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Legal battle royale over Corruption Court

Mar 18 (SO) Legal heavyweights will continue to battle it out in the country’s apex court, as the Govt’s proposal to set up a special high court on corruption through amendments to the Judicature Act is taken up before a bench headed by Chief Justice Priyasath Dep tomorrow. Strong backers of the January 2015 mandate for reform and good governance have come out in support of the bill to set up the special corruption court, after more..

‘Can’t compare SL refugees and Rohingya’

Mar 18 (Hindu) Sri Lankan Tamil refugees, who fled the war in the island nation in the 1980s, stood on a different footing from the Rohingyas who seek shelter from persecution in native Myanmar. Any comparison between the two is misconceived, the Centre has told the Supreme Court. Centre was responding to comparisons made by the Rohingya in the Supreme Court between their plight and the relief facilities given to the Sri Lankan Tamil refugees. more..

Over 30% drop in WA arrivals, 100s of cancellations

Mar 18 (ST) Sri Lankan hoteliers busy at the ITB Berlin travel fair last week are now facing a new challenge of overcoming the impact of the week-long Kandy crisis that led to over 5000 room nights cancelled and of over 30 per cent of the West Asia traffic. Tourist Hotels Association President Sanath Ukwatte told the Business Times that at a THASL meeting held on Friday according to reports from about 50 hotels in Kandy there were cancellations of over 5000 room nights more..

Web based businesses suffer from social media blackout

Mar 18 (SL) Web based businesses operating from Sri Lanka took a major hit following the recent social media blackout. Sunday Leader learns that several small businesses operating on Facebook and well as others who depend on traffic via Facebook suffered financially. Govt imposed a temporary ban on access to popular social media websites and platforms following the communal clashes in Kandy. more..

Registrar of Companies open all 7-days

Mar 18 (ST) The govt is making it easier and quicker to start a business in Sri Lanka by opening the office of the Department of the Registration of Companies (DRC) for business registration and other functions on all seven days of the week barring public holidays. Turning a new page in the country’s history, the operations of the 38 year-old department are now being carried out on week days during normal duty hours and Saturdays and Sundays from 9 am to 2 pm, more..

The legacies of nationalism and racism in SL

Mar 18 (SO) Racism is a political theme that has attracted a great deal of public attention in Sri Lanka last week. The attacks on the life and property of Muslim citizens in several locations in the Kandy District by Sinhalese mobs has provided the context for renewed public attention on the negative and destructive consequences of racist politics. There seems to be two opposing responses to these particular events of racism. The first, which is being openly expressed, condemns racism and more..

Hilton, Hyatt sales in limbo due to legal catch

Mar 18 (ST) The govt’s move to sell Hilton and Hyatt Colombo Hotels will likely be postponed till an amendment to a vital piece of legislation is made, according to Attorney General’s (AG) Department sources. Fifteen local and foreign companies responded to the Ministry of Public Enterprise Development’s call for Requests for Proposals (RFP) to act as the transaction advisor (TA) in the scheduled divestment process for more..

Another rain affected stalemate at Galle

Mar 18 (ST) Incessant rain that fell on the Galle International Cricket Stadium deprived Richmond College from forcing a decision in the 113th Lovers Quarrel last evening. Mahinda set a target of 203 runs to win in the final session of play were two wickets down for twenty runs when rain put an end to further play. After winning the toss Dhanjaya Lakshan elected to bat first hoping to go for a big score but Mahinda’s left arm spin duo Pasan Pethangoda, Navod Paranvithana captured more..

Trinity-Antonian clash limps to a draw

Mar 18 (ST) A little bit of rain and bad light condemned the 101st Trinity-Anthonian to a dull draw at the Asgiriya Stadium in Kandy yesterday. The battle saw little play on Day Two. A sharp shower halted play at the lunch break. There was a delay of around two and a half hours, before the players made a token appearance. They play was called off at the first hint of a drizzle. Continuing from 150-9, Trinity reached 196. Stumper Ashan Lokuketiya made 35 while Thisaru Dilshan more..

India looked up to Sri Lanka for improvement

Mar 18 (Island) Former Indian cricketer Ravi Shastri is no stranger to Sri Lanka. He has been a frequent visitor to the island since his under-19 days. Shastri captained Indian Under-19 team for a tour of Sri Lanka in early 1980s and since then he has made several trips first as a player and then as a commentator. Fate would have it that when Shastri moved away from commentaries and took up coaching, his first assignment was more..

Thomians smash Royal

Mar 18 (ST) This time the Thomian allrounder and skipper Dellon Peiris proved that he also is an inspiring leader. At the SSC grounds yesterday, the Thomians ended up with a huge 131-run win over Royal in their 43rd Limited Overs encounter to prove their superiority and complete their fifth consecutive win the series. Getting full use of his strong bowling attack and agile set of fielders, the Thomian skipper had the Royal batsmen in check. Shuffling his bowlers intelligently and more..

Quest to implicate Gota in Lasantha’s murder

Mar 18 (Island) Even though there is supposed to be an ongoing police investigation into the 2009 murder of Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickrematunga, what we have been seeing for the most part is a series of investigations and arrests in relation to various matters on the sidelines of the murder. One of the first persons to be arrested in this connection was a bystander who had stolen Lasantha’s phone from the crime scene. This was just a theft and the suspect was soon released. more..

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..