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Does the great axe fall?

Sep 4 (CT) It's a widely held belief that out of the collection of those things one believes in, to do with every side of one's life, will out of them issue the things of life with which we must live with and deal with. For example, one might have an issue with some religious belief in the religion one follows. President Maithripala Sirisena had personal issues with the political sides of things in which Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe believed. Tyranny? subversion? Why? or why not ? more..

To the polls again…

Sep 4 (FT) We are in a period of waiting, the incumbent Govt is moving towards closure, the pith and substance of the future govt, unformed and unclear as yet. Some of the recognised political parties have already announced their candidate for the presidential race, although the process of negotiations and the gathering of alliances for the elections, is yet going on. For sure, new political unions and fresh manifestos will be ceremoniously ushered, but in the personalities put forward, more..

Dinesh Gunawardena

Sri Lanka to call investors for convention hotel, hospital on China reclaimed land

Sep 4 (EN) Sri Lanka is to call proposals for investors to build a hotel, convention centre, hospital and international school in land newly reclaimed by China. SL’s National Agency for Public Private Partnership will assist in the process, the state information office said. The cabinet of ministers had cleared the proposal by Megapolis & Western Dev Minister to set up negotiation committee and project committee. Proposals will be called to build a hotel, convention & exhibition centre, more..

Dengue claims 60 lives so far this year

Sep 4 (Island) This year 42,518 dengue patients have been detected countrywide so far and more than 60 persons have died of the disease. Last month 7,308 dengue patients were found and out of them 1,579 were from Colombo and 1,329 from Gampaha. Around 70-80 patients suffering from viral fever had got themselves admitted to the hospital and of them 38 were suffering from dengue. Among them are a nurse and three other workers attached to the National Hospital. more..

Video: Prez attends Bohra Global Conference

Sep 4 (AD) President Maithripala Sirisena has said that it is a necessity at present to unite everyone regardless of religious and ethnic differences in order to achieve peace while eliminating poverty. The President, extending his greetings to the Bohra Global Conference 2019 said that the teachings of the Great Muhammad also contain the same message. The Bohra Global Conference 2019 commenced at more..

SL to set up new SOE to manage Lotus tower

Sep 4 (EN) Sri Lanka will set up a new state enterprise to operate a tower build for the telecom regulator, the state information office said. The cabinet has approved a proposal to give powers to the Treasury to set up a company to quickly commercialize the tower. The Lotus Tower was built by a Chinese firm for the Telecom Regulatory Commission of SL. The TRC is cash rich from license fees paid by mobile operators in particular. The proposal was submitted by the minister more..

3 bidders' proposals under review: PRDS

Sep 4 (CT) The Petroleum Resources Development Services (PRDS) said they were studying proposals submitted by bidders following tenders called on M1, M2 and C1 (shallow water blocks of the Mannar basin and Cauveri Basin) that were explored in 2009 by Cairn India - now known as Cairn Oil and Gas Vertical of Vedanta Limited. M2 block tender was called in January and has received three proposals from a single bidder and M1 and C1 have received a proposal each. more..

Parliamentary Committee slams Motor Traffic Department

Sep 4 (RN) Department of Motor Traffic is purposely avoiding performing its tasks and as a result, has caused losses of nearly Rs 4 billion to the state, the Chairman of the COPA MP Lasantha Alagiyawanna said at a meeting of the committee in Parliament. One of the main reasons for this loss is that the Department has not followed Cabinet instructions to take over the issuing of Driving Licenses from the private entity more..

Video: All JO parties agree to constitution of new alliance

Sep 4 (AD) The Constitution for the establishment of the Sri Lanka Podujana Alliance was approved by all political parties in the alliance, stated the Convener of the JO MP Dullas Alahapperuma. The UPFA MP mentioned this at a SLPP press conference held today. MP said that the Joint Opposition, yesterday, resolved the main issue there was to form an alliance. At the party leaders’ meeting yesterday, all parties in the JO had agreed to the drafted new constitution, Alahapperuma added. more..

Video: Fonseka should quit politics and stick to military affairs: Sujeewa

Sep 4 (AD) Minister Sujeewa Senasinghe says that fellow UNP Parliamentarian Sarath Fonseka should quit politics and stick to military affairs. The non-Cabinet Minister made these comments in response to a question from journalists regarding a statement made by Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka regarding the planned rally in Kurunegala supporting Sajith Premadasa. “I think Sarath Fonseka has also been given a carrot or a banana that he can become the presidential candidate,” he said, more..

'Tamils are disappointed as the govt gave hope and then failed to deliver'

Sep 4 (Hindu) In SL’s prez poll in 2015, the TNA, representing Tamils of the north and east, led its constituency in a crucial protest vote against then President Mahinda Rajapaksa. As the country gears up for the next presidential election, scheduled before the end of this year, Jaffna district MP M.A. Sumanthiran, who is also TNA’s spokesman and a senior lawyer, weighs the options before the Alliance, amid mounting discontent more..

Govt to digitise court system

Sep 4 (FT) Govt will be taking urgent measures to digitise the court system as a part of its ongoing digitalisation of State institutions, Minister Ajith P. Perera said in Parliament. Joining the debate on regulations proposed under the Judicature Act, made by the Minister of Justice and Prison Reforms, as published in the Gazette Extraordinary on 26 March 2019, Minister said the investment will not exceed Rs. 3 billion and it is a part of the integrated national digitisation endeavour of the Govt. more..

Six years' jail for bribery

Sep 4 (CT) Colombo High Court Judge Vikum Kaluarachchi yesterday sentenced Amarawansha Abeysinghe, a former employee of the Land Commissioner General's Department, to six years in jail with hard labour, for accepting a bribe of Rs 100,000 to issue a land permit. Abeysinghe, who was convicted on four charges, was also fined Rs 3,500 for each offence. Failure to pay the fines would result in a further term of simple imprisonment of six months and a fine of Rs 100,000. more..

Kusal Mendis, Shehan Jayasuriya uncertain for third T20I after on-field collision

Sep 4 (CI) Sri Lanka's Kusal Mendis and Shehan Jayasuriya are unlikely to be fit for the third T20I against New Zealand, to be played on Friday - both of them picked up knee injuries after an on-field collision in the final over of the second T20I on Tuesday. Jayasuriya was running from long on, and Mendis from midwicket, in order to intercept an aerial Mitchell Santner hit that, if caught, could have turned the game in Sri Lanka's favour. more..

SC urged to reject IGP's affidavit on Easter attacks

Sep 4 (NR) The twelve Fundamental Rights petitions filed against former Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando and IGP Pujith Jayasundara for allegedly failing to prevent the Easter Sunday attacks, were taken up for hearing for the third time today. During today’s hearing, Attorney General Dappula de Livera requested the Bench to reject the affidavit submitted by one of the respondents in the petition, IGP Pujith Jayasundara. Through the affidavit, IGP Jayasundara had claimed that the AG, more..

Witness testimonies to go ahead without Avant Garde chairman, court told

Sep 4 (AD) Bribery Commission has informed the Colombo High Court that it expects to proceed with the witness hearing of Avant Garde floating armoury case in the absence of Avant Garde Maritime Services Chairman Nissanka Yapa Senadhipathi. The case was taken up before Colombo High Court Judge Shashi Mahendran today. The first defendant of the case, former Chairman of Rakna Lanka Major General (Retired) Palitha Fernando, who was remanded over another lawsuit, more..

Tamil family from Biloela's deportation delayed until at least Friday, court rules

Sep 4 (ABC) A Tamil family facing deportation has been given until Friday to consider a surprise development in their case, after the Immigration Minister said he would not exercise his discretion to allow the youngest daughter to stay in Australia. The Federal Court heard the Immigration Minister David Coleman had advised the family's lawyers that the department would not allow two-year-old Tharnicaa to apply to renew her visa more..

Prez to tighten noose on bond scam offenders

Sep 4 (DM) Prez Sirisena commented on the course of action he is going to take on the Central Bank bond scam at the SLFP annual convention at the Sugathdasa Indoor Stadium on Tuesday afternoon after going through the three forensic audit reports on the fraud, a senior government source said today. Three forensic audit reports on the bond scam have been handed over to Prez in early this week and he is determined to go deep into the scandal and take legal action against those involved directly more..

Sri Lanka faces major challenges on UN’s 2030 development agenda

Sep 4 (IPS) On the road to sustainable development, Sri Lanka provides an interesting case study. Having overcome a three-decade domestic conflict, Sri Lanka has begun its transformation towards a sustainable and resilient society. The extreme poverty rate ($1.90 a day) dropped to 0.8% in 2016. The unemployment rate is below 5% since 2010.Free education and health policies have resulted in high youth literacy rates (98.7%) and high life expectancy (75 years). more..

Video: Not election commission’s job to hold Elpitiya PS poll: Election Chief

Sep 4 (AD) Chairman of the Election Commission Mahinda Deshapriya says that there will be no recalling of nominations for the Elpitiya Pradeshiya Sabha and that the elections for the local authority will go ahead with the nominations already handed over. A Gazette notification has been issued confirming that the election for the Elpitiya PS will take place on Oct 11, 2019. Supreme Court recently ordered more..

JVP alleges Govt misuse funds on vote on account

Sep 4 (DM) There is a move to misuse funds during elections under the guise of bringing a vote on account, JVP MP Bimal Ratnayake alleged in parliament. He said there is a possibility of govt misusing funds in the guise of a vote on account. He said misuse is possible as only expenditure is shown in a vote on account unlike in the case of a budget where both expenditure and revenue is stipulated. “Govt will be able to spend any amount for anything as revenue figures will not show in a vote more..

UNP trade union urges UNP MPs not to create division in party

Sep 4 (RN) The UNP-affiliated trade union Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya (National Trade Union Federation) today urged its MPs including Ministers not to create division in the party by airing their personal opinions in public. Addressing the media at Sirikotha this morning, Deputy Organiser of National Trade Union Federation (NTUF) Ananda Palitha said that UNP never argued over its prez candidate in the past. “In the past, we never selected our presidential candidate in full view of the public. more..

Nearly 500,000 persons are without NICs, CHRR study reveals

Sep 4 (RN) Nearly 500,000 out of the total number of citizens in SL do not possess the National Identity Cards (NICs), says Centre for Human Rights and Research (CHRR). Surangi Ariyawansa, Acting Executive Director of CHRR stated this addressing a workshop on human rights. This was revealed in a study conducted by the Centre for Human Rights and Research, she said, adding that nearly 100,000 of these persons more..

Carlo-dust illuminated our lives for a while

Sep 5 (CT) There’s dust in the universe that come together in ways no one really knows. This dust interacts with other dust particles, is transformed for a fraction of time in a universal clock of whose dimensions are known only in their enormity. We choose lifetime as a unit for manageable purposes and in such dimensions we can find coherence. And integrity. We call it a person. A personality. They are born, they decay, they perish. And the dust that they are scatters across the universe more..

Who's responsible for the admin. of SLC?

Sep 5 (CT) Since 1980 successive Sports Ministers in Sri Lanka, have used their authority to politicise the sports institutions, either by direct intervention or by helping their political supporters to run these organisations. This has been done at the expense of creating independent progressive sports bodies who could have produced an environment to develop world class sportsmen and women. Talented impartial officials have been side-lined. Talented athletes have not been properly managed or more..

GMOA targets 1990 Ambulance Service again

Sep 5 (SO) In a letter sent to the Director-General of Health Services, Dr Anil Jasinghe, last Monday (26), the GMOA had critically questioned the standard of the famed Suwaseriya ambulance service, which serves Sri Lankans free of charge. The GMOA had questioned the following in this letter; the recruitment criteria of ambulance service staff, posts they held within the Ministry of Health, supervisory & monitoring mechanism more..

Citizens' sovereignty under Sirikotha control

Sep 5 (CT) The Sri Lankan Constitution of 1978 commences with Chapter 1. The people, the State, and sovereignty. 1. Sri Lanka (Ceylon) is a free, sovereign, independent and Democratic Socialist Republic, and shall be known as the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. 2. The Republic of Sri Lanka is a Unitary State. 3. In the Republic of Sri Lanka, sovereignty is in the people, and is inalienable. Sovereignty includes the powers of govt, fundamental rights and the franchise. more..

30 years, and still waiting

Sep 5 (GV) Rain has turned the red earth roads of Kiula, Hungama in the Southern Province to mud and the skies are overcast. In the verandah of a bright pink house, five women – U.P. Somaseeli, K.D. Jayantha, A.T. Hemalatha, K.P. Somawathi and S.M. Pemasili – are settling in to plastic chairs to share their experiences. “It’s not often that people come to talk to us, especially because so much time has passed,” they say. These women’s husbands were forcibly disappeared in Southern prov more..

Fearing consequences of coming out

Sep 5 (TM) This week, we spoke to Dana* (name changed on request), a published writer of short stories and poetry who said that his writing includes the issues faced by the LGBT community in Sri Lanka. Yet, he did not want to have his name published in this article as he has not come out to his family and fears that his work would suffer if his readers stop purchasing his publications. Having witnessed how his friends that decided to more..

One question, two people, a shared pain

Sep 5 (GV) One question. I needed an answer to one question. Despite being used to meeting people and talking about difficult issues, it was not easy to ask this question. I had to make myself emotionally numb in order to be able to question those who have been heartbroken for decades and are living with memories of their children, husbands, wives, brothers or sisters. I knew they would certainly break down and cry when they are asked about those missing loved ones. more..

Editorial: Sour grapes and bitter truth

Sep 5 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena was at his oratorical best while addressing the SLFP’s 68th Convention, on Tuesday, in Colombo. His speech was replete with verve and vitality. He sounded as if he had not yet completed the first year of his term. He gave his supporters something to hang on to; he said the SLFP would ignore the next prez election and focus on the parliamentary polls, instead. He said he wondered why others were vying with one another to win the presidency as more..

Sarath Fonseka

Why is no one talking about an insolvent economy?

Sep 5 (CT) The irony of Sri Lanka in the second decade of the second millennium is that everyone can blame everyone else, without having to acknowledge his own contribution, or owning up to his share of the blame. It extends from corruption, to lawlessness to democracy-threats and the elimination of ethnic Tamil innocent in the course of the LTTE war - real and/or perceived, all under the previous Rajapaksa regime. The more recent one is JHU Minister Champika Ranawaka, more..

Alternative political groups and challenges they faced in an election year

Sep 5 (Island) In recent months, there has been a lot of attention paid by sections of the Sri Lankan community, at home and abroad ,in regard to alternative political groups that are critical of established political parties and their activities since independence. Mr. Nagananda Kodithuwakku, supported by Vinivida Foundation has been making a critique of the existing legislature, judiciary and the executive along with the main parties such as the UNP, SLFP and Podu Jana Peramuna. more..

Kamalraj dedicates his title to polio plagued mother

Sep 5 (Island) Elroy Kamalraj had endured many a disfficulty as a child. His sole refuge was his polio plagued mother after his father died under tragic circumstances when he was young. After taking up athletics and persevering in long jump for more than four years he had lady luck smiling probably for the first time at Junior National Athletics C'ship which concluded on Wednesday. He was awarded Best Athlete title of the meet more..

Football World Cup 2022 Qualifying round II: Lankans take on Turkmenistan today

Sep 5 (DN) Qualifying round two of the FIFA World Cup 2022 game between Sri Lanka and Turkmenistan will take place at the Race Course ground at 7 p.m. today. This game will be of great importance for both teams to make it to the next round which will be decided after the completion of the second leg scheduled for 10 Sept. Turkmenistan coach Mise Ante said that they arrived in the country after a ten-day visit to the UAE where they played a few friendly games. more..

Global payment network Visa partners with Cyber Security Summit

Sep 5 (FT) Visa, the global leader in payments technology, has signed on as a strategic partner for SL’s seventh annual Cyber Security Summit on 24 and 25 Sept at Cinnamon Grand. The summit consists of three key events: Cyber Security Day Conference and the Night Hack on 24 September and CEOs’ Forum on Cyber Security on 25 Sept. CEOs’ Forum discusses why cybersecurity should be a boardroom discussion, whilst the Night Hack is an innovative and informative evening of more..

'Govt's anti-gambling stance a major setback'

Sep 5 (CT) A senior businessman and hotelier says that Sri Lanka would lose a large slice of tourism if the country fails to address the need to grow the entertainment market and fulfil the demand for dedicated and modern exhibition and convention centers. According to Citrus Leisure Chairman, Prema Cooray, Govt's anti-gambling stance is a major setback to the local entertainment industry. He pointed out that due to the issue, more..

'Losing in the last over, we are almost there'

Sep 5 (DN) Despite back to back losses to New Zealand in the ongoing three-match T20 international series vice-captain Niroshan Dickwella is confident that SL team is jelling well and it is only a matter of time before they turn the corner. “When you look at the two matches, we lost them in the last over and we missed crucial chances at crucial moments of the game that was the main reason,” said Dickwella at the post-match press conference following the conclusion of the second T20I more..