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Tamil Nadu CM unhappy with SL's move to impose huge fine on Indian fishermen

Jan 25 (TOI) Tamil Nadu chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Thursday urged PM Narendra Modi to direct the external affairs ministry and the Indian mission in Sri Lanka to immediately register India's strong protest against a Bill introduced in the Sri Lankan parliament which has provisions to impose huge penalties on Indian fishermen, who engage in legitimate fishing in their traditional fishing grounds in the Palk Bay. more..

CEB issues RfP for 90MW of small-scale solar

Jan 25 (PVT) The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) has issued a request for proposal (RfP) for 90 small-scale solar projects of 1MW capacity each in Sri Lanka under the second stage of the Suryabala Sangramaya Programme – Phase II. Approval to go ahead with the RfP issuance was first given back in October last year. Plants will be developed on a Build Own and Operate (BOO) basis and will supply power to the National Grid. PPAs will be signed with CEB for a period of 20 years. more..

Stay Order issued on FCID over Gotabhaya trial extended

Jan 25 (AD) Stay Order issued by the Court of Appeal on FCID preventing any action against former Secretary of Defence Gotabhaya Rajapaksa over the misappropriation of public funds was extended till Feb 15, 2018. Court of Appeal issued a stay order on the FCID preventing any action against former Secretary of Defence Gotabhaya Rajapaksa over public properties following court proceedings on Nov 29. Former Defence Secretary filed a writ petition in Court of Appeal seeking more..

Muslim women in Colombo demand changes to Islamic marriage law

Jan 25 (AN) A group of Muslim women on Monday stood in silent protest against the country’s Islamic marriage law which discriminates against women. Organised by the Muslims Personal Law Reforms Action Group (MPLRG), the rally was held in Colombo, near the Ministry of Justice. Protesters urged Minister Thalatha Athukorale to recognise their right to justice and equality. They want the Ministry to update status of a report more..

Power, Corruption, Lies & Betrayal

Jan 26 (CT) In Sri Lanka, politicians break promises without fear of any punishment. Does that mean the errant politicos are above the law? For the last couple of decades, having made big promises, they do completely the opposite after gaining power. Why cannot we sue the politicians for breach of the contract? JR Jayewardene during his election campaign in 1977, appealed to the Nation, I quote – “Give me 120 good men and I assure you we will fulfil our pledges… more..

Intoxication in a Kakistocracy

Jan 26 (CT) There’s a word in Sinhala that is widely used for which there is no English equivalent. Pevunaa is a word used by those who drink, mostly. Those who almost drowned also use the word to indicate that a certain amount of water was swallowed, clearly without intention to do so. That’s the key here; lack of intention. Tipplers usually add a qualifier: tikka or a small amount. So, if we take the claim literally, a small quantity of alcohol had got into their system without even more..

'Central Bank was robbed: Investors should be crazy to invest in Sri Lanka'

Jan 26 (CT) Member of JO Bandula Gunawardena says the UNP lies, and that the loss from the Treasury Bond scam is over Rs 11.5 billion. "Rs 11.5 billion is a false figure that is apparent on the surface only. I too gave evidence as a witness at the Bond Commission. I told the Commission very clearly on that occasion that the conditional loss that was experienced due to the Bond fraud should be calculated by a Board consisting of financial more..

‘MS-RW unity govt must stay united for the sake of the country’

Jan 26 (Island) Few days after the Unity Govt celebrated its 3rd anniversary. President Sirisena asked the SC – "Whether, in terms of provisions of the constitution, I, as the person elected and succeeding to the office of President and having assumed such office in terms of Article 32 (1) of the constitution on 9th Jan 2015, have any impediment to continue in the office of Prez for a period of 6 years from 9th Jan 2015, the date on which the results of my election was declared. more..

Pitipana Committee and Public Debt

Jan 26 (CT) The Pitipana Committee had better credentials. They were members of the UNP's executive committee. Party apparatchiks do not need to know about public debt. A reasonable idea of the debt owed to the party and the party leader should be good enough. We can make honest mistakes. We cannot claim to make honest cover-ups. That seems the precise intent of our Prime Minister who addressed the country on his follow up action plan on the Bond Report. more..

'Statement made by PM was wrong'

Jan 26 (CT) Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekera says the Bond Report has been sent to the Attorney General's Department and now strong action should be taken by the AG's Department against culprits. Q: As the SLFP, for the first time you are facing this election with a major division? A: This is not the first time, we have had a division. In 1980, Basil Rajapaksa and others divided the SLFP and contested elections in this manner. more..

Liquidating corruption

Jan 26 (DN) Liquidating bribery, corruption and misuse of public property has become a hot topic in the political discourse taking place in the country, particularly in the local govt election campaign. But where are the culprits? The Govt says they are in the JO. According to the latter, however, the Govt is a den of thieves. Similarly, within the Govt the two principal partners – the SLFP and the UNP blame each other for harbouring corrupt members and condoning corruption. more..

Psychosocial rehabilitation for war-affected

Jan 26 (DN) One of the major consequences of the Lankan civil war has been the internal and external displacement of people. The Tamil Diaspora abroad was estimated to be around one million in 2010, or one quarter of the entire Sri Lankan Tamil population (International Crisis Group, 2010a). Less has been documented of the psychosocial impact on family dynamics by the displacements; separations; death, disappearance or injury to bread winner, leaving high percent of female headed households. more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

4,000 MW clean power generation potential going to waste

Jan 26 (CT) Sri Lanka has the potential to generate 4,000 MW of electricity from biomass by using Gliricidia Specium wood; however, bureaucratic red tape and a lack of knowledge among public officials have made it impossible to realize this potential, said the Bio Energy Association of SL's former President, Parakrama Jayasinghe. He pointed out that 1.6 million hectares of land in SL were in a neglected state of chena cultivation, where Gliricidia could be grown to generate electricity. more..

Editorial: When bad eggs are Blue

Jan 26 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena and the SLFP wing of the yahapalana govet would have us believe that all necessary action has been taken against Uva Chief Minister (SLFP) Chamara Sampath Dassanayake, who stands accused of having forced a female school principal to kneel before him. Dassanayake has been stripped of the education portfolio, produced in court and bailed out. But, there remains much more to be done if justice is to be done. more..

Art-felt thank you

Jan 26 (ST) It is an unmistakable roadside attraction in the heart of Colombo, a display of paintings in vivid colours on diverse themes. Green Path has for many years been a hub for local artists who in the absence of a gallery to exhibit their work, display them on the sidewalk in the hope that passers-by attracted by the sight, will stop to take a closer look and perhaps decide to buy their creations. more..

The day august assembly went to the dogs

Jan 26 (CT) On the 10thof Jan 2018, Sri Lanka created history inside the Parliament Chamber at Diyawanna with contemptible behaviour, displayed by some members of the JO and the UNP members, which ended up in a brawl when a special sitting was convened to table the report compiled by the Commission of Inquiry on the Treasury Bond Scam, and 34 reports of PRECIFAC. The pictures displayed on TV and social media showed how the JO Members invaded the well of the House more..

Man on eco-friendly mission

Jan 26 (Island) Unlike candidates who flaunt coexistence like a banner, Sampath Rambukkanage, SLPP candidate for Panmankada (East), ward of the Colombo Municipal Council, walks the walk. He is married to a Tamil woman. Of course, his political ideology about co-existence and equality had little to do with his falling head over heels for Nirmala. In fact, the racial difference didn’t bother him. Despite parental disapproval on both sides they tied the knot in 2000, when more..

Looters as Rulers: Bond scams: Is loss Rs 11 billion or 1.5 trillion?

Jan 26 (Island) PCoI which probed bond scams has recommended further investigations. This would mean that it requires further, thorough, transparent and independent investigation to find out under whose directions Arjuna Mahendran worked and permitted his son-in-law to earn billions of Rupees within a matter of few months. The investigation has to find out who masterminded the racket, to enable Perpetual more..

President can’t punish rouges due to affiliation with UNP: JO

Jan 26 (DM) President Maithripala Sirisena will not be able to punish culprits of the bond scam and other alleged individuals as far as he is affiliated with the UNP, MP Piyal Nishantha said. He said Prez had been unable to take some serious actions against the culprits of the bond scam because of the pressure from UNP members. “Although he flattered that he would take stern action against the convicts of bond scam and other alleged individuals, he has not been able to put his words into action. more..

Fitch affirms SriLankan Airlines’ govt guaranteed bonds at B+

Jan 26 (Island) Fitch Ratings has affirmed SriLankan Airlines Limited's (SLA) US dollar-denominated govt guaranteed bonds at 'B+'. The national carrier's bonds are rated at the same level as its parent, the Sri Lankan state (B+/Stable), due to the unconditional and irrevocable guarantee provided by the state. The state held 99.5% of SLA at end-2017 through direct and indirect holdings. Fitch has rated SLA's US dollar-denominated bonds at the same level as the sovereign due to more..

'Adam’s Peak new footprints: No archaeological value'

Jan 26 (CT) Department of Archaeology says that the supposed set of footprints found close to Adam's Peak, have no archaeological value. Director General of Archaeology, Professor P.B. Mandawala noted that the initial investigation into the discovery, conducted by Dept's Central Province office, had revealed that certain engravings of the supposed footprints have been carved into the rock recently. more..

CPSTL opens aviation fuel filtration unit to save foreign exchange

Jan 26 (Island) Ceylon Petroleum Storage Terminal (CPSTL) has built an aviation fuel filtration unit, which was declared open by Minister Arjuna Ranatunga yesterday. Chairman of CPC and CPSTL Dammika Ranatunga said that according to Joint Inspection Group (JIG) reports, Sri Lanka had achieved GOOD position in supply of aviation fuel and they were hopeful that the new project would help achieve the EXCELLENT position. JIG is an int'l organisation which monitors the standards more..

Lanka Bell connects 50,000+ homes, businesses

Jan 26 (DN) Lanka Bell, Sri Lanka’s iconic telecom operator has achieved a significant milestone of reaching 50,000+ households and businesses with its fourth-generation LTE internet connectivity; Bell4G. Within a short period of time Bell4G has raised the bar from serving 15,000 to 50,000+ customers, swiftly gaining ground as the preferred choice for 4G technology users island-wide. With attractive packages offering multiple-functionality, additional off-peak capacity and more..

Global Rubber Industries opens advanced specialty tyre factory with $ 40 m investment

Jan 26 (FT) Global Rubber Industries yesterday opened a world-class advanced specialty tyre factory in Badalgama with a $ 40 million investment to manufacture radial agriculture tyres for the first time in Sri Lanka. Managing Director Prabhash Subasinghe described the opening as very special not only for GRI but also for Sri Lanka given the fact that it was a historic venture. more..

Hambantota Port Project: FR contesting Framework Agreement

Jan 26 (FT) Supreme Court yesterday deferred to 4 April the fundamental rights petition contesting the Framework Agreement on the Financing, Construction, Operation and Management of the Hambantota Port Project. The bench comprised Chief Justice Priyasath Dep and justices Sisira J De Abrew and Vijith Malalgoda. The petition was filed by Suraj Walgama as a public interest litigation citing PM Wickremesinghe, Minister of Ports, members of the Cabinet and others as respondents. more..

Jaffna International Trade Fair opens today

Jan 26 (DN) Jaffna International Trade Fair (JITF 2018), largest Consumer Exhibition and Trade Fair in the fast-growing northern region of SL, opens today (26) and will go on till Jan 28, for the 8th consecutive year. All arrangements are in place to make it a great success for private and public sector companies, suppliers, buyers/procurers, academics, students and the general public. The event aptly named as Gateway to the North will be held at Jaffna Municipal Council Grounds. more..

GMOA sweeps SLMC polls

Jan 26 (Island) Four members of the GMOA has won elections to four vacant positions in Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) for graduate doctors. SLMC Registrar Dr Terrance G. de Silva, who was also the Returning Officer on both polling days, Tuesday (23) and Wednesday (24), said that GMOA President Dr. Anuruddha Padeniya had secured 6,254 votes, Dr. Nalinda Herath (Ex-Co member) 5,676, Dr Harris Pathirage 5,250 and more..

Sunshine Holdings and S’pore firm to draw Japanese investment

Jan 26 (LBO) Sunshine Holdings has invested 9 million rupees to partner with Strategic Business Innovator, an investment firm to be set up in Sri Lanka. Sunshine Holdings is currently in partnership with Singapore based SBI Ven Holdings, a subsidiary of SBI Holdings and veteran investment banker Viraj Malawana to set-up this new firm. SBI Ven Holdings incorporated in 2007 operates as an investment holding company. Strategic Business Innovator will be SBI Holdings’ liaison office more..

Women in Management (WIM) recognizes Canadian SL women in first awards show

Jan 26 (LR) Women in Management (WIM) launched the coveted initiative WIM AWARDS CANADA 2017 in Toronto. The Awards recognized and rewarded the outstanding women of SL origin who have excelled in their business or professions in Canada. The initiative was powered by Cinnamon Life, the flagship development by SL’s premier listed Conglomerate, John Keells Group. WIM is the respected professional organization for Women in SL with a membership around 5,000 women more..

'Yahapalana govt’s achievements numerous'

Jan 26 (Island) National unity govt, which recently marked the third year in office, has achieved much, Minister Mangala Samaraweera says. Issuing a media statement he said: "Once again, it is an election that will decide if democratic institutions and traditions, painstakingly rebuilt since Jan 2015 will be torn down and laid to waste again. It is an election that will determine if Sri Lankans will live free or under the yoke of fear, impunity more..

‘Give clear picture on Asbestos ban’

Jan 26 (DN) Asbestos sheet manufactures are asking for a clear message from the govt on whether the ban on the manufacturers and use of asbestos sheet was still in force. “However due to reasons best known to the govt and political developments between Russia and Sri Lanka the govt said that the ban was temporary lifted,” said Coordinator of the Fibre Cement Products Manufacturers Association, Anton Edema. He claimed that without a proper study being done legislation was passed to more..

Zimbabwe U-19 lose to Sri Lanka

Jan 26 (TH) Three half centuries from the Zimbabwe Under-19 cricket team players were in vain as the youth team fell to Sri Lanka by five-wickets in the semi-final of the Plate competition at the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup currently underway in New Zealand. The trio of half-centuries from Donald Mlambo, Jayden Schadendorf and Milton Shumba had helped the Zimbabweans overcome a fourth-ball wicket against SL on their way to a competitive score of 259/4 in their allotted 50 overs. more..

SL women take on body shaming barrel ad

Jan 26 (BBC) A gym in Colombo caused outrage after it put up a billboard featuring a picture of a barrel with the text this is no shape for a woman. BBC's reports on the fight to get it taken down. Hoarding for Osmo gym went up in a Colombo suburb last week and the row almost instantly made it on to social media. Both men and women shared pictures of the billboard along with expressions of outrage and disgust at more..

WPC, in rare move, asks public to name new office complex

Jan 26 (ST) The Western Provincial Council (WPC), in a rare move, has asked the public to provide a suitable name for its 16 storeyed new office complex being constructed at Denzil Kobbekaduwa Mawatha in Battramulla. Normally large, new buildings are named after politicians or some other dignitary. Deviating from the normal practice of consulting a literary scholar to propose a name for the building, the WPC has given an opportunity to the public to suggest a suitable name for the first time more..

Catholic Church begins Year of Good Shepherd with Latin Mass

Jan 26 (Island) With 2018 named as the Year of Good Shepherd, the Catholic Church’s first main event this year will be the annual Latin Choral Mass which will take take place at St. Lucia’s Cathedral in Kotahena on the 18th of February 2018. His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith will celebrate the Mass alongside several other Bishops, priests, religious and lay persons. Present at the occasion will be some of the outstanding musicians and singers from Sri Lanka and overseas. more..

Port city to get going by June

Jan 26 (DN) Work on the International Financial Centre of Sri Lanka that will kick start operations in the Colombo Port City will commence in June this year, Minister Champika Ranawaka said. He further said that the China Harbour Engineering Company has agreed to invest USD 1 billion towards the completion of the International Financial Centre of SL, which is a sixty storied three tower building complex. more..

Sri Lanka backstabbed India: DMK President

Jan 26 (Hindu) DMK working president M.K. Stalin on Thursday asked the External Affairs Minister to take diplomatic steps to get the Sri Lankan government withdraw the amendment introduced to stop Tamil Nadu fishermen from entering the Palk Bay. In a statement, he said it was shocking to learn that an amendment has been passed in the Lankan Parliament on Wednesday to impose fine on Tamil Nadu fishermen fishing in Palk Bay ranging from Rs. 50 lakh to Rs. 7.24 crore. more..

Bonds Issue: Cabraal may be connected: SLFP

Jan 26 (CT) The SLFP claims that former Central Bank Governor, Ajith Nivard Cabraal was likely to be connected to the infamous Bond scam. General Secretary of the UPFA, Minister Mahinda Amaraweera, said, "We were all in the Govt of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, so we know what financial fraud took place during that time, including the Greek Bonds issue, amongst others." He alleged that Cabraal could join the SLPP which was full of robbers and the corrupt. more..

PCoI recommendations: Ex-CB chief finds gaping holes in bond probe report

Jan 26 (Island) Former Governor of CB Ajith Nivard Cabraal and former Chairman of CSE Dr. Nalaka Godahewa alleged that there were glaring omissions and gaping holes in the recommendations made by the PCoI in its report. Asserting that the recommendations didn’t reflect what had actually transpired during the commission proceedings, the duo said the omissions amounted to a grave lapse on the part of the probe more..