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Video: Wahhabism on the rise in Sri Lanka?

Mar 17 (AD) A news report by India’s WION claims that while Sinhalese intolerance is on the rise in Sri Lanka, as apparent in the recent communal violence, the root cause for the distrust of Muslims in Sri Lanka lies in the alarming spread of Wahhabism among one of the most tolerant and peaceful Muslim communities of the world. It states that most of the international media especially Middle Eastern concerns are painting more..

NISC urges Govt to pass Judicature Bill

Mar 17 (DM) While stressing the need to pass the Judicature (Amendment) Act in Parliament so as to set up a permanent High Court-at-Bar to take action against fraud and corruption, National Intellectual Sangha Council (NISC) appealed to all political parties and organizations, to extend their support to the Bill without disrupting the move. NISC advisor Ven. Omalpe Sobitha Thera said they requested Sri Lanka Bar Association (BASL) more..

Ram Sethu will not be damaged for Sethusamudram project

Mar 17 (IANS) The Centre on Friday told the Supreme Court that in the interest of the nation it has decided not to damage the Ram Sethu bridge for the Sethusamudram project initiated to facilitate navigation between India's east and west coasts. Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice A. M. Khanwilkar and Justice D. Y. Chandrachud were informed by the Union Ministry of Shipping that it has decided to explore an alternative to more..

Labour reforms in Gulf countries Lankan white collar workers hit

Mar 17 (CT) The overseas job prospects for Sri Lankan white collar workers could be affected following changes in labour laws across several Gulf countries, the industry warned yesterday (16). Countries such as Oman, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE have implemented tough new regulations in a bid to give first priority to their own nationals for jobs in certain categories, both in the public and private sector. more..

Protest when OMP commences operations: GSLF Australia

Mar 17 (DM) The spokesman of the Global Sri Lanka Forum –Australia Ranjith Soysa in a letter to President Sirisena urged the political leaders of the country to record their protest when the Office of Missing Persons (OMP) commences its operations. OMP was set up by the Yahapalana govt who created an unprecedented record in co-sponsoring the OHRC resolution on Sri Lanka in 2015 as one of the four transitional justice mechanisms. more..

An evolving virus: How and why Dengue spreads across Sri Lanka

Mar 17 (Roar) Nearly everyone in Sri Lanka knows the basic fact sheet about dengue: it spreads through mosquitoes, usually black with white markings. According to schools and health inspectors, they breed in fresh-water collected just about anywhere—tyres lying around in the garden, plastic containers, coconut shells, pockets of polythene and so on. A high fever lasting over 3 days, combined with nausea & spotty rashes more..

Rogue polythene makers get around CEA blocks

Mar 17 (ST) Central Environment Authority (CEA) says its effort to clamp down on polythene lunch sheet and shopping bags by restricting the major manufacturers has been a failure as small-time industries have stepped into the void, selling the prohibited product freely. A survey carried out by the CEA has revealed that although the registered companies have stopped producing illegal polythene, small industries operating in more..

50% Colombo dwellers not segregating waste

Mar 17 (CT) Non-compliance by 50% of the public towards segregation, when disposing of garbage, is the prime reason for the issues of garbage accumulation in Colombo’s suburban areas, said Colombo. Municipal Council Deputy Commissioner L.R.L. Wickramaratne. He added that the CMC does not own places to facilitate non-segregated waste. Following the Meethotamulla garbage mountain collapse of more..

Video: Pereras alleviate Sri Lanka's pain

Mar 17 (CI) It is always the norm whenever controversy mires a sporting result for the actual sport to be overshadowed. There is also the case of outstanding sporting feats going underappreciated due to their coming in losing causes. In the aftermath of Bangladesh's thrilling victory over SL in the Nidahas Trophy, both these elements are likely to play a considerable role in upstaging one of the great counterattacking more..

Veggies trashed and thrown to jumbos

Mar 17 (ST) Gunny bags full of vegetables being thrown in corners to rot, wild elephants gorging on discarded vegetables, piles of produce discarded at economic centre garbage dumps – these have been common sights over the past weeks. A glut in vegetable supply raised hopes of a drastic price drop in cities and towns but, unfortunately, both farmers and retail shoppers have not benefited. more..

Let’s learn to be content with what we have

Mar 17 (DM) Finland is the world’s happiest country according to the latest annual survey conducted by the United Nations and most people may be surprised to know the reasons why Finland is the happiest in a world that is getting more selfish and self-centred compounded with other vices. As for Sri Lanka, we jumped four slots ahead and Sri Lankans were happier than in the previous year, according to the report released on Thursday. The report ranked Sri Lanka at 120. more..

That elusive FDI

Mar 17 (DM) Attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) as much as possible seems to be one of the key strategies adopted by the Yahapalanaya Govt for overall economic development. In fact, architects of the Yahapalanaya Govt pledged at the 2015 Presidential and General Elections that they were confident of mobilizing FDI on a mass scale and thus boosting Sri Lanka’s economy. Trusting what they promised, the people preferred Yahapalanaya in place of the Rajapaksa Palanaya. more..

Counsel tells SC: Bill to amend Judicature Act politically motivated

Mar 17 (DM) Senior Counsel Romesh de Silva PC yesterday making the submission on the proposed Judicature Act (Amendment) Bill that this Bill will lead to unequal treatment to equals. Seven Petitions came up for Special Determination of the Supreme Court before the Bench comprising Chief Justice Priyasath Dep, Justices Buwaneka Aluvihara and Nalin Perera. Counsel Romesh de Silva PC with more..

High Commissioner of India delivers key-note address at KDU

Mar 17 (FB) General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University (KDU) held its inauguration ceremony of Master’s Degree programme for the year 2018 today. HC of India, Taranjit Singh Sandhu was the Chief Guest at the function. He delivered a key- note address on India-SL relations for a shared and secured future. He noted that India-SL relations are special, unique and stand on its own footing. HC recalled that Sir Kotelawala was one of the most illustrious and brave sons of SL. more..

SL statistics office withdraws GDP data

Mar 17 (Reuters) Department of Census and Statistics withdrew its 2017 full-year and fourth quarter GDP data on Friday, a day after posting the island nation’s worst economic growth in 16 years. The data on Thursday showed the economy expanding 3.1% in 2017, the slowest pace in 16 years and decelerating from 4.4% in 2016. It showed fourth-quarter growth slowing to 1.4% year-on-year from 3.74% in the third quarter. “We got the last set of data at the last minute. more..

‘We’re close to toppling Ranil govt’

Mar 17 (Hindu) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said he would move a no-confidence motion against PM Ranil Wickremesinghe next week, and claimed he had the support of some legislators in the PM’s UNP. Declaring that he was close to bringing the govt down, Mr. Rajapaksa said: “The UNP’s own members are doing that, I don’t have to do [much].” He was speaking to Colombo-based foreign correspondents on Thursday. more..

Law & Order Minister and Muslim organisations discuss preventing violence

Mar 17 (FT) Minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara on Thursday (15) met with representatives of Muslim religious organisations at the Ministry for discussions on the tense situation arisen in the country following the attacks on Muslim community in Kandy and on measures to prevent such attacks in the future. At the meeting, Muslim leaders told the Minister that the Muslim community in the country had always worked with the Govt in power to solve the problems of their community. more..

International Atomic Energy Agency extends support to achieve SL's development goals

Mar 17 (FT) International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano says that the IAEA will extend its support to Sri Lanka to achieve future development goals. The visiting IAEA Director made these remarks when he made an observation visit to the new office premises of SL Atomic Energy Board on Wednesday during hisvisit to SL on an invitation extended by the Govt. Amano further said that SL had achieved significant goals in utilising nuclear technology under guidance of IAEA. more..

UN panel member challenged over Vanni death toll claims

Mar 17 (Island) Former MP and retired Navy Chief of Staff Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekera has sought an explanation from UNSG Sri Lanka panel member, South African human rights lawyer Yasmin Sooka as regards sharp discrepancy in the much-touted UN Vanni death toll and the British wartime dispatches from its diplomatic mission in Colombo. Weerasekera has challenged the Int'l Truth & Justice Project’s more..

'Special Reconciliation TV channel will promote sustainable peace'

Mar 17 (Island) The objective of Special Reconciliation TV Channel was to provide an opportunity to encourage multi-cultural, multi-ethnic and multi-religious community based integration programmes that recognises richness in diversity, promotes integration, facilitates reconciliation and builds a pluralistic and inclusive society, to achieve sustainable peace and harmony among different ethnic and religious communities, says Secretary, Ministry of National Integration and more..

Health Ministry to probe Indian health clinics

Mar 17 (Island) Health Ministry has initiated an investigation into media reports of unauthorised health clinics being carried out by Indian doctors in the North and East. Health Ministry spokesman, Prasanna Adhikari said that a probe would be carried out by the ministry’s Investigations Unit on instructions issued by the Acting Director General Health Services (DGHS), Dr Sarath Amunugama on Wednesday (14). Action would be taken according to the findings of the probe, he said. more..

Ranja strikes again

Mar 17 (DM) Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake said he would disclose details of a million dollar scam, with regard to Sri Lankan Cricket in Parliament next week. Mr Ramanayake said that this scam could be worse than the Bond Scam. “Bond Scam was in SL Rupees, while this scam regarding cricket has been in US dollars,” he said. The scam involved fixing of matches and broadcasting rights. more..

Compensation for Kandy riots from Monday

Mar 17 (FT) Govt authorities are scheduled to begin handing over compensation for the victims of the racially-instigated riots in the Kandy District by Monday. Kandy District Secretary H.M.P. Hitisekara told Daily FT that compensation would be made with the cooperation of the Ministry of Prison Reforms and Rehabilitation. “We have completed most of the preliminary work. The Govt Valuation Department has been active in the area and most of the valuation work has been done. more..

Junior Fed Cup: SL meets Singapore today

Mar 17 (DN) Sri Lanka entered the final of Junior Fed Cup Asia/Oceania Pre-qualifiers with a thumping 3-0 whitewash against Philippines in the semi finals worked off at the Sri Lanka Tennis Association hard courts yesterday. Sri Lanka will take on Singapore in today's final at the SLTA hard courts. Anjalika Kurera with a stormy attack beat her Philippino opponent Amanda Gabrielle Zoleta in easy straight sets 6/0, 6/0 to grab the first singles semi final victory for Sri Lanka. more..

Bangladesh's dressing room door damaged in Colombo

Mar 17 (CI) Aggressive bodily contact, shoving, agitated yelling, pointed fingers and a shattered dressing room door, all marred the finish and the immediate aftermath of the Nidahas Trophy match between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. The shattered door was likely the doing of somebody inside the Bangladesh dressing room. An outward-facing camera caught a number of Bangladesh players racing down the steps more..

As evening shadows fell the call for safety rang out

Mar 17 (ST) As darkness fell on the evening of March 5, with the Fort Railway Station bustling with people rushing home from work, approximately 300 women and men of all religions, ethnicities and ages, began their walk for safety for women on the streets at night. Each participant carried a torch. Organised by the Women’s Education and Research Centre (WERC) as its International Women’s Day initiative, the aim was to create awareness on the issue of violence against women and more..

SL now a hot destination for foreign insurers

Mar 17 (AAR) With five M&As since 2012 involving international players, the Sri Lankan market is today a key destination for global insurers looking to expand in Asia. The Sri Lankan insurance industry, though small in size, has caught the eye of the international insurance community, which has seen opportunity and is investing in this largely under penetrated market. The market currently has 27 players - 12 life, 13 non-life and two composite. “Sri Lankan market is vibrant and dynamic more..

Manufacturing, services pick up in Feb.

Mar 17 (FT) SL’s manufacturing and services sectors have expanded better in Feb than the lag suffered in Jan according to the performance of the latest Purchasing Managers Index. The Manufacturing Sector PMI changed to 51.7 from 55.6 in February from the previous month, indicating that manufacturing activities had increased driven by new orders. A similar pick up was also observed in Services. more..

RTI Commission orders release of Draft Disability Law

Mar 17 (Island) In July 2017 ICES filed a right to information request with the Ministry of Social Empowerment seeking release of the most recent draft of the law on persons with disabilities. The request was refused and ​ICES filed ​an ​appeal, first with the designated officer​ at the Ministry​, and then with the RTI Commission. On 27th Feb 2018, after a brief hearing, the RTI Commission ​ordered ​release of the draft law. The following are relevant parts of the order: more..

Sri Lanka's high tax structure seen as snagging local trade with Thailand

Mar 17 (Island) Continued trade between SL and Thailand could further cement good relations between Thailand and Sri Lanka in numerous fields. Trade expansion between the countries could amount to US$ 1.5 billion by 2020. However, the tax structure in SL is high and this could get in the way of facilitating business between the countries, Thai Ambassador Chulamance Chartsuwan said. 'The current trade balance between the countries at end 2016 was US$ 700 million. more..

Fury and fisticuffs as Bangladesh win ugly

Mar 17 (CI) Mahmudullah, sublimely poised while chaos roiled around him, hoisted an Isuru Udana ball over the square leg boundary when six runs were required off the last two balls, propelling Bangladesh to victory in scintillating fashion. It is difficult to overstate the importance of his innings, though the numbers - 43 off 18 balls - bear witness to its quality. Incensed by several mistakes from his team-mates, maintaining more..

EWIS powers Smart Classrooms at Trinity

Mar 17 (CT) In a project initiated and funded by the Trinity College Old Boys Association (OBA) - Colombo Branch, EWIS Information Systems upgraded the Junior School Hall Trinity College, Kandy with smart classrooms, installing Smart Interactive Displays and providing educational software. Sri Lankan education system is currently experiencing a revolution with the launch of Smart Classrooms, and thanks to this new interactive technology, students are now able to study more..

DSI announces launch of 18th DSI Supersport Schools Volleyball Championship

Mar 17 (Island) On the 13th of March 2018, DSI announced the launch of the 18th DSI Supersport Schools Volleyball Championship at a press conference at the Hotel Nippon, Colombo. The number one footwear manufacturer in the country has come forward, with the support of the Sri Lanka Volleyball Federation and the School Volleyball Association of the Ministry of Education, to organise this tournament, which has a significant spot in the history book of Sri Lankan volleyball. more..

Energy Mafia: Calls for depoliticisation of govt tender procedures

Mar 17 (DM) LTL Holdings, which claimed to have submitted the lowest bid of US $ 160 million for the construction of 300MW liquefied natural gas (LNG) power plant in Kerawalapitiya, this week urged the authorities to think of the national interest when going ahead with the tender procedures. The company therefore called for depoliticisation of the tender procedures. “We always quote the lowest or the second lowest more..

Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle celebrates its first rice harvest

Mar 17 (ST) Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort celebrated the harvest of its first rice crops from its own organic paddy fields, located within the premises of the resort. The rice paddy fields are one of the latest farming initiatives that further enhance the resort’s continued sustainability commitments. The resort gardeners adhered to traditional planting methods and started cultivating two varieties of rice in November last year, in order to keep the indigenous farming heritage alive. more..

A people’s peace & solidarity project against racism & ethnoreligious extremism

Mar 17 (Island) What if we are heading for dreadful yet durable deadlock as in Israel/Palestine? Israeli society evolved in such a manner that there was a shift to the radical right at the grassroots which reflected itself electorally; the once powerful Labour party and Peace movements were increasingly marginalized; and the Oslo two- state solution was in effect halted and partially reversed. For its part, Palestinian society shifted from the secular PLO and the radical left (PFLP), more..