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TNA requests for debate on forced Sinhalese settlements in Mullaitivu

Apr 25 (AD) TNA provincial councilmen of Northern Province have requested the Chairman of the provincial council, C. V. K. Sivagnanam to hold a debate over the govt’s alleged forceful establishment of Sinhalese settlements in the Mullaitivu District. They request that, at the next council meeting scheduled on the 26th April, the council should come to an agreement on the matter after deliberating on the proposals submitted more..

GMOA can’t protest over SAITM doctors passing KDU exams

Apr 25 (CT) Nearly ten years ago in Sept 2009, four months after Sri Lanka’s 26-year war against separatists in the North and East ended the first intake of the then newly established Medical Faculty at the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence Academy (KDA) took place. This was at the height of the era when President Rajapaksa and his family were controlling the affairs of this country. Defence and Urban Development Ministry Secretary then was Gotabaya Rajapaksa. more..

Present political setup and economic development

Apr 25 (FT) The present regime came to power three-and-a-half-years back. People voted in the hope of realising the progress that was promised, namely minimising corruption, better economic development, establishing law and order, better media freedom, upholding democracy. The most influential single word they used during their election campaign was Yahapalanaya (Good Governance). The majority of the country wanted a Yahapalanaya and as a result they came to power. more..

ඇත්තටම ආණ්ඩුවට මොකද වුණේ?

Sri Lanka looks to rope in generators at state agencies in emergencies

Apr 25 (EN) Sri Lanka's power regulator said it is looking at roping in standby generators of more than 130 MegaWatts idling at state agencies to support the national grid in emergencies or droughts. A survey of state enterprises like Sri Lanka's ports corporation and another agencies had found dozens of generators with capacities of around 1MW which could be used in emergencies, Director General of Sri Lanka's Public Utilities Commission, Damitha Kumarasinghe said. more..

82 eild elephants killed in Sri Lanka from Jan to March this year

Apr 25 (Bernama) A total of 82 wild elephants have been killed in the human-elephant conflict in Sri Lanka during the first quarter of this year. Director General Wildlife Conservation Department, M.G.C. Sooriyabandara said that the elephants had been killed by gunshot injuries in most cases. He said the most number of elephant deaths were reported from the eastern part of the country. Sri Lanka boasts of 6,000 wild elephants according to the census conducted in 2012. more..

Sri Lanka says can repay bonds, as the rupee plunges after money printing

Apr 25 (EN) Central bank which manages debt for the Treasury said the govt had enough money to repay bonds, denying charges made by some opposition spokesmen, as the rupee slid to record lows after a bout of money printing. "The payment of interest and principal at maturity on due dates (timely payment) and not before the due date is followed to the rule by CBSL in discharging its agency function of managing public debt more..

President intervenes to provide employment to sister of late Vidya

Apr 25 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena handed over a letter of appointment to Ms. Nishanthi Sivaloganathan, a Graduate of the University of Jaffna, and the elder sister of Vidya Sivaloganathan who was murdered in Jaffna. This letter of appointment was handed over to her fulfilling a promise made by the President when he visited the residence of Vidya during a tour Vavuniya last year. Mrs. Swineetha Weerasinghe, a veteran actress and the Vice President of the Vidya Foundation more..

Residents of Wekanda Housing scheme to be evacuated

Apr 25 (AD) Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya has instructed relevant authorities to immediately evacuate to safer locations the residents at Wekanda Housing Scheme at Stuart Street, Colombo 2. He gave these instructions at a discussion held today to determine the action plan to resolve the matter of the dilapidated condition of the building. The building was erected back in 1974 and currently holds a population of about 700 consisting of 114 families and 32 other illegal residents. more..

President discusses problems of Sri Lankan Airlines

Apr 25 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena said that the Presidential Commission appointed to look into the alleged frauds and malpractices in SriLankan Airlines will commence recording of evidence within the next two weeks. He said at a discussion held with the trade union representatives of SriLankan Airlines. Prez stressed the need for continuing the operations of the SriLankan as a quality airline to safeguard int'l recognition more..

Excise Dept. all out to ensure a sober Vesak week

Apr 25 (Island) The Excise Department will conduct a special programme countrywide during the Vesak week, Deputy Excise Commissioner Kapila Kumarasinghe said. The department would deploy its personnel during the week from April 27 to May 03 to conduct raids on illicit liquor selling points and inspect the licensed liquor shops to make sure that there would be no violations of excise laws, Kumarasinghe said. "We have received a large number of public complaints with regard to more..

'A world free of nuclear weapons a priority'

Apr 25 (NR) SL’s Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva A.L.A. Azeez says building a better and secure future for all is a shared call that we can shirk only at our own peril. Addressing the Second Preparatory Committee Meeting of State Parties to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty yesterday the Ambassador Azeez highlighted the importance of the Non-Proliferation Treaty as the global regime for nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament that called for a balanced and more..

USNS Mercy arrives at port of Trincomalee

Apr 25 (SLN) USNS Mercy, the lead ship of her class of hospital ships in the United States Navy arrived at the port of Trincomalee today (25 April 2018) as part of the ongoing annual multilateral Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HA/DR) preparedness mission - Pacific Partnership 2018. SL Navy welcomed the 272.49m long and 32.2m wide vessel in compliance with naval traditions at the harbour premises. more..

Sri Lankan students win medals at ICYS 2018

Apr 25 (NR) Former Deputy Minister Sarath Kumara Gunarathne and 5 Defendants, arrested on charges of misappropriating state funds worth over 14 million rupees, have been released on bail. Order was issued by Colombo HC Judge R Gurusinha. Attorney General had filed 6 indictments against the Defendants at the Colombo High Court over misappropriating state funds during the 2015 Prez Election amounting to 14 million rupees which were allocated for the Negombo Lagoon more..

Fuel prices will not hike: Arjuna Ranatunga

Apr 25 (DN) Minister Arjuna Ranatunga assured that the govt does not intent to hike the price of fuel, at the Cabinet meeting held yesterday. He said this in response to questions raised by several Ministers at the meeting. Minister said that even though the Petroleum Corporation is incurring losses the govt does not intend to increase fuel prices and cause a burden to the public. However, even though it was said that a price formula would be created to determine the price of fuel, more..

3,000 Police officers in Colombo for Vesak

Apr 25 (NR) Police Headquarters say over 3,000 Police officers will be deployed to ensure the safety of the public arriving in Colombo for the Vesak Festival. Superintendent Ruwan Gunasekara said the Colombo City alone has five Vesak Zones which includes 11 pandols. He said Sri Lanka Police will implement a special program to provide security to those arriving in Colombo and to direct traffic during the Vesak Festival. more..

Ministers not in favour of ban on pandals

Apr 25 (DM) Proposal made by Minister of Buddha Sasana Gamini Jayawickrama Perera to the Cabinet yesterday banning Wesak Pandals and Danasalas was turned down by the Ministers severely objecting to the proposal. In the midst of the opposition by the Ministers, Minister Jayawickrama Perera had opined that this was an idea mooted by the Mahanayakes. Ministers who expressed objections had voiced saying that putting up Pandals and conducting Danasalas during Wesak had been a tradition more..

Video: Police and fisheries officials raid Peliyagoda Fish Market

Apr 25 (AD) Investigation Unit of the Fisheries Ministry with the assistance of the police and the Special Task Force personnel conducted a raid at the Peliyagoda Central Fish Market Complex this morning. Five persons along with over 5,000kgs of fish caught using banned methods were seized during the raid. The raid was conducted at 3.00am today based on a tip-off received by the ministry. A lorry that was reportedly used to transport the fish was also taken into custody by the officers. more..

Ammonia tragedy a result of ignoring proper security methods: CEA

Apr 25 (DM) Recent tragedy in Crepe Rubber Manufacturing Factory at Horana where five people died due to an ammonia gas exposure on April 19, had been directly caused due to the lack of attention to the factory's safety programme, Director General of CEA Hemantha Jayasinghe said. Factory which was operated utilizing chemical substances had not observed a due procedure to maintain a special care of more..

Private MP's Bill on 20A in May: JVP

Apr 25 (NR) The JVP says 20th Amendment to the Constitution will be presented as a Private Member's Bill in May. JVP Leader MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake said the process of formulating the draft bill has commenced. MP Dissanayake said the Joint Opposition including Former President MP Mahinda Rajapaksa had agreed to the abolishment of the Executive Presidency based on several conditions adding the JVP is ready to hold discussions with the group. more..

'SLFP's future in Govt will be revealed'

Apr 25 (NR) Minister Chandima Weerakkody says the Central Committee of the SLFP will make a decision in future over its existence in the coalition govt. Minister Weerakkody said during yesterdays SLFP Central Committee meeting, it was decided to make a final decision on whether the SLFP will remain in the coalition govt and the necessary party reforms. Accordingly, he said the Central Committee will convene from the 8th to the 15th of May and make the final decision. more..

SLMC rejects foreign medical team to hold clinics in Sri Lanka

Apr 25 (DM) Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) rejected to register a foreign medical team of around 150 members who had sought approval to hold clinics in Sri Lanka, a spokesman to the SLMC said. The spokesman said that this request had been made through the Sri Lanka Navy where medical personnel attached to the Navy of some other countries including America, Australia and Japan had sought the approval to hold clinics more..

More than 1,500 of PC vehicles not in running condition

Apr 25 (DM) More than 1,500 Government-owned vehicles under the purview of the nine Provincial Councils were not in running condition, a report issued at the Cabinet briefing revealed. This was revealed following a proposal made by PM, in his capacity as the Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs, during the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday. “Accordingly, the Cabinet of Ministers considered the following details submitted by the Minister of Finance and Media, and decided more..

9th Jerusalem Conference in Palestine: Lankan delegation denied visa and access

Apr 25 (CT) A Lankan delegation to the Ninth Jerusalem International Conference in Palestine was denied access by the Israeli Govt. This delegation comprised Buddhist monk Baddegama Samitha, MP Mujibur Rahman, Catholic Priest Rev. Fr. Sarath Iddamalgoda, Moulavi Arkam Noor Amith and Kanagasabapathy Kurukkal. It was revealed that four members of the delegation were denied visa with the exception of Fr. Iddamalgoda, who was given visa but was refused entry at more..

UNP names Akila, Kabir, Navin, Ruwan and Harsha for party positions

Apr 25 (AD) The Politburo of the UNP has decided on the new appointments to the top positions in the party. Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam has been appointed as the party’s new General Secretary. He was formerly the Deputy General Secretary. Minister Kabir Hashim, who previously held the post of General Secretary before resigning this month, has been named as the new Chairman of the UNP. more..

Coup d’etat III, aborted on January 9, 2015?

Apr 26 (DN) The January 8 revolution was sparked by a remarkably provoked electorate that effectively challenged the Rajapaksa’s repressive regime. There had been a holdup in the release of the election results in the wee hours of January 9 morning. Unconfirmed reports stated that announcement of results had been suspended until further notice. Rumours doing rounds said that there had been some STF men rounding the D.S. Senanayake College counting centre. more..

Glorious uncertainties

Apr 26 (DN) The realignment of political forces continues in the aftermath of the failed motion of no-confidence against PM Ranil Wickremesinghe with all eyes now on the much-expected Cabinet reshuffle, which is due shortly. Ironically, even though the motion of no-confidence was aimed at destabilising the UNP by inviting dissent within the party and encouraging UNP MPs to vote against their leader, its net result has been the exact opposite, a destabilisation of the SLFP. more..

'We will agitate for Parliamentary Elections'

Apr 26 (CT) Colombo District MP and JO member Wimal Weerawansa says the SLPP gained an excellent victory at the LG Elections on 10 Feb, “With that the Govt was shaken; there were shocks within President Sirisena’s group. There were similar shocks within PM Ranil Wickremesinghe’s group”. Q: You firmly emphasized that when the sun rises on the 5th it would not be Ranil Wickremesinghe who would be the PM more..

Sri Lanka’s pandemic of sexual violence

Apr 26 (GV) The recent sexual assault of tourists in Mirissa has made headlines but the only unusual aspect of the incident was that it received substantial media attention: Sri Lanka has a national pandemic of sexual violence. Both foreign and SL women and girls are targeted throughout the country, and the incidents are often much more brutal than Mirissa. For example, within the last two years alone, the media has reported gang rapes in Kandy, Colombo, A'pura, Badulla, H'tota, Trinco & Matara. more..

Recurring violence against Muslims

Apr 26 (CT) Peace is more important today than any of the earlier eras because of the positively advantageous characteristics in the post-modern world with its attendant advancement in technology, socio-political vibrancy and religious freedom. Yet violence erupts mainly either on political or religious issues. Violence is the antithesis of peace. If we desire peace, harmony and peaceful coexistence among communities then violence has no place and should be abhorred. more..

Mahapola is a people’s movement

Apr 26 (SO) The Mahapola Scholarship program, introduced by the late Lalith Athulathmudali in 1981, granting 422 students a monthly allowance of Rs. 350 each has now awarded thousands of scholarships to undergraduates. Over 15,000 scholarships are granted per annum, at the rate of Rs. 5,500 per month. Lailth Athulathmudali from his hospital bed in 1987 said, “Mahapola is truly a people’s movement, it should continue to more..

A diversification in Tamil politics evidenced through the recent polls

Apr 26 (Island) Tamil politics in Sri Lanka has been changing during the past decade. The epic change, of course, occurring nearly nine years ago, when the near 30 years, long armed conflict ended with the complete military defeat of the LTTE and the pre-militant era traditional Tamil political elite, through the ITAK-led TNA, adroitly moved into the political space vacated by the demise of the LTTE and dominated Tamil politics for the post war decade from 2009 to 2018. more..

Iranaitheevu: a community reclaims their island home from the Navy

Apr 26 (GV) On the morning of April 23, 2018, about 300 people from the Iranaitheevu twin islands decided to sail there in about 40 boats. They have been displaced since 1992, and the Navy has occupied the island, barring the local people from staying or even visiting their traditional land, on which had hinged their livelihood. The islands also had important institutions like a school, churches, cooperative, weaving centre, hospital and village council. more..

Mahinda Amaraweera

Retrieving the reform agenda: Picking up the pieces

Apr 26 (CT) So long as we remember the fear psychosis that gripped our minds alert to human dignity under the shadowy surveillance state before 8th January 2015, we will not doubt the credentials of the change that it brought about. That it got mired in murky power politics is nether here nor there. There is a saying. Everybody is great until you get to know them. Now, we know most of them. More specifically, we know President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe. more..

Editorial: Of that dream Cabinet

Apr 26 (Island) Midterm electoral defeats have a sobering effect on govts, intoxicated with power. Nothing scares politicians more than the prospect of being trounced. Once elected, they lose the ability to think, and they regain it when they are relegated to the political wilderness. Potentates of the last govt are, today, campaigning against bribery and corruption and taking up cudgels for the rights of the people! Feb. 10 LG polls disaster has jolted Sirisena-Wickremesinghe administration more..

Sri Lankan puppet theatre through the ages

Apr 26 (Roar) Different forms of theatre—such as indoor stage dramas, street drama and puppet theatre performances—have been a part of Sinhalese culture for centuries. In fact, puppet theatre performances, known as rukada sandarshana in Sinhalese, have been traced back to the days of the A'pura and Polonnaruwa kingdoms. At present, such puppet theatre performances are almost unheard of within the country, more..

High Jumpers bamboozled by spike length ruling

Apr 26 (CT) Young high jumpers had to go through agony during the Under-20 high jump from an instruction mix up of officials that finally resulted disadvantages for jumpers. This having taken place and the AASL agreed to a second chance having them compete in the high jump at the trials for the seniors on 27th before finalizing the team for the South Asian Junior and Asian Junior Championship. According to the rules the maximum length of the spike should have to be 6mm for runners. more..

Union Bank records 37% growth in 1Q 2018

Apr 26 (Island) Union Bank recorded an impressive Profit Before Tax and VAT of Rs 246 Mn, reporting a 47% growth YoY, thus setting the pace for its next growth phase powered by a new three - year growth strategy which includes its subsidiaries. A significant growth in core banking operations contributed to the robust performance of the Bank during the period under review, while prudent cost and revenue management drove growth in profits over the corresponding period in 2017. more..

President rewards Commonwealth Games medallists and coaches

Apr 26 (DN) Medallists of the recently concluded Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast were rewarded by Prez Sirisena. Silver medalist weightlifter Indika Dissanayake received a cash award worth Rs. 4 million while Bronze medal winners Chaturanga Lakmal and Dinusha Gomes (both weightlifting), Anusha Kodituwakku, Thivanka Ranasinghe and Ishan Bandara (all boxing) received Rs. 3 million each. more..