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Legislative lane for new Constitution faces snags

Jan 12 (FT) A report prepared by the Panel of Experts for the Steering Committee based on the Interim Report, six Sub Committee Reports, the Report of the ad hoc Sub Committee assigned to look into the relationship between the Parliament and the Provincial Councils were presented to the Constitutional Assembly yesterday. As the Steering Committee was unable to reach common ground on most of the areas under discussion to more..

'Why govt cannot come to agreement with S’pore to get Mahendran extradited'

Jan 12 (Island) Chief Opposition Whip Mahinda Amaraweera, requested the govt to sign an agreement with Singapore to have Former CB Governor Arjuna Mahendran extradited. Amaraweera, participating in the debate on an Order on Extradition Law relating to Extradition Treaty between SL and Turkey, queried if there was any plan to sign a similar agreement with Singapore. Responding to Amaraweera, State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene said that more..

Vacancies for ten-non-cabinet ministers remain

Jan 12 (Island) Two more govt lawmakers yesterday received appointment as non-cabinet ministers against the backdrop of President Maithripala Sirisena’s firm stand that the cabinet be limited to 30, including the President and PM. Cabinet appointments were finalized on Dec 20, 2018. Badulla District UNP MP Ravindra Samaraweera and N'Eliya District UNP MP V. Radhakrishnan received labour and trade union relations, and special regions portfolios respectively. more..

Poor attendance at CA meeting: 169 MPs skip it

Jan 12 (Island) Poor attendance at the Constitutional Assembly (CA) meeting was noted yesterday with only 56 MPs being present when PM Ranil Wickremesinghe presented reports pertaining to constitutional reforms. The CA met, at 10 am at the Parliament chamber after a lapse of over a year. The meeting was convened to table five reports pertaining to the constitution making process following deliberations at the Steering more..

Ravi says he doesn’t usually sign off as r.k

Jan 12 (CT) MP Ravi Karunanayake informed Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratna that he does not generally put his signature as ‘r.k’. He was giving evidence in the case against former Sathosa Chairman Sunil Perera over allegedly ordering the sale of 1,000 metric tons of Sudu Kekulu rice against the price index and incurring a loss of Rs 4 million to the Govt. The case was filed by the CIABOC. Karunanayake further said that he had acted as the Minister of Trade, Commerce and more..

JO says English copy marked draft

Jan 12 (DM) Joint opposition MPs today brought to the notice of the Speaker that the English version of the panel of experts report on constitution-making was marked draft while the Sinhala and Tamil copies were not described as such. JO MP Namal Rajapaksa said the English copy carried a water mark saying, draft discussion only whereas it was not there on the Sinhala and Tamil copies and asked the Speaker whether there was any special reason for that. more..

'General election not needed to introduce a new Constitution'

Jan 12 (Island) The new constitution should be passed in Parliament and taken before the people at a referendum and the people would decide whether it should become the supreme law of the country or not, and one did not need a general election for that, said TNA Leader R. Sampanthan in parliament yesterday. The TNA leader said that framing of a Constitution was a sacred duty. more..

Judge declines to hear RADA case, hearing fixed for Jan. 29

Jan 12 (DN) The case filed against former MP Tiran Alles and three others was yesterday fixed for January 29 by the Colombo High Court. High Court Judge Vikum Kaluarachchi declined to sit on the bench citing personal reasons yesterday. This case is to be taken up for hearing before High Court Judge Pradeep Hettiarachchi. Attorney General had filed indictments against four accused for allegedly conspiring to misappropriate Rs.200 million of public funds belonging to RADA in 2005. more..

Voter list update every 3 months

Jan 12 (ST) Election Commission is seeking Govt approval to update the electoral register every three months to include persons reaching the age of 18 so that they will be eligible to vote. The Commission also has proposed that the electoral register be updated in February, instead of the current practice in June, Election Commission Director General M.M. Mohamed said. He said Parliament would have to pass an amendment to the Registration of Voters Act of 1980 to implement the new move. more..

Black Media further exposed: UNP

Jan 12 (DN) The UNP stressed it had no involvement in the protest carried out by a number of social activists’ groups opposite several media institutes in Colombo on Thursday. Issuing a special statement yesterday, the party said the UNP is committed to promote and protect the freedom of media. The statement also said another regrettable fact is that these media institutions are branding the participants of these peaceful and civilized more..

Over 300 vessels call over at Hambantota Int’l Port in 2018

Jan 12 (DN) Hambantota International Port (HIP) saw an increase in vessels docking at the port on the first week of the New Year. Traffic to the Hambantota International Port increased significantly during the last year, with 300 vessels calling with different service requirements. Whilst their volume of RORO vessels handled had increased by 136%, the multi services provided by the port has pushedits activities, which were previously centered around RORO and more..

Corruption case against Keheliya, two others re-fixed for trial

Jan 12 (DN) A corruption case filed against former Minister Keheliya Rambukwella and two others was re-fixed for trial by Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayarathne. This relates to causing an unlawful loss to the govt after allegedly purchasing 600 of GI pipes using SL Rupavahini Corporation’s funds during the previous Presidential Election. Counsel appearing on behalf of MP Rambukwella informed court that the MP did not appear in Court yesterday since he had gone to the Kandy High court. more..

Allocating new parking space for Sanath at Trillium - Nothing improper: CMA

Jan 12 (DM) The proper procedure was followed when allocating a parking space to former cricketer Sanath Jayasuriya at the Colombo Trillium Residencies where he had been earlier deprived of a parking space, Condominium Management Authority (CMA) General Manager R.K. Jayaweera said. The problem arose with Trillium Management Corporation when a pump house was built at the parking lot more..

Constitutional Assembly sitting ruled as legitimate

Jan 12 (FT) Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees Ananda Kumarasiri rejected UPFA objections to allow the Constitutional Assembly (CA) sitting in the main chamber of Parliament, during which the Chairman of Steering Committee PM Ranil Wickremesinghe moved several reports. Announcing his decision, Deputy Speaker told the lawmakers all matters pertaining to CA should be conducted as per the Framework Resolution of 9 Mar 2016 passed in Parliament. more..

EDB to promote organic Agriculture

Jan 12 (GDI) Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) will make recommendations to the Department of Agriculture for preparation of National Organic Agriculture Policy in a bid to develop organic agriculture sector in Sri Lanka. As part of EDB’s dedicated programs for the development of organic agriculture sector during the year2019, EDB will also help prepare organic regulations for Sri Lankan organic sector and to create a national data base on organic agriculture sector to more..

UK eying Trincomalee as naval base: Reports

Jan 12 (FT) Trincomalee is reported to have been voted as the most favoured location for Britain’s ambitious plan to set up its military bases in South Asia in the post-Brexit era. Britain is expected to open military bases in South Asian country and Caribbean as a part of its ambitious plan to increase its military presence in the region in order to regain its position as a global player. Informed sources revealed that more..

Book on Sajith Premadasa out next month

Jan 12 (FT) A book titled Sajith Premadasa: The People’s Leader: The Legacy of Ranasinghe Premadasa written by Dr. Telli C. Rajaratnam is scheduled to be launched in February (ISBN 978-955-51312-6-1). The book consists of 19 chapters and 300 pages with hard cover and jacket of the same artwork in full colour. It illustrates Sajith Premadasa’s career and vision and includes the housing programs, his speeches in Parliament, his press conferences which depict his wisdom, more..

State tourism bodies’ heads to roll this week

Jan 12 (ST) An undue delay in the appointment of heads of institutions to the respective tourism state bodies has caused concern among the industry that is keenly watching the situation unfold as days are closing in on the long-awaited global promotion campaign set to kick off in Berlin in March this year. The campaign that has been in the making and which was preceded by a number of other promotions is to take centre stage when the int'l travel fair International Tourism Borse more..

Catch the crooked in Lasantha killing probe

Jan 12 (Island) We have just completed the tenth anniversary of the assassination of journalist Lasantha Wickrematunge. A decade after this political brutality under a government with a bloody record of such violence against society, media freedom and democracy, we still await the killers of Lasantha, and those who wanted it done, caught in the clasps of the law. The failure to bring the killers of Lasantha to justice is more..

U-19 Test: Mishara century puts SL ahead

Jan 12 (DN) Opener Kamil Mishara stroked a fine century to put Sri Lanka ahead on the first innings of the one-off 4-day under 19 youth test against Australia at the SSC grounds yesterday. By stumps on the second day SL continuing from their overnight score of 20 for no loss in reply to Australia’s first innings of 269-9 declared had scored 287-7 to nose ahead by 18 runs with three wickets in hand. Mishara held the Lankan innings together with a patient knock of 105 off 235 balls more..

SL to host W. Asia Baseball Tournament

Jan 12 (CT) The Sri Lanka Amateur Baseball-Softball Association (SLABSA) has been offered the opportunity to host the West Asia Baseball Championship in June/July in Sri Lanka by the Baseball Federation of Asia (BFA). This bi-annual event was offered to Sri Lanka in appreciation of the hard work done by the President and the committee of SLABSA. The BFA has been extremely happy with the progress so far, especially with the development programmes carried out. more..

A man’s matchless mission

Jan 12 (DN) While Namanadan, his wife and three sons were sleeping in the early hours of Tuesday in his room on the 4th floor, he found that they were being engulfed by a cloud of smoke. He got to know that his building was on fire and he and his family were trapped, with no way out. “It was a raging fire that came from the bottom and the smoke just filled the room, I understood that I would not be able to go back down the stairs. more..

Norway admits peace efforts in SL a fiasco!

Jan 12 (CT) In the backdrop of SL completing a decade this year of bringing an end to the three decades of war, Norwegian PM Erna Solberg admitted that Norway’s engagement in the SL peace facilitation was a fiasco. Addressing a media briefing last Monday (7) in New Delhi during her visit to India the Norwegian PM regretted the manner Norwegian peace facilitation process failed and how the conflict ended. When Norway stepped into bring about peace in Sri Lanka, more..

Sri Lanka in India’s temple politics

Jan 12 (CT) Sri Lanka is in the news in India, possibly not for the right reasons. This has been a week dominated by temple-related politics and resultant concerns over the management of law and order, both in North and South India. India-SL connect has surfaced in the coastal southwestern state of Kerala, where a 47-year-old SL woman identified as Sasikala acquired a notoriety of sorts by allegedly becoming the third woman to enter the sanctum sanctorum of the Sabarimala more..

The walking dead of Lankan cricket

Jan 12 (ST) On a sunny boxing-day morning in 2004, the sudden destruction of SL coastal areas by the Asian Tsunami affected the life 14-year-old Dinesh Chandimal, in the environments of Balapitiya where he lived. Yet he lived to bat another day and shifted from his school Dharmasoka College Ambalangoda to the cozier Ananda College in Colombo, soon after. There, at Ananda, he was given only one task. more..

Edtorial: Govt forgot sulphur etc?

Jan 12 (Island) The UNF govt is like a pickpocket injured in a gang war. It is not strong enough to relieve the people of their pockets the way it used to. Having survived a defenestration attempt by a rival gang on 26 Oct. its health seems to be improving; it has introduced a carbon tax, of all things. Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera had a magic formula. It helped him rake in more funds to the tune of billions of rupees pour into the state coffers every month in the form of fuel price increases. more..

Essential reform for macro economic advancement

Jan 12 (ST) This submission, of essential national macro-economic value, is being made for consideration to be implemented as a part of the 2019 Budget Proposals, due to be presented on 5th March 2019. In positively advancing the macro-economic value of the country, and at the same time, mitigating potential economic risks, it is proposed that with the objectives of: -Minimizing the wrongful and improper use of foreign exchange, -Minimizing the opportunities for engaging in more..


Mixed View of this enigmatic land of ours

Jan 12 (Island) Cassandra means to start her Friday weekly resume on a good and bright note. She will repeat what a Minister of State said which all Sri Lankans should have heard and must bear in mind. Good to have it galen kotala-fied – so pertinent it is. Minister Arjuna Ranatunge, speaking on arrival in the Matara railway station after the successful trial run from Beliatte along the newly constructed extension to the Southern Railway line, gave expression to a truth we have lost sight of more..

Significance of 19th Amendment

Jan 12 (CT) In this sense, the new rule, the 19th Amendment, the piece of legislation brought forward by the present govt to diffuse the wide powers enjoyed by the Executive President under the present (1978 J.R. Jayewardene) Constitution can be regarded as a revolutionary step of the legislators, who injected this change into the blood of the outdated Constitution. Here, I would like to include the precise analysis and the sound judgement arrived at by illustrious diplomat more..

Lichens as a key to the future, and one scientist's quest to study them

Jan 12 (Roar) From a young age, Gothamie Weerakoon has had a hunger for the outdoors. Growing up in a home sandwiched between the mist-capped mountains of Kurunegala, Weerakoon’s life was defined by her surroundings, and it was in these surroundings that her education began. While absorbing the details of everything she came across, she started piecing together the ways in which the elements of our natural world interact with more..

Restoration of Media freedom a major achievement

Jan 12 (CT) Prez Sirisena enters his fifth year as President today (8), and this is an occasion to take a retrospective look at the achievements and failures, and to understand the reasons for failures. At the time of completion of three years of Yahapalana Govt, Prez Sirisena said, “Some ask me whether I am pleased with what I did during the last 3 years. Without hesitation and clearly I can respond that I am a happy and a satisfied man with what we achieved during that period.” more..

UDA gave new dimension to town and country planning

Jan 12 (CT) The Urban Development Authority (UDA) was born with the certification of the Urban Development Authority Law No. 41 of 1978 on 6 September 1978. This new Law which provided for an innovative new agency to promote integrated planning and the implementation of economic, social and physical development of urban areas in Sri Lanka was a landmark legislation. This Law, for the first time focused on the integrated development of urban areas rather than on mere more..

SLINTEC and Sri Lanka's plan to become an innovation economy

Jan 12 (Roar) The tuk tuk rolls to a stop in front of a shiny steel gate, behind which is an imposing modern building that is somewhat out of place amongst the paddy fields and unassuming houses that dot the landscape of Pitipana, Homagama. As we wait for the security officer to open the gate for us, we glance across the surroundings. In the distance we spot the NSBM Green University. more..

O democracy! What crimes are committed in thy name?

Jan 12 (CT) Copious amounts of what has to be construed as democracy administered broadly and expansively to drench a desperate, bewildered citizenry by a rotating leadership of confirmed crooks pregnant with hypocrisy and insincerity have in essence contributed towards a palpable feeling of delusion and disillusionment. The war had ended; there remains no burden on defense budgets or allied infrastructure. The very thing that devoured a giant slice yet within just ten years of more..

Impact of caste system on social harmony: Study of 6 villages in Matara District

Jan 12 (CT) This is a study of the impact of the caste system on social harmony in the Southern part of the country. For this study the researcher selected six villages in Matara: Aparekka Devundara Eladeniya, Kottawatta, Deeyagaha,Kubalagama, and Eladeniya. This analysis considers caste impacts on employment, social mobility, marriage, education and their day today life. The Caste system is the world’s longest surviving social hierarchy. Caste encompasses more..