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Editorial: It’s hell on the highways

May 25 (DM) Even though the terrorism perpetrated by the LTTE ended in May 2009 an equally devastating form of terrorism seems to be continuing unabated countrywide. This could be termed road terrorism. During the worst days of the LTTE a Sri Lankan working in Canada and coming on a holiday to Colombo was asked whether he was not afraid of the LTTE’s terrorism. He responded that what he feared more was the traffic terrorism on the highways and byways of Colombo, more..

A unique personality of Buddha

May 25 (DM) All Buddhists in every part of the world pay special attention to Vesak Poya, because it signifies the Birth of Prince Siddhartha, the Attainment of Enlightenment by him, and the passing away of the Buddha. Other than any Poya day of the year, Vesak is considered to be the most sacred. Therefore more than other Poya Days, Vesak Poya ushers in meritorious deeds by every Buddhist. Many of them observe Sil. In addition, many Buddhists take part in offering food, more..

Evolving Role of the Sangha in Society

May 25 (DM) The role of the Sangha in Sri Lanka society has been evolving throughout history. Currently, there is debate about the monks’ active participation in governing the contemporary society. Daily Mirror spoke to JHU MP and chief incumbent of Sadaham Sevana Rajagiriya, Ven. Athuraliye Rathana Thera about his views on the social responsibilities of modern day monks and their place in society. more..

Abuse of power under PTA?

May 25 (SL) The recent arrest of Azath Salley under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) sent shockwaves in the political arena reminding most people of the prevalent uneasy environment in the country during and after the war. The govt had removed the emergency regulations after the war, but the PTA remained in force as the govt claims that the LTTE once again may attempt to raise its head. more..

Fire work Monk is a JHU member

May 25 (SM) The Buddhist clergyman, named Indrarathana thero, who set fire to himself yesterday in Front of the Kandy temple of the tooth, has held a pradheshiya sabha membership in JHU until recently. However, the JHU says that committing suicide in protest on a Vesak poya day is not at all appropriate for a Buddhist clergyman and that it does not give a good example to the citizens. JHU leader Ven.Omalpe Sobhitha thero more..

Norochcholai infighting reduces output?

May 25 (Island) Some 30 engineers of the first coal-fired power plant in Norochchcolai are expected to meet the CEB management, on Tuesday, seeking its immediate intervention to rectify what they call bad management practices. The plant, which should feed 300 MW to the national grid, has been, during the past fortnight, generating only 200 MW. The powerful CEB Engineers’ Union (CEBEU) last month urged CEB Chairman more..

Furnace oil for power plants sufficient only for 20 days

May 25 (Island) The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) has low sulphur furnace oil stocks used by thermal power plants like Kerawalapitiya only for another 20 days, according to highly placed sources. A senior CPC official told The Island that if orders were not placed within the next three days, there would be a fuel shortage for power plants. "Next consignment should be ordered immediately, be it from Singapore or Dubai. more..

Impetus for political ties between Sri Lanka and Norway

May 25 (CT) Minister Douglas Devananda, while thanking Norway for its role in facilitating peace in Sri Lanka, requested the country to assist generously in the post-war development activities in the war-torn areas in the country. He was the Chief Guest at the National Day of Norway, celebrated on Wednesday in Colombo. Extending Sri Lanka's greetings to the King of Norway and to the Norwegian people, Minister said: more..

ACHSU sees another fee levying medical school at SJH

May 25 (Island) The All Ceylon Health Services Union (ACHSU) accused the Sri Jayewardenepura hospital administration of making arrangements to enroll medical students with lower marks to be trained as doctors for a heavy fee. ACHSU General Secretary Gamini Kumarasinghe said the rich could afford it, but the ordinary people could not pay such a huge fee. He said that the Jayawardenapura hospital director had made a statement that more..

Sri Lanka Immigration official takes swift action on tourist complaint

May 25 (eTN) eTurboNews recently reported about its publisher’s experience with an extortion scam by Sri Lanka Immigration Officers. eTN is now pleased to report that due to our article, the Controller General team of the Sri Lanka Department of Immigration and Emigration, W.A.C. Perera reached out to eTN Publisher Juergen T. Steinmetz and confirmed the following: The Immigration Officer listed on your arrival more..

JHU wants to mobilize masses

May 25 (CT) JHU MP, Athuraliye Rathana Thera said, the govt must be compelled to change its stand on the 13th Amendment to the Constitution through public mobilization. Referring to the announcement made by Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, who confirmed that the govt would not be abolishing the 13th Amendment, and the strongly expressed views of the JHU calling for the abolishment of the same, more..

Colombo Port fire: Sabotage not ruled out

May 25 (Island) Sabotage has not been ruled out as investigations are in progress into yesterday’s fire at Container Yard No. 1 in Port of Colombo. Textiles and electronic items, worth millions of rupees were destroyed in the blaze. Sources said that it was the biggest ever fire that had occurred in the port. Chairman of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority Dr. Priyath B. Wickrema said that the fire had occurred around 1.00 a.m. more..

Target practice

May 25 (CT) Dealing with ‘inconvenient’ people is one of the Govt’s main talents. Upset somebody important and you will be made to suffer. It is only the form of punishment that is to be decided, according to who you are and what the Govt imagines you will do to save yourself. Last week, it was the turn of Anuruddha Pradeep, a lecturer at the Uni of Sri Jayawardenapura. Pradeep was sacked for not completing his Masters within the specified amount of time after his appointment. more..

SLMC & Leadership: ‘Policy of something is better than nothing’

May 25 (CT) Rally-round the Muslims under one umbrella was most likely the founding philosophy of SLMC. The idea at the rear crafting the SLMC could be welcomed by every Muslim and perhaps much-admired by many likeminded Muslims although opposed by considerable number within the Muslims itself. Late SLMC leader’s initiative has to be appreciated, but, “I am Ashraff & Muslim congress is mine”, this had hoodwinked the entire political organization as a whole. more..

Sri Lanka Pilots’ Guild awaits new SriLankan recruitment process

May 25 (Island) The AirLine Pilots’ Guild of Sri Lanka (APGSL) yesterday said that it was awaiting the SriLankan Airlines’ new policy on trainee pilot recruitment. APGSL President Captain Ruwan Vithanage said that the guild always supported indigenous pilot recruitment, while protecting the assessment standards. SriLankan had taken steps to formulate a totally new process for recruitment of trainee pilots immediately and more..

Traditional cricket and the IPL pill

May 25 (CT) When Sri Lankans, meaning the average cricket fan, initially heard of match-fixing it could have been somewhere around 1993-94, when their team toured India and lost all three Test matches, on the morning of the fourth day, literally with two days left. One particular Test, called the Lucknow Test, came under a cloud and there were allegations and counter allegations, of the hand-of-fixing, playing an ugly part in that series. Three years ago, Hashan Tillekeratne, more..

Lanka ranks high in informal cash transfers

May 25 (DM) Sri Lanka has ranked high among informal money transfers in the south Asian region last year, a new Gallup study revealed. Nearly 800 million South Asians and Indonesians, which equals to 60% of the adult population in the South Asian region and Indonesia, sent or received a payment or remittance last year. The majority of the South Asian and Indonesian respondents did so informally, with 512 million people sending or receiving cash in person or sending it informally more..

Sabaragamuwa u’grads complain of threats

May 25 (Island) Undergraduates of the Sabaragamuwa Uni yesterday alleged that an unidentified gang had fired into the air, opposite the main gate of the university, in the vicinity of a continuous Satyagraha being performed by them against the suspension of student leaders. Convener of the IUSF Sanjeewa Bandara said that seven unidentified persons had arrived in a pickup truck, with front and rear number plates covered more..

Tamils of the Vanni: Betrayed by all

May 25 (CT) It really bothers me that the protest depicted by photograph titles like ‘Tamils… gathered around photographs of those killed during the Sri Lankan civil war’ is being orchestrated by people carrying the LTTE flag. Anyone who protests against massacres of Tamils in 2009 should by no means do so under the flag adopted by the Tigers. In 2009, the Tigers forced innocent Tamil civilians to remain in the Vanni – under pain of death – as a shield. This is evident from the same reports that more..

Secretary Defence declares open 'Resource Centre for War Heroes'

May 25 (MoD) Secretary, Ministry of Defence and Urban Development Gotabaya Rajapaksa graced the opening ceremony of the 'Resource Centre for War Heroes' as the Chief Guest today (24) at Wattala, Hekiththa. Transforming to a modern structure, an old Leprosy Hospital complex belong to colonial era which had been abandoned for a considerable period of time, the Resource Centre has been constructed. Secretary Defence unveiling the plaque depicting annals of the conversion more..

President and Secretary Defence visit Vesak Zones

May 25 (MoD) President Rajapaksa graced the Vesak Zone at Diyawannawa in the eve of the first day of Vesak celebrations yesterday. Secretary Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa was also present at the Vesak Zone. Diyawanna vesak zone was organized according to the directives of venerable Elle Gunawansa Thero. A Bakthi Gee Programme also took place at the location where a large number of devotees gathered to enjoy more..

President suspends court order

May 25 (SM) The court order to the remove Ensal (cardamom) plantation from the Knuckles Range has been suspended under the influence of the President Rajapaksa. The removal has been suspended on July 02, 2012 following a request made by the large scale Ensal smugglers from the President at Matale District Coordination Committee Meeting. The President has advised them to take required measures after discussing the matter with the Defence Secretary. more..

Basil opens road for Sarath N. Silva

May 25 (AD) The new road constructed connecting the Seruwawila Rajamaha Viharaya and the Somawathiya Rajamaha Viharaya, which is named after former CJ Sarath N. Silva, was declared open by Minister Basil Rajapaksa today. The news bridge and road were vested in the people at the auspicious time of 9.30am as instructed by the Chief Incumbents of both temples. The road was constructed under the instructions of President Rajapaksa, at a cost of around more..

Sri Lanka monk fights for life after immolation bid

May 25 (AFP) A Sri Lankan monk was fighting for his life Saturday, a day after setting himself on fire to protest the slaughter of cattle, an official said. Bowatte Indaratna, 30, was flown to the main National Hospital in Colombo from the pilgrim town of Kandy where he doused himself with gasoline and set himself alight on Friday in front of stunned Buddhist devotees. "He is in a very serious condition with 95% burns," more..

People's Movement to continue anti-hike protests

May 25 (CT) The People's Movement Against Electricity Tariff Hike said, they would continue their agitations against the electricity tariff hike, in protests outside Colombo. Convener of the Movement, Saman Ratnapriya, said they will organize protests in Anuradhapura, Kandy and Galle in the coming week. "We had a successful protest in Colombo. So, we want to spread this around the island. People from the North-Central, Central and Southern Provinces will take part in these more..

Buddhist monk succumbs to injuries after self-immolation

May 25 (AD) The Buddhist monk who set himself on fire near the main entrance at the Dalada Maligawa Kandy passed away due to injuries at the National Hospital, sources at the hospital stated. The Buddhist monk who suffered serious injuries after setting himself on fire to protest against the slaughter of cattle was transferred to the Colombo National Hospital. The Buddhist monk underwent treatment in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), a spokesman of the hospital said this morning. more..

Ban cattle slaughter immediately: Wimal to President

May 25 (AD) Leader of the NFF Wimal Weerawansa today requested the President to immediately ban the slaughtering of cattle within the country. In the wake of a Buddhist monk setting himself on fire yesterday to protest against the slaughter of cattle for meet, the Minister has written to President saying measures should be taken based on that incident. Minister further points out that the majority of the country’s Buddhist more..

De mining nearing completion

May 25 (DM) The Military said that in less than four years since the war ended nearly all areas in the conflict zone excepting for 96 square kilometres had been cleared of landmines and could be now used for resettlement purposes. Military spokesman said out of an area of 2,064 square kilometres identified as hazardous we have cleard 1,968 Sq. Km thus leaving only 96 Sq. Km to be cleared. The Army and de mining groups have removed some 500,000 anti-personnel mines, anti-tank mines, more..

Mega Indian tele-series on Buddha

May 25 (DM) The much talked of mega tele-series based on the life of Buddha was launched on the auspicious day of Buddha Poornima (Vesak), the Times of India reported yesterday. The tele-series produced by Spice studios had specifically booked Vesak Day for the launch of this TV show. The film which is expected to be one of its kind, was launched amid several film makers having attempted to recreate the Buddha era. Big names like Shekhar Kapur and Aushitosh Gowarikar have more..

Sri Lanka tea promoted in China, world's top producer

May 25 (LBO) Ceylon Tea is being promoted in China giving a chance for citizens in that country to enjoy the beverage, though freely consuming foreign tea is a liberty that citizens of the island no longer posses. Sri Lanka's consulate in Shanghai had also had a launched a promotional campaign on tea. "Black Tea, or Hong Cha as called in Chinese, is a popular beverage in Shanghai," Sri Lanka's Consul General Office in Shanghai more..

Iranian director to judge at Sri Lanka Filmfest jury panel

May 25 (PT) The 2013 edition of SAARC International Film Festival in Sri Lanka has selected Iranian filmmaker Abbas Rafei to attend this year’s jury panel. Rafei has been invited to judge at the festival along with some other jurors from Russia and Singapore. The participated films are to compete in different categories including feature, short and documentary films. The filmmakers and cineastes are also slated to attend a workshop that will be held on the sideline of the event. more..

TNA tells Govt. to resolve 13-A among its allies

May 25 (DM) The TNA yesterday urged the govt to resolve the issues pertaining to the Northern Provincial Council elections and power devolution because of the contrasting views expressed by some of the UPFA allies. TNA MP Suresh Premachanadran said it was up to the govt to resolve the issue among its allies because it was the present regime, which appointed the All Party Representative Committee (APRC) to propose ways of resolving the national question. more..

JVP accuse Lankadeepa of erroneous reporting

May 25 (SM) The news item published in ‘Irida Lankadeepa ‘newspaper stating that JVP has decided to expel a trade union leader is false, states JVP. JVP MP Vijitha Herath has emphasized that the report has been planted under the manipulation of the govt. In the statement he further states “A report on May 26th in a weekend newspaper has stated that the JVP has decided to expel a trade union leader. more..

Go forth and spread the Dhamma

May 26 (ST) The thrice blessed day of Vesak is being marked all over the world this weekend by millions of people. The UN Secretary General Ban-Ki moon has issued a Vesak statement in which he says that this year’s observance, “falling at a time of widespread strife and misery” is opportune to examine Buddhist teachings on how to respond to prevailing challenges. That the world is torn asunder by civil wars; nuclear threats; natural disasters; hunger; poverty; malnutrition; the lack of more..

Sampanthan’s pitch for CHOGM flattened

May 26 (Island) While university dons were taking the place of blue collar workers on the streets, another drama was being enacted in parliament on the same day. On Tuesday the 21st, TNA leader R. Sampanthan opened what the present columnist believes to be a planned TNA campaign to embarrass Sri Lanka before the international community in the run up to the CHOGM in November this year. He initiated the campaign with a speech extolling the virtues of the recent more..

'Govt should be vigilant on subversives'

May 26 (SO) Minister W.D.J. Seneviratne makes no bones about his stand on any issue. Overwhelmingly voted to represent Ratnapura district, he is firmly dedicated to the principles of his party both in triumph and in defeat. Disciplined by temperament, he speaks a little, but confines himself fully to his job. Even in the midst of virulent attacks from the Opposition, he keeps his cool letting the arguments of his rivals to stultify. more..

Colombo troubled by fire and water

May 26 (Island) Two fires shocked the country on the day of Vesak. A warehouse at the Colombo Port was gutted and a Buddhist monk attempted self-immolation in Kandy against cattle slaughter. The disciples of the Compassionate One should, no doubt, strive to prevent man’s cruelty to animals, but it defies comprehension why any of them should ever resort to self harm to achieve that noble goal. The Buddha never approved of such violent methods. On the other hand, it is not only more..

General strike exposed Opposition's political nudity

ay 26 (SO) Tuesday's countrywide general strike organised by the joint Opposition turned out to be the biggest flop as the working class rejected it in toto. Though the UNP and the JVP bragged that they would inflict a crucial blow on the Govt, the general strike called by almost all Opposition parties was by far the most unsuccessful trade union action in the country's history. Wide pre-event publicity was given and even moderates seemed to think that the joint Opposition could make at least some more..

'Govt must honour promises given on 13th amendment'

May 26 (SL) TNA MP, Attorney at Law, M.A. Sumanthiran says that the JHU’s move to propose the abolition of the provincial council system under the 13th Amendment to the Constitution is backed by the govt since the JHU is a constituent member of the governing party with a member in the Cabinet. “There must be a power-sharing arrangement agreed upon that enables the Tamil People of this country to live as equal citizens more..

Fractured opposition within a failed State

May 26 (ST) My Dear Green Man, Somey and Lalkantha, I am writing to you because you staged-or wanted to stage, really-a general strike this week that was supposed to have brought the country to a standstill. I think even you will agree that didn’t happen and that is what I wanted to write to you about. I am sure you must also be wondering why this didn’t happen. After all, you were not staging a strike against the eighteenth amendment to the Constitution or the impeachment of a CJ more..