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China-owned port in Sri Lanka could alter trade routes

Sep 26 (FT) Much has been said — but far less is understood — about the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, centrepiece of Xi Jinping’s expansive foreign policy. That Mr. Xi has ambitions to extend across Eurasia China’s commercial, political and military power is not in doubt. But, the precise details on OBOR remain just about as unclear now as they did four years ago when the policy was unveiled — which countries are more..

Low quality cosmetics flooding the market: GMOA

Sep 26 (DM) GMOA warned that there was a rapid increase in the import of toxic substances for facials because of the absence of laws regulating cosmetics in the country. National Cancer Institute's Consultant Gynecologist Sarada Kannangara said during the past two years cosmetics which include dangerous substances had captured the local market because of the inefficiency of the Health Ministry. He said clause 27 of the 1990 Medicine Act had been annulled in 2015 and more..

Denmark to look into SL adoption case

Sep 26 (CPH) Following revelations by a Dutch documentary that upwards of 11,000 Sri Lankan children were in the 1980s illegally sold into adoption to a number of countries in Europe – including possibly Denmark – the Danish adoption authorities have decided to look into the case. The social case handlers Ankestyrelsen and the adoption agency Danish International Adoption (DIA) have agreed to delve into the scandal and see if any of the children came to Denmark. more..

No refuge in Sri Lanka for fleeing Rohingya

Sep 26 (AT) Amidst an outright snub by the SL govt against Rohingya refugees seeking asylum on South Asian island, country’s growing communal discord appeared to take precedence even as more moderate thinkers called on coalition govt to reconsider its decision on humanitarian grounds and allow the refugees to at least seek temporary shelter. But, in the midst of a series of protests led by hardline Buddhist monks more..

Back to white-vanning days?

Sep 27 (CT) Back in the day a new term entered the political lexicon of Sri Lanka: white-vanning. It was about the use of vehicles, typically white vans, to abduct certain characters that the then regime felt were unsavoury. At times it was used to obtain information on LTTE activists and activities that could have endangered hundreds of lives, as in the case of the brother-in-law of then Senior Superintendent of Police Sarath Lugoda. The man was abducted in Kirulapona and more..

Civil war & quest for transitional justice in SL

Sep 27 (CT) In May 2009, SL’s armed forces comprehensively defeated the separatist LTTE. The day after the war ended, Sri Lanka’s then President Rajapaksa told parliament that his soldiers achieved victory by “carrying a gun in one hand, the Human Rights Charter in the other, hostages on their shoulders, and the love of their children in their hearts.”[1] The LTTE had used the very Tamils it claimed to protect as human shields, and the nearly three-decades-long conflict ended with over more..

'Budget will inspire local industries'

Sep 27 (SO) State Minister Eran Wickramaratne says, in the past two years, Govt has set up two pillars for the future success of the country-one is the pillar of democracy, the other is reconciliation. He said, at present, democracy has been strengthened, the Right to Information Act passed, and Presidential powers reduced through the 19th Amendment. Today, there is no cultural impunity and the judiciary more..

Response from New York to Geneva

Sep 27 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena's speech, at the 72nd UN General Assembly, in New York, could be considered more as a response to the comments made by the UNHRC High Commissioner Zeid al Hussein on Sri Lanka at the beginning of the 36th UNHRC session in Geneva last week. Unlike his predecessor Navanethem Pillay, facing a bad experience when she arrived in the SL during the previous regime, Zeid Al Hussein was given a warm welcome more..

Growing scepticism greets political leaders

Sep 27 (ST) Listening to a discussion on British and European politics on TV the other day I almost choked when one of the participants advised viewers to take promises made by political leaders with a pinch of salt. A pinch of salt, really! I would have thought that a tonne might bring us closer to the truth. And not table salt either. Epsom salt, which our medical room attendant gleefully dispensed in boarding school, would surely be ideal to wash away the lies and deceptions more..

'We will be intransigent!'

Sep 27 (CT) Vanni District MP and Leader of TELO - constituent of TNA, Selvam Adaikkalanathan said those connected to enforced disappearances should be identified, inquired and punished through the mechanisms of the Office of Missing Persons (OMP). "We are of a firm stand that all UNHRC recommendations should be implemented. OMP should be established in our country to examine the cases. more..

UNHRC session: What’s in store for SL?

Sep 27 (GV) The term painfully slow progress has become a standard descriptor for Sri Lanka’s overall pace of implementation of UNHRC resolution A/HRC/30/1  in Geneva. It has been two years since Sri Lanka cosponsored the resolution Promoting democracy, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka pledging in the meantime to implement a comprehensive Transitional Justice (TJ) process. SL’s Foreign Minister at the time, Mangala Samaraweera even engaged with more..

Editorial:  Gang rape of democracy

Sep 27 (Island) What we witnessed last Wednesday was, not to put too fine a point on it, gang rape of democracy. Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has frowned on the manner in which the yahapalana govt secured the passage of the Provincial Council Elections (Amendment) Bill. It has issued a media statement inveighing against the govt for contravening the due legislative process. The passage of the aforesaid Bill is, in our book, the legislative version of Treasury bond scams. more..

Reginald Cooray

A womb of one’s own: Life, abortion and motherhood in Sri Lanka

Sep 27 (GV) From well-intentioned comments about our weight and skin colour, to the insidious experience of being followed as we walk on the street, women are wearily aware that their bodies are public property.  The proposed change to the abortion law does little to address this, but at the very least it offers some relief to the victims of rape – the ultimate violence that occupies the dark end of a spectrum of suggestions, unsolicited remarks, straying hands and force. more..

Six creative career choices in Sri Lanka

Sep 27 (Roar) Sri Lanka has a long and rich heritage of arts and culture. With its strategic location, we’ve been blessed with visitors from across the globe, who have gradually added layers of complexity and hybridity to our art and culture. That said, it’s unsurprising that many Sri Lankan’s harbour great skill in when it comes to art and design, drawing from various schools of art, be it Sinhalese, Tamil, Islamic or Western. Sadly our society has placed emphasis on more more..

'Sri Lanka is a stable country now'

Sep 27 (CT) UNP MP Vasantha Senanayake has been very busy since assuming duties as the State Minister of Foreign Affairs in early June. During his tenure, he has attended several overseas conferences and participated in many state visits and even got the opportunity to meet several foreign dignitaries including the Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel and Minister of External Affairs of India Sushma Swaraj. more..

The steering committee report: Lies right, left and centre

Sep 27 (Island) The report of the Steering Committee could be said to be the draft Constitution in embryo and must be understood as such. However unsatisfactorily rendered it addresses two of the oldest, most vital questions in our contemporary history and indeed that of any state. One is the ethno-national question and the other, the question of models: presidentialism vs. parliamentarism. Taken together, two issues pertain to the nature and structure of the state itself. more..

Unrelenting campaign of misinformation regarding the Disappearances Bill

Sep 27 (Island) Even though the Bill to incorporate into the domestic legal system the provisions of the International Convention Against Enforced Disappearances which was to be debated in parliament has been withdrawn twice by the govt, the campaign to get it passed into law still continues. After it was withdrawn from being debated in Parliament the first time, an English language daily carried a long article by Minister Mangala Samaraweera in August this year trying to more..

Thirimanne keen to atone for dismal showing

Sep 27 (GN) Perhaps the only plus for the Sri Lanka team, in the heartbreaking home series against India where they were routed in all formats, was the performance of comeback man Lahiru Thirimanne during the latter part of the ODI series. The 28-year-old, returning to the side after almost 18 months, made a solid 80, 18 and 67 in the last three ODIs he figured in. Though the knocks were for a lost cause, more..

Sri Lanka Cricket salutes Sangakkara

Sep 27 (CT) SLC takes pleasure in saluting one of its greatest stars of recent times Kumar Sangakkara on the latest honour bestowed upon him by the county of Surrey by offering him an honorary life time membership in the club. This follows Sangakkara's 3-year stint of playing for Surrey for County Championship following ex SL cricketer's retirement from playing in the national team. This act of appreciation follows Sangakkara's honorary membership at MCC a couple of years ago. more..

Under-19 Cricket: Hasaranga hammers unbeaten triple century

Sep 27 (Island) Little known Pathum Hasaranga hogged limelight with an unbeaten 300 runs as Vidyaloka College, Galle amassed 490 for eight wickets declared against Gankanda Central in an Under-19 Division II encounter at Balangoda. Performance of Hasaranga was the highlight of the day as many matches were interrupted by rain. The number five batsman came to bat when Vidyaloka were four wickets down for 69 runs and he went on to hammer 24 sixes & 23 fours more..

Audit Bill & Provincial Council Bill

What is our real cricket structure and how effective is it?

Sep 27 (ST) Have you ever heard of the beggar’s wound? Seemingly, it’s bothersome but, the beggar does not make the slightest move to do something about it, and put an end to the misery. In short, the wound has come to stay. Our local cricket is facing a similar crisis at present. Yes, we had a perfect outfit which ran very effectively, may be a score of years ago. It was not rocket science. It had clubs which had their own necessary nitty-gritties such as a ground, a clubhouse and players, more..

Distribution and revenue implications of new Inland Revenue Act

Sep 27 (IPS) Earlier this month, Parliament passed a new Inland Revenue Act, effective from 1 April 2018. How will the new tax regime affect the tax revenue and what will be the tax burden on Sri Lankan citizens? Is it more pro-poor? This blog tries to answer these questions, using the results of a recent study done by the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS), in collaboration with the World Bank. Direct taxes paid by the people include personal income tax (PIT), more..

Budget critical for consolidation: CB

Sep 27 (FT) As the days tick down to Budget 2018, Central Bank yesterday called on its partner, the Finance Ministry, to refrain from pumping demand through the Budget ahead of possible elections next year, and maintain fiscal consolidation.  Typically govts include handouts, tax cuts, salary increases to the public sector and other populist measures to attract votes, which could undermine fiscal consolidation that the Govt more..

IPS auditorium named after late Dr. Kelegama

Sep 27 (CT) Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS) on Monday named its state-of-the-art auditorium as the Dr. Saman Kelegama Auditorium, dedicating it to its late Executive Director, in memory of his vision, leadership and guidance to the IPS, especially in establishing the Institute's Head Office at Independence Square, a press release stated. The ceremony was attended by Dr. Kelegama's wife, Eranthika Sirimavo Kelegama and his two children, Chandana and Jayathri, more..

amanté launches inspiring new Autumn-Winter 2017 collection

Sep 27 (DM) Drawing its inspiration from the rousing examples of successful women who have persevered against the odds, leading intimate apparel label amanté, unveiled its Autumn-Winter 2017 Muse Collection at a fittingly inspiring showcase. The chic new collection was launched on 21 Sept 2017 at the ARQ Style House, where ladies were invited to find their muse, and celebrate those women that have dared to forge ahead. In keeping with the theme, prominent SL thespian, more..

Coming soon: Tourism Vision 2025 vying for 5 million visitors

Sep 27 (FT) Govt revealed that the tourism sector will be boosted via a Vision 2025 preceded by a 2020 Strategic Plan incorporating input from all industry stakeholders. Further, 2020 will be declared Visit Sri Lanka year. “We need to plan for the tourists coming in 2025 and not in the past. We need to become a 365-day, 24-hour tourist destination. We must attract five million tourists,” PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said at the second more..

Leading global relocations player Santa Fe collaborates with EFL Relocations

Sep 27 (Island) Pioneering freight and logistics provider EFL (Expolanka Freight) has officially partnered with global family moving giant Santa Fe Relocation Services. Announcing the agreement, EFL said the company will has been appointed the sole agent of Santa Fe in Sri Lanka going forward, further strengthening its commitment to developing its expertise in global mobility and relocation solutions. Through this partnership, EFL will be able to assist clients across more..

Tender floated for 50,000 permanent brick and mortar houses for north, east

Sep 27 (FT) The Govt has floated tenders for the construction of 50,000 permanent brick and mortar houses for the north and east as part of resettlement and reconciliation initiative. The move follows Cabinet approving a Memorandum submitted by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, to construct 50,000 brick and mortar houses for conflict-affected families in the Northern and Eastern provinces.  The project is to be executed by the Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation together with more..

Pindapatha stopped, money to be used for welfare work

Sep 27 (DM) JO sponsored Pindapatha programme was suspended after former presidential secretary Lalith Weeratunga and Anusha Palpita the former director general of the TRC had refused to accept money collected in this manner, Ven. Medagoda Abhyatissa Thera said today. Several monks went on Pindapata in Colombo and Kiribathgoda for the purpose of collecting money to pay the fines imposed on more..

Finance Ministry calls for proposals for Budget 2018

Sep 27 (DN) Ministry of Finance calls for proposals from all stakeholders including the general masses to be included in the Budget – 2018, to presented in Parliament in November this year. Since the govt has a plan to introduce a successful budget targeting building a strong Economy, an Enriched country and creation of one million employments, people are invited to submit their proposals to enhance the opportunities in those fields to the Ministry of Finance, more..

Colombo to get 200 Wi-Fi hotspots

Sep 27 (CT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said that 200 free Wi-Fi hotspots will be established in Colombo. Speaking at an event held at the Galle Face Green last Monday (25), Wickremesinghe said the economy cannot be strengthened without joining the digital revolution and so, over 200 Wi-Fi units will be set up in key locations around the city to provide people with free internet access. This initiative is being carried out by the government and Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT). more..

Nobel Peace Prize: Prez Sirisena shortlisted

Sep 27 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena has been shortlisted for the Nobel Peace Prize 2017 by the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO). PRIO Director Henrik Urdal will publish an updated shortlist before the official announcement of this year's winner of the Nobel Peace Prize the PRIO website said. Based on independent assessments, PRIO Directors have offered their personal shortlists for more..

Don’t sensationalize suicides: Prof. Piyadasa

Sep 27 (CT) Incidents of suicide should not be sensationalized and all media in Sri Lanka should refrain from doing so, said Professor Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa, the Head of the Department of Mass Media and Communication of the University of Kelaniya. He noted that most of the locals commit suicide due to failure in love affairs. He added that it's the Sinhala and Tamil media that sensationalize suicides and people have got into the habit of considering suicide as an act of heroism. more..

S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike commemorated

Sep 27 (PSL) The 58th Death Anniversary of late PM and the founder of the SLFP, S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike, was held under the patronage of the Chairman of SLFP, President Maithripala Sirisena at the  Bandaranaike Memorial Monument in Horogolla, today (26). In parallel to this event the world’s first female prime minister madam Sirimavo Bandaranaike and late Anura Bandaranaike were also commemorated. Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga & Ms. Sunethra Bandaranaike more..

Govt to sign extradition treaties with several countries

Sep 27 (FT) Govt hopes to sign extradition treaties with nations in Asia, Europe and the Middle East, revealing that it finds the extradition law helpful to punish Sri Lankan criminals who have taken refuge in foreign lands. Minister Ruwan Wijewardene, moving the Extraditing Treaties SL signed with Russia and the Ukraine published in extraordinary gazette 2022/27 & 2021/47, informed Parliament that govt had also entered more..

Obtaining a Driving licence: Mental Health certificate required

Sep 27 (CT) It is reported that those who apply for a driving licence will be required to submit a mental health certificate along with the medical fitness certificate in the near future. The Chairman of the National Council for Road Safety (NCRS), Dr. Sisira Kodagoda said, that the NCRS decided to take this measure with the intention of minimizing road accidents which are increasing every year. Dr. Kodagoda added that the proposal regarding the matter will be presented to the Cabinet more..

Unemployed grads protest backdoor NCPC appointments

Sep 27 (CT) A group of graduates, demanding employment, held a protest demonstration having entered the North Central Provincial Council (NCPC) premises yesterday. The protestors entered the NCPC compound and closed the main gate to block people from leaving or entering the premises. However, due to the main gate being closed, a few NCPC workers who were attempting to leave the Council, during the lunch hour, were prevented from doing so and this led to heated arguments more..

Showing Compassion: Monk-led mob attacks Rohingya refugees

Sep 27 (CT) Sri Lanka Police yesterday temporarily detained dozens of Rohingya refugees, who are under UNHCR protection in Colombo, after a group of Buddhist Monks and people allegedly tried to storm the house they were being given shelter in Mount Lavinia. Later they were transferred to the Boosa Detention Camp, for their security, after obtaining a Court Order from the Mt. Lavinia Magistrate's Court, more..