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SC case filed against Power Ministry on Lakdanavi

Jun 19 (FT) A Fundamental Rights petition was filed in the Supreme Court yesterday against awarding the tender for the second LNG plant in Kerawalapitiya to a Chinese company, as the Power and Renewable Energy Ministry readies to present a Cabinet paper seeking approval for the procurement. The Cabinet paper is likely to be presented today. The National Movement for Consumer Rights Protection, filed the FR petition. Organisation claimes that Minister Ranjith more..

'Economic sentiment remains subdued'

Jun 19 (FT) The latest LMD-Nielsen Business Confidence Index (BCI) survey reveals that economic optimism in May remained relatively unchanged from the previous month. LMD reports that 7% (up from 5% in the previous month) of corporate executives believe economic conditions will improve over the next 12 months. However, the majority (57% versus 48% in April) of respondents expect the economy to stay the same during this period. While one survey participant notes more..

Sri Lanka grows by 3.2% in 1Q

Jun 19 (FT) Sri Lanka grew by 3.2% year on year in the first quarter of 2018, slowing marginally from 3.5% expansion seen in the fourth quarter of 2017, the Census and Statistics Department said yesterday. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) calculation, which uses 2010 as its base year, for the first quarter of 2018 recorded as Rs. 2,223,856 million, and GDP reported for first the quarter of 2017 was Rs. 2,154,971 million. more..

Loan scheme for homestay operators to upgrade their facilities

Jun 19 (Island) Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) announced the launch of a loan scheme for homestay operators across the country, in line with the budget proposals for this year. All categories in the homestay sector namely homestays, homestay bungalows and rented apartments will be eligible for the loan scheme launched under the guidance of the Treasury and the SLTDA. The loans schemes, the SLTDA said, will help homestay operators upgrade their more..

Department of Census and Statistics automates library

Jun 19 (DN) Department of Census and Statistics (DCS) provides various socio economic and demographic statistics to data users covering a wide spectrum from students, researchers to policymakers and international agencies. DCS’s Library is a special exclusive library having many documents covering survey methodology, National Accounts, Demography and Population, Poverty, Education, Health, Agriculture, Price and Inflation, Income and Expenditure, Labour Force, more..

Talks failed; sack all 25,000 employees if possible: Postal TUs

Jun 19 (DM) Postal trade unions vowed to continue with their indefinite work stoppage after discussions held at Presidential Secretariat failed. The trade unions which launched the strike to rectify anomalies in the recruitment circular issued in 2006, challenged the govt to suspend all 25, 000 postal workers if they could. Post and Telecom Officers’ Union General Secretary H. K. Kariyawasam said they were asked to more..

Staff officers can obtain police security to open post offices

Jun 19 (DM) Post Master General said postal staff officers can obtain police security if its necessary to reopen post offices which had been closed due to the ongoing postal strike seeking solutions to the Public Administration Circular 06/2006 over recruitment. Post Master General Rohana Abeyratne, said postal staff officers were responsible to provide necessary facilities and security to open their relevant post offices. Accordingly, IGP Pujith Jayasundara has also more..

SriLankan: 51% of the losses was accumulated interest

Jun 19 (DM) Minister Lakshman Kiriella said yesterday the bank interest accumulated over a period of time accounted for 51 per cent of the total losses incurred by SriLankan airlines. He said this had led him to seek concessions from the lending banks. The minister told Daily Mirror that during the previous govt several aircraft were bought over the prevailing market rates a leased out at unfavourable rates had contributed to the losses that were a burden to this govt. more..

State institute losses exceed Rs. 50 billion in 2017: Speaker

Jun 19 (DN) The losses incurred by govt institutions last year is over Rs. 50 billion, Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said. He pointed out that these funds could have been used for the welfare of the public or economic development, if proper public finance management was carried out by these institutes. He said these losses should draw more public attention. “Instead we see reports of 118 MPs who are alleged to have been involved in the CB bond issue, more..

Deputy Minister says MR’s portraits hang in Chinese companies

Jun 19 (SL) Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake claimed that portraits of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa can be seen hanging in Chinese companies in China. He said that during a visit to China he saw Rajapaksa’s portrait hanging in the office of a leading Chinese company. He says this shows the Chinese have a special place in their hearts for Mahinda Rajapaksa as Rajapaksa has sold Sri Lanka to China. Rajapaksa led Govt had signed several agreements with China more..

Megapolis Ministry discusses land issues with public

Jun 19 (DN) A forum to answer questions relating to land and construction issues raised by the public in the Colombo district, was held at Arcade Independence Square, yesterday. The event was organised by the Megapolis and Western Development Ministry, to mark the 40th anniversary of the Urban Development Authority (UDA). It was held under the patronage of Minister Champika Ranawaka and was participated by representatives of 13 local govt bodies as well as more..

Outgoing UNHR Chief commends Sri Lanka

Jun 19 (DM) Outgoing UN Human Rights High Commissioner Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein commended Sri Lanka and several other countries for hosting at least five visits by thematic mandates in the last 5 years. The other countries which hosted at least five thematic mandates were Argentina, Australia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Chile, Georgia, Ghana, Greece, Honduras, Italy, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Republic of Korea, Serbia, Tunisia, Ukraine, more..

All leave of postal employees cancelled

Jun 19 (NR) Post Master General Rohana Abeyratne has announced that all leave of postal department employees have been cancelled. In a statement the Postmaster General said all postal employees who fail to report to work today will be deemed as vacated from their posts. Accordingly an ultimatum has been issued for all staff including, permanent, non-permanent, casual, substitute and acting staff to report to their duty stations. Post Master General Rohana Abeyratne said more..

33 people shot dead this year; 24 murder cases solved

Jun 19 (DM) At least 33 people were shot dead countrywide in first five months of this year, SP Ruwan Gunasekara said. He said so far 24 murder cases had been solved and investigations are underway in regard to the rest. Colombo Crimes Division (CCD) had arrested 17 suspects in connection with organized crimes in Colombo and its suburbs during the same period. He said among the arrested were accomplices of underworld leaders, Makandure Madush, Angoda Lokka, more..

Special audit report on Diplomatic service performance soon

Jun 19 (DN) A special audit report on the performance of Sri Lanka’s diplomatic service will be released shortly, Auditor General Gamini Wijesinghe said. He said his Department is currently working on the document and the Department officials would be sent to diplomatic missions of Sri Lanka overseas to collect the necessary information. He was addressing an awareness programme for Parliamentary Journalists conducted by more..

Court again upholds supremacy of Parl.

Jun 19 (DM) Supreme Court had given two landmark rulings last week. Nonetheless it is not clear and too early to say whether SL society at large or at least the people concerned in particular paid sufficient attention to them. One was the case filed against Ceylon Tobacco Company (CTC) for causing cancer to a man in which the court ordered CTC to pay 400,000 to the man’s wife as cost as the CTC had delayed the case by appealing against an order made by the District Court where more..

Singapore’s Hub success and SL’s choices

Jun 19 (DM) Trump – Kim summit became the story for the global media last week, the multitude of narratives were presented in both legacy and social media platforms from a plethora of agents representing traditional security scholars, media personalities to millions of interested global citizens. From a Sri Lankan perspective the geo strategic and security implications of the joint agreement stemming from the Singapore summit is an analysis in progress. more..

SLAS seeks huge new allowance to attract top level graduates

Jun 19 (ST) Sri Lanka Administrative Service (SLAS) has called for a new monthly allowance ranging from Rs 50,000-15,000 for all its 2,376 officers in a move that highlights the urgent need for a national policy on salaries. A Cabinet memorandum submitted this week claims that a failure to upgrade SLAS salaries has caused a rapid drop in new graduates of high capacity joining the service; and that, during the past few years, tendency of male graduates— more..

Lost in time: Second mass grave discovered in Mannar

Jun 19 (CT) They found the bones in the sand. The discovery of human skeletal remains were first made in March, when a private soil inspector observed bone-like material found in a sample of soil sent to him for analysis. The soil samples were sent to the inspectors, by the CECB which was charged with conducting field inspections of land plot 35, Medawachchiya-Talaimannar Road, Mannar in the latter part of 2017. more..

SLC: Time to think out of the box: Aravinda

Jun 19 (SO) Former SL cricket skipper Aravinda de Silva says ex-players remain frustrated with the game’s administration after recommendations they had made over the years to improve the sport had gone unheeded by the authorities. What Sri Lanka cricket needed was to insert professionalism and non-partisanship to the administration of the game, de Silva said, after a host of former cricket stars publicly rejected more..

Tourism threatens to upstage garments

Jun 19 (CT) Tourism, for the first time in the island’s history, became Sri Lanka’s second highest debt-free foreign exchange earning industry in January, beating traditional rivals garments, which held this position for the past eight years since 2010. Tourism earnings in January fetched a figure of US$ 458 million, up 12.7% year-on-year (YoY), whereas garments grew at a sluggish pace of 1.99% YoY to US$ 434.8 mil in same period, more..

Sri Lanka fishermen threaten more action over fuel hike

Jun 19 (UCAN) Sri Lankan fishermen are urging the govt to further reduce the price of fuel to 44 rupees (US$0.27) per liter to protect the fishing industry and their livelihoods after a confusing few weeks where prices have been raised and lowered. Fishing organizations met recently with cabinet ministers and Vijith Vijayamuni Zoysa, the minister of Fisheries and Rural Economic Affairs, to discuss the matter. more..

Buddhist Affairs Minister to meet President today to discuss jailing of Gnanasara Thera

Jun 19 (Island) Minister of Buddhist Affairs, Gamini Jayawickrama Perera will meet Prez Sirisena today to discuss the imprisonment of BBS General Secretary Ven. Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera. Minister will also hold discussions with Minister of Justice, Thalatha Atukorale. General Secretary of the JHU Champika Ranawaka told the media, that a separate court should be established to hear cases against Buddhist monks. more..

'Sri Lanka's poor paying sky high prices as protection'

Jun 19 (EN) Sri Lanka is bringing an anti-dumping law and countervailing duties to help local businessmen who may sudden competition from foreign products, but there is no protection for consumers who paying sky high prices for protectionism, a minister has said. While protecting domestic businesses that can create jobs in some sector consumers are paying sky high prices due to unreasonable taxes, and they cannot even more..

New type of petrol for three-wheelers and motorcycles

Jun 19 (AD) Minister of Petroleum Resources Development Arjuna Ranatunga stated that a new type of petrol will be introduced for three-wheelers and motorcycles. He stated this attending the event for handing over the appointment letters for the newly appointed engineers of the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CEYPETCO). He also said that the studies being conducted regarding this are successful. more..

Army warns legal action against harbouring absentees, deserters

Jun 19 (DM) Sri Lanka Army said that they are continuing countrywide operations to arrest its absentees or deserters and warned legal action against those who would be harbouring them. Issuing a statement SL Army Headquarters appealed all concerned in earnest to desist from aiding or abetting the army deserters or absentees, harbouring or using them for any anti-social acts since such misdeeds as more..

Heart stopping situation at National Hospital: Surgeries face cancellation

Jun 19 (CT) The Cardio Thoracic Unit of the National Hospital of Sri Lanka in Colombo (CTU/NHSL) said it would be forced to cancel hearts surgeries in one of its theatres if its air conditioning (AC) continued to malfunction. NHSL sources said that they had been compelled to cancel two heart surgeries scheduled yesterday when the AC in one of the NHSL’s two Cardiac Theatres stopped working after more..

Saving Cricket

Jun 19 (CT) Last Sunday SL captain Dinesh Chandimal denied tampering with the ball by using a sweet in his pocket, before rescuing his team in partnership with Kusal Mendis on the fourth day of the second Test against the West Indies. Following the controversy of day three of the test match against West Indies, when the start of play was delayed by two hours with the Sri Lankan captain refusing to lead his team onto the field for the continuation of the West Indies first innings, more..

Dilemma 2: The Public Service

Jun 19 (FT) “One quality I admire about the Sri Lankans is their capacity to accept, or let us say reconcile with all the wrongs happening in their lives. Things that we in the West get het-up about, fazes them not. They take them as things to be endured, not challenged; yet another impediment in an endless cycle of life and death. “Somebody from the Works Department will come and dig up in front of their house, blocking access. They write to a Govt agency, there is no response. more..

මහින්ද මහත්මයා එනකම්....

2 French naval ships arrive at port of Colombo

Jun 19 (SLN) The naval ships Dixmude and Surcouf belonging to the French Navy arrived at the port of Colombo this morning (18) on a goodwill visit. The ships were welcomed by the SL Navy in accordance with naval traditions. The two French naval ships; Dixmude and Surcouf are commanded by Captain Jean Porcher and Commander Christine Ribbe respectively. Accordingly, Surcouf remains to be the first lady officer-commanding naval ship arrived at the port of Colombo till date. more..

IP Neomal Rangajeewa and Prisons Commissioner remanded till 3rd July

Jun 19 (AD) Inspector of Police (IP) Neomal Rangajeewa and Prisons Commissioner Emil Ranjan Lamahewa, who were arrested over the Welikada Prison clashes in 2012, have been further remanded until July 03. The order was given by the Colombo Magistrate’s Court. IP Rangajeewa of the Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB) was arrested by the CID on March 28 over the alleged killing of inmates at Welikada prison during the clashes in 2012. Lamahewa, who was the then more..

15% VAT on channelling fees, surgeries to be removed

Jun 19 (AD) Cabinet has decided to remove the 15% Value Added Tax (VAT) on doctors’ consultation fee, channeling fee and professional charges with effect from July 1, Minister Mangala Samaraweera said. The request was made by the Minister Rajitha Senaratne on the instruction of Prez and PM. Minister said that VAT was removed from OPD services in 2016, a decision he said was they took as a compassionate govt. more..

Avant-Garde corruption case: Gota’s revision petition fixed for support

Jun 19 (DN) A revision application filed by Former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa seeking an order to stay the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court proceedings pertaining to Avant-Garde corruption case was fixed for support on July 2 by Court of Appeal today. Through this petition, Gotabaya Rajapaksa also challenged Colombo Chief Magistrate's decision to refuse preliminary objections raised by him regarding the Avant-Garde corruption case. more..

Posts Minister to introduce tailored recruitment procedure

Jun 19 (DM) Post, Postal Services and Muslim Religious Affairs Minister M.H.A. Abdul Haleem said today a tailored recruitment procedure will be introduced to the Department of Posts to overcome postal issues. Responding to a journalist at a news conference, he said following a discussion with the National Salaries' and Cadres' Commission, the chairman had agreed to introduce a separate service minute for the department. The minister said there was a delay in resolving the matter, more..

Video: IUSF protesters teargassed

Jun 19 (DM) Police fires tear gas and water cannons to disperse protesting university students near the Parliament Roundabout in Battaramulla. The anti-SAITM protest march, organised by Inter University Students’ Federation (IUSF), commenced from near the University of the Visual & Performing Arts in Colombo this morning and caused severe traffic congestion as they marched towards the Parliament. more..

SLHRC to probe Jaffna shooting

Jun 19 (NR) The SL Human Rights Commission has launched an investigation into the incident where one person died in a shooting carried out by Police in Mallakam, Jaffna. The Commission has launched the investigation following a complaint lodged at the Jaffna District office. Accordingly members of the Commission have visited the crime scene and have obtained witnesses accounts. Meanwhile a Police investigation is currently underway over the incident following directives more..

Bail plea of President’s former Chief of Staff and ex-STC chairman postponed

Jun 19 (AD) The Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court has postponed announcing the decision on the bail applications of President’s former Chief of Staff, H.I.K. Mahanama and former Chairman of the State Timber Corporation (STC), P. Dissanayake, until the 26th June. The decision was slated to be announced today (19), however the Colombo Chief Magistrate Ranga Dissanayake said the order has not yet been prepared yet. In a report submitted to the court, the Bribery Commission made more..

The guasi Director of Sri J'pura General Hospital suspended from board

Jun 19 (CT) Dr Susitha Senaratne, regular medical officer and quasi-director of Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital (SJGH), formerly attached to the National Hospital had been ordered to be removed from the Board of Directors of SJGH with immediate effect by the Court of Appeal in a verdict delivered today (18.06.2018) under the case hearing of CA WRIT 184/2018. Senaratne, possessing no qualifications what so ever to hold the post more..

Video: Ven. Gnanasara Thera’s appeal postponed till June 22

Jun 19 (DM) The hearing into the appeal against the judgement delivered on the General Secretary of the BBS, the Venerable Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero, was postponed today as official from the Attorney General’s Department were not present. The hearing into the appeal was to be conducted by the Homagama Magistrates’ Court today but it was postponed to June 22. Gnanasara Thero, who was found guilty of threatening the wife of journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda, Sandya Eknaligoda, more..