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MG Dhanushka surrenders

Aug 4 (DM) Reality show singer MG Dhanushka, who was on arrest warrant, surrendered to the courts today. Colombo Chief Magistrate ordered to recall the arrest warrant on him after his surrender. He was later released on a personal bail of Rs. 25,000. Arrest warrants had been issued against him over not appearing in Court for the inquiry for violating Intellectual Property Act by singing the late popular singer MS Fernando's songs illegally without obtaining permission more..

Mahinda asks all MPs to oppose VAT bill

Aug 4 (AD) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says that what makes the VAT increase most objectionable is that it is being imposed on the public to finance the salary increase and various other concessions that the govt gave against all economic reasoning in order to win the general election. “No previous govt has taken such liberties with public finances for political purposes,” he said, in a statement issued today. more..

Ceylon Fisheries Corporation needs restructuring: Wedarachchi

Aug 4 (DN) Ceylon Fisheries Corporation is a state institution which should be protected and safeguarded through a proper restructuring program. It will benefit fishermen as well as the customers, said State Minister Dilip Wedarachchi. He said restructuring of the corporation is necessary if arrangements are to be made to provide wholesome and nutritious fish to customers at a fair price. The corporation set up in 1964 under the State Industrial Corporation Act more..

PM orders UNP to recruit 2/3 of eligible voters as party members

Aug 4 (Island) The UNP has recruited 800,000 new party members within one month of the launch of its project to increase its membership by three million new members, according to party sources. Recruiting three million new members is one of the projects envisaged by Party Leader and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe in view of party’s 70th anniversary being marked this year. Wickremesinghe has instructed his party men to recruit two thirds of the country’s eligible voters as UNP members, more..

'ETCA first round of negotiations starts soon'

Aug 4 (LBO) India’s High Commissioner in Sri Lanka Y.K. Sinha says that the first round of negotiations on the Indo-Sri Lanka Economic and Technology Cooperation Framework Agreement (ETCA) will start shortly. Speaking at the eighth AGM of the Indo Lanka Chamber of Commerce, High Commissioner reassured that India was aware that greater economic integration requires moving in an asymmetric manner. more..

Norwegian PM on holiday in Sri Lanka

Aug 4 (NN) Norwegian PM Erna Solberg accompanied with a delegation of seven arrived in Sri Lanka a short while ago on vacation. Sri Lanka and Norway have enjoyed a longstanding relationship for more than 60 years. Sri Lanka has recently demonstrated its commitment to democratic transition and is welcoming international investments, which could further strengthen the economy. Sri Lanka is now a middle-income country and this gives the opportunity to look for more more..

China should dispel India concerns over Colombo port project: Sri Lankan media

Aug 4 (PTI) China needs to dispel India’s concerns over its presence in the Indian Ocean relating to the $ 1.5 billion Chinese-backed Colombo Port City project in Sri Lanka, a media report said on Thursday. “Dispelling concerns from India over China’s increasing presence in the Indian Ocean, China will need to let the Colombo Port City Project in Sri Lanka really play a role in promoting the development of the local economy,” an article in state-run Global Times said. more..

Video: Tax on tobacco to be increased to 90%: Rajitha

Aug 4 (AD) A Cabinet paper will be submitted to increase tax on tobacco to 90%, Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne says. Observation was made at the unveiling of National Policy on Tobacco and Alcohol which was held at the BMICH under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena today. Steps will be taken to freeze the VAT on tobacco at 15%. “This has also done during the term of late President R. Premadasa. more..

Mathews relieved over Maxwell omission

Aug 4 (CT) Sri Lanka Captain Angelo Mathews is relieved to hear that destructive Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has been axed from the touring one-day squad. "He plays spin better than most of the Aussie batters, and he is one player who can score on both sides of the wicket. We are quite happy to see him not in the squad," said Mathews replying to a query ahead of the second Test match in Galle. The one day series will begin on 21 August in Colombo. more..

President, SLFP CC to meet

Aug 4 (CT) A special Central Committee (CC) meeting of SLFP chaired by Party leader President Maithripala Sirisena will be held this evening at the President's official residence. An SLFP CC member said that some drastic decisions were on the cards at today's meeting with stern action against some of the noted SLFP MPs who had allegedly breached the Party's disciplinary code very likely. He said a majority of SLFP CC members had reached consensus on disciplinary action against more..

UN Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues here next month

Aug 4 (CG) UN Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues Rita Izsák is scheduled to visit Sri Lanka next month. Rita Izsák is to visit SL from Oct 10 to 20, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights said. In March the Govt had noted several inaccuracies in the report by Rita Izsák-Ndiaye which was submitted to the UNHRC. Govt had said it was disappointed that incorrect, inaccurate & misleading references had been more..

Gnanasara Thera complains against Hoo Gaana Pokuna film

Aug 4 (AM) BBS General Secretary Galagodaatte Gnanasara Thera today complained to the National Film Corporation against the Hoo Gaana Pokuna film and requested it to block the release of the film in DVD or other formats in future. Gnanasara Thera said that the film has misinterpreted a saying by the Buddha, misleading the public in a subtle manner. A child character in the movie has been used to make this misinterpretation, which is even more serious, he added. more..

U.S. Continues Support for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem in Sri Lanka

Aug 4 (USE) As part of its commitment to support sustainable economic growth in Sri Lanka, Embassy of the United States supports expert American speakers and ongoing programs to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship across the country. “Our continuous outreach to students, academics, and entrepreneurs will empower Sri Lankans to take advantage of the peace dividend and develop a more vibrant and prosperous economy,” said U.S. Ambassador Atul Keshap. more..

Silken Aravinda, stoic Arjuna, and magical Mahela

Aug 4 (CI) v Australia, 1989, Hobart: Sri Lanka were at their weakest in the '80s. Test status had only been achieved in 1982, and some teams were reluctant to tour Sri Lanka for a mix of cricketing and political reasons. But though Muttiah Muralitharan's Australian travails were still six years away, the seeds of a one-sided rivalry were sown in Hobart. Having put Australia in to bat, Rumesh Ratnayake extracted bounce and movement more..

Video: Wimal arrives at PRECIFAC

Aug 4 (DM) Former minister Wimal Weerawansa arrived at the PRECIFAC a short while ago in connection with the misappropriation of Rs.1 billion in public funds. A PRECIFAC spokesman said a statement would be recorded from Mr. Weerawansa with regard to the fraud and corruption that had taken place in the institutions under his ministry. A complaint had been received by the commission alleging that Mr. Weerawansa had given vehicles and fuel from the Engineering Corporation more..

Water sources drying up fast

Aug 4 (CT) Environmental Organizations are alleging that certain owners of mini hydropower plants who produce electricity by building small dams across main rivers and streams and canals within the country and using that water are violating licences and laws during this production of hydropower. CAA has informed that only a part of relevant waterways should be used when producing hydropower and the remaining water should be allowed to flow naturally along waterways. more..

Video: Gammanpila ready to blow up proposed bridge between SL and India

Aug 4 (AD) An observation has reportedly been made by Minister Kabir Hashim to finalise an agreement for building a bridge connecting India and Sri Lanka, PHU leader Udaya Gammanpila says. Observation was made while the minister was responding to a cross question asked by a reporter recently in Indonesia. He pointed out there is a possibility Sinhalese of losing their motherland if this proposal comes a reality, more..

Video: Disciplinary action to unite a party, not to split it: SB

Aug 4 (AD) If a party takes disciplinary action against its members, that is to unite the party, not to split it, Minister S.B. Dissanayake says. The observation was made while speaking to reporters in Galle. “There have been disputes within the SLFP from the beginning, and that is why Dr. S.A. Wickremesinghe once described it as a ‘front’ not a party,” he added. He also severely condemned the behavior of the supporters of the JO who engaged in a protest march from Kandy to Colombo. more..

Video: Two held with foreign currency worth Rs 35 million

Aug 4 (AD) Two persons have been arrested at the BIA in Katunayake for attempting to smuggle undeclared foreign currency worth over Rs 35 million out of the country. The two suspects, aged 49 and 35, were preparing to board a flight to Singapore this morning when they were arrested by officers of the airport customs, deputy director of customs Parakrama Basnayake said. He said that the foreign currency was found concealed inside ornamental flower vases which were in their luggage. more..

Video: Tried my best to unite SLFP and go forward: Amaraweera

Aug 4 (AD) Fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera supporters are pressing the SLFP to take a decision regarding party members who are taking part in opposition rallies and that they have been patient enough. He stated that, as the General Secretary of the UPFA, he too has to accept partial responsibility for the delay in taking certain decisions. “I tried my best to unite the SLFP and go forward. I still do my best to prevent more..

July 1983: The war and the aftermath

Aug 5 (FT) Much has been written about the fateful year of 1983. Most of the writings have been on the contributory factors that went to make that black event, the ferocity of the racial attacks during the rioting and the weak handling of the tragic developments by the authorities. The short and long term effects of that decisive occurrence has not absorbed the writers as much. Such convulsions are not accidental events happening randomly. Invariably, there are long histories and more..

What is wrong with Tamil leadership in SL?

Aug 5 (CT) Present political climate in Sri Lanka, especially the Tamil politics, reminds me an ancient Greek mythology. King Sisyphus was condemned by the Olympian God Zeus to spend all the eternity in fruitless labour, rolling a rock up a mountain until it rolled back down of its own weight, again and again. Nothing could be more absurd than a life of such futility. King Sisyphus was punished for his trickery and killing. Myth of Sisyphus was used by Albert Camus to explain the absurdity and more..

Wildlife trade: Clarion call for stronger action

Aug 5 (SO) It only takes a simple search online, to find various types of endemic species of SL, to purchase. From various types of spiders, to snakes and lizards as well as star tortoises, rare species are available for purchase at the click of a mouse. A shocking and alarming situation for environmentalists and conservationists, the racket has been going on with valuable species being smuggled out of the country to be sold as more..

Editorial: Blood-soaked crossings

Aug 5 (Island) A young mother and her two little daughters were killed when the motorcycle they were travelling on collided with a fast moving train at a level crossing on Wednesday. It was the third such fatal mishap since a group of gatekeepers launched a strike, demanding a pay hike. Their trade union action is dragging on with no end in sight and the Grim Reaper is laying his icy cold hands on men, women and children. Unfortunately, a widely used yardstick of the effectiveness of any strike more..

Making SL a prime destination for FDIs

Aug 4 (SL) Although Sri Lanka’s ministry tasked with the tedious task of attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into the country and making the Indian Ocean island a prime destination for FDIs – Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade promised to present the much-awaited Agency for Development (AfD) Bill to Parliament last year, unfortunately such a fully-fledged, legislative framework is yet to see the light of day. In 2015 Minister Malik Samarawickrama told media more..

'Debt burden should be reduced'

Aug 4 (SL) Opposition Leader and Leader of TNA, R. Sampanthan, says that to ensure success in development, the debt burden of the country should be reduced and eventually eliminated. He also points out that the govt should minimize wastage through extravagant spending and ensure that corruption is eliminated. He noted that there should be meaningful development that will benefit the people, and added that steps more..

Did People’s Bank fudge tender procedures over digital banking & luxury vehicles?

Aug 5 (CT) Bank of Ceylon (BOC) and Peoples Bank are the two major state owned commercial Banks in this country. Both Banks from years occupied the envious leading position in the Banking Industry. Having successfully emerged from a capital inadequacy in 1992 they became the leading players in the country’s economy and as the principal commercial banking agent for the SOE’s and the Govt of Sri Lanka. Till the beginning of last year BOC & PB were placed No.1 and 2 more..

ACMOA permitted to involve in SAITM hearing

Aug 5 (LT) A request made to Court by All Ceylon Medical Association (ACMOA) to mediate in the case filed in Court of Appeal by a student of SAITM at Malabe has been granted. The All Ceylon Medical Officers Association made the request when the case was heard yesterday (2nd). The request was granted and the hearing was fixed for the 9th. Accordingly, written submissions would be filed before the 9th said Attorney at Law Sunil Watagala representing the Association. more..


Singarasa Case: Overruling a judgement not PM’s right

Aug 4 (SL) The Singarasa case is being challenged in court with PM Ranil Wickremesinghe requesting the Speaker of Parliament to overrule a judgment given by the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka which is a clear violation of the laws vested upon the Constitution. The Prime Minister has requested the Speaker to vacate through parliament the obviously impugned Supreme Court Judgment (SC/SPL/LA/182/99) popularly known as the Singarasa case, decided on Dec 15, 2006. more..

Starc's 5 for 44: best Test figures by an Australia seamer in Sri Lanka

Aug 5 (CI) 5 for 62: The previous best by an Australia seamer in Tests in Sri Lanka - by Ryan Harris at the same venue in Sri Lanka's second innings in 2011. Mitchell Starc's 5 for 44 is now the best and only the second five-for by an Australia seamer in Tests against Sri Lanka. Starc's is also the fourth-best haul by an Australia bowler in Tests against Sri Lanka. Three of the four best efforts by Australia bowlers in Sri Lanka have come in Galle. 1: Number of times a seamer has returned more..

Firsts for Sri Lanka’s track and field athletes in Rio Olympics

Aug 5 (Island) Marathoners Anuradha Indrajith Cooray and Geethani Rajasekara and javelin thrower Sumeda Ranasinghe will record several firsts in country’s track and field history when they take part in the 2016 Olympics which starts today in Rio de Janeiro. Track and field competitions will commence a week later on August 12. The former Ratnayake Central, Walala runner Geethani Rajasekara will become the first SL woman more..

AG highlights several irregularities at University of Jaffna

Aug 5 (FT) The Auditor General in his report on the affairs of the University of Jaffna, for the year ended 31 Dec 2013, appears to have effectively obscured attention on several problems in this important seat of learning in north Sri Lanka. The report was published in the Govt gazette just one day before a clash between two student groups forced the closure of the university on 16 July. The report states that dates to hold the examinations for various courses conducted under each faculty more..

Olympic Games: Cooray to carry national flag at opening ceremony

Aug 5 (DN) The stage is set for the world’s greatest spots extravaganza – the XXX1st edition of summer Olympic Games, which gets underway on Friday night with a spectacular opening ceremony to be staged at the Olympic Stadium here. Carrying SL’s lion flag at the opening ceremony will be veteran marathon runner Anuradha Indrajith Cooray. London-based SL long distance runner will be competing in his third Olympic Games, having done so in Athens 2004 and London 2012 Games. more..

Sri Lanka's adrenaline surges, again

Aug 5 (CI) Upon touching down in Sri Lanka, Australia had received quite the reception. There were no cultural dances, as anyone was aware. No fruit drinks at the airport, nor the privilege of being daubed in the glorious palm sweat of one of the nation's politicians. The welcome, instead, was sweetened by news of the ever-growing delegation of injured SL seamers. Dushmantha Chameera would not rush Australia with his pace. more..

Warner wicket crucial, says Graham Ford

Aug 5 (Island) SL coach Graham Ford said that dismissing Australian opener David Warner in the last over before stumps on day one of the second Test was crucial for his side. In reply to Sri Lanka’s 281 all out, Warner, gave the Australians a flying start as they reached 54 for one in 14 overs. But the Australian vice-captain was dismissed by off-spinner Dilruwan Perera in the last over before stumps much to the delight of the home team. "David Warner is such a free scoring batsman more..

Australia's mixed day in the field

Aug 5 (CI) Australia's day one effort in Galle was not so good as their opening day in Pallekele, if better than the second innings. Mitchell Starc delivered his best stuff of the series so far, Nathan Lyon disappointed and Josh Hazlewood ended the innings looking a little on the sore side. Dropped catches were an unwelcome sight, but Jon Holland can be expected to be better in the second innings after easing his debut nerves with a wicket. All the while, however, the bowlers were more..

French national severely assaulted in Matara

Aug 5 (DN) A French national living in Matara was severely assaulted by a group of men under the influence on Tuesday night. The victim is, 60-year-old Dominique Cardinaud, living in Sri Lanka for the last six years in a residence in Paramulla, Matara. “On Tuesday night, at around 8 p.m. Cardinaud was disturbed by a loud group of drunk men who had just frequented the bar next door,” related a close friend of Cardinaud more..

Opening of Indoor cricket facilities at Pallekelle Stadium

Aug 5 (DN) Sri Lanka Cricket announced the opening of the largest Indoor Cricket Centre in Sri Lanka at Pallekelle Int'l Cricket Stadium during the SL-Australia cricket series. SLC said that construction of five strips has now been undertaken by the Central Province Cricket Association under the supervision of SLC at a huge saving of Rs.50 million with SLC gaining additional facilities including two playing strips. New Centre will be equipped with latest technologies with high-tech cameras more..

Central Bank improves efficiency and transparency of govt securities market

Aug 5 (FT) The Central Bank announced a series of key measures to improve efficiency, transparency, governance and regulation of the Govt securities market. It said as a further policy measure to develop the govt securities market, Central Bank from yesterday has commenced releasing summary trading statistics on actual trading of Govt securities in the secondary market. It said from 1 August, all primary dealers have been required to undertake inter-primary dealer trades more..