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Tea estate workers continue strike for the 7th day: RPCs refuse further union negotiations

Dec 11 (CT) Regional Plantation Companies (RPCs) will not sit for further wage negotiations due to death threats received from Ceylon Workers' Congress (CWC) members, Planters' Association of Ceylon Spokesperson, Roshan Rajadurei said. “We are not willing to sit down and talk to people who are publicly issuing death threats. They have gone and threatened managers working in the field. If there are further death threats to more..

Madras HC pulls up officer for deporting man to Sri Lanka

Dec 11 (TOI) Foreigners Regional Registration Officer (FRRO) is in the dock as the Madras high court has summoned him to personally explain as to why he deported a man of SL origin -- but born and brought up in India – to Sri Lanka after he returned from Australia where he was denied asylum. Questioning the rationale behind deporting S Anand to Colombo, a division bench of Justice N Kirubakaran and Justice Abdul Quddhose rejected the officials’ claim that Anand entered more..

'UNPers at grassroots rally round Ranil'

Dec 11 (Island) Deputy Leader of the the UNP, Sajith Premadasa, said yesterday that the Constitutional coup perpetrated by President Maithripala Sirisena to remove PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, would be countered successfully, as UNPers at grassroots level had taken up the cause of their leader, with a great deal of enthusiasm. Premadasa said that he would not betray Wickremesinghe and spoil the good name of his late father President R. Premadasa. more..

Convictions on 62 corruption cases in 2018

Dec 11 (FT) Releasing their annual evaluation, the CIABOC has said that 62 convictions on bribery and corruption cases were handed out in 2018 and it stressed that several key steps had been taken to promote anti-corruption measures. Short report, which was recently posted on the CIABOC website, said that as a result of targeted prosecutions, 62 convictions took place this year, which is higher than the 57 seen in 2017. more..

Lotus Tower to blossom soon

Dec 11 (DN) The early awaited and long overdue Lotus Tower development project (also known as Nelum Kuluna) is now nearing completion and is expected to be opened in a few weeks adding a new landmark to South Asia. Standing at over 350 metres tall, it will be the world’s 19th tallest tower and will house TV and radio broadcasting stations, 20 telecom service providers and 50 TV broadcasters. Lotus Tower project will also offer two banquet and conference halls more..

Senior Basketball from December 17-28

Dec 11 (ST) 52nd Senior Nationals Basketball Tournament organised by the SL Basketball Federation will kick off on Dec. 17 with its level one matches going on until Dec. 28. These matches will be played at the Army Indoor court and Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium. Tournament will be played across three levels and will feature teams representing all 25 districts, as well as the army, air force, police, navy, schools and universities. The level two matches will be held in Batticaloa more..

Dambara Amila Thero disputes President’s actions

Dec 11 (FT) The Supreme Court yesterday deferred for support on 7 January the fundamental rights petition filed by Dambara Amila Nayake Thero of Nalanda University College challenging the acts of President Maithripala Sirisena on the removal of MP Ranil Wickremesinghe from the office of Prime Minister and the appointment of MP Mahinda Rajapaksa in his place. more..

Norway partners with UNDP Sri Lanka to support peace & justice

Dec 11 (Island) Govt of Norway entered into a partnership agreement with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka to extend support to UNDP Sri Lanka’s flagship portfolio on SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions project for the period Dec 2018 to Dec 2020. The Ambassador of Norway to SL, Thorbjørn Gaustadsæther and UNDP Sri Lanka Country Director Jorn Sorensen signed partnership agreement amounting to more..

Contempt of court case against Ranjan begins before three-judge SC bench

Dec 11 (Island) The hearing of the contempt of court case against MP Ranjan Ramanayake commenced yesterday before a three-judge Supreme Court bench comprising Justices Sisira de Abrew, Prasanna Jayawardena and Vijith Malalgoda. Senior Deputy Solicitor General Priyantha Nawana made a brief explanation to the judges about the case. Registrar of the Supreme Court Pradeep Mahamuthugala informed the court from the witness box that legal action had been instituted more..

Sri Lankan fielding is below par at the moment: Steve Rixon

Dec 11 (Island) In his first interview since being appointed as SL’s Fielding Coach, Steve Rixon admitted that he will have lot of work to do with the national cricket team in a bid to raise the fielding standards. Tagged the worst fielding team in the world, SL have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory due to their poor fielding on several instances. Rixon, who has worked with three int'l teams before was confident that he will be more..

Emerging Teams Asia Cup: Sri Lanka suffer first defeat but through to semis

Dec 11 (CT) India Emerging team and Sri Lanka Emerging team advanced to the semi-finals from Group ‘A’ yesterday. Unbeaten India topped the group with 3 wins, while Sri Lanka were runner-up with 2 wins. India beat Sri Lanka by 4 wickets at RPICS and Afghanistan beat Oman by 112 runs in the last of the first round matches yesterday. Sri Lanka scored 260 runs for 7 wickets in their allotted 50 overs with Avishka Fernando top scoring with 80 and Asela Gunarathne unbeaten on 67. more..

G.L concedes public finance under Parliament

Dec 11 (FT) SLPP Chairperson Prof. G.L Peiris acknowledged the need for the allocation of funds for next year, conceding that Parliament was vested with the authority to allocate public funds for govt entities and this could not be done by the Executive. “We have to allocate funds for next year by 31 Dec either by the Appropriation Bill or a Vote on Account. Under Article 148 of the Constitution, Parliament is vested with the authority to allocate public funds, therefore, we need to resolve this soon,” more..

'Issuance of Treasury bonds to SriLankan: Pressuring govt persistently, not practicable'

Dec 11 (Island) It was impractical for the Central Bank of SL to keep challenging the govt, urging it to follow the law to its letter when the spirit of the law had been followed, CBSL Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy told the PCoI commenting on issuing of treasury bonds worth over Rs. 14 billion to UL in 2012. In 2012, the govt issued treasury bonds worth Rs. 14.2 billion to SriLankan airlines to strengthen its balance sheet. more..

Ajaz Patel the only spinner for first Test against Sri Lanka

Dec 11 (CI) The offspinner William Somerville, who played a starring role on debut as New Zealand beat Pakistan last week, has not been included to play the upcoming home Test series against Sri Lanka. The 13-man squad that was announced on Monday had only one slow bowler in it - Ajaz Patel, who claimed a five-wicket haul in a dramatic four-run victory in Abu Dhabi last month. Meanwhile, 26-year old opening batsman Will Young earned his maiden-call up to international cricket. more..

Ideal Motors begins construction of assembly factory in Kalutara

Dec 11 (DN) Ideal Motors, a fully owned subsidiary of the Ideal Group, has commended constructing their factory in Kalutara to locally assemble new compact Mahindra SUV, the KUV100, and vehicle in SL. The company has also entered into a JV with Mahindra and Mahindra, a part of the US$19 billion Mahindra Group based in India. Ideal Motors has been a Mahindra distributor for the last nine years and Mahindra will hold a 35% stake in the JV, while Ideal Motors will have 65%. more..

SriLankan Airlines carbon emissions higher in 2018

Dec 11 (EN) Efficiency of SriLankan Airlines flights have fallen in 2018, and is contributing more towards carbon emissions, but was ahead of Emirates and Singapore Airlines, in an international ranking compiled. The atmosfair Airline Index 2018, which tracked more than 33 million flights globally, said that SriLankan Airlines was the 72nd most efficient among 125 regional and international carriers in terms of carbon emissions, more..

SL on hunt for batting & spin bowling coach

Dec 11 (DN) Sri Lanka are on the hunt for a batting coach and at the moment negotiations are taking place to have someone appointed probably ahead of the tour to Australia next month. It is reliably learnt that ex-Durham opening batsman Jon Lewis who quit as head coach of Durham on Dec 7 is one of them. Presently former SL batsman Thilan Samaraweera is the national team’s batting coach that is currently touring New Zealand. Meanwhile SL is also looking for a spin bowling coach more..

Addressing multiple facets of Prez power

Dec 11 (Island) This is in response to Dr. Nihal Jayawickrama’s (NJ) article in The Sunday Island of Dec 9, titled Why didn’t they tell the President? Referring to the President’s powers under the 19th Amendment (19A), NJ states: "That amendment removed his executive powers except three which he still enjoys: the power to appoint ambassadors, the power to appoint secretaries, and the power to appoint provincial governors". Although NJ’s comment cited above is limited only to more..

Capital crisis, as seen from SL’s countryside

Dec 11 (Hindu) For Chandrani Mendis, the political crisis gripping SL since Oct 26 has had a specific cost — her pension for November. “After my husband died, I had been receiving 250 rupees (roughly Rs. 100) a month as an allowance, but they stopped it last month,” said the 60-year-old, seated in her modest home in Wellawaya, Monaragala district, located in the Uva Province. As the country’s political unrest persists amid more..

Edtorial: Of that confession

Dec 11 (Island) The country has come to be focused on its Constitution as never before as the judgment day draws nearer. Clarity, brevity and comprehensiveness are some of the hallmarks of a good Constitution, which should be considered sacred in that it is the be-all and end-all of the modern state. A Constitution should also be flexible enough to be amended, if necessary, but certainly not according to the whims and fancies of greedy, ambitious rulers. more..

The implications & consequences of the verdict, whatever it is

Dec 11 (CT) Quite obviously I haven’t the slightest notion of what the Supreme Court verdict will be, unlike my friend Eran Wickremaratne who announced publicly (and rather curiously) that he doesn’t have the slightest doubt about it. However I do know, as a political scientist, what the implications and consequences will be if it were to go one way or the other. I tend to perceive and analyze things from the perspective of comparative global politics. more..

Shamindra Ferdinando & Malinda Seneviratne

Should we not look for a solution?

Dec 11 (DN) Since Oct 26, 2018, following the political changes effected, the country has been witnessing a series of developments emerging, culminating into a crisis situation. The removal of the PM, appointment of a new PM and a Cabinet of Ministers, Prorogation of the Parliament and the Notice of dissolution of the Parliament have been at the bottom of the incitation to this state of affairs. When we look back at the events in retrospect it becomes evident that the associated more..

Parliamentary and majority supremacy

Dec 11 (DN) Present text was penned under the Article 14(1 – a) of the constitution of Sri Lanka. It neither concerns any particular country nor any political team. However, its writer respectfully invites the wise and the intelligent, to carefully peruse the contents and if required to intellectually relate them with an open mind, to the happening political occurrences in the country of each reader. The scrutinization by itself is not enough, consecutively and with no delay, more..

The unsolved mystery of Vavunathivu gruesome double-murder

Dec 11 (CT) Once upon a time, the Tamil Tiger stronghold, Vavunathivu–located 8 km southwest of Batticaloa–had been a rich agricultural land with lush green paddy fields and palmyrah trees, surrounded by waterways and lagoons along with little villages cluttered in the midst of paddy lands. But the news of two Police constables found dead in the early hours of 29 Nov; murdered gruesomely with their eyes gouged more..

Prolonged political crisis serious threat to balance of payments and external finances

Dec 11 (ST) The longer the political crisis the more serious its adverse effects on the economy. This is especially so with respect to the balance of payments. A large balance of payments would weaken the external reserves and make the repayment of debt next year more onerous. At the time of writing, there is a glimmer of hope that the constitutional crisis and political chaos may be resolved. However, there have been so many twists and turns in the political saga more..

Madness of politics here and there

Dec 11 (ST) Turning one’s head constantly to the left and right to simultaneously watch scenes of bedlam in the SL parliament and confusion in the British House of Commons is educative. Except that it gives you a pain in the neck. At the time of writing, Supreme Court has extended its stay order on Prez Sirisena’s proclamation dissolving parliament and announcing a date for parliamentary elections. So it seems we must wait for a few more days to hear its decision on the constitutionality more..

Sri Lanka Navy turns 68

Dec 11 (SO) During World War II, the British Empire had clearly understood the strategic importance of Sri Lanka in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) and the necessity of a navy to ensure the Sea Lines of Communication (SLOC) or key maritime passageways lying in the vicinity of this teardrop island. It is with this glimmer of hope, the Ceylon Naval Volunteer Force (CNVF) was set up in 1937 and after World War II the CNVF was more..

Why didn’t they tell the President?

Dec 11 (Island) The President appears to believe that he still possesses the full executive powers he derived from the Constitution when he was elected to his office in Jan 2015. Three months later, he sat during a tumultuous session in Parliament and witnessed the passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, introduced by the Govt of which he was the Head.That Amendment removed all his executive powers except three which he still enjoys: the power to appoint ambassadors, . more..

Four parameters of a political solution

Dec 11 (CT) The country being on the verge of imminent division due to envisaged constitutional reform was one of the main justifications of the backdoor seizure of power of October 26 by members of the hitherto opposition who are now members of the govt. The threat they alleged came from the constitutional reform process. This is a process that has been continuing since the former govt got elected in 2015, though it is now at a standstill due the political crisis. more..

Prez making bogus claims about 19A : JVP

Dec 10 (DM) JVP said today the Prez’s claim that 19th Amendment was brought in haste was baseless and said it was discussed for months prior to its approval in Parliament. JVP MP Vijitha Herath said that the President was trying to take the credit for positives in 19A while passing the buck on the negatives to others. “The discussions on the 19A were ongoing even before the death of Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thera. more..

Report on Singapore FTA handed to Prez

Dec 10 (NR) The report on the SL-Singapore Free Trade Agreement has been handed over to President Maithripala Sirisena. President’s Media Division says a five-member committee headed by WD Lakshman handed over the report this evening. Prez Sirisena on the 11th of August appointed the committee of experts to study the Singapore Free Trade Agreement. President appointed the Committee after taking into consideration views expressed by various parties over the issue. more..

Video: Four nabbed with elephant pearls worth over Rs 40 mn

Dec 10 (AD) Four individuals have been arrested in Kandy, along with 11 elephant pearls estimated to be worth over Rs 40 million. The arrest was made by the officers of the Crime Prevention Unit of Kandy Police Division during an undercover operation. Three of the suspects, who had been in possession of 08 elephant pearls at the time of the arrest, were taken into custody near the Balagolla stadium, while the other suspect was arrested in Kandy town along with three elephant pearls. more..

Akila Dananjaya found to have illegal bowling action

Dec 10 (ICC) The ICC today announced that an independent assessment has found the bowling action of SL’s off-spinner Akila Dananjaya to be illegal and, as such he has been suspended from bowling in international cricket with immediate effect. The assessment revealed that his deliveries exceeded the 15 degrees level of tolerance permitted under the regulations. In accordance with Article 11.1 of the ICC more..

‘State bank trying to obtain a loan illegally’

Dec 10 (NR) UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake says a state bank is attempting to obtain a 750 million US dollar loan, at a time that there is no legitimate govt. Speaking at a media breifing at the Temple Trees MP Karunanayake said attempts to obtain such funds is illegal. The MP said the only thing the state bank is trying to achieve is to add this to the foreign exchange rate that is decreasing rapidly, while claiming in the tender that it is for Sri Lanka development bonds. more..

'Prez will request CJ to deliver order soon'

Dec 10 (DM) President Maithripala Sirisena will request Chief Justice Nalin Perera through the Attorney General to deliver the order on the dissolution of parliament without delay, MP Wimal Weerawansa said today. He told a news briefing that the President would make the request tomorrow morning. MP Weerawansa said the entire country was waiting for the SC ruling on the Fundamental Rights petitions filed against the dissolution of parliament. more..