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Nipah Virus infection: A brief overview

Sep 23 (CT) Nipah Virus (NiV) is an emerging zoonotic virus. It can be transmitted to humans from wild or domestic animals. Fruit bats are the natural host for this virus. Although NiV infections were first identified in Malaysia over two decades ago, it has once again come into the headlines, on account of causing infections in six persons from the Indian State of Kerala, of whom two died. This is a brief overview of some of the characteristics of the Nipah Virus, more..

An open letter to the Prez & The judiciary

Sep 23 (CT) SL’s current election system has installed a Parliament that has only brought misery to its people. Some MPs have no people’s mandate. The country is bankrupt, and no resolution is in sight. There is a need to have a people’s Parliament to resolve people’s problems. Installing a Proportional Representation and electoral district-wise meritocratic (PR-DM) election system via a referendum will ensure electoral district representation in Parliament for a brighter future. more..

Anti-Terrorism Bill Version 2.0: Still worse than PTA

Sep 23 (FT) On 15 Sept 2023, Govt of SL published an Anti-Terrorism Bill (ATA). The Bill is presented as a revision of an earlier version that was gazetted in March 2023, when it received widespread public criticism, including from local and int'l human rights groups. An analysis of the Sept 2023 Bill reveals that although minor changes have been made, the ATA continues to be an unprecedented expansion of executive power, both in form and in its potential for the repression of citizens. more..

Power supply: CEB appeals for urgent tariff revision

Sep 23 (TM) The CEB is in the midst of a deepening financial crisis and has made an urgent appeal to the Ministry of Power and Energy for an immediate increase in electricity tariffs. This plea comes as the CEB anticipates year-end losses surpassing Rs. 30 billion, primarily attributed to tariff revisions implemented in June. The situation has deteriorated rapidly following daily losses resulting from tariff revisions mandated by the PUCSL on 1 July. more..

No free passes to the land of integrity

Sep 23 (CT) The late Professor Ashley Halpe, delivering the keynote address at the annual conference of the SL Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies (SLACLALS) in 2011, pointed out the importance of liberation from our complicities. Today, more than a decade later, in a discussion with Khury Petersen-Smith at Brookline Booksmith in Boston, Ru Freeman spoke about free passes. ‘Transformation requires us to be willing to say that just because you are Sri Lankan or more..

How pragmatic is high-end tourism promotion?

Sep 23 (CT) After the pandemic dust has settled, the tourism industry has been outdoing its performances every year and the SL Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) has now set a rather optimistic target of making the tourism industry the top foreign revenue generating sector by 2027. To do so, the plan is to attract five million annual tourist arrivals, out of which 2.5 million are high-end tourists, who will spend lavishly when in the country. As of now, the average daily spending of more..

සජිත්ගේ සාක්ෂි සමඟ සරත් හැප්පෙයි

Video of Cargills staff brutally assaulting female goes viral

Sep 22 (DM) A video showing a group of staff members from a Cargills supermarket outlet brutally assaulting a female customer is circulating on social media. The incident is reported to have occurred at the Cargills outlet in the Hanwella area. However, police have launched an investigation to confirm the location and identify the suspects. CCTV footage captured multiple male and female employees from the outlet brutally assaulting the customer, allegedly in response to suspected theft. more..

India’s IRCON to enhance railway signalling system

Sep 22 (CT) In a development aimed at enhancing the transportation infrastructure in SL, the Ministry of Transport and Highways of Sri Lanka and India’s IRCON Ltd. signed a contract yesterday, for the design, installation, testing, and commissioning of a Signalling system for Sri Lanka Railways, from Maho to Anuradhapura, covering a distance of 66 km. This momentous agreement, signed yesterday, in Colombo, was attended by dignitaries, including Minister Bandula Gunawardena, and more..

National Hospital has highest number of post-op infections

Sep 22 (CT) Concerned Medical Specialists accused the National Hospital Colombo of allegedly having the highest number of post-operative infections (septicaemia), mainly as a result of it violating the Infection Control Manual guidelines endorsed by the WHO. Specialist doctors of the NHSL lamented, despite having a Deputy Director General, three Deputy Directors, close to 200 medical specialists, and a large number of Senior Medical Officers, more..

Hosts Sri Lanka to kick off 2024 Men's Under-19 World Cup on January 13

Sep 22 (CI) The 2024 Men's U-19 World Cup will kick off with hosts Sri Lanka taking on Zimbabwe on January 13. Defending champions India will take on Bangladesh, to begin their campaign the following day. The 41-match tournament will be played across 23 days in five venues, all in Colombo. The R Premadasa Int'l Cricket Stadium will host the tournament opener, the semi-finals on January 30 and February 1, along with the final on February 4. The P Sara Oval, Colombo Cricket Club, more..

Exploring optimal utilization of mineral resources to bolster the nation’s economic growth

Sep 22 (PMD) Mr. Arundika Fernando, State Minister of Urban Development and Housing, emphasized the nation’s commitment to bolstering its economy through the judicious utilization of mineral resources. He underscored the potential for creating high-value -added products from these resources and stressed the importance of carrying out these activities with a steadfast commitment to safeguarding the country’s land. State Minister Arundika Fernando made these remarks more..

Ali Sabri Raheem suspended from representing parliamentary committees

Sep 22 (AD) A resolution proposing the suspension of MP Ali Sabri Raheem from representing Parliamentary Committees was approved by the parliament on Friday. Presenting the motion in parliament this morning, Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa stated that MP Sabri’s continued representation of Parliamentary Committees despite his recent involvement in illegal misconduct, has raised concerns and created a problematic situation in relation to more..

A fair and insightful review of the only tournament in cricket that matters - the Asia Cup

Sep 22 (CI) The Asia Cup, which is the world's premier cricketing tournament for countries that tell their friends they hate each other but constantly send each other "U up?" texts, has finally ended. As is standard for situationships of this nature, nobody is really fully happy with how it all went down. So let's debrief. I guess. Oh god. For several tournament cycles, the ICC has unashamedly put India and Pakistan in the same group, or created a round robin structure in which more..

Indian national nabbed with laptops worth Rs.2.9mn

Sep 22 (DM) An Indian national was arrested today with 39 laptop computers worth Rs. 2.9 million while he was attempting to smuggle them to India, police said. They said the suspect was arrested at a temporary residence at Moor Street in Colombo 12. The suspect was identified as Kalandar Edul Ali, a resident of Hanuamantha Puram in Chennai. Police investigations revealed that the suspect had imported the 39 laptops while paying Customs duty. more..

Anura Kumara Dissanayake

National Film Corporation Act amended only to dub Murali’s movie in Sinhala

Sep 22 (DM) Minister Bandula Gunawardana has officially granted permission to dub the internationally-produced biopic movie '800' into Sinhala while amending the National Film Corporation Act for the first time. This decision serves as a meaningful tribute to the legendary Sri Lankan cricketer, Muthiah Muralidaran, he said. Addressing the media after launching the movie trailer, he said permission to dub the movie in Sinhala was granted only for this movie. more..

IT conference to attract investors for local companies

Sep 22 (EN) SL’s apex ICT body has projected a substantial boost of 15 billion US dollars to the country’s gross domestic product through the expansion of the digital economy by 2030. “Presently, the digital economy contributes US$ 3.7 billion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” Chairman of the Federation of Information Technology SL, Indika De Soysa said. The 41st National Information Technology Conference, themed Towards a Sustainable Digital Society, more..

Shooting incidents claimed 44 lives thus far in 2023: Police

Sep 22 (AD) Police Spokesperson SSP Nihal Thalduwa says 44 lives in total were claimed in gun violence incidents reported in the months that have elapsed in 2023. He mentioned that majority of them were found to be revenge attacks executed by organized criminal gang members. Meanwhile, DIG in charge of Western Province Deshabandu Tennakoon has said the support of good citizens is imperative to crack down on the crimes taking place in the country. more..

Sri Lanka to import test kits to detect Nipah virus after outbreak in Kerala

Sep 22 (AD) SL’s Ministry of Health has placed orders to import testing kits to detect Nipah infections after the southern Indian state of Kerala reported an outbreak of the bat-borne virus. However, the ministry said Sri Lankans should not have any undue fears about this virus infection, adding that the ordered test kits are expected to reach the country in the coming days. Following the outbreak in Kerala, the Indian govt has moved to institute mass testing to arrest the spread of the Nipah virus. more..

Angoda Weli Suda nabbed with Italian made semi-automatic pistol

Sep 22 (DM) An underworld gangster, Priyantha Sirinanda alias Weli Suda has been arrested by the STF during a raid in Mulleriyawa, while in possession of an Italian-made semi-automatic pistol, with which police believe that he was planning to commit a crime. The raid was carried out by Special Operations Division 1 on a house at Ambatale junction in Angoda, Mulleriyawa on Thursday on information received by Chief Inspector Wijayaratne, the Station Commander of STF. more..

Video: President Ranil calls for restructuring global fiscal system in UNGA speech

Sep 22 (AD) Addressing the UN General Assembly in New York, Prez Ranil Wickremesinghe pledged to lead SL towards sustainable growth, ensuring peace and prosperity for all, with the support of both the nation and the int'l community. He stated this while delivering his address during the General Debate of the 78th Session of the UNGA. Prez told the UNGA that currently, there is a stark contrast with the 2030 promise, as poverty and hunger levels are at multi-decade highs. more..

Date fixed for hearing of Pastor Jerome’s petition

Sep 22 (AD) Fundamental Rights (FR) petition filed by Pastor Jerome Fernando, requesting the court to issue an order preventing his arrest by the CID is set to be heard before the Court of Appeal on 4 Oct. The relevant order was given when the matter was heard before Appellate Court President Justice Nissanka Karunaratne and Justice Chamath Morais today. On 26 May, the self-styled prophet filed an FR petition before the SC, through his attorneys, seeking an order preventing his arrest. more..

Stability shouldn't come at the expense of freedom of expression: US Ambassador

Sep 22 (TM) International Peace Day was commemorated today (22) in Colombo. The event, graced by Ambassador Julie Chung, the United States Ambassador to Sri Lanka, shone a spotlight on the imperative task of translating the abstract concept of peace into tangible actions. In her address, Ambassador Chung also issued a call to action, encouraging active involvement and leadership from the youth, whom she described as the torchbearers of Sri Lanka's future. more..

මෛත්‍රීට උතුර දකුණු මාරුවුනු පාස්කු කතාව

Certis Lanka Security Solutions wins Peak of Success title at WORLDCOB Bizz Awards

Sep 22 (FT) Certis Lanka Security Solutions Ltd. recently reached a pinnacle of success by winning the prestigious Peak of Success award at the Bizz Awards organised by WORLDCOB held at Corinthia Lisbon Hotel, Portugal. It marked the second time Certis Lanka received this esteemed accolade, particularly noteworthy as they achieved the Peak of Success award, underlining their unwavering commitment to excellence. This global event brought together leaders from over 50 companies more..

Two liquor manufacturing companies in default of Rs 1.5 billion

Sep 22 (DM) Two companies engaged in liquor production owe a total of Rs 1.5 billion as taxes, the Ways and Means Committee revealed. The committee has recommended the cancelation of the licenses of these two companies (Wayamba Distilleries (Pvt) and Globe Blenders) if they fail to settle the due amount by Oct 15 this year. It has also been revealed that more than 90% of the bottles of liquor that have come under inspection by the Excise Dept consist of counterfeit stickers. more..

‘Nilantha visited P’ment for energy/transport SOC not Easter briefing’

Sep 22 (TM) Police stated that the SDIG Nilantha Jayawardena had visited Parliament early this week to attend a session of the Sectoral Oversight Committee (SOC) on Energy and Transport, and not to any meeting related to the Easter Sunday terror attacks of 2019. Claiming that Jayawardena had been invited to make a presentation regarding the terror attacks to MPs, Catholic Church expressed its displeasure over the incident, more..

Thileepan commemoration in 2020: Indictments served on Sivajilingam

Sep 22 (DM) Colombo High Court today served indictments on former Jaffna District MP M.K. Sivajilingam for committing offenses while commemorating the 33rd death anniversary of former LTTE member Rasaiah Parthipan alias 'Thileepan' in 2020. AG had filed indictments against M.K. Sivajilingam for organising and participating in a memorial event for Thileepan at Kondavil in Jaffna on or around Sept 15, 2020. High Court had issued a warrant for the arrest of Sivajilingam more..

President Ranil meets with US President Joe Biden in New York

Sep 22 (AD) Prez Ranil Wickremesinghe engaged in a cordial meeting with President Joe Biden of the United States in New York on Wednesday (20). This high-profile meeting unfolded amidst a lavish dinner hosted by President Biden, gathering all the heads of state who had participated in the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly. The encounter began with a warm welcome from President Joe Biden, who extended his hospitality to Prez Wickremesinghe. more..

Ali Sabry’s Photo with son at UN fuels nepotism outcry

Sep 22 (DM) A picture of Foreign Minister Ali Sabry with his son at an event on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly has sparked criticism with people questioning as to why such privileges are offered to the relatives of politicians. The picture posted on X formerly known as Twitter is doing the rounds on social media with public questioning as to why Sabry's son is part of the official delegation that has travelled to the UN in New York. more..

US supports SL govt in providing Thriposha to mothers and children through WFP

Sep 22 (WFP) The USAID handed over a substantial consignment of 4,700 metric tons of soya beans and corn to SL Thriposha Ltd, to support the continuation of the Thriposha fortified food program. The UN World Food Programme (WFP) facilitated the handover at a special event held at the Thriposha factory. This consignment forms part of a wider contribution of $20 million from the US towards the U.N. World Food Programme’s emergency operation to support SL communities more..

Navy recovers Kerala cannabis worth over Rs. 132 million in Negombo

Sep 22 (SLN) A special search operation conducted by the Navy in the Mankuliya Lagoon of Negombo today (21) led to the apprehension of a dinghy loaded with over 400kg of Kerala cannabis. The Navy conducts regular search operations in the coastal and sea areas around the island, with a view to prevent the influx of drugs into the country. As an extension of these efforts, SLNS Kelani in the Western Naval Command mounted this operation in the Mankuliya Lagoon on 21st Sept. more..

බිලියන 100 රැස්කරන්න ගෙනා APIT බද්දෙන් බිලියන 140 ක්!

Why is Central Bank dragging its feet on bank consolidation?

Sep 22 (FT) Bank consolidation is internationally accepted as a means to achieve economies of scale and thereby ensure sector stability whilst providing needed financial support to aid economic growth. Better ratings, lower funding costs, the capability to introduce technology-based products that require heavy set-up costs, the ability to lower cost-income ratios, and the benefits of advanced risk management systems are some of the advantages larger surviving entities would enjoy after consolidation. more..

Can freedom of expression coexist with a government body deciding what is true?

Sep 22 (FT) Article 14(1)(a) of the Constitution guarantees us the freedom of speech and expression including publication in any medium, subject to such restrictions as may be prescribed by law in the interests of racial and religious harmony or in relation to parliamentary privilege, contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence. Yet, the Cabinet has approved a bill that grievously limits online speech, expression and related actions. more..