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CEB to go for supplementary power purchases to address power shortage

Mar 28 (FT) CEB yesterday sought approval from Public Utilities Commission (PUCSL) to procure 100 MW of supplementary power and sign agreements with two independent power producers as a means of addressing the deepening power crisis. Two procurement deals, which were recommended by CEB as a short-term solution to avoid current power shortage, have been marred in controversy leading to delays in procurement, more..

Tilak Marapana’s efforts should not go waste

Mar 28 (DM) On the face of it, the intervention by Foreign Affairs Minister Tilak Marapana at the Geneva sessions of the UNHRC, appears apt and even laudable. He has stated, on behalf of the Govt, certain incontrovertible truths pertaining to the post-conflict situation in Sri Lanka. Naturally, he’s bound and even hindered by the relevant protocols, most seriously by what the Govt has agreed to in its wisdom (or lack thereof) or servility (more likely) on previous occasions. more..

Rajapaksa’s hollow call: Discipline for them freedom for us?

Mar 28 (DM) It is time that a debate of classical genre between freedom and discipline emerged in the socio-political spheres in SL. Engagement of the country’s learned ones, academics, intellectuals, professionals and thinking politicians is an indispensable component for a lively, robust and meaningful exchange of ideas, ideals and enlightening thoughts. It is not only essential that the participation of all shades of SL thought be brought forward for a lively deliberation of content and more..

Mysterious Mystery

Mar 28 (DM) When this column first reported that a ‘RED’ NOTICE had been issued on Mahendran, questions were asked, and eyebrows were raised!!! Now we are told that, at the request of the President, INTERPOL has issued a second notice on Mahendran!!! The MYSTERY IS WHY HAS IT STILL NOT BEEN POSSIBLE TO ARREST AND BRING MAHENDRAN IN??? Is Mahendran the elusive Scarlet Pimpernel? more..

Festering power struggles bubble over, again

Mar 28 (ST) Despite strong assurances from the Power and Energy Ministry that power cuts imposed due to the sudden breakdown of the Norochcholai coal power plant on Monday, people are left without electricity for three to four hours at times. Households and business large and small, are all counting the cost of power cuts and failures. The power interruptions in turn have raised questions about future supplies and more..

Sri Lankan engineers warn against open-ended LNG imports in proposed policy

Mar 28 (EN) SL engineers have warned against open-ended liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports implied in a proposed govt natural gas policy, saying it could delay development of newly-found offshore hydrocarbon deposits. Shavi Fernando, head of the energy sector committee of the Institution of Engineers of SL, was critical of references to LNG imports during a public forum on the new draft policy held by the PUCSL, more..

JVP demands immediate end to colonial legacy of corporal punishment in schools

Mar 28 (Island) JVP MP Bimal Rathnayaka yesterday urged the govt to immediately introduce legislation to impose a total ban on corporal punishment in schools. Speaking during the debate on the Expenditure Head of the Ministry of Women & Child Affairs and Dry Zone Development, Rathnayaka pointed out that corporal punishment was introduced under the British and was a legacy of colonialism. more..

Sri Lanka's new house costs down by a third if protectionist taxes removed

Mar 28 (EN) Sri Lanka's housing prices could be cut by a third if protectionist tariffs on construction raw material are removed, a housing developer said. "I could cut my prices by almost a third if the govt gives the right incentives," Iconic Developments Managing Director Rohan Parikh said. He said that people would like to buy housing in Colombo, but they are too expensive. "Construction material here is expensive," more..

Gnanam foundation to build Rs. 740Mn 6-storey building to Jaffna Uni

Mar 28 (AD) Recent Cabinet decisions released to public in Sri Lanka outlines that Cabinet of Ministers lead by Prez and PM had approved a proposal by Minister Rauff Hakeem to implement a project and enter into agreements with the Lyca Group of the United Kingdom that has agreed to build a six storeyed building with a 6,500 Sq.M floor area including modern facilities with an investment of Rs.740 million and more..

SC suspends appointment of new Docs

Mar 28 (CT) The Attorney General yesterday informed the Supreme Court that it was the policy of the Govt to absorb all medical students who have completed the bachelor of medicine, bachelor of surgery degree to State sector hospitals, based on the vacancies that are available. He told the Court that it was also the policy of the Govt to handover letters of appointment to foreign degree holders only after the intake of local medical more..

Kodagoda sworn in as Appeals Court Prez

Mar 28 (AD) Additional Solicitor General and President’s Counsel Yasantha Kodagoda has been sworn in as the President of Appeals Court. He took oath before President Maithripala Sirisena at the President’s Official Residence this morning. Secretary to the President Udaya R. Seneviratne was also present at this event. On March 24th, Constitutional Council had unanimously approved PC Kodagoda’s name more..

SL Army holds HRCSL in respect

Mar 28 (DN) The SL Army in a press communique yesterday expressed its gratitude to Human Rights Commission of SL (HRCSL) for extending its support to SL Army. The communique lauded the assistance extended to SL Army by the Commission in obtaining clearance for embarking on UN peacekeeping operations. It also said “It is the opinion of the SL Army that we, as Sri Lankans, should be proud that UN has selected more..

SL seeks divine help to end power crisis

Mar 28 (AFP) Sri Lanka’s state energy provider sought divine intervention Thursday to break a crippling power shortage, dispatching envoys to the country’s north to offer holy water to a tree sacred to Buddhists. The island nation has endured widespread energy shortages all week as a severe drought bites into hydro-electricity production, resulting in unpredictable blackouts and emergency measures to slash usage. more..

Grade Five exam behemoth

Mar 28 (CT) Grade Five Scholarship Exam was introduced in 1944 by then Minister of Education Dr. C.W.W. Kannangara with the intention of patronising the education of highly talented students of the rural areas who are of not-so-affluent backgrounds. The primary objective of the Grade Five Scholarship Exam was to enable the students who excel in the exam to get admitted to a popular school in a town area and to obtain financial assistance for their education until they enter university. more..

AI and political marketing

Mar 28 (FT) Artificial Intelligence has become a hot topic in the recent past in Sri Lanka, with an eminent business personality explaining how his companies like Singer and HAYLEYS are using this technology to better serve the customers. Let me do a deep dive into this interesting area. In simple words, AI is a technology which making machines work in an intelligent way, similar to the way that of how a human mind works. The key benefits of AI is that machines do not take a break like humans. more..

V Force ක්රියාන්විතය

Four including accomplice of Kimbula-Ela Guna arrested

Mar 28 (AD) Police have arrested four suspects including underworld figure known as Peramulle Sameera, a close associate of large-scale drug trafficker Kimbula-Ela Guna, who is believed to be in hiding in India. The suspects, who are connected to the drug trade and other criminal activities, were arrested by STF personnel following an operation carried out last night in the Palliyawatta area at Hendala, Wattala. Maduranga Fernando alias Peramulle Sameera is also believed to be more..

Norochcholai plant was destroyed during Rajapaksa era: CBK

Mar 28 (AD) Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga says that there would be no such power shortage in the country if construction of the Norochcholai coal power plant had been handed to the same Chinese company that was handed the project under her govt. She said that most of the power plants in the country were commissioned during her govt. She also charged that no new power plants were constructed during the reign of former President Rajapaksa and more..

Luxury cruise ship Silver Whisper calls at Colombo Port

Mar 28 (DN) The luxury cruise ship, Silver Whisper, part of the Silver Sea Cruise liner company called over to the Colombo Port on Monday carrying 300 high end luxury passengers who are on an around the world voyage. The ship first called over at the Trincomalee harbour on March 22, prior to calling over at the Colombo port. Silver Whisper boasts of amenities of a grand resort. The charms of more..

CSE to launch sustainability index

Mar 28 (EN) Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) will be launching a new index for listed firms in Sri Lanka which have the best environment, social, and governance (ESG) sustainable disclosures, a top official said. "Will will be launching an ESG Index," CSE Research and New Products Head Nishantha Hewavithana said. The groundwork for the new index is already complete, and CSE is evaluating the correct time to launch it, he said. He was speaking at a forum organized by the CSE and more..

‘Teachers yet to be paid for paper marking’

Mar 28 (NR) Ceylon Teachers Union has charged that teachers who marked 2018 GCE O/L exam papers have not been paid for their services thus far. Union Secretary Joseph Starling said the Dept of Examinations has failed to fulfil its responsibilities in this regard. He also charged that some teachers who marked GCE A/L papers are also yet to receive any payment. While stressing the issue was a significant one, he said paper marking payments are only a minor sum yet authorities had failed more..

Video: Temple Trees to be powered by generators until power crisis ends

Mar 28 (AD) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe today called on the officers of SL Administrative Service to take effective measures to use electricity in an economizing manner at public institutions until the power crisis is resolved. Requesting the administrative officers to use electricity only for essential purposes, PM further called on for discontinuation of using electricity from the national grid whenever possible and more..

Sri Lanka kicks off first ever tourism campaign in South Africa

Mar 28 (FT) The SL High Commission in Pretoria, with the support of the SL Tourism Promotion Bureau, organised So Sri Lanka Tourism Exhibition at Aviary Court in Menlyn Shopping Mall from 20-25 March. It was the first ever SL Tourism Promotional Campaign that took place in South Africa. Menlyn Shopping Mall is the largest shopping mall in the African Continent, which records 1.4m foot counts a month. The Exhibition was launched on 20 March, and Bangladesh High Commissioner more..

‘MS should summon SL’s UN Representative’

Mar 28 (NR) The SLPP has requested President Maithripala Sirisena to recall the SL’s Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva. MP Janaka Wakkumbura said the Permanent Representative has acted against the country’s sovereignty. MP Wakkumbura noted the President himself claimed that SL’s Permanent Representative to the UN has betrayed the country and soldiers, adding the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Secretary are unaware of the move. more..

Nurses end two-day token strike

Mar 28 (AD) The Public Services United Nurses Union has concluded its two-day token strike at 7 a.m. this morning. The govt nurses had launched a token strike on March 26th based on several demands. Chairman of the Union Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thero stated that govt nurses would resort to a strong trade union action if the relevant authorities fail to heed their demands. He further said the authorities have not taken more..

SL urged to promote services exports to UK

Mar 28 (EN) Sri Lanka should promote more services exports to the UK as it seeks to retain preferential access to that market following Britain’s exit from the European Union, to which it now exports duty free, a new study said. Under the GSP+ scheme Sri Lanka gets a great deal of preferential market access to the European Union including the U.K., the study by real estate consultancy Research Intelligence Unit (RIU), in association with the Sri Lankan High Commission in London. more..

CB to issue coins to the public after 23 years

Mar 28 (AD) The Central Bank (CB) today decided to issue coins to the public after the Central Bank bomb blast on January 31, 1996, Central Bank director Tamara Wijesuriya said. She said the Central Bank should issue coins to the public but it had been operated until the Central bank bomb blast. After 1996 CB was unable to issue coins due to naming the Central Bank area as a high-security zone. Instead, the task had been assigned to the Bank of Ceylon (BoC) at Gas Works Street more..

BOI dismisses concerns related to Mirijjawila oil refinery project

Mar 28 (CG) Board of Investment (BOI) today dismissed concerns raised related to the Mirijjawila oil refinery project. The BOI said that Foreign Direct Investment brought into Sri Lanka, including the oil refinery project in Hambantota, is channeled through the approved local banking system through Inward Investment Accounts (IIA) as per the Foreign Exchange Act and its regulations in Sri Lanka. In the case of the oil refinery at the Mirijjawela more..

Sri Lanka’s Beijing Embassy commemorates National Thripitaka Week

Mar 28 (DN) Embassy of Sri Lanka in Beijing, in collaboration with the Buddhist Association of China organised a Dhamma Sermon and a Dhamma Discussion with Most Ven. Dr. Medagama Dhammananda Thera, Chief Lekakadikari of the Asgiri Chapter of the Siam Maha Nikaya of Sri Lanka, Adviser of the Executive Board of Shasanarakshaka of the Ministry of Buddhasasana as well as the Vice President of the World Fellowship of Buddhists. more..

Malinga keen to play in Provincial Tourney

Mar 28 (DM) Lasith Malinga, who has been given clearance to play in the full IPL season, has now expressed his desire to play in the SLC Super Provincial T20 Cricket Tournament. According to highly placed sources close to the Mumbai Indians Team, Malinga, who arrived in India yesterday, is likely to discuss with the Mumbai Indians Head Coach Mahela Jayawardene and other senior team members, whether he can go back to SL and take part in the Provincial Tournament and more..

Prison officer deported from Dubai sacked

Mar 28 (AD) The Department of Prisons has decided to sack Prison Officer Lalith Kumara, who was arrested in Dubai along with the drug kingpin Makandure Madush and deported to SL last morning. Commissioner General of Prisons T.M.J.W. Thennakoon stated that Prison Officer Kumara will be dismissed from work as he had left the country without informing the department. Reportedly, Lalith Kumara had been serving more..

Country needs leader like Karu: Champika

Mar 28 (DM) Minister Champika Ranawaka said that the country cannot go back to family rule and the need is for a leader like Speaker Karu Jayasuriya who can create an image for the country both locally and internationally. “We took a certain step in this country in 2015 against family dominance. That cannot be turned back. This should be remembered by all despite whoever pays homage to that still. This country today needs a leadership that can create an image or this country both more..

Bangladesh fire: SL man falls to death

Mar 28 (DS) A Sri Lankan national reportedly fell to his death while escaping the fire at a high-rise building in Dhaka’s Banani area this afternoon. Deceased Niras Chandra, a SL citizen, was brought dead to Kurmitola General Hospital, said the hospital’s Director Brig Gen Qazi Rashid-Un-Nabi. He sustained serious injuries as he jumped off the building to escape the fire and died before he was brought to the hospital, he also said. With the death, a total of six people died so far more..

SL to open 22 new Tourist Police stations

Mar 28 (AD) Tourist Police Division of the Department of Police has decided to open 22 more police units throughout the island to ensure the safety of the tourists arriving in Sri Lanka and the pilot project has begun from Mirissa. Already eleven tourist police units have been established around the country and another 22 units will be established island wide to ensure the safety of both local & foreign tourists. more..

Amal Perera to be deported from Dubai soon

Mar 28 (AD) Singer Amal Perera, who was arrested in Dubai with the drug kingpin Makandure Madush, is to be deported to Sri Lanka soon, according to sources. On Feb 5th, the Dubai Police had arrested Makandure Madush at a party which involved drugs. Several prominent underworld figures and SL celebrities including singer Amal Perera and his son Nadeemal Perera were also taken into custody at this party thrown by Madush. Two arrestees, Nadeemal Perera and a prison officer more..

Dominant batting sets up England women's 3-0 series whitewash

Mar 28 (CI) England's women completed their second 3-0 clean sweep on their tour of Sri Lanka, wrapping up the T20I series with their most dominant display yet in a 96-run win in Colombo. Batting first after Sri Lanka won the toss, England's batsmen made hay throughout their 20 overs, with Danni Wyatt and Amy Jones each making half-centuries at the top of the order before Tammy Beaumont and Nat Sciver cut loose in the closing overs. Wyatt was the first of only two wickets more..

Budgets defeated at Megapolis, Home Affairs ministries debate

Mar 28 (EN) Several expenditure heads were defeated at the end of a debate on Megapolis and Home Affairs ministries on Thursday with most govt members absent at vote taking in a major embarrassment to the administration. A number of expenditure heads were defeated with 38 voting against and only 24 govt MPs present to vote. "Two key ministries have been defeated. Where are the bigwigs of the govt? more..

Await the December revolution!

Mar 29 (DN) New political developments over the past few weeks have meant that at least one major party has now decided on who their nominee should be for the presidential election due this year. That has also led to a series of new strategies that are now underway - with a realignment of political forces likely to emerge shortly. There has been no official announcement yet because no formal decision has been taken but former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa has been given the blessings of more..

When primordial identity turns predatory

Mar 29 (CT) The carnage in Christchurch, New Zealand, that killed almost fifty worshipping Muslims inside two mosques was not the first crime of Muslim hatred in history and will not be the last. The unassailable stand that PM Jacinda Ardern took in support of social and religious pluralism in New Zealand and globally, and the frankness with which she expressed her disgust and horror at the murderer and his poisonous ideology while demonstrating in multiple ways her sympathy more..

In Sri Lanka, illegal fishing slips through the net of legislation

Mar 29 (Roar) There was a time when Indian bottom trawlers violating international law and encroaching Sri Lankan waters made regular headlines. In response, the SL Navy arrested Indian fishermen on a weekly basis, and confiscated their bottom trawlers. There were also regular updates from Tamil Nadu’s late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, who brought up the issue of historic waters surrounding the Kachchativu island. more..