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Dry zone small tank revival seen mitigating Sri Lanka drought impact

Feb 24 (EN) Private sector investments have been encouraged to revive small tank cascade systems in Sri Lanka’s dry zone to mitigate the impact of a severe drought, which has deprived almost a million people of drinking water and cut rice output. Most long-term recommendations to mitigate the impact of disasters like drought are about overall disaster risk reduction, said Visaka Hidellage, Deputy Country Representative of United Nations Development Program in Sri Lanka. more..

Prof. Vajira Thero among 5 injured in Kadugannawa accident

Feb 24 (AD) Five persons including Ven. Professor Kumburugamuwe Vajira Thero were injured and hospitalised following an accident involving the vehicle they were traveling in at Kadugannawa. The incident occurred when a jeep stopped in the roadside near Ambalama in Pahala Kadugannawa had started to move backwards after the brakes failed and toppled down a precipice.  The injured passengers including the former Chancellor of the Sabaragamuwa University were rushed to more..

Nearly 10% of children don’t attend school

Feb 24 (CT) Nearly 10% of the children in Sri Lanka do not attend school, a Child Activity Survey 2016, conducted by the Department of Statistics, revealed. The results of the survey revealed that 9.9 % of the child population, (age 5-17) is currently not attending school and this is 10.0% for boys and 9.8% for girls. "Among the children not attending school, majority are engaged only in housekeeping activities, more..

US, SL discuss issues of common interest

Feb 24 (DM) A bipartisan delegation from the US House of Representatives led by the Chair of the House Judiciary Committee, Bob Goodlatte, together with US Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Atul Keshap, held discussions with Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera today. The Ministry said the discussions were focused on issues of mutual interest. Minister Samaraweera said it was a pleasure to welcome Bob Goodlatte and the House Judiciary delegation. more..

Tea prices ease after record-breaking spree

Feb 24 (EN) Sri Lankan tea prices were generally lower at this week’s auction despite some invoices continuing to hit new highs after sharp gains in recent weeks prompted international buyers to look at other origins. There was lower demand for teas from private company estates this week, while there was fair demand for low-grown teas that were on offer, brokers John Keells said. Among teas from the estate a limited selection of well-made bright teas with seasonal character sold well but more..

Sri Lanka may delay fighter jet purchase

Feb 24 (DW) A Sri Lankan Air Force (SLAF) plan to purchase 10-12 multi-role combat aircraft (MRCA) through a govt-to-govt deal could be delayed indefinitely due to budgetary constraints. Colombo has last year decided to issue request for proposals (RFP) to countries which manufacture fighter jets rather than buy it directly from aircraft manufacturers to avoid allegations of bribery and avoid middlemen. However a cut in the defence budget outlay more..

Ineffectual leadership, corrupt politics & persisting problems in Muslim Sri Lanka

Feb 25 (CT) There is one irrefutable fact about the SL Muslim community and that is, this minority which has been living in this island peacefully for over a millennium since its origins in the 8th century and prospered exceptionally well in comparison to similar Muslim minorities in the rest of Asia, has, during the last two to three decades, got deliberately enmeshed in narrow ethnic politics and irrational religious fanaticism to such an extent that it is now confronting a virtual existential crisis. more..

In formulating a new constitution: A quick response to S. Krishnanathan

Feb 25 (CT) The purpose of my article, An Appeal To Tamil Political Leaders On The New Constitution is partly achieved as Mr S. Krishnanathan has constructively responded expressing what he thinks about the main contours of a new constitution that includes some of the questions that I have raised. This is conducive to a public debate on the subject. However, I would take some exception to what he has said at the outset. He has expressed some displeasure, among other commenters, more..

'SAITM students will not be accepted by any country'

Feb 25 (CT) Professor Hiran Amerasekera of Sri J'pura University says, "Govt should do justice to the students who have enrolled in SAITM because the former govt allowed the establishment of SAITM." Q: Even though no one opposes private universities, there is a lot of opposition to private medical colleges. Why is that? A: Other universities grant only a degree. Finding a job based on that degree is a responsibility of more..

Moragahakanda: Biggest Yahapalana hybrid project

Feb 25 (SO) Within six months of launching the Moragahakanda-Kaluganga scheme by placing Nidhan Wasthu (treasures) at the bottom of the dam, President Sirisena, inaugurated the second phase, the North Western Province Canal Project (NWPCP) last week. This phase is aimed at ending the sorrowful stories of the people in the North Western Province, due to water scarcity. The project is implemented under the Mahaweli Water Security Investment Program. more..

A tale of woe and courage

Feb 25 (CT) Senarath Ekanayaka of Welikanda, Polonnaruwa is a 44-year-old ex-soldier. His wife is 38-year-old S.P. Thushari. They had two sons, 15-year-old Kavindu Sandaruwan and 10-year-old Theekshana Bandara. Senarath served in Jaffna, Elephant Pass, Palali, Thanthirimalai, Batticaloa and Welikanda for 17 years. He was nearly blinded due to a poisonous gas used by the LTTE in 1995 at Thandikulam. He was disabled by LTTE gunfire injuries in 1996 at Thandikulam. more..

Don’t shun them; They are ours

Feb 25 (NS) The incidence of leprosy in Sri Lanka according to statistics is 2000 cases per year. With the cultural stigma and physical ravages the human body undergoes, task launched to mitigate the social and administrative concerns that confront leprosy patients, is commendable. Ministry of Health is scheduled to unveil new laws to protect the rights and prevent discrimination of patients with communicable diseases, more..

Editorial: Cobra-mongoose cooperation

Feb 25 (Island) JO firebrand Wimal Weerawansa has been fighting quite a battle, during the last so many months, to have his NFF recognised as an independent party in Parliament. He says he has pulled out of the SLFP-led UPFA. Strangely, resistance to his move has come not so much from the SLFP, which leads the UPFA, but from the UNP! Speaker Karu Jayasuriya has told the House that he will take up the issue with the party leaders, but it is highly unlikely that Weerawansa’s wish will more..

Let’s pray for the Family Silver

Feb 25 (Island) Don’t you think the recently established National Asset Protection Centre would be better named as the Family Silver Protection Centre? C’mon…what has family silver to do with national assets? I’m only going by what former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the brains behind National Asset Protection, has said. What has he said? He says the new centre is necessary because the selling of Family Silver was the only strategy the UNP knows to develop the country. more..


Wigneswaran’s irrationality leading Tamil’s astray

Feb 25 (CT) "A system consisting of principles identified as the most logically suitable guidelines on which the people of a nation can be protected upholding the aspirations of the of those people in the most harmonious manner can be called an ideal Constitution all the people would love, respect and cherish. It is not something that can be created by a set of specialists who do not represent popular bases. At the same time, conciliation is a word that resembles the godly quality, more..

Norlanka and the Made in Sri Lanka legend gain UK and US exposure

Feb 25 (Island) Norlanka, apparel manufacturers and exporters, conducted an information seminar recently to detail their new distribution network and moves to market garments originating in manufacturers here, to new markets world wide. Outgoing CEO Gwyn William said Norlanka is now a strong marketing window for the garments industry. With an investment programme of approximately 80 million dollars and expanding markets demanding garments made in Sri Lanka, more..

Sri Lankan youth are using RTI to help war-affected families

Feb 25 (Roar) Hundreds of displaced families lined up outside the Vavuniya DS yesterday (22), precious documents in hand, hoping to find answers about the legal status of lands they were resettled on by paramilitary groups during the war. Perhaps the most stunningly organised use of the Right To Information Act yet, entity responsible for this is a little-known youth organisation called Association for Friendship more..

Keep big matches to the field

Feb 25 (NS) It is the season of big matches once again. It’s a season of celebrating the history, tradition, and rivalry between schools that have been battling it out for supremacy of the Gentlemen’s game each year. Cycle parades, trucking and all sorts of processions adorn the main roads of Colombo as the days draw closer. Sri Lanka boasts of the second, longest running domestic cricket tournament in the form of the much hyped, much celebrated, Royal-Thomian encounter. more..

The pen cannot be laid down

Feb 25 (NS) Everyone is aware that in this nation of ours, the wheels of justice turn at different speeds. Sometimes, they turn at breakneck speed, often they turn very slowly and at other times, they don’t turn at all. When Keith Noyahr, the then associate editor of this newspaper was abducted in May 2008, many close associates initially feared for his life. He was eventually released but not before he was badly beaten up, tortured and threatened with death. At that time, there was speculation more..

Global health leaders adopt Colombo Statement on migrant health

Feb 25 (IOM) Global health leaders adopted the Colombo Statement, which calls for international collaboration to improve the health and well-being of migrants and their families. Move aims to address the health challenges posed by increasingly mobile populations. Declaration was adopted on the closing day of the 2nd Global Consultation on Migrant Health, hosted by the Govt of SL, IOM and WHO in Colombo. more..

SL A v England Lions: Livingstone defies heat to score century for England Lions

Feb 25 (CI) Lancashire's Liam Livingstone continued his impressive form for England Lions in Sri Lanka with a century in demanding conditions on the opening day of the second four-day match. Livingstone's 105, alongside a half-century from Tom Westley, led England Lions to 339 for 9 while left-arm spinner Malinda Pushpakumara took 7 for 114 from 37 overs. Such was the heat in Dambulla that Livingstone was covered in ice towels during the tea interval but managed to more..

Sri Lanka will grow with time: Mahela

Feb 25 (WI) Mahela Jayawardene, former SL captain, urged fans and media to give some time to the talented but inexperienced Sri Lankan team, saying expectations are always high and prompt in the subcontinent. “I think talent is there but they have come to international cricket with little first-class experience,” said Jayawardene on Friday (24). “Expectations are always high in the subcontinent but this Sri Lankan team needs some time. Let them grow with time.” more..

'Series win in Australia hugely satisfying'

Feb 25 (CB) The Sri Lankan cricket team returned home to a heroes' welcome in the early hours of Friday after their thrilling series win over Australia. Led by Upul Tharanga in the absence of injured skipper Angelo Mathews, Sri Lanka won the first two T20Is at the MCG and Geelong - both off the last ball - to seal the series with a game to spare. Australia bounced back to win the final game in Adelaide, but Sri Lanka won the series 2-1. more..

Charana half-century rescues Thurstan

Feb 25 (Island) Put into bat first, Thurstan ran into trouble loosing five wickets for 66 runs before their experienced campaigner Charana Nanayakkara launched a rescue operation with a half-century for them to post 228 runs against arch-rivals Isipatana on day one of the 54th Battle of Brothers Big Match at the SSC grounds, Colombo on Friday. Despite losing two early wickets for 24 runs, Thurstan looked fine as opener Kasun Abeyratne scored at a pace of run a ball. But it was disaster after more..

SL: 39th greenest country in the world

Feb 25 (SO) Sri Lanka has set a futuristic and progressive task of increasing its share of renewable energy in electricity generation to 100% by 2030. Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority (SLSEA) was established to realize the necessity of having an apex institution to drive the country towards a new level of sustainability in energy generation and usage, through increasing indigenous energy and improving energy efficiency within the country. Sri Lanka has given indications that more..

'Centre must have power to dissolve PCs'

Feb 25 (DN) The Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly has agreed that the Centre must have the power to dissolve the Provincial Councils or take over their powers, Constitutional Lawyer and UNP MP Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne said. “We have now proposed to include a Clause in the new Constitution to enable the Centre to dissolve or take over the powers of any Provincial Council if it acts against more..

Sri Lanka’s first online book launch

Feb 25 (NS) Acclaimed Author Kelum Weligama is set to unveil his latest work Persona by means of a virtual book launch, first in SL’s publishing history today. Weligama is also the author of best selling personal development books, such as Jeewithaya Wenas Karana Katha 1 & 2 (Inspirational Stories for Life) Tharagaye Weeraya (Man of the Match) and Maha Molakayo (Master Minds) Moving away from traditional book launches, Weligama has chosen to launch his newest novel via online sphere. more..

IFC launches seventh Professional and Career Women Awards 2017

Feb 25 (Island) Women in Management (WIM) and IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, are inviting nominations for the Top 50 Professional and Career Women Awards 2017. Now in its seventh edition, these awards recognize women who inspire others with their successes in career, business, and everyday life. IFC and WIM work together in Sri Lanka to provide skill-building and training opportunities for women who lead, or work in, micro and small businesses. more..

American Congress delegation applauds unity govt’s achievements

Feb 25 (PSL) A delegation of the United States Congress called on President Maithripala Sirisena today (24) at the President’s Official Residence and held discussions about the steps to be taken to further strengthen bilateral relations; The 8-mlember delegation is the largest ever US Congress Group to visit Sri Lanka and it included 4 from the Democratic Party and 4 from the Republican Party. more..

SriLankan Aviation College to branch out overseas

Feb 25 (DN) SriLankan Aviation College the only EASA 147 certified training academy in the region plans to open branches in Jaffna and Batticaloa within the year and spread wings to Pakistan and Seychelles in the future. Most Sri Lankans working in major airlines overseas be a technician, engineer, ground handler, cargo agent or cabin crew has had some affiliation with the SriLankan Aviation College (SLAC) asserted, Primal De Silva, General Manager, SriLankan Aviation College more..

Sri Lanka’s real estate sector contributes 30% to economic development

Feb 25 (ST) Over the past few years real estate development sector in Sri Lanka has directly contributed more than 30 per cent to Sri Lanka’s economy and indirectly much more than that, says Minister Champika Ranawaka. He made this comment while speaking at the 1st Lanka Property Show organized by the Lanka Property Web at the Hilton Residence in Colombo on Friday. Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake and a few other officials were present among the invitees. more..

Key elements for a follow-up resolution

Feb 25 (HRW) Excellency, We write to seek your support in ensuring that the upcoming consideration of SL’s progress toward implementing its commitments under UNHRC resolution 30/1 accurately and substantively reflects the situation within the country. This includes both progress to date and the significant challenges remaining. At the end of this letter, we outline what we would consider to be the minimum key more..

'Buddha’s teachings continue to resonate'

Feb 25 (Hindu) The teachings of Buddha about compassion and universal brotherhood continue to resonate even today and Telangana has played a vital role in the revival of Buddhism in ancient India after it was suppressed for many years. This was the message from several speakers on the inaugural day of the first ever global celebrations on Buddhist Heritage of Telangana - 2017 organised by the Telangana State Tourism Development Corporation here on Thursday. more..

Sri Lankan identity needed at IPL

Feb 25 (NS) Ever since the retirement of batting artistes Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardena and Tillekaratne Dilshan, Sri Lanka’s T20 cricketers have collectively become a non-entity at the Indian Premier League (IPL) save the likes of Lasith Malinga, Angelo Mathews and Asela Gunaratne. Malinga is probably on his last legs for the Mumbai Indians at the age of 33 and struggling to be his old self. The present set-up for the Sri Lankans is a far cry from the inaugural IPL more..

Environmentalists clash over Wilpattu et al

Feb 25 (Island) Alleging that Minister Rishad Bathiudeen has taken advantage of the simmering dispute over clearing of Wilpattu jungles to pursue his objectives, Left Centre claimed that previous Rajapaksa administration as well as Yahapalana rulers were equally responsible for unabated destruction taking place. Chamara Nakandala said that the issue involving Minister Bathiudeen shouldn’t be taken in isolation. more..

Countries should work together on issue of illegal migrants: President

Feb 25 (PSL) “Similar to the way each country take decisions in national levels on the illegal migrants, they should act internationally with other countries regarding this matter”, says President Maithripala Sirisena. He was speaking at the concluding ceremony of the Second International Migrant Health Counseling Summit held today (23) in Colombo. “Legal migrant is a blessing for a country. But illegal migrants create health, social, economic and political issues for a country”, he said. more..

UNHRC: UK to support Sri Lanka despite rape camp allegations?

Feb 25 (EIN) As the UNHRC begins its Session on Mach 27th in Geneva, there are reports that UK is planning to support Sri Lankan Govt at the Council from facing UN inquiry, despite a recent report by the International Truth and Justice Project (ITJP) about Sri Lankan Military run rape Camps, where Tamil women are being held as sex slaves. According to the report: "A senior officer came into the room and was asked to take his pick, like we were meat in a meat market. more..

The Ring that saved keith

Feb 25 (NS) Story of Keith Noyahr’s miraculous escape from the clutches of death is known to all. However, there is a part which is known only to family of Rivira Media Corporation. The story where a momentary phone ring had saved Noyahr. What turned around a somewhat hopeless night was a frantic call amidst hundreds of others from the former Circulation Manager, Gamini Nukulasuriya to Keith’s mobile. more..

Divorce from UPFA to strengthen JO: NFF

Feb 25 (DM) The NFF led by MP Wimal Weerawansa said today the party's decision to act independently of the UPFA has been misinterpreted. It said the decision was taken to strengthen the joint opposition under the leadership of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa. “The UPFA led by President Maitripala Sirisena acts as an ally of the govt. Although the NFF contested the election on the UPFA ticket, it continues to act as party in the opposition. more..