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President emphasizes need for a national policy for construction sector

Aug 28 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena says even though today’s construction industry has been completely enriched with modern technology, when we utilize that knowledge in the local field of construction, we should combine it the expertise we developed in ancient times. President further said that what we learn from historical chronicles about great creations like Lovamahapaya have been proved during excavations and more..

Opposition Leader? I will consider if invited: Chamal

Aug 28 (CT) Former Speaker and Hambantota District MP Chamal Rajapaksa said, that he would certainly consider it if he was invited to accept the position of Opposition Leader in the new Parliament. Rajapaksa said he learnt that his name was among those proposed for the Position of Opposition Leader but had as yet not been personally spoken to by anyone on the subject. It was his opinion that the UPFA parliamentary group should decide on who the opposition leader should be, more..

No repeal of PTA at present

Aug 28 (DM) Govt is not considering the revocation or the amendment of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) at present, Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said. Earlier, the CAFFE, a local election monitoring body, had said that it should be repealed. The organisation called it a draconian piece of legislation that was used to suppress human rights. However, Minister, in response to a query, said the govt was not considering it at the moment. more..

Ex-ITN boss in transparency controversy

Aug 28 (CT) Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry has decided to summon the former Chairman of ITN Anura Siriwardane, very soon, to question him regarding financial irregularities alleged to have taken place when providing propaganda facilities during the last Presidential Election to the former President as well as to the current President. Premise for this is said to be a lack of transparency in such propaganda facility provisions. more..

TN groups to protest against US stand on SL

Aug 28 (CG) Political groups based in Tamil Nadu have threatened to stage a protest next week against the US Govt decision to back a domestic investigation on the war in Sri Lanka. Tamil Nadu politician Thol Thirumavalavan said that he has organised a protest outside the US Embassy in Chennai on Sept 3 against the announcement by the US that it will sponsor a resolution in support of Sri Lanka at the UNHRC. He said that the former Govt under Mahinda Rajapaksa had been accused more..

Nigeria is now open for SL investments

Aug 28 (GDI) Nigeria’s High Commissioner in Sri Lanka, S U Ahmed said that they were not represented very well in Sri Lanka though they have been doing business for a long time with Sri Lanka. He stated this at a session on “Bilateral Trade between Sri Lanka and Nigeria”, organized by the National Chamber of Commerce Sri Lanka. Nigeria is planning to creat a joint trade mission in Sri Lanka to strengthen bilateral trade and investment promotion between two countries. more..

Oil contamination; Water supply disrupted

Aug 28 (DM) The water supply to Colombo, Sri J'pura Kotte and Dehiwala-Mt Lavinia was disrupted today after the water in the Kelani River was found to have been contaminated with oil, National Water Supply and Drainage Board (NWSDB) said. The contamination had resulted in the Ambatale water treatment plant being forced to limit the supply of water. NWSDB said it hoped to resume the supply of water as soon as more..

SL Looks in the mirror and sees Singapore

Aug 28 (Caixin) Despite boasting the highest per capita income in South Asia, Sri Lanka is still a developing country. The per capita GDP of the nation, with its 22 million inhabitants, was US$ 10,400 in 2014. The figure is higher than that for India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, but is certainly not high enough to defeat underdevelopment. Sri Lanka does not carry the same weight with its neighbors as Singapore does with its. In any case, the latest elections could ensure stability, more..

13 apply for two posts of hangmen

Aug 28 (DM) The Prisons Department said today they had received 13 applications in response to an advertising calling for applications to fill the two vacant posts of hangmen. Assistant Commissioner Aruna Attapattu said the vacancies were advertised a month ago, based on Justice Ministry approval. He said the two vacancies would be filled by the beginning of November and the successful candidates would be given two-weeks training prior to assuming duties. more..

SLFP empowers President to decide on Ministers, posts

Aug 28 (AD) Central Committee of the SLFP today decided to authorize President Maithripala Sirisena, as the Chairman of the party, to appoint SLFP Ministers to the National Govt as well as the Opposition Leader, Chief Opposition Whip and Deputy Speaker. Proposal was approved at the SLFP central committee meeting this evening. A decision has been taken that all 80 SLFP MPs out of the 95 UPFA MPs elected to Parliament more..

SL to get $200mn for wind power from ADB

Aug 28 (EN) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has allocated US$ 200 million in lending to Sri Lanka in 2018 to support wind power generation, including possible public–private partnerships, under the govt’s renewable energy program. The allocation was made in an update to the ADB’s Country Partnership Strategy aimed at strengthening efforts to improve Sri Lanka’s economic competitiveness through environmentally sustainable growth. The US$ 200 million will be more..

Sarath Pathirana to take Lal Kantha’s seat

Aug 28 (CT) It is reported that Sarath Pathirana, who contested the recently concluded parliamentary election from the JVP for the Colombo District is to be appointed to fill the vacant JVP seat in the Western Provincial Council. This seat fell vacant when K.D. Lal Kantha of the JVP who had contested the PC elections for the Colombo District and won, resigned from his post of councillor on 10 August. Meanwhile, the Leader of the Western People's Front who was elected to more..

The fastest groundstaff in the world

Aug 28 (CI) At one point after the 15th over, on the first day of the third Test, the groundsmen on either side of the SSC square moved in; there had been no rain but they knew. From the media box with views of the city, the construction cranes, scattered multistorey towers, the white cupola of the Town Hall, and slowly-rising Lotus Tower were being obliterated by a curtain of grey. Groundskeeping team were on standby more..

Killers fled to Italy: CID

Aug 28 (CT) Two suspects connected to the killing of rugger player Mohammed Thajudeen have secretly fled to Italy, top CID sources said. It has been learnt that a close associate of a politician of the previous govt had assisted the two suspects in their flight to Italy, source added. The fleeing of these suspects to Italy come in a sequel to the blaze of publicity following the re-opening of the case after the CID told Court recently the death was not accidental but a murder. more..

Diyawadana Nilame election on Sept 8

Aug 28 (Island) The Election of a new Diyawadana Nilame of the Sri Dalada Maligawa has been fixed for September 8. The election of the DN is held by the Buddhist Affairs Commissioner. The venue of the election will be the Kandy Buddhist Centre Hall at Anagarika Dharmapala Mawatha, Kandy. Four candidates are vying for the coveted office of the lay custodian of the Sacred Tooth Relic and Chief Administrator of the Temple of the Tooth. Among those contesting are more..

PBJ quizzed by SIU for giving money to LTTE

Aug 28 (CT) Former Secretary of the Treasury, P.B. Jayasundera was today questioned by the Special Investigation Unit (SIU). It was reported that he is being questioned regarding the financial misappropriation case against Tiran Alles where a company chaired by him and established to reconstruct houses for Tsunami affected families has been charged with misappropriating state funds. more..

Kandy municipality kept on its toes during Perahera

Aug 28 (Island) Kandy Municipal Council (KMC) uses 17 tractors and 13 compactors daily for removing garbage and refuse that get piles up during Perahera. In addition to those vehicles, nine trishaws had been used to collect and remove refuse left behind by Esala Perahera viewers, Deputy Mayor Sena Dissanayaka said on Thursday. The collection of garbage during the Perahera has increased from 140 tonnes to 200 tonnes daily, Deputy Mayor Dissanayaka said, more..

UGGNF awaits EC approval to change name and symbol

Aug 28 (DM) United National Front for Good Governance (UNFGG) said it was awaiting the Elections Commissioner’s approval to change its name back to the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU). The party had also requested that diamond symbol of the UGGNF be replaced with the JHU’s Conch symbol. UGGNF General Secretary Champika Ranawaka said the JHU was changed into UGGNF during the previous parliamentary election for the purpose of forming a broad political front. more..

Bangar concerned by unfamiliar seam movement

Aug 28 (CI) Only 15 overs were bowled on day one at the SSC but in that time, India's inexperienced top-order batsmen were exposed to seam movement they were unfamiliar with, the visitors' batting coach Sanjay Bangar said. India lost their first wicket off the second ball of the day, when KL Rahul left a ball that seamed back to shave his off stump. According to Bangar, Rahul, who is playing his fifth Test on an unusually green SSC deck, still more..

S.B. claims defeated candidates selected to parliament through NL owing to pact

Aug 28 (Island) UPFA National List MP S.B. Dissanayake said he and several defeated UFPFA candiates had been appointed National List MPs according to a pact. If the SLFP decided to give the National List MPs ministerial posts they would accept them, Dissanayake said. Dissanayake said the defeated UPFA candidates like him had fared well at previous elections but failed at the recently concluded polls because the Mahinda Rajapaksa loyalists had conspired against them. more..

Shares rise for third day; investors snap up battered stocks

Aug 28 (Reuters) Shares rose more than 1% on Friday, rising for a third straight session, as investors bought into select battered stocks like conglomerate John Keells Holdings after recent falls. Main stock index ended 1.06%, or 77.38 points, higher at 7,350.52, moving further away from its lowest close since July 23 hit on Tuesday. Index had lost 3.2% in the two sessions through Tuesday as foreign investors sold off risky assets on fears of a China-led global economic slowdown, more..

Sri Lanka take two on rain-hit day

Aug 28 (CI) Asked to bat on a testing, grassy pitch, India held on grimly - with some luck on their side - to keep the damage down to two wickets on a day that rain allowed only 15 overs of play. KL Rahul fell shouldering arms in the first over, Ajinkya Rahane was done in by seam movement soon after, but Cheteshwar Pujara - getting an opportunity in the absence of two injured openers - and Virat Kohli stayed together for 36 runs more..

Glasnost to prosperity

Aug 28 (CT) The people of this country reaffirmed the stance they took on 8 Jan 2015; seven months later on 17 August. It's now up to the elected, to fulfil the wishes of the electors, i.e. to live in peace and prosperity. Racism doesn't deliver peace. When there is no peace there is no prosperity to the broad mass of the people of this country. That is why the racist card failed in the last of the country's two major elections to date. An imaginary bogey was used successfully by vested political interests more..

Steps from victory

Aug 28 (CT) After a victory at the recent parliamentary elections, Sri Lanka is seen by the outside world as a shining example of democratic peaceful elections and political transition. Our democratic values in society are far superior to an individual politician. According to Justice Weeramantry, “our ancient civilization fore-shadowed concepts of equality, freedom and democratic procedures in a manner which throws on us the burden of carrying on more..

Cases against Anura & Susil withdrawn

Aug 28 (AD) The court cases filed against Anura Priyadarshana Yapa and Susil Premajayantha have been withdrawn by Duminda Dissanayake and Prof. Vishwa Warnapala. On Aug 14, President Sirisena in his capacity as the Chairman of the SLFP and UPFA removed Yapa and Premajayantha from the posts of General Secretaries of the two parties. Dissanayake was later appointed as the Acting General Secretary of the SLFP and more..

Geetha revoked Swiss citizenship

Aug 28 (CT) UPFA MP-elect Geetha Kumarasinghe squashed rumours that she was to be disqualified as an MP due to her holding dual citizenship in Switzerland as well as Sri Lanka. "I wrote to Switzerland in June and got them to revoke my citizenship. I no longer hold any dual citizenship so I am well within the law and entitled to take oaths as an MP," Kumarasinghe said. She added that even the Immigration Department more..

JVP’s demand for parliamentary debate on national govt granted

Aug 28 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe had decided to postpone the swearing in of the new Cabinet of Ministers to Sept 04, sources said. It was earlier agreed to have the swearing in on Sept. 2. The decision to postpone the date had been taken at the request of JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake, who had asked for a one-day debate in Parliament on the national govt and more..

New six lane bridge to be built next to Kelani bridge

Aug 28 (DN) The govt is mulling a proposal to build a new six-lane bridge over the Kelani River adjacent to the existing Kelani Bridge (Japan Friendship Bridge) at a cost of Rs. 45 billion linking Colombo-Katunayake Expressway and Baseline road. The objective of this project is to ease traffic congestion around the Peliyagoda area and Baseline Road thereby contributing to the improvement of transportation more..

We can form a govt, says SLFP Gen. Secy

Aug 28 (Island) Powerful ministerial posts would be given to both UNP and SLFP elected MPs in the national govt, SLFP Acting General Secretary Duminda Dissanayake said. He said that besides the SLFP several other political parties had already expressed their desire to join the national govt. He said CWC leader Arumugan Thondaman and EPDP leader Douglas Devananda had decided to extend their support to more..

Sea erosion threatens surfers' paradise

Aug 28 (CT) Several tourist resorts in the coastal areas of Arugambay and Ulle in the Pottuvil region are threatened extensively due to sea erosion. Arugambay is one of the internationally renowned areas for sea surfing in the South East Asia. A significant number of sea surfers including the veterans in the sports visit Arugambay since the ethnic strife ended in the North and East in 2009. Several scenic locations such as the Kumana more..

Domestic probe will do bidding of US: PNM

Aug 28 (Island) President of PNM Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera that the domestic probe into allegations of war crimes levelled against Sri Lanka, backed by the US, would actually be an international investigation to be conducted according to the diktats of the US. "The investigation will be conducted according to their rules and regulations under the supervision of persons appointed by the US and the report will be submitted making more..

Justice delayed is justice denied!

Aug 28 (SL) Journalists have been victimised since they started exposing corruption and especially the wrong leadership of the former regime. Bygone incidents that took place during the former govt had damaged properties and brutally wiped out so many journalists’ lives including the founding editor of The Sunday Leader, Lasantha Wickrematunge. Wickrematunge’s brutal assassination on Jan 8, 2009 shocked nation. more..

Victors bask in new found glory as vanquished lick their wounds

Aug 28 (ST) Of those who contested the elections, over 40 lost their seats. While most of them were from the UPFA, there were others from the UNP, JVP and the ITAK. Sunday Times spoke to some of the winners and losers who had been defeated despite years of experience as politicians. Young UNP MP Mayantha Dissanayake from Kandy said the 2013 Provincial Council election had been a good experience for his campaign. more..

Accident or otherwise? It leaked diesel on election day

Aug 28 (DM) At around 6 a.m. on elections day the operations officer at the Ambatale water treatment plant noticed a patch of oil floating in the Kelani River. As this was an occasional occurrence he let it pass. However as the oil had continued to flow even after a lapse of 30 minutes, immediate measures were taken to shut down the plant and stop pump water from the river. Amidst rumours of suspected sabotage Coca Cola Company more..

Controversy over national list nominations

Aug 28 (DM) Nomination of MPs from the National List after the election has been the bone of contention these days in many political parties. ACMC of former Minister Rishard Bathiutheen has even suspended the party’s General Secretary Y.L.S. Hameed following his criticism of the party leader for nominating M.H.M. Navavi for the sole National List slot they got. Former UPFA General Secretary Susil Premajayantha too cites the controversy over National List nominations more..

Virginia horror lessons for Sri Lanka

Aug 28 (DM) For the first time on Planet Earth, a real life double murder was seen live on television when Two TV journalists were shot dead in the midst of a live telecast in Virginia on Wednesday-- the victims of an attack by a disgruntled former reporter who was apparently suffering from some mental imbalance. Hundreds of millions of people all over the world were shocked and horrified when they saw the pretty, young and creative reporter Alison Parker (24) and photo journalist more..