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'Kiriella has no right to ask me not to speak'

Oct 14 (CT) Chairman of the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) and JVP MP, Sunil Handunnetti says that Minister Kiriella is still involved in issues related to the Expressways. "The people of this country should be aware of all of this. Whatever loans we take, it is the people of this country who have to pay back this money by way of taxes. Neither Minister Kiriella nor the PM will bring money from home to pay off loans." more..

The never ending strikes

Oct 14 (NS) Colombo was at a standstill, stuck on the road twice last week thanks to a protest and a strike. Strikes and protests have been very frequent during the past several months and have been testing the patience of thousands of people who were left helpless due to traffic congestion. First it was the protest against the SAITM. Then it was the Locomotive Operating Engineers Union who launched a strike on Thursday (12), bringing all train commuters to the road. more..

The best for rejects: Rejects for the best

Oct 14 (Island) We thought Parliament was the only place where rejects were accommodated. We thought wrong. True, quite a few candidates, mostly from the UPFA, rejected by people at the last general election (2015), were brought in as National List MPs. It was a slap on the SL voter across the face. Adding insult to injury, yahapalana govt elevated those rejects to Cabinet ranks. But, now, we are told that rejects from Parliament have been donated to the Dalada Maligawa! more..


Women’s low participation in the labour force is a concern

Oct 14 (NS) Deputy Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs, Dr. Harsha de Silva said that the Sri Lankan Govt was committed to women’s empowerment and was analyzing the issue of women’s inadequate participation in the labour force. He added that the data on education was encouraging and showed that 96% of the country’s women were literate, while more women than men participated in tertiary education. “However, only 36% of women are in the labour force. more..

Pakistan assure Presidential level security for Sri Lanka team

Oct 14 (Island) Pakistan has assured security similar to what is given to the Heads of State when they come down for the last T-20 Int'l between the countries later this month. The third and final T-20 Int'l has been scheduled for Lahore in a bid to revive international cricket in Pakistan. There has been little cricket in Pakistan since the SL team bus came under a terrorist attack in 2009. "I am confident that the third T-20 will take place in Lahore subject to security clearance. more..

Disgrace for the UNP: Regime capable of robbing even the Central Bank

Oct 14 (Island) From its outset, Treasury Bond Scam was seen as a massive fraud carried on public funds or people’s assets managed by Central Bank. As the probe on the Bond Scams that took place shortly after the election of the present govt in 2015, what the public saw was the crooked manipulation of CB, the repository of the liquid national assets, made possible by the appointment of a Governor whose interests more..

Under 19 Squad picked for the Asia Cup

Oct 14 (DN) SLC today (13) announced the following squad to participate in the Under 19 Asia Cup to be held in Malaysia from the 9th to 20th November 2017. The Squad which has received the ratification of the Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera is as follows; Kamindu Mendis – Captain, Jehan Daniel – Vice Captain, Ashen Bandara, Dhananjaya Lakshan, Nishan Mathushanka, Nipuna Dhananjaya, Hasitha Boyagoda, Krishan Sanjula, Nuwanidu Fernando, Randir Ranasinghe, Thisaru Rashmika, more..

The curious cases of Shafiq and Karunaratne

Oct 14 (CI) Since the start of 2010, 26 batsmen have scored 3000 or more Test runs. Twenty-three of them average 40 or more. Among the three who don't are two batsmen who distinguished themselves in the recently concluded Pakistan-Sri Lanka Tests. Dimuth Karunaratne made 306 runs in the series, including a marathon 196 in Dubai and was Sri Lanka's top run scorer, while Asad Shafiq topped the run charts for Pakistan with 183, including a magnificent fourth-innings 112 in Dubai. more..

Exciting sprints, triple title winners decorate day three

Oct 14 (Island) Stunning sprint performances in the 200 metres and 16-year-olds winning triple titles contributed to an exciting third day, despite wet weather and nearly worn-out track causing injuries to many athletes at the All Island Schools Games- Athletics Championship at Diyagama. Under-20 boys 200 metres produced probably the most exciting prospects of the day as A.S.M. Safan of Anbukkagama Muslim M.V, more..

Asia leads global growth but SL among vulnerable countries

Oct 14 (FT) Helped by an upswing of growth in China, Japan and Korea, Asia remains the fastest growing region in the world with 5.6% growth in 2017 but countries with large debts and weak balance sheets such as SL remain vulnerable, IMF said. Latest 2017 Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific report called for special focus on structural reforms to avoid medium term headwinds and make use of the recovery of advanced economies that would be a positive for Asia. more..

CBK shocked

Oct 14 (SO) Former President, Chandrika Kumaratunga and her sister Sunethra Bandaranaike, this week, officially inherited properties of their brother, late Anura Bandaranaike, after a long-drawn legal battle. Former President was present at the Colombo District Court to accept ownership of the properties previously owned by her brother. Sunethra Bandaranaike, in 2009, filed a lawsuit claiming ownership for former Minister Anura Bandaranaike’s properties, claiming that more..

Babar's ton, Malik's 81 take Pakistan 1-0 up

Oct 14 (CI) Pakistan reasserted their dominance in the UAE with a crushing win in Dubai over a Sri Lanka side that has seen ODI wins excruciatingly hard to come by in 2017. A century from Babar Azam - back playing his most favoured format - and a blistering 81 from Shoaib Malik saw Pakistan set Sri Lanka a stiff target of 293. They were never really in the chase, losing half the side for 67, with Rumman Raees and Hasan Ali more..

Digital courts concept delayed due to tech fears

Oct 14 (FT) The project to digitalise the Sri Lankan court system, which was launched in 2016 with the first pilot implemented in the Matara courts, has since stalled due to some individuals showing fear over this shift, PM’s office revealed. It said many countries in the world had been able to accelerate the exchange of information in govt departments and organisations through the digitalisation process and this concept was being implemented in a number of Asian countries.  more..

Sri Lanka tea prices seen remaining high on global shortfall

Oct 14 (EN) Sri Lankan tea prices were mostly firm or higher at this week’s auctions with high grown varieties rising sharply, some hitting record levels, and prices seen remaining high owing to the global shortfall in production. Low grown teas, which account for the bulk of the crop met with fair demand and most were firm at last week’s levels while others appreciated in value. There was good general demand for teas from the estates and prices strengthened once again. more..

No rice shortages, 500,000 MT rice purchased: Minister

Oct 14 (DM) Sri Lanka has confirmed the purchase of 500000 metric tons of rice from four global suppliers to face pressure from its domestic markets distressed by paddy shortfall for three straight seasons.  Shipments from one country are already being offloaded at Colombo Port. SL is also returning back to its scrapped rice MRPs in the next two weeks. “As a result of these purchases, we have overcome any rice shortages more..

Mangala meets Newsmax CEO, U.S. Under Secretary

Oct 14 (DN) Minister Mangala Samaraweera who is in Washington to attend the WB/IMF annual meeting yesterday met legendary CEO of Newsmax Christopher Ruddy. Newsmax launched a full-fledged television news channel, Newsmax TV. The channel launched on Directv and Dish, and soon added Verizon Fios, giving the new network a reach of over 42 million cable/satellite homes. In April 2010, media-industry magazine Folio named Ruddy to its FOLIO 40, an “annual list of more..

Minister proposes only one member from family be permitted to contest LG polls

Oct 14 (DN) Minister Faizer Mustapha said that there should be a system to ensure that only one member from one family can contest at the forthcoming and Provincial Council Local Govt elections. Under the present system, most of the candidates are from political families. This deprives so many others in the 20 million population of contesting at any election. We should consider taking forward the concept of only one candidate from one family at the forthcoming election” more..

PM orders immediate relief for disaster victims

Oct 14 (GDI) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe ordered to speed up post-disaster relief activities and complete compensation payment to people affected by floods and landslides by November. He made this instruction chairing a progress review meeting in South, which was attended by the public officials in Galle, Matara, Ratnapura and Kalutara, 4 districts worst affected by torrential rains lashed in May & June. more..

Charlie & Little Johnnie revealed

Oct 14 (LT) Charlie who had assisted Perpetual Treasuries Lt. (PTL) to get information regarding treasury bonds was paid Rs. 97 million as bribes by PTL says its Chief Dealer Nuwan Salgado. He revealed this before the PCoI yesterday (12th). Mr. Nuwan Salgado produced a document which had been prepared on instructions from the CEO of PTL Kasun Palisena. The document describes how money was paid to different people through other companies attached to PTL. more..

President directs tampita vihara conservation

Oct 14 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena has directed relevant sections to implement a special program to preserve tampita viharas (temples on pillars), a special kind of Buddhist temples. President gave these directions at a meeting on conservation of tampita viharas in Sri Lanka. The meeting was held today (13) at the Presidential Secretariat. The building of tampita vihara; the temples built on pillars was popular in Sri Lanka during Kandy and Gampola periods. more..

Hartal brings Jaffna to a halt

Oct 14 (CT) Jaffna Peninsula came to a complete standstill yesterday following a hartal organized by several private institutions and backed by Tamil politicians in protest against the government's silence over the detention of some 132 prisoners held under the PTA without trial for several years. State and private banks, post offices, schools, private businesses and public transport were shut down and thousands of people more..

Milco delaying farmers payments

Oct 14 (NS) All Ceylon Peasants Federation pointed out that dairy farmers’ island-wide were facing a crisis due to the purchase related payments owed to them by the Milco not being made, the low buying price of milk and the high costs involved in milk production. Recently, a group of dairy farmers demonstrated in protest in Medirigiriya over the nonsettlement of arrears by the Milco, following the Milco buying milk from them through their 14 main chilling centres located in the country. more..

Old left wants 13th A implemented fully

Oct 14 (NS) The old guard of the leftist parties of the country has called for the abolition of the Executive Presidency and the devolution of power via the full implementation of the 13th Amendment. The United Leftist Front, a breakaway Party formed by former members of the Lanka Sama Samaja Party and the Communist Party of Sri Lanka, explained that the full implementation of the 13th Amendment would include Police and land powers being given to the Provinces. more..

Massive purge rocks SLFP

Oct 14 (Island) As purging of dissident SLFP leaders from the party is in full swing, incumbent and former Presidents of the party have expressed divergent opinions on the future of the SLFP. President Maithripala Sirisena, on Thursday, called on his new electoral organisers to reorganise and prepare the party for the next election. The president, handing over letters of appointment to the new electoral organisers at more..

Shalila Moonasinghe’s dual citizenship issue : Elections Commission to meet

Oct 14 (DN) The Elections Commission is to hold a meeting on October 19 to discuss the legal implications of the leader of the New Democratic Front (NDF), Shalila Moonasinghe not being a Sri Lankan citizen. Moonasinghe who was the former Litro Gas Chairman, is facing legal charges over hacking into a Taiwanese bank and has been remanded until Oct 25. Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said they would have to review the existing laws, more..

IGP flooded with public complaints against randy cops

Oct 14 (Island) In the wake of an Officer in Charge of a police station being charged with sexual assault, IGP said that he had received more information about other errant cops who had been accused of such behaviour. Police Chief Pujith Jayasundera said after he made available a hotline number (011 2444480) for public complaints in his office, a litany of complaints had poured in, mainly about sexual bribes solicited and various other crimes committed by policemen. more..

PTL Chief Dealer’s testimony challenged

Oct 14 (FT) Counsel for Perpetual Treasuries challenged the evidence given by Chief Dealer Nuwan Salgado before the PCoI that three individuals code-named Charlie, Car and Tango had received payments from the company in exchange for price sensitive information. President's Counsel Kalinga Indratissa, appearing on behalf of PTL, suggested to the witness that he had given false evidence to the Commission, noting that more..

A prominent politico is among her contacts

Oct 14 (DM) A voluptuous one visited a sexually transmitted disease clinic at a general hospital in the periphery about a fortnight ago.  The doctor to whom the young girl was referred to, invited her to take the seat opposite him and asked her to explain the symptoms of the disease. The young one who cringed and squirmed took a long time to stammer out the details the doctor wanted to know. Finding that she had contracted a serious venereal disease, the doctor questioned her about her sex life. more..

SAITM issue: NTUC in talks with FUTA, non-academic Uni staff

Oct 14 (DM) National Trade Union Centre Chairman K.D. Lal Kantha said that they were in talks with FUTA and non-academic staff of universities to get their support for the struggle against the SAITM. He said the SAITM issue was connected to both the education and health sectors and that a joint struggle should be carried out by the trade unions of those two sectors. “FUTA is with us opinion-wise. But they have not actively engaged with us. We are holding discussions with them to more..

Millions kept on Palisena’s chair after encashing cheques: PTL Senior Dealer

Oct 14 (DM) Senior Dealer of PTL Kaushitha Rathnaveera told PCoI that he had encashed cheques received by PTL from its related companies on several times amounting millions and left the money on PTL CEO Kasun Palisena’s chair but does not know what happened to the money thereafter. President’s Counsel Kalinga Indatissa appearing on behalf of Perpetual Treasuries Limited (PTL) cross-examined the PTL Chief Dealer more..

Role for every citizen

Oct 14 (DM) With Sri Lanka still suffering from some of its worst natural disasters during the past two years, there was much significance for our country in yesterday’s UN International Day for Natural Disaster Reduction. This event was started in 1989 after a call by the General Assembly for a day to promote a global culture of risk-awareness and disaster reduction.    According to the UN, the day celebrates how people and communities around the world are reducing their exposure to more..

Constitutional Conversation: What the Govt and Nationalists don’t get

Oct 14 (DM) Machiavelli said that the enterprise entailing the deadliest risk in politics is to try to institute a new order, and to be a new ruler while doing so (a new prince in a new principality). To be a relatively new govt trying to introduce a new political system in a polarized, poly-ethnic society with low economic growth, is as fraught an undertaking as one can imagine. The Govt is intensifying th evolatility of reform in every possible way. The Govt does not get that more..

Abolishing J.R. Jayewardene’s Executive Presidency

Oct 14 (DM) Reputed American Writer and Humourist Samuel Clemens, known to the world as Mark Twain was in London in May 1897 on a lecture tour. A rumour began circulating in the USA that Mark Twain was gravely ill and on the verge of death. Subsequently another rumour began spreading in the US of Mark Twain passing away in the UK.  On May 28th, 1897 the editors of the New York Journal cabled their London more..

Sri Lanka still trying to get the right batting formula: Pothas

Oct 14 (CB) As Sri Lanka suffered their eighth successive ODI defeat on Friday against Pakistan in Dubai, coach Nic Pothas suggested that the team is still trying to sort out the right batting formula. Chasing 293, Sri Lanka slumped to 67 for 5 and never recovered. In Sri Lanka's last series against India, they had Kusal Mendis batting at number three and towards the end of that series Lahiru Thirimanne fitted the bill. more..

Advanced tools help reduce natural disaster risks

Oct 14 (ST) Projects undertaken with the co-operation of geotechnical experts of Norway is helping Sri Lanka to reduce the risk of natural disasters in some parts of the country. Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (Asia) regional manager, Rajinder Kumar Bhasin, said the institute is helping in landslide mitigation in Badulla and Matale Districts, and also mapping areas in Matale and Jaffna that are prone to subsidence. more..

Anti-poverty banks to host care centres for seniors

Oct 14 (ST) Care centres will be set up at 1,074 Samurdhi bank branches next year to provide recreational and basic health services for the elderly during the day time. Samurdhi banks were set up to help reduce poverty in 1995 but lacked proper management and became politicised. Dr Sunil Nawaratne, director general of the Department Of Samurdhi Development, said the centres would have equipment to measure blood pressure more..

CAA acts on reports of arsenic in broiler chicken liver

Oct 14 (NS) The Consumer Affairs Authority has issued instructions for samples of broiler chicken in the market to be collected for testing following media reports, citing a study conducted by researchers of the University of Sri J'pura about toxic arsenic being found in chicken meat, specifically in the chicken liver. Chairman of the Authority, Hasitha Tillekeratne said that depending on the findings of the report more..

Bureaucracy hinders businesses Several permits for one export: CCC

Oct 14 (CT) Sri Lanka's bureaucratic approval processes, which impinge on the competitiveness of businesses, were highlighted by Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) Chief Economist Anushka Wijesinha, at a seminar in Colombo on Thursday. He said, a manufacturer of wooden frames for sunglasses for the global market has to first get the approval from the Forest Department for each tree cut. more..

Unprecedented crop failures, extreme weather destroy rice harvest

Oct 14 (ST) In an unprecedented turn of events, the rice harvest has failed for three consecutive seasons, creating a need for rice imports once more. From the Yala season of 2016 up to this year, the harvest has failed and rice production has hit a 10-year low. The govt plans to import more than 500,000 metric tonnes of rice within the next few months. A metric tonne is 2,204.6 pounds. more..