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NGO operation to save Killinochchi for tigers revealed

Nov 21 (LT) Military experts have stated that tiger organization has decided to deploy maximum force to defend Killinochchi from advancing troops of S.L. Army and use the facilities left to them by NGOs which have left the area. According to 'Lanka' Sinhalese weekend newspaper the deployment of NGO offices at strategically important points in Killinochchci town had been carried out ten years ago with a plan to make use of them by tiger terrorists whenever the town is threatened by government forces. more..

SC annuls cabinet decision to hand over Aththadiya land for hotel

Nov 21 (LT) The cabinet decision and lease agreements signed between Land Reform Commission, BOI and Aththadiya Wet Park Island Resort to hand over 30 acres of land from the lands taken over at Aththadiya from private owners alleging to be used for a project to prevent floods by using it to retain rain water and construct a drainage system has been annulled by the Supreme Court. The government wanted to handover the land to the company to construct a hotel and a holiday resort. more..

New act to revamp school educational system

Nov 21 (GDI) The education system in Sri Lanka will be revamped with several initiatives scheduled to be launched next year, Minister of Education, Susil Premajayantha told Parliament. Accordingly a new act will be brought before the parliament with the necessary input of all the parties concerned in this regard, Minister Premajayantha said. He said that the number of school teachers serving in Government schools has been increased to 2,14,000 from 1,87,000 earlier. more..

Pensioners living in foreign countries asked to register with DS

Nov 21 (GDI) The District Secretary of Colombo requests all pensioners currently living abroad to inform the relevant Divisional Secretariats or the District Secretariat about their current adress through the website Mr. G.A.J. Sylvester, District Secretary, issuing a statement said that more than 4000 pensioners in Colombo District alone are living in foreign countries and at present the Government is updating a data base of Sri Lankan pensioners.

Pro-LTTE group stopped from glorifying suicide bombers in Canada campus

Nov 21 (GDI) An attempt by an organization named Tamil Students Association, operating from Durham Collage (University of Oshawa), notorious for direct links with the banned terrorist movement, LTTE, to glorify suicide bombers, was foiled after vigilant Sri Lankans living in Canada took prompt steps to notify the relevant authorities. "This student organization is under the direct influence of top LTTE terrorists in Canada. They have misled the College authorities that the scheduled event was a cultural show", more..

GMOA will rush specialists to Jaffna

Nov 21 (SAMN) The GMOA Thursday said it would send surgeons, senior anaesthetists, general, neuro and orthopaedic surgeons post haste within the next two days from the National Hospital and the Kandy and Kurunegala Teaching Hospitals on a roster basis to Pallai to treat battle casualties. All Sinhalese doctors serving in Batticaloa, Vavuniya, Mannar and Akkaraipattu had been recalled following the killing of Dr. Palitha Padmakumara, . more..

Maintain mutual trust: Alahapperuma

Nov 21 (SAMN) One must not try to look for a Tiger in the eye of every Tamil person. Misunderstandings among ethnic groups could be bridged only through mutual trust and understanding, Transport Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said. Addressing a ceremony held to mark the intake of 350 students to the Ceylon-German Technical Training Institute (CGTTI) Minister Alahapperuma said ethnic diversity has to be prominently seen at the CGTTI when the next batch is enrolled. more..

VAT scam: Official tell of odd meetings

Nov 21 (SAMN) Former Tax Commissioner A. A. Wijepala, former Deputy Commissioner Z. Jayathilake and former Senior Assessor A. W. Ambepitiya of the Inland Revenue Department had a close relationship with each other, a former Tax Officer at the Value Added Tax (VAT) branch, T. M. Samarasinghe testifying as a witness at the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into alleged fraudulent VAT refunds of the IRD said Thursday. more..

‘Not a tactical withdrawal’

Nov 21 (SAMN) The government Thursday denied reports that the LTTE had tactically withdrawn from Pooneryn. Addressing the cabinet news briefing in the parliament complex Cabinet spokesman and Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said the Tigers would have never withdrawn from Pooneryn if their camp was not over run since it was strategically important for them. “They have launched massive attacks on the security forces from there,” he said. more..

Wanni Prison gates crumbles; civilians breaking out terror rule

Nov 21 (MOD) The iron grip of terrorism that suppressed Tamil civilians in Wanni for decades is fast loosening and civilians have now started escaping the terror clutches in large numbers, special correspondent in Vavuniya reveals. 39 civilians in two groups have arrived at the Omanthai roadblock seeking protection with armed forces this morning. The first group comprising 15 males and 10 females arrived at the roadblock at 7.50 AM. more..

New mechanism to reduce textbook costs

Nov 21 (DN) The Education Ministry has introduced a mechanism to avoid unwarranted spoilage of school text books while getting the best use of school text books which are distributed free each year by the Government, spending millions of rupees. The Government allocates considerable founds every year from the National Budget for provision of free school textbooks to students throughout the country including Jaffna. more..

'Tallest Tower' in Sri Lanka to come up in Battaramulla

Nov 21 (GDI) Construction on what will be the tallest twin tower in Sri Lanka will commence with a 'ground-breaking' ceremony next week. Suchirindia, a Hyderabad based business group roots in real estate, has ventured into construction of twin towers of 40 floors and 70 floors marvel at Colombo, Sri Lanka, collaboration with NEB Rapid Infrastructure and the Government of Sri Lanka is being developed at a cost of US$ 250 million. more..

'Rs. 14 billion allocated from budget for drugs'

Nov 21 (DN) Sri Lankans can how think about a country where they can live in peace and harmony. The humanitarian operation led by the President will end soon after the heroic Security Forces clear the rest of the areas in the North, Healthcare and Nutrition Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said. Minister de Silva was addressing the gathering after presenting letters to 1,000 trainee pharmacists. more..

2 soldiers killed and 13 injured in accidental shooting

Nov 21 (DPA) Two soldiers were killed and 13 others were injured in an accidental shooting at a military training camp in north-central Sri Lanka on Friday. The incident occurred in Nochchiyagama, 180 kilometres north of the capital, where a group of soldiers was training. The area is vulnerable to Tamil rebel attacks. The incident came as government troops continued an advance into rebel-held areas in the north.

Gateway to Elephant Pass opened

Nov 21 (Island) Sri Lanka’s military offensive against LTTE terror is rapidly moving towards an end with the capture of the biggest LTTE defence complexes in the northern theatre. The 800-metre-long and eight-kilometre-wide ‘defended area’ collapsed at about 5 a.m. yesterday following a week-long assault carried out by 53 and 55 Divisions. The two Divisions which had been conducting small scale incursions targeting LTTE positions launched the long awaited attack as more..

NGOs only helped Tigers and themselves

Nov 21 (Island) Following the liberation of several LTTE held areas in the North the Government has now learnt that several non governmental organizations which were based in the North for the last two and half decades had not carried out any development work despite receiving huge sums of money from foreign countries apparently for developing areas that were not under government control. There were nearly 3,000 locals employed by these NGOs and they were paid. more..

Labrooy receives invisible blow

Nov 21 (DM) In a strange indirect move, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has virtually sacked its Chief Match Referee Graeme Labrooy, but has not informed the former Sri Lanka star officially of the decision. “I have reason to believe that I am not the SLC Chief Match referee anymore. But nothing has been intimated to me officially” said Labrooy. Labrooy said that the team of SLC Match Referees have been move backed to be under the control of the SLC Umpires Committee which means that more..

‘Demand for electricity lighter’

Nov 21 (DM) The country’s annual demand for electricity has now declined by four to eight percent, Power and Energy Minister John Seneviratne told Parliament yesterday. The minister made this revelation when the House debated the vote of the Power and Energy Ministry during the Committee Stage of the Budget. Mr. Seneviratne said this decline was due to the success in energy conservation efforts and the rise in electricity charges. more..

East doctors reject ultimatum

Nov 21 (LD) Doctors of Eastern Province who will continue to stay away from their duties by November 24th will be considered as having vacated their posts, said Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva. The minister has given the ultimatum to doctors of the province at a meeting in Colombo yesterday, where he assured of special security arrangements for them. However, the doctors have refused to accept his word, and have decided to refrain from their duties further. more..

Range Bandara asks govt stance on Pillayan remark

Nov 21 (LD) "What is the government stance on the statement made by East Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillayan over the killing of his secretary?," asked UNP MP Palitha Range Bandara. Speaking at a press briefing yesterday, he said that the government which accused the UNP of whitewashing the LTTE after stating that the outfit was not behind the killing of Maj. Gen. Janaka Perera, is silent over the Pillayan statement. more..

Sri Lanka hikes tax on petrol imports

Nov 21 (LBO) The government has increased the customs duty on imported petrol by 10 rupees per litre to 35 rupees from yesterday, a senior Treasury official says. “We are increasing the taxes to trim the extra profits the two petroleum companies are making with the sudden drop in world energy markets,” says S R Attygalle, Director General Fiscal Policy of the Treasury. “This will not have an impact on the price of petrol at the pump.” more..

Sri Lanka troops say taking more Tiger defences

Nov 21 (AFP) Security forces fought pitched battles with the Tamil Tigers and seized control of more rebel defences near their political capital in northern Sri Lanka, the defence ministry said on Friday. Troops mounted three frontal assaults against the LTTE in the main battle for Kilinochchi, the rebels' de facto capital, on Thursday, the ministry said. The defence ministry has stopped releasing details of casualties among its own troops but more..

Buddhism: Vehicles of peace

Nov 22 (FL) THE story of Buddhist art is a fascinating journey, taking us on the path of true knowledge, away from the illusions of the world. The earliest monuments of the Buddhist and Jaina faiths have a sublime representation of the spiritual quest: moving from the multiplicity of the forms of the world to the simplest form, the stupa. The railings around the stupa symbolically marked the space where we left behind the confusions and attachments of the world. Inside, we were to meditate upon the inner truth. more..

SriLankan flight makes emergency landing

Nov 22 (Hindu) A SriLankan Airlines flight from Colombo with 114 passengers on board made an emergency landing at the Cochin international airport on Thursday morning. The aircraft, UL 165, landed safely at 8.45 a.m. after the crew spotted a defunct nose wheel and alerted the Air Traffic Control (ATC) authorities here. Personnel of the Fire and Rescue Services and Central Industrial Security Force, and officials of other agencies rushed to the runway on instructions from the airport officials. more..

Sri Lanka Dockyard repair work seen hit by recession

Nov 22 (LBO) Colombo Dockyard, which is enjoying a strong order book for new vessels, might see its ship repair business affected by the slump in shipping and the global economic turmoil, an equities research report said. First Guardian Equities said in a research report that the plunge in freight rates and downturn in the global shipping industry could erode Colombo Dockyard's profitability. more..

Sri Lanka export earnings fall in September

Nov 22 (LBO) Sri Lanka's exports earnings in September fell 9.4 percent to 652 million US dollars from a year ago on lower demand from the US and other big markets, the central bank said. Industrial exports fell 15.5 percent to 467 million dollars dragged down by a 13.1 percent fall in earnings to 253 million dollars from the textiles industry, the bank said in a statement on the monthly trade performance. more..

An “alternative” report on health care in a globalised world

Nov 22 (AN) A “critical and integrated assessment of both the state of global health and the policies and actions taken to reduce global health inequalities and unacceptable levels of ill-health” is lacking, said Vinnya Ariyaratne, executive director of Sarvodaya Movement. He made the statement in Colombo where he on Wednesday presented Global Health Watch 2, a report on health care that more..

The man who refused to be His Master’s Voice

Nov 22 (GV) ‘What does Palitha Perera know about culture? He’s just a cricket commentator!’ That’s how a senior banker reacted when veteran broadcaster and journalist Palitha Perera’s name was proposed as script writer and narrator for a TV documentary series on Buddhist temple murals in Sri Lanka. When Palitha heard this, he realised how, in the minds of many Sri Lankans, he was pigeon-holed into a single niche. more..

One on One with Ambassador Blake

Nov 22 (LG) "America's experience in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere has taught us that terrorism cannot be defeated by military measures alone. That is why we have urged the Government of Sri Lanka to adopt a political solution to the conflict now that meets the aspirations of all of Sri Lanka's communities. Such a solution would hasten reconciliation and give Tamils in particular a greater sense that they will enjoy a future of hope and dignity within a united Sri Lanka. more..

Ranil gheraoed on his way back from the Temple of Lord Saturn in Thirukollikadu

Nov 22 (AT) Rani Wickremasinghe, Leader of the Opposition was 'gheraoed' yesterday, when he returned after a merit making ceremony and a special pooja at the 'Pongu Saneeswarar' Temple in Thirukollikadu village in Tiruvarur district, located in Tamil Nadu. He arrived from Chennai to Tiruchrapallai by a scheduled flight and later he went by road to the famous temple of Lord Saturn - one of the 'Navagrahas.' more..

Sri Lanka may win LTTE, not the Tamils' problem: India

Nov 22 (PTI) Even as Sri Lankan army is close to LTTE headquarters Killinochi, India feels a military "victory" would not solve the problem being faced by the island nation and the side-effects in the form of terrorism could be "dangerous". New Delhi believes that the Sri Lankan government would have to address the problem politically by giving enough space to all sections of the society there to feel comfortable. more..

Troops on the “outskirts” of Kilinochchi

Nov 22 (Hindu) The Sri Lankan military on Friday claimed to have reached the “outskirts” of Kilinochchi town, the administrative headquarters of the LTTE. The Defence Ministry said troops had reached the northern boundaries of the Kilinochchi built up and started pounding the LTTE strongholds in the Adampan area. Three LTTE bunkers and a battle trench were destroyed. The Air Force gunships carried out strikes at two LTTE gatherings near Akkarayankulam tank in Kilinochchi. more..

Paralysed woman stranded in Sharjah hospital

Nov 22 (Gulf) Hospital officials have appealed for members of the public to donate money so that an elderly, hospitalised woman can return home. Rinoka, a 52-year-old Sri Lankan woman, was found in an unconscious state by Sharjah police. She was taken to Al Kuwait hospital and diagnosed with severe health problems that have left her paralysed. It was discovered that Rinoka previously worked as a maid for a family in Sharjah. more..

Sri Lanka aim for improved showing

Nov 22 (CI) Zimbabwe's first ODI at home since December 2007 had a promising beginning but ended in disaster. Their top order laid a steady platform against Sri Lanka on Thursday, reaching 124 for 3, but they lost their last seven wickets for three runs in 3.5 dramatic overs. Zimbabwe's last six batsmen were all dismissed for 0, equalling the record for most ducks in an innings. It was a calamitous collapse that would have severely dented the confidence of a young side, but more..

The Sri Lanka Embassy in Italy to remain open on Sundays and Public Holidays

Nov 22 (AT) Sri Lanka Embassy in Rome to remain open on Sundays and even on Public Holidays. On last Sunday 16th November, Sri Lanka Embassy opened a new chapter in the history of the Consular services of an Embassy. That is, it became the first Embassy to open the doors to more than 100,000 Sri Lankans living in Italy, as it decided to open on Sundays and on public holidays. The Embassy staff benefits from enjoying the holidays declared by both the Sri Lankan and Italian Governments. more..

Sri Lankans to demonstrate in Paris on Sunday against LTTE terrorism

Nov 22 (AT) Hundreds of Sri Lankans are expected to gather at Trocadero, under the shade of the most popular tourist attraction of the world, the Eiffel Tower on November 23 to protest against the dreaded terrorist outfit, the Tamil Tigers. The demonstration, organized jointly by all the Sri Lankan associations and societies in France is scheduled to begin at 3.00 p.m. on Sunday. more..

Sri Lanka chairs ICT Committee of ESCAP

Nov 22 (AT) Sri Lanka’s representative Mr. Lalith Weeratunga, Secretary to the President, was yesterday (19) elected Chairman of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Committee of ESCAP – the Economic & Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific. The unanimous election took place at the ESCAP meeting in Bangkok which opened Tuesday (18) bringing together ICT experts and policy makers from more..

Sri Lanka High Commission in Singapore to keep its door open on Sundays

Nov 22 (AT) Sri Lanka High Commission in Singapore too has commenced Consular and Labor & Welfare Services, on every Sunday from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. from mid November of 2008. This efficacious initiative was introduced by the newly appointed High Commissioner, on instructions by the Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama. Singapore has an expatriate Sri Lankan population of approximately 23,000 out of which 15,000 of them are in the category of housemaids. more..

Sri Lanka’s Manjala makes comeback in Tour de Pakistan

Nov 22 (IN) Jeewan Manjala from Sri Lanka, while coming from behind, won the fifth and longest stage of the Tour de Pakistan International Cycle Race, conducted from Rahim Yar Khan to Bahawalpur on Friday. Unlike the past the finishing point in Bahawalpur was stretched around six kilometers, thus taking the distance from Rahim Yar Khan to Bahawalpur to 182km instead of the traditional 176km. more..

'Lists of students admitted to Grade 1 should be exhibited before Dec 5th'

Nov 22 (LT) he lists of students to be admitted to Grade 1 for next year should be completed and exhibited before the 5th of next month states a notice sent to all Principals by the Ministry of Education. According to Ministry of Education the issues regarding Grade 1 admissions have been minimized this year. Minister Prem Jayanthe has informed parents not to come to the ministry to complain about their children not getting selected to their schools of choice if more..

Grieving CVF Personnel

Nov 22 (MG) In the year 1989, 300 personnel were recruited for the CVF (Civil Voluntary Force) in the eastern province as per gazette notification 541/9 of 1989/01/18. There are about 18 people from the Sinhalese and the Muslim communities still serving as CVF in the Ampara district for the last 19 years for a mere salary of rupees 10,650/-. They say with their salaries remaining stable for the last 19 years, they are unable to cope up with the cost of living spiraling every now and again. more..

GCE O/L begin on Dec. 8

Nov 22 (MG) The G.C.E. Ordinary Level Examination under the new and old syllabi is scheduled to be held from December 8 at 4,800 examination centres throughout the country, Examinations Commissioner General Anura Edirisinghe said. The examination will continue until December 20 but will not be conducted on Sundays and on December 9 and 12 as these are Government holidays. A set of model question papers as a teachers guide relating to the Ordinary Level new syllabus has already been sent to more..

The Last of the Revolutionaries

Nov 22 (LG) They don’t make people like Reggie anymore, When I say ‘they’ I mean all the elements, conditions, and perhaps Gods too, that have the power to make men. Reggie was, perhaps the last of a host of sturdy, dedicated and colourful characters of the pioneering Leftists of Ceylon. Yes, Ceylon and NOT Sri Lanka. I had the good fortune of knowing and associating with Reggie. No, not in politics, but in his artistic and ‘gastronomic’ endeavours. more..

Magnifisyncopathlogical - Stop abusing the nation’s flag

Nov 22 (LG) A national flag is an ensign that symbolises a country. I repeat, ‘a country’. There is a great deal of protocol involved in the proper display of a national flag. A general rule is that the national flag should be flown in the position of honour. When a national flag, with some exceptions, is flown upside down it indicates distress. Even though the north of Sri Lanka is ungovernable by the government due to prolonged rebellion, it is still a part of Sri Lanka. more..

700 Jaffna University Students Without Support

Nov 22 (LG) Today, I write you for a special reason. So, hope you might take your time to listen me. I know that all of you are concerned about the fate of our Tamils who suffer day by day due to the rigorous battle in our home towns. Our people, relatives, friends and our Tamil community face untold hardship owing to the atrocities by the both parties to the conflict in Sri Lanka. I know how much Tamils in Sri Lanka, especially in Jaffna, suffer. more..

All items sent from Tamil Nadu to Kilinochchi should be checked

Nov 22 (LG) Karunanidhi is no lover of the Tamil population in Sri Lanka. If he is, he should have been in contact with Sri Lanka Tamil Politicians, such as Anandasangaree, Douglas Devananda or the Late Laksman Kadirgamar. They are perhaps not of his intellectual level. Karunanidhi was more at ease agitating with anit-Hindi , and pro Eelam Movements from his youth. He has not changed much. more..

SEP to commemorate 70th anniversary of the founding of the Fourth International

Nov 22 (wsws) The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) and International Students for Social Equality (ISSE) in Sri Lanka will hold a public meeting on November 27 to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Fourth International. The Fourth International was established in 1938 by Leon Trotsky amid the Great Depression triggered by the share market crash on Wall Street in 1929. more..

Over Rs. 22,000 million allocated for higher education

Nov 22 (GDI) Rupees Rs. 22,168.5 million have been allocated from this year's budget for the higher educational system of the country, Minister of Higher Education, Wishwa Warnapala said in Parliament yesterday (21), adding that this is an increase of Rs. 950 million over the previous year's allocation. Funds have been allocated for the construction of two new Buddhist Universities at an estimated cost of Rs. 1300 million while more..

Seruwavilla and Somawathi will be declared as World heritage sites

Nov 22 (LP) After the reconstruction work of Seruwavilla and Somawathi religious sites, they will be declared as world heritage sites through the UNESCO, announced Chief Justice Sarath N Silva after inspecting the work in progress of rehabilitation. Accordingly it is expected the two sites will be declared as world heritage sites by June of next year. The development and reconstruction work of the two sites are at present underway are sponsored by the Central Bank and Cultural Fund. more..

Health Minister in special discussion with Eastern Health officials

Nov 22 (GDI) Minister of Healthcare and Nutrition, Nimal Siripala De Silva held a special discussion with the heads of Eastern Medical institutions at the Parliamentary complex yesterday (21), Parliament Correspondent reported. The discussion, initiated on the request of Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan was mainly focused on upgrading the quality of healthcare facilities in the region. more..