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Two Britishers living in Sri Lanka in Queen Elizabeth’s birthday honours list

June 14 (Island) Mark Gooding and Catherine Mole, two British Nationals living in Sri Lanka, have been honoured by the Queen in her Birthday Honours List. Mark Gooding, British Deputy High Commissioner to Sri Lanka and the Maldives, has been awarded an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) for his services to Foreign Affairs. Mark Gooding has served in Sri Lanka since 2008, contributing with dedication and professionalism to the full range of the High more..

SL beauty eying for Ms. Asia in USA

‘Jaffna’s pole vault queen’ Thanuja sets new record

June 14 (TC) Jaffna’s pole vault queen S. Thanuja established a new meet record on the first day of the 53rd Junior National Championship that began at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Athletic Stadium in Diyagama on Thursday, June 9. Thanuja cleared the cross bar placed at a height of three meters for the new record. The previous record was 2.90 metres established by Anne Piyumali in 2009. She had done a similar feat about two years ago when she established a new meet record in this event more..

Chinese national nabbed in kasippu raid

June 14 (DM) A foreigner was arrested for allegedly running an illegal brewery during a raid conducted by the Pussellawa police yesterday. A senior police official said it was the first time in the history of the Sri Lanka Police that a foreigner was taken into custody for running an illicit brewery. The Chinese national had been attached to a Chinese construction company carrying on improvements to the Gampola – Nuwara Eliya road. The suspect, married to a Sinhala woman more..

UGC claims SL Medical Council in contempt of Court

June 14 (Island) The UGC has filed a motion in the Supreme Court that the Sri Lanka Medical Council was not duly complying with a Supreme Court order, of March 30, to cooperate with the UGC to told the Act 16 exam. The motion said that this amounts to contempt of Court, the UGC has said. The original petitioner Lakshman Ariyawansa, a foreign medical graduate, has complained to the Court that the authorities in Sri Lanka have failed to hold the Act 16 exam for them. more..

UPFA determined to increase voter base

June 14 (Island) The UPFA is determined to increase it’s voter base at the forthcoming Local Govt Elections to 64 bodies. The Alliance believes that it’s popularity may have suffered a temporary setback as a result of distortion of facts relating to the Private Sector Pension Bill by the UNP and the JVP, senior sources of the Alliance said. UPFA General Secretary, Susil Premajayanth said that he was quite confident that the UPFA would increase its popularity base to win the majority if more..

Undergrads among Katunayake protesters, CID claims

June 14 (Island) The CID probing the May 30 police attack on employees of the Katunayake Export Processing Zone (EPZ) claims that it has identified, through video images, several youth from outside the zone and among them are undergraduates who attacked the police with stones and poles. Police sources said that when they visited the homes of those who had been identified, the suspects were absconding. Several teams of policemen had been deployed in civvies to search for the wanted youth, more..

Excess teachers in the Eastern province burdening coffers

June 14 (DM) There are 3,118 excess teachers in the Eastern Province (EP), causing an additional expenditure of 45.64 million per month for the provincial coffers, EP Education Director M.T. Nizam said. He said that around 2,443 Tamil medium teachers and 675 Sinhala medium teachers were in excess of the approved cadre in the province. However, he said the EP had 1,702 Tamil Medium and 321 Sinhala medium teachers vacancies for various subjects. more..

Fisheries Ministry to fight malnutrition

June 14 (DN) The Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Ministry in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) will reduce malnutrition from Sri Lanka, Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Minister Dr.Rajitha Senaratne said. Reports show that fish consumption has increased in Sri Lanka. The fisheries industry has to play a major role to reduce malnutrition in Sri Lanka, he added. more..

Country’s security normal - Acting IGP Illangakoon

June 14 (DN) Law and order has been fully restored in the country, Acting IGP N K Illangakoon said on being asked by the Daily News to comment on the security situation following the recent Katunayake FTZ incident. He said about the progress in the investigation carried out by the Police into the Katunayake incident that the CID is conducting the probe and that the details would be known after a full report on the incident has been submitted to him. more..

CID raid SLC: Mission to find missing disk?

June 14 (DM) A special team from the CID conducted a search inside the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) office in Maitland Crescent yesterday evening to find a missing hard disk which contained valuable information, sources said. However the CID Investigations Director denied carrying out such a raid. The CID had searched the World Cup 2011 office at SLC for the hard disk which had apparently contained valuable information on SLC and the World Cup. more..

Moves to control coconut palm disease spread

June 14 (FT) A total of 300,000 coconut trees have been infected with a leaf withering and leaf rotting disease in the southern part of the island. Since this condition is incurable the authorities have suggested that the trees be cut down to avoid the disease from spreading to coconut trees in other parts of the country. Coconut Research Institute confirmed that this disease which is a type of Phytoplasma disease is incurable and that the infected trees should be cut down. more..

Tourism drives foreign investment

June 14 (GN) Two years after the end of its three-decade civil war, Sri Lanka has been swiftly rebuilding its economy with tourism driving its growth and FDI investments. Between 2005 and 2011, the tourism sector received $1.2 billion in FDI and it aims to attract a further $5 billion by 2016 and boost tourist arrivals to 2.5 million. "The govt wants to have more hotels in the east. The area was abandoned for so many years because of the terrorist problem, more..

Tuticorin-Colombo ferry sets sail

June 14 (TOI) More than 20 years after ferry services between India and Sri Lanka were discontinued, a passenger ship Scotia Prince' sailed from Tuticorin port to Colombo on Monday afternoon. Union shipping minister G K Vasan flagged off the vessel, 105 years after the first swadeshi ship S S Gaelia sailed this route. Passenger ferry services were operated between Rameswaram and Mannar in Sri Lanka till 1983, when they were discontinued due to more..

'I don't urge you to watch my TV show'

June 14 (Sun) A war crimes film due to air on TV tonight is so horrific a top telly chief has warned people against watching it. The documentary about the Sri Lankan civil war features footage of executions, massacre victims and the corpses of women who appear to have been raped. Dorothy Byrne, head of Channel 4 news and current affairs, said: "I don't urge you to watch this programme. "It's horrific. The images will remain in your mind. There are probably many adults who shouldn't watch. more..

Indian model should be adopted: TULF

June 14 (Hindu) The Indian Model of federalism can be considered a satisfactory solution to bring about lasting peace in the Northern Province, TULF president V. Anandasangaree has said. “A unitary constitution will never be accepted though the government is very firm on that stand. The people of the North and the East do not wish to be under any subjugation, which they have already undergone for more than 25 years. De-militarisation should start forthwith. more..

UNP to Govt: Come clear on land, police powers to provinces

June 14 (Island) The government should stop contradicting itself and inform parliament about the agreement it had reached with India on the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, which requires that land and police powers be devolved to the provinces, the UNP said yesterday. UNP Media spokesman Gayantha Karunathillake said that the Rajapaksa regime should stop bluffing and changing its stance from time to time on a matter of national importance. more..

Disaster risk management: Govt initiates 10-year road map

June 14 (DN) The government has initiated a 10-year-road map for disaster risk management at national level, said Disaster Management Minister Mahinda Amaraweera. Addressing the Asia Conference on Disaster Management-2011 at Cinnamon Grand Hotel, he said since 2004 the government adapted legal and institutional frameworks for disaster risk management. “The National Policy on Disaster Management in Sri Lanka considers the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA),” he said. more..

Sacred Buddha Relics our national heritage - Dr Kakar

June 14 (DN) Director General of Pakistani Archaeology Department and Museums Dr Fazal Dad Kakar said ‘the Sacred Buddha Relics is our national heritage.’ The Sacred Relics which were brought from the museums of Taxila and Peshawar to commemorate the 2600th Sambuddhathva Jayanthi were exhibited at the Gangaramaya, Hunupitiya on June 12 and will be exhibited at Tissamaharamaya on June 12, 13, 14 and at the Mahamewna Asapuwa, Malabe on June 16, 17, 18. more..

India's N-plan worries Lanka

June 14 (BS) A shock in Fukushima, Japan, was causing fear waves across the world and now even in Sri Lanka, which has no nuclear reactors at all. Concerned over the nuclear programmes in South India, Sri Lanka has sought India’s assistance in developing a radiation monitoring and safety centre in the north-western part of that country. “We don’t have any nuclear reactors in Sri Lanka and have no particular plans till now. more..

Protected or not, railway crossings are veritable death traps

June 14 (ST) Forty seven-year-old Dr. Chintha Illangasinghe is battling for her life at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Kurunegala Hospital, while her husband, also a doctor, is being treated for injuries after an office train ploughed into their car at an unprotected level crossing in Wellawa, Kurunegala this week. On that fateful night, Dr. P. Illangasinghe and his wife were on their way home after a busy day. more..

Dons say talk alone won’t solve crisis

June 14 (DM) Long drawn discussions will not resolve the crisis or provide answers to our longstanding concerns unless the government takes practical steps to prove it is prepared to grant our demands, the FUTA said yesterday. FUTA spokesman Mahim Mendis said the main reason behind academics’ crisis was the failure of the country’s political leadership to understand the grave situation facing the higher education sector. more..

Spot fines for mosquito breeders

June 14 (DM) Health officers will be given powers to impose spot fines on institutions and individuals who neglect health warnings on eradicating mosquito breeding sites and thus contribute to the spread of the dengue disease, which claims the lives of hundreds of victims annually. Amendments would be introduced to the Mosquito Breeding Control Act shortly with health officers empowered to impose spot fines, more..

No arsenic in local rice varieties - minister

June 14 (DN) The Agriculture Ministry yesterday said that locally produced rice varieties do not contain arsenic. Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena said no traces of arsenic have been found in locally produced rice varieties. “As the minister in charge of Agriculture I can categorically state that locally produced rice varieties do not contain arsenic as alleged by certain quarters,” he said. more..

Parliament to draft political solution

June 14 (DM) The government has decided to assign Parliament the task of drafting a political solution to the North-East crisis, informed government sources said yesterday. It is learnt that President Mahinda Rajapaksa would make a request to the Speaker to appoint an All-Party Select Committee within this week to proceed with the task. Several political leaders including Minister Douglas Devananda more..

P’deniya hospital project: Minister alleges mega scam

June 14 (Island) Healthcare Minister Maithripala Sirisena says a large scale financial scam could have taken place at an ongoing building project at a major government hospital. MP Sirisena blames the health ministry bureaucracy for possible irregularities in the building project. He alleged that a staggering Rs. 300 mn had been spent over an estimated Rs. 400 mn for the construction of a multi-floor building in the Central Province. more..

'Operation Koninck' here

June 14 (NN) A Dutch official from the Netherlands Embassy will arrive in Sri Lanka tomorrow to conduct inquiries as part of investigations being carried out under the code name ‘Operation Koninck’ over LTTE activities in the Netherlands. A spokesman at the Netherlands Embassy in Colombo told News that the visit is being arranged by the Netherlands Justice Ministry and the Sri Lankan govt. The official who will arrive today more..

Vietnam envoy backs Lanka

June 15 (NN) Vietnam says Sri Lanka has great potential to become the second Singapore, the External Affairs Ministry said today. The Ambassador of Vietnam Ton Sinh Thanh expressed these views when he met the Deputy Minister of External Affairs Neomal Perera at the External Affairs Ministry today. The discussions were centered on many avenues to develop the bilateral relations between Vietnam and Sri Lanka. With a view to develop the economic co-operation between the two countries, more..

Apollo tyres enters Sri Lanka

June 15 (Hindu) Apollo Tyres, the India-based multinational that exports tyres in all automotive segments to more than 70 countries, announced on Tuesday its entry into Sri Lanka. Partnering Ideal Wheels and Tyres, a part of Sri Lanka’s automotive major Ideal group, the U.S. $ 2 billion Apollo Tyres will focus initially on passenger vehicle and cross-ply truck and light truck tyres. This will be expanded in a phased manner to include Apollo’s entire range that is sold in India, more..

A delegation from the Commonwealth Federation to visit Sri Lanka

June 15 (NN) A delegation from the Commonwealth Federation will visit Sri Lanka this month as Sri Lanka has bid to host the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Hambantota, Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage said today. Sri Lanka is confident of beating Australia and securing the rights to host the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Both Hambantota in Sri Lanka and Gold Coast in Australia have successfully bid to host the games in 2018 and more..

Sri Lankan universities are no place for the army

June 15 (Guardian) Students in Britain have protested vociferously against government cuts in education funding, and rightly so. But students in Sri Lanka, where state-funded higher education is also under attack, face an additional ordeal: compulsory "leadership and positive attitude development" of university entrants by the military. The scheme was introduced without warning by the ministry of higher education, and is being carried out by the ministry of defence. more..

Sri Lanka hopes Commonwealth countries will support its bid

June 15 (Hindu) Sri Lanka on Tuesday expressed the hope that Commonwealth nations would support its bid for the 2018 games. Hambantota (Sri Lanka), and Gold Coast (Australia) are the now cities that have bid for the games. The results will be known in November. The head of the bid committee, Central Bank of Sri Lanka governor Ajith Nivarad Cabraal, drawing a parallel with Malaysia said that what the 1998 Kuala Lumpur games did for Malaysia, the 2018 games would do for Sri Lanka. more..

Britain to screen film alleging Sri Lanka war crimes

June 15 (AFP) A british film documenting the final bloody weeks of Sri Lanka's civil war, which it claims provides evidence of war crimes committed by government forces, will be broadcast on television on Tuesday. The Channel 4 film uses mobile phone, official army and Tamil footage, satellite imagery and stills shot in the final stages of the Sri Lankan army's battle against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) separatists in 2009. more..

Sri Lanka foreign reserves ease in early June

June 15 (LBO) Sri Lanka's foreign reserves eased to 7,055 million dollars by early June 2011 from 7,163 million dollars at the end of April, amid recent sales of dollars by the Central Bank, official data showed. In April and May the central bank sold 257 million US dollars in forex markets. Sri Lanka has a peg with the US dollar. A central bank statement said foreign reserves were 7,055 million by June 09, but it was above the 6,610 million at the beginning of the year. more..

Govt-TNA talks could stall on police, land powers

June 15 (HT) It's not the first time that the govt has held talks with Tamil parties to thrash out a political solution to the festering ethnic issue. But many are hoping and praying that the current rounds of talks would be the last; or at least some sort of a beginning to the end. The six rounds of talks between the govt and the TNA has been low-key; neither side has revealed much about the exchanges. The grand old man of Tamil politics R. Sampanthan himself let off a more..

World Cup audit documents missing

June 15 (DM) Documents pertaining to the World Cup 2011, including some audit documents were among the material that were in the hard disks that had gone missing from Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) over the weekend, Suraj Dandeniya the tournament Director of World Cup 2011 said. He added that the two hard disks contained international and local details regarding the concluded World Cup 2011. However he noted that no harm had been done to SLC as back up on more..

Kalpitiya: fishermen’s livelihoods still at risk from mega tourism project

June 15 (AN) The mega tourism project involving the islands of northwestern Kalpitiya (Puttalam district) is important for the economy of Sri Lanka, but it should not come at the cost the livelihoods of the local fishermen, nor destroy the ecosystem. These are the findings of the report of a group of foreign activists for human rights, who on the 4th and 5th of June visited the area. The survey was then discussed in a seminar organized by more..

Dilshan ruled out of Rose Bowl Test

June 15 (CI) Tillakaratne Dilshan, the Sri Lanka captain, has been ruled out of the third Test at the Rose Bowl because of his fractured thumb. Dilshan sustained the injury during the Lord's Test, where he made 193 in the first innings but was unable to take the field during England's innings and didn't bat a second time for Sri Lanka. Kumar Sangakkara, who resigned from the captaincy after the World Cup, led the side in his absence and could do so again at the Rose Bowl but more..

Malaysia told to rethink support for Sri Lanka

June 15 (FMT) Malaysia should reconsider its support to Sri Lanka’s stand that others should not interfere in its domestic affairs.In a statement, Persatuan Promosi Hak Asasi Manusia (Proham) said that an UN independent panel has found credible allegations of human rights violation during the final stages of the nation’s civil war. “The panel had also recommended that UN secretary-general, Ban Ki-Moon establish an independent team to investigate into more..

Navy assists in repatriation of 10 Sri Lankan fishermen

June 15 (SLN) Sri Lanka Navy assisted in the repatriation of ten Sri Lankan fishermen, who were released from the Indian custody, today (13). The fishermen and two fishing boats were handed over to SL Navy officials by the Indian Coast Guard Ship, ICGS Vikram, at the Indo-Sri Lanka International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) in the seas north of Kankasanthurei. They were brought to the KKS Harbour in the evening today by Naval Craft P 415 attached to the Northern Naval Command. more..