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Lankan housemaid says no help was given by SL officials

Sept 5 (LB) I. Naushad, the husband of Sri Lankan migrant worker, Kareem Kanzul Maharifa said that although it was initially said that the govt had intervened to free his wife from being executed in the UAE after being wrongly charged of killing the chief of her household, the government had not made any attempts to do so. He said that the Govt of Sri Lanka had not even provided a lawyer to mount a defence on behalf of his wife and added that lawyers had in fact refused to appear more..

Thai Airways official promotes Sri Lankan tourism to Japanese

Sept 5 (CP) A professional in the aviation industry is planning to boost sales for the airline he works for by encouraging more Japanese to visit Sri Lanka. Khun Weerawat Swasdibutra, the former general manager of Thai Airways International for Sri Lanka and Maldives said, “I have always been a lover of Sri Lanka and I have done so much to promote the country as a tourist destination,” he said. After he assumed duties as the general manager of Thai Airways in Nagoya, Japan, in February this year, more..

Post-Gaddafi lessons for Sri Lanka, Cuba and Chavez

Sept 5 (EAR) The hot topic on the international scene today is about Libya and the deveolpments over there, because of its crucial relevance for countries such as Sri Lanka. In the aftermath of the fall of Gaddafi, the opposition in every country groaning under an autocrat is salivating at the prospect of foreign intervention. In Lanka, for sure, the Tamil minority is convinced and explicit in pronouncing that unless India and the international community get in on the act, nothing will persuade more..

‘Satanic Force’ contained over 1,000 names of women raped, men butchered by IPKF

Sept 5 (Island) Material Objects (MO) 124 and 125 are now just piles of paper gathering dust in a court vault. But they helped enlist an army of fighters, and assassins, for the LTTE. ‘Satanic Force’, two large volumes of Tiger propaganda seized by CBI investigators soon after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi gives an insight into the harsh indoctrination that LTTE cadres were put through, according to online edition of The Times of India posted on Sept. 4. more..

Gunasenas to deliver books to your doorstep

Sept 5 (Island) M. D. Gunasena, one of Sri Lanka’s oldest printers, publishers and booksellers, who are on the threshold of celebrating their centenary, launched their newest service - deliver books to the doorstep, a first of its kind in the country. A company official said, at the launch held at their auditorium in Colombo, that the delivery service will be within a 20-mile radius in Colombo and it has plans to expand the service to the other towns depending on the success of the Colombo operation. more..

IRCON wants encroachments removed

Sept 5 (DM) The Indian company involved in the reconstruction of the northern railway tracks had sought the govt's help to remove encroachments along the track between Palai and Kankesanthurai without delay. IRCON International Ltd General Manager S.L. Gupta said that people had heavily encroached lands along this track, and therefore they had to be removed to begin reconstruction work. The Cabinet has already decided to award the contract to IRCON to construct this railway track, more..

TNA to legally challenge new laws

Sept 5 (DM) The TNA decided to legally challenge the regulations imposed under the Prevention of Terrorism Act on the principle that things done by the govt under the state of emergency could not be done under a different legal regime, TNA MP M. A. Sumanthiran said. The govt imposed these regulations on August 30, 2011 to keep the ban on the LTTE and the TRO intact and to take action against terrorist suspects and surrendees in the context of emergency regulations being lifted. more..

Cracking down on litter and hygiene offenders

Sept 5 (ST) Colombo and suburbs will be cleaner and healthier with the introduction of new regulations on solid waste management. Western Province Municipal Councils, Urban Councils and Pradeshiya Sabhas have been asked to draw up waste collection schedules and notify the public on collection days and times, including public holidays. “The new standard by-laws on solid waste management have been issued by the Western Provincial Council,” Western Provincial Council secretary, Jayanthi Wijetunge, more..

Putting Sri Lanka on the map thru The Colombo Music Festival

Sept 5 (Island) It is literally a year away from now, but last Wednesday the crew from ‘Senses and Soul: The Colombo Music Festival’ already introduced this unprecedented music event to the world. The festival will be held in and around Waters Edge in Battaramulla on August 24, 25 and 26, 2012. Accompanied by a pentad of performing musicians, differing from reggae to semi-classic, the Working Committee of the festival did not only explain their aim but displayed their enthusiasm as well. more..

JVP led CEB trade union alliance to strike on Wednesday

Sept 5 (Island) The members of the CEB Joint Trade Union alliance have decided to launch a one day strike on Wednesday (7) demanding the govt to pay their salary arrears. A member of the trade union alliance Ranjan Jayalal said that if the CEB authorities fail to give a written assurance before 12 noon tomorrow, to pay the arrears, the unions will go on strike. He said that increments are given in the CEB once in three years and the last increment of 22 percent due in more..

Lanka leads in diseases, injuries

Sept 5 (NS) Sri Lanka holds the record of the country with the highest incidence of Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs), Communicable Diseases (CDs) and Injuries in the world. Mortality rates from NCDs are currently 20-50% higher in Sri Lanka than in developed countries – especially for cardiovascular disease and asthma. In 2008, the percentage of all deaths due to NCDs was 65.4, with deaths from cardiovascular disease being 29.6%. In 2004, NCDs from the total country disease burden was 50.9%. more..

New-look maternity clinics to come up islandwide

Sept 5 (ST) Maternity clinics islandwide are to be upgraded with extra facilities including rest rooms and play areas for children who accompany their mothers. The first was opened in the Gampaha district, where three more centres will be opened shortly. Minister Basil Rajapaksa said that facilities are being provided as some of the maternity clinics lack basic facilities, with no proper toilets, change rooms or rest areas. “In some places, maternity clinics have been set up in more..

'Elements fault lanka but shield LTTE fund raisers'

Sept 5 (DM) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that many countries, groups and organizations which faulted Sri Lanka today were harbouring those who funded terrorism in Sri Lanka and still let raise funds for this brutal cause. He said they were also glad to give safe haven to the very theoreticians of terror in this country. Delivering the keynote address at the inauguration of the three day ‘Rotary South Asia Conference on Development and Co-operation’ in Colombo, more..

Charge or release ex-LTTEers: US urges Lanka

Sept 5 (DM) The United States has urged the Sri Lankan government to charge or release former LTTE combatants, those who are still held in custody. Addressing the media in Washington Deputy State Department Spokesperson Mark C. Toner said “We also acknowledge that the Government of Sri Lanka has made progress in rehabilitating and releasing more than 8,000 of the 11,000 – more than 11,000 former LTTE combatants that were taken prisoners at the end of the conflict. more..

Intended mother in law’s chiding leads youth to suicide

Sept 5 (Island) A youth who had a love affair with a school girl committed suicide by hanging. This was revealed at the inquest into the death of Abeykoon Mudiyanselage Amal Niroshana (22), a sales representative and a resident of Udarawa in Pannala. The inquest into the death was held by City Coroner Edward Aahangama on Saturday. Giving evidence at the inquest witness Priyanka Susanthi a resident of Kelaniya said that the deceased had been a boarder at her house. more..

Rehab process nears end

Sept 5 (Island) While the AP reported a surge in arrests and prosecutions under new or toughened anti-terror laws following the 9/11 Al Qaeda attacks targeting the US, Sri Lanka is hopeful that all LTTE terrorists detained at the conclusion of the war in May 2009, except those to be prosecuted, will be released before the end of this year. Interestingly, the AP doesn’t make any reference to the LTTE in spite of the group being proscribed in 32 countries, more..

'Douglas has great difficulty speaking the truth'

Sept 5 (LB) Sir, I find last week’s interview with Douglas Devananda distressing because, as nearly always, he has great difficulty speaking the truth. He says he was not against my being Vice Chancellor (VC) of the University of Jaffna. That is untrue. After the President decided on me as VC and told me so in mid-December, at Devananda’s behest a meeting was held at Temple Trees early in the new year where the others present, I believe, included more..

EU to press Sri Lanka at the UNHRC

Sept 5 (SL) The European Union (EU) is to press Sri Lanka at the UNHRC this month to address the issue of accountability over alleged human rights abuses committed during the final stages of the conflict. Iulia Costea, the press officer of EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, said that the EU also wants the Sri Lankan govt to engage with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on the contents of the report by a panel of experts, on the war in Sri Lanka. more..

Country in for a shock

Sept 5 (ST) Sri Lanka’s power generation is heading for a crisis with the hydro power generation dropping to one of the lowest in recent years, technical issues resulting in breakdowns and the cost of electricity production escalating. The CEB is being hit by an estimated loss of Rs. 150 million a day whilst also trying to get one of the plants at the Kelanitissa power station repaired as soon as possible. One of the worst setbacks has been that hydro power generation has dropped to as low as 18 per cent more..

Ranil asks people to vote to save UNP

Sept 5 (DM) Opposition and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday said anyone who wished to save the party should vote for the elephant at the upcoming local government elections. Mr. Wickremesinghe, who was speaking at a meeting to organize the UNP’s Colombo Central electoral register last evening, said that the party had fielded only one list for the Colombo Municipal Council, adding that the UNP Reformist group had fielded a more..

'No rift within our party'

Sept 5 (DM) The leader of the JVP Somawanshe Amarasinghe denied today that there is a rift within his party. Amarasinghe laughed off the suggestion. “I can categorically state that there is no rift within our party,” he said. Speaking further Amarasinghe stated that his party is against the PTA that is currently being used by the govt. “We are against any law that curbs the rights of the people, any law that curbs the freedom of the people should be done away with" more..

Less guns mean more food

Sept 5 (IPS) As paddy cultivation revives in Sri Lanka’s former war zones, prospects for the island’s food security have improved dramatically. Experts say the extra capacity will not only make up for shortages of the country’s staple caused by the twin floods that hit the eastern and central regions this year, but actually provide a surplus. "I don’t think there will be a shortage this year. The northern harvest is good, it could be better next year," more..

Electricity rates on new basis

Sept 5 (ST) The Power and Energy Ministry is to propose a new tariff structure on electricity charges depending on the purpose of use. The move is aimed at overcoming the current disparity in payments by users and reduce losses of the Ceylon Electricity Board, Minister Champika Ranawaka said. The move comes as the CEB’s losses exceeded Rs. 150 million a day with the sharp drop in hydro power generation as the water levels in reservoirs were decreasing. more..

Women activists to petition SC that State has failed in its duty

Sept 5 (ST) In a new twist to the “grease yaka” phenomenon, women activists are planning to petition the Supreme Court this week on the grounds that the State is failing in its duty to protect women from these perpetrators. “There is a clear dereliction of duty on the part of the State as women are not being protected and the perpetrators -- whoever the grease yakas – are not being brought to book,” said activist Visakha Tillekeratne, more..

Chinese military equipment producer to build hotel

Sept 5 (Island) The Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority is positive about the China Aviation Technology Import-Export Corporation’s (CATIC) five star hotel project which is expected to be launch by the end of this year, despite the allegations levelled against it by UNP MP Dr. Harsha De Silva. With the country expecting to attract more than 2.5 million tourists by 2015 the govt has begun to sell and lease out land for more..

Case against 'two Masters' put off till next year

Sept 6 (LT) Cases against the LTTE spokesman Daya Master and its translator George Master were postponed till 16th Jnuary 2012 by the Chief Magistrate in Colombo, Mr Rashmi Singappuli this morning. CID appearing for the plaintiff informed the Courts that advice of Attorney General is awaited. CID also informed that all reports with regard to the case have been handed to the AG. P Sathyamoorthy appeared for the two accused Velayuthan Dayanidhi alias Daya Master and more..

Education Ministry launches Project "Thribasha"

Sept 6 (GDI) The Education Ministry together with the Ministry of National Languages and Social Integration has launched a pilot project titled "Thribasha" to make teachers and students proficient in all three languages - Sinhala, Tamil and English. The main objective of the programme is to ensure that Grade 1 to 5 school children including teachers are trained in Sinhala, Tamil and English. Director of Navodhya school branch at the Education Ministry, more..

Minister Champika Ranawaka claims Rs. 500 million damages

Sept 6 (ST) Legal action is to be initiated against a trade unionist who claimed that a cabinet minister transported a bed from Colombo to Kataragama at the cost of Rs. 80,000 for the minister’s use. The President of the Lanka Viduli Sevaka Sangamaya claimed that the bed was transported for the Minister of Power and Energy Champika Ranawaka. A statement from the Ministry of Power and Energy said that legal action would also be taken against the media more..

Court over rules Ratwatte’s plea to dismiss case

Sept 6 (DM) The Colombo High Court today overruled the plea of the defence to dismiss the bribery case against former Defence Minister Anuruddha Ratwatte without calling for defence witnesses as a strong case against Mr. Ratwatte is noticed from the indictment filed by the Attorney General against Mr. Ratwatte. The case was filed for his failure to declare to the Bribery Commission the mode of earnings of his assets amounting to Rs.33 million in cash and more..

Separate power plants for industries

Sept 6 (SL) The Power and Energy Ministry is considering the installation of power plants exclusively for industrial parks and export processing zones. Power and Energy Minister Champika Ranawaka has said such a move would resolve the rapidly increasing demand for power and minimize the burden on the national grid. Speaking during a meeting with Western Province industrialists, Ranawaka has said the Ministry was aware of a certain degree of disruption in supplying electricity to the industrial sector in the Western Province. more..

Lankan student fined for posting revealing pictures of ex

Sept 6 (AD) A student of Sri Lanka nationality in Singapore has been fined a total $22,000 for posting revealing pictures of his ex-girlfriend on the social networking website, Facebook. “The two foreign students, both 20, met, fell in love and broke up. However, the Lankan student could not get over it and posted revealing pictures of his ex-girlfriend on Facebook.” the Straits Times reported today. more..

Turkish Naval Ship arrives at Colombo Port

Sept 6 (SLN) “TCG GEMLIK” (F 492) a Turkish Naval Ship arrived at the Colombo Port on 05th September 2011. Sri Lanka Navy ceremonially welcomed them in accordance with naval traditions. The purpose of the visit is to strengthen friendly ties between the two Navies. The ship with a crew of 30 officers and 241 sailors is 138.6 meters in length and Commanded by the Commander Murth Ugur. Rear Admiral Sinan Ertugrul,the Commander of Task Force 151(CTF 151), the mission oriented more..

ICC admits minor flaws in the DRS

Sept 6 (TI) The International Cricket Council Sunday admitted that "minute number of errors" in DRS have been detected and it is being monitored closely. Mahendra Singh Dhoni had questioned the accuracy of the DRS after Rahul Dravid was controversially given out despite TV replays not showing any edge off the bat during the first ODI against England at Chester-le-Street Saturday. The ICC said it has been monitoring the accuracy of ball-tracking and all decisions whether more..

UPFA mayoral candidate Milinda launches policy platform

Sept 6 (GDI) UPFA Mayoral Candidate Milinda Moragoda launched his policy platform entitled "Making Colombo a Centre of Excellence", at a news conference today. Mr.Moragoda intends for the policy platform to be co-created with the participation of citizens of Colombo. He called his platform "an evolving work" and an incomplete document that is only the starting point. Ideas, comments and suggestions from members of the public will be sought through more..

Dusoto’s record unbroken in Arugam Bay

Sept 6 (GDI) Duane Dusoto (HAW) has been able to maintain his world number one ranking reigning as the ASP World Longboard Champion of the Sri Lankan Airlines Pro 2011, one of the world’s top rated surfing events that had been concluded at Arugam Bay. "This is a dream come true, this is what we work so hard for. The waves here have been amazing, it's never been flat and we had the best surf in the final, it was perfect. Arugaman Bay has an awesome wave!" Dusoto exclaimed. more..

24hr helpline for victims of child abuse

Sept 6 (DM) Victims of child abuse would be able to get assistance around the clock through a new 24 hour communication centre established by the Probation and Child Care Services Department. The service which began on Sept 1 provides assistance at any time of the day to victims of child abuse through the phone number 0112713039. Asked as to why such action was taken, the Commissioner of the Probation and Child Care Services Department G. P. D. Somaratne said more..

'We will organize masses for a new social system'

Sept 6 (LT) Since existing economic system in the country which is heading towards its destruction and incapable of solving the masses problems, the JVP will organize the masses for a proper new system for the country, said the General Secretary Mr Tilvin Silva. He said that 'the development of the Govt is a deception. If there is economic development there should be no increase in cost of living and the Govt should be able to increase the salaries more..

4 persons arrested while pasting posters despite the Emergency cessation

Sept 6 (LT) Four activists of the 'people's movement for safeguarding schools' have been taken into custody by the Wariyapola Police last night (04). They had been pasting posters on 'threats on free education'. Two of them had been assaulted by two allies of the Government who were under the influence of liquor along with a principal of the college alleging that anti Government posters are being pasted. Later they have been handed over to the Police. They have also taken Rs 6000 belonged to them. more..

The last chapter and ‘Last supper’ Of LTTE suicide cadres…

Sept 6 (LP) Unfolding LTTE actions and atrocities ‘Behind the Curtain’ today Lankapuvath brings to light how Velupillai Prabhakaran brain washed and hand picked male and female cadres for suicide missions. Hitherto undisclosed reports of the LTTE states that Pottu Amman was given the responsibility of hand picking suicide cadres. Most of the hand picked suicide cadres have been recruited from very poor homes. They have been given several classes to brain wash them to extent that more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 05.09.2011