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Air traffic operations back to normal

Apr 24 (NF) Air traffic operations are returning to normal following the situation that arose in the wake of the iolcano that erupted in Iceland. Accordingly a large number of Europe-bound travellers could be seen at the Bandaranayake International Airport. Many European countries started taking steps to bring air travel operations back to normal from Wednesday following 6 days of all forms of air travel coming to a standstill in the wake of the volcano's eruption. more..

Embassy hosts the 2nd annual diaspora gathering in Kuwait

Apr 24 (IL) As part of its initiative to maintain a constructive dialogue with the Sri Lankan community in Kuwait, the Embassy of Sri Lanka has successfully concluded the "Second Annual Sri Lankan Diaspora Gathering" on the 16th April 2010 at the Embassy premises. A large gathering of Sri Lankans numbering over 450 from all walks of life was present on the occasion. It is recalled that the maiden Sri Lankan Diaspora Gathering was held on 17th April. more..

The French in Sri Lanka are denied access to a flight to Paris

Apr 24 (RTL) A group of French ending a tour in Sri Lanka and provided with airline tickets for a flight to Paris on Tuesday was not permitted to take on Qatar Airways, claiming that their correspondence was uncertain, testified Friday that one of Tourists stranded in Colombo. "We had tickets from Colombo to Paris via Doha on Tuesday night. But we were refused registration on the grounds that the Doha-Paris flight was not safe to leave. more..

Demo demands drinking water to Gemunupura in Ampara

Apr 24 (NF) Residents of the Gemunupura Grama Niladari Division in Ampara engaged in a demonstration yesterday demanding a solution for their drinking water problem. This protest was carried out opposite the Ampara office of the Water Board. Those who joined the protest charged that for about a month they had not been provided with water on a regular basis. Even though they received water regularly earlier, this problematic situation had arisen when more..

Indian PM congratulates Sri Lankan PM

Apr 24 (IL) The Prime Minister of India Dr Manmohan Singh has conveyed his greetings and good wishes to his Sri Lankan counterpart Mr. D.M. Jayaratne on his appointment as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka. In his message Indian PM expresses confidence that the traditional close relations between two countries would continue to gain strength in the days to come. He conveys best wishes for Sri Lankan PM and more..

Sri Lanka: An uneven path to peace

Apr 24 (LM) I am in Anuradhapura at the Sri Maha Bodhi shrine, a must-visit destination for locals and visitors alike. The low fence encloses a cutting from the Bo tree (Ficus religiosa), protected and venerated by Buddhists, under which Siddhartha Gautama is believed to have attained enlightenment. Walking along the designated path, I muse slightly derisorily on the kind of things that take on religious significance. Suddenly, I stop. more..

Thoughts on National List of UPFA government

Apr 24 (LR) President Mahinda Rajapaksa government has published the list of National list MP’s. Let’s have quick look at each of the appointed members from UPFA list. They are listed in the order of merit in Lanka Rising’s choice. Ellawala Medananda thero JHU nominee. JHU gave the thought leadership in winning the fight against terrorism and Buddhist monks came into front in time in need. JHU is in a transition period of transferring active political leadership from monks to laymen. more..

Decline of Tamil representation outside the North and East

Apr 24 (DBS) Whenever demands or proposals are put forward to devolve more powers so that the Tamil and Muslim people of the Northern and Eastern Provinces could have a greater role in administering their areas of historic habitation one of the standard responses is to point out that more Tamils and Muslims live outside those two provinces. It is also an incontrovertible fact that the greater part of Tamils of recent Indian origin described generally as more..

Liberation Tigers’ Iranaimadu runway used exclusively by Indian Air Force

Apr 24 (TN) The runway constructed by LTTE in Iranaimadu in Ki’linochchi has been handed over to the exclusive use of Indian Air Force (IAF), according to sources close to a section of Sri Lanka Air Force personnel who have expressed their disapproval of this course of action by Sri Lanka government. The area in which this runway is located in Iranaimadu falls within the High Security Zone (HSZ) and is strictly out of bounds for low ranking SLA personnel, more..

Tories, Tamils reach out

Apr 24 (TN) It’s a sight that would have been incongruous a few years ago, but is almost unremarkable today. Nestled amongst the Tamil restaurants, grocery shops and other businesses on the main strip in Rayners Lane, a suburb of London, a large sign on the front of former store front says: ‘British Tamil Conservatives’. On the other side of London, another office of the BTC opened a few weeks ago with a lamp lighting ceremony accompanied by mirithungam drummers, more..

Namal to carry Rajapaksa Trade Mark- Kurahan Saatakaya

Apr 24 (IL) Namal Rajapaksa, elder son of President Mahinda Rajapaksa was sworn in as a MP at the inaugural session on the 7th Parliament, on 22nd April at 8.45 am. Namal contested the last general election which was held on 8th April under the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) from the Rajapaksa Family strong hold in Hambantota District. more..

The Zurich meeting and continuing international interventions

Apr 24 (RW) There was much speculation some months back about the provenance of the meeting of minority parties in Zurich. The usual suspects were thought to be behind the event, with the usual suspicions. My own view was that the move was to be welcomed, because unlike in the past the balance of power at such meetings could no longer be held by the Tigers. Given the strength of mind displayed in resisting them by a host of others in the past, more..

Buddha relics to be placed at upcoming park

Apr 24 (TOI) Holy relics of Lord Buddha from Japan, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Dharamsala (HP) would be placed at the upcoming `Buddha Smriti Park’ here next month. The park, a dream project of chief minister Nitish Kumar, is to be located on the demolished Bankipore jail premises, spread over an area of 22 acres. The To cost approximately Rs 125 crore, it is likely to be inaugurated by Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on the occasion of Buddha Jayanti in May. more..

Some notable features of Sri Lanka's new cabinet

Apr 24 (LP) Sri Lanka President has appointed a new cabinet. As promised, he has pruned the jumbo cabinet at least for the moment. The number of cabinet portfolios have been slashed to 39 and the number of Deputy Ministers are 37. It can be easily speculated several additions to the panel of Ministers in recent future. Previously there were 51 cabinet Ministers and the final number can be close to it. more..

Nine decisions that helped Lanka beat LTTE

Apr 24 (Sify) War is not won by soldiers alone: Will a good number of soldiers, tanks and artillery ensure the victory in a war? These are only the outward aspects which alone can't ensure victory in war. Only political will and strategy can guarantee victory in a battele, says Sri Lanka's Master Strategist Gotabaya Rajapaksa. In an interview, Gotabaya reveals the key decisions of the Government of Sri Lanka that led to the successful completion of more..

New cabinet installed to implement austerity program

Apr 24 (wsws) Following the April 8 parliamentary election, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse appointed the new cabinet yesterday in preparation for what will be a far reaching offensive against the living standards of workers. He has put in place a ministry that will not only implement the austerity agenda being demanded by the IMF, but seek to suppress the inevitable resistance of working people. more..

Gates for unguarded level crossings

Apr 24 (GDI) Measures have been taken to install 700 gates at unguarded level crossings. The programme will be jointly launched by the Railway Department and the Samurdhi Authority from the 1st of next month. The responsibility of manning the gates will lie with the Samurdhi beneficiary family that lives closest to the location. They will also be paid an allowance for performing this duty. more..

Providing relief get priority

Apr 24 (GDI) Urgent measures are being taken to provide relief to the people affected by the floods. People in several areas have been affected due to floods and lightning strikes caused by incessant rains. Deputy Director of the Disaster Management Centre Pradeep Kodippili said a relief programme has already been launched. Strong winds have reportedly caused damage to 56 houses in Moratumulla area yesterday. more..

18 Muslim MPs in the Parliament

Apr 24 (PSM) 18 Muslims have entered the 7th Parliament. Of them 11 from UNP and 7 from UPFA. 8 MPs in the UNP are from SLMC which contested under the UNP. Out of 7 MPs from UPFA, 3 are from ACMC and 1 from NC. It is analysed that the UNP got 60 seats and out of them 11 are Muslim MPs whereas only 7 Muslim MPs are from the UPFA out of 144 seats. However, Muslim percentage in Parliament is maintained by 18 MPs, more..

Caste origins of authoritarianism in Sri Lanka--Part 3

Apr 24 (LG) In the last discussion, we examined the inequalities which are inherent in the caste system. Q: How does caste affect the social aspects of Sri Lankan society? A: Caste systems idealize inequality, which creates and justifies cruelty in the treatment of the weak. Cruelty is not an accident when the caste system exists. In democratic societies, there are instances in which cruelties occur. more..

Police administration in North continues in ‘Sinhala Only’

Apr 24 (TN) Police administration in police stations and in courts in the North and East continue only in Sinhalese language causing immense difficulties to public as their complaints and statements are recorded in Sinhalese, a language not known to them, sources in Jaffna said. Despite the repeated insistence by magistrates in the North police administration is still carried out in Sinhalese language as the police officers being Sinhalese are not proficient in Tamil language to more..

Bevis: The Bawa of Brief

Apr 24 (DN) You travel, you venture; through narrow winding roads and steep downwards spirals; with many a jolt, many a twist. Finally, a sharp turn around an ancient gravel roundabout and you are greeted: with Brief. Monday, April 26, is the 101st birth anniversary of Bevis, the Bawa of Brief. Brief, this rare gem of art and beauty situated in the most outlandish of places, pays living tribute to its equally illustrious creator. more..

Lightening damages ‘Maha Saya’ at Mihinthale

Apr 24 (LT) A part of the plinth of the ‘Maha Saya’ at Mihinthale has been damaged due to lightening that struck yesterday evening. There was torrential rains in the area yesterday and the lightening that struck damaged part of the plinth of the ‘Dagaba’ said incumbent of Mihinthale Rajamaha Viharaya Ven. Walahahangunewawe Dhammarathana Thero. He said the lightening arresters of the ‘Dagaba’ have been inactive for a long time but authorities have not taken any measures to rectify it.

Transfers to 44 officers from Kiribathgoda Police for refusing to be intimidated

Apr 24 (LT) 44 police officers at Kiribathgoda Police have received immediate transfers. These transfers have been made by DIG for Western Province H.S. Dayananda claiming they were formal transfers. However, according to reports the reason for such transfers is said to be that these officers had refused to be intimidated by the OIC. A government minister from Kelaniya area is directly involved in these transfers say reports. more..

Kandy to award grand welcome to Premier

Apr 24 (LP) The newly appointed Prime Minister D M Jayarathne is to visit Kandy on the 26th of April. It was also reported that arrangements are made by the people of the hill country to welcome the new Premier. He is the first politician from Senkadagala to occupy the seat of the Prime Minister since the country gained independence. The Prime Minister is expected to pay homage to the temple of the Tooth Relic and more..

Suvadiviya to counter dengue menace

Apr 24 (DN) The Green Star Dengue prevention and Suvadiviya Physical Training programs organized by the Colombo Municipal Council will be launched from Town Hall premises today. The Green Star Home program is launched for the 10th successive year to create awareness among the public and also to get rid of potential mosquito breeding sites in view of the expected massive dengue epidemic this year, CMC Public Health Department Head Dr Pradeep Kariyawasam told the Daily News more..

New BOI Tax incentives for investments in war-torn North and East

Apr 24 (SLNN) Sri Lanka’s Board of Investment is offering new investment incentives for the northern and eastern provinces, the two provinces most affected by the country’s three-decade long conflict. Special tax and other benefits will be valid for much longer periods of 10, 15 or 20 years (depending on the sector) than those offered in other areas of the country. It is part of an aggressive drive to lure investors to war-affected parts of the country more..

'I’d accept only the post of deputy leader'

Apr 24 (LT) UNP Parliamentarian for Hambantota District Sajith Premadasa says he would not accept any other post in the UNP other than the post of its deputy leader. He has said this to a group of UNP members discussing the party reorganization. The group had asked Mr. Premadasa to accept the post of vice-president of the party which was made vacant by the resignation of Rukman Senanayake. more..

Editorial: Oliver Twists crying foul

Apr 24 (LNP) One of the words that politicians` lexicon does not have is `enough`. Their insatiable desire for self-aggrandisement knows no bounds. And they are ready to go to any extent to realise their dreams. After all, that is why they are called politicians! Victory has proved to be problematic for the UPFA with some of its ambitious constituent members demanding more and more National List seats. NFF Leader Wimal Weerawansa has done an Oliver Twist. more..

'We don’t scream like Wimal; we will act at the right time'

Apr 24 (LeN) It is reported that the JHU party is thoroughly disillusioned with the non appointment of its Gen. Secretary Dr. Omalpe Sobitha Thero as an MP via the National list of the UPFA. The only two names of the Hela Urumaya included in the National list were its leader Dr. Ellawala Medhananda and its Secretary Dr. Omalpe Sobitha Thero. The leader of the Hela Urumaya had stated, ‘we will not shout like Wimal. We will show what we can do at the right time’. more..

Anoma makes statement at Fort police

Apr 24 (LNP) General Sarath Fonseka`s wife Anoma Fonseka yesterday morning made a statement to the Fort Police in the chambers of the Court officer, on the direction of the Colombo Fort Magistrate and Additional District Judge Lanka Jayaratne. She made her statement to an officer attached to the Fort police for nearly one hour in the presence of her lawyers. more..

Iran grants $ 105 million for rural electrification project in Lanka

Apr 24 (Zawya) Iran has granted a $ 105 million loan to Sri Lanka for a rural electrification project, it was reported Saturday. The Power and Energy Ministry is to launch the project to supply electricity to about 1,000 villages in the rural areas of the country, a Sri Lankan internet newspaper reported. The loan was granted on the request of President Mahinda Rajapaksa to Iranian counterpart, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, more..

The road to peace: Transforming Sri Lanka's Ex-combatants into civilians

Apr 24 (IOM) A group of young former combatants recently received canoes, outboard engines, water pumps and tool kits from IOM at a ceremony in Batticaloa, on the east coast of Sri Lanka, 300 km from the capital Colombo. The equipment, funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), was to help them start new livelihoods as fishermen, farmers or the owners of small businesses. more..

Outgoing FM Rohitha Bogollagama bids farewell to the Ministry staff

Apr 24 (LP) Outgoing Minister of Foreign Affairs Rohitha Bogollagama bid farewell to the staff of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday 23rd April at a simple ceremony organized at the Ministry. Mr. Bogollagama conveyed his appreciation to all the staff of the Ministry and Missions abroad, for their contribution to the work of the Foreign Ministry during a difficult time. more..

On post-election ululations

Apr 24 (DN) Whenever I came across a word I didn’t know the meaning of, my father would say ‘check in the dictionary’. My Vice Principal, E.C. Gunasekara was like that. He would pick a word that a student has just used and ask him to give a definition. He would then pick a word from the definition offered and ask for its meaning. At some point the student would trip and he would then tell him to check the definition in the Concise Oxford Dictionary, more..

Model school bag to enter market

Apr 24 (DN) The model school bag designed by the Education Ministry in association with the Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry will be available in the market soon. The Education Ministry has introduced the model school bag. Normal school bags used by children were found to cause certain adverse health effects on users. Considering this situation the Education Ministry appointed a committee of experts including doctors to look into this issue. more..

UNP on verge of major shakeup

Apr 24 (DM) A major shakeup in the UNP is on the cards with Party Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe’s promises of change being met with stubborn resistance by other groups within the party, including MPs who with their affiliated unions are pushing for extensive reforms, including a leadership change. The National Lawyers Association, a body that is affiliated to the party, which held a press conference yesterday, said more..

Windies women seals series agaist Sri Lanka

Apr 24 (CI) A fine innings from the teenage opener Stafanie Taylor aided West Indies wrap up the three-game Twenty20 series over Sri Lanka at St Mary's Park. Taylor's unbeaten 54 from 45 deliveries was just the reply West Indies needed in their nervous pursuit of a target of 121 and she sealed the affair with three wickets remaining. This was West Indies' second successive win after they took the first Twenty20 and more..

Local media shut out

Apr 24 (DM) The presidential security division and the media unit shutter-bugged photo journalists from covering the swearing in ceremony of ministers at the presidential secretariat yesterday. This was a departure from the accepted practice of allowing free access to the media at such national events. Although photo journalists from local newspapers were barred from the event, their counterparts from foreign news agencies were allowed more..

Night clubs raided

Apr 24 (Island) The Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB) together with the Walana Special Anti-Vice Unit raided six night clubs in Colombo on Thursday and found that four of them were selling liquor without permits. The raids were part of move to prevent minors from visiting night clubs and karaoke bars in the city, Police media spokesman SP Preshantha Jayakody said. more..