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J'pura Hospital should provide treatment for clergy free of charge: NBF

May 22 (DM) Issuing a statement National Bhikku Front (NBF) urges the President to resume the free treatments for clergy at at Sri J'pura (SJP) Hospital. In a letter sent to President Maithripala Sirisena NBF has showed their displeasure over the hospital decision and raised their concerns on the free health care service in the country. NBF General Secretary Ven. Wakamulle Uditha Thera said SJP hospital more..

Several state hospitals at a standstill

May 22 (NR) The GMOA says the 24 hour token strike launched island wide has brought operations at state hospitals to a standstill. Out Patient Departments have stopped operating as a result of the strike resulting in much inconvenience to the public. Doctors also withdrew from private channelling services while the strike is not being worked off at children’s, cancer and maternity hospitals. more..

Yahapâlanaya unleashes rabid dogs

May 22 (CT) Postwar SL saw Buddhist extremism targeting the Muslim community with the euphoria of the victory over the LTTE. Rajapaksa govt allowed these extremists a free reign and cause extensive damage to the Muslim economy, which resulted in the Muslims voting en-block to overthrow the once indispensable Rajapaksa regime. The regime change brought about a lull in Buddhist extremist activity but restarted with the Mussali Muslim issue claiming that returning Muslim IDPs more..

High time constructions regulated and streamlined

May 22 (CT) The site of the five-storey building which collapsed last Thursday (18) by the Wellawatte canal near the Savoy cinema resembled a debris site of a collapsed building in a Hollywood movie! In the backdrop of fire engines, Police cars and ambulances, men were seen working day and night to clear the debris of the collapsed building. Apart from efforts to clear the debris, they were also seen searching for those still missing following the mishap. more..

ඇමති මාරුවෙන් මහජනතාවට සෙතක් වෙයිද?

Inter-agency cyber security effort mooted

May 22 (EN) A national cyber security strategy and a collaborative inter-agency effort and implementation mechanism has been recommended for Sri Lanka to deal with emerging threats highlighted by last week’s Ransomware cyber attack. Institute of National Security Studies Sri Lanka (INSSSL), a think-tank under the Ministry of Defence, said the island needs to develop a framework to increase security awareness and education. more..

Reshuffle inflicts more public burden: JVP

May 22 (NR) The JVP says the Cabinet reshuffle that took place this morning further burdens the public. Leader of the JVP MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake said the govt has increased to the number of Ministerial portfolios to 48 when the Constitution states there can only be 30 posts. The MP also said the govt has increased the number of Deputy Ministers and State Ministers to 45 when the Constitution clearly states only 40 posts can be available. more..

Tortured Muslim child marriage victim dies, Police soft-pedals capture of husband

May 22 (CT) SL Muslim Child marriage victim, Thameem Sharmila has died last night after being tied to a chair, poured oil and set on fire by her abusive husband last Friday. Activist had been calling the husband to be arrested so he can face justice in courts. “Police is yet to arrest the husband who is accused of burning a 4 months pregnant teenager alive. It is actually a double homicide.” Women’s Action Network said. more..

19–year-old taken prey by crocodile in Thalagamuwa

May 22 (DN) Thalangamuwa Police said that a nineteen-year-old boy was taken prey by a crocodile earlier today while fishing in the Paththinipurem lagoon. The two friends of the deceased has attempted to pull the boy off the crocodile's grip when it grabbed him by his abdomen. The deceased named Hahaldeen Rifkhan was a resident in Olahagamuwa, the Police said. Thalangamuwa Police said that search missions are underway. more..

Sri Lanka shows interest in Belarusian military hardware

May 22 (BelTA) Sri Lanka is showing interest in purchasing the Belarusian military hardware, BelTA learned from Security Force Headquarters Commander of Sri Lanka, Major General Ruwan Kulatunga at the MILEX 2017 exhibition. The Major-General thanked for the invitation and praised the Belarusian Armed Forces during the show of the MILEX 2017 exhibition opening ceremony. He was especially impressed with a waltz of armored vehicles. more..

Contempt charges against Dr. Padeniya; case fixed for Aug 2

May 22 (DM)  A Court of Appeal Bench comprising Justices Rohini Walgama and S. Thurairaja today fixed for August 2 the inquiry into the contempt of court charges filed against GMOA President Anuruddha Padeniya. The charge sheet was read to him in court and asked to show cause as to why he should not be punished for the alleged offence. He pleaded not guilty to the charges. Gamini Marapana PC with Navin Marapana appeared for more..

President to leave for Australia

May 22 (NR) President Maithripala Sirisena is scheduled to leave for Australia today on a four-day state visit. The Head of State will engage in the tour following an invitation extended by the Australian govt. The visit would result in many concrete steps to further expansion of bilateral cooperation in several fields including industries, investment, agriculture, maritime security cooperation, action against human smuggling, education, science and technology. more..

Ice cool Sangakkara keeps heat off Surrey

May 22 (CI) Kumar Sangakkara's sense of occasion was evident once more in this London derby as he scored his second century of the match, while also passing 20,000 career first-class runs. Sangakkara's 60th century in the format, from 174 balls, was played out in a thick cable-knit sweater despite the glorious sunshine that accompanied him for much of his jaunt. The ice in his veins must have been working overtime. This knock saw Sangakkara become the first Surrey batsman to score more..

HC serves indictment on Mahindananda

May 22 (DN) The Colombo High Court served indictments on MP Mahindananda Aluthgamage in connection with an indictment filed against him by Attorney General for alleged criminal breach of trust of Rs.3.9 million funds belonging to a trade union named SL Nidahas Kamkaru Congress. When the case came up before Colombo High Court Judge, former Minister was ordered to be released on two sureties of Rs. 2 million. more..

Commission takes a break

May 22 (CT) The Commission Investigating the alleged Treasury Bond scam will take a two-week break until 5 June. The reason behind this was the need for Supreme Court Judge Prasanna Jayewardene, who is a member of the Commission, to go abroad. President Maithripala Sirisena appointed a Commission of Inquiry to probe the Central Bank Bond scam of 2015 and 2016 in early 2017. It will essentially be a fact finding one, according to its ten-point term of reference. more..

Indian police warn against candlelight tribute to war dead in northern Lanka

May 22 (NDTV)   Chennai's Marina Beach has been a favourite with protesters. But for more than a decade, protests, demonstrations, agitations etc have been totally banned along the shoreline. The Chennai Police yesterday reiterated its ban on protests or unlawful gathering on the Marina Beach and warned of arrests if protesters are found assembling here. May 17 Movement, a Tamil National Civil rights activist group fighting for the rights of Sri Lankan Tamils, has called for more..

Video: KP exposes how MGR and Indira Gandhi supported LTTE

May 22 (WION) Former prominent LTTE leader Kumaran Pathmanathan, who was the chief international financier and helped smuggle weapons for the terror outfit. KP, as he was known, took over leadership of the LTTE following the death of Prabhakaran and was wanted in India in connection with Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination. Ironically, as KP revealed, it was Gandhi’s mother Indira Gandhi who asked RAW to aid LTTE. more..

Selfie costs doc his dear life

May 22 (Island)  A doctor died on Saturday in Badureliya when he tried to take a selfie with a waterfall in the background. He was standing on a boulder outside the public viewing area at the time of the incident. He has been identified as T. Dissanayake. Victim was a member of a group of doctors undergoing a Tamil language course at National Institute of Language Education and Training. Participants of the programme had gone to Badureliya to view the picturesque waterfall, more..

Vasudeva hospitalised; condition not serious

May 22 (AD)  Leader of the DLF MP Vasudeva Nanayakkara has reportedly been hospitalised due to a heart condition. He had been receiving OPD treatment and taking medication in the past couple of days for phlegm and wheeze. However, Vasudeva had to be admitted to Colombo National Hospital in the early hours of today due to sudden heart condition.  Dr Anil Jasingha stated that MP is currently receiving treatment in the cardiology unit and that his condition is not serious. more..

One Belt, One Road, One China?

May 22 (Roar) China’s ambitious moves to become a major player on the world stage has escaped no one’s attention. Giant nation’s political and economic heft is felt worldwide every time it throws its weight around. We in SL feel it more than most people, with billions in debt looming over the economy and Chinese-funded infrastructure appearing as if out of nowhere in the last few years. You know this isn’t ad-hoc investment. more..

Ravi bids adieu to finance ministry staff

May 22 (EN) Ex-Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake had met ministry officials and personal staff to bid farewell and thank them, before taking office as the country's new Foreign Minister. Minister Karunanayake had thanked officer and personal staff saying they had given him strength and work to help the country. In the foreign ministry he also had broad responsibility to work towards for the country internationally and domestically, the minister had said. more..

Rathana Thera’s vehicle in mishap

May 22 (CT) A motorcyclist sustained injuries after a collision with one of the vehicles in MP Athuraliye Rathana Thera's motorcade in Puttalam. Police noted that the accident occurred yesterday on the Puttlam – Anuradhapura Road when the female Samurdhi officer's motorcycle was accidentally struck by the MP's vehicle. Police claim that the vehicle had tried to over take another vehicle and had struck the motorcyclist. Police who arrested the driver of the vehicle was informed that more..

National inflation slows to 8.4% in April

May 22 (EN) Sri Lanka's country-wide inflation decelerated to 8.4% in April 2017 from an over two-year high of 8.6% in March 2017, on a year-on-year basis. Both Food and Non-food categories contributed towards the year-on-year inflation in April 2017, as measured by the change in the National Consumer Price Index (NCPI). The change in the NCPI measured on an annual average basis increased to 6% in Apr 2017 from 5.6% more..

LPBOA seeks fare hike

May 22 (CT) Minimum bus fare needs to be increased to Rs 10 from 1 July, Lanka Private Bus Owners Association (LPBOA) said. LPBOA President Gemunu Wijeratne said, annual bus fare revision is due on 1 July and they expect the minimum bus fare to increase. "Although we are expecting the minimum fare to increase, we do not expect bus fares to change by large percentage," he added. Wijeratne said that over the years, bus fare revisions were not properly calculated by more..

Why replace Best Finance Minister? Asks JO

May 22 (DM) The govt should reveal the reason for replacing its Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake who was not long ago awarded the title of Finance Minister of the Year for Asia-Pacific-2016 by The Banker magazine, the joint opposition said today. Commenting on the Cabinet reshuffle, JO National Organiser, MP Dullas Alahapperuma said after naming Minister Karunanayake as the Best Finance Minister a few a months ago it is a mystery as to why he had to be removed. more..

Govt is committed to ensure Social Justice: President

May 22 (PSL) Ensuring social justice for the benefit of the people is the prime commitment of this Govt, says President Maithripala Sirisena. He made these remarks at the opening ceremony of the newly built Court Complex at Galagedara, today. President said that, since the election of this govt to power, it has taken many steps to ensure and protect social justice, human rights, freedom and democracy in the society. more..

US envoy finds Sri Lanka FM switched before meeting

May 22 (EN) The highest ranking official from the new US administration to visit  Sri Lanka,   William E. Todd ,  called on the Foreign Minister only to find that Mangala Samaraweera had been shifted out  a short while earlier. Notwithstanding the swapping of portfolios between Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake and Foreign Minister Samaraweera, visit by US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs went ahead at the Foreign Ministry in Colombo. more..

Gold worth Rs 15 lakh recovered from Sri Lankan national in Mumbai

May 22 (PTI) Customs department on Monday caught a Sri Lankan national at Mumbai int'l airport and recovered from him 505 grams of gold worth Rs 14.9 lakh, some of which he had swallowed, while some concealed in his rectum, official said. The Sri Lankan national, Mohamed Faheem, was intercepted by the Air Intelligence Unit (AIU) of Mumbai Customs. He was cleared from the Customs Green channel. However, on suspicion, when he was directed to pass through more..

Cabinet reshuffle: 9 Ministers & a State Minister take oath

May 22 (EN) Ministers Mangala Samaraweera and Ravi Karunanayake swapped their portfolios in the long-awaited cabinet reshuffle, which also saw Ports Minister Arjuna Ranatunga lose his position. "The cabinet re-shuffle was made to go forward as a country with a new hope," President Sirisena was quoted as saying after the new appointments. President had asked ministers to work for the betterment of the country more..

Is the constitution a key?

May 23 (CT) The current debate on constitutional change reminded me this old joke about drunkard guy looking for a lost key. In this discussion, I shall use the old Marxian term –the national question – rather than the conventional terms -the Tamil ethnic question or the ethnic problem- commonly used in the current discourse. It has been incessantly argued with some justification that a new constitution or a revolutionary changes in existing constitution is the key to resolving the national question more..

Reversing growing trust deficit in the North

May 23 (CT) During the period of the previous govt May 18 became a day of tension in the North. The previous govt celebrated the war victory over the LTTE in the South of the country, while prohibiting any public memorial services for those who died in the last battles in the North. The report last week that police in the North had obtained a court order to put on hold a commemoration event in Mullivaikkal scheduled for May 18, the day the war ended, therefore took the centre stage of more..

Ramadan: A time for self-restraint that purifies the soul

May 23 (SO) Muslims around the world welcome the start of the blessed month of Ramazan on Friday, May 26, based on the sighting of the crescent moon. It is a month of fasting and not simply about abstaining from food and water for 14 hours or so a day. It’s a month of spiritual journey that helps purify the soul, refocus attention on God and practice self sacrifice. Sunday Observer interviewed Ash-Sheikh A.C. Agar more..

GSP plus: Renewed opportunities and policy imperatives

May 23 (ST) The European Union’s decision last week to restore the GSP plus concession allows Sri Lankan exports tariff free entry to its 28 countries. This could be a turning point in the country’s trade as the EU is a foremost market for the country’s exports. This opportunity must be seized to increase exports to the EU by adopting economic policies that would increase production of tradable goods. Sri Lanka became a beneficiary of GSP Plus in 2005. It lost this concession in December 2009, more..

Trump trumped by media he threatened

May 23 (ST) During his presidential election campaign last year the ever-loquacious and unpredictable Donald Trump threatened to change Washington which he called a swamp.  Not even four months after occupying the Oval Office Trump is sinking in the swamp he said he would clean up. Caught up in a labyrinth of charges of misconduct and worse, several Congressional and prosecutorial investigations into them, it seems to have escaped many that the week of leaks that produced more..

'Nationalizing SAITM would be a mistake'

May 23 (CT) Former State Minister of Higher Education, Rajiva Wijesinha spoke to Ceylon Today about the current controversy regarding SAITM. During the interview he stressed that SAITM was started in good faith, and the then government was at fault in not smoothing out any contentious issues immediately. But the questions with regard to quality are specious, because similar standards are not applied to govt universities. more..

Victory over Remembrance: A day of division

May 23 (GV) On May 18, 2009, Sri Lanka ended a decade long civil war. The day after, May 19, has traditionally been celebrated as Victory Day and marked with military parades. That is, until May 19, 2015, when Cabinet spokesman Rajitha Senaratne announced that the Govt of Sri Lanka would instead mark Remembrance Day in memory of those who had lost their lives. The move gave fresh hope to families of the North, who often had their memorial day activities blocked while more..

Editorial: Of that farce

May 23 (Island) The Yahapalana Mountain, having been in labour for several months, delivered a tiny mouse yesterday. The country saw a mini Cabinet reshuffle. Those who had naively expected a radical Cabinet shake-up were disappointed. The govt has sought to pull the wool over the eyes of the irate people who are demanding some economic relief immediately. The task of improving the performance of a govt is not something that could be accomplished through a Cabinet reshuffle. more..

JVP Press Conference: Cabinet Reshuffle

Why doctors and students are protesting against SL’s only Private Medical College

May 23 (GV) In Sri Lanka, doctors and students have been protesting for months, requesting the govt to shut down the private SAITM, the only private university in SL currently training medical students. They are against the privatization of education and claim that opening private universities will drastically affect children from poor families’ access to education opportunities. In Sri Lanka, education is state funded and offered free of charge at all levels, including university level. more..

Sri Lanka Cricket to spend 70 M on RPICS

May 23 (CT) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is set to spend Rs 70 million to fit the R. Premadasa Int'l Cricket Stadium (RPICS) with a complete crowd management system. This is one of the decisions along with numerous expenses decided upon by the Executive Committee of SLC when they met yesterday. The 40 turnstile gates that will efficiently manage the entry and exit of over 24,000 spectators expected to visit the stadium for each match. The first phase of this project was implemented more..