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CPC unions threaten to cripple fuel distribution

Apr 24 (Island) Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) unions yesterday threatened to cripple fuel distribution with effect from midnight yesterday. Civil society and religious organisations, too, are up in arms against what they call govt’s plans to hand over the Trincomalee Oil Tank Farm to India. The govt should take measures and implement projects to develop the country but that should not be done by selling national assets to the foreigners, more..

‘Modi must visit Tamil areas to understand their sufferings’

Apr 24 (Hindu) Tamil National Movement leader P. Nedumaran said PM Narendra Modi should visit the Tamil areas in northern SL during his visit to Colombo and take steps to alleviate their suffering. Talking to reporters here after staging a protest in support of the fishermen, he said as the Tamils could not get back to their houses, take possession of their lands and resume normal life even six years after the end of the civil war, Mr. Modi should intervene and address their problems. more..

WB & IMF commend SL’s economic progress

Apr 24 (NR) World Bank and the IMF have commended the progress of Sri Lanka’s economic development process and assured support for SL’s fiscal policy reforms and economic growth. These sentiments were expressed during discussions held by the Minister Ravi Karunanayake with the representatives of those organizations on the sidelines of the 2017 Spring Meeting of the World Bank and IMF in Washington. Deputy Managing Director of the IMF Mitsuhiro Furusawa more..

'Port City to yield US$ 13 billion'

Apr 24 (CT) The sale of the reclaimed land at Galle Face, for the Port City Project, will yield a whopping US $ 13 Billion, Central Bank Governor Dr. Indrajit Coomraswamy said. He said that it will take another one and a half to two years for the land to be reclaimed and filled and that will be the time that the land will be sold to the project for US $ 13 billion. This will by far be the largest transaction to be effected in Sri Lanka. more..

Stop son-in-law’s company from robbing people’s money

Apr 24 (LT) Perpetual Treasuries, the company owned by Arjun Aloysius, the son-in-law of former Governor of CB Arjun Mahendran has been again allowed to invest on treasury bonds, allowing the tender process for the company while a special presidential commission is investigating the bond scam is a serious crime says the Convener of Voice Against Corruption (VAC) Wasantha Samarasinghe. He says the license of perpetual treasuries to invest in treasury bonds should be banned more..

SriLankan Airlines to further reinforce Mideast presence

Apr 24 (SG) SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka and a member of the oneworld airline alliance, is looking to gain further impetus from the Middle East, even as the Indian Ocean island nation increasingly reaps the positive dividends of rapidly growing tourist numbers. The airline will be making fresh forays into the region, which is one of its significant source markets, through its presence at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai (April 24 to 27). The airline is uniquely positioned to serve as more..

Govt to reimburse total damages caused to houses: PM

Apr 24 (DN) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said that the govt will reimburse the total value of the houses damaged by the Meethotamulla disaster. PM said so addressing a team of representatives of the affected families of the Meethotamulla disaster at Temple Trees yesterday. Premier further said that the families living on rent will also receive a concessionary allowance in due course. more..

Sri Lankan Parliament to host Young Parliamentarians' regional meeting

Apr 24 (GDI) Regional Meeting of Young Parliamentarians of Asia - Pacific will take place from 25th to 26th April at Hilton Hotel in Colombo. Jointly Organized by Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), UN Development Program (UNDP) and Parliament of SL, meeting will be on Role of Young MPs in Advancing Inclusive and Peaceful Societies and Preventing Violent Extremism. Meeting will bring together young members of national parliaments from 39 countries in Asia-Pacific region, more..

PM cracks the whip on foreign jaunts

Apr 24 (Island) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has banned all UNP MPs and ministers from leaving the country more than thrice a year. If any MP or a minister needs to leave the country then he or she will have to meet him and obtain his written permission, PM has informed his group of MPs. PM has said that the MPs and ministers had to be in the country, attending to the problems of the people and the needs of the party. Party has appointed various committees as per the needs of the country more..

Govt drags its feet on mega $ 3 b FDI

Apr 24 (FT) Govt is alleged to be dragging its feet on a massive and highly beneficial private sector-run oil refinery project with foreign investment of $ 3 billion, biggest ever on its table and three times the size of individual Chinese commitment on projects such as the Port City and Hambantota Port. The oil refinery project envisages refining 200,000 barrels per day for export with first right of refusal for CPC if it wants to buy. more..

‘Listing SAITM, no solution to crisis’

Apr 24 (Island) The steps that have been taken to list SAITM in the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) in response to the ongoing wave of protests spearheaded by the GMOA will not be the solution to the crisis, stock market analysts said. "Broad basing the ownership of the institute will not prove a solution, without changing the model of SAITM when enrolling students to the medical faculty and without giving proper clinical training to such students, a stock market analyst said. more..

Long queues at filling points

Apr 24 (DM) Motorists were seen queuing up at filling stations in Colombo to refuel their vehicles fearing a possible fuel shortage due to the planned strike by petroleum workers. Some filling station owners said that they were not aware of a trade union action being launched but confirmed that no fuel tankers had arrived to replenish their fuel stocks today and acknowledged that this could potentially lead to a fuel shortage in next day or two. However, they assured the public that they would more..

Independent public trust to manage state pension funds

Apr 24 (ST) Amidst growing protests from trade unionists and opposition politicians, govt is gradually going ahead with employees’ retirement benefit reforms. The EPF, ETF and govt pension scheme will undergo drastic changes under this initiative phase by phase. These reforms are aimed at improving the efficiency of management in the EPF, ETF and deliver pension for life for public and private sector employees, more..

SLC to announce ICC Champions Trophy squad today

Apr 24 (DN) National Selections Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket headed by Sanath Jayasuriya met at the SLC Headquarters yesterday to select the squad for the forthcoming ICC Champions Trophy 2017. National captain Angelo Matthews who was in India as a member of the Delhi Daredevils for the ongoing IPL returned to the country early yesterday morning in order to take an active role in the selections of the team that will be led by him. The selectors adopted a strategic approach and more..

Heat to continue, rains after May 1: Met Dept

Apr 24 (DM) Reduction of humidity in the Sri Lankan atmosphere and the strong solar energy hitting the surface would prolong the dry spell and the heat, till the end of the month. Rains could be expected only after May 1. Department of Meteorology therefore predicted a dry week and high speed winds in the North. In addition sea areas were predicted to be rough from Kankesanthurai to Puttalam via Mannar and Pottuvil and up to the Hambantota area with winds reaching 60kmp/h. more..

Possible GSP+ postponement averted

Apr 24 (ST) Pressure on the SL Govt to deliver on its promise of ensuring that GSP+ benefits, if approved, are passed down to workers, has averted a possible delay in the process. While the European Union (EU) is set to decide next month on Sri Lanka’s request for a resumption of trade concessions under GSP +, there was concern that EU May decision-making process would be postponed by several months if more..

SLTA to conduct highest number of tournaments for 2017

Apr 24 (DN) Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA) boasts that they will conduct the highest number of annual tournaments during their 100-year history in 2017, including over 20 tournaments in the under-10 category. The SLTA will host a tournament once in three weeks throughout the year, creating competition opportunities to the age category that has shown an unprecedented high volume in recruiting to the sport. This was revealed to the media during a discussion at the SLTA where more..

Micro Holdings draws $ 40 m investment from South Korean firm

Apr 24 (FT) South Korea’s third-largest conglomerate, SK Group, recently announced that it plans to make an equity investment worth $ 30million-$ 40 million in SL’s homegrown automobile assembly pioneer and manufacturer Micro Holdings Ltd. SK Group Senior Vice President C.H. Lee said they were keen on investing in the efforts of Micro Holdings to revolutionise the Sri Lankan automobile and transport industry. “We are hoping to facilitate Micro to expand its production facilities, more..

Sunil Handunnetti visits Meethotamulla

What we need to be teaching our children after the Meethotamulla tragedy

Apr 24 (Island) Last week we went for a movie in Colombo. We hadn’t been to one in quite a long time, months actually and I was seriously shocked to see how the level of cleanliness (amongst other things) had dropped at this theatre. The seats were slashed and there were left over bits of popcorn on the floor in front of our seats even before our movie started. I suppose it is uncommon to see a cinema in such a state since most of our movie theatres have been through recent refurbishments and more..

Lankan athletes in action today in China

Apr 24 (DN) An 11-member Sri Lankan team arrived in China today to compete in the first and second legs of the Asian Grand Prix at Jiaxing and Jinhua, China from today till April 27. The third and final leg will be held in Chinese, Taipei on April 30. The Sri Lankan team comprised six men and five women athletes but did not include experienced Asian gold medalist Manjula Kumara (high jump) who unfortunately had to miss the championship due to poor health. more..

Records fall at Junior Championships

Apr 24 (Island) Young track and field prodigy Hirusha Abeysekara commenced from where he left last year at national level to win the Under-16 boys’ long jump with an impressive feat as Jegatheeswaran Aniththa, Asmika Herath and Nipun Kaldera hogged the limelight with new meet records on day one of the Junior National Athletics Championship at Diyagama on Sunday. Mendis, who clinched triple titles in the Under-14 more..

'Foreign coach Pietersz failed in his task'

Apr 24 (DN) The Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA) said that the foreign coach Eric Pietersz, whom they had got down to form and train a national pool had failed in his task and they had decided to terminate his contract. “We started in February, 2016 with 36 players who were the three top seeded players of U-12, U-14 and U16 but within three months only 24 players were left in the program,” revealed SLTA vice president Sohan Patrick. “We amended the program and more..

Australia Youth clinch series 4-1

Apr 24 (Cau) Australia Under-19s have wrapped up their Youth ODI series against Sri Lanka in style with a narrow 23-run victory in the final match in Hobart to earn a 4-1 series result. Australia set the SL U19s 245 to win at Kingston's Twin Ovals in Hobart, and a searing spell of leg-spin bowling by the flame-haired Lloyd Pope ended the tourists hopes of victory. Pope claimed three wickets in six balls across two overs to rip the heart out of the SL middle order and put the Aussies on course for victory.  more..

Brief history of Meethotamulla garbage dump

Apr 24 (Roar) Every day the Meethotamulla statistics are being laboriously revised, a backhoe scoop at a time, but now the horror and nausea of the news consumer is being replaced by something like incredulity. If the methane issued early threats and the soft soil shifted houses for months – if the Meethotamulla garbage dump was a time-bomb – why did the residents wait? This is the question now being insinuated. more..

Mattel to stimulate growth in Toy Industry

Apr 24 (DN) Mattel, a multinational toy manufacturer has identified Sri Lanka as a key market for growth. In a recent presentation to Mattel’s local partners South Asia Country Manager Ishmeet Singh outlined the toy company’s vision for SL. Mattel highlighted its commitment to developing and growing the toy market in Sri Lanka that will ensure the availability of quality, safe toys that aid early childhood learning and development as well as help address the threat of counterfeit and unsafe toys more..

Priority to disposal of garbage and political garbage

Apr 24 (SL) This fascinating autobiography of Vijaya Vidyasagara edited by Skantha Kumar and Marshal Fernando and published by the Ecumenical Institute for Study and Dialogue is excellent reading. Priced at Rs. 500/- and covering 300 pages this book is a very good buy for any reader interested in Sri Lankan society and politics. Having known Vijaya and associated with him and the Christian Workers Fellowship (CWF) for over half a century, I found the book difficult to put down. more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Editorial: When yahapalanaya rots and stinks

Apr 24 (Island) Those who voted for the incumbent administration may not have expected others’ garbage to be shoved down their throats––so to speak––in this savage manner. They were promised the sun and the moon, but, today, they have their villages being turned into stinking rubbish dumps. Their protests are violently crushed. The much-touted yahapalanaya has become kunu (rubbish) palanaya! Rajapaksa govt had villagers who protested against a factory polluting their more..

Priorities in tackling garbage & counter-terror

Apr 24 (SO) The law and the Constitution are of relevance not only in regard to sensational struggles between the citizen and the State when the security of the country is said to be at stake. Instead, when we refer to the breakdown of the Rule of Law, this is also reflected in the most mundane failures of ordinary civic life. And the point here is that, in Sri Lanka, the failure does not occur as a result of incapacity or lack of knowledge. Rather, it is through the deliberate subversion of the law, more..

'Ministry of Megapolis responsible for Meethotamulla tragedy'

Apr 24 (CT) Accusations are hauled chiefly at the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development and the Western Provincial Council for the culpable negligence in taking pre-emptive actions to transfer the garbage dump at Meethotamulla which killed approximately 40 people. Many are of the view that the tragedy could have been averted if relevant authorities cooperated to find an empirical solution to shift more..

Avurudu avalanche reveals Sri Lanka’s political graveyard

Apr 24 (ST) Surrounded by an army contingent and a police task force to boot, Lankan PM Ranil Wicremesinghe visits the scene of national carnage wearing a medical face mask to ward off the stench of piled up garbage and rotting corpses still to be exhumed from the trash crash of Mount Garbage which blew its top and slipped its disk on Aluth Avurudhu day under the sheer weight of a nation’s negligence. The PM’s face mask to muffle the raging stink – the scandalous stench more..

A sugar quoted caveat from India?

Apr 24 (CT) Refined, sophisticated and articulate Dr Sashi Tharoo (ST), an accomplished and skilled int'l civil servant from India, was in SL a few days prior the customary shut down for Sinhala and Tamil New Year celebrations. The official purpose was to deliver the key note address at Dinesh Weerakkody’s book Ranil Wickremesinghe: A Life. Yet, his address smacked of a veiled caveat to Sri Lanka of its dealings with China. After serving the UN for 29 years, he returned to India in 2006. more..

'Garbage issue will be resolved scientifically'

Apr 24 (SO) Disaster Management Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa says, tragedies like Meethotamulla are national catastrophes and as politicians we should never look at it in a narrow political perspective. The Minister said, when we face a natural calamity or catastrophe, like in other countries, we have to get together as true national leaders to find a lasting solution without getting into narrow political tracks. more..

Regrettable garbage deluge shows us up for what we really are!

Apr 24 (SO) Reading about the very unfortunate garbage slide in Meethotamulla, its aftermath and watching the entirety of it on several TV news channels, one was horrified and extremely sorry for those unfortunates who suffered not only loss of material possessions but family members. This cat avoided watching the funerals and all the loud weeping and wailing. Yet for all, she could not blame the govt high-ups entirely. Of course, she agreed with her friends that without getting luxury more..

The damage done by Ban Ki-moon to the Tamils in North-East Sri Lanka

Apr 24 (CT) In the 70 year history of the UN, there has not been a Secretary General worse than Ban Ki-moon. UN Office of Internal Oversight Services said that the UN Secretariat under Ban Ki-moon was drifting into irrelevance He has damaged the standing of the UN so much that Richard Gowan, a UN expert at the European Council on Foreign Relations believes that Antonio Guterres, who succeeded Ban Ki-moon on 1 Jan 2017, could give the UN the kick up the backside it needs. more..

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