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'Govt losing its credibility over corruption'

Nov 15 (Island) Deputy Minister Ajith P. Perera, warned the govt that its failure to firmly deal with massive corruption perpetrated during the previous administration and since the change of govt in January 2015 would have far reaching consequences. The govt would certainly have to pay a very heavy price for losing credibility among the electorate, the UNPer said warning of the fact that it would realize its folly when more..

Ports Minister slams liberalisation move

Nov 15 (FT) Setting the stage for a showdown between top ministers, Ports and Shipping Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said he would oppose the proposed liberalisation of Sri Lanka’s shipping sector and faulted his colleague for failing to inform him or discuss the move with industry stakeholders before the Budget announcement.  Samarasinghe, who is from the SLFP, praised Finance Minister Mangala more..

President raises awareness in lack of women representation in politics

Nov 15 (PMD) The program Eyata Balayak – Ratata Venasak to raise awareness about the women’s representation at the Local Govt Election was held under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena today (14). “Though the women’s representation in the govt service is at a proper level it is a critical issue that there is a shortage of their representation in political and constitutional sectors”, he said. more..

Sri Lanka wants to amend Hambantota Port concession agreement

Nov 15 (LBO) SL’s cabinet revealed that Ports Minister sought cabinet approval to amend the current concession agreement of the Hambantota Port. Ports Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe sought their approval to amend the current concession agreement and to sign an additional agreement. According to the cabinet proposal, SL govt has asked China Merchants Port Holdings (CM Port) to bring the date of more..

Assistance to SL: No strings attached: China

Nov 15 (DM) China will not attach any strings when extending financial assistance to Sri Lanka and will not use an investigation into alleged human rights violations or war crimes during the armed conflict as a precondition. Miss Zhang Song, who is the the Secretary of the South Asian Division of Ministry's Department of Asian Affairs, said her country provided assistance on the sole basis of the centuries old cultural, trade & religious more..

Don’t panic! No tsunami threat: DMC

Nov 15 (AD) The Disaster Management Center (DMC) says that there is absolutely no threat of a Tsunami on any coastal area of Sri Lanka and urged the public not to panic over false rumours claiming otherwise. There have been reports of residents in areas such as Kalmunai in the Ampara District being alarmed and panicking due to the receding of sea water at the beaches in the area. Reports also state that some parents have more..

'Naseby statement will clear Sri Lankan security forces'

Nov 15 (DM) The statement made by Lord Naseby during the sessions of Britain’s House of Lords will help Sri Lanka to safeguard the dignity of its security forces to some extent, State Minister of Foreign Affairs Wasantha Senanayake told Parliament. He made this remark in response to an allegation made by Joint Opposition Parliamentary Group Leader Dinesh Gunawardene that the govt is ignoring this statement more..

Expert calls for access to data on implications of Budget proposals

Nov 15 (FT) A top economist called for free access to accurate data to properly asses the implications of 2018 Budget proposals. Verite Research CEO Dr. Nishan De Mel pointed out that Budget projections were often designed to mislead and show a favourable position that did not exist and the simple fact that money had been allocated did not guarantee a positive economic outcome unless information was available to more..

Welikada prison killings : Loved ones of those killed seek justice

Nov 15 (ST) By the time Manel Wijesinghe (54) received a call on the morning of Nov 10, 2012 from an official of the Prisons Department informing her that her nephew who was in remand custody had been injured in the unrest that took place the previous night at the Welikada Prison, neither she nor the rest of the country was aware of the magnitude of the unrest at the country’s largest prison facility. By then 27 inmates lay dead more..

When Sri Lanka re-writes its constitution trade union rights should be considered

Nov 15 (DM) Gautam Mody is the General Secretary of the New Trade Union Initiative (NTUI) of India. When still a student he joined the trade union movement inspired by some workers taking over a metal factory. Although he joined as an activist he went onto become the leader of that union which eventually joined other trade unions to form the New Trade Union Initiative (NTUI). more..

Rise of Iran along the ancient Persian lines

Nov 15 (DM) Although the news from the Middle East creates an impression of an imminent war, chances are that Iran and Saudi Arabia continuing to play it by proxy until the rookie, the impulsive Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is assured of unlimited military assistance by the Donald Trump Govt.   After all it is nothing, but a spectacular checkmating by the two Middle Eastern giants that the world has been eyeing during the past few weeks with ballistic missiles flying over more..

Maha Sangha becoming fundamentalist…was Gnanasara a mere forerunner?

Nov 15 (DM) Prior to the last Presidential Elections in 2015, the Rajapaksa clan tried a fast one. And it backfired. Galagodaaththe Gnanasara, who is more akin to a street thug-clad-in-saffron robes in search of a cause to push his own ego and those of whom he had vowed to place on the throne than a layman who has renounced a greed-ridden life. Even though his caste, which is the critical factor in being qualified to be ordained under the Malwatte Chapter of Siam Nikaye, was a shady feature of more..

Govt to wind down SAITM Medical faculty operations to close by 31 Dec

Nov 15 (CT) Govt will officially wind down the operations of the SAITM by 31 Dec. A non-profit non-State university will be formed, also by 31 Dec, which will absorb all the students not only those who have already graduated, but also those who are within the system, which is in accordance with a directive given by President Sirisena. The 9-member Presidential Committee which has been appointed to find solutions to complex issue more..

PTA detainees: Jaffna University students march to UN office

Nov 15 (CT) Jaffna University students handed over a petition yesterday to the United Nations (UN) Office urging the release of all 132 detainees held under Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), transfer of Court cases of three PTA detainees to Vavuniya and the repealing of the PTA. Hundreds of students carrying placards marched through the main streets of Jaffna to UN office. The procession which commenced from the Uni premises, headed through Palaly Road to the UN office in Jaffna. more..

Contempt of court case against Gnanasara Thera fixed for Dec 11

Nov 15 (DN) The Court of Appeal hearing the contempt of court action filed against BBS General Secretary Ven. Galagoda Atte Gnanasara Thera Thera fixed further trial for Dec 11. This is over his alleged offensive behaviour inside the Homagama Magistrate’s Court. When the matter came up for inquiry before Court of Appeal (CA) Judges, Justices L.T.B. Dehideniya and Preethi Padman Surasena, Ven. Pitigala Dhamma Vineetha thera gave evidence as a defence witness. more..

Rs. 15 bn for loans at lower interest rate to target small businesses: Mangala

Nov 15 (Island) Budget-2018 would create a credit scheme with the allocation of Rs. 15 billion to enable small businesses to obtain loans at an interest of 6.5% and in some cases 3.3% to fund modernisation and expansion of enterprises, said Minister Mangala Samaraweera. Minister, addressing a post budget forum, said that at present one of the biggest barriers to starting a business was the cost of capital. more..

Sri Lanka dare to dream of India Test upset

Nov 15 (AFP) Captain Dinesh Chandimal is dreaming of Sri Lanka making history by winning a Test in India - despite being huge underdogs against the world's top-ranked side when the series begins in Kolkata on Thursday. Sri Lanka lost all nine matches - three Tests, five one-day internationals and a Twenty20I - as they were humiliated at home by Virat Kohli's tourists from late July to September. The island nation have still never won a Test on Indian soil but they head for Eden Gardens more..

Rajagiriya accident: 2 students granted bail

Nov 15 (CT) Two students, who were injured in the Rajagiriya accident, received bail yesterday, while recuperating at the Colombo National Hospital. Two of the students of Royal College, Colombo involved in the accident received bail, on order of the Colombo Additional Magistrate Chandana Kalansuriya. Two 18-year-olds, who incidentally drove the pick-up truck and the car that were involved in the accident, were however, not officially arrested due to their medical condition. more..

Failure to amend power purchasing agreement: CEB incurs Rs 8B loss

Nov 15 (CT) The failure to make necessary amendments to a power purchasing agreement with a private power plant has resulted in the CEB incurring a loss of Rs 8 billion. Deputy Minister of Power and Renewable Energy, Ajith P. Perera said, in Parliament that the CEB had incurred this loss during the last four years owing to the failure to amend its power purchasing agreement with the West Coast private power plant. more..

Sabaragamuwa Uni undergrad to represent SL at World Miss University pageant

Nov 15 (Island) 21-one-year old Dulani Rathnayake, an undergraduate of University of Sabaragamuwa has been selected to represent Sri Lanka at the World Miss University pageant to be held in South Korea and Cambodia from Nov 25 to Dec 20. World Miss University pageant is an international beauty contest held annually in Seoul since 1986 with an average of about 70 contestants every year. In fact, the event is held to select World Miss University Peace Corps Representatives. more..

Canadian doctors support Tellippalai Base Hospital in Jaffna

Nov 14 (LR) The Canadian Tamil Medical Association (CTMA) recently raised funds for Tellippalai Base Hospital, the second largest hospital in Jaffna district in Northern Sri Lanka. In the first phase of their support, the CTMA donated vital medical equipment  to the hospital. “The Jaffna society is highly satisfied with the efforts of CTMA,” Dr. Y. Thivakar, Medical Supervisor for the for Tellippalai Base Hospital said in message sent to CTMA on its annual fundraising gala, more..

Disgruntled Wijeyadasa trying to scuttle efforts to introduce new Constitution: TNA

Nov 15 (Island) Jaffna District TNA lawmaker M.A. Sumanthiran said that former Justice Minister Dr Wijeyadasa Rajapakse, PC, was making a despicable bid to sabotage the ongoing constitution making process. He said so in response to MP Rajapakse’s controversial request to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to rescind a motion passed in Parliament to set up the constitutional assembly to prepare a new Constitution. more..

Appointment as MP delayed due to interference in judiciary: Piyasena Gamage

Nov 15 (DM) MP Piyasena Gamage said today that the Court verdict confirming his appointment as an MP was delayed, because some people attempted to interfere with the judiciary. "There are some who try to influence the judiciary, though the govt has a whole does not do so. A case such as mine would have been resolved within a short period, but in SL, it is a time consuming affair. The verdict on my case would have been given much earlier if not for the influence by some," he said. more..

‘Focus on women’s empowerment, a positive feature of budget 2018’

Nov 15 (Island) 'Women’s empowerment and an enlightened economic culture were aspects of budget 2018. Empowerment of women was a newer aspect that could gain in importance particularly because 51% of the population are women and focus on gender and the contribution of women to the economy were not recognized in most previous budgets, president, National Chamber of Commerce of SL Sujeeve Samaraweera said. NCCSL was holding its budget seminar Monday. more..

Not Medamulana tax but bond scam tax: JO

Nov 15 (DM) The JO said the excessive taxes imposed on the people through the 2018 Budget should be described as bond scam taxes instead of Medamulana taxes. JO member G.L. Peiris said though the govt had reduced prices of essential items, it had in return hoped to obtain a colossal revenue by way of indirect taxes. “The govt will have to spend Rs.18 billion next year to provide the price reductions on essential items. more..

Tharjini shines at Australian Netball League

Nov 15 (DN) Tharjini Sivalingam (Genie), also known as the tallest netballer in the world excelled in Australian Netball League tournament, where she represented two clubs namely Falcon and St. Albans. The League competitions which took place in two stages (Victorian Netball League and Geelong Netball League) had over 20 teams from across the world. The teams locked horns as the battle for the championship marched ahead in the form of the elimination process. more..

Witchcraft claim: Sumathipala clears stand

Nov 15 (TI) Thilanga Sumathipala, the president of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), has dismissed talk that the witchcraft controversy embarrassed the SLC. "Dinesh Chandimal visited a lady sorcerer before the two-Test series against Pakistan. He did so in his individual capacity... "It just so happened that we won both the Tests..."Resorting to witchcraft or sorcery isn't something which has been institutionalised by SLC, so there's no question of any embarrassment," more..

Time for Mathews to put past troubles behind

Nov 15 (CI) It has been four months since Angelo Mathews stepped down from the role, but it's hard not to look at him with the feeling in the back of your mind that you're watching Sri Lanka's captain do his thing. There's SL's captain, pulling an underarm throw-down (flick-up?) from a crouched member of the support staff. Here he is now, in the nets, defending off the back foot, looking like a captain, looking burdened by everything that more..

Global giant Maersk hails Govt’s move to liberalise shipping and logistics sector

Nov 15 (FT) Maersk Line, largest global container shipping line and a market leader in SL, said it fully supported the 2018 Budget proposals made by Minister Mangala Samaraweera to open up the shipping and logistics sector to foreign investments and introduce an independent port regulator. Maersk Line Managing Director Steve Felder said “Maersk Line supports any efforts that govts make to liberalise and improve the business environment for the maritime industry, and for our customers. more..

Incorporating ayurvedic treatments, Sri Lanka's spas are worth the trip

Nov 15 (Forbes) Over the last few years, this tear-drop shaped country off the tip of India has become a travel writer’s darling. Earning accolades for its ring of beaches, enduring ruins, distinct cuisine, vibrant culture, and wild game-viewing, this up-and-coming destination for tourists seeking India Light was pure, untouched and unspoiled and ready for its close-up. Sri Lanka sounded like a veritable Shangri-La. Encouraged by high expectations set by effusive media praise, more..

JVP Press Conference on 2018 Budget

Defending champs India, Sri Lanka crash out of U-19 Asia Cup

Nov 15 (DN) India were knocked out of the U-19 Asia Cup after suffering their second straight defeat in three days. The defending champions lost to Nepal on Sunday and suffered a similar fate against Bangladesh on Tuesday to crash out of the tournament. Rain in Kuala Lumpur had forced the match to be reduced to 32 overs per side and Bangladesh, after electing to field, restricted India for 187 for 8 in 32 overs. India were reduced to 87 for 4 at halfway mark and were struggling to more..

Motor vehicle accident in Rajagiriya: Royalists conduct prayer service

Nov 15 (CT) A prayer service and bodhi pooja were held yesterday in remembrance of the Royal College student who was killed in a motor vehicle accident and for the speedy recovery of the students who sustained injuries in the same accident. A prayer service was held at the Good Shepherd Church, Jawatte by the Student Christian Movement of Royal College, and a bodhi pooja was held at the Bellanwila Temple. In addition to this, Grade 12/13 students of Royal College held a bodhi pooja more..

Not sure whether Hathu will be given a free hand: Murali

Nov 15 (Island) World’s highest wicket taker Muttiah Muralitharan expressed his reservations yesterday whether Chandika Hathurusingha will be given a free hand in coaching Sri Lanka. After the former Test opener tendered his resignation as Bangladesh Head Coach, the 49-year-old has been linked with the Sri Lankan job, but Muralitharan doubted whether his former Tamil Union team-mate will be given a free hand. more..

Rumesh Ratnayake stresses on execution

Nov 15 (Island) Sri Lanka bowling coach Rumesh Ratnayake revealed that his team has prepared elaborate strategies for the upcoming three-Test series against India but said it would be all about executing those plans on the field. "We have done all that we could have to counter attack. Whatever we would expect in the Test series. I hope our strategies will work," Ratnayake told journalists. "We can only plan but it’s about executing them on the field. It’s a huge challenge more..

The Wanniyala-Aetto, and CKDu

Nov 15 (Island) While I was collecting field data on Chronic Kidney Disease of Unknown Aetiology (CKDu) in Medawachchiya in 2013, I wondered why healthcare providers believed that the Veddas were less affected by the deadly disease. I knew that urinary tract infections had been reported among Vedda people in Hennanigala and Dambana in the Mahaweli areas through a study conducted by Premakumara de Silva and Asitha G. Punchihewa on a Socio-Anthropological Research Project more..