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‘The time is right for the masses to safeguard their rights’

Mar 30 (DM) Q: The party you assisted in bringing to power has now completed two years. Do you feel happy about it? A: It was our attempt to rid the country of Rajapaksa’s rule which no doubt deserved to be removed. We also told the masses not to have faith in the govt that would be ushered in after January 08th. This is now proved. It is the moment now for the masses to rally round to safeguard their rights. more..

Building boom endangers sand and gravel resources

Mar 30 (ST) SL’s lawmakers this week approved a proper mechanism to mine sand, gravel, and rocks from lands belonging to Mahaweli Authority and Forest Department where applicable. Decision aims to ease the demand for these and other building materials. Cabinet paper states that only lands that are not declared as protected areas will be targeted & mining be done only after an environmental assessment. more..

SL refugee family in Hong Kong pays for being Edward Snowden’s guardian angels

Mar 30 (Scroll) They had never imagined that a knock at their door one late summer night in 2013 would trigger a dramatic chain of events that would rewrite the course of their lives. Four years on, facing daily threats and the imminent fear of deportation, SL national Supun Kellapatha and his partner Nadeeka Nonis say they have no regrets about opening the door. They were glad they welcomed a tall, nervous-looking American more..

GTF calls implementation of resolution in timely manner

Mar 30 (CG) The Global Tamil Forum (GTF) cautiously welcomed the unanimous adoption of the resolution Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka (34/L.1) at the UUNHRC. This resolution, in effect, reaffirms the full implementation of the Resolution 30/1 of 2015. GTF said the fact that the resolution was sponsored by 47 countries and 27 countries spoke at the Interactive Dialogue on Sri Lanka more..

SL monetary bombshell mystery deepens

Mar 30 (EN) A mystery surrounding a monetary bombshell unleashed on the credit system at the turn of the year deepened, with CB Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy also unable to fully shed light on the toxic move. On January 2, Sri Lanka had to roll over an estimated 119 billion rupees of bonds and interest coupons. This included 72 billion rupees of a bond maturing on 01.01.2017 and the balance included more..

SF to be appointed UNP asst. leader

Mar 30 (DM) Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka is expected to be appointed as the Assistant Leader of UNP next week. UNP sources said this will be one of the several revolutionary changes that are to be made to the party by the working committee which is to meet on April 5, 2017. Also it has been decided that party should have three Deputy Leader posts with one post going for a member who represent the minor community. more..

JHU against creating Speakers in PCs

MarMar 30 (DM) The JHU said it was against the proposal to name the post of Chairman and Deputy Chairman in Provincial Councils as Speaker and Deputy Speaker stating that it would lead to separatism and political insecurity. JHU National organizer Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe said the proposal made by the Provincial Council Chairmen to change their posts had been approved in all nine provincial councils and submitted it more..

Moral Universalism or Immoral Nativism

Mar 30 (CT) Two things happened last week that made me tear up the few pages I had written and start anew. Both events compelled me to reappraise the zeitgeist we live in. Zeitgeist is one of those German words that crept in to English usage to express the spirit of social change, the bewildering unpredictability that characterize a period, a generation or an age. First was an encounter in the form of a conversation. The second was a piece of learned writing that dealt with public more..

Indian Technical & Economic Cooperation Day and International Students Day

Mar 30 (HCI) High Commission of India, Colombo organized joint celebration of ITEC Day and International Students’ Day on 28 March 2017.  The ITEC alumni and Sri Lankan students who underwent training/studied in India under ITEC scheme and ICCR scholarship scheme of the Govt of India gathered to celebrate Indian Technical & Economic Cooperation Day (ITEC Day) and the International Students Day at Hotel Taj Samudra, Colombo. more..

PM, Ravi K, Bond Scam & Financial Mafia

Only 63.2% utilized: Ranil

Mar 30 (CT) The overall rate of utilization of the capital budget in 2016 was 63.2% of the allocation, a note sent to Cabinet by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. Earlier PM has requested all ministries to submit a progress report on the projects implemented by each ministry, through the capital budget, financed by local and foreign funds, in the year 2016. There were 1,356 projects and annual programmes implemented by 48 line ministries, utilizing their capital allocation for the year. more..

De-stabilizer of nations

Mar 30 (CT) The Govt of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and particularly the international community -which wants to make the island the guinea pig for their war crimes probe in partnership by force with foreign jurists, should, nonetheless, take note of recent happenings in the island's North, the welfare of which people, the international community led by the West's agent, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), acts as their godfather, as befitting their own set agenda. more..

MR accuses govt of treachery against armed forces

Mar 30 (AD) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says that though the President and PM have repeatedly stated that no foreign judges will be brought to try Sri Lanka’s armed forces, the pledge given in Geneva last week is exactly the opposite.“The most dangerous aspect of the UNHRC resolutions of 2015 and 2017 is that the SL govt has accepted without any reservations the report of the OHCHR of Sept 2015 more..

Trinco was a thriving port city more than 1000 years ago; archeological finds reveal

Mar 30 (Island) Evidence of the existence of a thriving port city in Trincomalee more than 1,000 years ago has been uncovered by a group of archaeologists of the Central Cultural Fund. A large number of ceramic and clay potsherds of Chinese, Persian and Indian origin had been discovered from a surface survey conducted at the site of the ancient Gokanna Thiththa harbour in Trincomalee, Director General of the CCF Prof Prishantha Gunawardena told The Island yesterday. more..

Govt puts off withdrawal of SVAT system

Mar 30 (EN) Sri Lanka’s main business chamber has praised a government decision to retain an existing paperless value added tax refund scheme until a proposed electronic tax administration is fully operational. The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce said it welcomes the decision by the Ministry of Finance to postpone the abolition of the SVAT (Simplified Value Added Tax)  system that was due to come in to effect on 1st April 2017. The move followed joint submissions made by more..

Video: Weerawansa concludes hunger strike

Mar 30 (AD) MP Wimal Weerawansa has decided to end his hunger strike, according to MP Jayantha Samaraweera. He ended his protest fast after 9 days by drinking a glass of milk due to the requests made by several Buddhist monks, Samaraweera said. Weerawansa, who launched a hunger strike on March while in prison over the rejection of his bail applications, had been refusing food and was reportedly only drinking liquids.  more..

Two accomplices of Wele Suda sentenced to life imprisonment

Mar 30 (DN) Two accomplices of controversial heroin kingpin Samantha Kumara alias Wele Suda,  who were found guilty for having 1097 grams of heroin in their possession were sentenced to life imprisonment by Colombo High Court, today. While handing out a judgment against the accused, High Court observed that the prosecution has proved the accused are guilty beyond reasonable doubt. The accused Tharmaraja Susendran alias Susen and Kirumananda Gautham of Bambalapitiya more..

Army personnel arrested over Keith Noyahr attack granted bail

Mar 30 (AD) The six military intelligence personnel arrested and remanded in connection with the abduction and torture of journalist Keith Noyahr in 2008, have been granted bail by the Mount Lavinia Magistrate’s Court. Additional Magistrate Lochana Abeywickrama Weerasinghe ordered the suspects released on personal bails of Rs 1 million each. They were also ordered to appear at the CID on the last Sunday of each month, for the duration of the trial. The identification parade which more..

'3 Sri Lanka ports that India could develop'

Mar 30 (IANS) Even as China is firmly entrenched in Hambantota port, the island nation has three other major ports -- Colombo, Trinco and Kankesanthurai -- where India could collaborate for development, Minister Arjuna Ranatunga has said. According Ranatunga, his govt is looking at an Asian subcontinent investor to partner with SL Ports Authority to invest and take over East Container Terminal in private-public partnership mode. more..

Sri Lanka's fighting priest

Mar 30 (CX) Fr Jeyabalan Croos is undoubtedly a fighter. The events that he has faced and the commitment that he has shown leave no doubt that he has a taste for combat, risk, and movement. He is a Tamil priest who was ordained in 1982 for the Diocese of Mannar in the north of the country, in this land where land and sea mingle together. It was here that the Portuguese boats landed the first missionaries, who would convert a good part of this coastal people. more..

SL reports 27.5% computer literacy in 2016

Mar 30 (NR) Sri Lanka has reported an overall computer literacy of 27.5% in the first half of 2016. According to a national survey conducted by the Department of Census and Statistics, the results show an increase of 0.9% from the first half of 2015 to the first half of 2016. The survey said at least one computer was available in 22.5% of households in the country in 2016. This means more than one out of every five households owns either a desktop or a laptop computer. more..

SL grants dual citizenship to 1750 expatriates

Mar 30 (Xinhua) SL immigration authorities granted dual citizenship to 1750 of its expatriates on Thursday. Minister S.B. Navinna said there were as many as 23,000 expatriates who applied for dual citizenship, but only 1750 could secure the chance this time. He said the govt, formed after the 2015 Presidential Election, decided to give this right to Sri Lankans domiciled abroad so that they could stake a claim to their motherland. more..

Lyca takes legal action against MP Charles Nirmalanathan

Mar 30 (DM) Int'l mobile phone giant Lyca Group issued a legal notice to MP Charles Nirmalanathan for making number of defamatory and false allegations through a South Indian-based TV station Puthiya Thalaimurai, against their housing project that was scheduled to be opened by South Indian film idol Rajinikanth. The legal notice issued to the MP Nirmalanathan demands that the comments are immediately withdrawn, an apology is issued and damages of Rs. 250 million are recouped. more..

Clarification on Gazette Notification on Wilpattu Sanctuary

Mar 30 (GDI) President Maithripala Sirisena recently signed a Gazette Notification declaring four forest areas in North of Wilpattu Sanctuary as forest reserves. But, some interested parties with personal or political agendas are carrying out disinformation campaign and falsely state that the Muslim religious places, villages and houses would be acceded to Govt and the Wildlife Department under the said Gazette Notification. These forests were declared as Reserves under the Gazette more..

26 new subjects for A/Ls: Akila

Mar 30 (NR) Minister of Education Akila Viraj Kariyawasam says the govt will introduce 26 new professional education subjects to the A/L streams. He said the govt is taking steps to ensure schools produce students that are of sound mental, physical and social well being. Minister said this times O/L Exam results were the best results ever produced in the country adding that even the maths stream has seen progress. more..

Pakistan sends rice for drought-hit Sri Lanka

Mar 30 (PTI) Pakistan today said it will send 10,000 metric tonnes of rice to Sri Lanka which is facing its worst drought in four decades. The first shipment of the consignment will depart from Pakistan today and reach SL on 3rd April. PM Nawaz Sharif had directed authorities to provide all necessary assistance to the govt and the drought-affected people of SL. "The procedure for dispatch of 10,000 metric tonnes of rice to SL through containerised shipments has been initiated," it said. more..

Devi Balika ranked 1st in O/L results

Mar 30 (NR) Devi Balika Vidyalaya, Colombo was ranked first place following the release of the results of the 2016 GCE O/L Exam. Department of Examinations said the assessment was made taking into consideration the students that the sat the exams and pass rate. Rathnawali Balika Vidyalaya, Gampaha was ranked 2nd and Science College, Matale was ranked 3rd. Panadura Balika Vidyalayaa emerged 4th, Visakha Vidyalaya, Colombo 5th, Pushpadana Vidyalaya, Kandy 6th, more..

Of SLC, Sumathipala, and Teflon

Mar 30 (Roar) Those were the words of Kumar Sangakkara, delivering the MCC Spirit of Cricket Lecture at Lord’s in 2011. Six years on and little has changed. Sangakkara’s critique centred around SL Cricket’s perpetual state of chaos post-1996 World Cup win. Since that momentous achievement, which succeeded in placing SL firmly on the cricketing map, control of Sri Lanka Cricket has been bounced around between successive more..

Sri Lanka inks loan agreement with Kuwait for Kalu Ganga project

Mar 30 (KUNA) ­­ Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) has signed a USD 17 million loan agreement with Sri Lanka to finance developing the region of Kalu Ganga. The KFAED said lent fund would be invested for developing Mahaweli river basin. The project has been executed by the Sri Lankan Govt since the 60s; aimed at increasing agricultural and farming products, in addition to securing housing and improving living standards for the natives in the region. more..

Video: 13 students injured after school roof collapsed

Mar 30 (AD) ­­ Thirteen students have been hospitalized after a classroom ceiling collapsed on them at the Sirimalwatta Maha Vidyala in Gunnepana, within the Wattegama educational district. The students were admitted to the Kandy Teaching  Hospital following the incident this morning. The director of the Kandy Teaching Hospital stated that the students are currently receiving treatment, and are in stable condition. Further investigations are underway. more..

Confident of winning the series: Chandika H.

Mar 30 (CI) ­­ Only twice - barring the 2006 series against India that was washed out - in the last 31 years has Sri Lanka not won at least one game in an ODI series at home. As the third and final game of the series comes closer, they face up to the prospect once again, with Bangladesh keen to continue maintaining the pressure on the home side. Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusingha has said that his team is now more confident more..

UGC says its hands are tied

Mar 30 (Island) UGC said it was helpless as regards the SAITM issue because the matter was now before the Supreme Court. Medical undergraduates in state run universities have been on a lecture boycott, for the last three months, demanding the abolition of SAITM. They demand that unless the UGC take action against the private medical college they would not resume their studies. As the regulatory body of the state higher education, UGC wished to inform the medical students more..

Anunayake Thera is against opening of road opposite Dalada Maligawa

Mar 30 (DM) Anunayake of the Malwatte Chapter Ven Dr. Niyangoda Sri Vijithasiri Thera said it was malicious for anyone to request for the opening of the road in front of Sri Dalada Maligawa on the assumption that it would ease traffic congestion. He was addressing the media on the current issue related to this. He said air pollution and traffic congestion are problems afflicted not only in the city of Kandy but in other cities like Colombo, Kurunegala, Galle, Matara and Matale. more..

SLC replaces provincial first-class tournament with List A matches

Mar 30 (CI) Sri Lanka Cricket will not host a provincial first-class competition in the 2016-17 season despite repeated promises it would. Instead, the board has scheduled a provincial List A tournament in April, reasoning it was more important to play limited-overs cricket ahead of the Champions Trophy, which will be held in England and Wales between June 1 & 18. This is the 2nd successive year in which plans for a multi-day more..

Why Sri Lanka needs reconciliation

Mar 31 (DN) It should have been a political bombshell of huge magnitude but it turned out not to be. It should have halted the Joint Opposition SLFP faction’s fascination with Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, but it did not. Recently in the course of case proceedings in the Mt.Lavinia Magistrate’s Court into the murder of Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge, the CID, revealed in Court, that the Sri Lankan military’s intelligence apparatus had run a death squad operation, which more..

Ragging in SL Universities (Trinco Campus)

Mar 31 (CT) Tears are not new to me, it eases heart. But this time it has failed to do so. My sister left her higher education in Trincomalee campus due to severe ragging of so called protectors of free education seniors. That was a pleasant morning, sister was so happy as she’s entering Trincomalee campus for her higher studies dreaming of becoming an English teacher. Everything was set. Bought a lot of items as she won’t be able to visit home often as it’s about 300km away from home. more..

'North wanted to send 1,000 participants'

Mar 31 (CT) SLFP Youth Front is ready to hold a youth conference on 2 April, with the participation of approximately 10,000 young members of the SLFP. Youth from all corners of the country is expected to take part in this event. "We are going to introduce a sustainable and empirical resolution to the problems faced by the youth of the country. Instead of physically protesting to urge the govt to solve the problems of the youth, conversely, more..

Decisive two years

Mar 31 (DN) The govt headed by President Sirisena and PM Wickremesinghe scored a major diplomatic victory last week, with the UNHRC extending the timeframe granted to Sri Lanka by another two years to meet its obligations under a resolution passed by the Council. These obligations relate mostly to answering allegations of war crimes during the Eelam war with the LTTE and to setting up mechanisms for ethnic reconciliation. Previously, under the Mahinda Rajapaksa regime, more..

Debt Trap: A myth, reality or political propaganda?

Mar 31 (CT) Leading up to the presidential elections in January 2015, national debt was a major topic of discussion. It was considered as a major failure of the Rajapaksa regime, and was used as political propaganda by the unity government to influence voters. The objective of this article is to understand the gravity of this issue. Generally, national debt of any country is measured as a percentage of its GDP. It reflects the ability of a country to repay its debt without requiring further assistance. more..

Criminal Code Amendment Bill violates suspect’s rights

Mar 31 (DN) Govt’s Ministry of Justice through a Bill of exceeding ludicrousness recently tabled in Parliament, seeks the legislature’s approval to limit the suspect’s right to access an attorney and the right of the lawyer to access the client held in custody. Using wily words, the proposed law seeks to redirect the Attorney-at-Law to have access to Police Officers including the Officer-in-Charge of the Police station more..