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GMOA urged to quit JVP-FSP combine led project

July 27 (Island) The JVP and FSP as well as their IUSF have taken control of GMOA campaign against Dr. Neville Fernando’s SAITM, Govt Medical Officers’ Forum (GMOF) alleges. GMOF President Dr. Rukshan Bellana yesterday said that the GMOA had allowed those who had been pursuing a political agenda to interfere and influence what he said should essentially be a GMOA driven project. more..

Sri Lanka gets first Millennium Challenge grant, mulls transport, land projects

July 27 (EN) Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a U.S. govt aid agency, has announced a Rs1.1 billion initial grant for Sri Lanka with due diligence now being done on potential projects in the transport and land sectors.   Sri Lanka was among countries selected by MCC last year to receive five-year grants aimed at encouraging economic growth and reducing poverty. Delegation from MCC led by Fatema Sumar, more..

Three drown at wedding in Giriulla

July 27 (DN) Three individuals who attended a wedding in Athuruwela, Giriulla have drowned in a well last night. One of the three deceased has tripped into the well during the wedding and the other two followed at the attempt to rescue. Three individuals who were pulled out from the well with the aid of ropes and ladders died while being rushed to the Hospital. The deceased, Mahinda Karunaratne (39), Nisal Adikari (38) and Anjana Lal Kumara (41) are residents in Dambadeniya. more..

China Money

July 27 (CT) China and Hambantota are once more in the news, with Cabinet approval having been obtained to grant China Merchants Holdings Company Ltd. a 70% equity stake on the Hambantota Port for $ 1.4 billion, of which 10% 'will be deposited immediately after the official validation, another 30% of the value in three months (October) and the balance in another six months (January). See the lead story of this newspaper's yesterday's edition. more..

රවි බැඳුකර කොමිසම මගහැරීම ශිෂ්ට සම්පන්න ද?

Preaching good governance from a penthouse

July 27 (CT) In his famous polemic on morality and its place in human society, Trotsky said that morality is relative to each society, to each epoch, and is above all, relative to the interests of the different social classes. So, the morals of our PM and the Minister of Lotteries and Foreign Affairs are different from the morals of this writer.  We made a terrible mistake on 8th Jan 2015. We replaced a tyrannical autocracy with a shameless clique that delights in moral hypocrisy. more..

Tour operators fill waterholes in drought-hit wildlife park

July 27 (EN) SL tour operators have volunteered to deploy bowsers to fill dried up water holes at the north-western Wilpattu National Park where animals were suffering owing to a prolonged drought. “The prevailing drought in the northern and central region of Sri Lanka has had an adverse effect on wildlife,” Ministry of Tourism said. “One of the most affected areas has been identified as the Wilpattu National Park. As a result of the drought almost all of the waterholes in the park have gone dry more..

Murder of Vidya: Court orders investigation into allegations against Vijayakala

July 27 (AD) Kayts Magistrate’s Court has instructed CID to launch an investigation into the accusations against Minister Vijayakala Maheswaran, in connection with the release of a suspect in the murder case of Vidya. Chief suspect of the murder case, Mahalingam Shashi Kumar, had been captured by local residents and tied to a post, whereupon he had been released without being handed over to the Police. more..

Pvt. sector operating theatres to be used to clear surgery waiting lists at govt. hospitals

July 27 (Island) Health Ministry said it would make use of theatres at private hospitals to perform cardiac and eye surgeries to clear waiting lists at govt hospitals. Decision had been taken during discussions between Minister, Rajitha Senaratne and Private Hospital Association (PHA) to address issues faced by private health institutions. Health Ministry would meet the cost incurred for the surgeries by the relevant hospital. Surgeons and staff would be from govt and private sectors. more..

I will take maximum effort to prevent cruelty to animals: Faiszer

July 27 (DN) Minister Faiszer Musthapha said he would take maximum effort to prevent cruelty to animals. He made this observation when he met representatives of organisations campaigning for the prevention of cruelty to animals at the ministry. Representatives arrived in a protest march against the killing of stray dogs in Sri J'pura and Moratuwa campuses. Minister said that there is an organised campaign to blame and discredit him with regard to stray dogs being killed in the country. more..

Parliament Mafia: Sleaze allegation originates from home itself!

July 27 (DM) A complaint against a very senior purohita in yahapalanaya had been made to sleaze investigating authorities recently, they say. What is special about this complaint is that it had been made by a very intimate family member of the purohita. The complainant has furnished a list of property owned by the purohita which includes several mansions and BMW vehicles. The family member had made the complaint to more..

Sri Lanka to continue 1990 ambulance service with govt funds

July 27 (LBO) Considering the success of the project, cabinet has approved a proposal to provide funds to continue the pre-hospital care ambulance service launched last year with an Indian grant. The service was launched in Western and Southern Provinces by GVK EMRI Lanka with US$ 7.6 million assistance from Indian govt in July 2016. The govt let GVK import their vehicles and medical equipment duty free and provided space to set up their rapid response centers and more..

President meets President’s Counsels

July 27 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena held a meeting with the senior lawyers who were recently appointed as Presidents’ Counsels. The meeting was held yesterday at the President’s House. During the meeting, the President said a greater service should be offered to the country through their knowledge and experience in the field. He wished them to carry out their professional work independently. The meeting was held according to the tradition for them to meet the President more..

Jaffna HC Judge refutes Police spokesman

July 27 (DN) Jaffna High Court Judge, M. Ilancheliyan refuted claims made by the Police Media spokesperson, SP Ruwan Gunasekara that the shooting incident in Jaffna was not aimed at him but was a mere coincidence. Judge stressed that the Police media spokesperson’s views on the case were irresponsible and need not have been made before a full investigation was concluded into the incident. more..

Won't defend anyone found guilty by Presidential Commission: Harin

July 27 (DM) Minister Harin Fernando said he was not prepared to defend anyone found guilty of fraud by the presidential commission probing the bond issue. At the same time he said the present govt had appointed a commission to probe the bond issue despite allegations against its own self. Further he charged that some joint opposition MPs have inflicted undue influence on police officers at the Welikada police. "We saw how these MPs behaved at the police station "he said. more..

Ports strike scheduled for tomorrow postponed

July 27 (NR) Port Authority employees have decided to postpone the proposed strike scheduled for tomorrow. Chief Secretary of the All Ceylon Port General Workers’ Union said the strike was postponed following a promise by President. He claimed the President has vowed to temporarily postpone the signing of the Hambantota Port agreement. The govt yesterday reiterated that handing over operations of the Hambantota Port to China will not see the country’s land sold. more..

Kolonnawa, Muthurajawela 100% operational

July 27 (DM) A total of 250 and 86 fuel loaded bowsers had left from Kolonnawa and Muthurajawela terminals respectively this afternoon, CPC Ceylon Petroleum Storage Terminals (CPSTL) said. CPSTL Managing Director Sanjeewa Wijeratne said the operations of the Muthurajawela commenced this morning after the trade union strike action. “Now both the Kolonnawa & Muthurajawela refineries are fully operational,” he said. more..

'Fiasco has had a negative impact on Govt'

July 27 (CT) The Govt said it was betting all its chips on Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake clearing the negative image created by his alleged involvement in the controversial Treasury Bonds scam. Minister Rajitha Senaratne said, while it was undeniable that the entire fiasco has had a major negative impact on the Govt, the Cabinet expects Minister Karunanayake to appear before the Presidential Commission on Treasury Bonds issue. "We cannot make one-sided judgments. more..

Govt cannot be toppled by disrupting essential services: Sampanthan

July 27 (DN) The govt cannot be toppled by disrupting the essential services, Opposition Leader and TNA leader R. Sampanthan said in Parliament today. He also said that disrupting the essential services is an act against democracy. He added that the Joint Opposition is attempting to topple the govt by interrupting the essential services. “But everybody should realize the govt has received the people’s mandate,” Opposition leader said. Provision of fuel to the people is essential. more..

India run through top order after amassing 600

July 27 (CI) Swing, seam, pace and bounce. Dip, drift, turn and bounce. Ingredients that seemed largely absent when India piled on 600, their second-highest total in Sri Lanka, haunted the home side in their reply, as they ended the second day of the Galle Test five down with the follow-on mark still 247 runs away. Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Shami took the top order apart, even as Upul Tharanga hurtled along with a profusion of more..

Ravi's fate after he appears before CoI on Aug. 2: SB

July 27 (DM) President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe may take a decision on Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayaka after he gives evidence before the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) on bond scam on August 2, Minister S.B. Dissanayaka said today. Minister Dissanayaka admitted that certain information revealed during the CoI proceedings the other day involving Minister Karunanayaka were extremely damaging to the govt and to minister Karunanayaka himself. more..

Former SLAF commander receives final notice to appear in Court

July 27 (NR) Colombo Additional Magistrates Court issued summons for the final time for former Air Force Commander Harsha Abeywickrama to appear before Court. The order was issued by Magistrate Buddhika Sri Ragala when the case was taken up for hearing this morning. A case has been filed against former Air Force Commander over charges of a phone call he received from an individual who claimed he was MP Namal Rajapaksa requesting cancellation of a transfer of an SLAF officer. more..

Sri Lankan among Magsaysay award winners

July 27 (AP) Yoshiaki Ishizawa, a Japanese historian who helped Cambodians preserve the Angkor temples, and Gethsie Shanmugam, a Sri Lankan teacher who counseled war widows and orphans to overcome their nightmares, are among the six winners of this year’s Ramon Magsaysay Awards, regarded as Asia’s version of the Nobel Prize. The other recipients named Thursday are Abdon Nababan, more..

Coca-Cola returns to partner with SLC

July 27 (DM) Coca-Cola has entered into a 3-year partnership with Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) as the Official Carbonated Beverage Partner from 2017 – 2020. The partnership covers all inbound tours and matches in Sri Lanka until early 2020. Speaking on the partnership, Thilanga Sumathipala, MP – President, Sri Lanka Cricket said “We are delighted to welcome Coca-Cola as the Official Carbonated Beverage Partner for national cricket. Sri Lanka Cricket is poised at an important juncture more..

Far-right group's ship held in Cyprus, Sri Lankans on board ask for asylum

July 27 (Reuters) A ship an anti-migrant group planned to use as part of its campaign to protect Europe's shores from mass migration has been detained in Cyprus while the status of a group of Sri Lankans on board is being investigated. Members of the Identarian movement, which says it wants to protect Europe's identity from mass immigration, last week said they had chartered the C-Star which would set sail towards the Libyan coast to monitor humanitarian operations there. more..

Murder of Nadarajah Raviraj: Court issues arrest warrant for SL Navy Officer

July 27 (AD) Court of Appeal has issued a warrant for the arrest of Prasad Hettiarachchi, an officer of SL Navy. Prasad Hettiarachchi has been named as a respondent of the petition submitted by Nadarajah Raviraj’s wife, through which she requested that the murder case of her husband be taken up for hearing again. When the relevant petition was taken up for consideration today, the counsel representing petitioner’s side stated more..

Veteran Litigator Malliha Wilson of SL origin: From Tellippalai to the Supreme Court

July 28 (NS) This is the last thing you might expect to hear from Malliha Wilson, Ontario’s Assistant Deputy Attorney General from 2008 to 2016, a litigator with an impressive career who has been serving the Ontario Government for three decades. But say you didn’t know about her leadership roles, which as of late 2016 took the form of Special Counsel for Investment Management Corporation of Ontario. And say you just happened to come across her name when you learned about more..

Only class action can bring justice to Uma Oya project victims

July 28 (CT) I was in Sri Lanka a couple of weeks ago and had the opportunity to travel through Bandarawela, a unique destination for eco-tourists. Even during the colonial period Bandarawela with its semi-temperate climate was the main holiday destination for the foreign masters. Its reputation as a relaxing holiday resort in beautiful Sri Lanka still remains undiminished. What a paradise? However, I was shocked to see the irreparable damage caused to the town’s water supply more..

A Gem of a story

July 28 (SO) Abandoned houses and neglected tea bushes dot landscape of Paradise Estate. Houses stand ghost-like, uninhabited, except for a few tools and spare clothes of the workers hung to dry on a line inside. The residents are long gone. They left when gems were found and many exchanged tea, for a shot at finding a gem. Today, if you want to find gems, more often than not, it's likely you would end up in Paradise. more..

Against a culture of ambivalence

July 28 (CT) For obvious reasons, the govt wants to convince us that its enemies and friends are also the people’s. Obvious, because in equalising the one with the other we are on firm ground. Obvious, because if my enemy is your enemy, the world is easier to simplify, and the decision by an official body is easier to rationalise. Obvious, because if you kill your enemy and he or she happens to be my enemy as well, everything becomes a whole lot easier to sweep under the carpet. more..

'He gifted me a ring on Valentine’s Day'

July 28 (NS) There is a common saying that behind every successful man there is a woman. But often we don’t talk much about these heroines behind the man. This time we allocated some space for these unsung women behind the success of outstanding cricketers in Sri Lanka. In this column the present writer focused on the romantic times and interesting incidents in their married life. Yoshini Mendis, the wife of talented spin wizard of cricket Ajantha Mendis, joins in this discussion. more..

Sri Lanka, world's coveted black Tea source'

July 28 (CT) Chairman of the SL Tea Board Rohan Pethiyagoda said that Sri Lanka was the most coveted black tea source in the world. "Of course, we need to do more to get our message out there. Competing with the big international brands isn't easy. They have more leverage when it comes to shelf space in supermarkets", he said. However, we're carving out a niche for ourselves and our challenge is to grow that niche, more..

Questions of credibility impunity

July 28 (DN) Last week the news of the attempted abduction of Ryan Jayalath, Convener of the Medical Students’ Action Committee in the city in broad daylight was received with shock and disbelief by the civil society. Even sections of the establishment were stunned. Media Minister soon issued a statement condemning the incident and promising an inquiry. The police hastened to say that the van was not a police vehicle but it belonged to the Finance Ministry. more..

Still wanted: Pragmatic leaders!

July 28 (DN) Independence in 1948 saw Sri Lanka’s ship of state glide smoothly on still waters as it were, when oceans of rising waves, turbulence and even storms were seen elsewhere. Though on hindsight, the leaders at the time are not seen as great visionaries, they yet managed the ship of state prudently. They were dedicated patriots. They sacrificed their wealth and did not swindle the country. They did not ask for super luxury Benz cars, they used their own. more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Over 4000 netball players expected to compete in finals

July 28 (Island) Final phase of Schools Netball Championship sponsored by Nestle Lanka will be held from August 3 to 5 at the Vincent Dias Ground, Badulla. The three-day championship will be held under new age categories, namely the Under-13, 15, 17 and 19. Previously it was held in the age categories of Under-12, 14, 16 and 18. Teams in the Under-15, 17 and 19 age categories will compete in two Divisions. Schools with a student population of over 1000 will compete in Division ‘A’, more..

Govt’s new strong-arm approach

July 28 (Island) Last Wednesday, for the first time in living memory, the military was deployed to distribute fuel in the wake of the CPC strike. My generation has seen many things in our lifetimes, civil war, terrorism, suicide bombings, World War II scale military debacles, piles of dead bodies – the whole works, and we thought we had seen it all and that in the interval between now and our death, we would not see anything that we had not seen earlier and that life would be at the very worst, more..

He served beyond the call of duty

July 28 (DN) The village of Kumarakatuwa in Chilaw lies almost 20km away from a main city. It is over 300km from Jaffna. But it is in Jaffna, that Sub Inspector (SI) Sarath Hemachandra (51) of Kumarakattuwa spent most of his time during the last two years. For the last 15 years, he worked as the Security Officer of Jaffna High Court Judge, Illancheliyan Manikavasagar (54). Saturday (22), SI Hemachandra was killed more..

Fleet-footed India outdo SL in the Galle maze

July 28 (CI) India like to be ruthless when ahead, in that they don't like to leave the door open in order to make a statement. Even the ever-present threat of rain in Galle is not likely to make them enforce a follow-on on a 10-man Sri Lanka, even if they bowl them out in the first hour on the third morning. Prospects of a three-day finish might not be tempting enough for this team, which has seen the pitch drying out quickly, and which knows from first-hand experience that chasing anything more..

Editorial: Arrest those goons!

July 28 (Island) We thought the practice of deploying goons to operate alongside the riot police to crush public protests would end with the 2015 regime change. The present-day leaders, in the run-up to the last presidential election, promised a clean break from the past and a new political culture. But, two-and-a-half years on, we see pro-govt thugs operate openly in full view of the police, assaulting as they do protesters, with absolute impunity. They were first sighted in Hambantota, more..