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SLFP ministers to resign

Aug 5 (AD) All members of the SLFP who currently holding ministerial and deputy ministerial portfolios in the govt have decided to resign from their respective portfolios, former MP Thilanga Sumathipala said. Deputy Minister of Skills Development and Vocational Training stated that a group of SLFP members including him have handed over a letter to President Maithripala Sirisena informing of their decision to resign. more..

Drink poison on Aug18: Harin tells Dilan

Aug 5 (DM) Badulla District UNP candidate Harin Fernando told UPFA candidate Dilan Perera that he himself would have to consume poison when the UPFA was defeated at the parliamentary election on August 18. At a news conference held in response to the one held by the UPFA on Wednesday at which Mr. Perera had urged UNP leaders including the Prime Minister to drink poison, Mr. Fernando said UPFA members more..

With 19A in place, sky’s the limit for next Cabinet: JVP

Aug 5 (Island) JVP heavyweight K.D. Lal Kantha alleged that the 19 Amendment to the Constitution had been designed to pave the way for a national govt at the conclusion of the August 17 parliamentary polls. Colombo District JVP candidate Lal Kantha pointed out that there had never been a previous instance of the Constitution facilitating shaping of a National Govt at the expense of what he called democratically elected Opposition. more..

BJP looking to win through Sinhala Buddhist roots

Aug 5 (SL) It is well known that Sri Lanka has faced many problems due to ethnic and religious conflicts. Historical records of such unfortunate events have shown the adverse impact of extremism on communities as well as on the country. However, in times of such chaos, many religious leaders and patriots have come forward sacrificing their lives for the betterment of the country and its religion. At present, among the parties that more..

Malwatte Prelate says Allegations by Opposition against UNP baseless

Aug 5 (DN) The allegation by opposition parties that the country will be divided under a UNP govt is completely baseless, said the Most Ven. Tibbotuwawe Sri Sidhartha Sumangala Mahanayake Thera of the Malwatte Chapter. “They make these hollow and baseless allegation because they are hard up for slogans to dupe voters at election time,” he said. The prelate said the previous regime did not identify the country’s needs more..

HRCSL report on Rathupaswala Army Chief to respond this week

Aug 5 (CT) The National Dangerous Drugs Control Board (NDDCB) said that it was confirmed that drug dealers and drug addicts were actively involved in election campaigning, propaganda and promotional activities. NDDCB Chairman Dr. Nilanga Samarasingha added that NDDCB field officers island-wide had informed the Board of this. He explained that leaders of all political parties and candidates had been more..

Tracking the MR Effect through Social Media

Aug 5 (DM) Elections in Sri Lanka are an exciting affair. One need only look at a condensed timeline of events from the last Presidential Election to confirm this – from the then SLFP Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena’s shock announcement that he would be running as the Common Candidate against the then incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa to his unexpected victory. Various defections and crossovers provided the political backdrop. more..

Rain greets India in low-key SL arrival

Aug 5 (CI) The sun has shone in daylight hours in the week preceding the India team's arrival in Colombo, but as so often happens on the island, rains lie in ambush for the first sign of cricket. The visitors had been scheduled to train at the Premadasa Stadium, but when early morning drizzle worsened into showers, they switched to the indoor nets, partway across town at the NCC. So when M Vijay was asked before this training more..

School van accidents expose regulation vacuum

Aug 5 (ST) The school van system is “completely unregulated”, a leading child safety expert said as concerns were raised over passenger and pedestrian safety following a series of tragic accidents this week. 13-year-old Chamod Hasintha Dias was run over and killed by a school van veering off the road in the Moronthuduwa area in Wadduwa on Monday. Three other students with him were injured and rushed to hospital. more..

'No President can appoint a person as PM without parliamentary majority'

Aug 5 (DM) PHU Leader Udaya Gammanpila, a candidate contesting the election from the Colombo district under the betel symbol of the UPFA said the procedure had been laid down in the Constitution on the appointment of the PM, and nobody could deviate from it. In an interview, he said he was confident of the UPFA victory. Q: How is your campaign progressing? A: As a practising environmentalist, I have run more..

UNFGG Manifesto Women: Greener pastures come home

Aug 5 (DM) Greener pastures are generally alluded to as being abroad. But they will soon be here too. One important pledge concerning women is the promise of a National Council for Women in the manifesto of the UNF for Good Governance. This has long been overdue and will be in the form of a governing body for all issues relating to women. Women are in for a better deal in life. At long last we have acknowledgement of the major contributions made by women to our economic growth by more..

Clean Energy: A giant leap for all

Aug 5 (DM) In a dramatic move to lead the world in the battle against the catastrophic air pollution, US President Barack Obama unveiled the final version of his plan to tackle greenhouse gases from coal-fired power plants. Foreign agency reports say this is likely to set off a major legal battle between federal environmental regulators and the coal industry. The revised clean power plan will seek to slash carbon emissions from the power sector by 32% by 2030 from 2005 levels, more..

'UN assistance to N&E only through govt'

Aug 5 (DM) The govt said that if any project is being done by the UN as assistance for the resettled people in Northern Province, it would be done through Ministry of Resettlement of the central govt not through NPC. Foreign Ministry’s Spokesperson Mahishini Colonne said this while commenting on a statement by UN Spokesman that UN was exploring provision of technical and financial assistance including more..

Kotahena shooting: No arrests yet

Aug 5 (DM) No arrests have been made in connection with the Kotahena shooting which killed two people and injured 12 others despite repeated claims that underworld gangsters were involved in the fracas. Police Spokesman Ruwan Gunasekara said the CID detectives were still sifting through the evidence and checking on the clues before arresting any suspects. “The matter has been handed over to the CID which is conducting investigations but no suspects have been arrested yet,” he said. more..

Police bust drug ring run from prison

Aug 5 (Island) Mirihana Special Anti-Vice Squad arrested a former airman with 1,600 packets of heroin with a street value of about one million rupees at Ratmalana. Suspect admitted that he had been working for an underworld figure currently serving a sentence at the Welikada Prison. The suspect distributed heroin to locations named by the prison over the telephone. Heroin had been distributed in Ratmalana, Dehiwala, Moratuwa, Katubedda & Piliyandala. more..

151 Lankans in Mid-East jobs died this year

Aug 5 (CT) During a period of seven months from the beginning of this year to 31 July, 151 bodies of Sri Lankan workers have been brought back to Sri Lanka from Middle Eastern countries. Dead bodies have been sent from Middle Eastern countries including Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and other countries. 23 bodies arrived in Jan, 17 in Feb, 30 in March, 19 in April, 27 in May, 17 in June and 18 in July. more..

Supreme Court terminates GK FR case

Aug 5 (ST) Supreme Court on Tuesday granted approval to the govt’s new action plan of paying back 41 per cent of the deposits of the Golden Key Company (GK) and thus terminated the 6-year old case, GK counsel Prof. H.M Zafrullah said. All parties, including the depositors and the company have agreed to the settlement proposed by the govt recently. Therefore, three Fundamental Rights petitions filed by depositors were terminated by the Supreme Court. more..

GCE A/Ls in progress at 2,180 centres

Aug 5 (DN) The GCE A/L exam 2015, which commenced on Monday is in progress without any hindrance, sources said. Accordingly, no serious incidents have been reported so far except for a few minor incidents such as an attempt to copy. The examination is being conducted at 2,180 centres countrywide as scheduled. This year, 390,069 school and private candidates are sitting for the exam. 236,072 are school candidates and 153,997 are private candidates. more..

UK Bar launches formal inquiry into Sir Desmond’s conduct

Aug 5 (FT) The Bar Standards Board of the United Kingdom has decided to initiate a formal investigation into the professional conduct of Sir Desmond de Silva, Queen’s Counsel, over his role in Sri Lanka, based on a complaint by the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice. The Bar Standards Board commenced its investigation on 20 July, and will probe the top barrister’s conduct for five weeks, authoritative sources said. more..

'Drug dealers and addicts in election campaigns'

Aug 5 (CT) National Dangerous Drugs Control Board (NDDCB) said that it was confirmed that drug dealers and drug addicts were actively involved in election campaigning, propaganda and promotional activities. NDDCB Chairman Dr. Nilanga Samarasingha added that NDDCB field officers island-wide had informed the Board of this. He explained that leaders of all political parties and candidates had been informed in writing about the matter. more..

India upbeat ahead of warm-up game against Sri Lanka Board's XI

Aug 5 (IANS) Despite rain playing spoilsport during their outdoor practice session, Indian batsmen made the most of the indoor facility at the NCC while the bowlers stayed at the hotel for their assessments and gym sessions with newly appointed physiotherapist Patrick Farhart and trainer Shankar Basu here on Tuesday. After the team's short flight from Chennai on Monday, captain Virat Kohli and his team are looking to spending some quality time at the nets to start their preparations more..

Former LTTE members seek self-rule for Tamils

Aug 5 (Hindu) The Crusaders for Democracy, a group of former members of the LTTE, on Tuesday urged the Sri Lankan govt to honour its commitments made in the past at the international level on the Tamil question. According to the 1987 India-Sri Lanka Accord and the Oslo Communique of Dec 2002, the Sri Lankan govt had agreed to the concepts of federalism and internal self-determination, besides recognising more..

Crusaders release manifesto: Police halt public rally

Aug 5 (CT) Ex-LTTE cadres contesting under the banner of Crusaders for Democracy released their Election Manifesto yesterday at the Suthumalai Amman Temple premises in Manipay, Jaffna where LTTE Leader V Prabhakaran appeared for the first time in public and announced the surrender of arms to IPKF 28 years ago on 4 Aug 1987. Coordinator and one of the 10 candidates of the Crusaders for Democracy N. Vithyatharan said that his party had made elaborate arrangements to release more..

Uni of Colombo welcomed into CFA institute university recognition program

Aug 5 (Island) University of Colombo (UoC) has become the latest university to be welcomed into the CFA Institute University Recognition Program. CFA Institute acknowledges the UoC’s Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance Programs incorporating at least 70%of the CFA Program Candidate Body of Knowledge (CBOK) and placing emphasis on CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice. This program positions students well to obtain Chartered Financial more..

Health Minister used two Ministry vehicles for campaigning purposes: CMEV

Aug 5 (Island) An ambulance belonging to the Peradeniya Sirimavo Bandaranaike Children’s hospital had been used for electioneering purposes by Minister Rajitha Senaratne on August 3, first postal voting day, when he conducted a campaign meeting for health staff, at Garden Beach Hotel, Kalutara from 10.30 a.m. to 2.30 pm, an operations manager of the Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) disclosed. more..

Central Bank to raise $ 100 m more via development bonds

Aug 5 (FT) Central Bank has announced that it plans to sell $ 100 million worth of development bonds to foreign and local investors. Public Debt Department of Central Bank will issue $ 100 million in Sri Lanka development bonds of one year and seven months and two years and five months tenors to eligible investors for subscription at a rate of either $ 6 month LIBOR plus a margin determined through competitive bidding (floating rate) or at a fixed rate to be determined through competitive bidding. more..

UNP claims past govt wasted imported rice

Aug 5 (FT) The UNP alleged that the previous Govt had wasted 350,000 metric tonnes of imported rice through Sathosa. Attacking the former Minister Johnston Fernando, UNP National Organiser Gamage accused Fernando of importing several metric tonnes of rice while Sri Lankan famers were having their harvest. “During the last few years local famers cultivated their paddy fields and produced sufficient harvest. However, the past Govt wasted the harvest by importing rice. more..

Sri Lanka set to lose 3 Gold medals

Aug 5 (CT) Sri Lanka is set to lose at least three possible Gold medals along with a few other medals due to an unwise decision taken to scrap major athletics disciplines from the next South Asian Games schedule. During a meeting of representatives from South Asian countries, Sri Lankan representatives who included NOC Secretary, Maxwell De Silva and Sports Ministry representative, Director General of Sports, more..

Gunaratne smashes six sixes in one over

Aug 5 (CT) Clitheroe pro Janaka Gunaratne smashed his way into the Houldsworth Ribblesdale League record books and straight into a derby war of words. The Sri Lankan professional, 34, became the first player in the league's 122-year history to hit six sixes off one over. But furious Ribblesdale Wanderers players believed Gunaratne should have been out for a duck. He celebrated his reprieve by blasting the final six deliveries of the Clitheroe innings to all parts of the ground, more..

Gammanpila offers AKD advice

Aug 5 (CT) The leader of the JVP Anura Kumara Dissanayake is perverting the course of justice by not providing the information he has on the killers behind the mysterious death of Wasim Thajudeen, claimed Western Province candidate for UPFA Udaya Gammanpila. Addressing a press briefing, he said, "Dissnaanyake keeps accusing the former President Rajapaksa of being linked to the Thajudeen murder. He should not be making these declarations on stage or at meetings. more..

Mahela to join England as consultant

Aug 5 (CI) Mahela Jayawardene is to join the England side as batting consultant. The prolific batsman will be part of the England coaching team travelling to the UAE for the Test and limited-overs series against Pakistan. He is not a full time member of the ECB staff, but is likely to be contracted for a certain amount of days a year, much in the manner that Mushtaq Ahmed was in his period as spin consultant. more.. 2015 winners announced

Aug 5 (Island) is a unique annual competition that recognises Sri Lankan websites with a ".lk" domain for excellence in visual appeal, usability, and popularity in terms of web traffic. 2015 marked the sixth successive year that the event was held, further cementing its position as the island’s premier recognition of a high quality web presence. Winners of 2015 include several former winners – the most notable being – and several websites that were nominated more..

'SL should have simple, clear, predictable policies for economy to move ahead'

Aug 5 (LBO) Sri Lanka should have policies that are simple, clear, and predictable policies for economy to move ahead rather than having plethora of policies which hold the business back, an economist said. “Simplicity is the Key,” Razeen Sally an Associate Professor at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore said at the Economic Summit 2015 held in Colombo Tuesday. “If we are to learn one general lesson from East Asian miracles, more..

Govt releases Rs. 900 mn to purchase rubber at guaranteed prices

Aug 5 (Island) Rubber Development Department announced that it had released Rs 900 million to purchase natural rubber from small holders at a certified price of Rs 350 per kilo. During the last six months, govt had purchased raw rubber from 60,901 rubber small holders at a certified price of Rs 350 per kilo at a cost of Rs 897 million. Govt had allocated Rs 4,000 million to purchase rubber out of which Rs 900 mn more..

'SL needs new export finance instruments'

Aug 5 (EN) Sri Lanka’s govt will help develop new export finance instruments as part of an initiative to rapidly raise export earnings to 50 billion US dollars, Deputy Minister of Highways & Investment Promotion Eran Wickremaratne said. Two major problems faced by the island was the falling share of exports in economic output and the low participation of small and medium enterprises, he told an economic policy forum organised by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. more..

Tourist arrivals top 1-million mark in July

Aug 5 (FT) Tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka surpassed the one million mark in July, reflecting the country’s continuous momentum. The milestone was reached thanks to the largest-ever arrival figure of 175,804 in July, up by 31.2% thereby bringing the first seven months’ haul to 1.005 million. In comparison to a year earlier, 2015 performance reflected a strong 17% growth. Arrivals in July, which is off-season in the context of traditional Western European markets, surpassed 2015’s best month of Feb, more..

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