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Adhishthana Pooja: May Arhants come into being by the thousands

July 21 (NS) Ranjith had to climb the coconut tree three times a day to tap the toddy to make treacle for the Adhisthana Pooja. The whole process of tapping toddy, bringing it down and into the waiting arms of his wife, without letting the pot touch ground, heating it over a fire, in batches, in a specially constructed canopied and carpeted hut took approximately 40 days. What’s more being Christian Ranjith has taken over the task of more..

Miles to go before 2018

July 21 (DN) This followed months of dissatisfaction in both UNP and SLFP camps with President Sirisena complaining that corruption probes against Rajapaksa regime were stalled and reportedly a group of some 18 SLFP ministers and MPs wanting to quit govt ranks. There has been intermittent sniping among SLFP and UNP ministers for some time now but it appears that the prospect of upcoming elections - both local govt and provincial council, are pushing MPs to take up positions more..

So who are we laughing at, really?

July 21 (CT) On Wednesday evening at Sooriya Village, while speaking on relationship-education, vulnerabilities of children, especially girls, in cyber space, what can be done, what is being done and what should be done, Hans Billimoria asked a question from the audience. Did you get Sanath’s video? He pointed to several men and each of them said ‘yes’. He went on to talk about consent. Respect. Knowledge. Had Hans asked Did you get Dayasiri’s video? or else more..

President seeks Cabinet nod for State Dept. grant to empower CIABOC

July 20 (DN) President Maithripala Sirisena this week sought Cabinet approval to obtain a grant of USD 235,000 (Rs. 35.25 million) from the US State Department to empower the CIABOC. Cabinet granted approval for the signing of a MoU with the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labour of the US State Department. CIABOC has often cited lack of resources and personnel to carry out investigations into the large number of more..

Rural dairy farmers raise production, incomes through USAID assistance

July 20 (USE) K. Mathanakumari, a single mother of three from Mullaitivu, faced many challenges to feed, clothe, and educate her children.  Despite her hard work trying to provide a better life for her family, Mathanakumari had difficulties gaining access to basic resources and techniques to improve production from her dairy farm. In April 2015, the USAID selected Mathanakumari to join the Supporting Opportunities in Livelihoods Development (SOLID) project, more..

Sri Lanka dengue cases over four times previous average: WHO

July 20 (LBO) The World Health Organization says the current dengue epidemic is likely to have repercussions on public health in Sri Lanka, with a 4.3 times increase in the average number of cases reported. The WHO says from 1st Jan to 7th July in 2017, the Epidemiology Unit of Health Ministry has reported 80,732 dengue fever cases, including 215 deaths. “This is 4.3 fold higher than the average number of cases for the same period between 2010 and 2016,” the WHO said. more..

GSP+, New technology will enhance country’s competitiveness: PM

July 20 (DN) The GSP+ concession is the lynchpin to build our outward-looking, export-oriented economy which will provide jobs and increase incomes, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. He was delivering the keynote address at a forum organized by European Chamber of Commerce in SL, on Sri Lanka: The next Asian Economic Miracle? he stressed the potential of Sri Lanka’s economic growth through GSP+. more..

Sri Lanka must cut duties, ensure transparency, no corruption: EU envoy

July 20 (EN) Reduced import duties and taxes, transparent tenders and no corruption would make Sri Lanka more attractive to foreign investors wanting to invest to take advantage of its duty free access to Europe, European Union envoy said. Tung Lai-Margue, EU Ambassador to Sri Lanka, said the impact of the GSP Plus trade concession which Sri Lanka regained would be seen in the next few months just as the lifting of the fisheries ban led to a boom in fisheries exports within months. more..

Dumping garbage at Muthurajawela: Court order extended till July 25

July 20 (DN) The Supreme Court today extended the interim order issued preventing the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) from dumping garbage at the Muthurajawela Sanctuary until July 25. Chief Justice Priyasath Dep and Justice Upaly Abeyratne issued the interim order preventing the CMC or any other authority from dumping garbage at Muthurajawela on July 6, pursuant to a fundamental rights petition filed by 35 five residents in the close proximity to Muthurajawela Sanctuary. more..

Australian assistance to combat dengue

July 20 (PSL) Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop announced a major Australian assistance to combat dengue fever. She made this announcement when she called on President Sirisena today. Recalling that President Sirisena made a special mention about the spreading of dengue and Chronic Kidney Disease in SL during his recent state visit to Australia, Ms Bishop expressed happiness more..

19 hour water cut in parts of Colombo

July 20 (AD) The National Water Supply and Drainage Board announced a 19 hour water cut from 11pm on Friday to 6pm on Saturday to several parts of Colombo. The water board said that the supply to Kotahena, Mattakkuliya, Grandpass, Thotalaga, Jayantha Weerasekaar Mawatha and Maligawatta Flats will be suspended during the aforementioned time period. This is due to urgent repairs being carried out on the main supply line from Ambatale to Elihouse, it said. more..

2 Japanese naval ships arrive at Colombo

July 20 (SLN) Four (4) senior officers of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, who arrived in Sri Lanka today on a goodwill visit, called on the Navy Chief of Staff, Rear Admiral Sirimevan Ranasinghe at the Naval Headquarters. Accordingly, Commander of Escort Flotilla I, Rear Admiral Yoshihiro Goka together with Commanding Officers of JMSDF ships Izumo and Sazanami Captain, Yoshihiro Kai and Commander Hirotaka Okumura held discussions with the Chief of Staff. more..

Prez signs Office of Missing Persons Act

July 20 (DN) President Maithripala Sirisena signed the Office on Missing Persons (OMP) Act a short while ago, President’s Media Division said. Tweeting at the end of the event the President said I signed the Office of Missing Persons Act today. This marks another step forward in Sri Lanka's path to sustained peace. Sri Lanka introduced a bill to establish the OMP on the 22nd of May and the Bill was gazetted on the 27th of May 2016. more..

Woman forced to wait to have womb removed due to power cut

July 20 (DM) A sudden one and a half hour power outage that occurred while doctors at the Wathupitiwala Base Hospital were operating on a forty-five-year old woman to remove her womb meant that the woman was forced to wait for one and half hours with her abdomen open for the operation to be completed. A gynaecologist, assisted by another doctor, began the operation at about 9.45 yesterday morning. However after the doctors opened up her abdomen more..

Indian HC agrees to consider matching Korean proposal: Rajitha

July 20 (DN) Indian High Commissioner has agreed to consider matching the Korean proposal for Sampur LNG power plant, Minister Rajitha Senaratne said as questions over the feasibility of the power plant agreed to in 2016 came up for discussion in Cabinet. “We had a long discussion on the LNG plant. When Prez Sirisena visited India last year, he told Indian PM that Sampur 500 MW coal power plant cannot go through because as Minister of Environment, he cannot approve it. more..

NFF proclaims UN official’s ill-famed statement a violation of sovereignty

July 20 (AD) National Organizer of NFF, Piyasiri Wijenayaka stated that no Sri Lankan citizen had asked UN Special Rapporteur Ben Emmerson or anyone else to probe into the dark, closed chapter of the terror-stricken of LTTE. Issuing a letter to the Office of the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the UN, released to the media, Piyasiri Wijenayaka made the declaration on behalf of the NFF, in response to a statement made by more..

Road transport planners develop low cost traffic forecast

July 20 (EN) Sri Lanka road transport planners have developed a new method to forecast future demand for road use drastically reducing the cost of surveys as part of measures to improve traffic flows and cope with worsening congestion.  There was growing interest in research among staff of the RDA, said Namalie Siyambalapitiya, director of planning at the RDA. “I’ve been working for 30 years in road and transport matters and have found it very difficult to encourage our staff to do research,” she said. more..

Rail transportation along up-country line restored

July 20 (NR) Rail transportation along the up-country railway line that was hampered due to a train derailing has been restored. Rail transportation was authorised after a quality certificate was issued following a train engine with several carriages being deployed on a trial run. Railway services along the upcountry railway line were hampered last week due to the derailment of a night mail train. The train derailed between the Hatton and Kotagala railway stations. more..

Current govt ensured free vocational education: President

July 20 (PSL) President Sirisena says it is the current govt that extended the free education to the vocational education and freed the students from paying money for vocational education at some institutions. He recalled that before the election of the current govt, the students had to pay for some institutions which were under Ministry of Skills Development & Vocational Training. Prez was speaking at the World Youth Skills Day more..

Will vet Sri Lankan soldiers similar to other countries: UN

July 20 (DM) The UN has said that when selecting soldiers for the UN peacekeeping mission, it would vet SL troops similar to soldiers from other countries, to ensure they were not involved in illegal activities in their home country. In response to a question that the UN was still recruiting SL troops to serve (the UN Multi-dimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission) in Mali despite some new findings by the UN that Sri Lanka's security forces were engaged in torture, Deputy Spokesman for the UN more..

Video: New NCPC chairman's election undemocratic: JO

July 20 (DM) Claiming it was unlawful to present a no-confidence motion against North Central Provincial Council (NCPC) Chairman T.M.R. Siripala, JO MP Mahindananda Aluthgamage said yesterday said the procedure adopted to elect the new chairman was undemocratic. He said they were utterly disgusted with the tense situation that prevailed in the NCPC and have no hesitation to go to court against those who misbehaved and violated the agenda of the council's constitution. more..

New Inland Revenue Act to please IMF: JVP

July 20 (DM) JVP charged that govt had presented a new Inland Revenue Act in parliament for approval to please the IMF as a condition laid down by it to grant the third installment of the IMF loan. JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said no responsible authorities such as Inland Revenue Department officials, Trade Unions, tax payers and auditing firms had been consulted before formulating the Act. more..

One day, one hour, every week

July 20 (CT) We are a country that won a war against one of the most deadly terrorist organizations. In a world which was still in its early stages of facing the true horror of terrorism, armed insurgents and violent non-State actors, Sri Lanka was at the forefront leading the War on Terror. This was, of course, not accomplished overnight. Wars are won on two things: Superior military power and indisputable community mobilization. While a Nation State should develop and upgrade their more..

Public relations office set up at PM’s Office

July 20 (NR) The public relations office of the Prime Minister’s Office was declared open today under the patronage of the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff Rosy Senanayake. Rosy Senanayake detailed the service that will be offered by the public relations office. She said in 2016 alone the office received 48,815 public complaints, nearly 8,000 a month. Senanayake added the complaints mostly revolve around public grievances, their needs, and intention to contact the Prime Minister. more..

Sarana G. pleads guilty: Fined Rs. 2,000

July 20 (DN) Former Deputy Minister Sarana Gunawardena who pleaded guilty to two corruption cases filed against him by the Bribery Commission was today ordered to pay a fine of Rs. 2,000 by Colombo Chief Magistrate. This is the second instance that a SL politician was convicted over an offence that comes under the Declaration of Assets and Liabilities Law. CIABOC filed two corruption cases against former Deputy more..

Halt Sugar imports from Brazil: Importers

July 20 (NR) Sri Lanka Sugar Importers Association has called for an immediate halt of sugar imports from Brazil. Media Secretary of the Association Hemaka Fernando said the import of sugar from Brazil must be brought to a halt mainly as drug racketeers were using the route for drug peddling. He said President has issued clear directives to customs officers to inspect every shipment of sugar that arrives from Brazil adding that secondly he would like to state on behalf of importers, more..

7 arrested over Rs. 3.2 bn cocaine haul

July 20 (AD) Seven individuals have been arrested in connection with yesterday’s discovery of a cocaine haul estimated to be worth around Rs. 3.2 billion,. Ministry of Industry and Commerce said that the cocaine haul was detected by employees of Lanka Sathosa, whilst the supplies were being loaded off the truck. “A tender bid for sugar supplies, was called on July 18 by CWE (Sathosa) and a private sector sugar supplier called Ranjitha Traders was selected on the same day due to more..

මහ සයුරේ ගසා ගිය සද්දන්තයා

We think we cannot, therefore we cannot! Our power of self-doubt!

July 20 (FT) With sincere apologies to Virgil who stated quite simply and yet with much depth that they can because they think they can, I really must present the quote quoted differently! The title is also meant to reflect the frustration that one gets when trying to realise some meaningful progress perhaps in an unorthodox manner. We are quite ready to fail by sticking to same old routines when common sense may indicate that there is no hope at all in going down such routes.  more..

New wiki site to unmask dealings of tobacco industry in Sri Lanka

July 20 (Phys) A major new online project, TobaccoUnmasked, designed to reveal the activities and influences of the tobacco industry on public health policy, has been launched in Sri Lanka on the back of the success of TobaccoTactics – an initiative first established by the University's Tobacco Control Research Group. Launched at an event in Colombo by President Maithripala Sirisena, the new TobaccoUnmasked wiki will be part of the new Centre for Combatting Tobacco website. more..

Aloysius requested me to conceal vital info : witness

July 20 (DM) Pan Asia Bank Deputy General Manager R.A.B. Dias said that the owner of Perpetual Treasuries, Arjun Aloysius, had asked him to conceal vital information when testifying before the Presidential Commission. The revelation was made when the witness was questioned by Deputy Solicitor General regarding the previous testimony he gave about Mr. Aloysius’ request prior to him giving evidence before PCoI. more..

Cocaine weighing 160 kilos seized in Ratmalana: Estimated value over Rs. 2 b

July 20 (DN) The Police Narcotics Bureau and Mount Lavinia Police seized 160 kilograms of suspected cocaine in a container at Ratmalana Dedicated Economic Center, yesterday. The estimated street value of the drugs is over Rs. 2 billion, police said. The drugs were found hidden in a sugar container. Mount Lavinia Police said they have launched investigations following the seizure of a suspected cocaine load at Ratmalana. more..

189 acres of Mullaittivu lands released to civilians

July 20 (SLA) Responding positively to the concerns of the public, MPs and local politicians in the Mullaittivu District, Security Force Headquarters - Mullaittivu (SFHQ-MLT) released another land patch of 189 acres situated in the SFHQ-MLT Army Cantonment premises on Wednesday. Under this programme, families who were living with their next of kin are able to return to their original places of residence in Keppapilaw. more..

Bilateral defence ties with Sri Lanka improved: US report

July 20 (NR) A US report on international terrorism released yesterday says despite Sri Lanka’s counter-terrorism cooperation and training with the United States in 2016 being limited, bilateral security and defence ties between the two countries has continued to grow. The annual Country Report on Terrorism released by the Bureau of Counter-terrorism of US Department of State said SL’s law enforcement capacity was robust more..

'Inland Revenue Bill in Parliament next month'

July 20 (FT) Minister Mangala Samaraweera yesterday presented major reformshe Govt aims to implement, including continued fiscal consolidation and encouraging investment to shape Sri Lanka’s economy. Addressing the Sri Lanka: The Next Asian Economic Miracle? – Resetting Economic Development Priorities, he outlined three major reform areas coveringfiscal consolidation and revenue mobilisation, more..

Sri Lanka regulator approves power plan without coal

July 20 (EN) SL power regulator has approved a long term generation plan for 2018-2037 has been approved without coal plants, with mostly diesel with liquefied natural gas plants and renewables. PUCSL said CEB's recommended base plan with some coal was disallowed, and an optional plan with liquefied natural gas and a renewable plan was estimated to be cheaper without counting externalities but with updated fuel costs. more..

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