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No-faith motion against Bathiudeen: Govt rejects JO’s request for early date

May 24 (Island) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya announced, that the no-faith motion against Minister Rishad Bathiudeen would be taken up for debate on June 18 and 19. Speaker made this announcement, in Parliament, when Opposition member Vasudeva Nanayakkara demanded to know the decision of the chair on the issue. Jayasuriya said that the decision had been reached at the party leaders’ meeting yesterday morning. more..

NGJA certification a must for all jewellery shops: President

May 24 (DN) Attention has been drawn to make compulsory the use of the standard certificate seal of the National Gem and Jewellery Authority (NGJA) for gold products, as well as to raid jewellery shops functioning without the seal. This was brought up during a meeting held under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena at the National Gem and Jewellery Authority, on Wednesday. As the Minister-in-Charge, the President visited the National Gem and Jewellery Authority more..

Easter Sunday attacks: Acting IGP directed to take action against three senior DIGs

May 24 (DN) Attorney General Dappula de Livera PC has directed acting Inspector General of Police in writing to take disciplinary action through the National Police Commission against the Western Province Senior DIG, the STF Commandant and National Intelligence Chief for dereliction of duties. The AG handed over two letters containing his legal advice on the two interim reports of the special Prez Committee to probe the Easter Sunday attacks to acting IGP Chandana Wickramaratne. more..

Police and Intelligence Units were not aware of sterilisation doctor

May 24 (CT) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, said in Parliament both, the Police and Intelligence Units, were not aware of an incident in which a medical officer attached to the banned National Thowheed Jama’ath (NTJ) had performed tubal sterilisation surgeries on 4,000 Sinhala Buddhist mothers without their consent. Speaker made this remark when JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake raised a question regarding more..

CEB’s massive losses due to unwanted lengthy power purchase agreements

May 24 (Island) Minister Champika Ranawaka will appear before the Presidential Commission investigating frauds under the current administration on June 07 to give evidence on the irregularities that have occurred at the CEB. It was also revealed yesterday that by signing agreements with private power producers that last through the year. CEB incurred massive losses as such excess production was only needed for three months, President of the Lanka Viduli Podu Sewaka Sangamaya more..

Take measures to lift travel advisories: CASA

May 24 (DN) Shipping agency representatives, whose businesses are badly affected after the Easter Sunday attacks, urged the govt to take immediate measures to get the travel advisories on Sri Lanka lifted to smoothly operate their business activities. Ralph Anandappa, a representative from the Ceylon Association of Shipping Agents (CASA) made a request to State Finance Minister Eran Wickramaratne who was present at an event, organized by National Chamber of more..

Hate speech to be dealt with under ER

May 24 (FT) Emergency Regulations that deal with communication or spreading of rumours and false statements will be utilised to curb the spread of hate speech and incitement, while the possibility of introducing legislation to deal with the issue is also under consideration. Emergency Regulations in place also prohibit the affixing in any place visible to the public & distribution among the public any posters, more..

Honking at VIP convoys shows public anger towards Govt: MR

May 24 (FT) Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said the displeasure shown by the public against the closure of roads for VIP vehicular movements by unceasingly sounding the horn were a reaction to the Govt’s policies. A video of vehicles caught in traffic due to VIP road closures honking loudly in protest went viral, causing President Maithripala Sirisena to order an end to road closures that inconvenience the public. Rajapaksa expressed these views during a meeting held at more..

PCoI warns against any harassment of witness by Agriculture Ministry

May 24 (Island) Presidential Commission of Inquiry probing frauds under the current administration on Wednesday informed the Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture, K.D.S. Ruwanchandra to ensure that Senior Additional Secretary to the Ministry, Priyanga Himali Handunhewa, who gave evidence before the PCoI was not harassed in anyway. The PCoI informed Ruwanchandra that Handunhewa was entitled to the protection afforded to anyone that testified before a PCoI. more..

Freed Ven. Gnanasara calls for calm

May 24 (FT) Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) General Secretary Ven. Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara struck a subdued note yesterday after being freed from jail, calling on his supporters to be calm and to act judiciously for the sake of the country. Making a short statement after his release, Ven. Gnanasara thanked President Maithripala Sirisena, Justice Minister Thalatha Athukorale, and other State officials for his release. more..

Expect increase in electricity tariff

May 24 (Island) CEB is planning to increase the reserve capacity up to 25% with some experts warning that it would lead to an additional charge on the electricity bill. "If the govt is keen to recommend it, it should make sure that it is not going to burden consumers with additional charges," an official said. The five-member Ministerial Committee appointed to resolve the existing power crisis has granted approval for an emergency power purchase considering the prevailing power crisis more..

Sri Lanka punches below its weight on digital indicators

May 24 (DN) The country does not perform as well as expected on digital indicators. Awareness of the internet and related services do not result in usage within the country. The majority of social media users in Sri Lanka think that blocking social media during times of national unrest is the right thing to do, according to a survey conducted by Colombo-based digital policy think tank, LIRNEasia. Sixty-three percent of the population had never used the internet. more..

Heroic story of 30-year war must be recorded for next generations: President

May 24 (PMD) President Sirisena says that it is a timely need to write the full story regarding the great heroic story of the thirty-year long war victory, in a manner the future generation also can read about the bravery of the great war heroes, patriotism and their great humanitarian nature. Prez pointed out that through the reading of that story, a future generation, who love the motherland and loyal to the country, will be build and the true story more..

Case against Gota, six others fixed for day-to-day trial

May 24 (DN) Former Defence Secreary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa was today permitted to travel abroad for a medical test and further treatment by the Special High Court. Further, Special High Court has decided to commence hearing the case filed against former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa over the D.A. Rajapaksa Museum, on the 19th of June. The case filed against former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and six others in connection with an incident that the D.A. Rajapaksa more..

Integrated security system to monitor movements of people

May 24 (ST) An integrated security system linking key departments, including the Immigration, Registration of Persons, will be placed before the Cabinet soon. The project is estimated to cost about Rs. 40 bln, and is under discussion by the Home Affairs Ministry in consultation with PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and the respective departments. Home Affairs Minister Vajira Abeywardena said the funds would be raised through a long-term foreign loan, and from the Treasury and more..

Sri Lanka economy linked to all communities: Mangala

May 24 (FT) The recent mob attacks on Muslim properties and businesses in certain parts of the country have led the majority Sinhalese to lose jobs and earnings, Minister Mangala Samaraweera told Parliament. According to the Minister, Muslim-owned businesses alone bring $ 3 billion to SL per annum. “Mobs setting fire to a pasta factory, which was owned by a local Muslim, has led 95% Sinhalese to lose employment, more..

17 players to debut for Sri Lanka in Asia Rugby Championship

May 24 (DN) No less than 17 players will be making their debut for Sri Lanka at the Asia Rugby Championship Division I to be held in Chinese Taipei from May 29 to June 1. “It is a very young side. Four of the players are just 21 years while 18 players are 25 and under,” said Rohan Abayakoon, chief rugby selector said after the tour squad of 26 plus two standbyes was released by Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR) yesterday. The debutants are Umesh Madushan, Mithun Hapugoda who more..

Sudirman Cup Badminton tournament: SL to meet Ireland today in classification round

May 24 (DN) Sri Lanka will meet Ireland in their classification round match today at the 16th Sudirman Cup Badminton tournament which is in progress at Guangxi Sports Centre, Nanning, China. The result of this match will decide the 21st place in the ranking of this tournament. Ireland, ranked 21 competed in this tournament in Group 3A while 24th ranked Sri Lanka competed in Group 3B. Both teams ended with an unbeaten record to come on top of their respective groups. more..

Thajudeen’s murder: Former DIG indicted for suppressing infomation

May 24 (DN) The Attorney General has filed indictments against former Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police Anura Senanayake for allegedly covering up evidence in connection with the death of former Havelocks SC captain Wasim Thajudeen. Former rugby player Thajudeen was killed, apparently, in a road accident in Colombo in May 2012. The indictments have been filed under Section 198 of the Penal Code for more..

Former athlete appointed Senior DIG Southern and Sabaragamuwa Provinces

May 24 (Island) Ex-Royal athletic captain and public schools meet record holder, Senior Deputy Inspector General Roshan Fernando has been appointed by the National Police Commission (NPC) as the new Senior DIG of Southern Province and Sabaragamuwa Province. He will assume duties in his new provinces tomorrow (25). Having successfully completed a two-year period as Senior DIG of Northern Province, he was instrumental in further restoring peace in the area more..

SriLankan Airlines: Advocata supports expert committee recommendations

May 24 (FT) Advocata Institute yesterday said it strongly supports the President Maithripala Sirisena appointed expert committee recommendations on restructuring of SriLankan Airlines. It said the financial and operational restructuring should be a priority for the country. However, in the event that the restructuring fails to demonstrate rapid progression towards recovery, Govt should withdraw all State guarantees that support the borrowings of the airline, more..

Tourism wails over VAT cut volley

May 24 (FT) The terror-struck tourism industry is now faced with a fresh dilemma, as the much-lauded reduction of Value Added Tax (VAT) from 15% to 5% would in fact give more problems than relief. On the face of it, though the reduction of VAT from 15% to 5% reflects a 66.6% saving, it renders the hotels, restaurants and others unable to claim an input VAT paid on purchases, imports and other supplies. The current VAT Act restricts more..

Edtorial: Business of politics

May 24 (Island) Politics and business are joined at the hip. In the developing world, where politicians are deified, politics itself has become a lucrative business, as is our experience. It has also attracted quite a few big-time businessmen, who thirst for power. It is on the grapevine that a merchant prince is among some wealthy professionals who are toying with the idea of securing the coveted executive presidency. These aspirants may have been inspired by recent developments in more..

Limping back to normalcy after being double whacked

May 24 (Island) Cassandra boasts that she has been rather true to her ancestor of Grecian times by having forecast doubts about a nasty happening. She did not cry, Blood! I see blood as Cassandra of around 1250 BC did seeing in her clairvoyance the murder of her patron Agamemnon who brought her to Mycenae from Troy. No. This Cassandra doubted the origin of the attack on innocent Muslims by mobs and foretold it had to be instigated and engineered for the political benefit of some. more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Inherent dangers of passed on as received

May 24 (DM) This one line and variations of it – passed on as received – written innocuously at the end of a message, can send shivers down the recipient’s spine these days. What it means is that the sender has very little knowledge of the authenticity of the content. What it does real time is give the recipient another reason to be scared, as if there weren’t enough reasons already. Since the April 21 attacks, Sri Lanka social fabric has been on tenterhooks. more..

ISIS-Need to think global and Act local

May 24 (DM) Sri Lanka as a small Island Nation had experienced crisis after crisis within the last 5 decades. In 1971 it was somewhat adventurist and amateur type insurgency engaging the poor rural Sinhala youth. This was repeated in the late 80’s on a dangerously higher scale to topple the Govt by armed rebellion by the JVP (SL survived this ordeal). The 1983 civil riots paved the way for a prolonged Tamil Insurgency of the LTTE which lasted more than 25 years. Civil war ended in May 2009. more..

'Suspicion and unrest has seeped into society'

May 24 (CT) Whenever the Prez, PM or Ministers and MPs go before the Media and air their grievances it begs the question as to who is in power in this country, said Ven. Dr. Mawarale Bhaddiya Thera. The Thera made these remarks addressing an event held at the BMICH on 14 May. The Thera added that the Cabinet and MPs also have a duty to rectify mistakes committed by leaders who were above them. more..

Civil society activists call for end to extremism

May 24 (SO) A few weeks after the Easter Sunday brutal terrorist attack, the country is set on fire again with the organised terrorism launched by Sinhala-Buddhist extremists under the guidance of opportunistic political authorities. This time it’s against ordinary Muslim civilians. The police was severely criticised for failing to prevent such savage attacks targeting the unarmed civilians even when the emergency law had been enforced in the country. more..

Memory and the Security State

May 24 (GV) The sun was scorching at the Mullivaikkal memorial grounds as people gathered to remember loved ones and Tamil civilians killed during the war that came to an end on May 18th 2009. Lines of lamps and young coconut plants were laid out in lines in the soft sand. Surviving family members, loved ones and members of the community stood next to them. Each placed flowers at the base of the lamp and stuck joss sticks into the sand next to photos of their lost loved ones. more..

On Zaharan’s trail

May 24 (CT) Kattankudy, in the Eastern Province, looks like a township of a Middle Eastern country. It is also called Little Saudi Arabia as it has structures with Arabic wordings everywhere – on mosque walls, green flags flying on the tips of towers, name boards, street names and at the entrance of houses. It was in this town that Zaharan Hashim trained youth to join his militia to wage war against non-followers of Islam in Sri Lanka by more..

Attacking the outcome without addressing the root causes

May 24 (CT) Sri Lanka faced three insurrections after independence and there were several ethnocentric and religious clashes among different ethnic and religious groups. As a nation we have failed to explore the root causes of these ethnic and religious clashes and insurrections. Instead, we have done our best to control the outcome, terrorism. In certain instances, we were successful and in certain instances we have failed. Outcome can be controlled in the short run but more..

Tawheed is not a misdeed but dirtied by the extreme

May 24 (CT) A singular and specific victim of the whole macabre incident of the April 21 Easter Sunday bombing by terrorists in Sri Lanka from a standpoint of Muslims was the maligning, tarnishing and distorting of a term indispensable, necessitous and fundamental to the faith of Islam. It’s indeed extremely troubling to the faithful’s that this is the existential coalescing reality. A term essentially integral and intrinsic to Islam and all its prophets namely Abraham, Noah, Moses, Jesus, more..

Education Ministry issues directives to all schools

May 23 (DM) Education Ministry has informed heads of all schools in writing to abide by the Gazette notification issued under the Emergency law which prohibited dress and helmets preventing identification of a person. It said that the attention of Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam was drawn to this matter after the confusion that prevailed in schools when teachers and other individuals entered schools premises wearing more..

Family Health Bureau reveals Gradual reduction in perinatal deaths

May 23 (CT) Surveillance conducted by the Maternal and Child Diseases and Deaths Surveillance Unit of the Family Health Bureau had revealed a gradual reduction in perinatal deaths. The Health Ministry Spokesman, yesterday (22) said that countrywide surveillance carried out by the Unit in collaboration with the UNICEF has revealed that for every 1,000 live births there had been 6.8 perinatal deaths in 2017. The surveillance carried out between 2014 and 2017 was analysed while more..

Rain, rain everywhere, but not over reservoirs

May 23 (Island) Despite thunder showers in most part of the country, water levels of hydro reservoirs have not improved. Yesterday, Dehiwala recorded the highest rainfall of 134.8mm, while among catchment areas Kukuleganga recorded the highest with 33mm. Met Department forecast showery conditions in most parts of the country, particularly in south-western part in the next few days. Showers or thundershowers will occur at times in Western, Sabaragamuwa & Southern provinces. more..