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Three Indian naval ships arrive

Nov 2 (SLN) Indian naval ships Tir and Sujatha and the Indian Coast Guard ship Sarathi arrived at the port of Colombo on a goodwill and training visit today. They were warmly welcomed by the Sri Lanka Navy in accordance with naval traditions on their arrival. Defence Advisor attached to the Indian High Commission in SL, Captain Ashok Rao was also present on the occasion. The Commanding Officers of the visiting Indian ships, Captain DJ Revar, Commandant Pankaj Agrawal and more..

House under water

Nov 2 (FT) There were a few things that would get us island folk in a flap in days gone by. Cricket, coconut spirits, cost of living – these about cut it then. Today you can add constitutional reform to the heady mix that has us islanders ready to get our sarongs in a twist or hitch them up to here in readiness for a brawl. Last but by no means least add a dash of the bitter argot that is the jargon of jingoists, a twist of the saliva inducing lime of ethno nationalistic chauvinism, and more..

Bond Scam: Out comes the TAPES

South Korean firms to do Sri Lanka LRT feasibility study

Nov 2 (EN) Sri Lanka’s govt has chosen two South Korean engineering consultancy firms to do a pre-feasibility study for six planned Light Rail Transit systems linking the capital Colombo with suburbs. A spokesman said the Cabinet of ministers decided to award the contract for consultancy services for the pre – feasibility study and feasibility study to Seoyoung Engineering Co. Ltd. and Saman Corporation. The contract will cost Rs 202 million. The planned LRT systems are to more..

Get going towards a peaceful, prosperous future

Nov 2 (CT) The debate around the country and at the Constituent Assembly that is raging about the proposed new Constitution is robust and hopefully keeping ordinary Sri Lankans informed about it. There are some facts that need to be enumerated: Sri Lankans have overwhelmingly voted in favour of a new Constitution because both candidates at the last Presidential election, Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithripala Sirisena had it as a major part of their election manifesto. more..

Centre will lose all power if proposals are implemented: MR

Nov 2 (AD) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says that manipulation by the govt is glaringly obvious in the whole process of formulating a new Constitution and that the Joint Opposition is being provided with scarce opportunities to voice their opinions.  Delivering a speech during the debate on the Interim Report of the Steering Committee at the Constitutional Assembly in Parliament today, more..

Life sentence for killing intelligence officer

Nov 2 (Island) Colombo High Court, convicted Selvathurai Kimbakaran alias Marthan of the murder of Sunil Thabrew, Intelligence Officer-in-charge of Dehiwala Police, on July 23, 2003. A life sentence was imposed on the convict, as penalty for the murder conviction. A 5-year rigorous imprisonment term was also imposed for possessing illegal weapons, and a fine of Rs. 25,000 for possessing illegal bullets. LTTE assassinated the officer during Norway-arranged CFA. more..

His arrival required a departure

Nov 2 (DM) The former strongman the other day accompanied by security personnel as usual called at a well-known temple in the city to pay his last respects to a Buddhist prelate. After paying his last respects to the prelate, the former boss greeted a large group of VIPs and members of Maha Sangha present on the occasion and later got engrossed in a lengthy discourse with them on several topical national issues including the new Constitution in the making. more..

SC refuses to grant leave for Perpetual Treasuries FR

Nov 2 (DM) The Supreme Court today rejected the fundamental rights petition filed by Perpetual Treasuries Limited, challenging the suspension of its Primary dealer license by the Monetary Board. The Bench comprised Chief Justice Priyasath Dep, Justices B.P. Aluvihara and Nalin Perera. President’s Counsel Gamini Marapana with Navin Marapana and Kausalya Molligoda appeared for the Petitioner PTL. Deputy Solicitor General more..

Govt pharmacists on strike: Osu Sala provides drugs free

Nov 2 (Island) Countrywide Osu sala outlets under the State Pharmaceutical Corporation (SPC) yesterday issued drugs free of charge to OPD patients owing to the token strike staged by Society of Govt Pharmacists (SGP), demanding that Health Ministry resume the post graduate degree programme for Msc in Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics conducted by the Post Graduate Institute of Medicine. While dispensaries at National Hospital remained closed, more..

Red tape diverts Calamander’s Rs 2 bn investment to UK

Nov 2 (DN) Calamander Group, Unawatuna will invest Rs 2 billion in UK to build a 58 room beachfront star class hotel. Chairman and founder of The Calamander Group Roman Scott, said that he had initially planned to invest this amount in Sri Lanka but was forced to take it out due to the severe red tape he had to encounter in Sri Lanka. “I was planning to build a four star hotel investing Rs 2 billion but then to my dismay found that the approval process for land clearance, more..

Constitutional making: Wijenayake responds to BASL

Nov 2 (Island) Attorney-at-law Lal Wijenayake, Chairman of Public Representations Committee on Constitutional Reforms has accused the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) of making an attempy to deceive the public regarding the ongoing constituional making process. Wijenayake has sent us the following statemet in response to a statement issued by the BASL following a meeting of the Bar Council more..

Sri Lanka loses concessional financing from World Bank

Nov 2 (EN) Sri Lanka has graduated from concessionary Int'l Development Association window loans in July, World Bank Senior Country Economist for SL Ralph van Doorn said. SL has relied more on commercial borrowings in recent years, pushing up interest costs, requiring more careful debt management, van Doorn said. Sri Lanka has been tapping capital markets, ahead of losing concessionary financing from agencies such as the WB & ADB as well as bilateral donors. more..

No injustice caused to Admiral Travis Sinnaih: Govt

Nov 2 (Island) The govt said that no injustice had been caused to Admiral Travis Sinnaih, who retired as Navy Commander last week, after less than three months in office. Ministers Rajitha Senaratne and Dayasiri Jayasekera, answering questions at the weekly Cabinet Press Briefing, said that any extension of service to Sinnaih would have been unfair by the others waiting in line. "If we had allowed Admiral Sinnaih to stay on then the person immediately junior to him, more..

European MPs say disappointed with Sri Lanka reform promises

Nov 2 (EN) A visiting European Parliament delegation said they were pleased Sri Lanka had begun to benefit from the GSP+ scheme but were disappointed the govt had not kept some of the promises given to win duty free access to European Union markets. Members of European Parliament Jean Lambert said the delegation was disappointed that some of the legal changes promised, like replacing Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) more..

Lake Polonnaruwa faces 70% drop in occupancy

Nov 2 (CT) One of the upmarket tourist hotels in Polonnaruwa has seen a 71 per cent drop in occupancy, during the month of October in comparison to last year. Guest Relations Officer at Lake Polonnaruwa, Randika Deepal Kandage attributed this to a case where a child from France had been bitten by a rabid dog in Hikkaduwa earlier this year, with fatal results and the spread of this tragic story, particularly in the Continent (Western Europe, excluding the UK) more..

Intex South Asia in Colombo from Nov 15

Nov 2 (DN) The 3rd edition of Intex South Asia- the largest and only international textile sourcing show in South Asiafor yarns, apparel fabrics, denims, accessories and allied services - will be held at the Sri Lanka Exhibition & Convention Centre, Colombo, from Nov 15-17, 2017. On the back of highly successful shows in 2015 and 2016, the 3rd edition of Intex South Asia, will showcase 200+ exhibitors from 15 countries including India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, China, Korea, more..

Australian PM briefed on Sri Lanka’s planned constitutional reform

Nov 2 (AD) Visiting PM of Australia Malcolm Turnbull and his Sri Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickremesinghe held discussions on improving the bi-lateral co-operation mechanisms between the two countries, at the Temple Trees today. PM Turnbull admired the decision taken by the Sri Lankan Govt towards establishing a Parliamentary Budgetary Office and assured Sri Lanka of Australia’s support towards the initiative, PM’s Office said. more..

Sri Lanka fuel subsidies consumed by the richest 30%

Nov 2 (EN) SL's top 30% of society consumed and overwhelming 70% of fuel sold in the country and subsidies are effectively channelled to the rich, World Bank country economist Ralph van Doorn said. Pricing reforms were required to fix state enterprises, which have now become fiscal risks, van Doorn said. "Since the non-poor are the largest consumers of fuel and electricity the administered fuel prices are an effective subsidy to the non-poor funded indirectly by fiscal resources," more..

Prez pays attention regarding future steps to develop cinema & teledrama industry

Nov 2 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena has given instructions to appoint a Committee to take steps for the progress of the cinema and the teledrama industry, comprising of representatives from all the sectors of the cinema and teledrama industries. He has given these instructions during a meeting with the representatives of the Expert Committee on Artistic Affairs, held at the President’s Official Residence, yesterday. This is the third phase of the discussion series to obtain more..

7th Buddhist Summit of World Buddhist Supreme Conference commences

Nov 2 (PSL) The inauguration ceremony of the Seventh Buddhist Summit of the World Buddhist Supreme Conference was held today (2) at the Temple Trees, under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe. This summit is held in Sri Lanka according to an invitation extended by President Sirisena. Three hundred Chief Sangha Nayakas from 47 member countries, Buddhist monks, more..

D.P. Jayasinghe unveils Sri Lanka’s first-ever 3000mm diameter drilling rig

Nov 2 (LBO) D.P. Jayasinghe Piling (Pvt) Limited, one of the leading companies in the field of construction, and piling in Sri Lanka, unveiled a game changing innovation for the local construction industrywith the launch of Sri Lanka’s first and only 3000mm diameter drilling rig at a ceremony held at the Waters Edge recently. The launch, graced by General Manager of BAUER Equipment Malaysia Robert Neukaeuper and Upali Jayasinghe – Chairman of D.P. Jayasinghe Piling Co., more..

Sri Lanka 'A' beat West indies 'A' in 1st ODI

Nov 2 (CWI) Hometown boy Sheldon Cottrell followed up a half-century from Montcin Hodge with a destructive spell of left-arm fast bowling, but Sri Lanka 'A' defied them to clinch a two-wicket victory over West Indies 'A' in the first One-day match on Wednesday. Cottrell grabbed 4-44 from his allotted 10 overs to lead the Windies “A” bowling, as the Sri Lankans successfully chased 177 for victory under the lights at Sabina Park to take a 1-0 lead in three-match series. more..

PM to be summoned to Bond Commision

Nov 2 (DM) The PCoI investigating the Issuance of Bonds today said it requires the testimony of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe in order to "obtain a few clarifications and any other evidence which may be necessary". Issuing a statement at the commencement of the today's session, Commission noted that it had perused the affidavit given to the Commission by the PM and that the Commission had certain clarifications to be made. more..

'We were never demanding separation'

Nov 3 (CT) As a Sri Lankan, I have the right to ask everyone to be truthful to the country and to all our people. It would be a mistake to think that everyone can be deceived all the time. No one wants anything done behind the backs of the Sri Lankan people. Let us enact a constitution addressing the critical issues and seek the approval of the people at a Referendum. It is they who must make the final decision in the exercise of their sovereignty. The transcript of the speech: more..

Killing the new constitution

Nov 3 (Island) On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century by Timothy Snyder, the Levin Professor of History at Yale University, is a timely read to understand, in particular, the rise in popularity of Viyathmaga as a political idea, independent of however we appreciate its chief proponent and custodian, Gotabaya Rajapaksa. A brief but engaging read published earlier this year, On Tyranny highlights markers not just of individuals with authoritarian or fascist tendencies, more..

'New Constitution was promised to the people'

Nov 3 (CT) Minister Gayantha Karunatilaka says the new Constitution was a promise given to the people, and said "Even we, who brought in the existing Constitution have accepted that a change is necessary. President is also of the same view. We will bring this in not in the same manner as the 18th Amendment. We will obtain everyone's ideas. It is the Interim Report that was prepared and is being subject to discussion. more..

'We participated in this constitutional reform process with honesty & an open mind'

Nov 2 (CT) There is the widespread suspicion that the govt may try to get the new constitution passed in Parliament through the same means adopted to change the system of elections to the local govt institutions and the provincial councils in the recent past. There are over 40 MPs who contested and won the last Parliamentary elections under my leadership and who now hold portfolios under this govt. They can defeat this constitution in Parliament by not voting for it. more..

Editorial: Of that ball game

Nov 3 (Island) The yahapalana govt is troubled by what may be described as polls phobia and, therefore, facing an electoral contest is a frightening proposition for it, especially, at this juncture. The news of an election being on the horizon has had an unsettling effect on the govt politicians. But, the sense of humour has not deserted some of them. Minister Faiszer Musthapha has likened local govt polls to a cricket match. He would have been hauled over the coals for comparing more..

UNP luring SLFP into a Constitutional trap

Nov 3 (CT) The erudite bliss of people who pose as politicians has been put to the test in the form of a Constitutional Assembly, and yet many failed to comprehend its depth. As the Constitutional Assembly debates on various provisions of the Steering Committee Report, PM has made remarks to the extent of stating that the report has no validity in law. True and conceded, but to what effect is this Steering Committee Report if it declared more..

Uphill task of constitution making

Nov 3 (NS) As the debate on the new Constitution forges ahead many socio political and historical complexities in the Sri Lankan society seem to be coming into replay. With the difficult task of balancing the pride of the two main communities, the framers of a new Constitution no doubt have an uphill task. The upcoming three day debate in the Parliament starting on Monday will throw much light on the many sides of this complicated issue and will be a turning point in the whole exercise more..

Beware, the enemy within

Nov 3 (DN) One of the issues being widely discussed today is how to protect Buddhism. As I have been a Buddhist for nearly 45 years it is an issue that greatly interests me and I would like to say something about it. But before doing so it will be necessary to ask and then try to answer the question: Is Buddhism threatened and if so by what or whom? In my four decades as a monk I have travelled to every Buddhist country, living in some of them, most regions where Buddhism prevails. more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Northern woman’s intelligent take on next presidential election

Nov 3 (Island) Whoever is elected as President of Sri Lanka at the next presidential election, we are willing to accept him as the leader of our country, Arumugam Kokilarani, a 43-year-old woman in Elluthoor, Thottakadu in Mannar told the media yesterday. A group of media met her during a tour made to witness the operations and benefits of the urban water and sanitation projects in the area funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB). When said that Tamil vote would be crucial more..

Constitutional Assembly unconstitutional, null and void ab initio

Nov 3 (Island) Articles 75, 82 and 83 of the constitution have categorically conferred the power on the Parliament to repeal the existing constitution and replace it with a new one. The limitations of such powers are clearly stipulated in Article 76(1) in the following manner; "Parliament shall not abdicate or in any manner alienate its legislative power and shall not set up any authority with any legislative power." The provisions are crystal clear and unambiguous. more..

Link between gender inequality and sexual harassment in the workplace

Nov 3 (Roar) Early October, Hollywood was shaken to its core when multiple allegations of sexual abuse emerged against Harvey Weinstein in the media. Empowered by the takedown of the movie mogul by his victims, women all over the world rallied to express their support and outrage. And so the #MeToo movement was born—or rather revived by actor Alyssa Milano, who urged women to post me too as their status more..

Chamari signs on for Melbourne Renegades

Nov 3 (Island) The Sri Lankan record-breaker who tore apart Australia’s bowling line-up during the Women’s World Cup has signed with the Melbourne Renegades for the upcoming Rebel WBBL season. Chamari Atapattu, the first Sri Lanka player to appear in the WBBL, was one of three recruits unveiled by the Renegades on Thursday alongside wicketkeeper Emma Inglis, who has moved from cross-town rivals Melbourne Stars, and former Thunder player Claire Koski. more..

Singer revenue grows to Rs 37 billion

Nov 3 (Island) Singer Group announced results for the nine months ending Sept 30th 2017 with revenues increasing to Rs. 37 billion, an increase of 12% compared to the same period last year, demonstrating resilience by growing competitively and consistently in tough market conditions, a press release said. It adds - During the quarter a major milestone occurred with the majority shares of Singer (SL) being purchased by Hayleys Group from Retail Holdings (SL), thus more..

It was a long overdue obligation: Sidath

Nov 3 (ST) Right now, there are more unanswered questions than the ones that have already found solutions, stuck in the inbox of Maitland Place cricket office. At one juncture, it was presumed that Sri Lanka’s cricket was back on its feet when the Lankans only shed a drop of sweat or two at the most, to beat Pakistan twice, to take the Test rubber. At that time the elated players, especially the senior ones exuded loads of bonhomie on more..

Fighting continues

Nov 3 (ST) The long awaited AGM of a two wheeled sport is still to see the light of day. This has been reported to the body that controls all sports. It is also stated that fighting continues in this body too! FED ON ‘BATH’ PACKETS: There is a grudge among players who are due to tour Kazakhstan shortly as they say that they have been fed on rice (bath) packets. This has been stated by the coach of the team as these packets have no nutrition. OFFICIALS BOYCOTT KEY MEETING: more..