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UNPers wage war against Ranjan

Feb 21 (CT) UNP MPs had reportedly waged war against their colleague, State Minister Ranjan Ramanayake, during UNP Parliamentary group meeting held at the Parliament Complex yesterday, over his recent allegation that 24 MPs, including four Cabinet Ministers, were using cocaine and other kinds of illegal narcotics. This had started when outraged Minister Harin Fernando claimed that if Ramanayake was present at more..

Parliament to get sophisticated elevators

Feb 21 (DM) Steps have been taken to replace elevators in parliament with sophisticated ones following the recommendations of the committee appointed to look into the malfunctioning of an elevator recently, deputy speaker Ananda Kumarasiri informed parliament. He told parliament that the relevant company which looked into the defective elevator had recommended that the elevators are 36 years old and should be replaced with sophisticated ones, more..

Info on degree awarding status of private institutions sought

Feb 21 (Island) JVP MP Bimal Rathnayake requested Minister of Higher Education to submit a report on the accreditation process followed in granting degree awarding status to private education institutions. He raising a point of order during yesterday’s parliamentary sitting referred to the Gazette Notification numbered 210531, which was tabled in the House on the same day. He said: "Through this gazette the govt allows two private education institutions to award degrees. more..

Ex-forces chiefs condemn govt's Geneva strategy

Feb 21 (Island) Three retired service commanders, Air Chief Marshal Roshan Goonetileke, Admiral Tisara Samarasinghe and General Daya Ratnayake, alleged the war winning military was being penalised in terms of the Geneva Resolution co-sponsored by the govt, in Oct 2015. They requested President Maithripala Sirisena, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, to intervene to ensure those who risked more..

Vidura assaults his sister?

Feb 21 (DN) MP Vidura Wickramanayake who was charged for allegedly abusing, threatening and assaulting his sister was yesterday released on bail by Colombo Additional Magistrate. Borella Police told court that his own sister had lodged a complaint alleging that Wickramanayake had assaulted her. Attorney-at-law appearing for the MP however said that his client pleads not guilty to the charges while the complainants lawyer said that the Attorney General has decided to fix the case for trial. more..

Kalinga Indatissa appointed BASL President

Feb 21 (AD) President’s Counsel Kalinga Indatissa was elected as the new President of the Bar Association of SL (BASL). The election of the BASL was held today (20) in 84 polling stations established island-wide. The polling commenced at 8 am this morning and concluded at 5 pm in the evening. Accordingly, Kalinga Indatissa was elected the 25th President of the association. Attorney at Law Kaushalya Nawaratne has been appointed the new Secretary of BASL. more..

Delayed PC polls: AG and NEC Chief to be summoned by parliament

Feb 21 (DN) A decision was taken to summon AG Jayantha Jayasuriya and Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya for the next Party Leaders’ Meeting to discuss the holding of the Provincial Council elections under the old system. Minister Mano Ganeshan said that the discussion regarding the long overdue PC elections had been initiated by Minister Rishad Bathiudeen & Mano Ganeshan who attended the meeting. more..

Hindu struggle committee holds conference on India Sri Lanka friendship and geo politics

Feb 21 (NX) SriLankan MP AS Yogeshwaran raised the issue of mutual cooperation between India and Sri Lanka and pressed for the operation of free Ship service for poor pilgrims of both countries. During his address on the topic India Sri Lanka Friendship and Geo-Politics, he said that the SL govt was eagerly waiting for the response of the Indian govt to commence the services. He claimed that the cheaper ship service for poor pilgrims would definitely open up a new chapter in more..

Jayantha vs Shammi for top post

Feb 21 (CT) Another twist to the plot occurred following the Appeal Court filing by Mohan de Silva and his team and the settlement which followed, as now Shammi Silva and Jayantha Dharmadasa are set to be Presidential candidates, while Nishantha Ranathunga and Mohan de Silva will contest for the Secretary’s post. The Court settlement meant Shammi Silva, who only listed his name for the post of President as a back-up option if something went wrong with Mohan de Silva’s candidacy, more..

Sri Lanka Rugby bans top coach

Feb 21 (CT) Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR) yesterday imposed a provisional ban on SL’s renowned rugby coach Sanath Martis after a video of him assaulting a schoolboy at the Havelock Sports Club rugby grounds recently went viral on social media. The World Rugby appointed Rugby Educator and Trainer and current Coach of St. Peter’s and Havelock’s, was suspended from all formats of rugby with immediate effect more..

Five new BOI projects to start in Jaffna

Feb 21 (FT) The Board of Investment has made a significant impact in developing local economies, by implementing the Govt’s objective to promote regional industrialisation. There has been considerable employment generation, boosting of exports, new technology transfers as a result of Foreign Direct Investment inflows. Jaffna District is one of the main districts in Northern Province which BOI has targeted for the development through Foreign Direct Investments. more..

Big change in govt spending seen needed

Feb 21 (EN) A structural change is needed in Sri Lankan govt spending, nearly half of which now goes for salaries and interest payments, with more expenditure required on education, health and infrastructure, a senior official said. “Total govt spending has been falling to a manageable level but we need to change its composition,” said C. J. P. Siriwardena, Deputy Secretary General of the National Economic Council, and a former deputy governor of the central bank. more..

Welikada prison massacre report leak: Thalatha to question IGP

Feb 21 (CT) In response to a request made by JVP MP Nalinda Jayatissa, to table the Committee report on the Welikada Prison Massacre of 2012, Minister Thalatha Atukorale, said in Parliament that she would definitely call for an explanation from IGP Pujith Jayasundera regarding the leak of the said report to the Media. During the oral question round Dr. Jayatissa queried as to why the investigations into the said incident in which more..

DFCC continues with stable growth despite challenges

Feb 21 (Island) The DFCC Group is a diversified financial organisation involved in commercial banking, development banking, investment banking, wealth management, information technology, industrial park management and consultancy businesses. DFCC Bank, the largest entity within the Group, reported a Profit before Tax of LKR 4,233 million and a Profit after Tax of LKR 2,768 million for the year ended 31 Dec 2018. This compares with a Profit before Tax of LKR 5,792 million and more..

Schools Karate Do team leave for Malaysia

Feb 21 (Island) The SL Schools Karate Do team will leave for Malaysia today to take part in the 10th Silent Night Karate Tournament organised by the Malaysia Karate Federation. The tournament will be held on Friday and Saturday. Twelve boys and twelve girls from fourteen schools will represent the country at this tournament. Boys: R.A. Athukorala (Captain – St. Peters’ College, Bambalapitiya), M. Wimalasuriya (G.D.S. Koraya M.V, Chilaw), D.S. Siriwardana (Sri Saranankara N.S, Bingiriya), more..

External ecstasy, domestic danger for SL

Feb 21 (FT) Global giant Standard Chartered Bank predicted external factors are likely to be less adversarial for the Sri Lankan economy in 2019, though domestic challenges remain, whilst prospects would be much better next year. Lower oil prices, dovish policy by the US Federal Reserve, a less robust US Dollar, and foreign investor focus on South and Southeast Asia resultant to the US-China trade war, more..

'There will be bit of sideways movement'

Feb 21 (CI) At Kingsmead, SL's unknown bowlers were effective against SA's batsmen. Then, Kusal Perera, whose excellence with the bat was a revelation to everyone - possibly even himself - took the match away from the hosts. At St George's Park now - a venue at which they have won five of their six most recent Tests (the other was a draw) - SA have come to terms with the quality this inexperienced SL team can sometimes summon. Or, at least, that is what Fac du Plessis hopes. more..

Kusal Mendis fitness to be assessed today

Feb 21 (Island) Middle order batsman Kusal Mendis will go through a fitness test today having twisted his ankle while training on Tuesday. SL will make a call in the morning whether to play Mendis or not in today’s second Test against South Africa here in Port Elizabeth. Middle order batsman Angelo Perera could make his Test debut in case Mendis is ruled out. The tourists were also looking at the option of playing Milinda Siriwardene as there’s a bowling option with him as the conditions here at more..

SLADA desperate to eradicate doping from sports

Feb 21 (ST) SL Anti Doping Agency (SLADA) is eyeing at doubling its quota of awareness programmes for this year, after 2018 ended with nine athletes testing positive for using banned substances, a record high in numbers. Director General of SLADA, Dr. Seevalie Jayawickrama was highly concerned on making the sportsmen and sportswomen of tomorrow more alert as to the repercussions of using banned substances or more..

Football Sri Lanka Vision 2030: Pipe Dream or Retirement Plan

Feb 21 (ST) In the run-up to the World Cup last year, the FFSL (football Federation of SL) launched, with some fanfare, a plan called Vision 2030. At a time when even the Govt or, the Ministry of Sports, have not conjured such a momentous paradigm, the football administration in the country deemed it fit to announce to the world, its grandiose plan to revolutionise the Football fortunes of our land. From a conceptual point of view, the idea is well and good, because the sports loving public more..

SL targets 315mn kg tea production for 2019

Feb 21 (EN) Sri Lanka is aiming to produce 315 million kilos of tea in 2019, up five percent from last year, Minister of Plantation Industries Naveen Dissanayake said. Tea production had dropped to 303 million kilos in 2018, down one percent from 2017, mainly because of drought and excessive rains at different times of the year and a ban on the glyphosate weedicide, he said. Tea plucking had also been interrupted by a temporary go-slow by unionised workers demanding higher pay. more..

'Durban win best moment in my career'

Feb 21 (Island) SL’s Head Coach Chandika Hathurusingha has an impressive CV having tasted success whatever the team he has been in charge of whether it be SL ‘A’, New South Wales, Sydney Thunder or Bangladesh. Yet he put last wicket’s thrilling one wicket win in Durban over SA as his greatest moment as a coach. Since taking over in January last year, Hathurusingha has put in lot of effort to turn the fortunes of more..

Seylan Bank reports modest overall growth

Feb 21 (FT) In the backdrop of a challenging external environment, Seylan Bank has recorded a Profit-after-Tax of Rs. 3,189 million for the year ended 31 December 2018, after a one-off adjustment of Rs. 1,135 million to resolve the long standing issue of additional gratuity. The bank’s advances grew by 16.4% while the deposit base grew by 16.4%. Net interest income increased by 14.6% while net fee and commission income from core banking activities grew by 7.0%. more..

In MALI with SL Army, UN Peacekeepers

Feb 21 (Island) There is an element of fire and risk in all of us combined with excitement. That was aroused when an invitation was extended by the SL Army, to Sirasa TV News 1st, to visit Mali. As we were making preparations for departure, Mali was in the news, again. Captain HWD Jayawickrema and Corporal Samantha Wijayakumara were killed and several others injured, in an attack by a rebel group using an IED (Improvised Explosive Device). Everyone who cared, asked me to be careful more..

Richard, a multifaceted personality

Feb 21 (SO) At three in the morning on Feb 18 1990, Arjuna Ranawana, a news producer for Rupavahini woke up to a call at his residence. Wondering as to who it could be, he answered the phone to hear Kenneth Honter’s voice at the other end. What is Richard’s address, he asked and Ranawana said that he didn’t in fact know of an address but gave directions. The line was then disconnected. Ranawana was baffled as to what was more..

Edtorial: Man with a heart

Feb 21 (Island) UN independent expert Juan Pablo Bohoslavsk, has proved that not all UN panjandrums are heartless. During his visit, he did what the official Opposition has failed to do; he has spoken up for the hapless Sri Lankan public, troubled by a host of economic problems. He has been very critical of the so-called automatic market-based mechanism aka pricing formula to fix fuel prices, and the moves being made to introduce the same mechanism to determine water and electricity tariffs. more..

SLTDA, UDA partner to prepare tourism development master plans

Feb 21 (FT) SL Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) and the Urban Development Authority (UDA) have embarked on a mutual partnership to prepare tourism development master plans for identified areas across the country. Areas will be identified as tourism development zones and provided with specific guidelines for tourism development and tourist-related activities. The objective of this initiative is to set specific guidelines for tourism development and more..

Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe

Learning English the fun way

Feb 21 (DN) English teachers in government schools face the biggest challenge in getting children to use English in the classroom and the teachers get frustrated when students speak in their native language in the classroom. Princess of Wales College, Moratuwa, is among the few schools in the country to introduce the novel initiative - English Task Chamber to get these students motivated to learn and speak in English in the classroom from the very beginning. more..

Story behind the Public Trustee’s office

Feb 21 (DN) February 13 marked the 151st birth anniversary of Sir Don Baron Jayatilaka who was an outstanding national hero and a great philosopher. He was one of Sri Lanka’s greatest sons and was a prominent scholar who learnt Pali, Sanskrit, Sinhala and Buddhist philosophy under the tutelage of scholarly monks. He obtained his initial education at Wesley College Colombo, which was an excellent missionary school where he was exposed to the Western curriculum. more..

Helping prisoners turn a new leaf

Feb 21 (ST) Worn with use, the book in the prisoner’s hands is being read for the eighth time. Once a shabby corner with just a few books on a small shelf, the Welikada Prison Library renovated last July, now has cupboards, tables and chairs with more than 5000 books of different genres. However, there is a long way to go to create the Model Library planned by the Special Committee on Prison Library Services. more..

Students act contrary to strictures set

Feb 21 (CT) During the Eelam war and when universities were closed for about two years during the late 1980s uprising of the JVP with their policy of crippling the govt, the Jaffna University admirably continued lectures and exams. Later, when universities in other parts of the country had to be closed, sporadically, due to protest marches et al, mostly against SAITM, in Jaffna the doctors continued to pass out and degrees were conferred. So, its worrying to know that a situation has more..

Reforms proposed to law on inquests

Feb 21 (CT) For the purpose of ascertaining whether an act of medical negligence has contributed to a particular death, inquests have been recommended, in the case of stillbirths, where an allegation of medical negligence has been levelled, and deaths in which professional negligence/rashness is claimed to have played a part. Further, inquests, it has been proposed, should be performed in the case of stillbirths where the suspicion of a criminal act having caused the stillbirth exists, more..

'SLPP will win seven PCs'

Feb 21 (CT) UPFA MP Kanchana Wijesekera says the SLPP will win seven of the nine Provincial Councils. Q: The Govt is talking about setting up a National Govt. But the Opposition is putting forward opinions against it. The methodology to form a National Govt is described in the 19th Amendment. It is being said that it is according to that they want the National Govt set up; if so what is this opposition to it? more..

In pursuit of the nature of Hinduism

Feb 20 (CT) The origin of Hinduism is shrouded with mystery. Hinduism was in existence from time immemorial and is indigenous to the Indian subcontinent, which has been a breeding ground for spirituality from all directions of the country. While other religions have founders (Jesus Christ for Christianity, Abraham for Judaism, Mohammed for Islam, Guru Nanak for Sikhism, Confucius for Confucianism, Siddartha Gautama for Buddhism), Hinduism is only religion that has no founder, more..

Discipline & freedom under the reign of Gota

Feb 21 (CT) There’s nothing like a well-crafted marketing slogan for a prospective Presidential candidate. Gotabaya Rajapaksa is emerging more clearly into the daylight as Opposition’s candidate for Executive Prez. Against a redone image in the background of a library of books one observes our Gota, with appropriate gestures of hands, pontificating something we didn’t know: How can we have freedom without discipline? Fortunately, slogan hasn’t any racist connotations. more..