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Video: SJB to seek legal action against UNP once again

Jul 31 (AD) SJB General Secretary Ranjith Madduma Bandara says that they will initiate legal action against the suspension of the UNP membership of 60 local councilors who supported the SJB. He said that local council members elected by the people cannot be removed without a disciplinary inquiry. He added that they safeguard all the local council members ousted from the UNP and that they have already made the necessary more..

325 linked to COVID-19 + Lankapura DS staff member to face PCR tests

Jul 31 (NR) 325 persons, who associated the staff member of the Lankapura Divisional Secretariat who tested positive for coronavirus, have been directed to undergo PCR testing. Dr. Anil Jasinghe said the results of the PCR tests will be submitted today. Dr. Jasinghe however said travel restrictions have not been imposed in Lankapura, in light of the discovery of the COVID-19 positive case. He said steps have been taken to ensure community spread does not occur. more..

ECT under SLPA demand: Port unions support fast

Jul 31 (DN) The collective trade union action of the Colombo Port employees, launched on Wednesday is supported by 23 registered port trade unions. The trade union collective began a hunger fast on Wednesday demanding that the East Container Terminal of the Colombo Port (ECT) must be operated under the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) and must not be privatised or handed over to foreign or private entities. According to the trade union collective’s representation, more..

TGTE never showed any remorse over child soldiers: Lord Naseby

Jul 31 (DM) Transnational Govt of Tamil Eelam (TGTE), which has started legal action in the UK to lift the proscription on the LTTE, has never shown any remorse over child soldiers, Lord Naseby, President of the All Party British SL Parliamentary Group said yesterday. Speaking during the debate on Global Human Rights Sanctions Regulations 2020 in the House of Lords of the UK, Lord Naseby said the TGTE started more..

CAA sets dengue lab test charges

Jul 31 (CT) The Chairman of the Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) has announced the revised charges for laboratory tests for dengue. Through the publication of an Extraordinary Gazette Notification that has been issued a sum of Rs 1,200 would be charged to carry out the nonstructural protein 1 test (NSI Antigen Test) for dengue and the issuance of the report while a sum of Rs 400 would be levied for carrying out and the issuance of the Full Blood Count Test. more..

Sajith vows to stamp out ultra-nationalism

Jul 31 (CT) SJB Leader Sajith Premadasa said, under his watch, there will be no room for the emergence of any form of ultra-nationalism, extremism, religious violence and terrorism. He emphasised that a SJB Govt will totally eliminate all type of extremism and terrorism. “I am ready to face any kind of probe into charges directed against me for having misappropriated funds belonging to the Central Cultural Fund. I cannot be intimidated through the spread of canards & innuendos. more..

SIS informed police to probe suspicious extremist activities: Former Director

Jul 31 (DM) National Thawheed Jamaat (NTJ) had received political backing from politician Ameer Ali in 2017 and the State Intelligence Service (SIS) had informed Kattankudy police to impartially investigate the particular matter, former SIS Director SDIG Nilantha Jayawardena yesterday informed PCoI. He said that through a letter sent to former IGP Pujith Jayasundara in March, 2017, SIS had informed about the activities conducted by Islamic more..

Jayantha to assume duties as SLC Vice-President today

Jul 31 (Island) Businessman Jayantha Dharmadasa will take over as Vice-President of Sri Lanka Cricket today after K. Mathivanan stepped down from the post on Wednesday. A two time President of SLC, Dharmadasa is a vastly experienced cricket administrator having served as a Director of the ICC. He also served as Chairman of the Asian Cricket Council. Dharmadasa first came into cricket administration in 2005 and during his tenure there were many highlights for Sri Lankan cricket more..

Sri Lanka’s parliamentary elections will shape its political future—likely for the worse

Jul 31 (AC) SL’s upcoming parliamentary elections will serve as an indicator of the island’s future political direction, potential executive power buildup, and future geopolitical stance. With complications from the coronavirus pandemic, during which the Sri Lankan election commission has struggled to ensure that voting will be free, fair, and safe for all, the twice-delayed election may favor President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s party, allowing it to strike down a significant constitutional amendment more..

Video: President pledges to develop Kelaniya while preserving historical heritage

Jul 31 (AD) Prez Rajapaksa stated that the city of Kelaniya will be developed curbing the drug menace and underworld while preserving the city’s historical heritage and pride. Prez made these remarks touring Gampaha district for the second time today (30) in support of the candidates of SLPP contesting next week’s Parliamentary Election. The meeting was organized by candidate Sisira Jayakody. The Ten Fold Kelani Declaration more..

CID grills ETI Directors for 8 hours

Jul 31 (CT) CID recorded an 8-hour statement from the four Members of the Edirisinghe Trust Investments (ETI) Director Board, in connection with the ongoing probe into the controversial ETI transactions, yesterday. Subsequent to being summoned to the CID Office, statements had been recorded from Jeewaka Edirisinghe, Nalaka Edirisinghe, Asanka Edirisinghe and Deepa Edirisinghe. Quartet had arrived at CID Office at 10 a.m. yesterday to give their statements. more..

Wiggy plays SLPP card against TNA

Jul 31 (Island) Leader of Tamil People’s National Alliance C.V. Wigneswaran says the ruling SLPP wants the TNA to bag the northern and eastern electorates at the upcoming election. The former Chief Minister of the Northern Province said so addressing the media in Jaffna. He alleged that senior SLPP members Dinesh Gunawardena, Keheliya Rambukwella et al had recently claimed that SLPP would win electorates outside the North and East and TNA the North and the East. more..

Wayamba Governor lambastes EC for double standards

Jul 31 (Island) North Western Province Governor A.J.M. Muzammil alleged that the Election Commission (EC) seemed to be brazenly selective in the implementation of relevant laws pertaining to the conducting of parliamentary polls scheduled for Aug 5. Muzammil said that the EC owed the public an explanation as to how the EC allowed Constitutional Council member attorney-at-law Javid Yusuf to appear on the political more..

People’s Bank and UGC tie-up to provide laptop loans to undergraduates

Jul 31 (Island) People’s Bank has entered into a partnership with UGC to provide loan facilities to undergraduates of all universities in the country with easy repayment plans. This special loan scheme has been introduced to fulfill a promise given by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in his election manifesto Saubagye Dekma to empower all university undergraduates with the latest technology. A MoU announcing the partnership was exchanged by Sujeewa Rajapakse - chairman of more..

Kuwait adds Sri Lankans to no list

Jul 31 (FT) Kuwait has included Sri Lanka in the list of countries whose nationals won’t be allowed to enter the State. Others on the list include Bangladesh, the Philippines, India, Pakistan, Iran and Nepal. Kuwait’s cabinet yesterday said it will allow citizens and residents to travel to and from the country, starting 1 August. Last month, Kuwait announced it would partially resume commercial flights from August, but does not expect to reach full capacity until a year later, more..

JVP vows to fight moves to abolish 19A

Jul 31 (FT) Senior member of the JVP and former Gampaha District MP Vijitha Herath said that the Party would not allow the repeal of the 19th Amendment and would join forces with any Party in the next Parliament to block any such moves, this week. “The 19th Amendment is a big step in the right direction for democracy in the country. Abolishing the 19th Amendment would mean the country would take a few steps backwards. more..

Demand for private healthcare to swell with rise in ageing population

Jul 31 (DN) Demand for private healthcare is expected to increase owing to Sri Lanka’s ageing population and the increasing prevalence of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD’s). Both geriatric care and treatment of NCD’s typically require long term care with hospitalization and palliative care from time to time which support demand factors. Lanka Hospital Corporations Chairman Dr. Bandula Wijesiriwardena told shareholders in the company’s Annual report-2019. more..

SLID sets sights on international network to enrich training of future corporate directors

Jul 31 (Island) SL Institute of Directors (SLID), cementing a relationship with Institutes of Directors (IODs) of India, Singapore and Malaysia and building good contacts and rapport with IODs of the UK and Australia, is planning to give more from its popular Board Leadership Training Programme to future corporate leaders in Sri Lanka. SLID Chairman A.R Rasiah made this observation at Cinnamon Lakeside, Colombo on Wednesday at the SLID Annual Membership Meeting (AMM) more..

Ministry of Education to grant permission for schools sports events in November

Jul 31 (Island) Ministry of Education is considering granting permission for schools sports associations to conduct their competitions during the third term following a number of requests made by sports associations. A top official said that various school sports associations affiliated to the ministry had made requests to conduct their annual competitions later this year after they were cancelled due to the covid 19 pandemic. more..

‘Lankan ceramic industry has potential to cater foreign markets’

Jul 31 (DN) The Sri Lanka ceramic industry has the potential to cater to both the local and foreign markets if a mechanism existed where local manufacturers are given some incentive to expand with controlled imports. President, Sri Lanka Ceramic and Glass Council (SLCGC), Anura Warnakulasooriya said that however it is impossible to compete in price with mass scale production in countries like China or India where economies of scale drive the costs down. more..

Daraz partners with Sri Lanka Post for package returns

Jul 31 (DM) Daraz, SL’s largest online marketplace platform, partnered with Sri Lanka Post to enable easy returning of packages for all its customers, through the extensive post office network. Accordingly, if a Daraz customer needs to return a package, it can be handed over to the nearest post office, thus minimizing the time taken to process order returns and increasing accessibility across the country. MoU for the partnership was signed by Ranjith Ariyaratne - Post Master General of more..

Current SLC administration ignored and sidelined me: Mathivanan

Jul 31 (CT) SLC Vice President K. Mathivanan resigned from his post by submitting a letter to Secretary Mohan de Silva. Mathivanan was the only person to be elected from the Jayantha Dharmadasa/Nishantha Ranatunga team during the last SLC election. Prior to this too he had resigned from the post of Vice President in Sept 2013 over a dispute with the then SLC administration, and this time he claims that more..

How to deliver online education across SL

Jul 31 (TM) Sri Lanka’s education sector is having a tough time with the Covid era, trying to figure out how to provide online education when only 22.2% of Sri Lankans own laptops, tabs, or PCs. Those with Grade 5, Ordinary Level (O/L), and Advanced Level (A/L) exams in the coming months are most disadvantaged. What we need is a multi-dimensional approach to deliver online content to students from Hambantota to Point Pedro and from Ampara to Negombo. more..

Suspect busted for turmeric racket in Mannar

Jul 31 (SLN) The Navy nabbed a suspect who was smuggling a stock of dried turmeric in the beach area of Oluthuduwai, Mannar on 28th July. SL Navy continues to carry out regular patrols with a view to ward off possible arrival of individuals infected with coronavirus by sea, and avert illegal activities taking place off island’s shores. Naval personnel, during a patrol at Oluthuduwai beach, Mannar had interrogated a person who was suspiciously transferring several delivery sacks. more..

What do the amendments to the National Procurement Guidelines entail?

Jul 31 (TM) The current Govt, since it was elected in November last year, has expressed its interest in encouraging local industries and local manufacturing that have been overshadowed by imports in the past decades. Most notable amongst these initiatives is the indefinite ban on imports that was announced mainly to prevent foreign reserve spending, thereby boosting local production and businesses. more..

Development of renewable energy project: Delay causes huge losses to CEB

Jul 31 (Island) A news item in The Island, under the caption CEB finally begins to tap solar power in a big way, quoted the Chairman of CEB as having said that CEB successfully completed tender bids of 150 MW solar energy generation comprising plants between 1MW and 10 MW solar photo-voltaic (PV) plants. The report further said that more than 200 investors were willing to invest nearly USD 150 million in establishing these solar PV plants, generating electricity at a cost of Rs.10 per more..

Editorial: Battles and puzzling moves

Jul 31 (Island) SLPP founder and chief strategist Basil Rajapaksa has said something very interesting in a recent press interview. He has explained why he is not contesting the upcoming election. Others in the SLPP are guided by Rafferty’s rules, to all intents and purposes, in trying to win; they and their supporters flout election laws and health guidelines with impunity. Intraparty battles for preferential votes are raging in some political parties, and the worst affected is perhaps the SLPP, more..

Ranil Wickramasinghe

Why should we protect public wealth?

Jul 31 (CT) The issue of the future of the Eastern Container Terminal (ECT) of the Colombo Port has once again become a live issue as the port workers had organised a demonstration for the second time seeking a firm assurance from the Govt that the new terminal will remain in the hands of Sri Lankan Port Authority (SLPA). The trade union collective of the SLPA issued a warning not only against the Govt but also against India and Japan informs Prasanna Kalutharage “Do not let them privatise ECT. more..

The two Ronnies

Jul 31 (CT) The writing is on the wall for the UNP led by its colourless and losing leader, dictatorial Ranil Wickremesinghe (71), of Sedawatte. Wickremesinghe in politics has more in common with another loser, SLFP leader and former Prez Sirisena who’s contesting Wednesday’s (5) Parliamentary Election under an alliance controlled by the SLPP. Wickremesinghe is a far cry from his distinguished uncle by default J.R. Jayewardene, who became the leader of this country at more..

'Rajapaksas are a neo-liberal and ultra-capitalist lot'

Jul 31 (DM) Former Minister Champika Ranawaka responded to questions about legal action taken against him and also about plans for the future in an interview with the DailyMirror. He is also a Colombo district candidate representing SJB. Q: UNP-led political force that stood by Sajith Premadasa is split today. How would it affect you at parliamentary elections? A: Mr. Wickremesinghe’s UNP can make little impact on us. more..

Poor Sri Lanka: Rife with hypocrisy, lacking the will to succeed

Jul 31 (CT) Despite the attempted lessons from the Covid-19 pandemic, there seems to be no abatement of the endemic corruption which has been a curse in SL society. Where self-interest has trumped over common good, it is no longer a matter of shame, to be accused of corrupt practices. Amidst the clamour and naked greed fuelling the run-up to elections and admonitions by community leaders to choose wisely, such people are held in awe, and rewarded with loyalty for their ingenuity in more..

To vote or not to vote? Election apathy is not an option

Jul 31 (CT) The writer [whilst misquoting Hamlet] has in recent times increasingly come across a worrying and despondent notion that opposition [via voting] to the relentless march of the SLPP is a futile exercise. This despair arises from the realization that the main opposition UNP and its non-compliant offspring the SJB have consistently demonstrated their incompetence in most matters and that they are both happy to be slaves and willing vassals to Prez, even more pliant than perhaps his own party! more..

Voting in the elections 2020: For Public or Rulers’ welfare?

Jul 31 (CT) On Aug 5th 2020, we as citizens will choose the people who may join the President in governing this country for the next five years, if a Parliamentary system of governance under the present 1978 Constitution continues. Parliament has not functioned for 4 months- well beyond the limit set by the Constitution- so we do not know what will happen after the elections, and how or when Parliament will meet. more..

Covid-19 escapee not infectious after all

Jul 31 (DM) This year`s election originally to have been held on April 25 but postponed to June 20 would be finally held on Aug 5 under unusual circumstances with the COVID-19 pandemic breathing down our necks on the one side and having to strictly adhere to the prescribed health guidelines on the other. Amid the confusion and uncertainty overshadowing the voting process, comes the assurance by Election Commission Chief Mahinda Deshapriya that votes need not more..

Mahinda must update himself!

Jul 31 (DM) We like Mahinda Rajapaksa for many reasons. The veteran politician can turn the tide when the ships are down. He can make fools dance to his tune and educated men listen to him. This upcoming election is vital for him because this is the second time he is contesting a poll after losing power at the Prez Elections in 2015. He could be one politician who has the knack to keep voters with him even after losing an election. He proved this on Feb 18, 2015 by drawing a massive gathering more..

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