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Joint opposition tipped to call for a secret vote on no-faith motion

Mar 18 (CT) President Maithripala Sirisena received a warm welcome extended by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko in the land of the rising sun at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. Later, the two Leaders held bilateral talks following which they toured the Imperial Palace, taking in the sights. Though the season of Cherry blossoms has begun as the spring has started, President Sirisena like many other heartbroken tourists did not more..

Softlogic infusing Rs. 7 bn. fresh equity to strengthen balance sheet

Mar 18 (Island) Softlogic Holdings PLC, the Ashok Pathirage-led conglomerate into ICT, healthcare, retail, financial services, auto and leisure is raising seven billion rupees equity capital through a private placement under which a Mauritius-registered company Samena Ceylon Holdings Ltd, will take 19% of Softlogic at a price of Rs. 17 a share to be followed by a rights issue of 24 new shares for every 100 shares already held also at the 17-rupee price. Mr. Pathirage said yesterday that more..

Shakib escapes with fine and a demerit point; Kusal Mendis goes unscathed

Mar 18 (ST) Cricket often conjures up images of a good-natured sporting contests in contrast to football or rugby. But Friday’s altercation between players and officials seem to signal that those days of the gentleman’s game are over. It is usually match officials who are responsible for calming things down when the heat of the moment gets the better of players. But who will bring back the decorum when the umpires are the ones involved in the conflict? Bangladesh needed 12 runs off more..


Sad days to happiness

Mar 18 (ST) From a day (or days) of sadness last week, there was something to cheer about this week with news that SL had become a much happier nation in the year 2017. Our attention was drawn to this when Kussi Amma Sera (KAS) ran out of the house to share a story with her comrade-in-arms Serapina on something she had read in the local newspapers about happiness. It appears that SL had climbed four steps to reach 43rd position among 120 countries in the World Happiness Index. more..

The situation warrants your return

Mar 18 (ST) My dear Arjuna, I thought I must write to you as you are very much in the news these days. That is because you find yourself in a very unusual situation: your signature is still on our currency notes but at the same time there is a warrant out to arrest you. Ah, no wonder they say that we live in a land like no other! Those with long memories will remember you from over fifteen years ago. That was also when the Greens were in office but Satellite was the big boss. more..

'Govt failed to provide security to areas prone to outbreak of violence'

Mar 18 (SO) What struck Leader of the JVP Anura Kumara Dissanayake most, during his recent visit to areas affected by communal violence in Kandy is the constant fear that had been instilled in those affected by these unfortunate incidents. “The fear is ever present and that is the most dangerous situation” he said, explaining that it creates an environment of mistrust instead of coexistence and peace. more..

Women’s Rights; and the wrongs

Mar 18 (ST) The International Day for Women was marked worldwide last week, but the unfortunate events in Kandy and its environs took the focus away in SL. Much is said on March 8 each year to celebrate the usually underplayed role of women in society as well as their trials and tribulations all over the world. Women in each country have their own issues, and then there are those common to all womankind. Given the fact that SL women got the right to vote before many women in other more..

BBS leader’s Japan visit

Mar 18 (Island) We as a nation are quick to become complacent and believe that the worst is over no sooner any storm blows over or near us. This is certainly true of the unfortunate communal rioting that rocked several townships near Kandy a few days ago. Most of us think that the dust has settled with not even isolated sporadic incidents reported and the army beginning to clear the debris and hopefully begin the reconstruction work as they did when the army’s central armory exploded at more..

After the riots, story of hope for Anamaduwa

Mar 18 (SO) Mohamed Rahim, or Madeena Mudalali to the people of Anamaduwa, was the only Muslim to run an eatery in the area since 1990. In a wave of anti-Muslim violence sweeping the Kandy District, several isolated incidents in other regions of the country were also reported. In the early hours of March 11, Rahim’s restaurant was set ablaze by a mob, in what looked like an attempt to spread wave of violence into Puttalam more..

Tomorrow, Geneva

Mar 18 (CT) The UNHRC will sit in judgment over Sri Lanka in Geneva tomorrow. The 47-member strong UNHRC is co-headed by the USA and the UK and supported by the likes of South Africa and Australia which are also in the UNHRC team this year. As is usual, the thorn in the flesh of the USA and the UK sitting in judgment over politically fragile states like Sri Lanka will be China which is also a member of the UNHRC this year. India and Russia are however not in this year’s UNHRC team, more..

Who is afraid of the Corruption Court?

Mar 18 (SO) The Judicature (Amendment) Bill is now at the Supreme Court being argued for constitutionality before being presented to Parliament. The Bill, if enacted will set up a permanent High Court-at-Bar to take action against corruption and complex financial crimes. This would at long last fulfil a key promise of a Govt which was swept into power in 2015 on a platform of anti-corruption, and establishing the rule of law. The people expected swift justice against those more..

Bangladesh Cricket Board issues apology for events during Sri Lanka match

Mar 17 (ICC) After Shakib Al Hasan and Nuril Islam were both fined 25 per cent of their match fee and each issued with one demerit point after events in Friday's match against SL, the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has issued a statement accepting that the conduct of their players overstepped the mark and conceding that both were rightfully penalised. "BCB regrets the unfortunate happenings during Friday’s Nidahas Trophy more..

SLNS Samudura and Suranimila return home after Indian tour

Mar 17 (SLN) SLNS Samudura and Suranimila of SL Navy, which left for India on 2 March to attend MILAN - an initiative of the Indian Navy aimed to create a forum for the littoral navies of the region to exchange thoughts in the area of maritime cooperation, returned the port of Colombo today on completion of successful tour. The ships were welcomed at the harbour premises in accordance with naval traditions upon their return. A host of senior naval officers including more..

Lankan baby elephants, cynosure at Nagoya Higashiyama Zoo

Mar 17 (DN) Four Kangaroo cubs were presented to the Dehiwela Zoo by the Higashiyama Zoo in Nagoya, Japan, yesterday. The Director of the Dehiwela National Zoological Gardens Dammika Malsinghe, said the Kangaroo cubs are kept at the Ridiyagama safari park for safety. A black Rhinoceros cub was born at the Dehiwela Zoo in 2013 and named Mihiri. The parents of the cubs were presented under an animal exchange programme from Japan, in 2007, for which, more..

Doubts over new TV reconciliation channel because only Tamil can understand it

Mar 17 (AN) SL govt has sponsored the opening of the first Tamil-language television channel by Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC), SL’s national television network. For the authorities, the goal is to support national unity and reconciliation in a country marked by 30 years of civil war. But many people who spoke to AsiaNews expressed doubts about it. "The station is in Tamil, so only Tamils ​​can understand it,” some say. more..

How China is challenging American dominance in Asia

Mar 17 (TOI) As China grows more powerful, it is displacing decades-old American pre-eminence in parts of Asia. The outlines of the rivalry are defining the future of the continent. Last week, a group of 11 nations signed a trade deal that had originally been conceived as a US-led counterweight to China — but after President Donald Trump pulled out, the pact went forward without the US. It was the latest turn in Asia's gradual transition from American dominance to something much more fluid. more..

Decisions on Party’s future: UNP WC to convene on 22 March

Mar 17 (CT) Sources at the UNP headquarters, Sirikotha, said that the Party’s Working Committee is scheduled to be convened on 22 March. They said that among the issues that are to be deliberated at this meeting would be the holding of a national convention geared towards the revamping of the Party, the resolving of issues that have cropped up regarding the naming of mayors and officials to LG bodies won by the Party, the staging of the May Day rally and the reorganizing more..

Island wide tea factories will be investigated

Mar 17 (GDI) Sri Lankan Tea Board has commenced investigation on function of the tea factories in island-wide to continuous maintain the highest image of Ceylon Tea in the world market. Under this program 709 tea factories situated in several districts will be investigated within two months, Tea Commissioner E.A.J.K Edirisinghe said. It was reported that the Chairman of the SL Tea Board Rohan Pethiyagoda said recently more..

Troubled villagers question Matale quarry

Mar 17 (ST) Residents of Rathwatta, Udathenna in Matale are calling for an inquiry into extraction activity at a rose quartz quarry over concerns of public health and damage to the environment. They claim activity has damaged the Elkaduwa-Matale Road. Chaminda Abeyratne, who lives near the quarry estimated to be more than two acres-wide, suspects that environmental laws have been violated. He claims to have reliable information that authorities have approved the quarrying work more..

Sri Lanka Cricket boss regrets Bangladesh behaviour

Mar 17 (PTI) Regrettable and unacceptable is how Sri Lanka Cricket chief Thilanga Sumathipala has described the behaviour of the Bangladeshi team during their crucial match of the Nidahas Trophy against the hosts on Friday night. Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan was seen gesticulating at his batsmen, appearing to be conveying that they leave the field in protest against umpiring errors. The Bangladeshis claimed that the first two balls of Isuru Udana's final over when Bangladesh needed more..

The Elders call for decisive action to end sectarian violence in Sri Lanka

Mar 17 (SL) A group of independent leaders using their collective experience and influence for peace, justice and human rights worldwide, called on the Govt of SL to act with greater urgency and thoroughness to end sectarian violence targeting Muslim communities on the island. The Elders noted that the Govt has taken some measures to counter the criminal violence, but also warned that since unrest erupted on more..

Peeping tom got what he deserved

Mar 17 (DM) A bachelor who was a peeping tom and used to watch women bathing on the sly along with a friend was forced to undergo an embarrassing situation recently. On this particular day several women were bathing at the well that was surrounded by a brick wall. The two peeping toms as usual placed their coconut branch against the wall and were about to engage in their usual thrill. They had been drinking. One of them climbed up while the other held on to the coconut branch to more..

GMOA calls for Health Secretary’s arrest

Mar 17 (Island) GMOA called for the arrest of Health Secretary Janaka Sugathadasa for permitting the sale of Dr. Neville Fernando Teaching Hospital, affiliated to the medical school of the SAITM, which was acquired by the state at a cost of over Rs 3 billion in July last year. GMOA Assistant Secretary, Dr Naveen D. Zoysa said the hospital had been ceremonially handed over in the presence of Prez Sirisena and Minister Rajitha Senaratne with an MoU signed between the Health Secretary more..

'Mathews, Chandimal crucial for World Cup hopes'

Mar 17 (AFP) Aravinda de Silva, the former Sri Lanka captain, believes Angelo Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal are critical to the young side’s hopes at the 2019 World Cup despite poor form and recent injuries. Sri Lanka failed to make the final of the ongoing Twenty20 tri-series in Colombo, but their recent performances have raised hopes of a resurgence after a lacklustre 2017, in which they lost 40 of 57 int'l matches. more..

Emergency lapses on Mar. 20 unless extended by House

Mar 17 (DM) The state of emergency that was clamped on March 7 following communal riots that flared up in the Kandy District will lapse on March 20, unless it is extended by Parliament, an official said yesterday. Deputy Secretary General of Parliament Neil Iddawala told the Daily Mirror that the state of emergency that had been declared by President Maithripala Sirisena by proclamation should be approved by Parliament within 14 days completing on March 20. more..

T.B. Ekanayake signs no-confidence motion against PM

Mar 17 (AD) State Minister of Lands and Parliamentary Reforms T.B. Ekanayake had signed the no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. Ekanayake said that he signed the no-confidence motion while briefing media after a function held at Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall. “The wrongdoings of the public representatives should be exposed hence I am supporting the no-confidence motion against the PM.” he said. more..

Shakib, Nurul fined for breaching ICC code of conduct

Mar 17 (CI) Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan and squad member Nurul Hasan have been fined 25% of their match fees and also handed one demerit point each for breaching Level 1 of the ICC Code of Conduct in the fracas that marred their win over Sri Lanka on Friday (16). The thrilling fixture, which ended with Bangladesh's narrow win to dump the hosts out of the tournament, turned ugly in the final over of the former's run chase. more..

Disagreements in UNP over Colombo Dy. Mayor post

Mar 17 (DM) Some of the Tamil members of the UNP in the Colombo District have expressed their dissatisfaction on the party’s decision to name Mohamed Iqbal as the Deputy Mayor of Colombo. Mr. Iqbal’s name was announced at a meeting of UNP elected members of the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) last morning. Member of the Western Provincial Council and one of the UNP organizers in the Colombo District C. Y. P. Ram said it is sad that a Tamil is not named for the post. more..

Minister wonders why healthy sea weeds not popular in Sri Lanka

Mar 17 (Island) Fisheries Ministry officially launched the country’s first ever Aquatic Plant Tissue Culture Lab (WET LAB) constructed at a cost of Rs. 35 million at Rambodagalla in Kurunegala District. The main objective of this lab was to promote aquatic plant farming in Sri Lanka and earn foreign exchange by exporting healthy and high-protein sea food, Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said. SL exported a total of 52 MT of aquatic plants and had earned an income of Rs. 50 million last year. more..

No doubt Sri Lanka is at crossroads: GTF

Mar 17 (CT) “Sri Lanka agreeing to a well-defined, time-bound action plan for simultaneous operation of all transitional justice processes should be the top priority for the UNHRC,” says the Global Tamil Forum (GTF). “As Sri Lankan issues will be taken up at the UNHRC next week, the GTF would like to highlight the following for the careful considerations of the key countries at the UNHR,” the GTF has said in a statement today. more..

Shortlist announcement: Gratiaen Prize 2017

Mar 17 (Island) The shortlist for the Gratiaen Prize 2017 will be announced at an event on Monday 2 April, 6.00pm at the British Council Library, Colombo. All are invited to attend the announcement and listen to the reading of excerpts from the shortlisted entries. The Gratiaen Prize was founded in 1993 by the Sri Lankan-born writer Michael Ondaatje after he won the Booker Prize for The English Patient. This year the Gratiaen Prize celebrates a 25-year unbroken history of more..

Fraud at SriLankan, Mihin: Special Police team to assist Presidential Commission

Mar 17 (DN) IGP Pujith Jayasundara appointed a special police team to assist the Presidential Commission inquiring into the allegations of large scale fraud and malpractices at SriLankan Airlines, Sri Lankan Catering and Mihin Lanka, during the period of Jan 1, 2006 to Jan 31, 2018. The special Police team was appointed by IGP Jayasundara following a request made by the Commission. Police team consisting of 10 officers is headed by Superintendent of Police Laurence. more..

ප්රවෘත්ති නිවේදිකාවක් ලෙස චේතනා ලියනගේ...

Bring culprits to book

Mar 17 (CT) Today marks the eleventh day since the Government imposed a state of emergency after Sinhala-Muslim riots broke out in Kandy on 4 March. But this eleven day state of emergency is nothing compared to the 28-year-long state of emergency that Sri Lanka lived through from July 1983 to August 2011 after the outbreak of the Sinhala-Tamil riots in Colombo nor the six-year state of emergency that existed from March 1971 to February 1977 due to the April 1971 Insurgency. more..

Caesar’s seizure and a common candidate

Mar 17 (FT) Today (as I write, on 15 Mar) is a red-letter day for democratic-republicanism. It commemorates the occasion on which a klatch of lean and angry men stabbed Julius Caesar in the back… and front, or all over. Perhaps Caesar – the first of his name, and never Emperor of Rome (that dubious honour being reserved for his great-nephew Octavius who was deified as Augustus) – had it coming. A brilliant general, no mean orator, the holder of all the traditional magistracies more..