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SL ranks 76 at latest Human Development Index

Sep 17 (DM) Sri Lanka ranked 76 at the latest Human Development Index (HDI) with a value of 0.770 under the category of countries with High Human Development, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) said. The HDI-2018, which was compiled by the UNDP and released on Friday said the value of Sri Lanka has been increased by only 0.78% from 1990 to 2017. The life expectancy of SL females was listed at an average of 78.8 years and that of males at 72.1 years. more..

Porcupine hunt backfires claiming hunters’ lives

Sep 17 (CT) The remains of two males were recovered from a rock cave in dense forest in Ragala yesterday morning, the Ragala Police said. Police disclosed that based on the findings from the preliminary investigation, the deceased had left their home on an animal hunting trip on Saturday but had failed to return. Ragala Police said that the carcass of a dog was also recovered from the cave along with the human remains. The two were believed to have gone hunting for porcupines. more..

Successful completion of SL Exposition of OTDYKH/LEISURE International Tourism Exhibition

Sep 17 (Island) Sri Lanka was among 44 participant countries at the 15th OTDYKH /LEISURE International Tourism Exhibition held since 2001 at Moscow’s Expocentre, a press release said. The official closing ceremony of the exhibition held on Thursday. With 44 participant countries in 2018, LEISURE has become one of two Moscow’s largest international tourism fairs. SriLankan prominent participation was under the auspices of SL Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) in coordination with more..

VAT on imported fabric reduced to 5%

Sep 17 (NR) The Ministry of Finance says the VAT on imported fabric has been reduced to 5%. Minister Mangala Samaraweera after considering requests by stakeholders in the fabric industry decided to reduce the VAT on fabric to 5%. Fabric was subject to a 100kg CESS at the time of imports. The 2018 Budget proposed to impose a 15 % VAT on goods, the Value Added Tax Act No 14 of 2002 was amended accordingly, and the new VAT scheme came into effect from the 16th of Aug this year. more..

Pakistani caught at BIA with heroin worth over Rs 16 mn

Sep 17 (AD) A foreign national has been apprehended on arrival at the BIA by the Customs Narcotics Division for the possession of heroin. Reportedly, customs officials had found 1.6 kg of high-quality heroin of Brown Sugar variety, hidden within a false bottom of the luggage of the suspect. The worth of the smuggled haul of heroin is estimated to be about Rs 16 million, according to the Customs. A Pakistani national has been arrested in such manner, stated the Customs Officials. more..

Namal Kumarage questioned for seven hours by CID

Sep 17 (DM) CID grilled for seven hours Namal Kumara who revealed as to how DIG of the Terrorist Investigation Division Nalaka Silva informed him of a plot to lay harm on the lives of President Maithripala Sirisena and former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa by using underworld criminal Makadure Madush who is absconding court at the moment. Namal Kumara, a leading figure of the organization identified as an anti-corruption movement, was questioned regarding the revelation he made in this regard. more..

ශ්žරී ලංකා සාම සාධක හමුදාවේ සේවය

Central Bank should play role of a smart wife to moderate govt’s demands

Sep 17 (FT) In Parts I and II of this series, it was presented that Central Banks, created by society and not by politicians, have the mandate to preserve the value of money which the public holds on trust. The Central Banks could do so by producing money by using a prudent formula. That formula requires them to produce the required quantity of money to facilitate the economy to conduct the growing volume of transactions with the expansion in trade and output. more..

Terror in TID

Sep 17 (CT) A shocking revelation has been made over the alleged involvement of head of the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) DIG Nalaka de Silva in a plot to assassinate Prez Sirisena. It is indeed very shocking to know even a head of a vital establishment which was created to root out terrorism in the country being part of a plot to assassinate the Head of State. There were instances where several top ranking Police officials such as former DIG Vass Gunawardena was convicted over more..

Alleged plot to kill President and Gota: DIG Nalaka to be grilled shortly

Sep 17 (Island) Police protection would be provided to Namal Kumara of Dushana Virodi Balakaya, who has alleged a plot to kill President Maithripala Sirisena and former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, a senior police officer told The Island. Kumara told media last week that DIG in charge of the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) Nalaka de Silva had been plotting to assassinate Sirisena and more..

Construction cost of WPC building: JVP calls for Auditor General’s intervention

Sep 17 (DN) The JVP has made a written submission to the Auditor General requesting to intervene and audit the expenditure for the newly constructed Western Provincial Council building amounting to over Rs.7000 million. The JVP has also requested the Auditor General to probe the spending of public money on various posts in the Provincial Councils which the JVP claims are not legitimately recognised. more..

Sri Lanka slams Nomura report again; says not worse than Argentina and Turkey

Sep 17 (EN) Sri Lanka central bank which operates a non-credible crawling peg with the US dollar has slammed a report by Nomura, an investment bank, that appeared to exaggerate the island's vulnerability to a currency crisis. Sri Lanka cannot be worse than Turkey and Argentina, central bank said. SL has been vulnerable to currency collapses since 1951 when a central bank with money printing powers was created to join more..

SL rue missed opportunities as they prepare for must-win clash against Afghanistan

Sep 17 (DM) Sri Lanka left Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Saturday night ruing missed opportunities and knowing they had let Bangladesh off the hook as they now seek a quick turnaround against Afghanistan in a must-win situation to stay afloat in the six-nation tournament. The team's second and the last first round match will be played in Abu Dhabi this evening—but the islanders must win and win big to have a more..

Sri Lanka war: I wanted my side to lose

Sep 17 (BBC) By his own admission filmmaker Jude Ratnam is a traitor. A Tamil himself, he blames the Tamil Tigers for many of the atrocities carried out in Sri Lanka's civil war. The director told the BBC's Nalini Sivathasan why feels the way he does. "When the war was coming to an end, I wanted the [Tamil] Tigers to lose the fight. I wanted it to end, even if my own people had to be killed," Ratnam says. more..

Johnston’s bail application rejected

Sep 17 (NR) The Court of Appeal has rejected a bail application filed by UPFA MP Johnston Fernando, who is implicated in a financial misappropriation case. The application was rejected by a bench comprising judges Janak de Silva and Achala Wengappuli. Former Minister Johnston Fernando and two others are currently in remand custody over alleged financial misappropriation amounting to 5.2 million rupees at Sathosa more..

Unemployment in Sri Lanka's Jaffna doubles over two years

Sep 17 (EN) Unemployment in Sri Lanka's former war-torn Jaffna District has doubled over the past two years to 10.7% amidst, data from the statistics office showed, as President Maithripala Sirisena has said reducing unemployment in the region was a priority. Jaffna unemployment had also risen to 7% in 2016 from 5.7% in 2015, a Census and Statistics Department (DCS) report said. more..

Godahewa resents 4-country communiqué on Sri Lanka

Sep 17 (CT) The joint communiqué issued by the four countries, Germany, Britain, Macedonia, and Montegro pertaining to Sri Lanka, which was tabled before the UNHRC at its ongoing 39th session, was resented by Dr. Nalaka Godahewa at the conference held in Muscat, Oman on the 14 Sept. This conference which was organized by Jagath Sri Lanka Ekamuthuwa (JSLE) was attended by a large number of Sri Lankans living in Oman. more..

Lack of legal recognition for DNA database at GA’s Dept: Justice delayed!

Sep 17 (CT) DNA profiling; the process of determining an individual’s Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) characteristics, has become an established and valued forensic practice that can significantly contribute to the elucidation of criminal cases. The benefits of DNA profiling, combined with continued technological advances, have led to a rapid increase this past decade in the number of DNA samples analysed for criminal more..

Union agitations condemn undergrads, lecturers to hard labour

Sep 17 (ST) The high frequency of union activities at state universities is taxing the system. The Sunday Times learns from administrators, students and lecturers of the leading universities that the resulting backlog and increased workload, which is a product of lecture boycotts and university shutdowns, cause an ineffective cramming of work, a drop in the quality of lectures, and increased stress for students and lecturers. more..

Taxation: It’s Class Stupid

Sep 17 (DM) It is budget season again. For mainstream economists, budgets are mainly about fiscal discipline, and they focus on the impact of state expenditure on the budget deficit and govt debt. For int'l agencies like the IMF and World Bank, it is about whether state expenditure will be cut to address their conditions and interests, including shrinking the role of the state, privatization and free markets. Discussions and debates around the budget tend to focus on state expenditure. more..

Quo Vadis... or Which Way Sri Lanka

Sep 17 (DM) Four major political events more than any other, helped shape SL’s modern destiny. The winning of independence on Feb 4, 1948 under D.S. Senanayake as the first PM of then independent Ceylon, set in motion events that were to create the first seeds of communal suspicion between the Sinhalese and the Tamil communities in the country. PM saw Ceylon Citizenship Bill a necessity due to the failure of talks with Indian govt to settle the issue migrant Indian workers, Up country Tamils. more..

Keith Noyahr abduction: JO to sue CID for attempts to mislead public

Sep 17 (Island) The Joint Opposition (JO) said that there was an attempt to have the public blieve that the Rajapaksas were responsible for the case of abduction and assault of senior journalist Keith Noyahr. JO MP Dullas Alahapperuma has said, that the then Chief Opposition  Whip Joseph Michael Perera (UNP) blamed Army Commander Lt. Gen. Sarath Fonseka for attacks on journalists at that time. more..

Indian nationals ask to leave venue during women's ODI

Sep 17 (PTI) At least five Indian nationals were Sunday asked by the Sri Lanka Cricket authorities to leave the Katunayake ground near here for suspected behaviour during the third and final ODI between SL Women and India Women. They were handed over to the police for questioning. "They were seen talking on their mobile phones throughout the match. When questioned they said they were informing those back home on the game," an official, who did not want to be named, said. more..

Bus owner’s wife burnt to death in bus

Sep 17 (CT) The charred remains of a woman had been found inside a privately-owned bus which was found ablaze in Thammita, Gampaha on 15 September. The vehicle which was on fire was parked near the house of the bus owner at the time of the incident. The deceased, Malkanthi Karunaseeli (58) is a resident of Udugampola, Gampaha, and is said to be the wife of the bus owner. A source from the Gampaha Crime Investigation Unit said that the deceased was more..

Treasury to absorb SriLankan liabilities

Sep 17 (DM) The govt decided to create a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) under Treasury to absorb the total liabilities of SriLankan Airlines after writing them off its balance sheets. Minister Lakshman Kiriella told Daily Mirror it was a pre-requisite to strike an equity sharing arrangement with an investor to develop the national career. He said the national career should start with a clean balance sheet with no debt burden. more..

World Bank commits $ 200 m to elevate Sri Lanka’s public health services

Sep 17 (FT) The World Bank has committed $ 200 million to upgrade the standards of performance of SL’s public health system under the Second Health Sector Development Project for SL. Minister Rajitha Senaratne announced the World Bank’s support for the project at the closing ceremony of the Second Health Sector Development Project held yesterday. The development objective of the project is to enable it to better respond to the challenges of malnutrition & non-communicable diseases. more..

Kuwaiti couple given suspended sentence for assaulting customs officers

Sep 17 (DM) The Negombo Magistrate handed a six-month jail sentence suspended for five years for the Kuwaiti couple, who were arrested by the Airport Police for assaulting five customs officials on July 27, after they were found guilty. Police said the case was taken up for the hearing on Friday and the Magistrate ordered to fined Rs. 9,000 for each over six charges. Five officials of the Customs Department including a woman were injured after they were allegedly assaulted by more..

Major relief for people, despite immense debt burden: PM

Sep 17 (DN) Despite various economic difficulties and constraints, the govt has been able to steer the country forward by providing extensive relief measures to the people. The next step envisaged by the govt is to increase foreign exchange earnings by developing industries and enterprises and totally rid the country of its immense debt burden, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. PM was addressing a meeting after distributing more..

Indian High Commission rejects Sivajilingam’s Visa application

Sep 17 (AD) Northern Provincial Councilman of TNA M. K. Sivajilingam’s request for Visa to attend a seminar in India, has been rejected by the Indian High Commission. A training workshop for representatives of Tamil local government bodies is to be held in Hydrabad, India, with the participation of 18 provincial council members representing Sri Lanka. According to Sivajilingam, he had lost the opportunity to attend the event due to visa refusal while the others have already left for India. more..

4 dead, 2 injured in car-train collision

Sep 17 (AD) A car had collided with a moving train at an unprotected railway crossing in Omanthai, Vavuniya, this morning (16), stated the police. Reportedly, 4 persons had died on the spot and 2 other have been injured in the accident. The car had collided with an express train en route from Jaffna to Matara, said Police. The injured persons have been admitted to the Vavuniya hospital for treatment. The accident had occurred at around 10.30 am this morning and Omanthai Police is conducting more..

MR denies naming Gota as successor

Sep 17 (EN) Former president Mahinda Rajapaksa denied he had suggested in India that his brother Gotabhaya could be the next presidential candidate as a succession battle escalated within their ranks. Addressing reporters after a meeting in Kebithigollewa, he dismissed the claims that Gotabhaya Rajapaksa was his nominee as an absolute lie. “I never said anything like that. It is in someone’s imagination.” more..

Aussies ditching Bali and Bangkok for SL

Sep 17 (FT) More Australians are opting for holidays in Sri Lanka as opposed to Bali in Indonesia and Bangkok in Thailand, according to a report published by UK’s Daily Mail. Tourist arrivals from Australia in August had increased by 38% to 8,239 in comparison to a year earlier. Arrivals in the first eight months were 70,010 whilst in the entirety of 2017, the figure was 81,281, up by 9%. Full text of the article: A new paradise island has cropped up as Australia’s favourite holiday destination. more..

CNN blitz for three more months

Sep 17 (ST) SL’s tourism authorities have spelled out plans to continue to feature the destination on CNN amidst concerns that the international news channel is not the most popular among viewers. Minister John Amaratunga said that they have discussed with the CNN news channel to increase the advertising of Sri Lanka as a destination for another 3-month period. The media blitz on CNN was previously scheduled for a three month period and will now be extended, the minister said. more..

Video: It is better to be PM than President under new constitution: Mahinda

Sep 17 (AD) At a recent interview with Thanthi TV in India former President Rajapaksa stated that under the new constitution that PM would be more powerful than the President. When queried, Rajapaksa says that it is better to be in the parliament and become the PM and that he might opt to contest for the PM’s post rather than be the President. Speaking on the restrictions placed on him for contesting again at Prez Elections more..

PM calls on private sector to get involved in education reform

Sep 17 (FT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe on Friday called on the private sector to set up educational institutions to cater to the emerging needs of the economy, while insisting that the Govt would provide funding for students. Addressing the closing session of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit, organised by CCC last Friday, the Premier said emerging sectors in Information Technology required new skills and institutions needed to rapidly respond to these requirements. more..

We have got just one lifeline: Mathews

Sep 17 (Island) Sri Lanka’s fortunes in white ball cricket suffered a further set back following their 137 run defeat at the hands of Bangladesh in the curtain-raiser of the six nation Asia Cup campaign in Dubai on Saturday. Set a target of 262 runs to win, SL were shot out for their lowest total ever against Bangladesh. It was SL’s second heaviest defeat against this opposition. Due to their poor Net Run Rate, SL need to not only win today’s (Monday) clash against Afghanistan more..