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Tea plantation workers museum

Aug 8 (Roar) Nearly 200 ago, thousands of Indian Tamils embarked on an arduous journey from their homeland. Many were fleeing the oppressive caste system in search of a better life. They walked mile after weary mile from their villages to ports, where waiting boats and catamarans carried them across the Mannar Gulf to their new home in Ceylon. From Ceylon’s North, they journeyed once more – on foot, battling exhaustion, disease more..

Radical changes in the Judiciary

Aug 8 (Island) A completely new feature of the proposed draft constitution is the 55 member-second chamber of Parliament. Each of the nine Provincial Councils (PC) will nominate five of its members to sit in this second chamber. Other than the Chief Minister who will be an ex officio member of the second chamber, the other four nominees of the PC should not be members of the provincial board of ministers. These nominees of the PCs will hold office for the duration of their PC. more..

Near disintegration of a Commonwealth country

Aug 8 (Island) Close on the heels of DUP member Ian Paisley being suspended from the House of Commons for two undeclared free luxury family visits to SL, in 2013, courtesy the war, winning Rajapaksa govt, Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Govt received Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland, who once provided costly legal advice to the Maldives, another Commonwealth country. Controversy surrounded Scotland’s involvement with the Maldivian govt. more..

Anuruddha Padeniya

Thinking beyond borders

Aug 8 (DN) Polonnaruwa is dazzling with Presidential blessings. Not one or two but 180 development projects were commissioned by Prez Sirisena within two days writing a glorious chapter in its history. We are happy. So is he. This would ease the lives of Polonnaruwa residents as well as visitors to the historic city. Almost all projects are infrastructure developments. The fact that none would generate new employment opportunities or increase production capacities should not be more..

20A: A Constitutional manipulation

Aug 8 (CT) The Bill for the 20th Amendment to the Constitution (20A) of the JVP has been published in the Gazette of 6 July 2018. In terms of Standing Order 52 (5), it can be presented to Parliament after lapse of two weeks. It completed two weeks on 20 July. The next Parliament sitting date is 7 August. Therefore, this bill can be placed in the Order Paper for the first reading on that date. After the first reading, it will be referred to the subject minister, in this case, Minister of Justice, more..

Draft report on Sustainable Development Projects to be launched this week

Aug 8 (SO) An interview with Prof. Rohan Samarajiva on the draft report by the Sustainable Development Committee on achieving sustainable development targets, Prof. Samarajiva is a member of the Committee. Q: What are Millennium Development Goals and its objectives? A: At the UN sessions held on Jan 1, 2016 world leaders agreed to formulate plans to achieve development targets in each country. more..

A forgotten community: Remembering Black July

Aug 8 (GV) Writer S Karunakaran reflects on Black July from the perspective of a marginalised and often forgotten community – the Malaiyagha Tamils – and specifically those who tried to resettle in the North of the country. The Malaiyagha Tamils settled upcountry and in Colombo. A section of this community was displaced from the South following violence in 1958, 1977 and 1983, Karunakaran explains. Those from the North returned to their ancestral homes in Jaffna, Vavuniya, more..

Ministerial response to micro-financed suicides

Aug 8 (CT) Minister Mangala Samaraweera’s inherent moral responsibility to assist struggling debtors, who are principally women, though commendable yet does not go far enough to tackle the main cause of indebtedness. His official observations need be elaborated to emphasise the gravity of the problem. Among the 75,000 women across 12 districts the vast majority are Tamils in the N&E. This is clear evidence that post war rebuilding of these districts has not really rehabilitated more..

Mullikulam: A step closer to regain Navy occupied lands and houses

Aug 8 (SO) On 17th July 2018 about 80 families, including children and elderly left behind the brick houses they have been living in, with water, toilets, furniture, kitchen and other household goods, and moved to live in tents in a forest like area. The move was to resettle in their beloved, traditional village, Mullikulam, after nearly 11 years of displacement due to Navy occupation of the village. more..

Trying to change Standing Orders

Aug 8 (CT) The biggest casualty of the Prez’s premature dissolution of Parliament in June 2015 was the promise in his manifesto that the electoral system would be changed. Though he promised not to dissolve Parliament until that happened, sadly there was no understanding that the best way of ensuring this was to include the relevant changes in the 19th Amendment. Thereafter, as the Elections Commissioner noted, the PM kept raising objections, which meant consensus was not achieved. more..

Reflections on the language of my birth

Aug 8 (CT) There are times when I lament my abysmal knowledge of Sinhala. It is a language of course, but even as a language it takes much more than memorising grammar rules and vocabulary to master it. Being a dilettante when it comes to these matters, I never really picked it up. Poetry eludes me, so does prose. I tried my hand at writing a few essays there and a few love poems here, but the experience was so overwhelming that I gave up. This was years ago. more..

Supplementary estimate seeks Rs.2.7 billion

Aug 7 (DM) Govt today presented a supplementary estimate in Parliament seeking approval for Rs.2.7 billion for several programmes including the relocation of army camps in the North and East and for the implementation of Suwaseriya pre-hospital care ambulance service. Rs.1 billion was sought to relocate the army camps in N&E. This item was among other expenses made by the govt from May 1 to May 30. more..

27 refugees who fled during war return to SL

Aug 7 (AD) Twenty-seven Sri Lankan refugees, who fled the country during the war and lived in refugee camps in India, have returned to the island today (07). They have arrived at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) in three flights belonging to the Sri Lankan Airlines; UL- 122 departed from Chennai at 10.55 a.m. with 07 refugees, UL-138 departed from Madurai at 11 a.m. with 07 refugees and UL-132 departed from Trichy (Tiruchirappalli) with 13 others. more..

Video: Woman shot in Kadawatha succumbs to injuries

Aug 7 (AD) The woman who was injured and hospitalised following a shooting incident in Kadawatha, has succumbed to injuries. Shooting had occurred at around 1pm today at Armstrong Junction in Gonahena, Kadawatha. 34-year-old woman was admitted to the Ragama Hospital in critical condition. However, she had died from the gunshot wounds. The woman in question was only released on bail last month after being arrested and remanded in connection with a murder. more..

Unhealthy for Sri Lanka to raise funds through Panda bonds: JO

Aug 7 (DM) The Central Bank’s move to raise US$250 million through China’s Panda bonds is not healthy and clearly shows that the CB’s authority to obtain loans has been handed over to the People's Bank of China, JO said today. JO MP Bandula Gunawardana said that the People's Bank of China would issue Panda bonds to Chinese citizens on a request made by Central Bank of SL. “Panda bonds are issued to Chinese citizens more..

A new political alignment to jack up Pohottuwa!

Aug 7 (DM) One or two members of the Group 16 nursing high political ambitions are reportedly planning a new political alignment. They have already planned to revive a political party now in doldrums to use it as the core of the proposed new alignment and then invite a section of Group 16 to join forces with them. A Group 16 member from the Colombo district, who is known to be eying a very high-office is expected to lead this new alignment. Founder of the political party they propose more..

Govt shouldn't steer commercial banks to bankruptcy: Gammanpila

Aug 7 (DM) The govt should not influence commercial banks for political projects leading them to bankruptcy, MP Udaya Gammanpila said. He said the Central Bank (CB) had requested the heads of commercial banks to join the national Gamperaliya programme by granting loans up to Rs.100,000 without any collateral. “CB officials including its governor have made this proposal to several commercial banks on July 26. However, bank high-ups have refused the request more..

Monkeys drive nut prices: President

Aug 7 (EN) Sri Lanka’s primate population was responsible for destroying crops and contribted to a recent shortage of coconuts that resulted in dizzy prices, President Maithripala Sirisena said yesterday. About 35% of Sri Lankan crops were destroyed by animals, the president said adding that moneys were the leading predators ahead of elephants, wild boar and peacocks. Addressing the launch of a draft of more..

M Karunanidhi passes away at 94

Aug 7 (PTI) DMK chief M Karunanidhi, one of the foremost Dravidian politicians in modern times, died here today, after waging a grim battle for life aged 94, the hospital where he was admitted for the last 11 days said. One of the most charismatic figures of Tamil Nadu politics whose public life spanned over seven decades, is survived by two wives and six children, including DMK working president and heir apparent M K Stalin and daughter Kanimozhi, a Rajya Sabha MP. more..

Sri Lanka defence conference to discuss Pakistan political changes

Aug 7 (EN) Sri Lanka will host an international defence conference which will discuss, among others issues, how Pakistan's powerful military will interact with the new political leadership of Imran Khan. Army chief Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake said the two-day Colombo Defence Seminar at the end of this month will be attended by top military brass from India, China, Pakistan and US in addition to many more. "We can discuss how Pakistan's military - a very powerful military - more..

Four-storey ayurveda drug stores complex opened

Aug 7 (PMD) President Maithripala Sirisena opened the newly built four-storey storage facility building of the SL Ayurvedic Drugs Corporation, today (6). Sri Lanka Ayurvedic Drugs Corporation, which was incorporated in 1969 by the govt extraordinary gazette notification No. 14853/1 dated 11May 1969 under the provision of the State Industrial Corporation Act. No. 49 of 1957 as the pioneer of manufacturing and marketing more..

CEB a gravy train for its employees

Aug 7 (Island) CEB has paid a whopping Rs 3.3 billion as PAYE tax owed by its employees between 2010 and 2017 ignoring several directives including a circular by the Ministry of Finance in April 2016. Finance Ministry circular states that the Board of Directors and the senior management of state institutions must ensure that PAYE tax is deducted from the salaries of the employees and be sent to the Inland Revenue Department. This decision was taken by the Cabinet on 13 Dec 2007 to shift more..

Wimal’s corruption case fixed for Nov 2

Aug 7 (DN) A corruption case filed against former Minister and NFF leader Wimal Weerawansa was yesterday fixed for Nov 2 by the Colombo High Court. HC Judge Vikum Kaluarachchi made this order regarding an indictment filed against Wimal Weerawansa for the alleged unlawful acquisition of money and assets, estimated at Rs.75 million within a period of six years while serving as a Minister, during the former regime. President’s Counsel Jayantha Weerasinghe appearing for more..

Land area of Mirigama Export Processing Zone to be expanded by 108 acres

Aug 7 (LBO) Board of investment says the Mirigama Export Processing Zone is presently expanding its land area by another 108 Acres, adding 31 industrial lots to the zone with an objective of facilitating more FDI into the country. Mirigama Export Processing Zone (MEPZ) has contributed US$ 14 million in export revenue as at end of March 2018. MEPZ established in 1998 on a land area of 260.5 acres of which 50.7 acres are industrial more..

Prominent politician behind Wadduwa tragedy: NFF

Aug 7 (DM) The NFF accused the Police of not taking steps to arrest those responsible for the Wadduwa tragedy where four persons died during a Facebook party at a hotel's beach front in Wadduwa. NFF national organizer Jayantha Samaraweera said that the Police was unable to take action because there was a prominent politician involved in organizing the beach party. “According to the information we have gathered, the then Mount Lavinia Police OIC Chief Inspector Lalith more..

Sri Lanka desperate to break rut as de Kock stands in for du Plessis

Aug 7 (CI) Two Tests and three ODIs into the tour, there has been depressingly little competitive cricket between these teams. South Africa were wiped the floor with in the Tests, unable to muster competence with the bat until the final innings of the series. Since then, SL have been woeful in the ODIs, their batting, fielding and bowling taking it in turns to fail in the three matches so far. ODI series has already been decided, which would ordinarily make these last two games fairly pointless. more..

SriLankan probe finds BoC letter requesting shares be registered to EPF, state banks

Aug 7 (EN) A former Chairman of Bank of Ceylon had written to then Treasury Secretary P.B. Jayasundera asking shares of SriLankan Airlines be registered with the EPF and state banks that had contributed money, evidence presented to a commission of inquiry showed. At a PCoI into irregularities at SriLankan Airlines and Mihin Lanka, Company Secretary Dalrene Thirukumar provided documents filed by her predecessor. more..

Train collision: 4 railway officials interdicted

Aug 7 (DM) Four railway officials have been interdicted in connection with yesterday’s train accident at Pannaliya off Polgahawela. Officers under interdiction pending further investigations are the driver the assistant driver, the head guard and the under guard of the Rambukka bound train that rammed into the Kandy bound express from Colombo. Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva had directed the Railway General Manager to interdict the officials pending an inquiry. more..

IK Mahanama, Piyasena further remanded

Aug 7 (NR) The former Chief of Staff of the President IK Mahanama and the former Chairman of the State Timber Corporation Piyasena Dissanayake, arrested on charges of soliciting a 20 million rupee bribe, have been further remanded until the 10th of August. The order was issued by Colombo Chief Magistrate Ranga Dissanayake this afternoon. The duo was arrested on the 3rd of May while attempting to obtain 20 million rupees from an Indian investor. more..

Spinning to success: Wheelchair Tennis in Sri Lanka

Aug 7 (Roar) It is drizzling, and the courts at the SL Tennis Association are largely empty. However, in one of them, a trio of people sit under a shelter, waiting for the rain to stop. One of them is Jagath Welikala, a veteran tennis coach who has been coaching for the last three decades. The other two are tennis players – they wield rackets and spin them around as they watch the skies and talk to each other. more..

Special Unit to submit complaints on Moragahakanda-Kalu Ganga Project

Aug 7 (GDI) A special Unit has been established to submit any firm information with the evidence regarding the fraud, corruption and malpractices relating to construction works of the Moragahakanda-Kalu Ganga Development Project. This Unit has been set up fulfilling a promise made by the President as to swiftly establish this Unit, at the water filling ceremony of the Kalu Ganga reservoir last July 23 It is possible to give information through 011-20134159 and more..

Bishop Thiagarajah accuses the Jaffna College trustees of misappropriating funds

Aug 7 (CT) In a hard-hitting statement issued by the Board of Directors of Jaffna College, Bishop Daniel Thiagarajah, Chair of the Board, has accused the Trustees of Jaffna College Funds for misappropriating the Trust funds for the purpose of paying their legal fees. The statement notes that the Trustees have laid down unnecessary and unreasonable demands since January 2017. The statement also observes that the Principal of the College and Board of Directors worked hard more..

කොළඹ කුණු ප්රශ්නයට තාම විසඳුමක් නැහැ

Future of Employees Provident Fund

Aug 7 (FT) Today, there is an ongoing discussion about the EPF Sri Lanka, focusing on many related aspects. The main concern was the alleged swindling of its funds in association with the CB Bond Scam. Currently, the working class organisations are debating about the advantages of a proposal by the Govt to appoint fund managers to man its investment portfolio. In this context, it is relevant and important to pay attention to the issues in a watch out sense, mindful of the p’s & q’s. more..

Vijayakala needs to guard her tongue

Aug 7 (CT) MP Vijayakala Maheswaran has struck again with her rabble-rousing statements when she had charged that the Southern part of the country was responsible for supplying drugs to the North and that the menace had increased with the end of the war in 2009. Addressing the public in Kilinochchi last week, she had charged that narcotics were moving freely from the South of the country to the North with the massive support of errant lawmakers. She points the finger of blame against more..