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A brief history of English language films made in Sri Lanka

Dec 6 (Roar) SL cinema is overwhelmingly Sinhalese—the language of its majority, but that doesn’t mean that only Sinhala films were made here. Tamil cinema had some humble beginnings but was nipped in the bud by the unrest in the country. It’s only recently that it’s shown signs of a comeback, with the stellar Komaali Kings. As far as English films go, Chandran Rutnam’s According to Mathew is gaining traction. more..

The constitutional crisis and need for general election

Dec 6 (Island) The present constitutional crisis in Sri Lanka that originated with the dissolution of Parliament by the President on 9th Nov 2018 has aroused unprecedented interest of the people. This is a good omen as the Constitution imposes a fundamental duty on every Sri Lankan to uphold and defend the Constitution and the law. Several fundamental rights applications had been filed in the Supreme Court on 12th of November 2018 seeking inter alia- a. To quash the orders contained in more..

Appointment of PM: President now found contempt of parliament

Dec 6 (CT) Oct 26th 2018 will be recorded as an important date in the political history of Sri Lanka. It was the beginning of series of events that unfolded when the President of Sri Lanka acted unconstitutionally to sack a sitting PM, appointing a new PM (who even to date does not have command of the majority) and issuing a gazette to dissolve the Parliament. For any laymen the constitution is very clear and his actions could be termed as a well planned constitutional coup. more..

Dayasiri Jayasekara

Edtorial: Rating downgrades

Dec 6 (Island) Political instability invariably takes a heavy toll on a country’s economy with the passage of time. It is only natural that economists and members of the business community, here, have been appealing to the parties to the present political crisis to be mindful of the consequences of their actions and find a solution without further delay. The Supreme Court determination on the petitions against the dissolution of parliament is expected shortly. But court decisions alone will not help more..

Independence of the judiciary

Dec 6 (DM) Citizens have the highest expectations of the judiciary, and Judges’ rights are guaranteed by the Supreme Law of the country (Constitution) international conventions and Charter of the United Nations. Therefore States give special emphasis and protection for the judicial independence, Judges and the system of Justice. Independence of the Judges and judiciary should be real and not merely apparent safeguards in which guarantees is jealously guarded by all. more..

'Today there is no govt in the country'

Dec 6 (CT) UNP MP Gayantha Karunatileka says what is required, at this moment, is not a General Election but a Prez Election. Q: When the vote was held to suspend the Expenditure Head of the PM it was passed with 123 votes. With this, it will not be possible to continue with this govt. If so, is the UNP prepared to take over the Govt and run the country? A: Today there is no govt in the country. more..

Hashtag battles

Dec 6 (DM) There are political moments – like when President Sirisena addressed the media after his defection in November 2014 or Speaker Karu Jayasuriya surrounded by police officers without badges conducting parliament seated on the side next to a wall, an act of defiance as powerful as that of Sirisena, four years back. These moments, sometimes choreographed, have been catalysts for political movements in SL. The campaigns then get coated with catchphrases, slogans & visuals. more..

We want a home and country free of violence

Dec 6 (GV) The 16 days of Activism Against Violence Against Women, begins on the 25th of Nov and ends on the 10th of Dec, on International Human Rights Day. These 16 days of activism was created to raise our voices to end violence against women and human rights violations. For more than 20 years women activists have been speaking out to end violence against women. Nov 30th is South Asian Women’s Day dedicated for peace, justice, human rights and democracy. more..

Youth violence

Dec 6 (SO) We often come across violence in different forms. Murder, drug trafficking, thefts and sexual assault top the list. It would be tragic if the future of a nation is destroyed by violence. But, violence seems to be the new-trend among the youth of our country. The country is still reeling from the shock of two recent homicides, involving youth. The first incident was the murder of a student in Matara allegedly by another student and more..

No to disintegration, Yes to real harmony

Dec 6 (DM) We had a semblance of unity and peace at Independence in 1948. At that time we were materially on the way to growth, prosperity and mutual acceptance of equal dignity of human persons. The solidarity that was there could have been and should have been built upon with patience, insight and wisdom. Yet we seemed to neglect attending to the three qualities of mind, heart and spirit we needed most. While the prospects of material, temporal and worldly prosperity and more..

A truth truer than truth

Dec 6 (CT) We must not trust a man willing to die in glory but unwilling to live with truth and pride. Politicians who succeed in convincing themselves that the truth is identical with their self-interest turn out to be exceptionally good at being good liars. The best political liars are those who do not see reason and hence lie convincingly. Even when it becomes obvious that they are lying they insist that they are telling the truth and other party is guilty of untruth. When my son asked me if more..

Fitch downgrades SL financial institutions

Dec 5 (EN) Fitch Ratings said it has downgraded the ratings of National Savings Bank, Bank of Ceylon, DFCC Bank and People's Leasing & Finance, all with stables outlooks, after the sovereign rating was downgraded. The Long-Term Foreign- and Local-Currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) downgrades were, National Savings Bank (NSB) to 'B' from 'B+', Bank of Ceylon (BOC) to 'B' from 'B+'; DFCC Bank to 'B' from 'B+'; more..

‘Solution to crisis exists only in Parliament’

Dec 5 (NR) UNP MP Harsha de Silva meanwhile believes that the solution to the present political deadlock exists only within Parliament. He said the executive has no authority to enforce decisions that led to this crisis. MP de Silva said the President’s power is that he can appoint a PM who has a majority in Parliament. He noted the President thought that Mahinda Rajapaksa has a majority adding however that the former Prez couldn’t claim a majority although he tried various ways. more..

Dinesh asks if Ranil is ready for polls why he opposes dissolution

Dec 5 (Island) If former PM, Ranil Wickremesinghe was ready for an election, there was no point in the UNP going to courts against the dissolution of Parliament, MP Dinesh Gunawardena said yesterday. "The current political crisis can only be solved through a general election. Mahinda Rajapaksa said Monday night that the SLPP would move the Supreme Court against the interim order issued by the Court of Appeal temporarily preventing him functioning as the Prime Minister. more..

Video: Piyasena machang, waren Chandeta: Geetha

Dec 5 (DM) Former MP Geetha Kumarasinghe accused MP Piyasena Gamage, who has sworn in to fill the vacant position left by her in Parliament, of not allowing her to work at least a month in her constituency. She said that she was elected to Parliament as a member after polling the highest number of votes. “These Kaalakanni did not give any chance for me to serve my people at least a month in a free state of mind. more..

Poor financial literacy helping scammers

Dec 5 (EN) Ignorance about risks and a focus on rewards only making it easy for people to fall victim for scammers despite having high general literacy and education, a financial professional who is pushing to boost financial literacy said. Ravi Abeysuriya, who is advocacy chair of the Chartered Financial Analysts Society said a survey by S&P's found that South Asia had the lowest share of financial literacy. "On average about 65% of adults are financially literate in advanced countries" more..

Son axes father to death

Dec 5 (AD) An individual has been arrested on suspicion for murdering his father over a family dispute, by assaulting him with an axe. The deceased has been identified as a 49-year-old individual named T. Jayantha. The arrestee and the victim are reportedly residents in Kiwulawatta area in Dodangoda. The son of the deceased has surrendered to the police following the incident, according to the Police. Magistrate’s inquest on the murder is scheduled to be conducted today. more..

The space is ours; the frame is ours too

Dec 5 (FT) On 28 Nov, at the annual National Youth Drama Awards held at Nelum Pokuna, two young artists – Surin Chamara and Kasun Ukwatta– made a singular public statement against the prevailing political culture of corruption, greed and shamelessness in this country. Dramatically, in full sight of a live audience, these two young artists refused to accept awards from the hands of two chief guest politicians on stage more..

Wijesuriya asks Prez not to double down

Dec 5 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena was attempting to rule the country like a tribal leader who didn’t care about public opinion, the Constitution, the parliament and the courts of law, Prof. Sarath Wijesuriya, Convener of National Movement for a Just Society (NMJS) said. "President must work with the person that has the support of the highest number of MPs. He must no longer destabilise the country. Everyone knows the damage his decision on Oct 26th did to the country." more..

'Engaging universities in implementing SDGs'

Dec 5 (FT) Social statistics use statistical measurement systems to study human behaviour in a social environment. Social statistics research is a crucial resource for effective implementation of the development agenda of a country. In the absence of robust, reliable, and valid social statistics that are derived from credible research, development actors would be blindfolded; vast resources spent on development would be wasted, or even cause negative repercussions. more..

After war’s end, a long struggle to patch invisible wounds

Dec 5 (NYT) One by one the villagers arrive, each carrying a little blue book that chronicles a history of loss and heartache. On the back of each book is the patient’s name. Inside, on the first page, a family tree. An “X” is scrawled next to each loved one who has died. A “?” next to the missing. Underneath the symbol is the cause, and more often than not, it is written in simple capital letters: WAR. If bearable, their trauma would have remained more..

Tourism industry leaders decide to boycott tourism awards ceremony tomorrow

Dec 5 (CT) Many tourism industry leaders have decided to boycott Sri Lanka Tourism Awards ceremony this year, as President Maithripala Sirisena has been invited as the Chief Guest. They have expressed disgust at the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) has invited Sirisena, the man who is responsible for ruining the tourism industry this year by engineering a constitutional coup and a political crisis, as the Chief Guest of the event. more..

Community facilitates Sri Lanka’s Junior Badminton team in Toronto

Dec 5 (LR) Members of the Sri Lankan community in Toronto rallied on short notice to bring smiles to the faces of Sri Lanka Junior Badminton players who were participating in the Li NING BWF World Junior Mixed Team Championships. The team excelled in the tournament and finished 16th out of 40 teams during a two-week tour. The team placed 37th last time they participated in the tournament. Members of the local SL community in Toronto organized an exhibition game and dinner to facilitate more..

Tilvin Silva speaks at Seminar

Speaker inquires SLBC on suspending live broadcast of parliament

Dec 5 (AD) Office of the Speaker issuing a press release has addressed the allegations that the state media being biased. Speaker has stated that many MPs has pointed out at the parliament that the state media has been behaving in a biased manner. In order to inquire on this matter and the suspending of the live broadcast of the parliamentary session by SLBC, Secretary to Ministry of Mass Media Sunil Hettiarachchi and SLBC Chairman Somaratne Dissanayake were summoned this afternoon. more..

Hearing of petitions against parliament dissolution concludes for the day

Dec 5 (AD) The Supreme Court has concluded today’s hearing of the petitions against the dissolution of the parliament. Accordingly, the hearing of the case will resume from tomorrow. The hearing of the petition for the second day commenced this morning before the seven-judge bench consisting of SC Justices consisting of Chief Justice Nalin Perera, Priyantha Jayawardena, Prasanna Jayawardena, Sisira de Abrew, Vijith Malalgoda, Buwaneka Aluwihare and more..

RTI Commission orders disclosure of RW’s assets as PM

Dec 5 (DM) Right to Information Commission (RTIC) has directed the Presidential Secretariat to disclose the declaration of assets and liabilities of Ranil Wickremesinghe in his role as Prime Minister for 2015 and 2016, the Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) said. In a statement, the TISL said the order was made pursuant to an initial request it filed on Feb 3, 2017. “This decision would enable TISL to publicly release more..

Case against Ali Roshan to be heard daily

Dec 5 (AD) Permanent High Court Trial-at-Bar has decided to hear the case against Niraj Roshan alias Ali Roshan and six others, over the illegal possession of four elephants and racketeering, on a daily basis starting from the 13th of Feb 2019. The case was taken up before the Special High Court three-judge bench consisting of Justices Sampath Abeykoon, Sampath Wijeratne and Champa Rajaratne today. The State Counsel informed the court that all relevant documents related to more..

Fmr DIG Nalaka de Silva further remanded

Dec 5 (AD) Former DIG Nalaka De Silva who was arrested over VIP assassination allegations have been further remanded until the 11th of December. The former Director of the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) was arrested by the CID on Oct 25 over a suspected plot to assassinate President Maithripala Sirisena and former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa. He was arrested after a police informant, Namal Kumara, made the allegations against Silva in a news conference. more..

'Prez said would resign if pushed to the wall'

Dec 5 (DM) President Maithripala Sirisena has said that he would resign from Presidency after making a State of the Nation Address if he was pushed to the wall, MP Mano Ganeshan said. According to the MP, the President has said this during the meeting which was held with UNF party leaders Monday night. “President said that if pushed to the wall, he will make a State of the Nation Address, resign from Presidency and more..

CDS released on conditional bail

Dec 5 (DM) Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Ravindra Wijegunaratne, who was in remand custody, was released on conditional bail by Fort Magistrate Ranga Dissanayake today. The CDS was remanded over allegedly intimidating a witness in the case of Naval Officer Prasad Hettiarachchi allegedly abducting and making 11 civilians disappear. D.S Tissera of the CID appearing with OIC Nishantha Silva made a lengthy submission and said that CDS Wijegunratne had attempted to shoot and more..

First tentative step towards thundering final judgment?

Dec 5 (FT) In a palpable blow felt around the body politic, three courts have delivered a trifecta of punches to the coup’s solar plexus. It is not a full, final or binding ruling. But it is a first step towards something solid, stable, and altogether salutary – or so it seems. And there is enough to go on to give at least half the republic a new hope. First, the Supreme Court granted interim relief to plaintiffs challenging the suspect prorogation of parliament. It was a direct rap on more..

Harin Fernando

Make mental check Constitutional: SF

Dec 5 (DM) MP-Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka today proposed that an amendment should be brought in to the Constitution making it compulsory for the Head of State, service chiefs and others who hold important posts in a Govt to go through a mental fitness test annually. Field Marshal Fonseka said SL should follow the USA in this regard. “US President is bound to go through a mental fitness every year, while the others including the Service Chiefs who have the final say in launching more..

Crisis of SL Make

Dec 5 (CT) The validity of President Maithripala Sirisena’s 9 Nov dissolution of Parliament and calling for fresh polls on 5 January is to be heard by a full Supreme Court (SC) Bench chaired by Chief Justice (CJ) Nalin Perera on Friday. Since Sirisena’s surprise sacking of his then Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe and the appointment of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his place on 26 Oct and a new Cabinet, those have plunged Sri Lanka to a constitutional and an economic crisis. more..