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Sri Lanka to tie up with China further

Apr 1 (DM) Prez Rajapaksa had a telephone conversation with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday. It should not be viewed as just another regular telephone conversation between the two leaders because of the background that preceded it. The telephone dialogue has been timed in a context where China supported the SL Govt’s position on the UNHRC resolution on SL. The phone conversation followed the introduction of the bill to regulate the economic affairs of the Colombo Port City more..

More needs to be done on road safety

Apr 1 (DM) In a paradoxical turn of events, it was while cricketing legends from several countries were batting for Road Safety in India that Sri Lanka suffered one of its worst bus accidents in recent times when a passenger transport bus plunged down a 200-feet deep precipice close to the 13th milepost along the Badulla-Monaragala main road in Passara killing 14 commuters and injuring 31, some seriously. Among those killed or injured were men, women & children and calamity took place more..

'Competition among rice millers leads to price hike'

Apr 1 (DM) Leading mill-owner cum State Minister of Mahaweli Zones Siripala Gamlath, responds to questions about the present rice shortage and plans for the development of agriculture in the future. Polonnaruwa District MP from the ruling party is one of the leading rice millers in the country. Q: What is your assessment of the govt’s performance? A: We have done a lot. But, we have had to grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic more..

Sirimavo Bandaranaike Vidyalaya crowned OVEP champions

Apr 1 (ST) Sirimavo Bandaranaike Vidyalaya Colombo 7 crowned themselves as the champions of the Olympic Values Educational Programme, also known as OVEP. The awards presentation of this programme was held at NOCSL’s Hemasiri Fernando Auditorium on Monday. The first runner-up of the programme was Hillwood College, Kandy while the third place was taken by Chundikuli Girl’s School Jaffna. Speaking at the occasion, Secretary General National Olympic Committee, more..

An Ordeal of Errors

Apr 1 (CT) UNHRC was established by UN General Assembly (UNGA) on 15 March 2006. The UNHRC is an inter-governmental body within the UN system made up of 47 States and follows the procedures established by its parent body the UNGA. Quoting from the UNGA website wherein it says A UNGA Resolution usually requires a simple majority of 50% of all votes plus one to pass. Considering that no such definition of this procedure exists on the UNHRC website and it clearly states more..

NTJ bombed several locations in WP and EP

Apr 1 (CT) A group including National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ) leader Mohamed Qasim Zaharan alias Zaharan Hashim carried out suicide bombings in several places in the Western and Eastern Provinces on 21 April 2019, killing at least 260 people and injuring nearly 500 others. The targets of the bombers were Kingsbury Hotel, Shangri-La Hotel, Cinnamon Grand Hotel, St. Sebastian’s Church in Katuwapitiya, more..

The Geneva mess

Apr 1 (GV) The farcical arithmetic of the regime and its apparatchiks notwithstanding- that the abstentions should be counted as support for the regime and the majority of the world’s population is with it – as well as the whingeing about hypocrisy of the UN and the West in blissful ignorance of int'l politics, the UNHRC has passed a resolution on SL by 22 votes to 11 with 14 abstentions. Key abstentions are worth noting – India, Japan and Indonesia as well as some 7 African states more..

China’s tightens grip on double-Paksa govt

Apr 1 (CT) My preferred title was China has got us by the b@(($ but I could not have got away with it; CT Editor, an upright gentleman of tee-totalling disposition, has put in place a Comments Policy unsuited to hooligans like this one! What I wished to say was that we have become so beholden to China that Beijing can treat us like indentured serfs without fear of our fidelity drifting. It is not that the Nandasena Executive, with concurrence of Mahendra, Cabinet and SLPP and without more..

ජනතා ගැටලු සහ දේශපාලන අභියෝග | සටන

Serious flaws in Geneva resolution

Apr 1 (Island) Resolution A/HRC/46/L.Rev.1 dated 16 March 2021 has been adopted by the UNHRC based on procedures and practices adopted by Committees of the General Assembly. Of the 47 Members in the Council, 22 Member States cast an affirmative vote, 11 members opposed it, and 14 abstained. The procedure adopted does not recognize the number of votes that abstained. Therefore, adoption of the Resolution was based on 22 affirmative votes, which is less than half more..

Ceylinco Life crowned Sri Lanka’s most popular life insurer for record 15th year

Apr 1 (Island) Sri Lankans have voted Ceylinco Life the Peoples Life Insurance Service Provider of the Year for the 15th consecutive year, making the country’s life insurance leader the only company in its sector to win the coveted SLIM Peoples Award every year since the inception of the awards programme. This emphatic reaffirmation of popularity at the 2021 edition of these awards has only been outdone in longevity by Ceylinco Life’s performance, more..

Traffic cops: Losing their cool in the searing heat

Apr 1 (TM) The relationship between the Police and the public has been tarnished on a number of occasions in the recent past, largely due to arbitrary arrests and the excessive use of power on civilians. It would not be wrong to state that over the years, public perception about the Police has changed for the worse, even though it is only a handful of police officers who misuse their powers. The incident where a traffic police officer more..

Unclear. Untold. Unfair. Untenable

Apr 1 (DM) Unclear. Untold. Unfair. These are words that one can reasonably expect in any decent conversation or review of the recent UNHRC resolution on/against SL. However, such dismal descriptives are applicable to other matters, institutions and processes as well. Just the other day, those words were uttered at the launch of Dr. Prasanna Cooray’s book Politics of a Rainforest: Battles To Save Sinharaja. L.J. Mendis Wickramasinghe is a SL herpetologist, more..

A baby step in right direction

Apr 1 (Island) There has been a mixed reaction to the Election Commission (EC) decision to stop registering political parties with names associated with ethnicity or religion. The EC has said its move is aimed at facilitating national reconciliation. This is a baby step in the right direction, and much more remains to be done to usher in the reconciliation. Sri Lanka and her political parties are like a poor mother with a large, malnourished brood. Most of these outfits are mere name-boards that more..

The curious case of carcinogenic coconut oil

Apr 1 (DM) Consumers are in a quandary wondering how they could possibly fry the kavum and kokis this festive season with the unhealthy coconut oil that has dominated the market. Days after the billion-rupee sugar scam was exposed; several activists claimed that unhealthy coconut oil is being imported by large scale importers. Last year, a request was made to allow the import of raw materials to produce coconut oil locally. more..

Dr.Harsha Cabral appointed HNB acting Chair

Apr 1 (DM) Top lawyer Dr. Harsha Cabral has been appointed as the Acting Chairman of Hatton National Bank (HNB), following the resignation of top professional Dinesh Weerakkody as the bank’s Chairman with effect from March 30, 2021. Weerakkody, who served as HNB Chairman for three years, did not offer himself for re-election at the bank’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) held yesterday. The appointment of Dr. Cabral was carried out during an emergency meeting more..

Negative March for CSE but fares better than Feb. slump

Apr 1 (FT) Colombo stock market ended March on a negative note, but fared better than the sharper slump experienced in February. NDB Equities said the ASPI in March lost 4.75% and the S&P SL20 declined by 3.93%. Though down, it was less emphatic than what was seen in February, which suffered a 13.7% dip in terms of ASPI and 15.6% on the basis of S&P SL20. Thanks to the record high achieved in January, the ASPI year-to-date (YTD) was still up 5% & S&P SL20 higher by 8%. more..

West Indies make further headway on rain-marred day

Apr 1 (CI) West Indies made substantial headway in the 42.1 overs that were possible on a rain-hit day three, claiming five SL wickets as they conceded just 114 runs. When a final, play-ending squall arrived part-way through the third session, SL were still 104 runs behind West Indies' 354, with just two wickets in hand. The only real spot of brightness for the visitors was the batting of Pathum Nissanka, who followed up his more..

Softlogic Glomark now at CR & FC

Apr 1 (FT) As a revolutionary modern trade retailer in the market, Softlogic Glomark yesterday expanded its presence even further in the SL modern trade sphere with another one-of-a-kind Global Supermarket experience in the heart of Colombo at CR & FC. The CR & FC based flagship store is the 10th supermarket outlet under the Softlogic Glomark chain located at 24, Malalasekera Mawatha, Colombo 7. Glomark CR & FC is now open with the promise to bring the best of more..

BOC assets top Rs. 3 trillion milestone

Apr 1 (FT) State-owned Bank of Ceylon yesterday revealed that its assets had crossed the Rs. 3 trillion milestone in the first quarter, whilst loans and deposits by end 2020 had surpassed Rs. 2 trillion. As at 31 Dec 2020, BOC’s assets base grew by 24% to Rs. 2.9 trillion, primarily backed by an increase of 28% in the loan book. Yesterday BOC Chairman Kanchana Ratwatte disclosed that during the just ended first quarter, the asset base crossed the Rs. 3 trillion mark, creating banking history. more..

264 more test positive for COVID-19

Apr 1 (FT) A total of 264 persons tested positive for COVID-19 yesterday, bringing the country’s total COVID-19 patient count to 92,706. The patients detected yesterday include 238 associates of the Peliyagoda cluster and six persons from the Prisons cluster. Divulapitiya, Peliyagoda, and Prisons clusters have thus expanded to 87,910 patients. In addition to this, 2,655 returnees from abroad, 950 Navy personnel & their contacts, more..

'LP gas price request not denied by CAA'

Apr 1 (TM) Laugfs Gas PLC Chairman W.K.H. Wegapitiya stated that the islandwide liquid petroleum gas (LPG) distributors have not officially received a confirmation from the Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) denying the price request. However, Wegapitiya confirmed that Laugfs has incurred a loss of Rs. 1.4 billion in the last two months due to maintaining stable prices. “CAA has not officially conveyed a confirmation to Laugfs that the request is rejected, despite the information being more..

38 dead, 64 new cancer patients detected daily: Dullas

Apr 1 (DM) The health sector in the country is now facing a threat of spreading non-communicable diseases and according to the latest records, 64 cancer patients are being detected and 38 patients lose their lives due to cancer every day, Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said. He indicated the vision of Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour of the Prez and while giving priority to localism, a trend has been created to manufacture medicines against cancer. While drawing the attention of the Prez, more..

Arundika admits likely hand in Wennappuwa ASP’s transfer

Apr 1 (TM) Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) attached to Wennappuwa, Eric Perera might have been transferred due to a letter sent by him acknowledging the State Minister Arundika Fernando. Fernando said that he had sent a letter in December last year to Minister of Public Security, Sarath Weerasekera, requesting for the transfer of Wennappuwa ASP Perera due to allegations made against him by the public. more..

Improving women’s conditions to breathe new life in Sri Lanka’s development

Apr 1 (AN) The goal of the Women's Federation of the National Fisheries Solidarity Movement (NAFSO) is so to strengthen socially, economically and politically the role of women in SL with a view to equality and justice. To this end, the Federation prepared a policy paper titled Policies to empower women in food-producing communities, which it recently handed over to the govt. NAFSO marked International Women’s Day on 25 March in Colombo, sponsoring an event more..

In open court: Ranjan apologises to Mahindananda

Apr 1 (CT) Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage says the motive of TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran was to allow SJB MP Ranjan Ramanayake to go to jail and bring the issue up before the UNHRC sessions in Geneva. He said, he had entered politics not to seek vengeance from his political rivals or to even victimise them. Aluthgamage stated that he had even filed a case before the Nugegoda Chief Magistrate’s Court seeking compensation of Rs 500 million in 2016 against Ramanayake. more..

Rupee takes further dive

Apr 1 (TM) Sri Lankan rupee (LKR) is on a depreciation swing as it hit a record low on Wednesday, with the selling price of the rupee being quoted as Rs. 202.04 against the US dollar, marking a depreciation of over 6.4%, for the first three months of this year alone. The depreciation rate recorded so far this year is higher than the depreciation rate of 3.29% recorded during the period from 1 Jan to 31 Dec last year. more..

Bathiudeen appeals for Salley’s release

Apr 1 (CT) ACMC Leader MP Rishad Bathiudeen has appealed to the Govt to consider the release of former Western Province Governor Azath Salley who has been detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Bathiudeen made this plea while addressing the Colombo District Youth Conference of ACMC in Mattakkuliya. He also requested the release of Salley after considering that he was not guilty of any wrongdoing and added that more..

Rs 1,000 budget pack available from today

Apr 1 (CT) Govt yesterday, introduced a bag of essential items that can be purchased from Sathosa outlets from today, under a concessionary price of Rs 1,000. The market value of the essential items bag is more than Rs 1,400 which consists of 12 types of essential items such as white sugar, white kekulu rice, red kekulu rice, white nadu rice, red lentil, wheat flour, salt, sprats, chilli flakes, soya meat, tea leafs and a face mask. The concessionary package was provided in line with more..

Bail granted to heroin suspects

Apr 1 (Island) Many an eyebrow has been raised over Attorney General Dappula de Livera’s unprecedented intervention in respect of a Colombo High Court ruling pertaining to two narcotics cases. Authoritative sources said that de Livera, PC, had moved the Court of Appeal in revision of two bail orders of the Colombo High Court 4 as regards detection of 65 grams and 485 grams of heroin. Following the AG’s intervention, more..

Covid-19 fatalities rise to 568 with 2 deaths

Apr 1 (FT) Two COVID-19 deaths occurred yesterday and the country’s COVID-19 death toll has risen to 568. An 85-year-old individual from Wattala tested positive for COVID-19 while receiving treatment at a private hospital in Colombo. She was then admitted to the IDH, where she died of trauma of blood poisoning, acute kidney damage, high blood pressure, diabetes, and COVID pneumonia. An individual from Eravur, Batticaloa tested positive for COVID-19 while receiving treatment at more..

Two CID teams to probe 6,000 swords import

Apr 1 (TM) Two special Police teams from the CID have been deployed to investigate the alleged importation of 6,000 swords during the period of the Easter Sunday terror attacks, the Attorney General’s (AG) Department told the Court of Appeal yesterday. Archbishop of Colombo Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith filed a writ petition seeking an order from the Court for the law enforcement authorities to conduct a formal inquiry into the alleged importation of some 6,000 swords. more..

600,000 Sinopharm donation arrives: Chinese vaccine only for Chinese nationals

Apr 1 (TM) The stock of 600,000 doses of the Chinese Covid-19 vaccine Sinopharm that arrived in Sri Lanka yesterday, would only be administered to Chinese nationals for now, as the Health authorities have decided to not administer the vaccine to locals until further data about the vaccine is available. Speaking about the outcomes of a meeting held by the Director General of Health Services Dr. Asela Gunawardena on 30 Mar more..

Deduru Oya Hydro Power Plant to be commissioned today

Apr 1 (Island) Deduru Oya Hydro Power Plant would be inaugurated today supplying 1.5 MW to the national grid. Tt would provide electricity to more than 1,000 families. More than Rs. 303 million was spent on the project. The CEB engineers yesterday said more than Rs. 160 million rupees would be saved annually due to the commissioning of the pollution-free project. The ceremonial inauguration of the Deduru Oya Power Plant would take place in Katuwannawa, Minuwangate, Padeniya. more..

Failure to submit accounts could put SLC top brass in trouble

Apr 1 (Island) The warning signals are there for the top brass of Sri Lanka Cricket with President Shammi Silva, Secretary Mohan de Silva and Treasurer Lasantha Wickremasinghe all becoming ineligible to contest this year’s AGM for failure to submit SLC’s accounts in time. For the financial year ending on the 31st of Dec, SLC was supposed to submit audited and approved accounts to AG’s Dept in two months time which was 28th of Feb. Although the board had submitted the accounts on more..

Contaminated coconut oil bowsers handed over to Customs: Magistrate takes...

Apr 1 (CT) Dankotuwa Police were sternly warned by Marawila Chief Magistrate, Rakhitha Abeysinghe yesterday for handing over two bowsers of substandard coconut oil to SL Customs in defiance of the order made by the Marawila Magistrate. The Chief Magistrate also ordered IGP C.D. Wickremaratne to investigate the incident and make submissions to him shortly. Dankotuwa Police had seized the 2 bowsers more..

Perpetual panic

Apr 1 (FT) Just the other day people were suggesting to me that things were improving because, after all, the vaccines are here. My fascination with repetition being the mother of nonsense continues. What was improving? Lanka has never had an actual epidemic of COVID on any numbers; South Asia in terms of mortality, rather than the eye-watering distortions of PCR tests, hasn’t had a real pandemic. And yet there seemed an immunity to evidence for too many more..

Sirisena’s plans

Apr 1 (Island) SLPP MP and former Prez Sirisena has apparently sought to deny reports that the SLPP-SLFP relations have turned sour. He has declared in Kandy that he will continue to support Prez Rajapaksa and the SLPP govt while strengthening the SLFP, which, he says, will be able to form a govt under its own steam. What’s up Sirisena’s sleeve? Is he planning to run for President again to form an SLFP govt? Given the situation the SLFP is in, political observers may dismiss more..

ජවිපෙ නඩත්තු කලේ ඊබ්‍රාහිම්ගේ ත්‍රස්තවාදී සල්ලි වලින්ද?

Enjoining Order against Minister Wimal further extended

Apr 1 (DN) The Colombo District Court yesterday further extended its Enjoining Order preventing Minister Wimal Weerawansa and three electronic media institutions from defaming ACMC Leader MP Rishad Bathiudeen in connection with a statement made by Minister Weerawansa during a public gathering recently. This order will be effective until April 12. Colombo District Court Judge Amali Ranaweera made this order pursuant to a libel lawsuit filed by MP Rishad Bathiudeen. more..