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20න් දූෂණයට ඔටුණු පළදවා තිබෙනවා

COVID-19 impact painful for educators; but change is a must

Sep 8 (FT) Globally over 1.2 billion children are out of school due to COVID-19, the pandemic has over the last six months dramatically changed the face of education worldwide. This change in the delivery of education is sine quo non to do things differently from now on. However, do we precisely know what educators and policy makers need to do to make remote schooling/online learning work? Are teachers equipped with the whole arsenal of technologies required to unleash students’ full potential? more..

Concentration of power is harmful to the economy and everything else

Sep 8 (FT) If we shift our focus away from the minutiae of the proposed 20th Amendment to the big picture, we can see that it is about concentrating power in the Prez and unelected and unaccountable advisors around him, and disempowering Parliament, independent Commissions, and those who would challenge legislation before the courts. After successfully propagating the narrative delegitimizing Parliament (225ma epa), SLPP seeks to consolidate the concentration of power more..

20A: SLPP rejects criticism, plans to secure its passage next month

Sep 8 (Island) Dismissing criticism of the proposed 20th Amendment that it would pave the way for a dictatorship, Education Minister Prof. Peiris said that it would be presented to Parliament next October ahead of the presentation of Budget 2021. Prof. Peiris said that the govt wasn’t worried about the SJB moving the Supreme Court against the 20th Amendment as it was gazetted having secured the AG’s approval. more..

Independent Commissions will not be abolished by 20A: GL

Sep 8 (DN) Education Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris refuted the claims that Independent Commissions will be abolished by the 20th Amendment to the Constitution. Speaking at a press conference, he said that this Amendment has ensured the smooth functioning of seven Commissions, namely, the Election Commission, Public Services Commission, Police Commission, Finance Commission, Delimitation Commission, Bribery Commission and the Human Rights Commission. more..

Video: STF arrests former Baddegama PS member

Sep 8 (AD) Former member of the Baddegama Pradeshiya Sabha, Gamunu Ekanayake, has been arrested with weapons and ammunition. The arrest has been made today (07) by the STF. Officials have recovered a T-56 firearm, a magazine, a locally-manufactured firearm, a hand grenade, various sharp weapons, and ammunition upon a search at his residence. In addition, 2 National Identity Cards (NICs) and an unregistered motorcycle have also been taken into custody. more..

SLMC agreed to Zahran’s policies before the 2015 General Election: Shibly Farook

Sep 8 (CT) The SLMC had agreed to a few proposals in a policy statement put forward by National Thowheed Jama’ath (NTJ) Leader, Zaharan Hashim, to the representatives of five political parties that contested the 2015 Parliamentary Election. This was revealed when former Provincial Councillor affiliated to the SLMC, Shibly Farooq, testified before the PCoI probing the Easter Sunday bombing, yesterday. more..

Saudi decides not to charge fees or fines from exiting SL migrant workers

Sep 8 (MFA) The Govt of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has offered that any SL migrant worker, with valid or expired visit visas of all kinds, re-entry visa or final exit visa, who could not depart the Kingdom during the visa validity period due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be permitted to leave the Kingdom through the Immigration points of the airports upon their departure without being charged any fees or fines. This is a temporary measure taken by the Saudi Govt given the circumstances faced by more..

Video: PM on making Sri Lanka a global innovation hub

Sep 8 (AD) PM Mahinda Rajapaksa says that the new govt has prioritized the ICT sector and establishing a knowledge and technology based society to make Sri Lanka a global innovation hub. In addition to implementing a comprehensive digitization policy for the country, the govt is also working on a number of other related programs, said PM. These include setting up a Citizen Centric Digital Govt, establishing a digitally-inclusive SL & promoting IT entrepreneurship, he added. more..

JVP vows to go all out to torpedo 20 A

Sep 8 (Island) The JVP-led National People’s Power called the proposed 20th Amendment to the constitution a betrayal of mandate the people had given to the govt at the last general election. JVP MP Dr. Harini Amarasuriya said that the govt, claiming to respect people’s sovereignty, had unveiled a draft amendment to concentrate more powers in the executive presidency at the expense of the rights of the people. more..

British woman urges support for SL’s strays

Sep 8 (Island) A project that aims to help stray cats and dogs in Sri Lanka is asking for donations to boost its work and expand its operations, said a report published by the News and Star of the UK. Rachel Schofield, from Wigton (UK), founded Help Hikkaduwa Strays after a holiday to the area in September 2013. She was determined to help after seeing the number of strays suffering and her organisation now rehomes litter after litter of abandoned pups and kittens. more..

SampathCards partners KDU

Sep 8 (Island) SampathCards recently joined hands with General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University (KDU), one of the country’s premier higher education institutions, to facilitate payments for course fees through Mastercard & Visa Credit & Debit Cards, helping students to pursue their dream careers without having to worry about finances. In addition, Sampath Mastercard and Visa Credit Cardholders will now be able to avail themselves to 12 months 0% interest instalment payment more..

Artificial toddy raid in Dummalasuriya

Sep 8 (DM) With the detection of another deadly artificial toddy manufacturing plant in Dummalasuriya by a special police flying squad on Sunday, the social activists fighting against hazardous liquor products blamed the Excise Dept for not regulating the law properly. Police Walana – Panadura Central Anti-Vice Striking Unit sleuths on information raided a poultry feed manufacturing factory in Weerakodiyana area more..

Semasinghe proposes expansion of social security schemes

Sep 8 (FT) Expansions to the pension scheme for self-employed persons and the social security benefits scheme have been proposed by Samurdhi, Household Economy, Micro Finance, Self-Employment, Business Development, and Underutilised State Resources Development State Minister Shehan Semasinghe. According to a statement issued by the Finance Ministry, the proposals were made following observations of the activities of the SL Social Security Board, more..

Central Bank Chief visits Jaffna, discusses financial inclusion and regulation

Sep 8 (FT) A meeting between the officials of the Central Bank, including CB Governor Professor W.D Lakshman and the Rural Development Societies (RDS), Women's RDS, Agriculture Societies, Fisheries Societies, Cooperatives Societies, and other societies in the Jaffna District, was held at the District Secretariat of Jaffna yesterday. Deputy Chairperson of Committees and Co-Chairperson of District Coordinating Committee of Jaffna Angajan Ramanathan more..

Sri Lankan jobseekers living in Dubai park moved to shelters

Sep 8 (KT) More than 20 Sri Lankans found sleeping in Al Hudaiba Park have been provided shelter, thanks to good samaritans in the community. Social workers, the SL Welfare Association Sahana, and the Consulate-General of Sri Lanka in Dubai came to the aid of the stranded nationals who were in the UAE on visit visas. All of them came here on visit visas and were unable to find job opportunities, more..

Govt to decide only after formulating national trade policy: Bandula

Sep 8 (DM) Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardane said he told Indian High Commissioner Gopal Baglay that the new govt would take its position on the Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreements (ETCA) with India only after the adoption of a national trade policy. Minister said that he briefed the Indian envoy of the govt’s position, during a recent meeting with him. He said he secured Cabinet approval last week for the appointment of a panel of experts to more..

ComBank, PAYable to launch Smart POS-Mini device

Sep 8 (CT) The Commercial Bank of Ceylon together with PAYable (Pvt) Ltd. recently announced the launch of an Android Mini Point-of-Sale (POS) device to enable merchants anywhere in Sri Lanka to accept card payments. The Smart POS-Mini is a fully functional Android terminal, able to process transactions via Mag-stripe, EMV and Chip readers. The device is also capable of processing Near Field Communication (NFC) transactions and can scan QR codes at a high speed. more..

Buduputh Suraksha Health Insurance programme from Oct.1

Sep 8 (DM) PM Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday instructed to commence the Buduputh Suraksha Health Insurance programme which covers 15,000 Buddhist monks, from Oct 1, 2020. PM gave the instructions while addressing the 84th Board of Officials meeting of the Buddha Sasana Fund which was held at Temple Trees. Accordingly, the PM instructed to initially donate Rs. 40 million from the Buddha Sasana Fund to more..

One Belt and Road will help economic recovery: Chinese Embassy

Sep 8 (TM) Sri Lanka’s involvement in the One Belt and Road initiative of post-pandemic China will help the economic recovery of Sri Lanka, a senior Chinese diplomat in Sri Lanka noted recently. “The Chinese Government has taken the most comprehensive, thorough, and rigorous measures to fight against the pandemic. There were many heart-warming moves and active support from the Sri Lankan Govt and people from all walks of life to China at that critical moment. more..

LPBOA president urges crackdown on extortionists

Sep 8 (CT) Despite the collapse of the private bus industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic, bus owners have to pay around Rs 200 million per month to those seeking bribes working at State institutions, including timekeepers at bus stations, alleged the President of Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA), Gemunu Wijeratne. He claimed that bus owners have to face a loss of about 25% of their revenue due to this. Wijeratne urged Prez to take steps to crackdown on more..

Annual leave cancelled left and right

Sep 8 (TM) Several of Sri Lanka’s corporates have issued notices cancelling all their employees’ annual leave for the year 2020 due to the three-month lockdown following the Covid-19 outbreak in the country. Employees from local companies, big and small, told us that their organisations have issued several notices via email, informing them that their request for annual leave will be denied. more..

SPAR opens new outlet at Pepiliyana

Sep 8 (ST) SPAR SL (Pvt) Ltd, a joint partnership between Ceylon Biscuits Ltd and SPAR South Africa, has opened a new 9,500 sq ft store at Pepiliyana, near Nugegoda. This is the company’s fifth store in SL as plans for expansion continue to grow. The latest addition to their portfolio features local and imported products, organic and gourmet food as well as new additions like home goods, electrical appliances, tools, cosmetics and the first-ever wood-fired Harpo’s pizza container truck, more..

FFSL to conduct women’s football tourney in October

Sep 8 (DN) The idea of conducting this tournament is to reorganise women’s football in the country after the effects of Easter Sunday, inclement weather and the COVID-19 pandemic, which almost kept women’s activities on hold for the last 18 months. This tournament will be an ideal opportunity for the young girls to actively participate in football, as well as to be scouted for the national pool, which will be under the supervision of former National player Dudley Steinwall. more..

'Investors who acquire shares now would make substantial capital gains very soon'

Sep 8 (FT) State Minister Ajith Nivard Cabraal last week told stockbrokers that “SL investors who acquire shares now would make substantial capital gains very soon.” Cabraal made these remarks when he addressed SL’s Stockbrokers at the Finance Ministry. Cabraal explained that the Colombo Stock Exchange’s All Share Price Index was at around 7300 points by end Dec 2014 and the market cap was around $ 25 billion. more..

LPL gains momentum

Sep 8 (ST) The stage is finally set to inaugurate the Lankan Premier League (LPL), newest addition to the mushrooming domestic leagues in the world starting Nov 14, a few days after the conclusion of the world’s biggest cricketing extravaganza, the IPL (Indian Premier League). The tournament will run from Nov 14 to Dec 6. Although the agreement is yet to be signed between Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), the owner of the franchise based T20 league, and Innovative Production Group (IPG), more..

Editorial: Axing arts

Sep 8 (Island) The UGC is reported to have suspended external arts degree programmes. It has pledged to update the courses of study conducted by the arts faculties of the state universities. This, we have heard umpteen times, but nothing of the sort has been done for the last several decades. Reflected in the UGC action is the govt thinking that preparing students for the job market is the be-all and end-all of uni education, and the arts stream is something to be tolerated and not promoted. more..

Young ones steal limelight at RCGC Club Championship

Sep 8 (ST) The prestigious Royal Colombo Golf Club (RCGC) founded as the Colombo Golf Club in 1879, conducted the 99th RCGC Golf Championship and the year 2020 continued to serve up surprises after the epic action of mother nature locked down the world with the COVID-19 pandemic, what is just about blowing over at least in Sri Lanka. The diminutive, athletic, pocket-missile of Sri Lanka Golf, Yannik Kumara, launched more..

Seneviratne co-opted as Asia Rugby Exco Member

Sep 8 (CT) Asanga Seneviratne has been co-opted by Asia Rugby Executive Committee to fill the vacant position that was created by the resignation of Indonesian Gondo Gambiro earlier this year. Sri Lanka Rugby endorsed and nominated Seneviratne to take over the role with immediate effect. Seneviratne is not new to Asia Rugby’s Executive Committee and has served as the Honorary Secretary General in 2013-2015. He has served as President of SL Rugby Football Union more..

COVID-19: People’s reckless behaviour could vouch disaster again

Sep 8 (DM) SL is one of the success stories in the world in respect of containing COVID-19 threat. It is so successful that people have even totally forgotten the threat and now media rarely carry stories about the disease. However, does it mean that we are absolutely safe? Relevant authorities say No. Chief of the Health Ministry’s Epidemiology Unit Dr. Sudath Samaraweera on Saturday warned of another wave of the pandemic, citing the reckless behaviour of the people in the country, more..

පොදුජන පෙරමුණෙ මහලේකම් සාගර කාරියවසම්

Progressive taxation vital to reduce fiscal deficit

Sep 8 (ST) The reduction of the fiscal deficit is of utmost importance to achieve economic stability, economic growth and social development. The high fiscal deficit has to be reduced by enhancing govt revenue through higher direct and indirect taxes that are progressive and fall on the rich and the affluent. The Vote on Account (VOA) of Rs 9.1 trillion for expenditure in the last four months of this year that was passed by Parliament unanimously on Aug 28, together with the expenditure more..

Fr. Emmanuel must be forgiven for his sins by Cardinal Ranjith

Sep 8 (CT) Father Sleemanpillai Joseph Emmanuel is back in Sri Lanka and appealing to the immigration for leave to remain. He wants to die in SL, a country that he spent the last three decades demonising. In spite of his record of supporting the LTTE and glorifying violence by Velupillai Prabhakaran, the generous people of SL have decided to accommodate his plea. The foundational culture of Sri Lanka has been compassion, mercy, and forgiveness. more..

Can flowers bloom behind steel bars?

Sep 8 (CT) “Children should not be prisoners, but neither are we monsters. We feel for our children, and need them as much as they need us. There will be only one mother and no one can replace a mother’s position under any circumstance. I will carry my kid whereever I go, no matter what.” This was the lament of Nalini,* a former inmate and mother of indomitable spirit, who was incarcerated when her infant was 4 mo more..

Funeral Rites

Sep 8 (CT) On Sunday, UNP celebrated its 74th anniversary at its party headquarters at Sirikotha, Kotte. The event was presided over by UNP’s first dictatorial leader Ranil Wickremesinghe. Nonetheless, this celebration was more akin to performing the UNP’s funeral rites, a Party which won eight of the 16 Parliamentary Polls or 50% of such polls, contesting either as a single Party or as the Party leading a coalition of parties and three of the eight Prez Polls, with its candidate, more..

19A no impediment to smooth functioning of Govt

Sep 8 (ST) At the time the 1978 Constitution was enacted, the left parties led by the Lanka Sama Samaja Party and the Communist Party pointed out the dangers that could befall a developing country like Sri Lanka from the governance structure that the J R Jayewardene Constitution envisaged. Left leaders like Dr N M Perera and Dr Colvin R de Silva argued that the executive presidency would facilitate authoritarian tendencies by centralising power and vesting in one individual more..