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'Power should be shared between the centre and the periphery'

May 17 (DM) Secretary to the Public Representation Committee on Constitutional Reforms, Winston Pathiraja, in an interview with the Daily Mirror, says a new Constitution is the need of the hour. He feels power should be shared between the centre and the periphery. Q: As the Secretary to the Public Representation Committee that deliberated with the general public on Constitution-making, how do you see the more..

'13th Amendment took the country to the edge of the Unitary State structure'

May 17 (DM) Author and constitutional lawyer Canishka Witharana who is involved in the legal work of nationalist groups, said in an interview that attempts were underway to impose a new constitution on federal lines in a deceptive manner. Q: How do you look at the current status of the constitution-making process, ahead of plans for presenting a draft report? A: The process is on. The Parliament started this process by more..

293 dengue victims every day, failing health officials overwhelmed

May 17 (ST) Not unexpectedly, the dengue peak season has arrived this month to coincide with the Southwest monsoon, which lasts until September, and the 92 deaths so far this year is set to surpass 97 people who perished last year. Every day 293 Sri Lankans were infected with dengue from January to May. Many who die are below 30 and most are children below 15 years of age. For years now the Ministry of Health and its affiliates more..

Udaya alleges attempt to give voting rights to overseas pro-Tiger groups

May 17 (Island) UPFA MP Udaya Gammanpila alleged that an attempt was being made to allow pro-LTTE groups resident overseas to vote at SL elections. Alleging that the govt was bent on appeasing those who still propagated separatist sentiments, he said the move should be examined against the backdrop of dual citizens being denied opportunity to contest elections at any level in accordance with 19th Amendment. more..

Refugees return in numbers

May 17 (SL) Due to the war that prevailed in this country for nearly three decades, many left the country and migrated or fled to other locations or countries. However, with the end of the war and now eight years on, those who either fled or left the country have begun returning home. The majority of those who fled the war torn areas, fled to India. However. Last month alone over 100 of them had returned to Sri Lanka. more..

Ranil hails Beijing’s connectivity project

May 17 (Hindu) SL will leverage its strategic location and connectivity to become the hub of the Indian Ocean, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said at the recently-concluded Belt and Road Forum in Beijing. “The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) will provide the much needed hard and soft connectivity in the Indian Ocean required for rapid economic and social development,” he said, days after PM Modi concluded his visit to SL. more..

MR is not responsible for current economic turmoil: Bandula

May 17 (DM) Latest Central Bank report for the year 2016 clearly indicates that current economic crisis was not a result of the action of former President Rajapaksa or his govt, JO claimed. MP Bandula Gunawardane said nearly two and half years has passed since the Unity govt came in to power and still they are struggling to resolve the economic issues. MP said by importing crude oil present govt had to spend US$ 2.7 billions more..

Southern and Katunayake expressways: 20,000 traffic offenders arrested

May 17 (DM) Nearly 20,000 motorists were arrested on charges of violating traffic laws on the Southern (E01) and the Katunayake (E03) expressways during the period January to April this year. The Govt had collected some Rs.10 million in fines imposed by Court after finding the offenders guilty. A total of 19,837 motorists had violated traffic laws on both expressways under 21 categories. more..

LED bulbs for 3.8mn consumers: Minister

May 17 (DM) The cabinet had approved to provide ten million LED bulbs to 3.8 million consumers under low income category, Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said. He said those 3.8 million people still use incandescent bulbs and it consumes 70% more electricity than LED bulbs. “The low income consumers cannot buy LED bulbs due to their high price. Therefore the ministry had taken this decision to provide relief to them. more..

China pledges Yuan 2.4bn to SL up to 2020

May 17 (LBO) Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged 2 billion Yuan (US$ 290 million) development assistance to Sri Lanka for 2018 – 2020 period in addition to a 400 million Yuan grant which will be received this year for economic and technical corporation. Chinese President made this pledge when he met PM Ranil Wickremesinghe in Beijing. He said that China will support SL’s peace, unity, reconciliation & economic development more..

Plantation Tamils and Modi's role

May 17 (CT) Indian Premier Narendra Modi's visit to the country last week drew attention to the wider political dimensions sandwiched in the so-called Plantation Tamils' issue. Current Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran has been at great pains to drive home his several justifications to demand a merger of the Northern and Eastern Provinces by citing the Muslims in that province as being Tamil Speaking People. Just a fortnight ago we heard CWC President more..

NCPC gets its fourth minister replaced

May 17 (DM) Sampath Sri Nilantha Wickramaarachi was appointed North Central Province Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries this evening, replacing R.M.P.B. Ratnayake. Earlier this morning Sarath Illangasinghe was appointed North Central Province (NCP) Irrigation, Land, Rural Development and Women’s Affairs Minister, replacing H. B. Samasinghe. The moves come in the wake of several other changes to the North Central Province. Susil Gunaratne was appointed Transport, more..

What is Ransomware?

Sri Lanka: Emergence of startling evidence of a failed state

May 17 (CT) In the Republic of Sri Lanka, Supreme Law, the Constitution, says that every person is equal before law and entitled to equal protection of law [Article 12 (1)]. This means that the application of uniform approach for offenders who commit criminal offences where the characteristics of the offence is the same or identical. Application of this uniformity principle is of paramount important in any democracy to have people’s confidence in the criminal justice system. more..

Court dismisses request for stay order on anti-SAITM protest

May 17 (AD) The Colombo Additional Magistrate Wednesday refused to issue an order, upon a request made by police, preventing the anti-SAITM protest march organized by the IUSF. The Peliyagoda police station had made the request, citing the fact that the protest march would cause public inconvenience. However, the Colombo Additional Magistrate Chanima Wijebandara pointed out that the police department has powers to prevent such a situation if the need arises. more..

Taking turns in robbing people's money

UAE-based Lulu Group to inaugurate Lankan agri export centre today

May 17 (DM) UAE-based conglomerate Lulu Group will today inaugurate its state-of-the-art logistics and packaging centre that will be deployed to store, package and export fruit, vegetables and other commodities from Sri Lanka. To this end, Lulu Group has incorporated Y.A.S. Lanka Pvt. Ltd., a BOI company at the Export Processing Zone at Katunayake. Ministers Sagala Ratnayake, Duminda Dissanayake, Navin Dissanayake will participate in the inauguration ceremony more..

JO in Kandy commemorates fallen national heroes

May 17 (Island) Victory in the country’s war against terrorists would be observed at the National Ranaviru Udyanaya at Mailapitiya on Thursday, Kandy District MP Dilum Amunugama said. The programme for the day has been organised by the Kandy District MPs loyal to the Joint Opposition (JO). A motorcade transporting the organisers and supporters of the event would begin at the Rajopawanaramaya, Getambe at 10 a.m. said Dilum Amunugama MP on Tuesday (16) yesterday. more..

India, SL likely to finalise ETCA by year end

May 17 (FE) India and SL are expected to finalise the ETCA agreement by this year’s end with some headway being made during negotiations. Sanjay Panda, joint secretary in the external affairs ministry, said: “The negotiations have started and four rounds completed. At the beginning, our stand had been that we will move at a pace that the Sri Lankans are comfortable with and that is precisely what has happened. By year-end we hope to more..

Immigration & emigration officers meet Prez

May 17 (PSL) Association of SL Immigration and Emigration Officers met President Maithripala Sirisena today (16) at the Presidential Secretariat. They drew the President’s attention to some of the issues faced by them. The President directed them to hand over a report on the issues raised by them and their proposals to find solutions for them. They discussed about the Service Regulations Act of Immigration and Emigration, immigration and emigration regulatory service, more..

'GSP+: 18% duty on fish exports to be lifted'

May 17 (AD) “If GSP+ is to be granted on Friday, the 18 percent duty on export of fish will be removed the very next day.” Deputy Minister Harsha de Silva said, adding that EU had also lifted the ban on fisheries products. He further stated that the regaining of the GSP+ trade concession was proof of fulfilment of one of the election promises made by the UNP, and added that the trade concession paved the way for the removal of duty on a great many products of the export market. more..

Video: Tear gas used on IUSF protest

May 17 (AD) Police fired tear gas and water cannons to disperse the protesting university students near the Viharamahadevi Park in Colombo.  The protest march was organized by the IUSF over several issues such as the SAITM and curtailing student admission to universities. Severe traffic congestion had been reported in Colombo as the protesters reached Union Place in Colombo. Galle Face entry road was closed from more..

Court orders investigation into Ramli Ravishan death

May 17 (NR) Gampaha Chief Magistrate today ordered the area where Ramli Ravishan Perera was shot dead during the unrest in Rathupaswala to be investigated. Specialist JMO Ajith Thenakoon who carried out Perera’s post mortem was ordered to carry out the investigation. JMOs who completed the post mortem examinations of the three persons who died have been ordered to record a statement at the CID. 2 persons died due to gunshot injuries while another succumbed due to blow to the head. more..

Netherlands inks MoU with SL to explore facilities for On-board Security Teams

May 17 (SLN) Netherlands Govt signed an MoU with the Sri Lankan Govt today (16) at the Ministry of Defence on provision of services to the Netherlands Merchant Vessel Protection Detachments (VPDs) operating in the Indian Ocean. The Netherlands Ambassador in Sri Lanka Her Excellency Joanne Doornewaard and Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Karunasena Hettiarachchi signed the MoU representing the two governments. Commander of the Navy Ravindra Wijegunaratne, more..

Ransomware virus detected in SL: CERT

May 17 (DM) The recent worldwide cyber attack ransomware virus, known as WannaCry, has been detected in Sri Lanka, Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT) said. CERT Engineer Roshan Chandraguptha said they had received a complaint yesterday regarding a computer in an institution in Colombo which had been infected with the ransomware virus. He said the infected computer had not been updated more..

'Modi's Sri Lanka visit was a grand success'

May 17 (PTI) PM Narendra Modi's recent visit to Sri Lanka was a grand success and enabled both countries to finalise a number of projects, including the Trinco port project, a minister here said. Minister Sarath Amanugama, who was part of the official delegation headed by SL PM Ranil Wickremeshinghe that took part in the One Belt One Road initiative here, said talks were underway with India for its participation in free trade zones in Trinco, Hambantota more..

Petition to abolish Fonseka’s MP post: SC postpones hearing

May 17 (AD) Supreme Court has postponed the hearing of the petition seeking a court order to dismiss Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka from his MP post. The petition was submitted by a former MP of the Southern Province, Ajith Prasanna. When the petition hearing was called in today, the Supreme Court said to issue notices to the respondents. The petition hearing was accordingly postponed till the 12 of July. The petitioner pointed out that it was against the law to appoint more..

Sri Lanka's men face rape in custody decade after civil war: study

May 17 (AFP) Men in Sri Lanka are being raped in custody nearly a decade after the civil war, when sexual assault was routinely used to torture detained Tamils, a report said Wednesday. The rape of men and boys remains widespread but unreported, with victims unwilling to come forward due to social stigma and laws criminalising same-sex relations, All Survivors Project said in its report. more..

Special Committee to look into issues of IDPs and resettled in Mannar district

May 17 (PSL) A special discussion was held under the patronage of Secretary to the President Mr. P.B. Abeykoon to look into the issues of the  IDPs and the resettle displaced persons in the Mannar district, today (16). A group of Muslim representatives and the officials of the Department of Forest Conservation including Secretary to the Ministry of Environment participated in this meeting.  It was discussed in detail regarding the issues faced by the people in the area, more..

BBS ridicule chief prelates during meeting with Mano

May 17 (CG) The BBS today ridiculed the chief prelates during a meeting with Minister of National Co-existence Dialogue and Official Languages Mano Ganesan. BBS General Secretary Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero said that there is no point in having talks with the chief prelates and obtaining their opinion on national issues. Gnanasara Thero said the chief prelates are there just to appear before the media, look good, meet Ministers and make statements. more..

'SL received assurance from UK over GSP+'

May 17 (AD) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe says that Sri Lanka has received an assurance from the United Kingdom that despite it leaving the EU, the trade preferences already enjoyed by other countries would be maintained.  “The day after we will get the tariff concessions to enter the EU market, which is the GSP+.”  “We have also been assured by the UK that while they will leave the union, trade preferences already enjoyed more..

Perpetual Treasuries amassing wealth: ACF

May 17 (CT) Anti-Corruption Front (ACF) charged that Perpetual Treasuries has proceeded to invest and reinvest, in a number of noted firms in the country, the massive amounts of money allegedly earned illegally through investments in CB Bonds. ACF Adviser Keerthi Tennakoon said that unbelievable details have emerged concerning two CB bond scams which had taken place. He said among those details had been the manner in which the said scam had taken place, those that more..

Ganesan wants concrete proposals

May 17 (CT) Minister Mano Ganesan said that TNA should come with a proper set of proposals instead of speaking at different places about what they want included in the proposed new Constitution. He made this observation when asked about the meeting between US Ambassador Atul Keshap and CM of NP C.V. Wigneswaran. Wigneswaran recently said that solutions to the basic problems which the Tamil community in Northern Province face can be found within a federal political framework. more..

'No TNA members hold dual citizenship'

May 17 (AM) TNA MP M. A. Sumanthrian refuted rumours the TNA fielded MP with dual citizenship at the last election, saying no TNA MP holds dual citizenship. The MP, responding to a question directed at the TNA on Twitter alleging there were TNA members that held dual citizenship, tweeted: Not true. No TNA MP holds dual citizenship – at least, to the knowledge of the party. Members of the SL parliament have come under scrutiny more..

CB Annual Report: Bold in critical analysis & Proactive in policy recommendations

May 18 (CT) The Monetary Board released its Annual Report on the state of the economy in 2016, commonly known as the Central Bank Annual Report, two weeks ago. The Governor and the senior officers of the bank had in person handed the copies of the report to the three key persons in the administration – the President, PM and Minister of Finance at three separate meetings. Meeting them personally to hand in the report would have served two purposes. more..

Modi’s visit to central hills brings welcome attention to a marginalised community

May 18 (GV) Last Friday (12) Sri Lankans living in the central hills lined its narrow streets to catch a glimpse of that Indian tea-seller who rose to become the PM of India. The crowd, comprising of Tamils of recent Indian origin, were visibly jubilant. They turned up, in the thousands to hear Narendra Modi speak at Norwood Grounds after the opening of a new hospital complex in Dickoya, built with Indian funds. The euphoria and indeed affection was clearly palpable. more..

Indian teachers for upcountry

May 18 (CT) People's Teachers Union (PTU) General Secretary Nelson Mohanraj said, instead of recruiting Indian teachers for the plantation sector it is more favourable to appoint B.Sc graduates from the North and East to teach Maths and Science in Tamil medium schools. "Definitely the ministry can recruit these graduates who have been carrying out their struggle demanding for jobs. more..

Human Rights still an issue

May 18 (SL) The country is once again preparing to celebrate the liberation of the country by defeating the LTTE terrorists after a war that devastated the country for nearly 30 years. However, it is still questionable as to how much freedom we still enjoy despite the war  coming to an end. This is a topic that has been focussed on by many human rights activists. Are the people’s human rights assured? This is a question that has received mixed responses from various groups. more..

Purchase money paid to shadowy offshore company

May 18 (Island) The other key question in relation to the purchase and overhaul of MiG aircraft in 2006 was that the payment had not been made to the supplier - Ukrainian state owned company UKRINMASH, but to a front company by the name of Bellimisa Holdings Ltd. In 2000 when the Chandrika Kumaratunga govt bought six MiG-27s and one MiG-23UB trainer, the supplier was DS Alliance of Singapore. However DS Alliance was a middleman and all the MiG aircraft purchased more..

'If 20th Amendment is passed Mobs will storm Temple Trees, President’s House'

May 18 (CT) MP Wimal Weerawansa remarked that he should be grateful to the govt for imprisoning him since he could write two books while he was in the prison. The launch of one the books titled Ratata Uvamana Vama was held recently. When asked if the hunger strike that he observed in the prison was merely an attention grabbing fake show, he said those who say that it was a fake show are not able to skip even one meal. more..