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Sri Lanka: A haunted nation – The social underpinnings of communal violence

Oct 26 (CT) “The film has revealed a lot to me about people seated in power, people who are supposed to be above biases. These people are so frightened. I think one of the basest of all things is fear. Fear erodes the individual. Fear erodes the Nation, the spine of the Nation. People are frightened. The bureaucrat who’s frightened to take action – I can get angry with this kind of person for some days, but then I can also see there is some sort of shadow looming over his or her head that more..

In Che’s shadow

Oct 26 (CT) Political analysts say that in the absence of a charismatic leader to lure the youth to the once-revolutionary party, the JVP is now trying to market the charisma of Ernesto Che Guevara, to attract the youth as the party has fallen into the political dustbin. As part of its rejuvenation attempt, the Party organized the 'Che Riders' motorcycle parade to commemorate the Argentinean revolutionary leader. more..

Editorial: Thieves of lives

Oct 26 (Island) No crime or sin could be worse than robbing a dying person of his medicine, doubly more so when the victim happens to be a child. This exactly is what the local agents of a drug company and some pharmacists have done at the Cancer Hospital. They have stolen several phials of an expensive drug manufactured in the US—each costing about Rs. 237,000—administered to cancer patients, especially children, and resold them to the hospital through the same supplier. more..

State Reform in Sri Lanka: Issues, Directions and Perspectives

Oct 26 (Island) With the recently concluded NPC Election, the issue of state reform is back on the agenda as the TNA that stands explicitly for federal system of governance was able to win the majority seats in the NPC. Mr Vignesvaran of the TNA was sworn in before President Rajapaksa as the Chief Minister of the NPC. It is certain that the NPC will ask for the full powers of the Provincial List of the 13th Amendment to the Second Republican Constitution the full implementation of more..

From poets’ muse to principal in Jaffna

Oct 26 (ST) In February 1917, William Butler Yeats received a letter from a close female friend living in Ceylon and wept after reading its contents. “Last December I became an Amazon and my left breast and pectoral muscle were removed. Now my left side is a beautiful slab of flesh adorned with a handsome fern pattern made by a cut and thirty stitches which were ‘put in’ by the eminent surgeon of Colombo, Dr [Samuel Chelliah] Paul.” more..

‘Oye, ojaye’... no way cricket keliya for Veddahs

Oct 26 (Island) It is not often that a minister gets it right today, but I must say the Minister TB Ekanayake has got it just right when he has fumed at Veddahs playing cricket, which he says is bad for their culture. No doubt there must be the elders in the Veddah community who are more familiar with their culture and what could really threaten it today than the minister. Yet the minister was no doubt talking with his own knowledge of what cricket has done to Sinhala or Sri Lankan culture. more..

Tanya to premiere two new compositions at St. Martin-in-the-Fields

Oct 26 (DBS) In the few years since she was discovered “quite by accident,” Tanya Ekanayaka has proven it is possible to gracefully storm the international stage. From New York to London and to our little island, her star as a concert pianist is steadily rising. Tanya’s next solo recital will be a free lunch-time concert (1 p.m.-2 p.m.) on Oct 25, at St. Martin-in-the-Fields in London as part of the ‘Pianists of the World’ series, where she will premiere two of her new compositions. more..

Sri Lanka's resilience masks medium-term credit risks: Fitch

Oct 26 (DM) Sri Lanka is the only twin-deficit country in Asia having a growth unaffected by currency volatility, according to Fitch Ratings. Fitch cites this relative currency stability to a less open onshore capital account that provides insulation from volatile global capital flows, as well as the country’s increasing ability to tap offshore global bond inflows. The Rupee appreciated to a three months high of 130.55/60 to the dollar more..

Trade Union Front urges President’s intervention

Oct 26 (Island) Trade Unions affiliated to the National Labour Advisory Council (NLAC) has requested President Rajapaksa to bring about a justifiable settlement to he dispute at Ansell Lanka (Pvt) Limited in the Biyagama EPZ where 11 employees, it said had have been unlawfully terminated. The Secretary of the Free Trade Zones and General services Employees Union (FTZ & GSEU) Anton Marcus told ‘The Island’ Financial Review that the NLAC was deeply concerned more..

Chilean expertise for Lankan agribusiness

Oct 26 (FT) Sri Lanka, with its aim to boost trade and attain economic prosperity, has much to learn from Chile, a country that has much in common with our own in terms of geographical size and island-like positioning by looking into its growth through the agribusiness sector. Even though only 2% of its land area is recognised as being ‘useful’ for agriculture, Chile has managed to successfully shift its trade positioning from what it was through economic reforms to become more..

'President has kicked off ‘Smart Sri Lanka’ at right time'

Oct 26 (FT) President Rajapaksa has introduced the next ICT strategy ‘Smart Sri Lanka’ at the right time and any business or socio-economic new phase has to be launched at the right time for it to bear maximum dividends, said Founder and CEO of Mobilian International Ralph Simon. Simon was participating at the World Summit Award 2013 conference kickoff on Thursday. With peace restored to the country, Sri Lanka is currently at more..

Luxury mega yacht "Sea Dream II" on maiden voyage to Sri Lanka

Oct 26 (Island) SeaDream II, the luxurious mega yacht of the Sea Dream Yacht club USA will sail into Colombo on 1st November on her maiden voyage to Sri Lanka as part of her Asian Voyage experience. With over 50 cabins and 100+ staff members on board to look after their passengers, the uniqueness of a holiday on board the Sea Dream yacht is a very personalized service. It also offers a very close networking opportunity amongst the guests themselves and / or being secluded more..

Southern Expressway segment to Matara to be opened in January

Oct 26 (FT) The Govt has scheduled to declare open the second phase of Southern Expressway in January 2014. President Mahinda Rajapaksa will declare open the second phase of the expressway from Galle to Matara on 26 January 2014, Minister Dullas Alahapperuma announced. According to the Minister, 90% of the construction work on highway has been completed by now and work is in progress to complete the two entry points. more..

Sending housemaids to West Asia to cease

Oct 26 (Island) The govt has planned to put an end to sending women as housemaids to West Asia soon, Minister Dilan Perera says. Women taking up overseas jobs had declined by 12%, while male workers had increased by 29% during the period of January to September this year, when compared to the same period last year. In 2012, 106,106 male workers and 105,050 female workers had gone abroad between January and more..

200 detained for demanding India boycott CHOGM

Oct 26 (PTI) Over 200 activists belonging to various outfits were today detained after they picketed befofre the British Deputy High Commission and central govt offices here demanding India boycott the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Colombo. Holding placards demanding the Commonwealth of Nations to suspend Sri Lanka for its alleged human rights violations against civilians during its war against LTTE, they raised slogans against the central govt. more..

Colombo - Katunayake Expressway opens tomorrow

Oct 26 (DN) The long felt need of a high mobility link between the BIA, Katunayake and the capital Colombo will be realized tomorrow with the opening of the Colombo - Katunayake Expressway (CKE) by President Rajapaksa. The quick transit the Expressway offers between the BIA and Colombo with enhanced safety will help boost the country's economy in addition to providing pleasant travel for road users. The 25.8 Km long Colombo Katunayake Expressway is a four lane user-fee more..

ICT super highway empowers Colombo-Katunayake Expressway

Oct 26 (FT) Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) said yesterday it has been chosen to provide consultancy services as well as oversee and inspect the Colombo-Katunayake Expressway (CKE) project’s communication infrastructure and issue an independent certification for fibre optic installation to assure its capacity to handle many terabytes per second along the 25.8 km long Expressway. This has been awarded to SLT more..

Factories outside BoI zones to be monitored

Oct 26 (CT) The govt has decided to establish a monitoring body for the purpose of inspecting the factories located in and outside the investment zones. As disclosed by Director, National Authority on Chemical Weapons Convention (NACWC), Dr. Rohan Perera, the proposed body is to function under the purview of the Ministry of Industries and Commerce. After receiving the Cabinet approval, the Legal Draftsman’s Department will be advised to draft rules and regulations pertaining to more..

'Kariyawasam’s remarks not in good taste'

Oct 26 (Hindu) Union Minister G.K. Vasan on Friday said Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner Prasad Kariyawasam had overstepped his bounds by commenting that only those who did not participate in the CHOGM would face isolation. At a time when pressure was mounting from Tamil Nadu on the Central govt to boycott CHOGM, especially after the State Assembly adopted a resolution in this regard, Mr. Kariyawasam’s remarks were not in good taste. “It is an important issue involving a lot of more..

Sanath Jayasuriya's wife files for divorce

Oct 26 (PTI) Former captain and Sri Lanka Cricket selection panel's current chairman, Sanath Jayasuriya's wife has filed for divorce, lawyers said today. Anoma Gunathilake, the attorney for Sandra Jayasuriya said action had been filed for malicious desertion in the district court of Colombo on Oct 23. She said the defendant will be served notice and a hearing will be fixed thereafter. Jayasuriya, a former national captain is more..

NCPA acts against probation officers

Oct 26 (CT) The All Island Probation Officers’ Union staged a protest against the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) Thursday for taking legal action against some of the probation officers, who have allegedly abused children. Deputy Chairperson of the NCPA, Sujatha Kulatunga, said: “With regard to the behaviour of the members of All Island Probation Officers Union, who had staged a demonstration in front of the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA), on Thursday more..

New Zealand pull McCullum, Taylor out of Sri Lanka tour

Oct 26 (AFP) Senior New Zealand cricketers Brendon McCullum and Ross Taylor will sit out next month's tour of Sri Lanka so they can prepare for the upcoming home Test series against the West Indies, chief selector Bruce Edgar said on Saturday. The pair will return home after the current tour of Bangladesh with 23-year-old Kane Williamson replacing McCullum as captain in Sri Lanka where New Zealand will play three ODIs and two Twenty20s. more..

Theft of children’s cancer drug: Company blacklisted

Oct 26 (Island) The Health Ministry has blacklisted Omaxs Healthcare and interdicted five pharmacists attached to the Maharagama Cancer Institute (MCI) following the discovery of a major cancer drug racket. Health Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayathilaka said that the Investigation had revealed that the local agents of Omaxs Healthcare, with the assistance of the five pharmacists, had, after selling the cancer drug, known as ‘Oncasper’, more..

Live telecasts will restrain MPs

Oct 26 (CT) The giant LED screen set up at the Jayanthipura car park to telecast Parliamentary proceedings live is just the first step in airing an uninterrupted flow of live Parliamentary debates to the public, Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody said. It is also hoped that the live broadcasts will serve to restrain parliamentarians and would encourage them to refrain from engaging in unruly behaviour while at Parliament. Weerakkody pointed out the uniqueness of the live-casts in more..

Editorial: Engaging for a fair settlement

Oct 26 (Hindu) In calling for a “complete boycott” of the CHOGM in Colombo, the TN govt has lost a great opportunity to help calibrate India’s Sri Lanka policy. For starters, it seems unlikely that New Delhi will stay away from CHOGM: with President Rajapaksa finally coming through on his promise to hold the NPC elections, it would be unwise for India to disengage with his govt at this critical juncture. The NPC election was a legitimate exercise that saw the TNA emerge victorious. more..

'Chandrasiri must go'

Oct 26 (CT) Chief Minister of the Northern Provincial Council (NPC), C.V. Wigneswaran, yesterday at the inaugural session of the NPC reiterated his call for the removal of Maj. Gen. G.A. Chandrasiri from his post as the Governor of the Northern Province. Gen. Chandrasiri was in the audience when the Chief Minister delivered his inaugural speech. “The people in the Northern Province do not want a military official serving more..

Businessman shot in Puttalam

Oct 26 (CT) Two individuals have shot a businessman close to the Mannakulam Lake along the Puttalam – Mannar road and had stolen Rs 500, 000 from the victim and fled the area. The businessman who was shot last night was admitted to the Puttalam Base Hospital following the incident and was later transferred to the Colombo National Hospital. The incident has occurred when two individuals covering their face had shot the businessman who is a retail store owner, more..

New Dept. to manage ‘Sea City’

Oct 26 (CT) The govt is planning to set up a separate department to manage the proposed new town, to be established on a 400-hectare land at the Galle Face Green. This new town will be formed on a land near Galle Face. Senior urban planners had pointed out to the govt that new rules and regulations are required to construct the new town. They had emphasized that the management of the new town cannot be kept under the UDA as new laws should be drafted with regard to the more..

Noble start in north!

Oct 26 (FT) The NPC met for the first time in Jaffna yesterday, with Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran making a passionate call for demilitarisation in the region and citing serious lapses in the 13th Amendment, but pledging to use his huge electoral mandate to push for reconciliation in the former conflict zone. The inaugural session of the first-ever NPC was held at a newly-constructed building in Kaithady, Jaffna, that was opened earlier in more..

Random thoughts on the politics in Sri Lanka after 2004

Oct 26 (CT) Politics of Sir Lanka is undergoing serious changes in the last decade. These changes have shaken the very foundations of the major pillars of the post-colonial hegemonic edifice of Sri Lanka. Two of such pillars are the two-party equilibrium system and the North-South equilibrium system. The objective of this presentation is to map the post-colonial political landscape in Sri Lanka in relation to these two equilibrium systems and shed some light on the changes that are more..

Rise and fall of university education

Oct 26 (CT) In 1962, Sri Lanka’s elite university, University of Peradeniya, was ranked 52nd among the top universities in the world. Those were the heydays of Peradeniya. Two schools of thought, one inspired by legendary professor and literary icon, Prof. Ediriweera Sarachchandra, and the other, a rather elitist one, inspired by another legend, Prof E.F.C. Ludowyk of the Department of English, shaped the intellectual landscape of the Faculty of Arts. By then, Peradeniya, which was more..

National Policy sought for private transport

Oct 26 (SL) Looking forward to the Budget for the year 2014 that is to be delivered to Parliament on Nov 21, many trade unions, youth movements and other business entities have already submitted their proposals to the Ministry of Finance and Planning. In the Budget for 2013, an amount of Rs 44 billion was allocated for public transport, which was lesser than the amount allocated to transport in the previous budget. more..

Southern education Minister shares success behind Grade 5 Scholarship Exam

Oct 26 (ST) The Southern province had the most number of students who obtained marks above the cut off point at the year five scholarship exam, with 4702 students achieving the feat, an analysis of the results has shown. Hambantota district marked the highest per centage of students who exceeded the cut off point with 13.89 followed by Vavuniya – with 13.1% and Kurunegala 12.43%. One of the programmes which helped more..

Defeated Kandy Jumbos in legal wrangle over preferential votes

Oct 26 (Island) A group of eight UNP candidates who failed to get elected to the Central Provincial Council at the Sept. 21 polls, have filed a fundamental rights application in the Supreme Court, seeking a recount of preferential votes polled by UNP candidates. The group called a media conference on Thursday. They had prayed in their petition for the Court to declare their Fundamental Rights, under article 12(1) of Constitution, more..

Sri Lanka coconut milk ‘Arayuma’ wins Fair Trade award

Oct 26 (LR) A special award was presented to the company Arayuma recently in Toronto for their product “Premium Organic Coconut Milk”, voted “Canada’s Favorite Fairtrade Product for 2013” by a large number of Canadians during Fair Trade Fortnight. The Fair Trade Fortnight is an annual two-week blitz celebrating and promoting all Fair Trade, taking place during May 1st to 15th. Fairtrade Canada presented this award to more..

Sri Lanka has to cut budget deficit, boost rule of law, for growth: economists

Oct 26 (LBO) Sri Lanka has to reduce its budget deficit to boost domestic savings and improve rule of law to create a better environment for investment, economists said. Reduction of budget deficits will increase domestic savings, reducing the dependency on foreign borrowings for investments, A V de S Indraratne, chairman of Sri Lanka Economists Association and a former professor of economics told members of the more..

Can’t create different police force for a certain race - IGP

Oct 26 (AD) Responding to comments made by the Northern Chief Minister that Tamil-speaking policemen should be recruited to serve the people in the Tamil-dominated Northern Province, Police Chief today stated that different police forces cannot be created to suite a certain race. IGP N.K. Illangakoon stated that different police forces cannot be created to suite different races and that all function representing all communities in the more..

Pakistan Naval ships arrive Colombo

Oct 26 (AAP) Two Pakistan naval ships PNS NASR and Khaibar will arrive at Colombo Port on Sunday on a four-day goodwill visit. As part of goodwill, Pakistan Navy ships frequently make port calls on Sri Lanka and these visits are aimed at further strengthening the defence relationship between Sri Lanka and Pakistan. Sri Lanka is an important regional country and Pakistan Navy accords great importance to cooperation with more..

TNA tells CM to boycott CHOGM

Oct 26 (CG) The TNA has told NP Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran to boycott the CHOGM. Constituent parties of the TNA had reached a conclusion that the party must boycott the summit and the stand has been officially communicated to Wigneswaran. A three hour discussion was held between the constituent parties of the TNA last evening where the future of the NPC and other political issues were discussed. more..

Malaysian opposition wants to boycott CHOGM

Oct 26 (Star) DAP wants Malaysia to join Canada and India in boycotting the CHOGM in Colombo in protest of Sri Lanka’s human rights abuses. “Malaysia must boycott this as a humanitarian protest against The recalcitrant Sri Lankan govt’s stubborn refusal to account for the deaths of tens of thousands of Tamils during the closing stages of the Sri Lankan civil war.” DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng said in a press statement more..