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Video: Why didn't MR oppose ETCA and Mattala PPP deal in India: UNP

Sep 14 (DM) UNP questioned as to whether former President Rajapaksa opposed the proposed Economic and Technological Cooperation Agreement (ETCA) and the Public Private Partnership deal with regard to the Mattala Airport during his visit to India in the same way he opposed them in Sri Lanka. UNP MP Harshana Rajakaruna told a media briefing that it was funny not to hear reports which said former President more..

CDS could not have gone abroad without President's knowledge: Sumanthiran

Sep 14 (DM) The TNA struck a note of criticism at President Maithripala Sirisena over the incident in which Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Ravindra Wijegunaratne left the country for Mexico last Monday despite him being called by the CID to give a statement. The CDS is accused of aiding Navy officer Chandana Hettiarachchi who is a suspect in a case involving the abduction of 11 persons during the wartime. He had been summoned by the CID to record a statement last Monday. more..

Drug kingpin Siddique, four others acquitted

Sep 14 (DN) Controversial drug kingpin Mohammed Wasim Siddique and four others who had been indicted for allegedly possessing 8.1 grams of heroin were yesterday ordered to be acquitted and released from the case by Colombo High Court, after noticing several contradictions in the evidence of the prosecution. Attorney General (AG) had indicted the five accused including Siddhique under the Poisons, Opium and Dangerous Drugs (Amendment) Act No. 13 of 1984 for more..

Treasury bond scams: Mendis Company CEO ordered destruction of 102 vouchers

Sep 14 (Island) Senior Additional Solicitor General Yasantha Kodagoda, yesterday, told Fort Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne that W.M. Mendis Company had destroyed 102 vouchers pertaining to transfer of money, received from Perpetual Treasuries Limited (PTL). However, the CID had found the relevant cash cheques issued by the PTL, the court was told. Kodagoda said that four senior officers attached to more..

NPC to examine Sinhala settlements in four districts

Sep 14 (Island) Director General, Govt Information Dept attorney-at-law Sudarshana Gunawardena said that the TNA run Northern Provincial Council (NPC) had adopted a proposal to appoint an expert committee to conduct an investigation as regards the alleged settlement of Sinhalese in four administrative districts, including Mullaitivu. According to Gunawardena, the decision had been taken on Aug 30, 2018. Gunawardena said so in response to what he called erroneous media more..

President advises police not to drag cases against military personnel

Sep 14 (Island) Prez Sirisena said yesterday in Colombo, that if there were allegations against any military personnel, the Police should expeditiously file legal action , without arresting and subjecting them to long periods of detention. Ministerial Sources said that the President addressing a Special Cabinet Meeting, in the absence of PM who was in Vietnam , had said that long delays in investigations, after taking military personnel into custody, could turn into a Political issue. more..

SIU directed to probe allegations against TID chief

Sep 14 (DN) IGP Pujith Jayasundara has instructed Police Special Investigations Unit (SIU) to investigate the allegations levelled against DIG Nalaka de Silva, who heads the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID), SP Ruwan Gunasekera said. The allegations were levelled against the DIG at a press briefing held in Kandy last Wednesday by a social activist named Namal Kumara, director operation of a social movement called, Anti-Corruption more..

Uni. student injured in Mullaitivu shooting dies

Sep 14 (DM) The university student, who was receiving treatment at the Anuradhapura Hospital for three days due to a shooting incident in Pudukuduirrippu, Mullaitivu, died last evening, Police said. Four people including the university student were injured after a group of men, who entered their house, shot at them last Tuesday (11). The injured were admitted to the Pudukuduirrippu Hospital and the university student who sustained critical injuries had been transferred to more..

Heat advisory issued in East & several districts

Sep 14 (NR) Dept of Meteorology has issued a heat advisory for the Eastern Province and the Polonnaruwa, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi Districts. The warning said caution is expected in most parts of the Eastern Province and some parts of Polonnaruwa, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi districts today and tomorrow. The Heat Index Forecast is calculated with relative humidity and maximum temperature adding this is the condition that is felt. This is however not the forecast of more..

President to submit new proposals to UN

Sep 14 (PMD) At the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Sept 25, President Maithripala Sirisena will announce a set of new proposals for consideration at the March 2019 session of the UNHCR. He will also submit these proposals to the United nations Secretary General António Guterres as well as Un High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet. The President expects to meet both of them more..

Economic sentiment remains muted: Survey

Sep 14 (FT) Sentiment surrounding the economy remained gloomy in August with the latest LMD-Nielsen Business Confidence Index (BCI) survey revealing that almost half of the businesspeople consulted expect the economic milieu to worsen in the next 12 months. A corporate executive claims that this is because of “a lack of competitiveness in the investment climate to help drive the economy forward,” and points to bribery and corruption as the main causes, LMD notes. more..

Reform window still open: Expert

Sep 14 (FT) Sri Lanka’s current economic environment offers a window of opportunity for implementing crucial structural reforms and advancing towards greater competitiveness, KPMG India Chairman and CEO Arun Kumar said. Speaking at the Sri Lanka Economic Summit organised by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Kumar pointed out that despite significant productivity growth in the post-war period, it has been challenging for Sri Lanka to diversify exports resulting in its share of global trade declining gradually. more..

TNA alleges President interfered in CID probe

Sep 14 (Island) Continuing controversy over Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Ravi Wijegunaratne, wanted by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in connection with allegedly aiding and abetting Lt. Commander Chandana Prasad Hettiarachchi, a suspect in two major wartime cases, leaving for Mexico on Sept. 10 has taken a dramatic turn with the TNA demanding that the entire range of accountability issues here should be subjected to international judicial process. more..

Sri Lanka has to improve budgets, keep flexible exchange rate: IMF rep

Sep 14 (EN) Sri Lanka has to keep on a path of reducing budget deficits, broaden revenues keep the exchange rate flexible to conserve forex reserves and move towards inflation targeting, an International Monetary Fund official said. "If Sri Lanka continues on the path of fiscal consolidation, and maintains consistency and persistently the reforms of the last couple of years, investor confidence could strengthen and they could actually remain with Sri Lanka," more..

Hambantota Port signs historic TSA with K-Line

Sep 14 (FT) Hambantota Int'l Port Group (HIPG) has entered into its very first Terminal Service Agreement (TSA) with K-Line Ltd. (KLPL), one of the world’s largest Ro Ro operators and a member of the global giant in transportation, Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. of Japan. The TSA was a result of K-Line’s decision to partner HIPG to improve its throughput via the Hambantota Port, as the int'l standard service delivery levels consistently achieved and maintained by HIPG met with its own exacting levels. more..

Video: Suppression of Buddhists in N-E: Govt. not keen to curb situation: Nalaka Thera

Sep 14 (DM) The govt is not taking action over the recent protests carried out by a group of Tamil politicians and some Muslim extremists in the North against a move to build an archeological office at the Kurundankulama Asokaramaya in Mullaitivu, National Rights Organization President Ven. Bengamuwe Nalaka Thera alleged. Addressing a news briefing, he said Kurundankulama Asokaramaya was an ancient Buddhist temple with archeological value. more..

Kapila Jayawardena appointed Seylan Bank Deputy Chairman

Sep 14 (FT) Seylan Bank Board of Directors has appointed its Non-Executive Director and LOLC Group CEO Kapila Jayawardena as Deputy Chairman of the Board with effect from 10 September, according to a CSE filing. Jayawardena holds a MBA in Financial Management and is a fellow member of the Institute of Bankers and an Associate Member of the Institute of Cost and Executive Accountants, London. He served as Country Head and CEO (SL and Maldives) of Citibank NA from 1998 to 2007. more..

Sri Lanka taking pre-emptive steps as global liquidity tightens

Sep 14 (EN) SL has started to take steps to reduce economic risks by raising revenues and improving debt management as global credit conditions tighten with major central banks ending liquidity injections, officials said. US Federal Reserve, European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan had injected the equivalent of two trillion dollars since the global financial crisis but the injections have halved since 2018, Anubhuti Sahay Head, South Asia, Economics Research, Standard Chartered Bank Mumbai said. more..

Welgama against Presidential candidacy for MR’s brothers

Sep 14 (FT) Senior member of the Joint Opposition, MP Kumara Welgama, in a challenge of sorts to former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, yesterday said the Presidential candidacy cannot be kept within one political family. MP Welgama told Daily FT that he was against family bandyism and nepotism. “It is my position that the Presidential candidacy should be open to others and not just family members. I’m completely against family bandyism,” more..

Lower back injury sends Gunathilaka out of Asia Cup

Sep 14 (CB) All-rounder Danushka Gunathilaka has been ruled out of the Asia Cup with a lower back injury, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) confirmed. The left-hander who travelled with the team to the UAE, having last played a one-dayer in January earlier this year, will return home and as a result, Shehan Jayasuriya will join the squad as his replacement on Friday. Earlier in July, Gunathilaka was suspended for six int'l matches by SLC, for an alleged breach of code of conduct regulations. more..

Vidusha, Wimalasiri shine as Army take command

Sep 14 (Island) National record holder Vidusha Lakshani lowered the meet record of the women’s triple jump with a feat of 13.58 metres to clearly be a cut above the rest on day one of the 10th Defence Services Athletics Championship at the Sugathadasa Stadium on Thursday. It was the first time in these championships that the 13 metres barrier was broken, though the Army athlete had made numerous such performances elsewhere. Lakshani was able to clear the 13 metres mark on all her successful attempts more..

Cabinet snubs President over arrest of military chief

Sep 14 (EN) President Sirisena summoned an emergency cabinet meeting to defend the country’s senior-most military officer who is facing imminent arrest for allegedly shielding a mass murder suspect, but failed to secure agreement. The noon meeting of the cabinet ended after heated exchanges, sources close to the administration said adding that the President failed in get support and the issue was put off until the return to the island of PM Ranil Wickremesinghe. more..

Royal College drives innovation in Sri Lanka through Spark 2018 powered by Dialog

Sep 14 (Island) Royal College presents Spark 2018 powered by Dialog, a platform and exhibition aimed towards fostering imagination, invention and innovation amongst the youth in Sri Lanka. Towards spearheading a culture of innovation, Royal College Colombo in collaboration with Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka’s premier connectivity provider, has identified the need to inspire the next generation on the value of invention and the power of innovation at an early age. more..

PCoI told of a phantom request from Treasury to UL

Sep 14 (Island) Senior SriLankan officials had been informed, in 2010, that the Treasury wanted the airline to seek the services of an international financial company to evaluate a business plan formulated by former CFO, S. A. Chandrasekera, but there were no records of such a request from the treasury, PCoI on irregularities at SriLankan Airlines, SriLankan Catering and Mihin Lanka was informed. Yasantha Dissanayake, Head of Financial Management at SriLankan, more..

Wijaydasa Rajapaksa

LKI forum makes clear case for FTAs

Sep 14 (DN) To most people who aren’t economics or maths wizards, the topic of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) is a bit of a hazy subject. It’s logical then that all over the world, FTAs are seen as contentious, where people fear that their national interests are being compromised to other countries, without gaining a whole lot in return. People in SL and elsewhere worry that critical jobs are syphoned away or made obsolete by labour from foreign markets. These anxieties are common and often well-founded, more..

Multidisciplinary approach needed to combat ragging

Sep 14 (DN) Getting ragged or bullied in university is something every fresher dreads. The menace keeps making a comeback into universities and with the most recent update of a suicide letter penned by Sabaragamuwa Uni student Amali Chathurika surfacing, the topic is back in the debate. Amali’s plight is only a drop in the ocean as many incidents go unreported. Ever since Peradeniya Uni student Rupa Rathnaseeli jumped from the second floor of Ramanathan Hall to escape physical ragging, more..

Nuisance next door

Sep 14 (DM) In the recent past, lands in and around the Colombo area are being inundated with luxurious residences, that promise the city’s finest lifestyle. Such apartments are mushrooming all over Colombo District as a response to the strong demand for rented out apartments. If the creating of the lives that some people always wished to enjoy, forces another set of people to suffer, then it is unfair. more..

Nuts to you, my dear sir

Sep 14 (FT) We all know airline food isn’t much to write home about. So when a sitting president makes international headlines over it, you know something’s up. Whatever it is, it’s not our national carrier’s image or reputation. If it was low before and struggling to land without leaving pancake all over the country’s one serviceable set of runways, it’s at ground zero now. All for the sake of a small packet of nuts, ostensibly – and an evident lack of presidential self-control. more..

Of Patriots and Traitors

Sep 14 (GV) Much has been said across various media over the years, and recently too, on the subject of patriots and traitors. Samuel Johnson in his Dictionary (1755) defined a patriot as one whose ruling passion is the love of his country. This is certainly a laudable goal and worthy of emulation; it suggests a cause bigger than one’s self and hints at a sacrificial character. Why then did he also say that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel? Genuine patriotism is not easy to define, more..

'We need a safe space to discuss social issues with our children'

Sep 14 (SO) The following are excerpts of SL cricketing hero Kumar Sangakkara’s wide-ranging interview with journalist Azzam Ameen of BBC Sinhala, in which the former cricket skipper discussed politics, women’s rights and plans for the future. Q: Many people say Imran Khan won Pakistan’s Premiership and it is for Kumar Sangakka to follow suit. A: For Imran Khan it was the result of years of political odyssey with enormous trials more..

Cat-and-mouse games & The political implications of MR-Modi meeting

Sep 14 (CT) China’s entry into the rural infrastructure and plantation sector in SL is an indication of what the Asian superpower is becoming, or has already become, to Sri Lanka: a rich friend slowly buying you over by throwing money at your every problem. In the first three years of this govt, China’s involvement in SL was confined to several mammoth development projects in Colombo and down south. China also acquired operations of the newly constructed port more..

Violence directed against the Muslim & other minority communities

Sep 14 (CT) With Hitler, Prabakaran, Dictatorships, LTTE and Sinhala Buddhism cluttering political discourse, and a visible resurgence of indiscipline, things do not portend well for integration, reconciliation and progress. Hypocrisy all round us is dominant. The terror unleashed and suffered by the previous dispensation and the nearly thirty-year period of extreme horror, have apparently not taught us much. The rumblings of imminent disaster are all too real. more..

President calls emergency meet over arrest of military chief

Sep 13 (AD) President Sirisena summoned an urgent meeting of the cabinet of ministers to discuss the impending arrest of the country’s senior-most military officer for allegedly shielding a mass murder suspect. Sirisena was miffed that the CID had collected evidence against Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne and also obtained a court order for his arrest before he left the island more..

Chinese loans amount to 8%, rest are from West and others: MR

Sep 13 (DM) The amount of loans Sri Lanka obtained from China is only about 8% from the total loan amount and the rest of the loans are from the Western and other countries, former President Rajapaksa who is in India said. Mr.Rajapaksa said if he is not mistaken, Chinese loans only amounted to 8%. He said Sri Lankans today complained of lack of development more..

WPC’s cosy costly chairs cancelled by Governor

Sep 13 (DM) Western Province Governor Hemakumara Nanayakkara said he had ordered Western Provincial Council Chief Secretary to cancel the purchase of 144 chairs, each costing Rs. 644,000, with immediate effect. Addressing a press briefing in Rajagiriya, Governor revealed that Rs. 644,000 for a chair was without the import duty and when included the tax, the price of a chair would be approximately Rs. 844,000. more..