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Karu Jayasuriya to be Honoured with Sasana Keerthi Sri Deshabhimani Award

Mar 19 (Island) Today (19), the Malwatta Chapter of the Siam Nikaaya will bestow on Speaker Deshabandu Karu Jayasuriya (78) the Sasana Keerthi Sri Deshabhimani Award, the highest honour that it awards to a layperson for his or her services to the Buddha Saasana and more broadly to the nation as a patriot. Mr. Jayasuriya, who is the lay president of the Ramanna Nikaaya, is one of the tiny minority of political leaders in the country more..

De Mel’s contradictions

Mar 19 (Island) Chairman of Selectors Ashantha de Mel has ambitious plans for SL cricket, however, his actions continue to defy all logic. Since taking over from Graeme Labrooy four months ago, De Mel has emphasized the need to give players freedom. However his actions have the exact opposite impact on the team, players, captains and coaching staff. De Mel publicly criticized Dinesh Chandimal’s captaincy in NZ and Australia. Not only did he do this publicly, but in the middle of a tour. more..

Sri Lanka-South Africa ODI review

Mar 19 (DN) The recently concluded five-match ODI series between Sri Lanka and South Africa and won quite comprehensively by the host country by a margin of 5-0 hardly served the purpose for Sri Lanka whereas World Cup selection are concerned. Neither did the batsmen nor the bowlers came up with any noteworthy contributions that could have placed their names of the national cricket selectors’ short list for the World Cup. All what Sri Lanka had to show was just three half-centuries more..

1st T20I SA Vs SL: Focus remains on World Cup as T20Is start

Mar 19 (CI) Despite the change in format, the focus for both teams remains the swiftly-approaching fifty-over World Cup. South Africa made as much clear by naming the same squad for the first T20I as that chosen for the ODIs just past, with national selector Linda Zondi stating that Cricket South Africa regard the match as another step towards the completion of Vision 2019, their grand plan for World Cup success. more..

Afghanistan earn first Test win with seven-wicket success over Ireland

Mar 19 (BBC) Afghanistan earned their first Test win after Rahmat Shah's 76 and Ihsanullah Janat's 65 helped them earn a seven-wicket victory over Ireland. Starting day four on 29-1 chasing 147 for victory, the duo's 139-run partnership ended any hopes of an unlikely Ireland fightback in Dehradun. After hitting 98 in Afghanistan's first innings, Shah was out for 76 just three short of the victory target. Mohammad Nabi quickly departed but the Afghans were not to be denied. more..

Romesh Kaluwitharana was an aggressive opening batsman

Mar 19 (DN) At short notice I had to rush to catch up with Romesh Kaluwitharane, it was an arduous journey by tuk tuk bus and then again tuk tuk, I guess it’s the travails of a free lance journalist which is hard to stomach at the best of times. Romesh’s house was adjacent to St Sebastian’s College Moratuwa, where he learnt his rudiments of cricket.He was a notable son of Moratuwa where cricket, Baila and furniture is still famous. The people are unique in character because more..

Huawei steps up commitment, growth potential in innovation hub Sri Lanka

Mar 19 (FT) Global giant Huawei reiterated its commitment to SL, a regional hub for innovation and core business segments delivering good growth with potential for more. Huawei Technologies Lanka CEI Shunli Wang told journalists yesterday that its telecom carrier business and enterprise solutions had delivered 10% and 20% growth respectively in 2018, whilst the Huawei smartphones are market leaders. more..

Opposition wants voting rights for migrant workers

Mar 19 (FT) A proposal to grant voting rights to SL migrant workers was brought to the Govt’s attention in Parliament. Opposition lawmaker Sunil Handunnetti, highlighting the important role the migrant workers play in providing much-needed foreign exchange, held many countries other than Sri Lanka have granted their migrant workers the opportunity to vote using the Internet, and through their consular offices abroad. “Already 63 countries have started allowing their migrant workers to more..

'More Road Shows in the offing to promote CSE'

Mar 19 (Island) CSE chairman Ray Abeywardena who was a panelist at the 7th Annual Capital Market Conference organized by UTO Educonsult (Pvt) Ltd which was held on the of Mar 13 airing his views on the plans to develop the market confirmed that initiatives were underway to hold more Road Shows this year to promote the market overseas. Commenting on the excellent valuations and that the market was comparatively cheap at under 9 times on multiples, he stated that the impetus to more..

Economic sentiment on the rise: Survey

Mar 19 (FT) Sentiment surrounding the economy improved in February as 12% of respondents in the latest Business Confidence (BCI) poll believe that conditions will get better in the next 12 months. “The economy has begun to stabilise now, and we expect that it, as well as the investment climate, will improve further in the coming months,” a corporate executive said. Business prospects have also improved as 50% and 34% of those more..

Illegal fresh water fishing to be tackled

Mar 19 (NR) State Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Dilip Wedaarachchi has decided to establish a special raids unit to control illegal activities surrounding fresh water fishing. The State Minister has instructed the Chairman and the Director General of the National Aquaculture Development Authority to expedite measures related to this initiative. It has been revealed that fresh water fish crop drastically decreased owing to the use of illegal poaching methods. more..

Sri Lanka corporate, non-corporate income tax revenue up 20%

Mar 19 (EN) Govt revenue generated from corporate and non-corporate income tax rose 20.4% to 166.2 billion rupees in the first eleven months of 2018 from 138 billion rupees a year ago. Income taxes accounted for 17% of total revenue during the Jan-Nov 2018 period, after excise duty which brought in a quarter of total revenue and Value Added Tax which contributed 24%. Of total tax revenue during the same period, income tax accounted for 19, after import-based taxes which contributed 47% more..

Facebook takes down Sri Lanka TV anchor's posts justifying NZ massacre

Mar 19 (EN) Facebook took down an offensive post by an anchor working for Derana TV and also deleted several equally offending posts justifying the massacre of 50 people in NZ. "We’ve reviewed the share you reported," Facebook told one of its users who was upset by what he called the insensitive post of Chapa Chapabandara on his Facebook face on Friday. "As it violated our Community Standards, we've removed it. more..

No MCC office at Temple Trees

Mar 19 (FT) Govt rejected Opposition charges that an office of the Millennium Challenge Corporation exists within Temple Trees. Minister Sagala Ratnayaka told Parliament that no US agencies are allowed to set up offices inside the official residence of the PM. Minister Ratnayaka, urging the Opposition lawmaker Wimal Weerawansa to stop spreading false information, said: “The Millennium Challenge Corporation, or any other US Agency, has not set up an office at Temple Trees. more..

15 Cricketers to receive colours

Mar 19 (CT) The Sri Lanka Milo Schools Colours Awards for the years 2016 and 2017 organised by the Education Ministry will be held on 4 April 2019 at BMICH. The year 2016 will see 216 students representing 30 sports receiving colours. Cricket, the most popular sport among school children, will see 15 exceptional players being honoured with colours. In fact, the 15 players who will be feted on 4 April were the players who represented the Island nation in the 2016 Under-19 World Cup. more..

Sri Lanka media rights activists decry new anti-terror laws

Mar 19 (AP) Media rights activists urged the Sri Lankan govt to withdraw proposed anti-terror legislation, calling it is a set of draconian laws aimed at suppressing the media freedom and democratic rights. The new Counter-Terrorism bill approved by the cabinet of ministers is now before the Parliament. A date has yet to be announced for a debate and a vote on the bill, which the govt says would repeal existing tough anti-terror law. more..

Sri Lankan social activist never lost her resolve for fighting child abuse

Mar 19 (PNJ) Marini de Livera was at the grand opening of a rural community's first schoolhouse library when she got word she had been replaced. Then the chairperson of Sri Lanka's National Child Protection Authority, de Livera had made enemies by aggressively investigating child abuse — even when her work led her to the doorsteps of influential politicians. And when public ridicule, death threats and roadblocks from her own government failed to stop de Livera's investigations, more..

Nilmini Sigera wins Yakushi Pearl Award at Osaka film festival

Mar 19 (GDI) Actress Nilmini Sigera won the Yakushi Pearl Award for the given to the Most Brilliant Performer at the Osaka Asian Film Festival (OAFF) 2019 which was held in Osaka City, Japan, from March 8 to 17. The Film Festival which celebrates and appreciates film productions in the Asian cinema industry and has been conducted annually since 2005. Sigera received the award for her performance in Asoka Handagama’s latest film Asandhimitta. more..

Sri Lanka dairy farmers in trouble after buying imported milch cows

Mar 19 (EN) Sri Lanka is looking to give debt relief to farmers who have got into trouble after buying expensive imported milch cows that were not yielding as much milk as promised, amid problems with feed and care. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock Development P Harrison told parliament said talks were underway with the ministry of finance to extend the repayment period for farmers who were in financial difficulties more..

Chamal’s resignation from CC accepted

Mar 19 (DN) Prez Sirisena has informed the Constitutional Council (CC) of his acceptance of the resignation of former Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa from the CC. Official communication of the President was informed to the CC members when they met at the Parliamentary complex yesterday. Former Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa was appointed to the CC in Oct 2018 with the agreement between PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and then Opposition Leader R.Sampanthan. more..

Release of land gets UNHRC approval: Govt

Mar 19 (FT) Release of lands under military control has attracted the attention of the UNHRC, and contains positive comments in the Resolution to be presented at the forthcoming sessions. Minister Lakshman Kiriella told Parliament that the draft Resolution commends the Govt initiative to release land back to its rightful owners in the North. Minister, expressing his views on the Govt decision in response to a statement made by Opposition lawmaker Dinesh Gunawardena, said: more..

40th session of UNHRC: No change in co-sponsorship: FM

Mar 19 (DN) The 5-member delegation to the ongoing UNHRC’s 40th regular session, will present the country’s statement to the Council tomorrow. The delegation is comprised of Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana, Dr. Sarath Amunugama, Northern Province Governor Suren Raghavan, Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha and Deputy Solicitor General Nerin Pulle. The head of delegation, Minister Marapana will present more..

Eight more arrests made in Rathgama businessmen murders

Mar 19 (DN) The CID yesterday arrested seven more Police officers and a Forest Reserve officer over the murders of the two businessmen of Rathgama. The policemen and the Forest Reserve officer had been arrested following lengthy questioning over the incident. Among the arrested are two Sub-Inspectors, two Sergeants, two Constables and a Police Constable driver attached to Police Special Investigations Unit of the Southern Province. more..

FITIS calls on Govt to remove 3.5% NBT for foreign payments

Mar 19 (FT) Federation of the Information Technology Industry SL (FITIS) called on the Govt to remove the 3.5% NBT proposed in the Budget 2019 completely from foreign payments using credit and debit cards, insisting it will affect the ICT industry as well as the economy. In a letter addressed to Minister Mangala Samaraweera, the apex body of the ICT industry pointed out that the enactment of the proposed NBT of 3.5% to be charged on all foreign payments made by more..

CEB set on carrying out load shedding to deal with current power shortage

Mar 19 (FT) CEB has requested approval from the Power Ministry to carry out load shedding to cope with the current deficit in the power supply, owing to prevailing dry weather conditions in the country, as unscheduled power cuts were experienced across the island yesterday due to technical failures in Norochcholai. The second generator of Norochcholai tripped due to a technical failure yesterday, leading to power failures more..

700 children die every day due to lack of safe water

Mar 19 (DM) One of the year’s most important days, the UN World Water day will be marked all over the world on Friday with this year’s theme being, Leaving no one behind- water for all. It may be somewhat of a cliché to say that little drops of water make the mighty oceans and great rivers. But in this era when the world is known to be running short of safe water supplies and there is a danger of the super powers going to war for control of safe water supplies just as they went to war for control more..

UNHRC: Mere formality, get over with it

Mar 19 (DM) For years, foreign policy mandarins and their political bosses in this country lived and re-lived a lie that Sri Lanka’s destiny would be decided in Geneva. They were joined by the acolytes of the Tamil Tiger terrorists, their financers and paid and otherwise propagandists, who made the gullible in the diaspora part ways with their hard currencies, thinking that they were winning the war that the Tigers lost in May 2009. That debate had lost its intensity since then, but, more..

Hampshire stint on hold as Dimuth enters frame for SL World Cup captaincy

Mar 19 (CI) Dimuth Karunaratne's forthcoming stint with the Hampshire county side may be cancelled, with SL's selectors now strongly considering handing the ODI reins to Karunaratne for the World Cup. Hampshire had signed Karunaratne as their overseas player in February, but Karunaratne has now been asked to remain in Sri Lanka through April, in order to play the provincial one-day tournament, more..

Local contractors agitate against Chinese dominance

Mar 19 (ST) Sri Lanka’s contractors have expressed concern over Chinese dominance in construction projects here, and Govt efforts to preclude the local trade from participating even in basic tenders. One example they pointed to was an initiative to rehabilitate high priority roads and bridges in the Northern and Eastern Provinces, advertised in January last year by the Ministry of National Integration & Reconciliation. more..

‘Govt to safeguard archaeological sites’

Mar 19 (GDI) Minister Sajith Premadasa assured that the govt would not allow any misdeed to take place at any of the archaeological sites in the country.The minister said so during the third reading stage debate on Budget proposals, under the expenditure heads of the Ministries of Buddha Sasana and Cultural Affairs in Parliament, last Saturday. “Under our reconciliation drive, temples & kovils could be established. more..

TUs urge Govt to end long-drawn-out strike

Mar 19 (CT) Several powerful trade unions have requested the Govt to intervene and end a breach of human rights of workers, attached to ATG Ceylon Pvt Ltd, by the Management. Workers are of the view that domestic and int'l labour laws were being violated. ATG Ceylon (Pvt) Ltd. is a Company affiliated to the FTZ in Katunayake. Trade unions point out that workers of ATG, attached to its work wear production unit, have already launched more..

Prez Election: Sirisena not our choice: SLPP

Mar 19 (CT) The SLPP is not willing to elect Maithripala Sirisena as President again, despite being prepared to tie-up with the SLFP chaired by him, in order to topple the Govt led by the UNP, SLPP Gampaha District Leader Prasanna Ranatunga said. He said so during a programme organised by his Party under the theme Gama Samaga Pilisandarak (a dialogue with the village) held in Nedagamuwa, Kotugoda, on 16 Mar. more..

Prez reveals reason for S’pore visit

Mar 19 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena claimed that his visit on 24 Jan 2019 to Singapore, to deliver the keynote address at the Third Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific, was done unwillingly as the true reason for the visit was to urge the President of Singapore Halimah Yacob to help extradite the main suspect in CB Treasury Bonds scam, former Governor of the CB, Arjuna Mahendran. more..

Video: Ministers using cocaine: Ranjan undertook a govt contract: Gammanpila

Mar 19 (DM) While claiming that State Minister Ranjan Ramanayake’s recent remarks on cocaine being used by several ministers, were baseless, PHU Leader Udaya Gammanpila said it was a contract given by the Govt to the State Minister. Addressing a news briefing, he said it was done with the motive of diverting the attention of the people and preventing authorities from attending to their respective work. more..

SLPP slams SLFP for abstaining from Budget vote

Mar 19 (FT) The SLPP yesterday criticised the SLFP for its decision to abstain from voting on the second reading of the Budget 2019, and said it must make its reasons clear to bolster confidence between the two parties, which are in talks to form a coalition. The second reading of the Appropriation Bill 2019 was passed in Parliament on 12 March, with 119 MPs voting in favour, while 76 were against it. more..

Sri Lanka gets US$ 2.37bn in FDI in 2018; targets US$ 3bn in 2019

Mar 19 (EN) Sri Lanka has received US$ 2.37 billon of foreign direct investment in 2018, up 38% from US$ 1.78 billion a year earlier. Director General of the BoI Champika Malalgoda said the original target for 2018 was US$ 2.5 billion. In 2019, Sri Lanka is targeting US$ 3 billion of investments. "I am sure we can achieve this target with the projects in the pipeline," Malalgoda told reporters in Colombo. more..

Video: Adm. Karannagoda arrives at CID for third day

Mar 19 (AD) The former Navy Commander Retired Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda has arrived at the CID for the third day. He has arrived at the CID on two previous occasions, on 11th and 13th of March, to record a statement on the case of the disappearance of 11 youths in Colombo in 2008. On March 11th he was interrogated for nearly 8 hours. On Feb 25th, Retired Admiral Karannagoda filed a FR petition more..

The last straw in local politics today

Mar 19 (FT) I don’t despair easily. But a sense of desolation has overtaken me. Since it is abundantly clear that the last of the statesmen is dead and gone in SL today. However much you may hold out hope that some knight in shining armour or street-wise Hercules will come to deliver us from all evils, it is pie in the sky. Therefore let us resolve ourselves to our fate with a sense of humour and the traditional resilience that helps us islanders cope with the realities of political hubris and hypocrisy. more..

Brave Act

Mar 19 (CT) SLPP Embilipitiya Pradeshiya Sabha (PS) Chairman M.K. Amila was recently sacked by the Election Commission (EC) on the advice of the Attorney General for assaulting two Policemen attached to Panamure Police Station, Ratnapura, whilst engaged in their official duties in 2013. Amila’s case follows, the case where previously former Tangalle PS Chairman Sampath Vidanapathirana (UPFA) was sentenced to 20 years’ rigorous imprisonment by Court for murder and rape more..

Karunarathna Paranawithana