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Bill on Provincial Council Election to be presented to Parliament: President

July 18 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena says the govt procedures to hold Provincial Council Election have been completed by now. He said the bill related to this will be presented to the Parliament next week to pass the relevant regulations. President was speaking at a workshop held today (17) at Foundation Institute. Workshop was organized to make plans at local govt institutes for waste management and dengue prevention. more..

SL pull off highest successful chase in Asia

July 18 (CI) Stats highlights from the one-off Test between Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe in Colombo, where the hosts chased down 388. 4: Number of higher targets successfully chased in Tests. The 388 that Sri Lanka chased down in this match is the highest any team has successfully chased in Asia. The previous highest in Asia was India's chase of 387 against England in Chennai in 2008. The previous highest in Sri Lanka was Pakistan's chase of 377 against the hosts in Pallekele in 2015. more..

MP Gammanpila allowed to travel overseas

July 18 (NR) Colombo High Court today granted permission for MP Udaya Gammanpila to travel overseas for a period of three days. Accordingly the MP was granted permission to travel to Kuwait from the 27th to the 30th of July to attend a gathering of the Podujana Front. Colombo High Court Judge R Dunusinghe noted steps will be taken to notify the officers of the Immigration and Emigration Department in this regard. The passport of MP Udaya Gammanpila was impounded over more..

Singapore praises President’s efforts to strengthen reconciliation

July 18 (PMD) Singaporean Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan said the efforts made by President Maithripala Sirisena to strengthen reconciliation in Sri Lanka are laudable. Stating this when he called on President Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat today, he said that he would visit Jaffna tomorrow to donate books to the Jaffna Library and to sign an agreement to provide training facilities to the library staff. more..

Video: Tense situation at North Central Provincial Council

July 18 (AD) A tense situation was reported within the chambers of North Central Provincial Council today following the tabling of a motion of no-confidence against the Chairman of the council, T.M.R. Siripala.  Motion had initially been rejected when it was presented previously by 11 UNP PC members. However, it had been included into the agenda today by the Secretary of the provincial council while this had led to arguments and unruly behavior by members from both sides. more..

Navy dispels rumour about Sea Tiger’s boat

July 18 (AD) Sri Lanka Navy today (18) rejected recent reports alleging that the boat said to have been used by sea tiger Susei, the former leader of the LTTE naval unit, was spotted sailing the seas. Several media reported recently that Susei’s boat had been seen frequenting the Mullativu Sea. After conducting an investigation into these claims, Navy Media Spokesperson, Lieutenant-Commander Chaminda Walakuluge confirmed that the rumours were in fact untrue. more..

Telecommunications levy to be reduced?

July 18 (DN) Deputy Minister Dr Harsha de Silva implied today that Govt intends the relaxing of telecom levy on internet services shortly. “Govt came under heavy criticism in the recent past over increasing tax on internet data. However, you will hear good news with regard to data tax in the next couple of days from the higher political authorities in the Govt. It will be a positive step taken by the Govt to encourage active online more..

Akila ready to cooperate with temple authorities

July 18 (DM) Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam, who called on the Mahanayake Theras, yesterday agreed to cooperate with the Dambulla Rajamaha Vihara authorities when carrying out the conservation of murals and statutes at the historic site. Earlier, he was on a collision course with Ven. Godagama Mangala Thera on this issue. Asgiriya Chapter Chief Secretary the Ven. Medagama Dammananda Thera said it was also agreed at the meeting to speed up the conservation work. more..

Altair’s structural engineer Predrag Eror explains high-rise design principles

July 18 (Island) The complex correlation between reinforced concrete shear walls, steel frames and outriggers in modern skyscrapers was demystified by one of the world’s leading structural engineers at a professional forum in Colombo recently. Using case studies of some of most remarkable high rises under construction around the world, Predrag Eror, Principal of Derby Design Engineering and the Structural Engineer of Altair, explained how structural design principles enable tall more..

'People should change their not in my backyard attitude'

July 18 (DM) Swamped with the worst garbage crisis in Colombo, President Maithripala Sirisena ordered the Megapolis and Western Development Ministry to find an effective, long-lasting solution at a time when local govt authorities are defunct and Dengue epidemic in its deadliest shape. Daily Mirror interviewed subject Minister Champika Ranawaka to be acquainted with the ministry’s fresh initiatives more..

Sri Lankan cleared of charges in 19-year-old rape case in Korea

July 18 (Yonhap) A Sri Lankan national charged with raping a young South Korean woman nearly two decades ago was acquitted by the top court on Tuesday, in the final twist of a long-drawn-out investigation into the cold case. The Supreme Court upheld the not-guilty rulings by the lower courts on the 51-year-old foreigner, whose identity has been withheld, citing a lack of evidence. "It is difficult to believe the veracity of their testimonies in light of objectivity and details of the statements," more..

Dr. Palitha Abeykoon likely to be appointed SLMC Chairman

July 18 (DN) Dr. Palitha Abeykoon is likely to be appointed as the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) Chairman, reliable sources told the Daily News. “The GMOA has proposed three names to be considered for the post of SLMC Chairman and Dr.Abekoon is one of their nominees,” sources said. The GMOA had proposed Professor Carlo Fonseka, Professor Lalitha Mendis and Dr. Palitha Abeykoon to be considered for this position. Dr.Abeykoon was the 120th President of SL Medical Association. more..

පිටරටින් දුන් පොළිතීන් පාරිභෝගික අපිට ....

Why the 150-year party for Ceylon Tea?

July 18 (FT) The largest tea party that was staged last week to celebrate 150 years sure secured share of voice in Sri Lanka, in the backdrop of the garbage war and dengue epidemic that has hit all media in Sri Lanka and now moving to international media like BBC and CNN.  Then again the frank opinion expressed by the outspoken Chairman of Sri Lanka Tea Board the week before created a buzz in the country as to what was there to celebrate in the 150-year history of this great industry. more..

Job Growth

July 18 (CT) The economy has added jobs for the fourth successive quarter (Q) in the Q ended 31 March 2017, according to latest data. This is the longest sustained period of job growth, Q on Q, made at least since 2Q 2012, where such quarterly labour statistics on a contiguous quarterly basis has been made available on the CSD website. CSD's website doesn't give 1Q 2012 labour statistics. Data showed that the economy added 223,507 new jobs in the 1Q of the current year, more..

Record win for Sri Lanka over Zimbabwe

July 18 (CI) A lively 121-run stand for the sixth wicket between Asela Gunaratne and Niroshan Dickwella was the centerpiece of a great escape for the hosts, and a sapping defeat for a daring Zimbabwe side. Zimbabwe had never beaten Sri Lanka, of course, but also, the 388 they had set had also never been chased either by Sri Lanka, or by anyone on the island. In the end, Sri Lanka achieved the target with four wickets in hand more..

Website to track tobacco companies

July 18 (CT) The Govt is set to launch a website that tracks the activities of tobacco companies with the help of the University of Colombo and the World Health Organization (WHO). The Mathin Nidahas Ratak programme is set to expand further with the consent of President Maithripala Sirisena. An event has been organized for tomorrow to spread the awareness on abuse of drugs around the country. more..

IMF sees stability in Sri Lanka's macroeconomic, financial conditions

July 18 (Reuters) The IMF said Sri Lanka's macroeconomic and financial conditions have begun to stabilize and SL's performance under its $1.5 billion loan programme is satisfactory. Global lender, after completing the first review of SL’s economic performance, also said inflation has trended down and the balance of payments has improved, though international reserves remain below comfortable levels. more..

Foreign buying in Sri Lanka bourse doubles in first half of 2017

July 18 (EN) Foreign buying of Sri Lankan stocks on the Colombo bourse in the first half of 2017 had doubled to Rs 62.6 billion from the same period in 2016, the CSE announced. It was an all-time high for foreign purchases in the first half of a calendar year, it said in a statement. “Growth in foreign activity is certainly encouraging and goes on to indicate that foreign investors have identified an opportunity in SL stock market,” more..

E-log books for all Lanka multi-day fishing vessels

July 18 (Island) All multi-day fishing vessels would be provided with E-Log books/Tab Computers to enter fish harvest information, Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said. The ministry had taken steps to provide E-Log Books as a measure to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, he said. 2,328 multi-day fishing vessels would be provided with E Log Books. Total cost of the project is estimated to be Rs. 78 million. more..

No deadly blow in sight against ravages of killer dengue

July 18 (ST) Killer dengue, with more infectious and more fatal strains, is creeping along snuffing out unsuspecting lives while the Govt is hopelessly staring in the face of 100,000-plus infections, although Health Ministry reported 90,865 cases. Next peak season, from October onwards, is also fast approaching. News about the dengue crisis is also spreading in world capitals including London, where travellers are being warned. more..

Top SLC official behind inhuman act

July 18 (SL) A top Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) Board official is allegedly behind the order given last week to force temporary staff, employed to work at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Sooriyawewa, to remove and return their pants to get paid. SLC sources also said that while Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera had publicly stated that an investigation will be conducted on the incident, no action is expected to be taken. more..

End of the Anti-Corruption Secretariat

July 18 (CT) Last Thursday Co-Cabinet Spokesman, Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, addressing the Cabinet media briefing, said that the Anti-Corruption Secretariat had not delivered on its promises. This was in response to a question which was raised regarding extending the Anti-Corruption Secretariat's term which expired on 30 June. The govt spent Rs 65 million on the secretariat, but we have not seen it achieve much, Dr. Rajitha Senaratne said. more..

Arrest of Britisher over Buddha tattoo: A case of supreme delays

July 18 (DN) Highlighting the issue of chronic delays and archaic procedure within the Justice system, the Fundamental Rights petition filed by Naomi Coleman, Britisher who was arrested for adorning a Tattoo of The Buddha, was postponed close to a dozen times, after Judgment was reserved on June 10, 2015. Case was re-fixed on July 4, 2017, for argument on Oct 26, 2017. Case which drew international more..

'President Sirisena should be the Next Presidential Candidate'

July 18 (DM) SLFP General Secretary and Minister Duminda Dissanayake spoke about the party’s future in the wake of attempts by a section of its members to leave the Unity Govt together with the UNP.  Q: A group of SLFP MPs has decided to quit the govt. President Maithripala Sirisena has asked them to remain till Dec 31, 2017. Why is this? A: We joined hands with the UNP to govern the country for two years in conformity more..

Why UN reps are a bane to reconciliation

July 18 (DM) Ben Emmerson, the UN special rapporteur on counter terrorism and human rights, who visited Colombo last week criticized Sri Lanka for the slow pace of the transitional justice process and warned that the international community was running out of patience. He demanded that the govt repealed the Prevention of Terrorism Act, but also insisted that the proposed counter terrorism legislation that was meant to replace the PTA should do away with admissibility of confessions to more..

Secrets; when will we ever know?

July 18 (DM) Cricket lovers in Sri Lanka might not be happy with the clash between the two legends of the game, former captains Kumar Sangakkara and Minister Arjuna Ranatunga. They are indirectly levelling serious allegations against each other, which if proved, would definitely ruin their hard earned reputations. Raising a question on the 2009 Tour of Pakistan where the players had to face a horrendous terrorist attack, Sangakkara for some reason first called for an inquiry into more..

No FM has ever directly informed CB Governor of govt fund requirements before

July 18 (Island) Deputy Secretary to the Treasury S. R. Attygalle, testifying before the Commission of Inquiry, probing the alleged bond scams, said that as far as he knew there had been no instance where the Finance Minister directly wrote to the Central Bank Governor, informing the latter of govt’s additional fund requirements. Attygalle said so in answer to a question raised by Senior State Counsel (Mrs.) Shahida Bari. more..

CB Chief says economy rebounding in second half on flood reconstruction

July 18 (Reuters) SL's economy will rebound in coming months as the island nation begins to rebuild after devastating floods, and it could still expand by 4.5 to 5% for the full-year, central bank Governor Indrajith Coomaraswamy said. CB had earlier estimated 2017 growth at 5%, higher than last year's 4.4%, before the floods and landslides in May that killed more than 200 people and hit the agricultural sector hard. In contrast, some main agriculture areas have suffered from severe drought more..

Angoda Lokka runs extortion op here from Indian jail

July 18 (Island) Investigations by Mirihana Special Crimes Operations Unit have revealed that underworld kingpin Lasantha Perera alias Angoda Lokka, who is currently serving a jail term in India, uses a mobile phone to run an extortion racket here. The underworld character has made calls to several rich businessmen and threatened them with death if they don’t part with money. He has ordered his thugs to harass the businessmen who do not obey his orders, police investigators say. more..

IMF approves US$167.2 million second tranche of EFF

July 18 (IMF) On July 17, 2017, the Executive Board of the IMF completed the second review of Sri Lanka’s economic performance under the program supported by a three-year extended arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) arrangement. Completion of the review enables the disbursement of the equivalent of SDR 119.894 million (US$ 167.2 m), bringing total disbursements under the arrangement more..

Harsha breathes fire on culture of entitlement

July 18 (FT) Economist-turned Deputy Minister Dr. Harsha De Silva last week called for a change in attitude from the people of Sri Lanka in order to overcome the challenges facing the nation, arguing for a shift in thinking from a culture of entitlement to one of innovation and entrepreneurship. Delivering a passionate monologue in response to a question at a panel discussion on the benefits of the GSP Plus trade concessions, Dr. De Silva said that SL youths were predisposed to a sense of entitlement more..

India develops Ven. Sobitha Thero Village

July 18 (HCI) India and Sri Lanka signed a MoU to develop Most Ven Maduluwave Sobitha Thero Village (Elapathagama) in Anuradhapura District on July 14.  MoU was signed by Taranjit Singh Sandhu, High Commissioner of India to SL and Mrs. W.K.K. Athukorala, Secretary to the Ministry of Housing and Construction in the presence of Speaker Karu Jayasuriya. Venerable Monks from the Mahasanga, former First Lady Mrs. Hema Premadasa, several MPs, senior Officials from Govt of SL, more..

Treasury flushed with cash in Feb 2015; no shortfall: bond scam inquiry

July 18 (EN) Finance ministry was left with excess cash in February 2015 allowing its overdraft to be slashed and treasury bills retired when the controversial bond auction took place, Deputy Treasury Secretary Sajith Attygalle said. There was no sudden requirement for cash when settlement of bonds were made on March 2, he said. Earlier, claims had been made that more bonds than advertised were sold on Feb 27, 2015 under more..

Army commemorates 26th death anniversary of Hasalaka Gamini

July 18 (SLA) 26th death anniversary of one of the most remembered War Heroes in contemporary times, late Corporal Gamini Kularatne of 6 Sri Lanka Sinha Regiment (SLSR) who paid the supreme sacrifice on 14 July 1991 to prevent an enemy bulldozer ramming into the Elephant Pass garrison was commemorated on Friday (14) at the monumental Gamini Kularatne’s memorial at Elephant Pass. Commemorative event, organized by 66 Division and the 662 Brigade more..

Roshane Chanaka death: Punish those responsible: FTZSPG

July 18 (CT) The Free Trade Zone Solidarity Protection Group (FTZSPG) called on the Govt to enact the recommendations of the report compiled pertaining to the death and injuries to workers during the 2011 protest at the Katunayake Free Trade Zone. The group said, in a press communiqué, that those responsible for the death of the Roshane Chanaka must be punished. Convener of FTZSPG Chamila Thushari claimed that those who sustained injuries must also receive compensation. more..