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M. K. Shivajilingam

Constitutional Assembly unconstitutional, null and void ab initio

Nov 2 (Island) What could be comprehended by the Word Constitution?Constitution is recognised as a document made by law makers inserting a set of rules which are needed for the governance of the relevant territory, and it is considered supreme and unchallengeable. Inclusion of the following mandatory features could be seen in a constitution. 1. Provisions to guarantee/assure the rights of the citizens and the mechanisms to be operated for above purpose. more..

Editorial: Constitutional imbroglio

Nov 2 (Island) President Sirisena has decided to meet intellectuals and professionals and seek their views on the proposed new Constitution. The question is why he waited till the constituent assembly process got underway to have such lekgotlas. Anyway, better late than never! Constitution making is too serious a task to be left entirely to politicians, we reckon. The framers of a constitution should be knowledgeable men and women. A parliament may be converted into more..

My baby is free from HIV

Nov 2 (NS) That was the call she was expecting but did not have courage to receive. She took the phone with trembling hands. She can hear the voice from other end. I am Dr. …. She answered with feeble voice “Yes Doctor, this is Chamila. This is regarding the report. Isn’t it?” “Yes. Chamila. I know it is you but I have to make sure. Give me these details…….” After verifying her details she could hear doctors voice like more..

What is the lifestyle of Canadian Tamils?

Nov 2 (DN) In North America, in Canada, there are many people from Lanka, Tamil Nadu and other countries. They speak an ancient (about 21 centuries ago) but a contemporary language called Tamil. The Tamils from all parts of Lanka, north, east, central, Uva and west have gone to live in Canada for various reasons. This had been happening for phe last half a century. Majority of them are from the Jaffna peninsula. They are now Canadian citizens wherever they come from. more..

'Rajasekara not in required standard'

Nov 2 (CT) Ministry of Sports will only financially assist athletes who have been recommended by associations that govern each body, Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera said. Commenting on a video that was widely circulated on social media where long-distance runner Geethani Rajasekara alleged that the ministry has stopped assisting her financially, Jayasekera said that Rajasekara had been compensated till July 2017, two years after she achieved qualifying standard for marathon more..

'Without cleanup, Sri Lanka assured of early exit from World Cup'

Nov 2 (Island) Arjuna Ranatunga has said that Sri Lankans are in danger of making an early exit from Cricket World Cup in 2019 due to the negligence of authorities to correct the rot in the cricket administration. "There’s no possibility for SL team to win the upcoming India series. ICC has mentioned in their press release that it was because of sheer luck that SL had qualified for World Cup in 2019 and not because of their performances. more..

Govt’s PPP boss wants new set of regulations to facilitate investment

Nov 2 (DM) The chief of the Finance Ministry’s new National Agency for Public Private Partnerships (NAPPP), which is shrouded in secrecy, wants new rule books written for his agency, and to facilitate delayed investment projects, since the old rule book is too restrictive. NAPPP Chairman Thilan Wijesinghe speaking at a recent forum, said that public private partnerships (PPPs) handled by his agency should not be restricted by the Procurement Guidelines 2006 of the Finance Ministry. more..

False allegations against past Presidents of FFSL: Boteju should apologize

Nov 2 (CT) Four Past Presidents of the Football Federation of Sri Lanka (FFSL) have decided to take legal action against the Secretary General of Kotte Football League, Lalith Boteju, for making false allegations against them. Past Presidents, namely Thilina Panditharatne, Gamini Randeni, Hurley Silva and Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekara, have sent a letter of demand to Lalith Boteju, regarding the false allegations made against them without proper proof. According to the source, more..

Sri Lanka lags in Ease of Doing Biz; India speeds ahead

Nov 2 (FT) Sri Lanka is lagging behind in the Ease of Doing Business Index whilst the once struggling giant India is speeding away. As per the latest ranking released by the World Bank, SL dropped one place to number 111 from 110 last year. India on the other hand has jumped nearly 30 places to be at 100 and was grouped among top 10 improvers globally, having done better in 8 out of 10 business indicators. more..

Sri Lanka one of the fastest growing markets for Jaguar Land Rover: Asia Pacific MD

Nov 2 (FT) Sri Lanka has raced to become one of the fastest growing markets for the world-famous Jaguar Land Rover brands, its Asia Pacific Region Managing Director Robin Colgan revealed in Colombo.  “We are excited about the progress and the potential in Sri Lanka, which has quickly become one of the fastest growing markets for us. Sri Lanka is a real success story. We have doubled our volumes,” he said. Jaguar Land Rover, the UK’s largest automotive manufacturing business, more..

Wildlife Conservation DG directed to formulate map hearing fixed for 12 March

Nov 2 (FT) The Supreme Court yesterday (1) directed the Director General of the Department of Wildlife Conservation to formulate a map of the Muthurajawela sanctuary taking into account the gazette already published in this regard. The bench, comprising Chief Justice Priyasath Dep and Justices Eva Wanasundera and Vijith K. Malalgoda, also granted leave to proceed with the fundamental rights petition against the steps to dump garbage in the Muthurajawela sanctuary. more..

7th World Buddhist Summit starts today

Nov 2 (DN) The inauguration of the 7th World Buddhist Summit, which is also the Supreme World Wide Buddhist Conference, will be held at Temple Trees today, under the theme Buddhism for World Peace. President Sirisena and PM Wickremesinghe are to grace the occasion. Nearly a thousand representatives from 47 countries including all supreme leaders of main Buddhist schools of thought across 5 continents more..

QFA, FFSL renew co-operation agreement

Nov 2 (GT) Qatar Football Association (QFA) signed a co-operation agreement with its Sri Lankan counterpart at the Al Bidda Tower in Doha. Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa bin Ahmed al-Thani, President of the QFA and Anura De Silva, President of the Football Federation of Sri Lanka (FFSL) signed the agreement yesterday. The signing ceremony for renewal of agreement was attended by Saoud al-Mohannadi, Vice President of the QFA, Mansoor al-Ansari, General Secretary of the QFA, more..

MFSPA to resort to fast unto death protest

Nov 2 (DM) While rejecting the latest stand taken by the government regarding SAITM, the Medical Faculty Students’ Parents’ Association (MFSPA) today warned that it would resort to a fast unto death protest on Monday (6), if the related authorities would not provide them with an actual solution to this issue. The govt announced on Sunday that it had decided to abolish the SAITM and convert it into a not for profit institution coming under the University Grants Commission (UGC). more..

'Govt's decision on SAITM a fraud'

Nov 2 (DM) While rejecting the direction issued by the Vice Chancellors of State Universities for all medical students to engage in their academic work with immediate effect, Medical Faculty Students' Action Committee (MFSAC) said that the university students belonging to eight medical faculties have decided to continue boycotting lectures in protest of the SAITM despite the latest stand taken by the govt regarding it. more..

LMD unveils Businesspeople Of The Year

Nov 2 (FT) Business magazine LMD has released its annual list of leading corporate personalities - Businesspeople Of The Year (BOTY) - which pays tribute to the corporate front-runners in 2017. Now in its eight year, BOTY presentation is based on nominations received from LMD’s contributors, as well as an in-house think tank led by the publisher’s editorial and management teams. “This year’s hall of fame showcases 23 leaders from among the best in SL’s corporate community to coincide with more..

High level Japanese delegation calls on Prez

Nov 2 (PMD) President Sirisena said that Japan is continuously assisting Sri Lanka as a true friend. He said this when a high-level Japanese delegation called on him today (1) at Presidential Secretariat to discuss Japanese development projects in SL. Head of the Delegation, Director General of International Cooperation Bureau, Assistant Minister Kazuya Nashida assured the President that his country would extend fullest cooperation to SL’s development programmes. more..

'Anarchy will reign if EP is abolished now'

Nov 2 (DM) JHU General Secretary Minister Chamipika Ranawaka said yesterday the country would end up in anarchy if the executive presidency was abolished without introducing a stable parliamentary system. Speaking during the Constitutional Assembly, he said the good governance govt had acted to curb the extreme powers of the executive presidency by enacting 19th Amendment and made it more democratic. more..

'Bank for development finance on the cards'

Nov 2 (DN) The govt would soon set up a special Bank for Development Finance to assist the business community, said PM Ranil Wicrkaramasinghe. Speaking at the 25th anniversary celebrations of the Sri Lanka Confectionery Manufacturers’ Association at Colombo Hilton he said the prime objective of this is to assist the business community by offering them credit under more flexible terms. The Premier also said that he still remembers the beginning of more..

'Govt attempting to split anti-SAITM movement'

Nov 2 (CT) Govt is attempting to divide the main factions that actively participate in the anti-SAITM struggle through its so-called final solution, All Ceylon Govt Medical Officers' Association (ACGMOA) claimed. The Govt recently announced that it had decided to abolish SAITM and convert it into a not for profit institution coming under the UGC and the Ministry of Higher Education. Responding to this, GMOA stated that it can see a positive side in those proposals. more..

Buddhism foremost but other religions respected: SLMC

Nov 2 (DM) SLMC Leader Rauf Hakeem said they were not against giving priority to Buddhism in the new Constitution but also highlighted the need to include provisions where other religions are treated with dignity and respect. "We are not against giving priority to Buddhism but provisions should be included in the constitution to ensure other religions are respected as well and include a ban to differentiate other religions" more..

Short of match fitness: Asela, Kusal overlooked for Test series against India

Nov 2 (DN) Batting all-rounder Asela Gunaratne and wicket-keeper/batsman Kusal Perera have been left out of the 15-member SL Test squad picked for the three-Tests against India starting at Eden Gardens, Kolkata on Nov 16 due to match fitness. Lankan squad was picked yesterday and has been sent for ratification by Minister of Sports. “Angelo, Asela and Kusal all passed the yoyo and skinfold tests but as Asela and Kusal were short of match fitness we did not select them,” said chairman of selectors more..

Will join SLFP only if MR is given chairmanship: Welgama

Nov 2 (DM) MP Kumara Welgama recently said that they would join the SLFP only if former president Rajapaksa would be given the chairmanship and the post of general secretary should be handed over to a member of the joint opposition. He said that majority of the people were not pleased about the proceedings of this govt and added that each and every person’s wish was to have an election. “Consequences which would be faced by this govt after an election more..

'Things worse for Sri Lanka if National question ignored'

Nov 2 (DM) Things will get worse for Sri Lanka especially in the international arena if the country fails to address the National question, Leader of Opposition R Sampnanthan told the Constitutional Assembly. "SL knows very well that all the problems it has faced in the international arena, particularly since 2012, is because of its failure to manfully address the National question. Things can only get worse; they cannot get any better if more..

Video: Trump demands Congress terminate diversity immigration lottery

Nov 2 (DM) President Donald Trump, during a White House Cabinet meeting Wednesday, said he wants to terminate the Diversity Visa Lottery, a program that distributes around 50,000 visas to countries where there is a low rate of immigration to the US. "I am, today, starting the process of terminating the diversity lottery program," Trump said, seated next to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. "I am going to ask Congress to immediately initiate work to more..

Final draft of US-prepared new Constitution ready: Keheliya

Nov 2 (Island) There is no point in debating the interim report of the Constitutional Assembly Steering Committee as the final draft of proposed constitution has already been prepared by the US and given to the govt, UPFA MP Keheliya Rambukwella says. He said: "When a group of Sri Lankan MPs including me visited the US recently, we were told by a US Congressman that the US had prepared the final draft of the new constitution and sent it to the Sri Lankan govt. more..

PM calls for grabbing golden opportunity to achieve unity, progress

Nov 2 (Island) The choice Sri Lanka had was between finding a solution to the national problem by way of constitutional reforms and missing the unprecedented opportunity which had presented itself, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has told Parliament. The PM, participating in the debate on the interim committee report of the constitutional assembly, said that the unitary status of the country would not be compromised. more..

Bombs in Parliament need to be defused

Nov 2 (DM) Going by the rhetoric and the text pertaining to constitutional reform currently being debated in Parliament, it is all about two things. 1) Expunging of the clause supposedly privileging Buddhism, and 2) Devolution of power.  TNA MP, M. Sumanthiran, has stated the stand of his party and by and large the group of anti-Sinhala, anti-Buddhist NGO lobby: “Our stand is that there should be a secular constitution where there is no special identification for a single religion, more..

Who is really behind the New Constitution-making process in Sri Lanka?

Nov 2 (DM) There is currently a debate about the drafting of a New Constitution for the country among the academic community and the general public in SL. This started with the appointment of a 19-member Committee headed by Lal Wijenayake called the Public Representations Committee on Constitutional Reforms. Its report was released in May 2016. Meanwhile, a Constitutional Assembly was established by a parliamentary resolution on March 9, 2016 and a 21-member Steering more..

Will President’s APC supersede Steering Committee?

Nov 2 (DM) The country witnessed a major uproar after the Steering Committee released its interim report outlining proposals for constitutional changes. The political forces and Maha Sangha, sensitive to the character of the Constitution in the making and the status to be accorded to Buddhism, took up cudgels against the process arguing that the proposed changes, if enacted, would relegate the primacy of Buddhism enshrined in current more..

Time to give school authorities lessons in pregnancy!

Nov 2 (DM) There is a popular saying that the best things in society are for children’s use. Despite the presence of many human rights organizations, Women’s Groups & NGO’s involved in the protection of the children’s rights- especially those of girls- there are less affluent families who suffer enormously due to misdirected priorities of the authorities. It is ironic that the children who are entitled to education have lost this basic right. more..

Bonds scam related call recordings released: VAC calls for certain persons...

Nov 2 (CT) The Voice Against Corruption (VAC) publicized several phone call records, exposing several individuals, who had given and received instructions to release loans to the Perpetual Treasuries Limited, including officers from primary dealing State Banks, the Central Bank's Public Debt Department and the Tender Board. Convener of the VAC, Wasantha Samarasinghe, calling a media conference yesterday, more..

TNA MP clashes with Party Leader Asks for time to speak

Nov 2 (CT) A display of apparent difference of opinion was staged yesterday, by Tamil politicians on the proposed Constitutional reforms, when Vanni District TNA MP Sivashakthi Anandan accused Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan of denying his right to express views on the third day of the debate on the interim committee report of the steering committee of the Constitutional Assembly. more..

JVP Leader pooh-poohs Wimal’s bomb threat, danger of secession

Nov 2 (Island) NFF leader Wimal Weerawansa’s call to bomb Parliament, if it passes, the new constitution should not be taken seriously by others, JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake told the CA. "Before responding to a threat by a person we should take look at who is making the threat. The person who threatens to bomb Parliament is not strong enough even to hurl a stone at a target with a catapult. more..

Debate on Steering Committee interim report extended

Nov 2 (Island) Chairman of Constitutional Assembly Karu Jayasuriya announced that he had decided to extend the duration of the debate on interim report of the steering committee by one day owing. Speaker said a large number of MPs had asked for additional time. Assembly had previously allocated 3 days from Monday to Wednesday for the debate. On Monday the debate started at 10.30 am & continued till 6.30 pm. more..

Police come under the spotlight

Nov 2 (SL) There are increasing number of complaints regarding police brutality and force being unleashed on the people. During the recent past, several suspects have also been killed due to alleged police brutality. The most recent incident was when K.A. Gamini, who was arrested by the Divulapitiya Police, had died while in police custody. The cause of death was internal injuries. His relatives, giving evidence, said that Gamini more..

PM to ICT sector: Nothing for nothing

Nov 2 (CT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe put the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector on notice by saying that it has to show progress before expecting the Govt to give prominence to it. Affirming sluggish progress of ICT Sector, PM noted, "My policy is nothing for nothing. Show me the progress of your industry, then, I will give added priority to the industry & support more". more..

Premier Turnbull hails President Sirisena’s great reconciliation programme

Nov 2 (PMD) Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull congratulated President Maithripala Sirisena for the great reconciliation programme undertaken by the SL govt. Mr Turnbull said this when he held bilateral discussions with President Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat today. He thanked the President for excellent cooperation extended to fight transnational crimes including human smuggling and drug trafficking. more..

Geetha Kumarasinghe not eligible for Parliament: Supreme Court

Nov 2 (NR) Supreme Court today determined that Geetha Kumarasinghe cannot hold a Parliament post due to her dual citizenship. A five member bench led by the Chief Justice delivered the verdict today. The Court of Appeal ruled in May that Geetha Kumarasinghe cannot hold a post in Parliament as she holds dual citizenship, the country of her second citizenship being Switzerland. The Appeals Court determined that more..