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New report notes systematic persecution

July 28 (CG) A new international report has found that systematic persecution of the Tamil community still takes place through torture, rape, illegal detention and killings committed by the state authorities. Report by International Truth & Justice Project, a project administered by the Foundation for Human Rights in South Africa, run by transitional justice expert Yasmin Sooka who was also a member of the UN panel of experts on SL more..

Ranawaka says MS will appoint anyone, but Mahinda as PM

July 28 (Island) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Prime Ministerial dream would never come true, UNFGG Colombo District Candidate and Minister Champika Ranawaka said. It was the President who appointed the PM according to the Constitution which stated that ‘the President shall appoint as PM the Member of Parliament who in his opinion is most likely to command the confidence of Parliament’, Ranawaka said. Although the UPFA was talking about a PM candidate, more..

Sri Lankan historian Santasilan Kadirgamar passes away

July 28 (Hindu) Santasilan Kadirgamar, veteran historian, passed away here on Saturday after a brief illness. He was 81. He is survived by his wife and two sons including Ahilan Kadirgamar, political economist. Born in Chavakachcheri of Jaffna in April 1934, Mr. Kadirgamar, also known as Silan, had his school education at Jaffna College and pursued higher studies in history at the University of Peradeniya and the International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan. more..

New Constitution needed: TNA

July 28 (Hindu) The TNA, has demanded that the country frame a new Constitution to address a host of issues it’s grappling with, including the Tamil question. Taking time off from his election campaign, R. Sampanthan, the 82-year-old leader of the TNA, said that “everybody wants a new Constitution. Even the Sinhalese leadership wants a new Constitution. There are many matters that, to me, [call for] a new Constitution.” more..

Canada funds SDB to boost rural economy

July 28 (Island) As the preferred bank for the co-operate movement, SANASA Development Bank (SDB) continues to discharge its obligations and commitment to uplift the living standard of rural communities through SANASA primary co-operate societies by continually providing assistance in capacity building, training and development. SANASA Development Bank exchanged the signed MOU with SANASA Federation on the 15th of July, at SANASA Campus, Kegalle for another more..

UPFA manifesto out today

July 28 (DN) The UPFA election manifesto will be ceremonially launched today at 9 a.m. at Henry Pedris Ground, UPFA General Secretary Susil Premajayantha said. He said former President Mahinda Rajapaksa will also participate. UPFA will present an attractive package for the youths in Sri Lanka under a five year plan. It will not include chewing gum and bracelets, Premajayantha said. The request by UPFA to obtain the Nelum Pokuna Theatre or the BMICH for the ceremony more..

Action needed to meet LTTE threat, says GL

July 28 (Island) Former Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris alleged that for want of a cohesive national security strategy post-war peace and stability was at stake. Arguing that the govt was wholly incapable of addressing national security issues, Prof. Peiris said the recent arrest of an LTTE cadre Krishna Kumar along with 300 grams of cyanide, GPS equipment and seven hand phones at Ramanathapuram, South India pointed to more..

TNA indirectly helping Govt says Kajendran

July 28 (CT) TNA has been working internationally indirectly to help the govt to get rid of human right violations committed in the country by the State armed forces during the final leg of war, accused Selvarajah Kajendran, General Secretary of the TNPF in Batticaloa addressing an event held in connection with the opening of election office at Govindan Road. He further said that very soon Tamils in Batticaloa would lose their voice if their rights are not recognized. more..

QRC completes two housing projects in SL

July 28 (TP) Qatar Red Crescent (QRC) has completed two housing projects in the Mannar district of northern Sri Lanka, for families internally displaced by the armed conflict. The two projects cost QR3.1m ($849,315), which was donated by two Qatari sisters who opted for anonymity in pursuit of the great reward of undisclosed charity. The first project involved building 70 family housing units for 460 people of the poorest families in Kondachi, Musali Division. more..

Sri Lanka to revive state sugar firm with foreign investment as prices collapse

July 28 (EN) Sri Lanka is planning to revive a state sugar factory with a foreign investor expected to pump in US$ 100 million, which will create thousands of jobs in a remote rural area, officials said as global prices collapsed to a new low. A joint venture firm MG Sugars Lanka, in which the private investors will have a 49% stake and the state 51% is planning to build a new factory. Firm signed an agreement with BOI on July 27. more..

Granting of leave to private sector employees to vote

July 28 (DN) Leave necessary for employees to vote at the forthcoming general election should be afforded by their respective employers under the terms of the Section 122 of the Parliamentary Elections Act. No. 1 of 1981, Election Commissioner Dayanda Dissanayake said. Paragraph 12.3 in the chapter XII of the Establishment Code which is for the special leave of the public officers also states that a public officer should be granted a special paid leave, minimum period of four hours, more..

School bus topples injuring 17 students

July 28 (Island) A private school bus driven by an elderly person toppled over at Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 07 injuring 17 students of five leading schools yesterday morning. The 67-year-old driver had driven the bus at the Torrington Junction ignoring traffic lights, which had turned red at the time and then collided with another vehicle. The bus was carrying schoolchildren of Mahanama, Visakha, Sirimavo Bandaranaike, St. Lawrence Girls’ School and Isipatana College. more..

'ITN rejects live telecast of UPFA manifesto'

July 28 (DM) The state owned Independent Television Network (ITN) has refused a request to telecast live the UPFA election manifesto, which is to be launched today, asserting that it has to accommodate the already scheduled programmes of the channel -- in a letter sent by ITN to the general secretary of the UPFA. The letter, signed by ITN chairman Dhammika Ganganath Dissanayake and sent to UPFA general secretary more..

Dilan wants list of politicians’ names connected to drug mafia revealed

July 28 (DN) The National Dangerous Drugs Control Board Chairman (NDDCB) should immediately reveal the names of all politicians who have connections to the drug mafia because it seems the list of names are not reliable as it is biased, UPFA Media Committee Chairman Dilan Perera said. According to him, the NDDCB Chairman is holding press conferences at Sirikotha and therefore his impartiality is questionable. On the other hand, the quantity of Ethanol imported to Sri Lanka more..

Badminton Presidency: Dandeniya re-elected uncontested

July 28 (CT) Former President Suraj Dandeniya was elected uncontested as President of the Sri Lanka Badminton Association after the withdrawal of his opponent Prof. Ranjith de Silva at their general election yesterday. Newly appointed President Suraj Dandeniya said: "Our next task is to release the international ban on our Association. We have requested NOC and the Sports Ministry what are the changes that can be done in the present sports constitution. more..

Hoping Sri Lanka will tour Pakistan: Abbas

July 28 (CI) Zaheer Abbas, the ICC president, has said that he will try and convince other member countries to resume tours to Pakistan and is hopeful Sri Lanka will also tour the country. Pakistan did not host any international cricket between 2009 and 2015, after Sri Lanka's team bus was attacked by terrorists in Lahore in March 2009. The country's six-year isolation ended when Zimbabwe toured Pakistan in May for more..

To save sports go with Olympism

July 28 (CT) The latest sports federation in Sri Lanka to fall prey to their world body was the SL Badminton Association, when they were suspended by the WBF on 22 July 2015. At the time of suspension they were given two options, to either: 1. See that SLBA complies with the BWF governance principles by having: a) A constitution that is consistent with the BWF constitution and its principles as per the referenced clauses above – (requirements around on-going membership more..

Mixed feelings among displaced Tamils

July 28 (Hindu) Robinson, a 19-year-old youth of the Sabapathipillai camp of internally-displaced people (IDP) in Chunnakam near Jaffna, is more keen on playing cricket with his friends than talking about larger issues that affect the Tamil community. Still, he says he will go to polling booth on August 17, and cast his vote. “That is my right,” he says. What would the elections mean for him? This is a question that can be addressed by those who are knowledgeable, he replies. more..

'Audit Bill will be reality under new Govt'

July 28 (FT) The new Govt appointed following the upcoming general election will present a new Audit Bill in Parliament aimed at establishing financial discipline at state institutions, President Maithripala Sirisena told a gathering of accountants yesterday. Speaking at the Global Management Accounting Summit 2015 and Integrated Reporting Awards organised by the Certified Management Accountants of SL, more..

Cracks in the Mahinda camp

July 28 (SO) When the Mirihana Police arrested three military personnel travelling in a white van, it sent ripples across the country’s political circles as white vans were the trademark of the repression of the 10-year-long Rajapaksa administration. Former President Rajapaksa, former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and several other prominent politicians are residents of Mirihana, an area adjacent to Nugegoda, one of the most populous areas in the greater Colombo region. more..

The last of a generation of Tamil Marxists

July 28 (CT) He was my comrade and neighbour and oft would we sit out on my veranda, sipping the stuff that cheers and first talking sensibly, then slinging it out in voices that kept the neighbours, too polite to complain, awake till the late hours, as a bottle of the golden water of life emptied itself gently. He was a Christian, more than a superficial one as his wish that his funeral be both spiritual and secular shows. But this was less potent than the convictions that anchored his political sentiments. more..

Malinga cannot rest on his laurels: Kapila

July 28 (CT) Chairman of selectors Kapila Wijegunawardene says sling-arm fast bowler Lasith Malinga, will need to rediscover his lost venom if he is to be considered Sri Lanka's premier pacer in future ODIs, after being axed for the fifth and final one-day match against Pakistan at Hambantota last Sunday. Kusal Perera led Sri Lanka's strong batting display to give the hosts a comprehensive, but inconsequential, more..

UPFA’s negative election will not win votes

July 28 (Island) The nascent rejuvenation of institutions since the change of govt was demonstrated in an unexpected manner with the apprehension of a white van. These vehicles have obtained a notoriety that peaked during the last years of the war with the LTTE. The circumstances under which this particular white van came to light had all the classic features that made the white van an object of fear and intimidation during the previous decade. It had false number plates. more..

Editorial: A costly affair

July 28 (Island) The upcoming election is, in effect, a contest between the UNP and the SLFP, or rather, a race between PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. TNA, SLMC, JVP, CWC and DP are also all out to win as many seats as possible. With the major players jousting hard for supremacy new contestants, some of whom are still wet behind the ears, have the same chance as a cat in hell where getting parliamentary representation is concerned. more..

Culture takes on family ties

July 28 (CT) Matale District is waking up to some colourful drama come election time and Ceylon Today caught up with two important players from the main parties in the fray – UPFA candidate State Minister, Nandimithra Ekanayake and UNP's Central Provincial Councillor Ranjith Aluwihare. Excerpts of the interviews: Nandimithra Ekanayake Q: It was reported that at an election rally held in Na-ula on Sunday you were hooted at by a group more..

Oh what a circus, Oh what a shame!

July 28 (NS) No this is not Argentina that has gone to town, but good old Sri Lanka, my beloved homeland. Only thing missing is a flamboyant Evita to come and sing the haunting Don’t cry for me to complete the carnival. The day has dawned again for the political leaders to gather and discuss who should represent the swans, bells, elephants, betel leaves, weighing scales, and such symbols and we the minions like fools, awaiting the dawn of reckoning on August 17. more..

Aspirations for a better future

July 28 (NS) Having completed five years and entered the sixth year after bringing an end to the armed conflict that compelled our nation to suffer, dragging our people of all ethnic backgrounds, through incomparable traumatic experiences, we still do not show any positive and convincing trends towards the era we all aspire as a nation with a promising future. We are still nowhere near the ideal solutions. Instead, we have given prominence to aspects which are more ornamental. more..

'Upcountry to be uplifted'

July 28 (SL) The newly formed Tamil Progressive Alliance (TPA), which comprises of DPF led by Mano Ganesan, NUW led by Minister Palani Digambaran and UPF led by V Radhakrishnan, has also joined forces with the UNP led alliance to contest the upcoming election. Minister Digambaran said the TPA is committed to address the issues of the upcountry Tamils and carry forward the mandate given by the people to President more..

The truth behind MR’s minimum wage pledge

July 28 (SL) UPFA Kurunegala District candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa is seemingly clinging on to the last straw in the face of apparent defeat of his party at next month’s general election. Former head of state made a bold claim to increase the minimum wage of 1.5 million strong public sector to Rs. 25,000, raising questions of its practicality from many quarters of the society. Kurunegala District MP hopeful pledged to increase the minimum salary of public servants at an election rally. more..

A proper opposition for better governance

July 28 (SL) Today we experience different governing rules throughout the world. Most of the countries follow a democratic framework to rule the country where the representatives selected by the people are engaged in the law making and the policy planning business. In a rich democracy, the Parliament can be considered as a cross section of the society where the same prominence and the recognition are given to the dissenting voice. The difference between the Parliament and more..

'Abuse of State property at a minimum'

July 28 (SO) Media Director and National Media Co-ordinator, Transparency International of Sri Lanka (TISL) Shan Wijetunga, said the misuse of public property and public servants were at a minimum this time but that there was still room for improvement. TISL is a leading polls observer at the Elections. He said the misuse of State property by former govt during last Presidential Election was of epic proportions. more..

Manpower contagion and flexibilization of labour market

July 28 (Island) Last weekend I attended two meetings—the first is organized by Free Trade Zone workers, the second by the office-bearers of branch unions of the CMU. The principal focus of the both meetings was manpower agencies and the labour market. The second meeting was more focused as its organisers had adopted as the theme for their event: Is it the end of permanent employment? In fact, I borrowed General Secretary of the CMU, Comrade Sylvester Jayakody’s apt phrase, more..

Liberalization of the labor market: Is the end of permanent employment?

July 28 (CT) How do the three main parties in Sri Lanka, United National Front for Good Governance, UPFA and the JVP respond to the increasing demand made by the international financial agencies for labor market liberalization? Do these parties address this issue? Last weekend I attended two meetings. While the first is organized by the people working on the Free Trade Zone, the second is a meeting of the office-bearers of branch unions of the CMU. more..

Sri Lanka failed to fully protect victims of trafficking

July 27 (CG) The Sri Lankan govt made limited progress in protecting victims of trafficking, the Unites States said in its 2014 Trafficking in Persons Report released today. The report released by Sarah Sewall, US Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, said the govt also did not report any investigations, prosecutions, or convictions of govt officials complicit in human trafficking offences. more..

MoU with UNFGG Sobhitha Thera & 75 civil society orgs to sign...

July 27 (CT) The Civil Society Collective comprised of 75 organizations including the National Movementfor Social Justice led by Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thera will be signing a MoU with PM Ranil Wickremesinghe representing the United National Front for Good Governance. The signing will take place tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute. Former National Executive Council Member, Convener of the Lawyers' Collective and Lawyers' for more..

UPFA claims polls timed ahead of UN report

July 27 (CG) The UPFA says the Parliament election was timed to take place before the report on Sri Lanka by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is released. Former UPFA MP Dullas Alahapperuma said that the report on Sri Lanka is expected to pose a threat to Sri Lanka. He claimed that PM Ranil Wickremesinghe had wanted the Parliamentary election to be held before August 21 when the report will be handed over to President Sirisena. more..

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