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Bitter truth of Hingurana Sugar factory revival

Jan 19 (ST) The revival of the Hingurana Sugar factory under SL‘s first private partnership initiated during Prez Mahinda Rajapaksa’s regime in 2007 ending a 15 year closure has now been turned around to a profitable joint venture with efficient management. Sugarcane farming has become the economic mainstay of villagers at present after a long time reawakening Galoya valley in Ampara with unprecedented development activities that more..

GTF backs action against Lanka on the human rights front

Jan 19 (Island) Welcoming the TNA, TNPF and TMTK pushing for maximum possible action against the SL govt at the forthcoming 46th session of UNHRC, Global Tamil Forum (GTF) spokesperson Suren Surendiran said: “Tamil community has waited for nearly 11 years for justice with successive govts fooling them with various commitments. This current govt has publicly disowned any commitments made to the int'l community and now wants another commission to review findings of the various more..

Legalise cannabis growth for medicine, say traditional medical practitioners

Jan 19 (FT) The Federation of Traditional Medical Practitioners of SL Chairman Ven. Bengamuwe Nalaka Thero yesterday called on the Govt to legalise the cultivation of cannabis for medical purposes. Addressing a media briefing in Colombo, Nalaka Thero averted that even Lord Buddha had identified cannabis as a plant with medicinal benefits. The Chairman was joined by the Secretary of the Federation, Dr. Sarath Kotteyawatte and Dr. Anil Jayaweera, along with more..

Test, Trace, Treat: Putting Sri Lanka’s pandemic management mantra into practice

Jan 19 (WB) Sri Lanka’s extensive network of public healthcare workers has been the underlying force behind the country’s pandemic response. This series of articles, beginning with the Puttalam District, aims to capture the ground realities of pandemic management, from the perspectives of public health workers around the country. “COVID 19 came to Puttalam before it reached other parts of the island,” more..

French Ambassador visits Colombo Dockyard

Jan 19 (FT) Ambassador of France – SL and Maldives Eric Lavertu, Secretary to the State Ministry of Warehouse Facilities, Container Yards, Port Supply Facilities and Boats and Shipping Industry Development D.D. Matharaarachchi and Embassy of France Economic Counsellor Jean-Alexandre Egea paid a courtesy visit to Colombo Dockyard PLC (CD) recently. The Ambassador undertook this visit as part of the recent contract inked between the Colombo Dockyard and more..

Three million jobs reinstated due to reopening of airports

Jan 19 (DN) The SL Association of Inbound Tour Operators (SLAITO) welcomed the govt decision to open up the airports for commercial operations this week and was elated that 3 million jobs, both direct and indirect employment opportunities will be reinstated. “We are very happy to note that the Govt has decided to re-open Sri Lanka for Tourism from this week. This will benefit the approximately 3 million dependents of the tourism industry with direct and indirect employment”, more..

CSE performance sets stage for next level of development: Cabraal

Jan 19 (FT) Market performance has proven SL’s depth and, together with other Govt policies, sets the stage for the country to aspire to the next level of development, State Minister Ajith Nivard Cabraal said. State Minister was the Chief Guest at the 41st National Conference of Chartered Accountants, titled Abnormal: Navigating Through Shattered Norms. Speaking at the event Cabraal argued that Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) more..

Sri Lanka hockey in tragic ruin in the hands of a privileged few

Jan 19 (SO) SL has produced several sportsmen who excelled in various sporting disciplines. Hockey was right up there which dominated until the late 80s in this tiny Island-Sri Lanka also known as the Pearl of Indian Ocean. Tragically the sport is now in a pathetic state more or less like an orphan as there is no one to take care of it. A game which has a proud history of over 4,000 years was initially launched and dominated by the Englishmen. It later gradually spread into the Asian region. more..

Editorial: Macho Neanderthals

Jan 19 (Island) Some female local govt members have come together to form a front against discrimination and harassment they face in their councils. They have called upon all female representatives throughout the country to sink their political differences and join forces to safeguard their rights. This initiative deserves encouragement and assistance from everyone. It is heartening that female councillors have decided to go public with their grievances instead of suffering in silence more..

SL skipper admits woeful batting costs test

Jan 19 (Reuters) SL stand-in captain Dinesh Chandimal admitted a woeful batting performance in the first innings cost his team the first test against England at Galle International Stadium. England won the test by seven wickets on the last day on Monday to record a fifth successive test victory in SL. The home team won the toss and were looking to put a large total on the board but their batsmen contrived to give away their wickets more..

Stats: England's winning streak in SL, and captain Root equals Cook, Strauss

Jan 19 (CI) 5 - Successive wins for England in SL. The streak started in April 2012, in the second match of the series - an eight-wicket win in Colombo which helped them level the two-Test series 1-1. On their next tour, in 2018-19, they swept SL 3-0, before the seven-wicket win today. 1 - Instance of England winning more consecutive matches in a country overseas - they won the first eight Test matches they played in South Africa, from 1889 to 1899. England also won their first five Tests in Bangladesh. more..

Badminton: National coach resigns after inquiry finds him guilty on misconduct

Jan 19 (ST) After an inquiry has recommended stern action against national badminton coach Shimal Aponso for his involvement of allowing, leading and encouraging three players to consume alcohol during the Lanka Shuttle Challenge 2020 — a franchise tournament played last month, he has tendered his resignation. An inquiry was initiated following a complaint made by Sudath Janapriya — the father of 16-year-old Kaviru Janapriya — alleging that the said coach has influenced more..

Demolition of the Mullivaikkal monument: Fires doused, embers linger

Jan 19 (TM) The controversy that surrounded last week’s demolition of the Mullivaikkal monument at the University of Jaffna, built to memorialise the war dead, was indicative of the fragility of the country’s reconciliation process. The initial demolition led to a chain of events which included a protest, involvement of armed forces, a plea to international govts, and finally the reconstruction of the monument. more..

One Mile Challenge among top attractions in Sports Ministry’s new initiative

Jan 19 (Island) One Mile Challenge, a road running event, is among a series of talent identification competitions which is set to attract the interests of track enthusiasts when the Sports Ministry and its affiliate the Dept of Sports Development launch a new initiative Pubudamu Kreeda Tharu. Pubudamu Kreeda Tharu is a competition based talent identifying initiative which will be conducted in each district. The programme is aimed at identifying and developing talent for various sports. more..

Infrastructure facilities in our schools

Jan 19 (Island) We are all ever so proud of our Free Education System. Mainly due to the foresight of politicians of the past, such as Dr C.W.W. Kannangara, and perhaps many others in the education sphere as well, our system of education has provided distinctive opportunities for all children in our land, irrespective of caste, creed, religion, ethnicity and wealth. The far-sighted vision of our education system is to provide optimal educational facilities to each and every child of SL nation. more..

රසායනික පොහොර නැතුව වවලා ලංකාවට...

Growing nuts or going nuts

Jan 19 (ST) What in the names of all the deities is going on? And in this resplendent isle too! It is bad enough that envious eyes are cast in our direction hoping to grab a few chunks of what was once our sacred land to plant a port here and coal plant there. Of course there is no need to mention a few bakshees here, more yuan there and slippery rupees somewhere else that make the wheels of financial machinery turn as smoothly as Shanghai silk to the touch. more..

Managing COVID-19: A lay perspective

Jan 19 (ST) One year after the appearance of the COVID-19 virus, the world has come to terms with the fact that the virus is not likely to go away in the near future and will be around for some time longer. In such a context Govts the world over including our own have to work out how to manage the virus while at the same time opening up the economy. The considerations that apply to the more economically advanced countries will obviously not apply to the less affluent ones when striking the correct more..

President’s Counsel Sarath Jayamanne retires after a celebrated career

Jan 19 (SO) President’s Counsel Sarath Jayamanne wore many hats. Starting as a State Counsel at the Attorney General’s Department in Feb 1989 he has come a long way, passing many a milestone in his celebrated career to retire on Jan 15, 2021. He was invited to be the Director General (DG) at the CIABOC when everything there was in turmoil. President’s Counsel Jayamanna became the DG immediately after Dilrukshi Dias more..

Not all detainees are equal: Class, ethnicity and the prevention of terrorism act

Jan 19 (GV) Kanagasabai Thevathasan is a 64-year-old prisoner I met while I was at the Human Rights Commission of SL. Twelve years have passed since he was arrested, more than ten of which he has spent in prison. Thevathasan began fasting unto death on 6 Jan 2021, which he called off on 16 Jan for three weeks after promises were made by the prison authorities to speak with the relevant authorities to expedite his cases. Thevathasan is currently appealing his conviction under PTA more..

Colombo ETC embers glowing; Bureaucratic incompetence?

Jan 19 (CT) Crucial infrastructure projects remain in the focus of many sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) and financial conglomerates. Dubai Ports World has a $ 3 billion looking for investment across Indian Ocean logistics sector. UAE Investment companies have signed up with China Development Bank for a $ 10 Billion joint venture. A tech town is in the offing near the UAE port of Jebel-Ali with an investment of $ 600 million from Alibaba to develop mobile apps and Robotics. more..

Public smell a Rat in RAT charges in Ratnapura

Jan 19 (CT) Role played by doctors, nurses & other health professionals for the well-being of patients and the general public, in the light of the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, is truly commendable. However, if someone who represents the same field by pledging to serve the people makes the COVID- 19 or its victims an additional source of income, it is a great injustice to the people, as well as a disgrace to those in the sector they serve. more..

Hafeel Farisz’s lesson

Jan 19 (CT) I can’t remember how I met Hafeel Farisz. It must have been my writing. There was a time when I wrote on nearly everything and anything. I still do, but back then the brakes were missing; I just went on, unrestrained. One of the delights of writing nonstop is that it puts you in touch with people from nearly every shade of life. They send you their comments about the columns you’ve typed, encouraging you to continue and advising you on where to slow down and show restraint. more..

Human-Elephant conflict must end

Jan 19 (CT) As humans and elephants are equally valuable it is imperative that the human-elephant conflict that has reached high levels today has to be ended sooner than later. Prez Rajapaksa promised people in Medirigiriya last Saturday that he will bring a permanent solution to the Human-elephant conflict soon. The Asian elephants of yore lived from the Euphrates and Tigris to the Yangtze-Kiang. The elephants in Asia are now restricted to SL, Nepal, Bhutan, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, more..

Covid-19 forced cremation of Muslims discriminatory: HRW

Jan 18 (NRW) Sri Lanka’s requirement to cremate anyone who dies from Covid-19 goes against public health guidance and discriminates against the Muslim community, Human Rights Watch said today. The govt’s spurious argument that burial in accordance with Islamic tradition poses a public health risk stigmatizes, oppresses, and causes immense distress to a vulnerable minority. SL govt has claimed that burying people more..

Brokers welcome near-pure retail play in Friday’s Rs. 12.4 b turnover

Jan 18 (FT) Friday’s Rs. 12.4 billion turnover, the highest in a year, at the Colombo stock market is being credited by brokers to near-pure retail play, as investor sentiment gathered more momentum, spearheaded by high-net-worth individuals. Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) on Friday also saw the all-time highest intra-day gain (ASPI at 7,762) before closing up near 4%, or 291.34 points to 7,734. The benchmark index is now at the highest level since 2012 and Friday’s gain more..

Joe Root thanks fan who waited in Sri Lanka for 10 months to watch Test series

Jan 18 (CT) England managed to trump Sri Lanka in a stunning fashion by 7 wickets in the first Test of the two-match series at Galle International Stadium to register their fourth consecutive Test win in the island nation. Apart from the outstanding performance shelled out by the visiting team both with the bat and the ball, the Test match was in the news for the dedication and love shown by a cricket enthusiast Rob Lewis towards the English players. Lewis waited for as many as ten months more..

First innings was an unacceptable batting performance: Arthur

JJan 18 (CB) After England's seven-wicket win in Galle to take a 1-0 lead in the two-Test series, head coach Mickey Arthur termed SL's first innings outing as unacceptable. Sri Lanka had the toss advantage after opting to bat against an England side that had come to their shores with little preparation. However, bowled out for a meagre 135, SL were outplayed with both bat and ball, handing over that advantage to England quite timidly. more..

Female LG members to fight abuse at the hands of their male counterparts

Jan 18 (Island) Female local govt members are planning to sink their political differences and form a front against what they call unfair male domination in their councils. Addressing the media at Thalawatugoda on Saturday Maharagama Urban Council SLFP Member Chandrika de Zoysa said that their male counterparts did not allow them to speak at council meetings. “This is a problem not limited only to the Maharagama UC. Female members are treated likewise in all MCs, UCs and PSs. more..

With Joe Root at the helm, have England fans ever had it so good?

Jan 18 (CI) England supporters have never had it so good. Yes, the lockdown is rubbish. And yes, as the pandemic continues to ravage the UK, you can almost imagine plague-ridden Londoners of the 1660s looking on and sighing: those millennials are having it tough. There's no disputing that life in general is pretty grim right now. But on the cricket pitch, at least, this England team is achieving things which their predecessors could scarcely imagine. Victory in Galle means more..

Jonny Bairstow, Dan Lawrence seal emphatic seven-wicket win on final morning

JJan 18 (CI) England have won the first Test in Galle by seven wickets. In the end, it was straightforward enough. Resuming on the final morning with 36 more runs required to win, it took England just 9.2 overs to wrap up victory. Jonny Bairstow settled any nerves that may have been lingering by rocking on to the back foot and cutting Lasith Embuldeniya for four in the second over of the morning, while Dan Lawrence picked off more..

Parliament to convene tomorrow after Covid testing clears MPs

Jan 18 (EN) Committee on Parliamentary business has decided to convene Parliament on Jan 19 and 20 at 10 a.m. following the COVID-19 cases reported from the House last week. A total of 943 PCR tests were conducted in the parliament out of which 32 tests were done on MPs while the rest consists of Parliament staff, affiliated offices and security including the police. While all the 32 MPs tested negative, he said 9 others tested positive for COVID-19 which includes 4 staff members, more..

20 arrested for illegal excavations which would have posed danger to Samanala dam

Jan 18 (Island) Twenty persons were arrested last week for illegally excavating calcite deposits at Pallebedda Koswetiya Kanda as their action could pose a danger even to the Samanalawewa dam by triggering massive earth tremors. The properties of calcite make it one of the most widely used minerals. It is used as a construction material, abrasive, agricultural soil treatment, construction aggregate, pigment, pharmaceutical and more. It has more uses than almost any other mineral. more..

Colombo unfazed by possible Western hostility at UNHRC session

Jan 18 (DE) Gotabaya Rajapaksa govt is unfazed by the possibility of Western nations taking a hostile stance at the March session of the UNHRC in Geneva. In sharp contrast to the past, SL Tamil leaders (mainly from the Tamil-majority Northern Province) have united and presented a joint charter of demands to the UN. For the first time, disparate and mutually antagonistic leaders like R. Sampanthan, C.V. Wigneswaran more..

India and Sri Lanka bridge gaps

Jan 18 (CT) Thanks to the visits of the Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval last year and Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar this month, India and Sri Lanka have bridged gaps and cemented ties based on mutual understanding on key bilateral issues. Understanding has emerged maritime security, economic development, Eastern Container Terminal (ECT), COVID-19 containment, tourism revival and even devolution of power to Provincial Councils. The latest and the most striking more..

GL enters into self-isolation

Jan 18 (AD) The Minister of Education, Prof. G.L. Peiris, has entered into a period of self-isolation, sources say. This is after being identified as a contact of State Minister Piyal Nishantha who has been diagnosed with COVID-19. Earlier today, State Minister Piyal Nishantha was confirmed to have contracted the novel coronavirus following a rapid antigen test. State Minister Nishantha is the 4th Member of the Parliament to have been diagnosed with COVID-19 infection. more..

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