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'වැට්' ඇතුළු බදු වැඩි වීමක්

Agro-forestry and easing Lanka’s food crisis

Jun 1 (DM) Not so long ago, our country - a nation of 22 million people - had achieved near self-sufficiency in food production. However bad decisions by various govts, gradually eroded the ability of the country’s 1.8 million farmers achieving the target of self-sufficiency in food production. The sudden ban posed on all agro chemicals including fertiliser, weedicides and pesticides in May last year, with no alternate to fill the vacuum brought about by the ban, has proved disastrous to more..

Parliamentary democracy: Re-living a myth

Jun 1 (GV) Parliamentary democracy is a system of governance through which people share resources, provide for their own needs, enhance their own interests and deal with unexpected contingencies, as far as possible on their own. Since an entire population cannot be set aside to do this, they appoint representatives to do so on their behalf. When these representatives disregard or abuse this mandate, the people pay a heavy price. Life in Sri Lanka today is about this price. more..

'Political stability, key to solve economic crisis'

Jun 1 (SO) Minister of Justice, Prison Affairs and Constitutional Reforms Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, PC said that he first proposed forming an Interim Govt and it was thereafter that the request was made through the group of 53 independent MPs in Parliament. The Minister in an interview said, “We were pleading with the main Opposition SJB to take over the PM portfolio and the Govt but they turned down the request. more..

Changing pillows to cure headaches: Politicians—Constitutional amendment mess

Jun 1 (CT) This week’s priority for the MPs is to solve the political crisis by having a multi-party cabinet/govt and legislating the modified 21st amendment. This article discusses these aspects. The 20th amendment was unnecessarily and inappropriately introduced primarily to strengthen the power of the executive powers of the president and to benefit folks around him/her. Thus, it included dismantling independent Commissions, abolishing audits, weakening the judiciary, illegally more..

Why are journalists feeling exhausted and betrayed?

Jun 1 (DM) Is public anger against the media rising? There are some indications that protesters have reacted angrily and at times violently towards the media. Free Media Movement (FMM) has documented at least two instances where journalists have been assaulted by crowds queuing for fuel. There have been other incidents of journalists being held hostage and threatened by crowds at #GotaGoGama and nearby protests. A veteran photographer told me that one of the first more..

Protecting children from familiar & trusted perils

Jun 1 (TM) The tragic death of a nine-year-old girl in Atulugama, Bandaragama, according to activists, is just another incident that highlights how unsafe children can be when they are in society with no trustworthy adult around. One of the tragic realities this incident points out is that such environments can even be within a few hundred feet of a child’s home, in an environment which everyone assumes is safe for a child. more..

Taxing errors

Jun 1 (TM) While citizens are praying that the prevailing economic crisis does not worsen, the Govt yesterday admitted that its income has fallen to historic lows, and that the existing budget deficit is impossible to bear, as spending is more difficult now than before. This was stated by Cabinet Spokesman Bandula Gunawardana, who announced that the Cabinet of Ministers has arrived at a decision to amend several tax-related Acts – namely, Inland Revenue Act, Value Added Tax (VAT) Act, more..

Are we ready for Monsoon?

Jun 1 (CT) It is that time of the year; where torrential rains wreak havoc in the South-Western and Central regions of the country, causing floods, landslides and earth-slips, displacing thousands of people and destroying livelihoods of many. South-Western Monsoon, generally activated between May and Sept, is a yearly occurrence. However, unfortunately for the thousands of people who are affected by the torrential rains and the resulting natural disasters, authorities wake up only after disasters strike. more..

Udayanga Weeratunga

Editorial: Occam’s razor

Jun 1 (Island) National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA) President Dr. Rasitha Wijewantha, and NMRA CEO Dr. Sachin Semage have told the govt a home truth; the current shortage of medicine and medical equipment, and sharp increases in the prices of pharmaceuticals are due to the prevailing foreign currency crisis. This is the correct diagnosis of what ails the health services and all other sectors dependent on imports. There are some allegations against the NMRA, and they have to be more..

Reform and bridging finance needed soon to avert another blow up

Jun 1 (Island) 50th day anniversary of the Aragalaya took place in a generally calm manner. There were special events organized on Saturday, including a march from Independence Square to the Galle Face protest site. I met a veteran Colombo-based Tamil journalist who was one of those who made the trek, along with his teenage son. They had come to express their solidarity with the protestors and not to engage in confrontation with the govt. So they did not join the smaller group that decided more..

Saudi Arabia approves 1,585 Hajj pilgrims from Lanka, but big question over dollars

Jun 1 (ST) With Saudi Arabia this week approving a quota of 1,585 Hajj pilgrims for 2022, there are growing concerns about how tour operators will raise around US$ 6.3mn (Rs 2.2bn)—at a minimum of US$ 4,000 (Rs 1.4mn) per pilgrim—within Sri Lanka to meet the cost of the packages. Depending on services provided, each package can go up to US$ 6,000 (Rs. 2.1mn) for each pilgrim, excluding airfare. more..

Is prostitution illegal per se?

Jun 1 (TM) The word prostitution carries with it a certain taboo in society, where many condemn the very idea of it. While it has sometimes been referred to as the world’s oldest profession, the reasons as to why a certain individual would become a prostitute, or why they would select such a profession, is not something that can be easily stated with clarity; nor is this article going to analyse these reasons. However, there is still a burning question that needs to be answered in this context, more..

Concerns about Sri Lanka’s spin trio

Jun 1 (Island) The great game of uncertainties that cricket is, stranger things happen in this sport more often than not. By strange, we don’t mean things like computer hacking where mails are delivered to television partners to deposit hundreds of thousands of US Dollars to offshore accounts or well known underworld figures being sponsored to watch the game’s showpiece event at Lord’s. To be exact we mean what we witnessed last week in Dhaka. For decades SL have heavily depended on more..

NMRA CEO Dr. Semage quits, blaming Kumudesh

Jun 1 (TM) National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA) CEO Dr. Saveen Semage announced his resignation on social media, blaming the move on College of Medical Laboratory Science President Ravi Kumudesh, over the latter’s allegations against the NMRA in connection with the present pharmaceutical drugs shortage. Dr. Semage charged: “Political idiots such as Kumudesh & political elites, are blaming more..

ComBank donates 4 more IT Labs benefitting another 7,600 students

Jun 1 (Island) Commercial Bank of Ceylon has donated fully-equipped IT labs to four more schools under its flagship community initiative, benefitting another 7,600 students with the facilities to engage in practical lessons in ICT. The CSR Trust of the Commercial Bank has to date donated 243 IT Labs to needy schools across SL under its IT education initiative. Mudalindu David Mendis Maha Vidyalaya, Thimbirigaskatuwa, Bolawalana Nimala Maria Maha Vidyalaya, Negombo, Harischandra College, more..

‘LOLC Finance poised to fuel economic resurgence’

Jun 1 (Island) In one of the most historic mergers in Sri Lanka, LOLC Finance PLC, the largest NBFI in the country merged with its sister company, Commercial Leasing & Finance (CLC), to become the largest Non-Banking Financial Institution (NBFI) in Sri Lanka earlier this year. The market capitalization of the merged LOLC Finance PLC stands at over Rs. 180Bn, placing it among the top 3 companies on the Colombo Stock Exchange by market capitalization. more..

දුමින්ද-ගෝඨා යාළු දෙබෑයන්ට ලැබුණ අතුරු තහනමේ

Foreigners step up buying, locals wary as CSE ends negative run in May

Jun 1 (FT) Colombo stock market in May managed to end its three-month negative run with a modest gain whilst foreigners appear to be seizing select buying opportunities as local remain wary. 6-7% gain by the ASPI and SandPSL20 Index respectively in May is despite the Colombo Bourse remaining bearish in recent days. The market saw the last monthly gain in January after which it suffered dips. Year to date the ASPI is down 33.6% and SandPSL20 is down 37%. more..

Big-time electricity users to pay more; Power Ministry to present Cabinet proposal

Jun 1 (ST) The Power and Energy Ministry will submit a Cabinet proposal for an electricity tariff hike for those who consume a high number of units. Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera said the CEB had called for a rate revision for high electricity consumers such as companies, industries, and hotels. He pointed out that the rates which remained unchanged for nine years should at least be subjected to some review. He added that even the CEB had requested a hike. more..

'Only traitors won’t accept urgent economic reform agenda acceptable to IMF'

Jun 1 (Island) New Public Administration Ministry Secretary Priyantha Mayadunne has warned political parties represented in Parliament, state and private sector trade unions and the civil society that they will soon be categorised as traitors unless they agreed to a far reaching economic reforms agenda. Attorney-at-Law Mayadunne issued the warning over the last weekend at a meeting of public administration officers held at more..

Business as usual Colombo port reassures customers

Jun 1 (FT) South Asia’s hub the Colombo port yesterday reassured its global customers that it is business as usual in terms of productivity and reliability in spite of challenging times for Sri Lanka. All three terminal operators the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLAP), the Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT) and the South Asia Gateway Terminals (SAGT) gave this assurance and pointed to 4% year to date growth in container handling as testimony. more..

Pakistan-SL ODIs to mark the beginning of new ICC Women's Championship cycle

Jun 1 (ICC) After the completion of the T20I leg, the Pakistan v SL clash will move on to the ODIs, which will mark the beginning of the ICC Women's Championship 2022-2025 cycle. Pakistan will aim to carry forward the winning momentum from the T20I series, which they won 3-0, into the ODI leg with all the IWC matches to be held at the same venue in Karachi. This will be the first time Pakistan will be playing the Women's Championship ODIs on their home soil and they will hope to make more..

රංජිත් මද්දුම බණ්ඩාර

Aussie cricketers arrive today for full series against Sri Lanka

Jun 1 (DN) Australia cricket team led by Aaron Finch will arrive in Sri Lanka today for a full cricket series (T20, ODI and test) and this is going to be very important for both sides to get more exposure before world T 20 tournament and also the two tests in Galle which are part of the ICC test championship. According to a senior official of the SLC after six years time Australians the T20 champions and top test team of the world is always a challenge for the Sri Lanka team while more..

Colombo port to use bicycles amid assurances of fuel and power

Jun 1 (EN) State-run Sri Lanka Ports Authority has received assurances of continued electricity supply and ample fuel for operations and 100 bicycles have been available people to get around, officials said. SLPA Chairman Prasantha Jayamanna said the port had long-standing mechanisms to cope with crises. Colombo Port was one of the few in the region that remained open during the Coronavirus crises. SL is now facing the worst currency crises triggered by the island’s intermediate regime central bank more..

21A: SLPP divided, Sarath W takes clear stand against it

Jun 1 (Island) SLPP lawmaker Rear Admiral (retd.) Sarath Weerasekera has declared that he will not vote for the proposed 21st Amendment to the Constitution under any circumstances. Lawmaker said he couldn’t accept the 21st Amendment as it was meant to restore the provisions in the treacherous 19th Amendment enacted in 2015. MP Weerasekera said so at a meeting chaired by Prez Rajapaksa on more..

Transport Minister justifies train ticket price adjustments from today

Jun 1 (FT) Transport Minister Bandula Gunawardena justified the price adjustment for reserved train tickets, citing it was necessary to keep the institution afloat. “We have only increased fares for reserved seats by 30% from 1 June but going forward the commuters can expect certain amendments due to the fuel price hike. The Department of Railways incurs a loss of Rs. 7 billion per annum,” the Minister said in response to a query posed at the post-Cabinet media briefing. more..

New heads appointed to key tourism agencies

Jun 1 (FT) Tourism Minister Harin Fernando has appointed new heads to the three key tourism agencies. Priantha Fernando has been made the Chairman of SL Tourism Development Authority and Chalaka Gajabahu as the Chairman of SL Tourism Promotion Bureau. Shirantha Peiris has been made the Chairman of SL Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management. “All three of them were the most experienced and knowledgeable persons in the tourism industry who had a vast scale of more..

Ranil almost totally reverses GR’s 2019 tax cuts

Jun 1 (TM) Cabinet of Ministers has approved the proposal by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe to amend five Acts, aiming to increase the Govt’s tax revenue to pre-2019 Dec levels, in a nearly total reversal of the controversial tax amendments made under Prez Rajapaksa and then-Finance Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa. “Minister of Finance, Economic Stabilisation, and National Policies and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe more..

EDB welcomes transfer to Finance Ministry

Jun 1 (TM) The Export Development Board (EDB) applauded the decision made by the Govt of SL (GoSL) to remove it from the purview of the Ministry of Trade and vest it with the Ministry of Finance with effect from 27 May. EDB Chairman and Chief Executive Suresh D. de Mel stated that the apex body for SL exports will come under the purview of the Ministry of Finance, and he expects exports to be given higher priority, along with obtaining the support of Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL). more..

AG instructs to charge Ven. Gnanasara Thera

Jun 1 (TM) Police’s Colombo Crime Prevention Division informed Colombo Fort Chief Magistrate Thilina Gamage yesterday that the Attorney General (AG) has instructed to file charges under Section 291A of the Penal Code against Ven. Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera, for allegedly using words that are harmful to religious sentiments. Sections 291A reads thus: “Whoever, with the deliberate intention of wounding the religious feelings of any person, utters any word or more..

COPE: පොදු ව්‍යාපාර පිළිබඳ කාරක සභාව

NBRO extends landslide early warning issued to several areas

Jun 1 (AD) The NBRO has extended the landslide early warnings issued to Kegalle, Matara and Ratnapura districts. Level 3 (Red) warning is issued to Ratnapura, Kalawana, Elapatha, Kuruwita and Eheliyagoda divisional secretariat divisions in Ratnapura District for a period of 24 hours until 4.30 p.m. tomorrow (1). Since the rainfall within the past 24 hours has exceeded 150 mm, people living in the aforementioned areas have been urged to evacuate to safe locations to avoid risk of landslides, more..

Basil’s loyalists in fresh move to scuttle 21A

Jun 1 (DM) In a fresh move to scuttle the 21st Amendment, the loyalists of MP Basil Rajapaksa on Monday insisted at the govt’s group meeting that bringing about economic stability should be prioritized instead of expending energy on constitutional changes. However, Prez Rajapaksa emphasized that it should be incorporated into the Constitution. PM Wickremesinghe also spoke for it. Among the MPs who spoke against the 21st Amendment are Chintaka Mayadunna, more..

It’s payback time even though you are poorer

Jun 1 (FT) Amidst rising inflation, cost and a contracting economy the Govt yesterday announced new tax measures including reintroduction of previous rules to recoup at least half of the revenue lost due to relief given in Nov 2019. Following approval by the Cabinet of Ministers on Monday, PM and Finance Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday unveiled the new tax regime with two measures with immediate effect and others more..

Murder of a journalist in broad daylight 18 years ago

Jun 1 (FT) The death of any member of the journalistic fraternity is distressing. More so when a scribe is gunned down in broad daylight by unknown assassins for the crime of writing something that displeased people with pretensions of power. The sadness is even more acute when the journalist was someone known to you for more than 25 years and had been immensely helpful as a source of accurate news and stimulating views. Aiyathurai Nadesan who served as Batticaloa correspondent of more..

Reducing queues when supply is constrained

Jun 1 (FT) Queues are a problem faced by Sri Lankans every day now. There are few dollars. Therefore, essentials such as fuel for electricity production and transport are in short supply. Prices have gone up, but demand is still robust. With regard to electricity, the cost increases have not been passed down, yet. There is a degree of rationing, irrespective of willingness to pay or intensity of need. All are subjected to load shedding with rare exceptions. more..

මන්ත්‍රීවරුන්ගේ වත්කම් විමර්ශනයට 21න් නීති ගේන්න!