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SEC likely to come under Ravi as controversial liquor maker plans going public

May 24 (DM) Capital market regulator, SEC, is likely to come under the purview of the Foreign Ministry with the appointment for former Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake as the External Affairs Minister. This will be in addition to placing several other institutions such as the Development Lotteries Board, National Lotteries Board, Mahapola Scholarship Fund and SriLankan Airlines—which generally don’t come under more..

Parliamentary Select Committee to probe CB’s purchase of foreign assets under MR

May 24 (CT) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya announced in Parliament that a Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) has been appointed to investigate into and report on alleged malpractices in purchases of the offices including premises, of the Sri Lankan Embassy in Brazil and the Office of the Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in New York. The PSC will be headed by UNP MP J. M. Ananda Kumarasiri and includes 22 MPs. The other members of the committee are more..

SC to send determination to Speaker

May 24 (CT) The Supreme Court yesterday concluded the hearing of two special determination petitions filed against the proposed Bill titled Registration of Electors (special provisions), which was gazetted on 7.4.2017 and placed on the order paper of Parliament on 3.5.2017. The Court decided to send its Determination to the Speaker of the Parliament soon. The Supreme Court Bench comprised Chief Justice Priyasath Dep, Justices Sisira de Abrew and Nalin Perera. more..

Can’t pin it all on Ravi K: GL

May 24 (DM) Govt could not possibly pin the entire responsibility of its economic failures and fiscal shortcomings on former Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake as he was not the source of the problem, the JO said. It said if the Govt was attempting to shy away from taking responsibility of all these failures by sacrificing Mr. Karunanayake, it would be a fiasco. “There is no denying that there were many criticisms over the way Ravi handled more..

Cricket: No new Scotland heroics as Sri Lanka win easily

May 24 (AFP) Scotland were unable to back up their historic win over Sri Lanka as the Asian nation turned the tables with a nine-wicket victory when the teams returned to Beckenham on Tuesday. The Kent ground had seen Scotland record their first victory over a Test-match country in any format when they won Sunday's one-day tour opener by seven wickets. But Sri Lanka, using the matches as a warm-up for the Champions Trophy tournament in England and Wales that starts next week, more..

Strict action against inciting communal tension: Govt

May 24 (DM) Cabinet decided to take strict action according to the law against elements that attempt to create communal tension and disharmony in the country, Govt said. Govt accordingly will instruct all Police stations to be vigilant on those who attempt to create tension among communities and apply law strictly on them. Cabinet Spokesman, Land and Parliamentary Reforms Minister Gayantha Karunathilaka told a hastily convened news briefing in the Parliament Complex last afternoon more..

'We inherited a debt-ridden economy'

May 24 (CT) Newly appointed Minister of Finance and Mass Media Mangala Samaraweera yesterday compared the situation prevailing in the country inherited by the incumbent govt on 8 January 2015 to the Meethotamulla garbage dump. Moving seven resolutions under the Appropriation Act, the Finance Minister told Parliament: "I had serious misgivings when I accepted this portfolio. more..

RADA case against Alles, three others fixed

May 24 (DN) The case against four including former MP Tiran Alles and former LTTE Financial Head Emil Kanthan in connection with the Rs.200 million fraud alleged to have taken place in 2006 was fixed for July 31 by Colombo High Court yesterday. High Court allowed the Attorney General to proceed with the controversial RADA case in absentia of former North and Eastern Provinces LTTE Financial Head Emil Kanthan. When the case came up before High Court Judge Vikum Kaluarachchi, more..

Optimism looms all over business circles

May 24 (DN) Business chambers hailed the appointment of Mangala Samaraweera as the finance minister and said that his experience as a senior minister for several decades will certainly help to create a better economy. President, National Chamber of Exporters, Ramal Jasinghe said that Mangala Samaraweera as the foreign minister did a creditable job by helping SL to regain GSP+ which would help to boost exports. “Through the new minister we hope to work more closely with more..

Finance Committee Skewers Ministers’ Cars

May 24 (CT) Chairman of the Public Finance Committee M.A. Sumanthiran informed Speaker that the Committee has decided to withhold its approval for expenses to purchase new vehicles for Ministers. While tabling the Committee's performance report, MP said that the committee has requested Director General of National Budget Department to provide the details of vehicles purchased for ministers since Jan 2015. more..

Lankan cagers leave for Malaysia today

May 24 (DN) Two four-member Sri Lankan boys’ and girls’ cager teams leave for Malaysia today to participate in the FIBA Under-18 3x3 Asia Cup Championship to be held from May 26 to 29 in Cyberjaya, Malaysia. The Lankan boys’ team will be led by Brent Thevakumara, an experienced player from the Asian Int'l School - Colombo and will include Shivanga de Silva (CIS- Colombo), Rukshan Atapattu (Royal College, Colombo) and Rashan Perera of Lyceum Int'l School - Wattala. more..

Lottery Dealers to Strike

May 24 (CT) All-Island Lottery Dealers' Association (AILDA) yesterday warned that if the National Lotteries Board (NLB) and the Development Lotteries Board (DLB) were to be placed under the jurisdiction of Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake, despite the fact that both boards collapsed under him previously, they will opt for trade union action shortly. Secretary of the AILDA SS Madurasinghe stated this in response to reports that a few authorities which previously functioned under more..

Lankan Mission Heads: Ravi wants immediate report

May 24 (CT) New Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake will call for a comprehensive report on heads of all SL's diplomatic mission abroad. The report, which he will call for as soon as he assumes duties at the Foreign Ministry, will have to furnish complete background information on all serving diplomats including Ambassadors, High Commissioners, Deputy Heads of Missions and Consul Generals. more..

LuLu Group to invest US$ 1 bn on four mega projects here

May 24 (DN) UAE based retail giant LuLu Group has pledged to invest US$ one billion in SL for four mega projects within the next two years. The company also set up Y.A.S. Lanka, a BOI company at the Export Processing Zone at Katunayake recently. As their first investment of US$ 20 million the company inaugurated SL’s largest food processing and export unit that will source high quality products from SL and export to its large chain of hypermarkets in the Middle East and other countries. more..

Setback in Sri Lanka for China’s silk road

May 24 (EAF) China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) sets the bar high. It strives to connect Asia, Africa and Europe with the aim of achieving mutual development. Sri Lanka, with its valuable geographic position in the heart of the Indian Ocean, is a crucial participant in Beijing’s newest endeavor. But China–SL ties seemed to reach a low point when in Jan 2017 violent protests erupted in which people expressed opposition to an industrial zone project funded by Beijing. more..

GMOA threatens indefinite strike

May 24 (Island) GMOA warmed that it would be compelled to resort to an indefinite strike if the govt did not submit to courts its proposed solution to the SAITM issue. GMOA Secretary Dr Naveen Zoysa said the govt doctors had appealed to the President to place before the judiciary the proposals put forward by Minister of Higher Education to resolve the SAITM issue, but to no avail. Ministry of Higher Education in April presented several more..

Sri Lanka: Drink in days of old

May 24 (NZH) We were not suitably dressed for such an auspicious occasion. Entry to the Temple of the Tooth Relic inner sanctum, a sacred Buddhist shrine in Sri Lanka's crowded hill city Kandy, is an invitation-only affair. Visitors are expected to be correctly attired. Inside the temple, the dress code is white for purity. Through the connections of Priyanjith Panabokke, whose father had served on a powerful temple committee, we had a coveted pass to the holy of holies. more..

Royalists excel at C'wealth selection trials

May 24 (Island) At the Commonwealth Boxing Trials held recently at the Mass Arena of Royal College with the participation of a large number of boxers from all over the island, the performances of two Royalists stood out. Kevin Chamodh Piyasinghe of Royal College representing 52kg weight class excelled in the ring defeating his opponents with a lead. The young Kevin is a rising boxing star from Royal. His special skills are defending, attacking technically and quickly at his opponents. more..

Yahapalana Corruption: Did Ravi accept foreign ministry portfolio on conditions?

May 24 (AM) MP Ravi Karunanayake is to receive several departments that do not fall under the purview of the Foreign Affairs Ministry, sources said. Accordingly, there are moves to bring the Development Lotteries Board and the National Lotteries Board that fall under the Finance Ministry and the Mahapola Scholarship Fund that falls under the International Trade Ministry under the Foreign Affairs Ministry. more..

Dialog paves way for 5G with Massive MIMO trial

May 24 (DN) Sri Lanka’s Dialog, continued to blaze a trail in the region’s technology transformation with South Asia’s first successful trial of next-generation, Massive MIMO (Multiple-Input Multiple-Output) Technology. Massive MIMO Technology offers greater spectrum efficiency with up to six times more capacity from the same spectrum resource. In the race to 5G with unprecedented improvements in network throughput and capacity, MIMO is considered the most compelling technology more..

Post-war politics: Fonseka factor

May 24 (Island) Controversy surrounds SL’s decision to do away with the annual Victory Day parade in the wake of the change of govt in Jan 2015. Mathripala Sirisena was able to achieve what war winning Army chief General Sarath Fonseka failed in Jan 2010. Previous govt celebrated SL’s triumph over LTTE terrorism with a magnificent armed forces and police parade. Annual event reflected the liberation of the Eastern Province (Aug 2006-July 2007) and Northern Province more..

External affairs minister Ravi’s internal affair

May 24 (CT) Any person holding a public office, if found to have abused it for improper purposes violating the law, particularly the bribery or corruption, the law demands such persons to be dismissed from the public office and people want such people be named and shame in public. Before Ravi Karunanayake was appointed to the office of the Finance Minister, the PM, Ranil Wickremesinghe had prior knowledge that more..

Editorial: A gruesome finale

May 24 (Island) The latest terror strike in the UK has killed 22 persons including children and left scores of others injured. The cowardly attack must be condemned and the criminals responsible for it brought to book. Thousands of terrified music lovers were seen running helter-skelter following Monday’s blast at the conclusion of the Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena. The gruesome finale of the musical show must have evoked, in all Sri Lankans, horrible memories of numerous more..

Dialog Axiata offers pay per click rewards

May 24 (LBO) Dialog Axiata has entered the pay-per-click market offering Dialog and non-Dialog subscribers the opportunity to earn rewards on a daily basis. A website called has been launched for this purpose which is a sponsored deal site introduced for the first time in SL. Website provides participants the option of filtering sponsored deals by reward type and activity to best select the rewards they want to earn. Users can engage and redeem various rewards through more..

SLT fixed line telephone service on the decline

May 24 (ST) Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT), only fixed wire-line telecom service provider in the country, is grappling with a sharp increase in fixed wire-line disconnections and dropping demand for new connections, SLT, trade union leaders said. While the SLT lost 63,915 subscribers last year, it has failed to attract new customers due to a weakness in the marketing plan and its implementation. The number of new connections in 2016 dropped more..

Airlines oppose SriLankan’s hefty hike in ground handling fee

May 24 (FT) Airlines are up in arms over planned moves by SriLankan Airlines to jack up ground handling charges at the Bandaranaike International Airport by as much as 30%. Industry sources said the quantum of the hike was unwarranted and unjustifiable and SriLankan was simply trying to take other airlines for a mistaken ride.  At present SriLankan holds the monopoly of ground handling at the BIA and this status is under review by the Civil Aviation Authority.  more..

Navodya wins bronze as Sri Lanka finish with two medals

May 24 (CT) Hurdler Navodya Sankalpa from Mahinda College Galle clinched the bronze medal in the 400m hurdle, as Sri Lanka finished with a silver and bronze at the second Asian Youth Athletics Championship concluded at Bangkok yesterday. The youngster who trains under Piyal Weerasekera clocked 53.86 seconds. The race was won by Halomoan Edwin Bisar of Indonesia with a time of 51.96 seconds, while Ting Hsuan Huang finished second in 52.49 seconds. more..

Anura Kumara Dissanayake

The fate of another Muslim child marriage

May 24 (DN) In one of the worst cases of domestic violence in recent times, Thameem Fatheema Sharmila; a young 18 year old Muslim girl was burnt to death last week. She was tied to a chair, poured oil and set on fire by her abusive husband last Friday. She was four months pregnant and lost her baby. She is also the young mother of a 7-month old baby. Sharmila is also a victim of forced child marriage, which is legal for Sri Lankan Muslims. She was 16-years-old when she was taken to more..

The question of abortion

May 24 (DN) Abortion of human fetuses is indeed a traumatic one especially for an unwed young woman who has got pregnant for the first time. There are indeed unwed young women who have had abortions and subsequently got pregnant again and had had abortions more than once. The issue of abortion should be viewed first of all from the vision and perception of human life, development of life, development and exercise of human sexuality, human procreation in the perspective of more..

'There are many issues to iron out'

May 24 (CT) State Minister M.L.A.M. Hizbullah speaking on the repealing of the Muslim Marriage and Divorce Act (MMDA) said that the amendments should be done according to Sharia Law and the preaching of the Holy Quran. "If there is an amendment to the MMDA we have no problem we will support but the amendments should be done according to Sharia Law. We cannot do any amendments beyond Sharia Law. more..

Modi visit, A measured new step

May 24 (SL) Independent of expectations and anxieties to the contrary, the recent SL visit of Indian PM Narendra Modi was a measured, new step in bilateral relations over the past several decades. By responding in the right and adequate manner, without overdoing either the welcome or the anticipated protests to Modi visit, SL stake-holders have put bilateral relations in perspective, despite the continuing daggers-drawn approach in domestic politics, something that political parties more..

Branding Colombo City to be Asia’s another Singapore

May 24 (CT) The city of Colombo was well admired by the father of modern Singapore Lee Kuan Yew in 1950s, for having the best infrastructure, stone faced buildings and greener environment, and with the visionary leadership and sheer commitment he transformed Singapore, from third world to the first world. Later on, by looking at the successful city state of Singapore, our political leaders have pledged to emulate it and wanted to transform Sri Lanka to Asia’s another Singapore. more..

Timber tales: Traditional Lankan furniture and their origins

May 24 (Roar) When we think of traditional SL furniture, our thoughts often go straight to the wooden chairs and storage chests that harken to the old colonial days when SL was called Ceylon. In pre-colonial SL, seating above floor-level was uncommon; the ancient kings would sit on seats carved out of rock, while the masses would be seated on mats or on the bare ground. The seating furniture that we are now familiar with more..

Sri Lanka's power struggle continues

May 24 (NS) Unannounced power cuts throughout Colombo over the last few weeks may have gone unchecked by regulators and policy-makers alike, however new information has surfaced to indicate that consumers may have to pay twice the price for a unit of power if the treasury decides that the CEB bear the brunt of repaying a USD 1355 million loan obtained for the Norochcholai Power Plant. “The CEB has calculated the cost of energy excluding the cost of repayment of the loan, more..

I had a dream…

May 24 (SL) I had a dream. Not like that of Abou Ben Adhem in the poem of Leigh Hunt or the much celebrated dream of Martin Luther King. It was much more confusing. Was I dreaming or was it real? A corpulent man with a moustache and rings like knuckle dusters on his fingers was shouting: Mama pirewwe neddha? (Didn’t I fill it up?) and an emaciated man with goatee, cap and red shirt hopping on stage and screaming like a kattadiya (devil dancer) exorcising a perethaya more..