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Mastermind behind the Bond Scam: Ranil offers to answer Bond Commission probe

Oct 16 (CT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe is prepared to face the PCoI, says his office. A press communiqué from the PM's Office, claimed that the Premier is willing to face the Presidential Commission, in order to clarify doubts regarding the matter. It explained that the decision had been arrived at after the PM's name was mentioned on several occasions during the Commission proceedings. more..

MR says called for early polls to expedite end of executive presidency

Oct 16 (FT) He made these remarks in reply to a question posed by the media as to why he did not do so as called for by the National Movement for a Just Society, even after having the required two-thirds backing in Parliament and the people’s mandate. “Those who won the election by promising to abolish the executive presidency system have not done so even after holding office for over two and a half years,” charged Rajapaksa. The question was posed to the former President when more..

Prez and PM should adhere to Mahanayaka Theras’ advice : MFSPA

Oct 16 (DM) President Maithripala Sirisena and the PM Ranil Wickremesinghe should at least adhere to the request made by the Mahanayaka Theras and should resolve the SAITM issue immediately, Medical Faculty Students’ Parents’ Association (MFSPA) said. Speaking at a press briefing MFSPA Media Spokesman Dr. Nimal Karunasiri said that the authorities who came from the people’s vote must serve the public and should not play with the people’s mandate.  more..

Labour Ministry demands action on P-CoI findings

Oct 16 (Island) Minister John Seneviratne and National Labour Advisory Council (NLAC) have decided to request President Sirisena to take legal action against those who have caused huge losses to EPF. The decision was taken at a meeting of NLAC representatives chaired by Minister Seneviratne, who functions as the Chairman of the NLAC comprising employers, workers’ representatives and the govt. more..

Siridhamma Thera apologises to prelate

Oct 16 (Island) Ven. Pitiduwe Siridhamma Thera yesterday went before Malwatte Mahanayake Thera in Kandy and apologised for some of his statements which the Maha Sangha and the Buddhist laity have taken exception to. Siridhamma Thera met Most Ven Thibbatuwawe Sri Siddhartha Sumangala Thera as he had been informed in writing by the Malathu Vihara Sangha Karaka Sabha that he would be expelled from the Malwatte Chapter in case of noncompliance on his part. more..

Defying Court Order, a ploy by Namal: Harin

Oct 16 (DM) UPFA MP Namal Rajapaksa led the recent protest in Hambantota by defying the court order with a political game in mind, Minister Harin Fernando said. "Namal Rajapaksa's recent statement that he is a political prisoner is a part of this game to deceive the people and a subtle ploy gain their sympathy," minister said adding that there was no other reason for Mr. Rajapaksa to go ahead with the protest rally despite the stay order. "He is actually having a practice sessions in prison. more..

Mahanayake Theras urge Prez, PM to solve SAITM issue

Oct 16 (Island) The Mahanayake Theras of the 3 Nikayas have, in a joint memorandum, urged PM Ranil Wicrkemesinghe to settle the SAITM issue urgently. A settlement acceptable to all stakeholder should be evolved as early as possible, the prelates have said in their letter to the PM. They have urged the PM to take into consideration a letter addressed to him by Deans of Faculties of Medicine when finding a solution to SAITM issue. more..

Govt receives additional $ 18 million loan from OPEC fund for Kalu Ganga Project

Oct 16 (FT) Govt has received an additional $ 18 million loan from the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) to finance the remaining work of the Kalu Ganga Development Project. The loan agreement was signed on Friday, 13 October at the office of OFID in Washington DC by Secretary to the Ministry of Finance and Mass Media Dr. R.H.S. Samaratunga on behalf of Sri Lanka, and the Director General of OFID Suleiman J. Al-Herbish on behalf of OFID. more..

Anti-Dumping Bill finally coming to Parliament

Oct 16 (FT) Two bills, one to provide for the conduct of investigations and the application of safeguard measures on products imported into the country, and another to provide for the investigation and imposition of Anti-Dumping and Countervailing duties on imported products, will be presented to Parliament shortly. The Safeguard Measures Bill and the Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duties Bills have been published in the Gazette prior to being tabled in Parliament. more..

Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy named Central Bank Governor of the Year South Asia

Oct 16 (FT) The popular publication house Global Capital has named Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy the Central Bank Governor of the Year, South Asia. Dr. Coomaraswamy was felicitated at Global Capital Markets Awards ceremony in Washington DC over the weekend on the sidelines of the WB-IMF Annual meetings. Article dedicated to the award on the global capital website has been titled Cool, calm & collected approach to central banking. more..

SF’s motive is to expose Mahinda

Oct 16 (Island) Minister Sarath Fonseka has said he has entered politics and holding a minsterial post for the sole purpose of exposing the wrongs committed by his archenemy, former President Rajapaksa. He said: "I entered politics from a minor party, which could not form a government. We knew that very well. But at the same time I knew it would help me tell the world the crimes committed by Mahinda Rajapaksa. The minor party gave me a platform to create anti-Rajapaksa opinion in the polity. more..

Milan Maersk to call at Colombo Port

Oct 16 (DN) Maersk Line, with a presence in Sri Lanka for more than 25 years, continues to invest in Sri Lanka and contribute to its economy by bringing some of the latest and largest ships to Colombo. These megaships provide efficiencies and economies of scale to exporters and importers, thereby driving efficiencies in their supply chains. As such, the Milan one of the world’s largest ships, will arrive in Colombo on Oct 17 at 1200 hrs local time and berth at the CICT more..

CTU condemns Ananda Sarath Kumara’s appointment

Oct 16 (DM) Ceylon Teachers’ Union (CTU) condemned the appointment of North Central Provincial Councilor Ananda Sarath Kumara as the SLFP Organiser in Anamaduwa Electorate. CTU General Secretary Joseph Stalin said the Councilor was found guilty for forcing a female school teacher to kneel at her feet. He said considering the incident then President Rajapaksa prevent giving nomination to him and it cannot justify more..

Billion dollar business opportunity in power sector: Deputy Minister

Oct 16 (DN) In the next five years, investment opportunities would be offered to the private sector for 1,000 MW of wind power electricity generation in the country, affirmed Ajith P Perera, Deputy Minister of Power and Renewable Energy, addressing the audience at the launch of Build SL Housing and Construction Expo 2018, held in Colombo. He urged Sri Lankan entrepreneurs to make most of this zero corruption billion dollar business opportunity offered to them by the govt. more..

Sri Lanka looking to avoid ninth straight loss

Oct 16 (Island) After a 11-day stay in Dubai, the national cricket team travelled to Abu Dhabi yesterday and will be looking to square the five-match series having suffered a heavy 83-run defeat in the first game on Friday. The next two ODIs will be played here at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium, followed by the last two games in Sharjah. Sri Lanka need to address their ODI woes. Dubai game was the national cricket team’s eighth straight defeat in this format of the game. more..

China's lucrative embrace of SL stirs unease

Oct 16 (ST) Some 600 years ago, the great Chinese explorer Zheng He and his vast armada frequented Sri Lanka, including landing once to kidnap an uncooperative king. It was all part of the admiral's decades-long exploration of South and South-east Asia, even to the east coast of Africa - before China would mysteriously turn inwards again. Now, China is reasserting itself across Asia with a scheme that involves massive infrastructure more..

Non-processing of claim forms: NITF Chief asked to meet PM

Oct 16 (DM) National Insurance Trust Fund Chairman Manjula De Silva has been summoned for a meeting with PM Ranil Wickremesinghe tomorrow over the non-processing of compensatory claims submitted by owners of business establishments and householders who were affected by the floods in May this year. This was revealed by Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister's office Minister Sagala Ratnayake during a UNP Bala Mandala meeting at Morawaka on Saturday evening. more..

Sri Lanka to confirm Pakistan tour today, says team manager

Oct 16 (GEO) Sri Lanka will announce today about Pakistan's tour for the third Twenty20 International, that is set to be played at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. SL team manager Asanka Gurusinha revealed that the cricket board will take a final decision of either touring to Pakistan or not, after the board members' meeting in Colombo, Sri Lanka on Monday. Gurusinha announced to the media in Abu Dhabi's Sheikh Zayed Stadium prior to the press conference of SL skipper Upal Tharanga. more..

Sri Lanka commits to free trade

Oct 16 (FT) The 98th meeting of Intergovernmental Group of Twenty-Four on International Monetary Affairs and Development (G-24) was held in Washington, D.C. on 12 Oct. Minister Mangala Samaraweera assumed the Chairmanship of the G-24 on behalf of Sri Lanka. The last occasion Sri Lanka held the Chairmanship was in 1999 during President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s tenure as Finance Minister. more..

SL ‘A’ falls to spin to lose by an innings

Oct 16 (CI) A six-for from legspinner Damion Jacobs knocked Sri Lanka A out for 139 following on; the visitors lost all ten wickets for 57 after a solid start in their second-innings collapse, and just like that West Indies A had wrapped up victory by an innings and 13 runs in the first unofficial Test in Jamaica. Having skittled the opposition for 212 runs in the first innings early on the fourth day, West Indies A enforced follow-on with a 152-run lead. Sandun Weerakkody struck a brisk half-century more..

Courts wants medical report on Ukrainian Captain

Oct 16 (DM) Considering the application filed by Avant Garde Captain, Galle High Court Judge M.U. Gunawardene directed the Galle Police HQI to submit a report after having the suspect examined by a medical board of the Karapitiya Hospital. The suspect had sought court to amend the bail conditions imposed on him and permit him to travel to his country, Ukraine, to undergo heart surgery. The ship's caption, was on April 24, 2017, granted bail and ordered to report to the Galle Police more..

Ratnayake Central, Maris Stella win as Bens drop baton

Oct 16 (Island) St. Benedict’s, Kotahena seemed to have planned everything meticulously to win the boys’ title this time around. They had obtained the services of best coaches and their toils seem to bear fruit as they were going great guns by the final session of the final day. But a drop of baton in the Under-16 boys’ 4x100 metres relay cost them dearly as Maris Stella, Negombo and Ratnayake Central, Walala retained the boys’ and girls’ more..

Journalist Ranil Wijayapala passes away

Oct 16 (DN) The funeral of veteran journalist Ranil Wijayapala will be held at 3 p.m. today at the Kandanapitiya cemetery, Padukka. Senior journalist, defence correspondent and Sunday Observer News Editor Ranil Wijayapala (42), passed away on Saturday after a long illness. He was an old boy Taxila Central College, Horana. He joined the Daily News in February 1997 as a journalist and later became its News Editor. During a journalistic career spanning over two decades, more..

Unchanged Pakistan eye more dominance

Oct 16 (CI) Was the Test series a black swan event, not amenable to rationalisation after the fact? It certainly seems so after the proceedings of the first ODI between Pakistan and Sri Lanka in Dubai, which firmly saw the cricket return to the realms of predictability. Essentially, Pakistan are pretty bloody good in the UAE, and Sri Lanka, at the moment, are poor. Within the space of one evening's cricket, analysis seems to have reverted to favouring Pakistan heavily. more..

Death of Subramaniam Haran: Police had no option

Oct 16 (CT) Commander of the Cantonal Police of Ticino, Matteo Cocchi, clarifying the action of gunning down Lankan asylum seeker Subramaniam Haran, who had allegedly come charging at Police officers a week ago said, "There was no other option for the Police officer in that situation." Ticino is an Italian speaking Canton in Switzerland and this was the first time a Lankan asylum seeker was gunned down by Swiss law enforcement more..

Navy’s contribution towards greater maritime visibility for enhanced maritime security

Oct 16 (NS) This is the eighth successive year in which the Galle Dialogue Int'l Maritime Conference is being held in SL, attracting to our island nation, personnel from navies both near and far, and academics and experts in maritime affairs. I am personally drawn to this Conference just by its title for two reasons. Galle is my hometown. But not just only that. Galle is a city that has played an important role in Sri Lanka’s maritime interactions, in turn influencing the very history of our nation. more..

Better postpone the new constitution & Focus on the economy 

Oct 16 (CT) The Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly has produced an Interim Report on six key issues after 73 sessions between April 2016 and Sept 2017, without basic consensus among the key partners of political party representatives in the Committee. There were six sub-committee reports submitted before, in Nov and Dec 2016, and some of them were more controversial than the present report. Report perhaps has tried its best to incorporate more..

Adaraneeya Sri Lanka: Mulathew

Editorial:  Devil talk

Oct 16 (Island) It may be said, with apologies to the Bard, that politicians see more devils than vast hell can hold when they get into trouble and want to justify the vilification of their political enemies. This is the name of the game in politics where the devil looks after its own. President Maithripala Sirisena, over the weekend, gave the people of the Northern Province, crippled by a hartal, a choice between him and the devil, so to speak. He got off his presidential limo, in Jaffna, and met a group of people, more..

Annasi & Kadalagotu Literary Festival

Oct 16 (Island) Novels, short stories, poems and lyrics, even rap music; launch of new publications; introduction of new authors inclusive of Sinhala, Tamil and English; and sale of books both new and second-hand. All that and much more was the Annasi and Kadalagotu Literary Festival at the Mt Lavinia Hotel on Saturday Oct 8 starting at 10.00 and going on into the evening. The venue was particularly apt being imbued with the memory of stolen, secret romance where more..

'Skills mismatch a massive economic cost: Education system must be reformed'

Oct 16 (CT) Sri Lankan industries continue to incur immense economic costs due to the country's inability to create skilled workers by making the necessary education reforms, Dr. Nisha Arunatilake, Research Fellow at the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka said. Q: As someone who has done extensive research on the demographic and labour landscape of the country, can you give us a brief introduction on these areas? more..

Will Lanka’s constitutional scapegoat face sacrificial slaughter on the people’s altar?

Oct 16 (ST) The JRJ constitution, passed with a five sixth majority in 1978, has been used, since the late 1990s, as a convenient scapegoat for politicians on both sides of the political divide to pile upon its back the blame for their own political failures to deliver the goods promised to the nation. Two presidents Chandrika Kumaratunga and Mahinda Rajapaksa had mounted the beast of burden and had thoroughly enjoyed the ride whilst, at the same time joining in the chorus and giving more..

Sri lanka’s bread and circuses sideshow

Oct 16 (ST) Juvenal’s beautifully scornful castigation of the people being diverted by bread and circuses (panem et circenses), has a specific application in the present day. That cynical tactic served the Roman emperors well in turning the attention of bored plebians away from pressing national issues and civic duties. Sri Lanka has had its fair share of diversions through the decades since we embarked on our less than distinguished expedition of gaining independence from colonial rulers and more..

Anti-SAITM protests a political gimmick?

Oct 16 (CT) Since its inception, Medical Faculty of the SAITM never failed to create news on a regular basis. Even after numerous trade union action and protest marches, the main stakeholders are yet to find a solution to the issue. At the moment, steps have been taken to stop fresh enrolment and awarding of degrees at the SAITM Medical Faculty and a Court decision on the institute will be taken next month. more..

More devolution or more integration?

Oct 16 (Island) It is curious how obsessed the political class is today on how best to handle the long standing Ceylon Tamil issue. The facts indicate that the Ceylon Tamil population, currently a tad over 11% of the total population in the country, has declined, is declining and will continue to decline as a proportion of the total population. All the anecdotal evidence suggests that the youth of Jaffna wish to get the hell out of the country to white-ruled countries where a critical mass of more..

Where is Sri Lanka heading?

Oct 16 (CT) The new Constitution, currently being considered, is accused by many of being a project of Tamil separatists. It is not true. It is the project of regime destabilizers. They have done it elsewhere in the world and Sri Lanka's past or present experiences are certainly not unique. Initially Project Destabilizing Sri Lanka was India's, but with time neo-colonialists of the West, Tamil diaspora and various vested interest NGOs came to be driving partners as well. more..