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Premier Dengue Centre facing crisis with staff shortage

The lack of junior doctors is likely to toll the death knell for the Dengue Centre at the Negombo General Hospital, from which a large number of critically-ill patients have been able to walk out after treatment, since its opening on June 16. Medical staffing has reached crisis level at Negombo’s ‘Centre for Clinical Management of [...]

Scare over milk powder recedes as Lanka, NZ plan to increase local output

While the milk contamination scare was slowly fading away, Sri Lankan and New Zealand authorities this week began discussing plans to expand local liquid milk production and reduce dependence on imports which are mostly from New Zealand. Amidst a flurry of activity on the milk issue, Sri Lanka was also assured of the attendance of the [...]

US envoy Sison, NMSJ’s Ven Sobitha Thera discuss abolishing executive presidency

The United States (U.S.) has shown interest in a four-month-old 10-point proposal by the National Movement for Social Justice (NMSJ) for reforms, including the abolition of the Executive Presidency. US Ambassador Michele J. Sison met with the movement’s convenor Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thera for details during an hour-long discussion at the Sri Naga Vihare, Kotte, where [...]

Beggars an endangered species in Colombo, suburbs for CHOGM

Beggars an endangered species in Colombo, suburbs for CHOGM

Ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo in November, an operation to rid the City of beggars has got under way.  By Friday, 128 beggars who were held at the Colombo Remand Prison, have been moved to the Detention Centre in Ridiyagama, Ambalantota, officials said. The recent transfer on court orders, [...]

‘The fighting is over, but the suffering is not’

‘The fighting is over, but the suffering is not’

Ms Pillay said the Government had extended excellent cooperation towards a very complex mission. She had been told she could go anywhere and see anything she wished to see. Despite “some disturbing incidents”, that commitment was honoured throughout. Certain media, ministers, bloggers and various propagandists in Sri Lanka have, for several years now, on the [...]

State Bank faces semi privatisation

Semi-privatisation and a share issue either through the public or private entities to divest nearly half the bank’s capital, are on the cards for the debt-ridden People’s Bank, the 52-year-old state bank, amidst dire warnings from employees to the management against privatising the bank under the cover of restructuring, the Sunday Times learns. A senior [...]

Democracy undermined, rule of law eroded: Pillay

Democracy undermined, rule of law eroded: Pillay

United Nations Human Rights Commissioner Navanethem Pillay warned yesterday that despite the opportunity provided by the end of the war to construct a new, vibrant, all-embracing State, Sri Lanka is “showing signs of heading in an increasingly authoritarian direction”. Ms. Pillay was addressing the media at the end of a seven-day fact-finding mission on the [...]

Nandikadal: Govt. blocks Pillay’s move

There was panic in the corridors of power that Navi Pillay, the UN Human Commissioner for Human Rights, was going to scatter flowers on the Nandikadal lagoon in memory of those who had lost their lives in the last stages of the war against the LTTE. The reports were to cause a flurry of activity, [...]

Rupee plunge may send prices soaring

Import costs could rise on items like petroleum products and other essentials after Sri Lanka’s rupee took another beating against the US dollar this week. The US currency hit an all-time high of Rs. 135 (per US$) on Thursday, more than 7 per cent gain against the rupee since January this year when the dollar was [...]

Standoff again at Weliweriya: People foil move to open factory

Standoff again at Weliweriya: People foil move to open factory

The controversial rubber glove factory at Rathupaswela in Weliweriya was yesterday forced to suspend plans to resume operations following fiery protests by the villagers who prevented the workers from leaving the complex amidst a tense situation as armed police took up positions in the area. Hundreds of villagers including women and children who were led [...]

More barking and biting comments on police dog wedding

More barking and biting comments on police dog wedding

The controversy over the police dog wedding in Kandy continues with the Cultural Affairs Minister insisting it was an insult to the Kandyan tradition while a senior DIG has gone there to probe the matter. Senior DIG Gamini Navaratne was assigned for the probe after Inspector General N.K. Illangakoon ordered the high-level probe on the mass [...]

Bogus job agencies send ineligible housemaids on forged stamps, visas

Bogus job agencies send ineligible housemaids on forged stamps, visas

On Friday a 48-year-old female from Mattakuliya, Dubai-bound as a housemaid, was arrested by the airport police at Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), as her Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) registration number issued on completion of training, did not tally with the computerised data. She was produced at the Negombo Magistrates Court and released on [...]

Victor Emmanuel: He toiled into the night

Victor Emmanuel:   He toiled into the night

Behind every media group or any such noble venture, there are men and women who though largely unknown and unsung and with no desire for fame or fortune, yet play a major role in bringing a good newspaper to your home every day. Today we reveal one such person – Antony Victor Emmanuel who passed away [...]

Navi Pillay confronted with ‘missing’ stories, demos on 7-day visit

Navi Pillay confronted with ‘missing’ stories, demos on 7-day visit

 Hardline groups oppose her presence, others want spotlight on LTTE atrocities Journalists say self-censorship practised due to fear Ms. Pillay sees reconstruction taking place, impressed by warmth, hospitality of Lankans Sri Lanka first invited the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to visit in April 2011. When Navi Pillay finally undertook her overdue excursion, [...]

Breathtaking vehicle emissions choking the public to death

Motor Traffic Department officials and Traffic Police officers will fan out to different parts of the City of Colombo from tomorrow to check vehicle emissions. The move follows the discovery that a large number of vehicles are still plying the roads with heavy emissions. This is notwithstanding the centres which have been issuing certificates confirming they [...]

Politicians will come and go but people’s hard life will continue

Politicians will come and go but  people’s hard life will continue

M. N. Ranjith Premasiri (39), a carpenter from the village of Hulogedera in the Nikaweratiya electorate is among the more than 1. 7 million voters in the North Western Province (NWP), eligible to vote at the upcoming poll to elect members to the Provincial Council. While candidates from all parties are leaving no stone unturned [...]

Police can stop any animal sacrifice done sans permit

The Court of Appeal this week held the Police have the power to stop any slaughtering of animals for any ritual conducted in the guise of religious activities if the people concerned have not obtained a permit in accordance with the Butchers’ Ordinance to perform such an act. The writ application filed by 14 petitioners [...]

SL’s largest heroin haul of 250kg from Pakistan police tip-off

Information provided by Pakistan’s Police Narcotics Division (PNDP) led to the detection of this country’s single largest heroin haul of 250 kg on Friday, and the arrests of the main suspects, Customs investigations revealed yesterday. Customs Revenue Task Force (CRTF) Director Mali Piyasena said the container used to ship the drug into the country arrived on [...]

Indian trawlers endangering local fisheries resources

Indian fishermen have once again begun intruding into waters off north western Sri Lanka as was evidenced by the arrest of 35 of them by the navy last week. Anton Kusum Rakesh, the Chairman of the ‘Multi Day Fishing Trawler Owners Association’ said the intrusion of the Indian vessels into Sri Lankan waters was depriving local [...]

Weliweriya shooting incident | Victims’ lawyers seek order to restrain suspects leaving country

Weliweriya shooting incident | Victims’ lawyers seek order to restrain suspects leaving country

Lawyers who represented the families of the Weliweriya shooting victims sought a restraining order from the Gampaha Magistrate Tikiri K. Jayatillake on Friday to prevent the Army personnel involved in the incident from leaving the country. Bar Association President Upul Jayasuriya who appeared on behalf of the families told the Magistrate that there were questions as [...]

Public cooperation instrumental in solving organised crimes: Gampaha SSP

Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Gampaha, Vjitha Komasaru last week received an anonymous telephone call. The caller hurriedly said that he had information about one of the robbers in the Rs 2.3 million heist from a petrol shed on Monday. The caller provided accurate information about the suspect’s location. The police immediately responded and arrested [...]

Colombo Mayor asks police to probe file burning

Colombo Mayor asks police to probe file burning

Colombo Mayor A.J.M. Muzammil has formally requested the Inspector General of Police to investigate the burning of files belonging to the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC). In a letter to the IGP, the mayor points out that the destruction of valuable public documents violated several rules, regulations and laws, including the Offences against Public Property Act, the [...]

Fishing in polluted waters

Fishing in the Beira Lake is no breaking news story.  Not very long ago, fishing for what is popularly known as ‘Beira Batto’ was a leisure time activity or for personal consumption.  But today, fishing in this polluted lake has become a lucrative business. Fish caught in these filthy waters are today supplied to small [...]

Tiny ant makes big strides

They are a household nuisance and the sight of lines of ants marching towards food lying about can drive one crazy. But researchers from Peradeniya University studying a group of ants are excited by their discovery. The cause of the excitement was the existence of the rare endemic Sri Lankan Relict Ant (Aneuretus simoni Emery) [...]

Media’s voluntary policeman receives 176 complaints in 2012

The Press Complaints Commission of Sri Lanka (PCCSL), the media industry’s self-regulatory body, received 176 complaints against the country’s newspapers last year (2012), according to its annual report. The report released this week says there were 87 complaints against Sinhala newspapers, 42 against the Tamil newspapers and 29 against English newspapers. The commission also received [...]

Sri Lanka Universities of international standards to attract foreign students

Sri Lanka Universities of  international standards to attract foreign students

The University of Colombo, the top ranked State university in the country and eighth in South Asia, is preparing to enrol more foreign students, with a proposed international student centre to overlook their welfare, and hostels and cafeteria being developed for their board and lodging, according to a senior University official. In an interview with [...]

Fee-levying private/State universities a degree closer

Fee-levying private/State universities a degree closer

The Higher Education Minister has gazetted rules for institutes to be recognised as Degree-awarding institutes. The rules made under the Universities Act, cited as Specified Authority (Powers relating to Recognition of Institutes as Degree-Awarding Institutes) set out guidelines for the recognition of State or Non-State Institutes as Degree-Awarding Institutes, and be authorised to grant Degree/s [...]

Defence Services Colleges to spread islandwide

Government has decided to expand the Defence Services Colleges to accommodate children of armed forces and police personnel in other parts of the country, with the first of them coming up in Kurunegala. Earlier, the Defence Services College commenced in Colombo to provide educational facilities to children of the three Forces and the police. Cabinet [...]

Supervisors, invigilators politically appointed misfits sans adequate knowledge, training

Supervisors, invigilators politically appointed misfits sans adequate knowledge, training

Failure to implement recommendations proposed by the Examination Advisory Committees and improper training for exam invigilators, have led to the increase in chaos at public examinations, causing additional stress to students, trade unions have charged. Ceylon Teachers’ Union President Joseph Stalin said invigilators and supervisors are mostly political appointees who lack experience and knowledge. He [...]

EP Teachers benefit from books on Guidance and Educational Theories

Hundreds of pre-school teachers in the Eastern province this week benefited from the receipt of books on Guidance for Teachers and Educational Theories. The books were released jointly by the Eastern Province Pre-school Bureau and PLAN Sri Lanka, at an event in Uppodai, where Chief Minister N. Abdul Majeed was the chief guest and PLAN [...]

Competition and Recognition, Godfather of Invention

The Higher Education Ministry will conduct a competition called SIIIP (Solutions, Ideas, Innovations, Inventions and Products) among university students and students in advanced technological institutes to showcase their innovative and creative talents and gain recognition. The objective of the Higher Education Ministry is to create a platform to empower research innovations in Sri Lanka and [...]

Kandy Shepherdians celebrate 125th anniversary

The Past Pupils Association of Good Shepherd Convent Kandy has undertaken a string of projects to raise funds for the school which celebrates its 125th Anniversary this year. Among the projects undertaken during this Jubilee year is the sundown dance, ‘Dance the Night away’ with DJ Lucky, from 7.30 pm to 2 am on September [...]

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