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Clean up the judicial system

June 1 (CT) Attorney of Law Suganthika Fernando should be admired for her greatness, with no fear of the outcome from various quarters exposed the very poor quality of many of the judges, magistrate’ and court officials. Like all other government institutions the judicial system too is rotten to the very core of the justice ministry. From 1977 the judicial system was publicly stained with corruption from the very top to the peon. Appointments were not based on seniority but on their political views more..

Commonalities bet. Ramadan & Uposatha

June 1 (CT) There are several major religions and philosophical schools in this world. Billions of people follow one of these religions or philosophies. There is a relatively smaller number of atheists and those not belonging to the idea of religion and God. The atheist does not believe that there is a God Creator. Here, God meaning the traditional definition of a God. However, if one analyses, the atheist though does not believe in God Creator, he still believes in something. more..

A failure to protect?

June 1 (SO) In 2016, Sri Lanka established the National Authority for the Protection of Victims of Crimes and Witnesses as an initial step towards giving effect to international standards and best practices through which rights of victims of crime and witnesses will be protected. In the same year, the Sri Lanka Police also went on to set up a new division to refer witness protection cases to the new Authority. more..

20th Amendment, reality or fantasy?

June 1 (DN) The latest issue that has generated interest in political circles is the proposed 20th Amendment to the Constitution, which has now been presented to Parliament by the JVP which handed over the amendment to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya last week. The chances of the 20th Amendment becoming a reality is, at this stage, quite remote given the current composition of Parliament. However, the issue is indeed relevant and the stances adopted by various political parties more..

Presidential immunity: Scope and application

June 1 (DN) 1978 constitution introduced the notion of an executive presidency into the constitutional framework in view of the state’s agenda to expedite economic development. Office of the Executive President, with its claiming of broad immunities, was also expected to provide greater protection for minorities in SL. Hence the concept of presidential immunity became very much entrenched in the scope and structure of the present Constitution. However, scarcely a decade later, more..

'Gotabaya has displayed his abilities'

Jun 1 (CT) Former Minister W.D.J. Seneviratne says that he pointed out from the very beginning that what the Govt was doing for the past three years had been a complete failure. Q: Although it was with great verve that the 16 SLFP MPs including you went and sat in the Opposition, don’t you think, now, that it was a foolish act? A: No, no, no. There is a huge public response, now, after we left the Govt, that it was a good move. more..

Editorial: The Polls Chief’s ire

Jun 1 (Island) Proof of the pudding is said to be in the eating. When the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was passed by Parliament following the 2015 regime change it was made out to be the panacea for all our political ills. The creation of the National Election Commission (NEC) was hailed as a sure-fire way of ensuring that free and fair elections would be held on schedule. But, today, the situation has taken a turn for the worse. Elections are postponed according to the whims and more..

Are we building sustainably?

June 1 (FT) This is an honest question – Sri Lanka is a relatively small island in the Indian Ocean, Colombo is the economic capital of the country, with a growing urban population, with increasing demands to the physical infrastructure to sustain and support this growth. In addition, new high-rise buildings are being developed in the city centre, with more to be built over the coming decades as Sri Lanka’s economy grows and evolves to a more service-orientated economy to serve more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Tourism confident of promo campaign schedules

June 1 (ST) SL Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) seems to be gung-ho about the upcoming CNN campaign – a three month long schedule – expected to kick off next week. SLTPB Managing Director Sutheash Balasubramaniam assured that following the approvals for the campaign received by Cabinet the conditions that had been placed were normal and would be taken care of. He pointed out that they would be complied with and believed the campaign could commence next week. more..

Lankan karatekas win two bronze medals

Jun 1 (DN) Karatekas of the Sri Lanka National Team won two bronze medals at the 17th Asian Cadet Junior Karate Tournament held at the Japan, Okinava Town recently. It was organised by the Asian Karate Do Federation. Sri Lanka won two medals for the first time. Thirty four counties participated in this tournament. Vihangi Sashenka of Rathnawali Balika Vidyalaya, Gampaha won a Bronze Medal at this tournament in the under 16-17 years age group Girls Kata Karate Event. more..

Fasting, feasting, and snacking inbetween

June 1 (Roar) It is the month of Ramadan, the ninth month in the Islamic calendar. Most of your Muslim friends and colleagues are on an intense fast, getting slightly crankier throughout the day until iftar, the time to break fast with dates, water, and a steaming bowl of porridge. This is usually followed by multiple short-eats, deep fried snacks that is in no way healthy for an empty stomach by any stretch of imagination. more..

A S Jayawardena: The public policy management role model of our time

Jun 1 (Island) The demise of Mr. A S Jayawardena, former Governor Central Bank and Secretary to the Treasury will no doubt leave a notable lacuna particularly at intellectual gatherings, which he attended more often than not. Although he is physically no more with us, we will continue to remember him from different perspectives. He was a lovable and caring person to his family and colleagues alike. He never felt uneasy to work with younger officials. more..

Sri Lanka's devaluationist REER targeting is a tiger's tail

Jun 1 (EN) With the rupee hitting new lows against the US dollar, driven by a REER-targeting devaluationist policy to hurt wage earners, there seems to be little preventing SL from being shunted to greater political instability and discontent. It is not fair to blame the central bank only for the current problems. It was the 100-day profligate budget under Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake, assisted by CB Governor Arjuna Mahendran's unprecedented money printing that lit more..

Abolish PTA without compromising national security: HRCSL

Jun 1 (DM) The Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) should be abolished in order to prevent violations of citizen’s human rights without posing any threat to national security, Chairperson of Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) Dr. Deepika Udugama said. She said that it was the Commission’s preliminary recommendation to the govt to abolish the PTA Act, since it was observed that the human rights were heavily violated more..

Open letter to Additional Secretary to the Constitutional Assembly

Jun 1 (Island) I address this note consequent to a media report stating that the PM, following an appeal by the Leader of the Opposition, has instructed the Special Experts Committee of the Constitutional Assembly to finalize the Constitutional Reform proposals, taking account of the six experts sub-committee reports already received. I take the liberty of making this repeat submission, setting out in summary 10 points, which I firmly believe to be essential areas of reform, more..

SLC stands to lose US$ 4.5m from ICC if interim committee is appointed: Sumathipala

Jun 1 (DN) Outgoing president of Sri Lanka Cricket Thilanga Sumathipala stated that if an Interim Committee is appointed Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) will lose lakhs of money (4.5 million USD) from ICC grants at a press conference held at SLC headquarters yesterday. “We have informed of the current situation to the ICC. As our financial reports are not approved yet and if we fail to have our financial reports approved before June 30 we can’t get our financials grants. more..

Govt on major drive to recruit 20,000 graduates by year end

Jun 1 (FT) In a bid to pacify the protesting graduates, the Govt this week decided to recruit 20,000 graduates for a year-long training program with guaranteed job placement upon completion. Under the program designed by Ministry of National Policies and Economic affairs, headed by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, each trainee will be paid an allowance of Rs. 20,000 per month, more..

Ex-President laments about govt allowing issues to deteriorate

Jun 1 (Island) The govt could have prevented most of the strikes that were crippling the country if it had engaged in honest discussions with the relevant unions, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday. Commenting on the work to rule campaign by the Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers Union (CEBEU), which is to notch up a gear in intensity after its today’s special general meeting, Rajapaksa said that he would have prevented things from deteriorating this far. more..

KPMG announces historic appointment of Reyaz Mihular as regional Chairman

Jun 1 (FT) KPMG’s Middle East and South Asia (MESA) region board has announced the appointment of Reyaz Mihular as its Chairman for a two-year term commencing on 1 October at its recent board meeting. The appointment creates history for professional service firms in SL, making it the first time a SL professional has been appointed a leader in a global capacity within the Big 4 accounting firms in SL. Reyaz has served as a member of KPMG’s MESA Board since 2012 more..

UNP WC wants Thilanga removed from SLC

Jun 1 (DN) UNP Working Committee (WC) which met last morning had asked that Sri Lanka Cricket Board Chairman Thilanga Sumathipala be removed and replaced with a more suitable candidate. Sources within the WC, said UNP MP and Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake had explained that with the match fixing scandal, it was not appropriate to have a Chairman with alleged connections to betting and other scandals. more..

First largest common carrier vessel at JCT

Jun 1 (DN) Mv. Northern Jupiter, the first largest common carrier vessel made her maiden call on the Colombo port on May 20. She berthed at Jaya Container Terminal (JCT) for cargo operations. Mv. Northern Jupiter is handled by Simatech Marine Lanka (Pvt) Ltd at Colombo, Simatech Marine Lanka are the exclusive agents for Singapore based FeedertchPte Ltd. FeedertechPte Ltd had deployed the 2010 built Mv. Northern Jupiter in the China/Straits-India Sub Continent Service more..

Attack on Calvary Church: CA fixes appeal

Jun 1 (FT) Court of Appeal fixed for 13 June the appeal filed by the Attorney General against the High Court judgment where Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero and two Buddhist monks as well as 10 other laymen were acquitted in the indictment against them for the alleged attack on the Calvary Church at Araliya Uyana in Talahena. The bench comprised justices Pathman Surasena (CA President) and Arjuna Obeysekera. Court of Appeal on 2 Feb directed the Counsel for more..

Field Marshal ready to contest next prez poll

Jun 1 (Island) Minister Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka has said in Kandy that he will contest the 2020 presidential election if his party gave him nomination. Field Marshal made the announcement responding to a media query at Malwatte Temple on Wednesday afternoon when he paid a courtesy call on the prelate of Malwatte. People talk high about Gotabaya Rajapaksa, but he was not that strong, more..

CAL joins regional investment banks to provide access to SA frontier markets

Jun 1 (Island) Capital Alliance (CAL) has signed an MoU with AKD Securities Limited and Pakistan and Lanka Bangla Securities Limited in Bangladesh with the objective of providing investors with a single investment platform via which they can access South Asia’s leading frontier markets. MoU, which comes against the backdrop of the successful inaugural South Asia Investor Conference (SAIC) co-hosted by the three firms in Colombo recently, was signed by Nasir Uddhin Chowdhury more..

City Finance acquired by Lanka Credit and Business

Jun 1 (FT) After discussions and negotiations with the Central Bank, Lanka Credit and Business Ltd. (LCBL) has acquired City Finance Corporation Ltd the company said in a statement. The acquisition was made on 19 April. Before that, CBSL had conducted an in-depth evaluation of LCBL and had made an assessment of the future business plan of LCBL to restructure and turn around City Finance Corporation Ltd. Initially LCBL made a capital infusion of Rs. 565 million. more..

Attempts to obtain list fail

Jun 1 (CT) Attempts by interested parties to obtain Annexure C-350, of the PCoI Report on Treasury Bonds scam, from Dept of National Archives on a directive from Prez’s Secretary Austin Fernando, turned out to be a damp squib yesterday as that directive had not reached the National Archives. CHR and CaFFE Executive Director Rajith Keerthi Tennakoon claimed that the Annexure contains the list of individuals who received more..

Skipper Chandimal starts with century

Jun 1 (CT) SL captain Dinesh Chandimal made a wonderful start to his Caribbean campaign by scoring a century on the opening day of the tour against the Windies ‘A’ at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba yesterday. The right-handed batsman hardly put a foot wrong, as his team closed the first day of the three-day encounter on 318 for six. With the Test match just a week away at the Queen’s Park Oval, Chandimal used the opportunity to acclimatise to conditions here in Trinidad. more..

3,000 suicides annually: Health Ministry

Jun 1 (CT) Ministry of Health, said approximately 3,000 people commit suicide annually. Director of Mental Health Dr. Chithramalee de Silva, addressing a media workshop held to formulate guidelines for reporting on suicide, said the current statistics showed that 15 people committed suicide for every 100,000 people in society. “All these deaths were preventable if timely action had been taken,” she noted. The country has seen a drastic reduction in the number of suicide cases. more..

Enterprise Sri Lanka: Govt to invest Rs.80mn

Jun 1 (DM) The govt will invest some Rs.80 billion in developing rural roads, rural markets, and other public facilities, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera said. He said the Gampereliya scheme will be the primary focus of the govt’s economic agenda over the next 24 months. The first Gamperaliya exhibition will be organised in Monaragala on Aug 16 followed by Anuradhapura and Jaffna. more..

Did President’s Secretary take everyone for a ride by sealing PCoI report in archives?

Jun 1 (Island) Although the President’s Secretary, Austin Fernando states that interested parties can obtain the full PCoI report on the bond scam from the National Archives, those documents had an embargo of 30 years, Executive Director of the CaFFE, Rajith Keerthi Tennakoon said. "I made a call to the President’s Secretary who informed me that I can obtain the full PCoI report from the archives. This is what he had told SLFP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera on Wednesday. more..

Amid concerns over China's debt trap diplomacy, US lawmakers visit Sri Lanka

Jun 1 (Wion) Amid the global concern over China's debt trap diplomacy, a bipartisan group of influential US lawmakers visited SL to gauge the ground-level situation. Cash-rich China has invested millions of dollars in SL's infrastructure since the end of a brutal civil war in 2009. Under a pact with Sri Lanka, China recently gained lease of the strategic Hambantota port for 99 years. Sri Lankan politicians had said that the deal, valued at US $1.1 billion, was necessary to chip away at the debt. more..

Sri Lanka Cricket chief hits back at Arjuna

Jun 1 (AFP) Sri Lanka's cricket chief on Thursday lambasted former skipper Arjuna Ranatunga for casting a corruption shadow over the country's 2011 World Cup defeat and in turn questioned Ranatunga's actions as a player. SLC president Thilanga Sumathipala said Ranatunga, who captained the country to its 1996 World Cup victory, should have followed the right protocol instead of raising doubts. more..

Sri Lankan Navy arrests 6 Tamil refugees

Jun 1 (DC) In a late night development on Wednesday that has sent shock waves across Rameswaram, six SL Tamil refugees, including a woman and two children, were apprehended by the Island Navy authorities from an Indian trawler, suspected to be unauthorized immigrants, heading towards the North SL coast near Talaimannar. Reports reaching here on Thursday said that the six of a family of SL Tamil refugees including three male members were allegedly being illegally ferried more..

UNP again told to correct inauspicious things in its Headquarters

Jun 1 (Island) The UNP had not taken adequate action to address Vaastu dosha (Flaws in architecture as laid down by our ancients) issues that arise from violating any principle of Vaastu Shastra (architectural science) at the party Headquarters, Sirikotha, which has caused great disharmony in the party, a senior UNPer said talking to The island. Minister Gamini Jayawickrama Perera said that he had informed the party leadership about the possible Vaastu dosha at the Party HQ. more..

Admiral Wijewardene behind LCdr Hettiarachchi’s disappearance

Jun 1 (CT) CID yesterday, informed Colombo Fort Chief Magistrate that former Navy Commander and current Chief of Defence Staff, Admiral Ravindra Wijegunawardene was connected to the disappearance of Lieutenant Commander Prasad Hettiarachchi, a suspect charged with the abduction and disappearance of 11 children. Attorney Achala Seneviratne, appearing for the aggrieved parties, questioned the CID on more..

Turn to Ayurveda to strengthen your immune system

Jun 1 (DM) With heavy rains, landslides and strong winds continuing in most parts of the country, another problem is the influenza epidemic largely in the South and it could become serious if urgent and effective measures are not taken. On May 28, the Daily Mirror in a front page news report spotlighted the lack of facilities like Intensive Care Units (ICUs) but we need to focus more on measures to prevent the epidemic. The usual method is by having mass vaccination campaigns. more..

LTTE bogey to scuttle Constitution making

Jun 1 (DM) It is interesting and in a way puzzling to note that the political parties and leaders who agitated to scrap the Executive Presidential system of Governance during the height of the separatist war, are now expressing fear to do so, on the grounds that the country would be divided. The SLFP group functioning under former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, MEP led by Dinesh Gunawardane, Wimal Weerawansa and his party men, who were then members of the JVP, more..

From Anura’s to Mahinda’s 20 21 A

Jun 1 (DM) Posters adorned city walls last week, saying the 20th Amendment to the Constitution would, Divide the Country. The JVP-initiated the 20th Amendment to the Constitution is basically a correction to the 19A this hybrid Yahapalana Govt adopted with JVP also voting for it. A correction in terms of the main and the major pledge made during the 2015 January Presidential Election campaign. Abolishing of the Executive Presidency was more..

SLFP group of 16 opposes 20A

Jun 1 (Island) The Group of 16 SLFP MPs, who left the Govt and joined the Opposition, said that they completely opposed the proposal, in the 20th Amendment, brought by the JVP. Explaining their stance on the matter, MP S.B. Dissanayake said, in the event the 13th Amendment to the Constitution imposes a threat on the unitary status of the country, the Executive Presidency is key to diminishing that threat. more..