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Attack on Uni. students: GMOA to launch indefinite strike today

June 22 (DM) Executive Committee of GMOA last night decided to resort to a trade union action that will lead to a countrywide token strike to begin at 8am today, GMOA Assistant Secretary Dr. Haritha Aluthge said. Dr. Aluthge said the decision to launch an indefinite strike was taken for two reasons, firstly condemning the brutal attack on university students who protested at the Health Ministry building & secondly for not extending more..

Wiggy takes over Education, Agriculture

June 22 (CT) CM C.V. Wigneswaran will be temporarily handling the Ministries of Education and Agriculture following the resignation of the two Ministers who held those portfolios in a sequel to fraud allegations proved against them in addition to allegations of abuse of power. Ministers, T. Kurukularajah and P. Ayngraranesan handed in their resignations to the Chief Minister following positive findings of guilt by a Board of Inquiry appointed by the Chief Minister. more..

SL slip to number eight in ICC Rankings

June 22 (Island) Sri Lankan cricket has hit new lows following an update of the ICC Rankings for ODI cricket as the national cricket team slipped to number eight in the official rankings. Prior to the ICC Champions Trophy, SL were placed seventh and Pakistan were eighth, but an impressive show during the competition has helped Pakistan to secure the sixth spot while SL have slid down to eighth. Bangladesh are number seven. With this new low, SL are on the boarder line of relegation zone more..

Prez likely to sack SriLankan airline board

June 22 (EN) President Sirisena is tipped  to sack the board of directors of Sri Lanka’s national carrier, but is expecting them to resign on their own in the wake of a ferocious grilling by the cabinet, an official source said. Ministers grilled Sri Lankan airlines Chairman Ajith Dias and his CEO Suren Ratwatte who were accused of mismanagement and misappropriation in a repeat of profligacy seen under former administration. more..

IUSF misled intelligence units

June 22 (DM) The police and other intelligence arms did not have an inkling of where the procession of the IUSF was heading yesterday until they reached their target and stormed the Health Ministry building Suvasiripaya on Deans Road, IUSF Convener Lahiru Weerasekara claimed. The ministry officials inside the building at the time the IUSF students rushed into the premises, where they remained for several hours, had been allowed to vacate the premises unharmed. more..

IFC gets nod to issue offshore rupee bonds

June 22 (FT) International Finance Corporation (IFC), which is a unit of the World Bank group, has been given the Cabinet green light to issue Sri Lanka rupee denominated bonds in offshore markets, top officials said yesterday.  If approved by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka and other relevant bodies, the bonds will be sold in offshore markets and the proceeds will be used for lending in Sri Lanka, Cabinet Spokesman Minister Gayantha Karunathilaka told reporters. more..

Angelo can bowl at IPL, not for SL: Dayasiri

June 22 (Island) Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera said that contrary to claims in certain quarters, captain Angelo Matthews had not been fit enough to play in the first group stage match of the recently concluded ICC Championship Trophy tournament. Asked why Matthews had been prevented from playing the first match, he said: "Angelo was unfit. He aggravated an injury by taking part in India's IPL tournament. more..

JVP threatens to surround Isurupaya

June 22 (Island) Principals and teachers attached to the JVP trade union arm are planning to surround the Education Ministry next week in protest against the Ministry Secretary’s failure to give them a hearing to discuss outstanding issues. Convener of the Teachers – Principals Front and JVP Western Provincial Council member Mahinda Jayasinghe said they had asked for a discussion with the Education Secretary several times in the recent past but in vain. more..

Video: SB apologizes to Maha Sangha

June 22 (AD) A minister Wednesday apologized from the Maha Sanga after he was subjected to criticism during a media gathering organized by the Asgiriya Chapter. Minister S.B. Dissanayake said he regrets if the Maha Sanga have been disappointed about him and he would like to apologize from the monks and the Sanga Sabha. He also admitted to the fact that in several occasions he addressed Ven. Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero using only a part of the name. more..

Geneva stand contradicted in parliament: JO

June 22 (Island) Alleging that the yahapalana govt had taken contradictory positions in respect of continuing UN interventions made in accordance with 2015 and 2017 resolutions co-sponsored by Sri Lanka, JO Leader Dinesh Gunawardena, demanded an immediate clarification from the UNP-SLFP coalition. He accused the govt of repeatedly deceiving parliament regarding its Geneva commitments. more..

Anti-SAITM protest sends 92 to hospital

June 22 (FT) An IUSF protest yesterday in front of Health Ministry ended with 92 people being hospitalised, including six policemen who were deployed to control the situation.  Protest march turned violent after police charged at the protesting students with batons, teargas and water cannons to disperse them after they surrounded the Health Ministry.  Out of the 92 students arrested 55 were admitted to the National Hospital to receive further treatment, while the rest of the students more..

‘Use Colombo’s garbage as landfill for Financial City Project’

June 22 (DN) Finding a site to dump garbage is not an issue as there is a ready-made venue for the port city project in Galle Face said former President of Chamber of Commerce, Tissa jayaweera. He said that the port city project uses sand and rook to reclaim sea investing a lot of money and machinery. “Instead the port city project can use the sorted out garbage collected from Colombo and use in the filling of the land.” He said that though many consider garbage as an issue, more..

'Pakistan always supports Sri Lanka through thick and thin'

June 22 (TN) Former president Mahinda Rajapaksa of Sri Lanka said Pakistan and Sri Lanka’s mutual long relationship is sustained by cultural heritage, economies, and common stand on international issues. “We are grateful for the unconditional and steadfast support we received from Pakistan. It is a matter of deep satisfaction that I was able to raise SL’s voice with Pakistan. They have stood by us through thick and thin,” more..

HC urged to dismiss PIL plea to extradite accused from Lanka

June 22 (Hindu) Rameswaram police have urged the Madras High Court Bench here to dismiss a public interest litigation (PIL) petition seeking a direction to Central and State Govts to extradite SL Navy personnel who had allegedly shot dead 21-year-old fisherman K. Britjo on the high seas on March 6. In a status report filed before a Division Bench, Inspector of Police, Rameswaram Temple, said the investigators were yet to ascertain whether the incident took place in the Indian waters, more..

SEC to decide fate of errant firms in public float by month end

June 22 (ST) Timelines to enforce new directions on listed company public float is fast approaching with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) meeting next week to decide on the fate of errant firms, informed sources said. The Colombo Stock Exchange’s (CSE) timeline to issue directions on non-compliance is end June. The Commission is to decide the penalties on non-compliant firms as well, the sources told the Business Times, declining to say what they were. more..

Lasith Malinga says Sports Minister is a joke

June 22 (Island) Lasith Malinga made a scathing attack on Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara after Minister had questioned the fitness of Sri Lankan cricketers. After Sri Lanka’s disappointing Champions Trophy campaign last week, Jayasekara had said that SL’s players were the most unfit in the world. Malinga responded making a scathing attack on the Minister. "When parrots are on cage, monkeys outside are making noises. more..

Women's CT 2017, Warm-up: India beat SL

June 22 (CC) India’s second and final warm-up match before the commencement of ICC Women’s World Cup saw them take on Sri Lanka. Asked to bat first, India managed to pile on 275 runs on the board with help of a sturdy 85 by skipper Mithali Raj. In reply, Sri Lanka managed just 166 runs as Indian bowlers drew life out their batting line-up. Penny-pinching bowling by the likes of Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Ekta Bisht and Shikha Pandey saw their opponents stifle for run in the middle and more..

Sri Lanka partners with Japan’s JCB for national banking cards

June 22 (DM) Japanese banking giant JCB International Co. Ltd. will be issuing Sri Lanka’s national banking cards in partnership with LankaClear (Pvt) Ltd’s LankaPay brand next year, it was revealed yesterday. “The partnership was approved last week by the Monetary Board of the Central Bank,” LankaClear CEO Channa de Silva said yesterday at the LankaPay Technovation Awards 2017. A JCB team was in town to exchange the partnership documents. more..

Ranil drops Mangala from UNHRC resolution implementation monitoring body

June 22 (CT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday submitted a cabinet paper to establish a ministerial central coordination and monitoring mechanism to implement UNHRC recommendations. Interestingly, the man who has done all the hard work re UNHRC resolution over the last two and a half years, former Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera has not been appointed to this vital committee. more..

‘Most foreign tourists to SL are backpackers’

June 22 (Island) Sri Lanka should promote high end tourists into the country because most tourists who arrive in the country do not even occupy a normal hotel. They are mainly backpackers, CEO, The Hotels Association of Sri Lanka Laleenie Hulangamuwa said. "At this juncture we are in the process of addressing this issue to promote high end tourists into the country and to upgrade Sri Lanka to help classify it as a high spenders' destination while improving the infrastructure more..

A tiff within Sri Lanka’s Tamil polity

June 22 (Hindu) On the turbulence in the NPC. What was the recent crisis in Northern Provincial Council (NPC) in Jaffna? As many as 21 of the 38 members of the Provincial Council in Sri Lanka’s Tamil-majority north said that they had no confidence in C.V. Wigneswaran, their Chief Minister. The members’ move not only threatened his office briefly, but also signalled a possible split in the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) that runs the Council. TNA is also Sri Lanka’s main opposition party. more..

Govt approves 2500 construction workers from Nepal, Myanmar

June 22 (ST) Sri Lanka’s rapid expansion of construction in several economic sectors now impact millions of people in terms of employment and income. Its corresponding relevance to the country’s economy is the contribution to the GDP, directly and indirectly. Consequently, CCI regularly raises its concerns on the key issues which can sustain growth by avoiding the pitfalls in policy and in its intrinsic shortfalls. more..

Reading and falling in love: Did my phone take it away?

June 22 (Island) What happened to the saying Reading maketh and a full man? What will happen to the world when people read short messages on their phones? May be most of them are already doing it. That is why they just stare at this small gadget. I remember the times at airports when people read books , met and greeted people. Gone are those wonderful days people met, spoke, smiled, laughed and became friends at bus halts, railway stations, on the buses and during journeys by more..

Sri Lanka, the resplendent isle, the real of Indian ocean then & now

June 22 (CT) How times have changed! When DS Senanayake, SWRD Bandaranaike, Dudley Senanayake, Sirimavo Bandaranaike ruled SL, did the people go around glorifying them as larger-than-life superhuman entities? Did anyone try to deify them as worthy of obeisance and reverence? Did we see articles in newspapers specifically devoted to the worship of such personalities as some kind of weird idols that were somehow better than ordinary human beings? more..

M.A. Sumanthiran

Aluthgama 3 years on

June 22 (GV) Dharga town is sleepy in the afternoon heat, especially at this time of year, the month of Ramadan. However, three years ago, in 2014, the streets were filled with smoke. Groundviews has written extensively on the aftermath of the violence in Aluthgama, which left 3 dead and 78 injured. Muslim-owned shops and places of worship were set ablaze. Photos of the damage showed charred walls, broken roof tiles and burned furniture. Groundviews was one of the few on social more..

Editorial: North: Is all well?

June 22 (Island) Sanity has prevailed at long last and the Northern Provincial Council (NPC), which was on the cusp of a crisis for weeks, has regained some stability. This wouldn’t have been possible but for the intervention of religious dignitaries, some foreign diplomats and the willingness on the part of CM C.V. Wigneswaran and Opposition and TNA Leader R. Sampanthan to grasp the nettle. Opinion, however, is divided on how the issue of the no-faith motion against Wigneswaran as well as more..

'ETCA is being played very badly politically'

June 22 (CT) In recent past there has been a lot of discussion about the National Trade Policy. In the light of trade policy discussion, Ceylon Today interviewed Prof Razeen Sally who is Associate Professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. Prof. Sally is also the Chairman of the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), the main economic-policy think tank in his native Sri Lanka. more..

The rise and fall of Wigneswaran

June 22 (SL) He was chosen as a possible hero for the North but today he faces pressure from the very political party which put him in the political arena. Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran last week faced calls to step down in a corruption drama involving some members of the NPC. The TNA made it known publicly that it was not happy with Wigneswaran. In 2013 the TNA nominated Wigneswaran as the Chief Ministerial candidate for the NPC elections. more..

While there’s life, there’s hope

June 22 (SL) Having been castigated for being a prophet of doom and gloom insofar as the future of the Resplendent Isle is concerned, being subjected to recurring abuse accompanying the allegation that I am simply a “disgruntled victim of the great Hector Kobbekaduwa’s Land reform” etc. etc., it gives me a bit of satisfaction to document a ray of hope in the murk that is Sri Lanka today. As someone who underwent the travails resulting from a Specialist’s “outsourcing” of what was allegedly a more..

Oluvil Harbour: To continue or not

June 22 (SO) Reading the news item a few days back on the decision to shut down the fisheries harbour at Oluvil, some facts and views on the Oluvil Harbour given below are noteworthy. Oluvil Harbour appears a waste of public funds, local and foreign, not because of non-use or under- utilization but due to the serious issue of high recurrent maintenance cost required for the harbour to be operational arising from a very high volume more..

Acts of racism: A slur on reconciliation

June 22 (NS) After many years of war and terrorism we are starving for foreign investments while tourism has just begun to pick registering satisfactory levels of growth over the last few years. Despite many other issues, both political and economic, one positive thing in our country is absence of terrorism and the prevailing peace. In this context any person or organization that engages in any acts leading to destruction of that peace will be indirectly helping to breed terrorism and more..

The case for a Sangha rebellion

June 22 (CT) My colleague in the CCS, C. R. De Silva has asked me for my comments on the article, Buddhism & Good Governance: The Case for a Sangha Rebellion published recently in the Colombo telegraph in two instalments, for his information. CR was keen to have my comments as he had recently published ideas on the same line. Though I do not have the background to comment on the ideas of an international anthropologist and sociologist like Prof. H.L. Seneviratne, I decided to share my more..

Video: Protesting students barge into Health Ministry

June 21 (DM) The protestors of the IUSF forcibly entered the Health Ministry building at Maradana a short while ago. The protesting students demanded the abolishment of the private medical faculty at the SAITM. The students had also covered the ministry’s sign board reading Suvasiripaya with one of their banners which demanded the private medical faculty be abolished. Earlier today, Colombo Chief Magistrate issued an order more..

Police used tear gas against protesting students

June 21 (DM) The protest of the IUSF went violent with over 85 students being hospitalized after the police used battons, teargas and water cannons to disperse the students who surrounded and took over the Health Ministry building. The university students forcibly entered the Health Ministry building at Maradana in violation of the court order issued by the Colombo Chief Magistrate. Earlier today, the Magistrate issued an order preventing IUSF students from forcibly entering more..

Sri Lanka to abolish import control fee for tea

June 21 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s cabinet nod has been received to abolish the import control license fee for imported tea in line with 2017 budget proposals. There has been a significant debate on the issue of importing cheaper leaves for blending and re-export, over fears of damaging Ceylon Tea brand. Some tea exporters however want to import leaves from countries like Kenya, Vietnam and Indonesia, and blend them with higher quality local produce for higher returns. more..

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