees a day, the joint opposition said today. MP Dinesh Gunawardane told a news conference that the employees of the Sri Lanka Inland Revenue Department, the Sri Lanka Customs and the Excise Department had resorted to trade union action over what they described as undemocratic action of the Govt. more..

JVP bombshell: Avant Garde received Rs. 255 mn tax rebate from Yahapalana govt

Sept 23 (Island) Parliament was told that the ruling UNP-led coalition had given major tax rebates to Avant Garde Maritime Services (AGMS) under investigation by different agencies, including the CIABOC. The revelation was made by JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake. Minister Ruwan Wijewardene assured that govt would look into the matter and inform Parliament of its findings. The govt launched investigations into AGMS immediately after January 2015 presidential polls. more..

Office rental scam: Yahapalana Minister robbing people's money

Sept 23 (Island) COPA has, in its latest report, faulted Agriculture Ministry for renting pvt building for Rs. 958,000,000 without following proper procedures. Watchdog committee has pointed out that Ministry had not taken action to construct a new building complex in spite of having a block of land of its own. Instead, it had rented building at taxpayers’ expense. Committee has emphasized that it wouldn't approve of the transaction. more..

Glyphosate: Don’t allow TNCs to run the govt

Sept 23 (DM) Powerful transnational corporations especially those involved in pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and food are known to be pushing hard to sell their products here in what social justice analysts see as economic neo-colonialism which is more dangerous than the old military colonialism. We wish to spotlight today one such key area. In June this year, President Sirisena, resisting pressure from TNCs and their highly paid lobbies, banned the import of the weedicide glyphosate more..

NAM and sham: Whither Non-alignment?

Sept 23 (DM) The message from Venezuela’s Margarita Island is that the Non-aligned Movement is all but dead. 120-member organisation appeared like a bed-ridden elderly person thinking of beating Usain Bolt in a 100-metre sprint. Like the proverbial rats deserting the sinking ship, over the years many heads of state or govt skipped the summit. When the 17th summit was held in Venezuela last week, only ten heads of state attended it. Among them were Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, more..