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Accusations against Wijedasa baseless: JO

Aug 23 (NR) The Joint Opposition says the factors considered in the removal of Wijedasa Rajapakshe as Minister of Justice was baseless. UPFA MP Dilum Amunugama said Wijedasa Rajapakshe spoke of the country as he feels for the happenings. The MP said the party has never endorsed a common candidate, noting the party always brings forward its own candidate. He said the Party has never gone behind a common candidate neither will it do so in future. more..

Yet another mansion!

Aug 23 (DM) A grand mansion set in a landscape of scenic beauty coming up in the upcountry is a main topic among the people in the Nuwara-eliya District these days.  The inquisitive ones have already found out that the billionaire behind the mansion project is none but a purohita, who had made it to Diyawanna Council through the charity list after being rejected at the general polls. By the way, this worthy is said to be the lucky owner of two other mansions of similar grandeur, more..

Customs nets 24kg of hashish bound for Sri Lanka

Aug 23 (TOI) Customs preventive division from Tuticorin seized 24kg of hashish, a narcotic substance, which was planned to be smuggled to Sri Lanka. The gang, which carried the contraband, however escaped. Though sleuths opened fire in order to stop the gang, it did not stop and escaped by sea. The worth of the seized contraband is said to be in crores. Officials said they received secret information about the smuggling activity in Therespuram shore area. Based on the tip-off, more..

Sri Lanka to set up crisis panel to arrest cricket slide

Aug 23 (NR) Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara says a committee has been appointed with the objective of directing the Sri Lankan cricket team on the right path. Speaking at the weekly Cabinet media briefing today the Minister said all senior individuals with a stake in the country’s cricket are welcome to contribute to the initiative. The Minister stated a programme has been initiated to help direct the Cricket team in the right direction. more..

Provide health allowance to drought victims: Anura

Aug 23 (NR) Chief Opposition Whip MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake requested the govt to provide a health allowance to those affected by the drought in several districts. He said the allowance should be provided in addition to the present benefits. The MP stated farming was the only income for families adding more than three crops have been destroyed. He noted they have pawned everything they own from their gold to household equipment remarking they’re economy was in shambles more..

Yoshitha’s grand aunt issued notice by Colombo Additional Magistrate

Aug 23 (DN) Yoshitha Rajapaksa’s grand aunt was sent notice by Colombo Additional Magistrate Buddhika Sri Ragala to appear before courts on Sept 22 regarding an alleged case of money laundering where a land in Ratmalana had been purchased as means of legitimizing money earned through dubious means. The AG had asked that the FCID obtain a statement from her and thus they submitted a motion asking that the courts issue an order for her to come to the FCID for a statement to be recorded. more..

Govt will fulfill its responsibilities to strengthen Samurdhi Movement: President

Aug 23 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena says today the Samurdhi Movement has developed into a broad national power of the people for economic prosperity. He assured that the Govt will fulfill its responsibilities without any hesitation to carry forward the Samurdhi Movement taking it from strength to strength in the future.   He made these remarks addressing the Samurdhi Praja Shakthi National Federation: 2017 held at the Nelum Pokuna Theatre, today. more..

Electric vehicle charging stations to be regulated

Aug 23 (DM) With the increase in the number of electric vehicles in Sri Lanka, the number of charging stations too has experienced a significant growth. So far, there are over 5500 electric vehicles which could be charged at over 70 charging stations. Since there’s a higher demand for electric vehicles and charging stations, the government has newfound interest in this sector. Hence, a cabinet paper too has been issued to improve facilities. more..

Landmines still a threat in Muhamalai: Resettlement programme hampered

Aug 23 (CT) People in the Muhamalai area in Kilinochchi are facing untold hardships due to the fact that there are many live mines in the area. Even though the war in the North ended 8 years ago, some live mines have still not been cleared. After the end of the war in 2009, 41,000 families settled in the Karaichi, Kandawalai, Pachchilaipalli, and Pooneryn Divisions in the Kilinochchi District. However, 247 families that registered for resettlement in the Pachchilaipalli DS more..

'They not only protect thieves but they themselves are involved in thefts'

Aug 23 (LT) “The govt interfered to sabotage several investigations that were carried out against corruption in our country. The same govt is now attacking Minister Wijedasa Rajapaksa. Who protected the corrupt? Was it only Wijedasa Rajapaksa? No, all of them protect the corrupt and fraudsters. They not only protect thieves but they themselves are involved in thefts,” said Leader of JVP Anura Dissanayaka. He said this addressing Dhiriya Purawesi summit more..

Renowned Moulavi passes away

Aug 23 (CT) A renowned Islamic religious dignitary in the East and the Life President of Sammantrhurai Majlis us Soora, Sheikuthableeq Moulavi Aliyar Hasarath (75) passed away at his residence in Sammanthurai on Saturday after a brief illness. Moulavi Aliyar Hasarath was a founding member of the Tableequl Islam Arabic College and hundreds of Moulavis successfully completed their course of study under his leadership. The late Moulavi played a commendable role in the East more..

Wastewater in Sigiriya Moat, alarm a canard – CCF

Aug 23 (CT) Central Cultural Fund (CCF) said it was a false alarm that waste water was being disposed of into the moat surrounding the iconic Sigiriya Rock. People were agitated over the rumour that wastewater from surrounding offices, canteens and staff hostels were diverted towards the moat surrounding the Sigiriya Rock. Director General of the CCF, said that the rumour spread because of a particular restaurant that had been identified as diverting its wastewater to the moat. more..

Govt allocates Rs.100 billion for drought relief

Aug 23 (DN) The Govt has allocated Rs 100 billion to provide relief to drought affected areas, said Home Affairs Minister Vajira Abeywardena in Parliament today.  He said that in addition to those funds, the govt needs another Rs 80 billion to provide more facilities to those areas. He added that the govt has already spent Rs. 60 billion to provide relief for the flood affected areas and another additional amount of Rs. 60 billion is required.  more..

JO wants time to study serious discrepancies in draft constitutional proposals

Aug 23 (Island) Alleging what they termed serious discrepancies, the JO yesterday sought time to thoroughly examine Steering Committee’s interim drafts containing constitutional proposals in Sinhala, Tamil and English. JO parliamentary group leader Dinesh Gunawardena, MP told The Island that he along with MP Prasanna Ranatunga made representations on behalf of the JO at Steering Committee meeting chaired by Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday. more..

Draft 20A tabled in Parliament

Aug 23 (DM) Govt today presented the 20th Amendment to the Constitution to Parliament providing for a change in the provincial council electoral system and conducting elections to the nine provincial councils on a single day. Legislation presented to the House by Chief Govt Whip Gayantha Karunatilake has provisions to dissolve a council on a date prior to the actual date on which it term ends and also to extend the dissolution date to pave the way to hold elections on a single day. more..

Sri Lanka expects Yala rice harvest to be down 35%

Aug 23 (EN) Sri Lanka expects to harvest 988,000 metric tonnes of paddy (rough rice) during the ongoing drought stricken Yala minor cultivation season, down 35% from a year earlier, the lowest in a decade, data showed. The latest forecast based on cultivation progress up to June, has been upped from 789,000 tonnes based on May data. Farmers had already been advised to use water sparingly and plant less water intensive crops than rice this season due to a drought. more..

Army Chief urges private sector not to employ deserters

Aug 23 (Island) Army Chief Lt. Gen. Mahesh Senanayake urged private sector institutions not to provide employment to deserters under any circumstances. Lt. Gen. Senanayake said that legal action could be taken against those who had employed deserters. The warning was given in the wake of the arrest of over 700 deserters, including one officer over the weekend. Army Commander requested the public to provide information regarding deserters to the nearest police station and the army. more..

Fear of failure hampers Sri Lanka: Mahela

Aug 23 (PTI) Former Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene feels the current team is not making the progress they should because of a fear of failure. Sri Lanka cricket has declined rapidly across all formats in the last two years since they lost the services of Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara.  The Asian side are currently playing India at home and suffered a three-nil defeat in the Test series and also lost heavily in the first ODI of a five-match series.  more..

Cabinet decides to proceed with scheduled polythene ban

Aug 23 (DN) Despite protests by polythene manufacturers, Cabinet this week decided that it would impose the ban on polythene as scheduled on Sept 1. Manufacturers of polythene, soft packaging industry and other industries allied to the production of polythene, wholesale dealer and traders have made representations to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and stated that they would be adversely affected by the ban. They had stressed that the Cabinet decision to more..

German Research Vessel Sonne in Sri Lankan waters

Aug 23 (Island) Having completed its expedition around Australia, the German research Vessel Sonne, among the biggest of its kind, arrived at the Colombo harbour last week to start its expedition in Sri Lankan waters. The expedition was aimed at solving the mystery around the separation of India and Sri Lanka from Antarctica more than 116 million years ago, which once made up one giant supercontinent. The expedition is part of the research project INGON, which investigates more..

Onus on youngsters to lift Sri Lanka out of the pits

Aug 23 (CI) If anything, the first ODI was even more of a pounding than the Tests had been. After Sri Lanka's batsmen had taken turns torching their own innings in quick succession, India appeared as if they could have doubled Sri Lanka's score in the fifty overs. Sri Lanka might not even have taken a wicket had Rohit Sharma's bat not got been lodged in some sticky Dambulla soil. Then, completing the embarrassment, the team's bus was held up by demonstrators, who demanded that more..

Health sector priority for prevention of diseases: President

Aug 23 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena says future plans for health sector will pay priortize attention on strengthening of prevention of diseases. He said, accordingly the services of Health Medical Officers and Public Health Inspectors (PHIs) will be strengthened through providing additional facilities. President was speaking at 82nd Annual General Meeting of the Sri Lanka Public Health Inspectors Union, held at Nelum Pokuna today (22).   more..

Video: SAITM: Crucial discussion with President on Friday

Aug 23 (DM) The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) said today a crucial discussion  would be held with President Maithripala Sirisena on Friday on the SAITM controversy. “All stakeholders will be present at the meeting and we hope the President will give us a reasonable solution to this issue,” GMOA Secretary Dr. Haritha Aluthge said. He said they had requested the President to issue a gazette notice suspending student enrollment by SAITM. more..

'MR removed by his own amendment'

Aug 23 (DN) The amendment former President Mahinda Rajapaksa brought to remove former President Chandrika Kumaratunga from the Chairmanship of the SLFP has resulted in himself being removed. He now pretends to have forgotten all of this, Irrigation and Water Resource Management Management Minister Gamini Vijith Vijayamuni Soysa said. The Minister stressed that no matter the opinion, it was President Maithripala Sirisena who is the chairman of the SLFP. more..

Video: Smart ID in two months: DRP Commissioner

Aug 23 (DM) Department for Registration of Persons (DRP) would issue a new Smart ID within the coming two months, after the introduction of the present NICs some 45 years ago, Department’s Commissioner Viyani Gunathilaka said. He said that the decision was taken considering several issues regarding the current National Identity Cards (NICs). “Department will issue the present Identity card with the front facing image from Sept 1 and more..

PC polls delayed till mid 2018

Aug 23 (DM) Govt affirmed its position to introduce a new electoral system to the Provincial Council Elections even by delaying it till the middle of the next year latest, it is learnt. President and PM chaired a late night meeting of the Govt party leaders on Monday night and discussed the matter. The Govt decided to change the electoral system to the Provincial Councils. It will be a mix of the Proportional Representation System and the First Past the Post System (FPP). more..

Healing them psychologically

Aug 23 (NIE) For a few days, Vasantha Raman (name changed) sat silently and listened to the stories told by her neighbours at a community hall in Kilinochchi. Then the 35-year stood on the stage and said, For fifteen years, every day I would stand at the gate of my house and wait for my husband, she says. But he never came. So I would spend the day mowing the garden. Vasantha has no children and lived with her parents. Now I know that he will not return, she said. more..

Sri Lanka navy eyes increased sea marshals business

Aug 23 (EN) Sri Lanka's new navy commander announced plans to secure a greater role in providing anti-piracy security cover for international merchant shipping as the island emerged from a decades-long war. Vice Admiral Travis Sinniah said Sri Lanka as a conflict-free nation in South Asia was well placed to protect international shipping between the pirate-infested gulf of Aden to straits of Malacca. He said they were seeking to increase commercial operations more..

SIM card registrations to be made strict

Aug 23 (NR) The Cabinet today approved the proposal tabled calling for the registration of mobile SIM cards. Cabinet arrived at this decision taking into consideration the large number of active connections without documentation containing the accurate details of the SIM cardholder. The main purpose of this program is to curb various crimes and fraudulent acts that occur through the use of mobile phones. Accordingly, Cabinet paper which was presented by more..

Case against Prasanna Ranatunga re-fixed for trial for the fourth occasion

Aug 23 (DN) For the fourth consecutive occasion the case filed against MP Prasanna Ranatunga and his wife was today re-fixed for trial by Colombo High Court. Accordingly, the case is to be heard on a day-to-day basis commencing from October 26.  When the case came up before Colombo Chief HC Judge Manilal Waidyatillek, defence counsel sought a new trial date citing that his client wants to attend parliament sessions. Defence Counsel Anil Silva PC appearing for Prasanna Ranatunga more..

Video: President approves removal of Wijeyadasa Rajapakse

Aug 23 (AD) President Maithripala Sirisena has approved the removal of Wijeyadasa Rajapakse from his ministerial portfolios as per the request made by the UNP.  UNP Working Committee yesterday made a collective decision that Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakse should be removed from all his ministerial portfolios.  The party leadership therefore had requested the President to remove him from his ministerial portfolios, in light of him criticizing govt policies.  more..

School students to receive health insurance coverage

Aug 23 (NR) Cabinet of Ministers has approved the proposal that calls for health insurance cover for school children. Accordingly, 4.5 million school children aged 5 to 19 years will receive free insurance coverage of Rs.200,000 rupees each. The budgetary allocation for this purpose from the 2017 budget is 2,700 million rupees. The proposed insurance covers 10,000 rupees for out-patient treatment and a cover of 100,000 rupees per hospitalization. more..

HC commences trial against State Minister Palitha Range Bandara

Aug 23 (DN) The Colombo High Court today commenced recording evidence in a case filed against Skills Development and Vocational Training State Minister Palitha Range Bandara and another person for allegedly aiding and abetting to present a vehicle registration permit for an illegally assembled vehicle. When the case came up before High Court Judge Gihan Kulatunga, the first witness Dinesh Ratnayake gave evidence and further trial was fixed for August 25. more..

ගම්මැද්ද Good Market සමග එකතු වුණේ ඇයි?

Ministries are not lotteries

Aug 23 (DM) After the resignation of Ravi Karunanayake as the Foreign Minister, govt has reverted the two lotteries boards, National Lotteries Board and Development Lotteries Board back to the Finance Ministry functioning under Minister Mangala Samaraweera.   Two lotteries boards had been under the Finance Ministry for a long time as two institutions earning revenue for the public coffers until the Cabinet reshuffle effected in last May, when they were transferred to the Foreign Affairs Ministry. more..

Wasting: A problem needing immediate attention

Aug 23 (CT) Ceylon Today reported that SL is having the third highest prevalence of wasting, or low weight for height which is a strong predictor of mortality among children under five according to a report by the Int'l Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). Wasting is usually the result of acute significant food shortage and/or disease. Shockingly the only countries ranked below Sri Lanka in this index are Djibouti and South Sudan, countries wrecked by conflict and the horrors of global warming. more..

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