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SriLankan Airlines celebrates 40 years

Sep 12 (DN) SriLankan Airlines celebrated 40 years of operations, at Airline Centre, Katunayake recently. State Minister Eran Wickramaratne, was the Chief Guest at the occasion. SriLankan Airlines Chairman, G.S. Withanage, CEO, Vipula Gunatilleka and many staff members were present at the event. Addressing the gathering, Minister said, “It is a proud moment for all of us that SriLankan Airlines marks 40 years of services. History of our aviation runs far back to over 70 years. more..

Browns Agriculture hosts Tract Tec Camps

Sep 12 (Island) Browns Agriculture, the pioneer in the SL agriculture industry, recently held their latest series of Tract Tec Camps across the island in order to provide services and repairs free of charge to those customers whose warranties may have lapsed. These camps took place in Bingiriya, Wellawa, Galnewa, Pemaduwa, Seeppukulama, Parakramapura, Muthur, Kalmunai, Sevanagala, and Athimale. Because of this service coupled with its durability, resale value and availability of more..

Unemployment rises to 4.7% in 1Q'19: 399,784 individuals without jobs

Sep 12 (CT) The number of unemployed individuals in Sri Lanka has increased to 399,784 during the first quarter of 2019 from 389,406 recorded during the fourth quarter and from 372,135 recorded during the first quarter of 2018. The unemployment rate as a percentage of the working population has increased to 4.7% during the first quarter this year from 4.5% recorded during the same quarter of 2018. more..

Bathiudeen and Indian High Com inaugurate LANKAPAK 2019

Sep 12 (CT) Minister of Industry & Commerce, Resettlement of Protracted Displaced Persons, Cooperative Development and Vocational Training & Skills Development, Rishad Bathiudeen, alongside High Commissioner of India, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, inaugurated LANKAPAK 2019 in BMICH yesterday. Exhibition ends on 13 Sept. State Minister Buddhika Pathirana was also present at the inauguration. SL Institute of Packaging President, Anuradha Jayasinghe, Asia Packaging Federation Prez, more..

PM asks Sajith to present his winning formula

Sep 12 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe is reported to have asked Minister Sajith Premadasa to present his political formula for winning the prez elections. He held talks with Mr. Premadasa for two hours on Tuesday night. According to sources, the latter said the UNP could not win as a single party, and therefore it was important to get the support of all the like-minded parties including the TNA. For that purpose, he told Mr. Premadasa to see whether it was possible to garner the support of all. more..

'Ranil, Sajith talks focused on the best UNP candidate'

Sep 12 (DM) Tuesday night meeting between UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa focused on which one of them could poll the most number of votes at the upcoming Prez Election, minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara said. Minister while asserting that the talks continued in a cordial and friendly atmosphere, added that PM Wickremesinghe was mainly concerned on a foolproof and more..

Namal weds today

Sep 12 (CT) Namal Rajapaksa, the eldest son of Opposition Leader Mahinda Rajapaksa and Shiranthi Rajapaksa will marry Limini Weerasingha today. Weerasingha is the eldest daughter of businessman, Thilak Weerasingha and his spouse Aruni Weerasingha. Poruwa ceremony and registration will take place at Gangarama Temple in Hunupitiya. Namal's yoga guru, Nanda Siriwardena is one of the attesting witnesses, while the attesting witness for the bride will be her father. more..

Kongahage returns to Rupavahini as Chief

Sep 12 (FT) Prez Sirisena appointed former media personality and Ambassador Sarath Kongahage as the Chairman of SL Rupavahini Corporation. Kongahage is also the Chairman of the SL Foundation Institute. He was SL’s Ambassador to Germany, Switzerland and High Commissioner to South Africa and Prez’s Media Advisor. Kongahage received his BA with honours in Mass Communication from Kelaniya University. Previously he served as the Chairman of SLRC, more..

Election Commission meets Govt Printer: Prez Poll before 7 Dec

Sep 12 (CT) With the Election Commission Chairman having summoned Govt Printer Gangani Liyanage, to the Election Commission late Tuesday evening, speculation is rife that the Presidential Election is likely to be held before 7 Dec 2019. Commission sources said, the Presidential Election would not be held on 23 Nov or 7 Dec as many had predicted. "It will most likely be held before 23 Nov. more..

Disappearance of 11 Youths: Van kept with Navy Ops Director: CID

Sep 12 (CT) The Officer-In-Charge of the CID's Organised Crimes Division (OCD), Nishantha Silva yesterday informed the Colombo Fort Chief Magistrate's Court that details have been uncovered that the van used for the abduction, disappearance and extortion of money from 11 youths in and around Kotahena, had been kept under the supervision of the then Operations Director of the Navy. He made this revelation when the case was taken up for hearing at Chief Magistrate's Court yesterday. more..

No attempt to forcibly take over Rupavahini Corp: Ruwan

Sep 12 (DN) Defence State Minister and Mass Media Minister Ruwan Wijewardene denied speculation on internet social media that he was planning to forcibly take over the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC), the state-owned national television network that was recently transferred out of the Media Ministry and put under the purview of the Defence Ministry. Minister said he had never engaged in thug-politics and therefore, that information was totally baseless. more..

SLPP, SLFP reach consensus on key posts, symbol at general election

Sep 12 (Island) Joint Opposition MP, Mahinda Aluthgamage, yesterday, said that the SLPP was ready to contest the forthcoming parliamentary election under a symbol other than pohottuwa. The Parliamentary polls are expected to follow the prez election. Aluthgamage said that SLPP and SLFP had reached agreement in that regard, recently. He explained how the SLPP had addressed the SLFP’s concerns even at more..

Let’s together ensure a free and fair election

Sep 12 (DM) With the prez election fast approaching crunch time, the Election Commission is not pulling any punches in ensuring that the country’s important election to be held this year, most likely towards the end of Nov, will be peaceful, free and fair. With this in mind the EC issued several directives to political parties, monitoring groups and the media including social media websites. Last week EC Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya requested political parties to submit a written notice of intention more..

UNP’s internecine feud

Sep 12 (DM) When PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and Minister Sajith Premadasa sat down for talks on Tuesday night, the party members thought the quarrel over prez candidacy would end raising positive prospects at the upcoming prez elections. After talks that lasted for two hours, there was no final agreement on the candidate though doors remain open for further talks. Nevertheless, Minister Premadasa dubbed the talks positive. "Talks ended on a positive note,” he said after the meeting. more..

Will Sajith fall prey to Ranil’s predatory ways?

Sep 12 (DM) The much talked about presidential polls and the need for a change in regime were felt profoundly when the govt made another election blunder; not checking on the price increase of Prima wheat flour which has been raised by rupees 5.50 a kilo. However much health experts harp on the fact that citizens should increase the consumption of grain based food and cut down on the intake of flour based products, more..

SLRC taken over to establish order: SLFP Spokesman

Sep 12 (CT) The decision taken by President Maithripala Sirisena to bring the SLRC under the purview of the Ministry of Defence (MoD), was not arbitrary, SLFP Spokesman Weerakumara Dissanayake claimed. He added that it is unethical as it affects both the democracy of a national media institution and in turn, media freedom. He said he had made several proposals to the President time and again for the change in the management more..

UK containers to be checked for nuke waste dangers

Sep 12 (ST) Govt Analyst has called for reports from the Medical Research Institute (MRI) and the Atomic Energy Regulatory Council (AERC) on the containers reportedly loaded waste imported from the UK and now held at the Colombo Port. A. Welianga, the Govt Analyst, warned that if the two institutes fail to submit their reports, they will not be able to investigate the samples of the containers and issue a final report before more..

Sri Lanka and Togo focus on expanding trade and investment

Sep 12 (PMD) Leaders of SL and Togolese Republic have paid their attention to expand trade and investment between the two countries. This was discussed at length when the President Maithripala Sirisena and the visiting President of Togo Faure Essozimna Gnassingbé met at the President’s Office today (11). On his arrival at the President’s Office, President Faure Gnassingbe was warmly welcomed by Prez Sirisena. more..

Dairy farmers snared in govt cow deal in trouble

Sep 12 (Island) Dairy farmers who took part in a subsidised scheme to introduce high-yielding imported pregnant cows in 2017 had paid the govt over Rs. 988 million, the PCoI was informed yesterday. K.S. Damayanthi, internal auditor of the Ministry of Rural Economic Development told the PCoI that it was the total payment for 4,942 cows. "We imported 2,000 cows first. 30 of them were not well, Wellard Rural Exports Pvt. Ltd, more..

Ruwan fears sequel to October coup as Rupavahini deadlock continues

Sep 12 (RN) The controversy surrounding the change of management of the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC) took a turn for the dramatic yesterday as the Minister formerly in charge of the corporation suggested that his President may be laying the groundwork for a sequel to the October 2018 coup with the surprise takeover. Non-Cabinet Minister of Mass Media Ruwan Wijewardene said that more..

President instructs to expedite process of introducing new laws to prevent terrorism

Sep 12 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena has given instructions to expedite the process of amending the rules and regulations and introducing new laws to prevent terrorism. Prez has given these instructions participating in the progress review meeting of the Sectoral Oversight Committee on National Security held at the Parliamentary Complex, today (11). It is significant that this is the first time in the history of the Parliament more..

Extradition request on Mahendran forwarded to Singapore

Sep 12 (AD) Ministry of Foreign Affairs has forwarded the extradition request on Arjuna Mahendran to the SL High Commission in Singapore, says the Attorney General’s Coordinating Officer State Counsel Nishara Jayaratne. The extradition request will subsequently be forwarded to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore, she said. AG on Sept 2 tendered the extradition request for the former CB Governor to Defence Ministry more..

Flower bud only for Prez Election: SLPP

Sep 12 (FT) Presenting a new twist to the ongoing tug-of-war between the SLFP and SLPP on which symbol their proposed coalition would contest under, Opposition MP Susil Premajayantha said they would not oppose using a neutral symbol for General Election but their stance on the flower bud will not be changed for the Prez Election. SLFP on Tuesday called for a neutral symbol for the proposed coalition but the SLPP said on more..

Gota’s trial may finally begin

Sep 12 (RN) Prez hopeful Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s misappropriation trial will finally begin hearings in the Special High Court Trial-at-Bar after the Supreme Court in a split decision has rejected an application made by him halt hearings. The decision made yesterday where three of the five Justices held against Rajapaksa allows the Special HC Trial-at-Bar hearing the case to begin their work on Oct 15 & hear the case to its conclusion. more..

Foreman, guard duel delays train from Badulla

Sep 12 (DN) A railway foreman and a guard who engaged in a heated argument regarding the operation of the Colombo bound night mail train from Badulla on Sept 10 afternoon had to be produced before the Badulla police by the Badulla station master to bring about a solution to the problem. The train which was due to leave Badulla station at 5.55 p.m was delayed by nearly 50 minutes due to this encounter between the foreman and the guard. Passengers protested against the train’s more..

Rains to continue while 770,787 persons affected by drought

Sep 12 (DM) The prevailing stormy conditions over the island are expected to continue during next few days while at the other extreme 770,787 persons from 226,828 families had been affected due to the prevailing drought experienced in 18 districts in the country. The Meteorological Dept today said showers or thundershowers of over 100 mm would occur at times in the Western, Sabaragamuwa, Central and North-Western provinces and in the Galle, Matara and Jaffna districts. more..

Harin Fernando

Japan grants Rs1.6bn to boost airport security

Sep 12 (EN) Japan has given a 1 billion yen grant (1.6 billion rupees) to buy equipment to boost airport security and police work in the wake of Easter Sunday attacks. “The public security in Sri Lanka was threatened by the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks with a huge negative economic impact on the fast growing tourism sector of the Country,” a finance ministry said. “As an immediate response to the incident,the Govt of Japan has agreed to provide Japanese Yen 01 billion, grant…” more..

PC electoral scheme: A damned shame

Sep 12 (CT) Tons have been written over what we will define as the inner rottenness in the spirit of governance, whether it emerges from the varied heads of govt or from among those elected to the House as well as from other persons involved in the spheres of law and order, etc. We're trying to get our ideas together here, on the reason why the Provincial Council elections have not been held for the whole of this year and the reason why the Supreme Court decided the elections more..

'CID knew about the Easter attacks'

Sep 12 (RN) Errant UNF MP Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe accused the CID today of possessing prior knowledge of the Easter Sunday bombings. Rajapakshe claimed he had given testimony on it. “From information obtained after the Buddha statue incident in Mawanella, the more powerful members of Zahran’s gang were arrested, but were later released. As they were about to arrest the rest, Western Province Governor Azath Salley and more..

Not good news!

Sep 12 (FT) There are three kinds of people: Those who make things happen; those who watch while things happen; and those who wonder what happened! The first of these are perhaps evenly split between the best and worst of them… while most of us fall squarely in the middle – and some lag in the latter class of unconscious citizens. The latter class – citizen unconscious of happenings as well as their import – are surprisingly large in number. Despite the rapid advent of the age of digitalisation more..

Kanjipani’s father, brother arrested

Sep 12 (DM) Six persons including the father and a brother of drug kingpin Mohamed Imran alias Kanjipani Imran, were arrested for attempting to give two mobile phones and two chargers to Kanjipani Imran who is at the Boossa Prison. Kanjipani Imran’s father, brother and four other relatives had visited him at the prison today and they had tried to secretly hand over the phones and charges concealed in two lunch boxes. The arrested suspects were handed over to Rathgama Police. more..

Avant Garde Case: CA directs Magistrate’s Court to release Gota, 7 others

Sep 12 (DM) Allowing the revision application filed against the orders made by the Magistrate's Court and the High Court over the maintainability of the Avant Garde floating armoury case, the Court of Appeal today set aside both the orders and directed the Magistrate's Court to discharge the eight accused including Gotabaya Rajapaksa from the corruption case filed by Bribery Commission (BC). more..

SriLankan bans older 15-inch MacBook Pro on flight

Sep 12 (AD) SriLankan Airlines has says that older generation 15-inch MacBook Pro units will not be allowed in as checked- in or carry-on luggage due to a safety risk announced by the Apple Inc. The company announced that in a limited number of older generation 15-inch MacBook Pro units, the battery may overheat and pose a fire safety risk. The affected units were sold primarily between Sept 2015 and Feb 2017. SriLankan Airlines, as a safety measure, has requested the passengers to more..

Millennium Housing to build 400 houses in three locations in Sri Lanka

Sep 12 (EN) Millennium Housing Developers Plc said it was planning 400 houses in three locations as there was unfulfilled demand for housing in the greater Colombo area driven by migration. “Despite strong demand, residential construction remained weak, as the total number of housing approvals in Greater Colombo fell year on year,: Millennium Housing Chairman Harshith Dharmadasa said. “A severe shortage of low-end housing was evident caused by internal migration from rural to more..

Family critical of SL holiday resort where diver drowned after being swept out to sea

Sep 12 (NWL) A shop manager was swept out to sea as he paddled with friends in Sri Lanka, an inquest was told. The family of Rhos-on-Sea man Andrew Critchett who drowned while on holiday criticised the resort for failing to warn guests about the serious dangers and the lack of safety measures. An inquest in Ruthin heard the married Llandudno Halfords boss was wading in the sea with two friends when they were swept off more..

Sri Lanka’s economy has shown resilience after the Easter Sunday bombings

Sep 12 (CNBC) Sri Lanka’s economy has shown a fair bit of resilience, with its key tourism sector bouncing back following the devastating Easter Sunday bombings, said a senior executive — despite predictions that growth would be hit this year. The South Asian country’s economy is in decent shape fundamentally, said Gihan Cooray, deputy chairman and group finance director at John Keells Group, Sri Lanka’s second largest listed company by market capitalization. more..

Sri Lanka, Pakistan face external risks amid US, China trade war: Moody’s

Sep 12 (EN) SL and Pakistan are among Asian countries that face the highest risks of rising debt costs and depreciation as global growth slows due to a trade war between the US and China, Moody’s, rating agency said. Emerging and frontier markets with ‘B’ ratings faced risks. “Weak debt affordability, high debt burdens, a reliance on FC borrowing, and thin reserves coverage of external debt payments make these sovereigns’ credit profiles exposed to a shift in financing conditions,” more..

Sharjah offers to host Pak-SL series

Sep 12 (TN) Sharjah cricket officials say they would be happy to host Pakistan’s series against SL if required, but have not been approached to do so. Pakistan are due to play a limited-overs series against the Sri Lankans on home soil, starting later this month. However, 10 senior SL players have already pulled out of the tour because of security concerns. The SL cricket board then announced they had been warned by more..

Bakery owners reverse bread price hike

Sep 12 (AD) Increase in the price of a loaf of bread by Rs. 2 has not been implemented and the price will remain the same as earlier, the Bakery Owners’ Association said. President of the All Ceylon Bakery Owners’ Association, N.K. Jayawardena stated that the decision was taken following the reducing of wheat flour price. The association had announced the increase the price of a loaf of bread by Rs 2 on Friday following the price hike announced by the Prima Ceylon (Pvt) Limited for wheat flour. more..