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Rs. 50 million lottery winner ends up in court

Jan 27 (DN) An owner of a flower stall in Anuradhapura who is said to have frittered away Rs. 50 million won in a lottery draw to satisfy his addiction of narcotics was arrested by the police anti-narcotics unit officers while he was distilling kasippu in the backyard of his house at Gallkadawala with a colleague on January 24. Police also seized two barrels of 2,170 drams of goda and several distilling equipment. The suspect had won R. 50 million in 2014. more..

Switzerland ordered to pay Ä30,000 to deported ex-LTTEr

Jan 27 (TL) European Court of Human Rights has ordered Switzerland to pay 30,000 euros compensation to a Sri Lankan who was deported from Switzerland and subsequently arrested and beaten in Colombo. The unnamed man, a Tamil who had fought with the Tamil Tigers against the Sri Lankan govt, requested asylum in Switzerland in 2009, telling the Swiss authorities he had been persecuted in his own country. The request was rejected and, following an unsuccessful appeal, more..

Drought In Sri Lanka

Jan 28 (CT) In a world dominated by scarcity, climate change and population growth, water is no longer being taken for granted. Bitter disputes between nations and states have been a frequent issue in the recent past. Drought in Sri Lanka seems to be very frequent phenomena in the recent years. The drought is upon us once again with devastating effects. It has been affecting not only the dry zones per se but all other areas such as Kandy, Bandarawela to name a few due to scarcity of more..

Bondgate the political roller coaster

Jan 28 (NS) Joint Opposition said that the next course of action they were considering taking with regard to the Central Bank Treasury bonds issue was to file a writ of mandamus in the Court of Appeal. The issue reportedly involves former Governor of CB, Arjuna Mahendran and his son-in-law Arjun Aloysius who is involved with primary dealer Perpetual Treasuries. MP Vasudeva Nanayakkara reiterated that he had filed complaints with the CIABOC, IGP and the relevant more..

RTI act: Overrall 9th best among 110 nations

Jan 28 (CT) Director General of Govt Information Dr. Ranga Kalansooriya believes that the formulation and implementation of Right to Information Act (RTI), which will be commissioned on 3 Feb, will be the start of SL's return to democracy. By this, we have provided the infrastructure, where even a govt could be challenged. Right to Information Commission, which is also another ambitious govt project, more..

Good governance rattled by Rathanaís exit

Jan 28 (SL) The govt of Good Governance has been rattled by the exit of the Venerable Athuraliye Rathana Thero, a key member of the team behind pushing for support for Maithripala Sirisena at the 2015 Presidential elections. Athuraliye Rathana Thero decided to withdraw his support to the govt on the basis that the govt has changed tracks and has failed to keep its commitments given at the 2015 election. Former JHU strongman Udaya Gammanpilla said that more..

The Tamil question: The agony of an unsettled ethnic inequality

Jan 28 (CT) Kadiresan woke up early morning, a couple of hours before sunshine, looked up towards the starless skies and let out a deep sigh; he knew it was going to be another scorching, hot day in the peninsula. In the distance, beyond a parched landscape full of palms and groves lay his oasis of land; although it was only a quarter of an acre in area, it was watered regularly and with the rich red soil to nourish a crop of vegetables from cauliflower to beets, carrots and red onions, more..

'SAITM opens doors to qualified students unable to enter state universities'

Jan 28 (CT) CEO of SAITM Dr. Renuke Senaratne speaks to Ceylon FT. There are plenty of private institutes which offer higher education in various fields but to find one with a friendly environment, excellent staff and great facilities is not an easy task. For the past few years, the SAITM has been one of the fastest growing institutes in higher studies in the country and accommodates more than 1000 students at present. more..

Garment industry: Light at the end of tunnel

Jan 28 (SL) The garment industry is excited over the prospects of SL regaining the GSP trade concession this year. When Sri Lanka lost the GSP+ trade concession as a result of some political decisions taken by the former govt, some small-scale garment factories were forced to shut down after suffering huge financial losses. However two weeks ago the European Commission proposed that Sri Lanka be given GSP and the proposal is likely to be endorsed by the European Parliament. more..

Editorial: A fox, a tortoise and a president

Jan 28 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena said at Abhayaramaya the other day he had received information that an attempt was being made to file civil action against the bond scam suspects. He had, therefore, decided to appoint a presidential commission to conduct a thorough probe so as to have them dealt with appropriately. Bond thieves have evidently abused public funds by utilizing money belonging to the EPF, state banks etc in an improper manner and making huge profits more..


Pursuit of people power with peaceable protests

Jan 28 (NS) For those residing in the nationís capital itís a rare day that goes by without a protest, march or some other gathering for some cause. Often, people for and against the same causes, legislation, political parties, or even global events gather in the same place to be heard. Politics apart, every citizen of this nation has a right to protest against any oppressive encumbrances on their lives. But, citizensí action must be peaceably and carefully planned. more..

Sri Lanka Under-19s face hosts in the final

Jan 28 (Island) Sri Lanka Under-19s will have an opportunity to upset hosts when they meet South Africa Under-19s in the final of the Tri Nation Youth Tournament at Paarl on Saturday. Sri Lanka registered comfortable victories against their Zimbabwe counterparts but suffered defeats at the hands of the hosts in all three encounters in the Tri Nation tourney. They lost their first match to the hosts by a huge margin. In their second encounter, SL had a promising start to their run chase more..

President presents National Quality Awards

Jan 28 (PSL) National Quality Award Ceremony-2016, organized by the SL Standards Institution affiliated to the Ministry of Science, Technology and Research, was held under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena, today (27). President addressing the gathering said that it is important to pay attention regarding the quality and standard in every product, plan and initiative to conquer the challenges of the modern world. more..

No Office of Missing Persons

Jan 28 (CT) Minister Mangala Samaraweera opening the Foreign Ministry's Regional Office in Jaffna and the Indian Consulate celebrating the 67th Republic Day of India took place on Thursday in the backdrop of the family members of the disappeared persons and the political prisoners staging their hunger strike in Vavuniya. The fast unto death hunger strike by the family members of the disappeared persons and political prisoners in the North which commenced on Tuesday more..

Why indecent hurry over LGBT rights

Jan 28 (NS) There has been much brouhaha over an attempt to give legal recognition to those with different sexual orientations. Critics have accused some sections of the govt of making surreptitious attempts to legalise homosexuality and lesbianism and so on. These matters fall into the wide area usually referred to as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights. The accusation is that moves to recognise these rights have come as a part of the so-called conditions imposed by more..

Docs back abortion

Jan 28 (NS) The community of medical doctors in the country last week said they would make a collective appeal in public calling for abortion to be legalised in specific instances. Accordingly, the doctors would carry out an advocacy campaign to enlist public to support for the legalization of abortion in specific cases including rape, incest and lethal congenital abnormalities. Presently, abortion is lawful in Sri Lanka only in the instance where more..

International level cycle racing in SL

Jan 28 (CT) Lanka Sportreizen along with the Cycling Federation of Sri Lanka has planned to hold a cycling event in which professionals who are keen on cycle racing could take part and in the process enjoy the beauty of Sri Lanka, experience the challenging terrain and get to know the lesser known areas of Sri Lanka in a Coast to Coast exercise spanning from the East to the West. Thus, it is proposed to name the event as the T-Cup run from Parsikudah to Negombo. more..

National War Heroesí Front calls CTFRM report a treacherous document

Jan 28 (Island) The National War Heroesí Front has rejected the report submitted by the Consultation Task Force on Reconciliation Mechanisms (CTFRM) appointed by the Prime Ministerís office, as a treacherous document and has called for its members to be tried for contempt of court for ridiculing the countryís judiciary. Following is the text of the statement issued by the President of the National War Heroes Front Rear Admiral (Retired) Sarath Weerasekera in this regard: more..

Rs.5.7 m ATM theft at Bibila: Three member gang including visitng lecturer arrested

Jan 28 (DN) The gang responsible for the Rs.5.7 million ATM theft in the Bibila area, were arrested yesterday (24) by the Negombo Division Law-enforcement Unit. Among the arrested men includes a Visiting Lecturer of Colombo University. Suspects were nabbed along with Rs. 3 million in possession. One of the arrested, Dhammika Pushpakumara, 29, a resident of Minuwangoda, is the mastermind behind the theft. more..

Proposal for national policy on education presented to President

Jan 28 (PSL) The proposal for the national policy on general education which includes the proposals on the reforms in the education sector of the country was presented to President Maithripala Sirisena today (26). These proposals have been formulated by the National Education Commission, established to advise the govt on the education policies. ďWhen we pay attention on the education policies of the country, it is seen that policies havenít been implemented for the children to rise more..

Veteran actress Swarna won accolades at home and abroad: President

Jan 28 (PSL) A felicitation ceremony to pay tribute to veteran actress Swarna MallawarachchiĎs contribution to the countryís cinema during the last 50 years, was held under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena at the Tarangani Hall in National Film Cooperation, yesterday (26). The President presented a felicitation award to the actress Swarna Mallawarachchi in recognition of her service to the Sri Lankan film industry during the last 50 year period. more..

Forest density to be increased within next four years: President

Jan 28 (PSL) President Sirisena says his plan as the Minister of Environment is to increase the forest density from the current 27-28% to 32% within next four years. ďAccording to the climate and weather conditions caused by the environmental damage in our country, similar to many other countries, all beings including humans have to face a challenge for their livingĒ he pointed out. President was speaking at the ceremony to launch more..

Small farmers turn profitable with organic tea, Fair Trade label

Jan 28 (EN) Bio Foods (Pvt) Ltd., company set up by a Sri Lankan tea scientist, is helping marginalised farmers use organic cultivation techniques to develop niche products using the Fair Trade label, an international conference on social enterprise was told. Most of the companyís earnings from exporting products to overseas buyers go to small farmers who supply the raw material, said Prasad Rathnayake, deputy general manager of Bio Foods. ďWe annually give them $2.4 million for more..

SL local polls risk to economic reforms

Jan 28 (EN) Sluggish economic activity and higher consumer prices from drought could prompt the govt to go back on reforms ahead of local govt elections this year, a private sector economist told a Ceylon Chamber of Commerce forum. Recent reforms had improved economic stability although business sentiment was still not too optimistic, said Deshal De Mel, Head of Business Development at Hayleyís Global Beverages, part of the Hayleys conglomerate. more..

CPC Chairman replaced

Jan 28 (CT) Minister Chandima Weerakkody has removed CPC Chairman T.G. Jayasinghe with effect from yesterday. He has appointed Nadun Fernando as the new Chairman. When contacted, former CPC Chairman stated that he could no longer work with thieves. He asserted that another reason for his removal may have been his vehement opposition to certain political deals & unfair/unlawful appointments. more..

Fourth South Asia Region Public Procurement Conference to be held in SL

Jan 28 (FT) 4th South Asia Region Public Procurement Conference (SARPPC) will be held in Colombo and Kandy from Feb 20 to 23 under the Theme Electronic Govt Procurement (e-GP) in South Asia: Achievements, Opportunities and Challenges. Conference will be hosted by Department of Public Finance, Ministry of Finance and is coĀ]sponsored by the World Bank, ADB, and Islamic Development Bank. President, PM and Minister of Finance, are among the top level more..

India is single largest contributor to Sri Lankan tourist arrivals: Indian envoy

Jan 28 (ENS) India is the single largest contributor to Sri Lankan tourist arrivals with 350,000 arrivals last year, the new Indian High Commissioner Taranjit Singh Sandhu said. Addressing a distinguished gathering on the occasion of India's republic day, HC said that there are 150 flights a week to eight destinations in India from Colombo. The envoy further said that India's development assistance to Sri Lanka is of the order of USD 2.6 billion of which USD 435 is in grant form. more..

FM promises to release govt-held Jaffna land

Jan 28 (Island) Minister Mangala Samaraweera has reiterated the govtís commitment to continue to release lands in the North. He expressed the belief that real reconciliation would only be possible if all people had a better understanding of each other and the need for all to be treated with equality. He said one of the primary objectives of the Govt was to build a sense of equity and justice in the society by more..

India ready to revive sick industries in SL

Jan 28 (ENS) Associated Chamber of Commerce (ASSOCHAM) of India has offered to partner with Sri Lankan companies to revive sick companies or acquire those on the verge of closure, said Vinay Sharma, National Council member of ASSOCHAM. Speaking at the inauguration of the Jaffna International Trade fair here on Friday, Sharma said that with South Sri Lanka getting saturated for Indian businesses, Indian firms would like to move to Jaffna and the Northern Province which are virgin. more..

CP governor cracks the whip in the absence of education minister

Jan 28 (Island) Stern action would be taken against unscrupulous elements collecting money from parents on the pretext of development to schools, in the Central Province, warned Central Province Governor Niluka Ekanayake during an inspection of Dharmawickrema Balika Vidyalaya, Kandy recently. Governor Ekanayake was at Dharmawickrema Balika Vidyalaya for an investigation with regard to a complaint that a group of parents of students of the school were raising funds from other parents more..

Colombo city to become best urban centre in Indian Ocean :PM

Jan 28 (DN) Colombo city will be developed to the best urban centre in the Indian Ocean within the next decade, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. ďA global trends-oriented development will assure better living conditions for people in Sri Lanka,Ē he said. PM was speaking at the inauguration of the Logistic City in Muthurajawela, which is a project included in megapolis development. more..

Vandalised Buddhist shrine in Mankulam: SC fixes two petitions for support on 17 March

Jan 28 (FT) Supreme Court fixed for support on 17 March for granting of leave to proceed in respect of the Fundamental Rights petition lamenting of certain unidentified anti-social elements behind the incident of vandalised Buddhist shrine in Mankulam, apparently to stir religious unrest in the country and to disturb the hard-won peace at a cost of hundreds of thousands of precious lives belong to all communities. Bench fixed the petition filed by lawyer Naganda Kodituwakku more..

Kiriella objects to Bimal raising COPE report issue, Speaker overrules

Jan 28 (DN) Minister Lakshman Kiriella yesterday in Parliament strongly objected to JVP MP Bimal Rathnayake when he was raising a matter related to the COPE report on the Treasury Bonds investigation. He said MP Rathnayake should not be allowed to speak as it is a matter before court now. However, Speaker allowed the MP to raise the matter stating that he was speaking on behalf of all members of COPE. ďHe was talking about summons being received by the COPE members. more..

One Colombo Project receives 8 acres at Slave Island, special concessions

Jan 28 (Island) The govt has given an eight-acre land in Slave Island to a private company which would invest US$ 429.5 million (Rs 64,425 m) to construct a multi-storeyed building complex as a re-development and mixed development project. The govt has granted an income tax holiday for 10 years and a tax exemption for six years to the investing company named One Colombo Project (Private) Ltd, according to a gazette tabled in parliament. more..

Bankrupting Sri Lanka: 6 SLFP Chief Ministers in London junket

Jan 28 (CT) Six key SLFP Chief Ministers left for London on Thursday. Those who left the country were Western Province CM Isura Devapriya, Central Province CM Sarath Ekanayake, Sabaragamuwa CM Maheepala Herath, Southern Province CM Shan Wijeyalal de Silva, Wayamba CM Dharmasiri Dasanayake and Uva CM Chamara Sampath Dasanayake. Sources said the CMs are in London to attend a workshop for Provincial Councillors. The SLFP CMs are slated to return on 2 Feb. more..

Galle Road closed for rehearsals

Jan 28 (CT) Galle Road from the Galle Face Roundabout to the Old Parliament will be closed in the morning from 28 Jan to 3 Febr for the Independence Day celebration rehearsals, DIG Traffic Palitha Fernando said. He said on Saturday and Sunday the road will be closed from 7 a.m. until rehearsals are concluded and that from 1 to 3 Feb, the road will be closed from 8.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. On 4 Feb the Galle Road will be completely closed off due to Independence Day celebrations. more..

MR slams govt on corruption

Jan 28 (FT) Borrowing several battle-cries from the opposition campaign that ousted his administration two years ago, former President Rajapaksa addressed a massive political rally in Nugegoda, accusing the unity Govt of corruption and vowing to recover stolen state assets when he regains political power. Govt was guilty of treason, Rajapaksa said, accusing them of selling off state institutions, property & harbours to foreigners. more..

Let peace begin in our schools

Jan 28 (DM) With a major education reforms policy, described by some as an education revolution, being presented to President Sirisena yesterday, we could also reflect on the principles of the January 30 International School Day of Non-Violence and Peace (DENIP in Catalan). This observance was launched by the Spanish poet LlorenÁ Vidal Vidal in Majorca in 1964 as a starting point for schoolchildren to become peaceful and non-violent in what they do or in settling conflicts. more..

Bring all responsible to book

Jan 28 (DM) With the National govt moving into its third and vital year, President Maithripala Sirisena announced that appointment of a wide powered Special Presidential Commission (SPC) to probe the Central Bankís alleged bond scams during the past two years and also the bigger CB bond scams that are alleged to have taken place since 2007. President Sirisena addressing a meeting on Wednesday at the Narahenpita Abayaramaya to unveil a huge Awukana Buddha statue, more..