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Survey finds Ranil has more support than Mahinda

Aug 4 (CG) A survey conducted by the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA), has found that Ranil Wickremesinghe has more support to be Prime Minister than Mahinda Rajapaksa. CPA conducted an island wide pre election opinion poll with the objective of identifying Sri Lankan voter perceptions and attitudes on key topics being discussed in the lead up to the election and thereby contribute to the current political discourse. more..

Sri Lanka should overhaul state agencies, give easy services to public: PM

Aug 4 (EN) Sri Lanka has to overhaul state agencies so that public would be able to get services and approvals from the state more easily in a new administration, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. A three year law would be brought to restructure state agencies so that the public can get state services from fewer places, he told an economic policy forum organized by Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. "How many organizations do we have supporting exports? And how much do we export? he questioned. more..

Kotahena casualty not army sampath

Aug 4 (CT) Fourth victim of election related violence was reported yesterday when Niroshan Sampath, died yesterday following critical injuries he received during the Bloemendhal Road shooting in Kotahena last Friday. Although reports circulated that he was Army Sampath, Police denied this claim. Police Media Spokesperson ASP Ruwan Gunasekara said that the deceased is not an underworld figure and the CID is currently conducting investigations into the matter. more..

TNA’s election manifesto: Full text

Aug 4 (AD) “We, the Tamil People of Sri Lanka are a distinct People in terms of relevant International Conventions and Covenants. We as a People want to continue to live in our country in peaceful co-existence with others, with dignity and self-respect, with freedom and liberty and without fear, as equal citizens free from majoritarian hegemony,” the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) said in its parliamentary election manifesto. more..

Deputy FM slams former FM

Aug 4 (CG) Deputy Foreign Minister Ajith Perera accused former Foreign Minister, G.L Peiris of telling lies with regards to a leaked UN report on the investigations over the war. Perera insisted that there was no such report and if there was then Professor G.L Peiris should make it public instead of making unsubstantiated claims. “We do not know how Professor G.L Peiris got such a report and from where he got it. If he has such a report he must release it to the media. more..

Rishad issued notice on Wilpattu issue

Aug 4 (AM) Court of Appeals today issued notice on Minister Rishad Bathiudeen to appear in court on Sept 16 with regards to a writ petition filed by the Centre for Environmental Justice against the illegal clearing of Wilpattu and illegal settlement on the adjacent area. Centre for Environmental Justice petitioned the Court of Appeal on July 16, seeking a writ order against the clearing of the Wilpattu National Park and illegal settlement of people in the adjacent areas. more..

Litro sends letter of demand to Bandula

Aug 4 (AD) The Litro Gas Lanka Ltd sent a letter of demand to former Minister Bandula Gunawardena demanding Rs. 1 billion in damage over several remarks made against it. Litro Gas Lanka Executive Chairman Shalila Moonesinghe has sent the letter of demand on tuesday. In a statement issued recently, Litro Gas said, “Bandula Gunawardene who was silent on the corrupt practices of ex-President now sheds more..

Killer of Jaffna woman still at large

Aug 4 (Island) Colombo Crimes Division (CCD) and Pettah police had thus far failed to arrest the suspect, who is alleged to have killed 34-year-old woman identified as Rangan Karthika, whose body was dumped after it was secreted inside a travelling bag at the Pettah Bus Terminal on the Bastian Road, ASP Gunsekara said. The mother of the victim, who reached Colombo from Jaffna after her daughter’s picture was published in the media, had identified the killer as the victim’s paramour more..

Muslims have stopped believing scare stories against Mahinda: Azwer

Aug 4 (Island) Muslims were rallying around the UPFA in spite of scare stories being spread against Mahinda Rajapaksa by the UNP, JVP, TNA, JHU and other parties in the election campaign. The Muslims of Kurunegala were attending the UFPA campaigns in large numbers as never seen before, said Former Minister addressing a gathering of Muslims at Wilgoda Kurunegala. A.H.M. Azwer said that UNP and its allies were carrying out a vicious campaign against Mahinda Rajapaksa; more..

Sri Lanka has to free consumers, liberalize factor markets, slash state controls: PM

Aug 4 (EN) Sri Lanka has to move to the next generation of reforms, liberalizing factor and product markets and also reduce state controls and approvals that hold back entrepreneurs, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said. SL has import duties and other controls on poorer consumers that benefit businesses and also controls on services and domestic markets that businesses themselves has to wade through to get simple approvals. more..

CBK’s SLFP membership in question

Aug 4 (CT) General Secretary of the UPFA Susil Premajayantha said that the party membership of former President and SLFP patron Chandrika Kumaratunga will be discussed at the first central committee meeting following the election. Addressing the media, Premajayantha said that if the party membership of several SLFP members were suspended because they joined the UNP, action against Kumaratunga who is supporting them must be taken as well. more..

Colombo might become a Chicago : UPFA

Aug 4 (DM) UPFA charged that the Colombo city which recorded a high development rate would soon become a city like Chicago where there are frequent clashes because of the UNP administration. UPFA Colombo District candidate Wimal Weerawansa said the city was developed at a high rate due to the action taken by the previous govt and alleged the actions of the UNP administration were detrimental to the city because the UNP had allegedly involved with underworld figures. more..

Sharma calls for credible polling, vote-counting

Aug 4 (CG) Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma has called for credible polling and vote-counting in Sri Lanka during the August 17 Parliamentary election. A team of Commonwealth observers led by the former President of Malta, Dr George Abela, will be deployed to Sri Lanka for Parliamentary Elections scheduled for 17 August 2015. The Commonwealth Observer Group was constituted by more..

Stuffing political henchmen to Sri Lanka private banks could end

Aug 4 (EN) The stuffing of political appointees to private banks using voting rights of stocks bought by state-controlled funds will end if end independent wealth management trusts are set up, Deputy Economic Policy Minister Harsha de Silva said. The UNP is proposing independent trusts to manage Sri Lanka's Employees Provident Fund and Employees Trust Fund, where trustees will be appointed by a proposed constitutional council if they come to power after August polls. more..

Pro-Mahinda group wanted to form separate party: SB

Aug 4 (DN) Wimal, Dinesh and Gammanpila group had plans to form a separate party led by Mahinda Rajapaksa and contest the general election under the Lotus Bud Symbol. Similarly, those who left the SLFP before the presidential election to support Maithripala Sirisena influenced President Sirisena to deny nominations to certain individuals to contest the general election. This created many divisions in the SLFP led UPFA, Minister and UPFA candidate S.B. Dissanayake said. more..

Video: UNFGG denounces Kotahena shooting

Aug 4 (DM) The UNFGG today denounced the Kotahena shooting incident in which two people lost their lives and said no candidate should be involved with underworld figures during their election campaign. UNFGG Kalutara District candidate Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe said if any candidate sought the assistance of underworld figures, the act should be denounced completely. more..

CB Governor must be sacked: Former CJ

Aug 4 (Island) Former Chief Justice Sarath Nanda Silva said that the bond scam was an insider job and dishonest scheme with the Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran was a part of it, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe was in it, he added. "There was absolutely no need to go for a 30-year-bond." "It was a case of insider working with outsider and the country being the loser." the former CJ said. Silva said, the govt should remove Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran from his office more..

Rishad’s party eats into SLMC vote base

Aug 4 (Island) Expanding the reach of his party All Ceylon Makkal Congress to the Eastern province for the first time, ACMC Leader Rishad Bathiudeen has taken his battle to the bastion of SLMC. He said: "In the Northern Province, our party, the ACMC is contesting with the UNP. Seeing the sad political situation of the Muslims in East, my party has arrived in Ampara to contest and as a result we are taking on SLMC’s home-base without coalescing with any mainstream parties. more..

Video: UPFA wants Ranil et al to take poison

Aug 4 (DM) UPFA said it was illegal for the PM to lay the foundation stone of the Central Expressway. “This is the Northern Expressway that we planned and wanted to implement. They have instead changed the name and called it the Central Expressway," SLFP Spokesman Dilan Perera said. Having been informed of the plans to lay the foundation stone, UPFA had complained to the Elections Commissioner, who had more..

Shares slip from near 6-month high

Aug 4 (Reuters) Sri Lankan shares fell on Tuesday from their highest in nearly six months as investors booked profits following a four-day rally on hopes of political stability after the Aug. 17 elections. The index has gained 6% in nearly a month through Monday as investors picked up risky assets, also on expectations of strong corporate earnings. The main stock index was 0.32% weaker at 7,313.01 by 0702 GMT, slipping from its highest level since Feb. 13 touched on Monday. more..

Premier railway station without canteen facility since January

Aug 4 (Island) Fort Railway Station has been without a canteen for the past six months. It was closed since February this year due to a financial dispute between the canteen owner and the Railway Department. Commuters were had to buy their food from the small boutiques around the station. But, those who arrive at the station as early as 5 am to catch morning trains were greatly inconvenienced, a railway worker said. Previous canteen owner had failed to pay the rent of Rs. 100,000 more..

President expresses satisfaction about improved cooperation with Turkey

Aug 4 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena thanked Turkey for the steps taken to strengthen bilateral relations and cooperation. He said Turkish construction companies have partnered in several construction projects including a housing project in Mannar where 100 houses were built. He made this comment when the outgoing Turkish Ambassador Iskender Okyay paid a farewell call on President Sirisena at his official residence today. more..

Lankan Tamil, wife attempt suicide

Aug 4 (Hindu) A Sri Lankan Tamil housed in the special camp in the Tiruchi prison campus here reportedly attempted to end his life by consuming sleeping tablets on Monday. His wife, who had come to meet him at the camp, also consumed sleeping pills. Maheswaran (35), said to be a supporter of the banned LTTE, was booked in a Explosives Act case by the Q Branch CID, of Chennai City in 2012. Case is pending trial. Maheswaran’s wife Prashanthi came to meet him at camp as a visitor on Monday. more..

'Rajapaksas’ Colombo development a farce'

Aug 4 (DN) The naked truth of the lie propagated by both Mahinda Rajapaksa and Gotabhaya Rajapaksa came into limelight in the words of the husband of Siththi Nazima who died in the shooting incident in Kotahena on Friday, Deputy Minister Eran Wickremarathne stated in a communique. He said Nazima’s husband told PM Ranil Wickremesinghe who visited the grieving family that they live in a rented house and occupy the upper part of the house built with wooden planks which more..

Tiger Diaspora backs Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam led TNPF in polls

Aug 4 (DBS) Valvettithurai is a place that has figured prominently in the politics of Sri Lankan Tamils. Valvettithurai is a coastal town along the Vadamaratchy littoral region of the northern Jaffna peninsula. VVT as Valvettithurai is generally referred to acquired a notorious reputation at one time as the hotbed of smuggling. In later years Valvettithurai became known as the nursery of Tamil militancy. more..

Criminals and politicos

Aug 4 (CT) Last week's machine gunning of supporters of Minister Ravi Karunanayake at Colombo in broad daylight which left one dead and 13 injured is a reflection of the serious breakdown in the law and order situation in the country. No civilian is authorized to possess an automatic weapon. But the shooting had allegedly been done with the gunmen using at least one automatic weapon. The fact that these gunmen were in possession of automatic weapons, which weapons only the more..

The 19 amendment & dual citizenship

Aug 4 (CT) Maithripala Sirisena became the President, winning the Presidential Election held on Jan 8. As he promised before the election, he introduced the 19th Amendment to the Constitution within a brief period, making a favourable ground for the functioning of democratic system, which had collapsed during the previous regime. Unfortunately, some regressive elements in SL politics have somehow managed to insert a particular legal provision to this remarkable Amendment, more..

Police trace owner of car used by gunmen

Aug 4 (Island) CID had been able to identify the owner of the car that was used to shoot UNP supporters campaigning for Minister Ravi Karunanayake near St. Benedict’s College playground on the Bloemendhal road last Friday (31), ASP Ruwan Gunasekara said. Another victim, 36-year-old Niroshan Sampath of Stace Road, Grand Pass, Colombo 14, succumbed to his injuries yesterday at the National Hospital Colombo. more..

Major Sri Lankan parties reject TNA’s demand for federalism

Aug 4 (Hindu) Major political parties in Sri Lanka have flatly rejected the TNA’s demand for federalism. SLFP-led UPFA; UNP-led UNFGG and the JVP have, in unison, said the demand, if accepted, would lead to division of the country. Certain terms will be interpreted to convey different meanings in Sri Lanka, said Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, general secretary of SLFP. Federalism is one of them and if you say federalism, people more..

Rajapaksa fears undoing of his work in ending LTTE's campaign

Aug 4 (PTI) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa accused PM Ranil Wickremesinghe's UNP of working to undo his legacy by working hand in glove with the main Tamil minority party TNA. "I do not know what agreements have been worked out between the two parties. I fear if the country would see separation as a result," he told an election rally. Former president is running for a seat in the parliament in the election. more..

BOI to ink deal with 4 investors for US$ 4b

Aug 4 (DN) The Board of Investment of Sri Lanka (BOI) will sign agreements with four major foreign investors to setup factories to the tune of US$ 4 billion. “These foreign direct investments would be a gantry crane factory with ship building facility at the Colombo Port, monorail and control centre, ship breaking project at Hambantota and the Volkswagen car assembly project that are to be signed soon,” BOI Chairman Upul Jayasuriya said. more..

Tamil issue comes to the fore in SL elections

Aug 4 (ENS) In Jan 8 Presidential election, main issue was corruption and authoritarianism associated with UPFA regime. But in the run up to Aug 17 parliamentary elections, opposition UPFA has brought to the fore the issue of Tamil separatism & militancy, putting ruling UNFGG on the defensive. UPFA speakers, including former President Rajapaksa, are shouting from roof tops about a revival of the LTTE through its proxy TNA. more..

Coal Tender: PAB refuses to sit

Aug 4 (DM) The fifty billion rupee per year tender to supply coal to the Lakvijaya power plant into Norochcholai for three years has run into a yet another controversy with the members of the Procurement Appeal Board (PAB) refusing to sit following allegations made in the media against the PAB by Power and Energy Ministry Secretary Dr. B.M.S Batagoda and a member of the Standing Cabinet Appointed Procurement Committee. more..

'MR’s corrupt forces are history'

Aug 4 (DM) Minister and General Secretary of the UNFGG and Colombo District candidate Champika Ranawaka spoke to the on the upcoming general elections. Q: On what basis have you all joined hands with the UNP headed by Ranil Wickremesinghe? A: Even during the past, a party has always been a raft to us. Even Lord Buddha has said that the Philosophy of Buddhism should be used as a raft and that it shouldn’t more..

UPFA divided and crest fallen; Raja Rata turning green

Aug 4 (ST) Anuradhapura District is where former President Mahinda Rajapaksa decided to kick-off his election campaign as the virtual leader of the UPFA, SLFP-led coalition. This inaugural rally last month at the Salgado stadium drew large crowds. Like all major party rallies nowadays, crowds have to be drawn from outer areas making political assessments based on crowds at rallies no longer an accurate estimate of popular more..

Saudi employer offers Sri Lankan housemaid for sale online

Aug 4 (E24|7) A Saudi employer offered his SL housemaid for SR25,000 (Dh25,00) in an advertisement he published on a local auction website. Employer wrote in the ads that he wanted to end the contract with the 30-year-old maid and that she wants to work for another employer in the Gulf Kingdom for one more year before returning to her home country. He said in the advertisement that the maid is good in dealing with children. more..

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