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High incidence of sexual abuse and harassment of disabled: Engineer

Mar 12 (Island) Minister S.B. Dissanayake welcomed Sri Lanka becoming a signatory to United Nations Declaration on the Rights of the Disabled Persons. He said the ratification of Sri Lankaís adoption of the declaration was a boon to many disabled persons who had been hitherto neglected. Addressing the media at the Ministry office at Sethsiripaya, he said, ďIt is the duty of all citizens to help this segment our society as facilities for them need to be improved.Ē more..

Indian ambulance service revving to go in two provinces

Mar 12 (ST) Govt is going ahead with plans to start a new ambulance service by an Indian company, despite continuing protests by GMOA. The company is conducting interviews among locals for recruitment purposes, while the ambulances are being assembled at a private factory in Colombo and will be ready for use, soon. A spokesman for the company, GVK-Emergency Management and Research Institute (EMRI) more..

Tax hikes seen giving certainty to investors

Mar 12 (EN) Recent tax hikes by Sri Lankaís govt as it seeks to raise revenue to reduce the budget deficit and a heavy debt burden provide some certainty for investors, brokers and analysts have said. The govt announced it will raise its value added tax and re-impose capital gains tax ahead of talks on a US$ 1.5-billion loan it is seeking from the IMF after running into balance of payments difficulties. The tax hikes brought down stock prices sharply this week, but the market recovered more..

Earth mound collapse kills one

Mar 12 (CT) Two labourers who were involved in the construction of a building were injured when an earth mound has collapsed on them in Kandy yesterday. Even though the two critically injured labourers were rushed to Kandy Hospital one of them has died shortly after, Police Media Unit told Ceylon Today Online. The deceased was a resident of Balangoda area aged 32 years. His remains are kept at the morgue of Kandy Hospital and the post mortem examination will be conducted today. more..

Basil denies giving money to LTTE in 2005

Mar 12 (AD) Former Minister Basil Rajapaksa rejected allegations that any deal was struck with LTTE or its slain leader Prabhakaran during the Presidential Election in 2005 and that he had never carried out such a traitorous action. In a clarification letter issued through his lawyer responding to a statement made by Minister Sarath Fonseka in Parliament recently, Rajapaksa says that it is a deliberate attempt to tarnish his image more..

No clues of Dankotuwa incident yet: police

Mar 12 (DM) No clues have been received about the incident where five charred bodies were found inside a burnt van at Buthgampola, Dankotuwa yesterday morning, Police said. Police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekara said CID has launched investigations into the incident on the instructions of the police chief N.K. Ilangakoon. ASP Gunasekara said the postmortem was yet to be conducted and that its report would help the ongoing investigations by the CID. The five charred bodies were found more..

Trincomaleeís long road from ethnic conflict to ethnic harmony

Mar 12 (ST) Seven years after the war, the Trincomalee district, one of the biggest multi-ethnic regions in Sri Lanka, is rapidly returning to its pre-war glory, with the displaced people coming back to reclaim their lands, tourism business picking up and law-and-order situation improving. In this eastern district, where the strategic port city of Trincomalee, the administrative capital, appears as an ideal ground for national reconciliation, more people now turn up at police stations to more..

Malinga Bandara not allowed to play suburban cricket final in Australia

Mar 12 (ABC) A former Sri Lankan test cricketer will not be able to play in a grand final with an outer-suburban Melbourne cricket club following a Supreme Court decision after a suspension. Malinga Bandara and the Springvale South Cricket Club launched eleventh-hour legal action on Friday to quash the leg-spinner's two game suspension handed down on Thursday night. more..

Price of flour rises

Mar 12 (NF) Price of a kilogramme of wheat flour has been increased by Rs.7.20. Chairman of the All Island Bakeryís Association, N.K. Jayawardena stated that this move was confirmed by the Prima Group. The Association charges that the govt has imposed taxes on wheat flour. When News1st inquired on the matter from the Finance Ministry itís Media Coordinating Secretary said that no such tax has been imposed on wheat flour. Furthermore, he noted that the Executive Committee more..

CKD kills 2,000 annually

Mar 12 (CT) Acknowledging the fact that kidney diseases affect millions of people worldwide including many children, the global awareness campaign is aimed at encouraging and facilitating education, early detection and a healthy life style in children, from birth, so that they are free from such health issues during old age. Diabetic nephropathy and high blood pressure are the leading cause of kidney diseases in Australia, Europe and North America. more..

CMC declares war on rats

Mar 12 (ST) Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) is to undertake a month-long rat eradication programme to combat their increasing numbers in the city, CMCís Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ruwan Wijayamuni said. The plan is a large scale rat poisoning programme to combat the menace that has led to many public complaints, Dr. Wijayamuni said. The CMC will distribute pesticides free of charge mainly in the Colombo Fort, Pettah, more..

Ratnapriya condemns VAT hike

Mar 12 (Island) Purawesi Sanvidana Ekamuthuwa (PSE), expressed its disappointment at a govt decision to increase the VAT to 15%. Convenor of the PSE, Saman Ratnapriya said PM Ranil Wickremesinghe making a special statement in Parliament had announced the govtís decision to maintain a single rate of 15% rather than the eight percent and 12.5% proposed by the 2016 Budget. The govt should make a list of what it considered as essential goods and issue a gazette notice, more..

2kg of heroin found in Valvettithurai

Mar 12 (AD) A parcel containing approximately 2 kilograms and 80 grams of heroin has been discovered hidden in a forest area at Thondamanaru in Valvettithurai, Jaffna District. The heroin was discovered by officers of Valvettithurai Police following information received regarding a suspicious parcel. No arrests have been made so far while police are conducting further search operations in the area, according to the police media unit. Police suspect the heroin, which more..

Tamil prisoners end hunger strike in SL

Mar 12 (Hindu) Tamil political prisoners, who were on a hunger strike in Sri Lanka in protest against their prolonged incarceration, ended their protest after they were assured of speedy trials. The 13 former LTTE cadres launched the hunger strike on Feb 23 demanding the govt to expedite the cases against them or release them. They suspended their fast after Minister D M Swaminathan assured them of speedy trials. more..

Freedom to love

Mar 13 (SO) What is our definition of development and social advancement if our lovers cannot visit and enjoy inspiring public places and scenic locations in their own country? And why is war and communal hostility extolled as heroism and nationalism but love and intimacy sidelined embarrassedly and even restricted on our Dharma Dveepa? Captive Europeans held in the villages of late medieval Sri Lanka were goggle-eyed at what they saw as the lewd antics of the natives. more..

Role of the opposition in the debt crisis

Mar 13 (SL) Outgoing govts of Sri Lanka have a notorious history of leaving the Treasury bankrupt and when back in the opposition accusing the new govt of burdening the people by imposition of new taxes. The Rajapaksa govt, after a near decade in power, had not only cleaned up the Treasury but left it in debt to foreign countries and institutions from which they had borrowed heavily. Now the Rajapaksas thrown out of power along with their cohorts are demanding relief for the poor and more..

Delimitation simplified

Mar 13 (SO) Committee appointed to review the 2012 National Delimitation Committee Report will complete the delimitation review and gazette its report by June this year. Chairman of Delimitation Review Committee, Asoka Peiris said it was not compulsory to review delimitation in all districts, as these districts did not submit a large number of appeals. He said the argument in certain quarters, more..

Port City

Mar 13 (Island) Nobody would have been surprised that the Colombo Port City project, on hold for the past several months, is now on the verge of resuming. Minister Malik Samarawickrema had a strategy for trickling out the information that it was taking off in the short term. Before his recent visit to China, the minister who wears a second hat as Chairman of the UNP, granted an interview to a Sunday newspaper when he revealed that the project will resume in weeks. more..

Policy reforms, mandatory for economic sustenance

Mar 13 (CT) The tax reforms that PM Ranil Wickremesinghe announced in Parliament last week, were in accordance with the Policy Statement that was also made by him on assuming office. That was to increase the direct tax ratio to indirect tax ratio from 20:80 to 40:60. This was seen as a progressive move, given that the thrust of the argument being that direct taxes are paid based on realized incomes and the ability of that segment of the market to pay. more..

'Constitution must serve country, not political parties'

Mar 13 (SL) The proposal to change the Parliament to a Constitutional Assembly was passed without a vote earlier this week. According to the govt, it is important to form a new Constitution suitable for a country with a multi-cultural, multi-lingual and multi-ethnic environment. Voice Against Corruption (VOC) Convener and JVP North Central Provincial Councilor Wasantha Samarasinghe said that it is clear to anyone more..

Parity for women, take practical steps

Mar 13 (ST) International Womenís Day has come and gone marked locally by the Prime Minister announcing that there should 25% womenís representation in local govt bodies. Not to be outdone, a former President, the first woman Head of State of Sri Lanka, said it should be 50 percent. Fortunately, the incumbent President didnít enter the bidding fray with a higher offer. In Canada, newly elected PM Justin Trudeau, son of the dashing premier of yesteryear Pierre Elliot Trudeau, more..

At what cost poetic justice?

Mar 13 (ST) My Dear Akila Viraj, I thought of writing to you because you seem to be the man mostly in the news these days, much more than Yoshitha, Champika or even Mahinda maama and that too without even being remanded or summoned before a commission of inquiry, so you are a lucky, lucky man! Akila, many people say that you are too young for the extremely responsible job you hold, but I donít agree. You may not remember this but your boss, the Green Man, was appointed as more..

Boston Lanka: March 12, 2016

Container kills girl riding pillion on boyfriendís motorbike

Mar 13 (ST) A young girl riding pillion on a motorcycle with her boyfriend, died after being thrown off her seat when a container hit them from the rear in Weligampitiya, on the Negombo Road, the coronerís court was told this week. R. Dilushika, 23, was identified as the victim Lakshitha Madumal, 25, giving evidence before the Ragama Coronersís Court, said they were heading home on his bike after work when he had to reduce speed for a SLTB bus ahead of them which slowed suddenly more..

Field Marshal Fonseka supports hybrid court

Mar 13 (SO) As anticipated, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party has launched an offensive against the political protest rally to be held in Colombo on Thursday by the UPFA parliamentary dissident faction against the proposed ETCA economic agreement being negotiated with India. In swift implementation of a party central committee decision, letters have been sent to all SLFP MPs prohibiting them from attending any rallies and demonstrations organised by other political groups. more..

Royal turn tables to win an absolute thriller

Mar 13 (ST) A resolute Royal team which was battered on day one, came back strongly on the third to score a seemingly impossible four wicket win over S. Thomasí in their 137th Big Match at the SSC grounds. A team that had scored 350 for 5 in the first innings was rolled over for a paltry 127 in their second essay. Careless batting and a confusing batting order combined to cause their rout. At the end, which came at 6.10 p.m. more..


Mar 13 (SO) Apologies, but Menika cannot shed one single tear, even a croc one, when the former President bemoans the fact of a witch-hunt against him and his family members. He accuses the govt of trailing him and his family with revenge and yes, that horrid word, jealousy and thus the inquiries and arrests and those to come. He paints himself and his extended family, more so his atomic family, as lily white and the blame is all on the govt and the institutions set up to inquire more..

The breaking of the second precept

Mar 13 (SL) According to Section 22(A) as amended in 2009 of the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance (FFPO), any person who owns, has in his/her custody or makes use of an elephant which is not registered, and a license obtained in accordance with the provisions of this section, shall be guilty of an offence and shall on conviction be liable to a fine between Rs 100,000 - Rs 200,000 or a term of imprisonment not less than 2 years and not exceeding 5 years or both such fines. more..

Presidential alert on mysterious Cabinet Paper on Ottawa Treaty

Mar 13 (CT) President Sirisena called a special meeting with PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and Minister Mangala Samaraweera ahead of last week's Cabinet meeting. The matter in hand was the controversial Cabinet Memorandum on being signatories to the Ottawa Treaty which has already received the approval of the Cabinet of Ministers. Even though the Cabinet of Ministers had given its approval when the Cabinet paper more..

Why is everyone from Tennekoon to Sangakkara backing Thirimanne?

Mar 13 (Island) One of the changes that the new selection panel did for the World T-20 was to bring in top-order batsman Lahiru Thirimanne back to the fold. Thirimanneís exclusion from the Asia Cup squad saw former greats Aravinda, Jayasuriya and Sangakkara all in unison expressing their dismay at the snub. Not even dropping Asanka Gurusinha in 1997 brought in such high profile condemnation. Compared to Gura, Thirimanne has achieved hardly anything significant. more..

Govt grapples with debt crunch

Mar 13 (Island) Despite what appeared to be a concerted effort to deflect public attention with various sideshows like Minister Sarath Fonsekaís maiden speech in parliament, and the arrest of Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka on charges of illegally keeping an elephant, the economy remained the main focus last week with the opposition even hinting at a likelihood of a sovereign default as the 1.1 billion USD currency swap with India came due. Financial media reported last Friday that India had more..

Ripple effect from VAT and other tax changes

Mar 13 (ST) Planned increases in VAT, other taxes and the re-introduction of Capital Gains Tax announced by Govt will have a ripple effect on SL society, economists say urging authorities to take proper stock of the situation. Declining foreign revenue from key sources like remittances from SL workers in the Middle East due to lower oil incomes and a likely drop in demand for foreign workers is also impacting on SLís mounting debt crisis. more..

66th Battle of the Golds: Cambrians fight back to save the day

Mar 13 (ST) The 66th Battle of the Golds between St. Sebastianís College and Prince of Wales College ended in a stalemate, adding the 57th draw of the series, at the De Soyza Stadium in Moratuwa yesterday. The Sebastianites had the wand in their hands prior to the match but the Cambrians staved off well to end the game to save their camp. Prince of Wales batted sensibly than in their first innings to reach 149 for the loss of four wickets, chasing a target of 230 runs after more..

AG advised against giving Kumar dual citizenship

Mar 13 (SL) Immigration and Emigration Department has been advised by Attorney Generalís Department not to approve Dual Citizenship to FSP leader Kumar Gunaratnam. A letter addressed to the Immigration and Emigration Department in Feb 2015 by the then acting AG Suhada Gamlath states that a request by Gunaratnam seeking dual citizenship should not be considered. The letter was sent after the Immigration & Emigration Dept sought legal advice on request made by Gunaratnam. more..

Kusal Janith Perera faces polygraph test

Mar 13 (ST) Lankan opening batsman Kusal Janith Perera who was recalled from Sri Lankaís tour of New Zealand in December last year and subsequently suspended over the usage of the banned substance nandrolone has been subjected to two more tests by the ICC, according to informed sources. It is said that the ICC authorities have carried out two polygraph tests including a Hair Test on March 8 & 9 and are awaiting the results. more..

Sri Lanka HC calls on Ishaq Dar

Mar 13 (TN) SL High Commissioner Major General (R) Jayanath Lokuketagodage called on Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar here on Saturday evening and discussed matters pertaining to bilateral cooperation. He was accompanied by Ms Wijayanthi Edirisinghe, Minister / Head of Chancery of the High Commission of Sri Lanka. Jayanath Lokuketagodage said he was pleased to assume responsibilities as High Commissioner to Pakistan. He said Sri Lanka strongly desired to expand more..

Helping educate children in the tea plantations of Sri Lanka

Mar 13 (IS) Ipswich businesswoman Melissa Day is planning another curry and quiz night, at Seckford Golf Club, for her charity project to help education in Sri Lanka. Beauty therapist Melissa has pledged to raise enough money to enable the Tea Leaf Vision, which provides education for the children of tea plantation workers, to buy a second-hand school bus to help in the work. Melissa, who was adopted, traced her birth mother and family to the tea plantations of Sri Lanka. more..

Local Polls: Delimitation process would take a year: Govt

Mar 13 (Island) The re-demarcation of electoral boundaries in keeping with the new first past the post and proportional representation mix would take about a year, govt said. Informed sources said that the Committee on National Delimitation had received a large number of complaints with regard to the manner in which the electorates had been re-demarcated under Rajapaksa regime by a select group of more..

Lacille removed after push by ministers

Mar 13 (SL) The former secretary of the PRECIFAC Lacille De Silva, was reportedly removed following pressure from two Ministers, sources said. They said that two ministers from minority political parties in the cohabitation government had warned that they would resign from the govt if Lacille De Silva is not removed. It is learnt that PRECIFAC was conducting investigations on the two Ministers and this provoked the Ministers to push for Lacille De Silvaís removal. more..

The talk of the town

Mar 13 (ST) The talk in town is the Big Event in the faster version of the game which has already begun in a neighbouring country and fans are waiting to see it either on TV or Live. Before our heroes left for the event a big tamasha took place at the headquarters with even the Big Man coming to wish the participants. All were in proper trim wearing blazers and ties and it was shocking to note that one leading participant attended the event wearing a T-Shirt! more..