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Video: Duties and functions to ministries gazetted

Dec 12 (AD) The gazette notification proclaiming the relevant duties and functions to the Ministries has been published. Reportedly, Prez has issued the relevant gazette. The number of Ministers and Ministries, Duties, Functions, Departments, Public Corporations and Statutory Bodies under the relevant Ministers have been gazetted in accordance with Article 43/1 and Article 46/1 of the Constitution. more..

Video: All should support new President: Maithripala Sirisena

Dec 12 (AD) Former President Maithripala Sirisena says that everyone should work together to support the new govt to take the country forward. The former President mentioned this speaking at a function held in Kettarama, Colombo. Pointing out that it has been just 3 weeks since Gotabaya Rajapaksa assumed Presidency, Sirisena stated that everyone should support the leader and the govt when a new leader is elected to the country. He further said that poverty is the main issue of the country. more..

Temporary halt in train travel likely on Matara-Beliatta strip

Dec 12 (DM) Ministry of Transport is likely to stop trains from travelling on the Matara to Beliatta railway line in the coming weeks after reports surfaced that construction of the new railway tracks by a Chinese company had not been up to standard. In addition, a committee will also be appointed to probe the project which was carried out by a Chinese company who has no previous experience in the construction of railways. T26.75 km long Matara-Beliatta railway extension was more..

Video: No force should be allowed to take human lives: Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith

Dec 12 (AD) No force should be allowed to take human life or trample humanity, says Archbishop of Colombo Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith. He expressed these views addressing the annual carol program organized by the SL Army at Nelum Pokuna Theatre, yesterday (10). He pointed out that the Army personal are committed to protecting human life and that they fight to protect good people from people who commit wrongdoings. more..

Rs. 1 bn from Treasury to meet Apeksha Hospital drug shortage

Dec 12 (DN) The Health Ministry has acted swiftly to have Rs.1 billion released from the Treasury for the local purchase of essential cancer drugs required by the Apeksha Hospital, Maharagama, the country’s premier cancer treatment facility. The Apeksha hospital made an appeal to the Health Ministry recently regarding the shortage of 24 essential drugs required for cancer patients. Accordingly, the newly appointed Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi had urgently raised this matter with more..

Japan talks with GR govt: FOIP on the agenda

Dec 12 (Island) Japanese Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu will discuss the most important feature in Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe’s foreign policy–the Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP) with the new SL leadership. The Japanese Foreign Minister is scheduled to meet Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena and pay courtesy calls on Prez Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Premier Mahinda Rajapaksa during his three-day visit beginning today. A Japanese Embassy has said that the visit is more..

Royal Park convict had left country prior to travel ban Court order, SC informed

Dec 12 (FT) The convict in the Royal Park murder case, Jude Shramantha Jayamaha, who received a presidential pardon, had left the country before a Court order prohibiting him for travelling overseas, SC was informed. The Controller General of Immigration and Emigration informed the SC by affidavit that Jayamaha, on whom the Court slapped an overseas travel ban on 29 Nov, had left the country prior to that date. more..

SLFP should help govt obtain two-thirds majority: Maithri

Dec 12 (DM) The SLFP should support the new govt to obtain a two-thirds majority at the next General Elections, former President and SLFP Chairman Maithripala Sirisena said. He made this remark at a meeting held at the party headquarters with electoral organizers to review the party’s progress. Mr Sirisena said the new government should obtain a two-thirds majority at the next Parliamentary Elections so that President Gotabhaya Rajapaksa could create a prosperous country. more..

Peace Expo and Colombo Food Fest this weekend

Dec 12 (FT) Peace Expo and Colombo Food Fest 2019 will be held on 14-15 Dec at Independence Square, Colombo. Peace Expo 2019 is a unique two-day event, launched in 2016, as part of the UN Sustainable Development Goals Action Campaign activities. Event is spearheaded by The Road to Rights, a local youth-led organisation that engages in advancing Sustainable Development Goals through a human rights approach. Peace Expo 2019 will provide an opportunity to celebrate more..

CID officer on the run in Swiss care: Sri Lanka ponders future course of action

Dec 12 (Island) Govt would soon decide on a future course of action in respect of controversial Inspector Nishantha Silva taking refuge in Switzerland. Authoritative sources said that the alleged abduction of a local employee of the Swiss Embassy in Colombo close on the heels of Silva, his wife and three children leaving the country on Nov 24 had distracted the govt. Silva was attached to CID and entrusted with handling several high profile more..

Controversial new scanners at Customs

Dec 12 (CT) All Ceylon Container Transport Employees Union (ACCTEU), while rejecting Additional Director of Customs Sunil Jayaratne's statement that the new scanners installed at the Customs are not harmful to the human body, said that he cannot make such a comment since he is a representative of the Customs, against whom the allegation has been levelled in this connection. General Secretary of the Union, B.I. Abdeen said that it is up to the Atomic Energy Authority to more..

Ranil-Sajith discussions: No agreement yet

Dec 12 (CT) The factions supporting UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and Sajith Premadasa failed to agree on a number of points which were brought up during a special discussion at Sirikotha, yesterday. The meeting was held to iron out differences between the two factions and to plan the Party's campaign for the upcoming General Election. The factions had disagreed on a number of points and are hence, scheduled to meet for two-day round of talks to sort out these matters. more..

'Attempt to link UNP to Swiss Embassy employee’s abduction complaint, reveals...'

Dec 12 (Island) The UNP said no one connected to the party had anything to do with the abduction of a Swiss Embassy employee recently. UNP condemned the incident, because it was committed to protecting human rights and the rule of law, General Secretary of the party Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, noted adding that the Swiss Embassy employee of her own volition had complained of sexual harassment and being forced to open more..

Sri Lanka Pavilion held at World Trade Expo in Mumbai

Dec 12 (CT) The Consulate General of Sri Lanka in Mumbai participated at the World Trade Expo 2019 in Mumbai, together with popular Sri Lankan brands in India to widen its market access. The World Trade Centre (WTC), Mumbai and All-India Association of Industries (AIAI) hosted the 3rd edition of their flagship event in Mumbai, bringing together Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME's) from six Indian States, trade development officials and 30 participating countries. more..

Leading businesses pledge support to tackle Sri Lanka’s high malnutrition

Dec 12 (Island) Scaling Up Nutrition Business Network (SUN BN), led by the World Food Programme (WFP), brought together thirty leading SL businesses to pledge their support to three important agendas: improving workplace health and nutrition efforts; producing healthy food; and promoting healthy food consumption. A global network spanning 41 countries, SUN BN aims to reduce malnutrition in all its forms through engaging and supporting businesses to act, invest more..

31 institutions including Police, SIS, TRC brought under Defence Ministry purview

Dec 12 (FT) Thirty-one State institutions including the Police Department, State Intelligence Service (SIS), Department of Immigration and Emigration, Department of Registration of Persons, National Dangerous Drugs Control Board, as well as the Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRC), will come under the under the purview of the Defence Ministry, according to the subjects and functions Gazette issued by Prez Gotabaya more..

Vallibel Finance to build 16-storey headquarters

Dec 12 (DN) Vallibel Finance set its sights on a 16-story new headquarters building that will soon join Sri Lanka’s impressive skyline. Billed to be a state-of-the-art financial center in downtown Colombo 3, the foundation stone for the showpiece tower was laid by Dhammika Perera, Chairman of the diversified Vallibel Group and Jayantha Rangamuwa, the Managing Director of Vallibel Finance in the presence of the company’s Board of Directors, Senior Managers and staff. more..

CPA condemns aftermath, reportage on alleged abduction of Swiss emb. employee

Dec 12 (FT) Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) in a statement said it is deeply concerned with recent events in the aftermath of the incident in which an employee of the Embassy of Switzerland in SL was allegedly abducted, sexually harassed, and questioned by unidentified persons regarding embassy related matters, on or about 27 Nov. Whilst it is too early to comment on official processes underway investigating these incidents, CPA is alarmed with the conduct of several media more..

'Sri Lanka poised for growth'

Dec 12 (FT) Well-known investor and emerging markets guru Dr. Mark Mobius this week placed the odds of SL returning to strong growth in its favour, provided the Govt moved efficiently to implement policies, which include establishing an investor-friendly environment and competitive tax regime. Dr. Mobius, who is a founding partner of Templeton Emerging Markets Group, which is estimated to be worth $ 50 billion, and more..

'We went out to contain in 2nd session'

Dec 12 (CI) After conceding 89 runs in the first, wicketless session in Rawalpindi, Pakistan remarkably got back in the game in the second. They had bowled 48 balls on a full length in 26 overs in that opening session, conceding 47 runs off these deliveries and straying on leg stump as well. Wayward in line, ineffective in length, captain Azhar Ali's statements the previous day on the important of discipline in Test format seemed lost on this attack. Speaking after the day's play, more..

TNA’s chickens come home to roost

Dec 12 (Island) The TNA has woken up to the fact that the people are undergoing difficulties owing to the breakdown of the provincial administration in the North. It says annual transfers of state officials, under the Northern Provincial Council (NPC), cannot be effected without gubernatorial approval and, therefore, the govt should appoint a Governor without further delay. The TNA’s concerns should be appreciated, but here is a textbook example of irony. The TNA has a history of more..

'We need 300 to give our bowlers a chance'

Dec 12 (CI) Sri Lanka had sailed through the first session in Rawalpindi, a century opening stand in sight, but at the end of the day were left ruing the post-lunch session in which they lost four wickets for 31 runs. Dimuth Karunaratne and Oshada Fernando had seemed settled, with Karunaratne hitting a fluent fifty, and Oshada growing in confidence after he had taken 20 deliveries to get off the mark. But Karunaratne's dismissal in the 31st over more..

Rising Stars U19 Tri-Series: Sri Lanka defeat West Indies in low scoring thriller

Dec 12 (DN) An unbeaten last wicket partnership between Sonal Dinusha and Amshi de Silva propelled Sri Lanka to a nail biting one-wicket victory over West Indies in day three action of Rising Stars U19 Tri-Series. On another difficult batting wicket, Sri Lanka sent West Indies into bat after winning the toss and immediately their bowlers made life difficult for the host. West Indies plummeted to 67/7 in the 34th over, with new ball bowler Amshi de Silva (6-1-18-3) and leg-spinner Kavindu Nadeeshan more..

MinorMatters project receives UNAOC-BMW group intercultural innovation award

Dec 12 (BN) The MinorMatters: Rewind; Rebuild project of the organization Alliance Development Trust in Sri Lanka was selected as one of ten global grassroots initiatives to receive the prestigious Intercultural Innovation Award from the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the BMW Group, during an Awards Ceremony held last night at the Royal Theatre in Madrid, Spain. The selection process was highly competitive, with over 1,200 applications from 128 countries. more..

Pakistan seamers shine on day of fluctuating fortunes

Dec 12 (CI) History will record the significance of the day instead of the trivialities contained within it, though that is a shame, as the cricket was really rather good. On a day where the breaks between sessions appeared to herald official changes in momentum, the ebbs and flows never really allowed either side to walk away claiming more than an equitable share of the spoils. Pakistan will be well pleased to have seen the back of more..

Don't worry about the lines - you say you're Sri Lankan

Dec 12 (CI) Mohammad Abbas broke a Pakistan Test drought that had lasted 10 years, nine months and nine days when he shuffled in to bowl at 9.45am, but for me the wait was slightly longer. The plan had been to be parked behind press box glass, ideally with a coffee at arm's reach, to witness the historic occasion. But a domestic flight cancellation the previous day meant I'd had to spend Test-match eve in Karachi. While there, I'd also been ripped off by a taxi driver and charged 100 rupees by more..

President’s call for efficient Public Service: Can it be done?

Dec 12 (DM) Many promises by the yahapalana mandate, in relation to an independent and vibrant public service were ignored, forgotten or forsaken. The promise of bringing to justice those officials who, with their former political masters, had engaged in humongous robbing of national wealth not only escaped justice but became inner circle of the officialdom of the govt, making a mockery of the determination of those people who voted the govt in. The new Prez has set about restarting more..

Mahindananda Aluthgamage

Bhikkhu Sumedha: Sage-artist of Dulvala

Dec 12 (Island) The 13th death anniversary of a Swiss artist who made Sri Lanka his home and worked tirelessly for the sake of the sick, after entering the Sasana, falls this month. This is the fascinating story of the life of Ven. Sumedha, who died at the age of 74, as told by his friend Ven. Bhikku Bodhi. On Dec 21st [2006] at approx 10:30 pm, my beloved friend, Ven. Bhikkhu Sumedha, Swiss-born monk residing at Manapadassana Lena in Dulvala, near Kandy, passed away. more..

UNP at a crossroads

Dec 12 (DN) The appointment of NDF prez election candidate Sajith Premadasa as the Leader of the Opposition represents a watershed for the UNP as well for opposition politics in SL although it is likely to cause some fractious moments for the UNP in the coming months. UNP leader and five times PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has been Leader of the Opposition for most of the past 25 years since assuming leadership of the party in 1994 after the assassinations of then Prez R Premadasa more..

Exposing the Foreign Job Mafia

Dec 12 (DM) SL’s foreign recruitment industry plays an essential role in the country’s migrant labour sector with the industry expecting to secure jobs for Sri Lankans within conditions of safety, security and dignity. Despite these conditions, however, a complaint has been lodged to PCoI to investigate cases of corruption during 2015-2018 period against illegal recruitments by using Foreign Employment Bureau’s license granted for agencies. more..

Recommitment to SAARC spirit

Dec 12 (DN) At a time when experts on South Asian affairs were highly apprehensive about the future of the main regional grouping, SAARC, some of the leaders in the region express desire to strengthen the Association. As a founding member, SL attributes high importance to the purposes and principles of the SAARC Charter which aims to promote peace, stability, amity and progress in the region through strict adherence to the principles of the UN Charter and Non-alignment, Prez Rajapaksa said. more..

Govt’s accommodativeness cannot be taken for granted

Dec 12 (CT) In the first three weeks after the prez election, the govt appears to be following a more balanced set of policies with regard to dealing with ethnic and religious minorities and political activists than was expected. The election showed the country was deeply polarized in terms of inter-community political choices. Prez Gotabaya Rajapaksa won the prez election on a platform that gave primacy to national security with a large majority of the ethnic and religious minorities more..

Reimagining school through collective impact

Dec 12 (CT) School resonates differently with different people. For some, school is a place to look forward to, a place where they meet up and gossip with friends on the latest cartoons. For some others it's a place they despise because of strict teachers and a lot of homework. However, those who fall into either one of these categories have been blessed in life, since for some children, school is a place of refuge and a safe haven more..

Why Gota’s new face is likeable

Dec 12 (DM) President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s Indian tour concluded on a positive note. This was despite Rajya Sabha MP Vaiko staging a protest opposing the SL president’s visit to India. What’s striking about the former military man turned lawmaker is his show of calmness in the face of opposition. There is much talk about Gotabaya being a vegetarian and a Buddhist and these factors could be attributed to his composure. Gotabaya’s travels in and around India made him realise that more..

Material roots of racist ideology

Dec 12 (CT) Last week I wrote about racist ideology and declared that the thesis Bad leaders mislead the people, who are good, decent and free of prejudice, into evil ways, was false. Good-people bad-politician thesis, I said, is more often than not, an inversion of the truth. Masses carry with them emotions and prejudices rooted in past history and experiences of recent decades. Politicians willing to align with mass sentiments rise to the crest as leaders; those who oppose, are relegated to the wilderness. more..

 Sri Lanka Vs Pakistan