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Priority to disposal of garbage and political garbage

Apr 24 (SL) This fascinating autobiography of Vijaya Vidyasagara edited by Skantha Kumar and Marshal Fernando and published by the Ecumenical Institute for Study and Dialogue is excellent reading. Priced at Rs. 500/- and covering 300 pages this book is a very good buy for any reader interested in Sri Lankan society and politics. Having known Vijaya and associated with him and the Christian Workers Fellowship (CWF) for over half a century, I found the book difficult to put down. more..

Mattel to stimulate growth in Toy Industry

Apr 24 (DN) Mattel, a multinational toy manufacturer has identified Sri Lanka as a key market for growth. In a recent presentation to Mattel’s local partners South Asia Country Manager Ishmeet Singh outlined the toy company’s vision for SL. Mattel highlighted its commitment to developing and growing the toy market in Sri Lanka that will ensure the availability of quality, safe toys that aid early childhood learning and development as well as help address the threat of counterfeit and unsafe toys more..

Brief history of Meethotamulla garbage dump

Apr 24 (Roar) Every day the Meethotamulla statistics are being laboriously revised, a backhoe scoop at a time, but now the horror and nausea of the news consumer is being replaced by something like incredulity. If the methane issued early threats and the soft soil shifted houses for months – if the Meethotamulla garbage dump was a time-bomb – why did the residents wait? This is the question now being insinuated. more..

Australia Youth clinch series 4-1

Apr 24 (Cau) Australia Under-19s have wrapped up their Youth ODI series against Sri Lanka in style with a narrow 23-run victory in the final match in Hobart to earn a 4-1 series result. Australia set the SL U19s 245 to win at Kingston's Twin Ovals in Hobart, and a searing spell of leg-spin bowling by the flame-haired Lloyd Pope ended the tourists hopes of victory. Pope claimed three wickets in six balls across two overs to rip the heart out of the SL middle order and put the Aussies on course for victory.  more..

'Foreign coach Pietersz failed in his task'

Apr 24 (DN) The Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA) said that the foreign coach Eric Pietersz, whom they had got down to form and train a national pool had failed in his task and they had decided to terminate his contract. “We started in February, 2016 with 36 players who were the three top seeded players of U-12, U-14 and U16 but within three months only 24 players were left in the program,” revealed SLTA vice president Sohan Patrick. “We amended the program and more..

Records fall at Junior Championships

Apr 24 (Island) Young track and field prodigy Hirusha Abeysekara commenced from where he left last year at national level to win the Under-16 boys’ long jump with an impressive feat as Jegatheeswaran Aniththa, Asmika Herath and Nipun Kaldera hogged the limelight with new meet records on day one of the Junior National Athletics Championship at Diyagama on Sunday. Mendis, who clinched triple titles in the Under-14 more..

Lankan athletes in action today in China

Apr 24 (DN) An 11-member Sri Lankan team arrived in China today to compete in the first and second legs of the Asian Grand Prix at Jiaxing and Jinhua, China from today till April 27. The third and final leg will be held in Chinese, Taipei on April 30. The Sri Lankan team comprised six men and five women athletes but did not include experienced Asian gold medalist Manjula Kumara (high jump) who unfortunately had to miss the championship due to poor health. more..

What we need to be teaching our children after the Meethotamulla tragedy

Apr 24 (Island) Last week we went for a movie in Colombo. We hadn’t been to one in quite a long time, months actually and I was seriously shocked to see how the level of cleanliness (amongst other things) had dropped at this theatre. The seats were slashed and there were left over bits of popcorn on the floor in front of our seats even before our movie started. I suppose it is uncommon to see a cinema in such a state since most of our movie theatres have been through recent refurbishments and more..

Sunil Handunnetti visits Meethotamulla

Micro Holdings draws $ 40 m investment from South Korean firm

Apr 24 (FT) South Korea’s third-largest conglomerate, SK Group, recently announced that it plans to make an equity investment worth $ 30million-$ 40 million in SL’s homegrown automobile assembly pioneer and manufacturer Micro Holdings Ltd. SK Group Senior Vice President C.H. Lee said they were keen on investing in the efforts of Micro Holdings to revolutionise the Sri Lankan automobile and transport industry. “We are hoping to facilitate Micro to expand its production facilities, more..

SLTA to conduct highest number of tournaments for 2017

Apr 24 (DN) Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA) boasts that they will conduct the highest number of annual tournaments during their 100-year history in 2017, including over 20 tournaments in the under-10 category. The SLTA will host a tournament once in three weeks throughout the year, creating competition opportunities to the age category that has shown an unprecedented high volume in recruiting to the sport. This was revealed to the media during a discussion at the SLTA where more..

Possible GSP+ postponement averted

Apr 24 (ST) Pressure on the SL Govt to deliver on its promise of ensuring that GSP+ benefits, if approved, are passed down to workers, has averted a possible delay in the process. While the European Union (EU) is set to decide next month on Sri Lanka’s request for a resumption of trade concessions under GSP +, there was concern that EU May decision-making process would be postponed by several months if more..

Heat to continue, rains after May 1: Met Dept

Apr 24 (DM) Reduction of humidity in the Sri Lankan atmosphere and the strong solar energy hitting the surface would prolong the dry spell and the heat, till the end of the month. Rains could be expected only after May 1. Department of Meteorology therefore predicted a dry week and high speed winds in the North. In addition sea areas were predicted to be rough from Kankesanthurai to Puttalam via Mannar and Pottuvil and up to the Hambantota area with winds reaching 60kmp/h. more..

SLC to announce ICC Champions Trophy squad today

Apr 24 (DN) National Selections Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket headed by Sanath Jayasuriya met at the SLC Headquarters yesterday to select the squad for the forthcoming ICC Champions Trophy 2017. National captain Angelo Matthews who was in India as a member of the Delhi Daredevils for the ongoing IPL returned to the country early yesterday morning in order to take an active role in the selections of the team that will be led by him. The selectors adopted a strategic approach and more..

Independent public trust to manage state pension funds

Apr 24 (ST) Amidst growing protests from trade unionists and opposition politicians, govt is gradually going ahead with employees’ retirement benefit reforms. The EPF, ETF and govt pension scheme will undergo drastic changes under this initiative phase by phase. These reforms are aimed at improving the efficiency of management in the EPF, ETF and deliver pension for life for public and private sector employees, more..

Long queues at filling points

Apr 24 (DM) Motorists were seen queuing up at filling stations in Colombo to refuel their vehicles fearing a possible fuel shortage due to the planned strike by petroleum workers. Some filling station owners said that they were not aware of a trade union action being launched but confirmed that no fuel tankers had arrived to replenish their fuel stocks today and acknowledged that this could potentially lead to a fuel shortage in next day or two. However, they assured the public that they would more..

‘Listing SAITM, no solution to crisis’

Apr 24 (Island) The steps that have been taken to list SAITM in the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) in response to the ongoing wave of protests spearheaded by the GMOA will not be the solution to the crisis, stock market analysts said. "Broad basing the ownership of the institute will not prove a solution, without changing the model of SAITM when enrolling students to the medical faculty and without giving proper clinical training to such students, a stock market analyst said. more..

Govt drags its feet on mega $ 3 b FDI

Apr 24 (FT) Govt is alleged to be dragging its feet on a massive and highly beneficial private sector-run oil refinery project with foreign investment of $ 3 billion, biggest ever on its table and three times the size of individual Chinese commitment on projects such as the Port City and Hambantota Port. The oil refinery project envisages refining 200,000 barrels per day for export with first right of refusal for CPC if it wants to buy. more..

PM cracks the whip on foreign jaunts

Apr 24 (Island) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has banned all UNP MPs and ministers from leaving the country more than thrice a year. If any MP or a minister needs to leave the country then he or she will have to meet him and obtain his written permission, PM has informed his group of MPs. PM has said that the MPs and ministers had to be in the country, attending to the problems of the people and the needs of the party. Party has appointed various committees as per the needs of the country more..

Sri Lankan Parliament to host Young Parliamentarians' regional meeting

Apr 24 (GDI) Regional Meeting of Young Parliamentarians of Asia - Pacific will take place from 25th to 26th April at Hilton Hotel in Colombo. Jointly Organized by Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), UN Development Program (UNDP) and Parliament of SL, meeting will be on Role of Young MPs in Advancing Inclusive and Peaceful Societies and Preventing Violent Extremism. Meeting will bring together young members of national parliaments from 39 countries in Asia-Pacific region, more..

Govt to reimburse total damages caused to houses: PM

Apr 24 (DN) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said that the govt will reimburse the total value of the houses damaged by the Meethotamulla disaster. PM said so addressing a team of representatives of the affected families of the Meethotamulla disaster at Temple Trees yesterday. Premier further said that the families living on rent will also receive a concessionary allowance in due course. more..

SriLankan Airlines to further reinforce Mideast presence

Apr 24 (SG) SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka and a member of the oneworld airline alliance, is looking to gain further impetus from the Middle East, even as the Indian Ocean island nation increasingly reaps the positive dividends of rapidly growing tourist numbers. The airline will be making fresh forays into the region, which is one of its significant source markets, through its presence at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai (April 24 to 27). The airline is uniquely positioned to serve as more..

Stop son-in-law’s company from robbing people’s money

Apr 24 (LT) Perpetual Treasuries, the company owned by Arjun Aloysius, the son-in-law of former Governor of CB Arjun Mahendran has been again allowed to invest on treasury bonds, allowing the tender process for the company while a special presidential commission is investigating the bond scam is a serious crime says the Convener of Voice Against Corruption (VAC) Wasantha Samarasinghe. He says the license of perpetual treasuries to invest in treasury bonds should be banned more..

'Port City to yield US$ 13 billion'

Apr 24 (CT) The sale of the reclaimed land at Galle Face, for the Port City Project, will yield a whopping US $ 13 Billion, Central Bank Governor Dr. Indrajit Coomraswamy said. He said that it will take another one and a half to two years for the land to be reclaimed and filled and that will be the time that the land will be sold to the project for US $ 13 billion. This will by far be the largest transaction to be effected in Sri Lanka. more..

WB & IMF commend SL’s economic progress

Apr 24 (NR) World Bank and the IMF have commended the progress of Sri Lanka’s economic development process and assured support for SL’s fiscal policy reforms and economic growth. These sentiments were expressed during discussions held by the Minister Ravi Karunanayake with the representatives of those organizations on the sidelines of the 2017 Spring Meeting of the World Bank and IMF in Washington. Deputy Managing Director of the IMF Mitsuhiro Furusawa more..

‘Modi must visit Tamil areas to understand their sufferings’

Apr 24 (Hindu) Tamil National Movement leader P. Nedumaran said PM Narendra Modi should visit the Tamil areas in northern SL during his visit to Colombo and take steps to alleviate their suffering. Talking to reporters here after staging a protest in support of the fishermen, he said as the Tamils could not get back to their houses, take possession of their lands and resume normal life even six years after the end of the civil war, Mr. Modi should intervene and address their problems. more..

CPC unions threaten to cripple fuel distribution

Apr 24 (Island) Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) unions yesterday threatened to cripple fuel distribution with effect from midnight yesterday. Civil society and religious organisations, too, are up in arms against what they call govt’s plans to hand over the Trincomalee Oil Tank Farm to India. The govt should take measures and implement projects to develop the country but that should not be done by selling national assets to the foreigners, more..

Elections in US, EU and Britain while Democracy takes a back seat

Apr 24 (DM) Since June 2016, and continuing until Sept 2017, the democratic western nations from Britain to the US, from Holland, to France, to Germany have been awash with election mania. Unfortunately the plethora of elections in the democratic western countries and in the US has witnessed rise of open race hatred, Islamophobia and exclusivity. In all these countries political parties challenge the incumbent rulers for the right to force regime change via the ballot. more..

Govt’s failure to regulate public affairs and its adverse consequences

Apr 24 (DM) The failures of a modern state can manifest in diverse forms. The worst of such manifestations is the loss of State control over what is happening in the public domain. What we observe in many developing countries including Sri Lanka is the increasing failure of the state in general and public institutions in particular to establish public order with a view to making day to day lives of citizens secure, tolerable, predictable and satisfying. On the other hand, more..

Parties spell out big plans for May Day

Apr 24 (ST) Trade unions and political parties are gearing up to celebrate May Day on a large scale. UNP will host its May Day rally at Campbell Park, Borella, UNP Chairman, Minister Kabir Hashim said. UNP has organised two processions heading towards Borella; one will start opposite Tower Hall in Panchikawatta, the other will start from Darley Road. Both groups will set out at 11 a.m. and are to meet at Punchi Borella more..

Meethotamulla weeps, blame game continues

Apr 24 (SL) A blame game has begun over the Meetotamulla tragedy which claimed several lives as various theories and allegations continue to be raised. The main question on everyone’s mind is who is responsible for this tragedy. There was speculation that some groups had set fire to the garbage dump and it had compressed the garbage pile and this had resulted in the collapse of the mountain of garbage. more..

Probe role of doctor, prof. in bogus asylum seekers’ network: GL

Apr 24 (Island) Former Minister Prof. G. Peiris said that a recent British Court of Appeal ruling that a Sri Lankan asylum seeker had got a doctor to inflict grievous injuries in a bid to deceive British authorities should prompt a wider investigation into unsubstantiated allegations levelled those seeking asylum against the Sri Lankan military. Court of Appeal has identified the 35-year-old claimant only by the initials KV. more..

Meethotamulla garbage dump covered with polythene

Apr 24 (SLA) Dedicated Engineer troops of the Army as of Saturday afternoon, were busy rolling a huge polythene sheet, to cover up the remainder of the garbage heap in order to ensure safety of those still living near the location while the govt is fully committed in providing alternative homes and other facilities to the worst-affected in the Meetotamulla garbage dump tragedy. Another segment of troops of the Sri Lanka Engineers more..

Fill Galle Face on May Day: MR

Apr 24 (DM) Former President and Kurunegala District MP Mahinda Rajapaksa called on the people to bring the Govt to its knees by thronging in thousands to the Galle Face Green on the May Day where the Joint Opposition is scheduled to hold its May Day Rally. Mr. Rajapaksa said that the Govt had given the Galle Face Green to the JO for the May Day rally presuming that the rally would be a ridiculous flop. more..

Kandy dump under probe

Apr 24 (DN) The National Building Research Organization (NBRO) has dispatched a team of officials to the Kandy Gohagoda dump site to examine whether there is an imminent threat of garbage mound collapsing under pressure at the site. NBRO Landslide Research Division Director R M S Bandara said the team would make the necessary recommendations today to the authorities following the study. more..

CPC TU strike unacceptable, says Minister

Apr 24 (DM) The indefinite strike announced by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) Unions’ Collective on couldn’t be justified and the demands were groundless, Minister Chandima Weerakkody said. He said the Govt had not taken any decision in favour of the China Bay Oil Tank Farm in Trincomalee. Weerakkody said that the unions were not aware about the facts and therefore were making false allegations about more..

SL-Indo-Japanese Pact soon, says PM

Apr 24 (DM) A tripartite agreement between Sri Lanka, India and Japan was on the cards to start up development projects in the island, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Saturday. PM came up with this remark at a New Year festival in Suduwella, Maradana during the weekend. “I will take a message from President Maithripala Sirisena to India on Tuesday and will meet Indian PM Modi on Wednesday. more..

Matthews to lead SL in Champions Trophy

Apr 24 (CI) Lasith Malinga, who last played an ODI in Nov 2015, has been named in SL's 15-man squad for the Champions Trophy in June. Long-standing injuries had put his availability in doubt, but selectors have been satisfied he can be fit enough to deliver 10 overs and field for 50 by the time the tournament starts on June 1. Also in the squad are batsman Chamara Kapugedera, who has not played ODIs since Jan 2016, more..

Japanese experts present report to the Prez

Apr 24 (DM) The Japanese Experts Group presented their report on Meetotamulla Garbage Dump to President Maithripala Sirisena today. Head of the Experts Group, Mitsutake Numahata handed over the report and made a power-point presentation explain the recommendations of the group. He said as a short term measure, the garbage dump should be stabilized to ensure there would not be further collapses. more..

Changes to Australia temporary skilled worker program explained to Sri Lankans

Apr 24 (EN) Australia's embassy in SL has explained the changes made in April to its employer sponsored temporary skilled worker program. Full statement: Migration is vital to Australia’s economic growth and prosperity. Ongoing success in migration management requires constant recalibration to ensure the best outcomes for Australians and migrants alike. On 18 April 2017, the Australian Govt announced changes to our employer sponsored temporary skilled work visa arrangements. more..