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Asalanka’s voyage to consecutive national awards

Sept 26 (DS) It is a dream come true. I had been working hard for this and I thank all those who supported me. This is a huge encouragement for me to work hard. I will work hard for the success of Richmond and the Sri Lanka Under-19 team both. Charith Asalanka from Richmond College was announced Schoolboy Cricketer Of The Year for 2016 at the inaugural awards ceremony hosted in the presence of SL’s finest captain and more..

Commercial Bank kicks off operations in Maldives

Sept 26 (LBO) Commercial Bank of Ceylon today started operations of its subsidiary in Male, Maldives. Commercial Bank of Maldives private limited is a fully-fledged banking subsidiary which is set up in partnership with a Maldivian company. The bank last year said the partner Maldivian group of companies is involved in businesses ranging from financial services, hotel and tourism and retailing. Commercial Bank said it would invest in a 55% stake in this banking subsidiary with more..

Shares end flat amid foreign outflows

Sept 26 (Reuters) Stocks ended steady on Monday, as gains in financial shares were offset by losses in consumer staples, amid foreign outflows and tax hike concerns. Foreign investors sold a net 183 million rupees worth of shares on Monday extending the year-to-date net forging outflow to 3.01 billion rupees worth of equities. The IMF on Friday said SL's govt, which has failed to raise taxes as promised when it received a $1.5 billion loan from the lender in June, more..

FCID again seeks int’l warrant on Udayanga

Sept 26 (DM) FCID for the second time requested Court to issue a warrant through Interpol for the arrest of former Sri Lankan ambassador to Russia, Udayanga Weeratunga in connection with the inquiry being conducted into the huge financial loss caused to the Govt in the purchase of Ukraine-built MIG-27 aircraft in 2006. In a report submitted to Court, Foreign Ministry had informed that according to Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, more..

Tissa noticed to appear before High Court

Sept 26 (DN) Colombo High Court this morning, notified former Secretary General of the UNP Tissa Attanayake to appear before the court in the case in which he is accused of forging the signature of the (then) Common Opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena and the and (then) Leader of the Opposition Ranil Wickremesinghe. The former Secretary General, defected from the UNP in the run up to the 2015 Presidential Election and publicized a letter purported to be between more..

Tissa returning to politics

Sept 26 (CT) UNP's former General Secretary Tissa Attanayaka says he wants to return to active politics from the UNP to ensure that it wins the 2020 General Election. He said, "I am still an UNPer. The Supreme Court too has acknowledged that. UNP has no power at the grassroots level in the Kandy District. During the concluded Presidential Election, I had extended my support to the UPFA candidate and UNP too had extended their support to an SLFPer. I see no fault in that.  more..

Video: Arrest Wigneswaran: Udaya tells FCID

Sept 26 (DM) Opposition MP Udaya Gammanpila said he was looking forward for the arrest of Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran, who spearheaded a demonstration called Eluga Tamil (Let Tamils Rise) by violating the Public Property Act. He accused the Chief Minister of misusing his letterhead and deploying employees and vehicles of the Council in the demonstration held on Saturday in Jaffna more..

Sri Lanka to host Intex 2016 textile fair in Nov

Sept 26 (FF) Intex South Asia 2016, South Asia’s only international sourcing show for yarns, apparel fabrics, denim fabrics, clothing accessories, and allied services, will be held from Nov 16 to 18, 2016, in Colombo, at the Sri Lanka exhibition and convention centre. It is a robust platform for untapped South Asian intra-regional trade. Intex South Asia 2016 is the only international textile sourcing show in South Asia region and the only platform giving in-depth and more..

Govt backbenchers want probe CB dealing during Cabraal's time

Sept 26 (CT) Govt backbenchers have requested that the PM order investigations into 13 mega deals, which took place at the Central Bank, during the time Ajith Nivard Cabraal was the Governor. They had handed over a letter, to the PM, containing details of the suspicious deals that took place at the Central Bank from 2006-2015. The alleged deals relate to the investing of US$ 15.6 million in Greek bonds, the purchase of some ancient buildings around the Central Bank in the Fort more..

Video: CV has no right to call for removal of Buddhist Temples: Ranjan

Sept 26 (DM) Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran has no right to demand the removal of Buddhist temples from the North, Minister Ranjan Ramanayake said. He said that there was no need to remove Buddhist temples because freedom of worship should be preserved in the North just like in other parts of the country. “There are Buddhist temples, Hindu Kovils, Churches & Mosques in rest of the country more..

Indian Commerce & Industry Minister arrives

Sept 26 (ANI) Indian Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman is visiting Sri Lanka from today in a bid to expand bilateral trade relations between the two countries. She is being accompanied by senior ministry officials along with a business delegation. During her three-day visit, she will be meeting with her counterpart in SL govt Malik Samarwickrama who is the Minister for Development strategies and International trade. more..

7 offers for Mattala International Airport

Sept 26 (ST) Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA) has received seven offers from mainly European-based aviation related firms interested in managing operations at what has been called the world’s emptiest airport.  The MRIA called for Expressions of Interest (EOI) in June from investors to undertake investments and commercial operations of the facility located in Hambantota through the Transport and Civil Aviation Ministry.  Airport and Aviation Services Ltd (AASL) more..

Sri Lanka to control three wheelers despite rickety bus service

Sept 26 (EN) Sri Lanka is planning to issue licenses to three wheelers, introducing bureaucratic controls to a popular means of transport developed by the people to fulfil their needs, providing a convenience and night service which govt licensed buses with regulated fares are unable to provide. Transport Minister Ashok Abeysinghe said the licenses would be issued by provincial councils, adding regulatory barrier to entry. more..

Czech President, Foreign Minister to visit Sri Lanka separately in 2017

Sept 26 (CTK) Czech President Milos Zeman and Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek will visit Sri Lanka on two separate occasions next year. "The main reason for the visit to Sri Lanka is promotion of business-economic cooperation and the marking of the 60th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations," Irena Valentova, spokeswoman for the Foreign Ministry, said. Zeman's spokesman Jiri Ovcacek mentioned "support for access to the local and Indian market," he said. more..

U.S. supports to promote Public-Private Partnerships in Sri Lanka

Sept 26 (USE) I consider it a great pleasure and honor to speak to such a distinguished audience, at this national conference on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs). It has become evident that an important trend in economic and social development is taking place in countries around the world. The private sector is increasingly taking on what had previously been considered inherently governmental functions. Recognizing this change, govts around the world have developed significant more..

Subcommittee to study proposed tax hike on cigarettes: Health Minister

Sept 26 (DN) Cabinet Subcommittee appointed to study the proposed tax hike on cigarettes up to 90%, approved a 15% VAT and a five rupee increase per cigarette. The Committee giving nod to the increase, a Cabinet Paper for its implementation will be put up within the next two weeks, said Minister Rajitha Senaratne. “As regards the proposal made to the Cabinet to collect up to 90% taxations from tobacco companies, there were various more..

TNA says it had no hand in Jaffna protest

Sept 26 (Island) TNA leader R. Sampanthan said that his coalition hadn’t been involved in Saturday’s protest in Jaffna spearheaded by Northern Province CM C.V. Wigneswaran. Acknowledging anyone’s right to protest in any part of the country, veteran politician said that they were working hard to address the grievances of the war affected people through discussions with the govt. Several thousands of people joined the protest, demanding immediate solutions to their problems. more..

Tamil action group flays Justice Minister

Sept 26 (TG) US Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC) said it was deeply disturbed by SL’s justice minister’s rejection of war crimes and threat of legal action against those who attempt to pursue accountability for human rights violations committed by Sri Lankan soldiers. "USTPAC is deeply troubled by Justice Minister Rajapakshe's comments,” said USTPAC president Dr Karunyan Arulanantham, adding that it should “raise alarm bells among the international community”. more..

Sarath Fonseka calls for disciplinary action against Kamal Gunaratne

Sept 26 (AM) Former Army Commander Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka called for disciplinary action against Retired Major General Kamal Gunaratne for not carrying out his orders in 2009. Fonseka said that he had ordered the identity card and the dog tag of slain LTTE leader V Prabhakaran be returned to Colombo. He said that he could not check on whether they arrived in Colombo but got to know recently that Gunaratne had the ID more..

Achchuveli killing: 5 Army personnel remanded

Sept 26 (DM) Five army personnel including a Lieutenant Colonel attached to the Achchuveli Camp were remanded till Oct 10 by Jaffna District Court Judge S. Satheeskaran today on charges of killing two civilians in 1998. The Judge also directed the Achchuveli Police to produce another 11 soldiers in Court on that day. Military Police had complained to the Achchuveli Police about the incident where two civilians were shot dead by some soldiers from the Achchuveli Camp in Jaffna. more..

Video: Wimal at the FCID

Sept 26 (DM) NFF Leader and UPFA MP Wimal Weerawansa appeared before the FCID a short while ago to give a statement on the alleged misuse of state vehicles when he was a Cabinet Minister of the Rajapaksa govt. The FCID, on Sept 13, filed a B report in the Fort Magistrate's Court on an investigation against Weerawansa for the misappropriation of Rs 41 million by allowing his staff members use around 40 state vehicles belonging to State Engineering Corporation. more..

Vaas appointed SL 'A' fast bowling coach

Sept 26 (DM) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has appointed former national fast bowling coach Chaminda Vaas as bowling coach of the Sri Lanka 'A' team for the forthcoming West Indies A tour of Sri Lanka. Vaas re-joined SLC as their fast bowing consultant early this month where unlike his previous tenure as national bowling coach he will engage in identifying talent at grassroots levels. However SLC have now given him the task more..

Inter-ethnic goodwill must be built upon

Sept 27 (CT) Sri Lanka has entered into a period of conflict transformation. The theory of conflict transformation states that conflict changes the parties, their relationships and issues over time. There is a new relationship and the issues at hand can be addressed at a different level. This offers the chance to resolve the problem in a new way. The defeat of the LTTE on the battlefield and the Rajapaksa govt in elections has created a big change in the environment. more..

Techno City: First step in the right direction

Sept 27 (CT) Govt has laid the foundation for setting up a Techno City in Pitipana, Homagama in Sri Lanka with a planned investment of Rs. 19.3 billion or about $ 130 million over the years. This is a part of the Technopolis to be set up in the land area from Malabe to Pitipana under the Govt’s Megapolis project that aims at elevating the Western Province of the country to the status of wealth creator for the nation. PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, speaking at the foundation laying ceremony, more..

'India returnee deaths, not from Zika'

Sept 26 (SO) As panic swirled and fears mounted of an imminent outbreak of the highly contagious Zika disease in Sri Lanka, following the sudden deaths of two patients admitted to the Chilaw Hospital after a pilgrimage to India, the Hospital authorities now say, the actual cause was H3N2 flu and not Zika. The victims, two women, Sujatha Malini (65) and G.C.Ranmenike (66), from the village of Nallanrankotuwa in Chillaw area more..

Fonseka’s Good Governance

Sept 26 (SL) While the govt is doing all it can to set a good example to society and the Opposition, there are a few thorns among its roses it is being forced to deal with, sometimes with much embarrassment. One such thorn, at least according to some SLFP members in the govt, is Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka. He has been very outspoken in Parliament these days and he does not hide vengeance he has towards former regime, especially former President Rajapaksa and his brothers. more..

Editorial: O tempora! O mores!

Sept 27 (Island) In most action flicks, heroes and villains in flight topple trash bins without breaking stride so as to distract and obstruct their enemies in close pursuit. This modus operandi is, however, not confined to the celluloid world. Sri Lankan politicians who mismanage vital issues and get into hot water act in a similar manner in a bid to distract the public. Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, who is being troubled by many issues and pursued by the govt doctors who want their children admitted to more..

'Be patient and bear up the hardships'

Sept 26 (SL) Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam claims that many reforms have been brought in to the education sector, and people will see the effects of these changes in the near future. He said that govt has to take certain decisions even though the citizenry did not expect them, such as VAT increase, in order to rectify country’s failing economy. Minister, however, assured that they are only temporary until the situation improves more..

Doctor, I’m sick – of your ilk!

Sept 27 (Island) In 1992, my wife wanted to visit a gynecologist and we channeled one of the best – at least that was what we were told. Having dutifully paid the channeling fees early morning one day, we came for consultation the same evening armed with token No. 8 for the appointment at 6.30 pm. The doctor finally arrives at 8:00 or thereabouts, and the nurse announced that he would first be seeing the patients he missed out the previous day. The guy was really quick and within half an hour more..

Wiggy’s homeland dream to remain a dream!

Sept 26 (CT) This profound quote from George Bernard Shaw seems to be very relevant in the case of Northern Province Chief Minister Canagasabapathy Viswalingam Wigneswaran who has shot through his hips and not his lips again! All his recent comments of late have been myopic and shortsighted. They have been insular and prejudiced. They are convoluted as well. So, George Bernard's quote seems to be most apt. Just to digress mildly for the benefit of the curious, more..

Face The Nation

Solution to the doctors’ problem: Abolish Royal, Visakha, Ananda …

Sept 26 (SL) Should there be more palanaya (governance) in Yahapalanaya (good governance) than it exists today? Social activist Salvinia Leddegoda, while discussing current politics, when asked this came back at us with a verbal hand grenade: ‘An-ney go men. You fellows are talking rot like good governance but not admitting doctors’ children to Royal, Visakha and the lesser schools. I tell you there will be chaos……’ Salvinia has a personal interest: more..

Preparing the 2017 Budget: Too many cooks may spoil the soup

Sept 26 (ST) Preparing the 2017 budget is a challenging task. Bringing down the deficit to 5.5% of GDP; increasing revenue substantially; fiscal reforms to achieve these; finding the fiscal space for development and much needed social expenditure are enormously demanding tasks in the current economic and political context. Furthermore, the processes and procedures of budget formulation have become more complex and confusing than ever before. more..

Govt is exacting revenge on us for opposing ETCA and SAITM: GMOA

Sept 27 (Island) Dr. Nalinda Herath Secretary of the GMOA talks about their ongoing spat with the education ministry over the admission of doctor’s children to state-run schools. The GMOA is to meet President Sirisena to place their grievances before him. Q: The minister of education has made a statement in Parliament to the effect that the GMOA has been demanding that their children be admitted only to the best schools more..

No doping test raises many eyebrows

Sept 27 (CT) Lack of doping checks during the Army Athletics Championship raised eyebrows of many as there were several records - seasonal and personal best - by athletes during the meet. Sri Lanka Anti-Doping Agency (SLADA) had not been invited to do doping checks by the organizers prior to the championship where two new SL records and seven impressive meet records were set. Several concerned parties questioned the performance of some of the athletes during championship. more..

Holy Cross, Holy Angel’s PATH 2016 Champs

Sept 27 (Island) Holy Cross College, Payagala and Holy Angel’s Girls School, Payagala sealed the overall boys’ and girls’ titles and Magalkanda Buddhist Kanishta Vidyalaya and Gnanissara Maha Vidyalaya shared the runner-up trophies as the PATH 2016 Sprint and Relay Championship concluded at the Bandaranaike Vidyalaya ground, Payagala on Sunday. The two day championship organized by Sanvedee Minis Pavura, an organization of volunteers dedicated to social more..

Activists cry foul over attempts to reinstate Lankaputhra Chairman

Sept 27 (FT) A new chapter of saga at State-owned Lankaputhra Development Bank (LDB) has begun with critics contending the Central Bank is working beyond its limits to reappoint former Chairman Lasantha Goonawardena. The Anti Corruption Front (AFC), employees and Ceylon Bank Employees Union (CBEU) vehemently oppose the reappointment of Goonawardena insisting that he has continued to violate Banking Act more..

Overseas Realty to raise Rs.7.2 b via Rights for Havelock City

Sept 27 (FT) Overseas Realty, largest listed property company in Sri Lanka, is going for a Rs. 7.2 billion Rights Issue, one of the biggest in recent years, to finance expansion of the Havelock City project. Company announced that its Board of Directors resolved to issue two new shares for every five held (355.15 million shares) at Rs. 20 each in a bid to raise the funds required. The move is subject to regulatory and shareholder approval. Its existing share capital is Rs. 11.16 billion. more..

TT a national hobby with vested interests playing ping pong

Sept 27 (ST) Doyen of local Table Tennis (TT), Lalith Priyantha himself laments the woes that beset TT in Sri Lanka. Seven decades down the line, TT still remains nothing more than a national pastime, in the eyes of the sports fraternity. There are hundreds of children taking to this sport at various levels and there are scores of TT playing schools and clubs islandwide. But thus far and no further – let us find out. Though it is nearly 70 years since the sport was inaugurated in Sri Lanka, yet more..

Finance Ministry downplays impact of VAT hike on traders

Sept 27 (FT) Finance Ministry argued that despite the pending increase of VAT to 15%, quantum of tax paid by traders would diminish due to the significant number of essential items exempted from VAT and non-payment based on total turnover as currently done. Ministry claimed that traders had to pay 11% VAT on their entire turnover but once the 15% comes into play, VAT would only have to be calculated on specific goods more..