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Kumar Sangakkara's 2011 MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture in full

July 6 (Telegraph) Kumar Sangakkara delivered an exceptional speech in his 2011MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture, touching on the history, culture and opportunties for Sri Lankan cricket as well a moving recounting of the terrorist attack on their team bus in Pakistan. Mr President, my Lords, Ladies and gentlemen. Firstly I wish to sincerely thank the MCC for giving me the opportunity and great honour of delivering the 2011 Cowdrey Lecture. more..

Returnees struggle in post-war zone

July 6 (IRIN) More than two years after Sri Lanka's decades-long civil war officially ended, returnees to remote villages face tough times and uncertain futures, despite governmental and international efforts at reconstruction. "Everything that we had earned in 50 years, we lost in months," Supiah Arumugam, 52, and a father of two, told IRIN. Arumugam returned to his home village of Thunukkai, deep in Mullaitivu District in the island's north and more..

India hopes for successful TNA dialogue

July 6 (DM) Indian Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said today that her country would be happy if the talks between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) resulted in a mutually acceptable solution to the national question while preserving the unity of the country. Ms. Rao a former Indian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka told journalists that India hoped Sri Lanka which it considered friend would do what was necessary to usher lasting peace in the country. more..

Cricket Interim Committee was dissolved to avoid COPE investigations?

July 6 (LT) The true reason behind the dissolution of Cricket Interim Committee was the order for them to be present before the COPE in Parliament on July 6,2011, internal sources of Sri Lanka Cricket alleged. Accordingly, the new members of the interim board will be compelled to go before the COPE. However, it is obvious that the new interim committee members are already in a process of washing-off their hands from the corruptions took place in the past, more..

Channel 4 rejects Sri Lanka 'war crimes' film criticism

July 6 (BBC) The British TV station Channel 4 has strongly rejected claims by Sri Lanka's govt that footage broadcast in a recent documentary is false. The film in question appears to show troops executing Tamil prisoners, but Sri Lanka's govt now says the killers were rebels in army uniform. Channel 4 rejected the idea, saying its work had been meticulously checked. It also stressed the film had made clear that both the army and Tamil Tiger rebels had committed atrocities. more..

Keeping Tamil culture and uprooting the caste system from the North

July 6 (LG) My article published in the Sri Lanka Guardian, entitled "Sinhalizatioon of the North and the Tamilzation of the South" was provoked by a response to D.B.S. Jeyraj's article on Kokachchankulam by Prof. Dharmawardana who maintains a detailed website on place names. My article was followed by a very compassionate and hopeful article by Pearl Thevanayagam and Dr. Narendran. We also see Jeyraj taking up the same theme within a more..

International mechanisms set in motion to probe war crimes

July 6 (LG) As Channel 4 video footage of alleged human rights abuses by the government security forces is poised to be telecast by ABC in Australia today, even its aboriginies would learn there is this island in the Indian Ocean not very far from their birthplace which is accused of committing horrendous war crimes and Sri Lanka would forever go down in history as a once peaceful nation turned Killing Fields of the 21st century. The video only emphasises and more..

Warm tones from Mandhira’s violin fill London venue

July 6 (ST) Talented young Sri Lankan violinist Mandhira de Saram, who is based in London, will be giving a series of concerts in Colombo this month and next. She is fresh from a successful concert on June 5 at The Forge, a stylish new venue in Camden Town, London, where she performed with award-winning American pianist Gregory Martin. The two have been an established musical duo since meeting as students at Worcester College, Oxford. more..

No news of Nonis appointment as High Commissioner

July 6 (LG) On June 4, 2011, the govt’s side kick ‘The Island’ newspaper reported that a non carrier diplomat Dr Chris Nonis will ‘take over as SL’s envoy in the UK’. The only hurdle that was reported in the news was the diplomatic clearance by the British government. It is a month since the govt’s drum beater ‘The Island’ revealed this top secret. But there is still no news about Dr Nonis appointment. Speculation is rife within the Sri Lankan community and more..

Ban Ki-moon elected unopposed for a second five-year term as UNSG

July 6 (LG) The United Nations Secretary General (UNSG) Ban Ki-moon formally announced his candidacy for a second five-year term on June 6, 2011. While announcing his decision, he stated he wanted to keep leading the world body as a bridge-builder at a time of unprecedented global change. During his term as the UNSG, he maintained a stance of quiet diplomacy which received applause for him, but he lacked the courage to take action against states like Sri Lanka to bring them to more..

Drowning - a silent killer

July 6 (LB) One thousand one hundred people die from it each year in Sri Lanka; that’s three people each day. You could be forgiven for thinking it was dengue but that’s yet to claim even a 100 lives so far this year. It’s not a disease of an epidemic, rather an epidemic of decease - that of drowning. Drowning, as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) is ‘the process of experiencing respiratory impairment from submersion/immersion in a liquid. more..

Beside and Beyond the PSC Proposal

July 6 (DM) As was only to be expected, President Mahinda Rajapaksa has clarified that the proposal to set up a Parliament Select Committee (PSC) to negotiate a political solution and power-devolution package to the unending ethnic issue was not a diversionary tacti. If so, the Government will need to do more. If not, the Government will be deemed to have slipped into a denial mode. The consequences in the latter case would be undeniable. more..

In the land of lotus-eaters

July 6 (DM) When Odysseus landed on the isle of lotus-eaters, who were known to be the personifications of apathy, it didn’t take long for the famous seafarer to realize the dangers of their obliviousness. Today, mythology has a modern-day version – a land that is both paradise and has many parasites, where people would let anything and everything happen as long as these incidents do not occur within their personal territories or hinder their schedules. more..

Kumar Sangakkara: a credit to his sport and his country

July 6 (Guardian) "Incredible," muttered the old MCC member sitting behind me, his voice cracking in disbelief as the applause died down. Listening to him, it struck me how well Kumar Sangakkara's speech had gone down. Especially as just an hour earlier the same man had confessed that he had no idea who Sangakkara was. "Incredible, incredible," he continued. "It's incredible how long he has been talking. How long did he go on for?" more..

TN Assembly resolutions and strengthening pan-Tamil perspectives

July 6 (ORF) With two resolutions in as many days, and both relating to neighbouring Sri Lanka, the Tamil Nadu Assembly has unwittingly sought to introduce elements that were absent so far in the bilateral relations. More importantly, the two, moved by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa as private members resolutions, have triggered a chain reaction, reviving in the process complex pan-Tamil issues nearer home, with consequences flowing from across the world. more..

Committees – only a means to an end!

July 6 (ST) “Thaaththa,” Bindu Udagedera asked, “what is all this fuss about a committee?” “Which committee are you referring to, Bindu?” Bindu’s father Percy wanted to know. “Why, thaaththa,” Bindu asked, “are there so many committees?” “Why,” Percy said, “wasn’t it only the other day that one interim committee for cricket was dissolved and replaced with another interim committee…” “Ah, yes,” Bindu agreed, “but I was not thinking about that…” “What committee more..

CID questions Ravi on Duminda

July 6 (SL) UNP Colombo District MP Ravi Karunanayake was summoned by the CID last Wednesday (29) to question him over a statement made by him, in parliament, and eventually a press conference about the alleged involvement of a young UPFA parliamentarian in importing kudu (drugs). Karunanayake had first been summoned a few weeks back during parliamentary sessions, but the Speaker had ordered the CID not to summon an MP during parliamentary sessions. more..

Editorial: Thus spake Sanga

July 6 (Island) Kumar Sangakkara has done Sri Lanka proud once again. On Monday, he became the first ever active cricketer in the world to deliver the prestigious MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey lecture. In his brilliant oration, which earned him a standing ovation from a distinguished audience, he came out with some home truths for the consumption of inefficient, corrupt Sri Lankan cricket administrators and pompous, overbearing political nincompoops. more..

Editorial: The power of gentleness and humility

July 6 (DM) Living in a harsh and competitive world, the virtues of gentleness and humility may seem obsolete if not nonsensical to us. But what we need to discover, is the power that lies buried within these virtues. To some it’s revealed in lesser degrees, to others in greater. All we need to do is to make that decision to look at it impartially. Not being averse to it would open a pathway to self fulfillment and freedom. Though gentleness and humility are great virtues more..

Mixed response for leadership training camps

July 6 (SL) When the govt introduced their controversial compulsory leadership training for prospective university students, it was met with a wave of protests and condemnation from students and University Academics. With the first batch of students having completed the leadership training, there have been mixed reports of the success and merits of the programme which was so hurriedly pushed through by the govt. On the evening of May 17, Higher Education Minister, more..

Stuart Law defends Sri Lanka go-slow to ensure maiden Lord's century

July 6 (Guardian) Sri Lanka's coach Stuart Law has defended the deliberate go-slow engineered by Angelo Mathews so that his batting partner Dinesh Chandimal could make a maiden one-day international hundred at Lord's. England's captain, Alastair Cook, had suggested "the cricketing gods might look at that with a bit of disgust", but Law dismissed his comments as a failure to understand Sri Lankan culture as the teams prepared to meet again in the fourth ODI more..

Daring twilight robbery in the Pettah

July 6 (SO) It was around 5.30 pm when most shop keepers were getting ready to close the business premises after a hard days work when five persons including a Police Constable and an Army Sergeant and four others clad in civilian clothes barged into a shop at Second Cross Street and robbed cash amounting to Rs. 70 lakhs under the pretext of checking their business activities. The private company at Second Cross Street, Pettah had prospered over the years by exporting oysters to more..

Eliyantha should be prosecuted-SLMC

July 6 (DM) The SLMC, the governing body for western medical practice in Sri Lanka, said yesterday Eliyantha White who calls himself a doctor should be prosecuted under the Cosmetics, Devices and Drugs Act or the Penal Code if he had allegedly prescribed the drug Prednisolone to Sri Lanka cricketer Upul Tharanga. SLMC Registrar Dr. N.J. Nonis responding to concerns raised by the JVP said no one by the name of Eliyantha White has been registered in more..

Civil administration becomes Sinhalese in the country of Eezham Tamils

July 6 (TN) 140 Sinhala Sri Lanka Administrative Service (SLAS) officers who have come initially for a ‘training’ programme to Jaffna on Monday are eventually expected to be appointed to Sinhalicise the civil service of the country of Eezham Tamils. By not recruiting Tamils and Muslims to the civil service for many years now, Colombo has schemed a situation so that only the Sinhalese could be appointed to key administrative positions even in the north and east. more..

Minister acknowledges lack of transparency, governance

July 6 (Island) In a candid discussion among ruling and opposition law makers to conclude the 12th Sri Lanka Economic Summit in Colombo, Minister Naveen Dissanayake acknowledged that there were several issues that prevented investment being realised to the desired extent. "There is a lack of quick decision making in the government while transparency issues are also holding development back," the UPFA politician told the summit organised by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. more..

Foundation Stone Laying Ceremony of the 150 Bed Hospital at Dickoya

July 6 (MoD) The foundation stone laying ceremony of the proposed 150 bed hospital at Dickoya near Hatton in the Central Province was held on 4th July 2011. Hon. Maithripala Sirisena, Minister of Health along with H.E. Ashok K. Kantha, High Commissioner of India laid the foundation for the construction of the Hospital at the project site. The event was graced with the presence of Hon. Arumugam Thondaman, more..

Sri Lanka netballers denied again in Singapore

July 6 (Stuff) Sri Lanka got within touching distance of an upset win for the second successive day but again had to settle for a gallant defeat on day three at the world netball championship in Singapore last night. The world's 18th ranked team pushed 11th ranked Samoa all the way in by far the closest of the day's eight matches before suffering a 57-53 defeat. It followed a 65-56 loss to 12th-ranked Northern Ireland in their opening match on Monday as the sub-continental team, more..

Better treatment for dengue patients

July 6 (DN) The Health Ministry will upgrade blood testing to provide better treatment facilities for dengue patients. The ministry distributed 50 micro hemotopic machines among 50 state hospitals costing Rs five million, a ministry spokesman said. Six machines have been given to the Colombo National Hospital. Two machines each to the Colombo South Teaching Hospital, Sri Jayawardanapura Hospital, Jaffna Teaching Hospital, Kalmunai Hospital and Trincomalee Hospital. more..

Pakistan, Sri Lanka agree to negotiate CEPA in August

July 6 (Nation) The 10th session of Pakistan-Sri Lanka Joint Economic Commission ended on Tuesday, where Islamabad and Colombo agreed to hold Free Trade Agreement (FTA) review meeting/Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) negotiations in August 2011 in Colombo. The two-day session of Pak-Sri Lanka Joint Economic Commission was held in Islamabad on July 4-5 in which Hina Rabbani Khar, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Finance & Economic Affairs, more..

Muthuhettigama failed to halt Elpitiya UNP rally – Gayantha

July 6 (Island) The govt, having challenged the UNP to hold a public rally if it could, beyond the Benthara-Elpitiya river, had got cold feet and backed out at the last moment, the UNP said yesterday. Galle District UNP MP Gayantha Karunathillaka told The Island that they had not only held a demonstration in Elpitiya town on July 1, but were also able to draw a crowd of over 5,000 persons,thereby disproving the challenge thrown at them by UPFA MP Nishantha Muthuhettigama. more..

Lankan refugees return from India in large numbers

July 6 (Island) Due to the situation that prevailed in Sri Lanka for nearly three decades, particularly in the Northern and Eastern Provinces, a large number of people from the affected areas fled to India. With the dawn of peace they have started to return to the motherland. The Govt has taken necessary action to provide the needs of the refugees returning from India as well as from other countries. A total of one thousand returned to Sri Lanka on July 5. more..

Indian ‘Indignation’ aside over arrests, Tamil Nadu fishermen regularly poaching in Lankan waters

July 6 (DBS) Pressure exerted by Indian Govt on Sri Lankan Govt resulted in the immediate release of 14 Tamil Nadu fishermen arrested by Sri Lanka navy. More than 100 Indian fishermen in 40 boats from Danushkodi in Tamil Nadu were fishing in Sri Lankan territorial waters on Monday July 4th. SL navy in 2 ships came at 12.30 pm to the seas near 3rd sand dune between Kachchatheevu and Arichalmunai more..

Sri Lanka, India ferry opens new route for people, vehicles

July 6 (LBO) A new ferry service between India and Sri Lanka offers a cheaper alternative to airlines for tourists, traders and pilgrims and even the ability to drive across, the head of the company running the service said. "Our aim was to keep the price much less than that of airlines which is what we done," said P K Thimmayya, chief executive of Flemingo Liners, a ferry passenger and cargo service company promoted by Flemingo Duty Free Shop and Tradex Shipping. more..

Foreign jobs: Minimum age limit 30 years

July 6 (DM) Govt is planning to raise the minimum age for a person to seek foreign employment to 30 years, Minister Dilan Perera informed Parliament yesterday. Responding to an oral question raised by UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera in the House, the Minister said the maximum age for foreign employment will also be changed and would be reduced to 42 from the current age limit of 50. He said a total number of 330 Sri Lankan expatriate workers have died in 2010 of various causes more..

England v Sri Lanka, 4rd ODI: Sri Lanka look to seal series

July 6 (CI) If Alastair Cook felt leading England's one-day ramshackle was a tough ask he'd do well to listen to Kumar Sangakkara's MCC Spirit of Cricket lecture. Yes, stretching five top-three batsman into a top six is difficult, but far simpler than confronting the kind of political wranglings Sri Lankan captains are subjected to. Despite the numerous unwelcome and conflicting influences on Sri Lanka's set up, the team still manages to more..

LTTE still out there: PM

July 6 (NN) Some LTTE member who managed to flee during the final stages of the war are still at large and search operations are underway to locate them, Prime Minister D.M Jayaratna told parliament this afternoon. The Premier said that several suspects who had links with the LTTE had been arrested even after the war and based on information provided by them the police and military were able to recover hidden weapons. Speaking during the emergency debate in parliament, more..

Lightning transfer for 750 prisoners

July 6 (Island) Authorities have ordered an immediate transfer of 750 convicted prisoners from the overcrowded Welikada prison to the Mahara prison in an attempt to prevent them from converting remand suspects into hardcore criminals by association. Sources at the Mahara prison, which already has about 2,000 inmates, said it would be a Herculean task to take on so many additional prisoners as they were already having a severe shortage of staff. more..

Excellence in sports will help university entrance - President

July 6 (DN) Steps will be taken to grant additional marks to students talented in sports when the marks level is considered for admission to universities in future, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Kandy yesterday. The President who said that children skilled in sports should be nurtured with knowledge and understanding, added that this measure is taken to encourage children who are inclined towards sports from a younger age. more..

SLMC reduced pass marks to 45 – Counsel

July 6 (Island) The Sri Lanka Medical Council, at a meeting held on June 17, 2011, had decided to reduce to 45 marks, out of 100, the pass mark for the ERPM Examination (Act 16) for April 2011, Shibly Aziz, PC, told the Supreme Court recently. Aziz, appearing for the Sri Lanka Medical Council, told Court that in arriving at the aforesaid decision, the SLMC had taken into consideration the required minimum pass marks for the written papers in the Local Medical Faculties. more..

Galle Mayor suspended; Niyas to act

July 6 (DM) Southern Province Chief Minister Shan Wijeyalal De Silva yesterday suspended Methsiri de Silva from the Galle Mayorship and appointed Mohomad Husain Fawzul Niyas as the acting Mayor. The suspension of the Mayor was made effective through a Gazette notification and the Chief Minister said the decision was taken since the Mayor had not responded to a charge sheet against him. He said a retired Judge had been appointed to investigate the charges against him. more..