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'Remove Vajira from Cabinet'

May 27 (CT) The Yahapalana govt came under severe criticism for its delay in taking action against the alleged corrupt individuals in the previous regime. The recent move to appoint Anusha Pelpita, former chairman of TRC who is facing a legal battle against fraudulent deals, as an additional Secretary to Ministry of Home Affairs, has now come under scathing attack by civil society movements which played a major role in electing more..

Kelani Valley expands to spices growing as tea loses shine

May 27 (EN) Kelani Valley Plantations, a unit of Sri Lanka's Hayleys group said it is expanding into cinnamon cultivation as tea and rubber prices fall. Kelani Valley Chairman Mohan Pandithage told shareholders that the firm had invested 43 million rupees to grow cinnamon in 58 hectares out of which 33 was in Kitulgala. Kelani Valley was until the mid-1990 state-owned and the sector was a burden to the ordinary people with their taxes being used to pay salaries, until it was privatized. more..

Corrupt state officials' front to protect the corrupt

May 27 (LT) A state officials' front to protect the corrupt has been formed with the manipulation of the joint opposition and they have been pressurizing President Sirisena stating they would resign from their posts in director boards if investigations regarding their corrupt dealings are continued by the FCID reveal websites. These sources report that 6 officials including former director board of Tourism Development Authority were to be arrested yesterday after getting instructions from more..

WA asylum seeker ordered home to Sri Lanka despite fears for safety

May 27 (WA) A Sri Lankan asylum seeker who has lived in WA since arriving illegally by boat in 2012 has been ordered to return back to his home country, despite telling authorities he feared he would be persecuted for his religion. The Federal Court of Australia on Friday dismissed the Tamil man's application to have a previous decision not to grant him a protection visa re-heard. The man, whose name has been suppressed in court more..

Humanitarian Operation underway to purify flood affected areas

May 27 (LT) Humanitarian labour Operation, the special voluntary campaign by Red Star Relief Services Brigade of the JVP to help eh affected people to clean their houses, compounds, roads, wells and other damage infra structure was launched simultaneously in Colombo and Gampaha Districts today morning. The Leader of the JVP Anura Dissanayaka, General Secretary Tilvin Silva, Political Bureau member Sunil Handunneththi, Central Committee members more..

Hakeem: Kandy District alone has 50 schools in landslide prone areas

May 27 (Island) Minister Rauf Hakim told Parliament on Wednesday that in the Kandy District alone there were about 50 schools located within the landslide prone areas. Participating in a debate on a motion moved by the govt on the relief measures and damages caused by floods and landslides at the time of adjournment of the House, Minister Hakim said that heads of those schools had already been warned by the National Building Research Organisation (NBRO). more..

Asgiri Anunayake Theras frown on burdening poor with heavy taxes

May 27 (Island) Govt should refrain from imposing unbearable taxes on the masses while claiming repeatedly that the previous rulers had obtained massive loans, said Most Venerable Anunayaka of Asgiriya chapter Anamaduwe Sri Dhammadassi Thera when MP Mayantha Dissanayake called on him on Monday. Mayantha, the second son of late UNP heavyweight Gamini Dissanayake, called on the Thera to invite him to unveiling ceremony more..

Domestic reforms needed; int'l community goodwill alone will not help economy: FF

May 27 (CT) The Friday Forum has underscored that no amount of goodwill on the part of the international community will help Sri Lanka’s economy without discipline and the domestic will to reform. The Forum, comprising of a group dedicated to democracy, good governance, human rights and rule of law said that it recognizes the extremely difficult economic policy choices that our society and govt have to make in the present circumstances. “These circumstances include more..

Unnatural punishment; teacher released on bail

May 27 (DM) The teacher of Anuladevi Girls’ School, Galle who had allegedly told three students of grade four to punish another student, was released on a surety bail of Rs. 100,000 by the Galle Additional Magistrate Kesara Samaradivakara. The teacher was arrested by the Galle Harbour Police and produced in Court. Magistrate also ordered the National Child Protection Authority officials to meet the parents of the student and figure out if the incident had caused any distress to her. more..

පැතිකඩ වැඩසටහන

CM East tirade, Tri forces, media responses & repercussions

May 27 (CT) This incident and subsequent reaction on media needs scrutiny. The issues involved are; •Related to Protocol; •CM abusing navy office; •Role of the Governor; •The reaction of the media and, •Response by the Tri Forces. Protocol – In an event attended by the Chief Minister Nazeer Ahamed (CM) in his own province he should be afforded due recognition and courtesies. In a similar event happened in a province outside North and East and, were – CM not being allowed on the stage more..

Ranil, Sirisena and the G7 Summit

May 27 (CT) That Russian President Vladimir Putin will be more than a tad rankled about the G7 Leaders' meeting in Japan today is a fait accompli sort of thing, politically speaking. They meet after imposing sanctions on Russia and kicking Putin out of the G8 after he annexed Crimea from Ukraine by shoring up with propaganda and perhaps old Soviet tactics, Barack Obama labelled as Dark tactics which were used to indoctrinate, subversively train, finance and arm a huge Russian/Crimean more..

Dinesh picks holes in govt’s Megapolis plan

May 27 (Island) MEP leader Dinesh Gunawardena told Parliament that the govt’s ambitious Megapolis plan had ignored the development of the Kelani Valley area. He quoted an article published in The Island by an engineer said: "Kelani valley is often prone to floods, but there has not been a proper flood mitigation programme in this area. Gampaha and Colombo are vital districts for the country’s economy. more..

Steer economic growth to sustain well-being of Asia: President Sirisena calls on G 7

May 27 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena said that Japan’s formal announcement that G7 will explore what is needed to sustain the well-being of Asia to steer economic growth, highlights the relevance of Sri Lanka being here. “It endorses Prime Minister Abe’s reasoning for selecting us.” Addressing the G 7 Outreach Summit today in Ise-Shima in Japan, he said that with a revolutionary change of governance, his govt has more..

Sri Lanka: Consultations lacking on missing persons’ office

May 27 (HRW) Sri Lankan govt ratified the Convention against Enforced Disappearance but in the same week created an Office of Missing Persons without promised consultations with families of the disappeared, Human Rights Watch said today. Govt should honor its pledge to hold meaningful consultations with the affected families and nongovernmental representatives about the missing persons’ office and more..

Sri Lankan activists want AIADMK govt to encourage deep sea fishing

May 27 (Hindu) With the new regime in Tamil Nadu taking charge, activists, experts and the Northern Province’s fishing community strongly advocate that the State and Central govts in India encourage deep sea fishing by their fishermen. Noor Mohamed Alam, Mannar District Fishermen’s Cooperative Society Union president, while reiterating the position against the use of mechanised trawlers, says this has become more..

PM says half of land left for water retention encroached

May 27 (Island) PM Ranil Wickremesighe told Parliament that encroachment of hundreds of acres meant for water retention at various locations in and around the capital and its suburbs had resulted in Colombo getting inundated whenever there was a rain. "About 1,000 acres of land around Parliament were left for the purpose of retaining water when the parliament complex was built. When I inspected the present situation, more..

JO demands punitive action against those responsible for voting miscount

May 27 (Island) Joint Opposition warns that its MPs would refrain from respecting the Mace and the Speaker of Parliament if no punitive actions are taken against those responsible for the recent voting fiasco in Parliament. NFF Leader Wimal Weerawansa said: "We will not stand up when the Mace is paraded or bow down to the Chair when entering and leaving the House as a mark of respect if the Speaker shirks from his duty to more..

'Opponents won’t be able to cause rift between Prez and PM'

May 27 (Island) Higher Education and Highways Minister Lakshman Kiriella has said that those who have been campaigning against the govt will never be able to undermine the administration by causing a rift between President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe. In accordance with an understanding between the two leaders, the UNP and the SLFP formed a coalition following parliamentary polls in last August. more..

Is Wigneswaran planning to break away from TNA to form radical Tamil party?

May 27 (ENS) Chief Minister of Tamil majority Northern Province, C.V. Wigneswaran, appears to be planning to break away from the TNA and form his own radical Tamil party with the support of an influential section of the Tamil Diaspora. And the leadership of the TNA may allow this to happen as he has become an embarrassment and a thorn on their side. Wigneswaran’s politics of confrontation with the provincial Governor more..

Chinese funds chanelled to voice Rajapaksa dream

May 27 (SL) With the revelation of how Rajapaksa siblings have obtained the radio and television transmitters donated by Chinese govt to govt of SL to start their own private broadcasting station, FCID has reportedly commenced investigations on the former First Sons over the alleged violation of the Public Property Act and the Money Laundering Act. Rajapaksas have continuously come under fire for allegedly more..

Once beautiful villages overshadowed by dark colouds

May 27 (DM) The adverse weather conditions which lately took over the island affected many innocent lives. While leaving some of them displaced, others were orphaned as their loved ones were buried in the tragic landslides which occurred in Aranayake and Bulathkohupitiya in the Kegalle district. As a result of these weather conditions 94 people were found dead while 127 were missing leaving over 319,000 displaced from homes more..

Natural disaster andcrisis of the State

May 27 (DM) In the aftermath of the cyclone which devastated the island’s Eastern province in 1978, I wrote a piece in the Lanka Guardian which opened with the line “the dialectics of nature lay bare the structures of society” (LG,Jan 1st, 1979). In the face of the havoc wreaked on the lives of the citizenry by the recent floods, I see no reason to disown that point made as I turned 22, except to modify it: “the dialectics of nature lay bare the structures of the state”. I have never in my lifetime seen more..

Never again Hiroshima

May 27 (DM) It was a sinister cloud, an enormous explosion, a terrible flash, a heavy roar. Nothing like it had ever happened before and we hope will never happen again. It was the atomic bomb attack on the Japanese city of Hiroshima. The perpetrator was the United States, the post powerful military force during World War II and the then President Harry Truman justified the holocaust by saying it was intended to end the bloodiest war in human history. President Truman’s public announcement in more..

Minister unaware of Palpita’s appointment

May 27 (DN) Minister Vajira Abeywardena rejected the so called appointment of former Director General of TRC Anusha Palpita as an Additional Secretary of the Home Affairs Ministry calling it a media appointment. “I am unaware of this appointment and it is an appointment given by the media to create a media bubble. During the time of disaster, when we strongly urged the service of govt servants, he extended his co-operation as more..

PM orders inquiry on Palpita appointment

May 27 (DN) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has ordered a special inquiry into the appointment of Anusha Palpita as the former TRC Director Genaral Ministry. He issued this order to the Home Affairs Ministry yesterday responding to the public outcry over this appointment as a sheer disregard for good governance principles. PM has ordered the removal Palpita from this position, if he was proven unsuitable to hold the post, following the inquiry. Anusha Palpita is a former Chairman of TRC more..

Tissa V, Chandrasiri in the lurch

May 27 (CT) Supreme Court refused to grant leave to proceed with a Fundamental Rights Applications filed by Leader of LSSP, Tissa Vitarana and Vice Chairman of MEP, Somaweera Chandrasiri. Both of them filed applications stating that their names were included in the National List for future appointment as MPs. Elections Commissioner (EC) failed to appoint them as MPs and appointed defeated candidates and they hence sought an order seeking cancellation of the EC's decision to appoint more..

Anura Senanayake won’t make confession

May 27 (DN) Former Senior DIG Anura Senanayake arrested over his alleged role in the cover up of evidence in the rugby player Wasim Thajudeen murder informed Court through his lawyer that he will not make a confession before Magistrate over the incident. President’s Counsel Anil Silva appearing on behalf of former DIG informed Court that various parties including CID were pressurizing his client to make a confession. more..

Health Ministry funds to help flood-affected

May 27 (DN) Health Ministry provided Rs. 2.6 million as emergency funds for flood affected areas during the past 10 days. About 106 health teams were deployed from state hospitals while 941 health staff, including doctors, nurses and pharmacists, are conducting mobile health clinics in all affected areas, Disaster Preparedness and Response Division National Coordinator Dr. H.D.B. Herath said. He said the division is open 24 hours with a team of health professionals and supportive staff. more..

Tea crop down 16% in April

May 27 (FT) Sri Lanka’s tea production for the month of April decreased to 26.47Mn/Kg from 31.62 Mn/Kg a year earlier, which is a 16% decrease year-on-year, said tea brokers who also warned earnings would be less over the next two months due to adverse weather conditions and possible slowing of demand. Ceylon Tea Brokers Plc said cumulative tea crop for the first four months of 2016 was down by 14 million kilos to 96.84 Mn/Kg. Elevation wise analysis shows that more..

Roots of Governor-Chief Minister conflict

May 27 (ENS) The on-going conflict between Eastern Province Governor Austin Fernando and CM Naseer Ahamed, which has led to SL armed forces declaring an indefinite boycott of the Chief Minister, is rooted in the way Centre-Province relations have developed in Lanka and the nature of Muslim politics in SL. Last Friday’s spat in which CM Naseer Ahamed publicly accused Governor Austin Fernando of of insulting him more..

‘Can’t see why SL have been sent to North’

May 27 (DN) Former England fast bowler and present cricket commentator for BBC Test Match Special Jonathan Agnew has questioned the rationale behind Sri Lanka being asked to play the first two Tests of the English summer up in the north where the cold conditions would make any team from the subcontinent struggle for survival. “It is great for the home side that England won, but the nature of that victory does raise some serious questions about the scheduling and venues more..

CICT supports disaster recovery effort

May 27 (Island) Colombo International Container Terminals (CICT) has presented the first batch of a consignment of essential items required by flood victims in Sri Lanka, in support of national efforts to help displaced and affected families return to their homes. The consignment, valued at Rs 5 million, was provided by the China Merchants Charitable Foundation Limited, the corporate social responsibility arm of CMHI, the parent company of CICT. more..

Wigneswaran hails Jayalalithaa’s re-election

May 27 (FT) Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran on Thursday said TN Chief Minister Jayalailthaa is the only leader who can point out to the Indian govt about the latter’s moral obligations with regard Sri Lankan Tamils. Hailing Ms. Jayalalithaa’s re-election in Assembly election in TN, Mr. Wigneswaran told the NPC in Jaffna that it was time for Sri Lanka to move from the diluted 13the Amendment more..

'Everyone need not pay for those who want to fly'

May 27 (Island) SriLankan Airlines was gradually reducing its losses due to prudent measures introduced by the govt, but the man on the street need not pay for those who wanted to fly, says the Deputy Minister of State Enterprise Eran Wickremeratne. He said that SriLankan’s losses had been reduced from Rs. 32 billion in 2014 to Rs. 16 billion in 2015. But, the govt which has to clear the massive debts run up by the Rajapaksa regime could not go on subsidising national airline. more..

MR’s Co-ordinating Secretary found with kilo of gold

May 27 (DN) Former President Rajapaksa’s Co-ordinating Secretary Champika Karunaratne was recently arrested by the FCID of the Police for allegedly being in possession of gold. The FCID Officers have found around 1,100 grams. of gold in his possession. The arrest was made at his house located in Wewa Road, Boralesgamuwa. Champika Karunaratne has also served as the Chairman State Timber Corporation, a Chief Organizer of Tharunyata Hetak and Nil Balakaya more..

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