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Deadly garbage dumps pose elephantine problems

Mar 11 (ST) An elephant which had been regularly eating garbage at Manampitiya died last Saturday after suffering from a sickness for a month. This well grown male, about 20 years of age, was part of a herd that fed on garbage from a dump at Manampitiya. It had fallen ill in the third week of January. A veterinary surgeon and a team of wildlife officers tried to flush out any non-digestive materials from its stomach. more..

Controversy over Toronto Mayor calling off Colombo business meet

Mar 11 (Island) Many an eyebrow has been raised over Toronto Mayor John Tory cancelling a scheduled business meeting hosted by Toronto’s Canada-Sri Lanka Business Council at Cinnamon Grand, Colombo on March 20. Canada based sources told The Island that representatives of Toronto companies and organizations were scheduled to attend the business meet along with Mayor Tory, Councillor Michael Thompson, more..

Tennakoon spills the beans on assault: Says he has no faith in probe

Mar 11 (SL) While govt has made a major breakthrough into investigations on the assault on journalist Keith Noyahr, doubts have still been raised if justice will be served to Noyahr or other journalists who faced similar attacks. Veteran journalist Upali Tennakoon, who was assaulted in 2009, says he has no faith on justice being served. Upali, who is currently overseas, said he believes returning to SL could place his life in danger. more..

70,000 tonnes of rice in storage for two years, while imports continue

Mar 11 (ST) Thousands of tonnes paddy are languishing in stores of a state-owned organisation, while rice is being imported and the inadequacy of rice in the market is being claimed as an artificial shortage. State-owned Paddy Marketing Board, which buys paddy from farmers for a guaranteed price, is yet to clear a stock of 70,000 metric tonnes at its warehouses. Some of the stock is nearly two years old. more..

CMA seeks international support over full face helmet ban

Mar 11 (DM) Ceylon Motorcyclists’ Association (CMA) complained to UNICEF SL office and the IMF citing that the recent gazette issued by the govt imposing a full face helmet ban had restricted the motorcyclists’ right to safety. Writing to the UNICEF State Representative Tim Sutton and IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, CMA had noted that the govt had failed to provide a solution to the matter which they were originated. more..

Between a rock and a hard place

Mar 11 (NS) Following last week’s unruly incidents in Parliament resulting in the Speaker being compelled to name a very senior politician to be removed from the Chamber, and suspending him from attending sessions for a week, analysts have opined that all members of the House should respect the Speaker’s decisions and give him the space to exercise his privileges of the position in administering Parliamentary sittings. more..

TN fishermen call for state-wide shutdown

Mar 11 (IT) Fishermen protests in Tamil Nadu's Rameshwaram continue on the third consecutive day. The protest is being organised demanding compensation for 22-year-old fisherman K Britso who was allegedly shot by a Sri Lankan navy officer. Fishermen in Tamil Nadu have threatened a state-wide agitation if action is not taken against Sri Lankan navy officer. AIADMK raised the issue in the House on Thursday, more..

Committed to build young generation: Prez emphasizes at Pulathisi Youth Camp

Mar 11 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena says he would be committed to build an intelligent young generation which can win the market of scholars, also which consists of self-respect and self-confidence. He added that the government is providing the required guidance on this regard. He also stated that he would fulfill every responsibility to build the young generation in the country. President was speaking at the inauguration ceremony more..

Herath takes six as Bangladesh crumble to 259-run defeat

Mar 11 (CI) Sri Lanka's slow bowlers imposed their familiar chokehold over another fourth innings of a home Test match, uprooting batsmen as early as the second ball of the day, before sending the Test hurtling to its conclusion by the middle of the afternoon session. Leading the final charge was Rangana Herath. He was unstoppable as ever in defence of a score, and picked up record for most career wickets for a left-arm spinner more..

TN fishermen fail to turn up at Kachchativu St. Anthony’s Feast

Mar 11 (ENS) The 5,000 Tamil Nadu fishermen who were to attend the annual St. Anthony’s Feast in Kachchativu island on Saturday and Sunday failed to turn up today. Only Sri Lankan fishermen are currently participating in the festival which is being held at the renovated and expanded St.Anthony’s chapel. The renovation was executed for the Diocese of Jaffna by the Sri Lankan navy, free of charge, Sri Lankan officials said. more..

Sri Lanka to import 5,000 more heads of cattle from Australia

May 11 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka will import 5,000 heads of high yield cattle from Australia in May to boost local daily production. Minister P. Harrison said that around 6,000 heads of cattle had been imported in the past. "They are being reared at the govt farms. We will get their offspring hopefully by next year. We will import another 5,000 in May to be distributed among farmers. We will plan for more imports of cattle from Australia depending on the success of this project," he said. more..

Sri Lanka to open tenders for LNG energy project next month

May 11 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka will open tenders next month calling for international bids for an energy project on liquefied natural gas. The project is intended to generate 300 megawatts of electricity to the national grid. A spokesman said that the govt had agreed to proceed with the project, to be implemented in the Colombo suburb called Kerawalapitiya. "We are now working on the tender process. We will open tenders calling for bids in April," he said. more..

NewsLine with Faraz Shauketaly

My SAITM Story

Mar 11 (CT) Laying their life story bare in public in order to urge a government to take a policy decision is not something any student, studying anywhere in the world should ever have to face. In the face of wholesale lies that’s been spread around, We; the long suffering students of SAITM had no choice but to do this. This post has absolutely no intention of seeking public sympathy and I humbly request all who are prejudiced otherwise, to kindly not read any further. more..

Interest, knowledge of sports can stop rot

Mar 11 (CT) Around the world there is a standard for undertaking responsibility. It is especially so, when running a sports organization that is a money making venture. If you take an organization such as the International Olympic Committee, it is one of the richest sports controlling bodies in the world. These bodies are so rich that they are always under investigations because of corruption. It's not that it does not happen, but the main thing is how the movement involves itself with sports more..

Nurses Union to protest over lack of facilities

May 11 (DN) Public Services United Nurses’ Union (PSUNU) will conduct a protest campaign islandwide on March 13 and 14 against govt’s failure to rectify 7 demands of Public Nursing Staff, PSUNU President Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thera said. Thera also said that the higher ups had been unable to satisfy needs of the Nurses’ Union and Executive Committee of PSUNU would conduct a protest campaign against it. more..

Evaluation before reshuffle

May 11 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena is currently evaluating the work of all the ministries before carrying out a reshuffle of the Cabinet. Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said, the President was currently inspecting the ministers who have worked diligently in the tasks assigned to them as well as those who have failed to perform up to expectations during the past two years. He said a discussion in this regard had also been held during a meeting held with a group of SLFP ministers. more..

Anti-social criminals wreak havoc on public spaces

May 11 (ST) Anti-social behaviour in the form of criminal damage, or vandalism in other words, continues unabated in Sri Lanka. A sociologist says such criminal acts directed against public property are largely the result of a lack of respect for the law in the island and a culture of dishonesty. Destruction of public property, whether it be ripping off seats in buses or damaging fixtures on trains and toilets, also comes with a monetary cost. There are instances when drivers damage newly-laid concrete more..

Ex-AG in hot water for favouring Ravi Karunanayake in money laundering case

May 11 (CT) Former Attorney General Yuvanjana Wijayatilake has been accused of abusing his office and for unethically granting favours to Minister Ravi Karunanayake. In a letter addressed to the CIABOC, Nagananda Kodituwakku, an Attorney-at-Law claimed that Wijayatilake had abused his office by offering favours to Karunanayake, which according to Kodituwakku falls within the offence of corruption as defined in more..

Rules flouted at Yala National Park

May 11 (ST) Many Safari Jeep drivers operating inside the Yala National Park are openly flouting regulations put in place by authorities to ensure the safety of animals and tourists. Drivers, eager to please tourists, increasingly engage in rec klesss behaviour that not only harass the animals, but also putting the lives of tourists at risk. We observed several such incidents including driving vehicles at high speed, taking jeeps off designated pathways, climbing atop vehicles, and obstruction of more..

Australian High Commissioner reacts

May 11 (CT) Reference to our article Australia willing to advise GOSL Australian High Commissioner Bryce Hutchesson says: I am disappointed that, in an otherwise positive and broadly accurate account of my remarks on 8 March to the Colombo West Rotary Club, the Ceylon Today newspaper has completely misreported what I said about the fishing jurisdiction issue between SL and India. What I said was that the excellent operational collaboration between Australia and SL more..

'No dumping of garbage on UDA lands by year’s end'

May 11 (DN) The UDA will not allow any Local Govt Authority to dump garbage on its lands by the end of this year, Minister Champika Ranawaka said. “Garbage has been the most controversial and  persistent issue the Ministry has had to deal with and has locked horns many a times with the Local Govt authorities over the issue, he said. “Ten years ago when I was appointed as Minister of Environment. more..

Sri Lanka promotes tea, food at world's largest exhibition in Dubai

May 11 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka sent the largest ever contingent of food and beverage exporting companies to 'Gulfood 2017', the world's largest annual food and drink exhibition event in Dubai, to promote its tea, food. At the event held at the Dubai World Trade Center, the country used the opportunity to promote its world famous Ceylon Tea and other food-related exports to the UAE and Gulf region as well as other global markets, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Saturday. more..

GMOA seeks license system

May 11 (CT) While appreciating the decision of the govt to ban selling loose cigarettes, GMOA requested the authorities to limit the number of tobacco vendors. GMOA General Secretary, Dr. Naveen de Soysa said, govt needs to bring in a licence system for the sale of cigarettes and cut down on the number of sellers in order to reduce tobacco consumption. Minister Rajitha Senaratne said last week that he will shortly present a Cabinet Paper proposing a ban on the sale of loose more..

Travel agents fear their wings may be clipped

May 11 (ST) Sri Lanka’s travel trade industry has called an emergency meeting on March 17 to discuss a proposal by cash-strapped SriLankan Airlines to end traditional commissions on tickets, a move which could throw many agents out of business. In a circular to outbound travel agents, SriLankan Airlines has said the zero commission plan will take effect from April 1. As of now, agents get 5% commission from the national carrier more..

Surgeon claims 100% success

May 11 (CT) Second kidney transplant surgery performed in Polonnaruwa has been a hundred per cent success, according to Consultant Specialist Surgeon Rajiv Dassanayake. Surgeon said, "Second kidney transplant was 100% successful. A kidney from a 22-year-old man named Manoj, who died in an accident, was transplanted into a 19-year-old student named M.A. Dhanushka. In the future we will continuously carry out kidney transplants and will work towards saving the lives of patients." more..

Tea prices hit new high in February

May 11 (EN) SL tea prices hit a new high in Feb 2017, with the monthly auction average almost 50% higher than a year ago and slightly better than the record price achieved the month before. “SL national average stood at Rs 596.85 per kilo for the month of Feb 2017, significantly higher [by 47%] than the Rs403.87 achieved during the same month in 2016,” brokers John Keells Ltd. said. “The sale averages achieved in the second month of 2017 is the highest ever recorded, marginally bettering more..

'Would love to get 400 wickets but can't guarantee form'

May 11 (CI) Rangana Herath conceded 400 career wickets would be nice to have, while reiterating that at 39, he considers his future in the game after every series. Having taken 6 for 59 in Sri Lanka's victory in Galle, Herath is now the most successful left-arm spinner in Tests, surpassing Daniel Vettori's career tally of 362. This was also his 29th five-wicket haul - only Muralitharan, Warne, Hadlee & Kumble have achieved more. more..

UPFA constituent parties should speak independently in Parliament: Chamal

May 11 (DN) Constituent parties of the UPFA other than the SLFP should be provided an opportunity to speak independently in Parliament since those parties had not entered into agreements with the UNP, Joint Opposition and SLFP MP Chamal Rajapaksa said in Parliament. He made this observation yesterday speaking over the matter of the NFF request to sit independently in Parliament. MP said that SLFP General Secretary had entered into an agreement with the UNP. more..

Herath: Most wickets by a left-arm spinner

May 11 (CI) 366: Wickets for Rangana Herath in Tests, now the most by a left-arm spinner. He bettered Daniel Vettori's tally of 362 wickets. Herath has taken those wickets in only 79 Tests compared to Vettori's 113. Among all left-arm bowlers, only Wasim Akram is ahead of Herath with 414 scalps. 9: Five-wicket hauls for Herath in Galle - the most by any bowler other than Muttiah Muralitharan at any venue. Muralitharan has 14 at SSC and 11 each in Kandy and Galle. more..

15 officers including four DIGs transferred

May 11 (DM) 4 DIGs, 3 SSPs, 3 SPs and 5 ASPs had been transferred with immediate effect based on service requirements. It said the transfers had been made on the recommendations made by IGP Pujith Jayasndara and the approval of National Police Commission. Accordingly, DIG R. Dias has been transferred to Nuwara Eliya Division from Ratnapura and Kegalle Division while Nuwara Eliya Division DIG P. Munasinghe has been more..

Cabinet to review decision on pension payment

May 11 (ST) A Cabinet decision to calculate pensions of retiring public sector employees, based on pending salary increases leading upto 2020, has been put on hold, officials said.  The decision to hold back the implementation of the Cabinet paper approved in January this year came after it was revealed that the move  would cost the Govt billions as some 100,000 public sector employees who will retire during that period will be entitled to the benefit. The Cabinet paper by more..

Case against Wimal over Neththa Venuwata Etta re-fixed for trial

May 11 (DN) Colombo Commercial High Court, re-fixed for trial a lawsuit filed against NFF Leader Wimal Weerawansa by JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva over publishing and distributing the book Neththa Venuwata Etta. When the case came up before Commercial HC Judge Shiran Gunaratna, matter was re-fixed for trial for Sept 11 and 25. Counsel appeared on behalf of MP Weerawansa sought a further date for the trial citing that his  client is still in remand custody more..

Who are we?

May 11 (ST) A joke oft chuckled over about lineage is that no one really knows who one’s father is – the only fact without dispute is who one’s mother is. Jokes apart, this is the very pathway that a pioneering team of researchers from Institute of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biotechnology (IBMBB) of Uni of Colombo has followed to clear fact from fiction, from the larger picture that is SL, based irrefutably on science. more..

Fags killed more people than Prabhakaran

May 11 (CT) Chairman of the National Alcohol and Tobacco Authority Dr. Palitha Abeykone, in a report, states that, annual tax income for the govt through manufacture and marketing of narcotics is Rs 143 million and that the govt spends Rs 212.6 billion on providing treatment to persons who fall ill due to drug use. A survey carried out by him showed that about 40,000 school children smoke. Abeykone points out in his report that 35% of adult males use alcohol once or twice a week and more..

Tom Helm helps England Lions restore pride against Sri Lanka A

May 11 (GT) Tom Helm took five wickets as England Lions won the final match of their one-day series against Sri Lanka A in Colombo. After the home side had been dismissed for 192, England reached 124 for five in their run-chase before bad weather brought play to a premature end. With no more action possible, England’s target was revised to 113 under the Duckworth-Lewis method, handing them a second win in succession. However, Sri Lanka had already won the series more..

In post-war Sri Lanka, returning IDPs face fresh challenges

May 11 (Roar) Less than a week ago, following 30 days of relentless protest and an order from President Sirisena, SL Air Force released 54 acres of land it had been occupying, in Keppapulavu Division of Mullaitivu, since the end of the civil war in 2009. It was supposed to be a joyous occasion for a beleaguered community that has spent the post-war era toiling away at the Menik Farm IDP camp, and later, at an Army-built model village more..

Vulgar theatre

Mar 12 (Island) Friday’s unruly behavior in Parliament is nothing new to Lankans who are largely acclimatized to rowdy scenes in the legislature. Although these events do grab headlines and television and radio time, as happened on this occasion, many will agree that they are hardly newsworthy – except perhaps to make people wonder yet again why their tax rupees are wasted in lavishly supporting their representatives who are embroiled in fighting each other over their more..

Dengue vs. tourism

Mar 12 (SO) Dengue is raising its head again and this country’s health care system as well as public sanitary infrastructure and urban sanitation need revitalizing and purposeful action if things are not to go out of control. When a foreign govt advises its citizens to be cautious about the dengue illness in Sri Lanka, it takes the impact of this disease beyond its direct human toll. The warning was by the UK’s govt to all British citizens intending to visit this country. more..

Discrepancy between favoured and neglected schools

Mar 12 (SO) I am glad and honoured to have been invited by the Principal of Methodist High School Moratuwa, for the event commemorating the 175th anniversary of the school. The Methodist School was founded in 1842 by Rev. Peter Gerard de Silva. The contribution made by the Christian Missionaries for education is quite well known in all parts of the island. These schools instilled great human values and taught self discipline, more..