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CCS remains profitable and expands during tough year

Jun 3 (Island) Ceylon Cold Stores (CCS), one of the oldest companies in the country founded 152 years ago, has completed a challenging year ended Mar. 31, 2018, boosting revenue 26% to Rs. 37.59 billion but seeing its profit after tax declining to Rs. 2.57 billion from the previous year’s Rs. 3.55 billion due to a variety of factors outlined in the company’s recently released annual report. "The year reviewed in this report has been a challenging one, yet your company continues to thrive," more..

තක්කඩි බුකි තිලංගගෙන් cricket නිදහස් කරගමු

I was forced to take legal action: Ranatunga

Jun 3 (ST) Former Sri Lanka Cricket secretary Nishantha Ranatunga, who is at present embroiled in a court case against the SLC, is of the view that one should not be afraid of Interim Committees as they are not made up demons. He says that he is of the opinion that if the cause is acceptable to cricket’s governing body they would heed to such moves. Ranatunga explained “Right now the all powerful Indian Cricket is run by a sort of Interim Committee, which was appointed by the Supreme Court more..

It was right Royal domination

Jun 3 (ST) Royal produced a scintillating display, in appalling conditions underfoot, to demolish Isipathana and prevent a hat-trick of wins by the Green Shirts. They had earlier won the Major Milroy Fernando Trophy in 2015 and 2016 under Kushan Indunil and Sumudu Rankothge. The final score of 41-7 tells a tale of complete dominance by the Royal team. The Royalists were bent on proving that their struggles against Wesley in the previous game were just an aberration. more..

Dhananjaya will fly to the Caribbean today

Jun 3 (ST) Top-order bat Dhananjaya de Silva will fly out today to West Indies to join his teammates for the three-match Test series which begins on June 6 at Port of Spain. Dhananjaya, 26, was in the initial 17-man squad named for the series but withdrew just hours before boarding a flight to the West Indies due to a family bereavement. An unidentified gunmen shot dead his father –Ranjan de Silva on May 24, forcing him to abandon more..

CBSL independence crucial

Jun 3 (CT) Strengthening Central Bank of SL’s (CBSL) independence is a must factor for the successful implementation of SL’s proposed Flexible Inflation Targeting (FIT) regime, CBSL Deputy Governor, Dr Nandalal Weerasinghe said. Addressing a Media awareness programme themed, Towards an effective Flexible Inflation Targeting framework in Colombo, he said Govt plans to present the Cabinet approved new Monetary Law Bill to Parliament next year for approval. more..

Ramachandran turns down SEC appointment

Jun 3 (ST) Ministry of Finance has accepted a letter by Chandrakumar Ramachandran turning down an appointment to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). He was amongst the newly appointed five Commissioners to the SEC board. In his letter he has expressed his inability to accept the responsibilities that come with this appointment as his workload prohibits him to do so. However the Business Times reliably understands that the SEC had probed information on certain incidents more..

Big changes at SLFP CC today?

Jun 3 (SO) SLFP’s key decision making bodies - Central Committee, Executive Committee and All Island Committee will meet today under the auspices of President Sirisena to discuss far reaching changes to the party structure. These meetings will only be confined to discuss extensively about party reforms and re-organise the party to successfully face upcoming elections. At today’s meetings, Prez will put forward a proposal to more..

Monetary Law to be amended to suit inflation targeting

Jun 3 (ST) Amendments to the Monetary Law Act (MLA) is to be present to Parliament next year to suit the Flexible Inflation Targeting (FIT) frame-work with the aim of maintaining 4-6% inflation a year from 2020, CB officials said. These amendments are now being drafted and it would include strengthening the mandate of price stability, separating the monetary and fiscal functions, strengthening the CB’s autonomy, and introducing institutional arrangements for setting inflation targets more..

Sri Lanka seeks $500 mn apparel trade deal with India

Jun 3 (ST) Sri Lanka is hoping to convince India to remove the existing quota system for the apparel industry and instead requesting a US$500 million worth trade deal. Negotiations are currently underway between the two sides to ascertain whether the existing quota system for the sale of garments to India that is limited to eight million pieces annually worth $30 million could be altered to a higher $500 million worth, value-based system. These negotiations are said to be part of more..

Major fraud in tender: Dept insiders

Jun 3 (CT) There has been a big fraud in the tender procedure, for the proposed e-Motoring Project, designed to create a more advanced computer system for the Department of Motor Traffic, at a cost of Rs 4 billion, high ranking officers of the Dept revealed. Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva had submitted a Cabinet Paper and the Cabinet had on 22 May given its approval to award the e-Motoring Project tender to a company. more..

Colombo to be AI’s S Asia HQ

Jun 3 (CT) Amnesty International (AI) has selected Colombo as its South Asia Head Quarters and a permeant office is to be opened soon. The London-based non-governmental organization, established in 1961, that focuses on human rights, has already selected its officers, mostly from the South Asian countries including some locals and they are now operating from a temporary office, said AI’s Canada Coordinator for Sri Lanka since 1991, John Argue, who was in Colombo last week. more..

Education Ministry informed of alleged sexual abuse of swimmers

Jun 3 (CT) Aquatic Sports Union (SLASU) has informed the Education Ministry regarding complaints they received about alleged sexual abuse of young swimmers during the recently concluded swimming tour. At least five young swimmers had been allegedly sexually abused during Age Group Swimming Championship in Malaysia recently and parents had made written complaints to the Aquatic Sports Union (SLASU). “We have already informed about this to more..

Ministries barred from purchasing new vehicles

Jun 3 (ST) Govt ministers have been directed not to purchase new vehicles to Ministries or for their official use as the Treasury has to handle new expenditure costs like compensation for flood victims and damages to their property running into billions of rupees. At Wednesday’s cabinet meeting, ministers were urged not to buy new vehicles as the country is suffering from damages caused to people & property in recent floods. more..

'SLFP, SLPP to form broad leftist coalition'

Jun 3 (CT) SLFP strongman and former Minister S.B. Dissanayake, says SLFP and SLPP will form a broad coalition, very soon, which would pick a candidate for the 2020 presidential election. “The next Provincial Council polls will also be contested by a coalition of leftist parties and the current Unity Govt will not last the remaining one-and-a-half-years,” Dissanayake said. He said that the Group of 16, which left the Govt and decided to join the Opposition, did so on a matter of principle. more..

When anti-beef protest reached Sri Lanka

Jun 3 (Hindu) Last week, members of a Hindu outfit, Seva Senai, based in northern Sri Lanka, staged a protest in Jaffna, calling for a ban on cow slaughter and the sale of beef in the town of Chavakachcheri. “This is the land of Hindus and Buddhists. We worship the cow. Our tradition must be respected,” they demanded, days before Ramzan began. In essence, they were a group of Tamil Hindus, who were asking fellow minorities, Tamil-speaking Muslims, to adhere to Hindu tradition. more..

Private company to operate new train services in H’tota District

Jun 3 (ST) The govt wants the private sector to build and operate rail services in a US$ 800 million (Rs. 127 billion) project in the Hambantota district. In terms of the proposal approved by the cabinet, worldwide tenders will be called to construct railroads from Beliatta to Hambantota, Kataragama and the Mattala airport on a Build-Operate & Transfer (BOT) basis, Transport Ministry Secretary G.S. Withanage said. more..

US Army delegates enlightened on Sri Lanka's civil-military cooperation

Jun 3 (SLA) A four-member delegation of the US Army, Pacific Command (USPACOM) with the objective of learning more about Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) projects in Sri Lanka, prior to the forthcoming South Asia Regional Civil Affairs Conference, called at the Army Headquarters on Friday and met the Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake. Cordial meeting enabled the Commander of the Army to catalogue the chain of Civil-Military projects, more..

Hi-tech methods, transnational links to fight crime

Jun 3 (ST) Use of video conferencing technology, joint investigations comprising investigators from SL and other countries or specified organisations and search of computer data are to be included in a new amendment to the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act of 2002. Amendment — to be taken up in Parliament on Tuesday– identifies offences relating to money laundering and criminalises offences related to bribery outlined in Article 16 of UN Convention against Bribery & Corruption more..

Feuding coalition partners meet for rapprochement

Jun 3 (ST) His verbal barrage this week against his coalition partner, the UNP leadership, publicly laid bare that relations still remain a sore, festering wound and President Sirisena only poured more salt water on it. Those strong words also ricocheted on his predecessor Mahinda Rajapaksa, now the de facto leader of the Joint Opposition. “I don’t have to sweat at an election campaign. He is canvassing for us,” Rajapaksa said. more..

An unhinged President, a woolly Prime Minister, and Rajapaksas one too many

Jun 3 (Island) President Sirisena once again stole his own political thunder last week with a headlines grabbing outburst while appearing uninvited at a commemoration event to mark the 76th birth anniversary of the late Sobitha Thera. The outburst and the news reports of it are remarkable for not what the President said at the meeting, but for what he failed to say. He gravely omitted to mention the SINGLE ISSUE for which Sobitha Thera launched a movement and even sacrificed his life, more..

Launch of the Bandaranaike Research Hub – Keynote Address

Jun 3 (Island) Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala is a retired Sri Lankan Ambassador and a former UN Under-Secretary-General. This is a edited version of his remarks at the launch of the Bandaranaike Research Hub at the BCIS on 2 May 2018. I feel very privileged and humbled by this invitation to participate in such an important event in the history of the BCIS. I think it is perhaps a reason for my selection that I am a part of the old guard who were present at the creation, more..

Bond 118 does not exist, but many politicians received money from Aloysius

Jun 3 (ST) There is bad news for those awaiting the disclosure of a list containing 118 names of politicians and others who allegedly received funds from those linked to the Central Bank bond scandal.The reason – there is no list containing such names. However, that would not mean some more names would not transpire. They are to surface before court soon. At a news conference, former Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera had more..

As Govt seeks to legalise unauthorised buildings, UDA launches flying squad

Jun 3 (ST) A week after the Sunday Times revealed a Govt move to bring in a Bill that seeks to legalise unauthorised constructions in state-built condominiums, the Urban Development Authority has come up with a proposal to deploy flying squads to ensure that private and state sector constructions are being carried out according to approved plans. UDA Chairman Jagath Munasinghe said the teams carrying out more..

Sri Lanka plantations should start wage negotiations early: minister

Jun 3 (EN) Sri Lanka's regional plantations companies - commercial farms growing tea, rubber and oil palm - should start wage negotiations early, Plantations Industries Minister Navin Dissanayake said. The negotiations for a collective agreement is usually held with the involvement of unions, the Employers Federation of Ceylon which represents companies. He urged companies not to be caught by surprise but be well prepared. more..

SL to join world's largest international maritime exercise for the first time

Jun 3 (DM) Twenty-six nations including Sri Lanka, will participate at the biennial Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC), world's largest int'l maritime exercise, scheduled between June 27 to Aug 2, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. This is the first time Sri Lanka is participating in RIMPAC. U.S. Indo-Pacific Command reported that 47 surface ships, five submarines, 18 national land forces, more..

Back 20A to avert dictatorship: Viyangoda

Jun 3 (SO) The 20th Amendment to the Constitution which seeks to abolish the Executive Presidency is the last chance to prevent a return to autocracy and brutality in Sri Lanka, backers of the major constitutional reform say. According to Co-Convener of the Purawesi Balaya organisation, Gamini Viyangoda who has been ardently campaigning for the cause, failing to adopt the Amendment will usher in a dark age for more..

Match fixing thru pitch doctoring

Jun 3 (CT) Sri Lankan people have a spiritual bond with cricket, unlike any other cricket playing nation in the world. It is not a religious sensation as the fans of the countries like India and Pakistan show. It must be because cricket was able to make Sri Lankans stick together during the most critical periods the country went through. Even during the 30-year bloody war, Sri Lankans enjoyed the excitement of the game, which put their more..

Hero Policeman and mother’s eerie dream

Jun 3 (CT) The rain was pelting down hard on that fateful day when the phone on the desk of the Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the Madampe Police Station started to ring. OIC-Inspector (IP) Wasantha Kumara picked up the receiver and learnt that the caller at the other end was an official from the DMC. The caller urged IP Kumara to rush to a location where a woman and her three children were marooned in rising more..

Crime: Minimum age raised to 12

Jun 3 (ST) The minimum age limit for criminal responsibility is to be increased from eight to 12 years, according to a Penal Code amendment to be introduced in Parliament soon. Justice Ministry Secretary W.M.M.A. Adikari said it had been found that children Under 12 who were involved in criminal activity were not mature enough to realise the gravity of their crimes. Hence, the Govt believed there should be a more holistic more..

OMP meets families of the missing in Mullaitivu

Jun 3 (SO) Commissioners of the Office of Missing Persons (OMP) held their third session with families of the disappeared in the war-affected district of Mullaitivu yesterday, as it sets about designing its operations and approach to tackling one of the biggest caseloads of enforced disappearances in the world. Commissioners’ arrival in a region that was the final theatre of battle between the LTTE and Govt forces in 2009, more..

Video: SLFP appoints temporary office bearers

Jun 3 (AD) A temporary batch of office bearers were appointed at the SLFP Central Committee meeting which was held today. Accordingly, the temporarily appointed SLFP office bearers are as follows; SLFP General Secretary: Professor Rohana Piyadasa; SLFP National Organizer - Minister Duminda Dissanayake; SLFP Treasurer - MP S. B. Dissanayake; SLFP Senior Deputy Chairmen - Minister Nimal Siripala more..

Subversion of our democratic political spaces & What it means for SL’s future

June 4 (CT) Since Independence in 1948, Sri Lanka has witnessed three unsuccessful armed struggles. Two of these (1971 and 1987-89) have been confined mainly to the Sinhalese South. The last one in the North and East of Sri Lanka waged an armed campaign for almost 30 years until the Tami Tigers were defeated in 2009. The manner of the Sri Lanka’s state victory created acute political wounds and left unresolved the fundamental problems that gave rise to Tamil militancy. more..

Colonial legacy, dependency & brain drain from the global South

June 4 (CT) From the colonial days, colonised countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America established contacts with imperial centres of the global north under the latter’s control, initiative and supervision. Though these countries have had international contacts of various sorts before colonisation as sovereign countries, the nature of international contacts differed significantly. One defining feature of colonial relations was the fact that substantially more benefits going to imperial more..

How many spiders caught in Perpetual Treasuries’ web?

June 4 (SO) The aftershocks of the revelations of donations to political campaigns by the alleged Bond Scam suspect Arjun Aloysius’s Perpetual Treasuries and affiliates are still reverberating the political establishment and Lankan society with many watchdog organisations, activists and politicians demanding a list of recipients and many mud-slinging matches between politicians on both sides. more..

Will those glory days of cricket ever dawn again?

June 4 (SO) Now, we can only look back at those glory days and reflect, wondering whether they will ever dawn again. These days, when one finds that Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is in turmoil, it is no longer news. Instead, it would be news if SLC was not in turmoil. So, when stories of a match fixing scandal involving a few players and a curator employed by SLC emerged, hardly anyone raised an eyebrow. SLC swiftly announced that it would co-operate with investigations launched by the ICC and more..

A culture of dependency

June 4 (GV) The following article is a translation of a story by our sister site Maatram examining the exploitative practises of microfinance companies based in the North and East, which are causing fresh trauma for families already impacted by war. Those who have traveled along the A9 highway would not have missed the large signboards on either side of the road. The institutions who are putting up these signboards claim that their focus is to assist the people who more..

'40,000 death claim should be researched'

June 4 (CT) Amnesty International’s (AI) Canada Coordinator for Sri Lanka since 1991, John Argue, has been playing a major role in Sri Lanka, having visited the island 10 times between 1984 and 2008. Coming after 10 years, Argue says that the country has changed for the better but still needs to address its alleged human rights violations and war crimes charges to move forward before it could be referred to UN General Assembly, more..

100-day manifesto: A contemporary account

Jun 4 (Island) Since there is now some confusion about the 100-day manifesto, with lots of contradictory claims, I thought I should republish the first clear account of what happened, which was written soon after the events themselves. Though it may be claimed that my memory too may be at fault (not a charge usually made against me), the fact that this was written soon after should be an argument for its relative credibility. I have highlighted points of particular interest, and more..

Editorial: A question of sovereignty

Jun 4 (Island) Our honourable lawmakers have, of late, been behaving like a clowder of civets after a feast of ati kehel or wild banana, (which causes severe bowel disorders as well as constipation in them in spite of its irresistible smell and taste.) About 118 of them are said to have benefited from the largess of those involved in the Treasury bond scams. They are in an unenviable position, fearing as they do that they will be exposed sooner or later. Only two MPs have admitted that more..