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Sri Lanka to boost lesser known tourist attractions in off-season

Sep 18 (EN) Sri Lanka is using off-season promotional packages from Sept to Nov 2018, when arrivals from traditional markets fall, to boost awareness of lesser known tourist attractions, an official said. "We are working with bloggers, writers and influencers to promote lesser known attractions," Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau Managing Director Sutheash Balasubramaniam said. more..

Govt says fuel prices will decrease in near future

Sep 18 (NR) The much discussed newly implemented fuel pricing formula was taken up for debate in Parliament today. Deputy Minister Anoma Gamage said when considering the price of the crude oil in the international market, fuel prices are revised towards the latter part of the year. She noted the govt will be able to reduce fuel prices by February or March next year. She stressed the concern at present is that the price of good that are increased following a fuel price hike do not more..

US$50mn from ADB for rooftop solar loans through Sri Lankan banks

Sep 18 (EN) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has given Sri Lanka US$ 50 million (eight billion rupees) for lending through banks and financial institutions for customers to buy rooftop solar power panels at 8% annual interest. Households and entrepreneurs will be provided maximum credit facilities up to 7. 5 million rupees under the Enterprise Sri Lanka project, the Ministry of Finance said. The Department of Development Finance of the Ministry of Finance, more..

Depreciation of rupee has increased debt amount by Rs.1,000 bn: JO

Sep 18 (DM) The drastic depreciation of the Sri Lankan rupee against the US Dollar has increased the country’s national debt amount by Rs.1,000 billion since 2015, Joint Opposition (JO) said today. MP Bandula Gunawardane said PM Ranil Wickremesinghe continues to mislead the people by saying that the former government was responsible for current colossal amount of debts. “I challenge the PM to prove his claim. more..

Govt fears Nalaka de Silva while JVP fears a referendum: Gammanpila

Sep 18 (AD) Pivithuru Hela Urumaya (PHU) Leader MP Udaya Gammanpila says that the govt is afraid to arrest DIG Nalaka de Silva. Plotting to assassinate the head of the govt is not a mere murder but is an anti-govt conspiracy, stated the MP. However, Nalaka de Silva hasn’t been arrested and ideally he should be remanded by now, says Gammanpila. He points out that DIG de Silva is able to influence the officials conducting the investigation as he holds a high ranking post. more..

Sanga gives key advice to Pakistan players ahead of India clash

Sep 18 (DM) Sri Lankan legend Kumar Sangakkara has given some key advice to Pakistan’s rising stars Babar Azam and Usman Khan Shinwari as Men in Green prepare for the highly anticipated clash against India, the Pakistan media reported. Pakistan and India will lock horns on September 19 at Dubai Cricket Stadium for the first time after ICC Champions Trophy final last year. This is also the first meeting of the two sides on the UAE soil since 2006. more..

IT industry, universities in tie-up to train data scientists

Sep 18 (EN) Sri Lanka’s information technology industry is working with universities produce graduates in previously unavailable subjects like data science required in its quest to ramp up annual exports to five billion dollars, an official said. Jeevan Gnanam, chairman of SLASSCOM, said the country need to re-assess its education system as data science skills, required by the rapidly evolving IT industry, had not been taught in universities. more..

President Jayewardene, an example to present day politicians: Akila

Sep 18 (DN) Late President J. R. Jayewardene was a pragmatic and farsighted leader who enabled the country to keep pace with modern international trends. Present day politicians have much to learn from his biography. The manner in which he steered the country overcoming problems and obstacles with patience and finesse was a fine example to present day politicians, Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said. He was addressing the gathering at the 112th birth anniversary commemoration of more..

Coalition requests fair trial for Kamer

Sep 18 (FT) A coalition of civil society and rights groups have issued a public statement calling on the Australian Govt to ensure fair treatment of Kamer Nizamdeen and to expedite investigations into his arrest. Highlighting the fact that Nizamdeen, who was arrested 30 August, had not been given legal representation neither at the time of his arrest or when he was produced before judicial authorities, the statement called upon the Australian Govt to “ensure that Kamer is provided with more..

Video: Bribery Commission summons GMOA

Sep 18 (DM) GMOA Treasurer Dr Nath Wijesuriya has been summoned to the Bribery Commission this morning to record a statement over an investigation launched into an alleged foreign funds received by the GMOA. GMOA Secretary Dr Haritha Aluthge and several top officials who met the Bribery Commission officials today handed over a letter stating that the complaint filed against them was false. more..

Video: Three jumbos killed by train collision

Sep 18 (DM) Three elephants were killed after a herd was hit by the Batticaloa bound train early this morning while the elephants were walking across the tracks, Wildlife Conservation Dept said. The officials said the elephants were knocked down by the train with oil tank wagons at about 4.30 a.m at the 127-milepost between the Habarana and Palugaswewa Railway Stations. One she-elephants was pregnant at the time of the accident and the fetus had come out following the impact. more..

Video: Minor earth tremors reported at Hali-Ela

Sep 18 (AD) Residents in the area reported that they had felt a minor earth tremor in several areas of Hali-Ela in Badulla. Shop owners disclosed to Ada Derana that the said tremor occurred in several shops in the town at around 12.30 pm today (18). However, when queried from the Research Unit of the Geological Survey and Mines Bureau (GSMB), they stated that there was no such incident. more..

Shocking and disappointing: Angelo

Sep 18 (ICC) After the defeat to Afghanistan that hurtled them out of the Asia Cup 2018, Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews rued the errors of the batsmen. The 91-run win on Monday (was Afghanistan's first against the five-time Asia Cup champions in one-day internationals. Sri Lanka, who had earlier lost their opening clash against Bangladesh, are now out of contention for the Super Four. more..

'No RTI request on fuel pricing formula'

Sep 18 (CT) Director General of the Right to Information Commission (RTIC), Jayatissa Ranasinghe said that the Commission is yet to receive any RTI request regarding the fuel pricing formula. Addressing a workshop for media representatives, regarding the upcoming RTI Day, which is celebrated the world over on 28 Sept, Additional Secretary of the Ministry, Thilaka Jayasundara observed that a strong, unbiased, and balanced media was essential in order for more..

Lankan arrested in Milan was a former diplomat: MFA

Sep 18 (MFA) On receipt of media reports from Italy that a Sri Lankan with a Diplomatic Passport has been arrested at Malpensa Airport in Milan for allegedly trying to smuggle four youths into Italy, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs initiated immediate inquiries to ascertain the veracity of this information. Accordingly, the Officials of the Consulate General of SL in Milan have met the person arrested and have established his identity. It has been confirmed that the arrested person is more..

2/3rd in Parliament and Referendum require for 20th Amendment: AG

Sep 18 (FT) Attorney General told the Supreme Court that they are of the view that the proposed 20th Amendment to the Constitution, placed as a private member Bill, requires a 2/3rd majority in Parliament, and the consent of the people through a referendum. Additional Solicitor General Dilrukshi Dias Wickramasinghe, with Deputy Solicitors General Indika Demuni de Silva and Nerin Pulle, as well as Senior State Counsel more..

Law to be included in the school curriculum?

Sep 18 (NR) Minister of Justice Thalatha Athukorala says steps will be taken to include law as a subject to the school curriculum in order to educate students on legal aspects. She said the matter was already discussed with Minister of Education Akila Viraj Kariyawasam. The Minister noted the discussion focused on considering the implementation of the programme from the 6th standard. Minister said she hopes to educate school students on the laws and regulations of the country more..

Bulk price of 1kg of sugar up by Rs.18

Sep 18 (NR) Sugar Importers Association says the bulk price of 1kg of imported sugar has been increased by Rs. 18. Spokesman of the Association Hemaka Fernando said there is a possibility of the increase in the retail price following the price hike in bulk purchases. A tax of Rs. 31 was previously imposed on 1kg of sugar under the special commodity levy Act. The tax on sugar under the act has been removed and instead common commodity taxes have been levied on a kilo of sugar. more..

JHU proposes 5-point plan to move on after the end of the war

Sep 18 (CT) The JHU, a minor partner in the UNP-led coalition (United National Front), laid out a five-point plan for the country to put behind it’s bloody past at least with respect to the thorny issues of war-crimes and move ahead into the future. Co-leader of the JHU, Minister Champika Ranawaka said that various opinions have been expressed regarding the issue, pointing out that some want the law to be applied equally to more..

‘Rupee depreciation not a result of poor economy’

Sep 18 (NR) Minister Mangala Samaraweera says the depreciation of the rupee is not a result of poor economic management. Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake speaking to media after the UNP Parliamentary Group meeting last evening said the Finance Minister informed that the US President Donald Trump’s attempts to strengthen the dollar has resulted in the currency of other countries also falling drastically. He noted the group meeting was held at the Temple Trees while more..

Former Import & Export Controller further remanded

Sep 18 (AD) Former Import and Export Controller of the Import and Export Dept who was arrested for accepting a bribe has been further remanded till 02nd Oct. When the case was taken up today by the Colombo Magistrate’s Court the Bribery Commission officials informed the court that investigations are still underway and requested the Court to remand the suspect further. Defending Attorney pleaded bail grant for the suspect considering the ill health of his client’s daughter as a special point. more..

දියකාවා අභ්යාසය 9වන වරටත්

Understanding the debt trap

Sep 18 (FT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, speaking recently at the World Economic Forum in Vietnam, denied that SL was in danger of spiralling into a debt trap from excessive Chinese borrowings. However, during the past Presidential and General elections he and his team portrayed a picture contrary to that, although it is true that subsequently debt on Hambantota port was swapped with equity. Writing an article to Daily FT titled Sri Lanka’s Rupee and Debt Burden now at Critical Stage more..

Lost in Detention

Sep 18 (CT) The case of 25-year-old Kamer Nizamdeen is yet to reach the short attention span of this country; its politicians are silent, its public is mum, aware but lackadaisical. Kamer was arrested on 30 August, 2018, by Australian authorities, and according to his family, he has since been placed in solitary confinement under high security. According to reports, Kamer is being kept in custody on suspicion of collecting or making documents likely to facilitate terrorist acts, more..

Army executed some LTTE cadres who surrendered: SB

Sep 18 (Island) Rebel UPFA MP S.B. Dissanayake has reiterated that the army executed some LTTE personnel including one-time LTTE Eastern Commander Thambiraja Thurairajasingham aka Ramesh after they surrendered to the advancing troops. The declaration was made in response to a media query at the residence of former Deputy Speaker Tilanga Sumathipala last week. more..

Drought grips 16 districts affecting over 700,000 people

Sep 18 (Island) More than 700,000 people have been affected by the drought in 16 districts and the govt has taken many measures to provide relief to them, DMC says Jaffna District has borne the brunt of the drought with more than 370,000 people affected. In the East, Ampara, Batticaloa and Trincomalee districts were also affected by dry weather. The water levels in all major reservoirs in the Ampara District have more..

Staff not complying with transfer orders

Sep 18 (CT) Minister Rajitha Senaratne instructed the relevant authorities to halt salary payments of medical, nursing and other health staff if they fail to accept their transfer orders. During his meeting with Provincial Health Ministers, their officials and the Ministry’s officials at the National Blood Centre, Narahenpita, Dr. Senaratne was informed by several Provincial Health Directors present that several medical staff and nurses, more..

Habeas Corpus petition fixed for support

Sep 18 (DN) he Habeas Corpus petition filed by the wife of JVP founding leader Rohana Wejeweera seeking an order to produce the Corpus (body) of Rohana Wijeweera before Court to be dealt with according to law was yesterday fixed for support by Court of Appeal. The petitioner Sreemathi Chithrangani Wijeweera also sought an order in the nature of writ of Habeas Corpus releasing or discharging the Corpus forthwith more..

National Ozone day celebration held under President’s patronage

Sep 18 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena says all must fulfill their respective duties to preserve the Ozone Layer, which is a wonderful creation of the nature to ensure the survival of the earth and its creatures. He made these remarks addressing the National Ozone day celebration held at the BMICH, today (17). Expressing his views, President further said that Sri Lanka is committed to adhere to all the int'l agreements, more..

Tamil prisoner hunger strike spreads to Welikada?

Sep 18 (Island) The Committee for Protecting Rights of Prisoners (CPRP) urged the govt to look into the plight of Tamil prisoners detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act. "The situation has now take a turn for the worse with the hunger strike launched by eight detainees in the Anuradhapura prison. One of the leading figures of the protest Thillai Raj has been transferred to the Welikada Prison by authorities thinking that more..

Tamils should fight to death against Sinhala colonization: Sridharan

Sep 18 (CT) The Tamil people must wage a war unto death against forcible colonization by the Sinhala people as well as the setting up of Buddhist temples in the North, said TNA Kilinochchi District MP S. Sridharan. He was speaking at a programme, on 15 September, to commence a voluntary organization at village level in the North against forcible colonization and constructing of Buddhist temples. more..

Airports Authority of India to develop Palali airport

Sep 18 (PTI) State-owned Airports Authority of India (AAI) will prepare a detailed project report for development of Palaly airport in Sri Lanka. This would be the first project for the AAI in the island nation and "we are trying to get engaged with our neighbours", an AAI official said. AAI said it has signed an agreement with External Affairs Ministry for "preparation of a Detailed Project Report for development of Palaly airport in SL". more..

Ragging comes to the fore as CID takes over student suicide case

Sep 18 (ST) The CID this week recorded a statement from the mother of a Sabaragamuwa University student who is said to have committed suicide in 2015 after being ragged, an activist who accompanied her to the police said. Wasantha Elvitigala alleges that her daughter, Amali Chathurika, took her life after becoming depressed due to repeated ragging. For three-and-a-half years, however, there was no police action. more..

‘Sri Lanka should take guidance from Indian counterparts’

Sep 18 (DM) Aritha Wickramasinghe is a finance lawyer and an activist who promotes the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights and the rights of women, children and ethnic minorities. He was instrumental in lobbying for the Transgender Equality Inquiry by the Women and Equalities Committee of the British Parliament. He was also part of the team that successfully negotiated with the EU to include LGBT rights more..

Female Circumcision: An Islamic practice brings untold benefits to women

Sep 18 (DM) Much has been written about female circumcision of late, with many writers confusing this Islamic practice with FGM (Female Genital Mutilation). However this is far from the truth. Female circumcision as prescribed in Islam involves removing only the prepuce (foreskin) covering the clitoris. This is a relatively minor and harmless procedure very much like male circumcision and which like it confers many health benefits, including facilitating genital hygiene, improving sex life. more..

Global warming: Keep cool and carry on the battle

Sep 18 (DM) Although a hurricane and floods rising to several metres are devastating Carolina, the US President Donald Trump—reported by the Washington Post fact checker to have made more than 5000 false or misleading statements during his one year and nine months in office, still continues to describe global warming as largely a Chinese hoax. Recently he pulled the US out of the Paris climate change accord reached in Dec 2016 with most analysts now saying Mr. Trump is mentally more..

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