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Sri Lanka a different side of dairy farming

Mar 18 (ODT) Dairying in Sri Lanka is a much different scene to the lush pastures of West Otago. Kelso dairy farmer Marloes Levelink returned this month from a three-week stint in Sri Lanka, as part of a new farmer volunteer scheme to work with  dairy farmers there. From more than 100 applications from Fonterra shareholders, she was one of four selected to spend time at Fonterra’s demonstration and training farm in Pannala, more..

Self in place of people

Mar 18 (DM) Are the loyalists of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who call themselves the Joint Opposition (JO) playing into the hands of the Government by fighting for the demand made by Wimal Weerawansa’s National Freedom Front (NFF) to recognise it as a separate party in the Parliament? Wittingly or unwittingly, they have totally diverted the focus of the masses from skyrocketing cost of living and many other burning problems by this agitation. more..

Stop ethnic profiling and hate speech

Mar 18 (DM) On Tuesday (21) the world marks the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, with this year’s theme being racial profiling and incitement to hatred, including in the context of migration. This is significant in view of the emergence of the explosive Donald Trump as President of the US and his two executive orders imposing a temporary ban on immigrants from six Muslim majority countries. In the states of Hawaii and Maryland, federal judges have ruled that more..

Rescued Sri Lankan crew expected back in Colombo today

Mar 18 (Island) Sri Lankan crew members of the hijacked Aris 13 vessel said that the Somalian pirates had robbed all their possessions before leaving the ship. They were left with only their clothes and mobile phones, they said. Chief Engineer of the vessel, Jayantha Kalubowila said over the phone that Aris 13 with eight SL crew members on-board had arrived at the Port of Bosaso in NE Somalia Puntland region yesterday. more..

Sri Lanka cursed with corrupt and incompetent leaders: Shuffle shuffled?

Mar 18 (NS) Speculations were rife on Friday in Colombo of a possible Cabinet reshuffle after a meeting of the govt high rankers at the Presidential Secretariat. The meeting saw the participation of President Sirisena, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, and several ministers including Mahinda Amaraweera, Mahinda Samarasinghe, Susil Premajayanth, Dr. Sarath Amunugama and Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena. President earlier hinted of a change in Fisheries Cabinet portfolio more..

'Extradite fisherman murder case accused from Sri Lanka'

Mar 18 (Hindu) A public interest litigation petition (PIL) was filed in Madras High Court Bench here on Friday seeking a direction to the Centre as well as State Govt to extradite the accused in a case registered in connection with the death of Rameswaram fisherman K.Britjo (21) who was allegedly shot dead by the SL Navy on the high seas on March 6. Case, filed by D. Raju of NTK, has been listed for hearing before a Division Bench of Justices A. Selvam and N. Authinathan on Monday. more..

PIA’s CEO rebukes allegations of acquiring plane from Sri Lanka on exorbitant charges

Mar 18 (DP) Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) CEO Bernd Hildenbrand, who is facing travel ban and charges of corruption in airlines, rebuked all allegations leveled against him and termed them baseless. He claimed that investigation agency did not have enough information regarding lease of planes. Instead of conducting his media trial, all procedures of acquiring planes on lease could be learnt in more..

Govt faces rupee crisis

Mar 18 (Island) A decline in foreign investments and reserves has caused the govt to face a rupee crisis. Last year foreign investments dropped to USD 444.5 million (34%) and investment in Treasury bonds also declined. In 2016, the govt lost USD 324.3 million due to withdrawals by Treasury bond investors and this year up to February 14 there had been a loss of USD 309 million in Treasury bonds withdrawal. As a result, investments made by foreigners in Treasury bonds had dropped to USD 4.4 million, more..

Oppose UN resolution, Vaiko tells Centre

Mar 18 (Hindu) MDMK general secretary Vaiko on Friday urged the Indian govt to oppose the resolution in the UN that would give two more years to Sri Lanka to submit its report based on investigation into alleged war crimes against the Tamils. “With all sincerity and anguish, I would request you that the Indian Govt should oppose this resolution,” he said. If India supported the resolution, then it would be recorded in the history as a country that supported the genocide of Tamils, more..

President calls for better coordination between politicians, SLAS officials

Mar 18 (DN) The link between politicians and members of the Sri Lanka Administrative Service (SLAS) should be strengthened for the speedy implementation of development projects, President Maithripala Sirisena said. President also said that due to poor coordination between public servants and politicians, most of the funds allocated for various development programmes is sent back to the Treasury at the end of the year. more..

Colombo Fashion Week kicks off with Emerging Designers’ Showcase

Mar 18 (ST) Day one of Colombo Fashion Week kicked off with the Emerging Designers’ Showcase yesterday  at the Hilton Colombo. Set in the Foyeur of the GRAZE restaurant, show featured 8 new up and coming designers. Namely Dinushi Pamunuwa, Anushika Perera, Poorni Wijesinghe, Savindri Kuruppu, Vathsala Gunasekara, Marlon Rae, Mihiri De Silva, and Yathra Jayawardene. The night saw two brands being launched when their debut collections were showcased on the runway. more..

LOLC acquires majority stake in Cambodia’s PRASAC Microfinance

Mar 18 (Island) LOLC International Private Limited (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lanka ORIX Leasing Company (LOLC)) and The Bank of East Asia, Limited (BEA) announced that they have acquired a majority interest in PRASAC Microfinance Institution Limited (PRASAC) from Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries SA (BIO), Dragon Capital Group Limited (Dragon Capital) and Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden N.V. (FMO). more..

Berkeley conservation group wins $1 million grant for Sri Lanka project

Mar 18 (EBT) Seacology has won a grant of almost $1 million for a conservation project in Sri Lanka. The Berkeley-based organization is a winner in this year’s Water Window Challenge sponsored by the international Global Resilience Partnership. A goal of the competition is to bolster the resilience of flood-prone communities in Central/East Africa & South/Southeast Asia against climate change & natural disasters. more..

Survey on drought concludes

Mar 18 (NS) Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Disaster Management are presently conducting a survey with regard to ascertaining information pertaining to those affected by drought and are faced with food insecurity, for the purpose of providing relief. National Disaster Relief Services Centre (NDRSC) as per requests made by district secretariats and divisional secretariats are providing monies to them along with the facilities such as tractor & lorry bowsers required for purpose, more..

Protest over Welikada prison riots

Mar 18 (NS) A protest campaign was held last week in front of the Welikada prison demanding that the Govt bring to justice the perpetrators of the riots which took place in 2012 and address issues faced by inmates. The protest was conducted on March 14. In solidarity, approximately 3500 prisoners at the Welikada prison engaged in a fast, a protest which they were subsequently scheduled to continue in order to bring to the attention of the authorities the issue regarding more..

Mobitel-Ericsson MoU for first 5G Island of Innovation

Mar 18 (FT) Ericsson in collaboration with Mobitel and the Ministry of Telecommunication and Digital Infrastructure has formally signed the 5G Island of Innovation MoU in Colombo. MoU signed on 10 March, representing a landmark strategic ICT partnership that aims to bring 5G Internet of Things (IoT) innovation and entrepreneurship to Sri Lanka for the first time in South Asia. more..

Enterprise based project to boost entrepreneurship

Mar 18 (FT) Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) chaired by former President Chandrika Kumaratunga has conducted an extensive survey with the District Secretaries of eight districts in Northern and Eastern provinces resulting in the design of an Enterprise Based Village Development Project (EBVDP). On submission of the Cabinet Memorandum by President Sirisena as the Minister of National Integration and Reconciliation, more..

Piyumi Hansamali reveals all

Mar 18 (NS) Responding to an enquiry regarding a fight that broke out at hotel in Kiribathgoda last Thursday, popular model, actress and TV presenter  Piyumi Hansamali revealed to our sister newspaper Rivira,  that she had gone there with about six friends. “There were some people attending a party and they were singing and enjoying themselves. One person in that group looking at me and made some foul remarks. We heard it very well. My best friend Venura got very angry. more..

Govt stamps Rs.1.5 b subsidy for plantations

Mar 18 (FT) After strong appeals, Govt has allocated a fertilizer subsidy of Rs.1.5 billion for the tea, rubber, and coconut industries. The appeal, which was made by Minister Naveen Dissanayake after intense lobbying by the sector, particularly smallholders, was responded to by the Govt this week. Subsidy will be distributed to the apex bodies of the relevant industries with Rs.900 million being given to Tea Small Holdings Dev Authority, more..

Sun shines on Sri Lanka power policy

Mar 18 (FT) Treading in the footsteps of the rest of the world, the Sri Lankan Govt has decided to redirect its power policies from a mixture of hydro and coal to solar and wind power with a slew of new measures to subsidise home solar installations, purchase power at higher prices and build a floating solar farm.  Govt has earmarked Rs.3.5 billion to pay 50% of the interest incurred by home owners when applying for a loan to install a solar power grid onto their roofs. more..

Jaliya Wickremasuriya gets bail

Mar 18 (ITN) SL’s former Ambassador to the US has been released on strict bail conditions. Court enlarged him on bail taking into consideration on his health situation. He was arrested by FCID on the 18th of Nov last year on charges of misusing state resources amounting to US$ 332,000 during the previous regime. It has been mentioned in the medical report submitted by Director of the Hospital that former Ambassador is receiving treatment and he is suffering from many illnesses. more..

Kusal Perera, Thisara return to ODI squad

Mar 18 (CI) Kusal Perera and Thisara Perera were recalled to Sri Lanka's ODI squad against Bangladesh, but captain Angelo Mathews continued to remain unavailable due to injury. Other additions in the ODI squad included opening batsman Danushka Gunathilaka - fresh from an excellent run for Sri Lanka A - but there was no place for either seam bowler Nuwan Kulasekara or legspinner Jeffrey Vandersay. more..

Falsely framing the money shot

Mar 18 (FT) I am hardly an expert when it comes to finance. My best fiscal efforts have brought tears to my better half’s tender eyes. The most tough-minded fiduciary decision I have ever taken would have Keynes, Friedman, and Greenspan, nodding solemnly and agreeing that some men just don’t understand money. That probably has you smiling and wondering whether this is a column on subversive politics or the confessions of a self-made pauper. It is less of a laughing matter that more..

Editorial: Waiting for Godot

Mar 18 (Island) An otherwise outspoken Polls Chief Mahinda Deshapriya sometimes speaks in riddles, especially when he discusses the issue of much-delayed LG elections. A veteran public official, he must be having good reasons for not speaking his mind on sensitive issues though we want him to dance down the track and entertain the public. He presided over, perhaps, the most critical election in the post-Independence history of this country—the 2015 presidential polls, more..

The Perera era: End of an innings

Mar 18 (ST) Someone who always believed in luck, Nimal Perera, a powerful businessman during the Mahinda Rajapaksa-led administration, now says  he has ambitious plans to be a politician. On the back of stepping down from Chairman/Non-Executive Director at two Dhammika Perera-led firms – Horana Plantations and Vallibel One – as announced to the Colombo stock market, which followed his resignation as a director of more..

Learned from Chandimal's first-innings knock: Shakib

Mar 18 (CI) Shakib Al Hasan was cagey about what drove him to recklessness on the second evening, but conceded he had done some hard thinking overnight before he resumed his innings where he went on to score a vital hundred on the third day of Bangladesh's 100th Test against Sri Lanka. Bangladesh had lost two quick wickets and would soon lose a third when he had arrived at the crease yesterday, and though they were in danger of being dismissed well short of Sri Lanka's 338, more..

NEDA gears for island-wide youth entrepreneur drive

Mar 18 (DM) Sri Lanka’s apex State operated entrepreneurship developer, the National Enterprise Development Agency (NEDA), is now on a major youth entrepreneur drive-and the latest node in Sri Lanka’s grassroots market linkage network to start operations will be serving the small time young farmers and fisher-folk in Northern Province’s Mannar district. “We encourage our youth not to be a burden on the public resources,” said Minister Rishad Bathiudeen. more..

Spinners losing sting with old ball: Sandakan

Mar 18 (CI) The new ball remained key to the spinners' menace on this P Sara deck, said Lakshan Sandakan, after he took 4 for 140. SL were not particularly effective with either the first or second new ball, taking most of their wickets after the shine had worn off. But they did raise some close lbw shouts, and drew several mistakes from the batsmen, both early in Bangladesh's innings and soon after taking the second new ball. more..

Learning in the College of Political Privilege

Mar 18 (Island) The very poor education level of members of parliament disclosed recently made us inquire into the trends in the education of future politicians. As the Joint Opposition is the loudest voice in parliament today we made our first inquiry from them. Nuugath Manthri Janavimana said they were taking action to ensure that their children will be the best educated to be in politics and come to parliament. Why, do you think that your children will follow you to parliament? more..

Tamim, Imrul fined for breaching ICC Code of Conduct

Mar 18 (ICC) Bangladesh batsmen Tamim Iqbal and Imrul Kayes have been fined 15 per cent of their match fee for breaching the ICC Code of Conduct during the second day of the second Test against Sri Lanka in Colomboon Thursday. Both players were found to have breached Article 2.1.1 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which relates to conduct that is contrary to the spirit of the game. Tamim showed his bat to the umpire during an appeal for lbw, more..


The Chamber: A forum for decorum

Mar 18 (NS) Parliamentary Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, in similarity to his recent predecessors, is having a heck of time controlling the increasingly crude, juvenile, disrespectful and overly combative behaviour of a clique of legislators. Chaos reigned in the Assembly last week and the sittings were suspended twice when the Speaker ordered the removal of a senior lawmaker for unruly behaviour in the House. Speaker Jayasuriya had ordered JO MP Dinesh Gunawardena to leave more..

Make way to change

Mar 18 (NS) Changes are inevitable. But, many fear change. They mainly fear change because they fear how change will affect them personally. Whether the change is good or bad, or whether it benefits many, does not enter into the initial equation.  We treat change with skepticism at first, and then begin to accept it gradually. As time goes by, we eventually become used to them. But, then new changes come in and the cycle continues. Change, when it is forced, is an unwelcome guest. more..

Foreign judges not an obsession for International Community: Paikiasothy

Mar 18 (NS) Q: What are your views on the sessions in Geneva? A: The latest Resolution co-sponsored by Sri Lanka is not a new one. Govt has already announced that it will get the extra two years it requested for the implementation of the Resolution which is UNHRC Resolution on promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka co-sponsored by Sri Lanka in 2015 Oct at the 30th session in Geneva. more..

Trinity-Antonian centenary match spoiled by rain

Mar 18 (NS) Rain spoils the centenary cricket contest between Trinity College and St. Anthony’s College; only 106 overs were bowled over two days at the Pallekele International Stadium last week end.  Sad to say it rained on both days, wiping out most of the play. At the end,   it was the Trinitians who were most pleased.  There was not enough time for them to force a result but they had the Antonian’s on the ropes.  So, the  100th  Battle of the Blues ended  in a draw. more..

Izsak-Ndiaye’s concerns & Mangala’s views

Mar 18 (CT) UN Special Rapporteur on Minority issues Ms Rita Izsak Ndiaye in her address at the ongoing UNHRC session in Geneva on Wednesday has emphasized the need of SL safeguarding the minorities and on fulfilling its commitments in implementing the UNHRC resolution. Rita Izsak Ndiaye, recalling her visit to SL in October last year, mentioned on the necessity of healing the scars of war in the Island. UN Special Rapporteur while emphasizing that Sri Lanka should grab more..