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Video: Retention wall collapses in Mawanella; 2 killed, 1 injured

May 23 (DM) Two workers had been killed and another was injured when an earth embankment collapsed on them, while building a retention wall at the Mawanella Town this morning. The workers who were stuck underneath the debris were admitted to the Mawanella Hospital. M.K. Jayasiri (44) and Thilak Rupasingha (46) succumbed to injuries after they were admitted to the hospital. Investigations are being conducted to determine the cause of the mound of earth to collapse. more..

Renovation of water distribution system in Colombo

May 23 (DN) National Water Supply & Drainage Board (NWSDB) will take measures to enhance the water distribution system in Colombo and to reduce the non-revenue water supply (NRW) by 18% by 2021, Greater Colombo Water & Wastewater Management Improvement Investment Programme (GCWWMIIP). Though there are many projects to increase that water demand in Colombo, there is no significant project launched to more..

President orders stern action against racial attacks

May 23 (Xinhua) President Sirisena on Tuesday ordered his Law and Order Minister to thoroughly probe incidents related to racism in the island country and take stern action against those involved. Minister Mano Ganeshan said that during a cabinet meeting held on Tuesday, he had informed the president that there had been incidents of racial attacks against the minority Tamils and Muslims in the recent weeks. Ganeshan said that the president also instructed his cabinet that more..

Army should be withdrawn within 6 months: Sivajilingam

May 23 (DM) All military personnel, who had been deployed for security in the Northern Province, should be withdrawn within the next six months, NPC member M.K. Sivajilingam said yesterday. He said that soldiers  who can be accommodated in 600-700 acres of land were enough for security in the region, he said. While addressing media at Jaffna he claimed that  about 4,000 acres of land in Valikamam in the Northern Province was still under Sri Lanka Army. more..

JO congratulates Mangala on his new role

May 23 (CG) Joint Opposition (JO) today congratulated Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera on his new role. JO MP Dullas Alahapperuma wished Samaraweera after raising a question in Parliament today. Samaraweera asked for time to respond to the question, the first question put forward to him in Parliament after he was appointed Finance Minister yesterday. Speaking later Samaraweera said that he was concerned more..

Sri Lanka condemns Manchester attack

May 23 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka condemned the deadly attack in Manchester, England in which at least 19 people were killed and around 50 others were injured. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mahishini Colonne said that Sri Lanka was saddened by the attack in Manchester. "Saddened by the attack in Manchester. Sri Lanka condemns this heinous act. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected," she tweeted. So far 19 people have been confirmed dead, with 50 others injured more..

Shooting at Hikkaduwa: 2 dead

May 23 (AD) Two individuals were killed as a result of a shooting that took place near the Divisional Secretariat Office of Hikkaduwa. Police stated that the shooting had occurred at approximately 4 pm today, inside a printing press in the proximity of the DS Office. The two gun-shot victims were reportedly admitted to the Karapitiya Hospital for treatment, where they succumbed to their injuries shortly after. Two individuals had arrived in a motorcycle, entered the building housing the printing press, more..

Extremism will not be tolerated: Govt

May 23 (NR) The govt says action will be taken against any individual engaged in extremist activities. Minister Lakshman Kiriella reiterated the govt’s stance. He was responding to a statement by UPFA MP Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena who claimed certain groups and organisations are attempting to destabilise the country by engaging in such misconduct. MP said there are certain forces at work at present adding these forces are more..

Reshuffle disadvantageous to UNP: Range

May 23 (NR) State Minister Palitha Range Bandara says UNP is at a disadvantage through the Cabinet reshuffle. He said the SLFP as a result will benefit at the upcoming LG Election. He said he saw the Cabinet reshuffle as a loss to UNP adding SLFP has made room for one its appointments. He noted Sabaragamuwa Development, Kandyan Heritage and the appointment of a State Minister for Mahaweli Development, sees the General Secretary of the party obtaining powers and resources more..

Sri Lanka Railways losses down to Rs 6.8bn

May 23 (EN) State-run railway reduced operating losses to Rs 6.8 billion in 2016 from a loss of Rs 7.7 billion in 2015 mainly owing to an increase in revenue and a reduction in expenditure. Total revenue of Sri Lanka Railways (SLR) increased 4.6% to Rs 6.6 billion last year, while current expenditure decreased 4.6% to Rs 13.4 billion, benefitting from low oil prices, according to CB’s latest annual report. “Financial position of the SLR moderately improved during 2016,” it said, more..

Mysterious death of anaesthetist

May 23 (AD) The body of the female anaesthetist attached to the Nuwara Eliya Base Hospital who died mysteriously earlier today, has been discovered at her official quarters. The deceased’s body was found by the Police in the afternoon today. According to the Police, the deceased had previously been married to a doctor attached to the same hospital. She reportedly lived a solitary life after her marriage ended in divorce. more..

Sri Lanka wind project gets environmental okay with fewer turbines

May 23 (EN) An Asian Development Bank (ADB) supported project to set up a wind power project in north-western Sri Lanka has got environmental clearance with the lender saying impacts could be mitigated through design changes like fewer turbines. A draft Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) released by the ADB said environmental assessment and special studies for the 100 MW Wind Power Project in Mannar have been done for over a year between 2016 and 2017. more..

Case against Prasanna R. fixed for trial

May 23 (DN) The case filed against MP Prasanna Ranatunga and his wife was fixed for trial today on a day-to-day basis commencing from August 23 by Colombo High Court.  Attorney General (AG) filed indictments against the MP, his wife Maureen Ranatunga and another person on the charge of threatening a businessman over the phone and demanding Rs.64 million. Meanwhile, the High Court permitted Prasanna Ranatunga today to go abroad from June 28 to August 21. more..

Parliament Mafia dragging Sri Lanka down

I will strengthen youth in SL: Chandima

May 23 (NR) Minister of Skills Development and Vocational Training Chandima Weerakkody says he is pleased to take on the responsibility of strengthening the country’s youth, through his new ministerial portfolio. Speaking at an event in Galle Minister Weerakkody said the country has a lack of skilled workers. The Minister said the responsibility vested in him alongside the 12 institutions is to strengthen the training and future of the youth in the country. more..

Maithri too busy to meet Muslim MPs as BBS led groups continue their rampage

May 23 (CT) More focused on his very own political survival and foreign jaunts, President Sirisena appeared to have no time to discuss the increasing attacks against the Muslim community, and had shot down a request by Muslim MPs to meet him and had instead directed Law and Order Minister Sagala Ratnayaka to preside the meeting scheduled for today (22). Sirisena who is off to Australia today on a four day state visit, was too busy with the cabinet reshuffle and his impending Australia tour, more..

ඇමති මාරු ඇස් බැන්ඳුමෙන් ජනතාව ඇන්දවීම

Northern province development: My preferences: CM Wigneswaran

May 23 (CT) Hon’ PM, Hon’ Ministers, Hon’ MPs, Hon’ Members of NPC, High officials of Central and Provincial Services, my dear brothers and sisters, We are pleased to have the Hon’ PM discussing with Political Representatives and our Officials the Govt Economic Development Programme and Jaffna District Development Projects. This is a process we have been agitating for and not long ago in this very Hall we had Hon’ Malik Samarawickrama taking the trouble to find out our point of view more..

Cabinet reshuffle for an unpopular govt?

May 23 (CT) After much hype, the government went for a Cabinet reshuffle that has not impressed anyone. The new profiles handed over to the not so new faces of the politicians in the Cabinet come as a dire failure of the current administration. It unhealthily feels as if the ministerial portfolios were rotated among the politicians of the Government after a poorly managed, drawing of strings among them. The portfolios were simplified into a bunch of straws that were circulated among politicos, more..

GMOA President prejudged: Counsel

May 23 (Island) President of the GMOA Dr. Anuruddha Padeniya yesterday told the Court of Appeal that he was not guilty of the charge of contempt of the Court of Appeal levelled against him. The inquiry against him was fixed for August 2, 2017. The charge sheet was read out to him and he was given a copy for reference. The charge sheet said that on April 7, 2017, GMOA had launched a protest march in Colombo against more..

House to debate new Foreign Exchange Bill

May 23 (ST) The new Foreign Exchange (FE) Bill which will relax Exchange Control by liberalising inward and outward remittances of both local and foreign currencies, will be taken up for debate in Parliament today following The Supreme Court’s (SC) determination that the Bill is consistent with the Constitution. The new Bill will replace the old FE Control Act and remove criminal culpability of those found guilty of violating FE laws, more..

'President’s visit will boost Australia – Sri Lanka ties'

May 23 (PMD) Sri Lanka and Australia enjoy strong bilateral relations, and the current state visit of President Maithripala Sirisena will give them quantum jump, says Sri Lankan High Commissioner in Australia, Mr. Somasundaram Skandakumar. Bilateral cooperation has steadily improved over the years has spread into new areas of cooperation in recent years he said further, in an interview with President’s Media Division. more..

Tourism Minister unsure of return on investment of foreign tours by officials

May 23 (DM) Minister John Amaratunga shied away from accounting for the numerous foreign tours of tourism officials at the cost of millions of rupees in taxpayer money over the past two years despite noting their lack of contribution to SL’s tourism industry. Speaking at the PATA Annual Summit, he admitted that tourism growth was driven by tourists coming to Sri Lanka recommending the island to their friends and acquaintances. more..

Mirihana police arrest five suspects over drive-by shooting that targeted narco cops

May 23 (Island) The Mirihana police special investigations unit has arrested five suspects in connection with an attack on a group of Police Narcotics Bureau officers in Piliyandala recently. Under interrogation one of the suspects had said that PNB officers were a real menace to them and, therefore, they decided to kill them and flee the country, but their plans had gone awry. A senior officer said vital information about the incident could be more..

Geetha’s disqualification does not invalidate nomination papers: Verité

May 23 (LBO) Verité Research argues that the disqualification of a candidate does not invalidate nomination papers due to two main reasons. Releasing a research note, the firm argues that a Returning Officer is not authorized under the Parliamentary Elections Act (PEA) to reject a nomination paper on the grounds that a particular candidate nominated in the nomination paper is disqualified. Other key factor is that more..

Cyberbullying and scared women

May 23 (CT) It was a few years ago, when a friend called me to ask not to accept a Facebook friend request from a certain person whom she revealed as her former lover. "I am compelled to deactivate all my social media accounts, because this person keeps sending messages to my friends, making false allegations", she explained, adding that she is being forced to keep quiet because of her family's view that taking any action against it more..

Unemployed graduates left on the streets

May 23 (SL) The issue of unemployed graduates still continues unresolved and to date the graduates have no other alternative than to protest. The current good governance regime has taken some measures to provide employment for the unemployed graduates. However, when inquired, we discovered that there is no sustainable plan in order to ensure employment opportunities for the unemployed graduates in the future. more..

Sri Lanka would need legislative changes for inflation targeting: officials

May 23 (EN) Sri Lanka may require legislative changes to formally move into an inflation targeting framework where the Central Bank is steadily building capacity and laying the groundwork, officials said. Inflation targeting involves the Parliament or the govt formally giving an annual price target for the Central Bank to follow, Deputy Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe told members of Sri Lanka's Foreign Correspondents' Association. more..

'Elections Commission will stand against any procrastination of PC polls'

May 23 (DM) Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya, speaks about the reason for the present deadlock in the conduct of the LG elections, PC elections pending and controversy surrounding dual citizenship. Q: The local authorities’ elections is long overdue. What are the reasons for such an inordinate delay?  A: There are three factors that matter in conducting these elections. Actually, the reason is not more..

Will Cabinet reshuffle answer people’s woes

May 23 (DM) A Cabinet reshuffle had been one of the main topics discussed in the media during the past few weeks and the politically-minded people were keen to know how the reshuffle would pan out. Finally it became a reality yesterday. However, many of the ministers are still unsure as to the real purpose of ministries being shuffled from one minister to another.  Various reasons were given for Cabinet reshuffle. There have been clashes between ministers who represent the UNP more..

Why is this anti-India demagoguery?

May 23 (DM) During the second half of the 19th century, Prussian historian Leopold Von Ranke popularized a school of thought known as Primacy of foreign policy, (Primat der Aussenpolitik) which called for the strict subordination of domestic factors to the external needs of the State. He argued that foreign policy should be able to override domestic opposition. Ranke’s thought became so influential that Bismarck became one of its adherents. He observed: Foreign affairs are a purpose of more..

Maithri mends with mini-reshuffle

May 23 (FT) President Sirisena yesterday effected a mini yet decisive reshuffle of the Cabinet of Ministers, reinforcing his authority in the Coalition Govt despite reservations from UNP leader and PM. Contrary to expectations of a wide-scale change, what the country saw yesterday was a revision of the status quo of nine Ministers, most notably the swap of portfolios between the Ministers of Finance and Foreign Affairs. more..

More subjects under Ravi

May 23 (DM) Ravi Karunanayake who was sworn in as the new Minister of Foreign Affairs is to be assigned additional subjects and institutions which were previously not under the purview of this ministry. Institutions such as the Development Lotteries Board, the National Lotteries Board and the Mahapola Scholarship Trust Fund that were under the Trade Ministry are to be subjects allocated to the Foreign Affairs Ministry. In line with the decision taken jointly by President and PM more..

Postal workers agitate over attempts to sell heritage buildings of the Dept.

May 23 (Island) Convenor of Joint Postal Trade Unions said that there was an attempt by the govt to sell heritage buildings of Department in Kandy, Galle Fort and Nuwara Eliya for a song on the pretext of promoting tourism. Post office in the Galle Fort was one of the five oldest post offices in the country. "If those buildings are to be renovated that has to be done by Postal Department and if the govt ignores the warnings of the postal workers they will resort to strong trade union action," more..

Arjuna removed from Ports Ministry amidst turmoil over H’tota harbour deal with China

May 23 (Island) Ports and Shipping Minister Arjuna Ranatunga who has thwarted repeated attempts to finalise a controversial agreement with China on the Hambantota port lost his ministerial portfolio to Mahinda Samarasinghe in the mini Cabinet reshuffle yesterday. Of the changes made yesterday in keeping with an agreement between Prez and PM, SLFP took over the Ports & Shipping Ministry from UNP. more..

Gayantha says heavy responsibility as Lands and Parliamentary Reforms Ministrer

May 23 (FT) Newly appointed Minister of Lands and Parliamentary Reforms Gayantha Karunathilake said yesterday that he has heavy responsibility from now on. “I was working as the Media and Parliament Rehabilitation minister since last two and half years. I believed that ministry gave me opportunities to work with media institutions and other relevant authorities to establish a sound media freedom in the country. When President Sirisena took over the country in 2015, more..