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Video: Over 100 shops destroyed by fire in Kilinochchi

Sept 17 (AD) More than a hundred small shops were destroyed in a fire which broke out at the common market near the Depot Junction in Kilinochchi. Police said that the fire erupted at around 9 pm last night and the flames had destroyed most of the shops as well as their contents. The flames were doused in a joined effort by the Kilinochchi fire brigade, army, air force and police personnel. Prevailing dry weather condition more..

Customs workers unhappy with Ravi K’s new act: Country loses 1 billion in a day

Sept 17 (CT) The country is reported to have lost at least Rs. 1 billion as a result of a trade union action taken by the workers attached to the Sri Lanka Customs who went on sick leave bringing the operations at Orugodawatta and other inspection points to a standstill. Even though the trade unions representing the customs workers had made repeated requests for a meeting with Minister Ravi Karunanayake, they had not been given a time citing that the minister was busy. more..

Minister calls for report on road project following ST story

Sept 17 (ST) Minister Fasizer Musthapa is to call for a report from the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) about the slow progress of the road construction project around Thurstan Road, Royal and Thurstan Colleges and the Lionel Wendt Theatre. “I will look into the matter of the delay in the work,” Mr. Musthpaha said. The Sunday Times last week exposed the delay in carrying out the project and the inconvenience caused to parents who come to drop their children at the schools, more..

Moragahakanda displaced threaten fast-unto-death

Sept 17 (CT) Moragahakanda People's Rights Protection Movement said that people who were evicted to make room for the Moragahakanda Project will stage a fast-unto-death unless they were provided with the basic facilities for living. Their demands include supplies of safe potable water and all facilities needed to continue unabated with their traditional agricultural activities in arid lands of 600 acres in Thorapitiya more..

Bilateral agreements in galore after ETCA

Sept 17 (CT) In the face of opposition by certain groups against the proposed Economic and Technological Cooperation Agreement (ETCA), the govt is hoping to sign several bilateral economic and trade agreements with Asian countries from next year. Apart from the discussions already underway with China and Singapore to sign economic and trade agreements, the govt is now setting its sights on Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand to explore the possibility of FTAs with these countries. more..

Fearful Weerawansa spills the beans

Sept 17 (CT) A fearful MP Wimal Weerawansa pin pointed the exact location of the mass graves related to the last phase of Sri Lanka’s civil war. MP Weerawansa exposed this exact location when he met the Malwatte chief prelate Ven. Thibbatuwawe Sri Siddhartha Sumangala Thera in Kandy a few days ago. He feared that under the new government’s policies the former President Rajapaksa, his brother Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa whose self-claimed accolades of more..

JVP Press conference

Attack on Ambassador Ansar & Tamil Islamophobic racism

Sept 17 (CT) There are some very odd features about the recent attack on Ambassador Ansar at the Kuala Lumpur airport. It took place in a secured area of the airport, probably the result of a bona fide lapse on the part of the Malaysian authorities to which no particular significance should be attached. What is odd is that the attack took place at all. We can safely assume that for twenty five years and more our Embassy officials have been countering LTTE propaganda in all capitals where more..

Officials must take blame for system failing

Sept 17 (CT) There was a story of a former SL star footballer taking up employment as a grave digger and an ex-President of the Football Federation of SL getting excited over the story. Destiny came to the rescue of the star footballer to make him a grave digger, professional or not. Here the story is not one of destiny. Whether the man was a moron or not, had the FFSL had a programme made to make ex-professionals live decent lives after their careers, the story might not have come into existence. more..

SL makes push for convention on terrorism

Sept 17 (CG) Sri Lanka has underscored the need to strengthen cooperation to fight the scourge of terrorism and reaffirmed the importance to conclude a comprehensive convention on International Terrorism at the earliest. Speaking at the Interactive Debate at the NAM Ministerial Meeting held in Margarita Island, Venezuela, Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe, said terrorism remains one of the most serious more..

Sri Lankan Women banking on spin to combat Australia

Sept 17 (CI) Lanka de Silva, coach of the SL Women's team, said he will be banking on spinners, particularly left-arm spinners Inoka Ranaweera and Sugandika Kumari, to lead the side's attack in their upcoming ODI series against Australia Women, which starts from Sept 18. The teams are scheduled to play four ODIs and a T20 int'l, and three of the four ODIs will be counted for points in ICC Women's Championship. more..

Biswal holds talks with Tamil diaspora on reconciliation

Sept 17 (CG) US Assistant Secretary of State Nisha Biswal had talks with the Tamil diaspora on the reconciliation process in Sri Lanka. Assistant Secretary for Human Rights Tom Malinowski also attended the discussion. The discussion was held with the Global Tamil Forum (GTF), a leading Tamil diaspora group. GTF President, Fr S.J. Emmanuel and leading members including Suren Surendiran attended. more..

Health Ministry wakes up to Zika threat belatedly

Sept 17 (Island) The Epidemiology Unit yesterday briefed the public on the danger of Zika virus which had already affected Singapore (330 cases), Indonesia (over 300) and Thailand (about 200). Several cases were reported during the last two weeks from Malaysia, and the Philippines. Chief Epidemiologist, Dr Paba Palihawadana said that so far Brazil had reported the most number over 8,000 suspected new infections in March. more..

Assault on Lankan Envoy Ansar in KL Airport by Malaysian We Tamils

Sept 17 (DBS) An official Ambassador is defined as a diplomat of the highest rank accredited to a foreign Govt as the resident representative of his or her own country. The equivalent designation to an Ambassador among Commonwealth Nations is the High Commissioner. Since an Ambassador or HC is the premier representative of his or her country any honour bestowed upon him/her in host country more..

LRC’s questionable leasing out of 528 properties under Rajitha’s watch

Sept 17 (ST) Between 2002 and 2004, Sri Lanka’s Land Reform Commission (LRC) gave out more than 500 of its properties on lease to private parties. It happened under Rajitha Senaratne, who was Project Minister of Lands in the short-lived United National Front administration. But, in August 2004, Chandrika Kumaratunga, then President, cancelled all land alienations carried out by the LRC during the period in question. more..

Men at work, but little safety at construction sites

Sept 17 (ST) The safety of construction workers in Sri Lanka is a woefully neglected area, a researcher and civil engineer has pointed out. Dushan Dharshana has said his research revealed that many micro and medium-sized construction companies are unaware of safety policies and do not have safety officials. “Many construction workers and owners of construction sites are unaware of the need of deploying more..

Ekneligoda case before Avissawella HC

Sept 17 (ST) The high profile case of six Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI) personnel remanded in connection with the alleged disappearance of media personality Prageeth Ekneligoda on the eve of January 26, 2010 presidential polls will come up before the Avissawella High Court on Monday. They are seeking bail in the wake of the second suspect in the case, Lt. Col. Prabodha Siriwardena, more..

Digitisation in the Doldrums

Sept 17 (SL) With People’s Bank being the latest target of a fully-fledged mudslinging campaign, many segments of the society are questioning as to this pre-meditated effort of weakening banks along with leasing and finance companies is part of a series of transaction. The Sunday Leader has exposed during the last few weeks several moves by parties with vested interests to weaken companies especially in more..

From the frying pan into the fire

Sept 17 (SL) Two former Ceylinco Group companies – the Fingara Town and Country Club along with one of Sri Lanka’s oldest finance houses are being thrown from the frying pan into the fire, due to acts of both the management and sometimes the authorities, deliberately or otherwise, The Sunday Leader through its exposes showed during the past few weeks. During our investigations an overwhelming number of stakeholders more..

J.R.: A revered statesman, an iconic gentleman

Sept 17 (DM) The declaration of Martial Law and imprisonment of National Heroes in 1915 intensified the political struggle for national independence in Sri Lanka. Labour Leader A.E. Goonesinghe, by spearheading the 1928 historic Tram Car Strike, pressurized the colonial Masters. At a time when only a few people owned private cars, the security eye of the day had spotted a young man driving to and fro, within the metropolis to strengthen and support the ongoing strike. more..

Battle global warming the way we saved the ozone layer

Sept 17 (DM) Yesterday Sept 16 was a vital day for the world but unfortunately most people were not even aware of it though at one point it meant life or death for millions of people. In 1994, the United Nation’s General Assembly proclaimed Sept 16 as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. It marked the date of the signing, in 1987, of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. The ozone layer, a fragile shield of gas, protects the Earth from more..

Sampanthan sees viable political resolution through Constitutional reforms

Sept 17 (DN) Solution to the national question must be found in the new Constitution being formulated, Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan reiterated at an event in Trincomalee. He said his party will be forced to withdraw support if the govt does not propose a viable political resolution to the national problem through Constitutional reforms. While noting that the views and aspirations of the Tamils had not being taken aboard more..

Pakistan for emulating Sri Lanka’s malaria eradication success

Sept 17 (TN) Congratulating the people and govt of SL on completely eradicating malaria from the country, Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) has urged Pakistan and its authorities concerned to work towards emulating the success achieved by SL. PMA Secretary General Dr Mirza Ali Azhar said the WHO had declared SL as a malaria-free country. Despite having meagre resources, he said, SL govt had proved that a country could achieve a goal with political will, planning and proper efforts. more..

Bullets recovered from North Central Chief Minister's house

Sept 17 (DN) A cache of rusted bullets was recovered from a well in the North Central Chief Minister's official residence in Anuradhapura, today. Police said the cache included 259 T56 bullets and 15 84 S bullets. North Central Province Chief Minister Peshala Jayaratne currently occupies the official residence, located on Bandaranaike Mawatha, Anuradhapura. Workmen contracted to clear the well at the back of house at found the stock of bullets when they emptied the well. more..

Clinton bundler faced no punishment for failing to register foreign govt work

Sept 17 (FB) A top bundler for Hillary Clinton and President Obama was never punished for waiting months to register his work on behalf of a foreign govt, a delay that violated the Foreign Agents Registration Act. Imaad Zuberi, a venture capitalist and high-dollar Democratic fundraiser, raked in millions of dollars working on behalf of govt of SL over the course of 5 months in 2014. Zuberi was paid $4.5 million by the Sri Lankan govt more..

Sack Transport Comm Board: LPBOA

Sept 17 (CT) Lanka Private Bus Owners' Association (LPBOA) has called for the immediate resignation of National Transportation Commission and for the sacking of its entire Board of Directors. The demand comes in a sequel to discovery that there have been discrepancies in the issue of expressway route permits, which have resulted in govt losing millions of rupees in revenue. LPBOA President Gamunu Wijeratne said that the call for applications for route permits, more..

Wider inputs from SLFP for Budget 2017

Sept 17 (CT) A proposal has been mooted for SLFP members in the govt to submit proposals for incorporation in Budget 2017. Negatives left unaddressed, on matters arising from some proposals in Budget 2016, will be taken into consideration when the SLFP members in the govt draft their proposals for Budget 2017. Some issues arising from Budget 2016 were of significantly negative social impact, and will hence be taken into consideration in the drafting stage to ensure more..

After 28 years, Vaiko releases Prabhakaran’s letter to DMK chief

Sept 17 (Hindu) MDMK general secretary Vaiko has released a letter written by LTTE leader V. Prabhakaran to DMK leader M. Karunanidhi in 1989 in which he had asked the latter to bring to the attention of opposition parties the atrocities committed by the IPKF. “Prabhakaran gave the letter when I met him in the jungles of SL. Few months after I handed over the letter, Kalaignar (Karunanidhi) said he had destroyed it. more..

Merchant Ward popular with remanded politicos closed for repairs

Sept 17 (Island) Politicians who are sent to remand prison by courts charged with committing various crimes are highly disturbed and agitated with the news that the Merchant Ward of the National Hospital has been closed for renovation. Sources said that the beds of Merchant Ward were mostly occupied by politicians in remand custody as they fall sick the very moment they were remanded. They said it was a ruse adopted by politicos to avoid being in remand prison. more..

Zimbabwe players protest unpaid fees ahead of Sri Lanka series

Sept 17 (CI) Zimbabwe's Harare-based players have refused to train in protest over unpaid match fees, which date back to July last year. The players were due to begin preparations for a series against Pakistan A, which starts at the end of the month, followed by fixtures against Sri Lanka, but have instead insisted on a meeting with Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) managing director Wilfred Mukondiwa to discuss their worsening situation. Apart from the outstanding player bill, more..

US to renew military logistical pact it signed with MR govt

Sept 17 (Island) US intends to extend a military logistical agreement it entered into with the previous Rajapaksa administration in March 2007. Then SL Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and then US Ambassador Robert Blake signed the Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA) in Colombo. Left parties at the time condemned the ACSA both in and outside parliament. Agreement valid for 10 years more..

Now, Tamil parties in Sri Lanka write to Modi

Sept 17 (Hindu) Tamil parties in Sri Lanka, including some at loggerheads, have come together to express solidarity with Indian Tamils on the Cauvery issue. Leaders of the parties recently wrote to PM Narendra Modi expressing deep concern over violence in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, on sharing waters of the Cauvery. The ITAK, EPRLF, PLOTE, TELO, EPDP, TNPF and TULF signed the letter that was handed over to A. Natarajan, Consul General of India in Jaffna. more..

Indumathi to contest in final event for SL

Sept 17 (DN) Amara Indumathi will contest the final event for Sri Lanka today at 7.57 pm at the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro when she takes part in the 200 metres T45-46-47 event. Amara finished in sixth position with a time of 27.55 secs in the 200 metres T45-46-47 preliminary round held yesterday morning and qualified for the final. Yong Deja of America recorded best timing in this event with 25.58 secs. Meanwhile, Ajith Prasanna Kumara finished seventh in the 400m more..

Complaints inundate Bribery Commission

Sept 17 (CT) The 2015 report on Bribery and Corruption states that 10,634 unaddressed complaints have created a huge backlog at the CIABOC. The report that was handed over to President recently states that the Commission has had to deal with a barrage of institutional issues in its very difficult task of probing thousands of complaints which continue to flow in. The number of complaints received by CIABOC at the end of more..

Wage hike for estate workers in the offing

Sept 17 (DN) Plantation companies have agreed to raise the daily wages of estate workers from Rs. 450 to Rs. 600, according to MP Vadivel Suresh. He said negotiations between the got and estate management companies for a daily wage increase for estate workers had been successful and an agreement will be signed by next week. MP identified this as a victory for the workers as negotiations for a change in current wage structure had been going on for close to 1.5 years. more..

Grab a book!

Sept 17 (CT) The much awaited Colombo International Book Fair 2016 was opened yesterday at the BMICH. It is organized by the Sri Lanka Book Publishers Association. Have you ever seen a drug addict, rapist or burglar reading a book? Books are of no use to them. That is one reason why libraries are not robbed. Robbers do not know the value of books. If they know, even our private libraries will not be safe. Only civilized people read books. Those who have never stepped into a library or more..