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Unseating of Geetha: Will it spiral out of control?

May 13 (Island) MP Geetha Kumarasinghe was recently declared to be disqualified from being a member of parliament by the Court of Appeal on the basis of a provision introduced to the Constitution via the 19th Amendment, disqualifying dual citizens from becoming MPs. This provision was tagged on to Article 91, which lists the disqualifications to be elected or to sit in Parliament. Article 66 of the Constitution says that more..

M'mulla resident at risk again: Monsoon rains could cause flooding

May 13 (DM) There was an imminent risk of another landslide taking place as a result of flooding that could take place in the vicinity of the Meethotamulla garbage dump site due to the monsoon rains that were expected to begin soon, the Movement Against the Meethotamulla Garbage Dump warned yesterday. President of the Movement, Nuwan Bopage said the area was yet to see any form of restoration after the tragedy more..

JVP condemns abstention on Jerusalem vote

May 13 (CT) Sri Lanka has abstained from voting with the resolution brought by UNESCO against the destruction being carried out by Israel in the old city of Eastern Jerusalem, which has been named as a world heritage site. "We consider this move as drifting away from the non-aligned policy that SL has followed all these years, as well as an instance of capitulating to USA and Israel pressure and we vehemently condemn more..

Chai Boy Modi's Sri Lanka tea diplomacy

May 13 (EN) Indian PM Narendra Modi spoke of his humble beginnings as a tea boy (Chai Boy) when he addressed tens of thousands of tea plantation workers of recent Indian origin at Norwood in the Nuwara Eliya district Friday. Becoming the first Indian PM to visit the tea growing region, Modi said he and the vast majority of plantation Tamils had something in common - tea. "You & I have something in common" more..

Rs.1,500 mn allocated for reconciliation project

May 13 (DM) The National Integration and Reconciliation Ministry has made special budgetary allocation of Rs.1,500 million for an innovative programme on Reconciliation-Focused Economic Empowerment Project which aims at strengthening North-South economic and business links. The ministry said in a statement that the main objective of this project was to improve the production capacity of entrepreneurs in the N&E more..

New Bill will allow displaced people living abroad to vote

May 13 (DM) Govt is reported to be preparing legislation, which if enacted, will enable persons displaced prior to 2009 and living elsewhere can vote at elections despite their names not being included in the electoral registers. Registration of Electors (Special Provisions) Bill will exempt IDPs from the requirements of the Registrations of the Electors Act. Bill has been placed on the Order Paper of Parliament more..

MR not for destabilizing PCs: Isura

May 13 (DM) Former President Rajapaksa does not want to destabilize the Provincial Councils (PCs) administered by the UPFA, Western Province Chief Minister Isura Devapriya said. He said it was those in the lower rungs of the joint opposition that were seeking to cause trouble not Mr. Rajapaksa or representatives at the higher levels of the party. “We understand the pulse of the former president. more..

CCD investigates grenade at SLMC

May 13 (NR) Investigations pertaining to the discovery of an unexploded hand grenade found adjacent to the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) down Norris Canal Road, Maradana has been handed over to the Colombo Crimes Division. Police said investigations are being carried out on the advice of the Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of Motor Traffic in the Western Province. Officers of the CID and more..

PM arrives in China for One Belt One Road summit

May 13 (PTI) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe arrived here today to attend China's high- profile Belt and Road summit beginning tomorrow. Wickremesinghe left for the Chinese capital immediately after seeing off India's PM Narendra Modi at the end of his two-day visit to Sri Lanka last evening. Wickremesinghe will hold talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping and PM Li Xiang on a host of bilateral issues, his office has said. more..

Technical glitch stops one of Modi's choppers in Sri Lanka

May 13 (PTI) A helicopter, which was part of PM Narendra Modi's entourage on his two-day Sri Lanka visit, remains grounded in Kandy after it developed a technical problem, officials said. Mi-17 helicopter is grounded at the Asgiriya grounds after it failed to take off yesterday when Modi departed in his special flight. SL air force has helped identify the fault with the helicopter which awaits spare parts from India, officials said. more..

Premier Modi’s visit

May 14 (SO) Indian PM Narendra Modi’s brief formal visit to Sri Lanka last week was his second in two years, and follows several official visits by Indian ministers and senior Indian officials over the past two years. Similarly, President Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe have visited Delhi and other Indian centres several times over the past two years. Such Indo-SL exchanges since the inception of the National Unity Alliance coalition govt have been many, with not only several ministers more..

Celebrating and observing Vesak

May 14 (SL) On festivals of great religions, people sincerely wish the world: Peace, joy, happiness and other good sentiments though knowing very well that some kind of horrendous human massacre is happening near or far. It is a tragedy that even though today, where most countries are democratic and the great majority of people are against such horrendous crimes, they do take place. The crimes committed are by leaders elected by people desirous of peace and harmony. more..

Sacred offering by tea producers: Brew that keeps us going since 1867

May 14 (SO) The offering of a portion of the first fresh tea produced after the Sinhala and Hindu New Year to the sacred Getabaru Raja Maha Viharaya in Kotapola was held for the first time, last Thursday morning. The ceremony was organized by the Ceylon Tea Board and other stakeholders, with the participation of a large number of tea producers in the Southern Province. more..

Sangakkara believes it is an exciting time for cricket in USA

May 14 (ST) Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakkara believes that the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) can grow from strength to strength when the Florida leg of matches takes place on the weekend of August 5 and 6. The Jamaica Tallawahs star, who helped the franchise lift last year’s title for the second time, believes that the Hero CPL has delighted fans within the Caribbean, and beyond through the quality of the cricket coupled with the electric supporter experience. more..

Modi unleashes wheel of synergies

May 14 (CT) Just as an aside as it were, the extremely warm personal welcome accorded to Indian Premier Narendra Modi by Lankan Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe at the BIA for his May 11-12 visit to Sri Lanka was in huge contrast to the welcome that Wickremesinghe received when he arrived on his five-day visit to India at the Indira Gandhi Int'l Airport on 25 April. Lankan PM only had the Indian HC in Colombo Taranjit Singh and SL envoy in Delhi Chitrani Wagiswara more..

'They wanted to silence Lasantha'

May 14 (SL) The widespread belief in the politically-motivated killings of journalists in Sri Lanka is predicated on a deadly irony: the hidden hand has always been visible, but the fingerprints have gone missing. The two most widely publicized killings relate to IPS UN Bureau Chief in Colombo, Richard de Zoysa, 30, in Feb 1990, and the Editor-in-Chief of The Sunday Leader Lasantha Wickrematunge, 51, in January 2009. more..

Laws based on the Buddha Dharma

May 14 (ST) Buddha Jayanthi 2561 is just concluded and so too today, in the historic city of Kandy will the 11th UN Vesak Day — the first to be held in Sri Lanka since its Christian-born then Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar spearheaded Resolution 54/15 at the General Assembly of the world body — have its grand finale. It was apt that it was the Indian Prime Minister and the Nepali President who were invited as chief guests for the celebrations this week. more..

What brings you here?

May 14 (ST) My dear Narendra Modi, I thought I should write to you because you are visiting us again, even though you may have left our shores by the time this reaches you. On this occasion, they say it is to mark the Vesak celebrations. This is your second visit to Paradise in two years, so I suppose we must be doing something right! I’m not sure whether you were aware, Modi, but there was a lot of resentment against India and you in the weeks and months before your visit. more..


DMK questions PM Modi's silence on fishermen issue during Colombo visit

May 14 (ANI) Welcoming PM Narendra Modi's announcement of 10,000 houses for Indian origin Tamils in Sri Lanka, DMK raised doubts on the steps initiated by the former to redress issues of Tamil fishermen in his two-day visit to Colombo. "Tamil fishermen have been shot at and a lot of them were killed and the seizure of their boats has become a routine aspect of the SL Navy. If the PM can find a permanent solution to the fishermen problem, I think that will be a very big relief," more..

Security of our societies indivisible

May 14 (SO) The most significant event in the week was the 14th international Vesak celebrations that would come to a culmination today with Nepali President Bidya Devi Bhandari gracing the closing ceremony in Kandy. The highlight of the celebrations was the visit of Indian PM Narendra Modi who spoke of national unity, the importance of language and religion as cultural links and underscored the economic linkages between Sri Lanka and India in his address to the estate workers more..

Will Modi choose Mahinda over Maithri?

May 14 (CT) Tamils of Indian origin of the hill-country, treated as the children of a lesser God, for many decades, finally were able to grab the attention of those in the North, with Indian PM Narendra Modi visiting them on Friday. Modi was the first Indian PM to visit the estate sector and meet the communities and the political leadership whose roots are in India. Before Modi, it was Sri Jawaharlal Nehru who spent a two-week holiday in more..

Right thinking of Chandrika

May 14 (CT) Former President and the Chairperson of the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga had pointed out the need of holding an international investigation into the alleged war crimes believed to have been committed during the previous regime. The former President was addressing a press briefing of the ONUR last Tuesday after the National Reconciliation Policy of ONUR was given Cabinet approval. more..

Fighter to the end

May 14 (ST) A sad ending. This was the fate of Lakshman Croos Moraes, a depositor of the failed Standard Credit Finance Co and one of the leaders of a campaign to recover their deposits, who died at the National Hospital, Colombo, last week a broken man. Moraes and a group of depositors campaigned vigorously on behalf of others to ensure their deposits and interest amounting to millions of rupees were duly returned to them. A fighter to the end, Moraes died of heart failure, and more..

Asian Youth Netball Championship 2017: SL crash to 4th place as Singapore win title

May 14 (ST) Sri Lanka crashed down to fourth position after suffering a 49-58 defeat against Hong Kong in the Third Place Playoff on the final day of the Asian Youth Netball Championship at the Hwasan Sradiun in Gongju, South Korea yesterday. Sri Lanka, defending champions, faced a dramatic setback in this year’s competition which was evident after their early loss to low-ranked Thailand in the first round for the first time in history. more..

Wrestlers hand walk-overs due to bungling officials

May 14 (CT) Sri Lanka wrestling team were faced with a number of problems and were forced to hand two walk-overs to Japan and Thailand at the ongoing Asian Wrestling Championships being held in Delhi, India. The two wrestlers who handed over walk-overs in the women's category are Anusha Wijeyasinghe (53kg) and Shriyanthi Niroshini (48kg) both from Army SC. This incident occurred due to mismanagement by officials who failed to turn up at the venue on time with the team. more..

Govt go-ahead for controversial Uva-Wellassa sugar project

May 14 (ST) The government is going ahead with the Uva- Wellassa sugar plantation project which was abruptly halted by the previous Rajapaksa regime in 2007 following vigorous protests of residents and environmentalists. The Cabinet has approved the resurrection of the project to cultivate sugarcane in around 62,500 acres of fertile land in Maduruoya reserve area instead of lands from Nilgala, Galoya and Maduruoya reserves which were proposed in the 2007 project. more..

We are most certainly working according to our game plan: SLC CEO

May 14 (ST) We write in Right of Reply to your column titled Sunday Musings with S.R. Pathiravithana, appearing in the Sunday Times of April 30. At the outset, it is interesting to note that you have chosen to title your article using the preposition our, as you seem to be vastly uninterested in ascertaining the Game Plan (GP) of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), thereby, alluding to a GP of some other interested party. more..

Successful Modi visit

May 14 (Island) It has been axiomatic that good relations with India must be the cornerstone of Sri Lanka’s foreign policy. This necessity has been largely observed during the post-Independence period, admittedly with some serious aberrations particularly during the war years. Relations were badly damaged when India, no doubt influenced by sub-regional concerns in Tamil Nadu and the demands of realpolitik, permitted the LTTE to train, base and stage from Indian territory during more..

Contempt of court case against Dr Padeniya

May 14 (Island) Two NGO activists have filed a contempt of court plaint against Dr Anuruddha Padeniya, President of the GMOA over certain comments he made at a public meeting held to demand the state-ization of the SAITM medical course on 7 April 2017. The gist of what Padeniya said at that meeting was that in 2010 the GMOA had put out a 20 page document outlining the shortcomings in the medical course offered by SAITM. At the time this document was more..

Hatton Dickoya Base Hospital vested with public by Indian PM

May 14 (PSL) Hatton Dickoya Base Hospital, which was built on a Rs. 1,200 million fund from Indian govt, vested with the public by the Indian PM Narendra Modi. The three-story  hospital building comprises a 150-bed ward complex, Medical Equipment Unit, Out Patient Department, Specialist Center, Intensive Care Unit, Maternity Ward, Emergency Treatment Unit, Labour Room and two Operation Theatres. more..

Visakhians and Army SC well poised to clinch overall titles

May 14 (ST) Visakha Vidyalaya, Colombo are well poised to clinch the championship in the Girls section at the end of the second day of the National Intermediate Swimming Championship 2017 at the Sugathadasa Swimming Complex yesterday. Visakha Vidyalaya with 221.50 points are well ahead of Musaeus College, Colombo (173), SL Army (117), Kalutara Balika Vidyalaya (101) and St. Anthony’s Girls College, Kandy (99) and in Boys section SL Army are at the helm with 267 points more..

The price people pay for their arrogance

May 14 (Island) The moment Hitler had France under his control, he had the whole of Western Europe at his beck and call. It gave him a massive adrenaline rush and he thought he could do just about anything. Instead of consolidating in Western Europe, Hitler invaded Russia. That proved to be a fatal mistake. Price people pay for their arrogance! In cricket, West Indies thought that they would continue to produce world class players. Natural talent was enough to dominate world cricket more..

Modi invites MR to India

May 14 (CT) Visiting Indian PM Narendra Modi has invited former President Rajapaksa to India for a deep political dialogue. Invitation was extended to the former President at a closed door meeting with the visiting Indian Premier, which took place at the Indian HC premises, 44, Galle Road, Colombo 3. It was a closed door one-on-one chat where no politics was discussed, but the meeting had lasted for a little over an hour. more..

Global ransomware attack: CERT says no incidents in SL so far

May 14 (DM) No complaints have been made by any Sri Lankan as of now in connection with the global ransomware attack which had affected at least 99 countries including China, Russia, US and UK, Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT) said. CERT Chief Engineer Roshan Chandragupta said they were attempting to figure out how the attack was being spread. “Usually, ransomware is spread via emails but we don’t think this cyber attack is spreading via emails. more..

Over 8,000 Ha of forest cover destroyed annually

May 14 (CT) Over 8,000 hectares of forest cover is destroyed each year in SL. This was revealed in Colombo by the UN Collaborative Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries (UN-REDD), which is supporting SL to reduce forest destruction and emission of greenhouse gases. It was said that the development projects, road building, mass scale cultivation and housing construction were the reasons for deforestation. more..

Vehicle tax relief plan for select few foiled

May 14 (ST) Finance Ministry’s attempt to grant special tax concessions for selected few persons for the import of luxury vehicles has been thwarted by the Sectoral Oversight Committee on Public Accounts. Country would be deprived tax revenue of Rs. 104 million by granting these tax concessions. Public Accounts Committee (PAC) headed by MP M.A. Sumanthiran has recommended to Parliament not to approve orders granting tax relief more..

Video: Nepal President Bhandari arrives

May 14 (AD) Nepal’s President Bidhya Devi Bhandari arrived in the country this morning for her five-day official visit to Sri Lanka. President’s Nepal Airlines flight reached the BIA at around 10am today (13). At the invitation of her SL counterpart Mathripala Sirisena, President Bhandari is attending the concluding ceremony of Int'l Vesak Day to be held in Kandy on May 14. On her way to SL, she made a transit trip of Bangkok, where she laid a wreath at the memorial site of late Thai King more..

SLBA seeks BWF support

May 14 (CT) Badminton World Federation (BWF) has announced that Sri Lanka Badminton Association (SLBA) must manage its own internal affairs with total independence and ensure that no third party interferes in its governance and operations. In an official mail to SLBA on Monday, BWF further stated: It is important for BWF to protect the autonomy of sports, which is a clear principle in the BWF Constitution and the IOC Charter. The Minister of Sports on 20 April suspended more..

Cabinet reshuffle after PM returns from China

May 14 (ST) President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe decided on Friday night that the much-talked-of Cabinet reshuffle will take place upon the latter’s return from China. The meeting came just ahead of the Premier travelling to the airport to board a Singapore-bound flight en route to Beijing. President Sirisena also directed him not to deal with any matters relating to Hambantota Port project with a Chinese firm more..