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'Govt has political will for unpopular reforms'

July 25 (EN) National unity govt of the two main parties has had a difficult two years but the political will to push through unpopular reforms is now in place, Minister Kabir Hashim said. “The govt has had the courage to take on a lot of reforms that usually would not have been popular,” he said. Govt has been working to set the fundamentals in place for faster, and sustainable economic growth since it was formed two years ago, more..

2018 Poya dates accurate: Vajira

July 25 (NR) Ministry of Home Affairs says the contents of the gazette notification issued by the govt pertaining to the Poya days in 2018 are 100% accurate. Minister Vajira Abeywardene said a request should be made by the Chief Prelates if the gazette notification should be amended. He said it is not the first time in history that the Vesak Poya day falls in April adding that it happened in 1947, 1866, 1885, 1904, 1923, and in 1942. Vesak Poya day will be celebrated on the 29th of April. more..

13 anti-SAITM students granted bail

July 25 (DN) Thirteen medical faculty undergraduates arrested for allegedly engaged in a Satyagraha campaign at Lipton Circus against the SAITM in violation of a Court order were yesterday ordered to be released on bail by Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court. While ordering the suspects to be released on cash bail of Rs.500,000 each, Additional Magistrate Jeyram Trotsky advised them not to behave in an offensive manner. The students who were engaged in the Satyagraha by more..

'Investments in H’tota were a big mistake'

July 25 (AD) Governor of the Central Bank, Dr. Indrajith Coomaraswamy stated that Govt was in the process of attempting to deepen and widen the agreement with India to include services, investment, training and technology, in addition to goods. He expressed these sentiments upon addressing the inauguration ceremony of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit of 2017 as the keynote speaker of the event. more..

Court permits Tiran to travel abroad

July 25 (DN) The Colombo High Court today permitted former MP Tiran Alles to travel overseas for a period of one month. Former Parliamentarian Tiran Alles whose passport has been impounded by Court in connection with the controversial RADA case, had sought Colombo High Court’s permission to travel Singapore. Alles through his lawyers had requested the Colombo High Court that his passport be temporally released since he wants to visit Singapore for medical purpose. more..

Shaky Sri Lanka brace for tougher test

July 25 (CI) At a glance, Sri Lanka's recent home record is not so bad. They have won five of their six most recent Tests on the island and at least three of those victories were comprehensive. The whitewash over Australia, too, remains a source of enduring pride, even though it was achieved close to a year ago. Rangana Herath - the hero of that series - remains undiminished in his 40th year. Kusal Mendis, who produced that pivotal performance, has also since made headway, more..

India batsmen could look to repeat Herath counter

July 25 (CI) Sri Lanka's success at home over the last few years has largely been dependent on the performance of Rangana Herath. He has rarely failed to deliver and has ensured to carry the legacy set by his predecessor Muttiah Muralitharan. Since January 2012, Herath has taken 41% of Sri Lanka's Test wickets at home. He has 20 five-wicket hauls and seven 10-wicket hauls in this period. more..

Severe drinking water shortage hits drought affected A’pura

July 25 (DN) There has been a large scale scarcity of drinking water in the Anuradhapura district. People in the Anuradhapura district, especially those in rural areas, are facing a severe shortage of drinking water due to the prolonged drought. Anuradhapura Govt Agent R.M. Wanninayake told the Daily News that the distribution of drinking water through bowsers, which was confined to six DS Divisions, have now been extended to 11 DS jurisdictions. more..

Pakistan army rugby team in Sri Lanka

July 25 (PHC) As part of the ongoing Army-to-Army Sports Exchange Programme between Pakistan and Sri Lanka, a 17-Member Pakistan Army Rugby Team, arrived Colombo on 24th July. Pakistan Army Rugby team, led by Brigadier Ghulam Jilani, will play a bilateral series with SLA Rugby Team from 25th July to 1st Aug. Bilateral sports exchange programme between the two armed forces has been working very well. In the recent past, Pakistan Army Hockey and Pakistan Air Force soccer teams more..

GMOA suspends token strike

July 25 (NR) The token strike launched by the GMOA has been suspended. GMOA decided to call off the strike following discussions with Minister Sagala Ratnayake. He had informed the GMOA that a comprehensive report on the attempted arrest of Convenor of the Medical Faculty Students Action Committee Ryan Jayalath would be submitted within 2 weeks. He noted Parliament will be informed of the matter in detail. more..

Ravi's late attendance causes stir in House

July 25 (DM) Foreign Affairs Minister Ravi Karunanayake walking in late for parliamentary sessions caused a stir in the House today. A few minutes earlier Chief Opposition Whip Anura Kumara Dissanayake asked why the minister was not present to answer a question."The minister had informed the Presidential Commission of Inquiry that he was unable to be present at its proceedings as he had to attend Parliament. However, he is not present here either," Mr Dissanayake said. more..

Power failure in Colombo and suburbs: CEB

July 25 (DM) The incidents of power failure reported in Colombo and the suburbs this evening was due to electricity load balancing to demand and not because of a breakdown, Power Ministry Director said. He said the load balancing (peak demand reserve refers to the use of various techniques by electrical power stations to store excess electrical power during low demand periods for release as demand rises) had to be done to the grid due to the high demand of its use. more..

Action will be taken against those responsible: Sagala

July 25 (DM) Action will be taken against the police officers involved in the alleged attempt to abduct MFSAC convener Rayan Jayalath, if is is found that they had acted outside the provisions of the law, Minister Sagala Ratnayake told Parliament. He said an investigation would be carried out to determine whether the police officers have violated the law and also whether the senior police officers involved in the incident had more..

SriLankan Airlines: Minister Kabir Hashim continues his Yahapalanaya blab

July 25 (CT) Taking to social media the general public vented their frustration and even hurled insults at Minister Kabir Hashim, after a video footage of him addressing the management of SriLankan Airlines went viral. This was after Minister Kabir Hashim visited the offices and the training facilities of SriLankan Airlines in Katunayake a few days ago and went on to tongue lash and blame the former Rajapaksa led regime for the catastrophic losses it incurred when managing more..

Exotic new Income Tax Law: Is it the solution for the Sri Lankan problem?

July 25 (FT) In biology an exotic species, is a species of animal or plant which is foreign to the region or country. Many nations have strict rules and controls against the introduction of exotic species due to the fear of damage and havoc they may create to the local environment. However, an exception is made when an animal or plant is introduced to solve a serious imbalance in the environment such as another animal overrunning the country. more..

මහබැංකු බැඳුම්කර මගඩියේ නවතම අනාවරණයන්...

Lankan Navy arrests three TN fishermen

July 25 (PTI) Three fishermen from TN were today arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy for allegedly fishing off Neduntheevu near the Lankan coast, the sixth such incident this month. The fishermen from Kottaipattinam in Pudukottai district have been taken to Kangesanthurai port, police said. Their boat was also seized for allegedly intruding into Lankan territory and poaching in their zone, they said. On Friday last, eight fishermen from Nagapattinam district were arrested for allegedly fishing off more..

Foreign Interference

July 25 (CT) Under the Soulbury Constitution, in force for a period of 25 years, from 1947, i.e. on the eve of Sri Lanka's, then known as Ceylon's, independence, got on 4 Feb 1948, to 22 May 1972, the year it became a republic, a convict in local Courts had the right to appeal to the Privy Council in the UK for redress. This was because till Sri Lanka became a republic, the monarch in England, in the historical context then, King George VI, and, following his demise, his daughter more..

President presents golden awards to Sri Lankan Olympic athletes

July 25 (PSL) A felicitation ceremony to present golden awards to athletes who represented Sri Lanka at the Olympic games from 1948 to date, was held today (24) at the President’s House, under the patronage of President Sirisena. This has been organized by the Ministry of Sports and SL Olympic Association, in line with the golden jubilee of the Sports Ministry. 41 SL athletes were offered golden awards by the President on this occasion. more..

Cooler credit growth forecast for Sri Lanka’s banks: OBG

July 25 (OBG) Following several years of high lending, hiked interest rates and the pursuit of Basel III compliance, credit growth in Sri Lanka could slow this year and into 2018. On the back of govt efforts to stimulate growth in the economy, private sector credit expanded by 18% last year and by just over 20% in 2015. However, in a move aimed at reducing excessive credit expansion and inflationary pressures, in March CB increased more..

Ravi unable to appear before PCoI today: Counsel

July 25 (DM) A counsel appearing for Minister Ravi Karunanayake yesterday informed the PCoI that the minister would not be able to appear at the PCoI today to summoned to do so. PCoI had earlier summoned the minister to testify at the PCoI. Counsel Sandun Gamage appearing for the minister said according to his limited instructions, the minister would not appear before the PCoI today and that the minster had said he would inform more..

Role of Media in conflict transformation, reconciliation discussed

July 25 (Island) Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation said that it organised three sensitisation workshops in Colombo, Kandy and Kurunegala Districts to advocate reconciliation friendly journalism. Ministry said, "Over 150 journalists discussed the role of media in conflict transformation, reconciliation and peace building, Ministry under the direction of President Sirisena has developed a Reconciliation Action Plan more..

Addressing dengue One hour, one day and every week is enough

July 25 (CT) Dengue mosquito is the only insect, presumably, that feels as if it was created just to cull the human population as a natural crowd control mechanism. Around five to 10 million individuals are estimated to contract the disease with around half a million succumbing to life threatening conditions every year around the globe. And for the first time ever in SL's history, 2017 is currently witnessing an unprecedented more..

RDA, Swimming Club make conflicting claims on demolition

July 25 (ST) The Colombo Swimming Club (CSC) ignored repeated requests to remove structures from the land acquired from it for road expansion, forcing the Road Development Authority to go to court, RDA Chairman told the Sunday Times. However, CSC President Tony de Livera accused the RDA of using strong arm tactics that saw dozens of foreign tourists fleeing in fear from the exclusive club. more..

Blotched abduction of a student activist

July 25 (DM) In the recent history of this country, repeated failure by successive govts to address proactively incipient threats and peripheral grievances had allowed them to mushroom, which later compelled the beleaguered governments to respond with knee-jerk overly violent means. That happened in 1971, 88-89 and during the rise of Tamil separatism and later terrorism in the early 80s. History is threatening to repeat itself. more..

‘Toppling govt a pipe dream'

July 25 (DN) Making reference to Article 70 of the Constitution of the Republic, a Senior Stalwart of the SLFP fired warning signals at dissidents and members of the party asserting that the discourse of toppling the govt, is but a pipe dream. Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva pointing out the balance of power within the Parliament said that, in order to change the status quo a majority of 2/3rds is required in Parliament. more..

Key information surfaces in Dassanayake probe

July 25 (SL) Key information has surfaced in relation to the investigations over former Navy Spokesman D.K.P. Dassanayake and his role in the abduction of 11 youth. Police Media Spokesman Ajith Gunasekara said that Dassanayake is believed to be connected to the abduction and disappearance of the 11 youth. A mother of one of the disappeared youth dismissed allegations that youth were linked to LTTE. more..

'No need to have a fresh law to regulate NGO activities'

July 25 (DM) Minister Mano Ganeshan, in an interview, spoke about the current status of the constitution making process and the role of NGOs. Q: There are different activities- cultural events - being conducted for the promotion of reconciliation. Yet, there is a school of thought by some Tamil leaders that none of them will serve the real purpose without a new Constitution. What is your position regarding this as the Minister? more..

Is the govt playing good cop, bad cop?

July 25 (DM) It’s notable that President Sirisena gazetted the controversial Office of Missing Persons (OMP) Act during the visit to Sri Lanka of Jeffrey Feltman (19-21 July), UN Under Secretary General for Political Affairs. Similarly it appears that high profile arrests of officials associated with the govt’s political rivals from the previous regime, also tend to take place during these visits – as if to prove a point to external observers. The unprecedented arrest of Commodore D.P.K. Dassanayake more..

Sino-Indian troop confrontation in Bhutan

July 25 (DM) On June 16, 2017, Chinese road construction workers accompanied by Chinese troops began moving into the tri-junction of Doko-Lam where the borders of the three countries – India, China and Bhutan meet. Chinese authorities claim they were in the process of constructing a road within their territory. The Chinese workers had also demolished an old bunker used by the Indian army at the tri-junction in Sikkim, after the Indian army refused to comply with a Chinese demand.   more..

Arjun Aloysius paid Ravi’s Penthouse lease

July 25 (Island) A witness dropped a bombshell while giving evidence before the Presidential Commission on bond scams. Former owner of a 4,000-square-foot luxury apartment at Monarch Residencies, situated at Colombo 3, Vinodani told the Commission that it had been first leased out to Ravi Karunanayake till the renovation work on his house was completed, but the lease had been paid by a company connected to Arjun Aloysius. more..

Docs on strike

July 25 (Island) GMOA is scheduled to conduct a one-day strike today (25) to pressure the govt to meet four of its demands including taking action against those responsible for the attempted abduction of a student leader in Colombo late last week. Ex-Co member Dr Chandana Dharmaratne said the union had given the govt adequate time to initiate a proper investigation into the attempted abduction of Medical Faculty Students’ Action Committee Convener, Ryan Jayalath and more..

Today’s Economic Summit to focus on solutions to national challenges

July 25 (Island) Govt Ministers, Opposition MPs and Govt Advisers will take center stage at the eighth and the last session of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit 2017 to discuss current national challenges faced by the country and possible solutions for those issues. The session, titled, Transformative Solutions to Current National Challenges will take into discussion Sri Lanka’s ongoing reconciliation process, economic reform agenda, Law and Order situation, national debt burden and more..

Cabinet to decide today fate of Rs. 193b costing, Rs. 47b loss making H'tota Port

July 25 (FT) Cabinet is scheduled to decide on the future of the Hambantota Port, built by former President Rajapaksa through a loan costing Rs. 193 billion, which has since accumulated a loss of Rs. 47 billion. Following many rounds of negotiations as well as months of scrutiny and revisions due to concerns, a restructure of the Hambantota Port has been proposed under a public-private partnership whereby the govt via more..

Customs officials seize 2.4 kg gold smuggled from Sri Lanka

July 25 (Hindu) In an early morning operation on Monday, Customs Preventive Unit (CPU) sleuths seized 2.4 kg of gold biscuits, smuggled from Sri Lanka, through the sea route after intercepting two fishermen on the coast between Mukuntharayar Chathiram and Dhanushkodi. Acting on specific intelligence, a six-member team, led by Superintendents Muniasamy and M. Pugazhendi, visited the seashore around 1.30 a.m. and made the seizure after intercepting the fishermen, more..

Those who prevented white van abduction to be arrested

July 25 (Island) Colombo Crimes Division is getting ready to arrest all those who obstructed its officers who tried to arrest convener of Medical Faculty Students’ Action Committee Ryan Jayalath at the GMOA premises last week. CCD sources said that they had reported the incident to court. IGP Pujith Jayasundara said that it was a serious offence to obstruct policemen attempting to arrest a warranted person. Those who obstructed the arrest and helped the suspect to escape. more..

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