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The Truth Squareto trap disinformation during General Elections

Feb 27 (EN) The Truth Square -Trap Disinformation a platform created to battle fake news during the upcoming General Election campaign was launched today at SL Foundation Institute. The platform spearheaded by NextGenSL involves youth representing the main political parties in SL, civil society activists, senior journalists, academics and media. UNP, JVP & SLPP were represented at the launch. more..

'Students seeking foreign uni’s: Govt losing Rs.56 bn annually'

Feb 27 (DN) Due to the restriction on the intake of Advanced Level students into state universities, the govt loses an estimated Rs.56 billion annually as there are more students seeking university entrance in foreign countries, Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardane said. Minister made this observation at the Diploma awarding ceremony held at the SL Foundation Institute auditorium, yesterday. He said the Govt will make a revolutionary change in higher education institutions this year. more..

President orders to stop Oil Palm cultivation

Feb 27 (DM) President Gotabaya Rajapaksa today ordered the relevant officials to take measures to immediately stop Oil Palm (Katu Pol) cultivation in the country. He made the order after the people of Galle complained that Katu Pol cultivation was one of the main reasons for the water scarcity. President Rajapaksa, who was presiding the Galle District Coordinating Committee meeting, said a proper environmental study should be carried out immediately over the issue. more..

Sajin Vass remanded

Feb 27 (AD) Former UPFA MP Sajin de Vass Gunawardena has been remanded until March 12 by the Colombo High Court for allegedly intimidating witnesses in a court case. The former MP has been indicted on the charge of money laundering amounting to over Rs 306.26 million, under Section 3 [1] [a] of Money Laundering Act No 05 of 2006 as amended by Act No 40 of 2011. When the case was taken up today before more..

Attempt on Aluthgamage's life: Politician involved to be exposed: Aluthgamage

Feb 27 (CT) State Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage, said the CID would call a top politician for investigation over the course of next week for alleged orders the latter made to MP Ranjan Ramanayake to murder Aluthgamage. He said the Govt Analyst report on the alleged conversation where the said politician instructing Ramanayake has been released on 25 February. Meanwhile, speaking on the CB Treasury Bonds scam, he added that the AG has to initiate legal action more..

Police commandos probe mystery fire at Buthgamuwa swamp

Feb 27 (Island) A special squad of the Police STF is conducting further investigations on the cause of the fire that broke out in a marshy land at Perera Mawatha on the Rajagiriya- Buthgamuwa Road, on Tuesday. Police believe that illicit liquor dealers were behind the suspicious act. Several barrels used to distill illicit alcohol were found at the location. Going by the initial investigations, police said that the area residents blamed the fire on illicit distillers in the area. more..

Video: Estate workers’ wage hike shouldn’t be a false campaign promise: Vadivel

Feb 27 (AD) MP Vadivel Suresh says that the hike of the daily wage of estate workers to Rs 1000 cannot be just a campaign promise. He pointed out that Prez Gotabaya Rajapaksa promised that the daily wage of estate workers will be hiked to Rs 1000 after he wins the Prez Election. “They say that the wage will be given in March. However, the March salary will be given on Apr 10. Yet, by any chance the general election has been more..

People’s Bank introduces state-of-the-art self-service school banking unit at Royal

Feb 27 (Island) Inscribing another milestone in the history of People’s Bank Digital transformation Journey, a new self-service school banking unit with NFC-enabled Cash Deposit Machine (CDM) was inaugurated at Royal College, Colombo on 26th Feb. The inauguration ceremony was held at school premises with the participation of Chairman, People’s Bank Sujeewa Rajapakse, its CEO Rasitha Gunawardane, Principal, Royal College B.A. Abeyrathne, Senior Deputy Principal more..

New online service for foreign tourists

Feb 27 (NR) The govt has directed attention towards introducing a web portal for foreign tourists to obtain secure transport services. Ministry of Tourism & Civil Aviation said tourists will be able to obtain accommodation, vehicle rental services and other services necessary for their trip, through the online service, introduced by the SL Transport Board. The introduction of the web portal has been proposed as a solution to prevent illegal activity and abuse linked to the tourism industry. more..

'SC Judge to examine reconciliation process'

Feb 27 (EN) Sri Lanka will appoint a Supreme Court Judge to examine its post-war reconciliation process SLPP Chief Prof G.L Peiris told reporters Thursday. He said that the judge will act as a Commission to review what has taken place and recommend future action. This follows Sri Lanka declaring its decision to withdraw from the co-sponsorship of the UNHRC resolution 40/1 and the preceding resolutions 30/1 and 34/1. more..

Video: Ranil will come to parliament by national list: Fonseka

Feb 27 (AD) UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe will enter the parliament through the national list at the upcoming general election, says UNP MP Sarath Fonseka. He said that it is said that Wickremesinghe will not be contesting at the elections and if he does he has to contest under Samagi Jana Balawegaya. However, Wickremesinghe can contest separately, if he wishes, Fonseka added. Although there is a curiosity in the silence of the UNP Leader, several agreements were arrived at following more..

Sri Lanka expects maize production to rise 40% in 2020 main season

Feb 27 (EN) Sri Lanka is expecting domestic maize output to reach 310,497 metric tonnes in the main Maha harvesting season that is getting underway, up 40% from 220,425 metric tonnes reported last year the Department of Agriculture said. SL’s maize output was hit by the fall army worm and erratic weather last year. By January 78% of the targeted 99,431 hectares of maize had been cultivated. Most the maize is expected from the Anuradhapura, Moneragala and Amparai districts. more..

Video: Minister orders probe into assault on cricket fans at Sooriyawewa stadium

Feb 27 (AD) Sports Minister Dullas Alahapperuma has instructed Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) to investigate the assault on spectators near the entrance to the Sooriyawewa Stadium during the second ODI between SL and West Indies yesterday. A large crowd of cricket fans had reportedly been assaulted near the ticket counters located at the entrance to the int'l cricket stadium in Sooriyawewa during yesterday’s ODI match. more..

Video: No need to fear withdrawal from UNHRC resolution: Nalaka Godahewa

Feb 27 (AD) There should be no fear on the withdrawal from a co-sponsored resolution, in the context where even the United States has withdrawn from the UNHRC, stated Dr. Nalaka Godahewa. Godahewa mentioned this attending an opening ceremony held in Gampaha. Responding to a question by a journalist on whether there could be a possibility of losing the GSP Plus concession, he stated that the past govt did nothing for the country’s economic development with the GSP Plus. more..

Travel ban temporarily lifted on Namal

Feb 27 (TM) The travel ban imposed on MP Namal Rajapaksa has been temporarily lifted until 23 July 2020. The order was delivered when the money laundering case against Namal Rajapaksa was taken up before the Colombo Magistrate’s Court today. Namal Rajapaksa and three others have been accused of laundering money amounting to Rs.30 million through Gowers Corporate Services (Pvt) Limited between 2013 and 2014. The case will be taken up for hearing once again on 23 July. more..

Govt failed to walk the talk: UNP

Feb 27 (FT) UNP criticised the Govt’s failure to deliver the changes it promised in the lead-up to elections within its first 100 days in office. UNP Assistant Leader MP Ravi Karunanayake said the Govt was unable to address several of the people’s issues such as inflation and timely delivery of the fertiliser subsidy. “The Govt failed to walk the talk. They promised a lot during the Prez Election such as the fertiliser subsidy more..

Sale of beef in Nuwara Eliya temporarily halted from tomorrow

Feb 27 (AD) On a written notice issued by the Nuwara Eliya District Secretary, steps have been taken to temporarily halt the slaughter of cattle at slaughterhouses in the Nuwara Eliya District with effect from today. Accordingly, Nuwara Eliya, Kotmale, Ambagamuwa, Walapane, Hanguranketha Divisional Secretaries had been notified by the District Secretary. Reportedly, it has been noticed that foot and mouth disease are spreading among cattle in several places in N'Eliya district. more..

Removal of CCTV cameras at Kelaniya Uni; 16 including monk arrested

Feb 27 (DM) Sixteen Kelaniya university undergraduates including a monk were taken into police custody in connection with the removal of newly installed CCTV cameras at the university premises, Police Spokesman Jaliya Senaratne said. He said the monk and three students were arrested over the incident by the Kiribathgoda Police this afternoon while other 12 students later surrendered. The police commenced investigations into the incident after a group of students of the uni more..

Sri Lanka shakes off its shadow

Feb 27 (AFR) A guard thumps the car boot closed. All clear. Up at the entrance we know the drill: bags on belt and walk through the X-ray machine. Like at the airport, but with a bevy of hotel employees beaming in the balmy island air, proving it is possible for a security routine to seem like a greeting ritual on loop. Beneath the smiles is trauma. “We’re really proud that no staff lost their jobs after the incident,” more..

Turkey assures continued support to SL

Feb 27 (SLA) Turkey’s new Ambassador, Demet Sekercioglu has called on the Commander of SL Army, Lt General Shavendra Silva, yesterday. Lt General Silva has recalled bonds of goodwill both countries have been harbouring for generations and underlined the need to maintain the status quo. He has further appreciated the support, facilities and cooperation that have been lent to SL all the time by Turkey with special focus on training openings that have been offered to the SL armed forces. more..

Minister Amaraweera promises measures to check spike in road accidents

Feb 27 (Island) At least 3000 people would be killed in 2020 due to road accidents, given current trends, Minister of Transport Service Management Mahinda Amaraweera said yesterday addressing a meeting at the ministry. He said the govt would have to spend at least one billion rupees to treat the victims of road accidents. Given the colossal loss of life and the financial costs associated with those accidents, the govt would take a number of steps to address the problem. more..

CB Bond Scam

Geneva: Right cause, wrong tactics

Feb 27 (FT) The Geneva 2015 resolution is a hidden tripwire linked to a maze of claymore mines, some buried, some planted in ditches, others nested in trees. When this article appears, Sri Lanka may have nudged that tripwire. There was another, smarter, safer way. The Geneva 2015 resolution was explicitly based on and legitimised the utterly tendentious Zaid al Hussein report with its outrageous, unfounded allegation of system crimes and its hostile recommendations. more..

US standing tall in Indo-Pacific

Feb 27 (CT) When India hit a massive gold reserve holding almost five times India's current reserve of gold, with estimated deposits at around 3,000 tonnes and worth Rs 12 lakh crore in Sonbhadra district of Uttar Pradesh, and Premier Modi and US President Trump signed military and trade deals topping a huge US $3 billion, all within 3 days. It will not be laying it on too thickly to say that India, under Modi, seems to be looking pretty good. 'Behind those deals, Modi's budgetary problems will more..

Video: Two Sri Lankans on Diamond Princess test negative for COVID-19

Feb 27 (AD) Two Sri Lankans on board Diamond Princess the cruise ship have been sent to India after being tested negative for COVID-19, says the Embassy of SL in Japan. They will return to the island after being quarantined for 14 days in India. Diamond Princess cruise ship carrying 3,711 passengers and crew members has been held in quarantine at Yokohama Port in Japan since the 3rd of Feb, after a passenger who had more..

UN rights chief to present oral update on Sri Lanka’s withdrawal from resolution

Feb 27 (AD) The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet will be presenting her Oral Update on SL withdrawing its co-sponsorship of Resolution 40/1 of March 2019 on Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka, which also incorporates and builds on preceding Resolutions 30/1 of Oct 2015 and 34/1 of March 2017. Minister Gunawardena will respond to more..

Video: Gotabaya taking over presidency makes no change: JVP

Feb 27 (DM) While claiming that shifting of presidency from Maithripala Sirisena to Gotabaya Rajapaksa had made no change in the governance or the economy in the country, JVP said the govt has neither fulfilled any of its promises nor provided any concession to the people for the last three months. JVP MP Vijitha Herath told a news conference that the govt which promised before the presidential election to discard the MCC pact, more..

Over 200,000 security forces personnel to get Virusara privilege cards

Feb 27 (MoD) The Defence Ministry has decided to issue Virusara Privilege Cards (VPCs) to over 200,000 security forces personnel, including families of fallen war heroes and disabled soldiers to provide them discounts from public and private sector institutions. Over 44,500 cards have already been issued to them under the first phase. The VPCs facility provides a wide range of unique benefits to security forces personnel including more..

UN, World Bank and UNICEF outline vision to end child malnutrition in Sri Lanka

Feb 27 (TM) Recognizing that nutrition is a fundamental building block in a child’s life and is the cornerstone of a child’s development into a healthy and productive adult, a portfolio developed by the UN, World Bank and UNICEF was handed to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa today at an event held at the Presidential Secretariat. Outlining a vision to end child malnutrition in Sri Lanka, more..

110 state institutions to be presented awards by the President

Feb 27 (AD) According to the report of the Committee on Public Accounts (CoPA), govt organizations which have achieved a high performance in the year 2018 will be presented with awards at the Parliamentary Complex tomorrow (28) under the patronage of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. PM Mahinda Rajapaksa and Speaker of Parliament Karu Jayasuriya are also expected to grace the ceremony. more..

Publishing giant’s love affair with Sri Lanka’s engineers

Feb 27 (TM) Sri Lanka’s engineering talent has long been held in high regard by the international community, as seen by 2015’s all-electric supercar Vega, which was featured on BBC’s Autos, and 2019’s Ravana-1 satellite that was launched from the International Space Station (ISS) in Virginia, US. Both of these were created by Sri Lankan engineers and are indisputably world-class feats of engineering. more..

SriLankan Airlines Airbus deal: Accusations still flying between both sides

Feb 27 (ST) The debate on the SriLankan Airlines Airbus deal, held on Thursday (20), again saw both sides trading accusations against each other over their alleged part in a swirling corruption scandal that had already seen the arrest of a former SriLankan Airlines CEO and his wife. Moving the adjournment motion, UNP MP Nalin Bandara said the commission that had been demanded from Airbus to purchase a new fleet of aircraft more..

'Drugs in schools country’s biggest problem'

Feb 27 (EN) Sri Lanka’s children are facing a massive issue with drug dealers targeting students near schools making the spread of drug addiction the most serious problem facing the nation, PM Mahinda Rajapaksa says. He said that in the past a student found smoking a cigarette would be sacked from the school. “But today marijuana, heroin and even more dangerous drugs such as Ice is being sold to children” he said. more..

Udayanga Weeratunga Extradition Saga

Feb 27 (DM) 2006 MiG Deal is back in the spotlight, with the FCID investigation into the saga has led to SL’s first-ever successful extradition request of a suspect, Udayanga Weeratunga, who is the alleged mastermind of the deal according to police reports. The dramatic extradition of the former SL ambassador to Moscow has been overshadowed by the efforts of senior officers of CID to ensure he was granted bail. more..

Minority parties prepare to canvass votes in North and East

Feb 27 (DM) SLPP teamed up with SLFP and formed SL Nidahas Podujana Sandhanaya in view of the upcoming parliamentary elections. Its electoral strategy is clear in the districts outside the North and the East. They will stick together along with the other small allies in these areas. However, the two parties are now considering different approaches to contest the elections in the North and the East where demographic patterns are different due to the concentration of Tamils and Muslims. more..

Yuthukama challenges the government on certain fundamental issues

Feb 27 (DM) The proposals submitted by Yuthukama to the public in the presence of the President of the Republic last week are well crafted, reflect the views of a majority of those who voted for Prez Gotabaya Rajapaksa and should be subject to serious discussion. Some of the proposals may go through a process of refinement during the public debate, but nevertheless, they should be explored seriously. They also reflect some of the deepest concerns of the people which found more..

 West Indies in Sri Lanka