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PAF chief arrives in Sri Lanka for 3-day visit

Aug 26 (DT) Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt is scheduled to arrive in Sri Lanka on a three-day visit on Wednesday on the invitation of Commander of Sri Lanka Air Force Air Marshal KA Gunatilleke. During his stay, the air chief will call on President Rajapaksa and meet top military leadership including Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and the services chiefs, according to a message received more..

All systems go for protest by trade union alliance

Aug 26 (Island) Public, semi-govt and Private Sector Trade Union Alliance will stage a protest opposite the Fort Railway Station tomorrow over several demands including a salary increment of Rs. 10,000. Convener of the Alliance Saman Rathnapriya said that they had decided to stage a protest as the National Salaries and Cadre Commission did not respond to their letter requesting a discussion on Aug 13. He said that according to the Cost of Living index of the govt, all employees needed more..

Gnanasara Thera raises questions over the roles of Vasu and his ministry

Aug 26 (AM) BBS General Secretary Galagodaaththe Gnanasara Thera today questioned the role of Ministry of Social Integration and that of Minister Vasudewa Nanayakkara saying the ministry and the minister have done nothing to strengthen social integration in Sri Lanka. Gnanasara Thera said Minister Nanayakkara had done nothing to fulfill his responsibilities, apart from “flying kites” at Galle Face to develop national harmony in the country. The kite festival was organized by more..

Sri Lanka's surging cash reliance on China

Aug 26 (AJ) Since ending its civil war in 2009, Sri Lanka has become increasingly financially dependent on China, receiving an estimated $4bn worth of loans, grants and aid. While govt officials maintain the loans have brought to fruition much-needed infrastructure projects, opposition politicians warn the country is being led down a path of financial reliance on China. Nearly 70 percent of Sri Lanka's infrastructure projects, including more..

Rupee edges down on importer demand

Aug 26 (Reuters) Sri Lankan rupee traded weaker on Tuesday as importer dollar demand outpaced inward remittances and exporter dollar sales, dealers said. The dealers said they expect the local currency to remain steady for the rest of the year after positive comments by the central bank chief last week. Central bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal said last week the banking regulator would intervene in the thinly-traded market whenever required to keep the rupee stable. more..

Video: Wariyapola boy hospitalised

Aug 26 (DM) Chandra Kumara alias Selva who was slapped by a girl at the Wariyapola bus stand was admitted to the Wariyapola hospital yesterday after complaining of a hearing problem in one of his ears, hospital sources said. According to hospital sources, steps have been taken to transfer him to the Kurunegala hospital for further examination. Over the past few days, the video depicting a girl slapping a youth at the Wariyapola bus stand went viral on social media. more..

Erroneous 2014 GCE A/L Economics Paper

Aug 26 (CT) Education – a glorious enterprise in this enlightened century increasingly purveys and panders to the economically viable forms of knowledge' and skills, meant to take the world from metaphorical darkness to literal light or vice versa. In Sri Lanka, the land where education is free, the eternally grovelling critics sprouting the snivelling grievances of the common man, represented by the Ceylon Teachers' Union more..

Minister Basil opens Hikkaduwa Avenra Beach Hotel

Aug 26 (GDI) Minister Basil Rajapaksa declared open recently, the newly refurbished Avenra Beach Hotel – Hikkaduwa with the participation of Chairman of the Avenra group Dhanesh De Silva. Hikkaduwa Avenra Beach Hotel is a beautiful hotel that is located on a strip of land between the sea and taking maximum advantage of the beach front. Avenra Hotel consists of 60 rooms, swimming pool, conference and banqueting hall which can seat 450, restaurant and many more facilities more..

Annual Governor’s meeting before Presidential polls

Aug 26 (Island) Governor of the Uva province Nanda Mathew said that the Governors would have to fix a date between Sept 20 and the next Presidential elections to hold the 17th annual meeting of the Governors’ Association in the province. Governor Mathew said that all matters such as the agenda for the next Governors’ meeting would be taken by incumbent President of the Governors’ Association, Governor of the Sabragamuwa Province W.J.M. Lokubandara in consultation with more..

Video: BBS ties up with Hindu Federation for reconciliation

Aug 26 (DM) The Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) today charged that the Govt and the National Languages and Social Integration Ministry had failed in the reconciliation process in Sri Lanka and as such would work with the All Ceylon Hindu Federation (ACHF) to complete this task. Ven. Galagodaatte Gnanasara Thera expressed these views at a joint news conference with the All Ceylon Hindu Federation (ACHF) in Colombo. more..

DEW re-elected Communist Party General Secretary Unanimously

Aug 26 (Island) Communist Party (CP) has reelected DEW Gunasekera its General Secretary according to party Chairman Raja Collure. Minister Chandrasiri Gajadheera was elected Deputy Chairman. The election of office bearers followed the 20th National Congress of the CP held in Ratnapura from July 25 to 27. S. Sudasinghe was elected the Deputy General Secretary while Aga Jayasena was elected the Organizing Secretary and S. Nagendran the Treasurer. more..

Spectre of evictions & land grabs in Colombo

Aug 26 (GV) There is a new energy to the beautification and development of urban areas in Colombo with a surge in construction, reconstruction and opening up of new spaces. The other side to this is the demolition of private properties and the eviction of thousands of people. In August 2014 media showed the demolition of shops in Pettah area at the behest of the powerful UDA. This incident, like many others, was reported in the media and raised by opposition politicians more..

Sri Lanka launches Rs 150mn floating market

Aug 26 (LBO) Shopkeepers in a newly built 150 million rupee floating market are hoping for better times after leaving behind wayside boutiques in a section of Colombo which is being modernized. Ajantha Dhaundarasekara, 55, was among scores of small businessmen who ran one of about 100 shops in Bastian Road in Colombo's Pettah area,which were demolished as part of a city beautifying exercise. more..

SL youth on Taiwanese vessel goes missing

Aug 26 (DM) Parents of a Sri Lankan youth, who had gone missing while working aboard a Taiwanese ship, have sought the assistance of the CID, the Foreign Employment Bureau and the Ministry of External Affairs, to locate their son. Harshaka Srimal, a CINEC Maritime Campus graduate, went missing on August 14 while working on the Taiwanese fishing vessel ‘Sinaw 8’ as a welder and fitter. He and his friends Asanka Indunil, Lakmal Madusanka and Pradeep Indika more..

Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.4%

Aug 26 (LBO) Sri Lanka's stocks continued to rise above the 7,000 mark with price gains witnessed in Richard Pieris and telco stocks amid strong foreign buying. All Share Price Index closed 29.29 points higher at 7,013.32, up 0.42%. The S&P SL20 closed 3.42 points lower at 3,851.85, down 0.09%. Turnover was 1.73 billion rupees, up from 1.22 billion rupees a day earlier with 124 stocks closed positive against 79 negative. John Keells Holdings closed 1 rupee lower at 242.00 rupees with more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

Child’s heart moves to save animal from slaughter

Aug 26 (Island) A 9-year-old girl Imesha Prabodhini of Sri Buddha Jayanthi Primary School, Balangoda who was moved by the plight of an ox being dragged to the slaughter house struggling to escape its captors collected money with the help of her classmates, class teacher and her parents to save the life of another ox in a similar plight, later on. She collected Rs.43,000 and after paying Rs. 30,000 to the slaughterhouse she handed over the balance to the Balangoda Hospital to buy a wheel chair. more..

Is BIA becoming a filch heaven?

Aug 26 (CT) Sri Lanka's main airport, the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), it appears is fast earning a reputation as a filch heaven with an organized group of unscrupulous employees taking upon themselves to treat unaccompanied luggage as a treasure trove to purloin and pilfer at will. And as is to be expected, it is the hapless migrant workers, many of them domestics, returning for a holiday or for good, after a long stint, more or less in a Middle Eastern country, more..

Pope will visit Madhu while in Lanka

Aug 26 (CG) In his trip to Sri Lanka, that will take place between the 13th and the 15th of January 2015, before proceeding to the Philippines, Pope Francis will visit the Shrine of Our Lady of Madhu and will thus be the first Pope in history to set foot in a territory where most inhabitants are Tamil. Francis chooses to touch on the sore point of the civil war between the Sinhalese and the Tamil people that devastated the island for 26 years more..

Red alert from Sobitha to MR on post

Aug 26 (CG) The leader of the People’s Movement for a Just Society the Venerable Maduluwawe Sobhitha thero today said if President Mahinda Rajapaksa fails to abolish the post of Executive Presidency then he will gather the support of the public to field a Common Candidate at the next Presidential elections. Speaking to reporters after meeting the Chief Prelates in Kandy today, Sobhitha thero said more..

‘Solution must come from within Sri Lanka’

Aug 26 (Hindu) While PM Narendra Modi’s emphasis on devolution of political rights to Tamils is welcome, a solution has to come ultimately from within Sri Lanka, Tamil politician and Cabinet Minister Douglas Devananda said here on Monday. He was referring to Mr. Modi’s statement at a recent meeting with TNA leaders in New Delhi that India would continue to engage with Sri Lanka for full implementation of 13th Amendment. more..

Video: Gun shots fired at JVP office in Moneragala

Aug 26 (DM) Members of the ruling UPFA had opened fire and had run amok at an election office of the JVP in Maneragala, JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva said at a hurriedly organised media briefing in Colombo a while ago. This is the first instance of firearms being used in election related violence in the run up to the forthcoming Uva PC elections. Gang had ransacked the platform set up for the political rally to be addressed by more..

TESO to protest against Mahinda Rajapaksa's UNGA address

Aug 26 (Hindu) Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) will hold demonstration in Chennai on Sept 3 urging the UN not to allow President Mahinda Rajapaksa to address its General Assembly on Sept 25. A resolution adopted in the meeting of the TESO chaired by DMK president M. Karunanidhi said Mr. Rajapaksa had refused to allow the UN team seeking to investigate SL’s human rights record. more..

Glyphosate banned in four districts

Aug 26 (Island) In a bid to prevent farmers from harmful effects of agrochemicals, the government has banned the use of glyphosate in four districts with immediate effect. Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena said that the govt had decided to ban the use of glyphosate in Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Kurunegala, Monaragala and part of the Badulla as many farmers were contracting chronic kidney disease more..

18 bland new lagoons

Aug 26 (DN) New lagoons will be created by developing 18 lagoons in the country without harming the biodiversity of the lagoons, but by eliminating unauthorized structures and building the lagoons outward. A large number of lagoons specially in the North and East possess a very high potential for development as recreational and ecotourism centres. The development work on the new lagoons is expected to be completed more..

Sri Lankan man arrested in New Zealand over Swiss murder case

Aug 26 (AP) A man accused of murdering his girlfriend nearly 14 years ago in Switzerland was arrested Tuesday in New Zealand. The 42-year-old Sri Lankan national is accused of murdering 23-year-old Kavitha Kandiah on Dec. 13, 2000, in the city of Basel. He was arrested under a Swiss warrant and granted interim name suppression by a New Zealand court pending an appearance next week. more..

Hidden dangers highlighted in Defence Seminar

Aug 26 (SL) The Sri Lanka Army flagship Defence Seminar 2014 held in Colombo, Sri Lanka from August 18-20, 2014 attracted 450 delegates including 200 foreign participants from 66 countries. The LTTE fronts in TN attempted but failed to prevent high level Indian political and military participation in the Defence Seminar. After the Indian authorities ignored the LTTE fronts, the actor turned director Seeman, leader NTK, more..

Saudi-SL talks focus on investment, tourism

Aug 26 (AN) Deputy Crown Prince Muqrin and Sri Lanka’s ambassador to the Kingdom, M.H. Mohamed, held a meeting in Jeddah to promote investment and tourism between the Kingdom and SL. Mohamed said that the talks, which were cordial, addressed issues of bilateral interest. He said that the deputy crown prince was confident that Saudi businessmen could invest in countries like Sri Lanka if they were offered attractive incentives. more..

Can North Rule Sri Lanka? – Possible

Aug 26 (DM) Election procedure is flexed in such a manner the day is not too far away, when the Northern Province determines the declaration of the next President of Sri Lanka. Token assistance will be required from the Eastern Province to make it definitive and that will be forthcoming. This would have been conclusively established in 2005 if Prabhakaran did not prevent the people of the North from exercising their franchise. That was the election that Mahinda Rajapaksa won by a whisker. more..

Political bribe to hang on to power

Aug 26 (DM) On the very day last week when we editorially questioned the rationale for having so many ministries for certain sectors in the country, two more deputy ministers were sworn in by President Rajapaksa, bringing the number of deputy ministers to 40. Prabha Ganesan once a die-hard Tamil nationalist and hailing from the Indian-origin community in Colombo was appointed Deputy Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technology while P. Digambaram, more..

Video: Ex-CJ to petition SC on snap presidential poll

Aug 26 (DM) Former CJ Sarath Nanda Silva said there were provisions to take legal action against the Elections Commissioner if he makes arrangements to hold the presidential election before Nov 19, 2016. He said if this was to happen he would intervene by petitioning the Supreme Court against the Elections Commissioner. Mr. Silva said Section 31.2 of the Constitution clearly states that a President who is elected to more..

Explosive situation at Karapitiya hospital finally resolved

Aug 26 (Island) Patients who came to the Out Patients Department (OPD) of the Karapitiya Teaching Hospital in Galle demonstrated opposite the hospital Director’s office as doctors boycotted their duties yesterday in protest against the failure of municipal authorities to remove garbage that was piling up there. Director of the Hospital Dr. Shelton Perera said that doctors had decided to boycott their duties and stop hospital admissions as the Galle Municipal Council had not removed garbage more..

Sri Lanka and Korea sign MoU to develop Technical and Vocational Education

Aug 26 (GDI) At the debate which took place over the Sagara Ocean University Bill, some debated that entering University without GCE A/L or disregarding Z-score is not right. The methodology used to enter a conventional University does not apply to enter Universities of Technical Education in any country in the world said Minister Dullas Alahapperuma. He made these observations at a ceremony where a MoU was signed between the governments of Sri Lanka and Korea to develop more..

Central Bank to diversify reserve management

Aug 26 (FT) Central Bank of Sri Lanka and the People’s Bank of China entered into a Bilateral Investment Agreement on Bond Investment yesterday, which enables the Central Bank of SL to further diversify its reserves management activities into Chinese Renminbi denominated assets. “As a result, the Central Bank could now access one of the largest and growing securities markets in the world, more..

Two killed and seven injured as container truck rams small lorry

Aug 26 (Island) A brother and a sister were killed and seven others including four children injured in the early hours of yesterday at Mahabage in front of the Welisara Navy filling station when a small lorry attempting to turn into it was rammed from behind by a container truck. The injured were admitted to the Colombo North Teaching Hospital at Ragama. The condition of one of the injured, a woman is said to be in a critical condition. 13 persons had been travelling in the small lorry from Stace Road, more..

Fresh concessionary loans for Divi Neguma families

Aug 26 (FT) As part of its poverty alleviation policy the Govt will provide concessionary loans to families under the Divi Neguma program. Minister Basil Rajapaksa has stated the program will be launched to grant loans at concessionary rates of interest to each Divi Neguma beneficiary family and it will be possible to obtain loans without security. He added that under this program, loans of Rs. 5,000 to 50,000 will be granted at concessionary rate of 4% interest to commence self-employment and more..