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Achieving revenue targets challenged

Aug 11 (CT) A senior tax consultant highlighted that under the current circumstances achieving goals of revenue and deficit would be challenging. The govt in its budget for 2014 targeted a revenue of Rs 1,437.4 billion of which Rs 1,274.6 billion was to be generated through tax revenue. Govt is also planning to keep the budget deficit at 5.2% this year. Finance Ministry report shows that during the first four months of this year, govt revenue was Rs 345,056 million out of which more..

Mathews puts chase down to faith

Aug 11 (CI) Faith was all the explanation Angelo Mathews could give for a day in which the weather itself colluded with the hosts, who sped to a thrilling seven-wicket victory, to take the series lead in Galle. Mathews was at the crease as a dark cloud moved above the stadium, threatening to halt Sri Lanka's chase either by unleashing rain, or by blocking the last rays of sunlight. But as the cloud loomed closer, Mathews and Kithuruwan more..

Mahela opens for the first time

Aug 11 (CI) 0: Number of times either Pakistan or Sri Lanka had been involved in a Test where a team lost after posting a 450-plus score in the first innings of the match. Pakistan's defeat in Galle was the 12th such result in Test cricket. Pakistan, however, have lost three Tests after batting second and making 450-plus in their first innings, including the Oval Test that they conceded in response to allegations of ball tampering in 2006. 1: Number of times a Pakistan wicketkeeper has scored fifties in more..

Eastern surfers beat Southern counterparts

Aug 11 (Island) The surfers from Sri Lanka’s east coast came out with flying colours when they won the overall championship beating their southern counterparts in the second and final leg of the of Red Bull Ride My Wave surfing competition which concluded here at Arugam Bay Surfing Point yesterday. Overall eastern surfers collected 288.95 points against southern surfers 143.1 points. Having lost the first leg three months ago, southern had to make an impact in the second leg to more..

Arthur, Jennings among SL coach applicants

Aug 11 (CI) Sri Lanka Cricket's hunt for a head coach has gained momentum with at least 13 applications, including ones from South Africans Mickey Arthur, Ray Jennings, Eric Simons and Lance Klusener, England's Chris Adams and former fast bowler and current Australia assistant coach Craig McDermott. SLC had advertised for the positions of head coach, fielding coach and trainer on their website in the last week of July, more..

Manufacturers should gear up for FTA with China

Aug 11 (CT) SL manufacturers and exporters need to adopt a proactive stance to reap the maximum benefit from the proposed FTA the country will be insinuating with China. Currently there's a lag shown within the local manufacturers who look only at traditional markets overlooking the massive potential and opportunities lying within Asia. "This will be the first maritime, Silk Road hub China is doing with any country; Hong Kong is the only comprehensive economic hub they have as a sea bar. more..

Powering the Energy Sector: Energizing the Power Sector

Aug 11 (Island) SL farmers, small and medium enterprises, service providers, big businesses and households have been afflicted by one of the highest electricity tariffs in the world and uncompetitive fuel costs for many years. This has been undermining the economy's competitiveness thereby discouraging investment and employment generation. The enormous losses incurred by the CEB and CPC have added to thedebt burden imposed on the current & future generations more..

Phase I of the Colombo Port city starts next month after clearing bottlenecks

Aug 11 (ST) Phase I of Sri Lanka’s proposed off-shore city, the Colombo Port City, is to start in September this year after completing all necessary requirements and legal documentation including Environmental Impact Assessment and signing of agreements with all connected parties of the project. The land filling work under Phase 1 of the project will commence in two months from September and more..

Sri Lanka Global Champions at CIMA Business Challenge 2014

Aug 11 (FT) Corporate Consultants from the University of Colombo were crowned Global Champions at CIMA Global Business Challenge (GBC) 2014, a prestigious international business competition held in partnership with Barclays, which took place in Mumbai, India. Team Corporate Consultants triumphed over stiff competition beating 23 talented teams from universities around the world. The finale has been exceptionally difficult to judge with the striking levels of business skills more..

Biz leaders panel optimistic but gives checklist for Govt

Aug 11 (FT) A panel of top business leaders last week expressed optimism over prospects for the private sector and Sri Lanka, but gave a checklist for sustenance and improvement. John Keells Holdings Deputy Chairman Ajit Gunewardene, Brandix CEO Ashroff Omar, Hemas Holdings Chairman Husein Esufally, Dialog Axiata CEO Dr. Hans Wijayasuriya and Softlogic Holdings Chairman Ashok Pathirage admitted they were mostly overly positive about the future and justified their sentiment as well. more..

Chinese business delegates in Sri Lanka for 'Business Matchmaking'

Aug 11 (Island) delegation of over 35 Chinese companies from Zhongshan Municipal headed by its mayor is in Sri Lanka from today for "Business Matchmaking". The Sri Lanka-China Friendship Association (SLCFA), which organized this event with coordination of the Sri Lankan Consul General in Guangzhou described the arrival of representatives from 35 top most companies as 'Matchmaking at your doorstep'. more..

Women entrepreneurs meet President

Aug 11 (FT) Women entrepreneurs were invited by the Ministry of Finance for a pre-budget meeting chaired by President Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat with the participation of Minister of Economic Development, Minster of Traditional Industries, Small Enterprises, Minister of Co-Operative and Internal Trade other relevant officials of the ministries. The majority of the women entrepreneurs thanked the President for the interest free loans granted for micro and small more..

'Extremists make Muslim allies of SL worry'

Aug 11 (AM) Extremist organizations have created suspicion among the Muslim countries which have been Sri Lanka’s allies during the recent past, Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka says. He has also said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa has had traditional respect from Muslim countries for his role as the long standing leader Palestine Solidarity Committee. But his apparent inability or unwillingness to curb extremist forces is a big error, Dr. Jayatilleka had said. more..

Drawing two pensions: Ex-SPC secretary to be arrested shortly

Aug 11 (Island) CID is probing former Secretary of the Southern Provincial Council Amaradasa Perera for allegedly receiving over Rs. 5 million by drawing two pensions for many years. Investigations have revealed that the pensioner had obtained pensions from two Divisional Secretariat areas. It was among several other investigations into major pension frauds over the past couple of years. more..

Police to produce video evidence of polls law violations, today

Aug 11 (Island) Police will submit to the Badulla Magistrate court today the video footage containing visuals of govt and Opposition candidates with their supporters conducting processions in violation of election laws last Thursday after submitting their nominations papers for the Uva PC polls. Police said that they had analysed video footage obtained from various sources and identified four persons who were engaged in violating election laws. Those recordings would be produced before courts more..

Gotabaya says he won’t enter politics without a request from MR

Aug 11 (AM) Defence Secreatary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has told that he will not enter Politics without a request from his brother, President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Sri Lankan Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, in an interview with a television station, said that he has no interest in entering politics unless President Rajapaksa requests him to do so. He added that he would continue with his duties as the Secretary of Defence to “ensure the well-being of the country.” more..

Indian rights activist to be included in Lanka disappearance panel

Aug 11 (PTI) An Indian human rights activist will be included in the disappearances commission set up by SL govt to probe the cases of missing persons during the three-decade war with the LTTE. Avdash Kaushal is to be named in a Gazette notification to be issued this week by President Rajapaksa. He heads an NGO called Rural Litigation and Entitlement Kendra working to promote the cause of Van Gujjars, more..

Holy festival with unholy ending

Aug 11 (Island) Annual fire walking ritual of the Hindu Kovil at Gonakelle Estate in Passara came to a violent end as supporters of two rival factions clashed with each other and the police had to open fire to bring the situation under control. Police said the clashes had occurred between the members of incumbent board of trustees of the Kovil and members of its previous management, while the annual festival was underway. Supporters of the two sides fought throwing stones and more..

Video: Easy cash, easy job, easy go

Aug 11 (DM) Police investigations had been launched to arrest a group that had allegedly swindled money from several people through easy cash payments (mobile) scheme on the assurance of giving them job opportunities. SSP Ajith Roahana said several people had lodged complaints against the culprits who had published advertisements in the weekend papers claiming to give jobs as heavy vehicle drivers at various harbours and other companies. The fraudsters had asked more..

25000 acres of acquired land missing

Aug 11 (SM) There are no substantial information on over 25,000 acres of land acquired by the govt under Land Reform Act No. 1 of 1972 and its amendments, said a higher official attached to Ministry of Land and Land Development. He has further stated that there are heavy suspicions rising weather they were acquired by the politicians or distributed among their acquaintances. The govts which came into power since 1972 failing to more..

Former war zones now fight for tourists

Aug 11 (TW) Two Sri Lankan cities at the heart of a 25-year civil war are creeping back onto a tourist trail from which they were blocked until peace came to this South Asian country five years ago. The island that sparked the word "serendipity" - describing happy discoveries made accidentally and derived from Serendip, an ancient name for Sri Lanka (Ceylon) - is again tranquil. Slightly smaller than Tasmania but with a population as big as Australia's, teardrop-shaped Sri Lanka more..

Sri Lanka Tourism launches taxi advertising campaign in UK

Aug 11 (eTN) Under the guidance of Ministry of Economic Development, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau has launched an International Tourism Promotional campaign in order to increase awareness of destination Sri Lanka in countries around the world. As part of this campaign 1200 taxis will be branded featuring key tourism attractions of Sri Lanka in major destinations around the world including UK, France, Germany, Korea and Japan. more..

Video: Robbery at Postal Dept. of EAM, suspect arrested

Aug 11 (DM) An office assistant attached to the Postal Department of the Ministry of External Affairs had been remanded after he confessed to stealing a parcel belonging to an individual by the name of Arunida P Wimalasiri of Anuradhapura who was been killed in an accident while working in Korea. The parcel had been stolen after it was sent to the Consul Department of the Ministry of External Affairs by the Sri Lankan Embassy in Korea. more..

SriLankan-Mihin air merger not an option

Aug 11 (DM) A few weeks ago Parliament was informed that the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Airport in Mattala had only earned a little more that Rs.16,000 as revenue in May. On top of that, an interim report released by the COPE last week stated that the operating loss of the fully state-owned budget carrier, Mihin Air had increased to Rs.3.3 billion in 2013 from the Rs.1.9 billion during the financial year 2012. The interim report also said the massive losses incurred by more..

Dump the culture of hatred

Aug 11 (DM) A recent letter to the editor published in a Sinhala Sunday newspaper caught my attention. It reveals the plight of a Sinhala Buddhist woman married to a Muslim. With the increasingly virulent hatred directed against our Muslims, the couple has been put under pressure to separate. As of late, they have received death threats. The police have not been helpful. Right now, they live separately, but are not considering legal separation. A Muslim woman writing to this newspaper recently more..

Sri Lankan envoy falls back on shared past

Aug 11 (ENS) He came to the national capital alone at the tender age of 20, but with a determination to learn. Exactly 44 years on, Sudharshan Seneviratne is back in the city for a long haul -- this time as SL High Commissioner to India. Nomination of Seneviratne, a renowned archaeologist, for replacement of Prasad Kariyawasam had surprised many. After all, he is the first person from outside diplomatic service more..

Drought hits again

Aug 11 (SL) Sri Lanka, being a tropical country close to the equator, experiences critical impacts of warm climate conditions. This year, drought has hit several areas of the country leaving people no access to water for drinking or cultivation. Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa in North Central Province, Ampara in Eastern Province, Hambanthota in Southern Province, Monaragala in Uva Province and Mullaithivu in Northern more..

A run-machine that just won't stop

Aug 11 (CI) Talent is a beguiling concept. Almost anyone feels they can spot it, given enough knowledge. Sometimes, those marked out for special ability go on to achieve extraordinary things. Blaise Pascal had a theorem to his name by 16, and would become a mathematical giant. Rabindranath Tagore wrote his first poem at eight, then had his first major collection published at 17. Current chess world No.1 Magnus more..

Superimposing female teacher’s face on nude photo: Schoolby bailed out

Aug 11 (Island) Nugegoda Acting Magistrate Tissa Wijeratne enlarged on bail a 14-year-old student of an international school who had digitally superimposed a face of a female teacher on a nude picture of another woman and posed it on the Internet. Both the student and teacher are from the same school. The suspect had been produced before the courts following a complaint by the teacher to the CID. more..

Secretary General of SAARC calls on President Rajapaksa

Aug 11 (GDI) The Secretary General of SAARC Arjun B. Thapa called on President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the President’s House in Kandy this morning. President Rajapaksa informed the Secretary General that Sri Lanka is looking forward to participating in the 18th SAARC Summit, which will be held in Kathmandu in November of this year. The Secretary General, who is currently in Sri Lanka on his first official visit since assuming duties, more..

Mostly smiles but a few pouts as Uva nominations close

Aug 11 (ST) Public meetings and house-to-house campaigns have got off at steady pace for the Uva PC elections, with some candidates celebrating new alliances and others disappointed at the poor yields from decisions to switch parties. A total of 617 candidates handed in nominations by Wednesday’s closing date and prepared themselves for the elections fixed for Sept 20. The SLMC has decided to contest under an alliance with more..

Unemployment among educated women acute

Aug 11 (Island) The problem of unemployment is more acute among the educated females than their educated male counterparts, a survey has revealed. According to findings of Sri Lanka Labour Force Survey 2013 compiled by the Department of Census and Statistics, the youth unemployment rate (15-24 years of age) reported for 4th Quarter 2013 was 19% and that is the highest unemployment rate among age groups. more..

MR calls for report on A/L Econ. paper

Aug 11 (DM) President Rajapaksa has directed Minister Bandula Gunawardane to submit a report on the controversy surrounding the GCE (A/L) question paper on Economics, and related matters, to Cabinet. Consequently, Mr. Gunawardane has, in turn instructed the Commissioner General of Examinations Jayantha Pushpakumara to compile a report detailing the reasons for the removal of Professor more..

TNA Conduit for evidence

Aug 11 (CT) Those who wish to testify before the UNHRC sanctioned war crimes investigation panel on Sri Lanka, can submit their evidence through the TNA, MP M.A. Sumanthiran informed the people in Jaffna residents, recently. He has said the UNHRC-led international probe on alleged human rights violations that took place during the final phase of the war has begun and if there were any important evidence that more..

UNP fact finding mission blocked yet again

Aug 11 (AM) A fact finding mission carried out by a group of UNP MPs to the Maradana railway station was disrupted by pro-govt protesters attached to a railway union. Although the MPs used a sperate entrance to enter the premises, they could not avoid the protesters who vehemently opposed the fact finding mission by UNP MPs. It was organized under the gaveshana charika project, with the initiative of several UNP MPs more..

The drought, the farmer and the people

Aug 11 (CT) Sri Lanka never seems to be without problems for its people to worry about. It is either the weather, the high cost of living, racial or religious intolerance or nepotism and cronyism in governance. There is always a reason for them to worry about, and most of them being man-made. But floods and droughts, which are a natural phenomenon, also affect them leaving them frustrated and devastated. The current drought that has gripped the country, menacing more..

TID further victimized assaulted Tamil student

Aug 11 (CT) Sabaragamuwa university students claim attempts are underway by the Terrorist Investigation Department (TID) to intimidate their colleague – Shanthikumar Sudharshan who was assaulted and cut early last week by an unidentified group, into admitting the cut injuries are self-inflicted. The University Students group claim they have received information to believe victimized Sudharshan, a resident of Kilinochchi who was arrested by the TID on Saturday morning more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

A welcome step in the right direction

Aug 11 (CT) It is an honour, Mr Chairman, to have been asked to speak on the Prescription (Special Provisions) Bill, which I am very happy to support. It a necessary measure, and should have been introduced some years back. Ineed I recall six years ago, when I headed the Peace Secretariat, having a meeting with the Chair of the Law Commission about the need to introduce legislation of this sort, and being impressed because they too had already thought about this. more..

Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.4%

Aug 11 (LBO) Sri Lanka's stocks closed 0.36% higher with the turnover crossing one billion rupee mark amid net foreign buying, brokers said. All Share Price Index closed 24.69 points higher at 6,942.92, up 0.36%. The S&P SL20 closed 16.67 points higher at 3,818.54, up 0.44%. Turnover was 1.15 billion rupees, down from 1.58 billion rupees last Friday with 115 stocks closed positive against 79 negative. Hayleys closed 1.30 rupees lower at 309.70 rupees with an off-market transaction more..