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India issues Dharmapala stamp

To commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Anagarika Dharmapala, India will issue a stamp on October 25 in New Delhi. Indian High Commission Spokesperson Esha Srivastava told the Sunday Times the stamp would be issued by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee. Sri Lanka last month issued a stamp honouring the great Buddhist revivalist and national leader.

Defence Ministry seeks details of your lost property in north

The Ministry of Defence and Urban Development is inviting complaints from people who have lost their property or land in the Northern Province due to terrorism after 1980. The ministry said those who had lost property or land should send in details about themselves and their property to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, 15/5, [...]

No presidential punch at Pallai

No presidential punch at Pallai

A lighter side of the much publicised reopening of the new Jaffna railway station was this scene. Pallai railway policeman Sumith was insisting that the tickets of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his entourage should be punched as others do before they boarded the train to Jaffna. But a Presidential security officer is seen blocking him. [...]

Pope’s visit in the balance: Cardinal writes to President

Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, the Archbishop of Colombo, has sought President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s early advice whether the visit of Pope Francis should go ahead or be cancelled in the light of the upcoming presidential election.  The three-day visit is scheduled to begin on January 13 next year. The request has gone in the form of a [...]

Tit-for-tat: Govt. officials boycott NPC programme

Central Government officials boycotted a Northern Provincial Council mobile service, in what has been described as tit-for-tat, after Northern Chief Minister C.V. Wigneshwaran kept away from the District Development Council (DDC) meeting presided over by President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Jaffna on Monday. The mobile service was organised in Nedunkerny in Vavuniya to resolve public problems [...]

Top FAO official, hundreds of others turned away at Omanthai

A top United Nations official was turned away at the Omanthai checkpoint this week as the Defence Ministry started strictly enforcing a requirement that prior approval is needed for foreign passport holders to travel to the north. The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Country Representative, Beth Crawford, was on her way to Kilinochchi on Wednesday [...]

China gets controlling stake at Hambantota port

China gets controlling stake at Hambantota port

News that Sri Lanka had granted Chinese state-owned companies operating rights to four berths at the Hambantota Port once they are completed next year has caught the shipping industry unawares. There had been no tenders or prior announcements. But Sri Lanka Ports Authority Chairman Priyath B Wickrama says the Government had agreed to such an [...]

2014 voter list expedited for early poll

The 2014 electoral register is being prepared earlier than scheduled, Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya said yesterday amid report that an early presidential election is likely to be held in January next year. He said the objective was to provide an opportunity for first timers in the 18-19 age group to vote in an early election. “In [...]

Port projects are open for any country: SLPA Chairman

Any country was free to bid for the proposed third terminal at the Colombo Port and the many other terminals that are being planned for Hambantota Port, said Priyath B Wickrama, Sri Lanka Ports Authority Chairman. “We know that,” he said, when asked whether he was aware that India was concerned about China’s growing foothold [...]

EAM invites Lanka’s envoy for non-event

Heads of some Sri Lanka diplomatic missions overseas or their deputies turned up in Colombo yesterday for a conference but found there was no such event. Invitations were sent out by the External Affairs Ministry for the event. They were made to believe that President Mahinda Rajapaksa would address them. Among those who arrived in [...]

Beijing’s nuclear subs coming again, India concerned

Any warship can come to Sri Lankan ports with Defence Ministry permission and the Chinese nuclear submarine that docked at the Colombo Port last month will pass through again on its return journey, a senior official said. The Changzheng 2, a type 091 Han-class nuclear-powered submarine, docked at the Colombo International Container Terminals Ltd (CICT) [...]

Rice millers in hot water

Rice millers in hot water

Several small-time rice millers around the country are dismantling their machines to sell them as scrap at Rs. 42 per kilo. Gamini Kumarasinghe, Co-Chairman and Media Spokesman of the Rice Millers’ Association said that shortage of paddy, high prices of paddy and the Government’s move to import rice have forced many millers to take the [...]

Probe on fax promising duty-free three-wheelers to varsity employees

The Council of the Peradeniya University which met yesterday called for an inquiry into the fax purported to have been sent by the Presidential Secretariat, Peradeniya University Vice Chancellor Athula Senaratne said. The fax said three-wheelers would be given away duty free to university employees after a sum of Rs. 25,000 was deposited at a [...]

Lanka’s feat on malaria elimination hailed

Sri Lanka came under much praise from health experts at a three-day conference in Colombo for successfully eliminating malaria. Addressing media personnel at the end of the conference on ‘Sri Lanka’s achievements in Malaria Elimination’ at the Galle Face Hotel, Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena said since October 2012 no malaria cases had been reported and [...]

Northern fishermen call for stronger action against Indian poachers

A petition forwarded by northern fishermen to the Attorney General’s Department by representatives of fishermen in the North has called for stronger legal action against illegal fishing by south Indian fishermen. Mannar District Fishermen’s Cooperative Society Union (FCSU) President Noor Mohamed Mohamed Aalam and the Jaffna District FCSU President Anthony Emiliyanpillai recently forwarded a petition to [...]

SL Atomic Energy Board to oversee peaceful applications of nuclear energy

Parliament will enact new legislation this week to set up the Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board to promote and encourage peaceful applications of nuclear science and technology in health, industry, environment and agriculture, for Sri Lanka’s national development. The Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Bill was presented to Parliament earlier this month and will be taken [...]

Two motor cyclists die in road mishaps

Two motorcyclists were killed in two different traffic accidents on Wednesday (15), a coroner’s court was told. Father of one Amila PiyanSka Padmalal, 32, a boiler operator attached to a factory in the Biyagama Free Trade Zone and a resident of Dewalagama, Dompe was on his way home when his motorcycle collided with a container [...]

Wrong room number has 5-star hotel guest remanded, employee hospitalised

A mix-up at a 5-star hotel in Colombo on Wednesday, resulted in a hotel employee being hospitalised and an American guest spending a night at the Welikada Remand Prison. Samuel Jerome Dealey, 40, head of Washington-based Monument Communications, was in Sri Lanka for meetings with clients. He was asleep in his room at the hotel [...]

Doctor and two others killed in road accident

Doctor and two others killed in road accident

A lady doctor and two others were killed, while another two were injured when an ambulance rammed head-on into an oncoming truck at Bathuluoya on the Puttalam-Chilaw Road yesterday, police said. The dead victims are Dr Ms Ishani Jayewardene, 26, A.M. Irshad, a junior hospital worker, while the third was yet to be identified, police [...]

MR to present Budget2015 on Friday

President Mahinda Rajapaksa, as Minister of Finance and Planning, will on Friday present his Government’s Budget for 2015, to Parliament. The Second Reading of the Budget will commence on October 25 and continue till November 1.The vote on the Second Reading will be taken on the evening of November 1. The Third Reading will commence [...]

Woman leader, 3-man gang of vehicle thieves arrested

A woman who led a gang of vehicle thieves was arrested along with three male accomplices from a location in Wattegama, Ragama, yesterday, police said. Two vans and a car stolen by the group were also recovered by sleuths ofm the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). According to police, the suspects are alleged to have vanished [...]

BASL concerned over next AG as present incumbent’s retirement approaches

BASL concerned over next AG as present incumbent’s retirement approaches

Concerned over the possible new appointment, following the retirement of the current Attorney General (AG), the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) highlighted the need to appoint an impartial and independent person to the post. BASL President, Upul Jayasuriya stressed on giving due consideration to merit and seniority of the service in the AG’s Department [...]

SL, Maldives forging ahead to further strengthen 50-year relationship

SL, Maldives forging ahead to further strengthen 50-year relationship

As the Republic of Maldives nears its 50th year of independence next year, and along with it, the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations with Sri Lanka, the two countries are exploring new ways towards enhancing decades-long relations, a senior Maldivian official said. Ambassador-at-Large of the Republic of Maldives, Abdullah Hameed, who was in Colombo this [...]

18A boomerangs on MR’s attempt at 3rd term in office

Summarised extracts from the opnion given by prof. Suri Ratnapala (University of Queensland, Australia) to the Bar Association of Sri Lanka on the applicability of the 18th Amendment with regard to the incumbent President seeking a third term The question presented for this opinion is whether His Excellency, President Mahinda Rajapaksa is disqualified in Law [...]

Ebola: Don’t panic but be ready

Ebola: Don’t panic but be ready

This is what is on the minds of a large number of doctors, as public concern grows with this virus spreading in several continents. In Sri Lanka, people do not know the gravity of Ebola and its deadly trail, pointed out many doctors while there were mixed reactions whether the virus (Ebola Virus Disease) would [...]

Home visits halted for African students

The Health Ministry has instructed all medical officers and Public Health Inspectors to be on the alert for arrivals to the country who suffer from fever or breathing difficulties as it is possible for people infected with the Ebola virus to enter without undergoing screening at the airport. There is a freeze on admitting new [...]

PHI’s wife (28) of 2 months dies of dengue

PHI’s wife (28) of 2 months dies of dengue

A 28-year-old wife of a Public Health Inspector (PHI) attached to the Colombo Municipal Council’s (CMC) Public Health Department (PHD), died of Dengue on Thursday. Surrounded by abandoned toilets and buildings in Kotehena, the newly married couple had been residing in staff quarters belonging to the CMC’s PHD. Chathurika Wimansani died from Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever [...]

Yala re-opens for 6 hours daily following some rains

Yala re-opens for 6 hours daily following some rains

Yala National Park is now opened for safari for six hours every day following sporadic showers in the area during the past weeks, Wildlife Department Director General H. D. Ratnayake said. Although the water levels in tanks and water holes in the park are not up to desired levels, the situation in the park has [...]

Lawyers debate Rajapaksa’s third term

Mixed views were expressed at a forum organized by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka yesterday to discuss the Constitutional provisions regarding President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s suitability to run for a third term. Beginning the proceedings BASL President Upul Jayasuriya said time had come to remedy the breakdown of law and order in the country. Mr. [...]

Only our smaller craft caught for breaking rules: Fisheries Minister

Drawing reference to the Sunday Times news item on September 28 under the headline ‘Chinese craft break fishing rules; Lanka faces EU ban’ Fisheries Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne’s Media Secretary Daya Sri Narendra Rajapakse has said that the article is misleading. He said that Dr. Senaratne has said that ‘To date none of the large [...]

EU red card on local fishing has Govt. reeling in frantically

Government this week was making hurried plans to enact several regulations, in a bid to stay an upcoming European Union (EU) ban on the export of Sri Lankan marine products, but industry stakeholders said that the efforts were too little, too late. The EU has already issued a red card to Sri Lanka’s authorities with [...]

Chinese tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka surge

A surge of about 140% in Chinese tourists visiting Sri Lanka has been observed within the first nine months of 2014 when compared to the same period in 2013. Official Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) statistics which provided the figures also reported that the Chinese have become the third largest number of visitors to [...]

Traffic snarls and commuter growls worsen as transport system overloads

Traffic snarls and  commuter growls worsen as transport  system overloads

People-friendly, beautified Colombo is a traffic nightmare, with fuming drivers spending hours on choked roads every day, while an expert warned that putting up new expressways in this congested space would not provide solutions. Seven million trips are made each day in the Colombo metropolitan areas and this is estimated to grow to 12.2 million [...]

Mental illness on the rise worldwide: psychiatrist

With the rise in foreign visitors, health authorities should be trained in dealing with tourists who show symptoms of mental illness as there in an increase in various neurological disorders worldwide that may lead to violent tendencies and drug addiction, a senior lecturer in psychiatry warned. Addressing a seminar organised by the British High Commission, [...]

Yal Devi to bring back the glory of northern lines, says Station Master

Yal Devi to bring back the glory of northern lines, says Station Master

He was the Assistant Station Master of the Jaffna railway station nearly 30 years ago. Today he has returned as the Station Master to the place he considers ‘home’. Narayanasamy Thavananthan recalling his time there from 1983 to 1990-when train services were terminated due to the conflict- says one of the main changes he sees [...]

Rape of British woman: DNA test on guesthouse worker

A man who allegedly raped a British woman at a guest house in Kohuwala last Saturday has been subjected to a DNA test, Police said. The incident is reported to have taken place when the woman along with her friends went to a party at the guest house last Saturday, Police said. The woman had [...]

Missing Lankan seafarers’ next-of-kin receive limited compensation

Missing Lankan  seafarers’ next-of-kin receive limited  compensation

More than a year after they went missing and now feared dead, families of four Sri Lankan seafarers received limited compensation from the authorities earlier this week. On the initiative of the International Transport workers Federation (ITF) and the Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Program (MPHRP), the families received Rs 50,000 each from Ceylon Shipping Corporation [...]

Unpaid Lankan worker allegedly beaten to death by drunken employer in Malaysia

The Ministry of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare is investigating into an incident where a 26-year-old man was beaten to death by his drunk employer in Malaysia. The deceased Mohammad Suffrine, a resident of Puwakpitiya in Galewela, had requested for his due wages from his employer, which resulted in the fatal assault. Mr Suffrine had gone [...]

Look who’s breaking road rules

Some motorists violate road rules, ignoring the pedestrians even at level crossings. A driver in his car is seen talking on the phone while stopped on a pedestrian crossing and in a separate case a driver was caught stopping his luxury car, also on a crosswalk, to drop off a passenger. In addition to this, [...]

Between a rock and a hard place: forest paradise vs quarry jobs

Between a rock and a hard place: forest paradise vs quarry jobs

The mesmerising sound of the evening breeze sweeping through tree leaves, the gentle call of birds and the ripple of a nearby stream … peace reigns but for the loud thuds in the Kodigahakanda forest reserve – rocks being crushed under the hammers of villagers who work in giant quarries. Earning up to Rs. 3000-4000 [...]

Satyagraha attackers still at large while students go on own rampage

Satyagraha attackers still at large while  students go  on own rampage

Assailants of Sabaragamuwa University students are roaming free more than a week after a violent attack with police saying defensively they had not yet questioned a UPFA Pradeshiya Sabha member alleged to have led the thugs because he had been absent from home when visited. University and government authorities condemn the students, saying they are [...]

CIRP hosts ICAP to promote SL as Psychology Hub of Asia

CIRP hosts ICAP to promote SL as Psychology Hub of Asia

The International Conference on Applied Psychology (ICAP)- deemed to be a juncture in Psychology in Sri Lanka, will be held at the BMICH from October 22 to 24. A large number of world renowned Clinical and Sport Psychologists, along with senior academics from the UK, U.S., Peru, India, Maldives, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Macedonia, Australia and New [...]

New ICT lab for Batticaloa Technical College with Korean aid

New ICT lab for Batticaloa Technical College with Korean aid

A new Information Communication Technology (ICT) lab was declared open on Tuesday at the Batticaloa Technical College. It was constructed at a cost of Rs 4 million, with financial assistance from the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA). Chief Guests at the opening ceremony were Director General, Department of Technical Education & Training, J.A. Ranjith and [...]

MR, BG, Indian HC jointly open Indian aided Language Lab

A Language Lab built with Indian assistance at the Wayamba National College of Education, Bingiriya, was jointly declared open by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Education Minister Bandula Gunawardana and High Commissioner of India, Y.K. Sinha, last Saturday. The Language Lab in Bingiriya is one of nine Language Labs that the Government of India (GoI) has set [...]

Learning lessons from fraud and scam the hard way

A female tuition teacher was ordered to be remanded for allegedly defrauding a parent of Rs 450,000, with the promise of admitting his son to a leading school in Kandy. The suspect, Kularani Silva was ordered to be remanded till October 24 by Kegalle Magistrate Prasanna Alwis. Court was informed that the suspect is alleged [...]

Kandy Good Shepherd Convent OGA AGM

The Annual General Meeting of the Past Pupils’ Association of Good Shepherd Convent, Kandy, will be held on October 26, from 10 am onwards at the School premises. A mass will be held at 9 am at the School Chapel.For lunch reservations call 0812 224 100.

Zahira College OBA Centenary celebration honours ‘Legends of Zahira’

The Zahira College OBA Centenary Dinner at the Hilton on Saturday celebrated 100 years by honouring five “LEGENDS OF ZAHIRA”. It was attended by a large and distinguished gathering of old boys of the College. The centenary celebrations highlighting “A Century of Excellence” was addressed by College Principal, Trizviiy Mariakar and Chairman of the Board [...]

‘Familian Tranquillo 2014’, Dehiwala HFC’s fundraiser for more classrooms

‘Familian Tranquillo 2014’, a concert organized by Holy Family Convent, Dehiwala, to raise funds for a four-storied building, will be held at the school auditorium on October 25. The concert includes unique music and dancing works performed by students from Grades 1 to 6. “This year the school celebrated its 79th anniversary. We have 74 [...]

Govt. on overdrive to resolve Education sector anomalies by year end

Principals, teachers and aspirant teachers are set to benefit from a series of Government decisions to grant promotions, salary increments and launch a recruitment programme, ahead of possible elections. Accordingly, some 12,000 Principals will be granted promotions and salary increments before year end, ending a seven-year long wait, Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena said He said [...]

NCE students to be awarded Degrees instead of Diplomas: BG

Those admitted to Colleges of Education will be awarded Degrees instead of Diplomas, from next year, said Education Minister Bandula Gunewardena. At the National Colleges of Education Diploma-awards ceremony on Wednesday, the Minister said that those admitted to National Colleges of Education will be awarded Bachelors in Education, following an extra year’s training at the [...]

MR hands over new Mahindodaya Tech Lab to Kuliyapitiya Vidyalaya

MR hands over new Mahindodaya Tech Lab to Kuliyapitiya Vidyalaya

President Mahinda Rajapaksa handed over the new Mahindodaya Technical Laboratory to the students of Kuliyapitiya Baragedara Anagarika Dharmapala Maha Vidyalaya, last Saturday. The Technical Laboratory built under Education ministry inspections consists of a Computer lab with 40 computers, Language lab, Advance Level lab, Maths lab and a Distance Education center. The President had inquired about [...]

SB settles undergrad’s strike at Trinco campus

A strike launched by students of Trincomalee campus has been amicably settled, following discussions with Higher Education Minister S.B. Dissanayake. The students decided to end the boycott of lectures since July 28. They had demanded the re-appointment of former Rector Nagalingam Varnakulendran who supported the development process, and to complete the ongoing building projects soon. [...]

Govt. woos Private Sector to introduce quality Higher Education in SL: SB

The Sri Lanka Government is promoting non-State sectors to introduce quality Higher Education to improve access and enhance freedom of Higher Education, in addition to free education, in our country, said Higher Education Minister S.B. Dissanayake. Addressing the opening of a two-day workshop, “Innovations in Higher Education for Knowledge-Based Economies & Economic Growth in the [...]

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