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President accepts the summary of CB annual report

Apr 6 (GDI) The programme of renovating tanks which were destroyed by terrorism is being implemented in the Anuradhapura District. Several tanks have already been renovated and the farmers have the opportunity to cultivate many paddy fields that had been lying fallow. Thimbiriwewa in Medawachchiya is being renovated under the programme at the cost of 4 million rupees. more..

Avenues and lanes within slum settlements get paved with concrete

Apr 6 (GDI) The government has successfully implemented a road development scheme to pave access roads to slum areas in the Colombo city with concrete surfaces in an attempt to uplift the lifestyle, living conditions, and sanitation of the people living in such settlements. Senior officials of the Ministry of Nation Building And Estate Infrastructure said that they will be extending significant support to this project. more..

Russia-Lanka ‘Images of Friendship’

Apr 6 (GDI) A photographic exhibition on Russia- Sri Lanka relations was declared open by Russian Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Vladimir P.Mikhaylov and Mr Lalith Weeratunga, Secretary to the President at Galle Face Hotel yesterday. The exhibition will continue until 07 April. Photographs depicting key landmarks on exchanges between the two countries are displayed including the first man in space, more..

'Join UPFA for better tomorrow'

Apr 6 (LNP) The country will receive the benefits of electing President Mahinda Rajapaksa for the second term with a clear majority of 1.8 million votes in this General Election, Tharunyata Hetak organization Chairman and Hambantota district UPFA candidate Namal Rajapaksa said. Rajapaksa was speaking at a massive election rally at the Sanath Jayasuriya Stadium on Sunday. more..

The duty of a judge is to protect individuals from abusive state action

Apr 6 (TC) My Lord, the Chief Justice of Sri Lanka Mr. Asoka De Silva and his companion Judges from Supreme Court of Sri Lanka, Hon’ble Mr. Sathya Hettige, President Court of Appeal and other Hon’ble Judges from Court of Appeal and High Courts, Hon’ble Mr. Milinda Moragoda, Minister for Justice & Legal Reforms, Attorney General Mr. Mohan Peiris, Solicitor General Mr. W.P.C. Dep, Mr.Shibly Aziz, President and more..

USA aids, awards Colombo supplier

Apr 6 (TN) A Colombo-based supplier of horticultural produce to McDonalds, Burger King, Unilever, Heinz and also to Japan has been provided with US aid since 2008 to initiate its activities in the Eastern Province. Mr. Mohan Pandithage, chairman of the supplier group, Hayleys, a Multi National Corporate (MNC) of Sri Lanka, received an award from USAID for the achievement of economically linking conflict-affected East with the Colombo-centric system and more..

Aanandasangaree complains to President about the Armed Forces constructing Buddha Statues in the North - East

Apr 6 (TC) V. Aanandasangaree President -TULF, has written a letter on April 4th to President Mahinda Rajapaksa about the propagation of Buddhism by the Armed forces in the North and East of Sri Lanka. The full text of the letter is given below: Your Excellency, There are a lot of matters I wish to bring to your notice. I am so sorry to say that Mahinda cinthanaya had been polluted with more..

Editorial: Of those `human bombs`

Apr 6 (LNP) In the hands of terrorists anything becomes a weapon, from a table knife to a fuel-laden jumbo jet. They are an innovative lot in spite of their brutality. It was only last December that a terror suspect was nabbed, on board a passenger aircraft over Detroit, for his failed attempt to detonate, of all things, his underwear with explosives sewn into the crotch. He was left with a singed pair of briefs and only god knows what else! more..

'General can go home if he begs pardon from President'

Apr 6 (LT) Gen. Sarath Fonseka could get himself released if he begs pardon from the President says Minister Gamini Lokuge. He said this at a UPFA election rally held in Nugegoda. “The JVP says it would work to get Gen. Fonseka released. They say they have come forward to contest the election to get Gen. Fonseka released. No one needs to come forward to get Gen. Fonseka released. more..

'Dulles who betrayed his religion for the US dole is talking about morality'

Apr 6 (LT) Dulles Alahapperuma, who betrayed his religion to get the monthly dole from the US government when he was living there, talking about morality is indeed humorous says candidate of the DNA for Colombo District Sarath Manamendra. Mr. Manamendra said, “Dulles Alahapperuma talks about ethical politics in Sri Lanka. He knelt before Milinda Moragoda to get visa to go to the USA. more..

Bhikkus who went on ‘death fast released on bail, police asked to submit full report

Apr 6 (LT) The Maha Sangha that carried out a ‘fast unto death’ demanding the release of Gen. Sarath Fonseka and were forcefully removed by the police yesterday using civilians were brought before Colombo Additional Magistrate Ravindra Premaratne today. The Slave Island Police charged the Maha Sangha of breach of peace and preventing the police from carrying out their duties. more..

A choiceless election to elect a lumpenised parliament

Apr 6 (GV) This general election would bring about a parliament with a clear majority. Few if at all, would dispute that. While there is also talk of a two-thirds majority in parliament for President’s UPFA, that possibility seems remote, unless the Southern voter goes berserk. That for the Sinhala voter is not that impossible and then, all calculations and forecasts could go haywire as well. more..

President assures: US $ 4,000 per capita income by 2016

Apr 6 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday that the country attained middle income status during the last five years which is a unique achievement. “During the past five years, the country gained a per capita income of US $ 2,053, while becoming a middle-income State. “It was an excellent accomplishment of the country,” the President said at the presentation of the 60th annual report of the Monetary Board to him more..

Violence rages in Ampara: Police failure to control the cause blamed

Apr 6 (UNP) As in- fighting among the UPFA candidates are growing so is the tense situation in the country escalating with peace loving citizens being unable to attend to their daily activities . Despite the general growing violence since of late in the country and the general public pointing an accusing finger at the Police inaction as the cause, and the Govt. turning a blind eye to them has allegedly precipitated this monumental violence in the country, more..

'Experience & temperament of ’71 should be used to end present draconian regime'

Apr 6 (LT) “We should create an environment for the people in this country to live as perfect human beings using the experiences and temperament handed down by the ’71 uprising of the JVP. However, difficult it is we have to move along that path. It is necessary to go on the path taken by the April Heroes to defeat the undemocratic path taken by the present regime,” more..

Basil Rajapaksa creates history

Apr 6 (DN) Senior Presidential Advisor and UPFA Group Leader in the Gampaha District Basil Rajapaksa has created history in political campaigning in the district by conducting 1002 campaign meetings up to yesterday said a spokesman for the Gampaha UPFA office yesterday. Basil Rajapaksa has conducted an unprecedented and exemplary election campaign in the district which had been highly successful and more..

The consolation prizes on offer

Apr 6 (DN) In the former, there is a winner and one or more losers; there are no consolation prices. In any other election, there are consolation prizes. There is a ‘Best Loser’s Prize’ called ‘Leader of the Opposition’. This is what the tussle between Ranil Wickremesinghe and Sarath Fonseka was about, or between ‘Elephant’ and ‘Trophy’ if you want to do it with symbols. There are other consolation prizes for individuals. Even if your party doesn’t win, you can still enter Parliament. more..

Centre of excellence for value addition: Uva Wellassa University

Apr 6 (DN) There have been constant complaints from the private sector that graduates coming out of the universities do not possess skills required to work in the private sector. Most private sector business leaders are not satisfied with their performance either and they are reluctant to provide employment for graduates especially with arts degrees. more..

Deported student vanished without trace, say family

Apr 6 (Age) A Sri Lankan student has disappeared without a trace after he was deported for overstaying his visa. The Immigration Department has refused to help find Randika Mallawaarachchi, who was deported almost two months ago. Department officers put Mr Mallawaarachchi on a Sri Lankan-bound plane at Adelaide airport some time between February 15 and 19. The Sri Lankan government says he never set foot on his home soil, more..

Govt. calls for NGO help to resolve IDP issues

Apr 6 (DM) Chairman of the North East re-building task force, Senior Presidential Advisor Basil Rajapaksa yesterday called for NGO help to resolve issues faced by the IDPs in the North. Mr. Rajapaksa who addressed a special meeting on resettlement of IDPs organized by Caritas Sri Lanka, said the government had given top priority to providing education to the displaced children and for livelihood development of the IDPs. more..

'Cabinet of ministers must be given targets'

Apr 6 (Island) Sri Lanka has the potential to bounce back after a difficult to year to post seven to eight percent economic growth and realise President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s vision of doubling the per capita of Sri Lankans in five years to US$ 4,000 but Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal said macroeconomic stability would be crucial and future cabinet appointments must be more..

Politicians taking advantage of parliamentary system

Apr 6 (Island) Relating his first meeting with Dr. Wijayananda Dahanayake, MP, way back in August 1979, former Cabinet Secretary Dharmasena Wijesinghe says unlike now, politicians of yesteryear led a simple life. In his book titled Milestones, the veteran public servant said how he had offered a lift to Dahanayake, who was at a bus halt a little distance away from the then Parliament. more..

TMVP sees new path for Tamil leaders

Apr 6 (Island) Sri Lankan Tamils must put their past behind them and come out of their isolation, a top TMVP politician said yesterday. "Joining forces with the government and President Mahinda Rajapaksa could create a path for Tamil leaders to take the problems of their people to the highest level such as Parliament or Cabinet of ministers," TMVP Trincomalee District leader Mrs Judy Devadason added. more..

Ranil vows to appoint CC

Apr 6 (Island) UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said that steps will be taken to appoint the Constitutional Council after the UNF forms the government following Parliamentary Elections. He said he hopes that President Mahinda Rajapaksa will not again reject the names that will be nominated. "By this, we will be able to reactivate the Elections Commission, Police Commission, Public Service Commission and the Judicial Services Commission. more..

Maha Sangha to stage Sathyagraha

Apr 6 (DM) The Maha Sangha will stage a Sathyagraha opposite the Fort Railway Station at 3.00 pm today, demanding the release of Retired Gen. Sarath Fonseka who is being held in military custody, the National Bhikkhu Front (NBF) said. NBF Secretary Ven. Kalawelgola Chandraloka Thera charged that some state sponsored goons forcibly removed four Bhikkhus who were staging a fast unto death, along with eight others. more..

‘Work in harmony with Ranil to develop country’

Apr 6 (DM) Chief Sanganayake of Nine Korales of Colombo and Hunupitiya Gangaramaya Temple Chief Incumbent Ven. Galaboda Gnanissara Thera yesterday said it was an undisputed fact that Opposition UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe was a knowledgeable and capable leader whose services were vital for the development of this country. The prelate told the media yesterday that more..

Sri Lanka poll campaigning ends

'Don’t politicize arrest of UNP candidate'

Apr 6 (DM) Ruling UPFA asked political parties not to politicize the arrest of certain candidates and thus undermine the judicial process of the country. “The recent arrest of a UNP candidate on charges of having abused a woman was in no way politically motivated though the opposition and the media are trying to show it is so. The kind of interpretation given by the opposition only undermines the judicial system of this country,” more..

Speaker criticized over swearing in of 2 MPs

Apr 6 (CT) Speaker W.J.M. Lokubandara came in for strong criticism by the UNP in Parliament today over his refusal to allow the swearing in of two new MPs. Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe told the House that the speaker had not responded to two letters sent by the elections commissioner with regard to the matter. Neither has he replied to an oral request made for convening a meeting of more..

'If Gen. Fonseka is charged for talking politics, how should Defense Secretary be charged for participating in politics'

Apr 6 (LeN) If General Fonseka is hauled before the Army Courts because he was involved in politics when he was an Army Commander and Chief of Defense staff, before what Court should Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapakse be charged for openly participating in politics and canvassing for support for the Govt. UNP Gen. Secretary questioned, more..

Law equal to all, irrespective of social status - President

Apr 6 (LP) The Law is equal to all irrespective of their status in society and those violating the country’s law need to be severely dealt with, stated President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday adding that he is not ready to intervene in the affairs of the law enforcement authorities in any way. “There were some instances where Supreme Court judgments relating to sand mining were served in favour of friends. more..

Sri Lankan war zone doctor stands for election

Apr 6 (BBC) A doctor who worked in Sri Lanka's war zone during last year's civil war is standing for a pro-government party in parliamentary elections. Dr V Shanmugarajah gave high casualty figures to aid agencies and the media from within the combat zone. The government doctor is believed to have been enlisted by the now-defeated Tamil Tigers into their medical team. more..

Sri Lanka to broaden offshore oil search

Apr 6 (LBO) Sri Lanka is to broaden its search for offshore oil and offer more exploration blocks in the Cauvery Basin in the island's north as well as the south. These will be in addition to blocks in the Mannar Basin off the north-west coast where Cairn India is searching for oil. The Ministry of Petroleum plans to conduct the second licensing round for oil exploration in the near future, more..

Archaeology sparks new conflict between Sri Lankan Tamils and Sinhalese

Apr 6 (Times) Recent visitors to Kilinochchi, the former capital of the Tamil Tigers, had noticed something unusual — there was a single, new building standing among the bombed-out ruins of the abandoned city in northern Sri Lanka. It was a whitewashed Buddhist shrine, strewn with flowers. “We thought it strange because there was no one there except soldiers — the civilians had all fled,” more..

Ex-army chief returns to court martial

Apr 6 (AFP) The court martial of Sri Lanka's former army chief resumed Tuesday, two days before parliamentary elections at which he is a candidate, a military official said. Sarath Fonseka, who has been in detention since February 8, appeared at the hearing in the tightly-guarded naval headquarters. "General Fonseka is at the hearing which re-opened this morning into allegations that he was involved in politics while in uniform," more..

Friday following the election declared a public and bank holiday

Apr 6 (DM) The government has declared Friday a special Public and Bank holiday; the government information department quoted the Secretary to the Ministry of Public Administration D. Dissanayaka as saying. The holiday comes a day after the General Eelctions.

Debrief News - 05.04.2010

Sri Lanka election, record your comment

Apr 7 (BBC) The BBC Sinhala service, Sandeshaya, invites its listeners/ readers to leave an audio comment regarding the 2010 general elections and our programmes. The listeners are invited to call a telephone number in London : +44 20 8133 3195 and record a voice message of upto 60 seconds. The BBC will not charge you but there will be a charge from the service providers for the call, a minimum of Rs. 10 from Sri Lanka. more..

50% increase in Mideast travellers to Sri Lanka

Apr 7 (AB) The number of tourists from the Middle East to Sri Lanka doubled in January 2010, compared to the same month the previous year. Official figures from the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority show the strongest growth was registered in Qatar, which was up 171 percent, followed by the UAE (164 percent), Saudi Arabia (127 percent), and Kuwait (135 percent). more..

Massive ‘Sathyagaraha’ in Colombo demanding govt. to release General

Apr 7 (LT) A massive ‘Sathyagraha’ was held in Colombo today demanding the government to release Gen. Sarath Fonseka. Ms. Anoma Fonseka, General Secretary of DNA Vijithe Herath, DNA Candidate for Colombo District Sunil Handunneththi, several political leaders and a large crowd participated in the ‘Sathyagraha’ organized by ‘People’s Solidarity to Emancipate General.’ more..