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'Nidhas Trophy taught me a bitter lesson'

Mar 4 (Island) There’s always pleasure in beating the big brother. Everton love beating Manchester United, All Blacks love thrashing the Wallabies and the biggest satisfaction in sports for Sri Lankan fans is to see their team overcoming India. The mid-90s gave us an overdose of these happy moments starting from the 1996 World Cup semi-final. A year later, Sri Lanka won India’s Independence Cup more..

Physiotherapist Khoury roped in for 2 years

Mar 4 (ST) Paul Khoury–the Lead Physiotherapist at English County-Sussex has been roped in by Sri Lanka Cricket to help country’s national cricketers on reducing injuries. He has been appointed as Rehabilitation and Training Manager for a two year period. Injuries particularly muscle strains have been rift in Sri Lanka cricket with several of its national cricketers including team’s white-ball skipper Angelo Mathews regularly being in and out of the team due to injuries. more..

Norway central bank invests in top SL stocks

Mar 4 (ST) Norway’s Central Bank, Norges Bank’s pension fund (Norges Bank Investment Management or NBIM) has shown interest in local high valued shares during the past quarter, results released by firms to the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) showed. This US$960 billion sovereign wealth fund has shown keen interest in CSE shares for the past three years, analysts say. The fund increased Access Engineering’s stake to 29.1 million shares as at December with T Rowe Price more..

Doesn’t Malinga deserve something more than this?

Mar 4 (ST) It seems all but over for Lasith Malinga, the feared bowler with a no-nonsense attitude. But does he not deserve an honourable exit in exchange for his contribution towards SL cricket over the past 14 years? Malinga is no ordinary cricketer. He is a legend in his own right. He took the sporting world by surprise with his lethal inswinging yorkers that crashed into the stumps like thunderbolts, leaving the batsmen bemused. more..

'Net foreign inflow over Rs. 6 b / Markets must learn to adjust to political changes'

Mar 4 (SO) The CEO of the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) Rajeeva Bandaranaike said the CSE has performed well this year amidst the political turmoil in the country, refuting rumours that the Stock Market would crash due to the turbulence in the aftermath of the recent polls. He said the CSE has done well this year with the All Share Price Index up 2.8 percent and the S&P SL 20 up 1 percent from January to date and volumes are doing better than last year. more..

PM to revise RPC leases with World Bank

Mar 4 (ST) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe is expected to underline immediate changes to be initiated on the tea plantations, ideas that would also be included in a World Bank report to be released later this month. The plantations industry is expected to have a meeting with Mr. Wickremesinghe shortly with the aim of obtaining instructions on the way forward in respect of a second reawakening of the regional plantation companies, officials at the Plantations Ministry said. more..

Sri Lanka’s unsettled land question

Mar 4 (Hindu) One year is a long time to sustain a street protest. Taking turns, a group of people from Keppapilavu in Mullaitivu district has stayed put under a roadside tent, asking the govt to return their land which is under military occupation. “We are determined to continue our struggle until there is justice,” said S. Chandraleela, one of the protesters, at a recent meeting held on the 365th day of their agitation. more..

British chef in the soup over Sri Lankan curry

Mar 4 (EN) A British chef who claims to be the first from her native island to popularise Sri Lankan food has brought out a cookbook that has offended even non foodies. The social media backlash to "Weligama: Recipes from Sri Lanka" was so intense that even the author's local host, Barefoot Gallery, scrapped a book signing scheduled for March 9. "This event has been cancelled. You cannot share this event, but you can still post," Barefoot, said on its facebook page. more..

New luxury train between Kandy and Ella

Mar 4 (DM) Railways Department announced the operation of a luxury train between Ella and Kandy Railway Stations. It would operate on Saturdays and Sundays. Train compartments have been fully air conditioned and will leave Kandy at 7.40 a.m. and will arrive in Ella at 1.28 p.m. The same train will depart from Ella at 2.45 p.m. and arrive in Kandy at 8.05 p.m. The operation of trains Nos: 1033 and 1034 between Kandy and Colombo Fort on Saturdays and Sundays would be cancelled. more..

Extension of private sector retirement age gets go-ahead from the govt

Mar 4 (ST) After dilly–dallying due to some concerns of employers, the govt is mulling to extend the retirement age of private sector employees up to 60 years providing the same opportunity given to public sector workers. Labour Minister W.D.J. Seneviratne said that govt is ready to discuss and settle any issues and grievances of employers in implementing this decision as the private sector employees should be given the option to more..

Ontario Cricket Academy to take on Lankan schools

Mar 4 (ST) Ontario Cricket Academy (OCA) of Canada will be touring Sri Lanka to play with local schools from 10th to 20th March. This is the fourth tour to the island and 13th int'l tour undertaken by OCA since 2003. OCA’s Director, Derek Perera a former National Canadian cricketer is very excited to have the Canadian youngsters play with some high class schools such as St. Benedict’s Colege, DS and St. Joseph’s College, “I believe that as part of our ongoing cricket development efforts more..

International inaction is not an option on Sri Lanka says GTF

Mar 4 (TG) The international community must use all its leverage to ensure accountability and reconciliation has not reached a dead-end in Sri Lanka, Global Tamil Forum said in a statement. "Almost nine years after the end of the war and two and a half years after co-sponsoring a UNHRC resolution calling for comprehensive transitional justice measures, Govt of Sri Lanka has not taken meaningful steps to inspire confidence of its commitments and intentions," GTF added. more..

No Indian workers under ETCA but entry possible through SL immigration rules

Mar 4 (ST) The labour market or Indian workers visiting Sri Lanka is completely outside the scope of the proposed Sri Lanka- India Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA) with such issues being dealt independently under the Immigration Act, Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade said this week. In a statement, on services liberalisation, the Ministry said it has maintained a consistent policy more..

Lankan Tamil film finally gets good screens

Mar 4 (DC) M.S. Anand, a filmmaker from Australia who has also won few awards for his shorts, tried his hand in making a commercial Tamil cinema and debuted with the movie Yazh, which is an ancient musical instrument. Yazh-Paanam in SL acquired its name for the same root as it is where the Tamil art and culture flourished during those times. Talking to DC, Anand says, “The film narrates in real time in a non-linear fashion three interwoven stories of six main characters who are torn apart by more..

Shakib Al Hasan ruled out of Nidahas Trophy

Mar 4 (CB) Bangladesh received a huge blow in the lead up to the tri-nation T20I series, involving SL and India, with their captain Shakib Al Hasan being ruled out of the tournament as he continues his recovery from the finger injury sustained in January, Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB)said. BCB initially named Sakib in their 16-man squad with the hope that he will be available at some point during the tournament in SL but eventually decided to rest him in order to give him adequate time to recover. more..

UNP to tell Ranil Choose or lose!

Mar 4 (CT) Leadership of one of the oldest political parties in SL, UNP is tipped to face the litmus test as a major group in the party, which met recently, has decided to strictly demand that PM Ranil Wickremesinghe step down as party leader or face the threat of losing the Premiership. "We decided to demand that he step down from party leadership on his own will and let a new leader be appointed in a democratic manner. more..

Law and Order Ministry: Ranil taps Kiriella?

Mar 4 (CT) Moves are currently underway to hand over the Ministry of Law and Order to the Minister of State Enterprises and Kandy Development Lakshman Kiriella, reliable sources said. They revealed that PM Ranil Wickremesinghe had called Minister Kiriella from Singapore and inquired if he was prepared to take over the Ministry. Since Minister Kiriella is an attorney-at-law and is also the Leader of the House he carries out a very significant role on behalf of the UNP, more..

Funeral with State patronage for Ven. Daranagama Kusaladhamma Thera

Mar 4 (ST) Chief Incumbent of Sri Sambodhi Vihara in Colombo, the Ven. Daranagama Kusaladhamma Thera passed away in the early hours of yesterday at the age of 54. Thera had been ailing for some time and was undergoing treatment when he passed away. In addition to being the Chief Incumbent of Sri Sambodhi Vihara, Thera was also the Founder of Sri Sambodhi Community Development Foundation in London & Chairman of The Buddhist Media Network which began first Buddhist TV channel. more..

Ding-dong battle continues between the two coalition partners

Mar 4 (ST) When the brief but sombre private swearing-in ceremony ended last Sunday, Prez Sirisena made sure those from his SLFP proceeded to an upper floor at the Presidential Secretariat. There, a worried looking Sirisena said he bestowed the much-talked-of Law and Order portfolio on PM Ranil Wickremesinghe. Premier, he said, would hold the position only for a short period. This is whilst military strongman and Minister Sarath Fonseka, more..

A truculent President and a tame PM: Are they to be fired, or forced to work together?

Mar 4 (Island) Neither Maithripala Sirisena nor Ranil Wickremesinghe owes their current official positions to their popularity or politics. They are where they are by democratic default when a majority of the SL voters said enough is enough to Mahinda Rajapaksa, his family, their cronies and their relentless power grab. That was in Jan 2015. A majority of the members of the present parliament also owe their parliamentary seats to the same Jan 2015 wave which carried them to parliament more..

Nero fiddles while Rome burns

Mar 4 (Island) Friday Forum earnestly draws the immediate and undivided focus of the public, the govt and MPs, to five matters that require urgent and immediate attention. This is vital in the interests of sections of our society who have been victims of serious disasters, both natural and man-made, in the interest of maintaining reasonably stable prices, because they adversely affect the welfare of people, in the interest of good governance, in the interest of govt and corporations in Sri Lanka more..

Security goes to the dog, probe on top cop

Mar 4 (ST) They say a dog is a man’s best friend. Here is a story of how one from the canine breed has been enjoying special privileges like his boss, a top cop in the south. However, for the top cop’s subordinates, it has turned out to be a dog’s life. One of the staffers was asked to remove ticks off the dog and groom it for a birthday party in the top cop’s office. The party took place in the official premises. That is not all. more..

Closed after bond scam controversy The Sunday Leader resumes

Mar 4 (SL) The Sunday Leader newspaper, which was forced to close after being linked to the treasury bond scam, resumed printing today. The newspaper had to close last November after several issues arose with funding. Funding for The Sunday Leader was believed to have been sourced through former Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake and businessman Arjun Aloysius since 2015. more..

Minister allows 14-storey Blue Ocean project despite legal disputes

Mar 4 (ST) The Megapolis Minister has issued a gazette notification, permitting mixed development on the eastern side of Layards Road in Colombo 5, including a section which is at the centre of a legal dispute between a condominium builder and several residents. The proposed Blue Ocean Layards Road is advertised online by the developer as a luxury apartment complex of 14 storeys. But in June 2017, eleven residents of Layards Road more..

Programme to provide jobs for all unemployed graduates within 6 months: Prez

Mar 4 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena says that all the interviews postponed due to election will commence and steps will be taken to provide employment for the unemployed graduates within next six months. President made these remarks during a ceremony held to hand over appointment letters to the graduates of Batticaloa district at Weber Ground in Batticaloa, yesterday. 200 graduates & 40 diploma holders more..

Round two of cabinet reshuffle faces hurdles

Mar 4 (SL) Round two of the cabinet reshuffle, which is to involve UPFA members, is facing some hurdles from within the alliance. Some SLFP members have refused to accept changes to their portfolios and are threatening to sit as independent MPS. Following the recent cabinet reshuffle of UNP members, UPFA was to undergo a reshuffle this week or next week. However the move is facing opposition from within with some more..

Debunking the wanda pethi hoax

Mar 4 (CT) On 27 Feb, a tense situation arose in Ampara with a mosque and at least four shops, owned by Muslims, being damaged and three people sustaining injuries in a clash, which flared up when some tablets were allegedly found in a meal served in a wayside restaurant to a customer, who was a Sinhalese. 'Muslim restaurant owners mix tablets (wanda pethi is the common term for these tablets) which are believed to cause more..

Statement by eyewitness of final battle to be sent to UNHRC

Mar 4 (SL) A statement made by a Northern Provincial Council (NPC) member, who was an eyewitness to the final stages of the war, is to be sent to the UNHRC. NPC member S. Kugadas had made his maiden speech at the Northern Provincial Council last week. In his speech he made references to the final stages of the war. Northern Province Chief Minister C. V. Wigneswaran had then requested that the speech be sent to UNHRC more..

Ashraff crash: Not an explosion but maintenance negligence

Mar 4 (ST) The Air Force Mi 17 helicopter crash that killed the then Minister M.H.M. Ashraff was not due to an explosion but negligence or omission on the part of the maintenance crew, a Commission of Inquiry has ruled. Commission headed by former Court of Appeal Judge L.K.G. Weerasekara was appointed to investigate the Sept 16, 2000 crash in which the then SLMC leader Ashraff died. Mi 17 helicopter crashed at Urakanda, more..

OMP does not aim to benefit one community says Minister

Mar 4 (GDI) The Office on Missing Person (OMP) does not aim to benefit only one community and does not threaten another. It is merely a truth-seeking mechanism. It aims to investigate and find out the truth about those identified as missing or who have disappeared during conflict says Minister of Finance Mangala Samaraweera. Issuing a statement on appointments of Members of the OMP minister says that more..

Power cuts loom as dispute between CEB engineers and PUCSL continues

Mar 4 (ST) Sri Lanka may face power cuts in view of the prolonged drought because the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) and the CEB Engineers Union have failed to reach agreement on new projects. These include liquid natural gas (LNG) and thermal power plants which were expected to generate about 1000MW and were to begin this year or next year, but may now be delayed till 2020, the Sunday Times learns. more..

Govt bungles Brigadier episode

Mar 5 (CT) A relatively minor episode which took place outside the High Commission of Sri Lanka in London on February 04, blown out of proportion, has ended in the unconditional surrender by GoSL to Britain’s diktat. During the customary Independence Day ceremony taking place inside the High Commission premises in London, another event was taking place outside the Chancery Building at 13, Hyde Park Gardens. Members of LTTE front organizations Tamil Solidarity, more..

A desolate tale of impunity in two episodes

Mar 5 (ST) Even as farmers protesting the Rajanganaya Drinking Water Project in Thambuttegama were beaten mercilessly by the police and later arrested en masse this week, law enforcement agencies remained inactive in regard to instigators of communal violence in Ampara, happening uncannily enough in the same approximate time span. What occasions this difference? This is the tale of impunity in two episodes in modern day SL, as reflected in more..

OMP and Enforced Disappearances Bill: Promise of justice for an invisible crime?

Mar 5 (SO) Govt moved to appoint commissioners to a permanent Office on Missing Persons this week, empowered to investigate and trace tens of thousands of cases of persons forcibly disappeared during two insurgencies and a 26 year civil war. OMP mechanism and the Enforced Disappearances Bill that will criminalize the act of forcibly disappearing persons in SL for the first time offers the best chance in a long time to help more..

Why the govt needs to overcome the fear of labeling

Mar 5 (CT) The recent attacks in Ampara were perpetrated reportedly based upon a canard that continues to re-surface from time to time. While this piece refrains from divulging into the details of the rumors and how the said chain of events transpired, such acts of violence undoubtedly warrant utmost condemnation and swift investigation and legal action against the perpetrators. The incident was discussed the following day at the weekly Cabinet meeting, raising concerns over escalating more..

What’s new pussycat after resurrection shuffle farce?

Mar 5 (ST) After last month’s LG election debacle if the govt suffered the belief that appointing Harin Fernando as the new Minister of Foreign Employment or making Ministers Laksman Kiriella and Kabir Hashim exchange their respective portfolios like swingers at a wife-swapping party, formed the stuff of the dramatic change the Govt had announced a week ago would win its lost credibility, it was much mistaken. On the contrary, instead of earning the applause of the people more..

Half a century and counting: Hulftsdorp’s unique culinary offerings

Mar 5 (Roar) From the famed Nana kade outlets at the Galle Face Green to Burger’s King (now unflatteringly re-christened to Fazly’s) in Slave Island, experiencing Colombo’s street food is a popular pastime for those who dare to do so. There are revered institutions where one knows precisely where to go for what: Pilawoos for creamy dishes of kottu, Nana’s for minced meat and naan, paired with isso wadey and ice-cream more..

Ranil & Chandrika: Govt’s shakiest pillars

Mar 5 (Island) PM Wickremesinghe was addressing a serious-minded audience when he made an utterly misleading pronouncement which would instantly have been seen through by those he was addressing. Singapore datelined story said as follows: ‘PM Ranil Wickremesinghe says that SL's Unity Govt has come to stay and no future administration would scrap the concept …." Look at Germany. National Govts are shaky. But once established and taken root, it will not be more..

Mahinda Mama and his Indian trickery

Mar 5 (SO) Mahinda mama always had a trick up his sleeve didn’t he?. Siripala gives him that- for he can, like the age old practice in paradise land, convince a man of anything and everything with his small chaatuwa. It wasn’t enough that he cried No No when the anthem that is national was to be sung in Tamil, something Siripala for the life of him couldn’t understand why, he took a big watti and went to Tamil Nadu to pray to the Gods that be. Which God will give any blessings to the man, more..

Anura Kumara Disanayake