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'Govt minister protecting Gnanasara Thera'

June 7 (DM) Minister Rajitha Senaratne said today a warrant has been issued for the arrest of BBS leader Galagodatte Gnanasara Thera and CID detectives have been deployed to take him into custody over allegations of inciting religious and racial hatred. He said it would be a difficult task for the police to arrest him if he was being protected by a minister. Journalist: There are media reports that he is being protected by a minister. more..

Muslim-owned shop torched in Wijerama

June 7 (CT) Another Muslim-owned shop in Wijerama, Nugegoda has been petrol bombed at 1 AM on June 6th. While the police have deployed 4 teams to arrest Galagoda Atte Gnanasra, this is the 5th big shop that has been set on fire. “Fortunately, the shop owners have adopted a brilliant fire protection system by filling water into plastic bottles behind the front door so that if petrol bombs are throw, the plastic bottle will burst and the fire would be doused,” a ship owner said. more..

Borella Traffic OIC further remanded

June 7 (DN) Borella Traffic OIC arrested for allegedly robbing a stock of lightning conductors and gold jewellery worth Rs 550,000 was ordered to be further remanded till June 16 by Colombo Chief Magistrate today. When the suspect IP Dhammika Rajapaksha was produced in an identification parade, he was identified by two witnesses in the case. Cinnamon Gardens Police witnessed that the robbery occurred while the goods were being transported to Colombo to be sold by more..

Levy on imported sugar increased

June 7 (NR) Govt has increased the special commodity levy on a kilogram of imported sugar to 23 rupees from the current levy of 13 rupees, the Ministry of Finance said. However, it said there is no impact on the selling price of sugar in the market as the world market price on sugar is continuously declining. Govt’s objective is to pass the benefit of the increased levy to farmers engaged in sugarcane cultivation. more..

Levy on imported fish reduced by Rs.25

June 7 (DM) The Govt had reduced the Special Commodity Levy on imported fish by Rs 25 per kilogram effective from today, the Finance ministry said The Ministry said due to the inclement of weather, the fish production had been affected in the country. Therefore the Govt, as a relief measure had reduced the levy from Rs. 75 to Rs. 50 per kilogram on imported fish. The Ministry said Sri Lanka imported around 2000 MT of fish per month for local consumption. more..

Railway TU wants extra leave

June 7 (CT) All Ceylon Railway Employees' General Union (ACREGU) requested the govt to allow public servants suffering with dengue an additional fortnight's sick leave. In a letter to Minister of Public Administration Ranjith Maddumabandara, ACREGU General Secretary Sepala Liyanage said medical certificates only allow two weeks' leave, but often it is not sufficient, given the nature of the dengue disease. Doctors usually order a fortnight's bed rest to promote the recovery process, more..

More SriLankan Airlines flights to Gulf mooted after Qatar crisis

June 7 (EN) Minister Ravi Karunanayake has suggested the national carrier SriLankan Airlines increase flights from Colombo to Middle East-Persian Gulf countries after the isolation of Qatar by its neighbours. There are 150,000 Sri Lankan migrant workers in Qatar, second largest number of expatriate workers after Saudi Arabia, where there are 193,000. UAE has 125,000 Sri Lankans, Egypt & Bahrain 10,000 each, more..

Health Minister promises bone marrow transplant at Kandy General Hospital

June 7 (Island) Minister Rajitha Senaratne has pledged to commence bone marrow transplant (BMT) surgery for patients with Thalassemia at the Kandy General Hospital as soon as possible. Laying the foundation stone for a three-storey building at the Gonadoowa Hospital, Bandaragama, he said BMT operations for cancer patients had already commenced at Apeksha Hospital, Maharagama. Steps would be taken to initiate BMT for paediatric patients at the Lady Ridgeway Hospital more..

A series of programs in Polonnaruwa to mark Poson Poya

June 7 (PSL) A series of programs will be held on June 08, 09 and 10 in Polonnaruwa under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena to mark the Poson Poya day. The Bandaranaike-Senanayake Poson Maha Bath Dansala organized by the Polonnaruwa Buddhist Association for the 57th consecutive year will be held on June 08 and 09 near the Polonnaruwa Parakrama Samudraya and the President will open this to the public. Annually, the Poson Maha Bath Dansala more..

CB official tried to bid at same rate as Perpetual: bondscam inquiry witness

June 7 (EN) A Central Bank official tried to enter a controversial bond auction in Feb 2015, at the same rate that Perpetual Treasuries won a bid, raising concerns over insider information, a commission of inquiry was told. State-run Bank of Ceylon placed bids of 13 billion rupees on behalf of Perpetual Treasuries, at a controversial bond auction where only a billion rupees of securities was originally offered. more..

Sri Lanka, Thai MoU on Strategic Economic Partnership in August

June 7 (EN) An agreement on a Strategic Economic Partnership between Sri Lanka and Thailand is expected to be signed during Thai Deputy PM Somkid Jatusripitak’s visit to the island in August 2017. Sri Lanka and Thailand came to a consensus on a Trade in Goods Free Trade Agreement as the first step before a comprehensive in bilateral talks on June 2 in Bangkok, commerce ministry said. This was during the second Sub Committee Meeting on Trade Related Matters between more..

Rs.100 Mn. for clearing garbage in disaster areas

June 7 (NR) Cabinet has decided to allocate an additional 100 million rupees to Ministry of Local Govt and Provincial Councils to promptly clear areas with garbage following floods and landslides which affected 15 districts recently. The proposal was jointly tabled by Ministers Anura Priyadarshana Yapa and Faizer Mustapha. It was stated that a large amount of garbage was accumulated in disaster hit areas further adding the Ministry did not have the required facilities to remove more..

Tobacco cultivation to be banned by 2020

June 7 (DN) Tobacco cultivation will be banned by 2020, Minister Rajitha Senaratne said. Minister, observing that about 30,000 persons are currently involved in tobacco cultivation, said a programme is in place to introduce alternate crops to cultivators. The sale of cigarettes within a 500 metre radius of schools will also be banned, adding that Cabinet approved the proposal in this regard recently. The sale of single stick of cigarette more..

Dinesh shreds Zeid’s Report on Lanka

June 7 (CT) Leader of JO Dinesh Gunawardena yesterday charged that the report of the office of the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights on Sri Lanka was misleading and its recommendations were harmful to the nation. Moving an adjournment motion on the repeal of UN Resolution on Sri Lanka, the MP pointed out that the UNHRC report on SL dated 10 February 2017 had stated that SL had formulated a draft of the new Constitution in Dec 2016, which he claimed was untrue. more..

Mangala Out, Rajitha In

June 7 (CT) Minister of Finance and Media Mangala Samaraweera has opted out of chairing the weekly Cabinet news conference, a role he also played 23 years ago. This is a sequel to President Maithripala Sirisena reinstating Samaraweera in Media along with Finance in the latest Cabinet reshuffle where it was a return to the Media for Samaraweera following his previous stint as Minister of Posts Telecommunication and Media in the Chandrika Kumaratunga Govt in 1994. more..

Depleted Sri Lanka seek Mathews lift

June 7 (CI) Truth be told, Sri Lanka have often had the knack of winding up in the easy group in world tournaments. In years gone by, this has meant being clubbed with perhaps England and Bangladesh. They used to skip casually through the group stages, and would generally make a strong push in the back end of a tournament as well. Between 2009 and 2014, Sri Lanka made six ICC tournament semi-finals. more..

The debate between so-called JO & Govt

June 8 (CT) So, my urge to the Govt, at this time, is that you did the course correction; you turned towards the right direction; you did the right thing by co-sponsoring those two Resolutions, but please do not drag your feet any longer. Be brave and do what is right and nothing will go wrong. Do not be afraid to do the right thing. The previous regime was not afraid to do the wrong thing, but you are afraid to do the right thing, perhaps the presence of many who were in the previous Govt more..

Implement the UNHRC resolution

June 8 (CT) What happened to unarmed civilians in violation of human rights and humanitarian laws must not be confused with legitimate actions taken by the State against armed combatants carrying on an armed struggle against the State. The distinction between these two situations is clearly defined in humanitarian laws and human rights laws, and the standards of judgement pertaining to the applicability of the said two laws are clearly recognized internationally. more..

Floods, no hindrance to education system

June 8 (SO) The Govt will take all possible steps to help schoolchildren and schools affected by the devastating flood and minimize the impact on the education system as a whole. According to the latest reports from the Ministry of Education, 45 children have died and eight children are reported missing due to the recent floods and landslides. The highest number of child deaths has taken place in R'pura & Horana. more..

Scripting a story for Sri Lanka’s youth

June 8 (NS) Social entrepreneur and Community Specialist, Regional Strategies for India and South Asia at the World Economic Forum, Indira Kithsiri dons multiple hats. Powered by the passion to make the world a better place, in the wake of the havoc the 2004 tsunami wrought, Indira Kithsiri single-handedly started an NGO in Sri Lanka. She was only 21 at the time. Since then, all her efforts have been dedicated to making a real difference. Indira is the Community Specialist, more..

CT 2017: Pakistan beat South Africa

June 8 (CI) Never mind the damp conclusion; this is Birmingham in June, what did you expect? The weather shouldn't detract from the fact that Pakistan pulled off an upset in the game of the tournament so far. It is a shame the contest wasn't able to carry on till its natural conclusion, because it could have been the day the 2017 Champions Trophy finally came to life. Instead, it was the day Pakistan ensured they remained alive, beating South Africa by 19 runs via the DLS method more..

'Most natural disasters today are man-made'

June 8 (CT) In an interview with Ceylon Today, Professor Deepthi Wickremesinghe, Director, Career Guidance Unit Department of Zoology and Environment Science, University of Colombo, stated that irregular development practices can lead to many natural disasters that can be categorized as man-made ones. She added that any development that indirectly causes the destruction of property and human lives cannot be permitted. more..

Ear- shattering deafening silence

June 8 (SL) It is a deafening silence that’s ear shattering.  Percy Mahendra Rajapaksa, former SL President has been accusing the Indian Spy Agency, RAW, whose boss is Narendra Damodardas Modi the Indian PM, of staging ‘a coup against him and throwing and him out of power. Surprisingly they met on Vesak Day under cosy conditions at the Indian High Commissioner’s residence and the High Commissioner reported: Rajapaksa had described the talks as cordial, more..

Editorial: Generosity of hapless public

June 8 (Island) President Sirisena is reported to have extolled Sri Lankans as a nation with unmatchable qualities. He has praised them for their generous contribution towards disaster relief. One cannot but agree with him on this score. Sri Lankans are generous even when there are no disasters. Today is Poson Poya Day, when they give away food at numerous danselas. They offer victuals to the needy and the super rich alike with compassion. But, the question is whether the same can be more..

Anura Priyadharshana Yapa

Running with the hare and hunting with the hounds

June 8 (SL) The title of this piece should, in fact, read, You shouldn’t be able to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds because that would be more appropriate given what I am about to say. However, since most editors don’t want long titles to the articles they accept for publication … On several previous occasions I have drawn attention to the insurance buyers within the higher ranks of the current govt. The most recent was the son of one of the most useless PMs more..

A Legendary Friendship

June 8 (Island) Lord Buddha once addressed Ananda Thero, "Ananda, beings subject to birth, old age, death, sorrow, weeping, lamentation, pain, grief and utter despair come to me, a good friend and rid themselves of all their miseries", Kalyana Mitta or Good Friend is the pivotal factor, the very substratum of success in life, here and hereafter. It remains no less an element in the case of a Bodhisatta too, as most fascinatingly demonstrated in Ghatikara Sutta more..

Unlocking the essence of Ayurveda

June 8 (Roar) Stories of weda mahaththayas and their unusual herbal remedies that claim to cure multiple ailments and sicknesses are not uncommon in SL. Nowadays, Ayurveda is an established medical practice in its own right. There are many qualified Ayurvedic doctors who have been trained in recognised institutions such as the National Ayurvedic Teaching Hospital in Colombo, Gampaha Wickramarachchi Ayurveda more..

Passion of Chamathya: the global anti-GBV crusader

June 8 (NS) She is known for her work on empowering women and girls against gender based violence. She is the coordinator of Stop the Violence Campaign of the Sri Lanka Girls Guides Association (SLGGA) and is a National Trainer for Voices against Violence an educational curriculum co-developed by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) and the United Nations Women. Chamathya Fernando, is a youth leader with many titles under her belt and more..

Gunathilaka replaces injured Kapugedera in Sri Lanka's squad

June 8 (CI) Chamara Kapugedera has been ruled out of the Champions Trophy with an injury to his right knee, which was sustained during training on Wednesday. He has been replaced with opening batsman Danushka Gunathilaka, who was on stand-by in England. "Kapugedara [had] a heavy pounding on the right knee when he landed on it awkwardly during a fielding drill this morning, and radiographic investigation has revealed a meniscal tear coupled with an acute tendon injury," more..

Bodies Beneath: Accidentally discovered mass graves in Sri Lanka

June 8 (Roar) The recent discovery of human remains at the construction site of the Shangri La hotel stirred the old pot of conspiracy theories. News reports casually evoked two past lives of the construction site, as an army base in a violent epoch and as a cemetery in the British period, and left the conclusion to the public imagination. Authorities have concluded preliminary investigations and submitted a report to the Magistrate’s Court. more..

Possession of elephant Ganga: SC fixes for support on 2 August petition

June 8 (FT) Supreme Court fixed for support on 2 August for granting of leave to proceed in respect of the fundamental rights petition seeking to stay the Colombo Magistrate’s order in taking into custody the elephant Ganga. The Bench comprised Justices Sisira De Abrew, Anil Gooneratne and Nilin Perera. Petitioner Amaradeva Malwatta, the custodian/trustee of Rajju Bandara Basnahira Dewalaya of Urumutta, Akuressa cited Wild Life Conservation Department Director General more..

Today is World Oceans Day

June 8 (DM) A couple of months ago,while under water just a few miles off the coast of Colombo, I had a chance encounter with an extraordinary being. As we meandered in and out of a coral-covered wreck, this gigantic creature appeared from the dark depth, a massive whale shark with dozens of little fish swimming gracefully by its side, like a king moving with his court. The shark stayed with us for almost 40 minutes. He kept circling us, coming closer and closer, more..

Mathews wary of one of the best attacks

June 8 (CI) Where in previous years, India's batting comprised the greatest threat to oppositions, their bowling has also turned up strong in this Champion's Trophy, and Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews has noticed. So far, India's attack has been unstoppable. They dismissed Pakistan for 164 on Sunday, but had also demolished Bangladesh, and skittled New Zealand in the warm-up encounters. more..

Today is Poson Full Moon Poya day

June 8 (DN) People love their lives, i.e. they love to continue living. They do not like to die. It is the first basic right as far as humans are concerned. It is also the first Fundamental Human Right as listed by UN. It is the right of everyone to live without any threat whatsoever to one's life. Buddhism goes even further than this. The Buddhists extend this right to live happily to all living things, voicing it as May all beings be well and happy (Sabbe satta bhavantu sukhitatta). more..

Big ask for Sri Lanka against in-form India

June 8 (Island) Kusal Perera will move up to open batting with Niroshan Dickwella in the absence of Tharanga. Sri Lanka are facing early ouster from the Champions Trophy if they are unable to win today’s crucial Group ‘B’ fixture against India at The Oval. Defeat to South Africa by 96 runs in their opening fixture on Saturday has given the Sri Lankans little room for error. The good news for the Sri Lankans is that captain Angelo Mathews will be back to lead the side, but he is unable to bowl. more..

Sri Lanka to shift to new bond auctioning system in August

June 8 (EN) Sri Lanka would shift to a bond auctioning system, which the central bank has spent several months developing, from August, Central Bank Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy said. The bond auction has been developed following consultations with international experts and domestic stakeholders, he said. He said some bunched up domestic debt maturities have been cleared. more..

Govt to establish largest fisheries harbour in Point Pedro

June 8 (FT) Govt has decided to increase the number of fisheries harbours in the country starting with Point Pedro, which will be the largest of all and another fisheries harbour in Pesalai. According to Minister Mahinda Amaraweera, the proposed fisheries harbours established as part of the ADB program will provide livelihood opportunities in the northern peninsula. “Prior to 1983, there was about a 40% contribution from northern fishermen to local fish production. more..

Poson unveiled path to Panchasheela: Prez

June 8 (DN) As the disciples who listened to the Buddhist teachings for the first time under a mango tree, our determination on this noble Poson full moon day should be to commit ourselves to make a better world through the discipline of mind, body and word, President Sirisena said in his Poson day message. “We commenced our journey through a new civilization on the day King Devanampiya Thissa ended the game of deer hunting in Mihintale. With the king who relinquished more..

Susanthika claims medal worth Rs. 250 Mn!

June 8 (Island) SL’s only female Olympic medalist, Susanthika Jayasinghe says that she has received offers from both SL and abroad for her silver medal following recent media reports. "They have offered as much as Rs 250 million. I too did not know the medal would be worth that much," she said. Ace sprinter said that she regretted that Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera’s failure to give due recognition to an Olympic more..