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Two pieces of bones in Mannar mass grave bear signs of torture

Dec 10 (Island) The discovery of two pieces of human bones, bound by a cable, has caused serious concern to the experts engaged in excavating the Mannar mass grave; they wonder whether some of the people buried there had been tortured. The two pieces of bone were recovered on Friday (7). Mannar District Judge M. Swarnaraj visited the grave site to inspect the skeletal remains. The two bones had been stored securely for further more..

Thilina Bandara Thennakoon joins UNP

Dec 10 (AM) Former Central Provincial Council Minister Thilina Bandara Tennakoon obtained membership with the UNP. Tennakoon met UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe this morning at Temple Trees and obtained party membership. UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella and General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam were present when Tennakoon met Wickremesinghe this morning. He is a nephew of UPFA MP and Rajapaksa loyalist Janaka Bandara Tennakoon. more..

Latest Field Guide to the Butterflies of SL

Dec 10 (Island) A new book Field Guide to the Butterflies of SL authored by the island’s renowned Lepidopterist duo, George Michael and Nancy van der Poorten, will be launched on Thursday Dec 20 at 6 pm at the Met Department Auditorium, Colombo 7. A must for nature lovers, this new field guide allows the casual observer to correctly identify the butterflies observed in the field. More advanced naturalists will learn key identification points for the more difficult species. more..

Death sentences held up due to delayed reports: President

Dec 10 (PMD) President Sirisena says necessary steps should be instantly taken to implement the recently taken decision to enforce the death penalty against the persons who still engaged in drug trafficking activities even after they have been convicted on the death penalty, for the future of the country, the nation and future generation. Prez further said that due to the failure of the relevant institutions to submit more..

Ranil won’t be PM even confidence motion passed: PHU

Dec 10 (DM) UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe would not be appointed as the PM even if the confidence motion would be passed in Parliament, PHU said today. The UNP is to move a Confidence Motion on Wednesday in Parliament pledging solidarity with its leader Ranil Wickremesinghe as the PM. PHU Leader Udaya Gammanpila said according to the internal sources of the UNP, the MPs who would vote in favour of the motion were to file a Fundamental Rights petition in the SC more..

Navin calls for changing UNP’s structure

Dec 10 (Island) UNP National Organiser and MP Navin Dissanayake has demanded that changes be effected to the UNP’s structure and the party make the best use of its Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa. Dissanayake said, at a meeting of the UNP’s Hatton-Muskeliya organisation over the weekend, that UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe was adept at what he called playing games inside the party, but could not do so outside. He recalled that Wickremesinghe had polled 40 votes as against his later father more..

Verdict of Wigneswaran’s case on Jan 31

Dec 10 (AD) Court of Appeal informed that the verdict on the preliminary objections filed pertaining to the Contempt of Court petition against the former Chief Minister of NPC C.V. Wigneswaran and other NPC members, on the 31st of Jan 2019. The petition was to be heard before Justices Kumudini Wickramasinghe and Janak de Silva today. However, due to the absentia of Justice Wickramasinghe at the hearing, more..

Constitutional Coup: Massive protest rally on Dec.17

Dec 10 (DM) UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe today informed UNP MPs, provincial councillors and organizers that a mass protest rally participated by members of several political parties and civil society organizations will be held in Colombo on Monday (17). According to what the UNP leaders told those gathered at Temple Trees, the protesters will march from all over the country for the rally at Galle Face Green. “Our lawyers have informed us that the Supreme Court decision on the petition more..

Auditors give qualified opinion of Sri Lanka Anilana Hotels’ accounts

Dec 10 (EN) Auditors M/s Amarasekera & Company, Chartered Accountants, have given a qualified opinion on the annual report for 2017-18 of SL’s Anilana Hotels & Properties which has run up big losses. Auditors have also flagged as a key audit matter revaluation of freehold lands and investment property of the firm, whose annual report has just been released to the stock exchange. Singapore’s SOMAP Int'l Pte Ltd recently acquired control of Anilana Hotels & Properties in a private more..

President faces fresh challenge over his mental health

Dec 10 (EN) President Sirisena Monday faced a new challenge from an unexpected source questioning his mental condition to govt country as a political crisis triggered by him dragged without any sign of resolution. A public interest case was filed by a woman activist identified as Thakshila Jayawardena who argued that irrational behavior of the president was due to severe stress of adjusting to an urban life style, more..

Shootout in Modara injures five

Dec 10 (AD) A shootout has occurred near a housing complex in the Modara at around 3 pm today. Police stated that two persons who arrived on a motorbike had opened fire at a group travelling on a three-wheeler. Reportedly, six persons including a female had sustained injuries in the incident and had been admitted to the National Hospital in Colombo. A group of four males from Colombo 15, aged 31, 28, 30 and 26, had been travelling on the three-wheeler when the shootout occurred. more..

Daily Mirror removes video of Sirisena’s controversial statement from Facebook

Dec 10 (CT) Daily Mirror, SL’s largest selling privately owned daily newspaper, has removed the video of Prez Sirisena’s controversial video from its Facebook page after increasing pressure from President’s Media Division (PMD), Colombo Telegraph can now reveal. In the video interview that went viral over the weekend, Sirisena was caught on record saying former President Rajapaksa could not show a parliamentary majority, as the MPs demanded higher bribes than expected. more..

JVP press conference

Sri Lanka’s economy at crossroads

Dec 10 (FT) This is an edited version of the Prof. H.A. de S. Gunasekara 2018 Oration delivered at the Univ of Peradeniya on 4 Dec. Professor H A de S Gunasekara, popularly known as HAdeS, was a legend in economics in Sri Lanka. The doctoral thesis From Dependent Currency to Central Banking in Ceylon, which he submitted to the University of London, was a seminal contribution to the setting of the monetary and financial system in an economy that was transformed from feudalism to more..

Tourism’s peak period in peril

Dec 10 (CT) Sri Lanka is still struggling to come out of the adverse political situation as a result of the political tsunami which had struck the Parliament, and turned the country’s governance upside down a month ago. As the country is nearing the fourteenth year of the tsunami devastation, the late US President George H.W. Bush who visited the Island on Feb 2005, commenting on the destruction caused by the natural disaster said that SL being a country popular with tourists all efforts more..

Video: Contempt of Court petition filed against Karu

Dec 10 (AD) A lawyer has filed a petition before the Supreme Court challenging the Speaker’s decision to convene the parliament despite a pending restraining order. The petition has been put forward stating that Speaker Karu Jayasuriya has acted in Contempt of Court by reconvening the parliament when there is a pending restraining order issued on the act. Reportedly, the petition has been filed by Attorney at Law Aruna Laksiri. more..

Political turmoil halts student insurance scheme

Dec 10 (ST) Rs. 2,800 million worth Suraksha insurance scheme launched last yr to provide medical cover for Govt school students has become the latest casualty of the ongoing political turmoil. The Education Ministry launched the scheme in 2017 and offered insurance cover valid from Oct 1, 2017 to Sept 30, 2018. However as 2018 draws to an end, students have not received their insurance cards for the next year. more..

Ugly incident in parliament cannot be accepted: Thera

Dec 10 (DM) Ven. Ittepane Dhammalankara Thera, Mahanayake of the Kotte Parshwaya of the Kalyani Dharma Gree Maha Sanga Sabha told SLPP leader Mahinda Rajapaksa that Sri Lankans who are a part of a great history cannot accept the ugly incidents that took place recently within the chamber of the Parliament. He reminded the former President who visited the Thera at his Temple, Sri Dharmavijayaloka Viharaya at more..

'Eastern Province Para-military groups still possess weapons'

Dec 10 (CT) Tamil National People’s Front Batticaloa District Organizer Suresh Tharmalingam hinted that there are several para military groups which murdered and terrified the people of the Eastern Province in the ‘90s, that have not officially handed over their weapons and it is high time the Govt confiscates those weapons. The news of 35-year-old Niroshan Indika and 28-year-old Ganesh Dinesh, who were killed whilst on duty, more..

Sri Lanka forex reserves down US$ 880 million in November

Dec 10 (EN) Sri Lanka's forex reserves dropped by US$ 884.9 million in Nov 2018, to US$ 7,018.38 million amid a statutory reserve cut and more liquidity injections. In November the central bank cut the statutory reserve ratio and injected what an official said was an estimated 90 billion rupees of cash at zero interest rate in to the banking system to permanently sterilize liquidity shortages generated by earlier interventions. more..

Iraq emerges to be the No. 1 buyer of Sri Lankan Tea in 2018

Dec 10 (AD) From being second largest importer of SL Tea or renowned Ceylon Tea, the OPEC’s second-largest oil producer – Iraq that suffered a political crisis and a warfare from 2003 since American Invasion has emerged as SL’s number one tea buyer which was reflected in the Jan - Oct 2018 official tea export statistics. Iraq was number 2 to Turkey in both 2016 and 2017 but had become the top on the list in 2018 so far. more..

Sri Lanka crisis negative for economy, polls seen positive for stocks

Dec 10 (EN) SL’s political crisis is not good for economic growth but investors see early elections could be positive for the stock market, according to Tundra Fund, a Swedish based fund focussing on less well-known frontier markets. “Many were surprised that Sri Lanka, in the midst of what constitutes a constitutional crisis, was one of the winners during the month and rose almost 3%,” fund said in its latest monthly commentary. more..

First comprehensive survey of SL art organized by a U.S. museum opens in LA

Dec 10 (AD) Los Angeles County Museum of Art is presenting The Jeweled Isle: Art from Sri Lanka, the first comprehensive survey of SL art organized by a U.S. museum. Drawn in part from LACMA’s collection of SL art, and including numerous domestic and international loans, the exhibition presents some 240 works addressing nearly two millennia of SL history. In 2009, Sri Lanka emerged from a nearly 30 year-long civil war more..

Prez urged to guarantee national security

Dec 10 (Island) The govt urged President Sirisena, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of armed forces to ensure national security as the country struggled to cope up with political and constitutional crisis. Minister Bandula Gunawardena appealed to Prez on behalf of the govt. Asserting that some sections of the security sector acted contrary to presidential directives, Minister warned of dire consequences unless more..

SLPP leaders agog and on their toes

Dec 10 (CT) Party Leaders of the former President Rajapaksa faction are on their toes in anticipation of an election, irrespective of the pending decision of the Supreme Court with regard to the dissolution of Parliament. The Party Leaders met yesterday at the SLPP office in Battaramulla, to discuss their future political stance. Former MP Basil Rajapaksa also attended the discussion along with several incumbent MPs. more..

The present political imbroglio: Some random thoughts

Dec 10 (DM) The present Constitutional imbroglio has given rise to a spate of constitutional opinions being expressed by legal experts some genuine others spurious. Democracy is said to be, endangered and the Sovereignty of the people is much spoken of. One wonders what the People in the so called peripheries, i.e. in the northern and eastern parts of the country and in the rural hinterland make of this. Do these constitutional controversies have the surreal quality of more..

League of Nations, the UN and the world’s longest running conflict

Dec 10 (DM) In the aftermath First World War (1914 - 1918) in which 15 - 19 million lives were lost, the League of Nations (LN), an intergovernmental organisation wasfounded on January 10, 1920. The League’s goals included disarmament, preventing war through collective security, settling disputes among nations through negotiation and improving global welfare. The goal of the LN was to prevent wars through disarmament, collective security and negotiation. more..

I will abide by SC ruling: President

Dec 10 (DN) President Sirisena said that he will honourably accept whatever ruling given by the Supreme Court on the petitions filed against the Gazette notification issued by him to dissolve Parliament and take future political actions according to it. He said he is not happy about the administrative process vested in the President as a single individual under the Constitution as it should not be so in a country, more..

New TID Director

Dec 10 (Island) SSP W.S.E. Jayasundera has been appointed new Director of the police Terrorism Investigation Division (TID). He has been placed in charge of the Ministerial Co-ordination Division. Jayasundera was previously in charge of the Jaffna Police Division. Jayasundera succeeded DIG Nalaka de Silva, who was arrested in connection with an alleged plot to assassinate President Maithripala Sirisena and former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. more..

Irrigation Dept. distorts history at Iranamadu

Dec 10 (ST) The plaque which acknowledged the contribution of late Prime Minister, D.S. Senanayake, and the opening of the renovated Iranamadu Tank in 1954 by then Agriculture Minister Dudley Senanayake has been completely destroyed and replaced with a plaque bearing the name of President Maithripala Sirisena. The construction of the Iranamadu tank which is regarded as the Gem of Kilinochchi, began in 1906 and was first used for irrigating fields in 1922. more..

A young UNPer should run for Prez: SLMC

Dec 10 (Island) SLMC leader Rauff Hakeem has called for fielding someone young from the UNP as a common candidate at the next presidential election. He said that there was a need for a young UNPer to run for President and leader the UNP-led alliance, at the next parliamentary election. Hakeem, however, said his party would back UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe in Parliament if a motion was presented more..

Video: Police discover 10 firearms in Beruwala

Dec 10 (AD) A 40-year-old man had been arrested with nine fire arms including a MP5K weapon used for VIP protection and a stock ammunition in Beruwala, Police said. “Suspect was arrested earlier the same day at the Lathpandura Junction in Baduraliya on possession of several ammunition,” they said. Following questioning of the suspect, Police recovered six shot guns and six rounds of ammunition, one 2.5 gun and 800 rounds of ammunition, weapon used for VIP protection more..

Video: Past govt acted without an understanding of country’s security: Gota

Dec 10 (AD) Former Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa stated that the current political situation has arisen from making 19th Amendment with a view to achieving personal political interests. He mentioned this responding to questions posed by the media personnel at the end of a certificate awarding ceremony at the Dr. Piyasena Rathuwithana Astrological Science Academy. He stated that past govt did not act with a proper understanding of the country’s security. more..

Constitutional crisis: Bandula blames it on foreign interference

Dec 10 (Island) Minister Bandula Gunawardena claimed that proving a simple majority in parliament went awry due to unprecedented international interference. He admitted that the actual situation was far more different to what was publicly stated by politicians. Gunawardena said that they faced an unexpected obstacles by way of foreign interference hence the current constitutional crisis. more..

Drunk driver causes two accidents; three dead, seven injured

Dec 10 (AD) Investigations have revealed that, the driver responsible for the two motor accidents, which killed 3 persons and injured 7 others, had been driving under influence of alcohol. At around 12.10 am today (9), a car had collided with a car arriving from the opposite direction and two other motorbikes, near a fuel station in Ratmalana. The driver of the other car and one biker had been killed in the accident and four other persons have been admitted to the Kalubowila Hospital more..

Monks, residents protest over last week’s assault on monk

Dec 10 (ST) Around 100 Buddhist monks and area residents yesterday staged a protest over last week’s assault of a resident monk at the Sudharshanaramaya in Maharagama The Ven Kottawe Hemawansa Thera was allegedly assaulted by an Urban Councillor of the area. The crowd gathered yesterday at the center of the town demanding action against the alleged suspect identified as Maharagama UC member Nishantha Wimalachandran. more..