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CPC loses Rs. 5.4 billion from kerosene sales

Jul 19 (FT) Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) incurred a loss of Rs. 5.4 billion from the sale of kerosene oil in 2017, the Govt told Parliament, but expects sales to reduce with more low income houses being added to the power grid. CPC incurs a cost of Rs. 93.79 per litre. The cost is borne by the Govt and sold at reduced cost to the consumer. A production tax of Rs. 7 per litre is applied. As a result, the CPC bore a loss of Rs. 5.4 billion from kerosene sales alone in 2017. more..

Badminton in turmoil as secretary, treasurer resign

Jul 19 (DN) The secretary general Mohan Wjeyathilaka and treasurer Mangala Gamage of the SL Badminton Association have resigned from their respective posts officials close to the association said. Former Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekara had issued an extraordinary gazette suspending the registration of Sri Lanka Badminton Association, the national association for badminton and further ordered that the election be convened and held to elect new office bearers to SLBA for 2017. more..

Feeding alcohol to toddler: Father says it was water in the bottle

Jul 19 (DM) The father of the baby, who was seen in a social media video, feeding it with a beer bottle, told court yesterday that it was water that was in the bottle and not alcohol, as charged. Four men, including the 40-year-old father of a baby, who had been believed to have fed an alcoholic beverage to a toddler, had been remanded till August 1 by the Galgamuwa Magistrate. However, the father maintained that it was water. more..

Contempt action against Ven. Galagoda Atte Thera: Court of Appeal judgement on Aug. 8

Jul 19 (DN) The contempt of court action filed against BBS General Secretary Ven. Galagoda Atte Gnanasara Thera over his alleged offensive behaviour inside the Homagama Magistrate’s Court was fixed for judgment by the Court of Appeal. Court of Appeal Justice (President) Preethi Surasena and Justice Arjuna Obeysekara informed that judgment regarding this case would be delivered on Aug 8. Both prosecution and defence parties had concluded their oral submissions more..

End of session joy ride to Malaysia for all CPC members

Jul 19 (Island) The members of the Central Provincial Council are scheduled to join a tour abroad to mark the end of the sixth session of the council. Chairman of the Provincial Council L. D. Nimalasiri said it would be a six-day tour of Malaysia. The council members numbering fifty eight will join the tour, the cost of which will be borne by the provincial council. The council members are expected to study the management of waste and environment among other things. more..

No downsizing of Army: PM

Jul 19 (CT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, told Parliament that Army Commander Mahesh Senanayake was willing to meet Opposition MPs to explain the truth behind allegations that the Govt was attempting to reduce numbers in the Army cadre. He responding to a question by JO MP Dinesh Gunawardena, said there were allegations that the Govt was attempting to reduce numbers in the Army cadre and reduce the military strength in SL. more..

Death penalty a red herring: JO

Jul 19 (DM) The JO said the Govt would never implement the death penalty and that the topic had been introduced to divert the attention of the public from pressing issues. JO MP Mahinda Yapa Abeywardane said the Govt had no strength to implement the death penalty. “This Govt waver to the demands of the int'l forces. It would never implement the capital punishment. This is yet another topic put forward by the Govt to hide pressing issues- such as the CB Bond Scam- more..

Minister with underworld bodyguards is Sarath Fonseka: Police sources

Jul 19 (CT) High ranking officers of the SL Police have revealed the identity of the Govt Minister who has allegedly recruited underworld figures into his security detail. Minister concerned was identified as Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka. An informed Police source, on the condition of anonymity, revealed that investigations have uncovered tangible proof of these claims in the form of several photographs. However, when inquired, Fonseka vehemently denied the allegations. more..

SF rejects media report over underworld connexion

Jul 19 (DM) While rejecting media reports that some underworld figures were protected by a Senior Minister, Minister Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka said those reports were targeted to defame and cause inconvenience to him. he said that some media reports had stated that five underworld leaders, whom the Police were looking to arrest, were protecting a minister and had become the private bodyguards of the Minister. more..

Damsel in distress…Lanka in agony

Jul 19 (DM) Her clothes were ripped off; body battered; mind confused and heart burnt; she was raped and dishonoured and violated beyond recognition. All the traditions and values that were associated with a young woman in a rural hamlet were stolen from her, so to speak. For one offender to another successive criminal, her body and soul became a playground; she was defamed, defaced and debased. Yet, while all these undignified and unscrupulous deeds were committed by more..

Mandela and Obama

Jul 19 (DM) What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead– Nelson Mandela The above quote was on the invitation that the South African mission here sent to media requesting them to join the centenary birth celebration of Nelson Mandela that was held yesterday at the Independence Square. It was quite coincidental that the centenary observations in Sri Lanka more..

'Names from outside Rajapaksa family considered for Presidential Candidate'

Jul 19 (DM) Former Minister Basil Rajapaksa, speaks about the presidential election, the status of the economy and the govt’s tax policy. Q: There are a lot of talks about the Presidential Election. There are differences of opinion on the candidate to be selected from your side. Who is the candidate in your mind? A: I do not think a seasoned politician like former President Rajapaksa will take a hasty decision. more..

JVP seeks increased pay scale for Police low-rankers

Jul 19 (CT) The JVP requested the Minister of Law and Order to revise the salaries of the low-rank Police officers according to the current cost of living. The JVP, presenting an Adjournment Motion at yesterday’s Parliament sitting, said that these Police officers in the lower ranks are receiving a salary below Rs 20,000. JVP MP Dr. Nalinda Jayatissa presented the motion. MP Nihal Galappatti seconded it. more..

The unsavoury battle for the nut pie

Jul 19 (ST) The decades-old desiccated coconut industry is grappling with a shortage of nuts. Making it worse, producers allege, are unregistered backyard processors who buy up vast quantities of nuts from growers and, via suppliers, sell kernels or milk extracted under unhygienic conditions to manufacturers of coconut milk powder. Desiccated Coconut Manufacturers’ Association (DCMA) has also appealed to more..

China unresponsive over FTA talks with SL

Jul 19 (Nikkei) The SL govt is exasperated by China's slowness to conclude a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) after Colombo sent Beijing a formal request to resume talks over three months ago. Some observers believe Beijing has turned a cold shoulder after the present coalition govt balked at incurring any further debt. The previous govt of President Rajapaksa formed close ties with China through major infrastructure projects more..

China’s economic contribution has benefited whole world – Amb. Cheng Xueyuan

Jul 19 (Island) China said yesterday that since 2002 its contribution to global economic growth was on an average of 30%. China’s Ambassador in Colombo, Cheng Xueyuan said that his country’s development had benefited the whole world, including SL. "Since 2002,China’s input to global economic growth has averaged around 30%", he noted adding that it had become a major engine for global economic recovery & growth, more..

MR to miss Parliament debate on New York Times allegations today

Jul 19 (AD) Parliament is scheduled to debate the allegations made in a New York Times investigation detailing how China seized ownership of the Hambantota Port and accusing the former govt led by Mahinda Rajapaksa of corruption. The UNP is expected to table the relevant Adjournment Motion for the debate. Parliament debate will commence at 10.30am today and continue throughout the day. more..

Witness complains that former SriLankan CEO ignored procurement guidelines

Jul 19 (Island) Kapila Chandrasena, former CEO of SriLankan Airlines, had insisted on ignoring the procurement guidelines of SriLankan Airlines, set by Emirates, in a bid to award hoarding contracts to Kuma Stickers, Priyadharshani Epitawala, Manager Network Planning and Research told the PCoI on irregularities at SriLankan Airlines, SriLankan Catering and Mihin Lanka yesterday. more..

New Constitution: TNA seeks int’l backing for its cause

Jul 19 (Island) The TNA yesterday reiterated its call for the enactment of a new Constitution before the end of this year. TNA and Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan told the visiting Belgium-SL Parliamentary Friendship Group it was important to enact the new Constitution this year. Briefing the delegation Mr Sampanthan highlighted that the present Sri Lankan Constitution is not enacted based on consensus. more..

Two leaders pay attention on strengthening the Sri Lanka –Georgia ties

Jul 19 (PMD) The leaders of Georgia and Sri Lanka pay attention on strengthening bilateral ties. President Maithripala Sirisena who is on a three day visit to Georgia to the participate in the Open Govt Partnership Global Summit in Georgia and President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili met in Tbillisi to discuss bilateral relations today (18). Prez Sirisena, paying attention on ways to strengthen the economic ties, said more..

PM to launch 5-year National Export Strategy today

Jul 19 (FT) The much-awaited five-year National Export Strategy (NES) that lays emphasis on diversification of exports through strengthening of emerging sectors to chart the next export growth cycle of Sri Lanka will be unveiled under the patronage of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe today at a ceremony at the Temple Trees. The development of this strategy was a central component of the EU-SL Trade-Related Assistance: Increasing SMEs more..

Kleptocracy of Sri Lanka

Jul 19 (CT) The recent news of a Govt member directly engaged in interactions with underworld figures who have been recruited as the said Minister’s security detail has become the latest report to trend. Yet, it does not come as a surprise to many. By now, our society has become riddled with corrupt politicians, politician puppets strung up by malicious figures, criminals turned politicians and vice versa, political leaders who cover up and defend high profile criminals and such. more..

Water cut in Colombo 13,14 & 15 tomorrow

Jul 19 (NR) The National Water Supply and Drainage Board says the water supply to several areas in Colombo 09, 11, 13, 14 and 15 will be restricted for 9-hours from 9pm tomorrow. The water board attributed the nine hour water cut to essential maintenance work. Accordingly, the water supply will be restricted until 6am on Saturday to residences and other commercial establishments along the Baseline road from Dematagoda junction to Kelaniya Bridge and all by lanes. more..

හන්තාන, පේරාදෙණිය සහ ආදරය: I කොටස

Dwindling Sri Lanka rubber output seen deterring investors

Jul 19 (EN) Falling natural rubber production in SL might deter new investments in the rubber products manufacturing industry and even prompt existing investors to go where raw material is available, a senior official said. The govt must urgently take measures to increase natural rubber production and improve productivity of existing plantations, said Sunil Poholiyadde, outgoing chairman of the Colombo Rubber Traders’ Association. The master plan for rubber has many proposals to more..

International Mental Health Nursing Conference begins

Jul 19 (GDI) The first ever International Mental Health Nursing Conference in Sri Lanka will be held at the National Institute of Mental Health in Angoda from 19th – 21st July. A special lecture on Researches of Mental Health Nursing Service will be delivered by Prof. Athula Sumathipala from Uni of Keele, UK at this conference. The opening ceremony of this conference organized by the World Health Organization, Ministry of Health and National Institute of Mental Health more..

Facebook to remove misinformation that leads to violence

Jul 19 (NYT) Facebook, facing growing criticism for posts that have incited violence in some countries, said that it would begin removing misinformation that could lead to people being physically harmed. The policy expands Facebook’s rules about what type of false information it will remove, and is largely a response to episodes in SL, Myanmar and India in which rumors that spread on Facebook led to real-world attacks on more..

Development of national housing and Employees’ Provident Fund

Jul 19 (FT) Singapore has become a buzzword in the media circles today. Media speak is centred round many issues. Extradition of the fugitive CB Governor appointed to the post on a recommendation by our PM, now missing and reportedly taken refuge in Singapore, is the main topic. A recent trade agreement alleged to be highly disadvantageous to Sri Lanka and entered into unilaterally with Singapore, is the other current issue. Politicians in the meantime are more..

Sri Lanka's loss-making Lanka Sathosa to sell high margin goods to get into black

Jul 19 (EN) Sri Lanka's loss-making state-run retail store chain Lanka Sathosa, which has made billions of rupees of losses amid allegations of chronic mismanagement and corruption is hoping to get into profits this year by moving to higher margin products, an official said. "We have to sell essential goods below cost because as a state enterprise we are required to do so," current Lanka Sathosa Chief Executive S. H. M. Faraaz told journalists on Wednesday. more..

Another trial by spin awaits South Africa

Jul 19 (CI) Soon, Sri Lankans might be making jokes about how the captain, the coach and the manager should be banned more often. Dinesh Chandimal, Chandika Hathurusingha and Asanka Gurusinha will miss four of the five ODIs against South Africa, after the ICC meted out its most severe punishment earlier this week since the demerit points system was introduced, but that is not a concern for the next 5 days. more..

Three police transfers with immediate effect

Jul 19 (DM) Three police officers including one Chief Inspector and two police Inspectors were transferred with immediate effect due to requirement of the service the police media division said today. They said the transfers were made following permission of the police commission and the order of the IGP. Chief inspector R.W.W.M.R.T.P. Hanalgoda from OIC Sri Dalada Maligawa to Polpithigama and Inspector H.M.I.W. Bandara from OIC Pulathisipura to Sri Dalada Maligawa while more..

Suwa Sariya 2nd phase to be launched in Jaffna

Jul 19 (NR) The second phase of the Suwa Sariya Ambulance service is scheduled to be launched in Jaffna on Saturday. The second phase will be launched under the patronage of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe in Jaffna. Indian PM Narendra Modi is also expected to address the inauguration ceremony via video conference that will take place at the Jaffna Municipal Council grounds. Indian govt has reportedly granted $15.02 million towards the second phase of Suwa Sariya Ambulance more..

Video: Two elephants of Sinharaja to be kept in separate area: SF

Jul 19 (DM) The two last remaining elephants of the Sinharaja Forest reserve would be kept in a separate region under supervision, Minister of Wildlife Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka said. “Area is about 80 acres within the forest reserve. We hope this would mitigate issues with regard to human-elephant conflict,” he said. He said these two elephants had killed at least 15 people and 200 cattle and destroyed 300 coconut trees. more..

Bail plea of Rangajeewa & Emil rejected

Jul 19 (AD) An application seeking bail submitted by IP Neomal Rangajeewa and the former Prisons Commissioner Emil Ranjan Lamahewa has been rejected by Colombo High Court. The HC Judge Champa Janaki Rajaratna rejected the bail application stating that granting bail to the suspects, while a lot of information is being revealed about the crime, might hinder the investigations. Representing the defendant, President’s Counsel Shavindra Fernando stated that there is no evidence more..

India assists SL in sanitation sector project

Jul 19 (IHC) India and Sri Lanka signed a MoU today on a sanitation sector project under which 3400 toilets would be constructed in Batticaloa District. The MoU was signed by Taranjit Singh Sandhu, High Commissioner of India and Mrs. Renuka Ekanayake, Secretary, Ministry of Fisheries & Aquatic Resources Development and Rural Economy, with the participation of M.S.S. Ameer Ali, Deputy Minister of Fisheries & Aquatic Resources Development and Rural Economy and more..

GMOA threaten countrywide work stoppage next week

Jul 19 (DM) The GMOA today said they would launch a countrywide work stoppage next week, if the authorities concerned do not provide them with reasonable solutions to issues faced by them, during coming days. GMOA Secretary Dr. Haritha Aluthge said that their central committee, that met today, had vested its executive committee with the powers to decide on a date to launch the work stoppage after considering the response of Prez and more..

Sri Lanka shipwrecked fishermen rescued by China dredger

Jul 19 (EN) A Chinese sea sand dredger working on a sea reclamation project near Sri Lanka's Colombo port had rescued two shipwrecked fishermen who were adrift clinging on to a piece of flotsam. The captain of Xin Hai Feng, a vessel working for Shanghai Dredging Company at Colombo Port City project, had spotted the two drifting fishermen who were clinging on to a empty fuel diesel drum. The Colombo Port City is reclaimed by China Harbhour Engineering Company. more..

Ukrainian border guards detain illegal migrants from Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh

Jul 19 (UF) Border guards of the Lviv and Lutsk detachments and the operative and search unit of the Eastern Regional Directorate have detained 13 illegal migrants - from SL, India & Bangladesh, Ukrainian State Border Guard Service has reported. "Border guards spotted six foreigners who did not have any documents with them and watched two people cross the Western Bug River along the border line. Border guards immediately informed their Polish counterparts. more..

Sri Lanka asks AAI to submit business plan on Mattala airport operation

Jul 19 (PTI) Sri Lanka has asked the Airport Authority of India to submit its business plan for operating the country's loss-making Mattala Rajapaksa Int'l Airport in southern Hambantota, Civil Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva told parliament today. His remarks came in response to the Opposition's question asking the govt to disclose the details of the deal. USD 210 million facility, is dubbed the world's emptiest airport. more..

Due compensation, pension: Disabled Soldiers’ Association seeks SC intervention

Jul 19 (Island) The Sri Lanka Disabled Soldiers’ Association has complained to the Supreme Court that when its members had gathered peacefully to protest against the non-payment of their pensions and the other due compensation the police arrested the petitioners. The petitioners have said they served in the North, during the country’s war against terrorism and suffered disabilities. They served in the army for over ten years and were eligible for pension. more..