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'Confidential IMF report indicated previous govt hadn’t paid bills up to Rs. 1.2 trillion'

Oct 7 (EN) Former CB Governor Arjuna Mahendran told PCoI that a confidential IMF report in his possession had revealed that in 2014 bills amounting to Rs. 1.2 trillion had not been paid by the then Govt. The previous administration, said the Former Governor, had suppressed these arrears in an attempt to camouflage the problem and pretend everything was hunky dory. Money had not been paid, he said, to, among others, RDA, more..

The most powerful weapon to change the world

Oct 7 (DM) With the highest priority being given to education, Sri Lanka yesterday joined the international community in celebrating World Teacher’s Day on the theme Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers.   According to the United Nations Education Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), this year marks the 20th anniversary of the 1997 UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Higher-Education Teaching Personnel. more..

Show me a leader who has not supported federalism

Oct 7 (DM) Whenever the discourse on Constitution-making came to fore during the past two decades, the bone of contention was the nature of the state with the Tamils wanting a federal mode of governance and the Sinhalese insisting on a unitary state. However, even after more than thirty years since the ethnic problem took a violent turn, both the Sinhalese and the Tamils are fighting over ethnological terms such as federalism, unitary state and right to self-determination.  more..

'There is no crisis in the govt'

Oct 7 (NS) Interview withMinister of Primary Industries and Senior Deputy Chairman of the UNP, Daya Gamage. Q: Is there a crisis in the Govt? A: No, there is no such crisis within the Govt. However, within the group, the members of which are stating that there are crises inside the Govt, crises can be seen. Q: Do you not agree that this Govt has fallen out of favour with the people? A: It is like this. more..

'We challenge the sil redi thieves'

Oct 7 (NS) Interview with JVP MP Bimal Rathnayake. Q: There is a view that in the new constitutional proposals, the Buddha sasana being given the foremost place and the unitary nature of the State have been neglected. What is the JVP’s view? A: Basic draft proposals pertaining to a Constitution and proposals opposed to such have been put forward. There is no proposal among the proposals which would cause an adverse impact on more..

Govt may lose referendum on new Constitution

Oct 7 (DM) The coalition govt of President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has - as one of its primary objectives - the political project of enacting and passing a new Constitution. This requires a two-thirds majority in Parliament and endorsement by the people in an islandwide referendum. More importantly, the govt has been trying to justify its move to introduce a new Constitution saying envisaged Constitution more..

Tourism Leaders’ Summit commenced under President’s patronage

Oct 7 (PSL) Tourism Leaders’ Summit – 2017, held annually in Sri Lanka, in line with the United Nations’ World Tourism Day was commenced today (4) at the BMICH, under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena. The objective of this summit is to create a national discourse on tourism, with the assistance of scholars and professionals in tourism sector, and implement national policies regarding the tourism sector. more..

Human Rights Commission asks President to ensure enforced disappearances bill enacted

Oct 7 (PSL) The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) presenting its observations on the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances Bill has requested President Maithripala Sirisena to ensure the bill is enacted. Commission, presenting its observations on the bill in writing to the President, said the proposed legislation is a positive step towards more..

Orphaned elephants may follow Dehiwela animals in night visits experiment

Oct 7 (ST) Pinnawela elephant herds are likely to have visitors at night. Department of the Zoological Gardens plans to take the night zoo idea to the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage, a senior Zoological Department official said. It will depend on the success at the National Zoological Gardens of Dehiwela which opened for night visits last week, the acting director general of the zoo, Dammika Malsingha, said. more..

Namal backtracks after anti-India protest

Oct 7 (DN) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s legislator son Namal beat a hasty retreat yesterday after leading an anti-India protest outside the Indian Consulate and clashing with police at Hambantota. The young MP used a loud hailer to work the crowd to a frenzy as the Joint Opposition rally marched from the Hambantota beach to the Consulate. Indo (Indian) colony apita epa, Indo colony apita epa, more..

'One rape in every four hours in Sri Lanka'

Oct 7 (DM) Sabaragamuwa Province Governor Marshal Perera said it was a disturbing matter that a rape of a woman take place every four hours in Sri Lanka that carries the reputation as the country that produced the first woman prime minister and the first woman president in the world. Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Textile and Trade Exhibition 2017 he said that schoolgirls were the victims in many instances. more..

Inhuman and brutish: Crime against schoolgirl Vidya planned for porn mafia

Oct 7 (ST) The brutal gang rape and murder of Punkuduthivu schoolgirl Vidya was well planned, masterminded abroad and the crime was committed in a very inhuman way, observed the trial-at-bar which sentenced 7 of the nine accused to hang. Unanimous judgment of the first ever trial-at-bar in Jaffna received widespread welcome from the public who were shocked and angry over the brutal crime 2 years ago. more..

Mahendran pleads ignorance over ‘State Banks meeting’ summoned by Ravi

Oct 7 (DM) Former Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran yesterday told the PCoI that he was unaware about the two meetings summoned by former Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake, where he had asked the state banks in the presence of public officials to bid at a lower rate at the March 29 and 31, 2016 Treasury Bond auctions with a guarantee that the CB would not accept other bids at a higher yield rate. more..

Turning cricket around real businesslike

Oct 7 (CT) We have in a number of editorials been keeping the Sri Lankan sports loving public informed about the numerous problems that have been regularly affecting sports in the country. It is of utmost importance that sports administration be placed in the hands of persons, who love the given discipline and have gained experience through participation at least at school level. A former Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police, Nimal Lewke, a former National Boxing Champion, more..

The Sri Lanka Vision 2025: Its strengths and weaknesses

Oct 7 (FT) Govt has formulated a new vision – Vision 2025. It is quite comprehensive, though a few shortcomings exist. The first component of a vision is a shared sense of purpose which provides an understanding of the need for coordinated collective effort – for subordinating individual interest to the larger objective that can be achieved only by the collective effort. The second component of a vision includes specific and measurable goals that must be achievable and give hope to all who seek it. more..

JVP press conference

SLMC to hold its first meeting with Prof. Colvin Guneratne as chairman

Oct 7 (Island) Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) yesterday said it would hold its first council meeting of the month after Prof. Colvin Guneratne assumed duties as its Chairman on Monday. SLMC Registrar, Dr Terrance de Silva said that although Prof. Guneratne had been appointed last month he had assumed duties on Monday.  Responding to  questions  regarding Wednesday’s incident where medical students affiliated to the Medical Students Action Committee (MTAC) protested outside more..

Police Commission to look into assault in Hambantota

Oct 7 (NR) The National Police Commission has drawn its attention to the assault of an individual who was arrested by an Assistant Superintendent of Police during the unrest during a Joint Opposition protest in Hambantota yesterday. Police Commission will accordingly hold a discussion on the matter next Thursday. Several videos were seen circulating on social media following the arrest of 28 individuals during the Hambantota protest. more..

Five arrested for attempted kidnapping of doctor

Oct 7 (NR) Five suspects including two women, who had attempted to obtain a ransom after kidnapping a doctor, have been arrested. Police stated that the suspects had attempted to scare the doctor residing at Cinnamon Gardens by posing as officers of the Panadura Walana anti-corruption unit and had attempted to forcefully obtain 100,000 rupees and a Gold ring. A three-wheeler used for the kidnapping has also been taken into custody along with the suspects by the Police. more..

Shangri-La Colombo set to become one of Asia’s top MICE destinations

Oct 7 (DM) Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo is set to become the most extensive and versatile events venue in Sri Lanka when it opens its doors by mid November 2017. The hotel will boast over 3,500 sqm of events space including two ballrooms, several function rooms and a private outdoor lawn. Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will be the second Shangri-La property in Sri Lanka – joining Shangri-La’s Hambantota Golf Resort & Spa, which opened in June 2016, and is anticipated to more..

Probe on alleged moves by Australian company to bribe Sirisena’s official in 2009

Oct 7 (ST) Australian media reported this week that the World Bank had banned five subsidiaries of one of the country’s iconic engineering companies for allegedly making inappropriate payments to secure contracts in foreign countries, including Sri Lanka where an official working for the then Minister Maithripala Sirisena is said to have demanded political donations. The media reports said two Australian companies more..

15-hour water cut affecting several areas in Colombo tomorrow

Oct 7 (AD) National Water Supply and Drainage Board stated that there will be a 15-hour water cut to several areas within Colombo tomorrow, for essential maintenance and repairs. Accordingly, the water cut will be in affect from 2 pm tomorrow till 5am on Oct 9. It was announced that Moragasmulla, Rajagiriya, Obeysekarapura and Bandaranayakepura will be affected by the water cut. Additionally all residencies along the Rajagiriya-Nawala main road up to the Open University will also be affected.    more..

UDA to make Narahenpita a Green City

Oct 7 (AD) Urban Development Authority announced that a program will be implemented to transform Narahenpita into a Green City by 2018.  Executive Director of the UDA Sumeda Ratnayake stated that the program will be implemented encompassing a land area of 20 acres.  Additionally it was also reported that four sew housing schemes will be constructed for government professionals. Reportedly the project has an estimated cost of Rs.10 billion and is to be initiated by the end of the year.  more..

eNIC info: Petition to SC on invasion of privacy

Oct 7 (ST) Supreme Court has been petitioned against the Govt’s new regulations to create an electronic database allowing the Commissioner General for the Registration of Persons virtually unrestricted access to any information concerning any citizen recorded with any public authority. The regulations mandate the Commissioner General to  maintain a national register in respect of each application for a national electronic identity card (eNIC). more..

Parents charge class teacher beat their children for not solving math problem

Oct 7 (ST) A group of grade one students of Wawinna Junior School at Wattegama Kandy were allegedly beaten by their class teacher for failing to solve a math problem, parents of some of the students told the Sunday Times. A mother of a six-year old said that her daughter’s back was swollen and had marks of the stick that the teacher had used on her. She said, despite her husband complaining to the principal no action had been taken so far. Another parent said on seeing similar markings more..

No increase in water tariffs: Hakeem

Oct 7 (NR) Minister of City Planning and Water Supply Rauff Hakeem says water tariffs will not be increased through the 2018 Appropriation Bill. He said the government has taken a decision to refrain from increasing water tariffs. The Minister said there is no decision in this regard yet. Minister Hakeem stated the govt is of the view that it is inappropriate to increase water tariffs at a time that the prices of essentials goods have also been increased. more..

Can black soldier fly larvae battle Sri Lanka's garbage crisis?

Oct 7 (EN) Sri Lanka's organic municipal garbage could be digested with black soldier fly larvae, little creatures that are triggering a revolution in the West and East Asia by turning organic waste into valuable animal feed, householders who have experimented say. The voracious little larvae, which look like plump ribbed worms, will devour kitchen waste in a day, consume fish, meat offal and bone, before they decay and start to emit odour, more..

Looking for headlines?

Oct 8 (SO) SLFP rebel group and allied factions calling themselves the Joint Opposition on Friday conducted a protest demonstration in Hambantota under the banner of a so-called Hambantota District Centre for the Protection of National Resources. Politically powerful parliamentarians – young and old - of this group, as well as the former Speaker of Parliament, were the leaders of the unruly protest in front of the Indian Consulate office in the country’s newest international port township. more..

Can Sri Lanka take that giant step forward?

Oct 8 (SL) Despite a multiplicity of contentious proposals some with obviously malicious objectives, crass political opportunism and other negative features evident in the process of making a new constitution, the realization by three main political parties to overcome the bogey of racism that has been holding us back is a giant step forward for Sri Lanka. The UNP and a faction of the SLFP coming together with the backing of the TULF on many issues, despite the incendiary cry that stalled more..

The failed second surgery: Heartbreaking!

Oct 8 (SO) Fifty years after the world first heart transplant surgery an expert team of medical professionals led by Cardiac Surgeon Dr Anil Abeywickrama performed SL’s first heart transplant at Kandy Teaching Hospital on July 7 this year. Groundbreaking surgery brought a new lease of life to the recipient while also bringing renewed hope to other patients suffering from heart failure with the surgery being declared a huge success. more..

Enriching the political class

Oct 8 (Island) Last week’s celebration of 70 years of parliamentary democracy in SL triggered debates and discussions at different levels countrywide. Several Speakers from the Parliaments of country’s belonging to the SAARC were here for the event commemorated with a special session of the incumbent Parliament when the predictable hosannas were sung praising the achievement. Churchill once famously said that democracy is the worst form of govt, except for all the others. more..

Political feasibility of a referendum for the constitution

Oct 8 (Island) The interim report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly is now on the table and there seems to be a stand off developing between the UNP and the pro-Sirisena SLFP over its contents. President Sirisena is being furiously assailed in pro-UNP websites like Lanka e News. Simultaneously we see the noose tightening around the UNP in relation to the bond scam. This is not to suggest that anybody is stage managing the events taking place in the Bond Commission more..

'Tamil Diaspora must seriously contribute to rebuild the country'

Oct 8 (SL) The change in the political environment in Sri Lanka recently saw the head of a leading Tamil diaspora group visiting the country, his first visit since a ban on him was lifted. President of the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) Father S.J. Emmanuel said there are some good changes to be seen in the country, yet a lot more needs to be done. He also called on the Tamil diaspora to not just visit SL for a holiday, but seriously contribute to more..

Supreme Parliament, Sovereign People

Oct 8 (ST) Parliament decided to celebrate 70 years of Parliamentary democracy in Sri Lanka this week, ironically in the shadow of a former Chief Justice going to the Judiciary complaining that the Legislature acted against the law of the land. He is alluding to the recent passage of amendments to the Provincial Council Elections Act controversially passed in the House last month. After all, Parliament is meant to exercise the legislative powers of the sovereign people under more..

Let the best come into politics

Oct 8 (CT) One-time guerrilla, ground-breaking journalist and iconoclast extraordinaire Victor Ivan is today a sad man. At a recent book-launch Ivan told the audience that when he looked around in Sri Lanka he saw it barren, a desert, he said in Sinhala. Not a desert as in a waterless wasteland, but a desert where no new leadership has been nurtured and has grown. This he says is the greatest challenge we as a nation have to face. He blamed the current leaders in politics, business and more..


Action-packed international powerboat events to hit waters in Bentota

Oct 8 (SO) Lanka Powerboat Association (LPA) is bringing two international powerboat events to Sri Lanka this November. This unique, action-packed powerboat event which will feature Formula 2 (Super Cat) and P750/Thundercat powerboats will take place at Bentota on Nov 11 and 12. All of the invited drivers will be providing a breathtaking display on waters of lagoon and sea. The event features two days of white knuckle, edge of the seat racing by int'l champion power boat drivers more..

External Committee to re-haul Sri Lanka cricket at last

Oct 8 (Island) A Test match that seemed to be going nowhere and appeared to emulate the slowest in Test history (between South Africa and England played at Port Elizabeth in the 1956-57 series) at Dubai, suddenly turned into a palpitating drama on the final day. At the end of the fourth day, the Pakistanis seemed to hold the upper hand. An ominous defeat to SL was again the sword of Damocles hanging over the heads of the tourists. The only hope was left-arm leg-spinner more..

Basil drops a bombshell as Mahinda holidays in Japan

Oct 8 (CT) Following repeated assurance by President Maithripala Sirisena, the perspective of Mahanayake Theras'- at least, that of Mahanayake Thera of the Malwatte Chapter- on the proposed constitutional reforms seems to have changed drastically. This was evident, when Leader of MEP Dinesh Gunawardena - who his colleagues identify as de facto Opposition Leader of the country - called on Most Venerable Thibbotuwawe more..

An endless dilemma

Oct 8 (Island) The new national selection panel has been commended for some noteworthy changes that had been made to help revive the national cricket team to get back to winning ways. Their efforts have been acknowledged by both captain Dinesh Chandimal and coach Nic Pothas, who have spoken so highly of the role of the selectors. But earlier this week, they took a step in the wrong direction. They stunned all cricket followers by retaining Chamara Kapugedera for 5-match ODI series more..