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Govt working on reconciliation: PM

Feb 1 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe inaugurating the Commonwealth Asia Regional Seminar for parliamentarians in Colombo clarified about how foreign judges could participate in the accountability mechanism. "Composition of Supreme Court is decided by the constitution. So who can be members of the final body is decided by the constitution and they have to be citizens of SL. more..

We the People & They the Maha Sangha

Feb 1 (CT) Recent events demonstrate that the saffron robe has now become the instrument of choice of an emerging ochlocracy – the refined term for mobocracy. In this land like no other, the ill-natured and the capricious outnumber the good natured and the cautious in politics of the street. Politics of the street in the age of digital communication gives them a head start that others cannot match. A militant monk who delivered a homily on Theravada Jurisprudence as more..

Drunken mother’s bid to throw her baby out of train thwarted

Feb 1 (Island) A group of commuters in a Panadura bound train from Colombo acted swiftly and saved the life of an infant when her drunken mother attempted to throw her out of the train. The commuters later handed over the Gypsy woman and the infant to the Moratuwa police. According to the police, the woman in a state of inebriation. The woman had boarded the train at Angulana. A number of Gypsy families visited the woman at the police station. more..

Video: Joint Opposition to boycott Independence Day celebrations

Feb 1 (DM) Members of the joint opposition will boycott State functions including the Independence Day celebrations on Feb 4 to protest what they described as the suppression by the Govt, MP Dinesh Gunawardena said. He accused the govt of carrying out a political witch hunt against its opponents and acting against the norms of good governance and democracy. “Therefore, we will boycott State functions more..

Homagama protest: two monks remanded

Feb 1 (AD) Two Buddhist monks, who were arrested for allegedly involved in the violent protest near the Homagama Magistrate’s Court, have been remanded until Feb 9. The suspects were produced before the Homagama Magistrate this afternoon. Six more individuals will also be surrendered to the police tomorrow, it was reported. A tense situation was arisen in front of the Magistrate’s Court as a group of about 200 monks and civilians had gathered there in protest over the diction to more..

Singing the national anthem in Tamil

Feb 1 (CT) During the last Cabinet news briefing it was said that President Sirisena and PM Wickremesinghe will consider submissions at Wednesday's Cabinet meeting and come to a joint decision as to whether the National Anthem will be sung in both Sinhala and Tamil at the coming Independence Day celebrations. Already, the Cabinet Sub-Committee on National Reconciliation has proposed that the National Anthem be sung in both languages on 4 February although more..

Hiru TV: Balaya

Pakistan Sri Lanka continue to enjoy excellent relations: Pak Envoy

Feb 1 (HCP) The High Commissioner of Pakistan in Sri Lanka, Major Gen(R) Syed Shakeel Hussain said that Pakistan and Sri Lanka continue to enjoy excellent relations as there is a strong will on both sides to further develop and promote these relations. Pakistani envoy said this while briefing a delegation of International Relations Department of Preston University, Islamabad Campus, which visited Pakistan High Commission in Sri Lanka on 1st February 2016, for an interactive session with more..

Prisons Chief asks for additional security for Yoshitha and others

Feb 1 (Island) Commissioner General of Prisons Nishan Dhanasinghe yesterday said a request had been made to the IGP to beef up police security in the area where former President Rajapaksa’s son Yoshitha, Nishantha Ranatunga, Rohan Weliwita and Kavishan Dissanayake were being held in custody. They have been remanded on allegations of financial irregularities at Carlton Sports Network under Money Laundering Act. Commissioner said he had made such a request more..

Sri Lanka to start Google Project Loon balloon trials this month

Feb 1 (EN) Sri Lanka has signed a one-year deal with Google to start flight trials of Project Loon, a research and development project of the Internet giant aimed at providing broadband access to remote areas using high-altitude balloons. “Increasing Internet access will give a fillip to economic growth,” Minister Harin Fernando said. Equipment for the project has already arrived and Google expects to start more..

Bhikku Kathikawath Bill will help safeguard Buddha Sasana: Amarapura Chief Prelate

Feb 1 (DN) Supreme Patriarch of Amarapura Maha nikaya Aggamahapandita Ven. Dauldena Ñanissara Mahanayake Thera noted that the Theravada Bhikku Kathikawath Bill paves the way for the safeguarding and protection of the Buddha Sasana. Issuing a statement in respect of the proposed act for the registration of the Theravada Bhikkhu Kathikawath, the Mahanayake Thera highlighted that more..

Abhayaramaya Cabal mulls pre-independence day protest near Galle Face

Feb 1 (AM) A group supporting former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has planned to stage a protest in front of Presidential Secretariat on Feb 3. Initial discussions in this regard have been held at the Abhayaramaya temple in Narahenpita with the participation of some prominent Buddhist monks, including Ven. Muruththettuwe Ananda Thera, the head of the temple. The protest will demand the govt to refrain from arresting war heroes and more..

The country that supplies eyes

Feb 1 (BBC) To restore sight to damaged eyes, doctors often need to transplant the cornea - the transparent covering of the iris and the pupil - from a donor's dead body. There is a worldwide shortage, but one country, Sri Lanka, is doing its best to satisfy demand, without seeking any reward - at least in this life. Bandages cover Paramon Malingam's right eye. A tear appears in the left one. It is the relief of a very lucky man. more..

Rajitha sacks NMDRA Chairman and Deputy

Feb 1 (DM) Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne has directed the Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the National Medicinal Drugs Regulatory Authority (NMDRA) to resign from their posts with effect from today, ministry sources said. NMDRA Chairman Prof. Lal Jayakody and Deputy Chairman Prof. Krishantha Weerasooriya were appointed by the minister himself in the run-up to the parliamentary elections last year. more..

Jayalalithaa seeks Modi's intervention to release 15 fishermen, 69 boats

Feb 1 (ENS) Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has sought the personal intervention of PM Narendra Modi in securing the release of 15 fishermen from Tamil Nadu who have been arrested by Lankan Navy and the 69 boats of fishermen which had been in Lanka for a long time. The Chief Minister, in her letter to the PM, said based on her repeated requests and the Govt of India’s efforts all the Indian fishermen who were apprehended by more..

Religious observances and fanfare to herald Independence Day celebrations

Feb 1 (ST) The public are cordially invited to mark the 68th Independence Day celebrations to be held under the theme Ekama Deyak- Maha Balayak at the Galle Face Green on Thursday. A military parade in the morning and a cultural event later in the day are the two main events, while a string of celebrations are also due to take place at provincial level. Nearly 9,000 security personnel will participate in military parade more..

Paypal to discuss Sri Lanka inward payments

Feb 1 (LBO) The regional head of PayPal is to have discussions with Sri Lanka’s officials over freeing Paypal inward payments for citizens in the country, Minister Harin Fernando said. “Regional head of PayPal will visit Sri Lanka this Wednesday. He is scheduled to have talks with Central Bank Governor and Finance Minister about this matter,” he said. Paypal is a worldwide payments system that evolved out of the US, more..

Polythene ban: CEA gets tough

Feb 1 (DN) The Central Environmental Authority (CEA) will take legal action against those who produce, store and sell polythene less than 20 microns from tomorrow. CEA Chairman Prof. Lal Dharmasiri said that the law on polythene ban would be strictly enforced throughout the country on the directives of President. Instruments to measure the micron levels were distributed to all provincial offices of the CEA. more..

Integrating students to help reconciliation

Feb 1 (SL) As efforts are taken at various levels to bridge the differences between the communities in the country, one proposal which has now been made is to build mutual understanding among students. Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga has proposed integrating students from different backgrounds in each school in the country. She has proposed need to have students of different communities more..

Responsibility, Autonomy & Geneva Resolution

Feb 1 (DM) The resolution co-sponsored by our govt at UNHRC is a mutual agreement entered into by Sri Lanka, as a Sovereign Member State of the UN, which recognises our responsibility to embark on a process of reconciliation among communities that will foster peace and prosperity. This resolution is an opportunity to do what is right, by ourselves and for ourselves, and for our future generations. Over the many decades, including the post-war period, there have been assassinations, abductions, more..

Bridging economic growth and social justice

Feb 1 (DM) In what the govt described as the mega development project of the development year 2016, President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, along with Minister Champika Ranawaka presided at an Independence Square ceremony on Friday to launch a 15-year Western Province, and Megapolis Project. Though some Opposition critics or cynics say that in several other countries such Megapolis projects have failed or backfired, we need to think positively, more..

Tamil People’s Council calls for recognition of self determination

Feb 1 (CT) The Tamil People’s Council called for the recognition that Tamils constitute a distinct people with the inalienable right to self-determination in a draft set of proposals, calling for a political agreement prior to a constitutional enactment in Sri Lanka. The ‘Report of the Sub-Committee on Finding a Political Solution to the National Question’ was released at the Veerasingam Hall in Jaffna on Sunday. more..

Apex Muslim body silent on women contesting polls

Feb 1 (Island) Female Muslim politicians are in a quandary as regards the forthcoming local govt elections as the apex body of Muslim organisations had not yet made known its position on Muslim women contesting polls. The govt had decided to allow 25 per cent of the seats to females and the All Ceylon Jemmiyathul Ulama’s (ACJU) silence on the issue was puzzling, said a Muslim politician. He added that as a result Muslim women were at a distinct disadvantage. more..

Shiranthi summoned by PRECIFAC today

Feb 1 (CT) Former first lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa will be summoned to the PRECIFAC at 1:00 p.m., today, Director of PRECIFAC, Lacille De Silva said. He added yesterday that she was summoned to record a statement on a house which was transferred to her media consultant by the name of Milinda Ratnayaka. "The house is valued in the range of about Rs 5.5Mn, however it had been transferred to Ratnayaka simply for Rs 0.5Mn," he said. In mid 2015, she was also questioned by FCID more..

Joint Opposition not surprised

Feb 1 (CT) Joint Opposition stated that it did not come as a surprise to them that Lieutenant Yoshitha Rajapaksa was arrested and remanded last week. MP Ranjith De Soysa said that it had become a norm of late for the rule of law in the island to apply differently to individuals. Joint Opposition would be striving to ensure that the law was applied equally to all and was not manipulated or politically influenced in any way. more..

Suspect arrested with 20 kg of heroin

Feb 1 (Island) Acting on a tip-off the Ambalangoda police have taken a person into custody along with 20 kilos of heroin on Saturday night. Police identified the suspect as a resident of Madampagama, Kuligoda in the Ambalangoda police area. A senior police officer said that the suspect had been arrested near the govt hospital at Walawwatte, Madamagama. The suspect carried a parcel containing over one kilo of heroin. During initial interrogation, the suspect had claimed that more..

'Chilaw Plantation Company funds misused'

Feb 1 (DN) PRECIFAC in its investigations revealed that funds of the state-owned Chilaw Plantation Company had been heavily misused for the Presidential election, Uva Provincial Council and May Day propaganda campaigns. Even though it had been stated that the money was taken to provide relief measures to the displaced and provide aid to flood victims, the money had been spent for political propaganda campaigns. Investigating officers found out 17 irregularities more..

Sergeant Major and Corporal spill the beans

Feb 1 (DN) A Sergeant Major and a Corporal arrested in connection with journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda’s disappearance have given statements to the CID linking a senior official of the previous administration to the incident. They confessed to the Police that they got involved in the case as a Lieutenant Colonel attached to the intelligence wing - who is also in remand - dragged them into the incident saying it was an order more..

Omani Chamber keen to invest in Sri Lanka

Feb 1 (DN) Omani Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Said Saleh Said Al Kiyumi, who visited the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce during this week said, Oman is ready to look at big Sri Lankan projects to invest. Kiyumi and his team, who was in the country to attend the Eastern Investment forum said they are willing to look at projects in the areas of tourism, property development, SME development and many more. "We like to invest in big projects, which SL is planning to launch, more..

Remembering Upali Wijewardene

Feb 1 (Island) The 33rd anniversary of the disappearance of Mr Upali Wijewardene, the Founder Chairman of Upali Group of Companies, falls on Feb. 13. Mr Wijewardene and party disappeared, while returning to Colombo from Malaysia in his private jet on May 13 1983. The Upali Group, its employees and sales agents islandwide have made arrangements to commemorate the anniversary with religious ceremonies such as Bodhi Pooja, more..

Sri Lanka Thawheed Jamaath files FR

Feb 1 (DN) Sri Lanka Thawheed Jamaath, a Muslim Welfare Association has filed a fundamental rights petition in the Supreme Court challenging the Defence Secretary’s decision to prevent the entry of TN Islamic scholar Jainul Abideen and two other priests for a function scheduled to be held last year. The petitioners had cited Immigration and Emigration Controller General, Defence Ministry Secretary, Muslim Religious & Cultural Affairs more..

SEUSL staff don exercise gear to promote fitness

Feb 1 (CT) A large number of academic and non academic staff members of the South Eastern University of Sri Lanka (SEUSL) enthusiastically participated in the National Sports and Physical Fitness Promotion programme declared by the Ministry of Sports, National Youth Services Council and Presidential Secretariat and which was held at the Oluvil Campus Grounds recently. The department of physical education had made all the arrangements in this connection under more..

Sri Lankan expats all set to celebrate Independence Day

Feb 1 (GT) The Sri Lankan community in Qatar is all set to celebrate the 68th Independence Day (Nidahas Udanaya 2016) that falls on February 4. The celebrations are going bigger and better this year with the embassy of Sri Lanka and Sri Lanka Coordinating Committee (SLCC) planning cultural programmes. There would also be events for members of diplomatic community. A musical event has been organised on February 5 at Radisson Blu Hotel commencing at 5pm. more..

ETCA to tap huge regional market

Feb 1 (DN) PM Narendra Modi's Make in India strategy will create opportunities for linking into new and expanding value chains in domestic as well as multinational companies operating in India for Sri Lankans, Minister Malik Samarawickreme said. Improving infrastructure in both countries is reducing transaction costs and thereby increasing the advantages of proximity, he said. Speaking at the Invest in East forum he said that more..

SLT launches national cloud, Akaza

Feb 1 (SO) SLT launched the country's National Cloud, Akaza, raising the bar in cloud computing in SL. Akaza provides end-to-end cloud computing services enabling business organisations with enhanced agility, quick service delivery and cost efficiencies while providing maximum ROI and improved scalability. Akaza's technology integrates all its cloud services including IaaS, STaaS, PaaS, DaaS, SaaS & CaaS with business management platform of corporate enterprises. more..

Sixteen Sri Lankans among 351 players up for IPL auction

Feb 1 (DN) As many as 351 cricketers are set to go under the hammer when the 2016 IPL Players' Auction takes place in Bengaluru on Feb 6. However, only a maximum of 116 players can be bought at the auction. The full list of players short-listed for the auctions has been released. It includes 130 capped players, 219 uncapped players and two from Associate Nations. Out of these, 230 are Indians and 121 foreigners. List was trimmed down from the original list of 714 cricketers more..