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Atapattu still in contention for head coach job

Sept 21 (NS) SLC will either go ahead and appoint a permanent head coach for the national team or prune down the list of applicants further from the nine who have been short-listed for interviews through Skype by next week.The interviews was to have taken place last week but SLC CEO Ashley de Silva stated that due to some members of the 11-member special committee appointed to select the national coach not being available it has been put off for next week. more..

Kotmale profits dip due to capacity constraints etc.

Sept 21 (Island) Kotmale Holdings PLC, a member of the Cargills group of companies, has seen group profits dip in the year ended March 31, 2014 to Rs.93.4 million from Rs.116.1 million a year earlier. This followed the consolidation of the dairy sector operations within the Cargills group and capacity constraints where some of Kotmale’s branded products are now manufactured elsewhere. However, the royalty fee is being paid to the Kotmale for the use of the brand, more..

The night belonged to Josephian allrounder Sadeera

Sept 21 (ST) St. Joseph’s College allrounder and Sri Lanka Under-19s deputy skipper Sadeera Samarawickrama became the 35th Bata-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2014 at a glamorous awards ceremony held at the Musaeus College Auditorium on Friday. Sadeera becomes the second Josephian to win this coveted award since Rohan Weerakkody won it in 1987. The first runner-up was allrounder from Prince of Wales’ College, Shanuka Dulaj, the first schoolboy batsman to reach 1000 runs more..

Data issues taken up by IMF, again

Sept 21 (CT) The IMF in a new Staff Report released last Friday again highlighted several issues with the country's official data regime. Staff Report is a result of the 2014 Article IV Consultation and Second Post-Programme Monitoring Mission that concluded earlier this year, and data issues discussed in the report were also highlighted in last year's report. IMF said macroeconomic statistics were broadly adequate for surveillance, but weaknesses more..

Lankan medal prospects good at Asian Games

Sept 21 (NS) Sri Lanka who returned home empty-handed at the last Asian Games are hopeful that its contingent of 80 athletes would put up a better performance in the nine sports they will participate at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea. Sri Lanka’s medal prospects lie in athletics with javelin throw champion Nadeeka Lakmali and 400m women’s champion Chandrika Subashini. Both are in good form with their recent performances. more..

Lakmali keen on living up to expectations

Sept 21 (Island) Asian Games is the only major international event the national javelin record holder Nadeeka Lakmali has not taken part in during her more than decade old athletics career. In Incheon, when she makes her debut she is one of the few medal prospects that Sri Lanka has. The thrower trained by A.J. Rodrigo (junior) has competed at Asian Grand Prix, Asian Championships, Commonwealth Games, IAAF World Championship and at the Olympics. She has won Asian Grand Prix and medals at more..

Uneasy limbo prevails at Maitland Place

Sept 21 (ST) Definitely there is a buzz in the air and a hum in the corridors. No 35 Maitland Place, Colombo 7 is back at work after a short limbo. Or is it an optical illusion like the famous Muralitharan action which was responsible for over two thousand victims at the end. Right now there appears to be calm after the storm. This impasse did not take place because our cricketers were on the decline or their payments were getting late. more..

Sri Lanka rugby 'at the crossroads’

Sept 21 (NS) Just as her players found their feet and rediscovered their potential, Sri Lanka’s rugby administration has realised it can no longer hide the fact that without a platform or what it calls “scientific infrastructure” there is very little or nothing the country can do with an eye to the future.The scenario may be puzzling to outsiders with players eclipsing the administration and taking their place on the field as finished products, but the Sri Lanka Rugby Union can more..

Post-election opposition alliances and govt’s wardrobe malfunctions

Sept 21 (SL) This week is of pivotal importance to all the political parties in Sri Lanka who are vying for power. The outcome of the Uva PC election will be a key factor that determines the timelines of two national level elections in Sri Lanka, i.e. the Presidential election in 2015 and the Parliamentary election which will be held subsequently. Although the govt is confident about victory at the Uva PC election it is doubtful about the winning margin. more..

'Inviting new HR high commissioner a step in right direction'

Sept 21 (SL) With developments taking place with the investigations on the war by the OHCHR and the stand to be taken by the new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, the Witness Protection Bill is a much talked about subject. Minister Rauff Hakeem says that Sri Lanka is a party to UN Human Rights mechanism and President Rajapaksa inviting the new High Commissioner to Sri Lanka is a positive step in the right direction. more..

Indo-Lanka relations after Xi’s visit

Sept 21 (Island) The reason why Indo-Sri Lanka relations were on a particularly good footing during the Bandaranaike era between 1956-1965 and 1970-1977 is because under the Bandaranaikes Sri Lanka had a foreign and domestic policy that was identical to India’s. During that period, both India and Sri Lanka had the same friends overseas. Both countries associated more with the socialist camp than with the capitalist camp. Last week, thanks to the Chinese President’s visit to Sri Lanka and India, more..

The Scotland vote and Sri Lanka

Sept 21 (NS) On the face of it, the referendum held last week on the future of Scotland and therefore the future of the British union, has some relevance for Sri Lanka. After all it was about separation. This is why it excited the Eelamist commentariat. The fact that the Scottish people chose, by majority, to remain in the union need not dampen their enthusiasm because the ‘unionists’ bent over backwards to offer concessions and the ‘losers’ can demand that they deliver. more..

'Tamils want to keep their identity, cultural practices'

Sept 21 (SL) TNA has been pushing the govt to re-merge North and East as stated in the Indo-Lanka Accord. At the recent Convention of the ITAK, they also passed a resolution to launch a non-violent campaign if the govt fails to consider merging the two provinces by the end of this year. TNA MP Suresh Premachandran pointed out that the govt is spending unnecessarily by having separate provincial council administrations for the North and East whereas more..

JR’s legacy enlivens paradise politics

Sept 21 (ST) My Dear JR, I thought of writing to you as people are talking about you once again, perhaps because it was your birth anniversary this week. In doing so, they seem to realise that even though 25 years have now passed since you left office, your influence on Paradise is as great as it was back then. First there is this issue about the Constitution you introduced 35 years ago. What is funny about it is that when in opposition, everyone promises to abolish it but more..

Anagarika Dharmapala: 150th Birth Anniversary

Sept 21 (ST) On cue with the Chairman of the Anagarika Dharmapala Trust writing to the newspapers saying that the vision, mission and ideals of the national icon, Anagarika Dharmapala must not be confined just to his birthday on Sept 17, President Rajapaksa this week announced that the next 12 months would be ‘Dharmapala Year’. It is a fitting tribute to a personality who inspired the national freedom movement in the latter part of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries, more..

'People in East don’t need to merge with North'

Sept 21 (SL) Re-merging the North and East is an issue which is of no concern not only to the Tamils in the two provinces but also to the Muslims and Sinhalese living in the East. Former Chief Minister of the Eastern Province, Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, better known as Pillayan, feels the issue is being raised once again purely for political reasons and not in the best interest of the people living in the North and East. more..

Sri Lanka in the Asian Century

Sept 21 (NS) In his classic work of historical sociology, ‘The long twentieth century,’ Giovanni Arrighi uses the term ‘long century’ to connote eras of domination, tracing the unfolding of capitalism through the fortunes of Florence, Venice, Genoa, the Dutch, English and finally the USA. The twentieth century, the last of the 7 centuries long relationship between capital accumulation and state formation, belonged to the USA, there’s no argument there. more..

The Uva election

Sept 21 (Island) By the time you read this commentary, you would hopefully know who had won or lost in the Uva, what kind of voter enthusiasm has been displayed as indicated by the turnout and, most importantly, if there has been violence and/or cheating. Unfortunately the latter is far too common at elections in this country and the situation gets worse and not better at each succeeding poll. The political will to end that is sadly lacking as evidenced by more..

'FDI inflows increased during President Mahinda Rajapaksa's tenure'

Sept 21 (SO) Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena said the total number of Foreign Direct Investments(FDIs) gained by Sri Lanka from 1978 up to 2005 was US$ 3 billion. However, US$ 8 billion worth FDI inflows have come in during President Rajapaksa's tenure from 2005 to 2013 which is a 74% increase in FDIs. He said when we look at the past, all former governments expressed confidence over Europe as they thought the world was under Europe. more..

Scottish verdict: Better together than unnecessary risks

Sept 21 (SL) The outcome of the referendum on Scotland would have been one great disappointment to those regions and secessionist groups waiting to break away from their mother country and to those who have been waiting for the collapse of the British Empire for long years – although the Empire disappeared well over half a century ago. It was welcomed by stable democratic countries, particularly of the Western bloc and even less affluent developing countries would have welcomed the survival of Britain. more..

President, the architect of new Sri Lanka

Sept 21 (SO) Now that the Uva PC elections have concluded, the focus will be on the next Presidential election and the Parliamentary general elections. Unlike earlier Presidents, the incumbent President Rajapaksa invariably held elections ahead of schedule. The Opposition hopes that the two elections scheduled for 2016 could be advanced to early next year. Although President Rajapaksa could continue as the Head of State till Nov 2016 and the UPFA Govt with a two-thirds majority more..

High voter turnout recorded at Uva poll

Sept 20 (CG) A high voter turnout was recorded at the Uva PC elections held today and Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya said he was satisfied with the overall conduct of the polls in the Monaragala and Badulla Districts. The Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) was among those involved in the election monitoring process during the Uva elections and it published a list of some of the incidents recorded during more..

Google brings turn-by-turn navigation to SL

Sept 20 (AO) Google has silently rolled-out turn-by-turn navigation support in Maps to 19 new countries including neighbouring Nepal, Mauritius, and Sri Lanka. The other countries include Angola, Bahamas, Bolivia, Botswana, Fiji, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Malta, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania, and Trinidad and Tobago. Android (and iOS) users in these countries will now be able to get free spoken turn-by-turn directions in Google Maps app. more..

Warnings over fatigue as expressway claims more victims

Sept 20 (ST) Thirty-two-year-old Krishantha, lying on a bed at the Colombo National Hospital, lost his right leg below the knee in the freak accident on the Southern Expressway last week that also claimed the right leg of parliamentarian Ajith Mannapperuma. Krishantha is the UNP MP’s police-appointed security officer and has 12 years of VIP security service for political leaders such as former defence minister Anuruddha Ratwatte and former presidential contender Sarath Fonseka. more..

Did not wish Modi on B'day due to Xi's Gujarat visit: Rajapaksa

Sept 20 (PTI) President Rajapaksa on Saturday told two visiting BJP leaders that he deliberately refrained from wishing PM Narendra Modi on his birthday because he did not want to disturb the Premier with Chinese President Xi Jinping visiting Gujarat. BJP national secretary P Muralidhar Rao and the party's global convenor of overseas affairs Vijay Jolly held a 45-minute meeting with Rajapaksa at the Presidential Palace. more..

President visits Thondaman at hospital

Sept 20 (AD) President Mahinda Rajapaksa today visited Sendil Thondaman, at the Colombo National Hospital, who suffered injuries following a road accident in Bandarawela. The medical condition of the politician is now stable, a spokesperson from the hospital said. One person died and 18 other supporters of Thondaman were injured in the accident which took place at Bandarawela town, on 17 September. Thondaman’s driver was arrested over the accident, on 18 September. more..

UK to utilise Sri Lanka ODI series for WC

Sept 20 (CG) England fast bowler James Anderson is looking forward to the forthcoming One-Day International (ODI) series against Sri Lanka in the latter’s backyard in November as an ideal platform for preparation for the upcoming World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. “Leading up to a World Cup we’ve never had that focus on one-day cricket. It’s nice to have that and I think with the one-day game we’ve got a promising squad, a very promising squad,” Anderson was quoted more..

BJP leaders meet Rajapaksa; discuss issues of Tamils in Lanka

Sept 20 (PTI) Two senior BJP leaders today met President Rajapaksa here and stressed that the pending issues relating to Tamils in Sri Lanka need to be resolved within the framework of the country's Constitution. BJP national secretary P Muralidhar Rao and the party's global convenor of overseas affairs Vijay Jolly held a 45-minute meeting with Rajapaksa. During the meeting, Rao underlined that the settlement of the pending Tamil more..

Teachers’ Unions at loggerheads over long overdue promotions

Sept 20 (ST) Trade unions are in a war or of words over school principals’ promotions on the eve of the Uva Provincial Council elections, with a pro-government union claiming that the government has agreed to resolve the issues, but a rival trade union disputed the claim. The Sri Lanka Independent Teachers’ Union (SLITU) claimed that the Education Minister and officials, at a meeting held this week, agreed to several demands proposed by the Union. SLITU President, Wasantha Handapangoda more..

Four soldiers killed at Ambepussa camp

Sept 20 (CG) Four soldiers were killed after an earth mound collapsed on them at the Sinha Regiment camp at the Ambepussa army camp this evening. The army media unit said that the soldiers were on a tractor are were engaged in some work when the earth mound unexpectedly fell on them. Soldiers at the camp rushed the four injured soldiers to the Warakapola hospital but they were pronounced dead on admission. Army Commander Daya Ratnayake has ordered a full investigation more..

Experience: I was on a plane that blew up

Sept 20 (Guardian) In May 1986, I went on a diving holiday to the Maldives with my husband, Robert. We were travelling with other British people, all sitting together at the back of the plane. When the plane, an Air Lanka Tristar, made a transit stop in Colombo, Robert and I were given boarding passes to move to the front of economy. The rest were given the same seats as before. The plane was on the tarmac and I was just more..

Set for Peace 2014 Sri Lanka at Park Street Mews on Sunday

Sept 20 (FT) Peace starts with individual action, and your actions will inspire others. So, what will you do on Peace Day, 21 Sunday Sept? Who will you make peace with? Calling DJs and promoters around the world to celebrate Peace Day – Saturday 21 Sept, DJs will be asked to play a ‘set’ in the name of peace and promoters will be asked to dedicate their event to Peace Day. The vision is to hear the DJs of the world, from conflict zones to nightclubs, to the front rooms of our homes, more..

20% have voted by 10.00, UPFA continues to violate election law – NEM-IHR

Sept 20 (LT) The Network for Election Monitoring of the Intellectuals for Human Rights (NEM-IHR) in a press release on complaints it has received until 10.30 a.m. Reports following information: Enthusiasm to vote could be seen in both Badulla nd Monaragala districts since polling commenced today at 7 a.m. Our monitors have reported large numbers of voters coming to polling stations to cast their votes. They have reported that by 10 a.m. about 20% of the votes have been cast. more..

Maldives asks for Sri Lanka’s help in obtaining specialist doctors

Sept 20 (Haveeru) Maldivian President Yameen Abdul Gayoom on Friday asked for Sri Lankan govt’s help in obtaining aestheticians, gynecologists, and pediatricians needed for Maldivian hospitals. In a meeting held with Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena, President Yameen said that the lack of specialist doctors was the biggest challenge faced by Maldivian health sector, and noted that the sector was now more..

Goa to Sri Lanka: From blessed Vaz to Acharya Kosambi

Sept 20 (TOI) Well-deserved celebration in Goa as the longstanding candidature of native son Joseph Vaz has finally been approved for sainthood. He will be "the first saint to Sri Lanka" but the Vatican noted "since Blessed Joseph Vaz was born, educated and ordained a priest in India and opted to be a missionary in Sri Lanka, both the countries have special significance at his being raised to the honours of the altar." The Benaulim-born priest, a son of Sancoale, exemplified personal more..

Bakery owners ready to cut prices

Sept 20 (DM) All Ceylon Bakery Owners' Association (ACBOA) said the prices of bakery goods could be reduced if the benefits of the recent fuel and electricity tariff reduction was passed on to them by wheat flour providing companies. “Flour providing companies have benefitted from the fuel and electricity tariff reduction. So if they reduce flour prices, we can also reduce the prices of our products,” ACBOA spokesperson N.K. Jayawardena said. He also urged the govt to reduce more..

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