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Dilan Perera

Walkers return determined that the journey must go on

Jun 28 (SO) After completing a gruelling 73- day walk around Sri Lanka to create awareness on mental health and suicide prevention, Nivendra Uduman, Ranil Thilakaratne and Sara Nazoor are back in Colombo. Counselling psychologist, Nivendra Uduman spoke to the Sunday Observer about his journey and shared his experiences with us. He said that it is difficult to find words to describe such a surreal experience. “I am still processing the journey that Ranil, Sara and I completed. more..

The emerging political vacuum in Sri Lanka: Is JVP the answer?

Jun 28 (GV) If there is one question that troubles many rights activists in Sri Lanka today, it is the current political instability within the coalition Govt led by Ranil Wickremesinghe and Maithripala Sirisena govt and their seeming inability to stop the Joint Opposition, unofficially spearheaded by the Rajapaksa family, from capturing power again. Both President Sirisena and PM Wickremesinghe have lost the political credibility they had in January 2015. Sirisena’s somersault in fortune was more..

Protecting country’s life-giving waterways need of the hour

Jun 28 (CT) In a long-term study, carried out by the Peradeniya Uni, it has been revealed that the Mahaweli River which is a catchment area the size of 1/6 of the area of Sri Lanka; and on which 90% of the country depends on has, by now, become one of the most polluted rivers of the world. Senior lecturer at the Dept of Geography at the Peradeniya Uni Dr. Lalitha Dissanayake has conducted this study on Mahaweli River more..

How significant is Kensington Oval victory

Jun 28 (Island) Sri Lanka defeated West Indies by four wickets on Tuesday, June 26 here at Kensington Oval, Bridgetown, Barbados. By doing so they levelled the three-match series at 1-1. What significance does this victory hold? Here are some answers: * Kensington Oval was established in 1871. It was formerly known as Pickwick Cricket Club. Its approximate capacity is 28,000. The inaugural Test of the West Indies was held here in 1930. more..

LB Finance records Rs. 7.8 b PBT in FY18

Jun 28 (FT) LB Finance has accomplished a stellar performance for the year ended 31 March 2018 with a profit before tax of a record Rs. 7.8 billion. In a statement LB Finance said its Operating Profit before Tax on Financial Services crossed the Rs. 7Bn milestone to reach Rs. 7.8 b as at March 31, 2018, a growth of 13.2% over the previous year. Total operating income recorded a growth of 20.4% reaching Rs. 13.5 b. Net interest income, main source of revenue, grew by 21.4% more..

Govt to release Rs. 10 b development finance: PM

Jun 28 (FT) Govt plans to release Rs. 10 billion in development finance to the private sector, particularly targeted at large-scale companies willing to expand their businesses overseas and improve competitiveness, an upbeat PM Ranil Wickremesinghe announced this week. Speaking at the Sri Lanka Institute of Directors (SLID) AGM on Tuesday, Wickremesinghe noted that the Finance Ministry was in the midst of formulating more..

DIMO and Moratuwa University unveil Formula Student 2018 race car

Jun 28 (CT) Diesel & Motor Engineering (DIMO), with students from the Mechanical Engineering Dept of Uni of Moratuwa, unveiled the DI-MORA P2, a race car built by the university students to participate in the world’s biggest student motorsport competition, Formula Student 2018. Formula Student 2018 will be held in the UK from 11 to 15 July 2018 and is expected to feature over 3,000 students, 5,000 attendees, 250 industry professionals and over 90 universities more..

Has SLC lost the plot on Chandimal’s alleged ball tampering?

Jun 28 (DN) Having viewed the purported footage released by ICC of SL skipper Dinesh Chandimal’s alleged ball tampering during the 2nd SL – WI Test match, it would appear there is MERIT in the allegation. This does no credit to this country and is reflective of what is happening in the wider arena of its governance. Nevertheless this must be viewed in the context of current realities which apply to this allegation which include: Over a long period of time no one in authority in the ICC has objected more..

Darun Nusra children’s home abuse case: Children without edu for months

Jun 28 (CT) Twenty-five civil society organizations have signed a petition, condemning a move by the Department of Probation (Western Province) and the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) to send children, relocated from the Darun Nusra orphanage in Dehiwala on a Court order, back to that orphanage. The petition has been signed by the Affected Women’s Forum, based in Akkaraipattu, Akshaya, more..

Out there it was a mental game: Thilan

Jun 28 (Island) At Kensington Oval, the raw Lankan batters were in for an induction into fierce fast-bowling. In the third Test where the home team was about to snatch a series win on Monday, Sri Lanka fought back well to avert the effort. There was drubbing in the first Test. The second one in St. Lucia was so close that they were denied a win mainly due to shortage of time. Coming into Barbados’ green-top, nobody imagined a series-levelling SL victory in just over three days. more..

IWS aviation launches SL’s first aerodrome

Jun 28 (DN) IWS Aviation, launched SL’s first privately owned fully fledged aerodrome with an investment of over Rs 200 million in Welisara. Facilities at the aerodrome include landing and parking spaces, line and base maintenance for Airbus and Bell Helicopters, Aircraft on Ground Help Desk (AOG) support, crew coordination and Air Operators certificate (AOG) 24/7. Arthur Senanayake, Chairman – IWS Holdings Group said the hanger can accommodate six helicopters more..

Who needs football? Cricket has a billion fans, survey finds

Jun 28 (AFP) The football World Cup may be attracting viewers across the planet but cricket has a huge audience too, with a fanbase of more than a billion people, a major new survey says. The report, conducted by Nielsen Sports for the ICC, put the number of fans at 1.039 billion – mostly male, living in South Asia, and with an average age of 34. However, 39% are female, the survey says, adding that more..

Pohottuwa’s President and the greying of the Rajapaksas

Jun 28 (LBO) Former Prez Mahinda Rajapaksa was born on Nov 18, 1945. A day after he turned 60 years old, on Nov 19, 2005, he assumed the Presidency. He had just narrowly defeated current PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was 56 at the time. By the time the 2020 Prez election rolls around, Mahinda Rajapaksa will be 74 years young! Because the constitution includes a two term limit on the Presidency, he will have to choose a successor to contest the election who will in turn more..

Sri Lankan lands on Indian shore by illegal ferry, arrested

Jun 28 (TOI) A SL national, who reached the Indian shore in the district on Tuesday night through an illegal ferry was arrested by the Q branch police. He had come with two more people. While the boat in which they had come was seized, police are searching for two more SL nationals. SL national was arrested based on a tip-off. They had increased vigilance on the shores of Rameswaram and nearby areas. One of the teams posted at the Valangapuri beach near Uchipuli, spotted a man roaming more..

Sri Lanka formula fuel price on 5th of every third month

Jun 28 (FT) Finance Ministry has been given the go-ahead by Cabinet to establish a committee to update fuel prices on the fifth day of every third month. Govt last month announced the introduction of a cost based price formula for fuel to be executed from 11 May. Cabinet this week approved a Cabinet paper presented by Minister Mangala Samaraweera to appoint a committee with members from the Treasury and more..

'Killing of Leopard: A non-bailable offence'

Jun 28 (DM) Lawyer and environmental protection activist Jagath Gunawardena said the killing of the leopard by villagers at Ambalakulam in Kilinochchi was a non-bailable offence under the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance. He told Daily Mirror under Section 30 (2) of the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance the killing or harming such an animal would be a punishable offence and liable for imprisonment and fine on the discretion of the Court. “As provided by Section 67B of more..

SLANA calls foul over THC revenue loss

Jun 28 (FT) The Sri Lanka Association of Non-Vessel Operating Common Carriers (NVOCC) Agents (SLANA) on Tuesday called on the Government to overturn a 2013 gazette notification, which mandates that all charges on containerised cargo be inserted into an all-inclusive freight. SLANA claims the move, which came into effect in 2014, effectively prohibits NVOCCs from recovering shore-based costs such as Terminal Handling Charges (THCs). more..

Dispute over toddy leads to child’s murder

Jun 28 (CT) In a shocking development, it has come to light, following investigations conducted by the Police that a dispute over stolen toddy had led to the revenge killing of a six-year-old girl of Kattupulam, Chulipuram in Jaffna. This had been revealed when a 22-year-old suspect who had been arrested by Vaddukoddai Police confessed to the murder, Police said. The suspect was arrested along with five others and produced before more..

Arjuna wants probe on bookies

Jun 28 (Island) World Cup winning Captain and Minister Arjuna Ranatunga said that he would soon formally request Minister Mangala Samaraweera to examine profits made by bookies on days the national cricket team lost int'l matches under controversial and arguable circumstances. He said so after attending a public service project at the Balapowa Sri Sudarmarama Purana temple, in Udugampola. He warned of dire consequences unless the Finance Ministry stepped in. more..

SEC clears Rs. 667.5mn Anilana private placement deal

Jun 28 (DM) The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has cleared a private placement deal the troubled Anilana Hotels & Properties PLC was trying to enter into with Singapore-based Somap International Private Limited, since last year. Anilana will issue 513.4 million new shares to Somap at Rs.1.30 a share, to raise Rs.667.5 million. In return, Somap International will receive a 51 percent stake in Anilana. The Anilana share last traded at Rs.1.10 on the Colombo bourse. more..

Army to cooperate with HRCSL to resolve screening issue of UN peacekeepers

Jun 28 (SLA) Sri Lanka as one of the Troop Contributing Countries (TCC) to the UN since the year 2004 has been in the practice of sending her troops for UN Peacekeeping assignments in large groups in close collaboration with UN Dept of Peacekeeping Operations (UNDPKO). To be in line with the UN Secretary General’s decision No. 2012/18 on 11 Dec 2012 in relation to screening of UN personnel for Human Rights, more..

Pakistan’s Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Chairman arrives in Sri Lanka

Jun 28 (SLA) Admiral Ravindra C. Wijegunaratne, Chief of Defence Staff, together with Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army welcomed Pakistan’s Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC), General Zubair Mahmood Hayat, NI (M) who arrived in Sri Lanka on a 4-day official visit on Wednesday. General Hayat, the 17 CJCSC of Pakistan who is here on an invitation extended by Admiral Ravindra C. Wijegunaratne is scheduled to call on more..

Special islandwide 2-day Police operation: Over 2,300 arrested

Jun 28 (CT) A special operation, conducted island-wide, by the SL Police, under the supervision of IGP Pujith Jayasundara, with the participation of 14,070 officers, on 26 June and yesterday, resulted in 2,322 crime-related arrests and 5,254 arrests for vehicular offences, all of which are pending legal action. The purpose of the operation was to reduce the rising crime rate and motor accidents. 1,796 roadblocks were set up, 58,042 vehicles were searched, 58,042 people were searched and 650 intoxicated more..

'SL sleepwalking into a Rajapaksa dynasty'

Jun 28 (DM) Sri Lanka is sleepwalking into a Rajapaksa dynasty characterized by illiberal democracy, state-dominated inefficient capitalism and ethnic chauvinism, after a failed test of good governance by an unholy coalition of left and right wing parties for three years, according to Prof. Razeen Sally, Chairman of think tank, IPS. Delivering a public lecture last week on the topic Capitalism in Asia and what it means for SL, more..

Blood is thicker than water

Jun 28 (DM) A big row was bedeviling the Pohottuwa in the recent past. It was a stalwart from a political party in Gampaha who had set the ball rolling. In fact, it was this row that deprived the Katana doctor madam of the deputy chair of the Diyawanna council. The dispute over whom the party should field as their candidate at the upcoming big poll is said to have led to this row in the party. When one faction was insisting that B of the R-family be groomed as the party candidate, more..

Amnesty International urges Govt to take action against threats to Sandhya Ekneligoda

Jun 28 (AI) Sri Lankan authorities must urgently take action against those threatening human rights defender Sandhya Eknaligoda, Amnesty International said today. Over recent days, Sandhya Eknaligoda, a distinguished campaigner against enforced disappearances and the wife of disappeared cartoonist Prageeth Ekneligoda, has been subject to a barrage of hate, abuse, intimidation, harassment and death threats on social media. more..

G-16 under pressure to give up SLFP positions: Crucial meeting today

Jun 28 (Island) The SLPP is scheduled to hold crucial talks today with senior representatives of the Group of 16, comprising SLFPers who voted for the Joint Opposition (JO) led No-Confidence Motion (NCM) on April 4. Political sources said that the meeting was scheduled to take place in the evening, at the Nelum Mawatha Office of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. The SLPP was expected to ask the members of more..

Desperate people and the migrant crisis

Jun 28 (DM) Today there are strident calls from the US -- the richest and most powerful country in the world -- to stop the entry of migrants into the US. The present administration in that country even going to the extent of separating children from their parents in an effort to scare migrants-to-be from entering the country. In Europe populists political parties opposed to migrants entering their countries are making rapid political gains. An example of this, the new Italian govt’s more..

So who wants Provincial Councils now?

Jun 28 (DM) The terms of the North-Central, Eastern and Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councils expired in Sept 2017 and those of the Central, Northern and North-Western Provincial Councils will end this September. As of now, there’s no sign that the Govt is interested in holding these elections. Perhaps being decimated at the LG elections in Feb 2018 has made the Yahapalana bigwigs wary of facing the people. Perhaps they feel it’s best to wait for a winner-takes-much General Election of more..

'President sought my support for No-faith Motion against PM'

Jun 28 (DM) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, in an interview with Daily Mirror, speaks about the presidential candidate, the political rifts within the JO, the development in world politics and India’s political influence on Sri Lanka. Besides, he responds to questions about his meeting with US Ambassador Atul Kehsap. Q: There are reports about rifts within the JO over the move to accommodate the 16-member SLFP group. more..

Muddled electric vehicle plans running on low battery

Jun 28 (ST) Years after bombastic promises were made by the Govt about introducing electric vehicles, more than 5,000 owners are still waiting for the day when charging infrastructure will be widely developed. After all, shallow, knee-jerk statements have been made by various finance ministers and their policy pundits without first planning and developing the electric vehicle charging infrastructure. more..

Failure to revise payment structure: CPPBOA mulls TU action

Jun 28 (CT) The Ceylon Petroleum Private Bowser Owners’ Association (CPPBOA) is mulling trade union action because the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) has failed to revise their payment structure in accordance with the recently introduced price formula. The CPPBOA has demanded that hiring charges should be increased by 12.5% per bowser. CPPBOA Secretary Shantha Silva said, that they were originally planning more..

Illegal fishing using explosives in 2018: Over 2,400kgs of fish seized by Navy

Jun 28 (CT) Navy said that they were able to take into custody 2,442 kg of fish, caught illegally, using explosives, thus far this year. Using explosives for maritime activities had become one of the major challenges to the sustainable survival of marine resources of the country. “Using explosives for fishing activities in the ocean areas of the country has immensely contributed to the depletion and destruction of the fish stock belonging to SL. more..

Images from Vanni at Geneva exhibition

Jun 28 (Island) In the absence of a govt initiative to counter pro-LTTE Diaspora elements propagating lies, Global Sri Lanka Forum (GSLF) has organised a 3-day public exhibition at the Geneva-based UNHRC. The exhibition will begin on July 2 (9 am to 4 pm). Ajantha Premaratne of the GSLF said that the exhibition was meant to highlight restoration of peace in Sri Lanka following the defeat of the LTTE in May 2009. more..

Local biz should not fear competition

Jun 28 (FT) Sri Lanka’s private sector has a stronger role to play in increasing competitiveness, improving corporate governance and supporting the Govt to implement economic structural reforms, a top official said this week. British High Commissioner James Dauris speaking at the Sri Lanka Institute of Directors (SLID) AGM on Tuesday was frank in his assertion that the private sector has a wider role to play in fostering more..

Cabraal says New York Times article is fake news

Jun 28 (AD) Former Governor of the CB, Ajith Nivard Cabraal, has refuted the allegations made in a recent article published by The New York Times, referring to it as fake news which has violated the truth and a gross misrepresentation of facts. The New York Times article titled How China got Sri Lanka to cough up a Port, written by Maria Abi-Habib, had made certain accusations pertaining to China’s acquisition more..

Deteriorating law and order: JO raps Govt, demands swift action

Jun 28 (Island) JO urged the govt to take urgent action to restore public confidence in law enforcement. Anuradhapura District MP Shehan Semasinghe said that the situation was really dicey in the North as well as the South with the police recently reporting LTTE activity in the Vanni. The govt owed an explanation as regards the deteriorating situation and how it intended to arrest the wave of incidents, he said. more..

Sri Lanka now confident of managing govt debt: CB Governor

Jun 28 (EN) Sri Lanka is confident of managing debt if the govt keeps to the path of reducing budget deficits and domestic rollover risks are now receding, Central Bank Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy said. A liability management law, which will also help managed rollover risks. “We are confident that provided fiscal consolidation stays on track the govt’s debt obligations can be managed,” Coomaraswamy said, more..

Sri Lanka’s outlook remains stable but is conditional on reforms: World Bank

Jun 28 (LBO) World Bank says a challenging domestic political environment has already taken a toll, slowing down some reforms and complicating the stable medium-term outlook and an impending election cycle which will only elevate this risk. World Bank, releasing its June 2018 edition of the Sri Lanka Development Update said the reforms are expected to bring in long-term benefits enhancing more..