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SF advised to visit hospital for a week

July 12 (DM) Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka has been advised to visit hospital daily for a week over an ailment in his shoulders. DNP MP Jayantha Ketagoda said that on the advice of orthopedic surgeon Sarath Fonseka who is in Welikada prison has to attend to a private hospital in Colombo for seven days to undergo treatment. The doctors had recommended treatment following the direction made by the Colombo High Court to prison officials to provide necessary more..

Sri Lanka petroleum explorer seeks oil spill response services

July 12 (LBO) Cairn India which is exploring for petroleum resources off Sri Lanka has called for proposals for oil spill response equipment and services as it prepares to drill its first well in August this year. The company announcement said delivery of equipment could be either at Colombo or Chennai in south India indicating its support operation for offshore wells in the Gulf of Mannar might be based in India. Sri Lankan companies interested in the oil industry business had more..

Sri Lanka ceramics exports seen recovering

July 12 (LBO) Sri Lanka's ceramics industry is recovering but needs to be innovative in tackling high energy costs, a big exporter and head of an industry body has said. "There is definitely a future for ceramics in this country," said Dayasiri Warnakulasooriya, president of the Sri Lanka Ceramics Council. "We were doing well, we were not doing well some time ago but we are coming up now." The ceramic export industry was hard hit by global recession and more..

'Govt. paid for low quality petrol'

July 12 (DM) The UNP today charged that the govt had paid for the 20,000 metric tonnes of contaminated petrol, despite the assurance given by Minister Susil Premajayantha having said the payment had been suspended. UNP MP Gayantha Karunatillke said that according to reliable information they had the consignment had been paid for. He charged that ministry officials known to be responsible for what happened had not been dealt with according to more..

Sangakkara's call for unity rightly ruffles feathers

July 12 (WSJ) Kumar Sangakkara has long come across as an articulate and principled man; now we know he's also a very brave one. On July 4, Sri Lanka's former captain and finest-ever batsman delivered the annual Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture at Lord's in London. The talk is given by someone seen by the MCC, which has gone from being the global game's governing body to its unofficial conscience, is usually someone with a reputation for integrity and more..

Lankan jailed after 517 cards cloned in chip-and-pin fraud in UK

July 12 (LE) An illegal immigrant was today behind bars after ripping off hundreds of customers at the Merseyside petrol station where he worked. Sri Lankan Murugaiya Selvakumaran, 36, swapped the chip and pin machines at a Murco petrol station in Wallasey with card readers which allowed international criminals to copy customers’ cards and make fraudulent withdrawals. The fraud only came to light towards the end of February 2009 when banks began to tell their clients they were victims of more..

Lasantha murder suspect released on bail

July 12 (NN) A former Army Intelligence member who had been arrested and detained over his alleged involvement in the assassination of the Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickramatunga, was granted bail today. The suspect, Kandegedara Priyawansa, was given bail by the Colombo High Court when the case was taken up for hearing today. Earlier this month the police told court that that there is evidence to suggest Kandegedara Priyawansa was involved in Lasantha’s killing. more..

Shares at 6-mo lows on margin calls, lack of liquidity

July 12 (Reuters) Stocks fell over 2 percent to a six-month low on Monday as margin calls forced sales to settle credit transactions amid low liquidity with large amounts of money locked in private placements and public issues. Sri Lanka's main share index fell 2.1 percent or 144.39 points to 6,767.6, its lowest close since January 5 and its highest daily fall since March 3 in terms of both percentage and points. "Brokers were selling as some investors' portfolio more..

Special provisions for differently-able persons

July 12 (SL) The Elections Department has said that special provision has been made to allow a person to accompany a differently-able person to mark the ballot paper at the forthcoming local government elections. The Department has stated that the person who accompanies the disabled person should be more than 18 years of age, not a contesting candidate at the election and should not be a person subject to any disability. “The disabled person should hand over to more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 11.07.2011

Govt. seeks approval for supplementary estimates

July 12 (SL) The govt has sought parliamentary approval to generate funds to 69 govt institutions and ministries. The supplementary allocations have been tabled in parliament. Parliament’s approval has reportedly been sought to purchase vehicles for several Ministries, repair office premises and meet the traveling expenses of govt officials who had traveled overseas. The govt had also sought funds for the payment of salaries of some institutions and and to repair minor irrigation tanks more..

Ireland's ODI with Sri Lanka in Edinburgh washed out

July 12 (BBC) Ireland's triangular series ODI against Sri Lanka in Edinburgh was washed out on Monday without a ball being bowled. Weekend rain had taken its toll at the Grange and the decision to call off the game was taken at 1500 BST after further rain on Monday morning. Ireland take on the hosts at the same venue on Tuesday with the Scots playing Sri Lanka in Wednesday's final game. Meanwhile, Mark Garaway has left his poistion as High Performance Director of more..

Lanka war crimes: No comments, says Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao

July 12 (IT) The Indian govt has had nothing to say for the last four days on the gross violation of human rights in Sri Lanka. Four days after Headlines Today aired chilling evidence of Sri Lankan army's atrocities against Tamils, India has maintained a defeaning silence. Meanwhile, Colombo claims the atrocities were committed by the LTTE fighters. Chilling evidence of crimes against humanity was aired by Headlines Today on Thursday night. more..

55,871 eligible postal voters

July 12 (DM) A total of 55,871voters are eligible to vote by post tomorrow for the local government polls being held on July 23rd, to elect members to 65 local government bodies, deputy elections commissioner W.P.Sumanasiri said. He said the Elections Secretariat has made arrangements for postal voting at almost all govt offices and average 10 – 12 voters are expected at each polling stations adding that ballot papers have already been delivered to Presiding Officers. more..

Pakistan SC grants bail to Sri Lanka cricket team attack accused

July 12 (Nation) The Supreme Court (SC) has granted bail to Malik Ishaq, the head of banned organisation Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, who was accused of planning an attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore in 2009. Ishaq had appealed to the SC to overturn the decision of the Lahore High Court which had rejected his bail plea. The case was heard by Justice MA Shahid Siddiqui. Malik Ishaq had been accused of plotting the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team while he was in prison. more..

TNA calls for foreign monitors

July 12 (BBC) The largest Tamil party in Sri Lanka has called for foreign monitors to have a presence at local elections in northern Sri Lanka that are due to take place later this month. It says people connected with the governing coalition are using foul means to intimidate its candidates. The govt denies it. The TNA has accused the govt of obstructing its election campaign in three northern districts, including areas that were a war zone more..

Milly Dowler shakes the conscience of British democracy from heaven!

July 12 (LG) 13 years old English school girl Amanda (Milly) Dowler was murdered on 21 March 2002 and her body was recovered from the woods on 18 September 2002. It was a painstaking effort to provide justice on her death until the evil serial killer Levi Bellfield was sentenced for life on 24 June 2011 after careful investigations by the police and criminal proceedings that followed. The verdict was based purely on meticulous circumstantial evidence, when more..

‘The War – Is it Hereditary or Acquired? – Muthusom or Thediya Thettam? (Tamil)’

July 12 (LG) I write in response to the article ‘The Objectivity of Truth’ by Mr. Unto Tahtinen, published in the Sri Lanka Guardian. The author says ‘My problem was - and is still - what is "Truth".’ As happens to me these days, I immediately identified with my own inner search. I did not go in search of Truth. I usually did question in my own mind, wanting to know a logical connection, if something did not make sense to me. When I was hurt and did not have an answer why? more..

Full text of urgent Adjournment motion moved in parliament by TNA leader

July 12 (TC) Hon Speaker, I hereby give notice that I shall after question time on the adjournment of Parliament on Thursday the 7th July 2011 move the following motion as a matter of urgent public importance. Whereas Sri Lanka from shortly after it attained Independence in 1947 has been in the crucible of ethnic violence which occurred in 1956, in 1958, in 1961, in1977, in 1980 and in 1983- wherein the Tamil people numerically in a more..

Granting dual citizenship must be viewed very seriously by the govt

July 12 (LG) It was not long ago that the Govt went all out to woo the expatriate populations overseas to invest in Sri Lanka in Tiera D accounts tied to a reward of dual citizenship on different terms. It used to be that dual citizenship could be bought with one payment equivalent to US $2000 at the discretion of the President and that was the main criteria considered. There was no reference to a reason for seeking dual citizenship or whether this payment was made more..

Wanted: More courageous Sri Lankans

July 12 (LG) Kumar Sangakkara may never know it but he has opened a hornets’ nest and indirectly questioned the courage of all right-thinking people: ‘Are you standing up for your rights?’ This would also apply to sections of the business community who conveniently ignore corruption in deal-making and follow the adage that only the fittest survive or ‘it’s survival through the biggest money pot’. One prominent business professional once told colleagues, more..

Democracy and SAARC

July 12 (LG) Mr. chairperson, Hon. Speakers, fellow Parliamentarians, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentleman, In the latter part of the 20th century, there was a "fashionable" school of political thought prevalent in some sections of our societies, which argued that democracy is not conducive for economic progress in developing countries. In the guise of wanting to achieve economic development, some countries moved towards oligarchy and more..

Jaffna: Touch and go

July 12 (SL) travelling to the North last week, I noticed many changes. Roads are being developed at a rate. And the stretch of tar from Vavuniya to Killinochchi is steadily becoming more motor-able. The increase in traffic and tourists has also been beneficial to the local economy, and small towns have popped up where previously there was only empty stretches of road. These towns are not new, however, and most of them claim to have been reborn after disappearing during the war. more..

Why a six-month interim committee? It’s the debts, stupid

July 12 (SL) The ICC might’ve decreed that Cricket Boards of its member-countries shall be elected bodies by 2012/13 – but the Sri Lanka government is in no apparent hurry to dispense with the practice of naming its own men to run cricket. It dissolved one interim committee only the other day, and, rather than call for the popularly expected Board elections, the Sport Minister appoints last week another of the same– a four-member committee, the fourth in more..

Democracy gets a beating

July 12 (SL) Democracy and freedom of expression have once again received a beating with another protest being brutally attacked allegedly by government sponsored thugs last Wednesday in Kurunegala. Many protestors have sustained injuries during the attack. Last Wednesday’s attack was the third protest to come under an attack by thugs or police personnel within a span of one and half months. Attacks on protestors have now become a common feature more..

Editorial: 'Others can't solve our problems'

July 12 (Island) Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has, addressing a regional conference in Delhi recently, stressed the need for South Asia to battle terrorism without external help. He is sanguine about the region's potential to achieve prosperity. A concerted effort is called for to address the numerous frictions within the region, he has said. One could not agree with the Indian premier more. External powers that reach out to this part of the world only peddle their more..

Editorial: Petrol crisis: The fraud and the fiasco

July 12 (DM) The latest scam to hit Sri Lanka is that of the purchase of 20,000 metric tonnes of low quality petrol, which was found to be nowhere near the expected octane 90 standard. A Sunday newspaper revealed the petrol-bombshell news that this stock was tested at a laboratory and found unfit for use because there were metal particles and other substances which could damage motor vehicles. But a top official had reportedly ordered that the contaminated stock be released more..

‘Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields’ in retrospection

July 12 (GV) The TV programme entitled Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields, produced by Channel 4 of the UK, sparked substantial debate and discussion in every strata of interest on Sri Lanka, including the realms of high politics and diplomacy, national an international journalism, the non-governmental sector and the programme carried sufficient weight to trigger a renewed interest on Sri Lankan affairs in the West – which – due to the absence of more..

Sanga 'Saga' or 'Sage' Sanga

July 12 (DM) Visualize at a sacred site in the United Kingdom, a Sri Lanka guest speaker standing up for a dedication to the military and censoring the terrorism of the LTTE, receiving a thundering standing ovation from a distinguished audience. The possibility of extracting the same response with a transported Barmy Army in attendance, at a another venerable site was abruptly aborted after the organizers expressed unsubstantiated fears that cheers may turn to jeers but more..

Leaders must set example to overcome current crisis

July 12 (DM) My dear Mahinda aiya, Ayubowan, vannakum, assalamu allaikum and best wishes as Sri Lanka faces another natural calamity amid a black July- international crisis over alleged war crimes. For decades, especially after Sri Lanka in 1977 shallowed the globalised Capitalist market economy policy, we have recklessly polluted the environment and upset the delicate balance in the eco system. For this selfishness arising out of greed or ignorance or a combination of more..

Atchuvely-Thondamanaru road opened after 28 years

July 12 (Cimic) The Atchuvely – Point Pedro (PPD) main road running via Thondamanaru that had been closed nearly for 28 years was opened for the public on Sunday by Minister He accompanied by Minster Douglas Devananda, Governor Northern Province Major General (Retd) G.A. Chandrasiri and Commander Security Forces – Jaffna Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe opened the road cutting a ribbon amidst applause of cheerful villagers. more..

Panel addresses arsenic concerns

July 12 (UCAN) Christians and Buddhists joined forces with farmers to highlight the dangers posed by arsenic poisoning and to promote organic farming. A panel of experts addressed a discussion among religious and area farmers about the deadly poison, which has been blamed for the death of more than 20,000 farmers in the past two decades. “We have found that arsenic poisoning is the cause of a rare kidney disease found in the north central province,” said Dr. Channa Sudath Jayasumana, more..

Southern universities hold anti-SL govt demonstration in Jaffna

July 12 (TN) Teachers associations of universities in the south of the island of Sri Lanka held an anti-SL govt demonstration and meeting in Jaffna on Friday that was also participated by teachers of the University of Jaffna. It was an impressive demonstration and meeting held in Jaffna in recent times, news sources in Jaffna said. Their demonstration march starting from the old railway station of Jaffna went through the Hospital Road and KKS Road of the heart of the city to more..

CEPA is beneficial, but wants stakeholder concerns addressed

July 12 (FT) The Indo Lanka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ILCCI) declared yesterday that the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between Sri Lanka and India was highly beneficial and the best of it could be achieved if stakeholder concerns are addressed. “It is the ILCCI’s belief that entering into a CEPA certainly offers more openings for Sri Lanka than it is likely to obtain through other regional frameworks. more..

Threats escalate on TNA candidates ahead of civic elections in North

July 12 (TN) Following the Sri Lanka Army attack on TNA meeting last month and the systematic harassment on building owners not to provide their halls to TNA for campaign meetings, the residences of various candidates of the TNA, including the former MP M.K. Sivajilingam, have been targeted by SLA-operated squads that are engaged in threatening the candidates. In the early hours of Saturday, a gang that came in two white-coloured Hiace vehicles threw dirt baskets at more..

High hopes on Chaminda and Prasanna as team leave for World Military Games

July 12 (Island) The country will turn to its captain Prasanna Amarasekara, Asian Athletics Championship medal winner Chaminda Wijekoon and other top notch athletes for medals when almost a national team take part in the 5th edition of the World Military Games in Brazil. The team consisting of 21 athletes representing Army, Navy and Air Force is captained by 400 metre veteran Prasanna Amarasekara. Apart from Amarasekara there are at least six other athletes, more..

India helps upgrade vocational training

July 12 (DN) The Indian govt will fund Rs 205.5 million to upgrade the Nuwara Eliya vocational training centre. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was also signed by Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Ashok K. Kantha and Minister Dullas Alahapperuma in this regard at the Youth Affairs Ministry yesterday. High Commissioner K. Kantha said that the decision was taken to strengthen the relationship between the two countries. more..

National schools in modernisation project

July 12 (DM) All national schools, which do not have primary level classes, will be included in the 1000 secondary schools modernization project, Minister Bandula Gunawardane said. He said govt and the opposition MPs, who took this matter into consideration, passed a resolution at the Education Ministry Parliamentary Consultative Committee meeting last week. “We have asked the regional authorities to name two schools from each divisional secretariat areas to be included in this programme,” more..

President welcomes constructive criticism

July 12 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said he would happily welcome all criticism aimed at exposing any lapses of the government in its objective to fulfil the people’s aspirations. Stressing the harm that could be caused to the country’s development effort if there are conflicts among each other, the President said although pointing out the government’s shortcomings was welcome, this should be done with a genuine intent and not with a spiteful motive. more..

Dayasiri says Sajith left them in the lurch

July 12 (Island) The UNP’s new Deputy Chief Whip Dayasiri Jayasekera says that the procedure followed in appointing the party’s National Organiser was incorrect, but if no one was willing to contest the leader, they might as well back the incumbent. Dayasiri said that he was even willing to state his view in Court, but warned that the ongoing legal proceedings by the Sajith Group, challenging the appointment of Ravi Karunanayake as more..