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Sugar imports suspended temporarily

Oct 16 (DM) Sugar Importers' Association said that they would have to stop importing sugar temporarily, due to world market and Indian market sugar price hike. Sugar Importers’ Association member Priyantha Senavirathne said after imposing an extra control price on sugar imports, an extra loss had to be incurred when importing. “The price of a sugar metric ton in the Indian market was at US$ 340 by yesterday. more..

Chinese construction worker found dead

Oct 16 (AD) A Chinese worker involved in construction of Southern Expressway has been found dead in his workers’ hostel. The deceased Chinese national has been a worker at a construction site of the Southern Expressway near Bedigama-Weeraketiya. The 43-year old worker had gone to sleep, last night, in his quarters at the workers’ hostel belonging to the construction site. However, when his colleagues had checked on him when he didn’t report to work today, more..

The symbol badge of World Mental Health Day Celebrations pinned on President

Oct 16 (PMD) Marking of the World Mental Health Day 2018, the butterfly symbol badge was pinned on President Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat, today. The World Mental Health Day celebration was held under the theme young people and mental health in a changing world and in parallel to this event, activists of the Action Network for Mental Health has organized many events across the country. World Mental Health Day is observed on 10 Oct every year, more..

Sri Lanka price controls drive drugs off market as currency falls

Oct 16 (EN) Several drugs used to treat, blood pressure, cancer, osteoporosis, cancer and antibiotics have gone off the market as price controls originally proposed by a Marxist began to bite amid a steep fall in the currency. SL Chamber of Pharmaceutical Industry said despite repeated appeals the price control agency, National Medicinal Regulatory Authority has not allowed increases prices, which were cut despite a falling rupee. more..

DIG Nalaka summoned to CID today

Oct 16 (DM) DIG Kaushal Nalaka de Silva who was in charge of the Terrorism Investigations Department (TID) has been summoned to the CID today obtain a statement regarding an alleged assassination plot on Prez Sirisena and former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, CID sources said. He has been informed to appear before CID Homicide Investigation Unit OIC Chief Inspector Ranjith Munasinghe at 9.00 am today. The statements has to be taken regarding the bringing of two more..

Amara Ranathunga passes away

Oct 16 (AD) Popular singer Prof. Amara Ranathunga has passed away last night at the age of 79. She had been receiving treatment at a private hospital for the past several days. The funeral will take place on Thursday (18), according to family members. Amara Ranathunga is the wife of veteran singer and musician Dr. Dayarathna Ranathunga and is also considered the the first Professor of Music in the Sri Lankan music field. She entered Bhathkande Musc Institute in India in 1961, more..

Video: Nothing official about IGP's resignation: Nalin Bandara

Oct 16 (DM) Responding to speculation that IGP Pujith Jayasundara was to resign, Deputy Minister Nalin Bandara said he had not officially informed the Ministry or the President about any such move. There is a mounting pressure from different groups that the IGP should either step down or be sacked over his recent conduct. He said that the IGP must have been disgusted by the remarks made by certain responsible people against him. more..

The process that brought in the new Chief Justice is a Yahapalanaya achievement

Oct 16 (FT) We saw Justice Priyasad Dep come and now we see him going into retirement. The fact that a judge cannot get an extension is also sacrosanct; because if that was permitted it could lead to abuse, with judges giving decisions with a view to seeking extension. Justice Dep gave inspired leadership to the paramount doctrine of independence of the Judiciary. Judiciary is the pinnacle of good governance that is known as Yahapalanaya. Justice Dep leaves his position with the patriotic and more..

Kahandaliyanage attempts impunity: Move to appoint stooges to the board averted

Oct 16 (CT) Dr Athula Kahandaliyanage, Chairman of Sri J'pura General Hospital today attempted to illegally remove the three specialists serving the hospital Board quoting Minister Rajitha Senaratne, CT reliably learns. In an unprecedented move, Kahandaliyanage convened a specialists’ meeting stating that Rajitha Senaratne has ordered the removal of the three specialists representing the interest of the hospital, namely, Dr Kanishka Indraratne, Dr Madhava Karunaratne and more..

Rajiva Wijesinha

Reaping Votes

Oct 16 (CT) The weak rupee, would not affect the lives of the average people who do not depend on imported goods for their daily needs, People who eat rice, some vegetables and fish from their village won’t be affected by this– Minister Mangala Samaraweera. While what Samaraweera said may carry some truths, there still may be steps that the Govt can take to at least bring down the prices of vegetables by minimizing post-harvest losses, thereby winning both the lost urban and more..

Pakistan HC re-launches official website

Oct 16 (PHC) High Commissioner of Pakistan Dr. Shahid Hashmat unveiled the new interface of the official website of the High Commission on Oct 16, 2018. On the occasion, HC said that the new website will become a one-stop gateway for visitors to Pakistan with essential information highlighting the rich cultural heritage of Pakistan. The portal offers photos and videos on various tourism destinations in Pakistan and necessary information for SL nationals who wish to visit Pakistan. more..

Sanath Jayasuriya states his integrity and transparency in wake of ACU charges

Oct 16 (CI) Former SL captain and selector Sanath Jayasuriya has said he has "always conducted [himself] with integrity and transparency with matters concerning the sport," in the wake of being charged on two counts under the ICC's anti-corruption code. Jayasuriya, 49, also pointed out that the charges laid upon him "do not contain any allegations pertaining to match fixing, pitch fixing or any other similar corrupt activity," more..

Sri Lanka’s growth to recover and remain at 4% : World Bank

Oct 16 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s economic growth is projected to recover from the effects of last year’s weather disruptions, which negatively affected agriculture, and to remain around 4% in the next two years, says the World Bank in its twice-a-year regional economic update. The latest edition of the South Asia Economic Focus, Budget Crunch, finds that the region’s growth performance is uneven across countries—with Afghanistan notably more..

Countering Awa: Security tightened in Jaffna

Oct 16 (DM) The Police have taken steps to strengthen the security in Jaffna town as a means of putting an end to the attacks and robberies allegedly committed by the AWA group. They have set up road blocks and check points where random checks would be carried out on vehicles and their occupants. Some 40 people were arrested during raids conducted by 500 police personnel in Jaffna, Manipay, Chunnakam and Kopai. more..

Tax defaulters dodge Rs.197 billion

Oct 16 (DN) Govt had been deprived an income amounting to approximately Rs.197 billion due to taxes in default as at the end of last year, Inland Revenue Department (IRD) performance report for the year 2017 indicated. Tax evasion remains one of the main reasons for the default of taxes. The report was tabled in Parliament last week. The Gross Income Tax in default stood at Rs.117.6 billion as at Dec 31, 2017 as per the report. more..

Only 8% of budget promises are on track, says think tank

Oct 16 (AD) A private sector think-tank says that only 8% of the govt’s budget promises are progressing in line with their targets and that the pace of progress is slow, at the end of the first six months of 2018. “Further, progress on 33% of proposals are categorised as either broken, neglected or undisclosed.” “This means that the govt is either not doing what it is saying or not saying what it is doing for promises amounting to more..

Govt should guard against policy backsliding: IPS

Oct 16 (FT) SL’s Govt should fight against policy backsliding and remain focused on export and investment driven growth strategies as the already beleaguered economy heads towards deepening political and economic challenges next year, hampered by high debt, growing external risks and limited reform implementation, a top think tank said yesterday. Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) Executive Director Dr. Dushni Weerakoon more..

TNA expects Prez to solve Tamil detainee issue by tomorrow

Oct 16 (Island) TNA and Opposition leader R Sampanthan has requested the Tamil prisoners detained under the provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act to abandon their hunger strike, demanding their release, as President Maithripala Sirisena had agreed to give them a solution. Sampanthan said that Prez had spoken to him and promised that he would give a solution to the problem of Tamil prisoners on Oct. 17. more..

Tamil activists move to involve Sri Lanka in London arrests

Oct 16 (ST) British MPs of a pro-Tamil lobby and Tamil activists are trying to drag the Sri Lanka Govt and its High Commission in London into the arrests last Monday of four Tamils demonstrating against PM Ranil Wickremesinghe’s presence at the Oxford Union. Tamil groups claim they were detained and released the next day following complaints by SL officials. The British MPs, in a letter to Home Secretary Sajid Javid and more..

Sex-edu a child’s right: UNFPA SL

Oct 16 (CT) The UN Population Fund (UNFPA SL) said that access to comprehensive, medically accurate sex education is a child’s right and that the UNFPA is working with the Ministry of Education to introduce proper, accurate material in this regard to the curricula and engage teachers actively and educate parents regarding the importance of sexual education. The UNFPA Sri Lanka pointed this out at a media workshop more..

‘Our people are averse to a new govt’

Oct 16 (DM) Former Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa spoke about the proposed move to form a new Govt and the next presidential candidate. Q: There are talks about an interim Govt to be formed if President Maithripala Sirisena and former President Mahinda Rajapaksa come to an understanding. What do you think about it? A: Personally, I think there is a crisis situation in the country. Every segment of society- more..

Hambantota as forward Chinese military base: Distraction from real problem

Oct 16 (DM) America’s Vice-President Mike Pence has warned that Hambantota may soon become a forward military base for the PLA Navy. In a speech at Hudson institute, Pence launched a broadside against China’s predatory trade, debt diplomacy, coercion and military aggression; he referenced to the Chinese-funded Hambantota port, of which the majority stake is owned by China’s state owned port operator, China Merchants. Though these concerns are usual American refrain, more..

Political Parties must have unwavering policies

Oct 16 (DM) The Supreme Court has ruled that certain Articles of the 20th Amendment to the Constitution Bill presented in the Parliament in May by JVP as a private member’s Bill were inconsistent with the Constitution. It has also ruled that if the Bill was to be passed without changing the said Articles it should be passed with two thirds majority in the Parliament and approved by the people at a referendum. It is amazing to note that many political parties that had been agitating more..

Central Bank takes new measures to strengthen transparency and accountability

Oct 16 (Island) The Central Bank wishes to inform the public that several measures have been initiated and some have already been implemented, to strengthen transparency and accountability in several areas of operations of the Central Bank in line with the recommendations of the COI. In relation to the legal framework within which the CB operates, measures are under way to strengthen several laws applicable to CB. more..

UNP suffered because of rifts between the late leaders: Navin

Oct 16 (DM) Minister Navin Dissanayake said, the UNP suffered because of rifts between the late leaders such as former President R. Premadasa and Gamini Dissanayake, and hoped a similar feud would not arise between him and his colleague Minister Sajith Premadasa. Minister said there was a hard time ahead for the party. “If we act properly, we can succeed. Our political opposition is also riddled with problems. They are yet to decide who is to be fielded next time as their candidate. more..

National debt amounts to US$ 53.5 Billion at end-June

Oct 16 (CT) Sri Lanka’s total outstanding debt as of end-June this year stood at US$ 53.5 billion, up 9.5% compared to US$ 48.9 billion reported during the same period of last year, which as a percentage of the GDP, represents 59%. According to Central Bank data, the country’s long term debt represented 86% of the total outstanding, while short term debt was 14% of the total. The Govt owed US$ 36.2 billion as of end June this year, up 9.6% compared to US$ 29.8 billion it owed a year ago, more..

Wasting peoples' money to stay in power: Prez entourage to UN in New York was 63

Oct 16 (CT) JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva said that what the masses select at national elections were not Govts, but groups of thieves and robbers who carry out both small and large scale thefts and robberies. He said, “All State sector workers are given the opportunity to purchase a vehicle through a permit after five years. Now that permit has been suspended and having done so the Govt claimed that they had suspended the same permit more..

JVP calls for dissolving parliament

Oct 16 (Island) The present crisis cannot be resolved by forming a caretaker govt with Mahinda Rajapakass as the PM, JVP says. JVP politburo member K.D. Lalkantha said that the need of the hour was to dissolve parliament and allow the people to elect a new govt. "People are undergoing tremendous hardships. This is not a yahapalana govt but a janapeedaka (suppressive) govt. There is an economic crisis because the govt is overdependent on the US dollar. more..

More to be exposed: Namal Kumara

Oct 16 (DM) Anti-Corruption Force Operations Director Namal Kumara yesterday said he would reveal more incidents including an alleged land fraud taking place in the country. He expressed these views to the media after giving a statement to the CID over the ongoing probe into alleged assassination plot on President Maithripala Sirisena and Gotabaya Rajapaksa. Kumara said he handed over some recordings to the CID when he was summoned to give a statement yesterday. more..

ICC probe: Sanath charged with non-cooperation

Oct 16 (FT) The ICC yesterday charged former SL captain Sanath Jayasuriya under its Anti-Corruption Code. Jayasuriya, had two spells as Chairman of Selectors, the latest being from June 2016 to Sept. 2017 and it is believed that his second term has come under scrutiny. The 49-year-old has been charged with two offences under the Anti-Corruption Code. First charge relates to refusal to cooperate with the investigations more..

Relatives suspect Dehiattakandiya accident to be a murder

Oct 16 (AD) Four members of the same family were killed in a collision between a tipper truck and a motorbike in the Uttalapura town in Dehiattakandiya. The father and the three children were killed while the mother sustained serious injuries. Meanwhile, the relatives of the deceased suspect that the accident was deliberately done by the owner of the tipper truck due to a conflict with the father. The accident occurred in Uttalapura area on Sadunpura -Lihiniyagama road at around 5.30 pm. more..

Invest Sri Lanka ends with first-ever event in Scotland

Oct 16 (DN) The Invest Sri Lanka capital market road show organized by the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) in association with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) concluded on a positive note with institutional investors based in Edinburgh, particularly those with an investment interest in frontier and emerging markets gathering to hear the investment case for Sri Lankan equities. This is the first occasion the CSE and SEC has directly engaged investors in Scotland. more..

Wickremesinghe to meet Modi

Oct 16 (Hindu) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe will visit New Delhi later this week and meet his counterpart Narendra Modi to discuss bilateral matters. PM will take part in high-level meetings, including with Mr. Modi, on Oct 19 and 20. The visit is seen as significant from both sides, sources said. New Delhi has been concerned with the slow pace of several India-aided projects in the island, while Colombo appears more..

Paarami wins bronze at Youth Olympics

Oct 16 (Island) Kuliyapitiya Central long distance runner Paarami Wasanthi won SL’s first medal at the Youth Olympics when she was placed fourth in her category in the Cross Country race in Buenos Aires, Argentina on Monday. She was placed third in the 2,000 metres steeplechase earlier and she needed to make a repeat performance in the cross country race for her to secure a medal. "Parami was placed fourth in the cross country race (among the athletes who took part in the steeplechase) yesterday more..

TDL won’t go to Treasury: SLTPB

Oct 16 (FT) Upon reaching a settlement between industry stakeholders and the Finance Ministry, the Tourism Development Levy (TDL) will not be absorbed into a Consolidated Fund, SL Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) said. “There was a proposal to absorb the TDL into the Consolidated Fund of the Treasury and using it for tourism promotion on a case-by-case basis. However, after industry leaders discussed the matter with Treasury officials, they agreed not to put it through,” more..