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St. Benedict’s College celebrates its 146th anniversary

July 11 (Island) The St. Benedict's College, Colombo 13 celebrates its 146th year of its glittering service to the nation today (11). The celebrations will commence with an Eucharistic celebration at St. Lucia's Cathedral Kotahena followed by procession and Assembly, a press release issued by the organisers of the event said. The release also said:"St. Benedict who was born in the fifth century hailed from an affluent family. He renounced his wealth and devoted his life to more..

From killer/killers to bhutaya: Kahawatte on edge

July 11 (ST) They found her 12 days after she went missing without a trace, following a routine visit to the Sunday fair in Kahawatte, on the 19th of last month. The highly mutilated and naked corpse of Manel Jayanthi, 54, was discovered in a wooded area surrounded by a rubber plantation, deep inside Opata Estate, barely eight km from Kahawatte town. It was the third death in three months, and as the news of the grisly find spread throughout more..

Nudist beach proposed in Kalutara

July 11 (SL) A proposal has been put forward to have a nudist beach in Kalutara and it was taken up for discussion as early as last month. The nudist beach was proposed to be opened at Calido beach in Kalutara, an area which was declared last year as a tourist zone. Calido beach is within a 1 x 1 ½ km strip area and the management of a leading casino operating in Colombo was tasked with operating the tourist zone. Stardust casino had proposed a nudist beach in Kalutara as part of more..

'No relocation of elephants in South'

July 11 (DN) Wildlife Conservation Department Director General Dr Chandrawansa Pathiraja stressed that no elephants in the South will be relocated either for the construction of the Mattala airport or for the proposed Games City in Hambantota hosting Commonwealth Games in 2018. He said that the media reports that the Govt was planning to relocate 200 elephants were baseless and not true. Disclaiming the report that a runway of the Mattala airport is built across an elephant corridor, more..

People fume over fuel fiasco

July 11 (ST) Renuka Mapalagama, 45, a mother of two and an executive at a firm in Colombo, decided to leave office late as she had to pick up her daughter from school at 6.30 p.m. on July 1. Unfortunately, the car that had been pumped with fuel only that morning did not start. “I panicked at the thought of having to leave my teenage daughter at school after 7 p.m. I called a friend who offered to pick her up. The car was towed to the garage later,” more..

Quacks appear on TV health ads

July 11 (Island) The Government Medical Officers' Association (GMOA) claims that quacks appear on television advertisements to promote health products. GMOA Additional Secretary, Dr. Sankalpa Marasinghe told Lankapuwath there were 40,000 quacks operating in the country. Many of those quacks appear on TV advertisements posing off as registered doctors and the GMOA is now probing the issue, Dr. Marasinghe said. He said complaints were increasing regarding quacks and more..

Over 475 jeeps for Police stations

July 11 (DN) The Defence Ministry will provide all police stations with vehicles since many police stations have been badly affected by a severe shortage of vehicles for official duties. Under this initiative, 475 jeeps will be handed over to 475 police stations covering the entire country. Under the first phase of the programme, of the 475 jeeps 137 were handed over to OICs of the respective police stations under the patronage of Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa more..

Development Diaries June 29, 2011

Indian police nab man suspected to be naxalite

July 11 (ENS) The city police detained a 30-year-old man, suspected to be a naxalite, along with 14 others during a protest in front of the Sri Lankan Airlines office at Nungambakkam, here on Saturday. Police said the man, who initially gave them the slip, was later caught. He was identified as A Satish Kumar of Omalur in Salem district, arrested under POTA for allegedly providing arms training to 22 persons in a forest area in Dharmapuri district. more..

'We might have to turn to India for tuskers'

July 11 (DM) Diyawadana Nilame Pradeep Nilanga Dela said that the only hope of getting Tuskers to be used for Peraheras was to bring them down from India. He said that there was a dearth of Tuskers and generally there was a dearth of elephants that could be readily used for peraheras in the country. In fact there are only four to five Tuskers who are capable of carrying sacred caskets in the Kandy Esala Perahera or even other Peraheras. He was addressing the media regarding more..

Wijesinha to the rescue

July 11 (SL) Last week Presidential advisor, Rajiva Wijesinha, embarked on a journey to Britain and other parts of Europe to defend the Sri Lankan govt against increasing international pressure regarding war crimes committed during the last stages of the war. Below are excerpts of an interview he gave The Sunday Leader regarding his visit. Q: You are in the UK currently to defend serious war crimes charges against the Sri Lankan govt. more..

The Sunday Leader to fight court action

July 11 (SL) The Sunday Leader will vigorously defend a plaint filed by Attorney-at-Law N. Laduwahetty seeking relief for an alleged purported defamation of character in relation to articles published in this newspaper captioned ‘S. Thomas College Prefects Assault Fellow Thomian’ in its February 20, issue of The Sunday Leader and a follow-up article titled ‘Nine Thomians Assaulted by Senior Prefects.’ The plaintiff is seeking a total of rupees one billion by way of damages. more..

Phew! Power cuts are back

July 11 (LB) The Ministry of Power and Energy and the CEB are up against a wall in their endeavour to provide an uninterrupted supply of electricity whilst reports of imminent power cuts keep emerging. The prevailing drought in the catchments has resulted in water levels going down, in addition to the inability to generate an adequate supply of electricity through the national grid. It is reported that the water levels at Castlereigh and Mousekelle reservoirs have receded to more..

JVP accuses Govt of thuggery

July 11 (Island) The JVP yesterday accused the govt of setting goons upon their local govt election campaigners in the North. JVP Propaganda Secretary Vijitha Herath addressing a press conference at their headquarters at Pelawatte said that those thugs were disturbing the party’s election campaign for the forthcoming local government poll. He said that not only thugs but some military personnel too were used against them. more..

From one interim administration to another

July 11 (CI) Kumar Sangakkara's speech at the 2011 Cowdrey Lecture contained a remarkable criticism of Sri Lanka's cricket administration, which he called devoid of accountability and transparency and caught in a "mad" power struggle. "Presidents and elected executive committees would come and go; govt-picked interim committees would be appointed and dissolved." The latest incident was at the end of June, when Sri Lanka's sports ministry dissolved more..

Thilanga Sumathipala to address PGA Committee on Arms Trade Treaty at UN

July 11 (LB) Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA) 3rd Preparatory Committee on the Arms Trade Treaty will be held at the United Nations (UN) headquarters at New York. The third session of the Preparatory Committee for the UN conference on Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) will meet at the United Nation Headquarters in New York City from July 11-15, 2011. The purpose of the Prep Com is to make recommendation on the elements that would be needed to attain an effective and more..

'No obstructions will be allowed to hinder development'

July 11 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday asserted, that he would not let any obstructions hinder the development of the country. “Obstructions, insults and political mud slinging would not deter us from taking the country on the path of development, as long as the masses are with us” the President said. He was addressing a gathering after inaugurating the development of Pelawatte – Neluwa - Morawaka and Horawala – Pelawatte – Pitigala roads, more..

India to turn in two tigers

July 11 (DM) A half a dozen of Anacondas in the Dehiwala zoological garden would be exchanged for a tiger couple at the Mysore zoo in Bangalore, India, officials. Executive Director of the Indian Forest Service Dr. R. Raju, during an interaction with a group of Sri Lankan journalists, told that basic work had been worked out for the animal exchange programme between the zoological authorities of the two countries. A few Indian officials had already visited Sri Lanka for the purpose. more..

Large harvest of green gram reduces prices further

July 11 (Island) The large harvest of green gram yielded mid season has been able to reduce the retail prices in the market and will be reduced further by next month. The Hector Kobbekaduwa Agriculture Research and training Institute (HKARTI) said that the mid season harvest which starts in August and ends in November will help the farmers to a great extent to increase their crops and income. The country’s requirement of green gram for 2010 was 11,609 metric tons, but more..

'We will aid Govt. because of our country'

July 11 (DM) Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said yesterday that the entire population would suffer if the international community, which accuses Sri Lanka of war crimes, imposed sanctions; and that that was the reason the UNP was ready to support the govt’s efforts to avoid such an eventuality. Mr. Wickremesinghe made this point at a special ceremony organised to commemorate the death anniversary of former minister V.A. Sugathadasa more..

Lecturers stop lecturing

July 11 (DM) The Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (FUTA) has decided to stop the lectures in all universities from next week as there has been no tangible resolution of their salary issue. FUTA spokesman Dr. Mahim Mendis said that this decision was taken as their salary issue had not been solved. He said that the discussion held with the officers of the Higher Education Ministry had not yielded any results and they had decided to stop giving lectures. more..

Deyata Kirula brings development boon to A’pura

July 11 (DN) Under the Deyata Kirula - 2012 development programme, Rs 1,000 million worth infrastructure development projects will be completed in each Divisional Secretariat division in the Anuradhapura district. There are 23 DS divisions in the zone. Priority is being given to development ventures involving water supply, electricity supply, strengthening rural health services, rural schools upgrading, small tanks and anicuts renovation, rehabilitation and the development of more..

SLC’s 50,847 free World Cup tickets trigger controversy

July 11 (Island) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) printed 50,847 complimentary tickets for World Cup 2011 and distributed them among politicians, officials and those near and dear to senior SLC officials. Well informed sources said that the possibility of some of the complimentary tickets being sold couldn’t be ruled out. The Auditor General, in a damning report on SLC sent to the parliamentary watchdog committee, COPE revealed the irregularities more..

Sri Lankan cricket should gets its house in order first

July 11 (National) In a world of characters like Sepp Blatter, Jack Warner and Lalit Modi, we seldom have to go a fortnight without some outlandish pronouncement from a sports administrator. Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), though, has done the impossible and managed to put those luminaries in the shade. Soon after it was announced that the much-hyped Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) would be postponed by at least a year, a spokesman for the island nation's board more..

Compensate motorists for losses from bad petrol: UNP

July 11 (DM) UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake had urged the government to compensate the many thousands from all over the country whose vehicles had been damaged due to the sub-standard fuel imported by it. Attanayake said that a thorough investigation should be conducted into the incident and assured those present that the UNP had already started its own investigations in order to find out who had been responsible for this debacle. more..

Sri Lanka exports up 37-pct in April

July 11 (LBO) Sri Lanka's exports rose 37 percent in April 2011 to 745.7 million US dollars driven by a 41 percent gain in industrial exports to 574 million US dollars, while imports also rose 53 percent to 1.5 billion US dollars. Apparel exports rose 32 percent to 302 million US dollars and rubber products doubled to 54.8 million US dollars. The central bank said revenues from solid tyre and rubber glove exports. more..

CPC foul petrol fiasco: Disciplinary action against wrong doers soon

July 11 (Island) Those responsible for importing a stock of petrol in a hasty and questionable purchase, which resulted in widespread complaints that the fuel has caused damage to the engines of many vehicles, will face disciplinary action if the three member committee now probing the deal finds fault with them, Petroleum Minister Susil Premajayantha said yesterday. more..

‘Lakvijaya’ operative from today

July 11 (DN) The ‘Lakvijaya’ coal power plant at Norochcholai will add another 300 MWs to the National Grid from today. During a test run yesterday the power plant released 100 MWs to the National Grid. Depending on its success officials were set to release another 200 MWs later in the day. Certain technical difficulties experienced at the power plant had been overcome to a large extent. more..

British politicos, GTF step-up ‘war crimes’ pressure ahead of UK Defence Secy visit

July 11 (Island) In the run-up to Saturday’s Lakshman Kadirgamar memorial lecture delivered by Dr. Liam Fox, MP, UK Secretary of State for Defence, in Colombo, British parliamentarians had stepped-up their campaign targeting Sri Lanka over war crimes. The LTTE assassinated the then External Affairs Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar on Aug. 5, 2005 in Colombo. more..

Wijedasa R, Ravi K lash out at UPFA over SLC corruption

July 11 (Island) UNP MP Wijedasa Rajapakshe says the government should be held responsible for the current financial crisis at Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC). Had there been supervision by parliamentary watchdog committees, COPE (Committee on Public Enterprises) and PAC (Public Accounts Committee) the SLC wouldn’t have been in the present mess, former COPE Chief told The Island on Saturday. more..

'Issues and problems facing people of Northern and Eastern provinces'

July 11 (DBS) Hello Friends, Although the war against the LTTE ended in May 2009 many of the problems and issues concerning the Tamil speaking people of the Northern and Eastern Provinces are yet to be resolved. The war itself was the result of the unsolved ethnic crisis or the Tamil national question.The war in its wake has created a host of new problems besides aggravating existing ones. more..

Chennai ferry service to Lanka postponed

July 11 (ENS) The Chennai-based AMET Shipping’s plan to start a Chennai-Trincomalee cruise has been postponed indefinitely because the necessary approvals from the Indian and Sri Lankan governments have not been acquired yet, says Capt Nalin Peiris, general sales agent for the cruise in Sri Lanka. The cruise, using the luxury liner AMET Majesty, was to have been inaugurated on July 4. more..

Sri Lankans seek asylum in New Zealand

July 11 (Stuff) About 85 Sri Lankan asylum seekers, apparently on their way to New Zealand, have been detained by Indonesian police and are refusing to abandon ship. It is understood the ship is anchored in the waters of Tanjung Pinang, after it was stopped at Bintan Island, Riau, on Saturday. Reuters photographs show the refugees holding up signs that read: “We need New Zealand". more..

Academics to withdraw marking schemes

July 11 (DM) Indicating developing signs of disruptions on the 2011 A/L answer script evaluation process, the academics have decided to refrain from submitting marking schemes for the answer scripts, the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA) said. According to FUTA President Dr. Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri the 2011 A/L evaluation process cannot be commenced without the marking schemes. more..

PM points finger at politicos amidst record increase in heroin detections

July 11 (Island) In the wake of Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne acknowledging in parliament the alleged involvement of politicians in the narcotics trade, The Island can reveal that the police have recorded a significant increase in the number of heroin and cannabis detections in 2010 compared to the previous year. Tthe increase in the number of detections in both categories was due to police stepping up anti-narcotics operations. more..

'Caretaker' selling lands to foreigners disregarding cultivation

July 12 (LT) 'When the third, fourth generations of massive irrigation projects like Senanayake and Mahaweli projects face a scarcity of lands for cultivation, Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa who said that he is not the owner but the 'caretaker' of the country is engaged in selling the state lands to foreigners' said former JVP MP Samantha Vidyaratne. He said 'the Rajapaksa rule which is playing the second innings of the open economy is building hotels in wet zones. more..

Modern Bus Stand for Galle .

July 12 (GDI) he Modern Bus stand of Galle, in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka, built at a cost of Rs. 405 Million was declared open this morning by President Mahinda Rajapaksa. This two storied bus stand is the longest bus stand in Sri Lanka and its length is 161 meters with a width of 10 meters. Funds for this project were allocated by the Ministry of Economic Development. It consists of 16 shops, one restaurant and 4 stalls for selling newspapers. more..

Only profit of farmers reduced by the Govt - JVP

July 12 (LT) "Despite the high cost of production has gone up the farmer's income has not increased and the fertilizer subsidy also has been reduced by the Govt", the former JVP MP, Mr S K Subasinghe at a media briefing held today at the party headquarters. Mr Subasinghe pointed out that the 'Govt has reduced the fertilizer subsidy to 34 kg. per acre which is a drop of 20%. Instead fertilizer has been issued to the market at Rs 1200. more..

New horn law soon

July 12 (NN) Minister of Environment Anura Priyadharshana Yapa says new laws to regulate the use of vehicle horns and beat silencers is still under discussion. He said that some drivers use their vehicle horns and beat silencers in a manner which harms others on the street. He said the new regulations will be implemented soon. The new laws were earlier expected to be implemented from May this year. A gazette notification to this effect was to be published after research conducted by more..

Substance in water

July 12 (NN) The water supply at the Raddoluwa national housing scheme was cut today after an unknown “substance” was found to have been mixed with the water, residents said. One resident said that the water board in the area had made a public announcement today for people in the area not to consume the water. Water barrels were distributed to the area while trucks also pumped water to the residents as a temporary measure. Residents of the housing scheme said that more..