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Police arrest 19 over racial violence

Nov 18 (Reuters) Sri Lankan police arrested 19 people after a clash between extremists from the majority Buddhist and minority Muslim communities in which four people were injured, a spokesman said on Saturday. Tension has been growing between the two communities this year, with some hardline Buddhist groups accusing Muslims of forcing people to convert to Islam and vandalising Buddhist archaeological sites. more..

UNHRC adopts the 3rd UPR outcome on SL

Nov 18 (NR) The UNHRC has adopted the outcome of the third Universal Periodic Review on Sri Lanka at the 28th session of the Universal Periodic Review. At the session the President of the Human Rights Council Joaquín Alexander Martelli proposed to the working group to adopt the recommendation section of the draft report and the UPR of Sri Lanka was adopted. The review of Sri Lanka was held on Wednesday. more..

Tamil Nadu politicians urged to visit Sri Lanka before commenting

Nov 18 (Hindu) Tamil Nadu politicians are welcome to visit Sri Lanka and see the plight of hill country Tamils before hastily commenting on matters pertaining to them, Minister Palany Thigambaram said. “While they [State politicians] have always spoken up for Eelam Tamils in the north and east, they seldom acknowledged the existence or challenges of Tamils living in the hill country,” he told The Hindu on Friday. more..

COPE under a cloud: Speaker urged to restore credibility now

Nov 18 (Island) Former Chairman of COPE D.E.W. Gunasekera said that his successor JVPer Sunil Handunetti should immediately request Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to remove the members who had been in touch with Perpetual Treasuries Chief Arjun Aloysius and conduct an inquiry. Former Minister said so when The Island asked him what would have been his reaction if he had faced a similar situation. more..

To improve female labour force participation in Sri Lanka, first change attitudes

Nov 18 (WB) Earlier this year in Hatton, I met a group of talented, young adults who had just participated in a social innovation pilot program. They were enthusiastic and dynamic, brimming with potential. But the potential to realize that potential was going to be influenced along gender lines; the expectations and obligations to the families were the most important determinants.   I heard about some of these challenges. more..

India, Bangladesh set to feature in tri-series in Sri Lanka

Nov 18 (WB) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), on Friday (17), announced fixtures for the T20I tri-series, including India and Bangladesh, to be played from March 8-20. The three teams will play two league matches each against one another, before the final which will be played on March 20. All games will be played at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. Speaking about the tournament, Rahul Johri, BCCI CEO, added: more..

'Retain Executive Presidency'

Nov 18 (DN) The Executive Presidency should be retained for the country’s defence and to protect its unitary status, Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said in Parliament. He also said that the powers of the governors’ who are representatives of the President should not be reduced too. “The Northern Province Chief Minister has refused to hoist the National Flag at a ceremony at a school in the North,” he said. more..

President warned not to put off LG polls

Nov 18 (Island) JVP says it would like to join with the devil or devil’s grandmother to defeat the govt’s plans to delay elections using courts. JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake participating in the third reading stage debate in parliament said his party would join anyone including those who would not agree with them ideologically to take to the streets if the govt went on postponing elections after 22nd of this month. more..

Three-wheeler regulations from Jan 1, demerit system early next year

Nov 18 (ST) As concerns rise over an increasing number of fatal accidents on Sri Lankan roads, the authorities are gearing up to implement new safety regulations governing three-wheelers from January 1 and the new fine system together with a point-based demerit feature from early next year. Arrangements were being made to implement the revised three-wheeler regulations were first gazetted on Jan 9 this year more..

Rs 3b for Aruwakkalu Waste Management- Budget 2018

Nov 18 (ST) Govt’s 2018 Budget has allocated Rs 3 billion to accelerate the Aruwakkalu Waste Management programme which includes the construction of a sanitary landfill. Denying inefficiencies had held up the project, The initiative will be completed on schedule, after meeting environmental prerequisites and tender procedures. Proposal for a sanitary landfill put forward by the previous Govt failed its EIA. more..

Senaka Bibile’s drug policy reminds of Bernard Shaw’s Doctor’s dilemma

Nov 16 (DM) Hypocritic oath, humanity, professionalism all weighed against pecuniary interests leads to conflict of interest, pushing doctors to a catch-22 situation. With little options, naturally they would choose the economic alternative; select the affluent patient over the most deserving case.  A century ago in 1906, George Bernard Shaw borrowed the title from a contemporary writer to name his Drama Doctor’s Dilemma where for the first time in Medical history, more..

How to win the Referendum? A tale of two Constitutions

Nov 16 (DM) Every country has two Constitutions: a Legal Constitution and a Political Constitution. To win a referendum and to introduce a new Constitution, Sri Lanka must change both. The focus for the past two years has been on the Legal Constitution. From now, it must be on the Political Constitution.   A Constitution answers a series of questions about the State. Is it unitary or federal? Which is more powerful, Parliament or the Executive? more..

Bond issue: COPE Chairman wants phone details presented to Parliament

Nov 18 (DM) COPE Chairman and JVP MP, Sunil Hadunnetti requested Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to take steps to record in the hansard the details of the telephone conversations said to have taken place between some COPE members and PTL owner Arjun Aloysius, during COPE proceedings on the bond issue so that people would know what had been discussed. He said it was unethical for COPE members to talk to person under investigation more..

Minor incident being escalated into racial issue in Galle: Vajira

Nov 18 (AD) Minister Vajira Abeywardena today expressed his utmost regret on behalf of the govt with regard to a minor incident in Ginthota, Galle escalating out of control and developing into a tense situation. He also said that he will accept complete responsibility on behalf of the govt to prevent this situation from further escalating.  He said that additional police teams from surrounding police stations, riot squads, STF and tri-forces personnel have been called into last night more..

First session of Foreign Office Consultations between SL and Switzerland ends

Nov 18 (FT) First Session of Foreign Office Consultations between SL and Switzerland concluded yesterday at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The formal but inclusive bilateral engagement followed the signing of the MoU on Foreign Office Consultations between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of SL and the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation in March 2016. MoU provides a platform for a regular and more structured review of more..

Treasury bond scams: JO asks Maithri to quit govt, appoint new PM

Nov 18 (Island) Alleging that the ruling UNP had been grossly implicated in the alleged Treasury bond scams involving the Central Bank and the Perpetual Treasuries, the Joint Opposition (JO) urged President Maithripala Sirisena to quit the unity govt without further delay. President Sirisena committed a section of the SLFP to UNP-led govt after the latter’s failure to secure a simple majority at 2015 parliamentary polls. more..

Police curfew imposed in parts of Galle

Nov 18 (AD) Police curfew has been imposed in several areas in the Galle District until 9am today due to a tense situation, Police Spokesman SP Ruwan Gunasekara said. He stated that police curfew has been imposed in Kurunduwatta, Maha Hapugala, Welipitimodara, Ukwatta, Ginthota and Piyandigama Grama Sevaka Divisions. The Police Spokesman said that the curfew was imposed in order to control a tense situation prevailing in the area and to restore normalcy. more..

Venomous snake in parliament

Nov 18 (Island) Parliament workers found a cat snake – (mapila in Sinhala and poonai pambu in Tamil) in a committee room of the Parliament complex yesterday morning. The snake was first detected by some cleaning workers in a corner of the Committee Room Number One located on the ground floor; it is mostly used for meetings between ministers and govt officials. Workers immediately alerted the House Keeping Department employees who took action to remove the snake. more..

Parliament Mafia pointing the finger at each other

Nov 18 (CT) While noting that they are only bound by the agreement between the SLFP and UNP to form a consensus Govt, Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara, in Parliament dropped a minor bombshell by alleging that there is an underhand deal between UNP and JO, to sling mud at the SLFP. Minister Jayasekera was explaining the situation that has cropped up following statement made by JO MP Kanchana Wijesekera demanding to know more..

Suranga Lakmal offered free taxi ride in SL

Nov 18 (PO) Suranga Lakmal’s superb bowling figures in India is being keenly followed by a taxi driver in SL. Incidentally, his name is also Suranga Lakmal. (Full name: Manimeldure Suranga Niroshan Lakmal). “I am proud to be also known as Suranga Lakmal and all my other taxi driver-colleagues tease me…”, Taxi driver Lakmal speaking exclusively over telephone from his taxi (he was carrying a passenger from airport to the city), said. “Yes, I follow cricket and take much more interest in more..

'UNP’s objective to strengthen parliament'

Nov 18 (NR) Minister Lakshman Kiriella says UNP’s goal since obtaining power has been to strengthen Parliament powers. He said govt has worked towards this endeavour over the past three years. Minister said they have shared the responsibility of each Sectoral oversight committee among all political parties adding their intention was to strengthen the parliament. He said through enactment of the 19th amendment, several powers of the Executive President have been more..

'Budgets alone cannot change SL’s destiny'

Nov 18 (FT) State Minister Eran Wickramaratne said that budgets alone could not change the destiny of a country, insisting that there were many hard and soft factors involved in changing the ecosystem of an economy. Stressing that the Enterprise SL Budget concept would empower Sri Lankans to take their future into their own hands, he added that it was critical to rekindle the entrepreneurial/trading spirit to boost exports more..

LG polls nominations begin on Nov 27

Nov 18 (DN) Returning Officers have been notified by the Elections Commission to publish notices calling for nominations from Nov 27, Additional Elections Commissioner M.M. Mohamed said. He explained that Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya had informed them of this after a meeting at the Commission. Nominations therefore would be accepted at the end of 14 days from Nov 27. Seventeen days after the date (27), nominations would close at 12 noon. more..

INSSSL holds panel discussion

Nov 18 (MoD) The Institute of National Security Studies Sri Lanka (INSSSL) conducted a panel discussion on "The Role of Armed Forces in Post Conflict Sri Lanka" to a delegation from The Centre of Conflict and Humanitarian Studies (CHS), Doha on the 17th of Nov. The delegation, led by Sultan Zuhdib Majid Barakat, comprised of MSc students from 14 countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The discussion was chaired by Mr. Asanga Abeyagoonasekera Director General of more..

Anti-Muslim assaults in Gintota

Nov 18 (CT) Gintota is currently facing a heavily tense situation with impending riots, by Sinhalese mobs against Muslims. Reports said that there is a riot building up currently after a Sinhalese group of youth had assaulted a bunch of Muslims who were playing. A skirmish between two groups over a bike accident has escalated to violence. According to reports, a Muslim child had been knocked down by a Sinhalese youth. more..

Politico’s son-in-law in school frock drama

Nov 18 (CT) The son-in-law of a SLFP politician in the Puttalam District is under investigation after he is alleged to have threatened a school teacher who had reprimanded his daughter over the student's dress code. According to Police the alleged incident took place at a Maha Vidyalaya in Madurankuliya at the start of this week. According to the complaint made by the Teacher, the suspect is alleged to have stormed the school premises during the assembly and abused her in obscene language more..

Tender for tabs further delayed

Nov 18 (Island) Due to issues involved with the awarding of a tender to import 200,000 tabs to be distributed among GCE A/L students, the distribution of tabs would be further delayed, Education Ministry sources said. As six companies had protested against the decision taken by the UCG to award the tender to a particular company, UGC held discussions with them on Thursday, in a bid to resolve the issue. UGC’s decision will be announced next week, the sources said. more..

'Fantastic if I can take five-for against India'

Nov 18 (Island) Seamer Suranga Lakmal, who bowled an unplayable spell on the opening day of the first Test against India here in Calcutta, said that he had been doing a lot of research and planning ahead of the three-match Test series against world’s number-one ranked team. Lamkal’s burst helped SL to reduce India to 17 for three and the hosts moved to 74 for five on a rain-curtailed day two with Dasun Shanaka accounting for more..

Sevens players given SLR contracts

Nov 18 (CT) Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR) has finally decided to take the first step toward professionalizing the sport when they introduced a contract system for Sri Lanka Sevens men's and women's teams. They have picked 20 men and 16 female players who will be given a one year contract till the next Asian Games in Indonesia. Contracts will be effective from this month. The contract has been prepared and approved by the SLR, Sports Ministry and the Clubs. more..

Private sector is performing well: Survey

Nov 18 (FT) The latest monthly poll conducted by research firm Kantar TNS, for business magazine LMD, reveals that a notable majority (78%) of the people believe Sri Lanka’s private sector is performing well. Respondents say that this is a reflection of the business community working efficiently in accordance with standards. However, only three in 10 of those surveyed feel that our corporates are world-class, citing the famous businesses that are well known. more..

සාගල බේරෙන්න FCID ලොක්කෙක් අත්අඩංගුවට !

Airtel partners with Google for online purchasing for 1st time in Sri Lanka

Nov 18 (LBO) For the first time in Sri Lanka customers will be able to purchase apps and other digital content through their Airtel recharges or reloads launching with Google Play. This Direct Carrier Billing service named AirPay will permit prepaid customers to have their purchases deducted from their remaining balances, while postpaid customers will have their purchases incurred to their monthly phone bill. Given that the circulation of credit cards is still considerably low, more..

Sri Lankan students take part in summit on world Tsunami awareness day

Nov 18 (FT) The Govt of Japan hosted the High School Students Islands Summit to commemorate the World Tsunami Awareness Day that falls on 5 November as declared upon by the resolution adopted at the United Nations General Assembly in 2015. The Summit was held on 7 and 8 November at Okinawa, Japan with the participation of 150 students around the world. Six students from Galle District had the opportunity to participate in this Summit, representing Sri Lanka.  more..

'Finance Minister fooled into giving tax relief to beer industry'

Nov 18 (DM) The Amarapura Vidwat Sangha Sabha said that Minister Mangala Samaraweera had been fooled into giving tax concessions to the beer industry because of a study that was based on fabricated data to please the tourism industry. Its Chief Registrar, Venerable Mawarale Bhaddhiya Thera, said that although the finance minister had reduced the tax on beer stating that it was a measure that was required to attract tourists, more..

Curious case of Winter Sports Association

Nov 18 (CT) Sri Lanka does not neither have a winter season with snow fall nor any winter sports clubs, but surprisingly we have a Sri Lanka Winter Sports Association (SLWSA), a loggerhead regarding its status and receiving millions of funds for the sport. In fact, at present, Sri Lanka has an athlete (Lukas Hettiarachchi) who receives US$ 1,500 per month for winter sports until the Winter Olympics in 2018, while SLWSA has received International Funding of US$ 34,000 more..

On view: Wendt’s artistic world

Nov 18 (ST) Theatre-goers and art lovers in SL are familiar with the Lionel Wendt Art Centre, but few of the younger generation would have an inkling of the artistic genius it was named after. A versatile personality- Lionel Wendt was a photographer, musician and art collector who made a great contribution to the arts in SL. This week, a curated selection of his photographs is on exhibition at the Harold Peiris Gallery of the Lionel Wendt offering the public a glimpse of his phenomenal talent. more..

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