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Annual fare revision: New bus fares

June 23 (AD) National Transport Commission today issued a special notice with the new revised bus fares, which will come into effect from July 1.  Annual bus fare revision has been decided to be granted by Ministry of Transport & Civil Aviation along with the National Transport Commission with effect from July 01 in terms of the National Bus Fares Policy. NTC says that stern action will be taken against any operator more..

Lanka Sathosa to reach 400 branches

June 23 (GDI) Lanka Sathosa is preparing to cross the 400 branch mark despite 9 outlets being hit by recent floods. Minister Rishad Bathiudeen addressing his Ministry’s progress review meeting on 21st June said that there are no plans to privatise Lanka Sathosa. “Recent floods have affected 9 Lanka Sathosa branches and they will be renovated immediately. Despite facing damage, Lanka Sathosa continued to serve consumers and helped the disaster victims as well. more..

Medical dons issue stern warning to govt. over SAITM issue

June 23 (Island) The Federation of Faculty of Medicine Teachers’ Association (FFMTA) has warned that it would resort to stern trade union action if the govt fails to provide a solution for the SAITM issue and to maintain high standards of Sri Lankan medical degrees. FFMTA’s Convenor Dr M.C. Weerasinghe said: "We the FFMTA have been observing the series of incidents that took place within last seven years regarding the SAITM issue. The Deans, FFMTA in collaboration more..

CMC will no longer dump garbage at Meethotamulla

June 23 (DN) Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) informed the Supreme Court that they have taken a decision to refrain from dumping garbage at Meetotamulla area in Kolonnawa. CMC revealed these facts when a fundamental right petition filed against Meetotamulla garbage dump was taken up for inquiry. Meanwhile, counsel who appeared for the petitioners tendered in court 40 death certificates pertaining to the individuals more..

Police kennel effort to breed dogs fails

June 23 (Island) A project to breed canines by Police Kennels had failed as the puppies produced here did not meet the international standards and Sri Lanka would have to import dogs for police and security forces, Minister Sagala Ratnayake told Parliament. Responding to a question raised by UNP MP Buddhika Pathirana, minister said that there were 177 dogs in the police kennel and the govt had spent Rs 92,751,156.63 in the year 2016 for the upkeep of those animals. more..

Geetha Kumarasinghe petition to mediated

June 23 (NR) Former Minister Piyasena Gamage has filed a motion at the Supreme Court requesting to be a mediator in the petition filed at the SC against the verdict of the Court of Appeal pertaining to the Parliamentary seat of MP Geetha Kumarasinghe. A 3-member bench headed by Chief Justice decided to hear the petition on 4th of July. The motion called for the suspension of the Appeals Court decision pertaining to MP Kumarasinghe and an annulment of the order decreed by SC. more..

Top Sri Lankan economist Dr. Saman Kelegama dies in Thailand

June 23 (EN) Top SL economist and the head of IPS, Saman Kelegama, has died in Thailand. Kelegama was due to travel back home Friday but Sri Lankans who were due to fly back with him raised the alarm when he did not show up at the airport. Later, the authorities found him dead in his hotel room.  The cause of death was not immediately known. “When they went to his room, there was a do not disturb sign. more..

People don’t dump garbage at allocated places: CMC

June 23 (DM) Though the CMC collected garbage on a regular basis, people did not dump garbage at allocated places making the process of garbage collecting cumbersome, CMC Commissioner V.K.A. Anura said. He said there were several piles of garbage remained in the city. CMC had asked the assistance of the Armed Forces to raid illegal places of dumping garbage. "Although we collect garbage on a regular basis, people do not dump garbage at appropriate places. more..

Strong Sri Lankan sales wins Gestetner best performance in RICOH Asia Pacific

June 23 (DM) Building on its winning legacy, Gestetner of Ceylon once again won resounding recognition for its tremendous sales performance over the past year, rising above its peers in the Asia Pacific region to win the RICOH Asia Pacific Award for Outstanding Achievement in Units & Sales Revenue FY 2016 in multi-functional products (MFP). Notably, Gestetner of Ceylon is currently the only distributor to have won this award, adding to its impressive two time win over the last 3 years, more..

India, Sri Lanka to ink pact for cooperation in traditional medicine, homoeopathy

June 23 (PTI) Union cabinet today approved signing of an agreement between India and Sri Lanka for cooperation in areas of traditional systems of medicine and homoeopathy. The proposed memorandum of understanding will be inked between the Ministry of AYUSH and SL's Ministry of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine. "The signing of the proposed MoU will enhance bilateral cooperation between more..

MP’s dual portfolio irks opposition

June 23 (CT) The Opposition called on the Chairman of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) and Deputy Minister of Finance, Lasantha Alagiyawanna, to step down from one of his portfolios as one individual could not hold both positions of PAC chairman and a Finance Minister due to conflict of interest. Leader of the JVP, Anura Kumara Dissanayake, made this observation in Parliament while taking part in the debate on the notifications made under Excise Ordinance in the House. more..

Hewapanna breaks Guinness Record

June 23 (CT) Local film director Nandana Hewapanna has made yet another successful attempt breaking his own Guinness World Record for the fastest film produced (script to screen). His new movie Salakuna has taken only 59 hours and 20 minutes to be completed. Hewapanna has put pen to paper at 6:10 in the morning on 16 June and the completed movie has finished its first screening to a panel of judges at 5:50 in the evening of 18 June. more..

IUSF Convener Lahiru Weerasekara arrested

June 23 (AD) The Convener of IUSF, Lahiru Weerasekara, has been arrested by police.  He was arrested while leaving a press conference held today at the Centre for Society and Religion (CSR) at Deans Road, Maradana. IUSF Convener was reportedly arrested in connection with the incident at the Health Ministry on Wednesday. A large number of university students, during a protest against SAITM, had forcibly entered more..

What were police doing?: PM

June 23 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has informed the Ministry of Law and Order to report back to him just how university students were able to climb four storeys into Ministry of Health building without the police being able to stop them. This came about after he was informed by several ministers that the police did nothing to stop the students protesting against SAITM from getting into the Health Ministry building and causing so much damage to equipment and vehicles more..

Heavy rain forecast in Sri Lanka, floods, landslides feared

June 23 (Xinhua) Heavy rain is forecast in the southern part of SL, leading to concerns that the country might be hit again by floods, an official here said on Friday. Spokesman for the DMC said that heavy rain ranging from 75 mm to 100 mm could occur, and therefore people should remain vigilant. "We have issued an alert only. If the need arose, we will evacuate people due to threat of floods or landslides," he said. Showery weather was expected during next few days in the southwest more..

Standing up for Rights: What Malinga said

Our tryst with mosquitoes!

June 23 (FT) This small specie – small in size but quite big in impact – is creating havoc among us these days. Govt has a serious emergency at hand consequent to mosquito bites and specifically the bites of one species – Aedes aegypti – making a significant impact on public health and our economy too.  Aedes aegypti is the vector that carries the dengue virus and the whole reason for today’s emergency situation. We are the primary host of the virus and we appear to be playing the perfect more..

Do protesters want to lose public support?

June 23 (CT) Yesterday, thousands of patients who came to receive treatment at govt hospitals were waiting helplessly, bearing the pain, as doctors were engaged in a strike action condemning the attack carried out by Police and STF against university students who invaded the Health Ministry demanding govt to take over SAITM. The decision of the GMOA to go on strike was a sudden move which was announced only around 10 p.m. the day before yesterday, after 95 student- protesters more..

Serial garbage dumpers warned: You are being watched!

June 23 (DM) Street cameras will be set up to identify persons who dump garbage on the roadside and in public places, Minister Faiszer Musthapha said. At a meeting held to formally establish a National Task Force which was established by the Ministry in order to find solutions to prevailing garbage crisis with a view to curbing the spread of dengue, he warned that stern action would be taken against such individual. more..

Many ill-effects of Uma Oya project revealed in House

June 23 (Island) A disaster was on the horizon as the Uma Oya Multipurpose Development Project had resulted in unexpected ill-effects, Parliament was told. Deputy Minister Anuradha Jayaratne said that there was a leak which released about 1,070 litres of water per second and there was a threat of houses and other buildings in the Bandarawela town caving in. He said so responding to a series of questions more..

Kiriella adamant Dinesh should have been present

June 23 (DM) Govt cannot be expected to go out of their way all the time to allow the joint opposition to move adjournment motions as and when they want, Leader of the House Lakshman Kiriella said. He was referring to the statement made by JO MP Dinesh Gunawardane that they will request the govt allow the adjournment debate on Health Ministry incident today. Mr. Gunawardene was not present to move the debate yesterday more..

AG flayed for sending Bill inconsistent with Constitution for approval

June 23 (Island) Attorney General’s notification to the Supreme Court that Ministry of Justice wanted to withdraw the Code of Criminal Procedure (Special Provisions) (Amendment) Bill after two petitioners had challenged it had an adverse effect on the national legislature, MP Dinesh Gunawardena said in Parliament. "If the two petitioners had not questioned the constitutionality of the bill before the Supreme Court, more..

Police Media Spokesman resigns

June 23 (DM) Police Media Spokesman DIG Priyantha Jayakody in a Facebook post said he had decided to resign from his post due to his prevailing medical condition. He also stated that SP Ruwan Gunasekara would be appointed as the new Media Spokesman for the Police Department.  “I take this opportunity to convey my sincere gratitude towards all media colleagues and all my FB friends for the untainted support and more..

It’s business as usual in Qatar, say returnees

June 23 (ST) Fowzil Ameer (40) is excited to be home and reunited with his wife and three children after his return from Qatar. He is eager to make the most of his two-and-a-half month vacation from his job and spend quality time with his family during the final weeks of Ramadan. However, he is unfazed by the prospect of returning to Qatar, even if the current diplomatic crisis engulfing the country drags on for months. more..

Authorities mum on garbage problem

June 23 (SL) Despite strong objection by the masses in most parts of the Western Province and in some parts of Wattala, the authorities were mum, simply saying they are yet to find a concrete solution to the growing garbage problem in the country. Minister Faizer Mustapha was not available for comment despite numerous attempts to contact him. National Solid Waste Management Support Centre (NSWMSC) more..

The truth about school admissions

June 23 (DM) Instead of quotas for security forces MPs list becomes the order of the day as  regulations are openly flouted by politicians in the admission of children to schools? Two little ones cling on to their mother and father happy as ever on their way to school to begin their new lives, while two other little ones remain in their homes yearningly looking at the former, after their hopes of attending a new school almost shattered.  more..

'I could have survived unharmed if I toed the govt line'

June 23 (DM) Former General Secretary of SL Working Journalists’ Association Poddala Jayantha recently lodged a complaint with the CID, requesting an investigation into his abduction and torture in June, 2009. He began his journalism career in 1989 as a freelance journalist at Ravaya. Later, he joined Lake House and was working as an investigative journalist at the time when he was abducted and tortured. more..

Mervyn gives undertaking to SC on compensation payment

June 23 (DN) Former Deputy Minister Mervyn Silva gave an undertaking to the Supreme Court to pay compensation of Rs.400,000 as damages to a resident of Kiribathgoda by June 27 this year. President's Counsel Anil de Silva appearing on behalf of the former minister gave this undertaking to the Supreme Court three-judge-bench headed by Chief Justice Priyasath Dep. On Nov 28, last year, SC ordered Mervyn Silva to pay Rs.400,000 more..

On political lone wolves

June 23 (DM) In politics there are degrees of expedience, of imperative, of loyalty, of friendships that sour and enmities that are forgotten. Nothing is cast in stone, which is why no one can be counted on as a permanent ally or foe. Picking on parties and individuals has naturally become a political necessity. Not just a necessity, but a necessary frill.  Truth is that Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka, whose critique of Gotabaya while he was in power years ago has resurfaced on social media, has changed. more..

Precious lives should not end on roads

June 23 (DM) In Colombo and other cities, peak-time traffic snarls have led to the calamity of eight road deaths a day in addition to costing hundreds of millions of dollars on wasted fuel, more air pollution and a waste of precious time for hundreds of thousands of people including schoolchildren. Super highways and other road projects have to some extent eased the congestion. But in recent months especially peak time demonstrations by university students and others are flashing red lights more..

Please make us drunk, so that we can forget: Mangala cheers rethink of alcohol policy

June 23 (LBO) Minister Mangala Samaraweera told Parliament that the country needs to relax issuing liquor licenses for beer & wine as it may reduce illegal liquor consumption. He said the ministry is now collecting information and is having discussions with the relevant parties with regard to the issue of licenses. “When we keep increasing fees and duties, people tend to consume more illegal liquor affecting health. more..

Cabinet Paper on SAITM to Ministers next week: Rajitha

June 23 (CT) Cabinet Paper on govt's proposed action, regarding the SAITM, will be presented for the perusal of the Ministers next week, Minister Rajitha Senaratne said. "This will also contain standards for medical education. I will present the Bill and I expect that it will be approved," he said. Minister added that he was to meet the head of SL Medical Council (SLMC) Professor Carlo Fonseka on Wednesday. Fonseka was to present him with a report on standards for medical education. more..

Parliament Mafia: What they discuss behind closed doors

June 23 (DM) A powerful purohita the other day openly vented his spleen on a colleague for the being the villain responsible for the loss of his much cherished portfolio. He also said that this colleague who undercut him would never be able to win at an election. He vowed, “I am going to expose all misdeeds the man has committed since entering the council through the charity list.” What is significant is that both these purohitas belong to the Green party. By the way, a group of purohitas more..

Health Minister threatens to deliver bitter medicine to striking docs

June 23 (Island) Minister Rajitha Senaratne warned that govt was prepared to take drastic action against the continuous strike launched by the GMOA. Addressing media following Wednesday’s incident, where undergraduates walked into Health Ministry premises, Dr Senaratne flayed the GMOA for having resorted to a strike in protest against police action. It was wrong for doctors to strike at a time the country was faced more..

Learning tricks from Parliament Mafia: Pera Uni assistant bursar missing with Rs 32 mn

June 23 (Island) A senior Assistant Bursar of the Postgraduate Institute of the Uni of Peradeniya has gone missing after allegedly misappropriating Rs. 32 million out of university funds. Peradeniya VC Prof. Upul Dissanayaka said the incident had been reported to the CID for investigation while a separate internal probe was underway. Bursar had withdrawn the money from an account with a bank saying that the money would be deposited with another bank, which offered a higher interest rate, more..

Yahapalanaya deals a blow to Child Protection: NCPA Deputy Chairman sacked

June 23 (Island) Shivers were sent down the spines of the good governance aspirants when President Sirisena, in most unwelcome manner, removed Sajeeva Samaranayake, Deputy Chairman National Child Protection Authority (NCPA). It is understood that no reason has been cited for his removal in the letter of expulsion. The NCPA comes under the Ministry of Women and Child Affairs, whose minister is Ms. Chandrani Bandara. (To put the record straight, good governance aspirants, more..