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Unified cancer treatment in Jaffna

Oct 19 (MoD) The difficulties under gone by cancer patients in Jaffna has been to a great extent diminished by the unified cancer treatment. Ample facilities have been created with the assistance of the government and northern provincial council in the Jaffna Teaching Hospital for the patients to get treatments, Medical Officer in charge of the Jaffna Teaching Hospital's Cancer Treatment Unit Dr N Jeyakumar said. Treatment for cancer patients is now done in more..

Kalmadu Sri Murugan Kovil reopens

Oct 19 (MoD) The reconstructed Sri Murugan Kovil in Kalmadu Unit II was handed over to Hindu devotees in a function held yesterday, 17th October. The Kovil had been destroyed by the LTTE terrorists as it was utilized by the terrorists for their activities for over a decade. The Kovil was reconstructed by the 611 Brigade deploying in the area under 61 Division. It is significant that after 12 years Hindu devotees living in more..

Can we ever be an 'Open Society?'

Oct 19 (DM) “In this globally inter-dependent world, we must work together where we can and constructively counsel each other where appropriate.” – President Mahinda Rajapaksa. In an Open Society, government is constantly evolving and is open to criticism and change; a society that is able to tolerate new ideas and different modes of thought and action. The concept of “open society” was originally developed by the early philosophers. more..

When the 'South' surrenders with or without 'white flags'

Oct 19 (SL) The famously speculative “white flag” case against SF with FJ continuing on the witness box, cross examined by Defence Counsel is now into controversies more on publication than on FJ’s reporting. What is this case about? This case has SF as the man who commandeered the war, accused and charged for making provocative statements creating unrest and communal problems in the country and inconveniencing the government. more..

CGR facilitates access to Stations by disabled persons

Oct 19 (GDI) The Department of Railways will make special provisions in the northern railway stations to facilitate differently-abled persons, Several railway stations destroyed during the war period in the North are being renovated and the new facility will be iinstalled in all stations when reconstruction works are implemented. The aim of this initiative is to create an environment where more..

Lankan constitution and democratic rights

Oct 19 (TC) "Questioning the law and speaking the truth cause fear of death in our country. There is a large number of institutions of law, and also there are commissions, orders and circulars in abundance. But only justice is scarce. Rather than disappearing corruption, the person who exposes it disappears. Anybody may get injured without an attacker. Any body may disappear without an abductor. Three media institutions were set on fire. more..

Sajith Premadasa : Question or Answer ?

Oct 19 (LG) We voted in governments who did not listen to its populace since independence. We closed our eyes when our very rights as democratic citizens were pilfered right in front of our very eyes. And we continue to buy the canard that successive governments are interested in the aspirations of the common people. Our leaders belonging to two major parties whose members kept switching sides as and when it suited them have hoodwinked us for well over six decades and still counting. more..

'I could be arrested if drugs are planted in my house since i'm in the Opposition'

Oct 19 (NF) Ranjan Ramanayake, the United National Party parliamentarian, who was remanded, was released on bail today. Ranjan said that he could be arrested if drugs were planted in his house or his jeep since he was in the Opposition, while Karu Jayasuriya, Deputy Leader of the UNP described Ranjan's arrest as a result of the country's conniving, hateful and vengeful politics. more..

The sex lives of politicians

Oct 19 (SL) In Sri Lanka the third rail is sex. It’s an issue no one touches, like the electrified third rail on a railway. In Sri Lanka sex ‘scandals’ are simply not discussed. Extra-marital affairs, homosexuality, pre-marital rape, these all get brushed under the rug. A politician’s sex life is their business, for better or worse. Prominent members of the opposition are reportedly gay. Some are obviously homosexual, former fashion designers making gay jokes in Parliament. more..

A tale of love and affection unfolds in Mahiyanganaya

Oct 19 (SL) In a world where some mothers abandon their newborns in street corners and garbage dumps, a tale of love and affection is reported from Mahiyangana. The mother squirrel was jumping and running around to protect her little one from the marauding crows hovering overhead, when suddenly, the little squirrel fell off. The mother looked in horror at the little one falling to his death from the tree tops but more..

Reconciliation through ‘Rehabilitation’ & ‘Reintegration’ of Ex-LTTE members: Separating fact from fiction

Oct 19 (GV) Once in a while you may have seen local media reports about persons referred to as former combatants or members of the LTTE. These reports were probably either based entirely on content sourced from a state official or written by apparatchiks. Or you might have read one of several interviews given by the Commissioner-General of Rehabilitation (CGR), the self-styled patriarch/paternal figure Brigadier Ranasinghe. more..

New Sri Lankan civil war photos threaten to overshadow Britain visit

Oct 19 (Telegraph) The photographs, which showed blood stained bodies of young men and women who had been blindfolded and had their hands tied behind their backs, were released by the Global Tamil Forum (GTF), a group which includes former supporters of the Tamil Tiger rebels. Their release was timed to coincide with the visit of Professor G.L Peiris, the Sri Lankan foreign minister, who will meet William Hague on Wednesday. more..

IFJ calls for probe into assault

Oct 19 (BBC) The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has called on Sri Lanka government to take immediate action against the police officers accused of assaulting a group of journalists covering a student protest. Five journalists covering the Inter University Students’ Federation (IUSF) demonstration were attacked after they reported police used undue force to break up the protest on 14 October in Colombo. more..

'What Gen. Fonseka requires is justice not pardon'

Oct 19 (TC) Having just returned to the country from travel overseas I wish to express my disapproval and disappointment with the recent sentence and imprisonment of Gen. Sarath Fonseka. Today it is evident to many citizens that Gen. Fonseka has been denied the opportunity of a fair trial as well as the due process of law and it is this breach of the law that needs to be rectified. Consequently what Gen. Fonseka needs is not pardon but justice. more..

Editorial: Who will guard the guards?

Oct 19 (Island) The government is happy that its writ runs in all parts of the country. But, there are still several places that need to be liberated. They are the trouble-torn universities and the overcrowded prisons. The seats of higher learning must be freed from the clutches of student thugs wreaking havoc and the prisons from the corrupt officers who are running separate states of sorts behind tall walls. more..

Editorial: Erik Solheim

Oct 19 (DM) The news reports that Erik Solheim is to pay a visit to Colombo and that UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe is slated to meet him shortly in Oslo have disturbed some quarters. Such is the antipathy that the most of the people have for the former peace broker that many prefer to ignore the fact that President Mahinda Rajapaksa held talks with him on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. more..

'Only solution for economic crisis is creating people’s economy based on socialist policie'

Oct 19 (LT) Solutions for the present burning economic crisis could be found only from a people’s economy that is based on socialist policies says the JVP MP Anura Dissanayake. Addressing a seminar under the theme ‘The blown up economic development and its festering crisis’ he said, “The government is creating an illusion of a development. more..

Lanka has benefited from FTA with India

Oct 19 (Island) Department of Commerce Director General Gomi Senadheera said the Indo-Sri Lanka Free Trade Agreement (ISFTA) has been positive for Sri Lanka. The country has benefited from the trade agreement more than India. He said that the trade balances of the two countries have been significantly negative for Sri Lanka, but it’s not due to the ISFTA, he pointed out. He said the total trade between the two countries has grown significantly more..

Crash course schools heading for trouble

Oct 19 (ST) Tutories that have mushroomed countrywide, like fast food outlets, to offer “crash courses” in practically everything from “modern English” to speaking the Queen’s language in just 24 hours or making computer wizards out of unsuspecting youth, are in trouble. Youth Affairs Minister Dallas Allahapperuma wants to order a crackdown on these modern day “fast learning” outlets. “They are the cause a lot of youth losing their money in fraudulent exercises,” more..

'Govt., opposition fighting like cats and dogs'

Oct 19 (NF) Head of the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research, Singapore, Professor Rohan Gunaratne says that the government and the Opposition, instead of working together on matters of national security, foreign policy and also economic development, are fighting like cats and dogs. He made this comments in an exclusive interview with Shameer Rasooldeen of Newsfirst on Direct Talk. more..

Sri Lankan ambassador a fraud?

Oct 19 (SL) Representing country overseas undoubtedly has its plus points. Being an ambassador necessitates being a symbol of sorts of the country you represent — a good, law-abiding citizen. Unfortunately, it is looking increasingly likely that one of our own ambassadors has indulged in a little law bending (or perhaps just taken advantage of the ubiquitous red tape in government organisations.) more..

Sri Lanka urged to become part of global supply chain

Oct 19 (LBO) Sri Lanka must integrate itself with global production processes and markets instead of trying to produce everything itself, W A Wijewardena, a former central bank deputy governor, has said. Emerging global production processes enable one part of a product to be made in one country, another part in another country, and the whole product to be assembled in a third country. "We have to be part and parcel of the global production process rather than more..

Rogue radio station busted

Oct 19 (DN) Kalpitiya Police yesterday discovered a radio station which had been operating from a secret chamber in the Kalpitiya Market complex in the heart of Kalpitiya town. This radio station covering an area of 15 km from the Kalpitiya town was operating without a valid licence from the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission. Programs were aired on FM 96.1 - 96.2. A powerful transmitter, sound control devices, powerful antenna, laptop computer and 14 CDs were taken into custody by the Police. more..

Ganja, phones among women prisoners

Oct 19 (DM) A search operation of the women inmate’s quarters of the Welikada prison had unearthed 44 ganja cigars, 53 mobile phones and three knives. The Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB) conducted the search after obtaining a search warrant from the Maligakanda Magistrate. All 464 women inmates were searched by the PNB with the assistance of prison officers. They also recovered 100 phone batteries and 66 phone chargers during the search. more..

Peace in balance as clan rules supreme

Oct 19 (TA) IS Sri Lanka entering a long postponed period of welcome stability and prosperity - or will the brutal way that the 26 years civil war was won pollute the peace irredeemably? Only 18 months after the government forces finally cornered the Tamil Tigers - and many civilians caught up in the fighting - and wiped out the leadership, including the dominant figure of Velupillai Prabhakaran, it is too soon to tell. more..

'All parties in UK ready to help Sri Lanka today'

Oct 19 (DN) All parties in the United Kingdom stand by you and are ready to help Sri Lanka today. We are happy that terrorism has gone away from this island; that reconstruction, rejuvenation and reconciliation is the order of the day, said Paul Murphy MP (Labour), leader of the visiting Parliamentary delegation from the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) UK, when they met President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees last evening more..

Sri Lanka hailed as destination for film producers by movie 'Location Guide'

Oct 19 (PR) Sri Lanka has earned a rave review as a destination for movie and broadcast productions in the 2011 edition of The Location Guide, the film industry's bible for selecting movie and commercial production locales. The latest edition of The Location Guide featured a separate "Focus" on Sri Lanka, highlighting the island's natural beauty, a film-friendly government and its reasonable production costs. The Guide noted Sri Lanka's wildlife parks, more..

Indian Bank gets RBI nod for branch in Jaffna, Sri Lanka

Oct 19 (ET) State-owned Indian Bank today said it has got approval from the Reserve Bank India to open a branch in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, and expects the branch to be functional by the end of December. "We have just got licence from RBI for opening a branch in Jaffna and we are in process of seeking approval from the Sri Lankan authorities for the same," Indian Bank Chairman and Managing Director T M Bhasin said after inaugurating its 1,800th branch Noida (UP). more..

Did Sri Lanka throw away youth match?

Oct 19 (DM) Questions are being raised in cricket circles whether the Sri Lanka Under-19 team on a recent tour of England threw away their fifth and final one-day match in order to catch a flight back to Colombo. Sri Lanka went into the match leading 2-1 after a game was washed out. England batting first scored 184 in 48.5 overs and chasing the target Sri Lanka were 43 for 5 when rain intervened and the target was revised to 177 in 41 overs. more..

First Lankan pilgrims arrive

Oct 19 (AN) The first group of 350 Sri Lankan Haj pilgrims arrived at Jeddah's Haj Terminal via Saudi Arabian Airlines on Sunday. Sri Lankan Ambassador Ahmed A. Jawad and Consul General Sabarullah Khan received the pilgrims. “This year, Sri Lanka will send an enhanced number of pilgrims since the government's reduced Haj package has attracted a larger number of pilgrims,” said Jawad. Sri Lankan Haj operations this year have been streamlined through a more..

Rural teachers to get better schools in 2011

Oct 19 (Island) According to a decision taken by Bandula Gunawardena, Minister of Education, steps will be taken from next year onwards to transfer government school teachers who had served more than 08 years in the same school. According to sources, there was a dearth of teachers in many remote schools in the country, while there more teachers in popular and urban schools. "Teachers serving in remote schools were unable to get transfers to urban schools more..

U.S. convicts Singapore man in Tamil Tigers arms plot

Oct 19 (Reuters) A federal jury in Baltimore has convicted a Singapore national of conspiring to provide weapons to Tamil Tiger rebels operating in Sri Lanka, the U.S. Justice Department said on Monday. Balraj Naidu, 48, was charged in a conspiracy to provide material support to the rebel group designated in 1997 by the U.S. Department of State as a foreign terrorist organization. more..

EPF Act to be amended

Oct 19 (Island) Minister of Labour Gamini Lokuge said that since Cabinet approval had been obtained to grant 30 per cent of the funds lying to the credit of an employee as a loan, a Bill would be tabled in Parliament to amend the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) Act no-15 of 1958. The Minister said the amendment would be included in the Order Book when Parliament met on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Superintend of EPF Rupa Dheerasinghe said that once the amendment was passed in Parliament more..

Bangladesh business delegation to visit Sri Lanka

Oct 19 (Island) A business delegation from the Sri Lanka – Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SLBCCI) is scheduled to visit Sri Lanka from October 28 to November 1, with the objective of increasing investment and trade opportunities, Head of Chancery at the Bangladesh High Commission in Colombo, Mir Akram Uddin Ahammad said. President of the SLBCCI Harikesha Wijesekera said that the visiting delegation hopes to initiate linkages that would lead to more..

New role but same old Murali

Oct 19 (CI) Muttiah Muralitharan's team-mates expect no lessening of the offspinner's powers as he begins life as an international limited-overs specialist. Murali, 38, retired from Tests in July with a record 800 wickets and after taking a break has been increasing his load ahead of engagements with Australia over the next three weeks. He is part of the squad that has just landed in Australia, more..

Sinhala families welcomed by Jaffna intellectuals

Oct 19 (DM) Yarl Analytical and Research League, a Jaffna-based body of intellectuals, has stressed at a meeting that Sinhalase families who fled the embattled North in the past should be resettled in their original places of residence. The League met in Nallur over the weekend to discuss the matter of some 100 to 120 Sinhala families seeking resettlement in Jaffna. Some 100 individuals including some resettled Muslims participated at this meeting, more..

Special sittings on LG Bills

Oct 19 (DM) Six Provincial Councils (PCs) will hold special sittings today to discuss the Local Government Electoral Reforms Bill. Minister and government Chief Whip Dinesh Gunawardana said this came in the wake of President Mahinda Rajapaksa having directed provincial governors to obtain the approval of the PCs within the course of this week. Uva Governor Nanda Mathew said the WPC met yesterday to debate and approve the Bill while more..

Sri Lanka central bank keeps policy rates unchanged

Oct 19 (LBO) Sri Lanka's central bank will maintain benchmark interest rates at current levels as inflation remains low, credit flows are picking up and economic growth strong, a statement said. The Monetary Board of the bank at Monday's meeting decided to maintain the Repurchase rate and the Reverse Repurchase rate at 7.25 percent and 9.00 percent, it said. "Economic growth remains robust and broad based with all sectors contributing to the expansion of output," more..

No justice for slain Sri Lankan journalist

Oct 19 (AP) A media watchdog on Tuesday demanded justice for a Sri Lankan journalist killed 10 years ago and called for an end to impunity for those linked to the government. Mayilvaganam Nimalarajan was shot dead at his home in the country's northern region at the height of a civil war between government troops and separatist Tamil Tiger rebels. Media advocates have blamed a pro-government militia. more..

President shuns North TNA parliamentarians

Oct 19 (TN) Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa has failed to invited the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians of the North to a meeting related to ‘Development of North’ in Vavuniyaa Sri Lanka Army (SLA) Joseph Camp Tuesday, deliberately keeping away the elected representatives of the people from participating in the meeting, TNA parliamentarians of North accused. more..

Tamil migrants' derelict cargo ship rusts in port as investigation continues

Oct 19 (VS) Surrounded by marinas full of luxury yachts and sailboats in Nanaimo Harbour, the derelict ship that carried almost 500 Tamil migrants to Canada stands out like a sore thumb. The rusting 193-foot MV Sun Sea arrived in the harbour Friday from Colwood, where it had been docked since August. It will be berthed at the Nanaimo Shipyard for up to six months while the Canada Border Services Agency continues its investigation into more..

TNA opposes proposed poll Bill

Oct 19 (DM) The TNA yesterday expressed its objection to the proposed Local Authorities Elections (Amendment) Bill which provides for the conducting of elections to the local bodies under a mix of the Proportional Representation system and the First Past-the Post system. The party’s parliamentary group today discussed the pros and cons of this new piece of legislation to be introduced by the government very soon. more..

Shame on all citizens, says UNP

Oct 19 (DM) Jailed DNA Leader and former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka yesterday requested the opposition to work together to save what he called the fading democracy in the country and to fight against the injustice done to him. The former Army Commander raised this point when UNP MPs Mangala Samaraweera and Ravi Karunanayake visited him at the Welikada prison yesterday. more..

Most rice varieties lack nutrition value

Oct 19 (Island) Eighty percent of the types of rice available in the market have a low nutritional value, a recent survey by the Health Ministry has revealed. The survey conducted by the Non -Communicable Diseases Unit of the Health Ministry has found that 2.5 kg of bran from every 22kg (1 bushel) of rice is discarded during husking and polishing in rice mills. more..

'Sri Lanka to relax foreign-exchange controls in a few weeks'

Oct 19 (BN) Sri Lanka plans to ease foreign- exchange rules in the “next few weeks,” the nation’s central bank governor said, after keeping interest rates unchanged today to support economic expansion. “In the next few weeks, we are going to be relaxing some of the exchange controls that we have, which means there will be basis for outside growth as well,” Ajith Nivard Cabraal said more..

'We are not prepared to endorse Govt.'s attitude by accepting the Parliamentary Seat'

Oct 19 (LT) Mr Tilvin Silva, General Secretary of the JVP said that Mr Lakshman Nipunaarachchi will not accept the Parliamentary seat of former Army Commander General Sarath Fonseka. Mr Silva further stated that Mr Nipunaarachchi has been informed by the Secretary General of the Parliament to take oath in Parliament on 19, 20 & 21. But the JVP will never accept this seat because it belongs to General Fonseka who more..

Eleven heart patients die in 6 weeks after surgery at SJH

Oct 19 (Island) Eleven patients suffering from heart ailments have died following surgery at the Sri Jayewardenepura Hospital for the past six weeks. They died in wards while recuperating. The Island learns that the airconditioners in the separate theatre, where heart operations are performed, are not suitable for operating theatres. Two Cardiologists had taken up the matter, more..

Mihin Lanka being granted new 250M loan - UNP

Oct 20 (AD) The Bank of Ceylon has released another loan of 250 Million rupees for Sri Lanka’s budget airline Mihin Lanka to purchase another aircraft, UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake charged. He questioned as to why the BOC would grant a loan to an airline that has already faced losses of over 33 Billion rupees. He said that at the start Mihin Lanka was provided with 500 million rupees by the Bank of Ceylon as initial investment and more..

Sleepless in Sri Lanka

Oct 20 (HT) An sms found its way to me during my recent stay in Kolkata: "it’s good that Ram got some part of the land because Sita now has a travel agency, Laxman might retire after the Australia series, Ravan is a commercial flop and there is peace in Lanka." In fact, almost everyone I met – I had returned home for the first time since the civil war got over in May, 2009 -- asked me ""what is the situation after the war?" more..

Sri Lanka minister slams 'colonial' rights groups

Oct 20 (AFP) Sri Lanka's foreign minister Gamini Lakshman Peiris rejected "colonial" criticism Tuesday of a government-appointed civil war probe, after foreign rights groups snubbed an invitation to attend. New York-based Human Rights Watch, London-based Amnesty International and Brussels-based International Crisis Group last week accused the panel of a cover-up and refused an offer from Colombo to appear before it. more..