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UAE court upholds jail term for Indian man for molesting Lankan maid

May 15 (IANS) A court in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has upheld a jail term awarded to a 37-year-old Indian man for molesting a Sri Lankan domestic maid earlier this year. The Dubai court of appeal upheld the six-month jail term for the Indian worker followed by deportation from the UAE for the incident that took place Feb 1, the Khaleej Times reported Wednesday. The accused had barged into a villa in the Al Mamzar area of here and molested the Sri Lankan. more..

BASL snubbed

May 15 (DM) Breaking away from the tradition followed at the ceremonial sittings to welcome new judges to the Superior Court, the Bar Association of Sri Lanka or the unofficial bar has not been invited to participate at today’s ceremonial sitting held to welcome newly appointed Supreme Court Judge Rohini Marasinghe. As the Supreme Court had not invited the BASL which represents lawyers from the private bar, the ceremony will be more..

Heads of ‘Rivira’ ‘Lakbima’ & ‘Kirula’ topple

May 15 (LT) Gairika Perusinghe who was the chief executive officer of the ‘Rivira’ Media Corporation that publishes ‘Rivira’ and ‘The Nation’ newspapers has been removed from his post and all his powers have been taken over by the Chief Editor. The decision has been taken at a special board meeting convened in a hurry last Friday. The decision has not been announced officially. However, Gairika Perusinghe has not reported for duty during the first two days of this week say reports. more..

NPC elections first, Wayamba and Central PCs later

May 15 (DM) Sources close to the govt informed that elections to the Central and Wayamba provincial councils are likely to be postponed. The govt is planning to hold the Northern Provincial Council elections in early September and to conduct the polls for the Central and Wayamba Provincial councils later in the same month. However, senior govt members had advocated to the President to have the Northern Provincial Council elections in September and the elections for the other more..

Minister Wimal has no intention of challenging the monks

May 15 (DM) While stating that he would not respond to the challenge posed by Ven. Galagodaatte Gnasara Thera of the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) against him, Minister Wimal Weerawansa charged that the BBS should challenge Dilantha Vithanage of the BBS and the Norwegian Embassy in Colombo. Issuing a statement the minister said he had a great respect for the monks because their political lives were interwoven with their more..

Minister to investigate interruption in operations at Sapugaskanda

May 15 (AD) An investigation will be held concerning the interruption in refining operations of crude oil at the Sapigaskanda refinery, Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa stated. When Ada Derana contacted the Minister with regards to the situation at the refinery, he said that it was of great concern that no crude oil had been imported even with the stock of crude oil nearing depletion. He said that he had instructed officials to import the necessary crude oil while the CPC states that despite more..

Sri Lanka eager to buy Belarusian machines, vehicles

May 15 (Law) Sri Lanka is interested in buying special vehicles of Belarusian make. The information was released by Sri Lankan Deputy Foreign Minister Neomal Perera at the meeting of Belarusian business circles with representatives of the Sri Lankan delegation. The meeting took place in the Minsk branch of the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry on 15 May, BelTA has learned. The Deputy Foreign Minister remarked: “Sri Lanka is an industrial and agricultural country more..

Sri Lankan Tamil refugees to get driving licences

May 15 (Hindu) Driving licences would be issued to Sri Lankan Tamil refugees living in the state as part of welfare measures provided to them, the AIADMK govt announced. The govt has been extending various welfare measures to the refugees, including scholarship schemes for various courses, ranging from Rs 850 to Rs 4,700, the Public Department policy note tabled in the Tamil Nadu Assembly said. “This govt has also decided more..

Karunaratne leads SLC Combined XI to victory

May 15 (CI) A faltering Sri Lanka A were beaten comprehensively by SLC Combined XI, in the third match of the List A tri-series in Pallekele. SLC Combined captain Dimuth Karunaratne hit an unbeaten hundred as his side ran down Sri Lanka A's 211 with seven wickets in hand and more than nine overs to spare. Both teams have been beaten once by the Rest of Sri Lanka side so far in the tournament. Allrounder Sachithra Serasinghe also contributed significantly to the win, more..

11 underage girl students molested by school principal

May 15 (E24|7) The local magistrate has remanded to police custody the principal of a school in Galkiriyagama, Kekirawa in Sri Lanka’s North Central province till May 22, for allegedly sexually molesting 11 underage school girls, ‘Divaina’ newspaper reported on Monday. The 45-year-old suspect, a father of two, identified as A. M. P. Dissanayake from Unduruwa and principal of Galkiriyagama Primary School, was produced before acting magistrate Vipula Wickramanayaka more..

Maldivian objects issuing domestic license to foreign airlines

May 15 (Haveeru) Maldives national airline, Maldivian has strongly objected to the issuing of domestic license to foreign airlines and warned that local airlines could go bankrupt as a result of such a decision. Regarding the interest expressed by Sri Lankan airlines to operate flights to Gan, Maldivian Managing Director Abdul Haris said that the govt had sought the company’s opinion on the matter and that they had rebuffed it. more..

Pedestrian Safety

May 16 (NS) United Nations Collaboration for Road Safety has announced a week of global road safety from May 6 to 12, 2013. This is the second time UN Collaboration announced such a road safety week. The second UN Global Road Safety week carries the theme “Pedestrian Safety”. The Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 intends to save five million lives. Within that, the short-term goal of the road safety week is to prevent a single pedestrian fatality during this week; more..

What’s left of the May Day?

May 16 (NS) Now that the May Day celebrations are over, the leftist parties can yet again fade into insignificance and irrelevance. 50s, 60s and the 70s were the heyday of the Sri Lankan left. After the parliamentary election held in 1947 the Lanka Sama Sasamaja Party (LSSP) led by N.M. Perera and Philip Gunawardena emerged as the main opposition party in the country. What is ironic about the “old left” is that its leaders were in many respects perfectly bourgeoisified gentlemen. more..

'More mega projects launched in the Eastern Province'

May 16 (SO) Deputy leader of the SLMC Naseer Ahamed who is a Minister of the Eastern PC said that they are fully confident on President Rajapaksa's commitment towards safeguarding the interests of the Muslim community and addressing their grievances and problems. Guided by the development goals of the UPFA for the Eastern province, the provincial administration has already implemented several development- more..

Creative writing in English contributes significantly to the contemporary SL ethos

May 16 (DBS) The Gratiaen Prize was established twenty years ago and in these two decades, not even its most caustic critics can deny that it has leavened our cultural scene. Creative writing in English contributes significantly to the contemporary Sri Lankan ethos far out of proportion to the minority that engages in it as practitioners and those who appreciate it as readers. The far-sighted companion H.A.I. Goonetilleke Prize for the best translation ensures the cross-fertilization of more..

Male chauvinism could be as hard as racism or national oppression

May 16 (DBS) Kindness and care are replaced with power and command. People look for somebody who knowingly or unknowingly takes the reins into his hands. In this scenario Anoma Janadare, the famous actress and a committed feminist launched the English version of her book Punarukthi, a few weeks ago. At this occasion, chaired by the veteran film director Sumithra Peiris, interesting speeches were made by radical film maker Manohan Nanayakkara and feminist teacher Kanzul more..

Anguish of uncertainty felt by family members of missing LTTE surrendees

May 16 (DBS) Mothers, wives and sisters of several LTTE surrendees are demanding that they be reunited with their family members, four years after the war. War came to an end in May 2009, but that did not put an end to the suffering of the communities. Even today, numerous Tamil families await justice for their families and friends in Sri Lanka. This tale is similar but also different. Different because it highlights the plight of women more..

Sri Lanka: On the question of nationalism

May 16 (CT) Nationalism has been the main guiding ideology of many of the countries in the world in modern times, and even before, whether we like it or not. If nationalism could be replaced completely by liberalism or socialism, or by a combination of both, the world would be a better place to live. But that is not the reality as at present. Both liberalism and socialism have often capitulated to nationalism, and worst of all to ethno nationalism. This is the case in Sri Lanka and elsewhere. more..

Monopoly building in Sri Lanka

May 16 (CT) The recent acquisition by Dhammika Perera the Sri Lankan business mogul (with related parties) of Lanka Ceramics, a large public quoted company, brings into focus once again the gaping lack of laws and regulations concerning commercial activities in this country. Not only do we not have laws governing vital areas of the economy but more importantly suffer from an obvious ignorance in such matters at the highest levels. Mr. Dhammika Perera also owns Royal Ceramics which more..

Navy doc on a picture-taking mission

May 16 (ST) Seated across from Dr. Lalith Ekanayake in his office in the Fort, there seems to be many contradictions before us. Smartly-attired in his white uniform with many an epaulette befitting a high-ranking naval officer, the contradiction that jumps off the walls of his office and grabs the eye are the stunning photographs, a cosy ‘thunpath-rela’, the majestic stare of a leopard, the swirl of a proud pony caught in a gallop more..

Getting Sri Lanka to work

May 16 (Island) Just when sanity seemed to be prevailing over the Bodu Bala Sena, following the various vigils, rallies and protests that have been organised in the last month, the govt found yet another imaginative way to agitate people – it had Azath Salley arrested. Apparently, the Police are so busy scouring the pages of limited circulation magazines in other countries for potentially disturbing statements by Sri Lankan Muslim politicians that they don’t have time to more..

Editorial : Enhancing voter participation

May 16 (Island) Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya has launched a special programme to motivate the public to exercise their franchise. Elections are the lifeblood of representative democracy and voter apathy is symptomatic of a severe erosion of public confidence in a country’s electoral process and system of governance. Therefore, the Polls Chief’s efforts to enhance voter participation in elections need to be appreciated. Deshapriya has told the media that more..

T-bill yields, market rates plunge

May 16 (Island) Benchmark Treasury bill yields plunged across all tenures at yesterday’s primary market auction to lows last seen during the first quarter of 2012, and although interest rates are easing, the Central Bank is keeping liquidity on a tight leash. The Public Debt Department of the Central Bank offered maturing bills amounting to Rs. 15 billion which attracted bids amounting to Rs. 42.63 billion. more..

Jaffna players could be the next big thing

May 16 (Island) The selection of three players from the North and East to participate in the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) conducted triangular tournament now underway in Pallekele is only an indication of things to come, experts believe. All-rounder Jeayasooriyam Sanjeev is 20-years-old and is a product of Methodist Central College, Batticaloa, and represents the Sri Lanka Combined XI in the on-going tournament. Rishan Tudor from St. Patrick’s College is a 19-year-old wicketkeeper more..

Cancel Krrish deal – Harsha

May 16 (FT) UNP MP Dr. Harsha de Silva yesterday claimed that India’s Krrish has continued to fail to live up to its undertaking given hence the Govt must cancel it. Following is the full statement from MP de Silva. By Extraordinary Gazette 1778/3 dated 1 October 2012 the Govt announced a large number of benefits to a company called Krrish to build four high rise buildings at Transworks Square, on an unsolicited proposal, citing it as a ‘strategic investment’. These benefits included more..

UNPers given special training

May 16 (CT) The Friedrich Naumann Foundation, a Germany-based INGO, has held a two-day special workshop for UNP MPs, Local Govt bodies and Provincial Councils, at the official residence of the Mayor in Colombo on ‘how to defeat the present govt and bring the UNP back into power.’The workshop was conducted on 14 and 15 May. The chief speakers at the workshop included Manfred Risher, former Mayor of Germany and a more..

'Govt. mollycoddling LTTE leaders'

May 16 (CT) The JVP alleged yesterday the govt is ‘mollycoddling the leaders of the LTTE that brought so much suffering to the people of the North,’ while the Northerners have been denied the right to information as well as democracy. JVP MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake said, “Relatives of the people who disappeared after or during the war are still left wondering whether their loved ones have died or not. The govt has a responsibility to provide this information to the people. more..

Mano says TNA will boycott NCP polls

May 16 (CT) The TNA has decided to refrain from contesting the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) elections, unless land grabbing in the North is halted, Leader of the DPF, Mano Ganesan, said yesterday. A spokesman or representative from the TNA was not present to make their stance known and therefore, Ganesan articulated the TNA position to the press. The NPC elections are scheduled to be held in September, before the CHOGM in November, Ganesan said. more..

FUTA under pressure to join strike

May 16 (Island) The FUTA is under pressure to join the May 21 token strike, organised by the Co–ordination Committee of the Trade Union Alliance (CCUTA), against the recent electricity tariff hike. Its crucial executive committee meeting held to decide whether to participate in the strike ended at the Colombo University Arts Faculty’s Board Room, leaving it to FUTA sister unions to approve the final decision. more..

SLT Group dials Rs. 2 b pre-tax profit in 1Q

May 16 (FT) Sri Lanka Telecom PLC Group has recorded Rs. 14.45 billion revenue, with 5% year-on-year growth during the quarter. Strategic initiatives engaged particularly in the mobile sector together with the expansion of broadband and data services through i-Sri Lanka program have complemented the growth of group revenue. During the quarter under review, the group reported a Net Profit Before Tax (NPBT) of Rs. 2.03 b and Net Profit After Tax (NPAT) of Rs. 1.60 b. more..

BASL delegation meets Malwatte Prelate

May 16 (Island) A deputation of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) called on the Mahanayake of Malwatte, the Most Ven. Tibbatuwawe Sri Siddhartha Sumangala Thero yesterday, but their two-hour-long conversation was not open to the media. However, BASL president Upul Jayasuriya later told the media that the prelate had responded positively to views expressed by the BASL delegation. The delegation pointed out that the country’s justice and independence of the more..

Questions continue to hang over milk powder

May 16 (Island) The question of whether powdered milk from New Zealand contains any toxic substance and to ascertain whether it is harmful for human consumption has been dragging on since April. Chairman of the Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) Rumy Marzook said that the Food Advisory Committee, of the Health Ministry, whom he met on Tuesday, wanted fresh samples to be sent abroad once again for testing. more..

‘Sri Lanka must learn fast from mistakes of successful Asian economies’

May 16 (FT) With the world undergoing a fundamental change while Sri Lanka was preoccupied with its three-decade war, an acclaimed expert on international affairs yesterday advised that the nation has to learn from other countries to make up for what was lost. Speaking on Sri Lanka’s potential in the new Asian hemisphere, National University of Singapore/Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy Dean and Professor Kishore Mahbubani expressed that change could more..

Health Ministry gets fortnight ultimatum

May 16 (Island) The Professions Supplementary to Medicine gave the Health Ministry two weeks to settle the issues of recruiting 600 graduate PSMs and promoting grade two PSMs to grade one or face fresh trade union action. General Secretary of the Professions Supplementary to Medicine (PSM) Saman Jayasekara said that the Health Secretary had pledged to recruit graduate PSMs during a meeting held with the union on Tuesday and that had prompted them to temporarily suspend more..

Ceremonial sitting: Three judges absent

May 16 (DM) The ceremonial sitting to welcome the newly appointed Supreme Court judge, Justice Rohini Marasinghe was held at the Supreme Court yesterday with the notable absence of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL), which traditionally represents the country’s legal fraternity. Justice Marasinghe was accorded a warm welcome at the ceremonial sitting by an array of Judges of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, High Court, more..

Master Plan to manage Kidney disease

May 16 (DN) Health Ministry Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayatilleke ordered health officials in the North Central Province (NCP) to formulate a Master Plan to manage the rapidly increasing chronic kidney disease in the NCP. He has ordered NCP Health officials to obtain the statistics relating to all kidney patients in the affected areas to ascertain the actual number of existing kidney patients. The details of these kidney patients are to be obtained in order to decide what stages they are in at the more..

JVP has no political ties with UNP

May 16 (CT) The JVP declared yesterday the UNP and the SLFP are equally responsible for the ‘problems faced by the country.’ JVP MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake said, “If the SLFP is the ‘mother of all problems’ in the country, then the UNP is the ‘father.’ The UNP not only lacks solutions to the many crises faced by the people of this country today, they are also responsible for igniting the problems.” He made the above comment referring to recent media speculations of possible more..

DIP system: more discipline for road rule breakers

May 16 (DN) According to the newly introduced Driver Improvement Points System (DIPS), over 7,000 drivers had lost points owing to negligence, driving under the influence of liquor and failure to avoid traffic accidents during the last four months. The points system had been introduced with the intention of transforming reckless drivers into disciplined drivers. These new laws have been enacted according to Motor Traffic Act more..

Softlogic Manager’s body fished out of river

May 16 (Island) Police yesterday recovered the body of Softlogic Group of Companies chief manager of recoveries, which was dound floating in the Kelani River, near the Gangathilaka Viaharaya in Wellampitiya. The deceased was identified as Shiyan Nanayakkara (40). Eye witnesses told the police that the victim was earlier seen arriving there in his jeep, which had been parked near the temple and walking towards the river bank. After sometime they had seen the body of the deceased, more..

Army calls for war crimes evidence

May 16 (CG) Army commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya says that Sri Lanka is prepared to conduct investigations on the war crimes alleged to have been committed by the security forces, if the charges are backed with evidence. State radio today qouted him as saying that preliminary investigations have been conducted through the establishment of two courts on the recommendations of the commission on lessons learnt and reconciliation and on the channel four accusations. more..