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Jaffna JMO confirms bullet hit the rider

Oct 23 (CT) Pandemonium reigned supreme at Jaffna Teaching Hospital mortuary on Friday, where bodies of the two youths, whose deaths were deemed accidental by the authorities, were lying there for further investigations. JMO confirmed that one of the students, the rider of the motorbike, had received a gunshot injury to his chest. However, till late evening on Friday, Police Dept did not mention anything about a gunshot but claimed more..

CB refers pyramid scheme probes to CID, AG

Oct 23 (ST) The Central Bank (CB) after probing five entities dealing in pyramid-like bogus deposit-taking has handed these investigations over to the CID, top officials said. “The CB investigated some multi-level marketing firms that are dealing in pyramid schemes,” a CB official told the Business Times adding the most of these schemes are functioning in the south and are carrying out peculiar business models such as selling furniture, electronics, etc above the market value to customers. more..

Taxpayers owe MPs a living?

Oct 23 (Island) None of our readers would have been surprised by JO MP Bandula Gunawardene’s strenuous defence of the pernicious practice MPs brazenly selling their duty free vehicle permits for millions of rupees. Gunawardene, after all, having banqueted well at the political table having served as a minister in both UNP and UPFA cabinets, is no doubt familiar with the principles of self-service. We do not know whether this was a subject that was taught in his economics tuition classes more..

COPE to submit two reports!

Oct 23 (CT) COPE will next week present in Parliament two reports on the controversial Central Bank Bond issues, COPE Chairman JVP MP Sunil Handunnetti said. "COPE has conducted an intensive investigation into the two bond issues based on the report submitted by the Auditor General. The committee has discussed the turn of events at length during the past 16 months and compiled two reports" he said, more..

Jayalal determined to bring glory to SL

Oct 23 (SO) Think of an active involvement in one sport or another for 45 years; active not in administration or adjudicating, but competing. Consider being a decent cricketer and soccer player and also being among the top competitors in bodybuilding, the javelin and discus events. It’s quite something isn’t it? Jayantha Jayalal is certainly quite something in terms of achievement but more so in his passion for sports. In a few days time this tall, well-built young man who will be turning 54 more..

SLC refuses to back charity walk

Oct 23 (CG) Sri Lanka Cricket Board (SLC) has refused to formally support a charity walk in which former top cricketers Kumar Sangakarra and Mahela Jayawardene are participating. The organisers of the Trail walk had sought the support of SLC for the latter stages of the walk but the request has been turned down. It is understood that the reason for the refusal is a rift between the SLC top management and Jayawardene. Trail 2016 is covering a distance of 670km over 28 consecutive days more..

New Defence-Security portfolio likely

Oct 23 (CT) President is contemplating the creation of a new ministerial level position tasked with responsibility for defence and national security matters. New position is being created because of deep concerns arising out of a spate of recent allegations relating to matters of State security and the military forces. Prez had wanted a trusted person to handle these matters especially because of controversies surrounding members of security more..

Indian media group warns of impersonators

Oct 23 (CG) Indian Federation of Working Journalists (IFWJ) has written to President Sirisena warning him of some impersonators who are to attend an event in Colombo. IFWJ claims a batch of some nine to ten persons, pretending to be journalists from India (impersonating as Office-bearers and members of IFWJ), are likely to participate in a conference in Colombo this week, organized by the SL Press Association, which the President is scheduled to address. more..

Royal retain Noel Fernando Trophy

Oct 23 (ST) Royal College made a thorough clean-out to outsmart traditional rivals S. Thomas’ College by 50-2 and retain the T. Noel Fernando Memorial Trophy in the 43rd Royal-Thomian Regatta and 47th Boat Race on the waters of Beira Lake at the Colombo Rowing Club yesterday. Coming off with a decent record this season, the Royal rowing crew took the coveted plum for the 21st occasion after ending the Thomain dominance of five years last year. more..

Swiss help to probe Sri Lanka’s Airbus deal

Oct 23 (ST) Swiss investigators are flying into Colombo next month to investigate the Airbus agreement with SriLankan Airlines as part of an international probe on allegedly corrupt deals by the France-based aircraft manufacturer.  While the govt here is independently probing whether there was any corruption in the Airbus deal with SriLankan Airlines, the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) began an investigation in August to examine more..

Fate has forced Vandersay to wait patiently

Oct 23 (Island) With the exit of Shane Warne, for a few years, leg-spin looked a dying art. But Pakistan’s Yasir Shah has kept cricket’s most difficult art alive. Last year, as Pakistan won in Sri Lanka after nine years, the leg-spinner took 24 wickets. He became the quickest Pakistani to take 50 wickets in Tests and became the first leg-spinner since Warne to be ranked as world’s number one bowler. He is following on the footsteps of other remarkable Pakistani leg-spinners such as more..

‘Good Pvt medical education is a necessity’

Oct 23 (Island) "In Sri Lanka, for some unknown reason, thus far, good private medical education has yet to be been established … I believe its time we should be moving with the developing world, and I think that for our students too, good quality private medical education is a necessity. The primary aim of this institution, SAITM, is to provide precisely that. And in such a context, I am very happy to provide the academic leadership for such an institution". So said Profesor Deepal Weerasekera, more..

Sanjay, Mathews and Kimiko win 5 Gold each

Oct 23 (ST) India with a massive haul of 121 Gold, 77 Silver and 18 Bronze – totaling 216 Medals won the overall championship at the South Asian Aquatic Championship 2016 which concluded yesterday. Six South Asian countries took part in the four day event except for Afghanistan and Bhutan. Champions India was represented by 53 swimmers who took part in 191 events. Hosts Sri Lanka was the runners-up winning 28 Gold, more..

Justice sought for Sugirdharajan

Oct 23 (SL) January has become an important month to be remembered as it is a month where most of the journalists who exposed the truth about a corrupt govt and its officials in Sri Lanka were brutally murdered and attacked. Subramaniyam Sugirdharajan is one of them who was assassinated for exposing photographs of five students who were alleged to have been murdered by the armed forces at the time. Sugirdharajan was shot dead in Trincomalee on the 24th of January 2006 for more..

State toughens on eve of budget

Oct 23 (Island) The remanding of Tissa Attanayake for nearly six weeks has sent shock waves through both sides of the political divide. Attanayake was the general secretary of the UNP during what was probably the worst period in its history. All of us journalists know him as a friendly and approachable politician. It was through Attanayake and his secretary that all the Sunday political columnists got their gossip about the UNP. This was not leaked information. more..

Appropriation Bill: Mixed reactions

Oct 23 (CT) We highlighted certain areas that needed attention such as teacher training, infrastructure, development of peripheral schools, and student welfare, but there is no systematic approach from the govt in this direction." FUTA president further noted that while the govt had made reductions in the allocations for education, they maintained finances regarding luxury vehicles for MPs. "They will have various justifications more..

Sadeepa equals long jump record  

Oct 23 (CT) Gateway's rising star Sadeepa Henderson once again repeated her performance at the Sir John Tarbet Junior Athletics Championship at Embilipitiya when she won the Gold Medal for the long jump event with a record equalling feat of 5.32m. In the four-day championship which began yesterday under hot and humid conditions at a difficult venue, the Embilipitiya Mahaweli Ground, Sadeepa equalled the feat set by Prasadi Lakshani last year to win first Gold Medal of the meet. more..

Book Review: The Story of a Brief Marriage

Oct 23 (TG) The opening sequence of Anuk Arudpragasam’s debut novel, in which a six-year-old child with a shrapnel-shredded arm is brought to an open-air operating theatre, feels horribly timely. The young man carrying the listless little boy finds a strange solace in discerning the child’s prospects: “Soon the doctor would arrive and the operation would be done, and in no time at all the arm would be as nicely healed as the already amputated thigh … According to the boy’s sister [that] injury more..

JO to launch a new mode of protest against VAT (AMdt) Bill in Parliament

Oct 23 (CT) President Sirisena in a rare departure from his modest and judicious political conduct took the country by storm when he made several sensational public statements in quick succession on the eve of his departure for India to attend the BRICS-BIMSTEC outreach summit. The furore triggered by his controversial statements continued unabated during his absence from the country & situation took a turn for the worse more..

Bibile Veddas decry neglect Deprived of basic amenities for 78 years

Oct 23 (CT) Since the govt has not provided the long-suffering Rathugala Vedda community any common amenities, Vedda Chief Sudha Wannila Eththo said dejectedly they had no choice but to trek back to live in their traditional jungle habitats and try to eke out a living instead of this eternal wait in increasingly bitter disappointment. Forlorn Bibile Vedda leader said that they are now returning to their original place of birth in Dhanigala in Nilgala forest reserve to live out their lives as best more..

Estates to cough out Rs.4 bln more to pay workers

Oct 23 (ST) The new collective agreement reached between Regional Plantation Companies (RPCs) and estate unions would result in an additional cost of Rs.4 billion to the owners.  The new pact envisages raising the current wage of Rs. 620 to Rs. 730 effective October 15 for both tea and rubber. However with statutory dues it goes up to Rs. 805 against Rs. 687.50 earlier.  The additional cost for the RPCs as a result of the wage hike would be about Rs.4 billion, more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Executive Presidency at the root of problem

Oct 23 (ST) The fallout from the Presidential bombshell ten days ago over the manner in which the Govt’s anti-corruption drive was being (mis)handled still reverberates. He lashed out that there was a political agenda being pursued and that he was kept out of the loop. The remarks opened a crack in the Govt of National Unity — and in a move to backtrack, the Media, the usual scapegoat when leaders blunder, is being blamed for misreporting and misquoting the President. more..

Bribery controls halt

Oct 23 (ST) My dear Dilrukshi, I thought I should write to you because it appears that the whole country is talking about you, your job and your resignation. It is disappointing that you had to leave in the way you did, but after Maithri made his statement about you and bribery commission, he didn’t leave you with much choice. Dilrukshi, I suppose you must be still confused as to why you were shown the door. There you were, merrily investigating many complaints that came your more..

'A leader must be able to empathize with all his citizens'

Oct 23 (CT) C.V. Wigneswaran, who is in the UK attending the signing ceremony to twin Kingston with Jaffna, were posed the following questions by Ceylon Today. Q: Has there been a threat to your life? Why is the security division talking about political motivations; and your thoughts on their refusal to give additional security? A: None should stoop to such low level in politics to transform a serious matter into a political gimmick. more..

Lasantha killing probe spotlight on Military Intelligence community

Oct 23 (SO) The investigation into journalist Lasantha Wickrematunga’s death has become a severe indictment on the country’s former defence apparatus, which operated as a personal tool in the hands of political powers under the Rajapaksa administration. A retired officer attached to the military intelligence unit committed suicide last week claiming responsibility for the death of the senior journalist, who was highly critical of the heads of the defence establishment. more..

Protect Independence Of Independent Commissions

Oct 23 (SL) Most political analysts are still wondering about the reasons behind the outburst of the usually staid and placid President Sirisena on the three key investigative organisations probing political and financial crimes and bribery and corruption – the FCID, CID and the BC. This outburst sent a strong political tremor that hit the bottom of the piles propping up the political edifice of the Yahapalanaya govt and its aftershocks were being felt throughout the week. more..

Will mystery suicide reveal layers of conspiracy?

Oct 23 (SO) In a twist that takes the Journalist Lasantha Wickramatunga assassination into the realm of conspiracy fantasies, investigators will now ascertain whether the recent mystery death of an ex-intelligence agent is genuinely the remorseful suicide of the actual killer or, is a cynically deliberate murder by the real Lasantha assassins aimed at deflecting the ongoing probe. The assassination of editor of Sunday Leader more..

Ensuring justice, protecting morale

Oct 23 (SO) None other than President Sirisena himself has asked the Police to ensure that a thorough and credible investigation is made into the deaths of two university students in Jaffna on Friday. Initial news reports indicated that two students of the University of Jaffna had died in the early hours of Friday and that the police had claimed that the deaths were the result of a motorcycle crash. Subsequently, however, a Govt statement, that seemingly contradicted more..

Could save Sri Lanka at UNHCR

Oct 23 (CT) UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, the then head of the UNHCR, began a three-day visit to SL, on 25 July 2006, the first such visit by a UNHCR head to the country, when the armed services had just begun to make inroads into Tamil Tiger terrorists held areas in the North and the East of the country. Now as head of the apex body, Guterres will preside over the destinies of SL when the UNHCR takes on the US resolution demanding a transparent & independent war crimes probe more..

Multi intelligence unit to stem illicit drug trade

Oct 22 (DN) The Inter-agency Intelligence and Information Unit on Narcotics established by the Defence Ministry, Tri-Forces, Police and CSD has been set up to combat the illicit drug trade, Law and Order and Prison Reforms Ministry Secretary Jagath Wijeweera said. He said this unit meets regularly and coordinates with all agencies based on information gathered to conduct operations to nab drug dealers. more..

25 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees from India to arrive on Tuesday

Oct 22 (GDI) 25 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees in Tamil Nadu, India are arriving in Sri Lanka under the UNHCR facilitated voluntary repatriation program on Tuesday. Govt has initiated action to encourage the voluntary refugee returnee programme and the current trend of increased refugee returnees is a sign of reconciliation and moving towards permanent peace said V. Sivagnanasothy, Secretary, Ministry of Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs. more..

Sri Lanka, Indonesia presidents scheduled for upcoming visits to Iran

Oct 22 (MNA) Presidents of Sri Lanka and Indonesia will visit Iran on separate trips in the next few months to expand relations with the Islamic Republic. President Maithripala Sirisena, is scheduled for a visit to Tehran late Nov or early Dec, while President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, will visit Iran in January 2017. According to some reports, presidents of Finland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Venezuela are also scheduled for a trip to Tehran during autumn or winter. more..

CPC wants autonomy to decide commercial operations

Oct 22 (ST) The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) and the Finance Ministry are on a collision course over raising funds from the CPC, after turning down a Treasury request to transfer Rs. 10 billion to the Consolidated Fund. The CPC, this week, through the Ministry of Petroleum Resources Development has responded to the Finance Ministry Secretary explaining its current weak financial position and made more..

SL to control iron, folate deficiency through fortification of rice

Oct 22 (DN) The govt has taken measures to control iron and folate deficiency via food fortification. National Food Promotion Board Chairman Dhammika Peiris said that the iron deficiency is the most common cause of anemia, which is the most prevalent nutritional deficiency in Sri Lanka. “Since several years back, the govt provides iron and folic acid supplements as a solution for the iron and folate deficiency which is highly prevalent among pregnant mothers and children. more..

Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and Oxford Business Group signs second MoU

Oct 22 (AD) Sri Lanka’s two-fold bid to build economic momentum and improve investor sentiment on the back of a $1.5bn funding pledge from the IMF will be analysed in a report by the global publishing firm Oxford Business Group (OBG). The IMF expects Sri Lanka’s economy to expand by 5% in 2016, which would represent a 3-year high. Sri Lanka 2017 highlights the economic sectors that are expected to generate new growth, including tourism, ICT and transport. more..