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Editorial: Dudley’s Drama

Jun 24 (Island) The incumbent govt has become a metaphor for failure, and earned notoriety for its callous disregard for the woes of people. It does not care to safeguard the interests of consumers, who are being fleeced by producers and traders alike. Some help for the hapless public has come from an unexpected quarter—a member of the Rice Mafia; the proprietor of the Araliya Rice Mills, Dudley Sirisena, who is one of the millers blamed for market manipulations and the exploitation of farmers more..

Ban ends, hundreds of mechanised Indian fishing trawlers in Lankan waters again

Jun 24 (ST) As a two month breeding ban that was imposed on Tamil Nadu mechanised bottom trawlers came to an end on Wednesday, Indian fishermen have started returning to the northern waters of SL. Northern fishermen who are struggling to secure adequate kerosene to go fishing these days due to the ongoing fuel shortage, called for the intervention of the TN Chief Minister to resolve the conflict between more..

Frustrated pole vault national record holder Sachini leaves Sri Lanka

Jun 24 (Island) Pole vault national record holder Sachini Kaushalya Perera is the latest track and field athlete to leave the sport and the country seeking greener pastures abroad. A former gymnast, Perera improved the national record several times under the guidance of former champion Sanath Gunaratne. Her record breaking spree made pole vault one of the looked forward to disciplines in the women’s category at track and field events during the last couple of years. more..

No gas even at unprecedented prices: The growing plight of the housewife

Jun 24 (Island) The problem of LPG supplies has now reached epic proportions with the distinct possibility of the prices going up even further. The possibility of adequate supplies even at such higher prices is so remote to be non-existent. As such even for those who can afford to pay such high prices, which is a minute proportion of the population, there is no relief insight by persisting on this failed option. The plight of those who can ill afford the day to day food purchases, this is a double whammy, more..

චණ්ඩි රැජින

Paying foreign debt from domestic income

Jun 24 (ST) One of my friends sent me a text message seeking clarification on the country’s foreign exchange problem. The foreign exchange shortage has resulted in domestic supply shortages in fuel, gas, food, medicines and others; and it’s getting worse in the coming weeks, as the govt keeps announcing. Our export income remains nearly the same as it was a few years ago. The number of migrant workers in West Asia hasn’t gone down. Although we lost tourism earnings, more..

Future of Engineers, Engineering sector & SL

Jun 24 (DM) Ceylon was known as the pearl in the Indian Ocean in ancient times and as well as at present. Hence, it was known to other countries for centuries. We have 2500 years of written history and that was one of the developed civilizations in Asia. The famous historical remains in our ancient cities such as Anuradhapura, Sigiriya, Polonnaruwa, Panduwasnuwara etc. are the evidence to our ancient engineering marvels. The Chaithya stone bridges and buildings are the examples of more..

Homelessness rising as economic collapse draws closer

Jun 24 (CT) As darkness begins to rule the city and parents are rushing back home with their children from Viharamahadevi Park, Ruwani, a 28-year-old mother slowly settled herself on the pavement under a street lamp with her 10-month-old baby and other belongings and started breastfeeding her infant. Ruwani is one of the dozens who, over the past few months, have lost a roof above their heads due to deteriorating more..

Listen to the voice of the children and respond to their needs: Religious Leaders

Jun 24 (CT) We just returned from a workshop in Kathmandu organised by UNICEF, which brought together religious leaders from different faiths from across South Asia. From SL, our delegation consisted of all our faiths: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, and Islam. The theme of the workshop was Faith and Positive Change for Children, Families and Communities. The timing and theme of the workshop couldn’t have been more relevant to SL, given the economic and political crisis more..

Rebuilding broken bridges

Jun 24 (CT) It’s the duty of the Govt to pass on the benefits of the current fall in global crude oil prices and freight rates backed by a stable local exchange rate, according to reports filed by CME Group, USA and Drewry Supply Chain Advisers, UK, yesterday, to the masses of this country. However, falling global crude oil prices or not, there is not only no fuel at the pump for the masses, but also cooking gas and kerosene as well to name a few unavailable essentials, underlined by miles-long queues more..

Insecurities over the social security fund

Jun 24 (TM) People of all social strata can be seen in queues these days, and regardless of their financial situation, almost everyone is affected in some way by the economic crisis. Govt has thus identified the need to provide fiscal relief to the public as a short-term measure, while long-term measures are being discussed. Last week, it was announced that a Bill will be presented to the Parliament to impose a 2.5% tax on more..

A four day working week for public servants: A comment

Jun 24 (CT) I refer to the Daily Mirror report of 13th June under the above caption, and wish to express my comments as follows: 1. It is indeed a brilliant idea emanating from a senile mind to solve the twin crises (a) the food crisis and (b) the transport issue arising from the Fuel crisis. 2. Govt had declared a four Day working week for Public Servants apparently that it would ease the demand for Public Transport and consequent saving of fuel, by a reduction in the number of buses & coaches, more..

Revisiting, reforming & reordering our agriculture

Jun 24 (CT) Replanning Agriculture has become a virtual annual exercise. Usually, such deliberations are held as a Multi-day Residential Meeting at one of the plush Tourist Seaside Hotels, attended by a large number of participants. The word Policy is also smuggled into the title somewhere, to give it an air of seriousness and respectability. This is an expensive exercise both financially and in Staff Time. Therefore at the present time, deliberations must factor in the realities of (i) The Coronavirus pandemic more..

මෛත්‍රීට එරෙහිව රතන හිමියෝ CIDයට වඩිති

Investigations against Deshabandu Tennakoon: CID acted in biased manner

Jun 23 (DM) The Colombo Fort Magistrate Thilina Gamage yesterday observed that the CID has acted in a biased manner when handling investigations against Western Province Senior DIG Deshabandu Tennakoon relating to the attacks on peaceful protesters at Galle Face. Accordingly, Magistrate Thilina Gamage ordered the IGP to take necessary action against ASP Chanaka Silva for acting in a biased manner when presenting facts to Court regarding SDIG Deshabandu Tennakoon. more..

President has violated Constitution: Sirisena

Jun 23 (CT) Former Prez Maithripala Sirisena charged his successor, Prez Gotabaya Rajapaksa, had violated the Constitution, when appointing UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister last May. He said it has been clearly stipulated in the Constitution, that an MP, who commands a majority, should be appointed as PM. Thus, Sirisena argued that Rajapaksa had flouted the Constitution when he had invited the UNP Leader to take up the post, vacated by former PM Mahinda Rajapaksa. more..

Why SL's economy collapsed & what's next

Jun 23 (AP) Sri Lanka’s prime minister says the island nation’s debt-laden economy has collapsed as it runs out of money to pay for food and fuel. Short of cash to pay for imports of such necessities and already defaulting on its debt, it is seeking help from neighboring India and China and from the IMF. PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, who took office in May, was emphasizing the monumental task he faces in turning around an economy more..

PM appeals to social media activists not to insult Hirunika

Jun 23 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe made an appeal to the social media activists and users not to publish photos of Hirunka Premachandra who is a mother of three, causing insult to her. He said motherhood should not be insulted in a decent society. PM said the concept of motherhood should be respected before everything else. He said this responding to insulting photos shared on social media, which were taken while Premachandra was participating in a protest outside the PM's more..

Margarine to be imported through Indian loan?

Jun 23 (NR) Minister of Trade, Commerce and Food Security Nalin Fernando says the possibility of importing a quantity of margarine from India under the Indian loan assistance is being considered. The Minister requested the All Island Bakery Owners’ Association to submit a detailed report on the import prices and quantities required to import margarine for future activities. A meeting was held today between Minister Fernando and the Association to discuss the issues faced by bakery owners. more..

Warning signs for Australia ahead of litmus test against spin in Galle

Jun 23 (CI) Knowing what's coming is one thing, playing it is something else entirely. There were some smiles from David Warner as he watched deliveries rip past his edge during the 99 he made in Colombo on Tuesday, but Australia's collapse that decided the ODI series has brought into sharp focus what they will need to combat for the rest of the tour. Warner talked a good game afterwards, despite the series defeat, more..

Dr. Pethiyagoda appointed Senior Policy Advisor to Opposition Leader

Jun 23 (FT) One of SL’s leading naturalists and a taxonomist on freshwater fish of SL Dr. Rohan Pethiyagoda has been appointed as Senior Policy Advisor to Opposition and SJB Leader Sajith Premadasa. Following the appoint Premadasa said: “Climate change is a real concern and for any policy its ecological impact has to be well understood, we believe his expertise will matter greatly in making balanced decisions.” Dr. Pethiyagoda last month was awarded the Linnean Medal more..

GMOA submits proposal to avoid malnutrition

Jun 23 (NR) The GMOA has submitted a five-point proposal to minimise the impact of malnutrition and ensure that future generations don’t fall victim to malnutrition. GMOA said a majority are resorting to reducing the food intake or compromising on the quality of food owing to the food shortage and increase in prices of food items. GMOA citing this as a critical situation submitted a five-point proposal to avoid malnutrition. First proposal includes conducting a scientific follow-up on present more..

COPE: පොදු ව්‍යාපාර පිළිබඳ කාරක සභාව

Fast-track leave approval to take up foreign jobs

Jun 23 (CT) Doctors urged the Govt to fast-track the process of leave approval for medical practitioners and other health employees to take up foreign employment during this crisis. President of Medical and Civil Rights Professional Association of Doctors (MCRPAD), Dr. Chamal Sanjeewa said, young doctors were opting to leave the island for greener pastures, without going through the three-year probation period as post interns. Those who pass examinations conducted either by more..

Stocks gain for third day amid worst foreign outflow in three weeks

Jun 23 (EN) Stocks closed higher for a third straight session on Thursday, led by Expolanka shares and new buying interest in some banking shares, but witnessed the worst foreign outflow in three weeks. Foreign investors sold a net of 163 million rupees worth of shares on Thursday, its worst since June 2. Market has witnessed a total foreign outflow of more than 1.2 billion rupees so far this year. ASPI closed 0.58 or 43.94 points higher at 7,556.09. It has gained 1.8% in the last three sessions. more..

EPF hit by US$6.5bn hair cut after soft-peg collapse

Jun 23 (EN) Employees Provident Fund (EPF), a pension fund of private sector workers has suffered an estimated US$ 6.5 billion hair cut after the collapse of a soft-peg after two years of money printing to mis-target interest rates. Sri Lanka operates soft-pegged monetary rate regime made respectable by the label flexible exchange rate which frequently runs into money and exchange policy conflicts and collapses steeply. more..

Legal liquor demand drops by about 30%, COPF reveals

Jun 23 (Island) It was revealed at the Committee on Public Finance (COPF) that the demand for liquor had decreased by about 30% due to the recent increase in the price of liquor and the decrease in the income of the people. This was revealed at a meeting of the Committee on Public Finance chaired by Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, MP, recently. Officials representing several institutions were contacted online to discuss plans to increase govt revenue. Accordingly, officials representing more..

Private bus services hit by fuel hoarding, tyre price hike

Jun 23 (EN) Private passenger bus services in SL have been hit by fuel hoarding and rising costs of tyres, with 75% of buses running with fewer passengers, Private Bus Owners’ Association (SLPOA) Chairman Gemunu Wijeratne said. Since June 6, the SLPOA had more than halved the number of buses that used to operate before the prevailing unavailability of fuel, but now increased operations after govt permitted private bus operators to purchase fuel from state-run SLTB depots. more..

ධම්මික නිසා කලබල වුණු ඩඩ්ලි...

Man waited in fuel queue for 5 days, dies

Jun 23 (DM) A 63-year old man who had been waiting in a fuel queue at a filling station at Batagoda in Anguruwatota has died, police said. It was reported that the victim was waiting in the queue near the fuel station to get diesel for his vehicle for at least five days. He was found dead inside his tipper truck. The death toll in queues now stands at least ten and all the victims were men between the ages of 43 and 84 years. Majority of death reported in queues were due to cardiac arrests. more..

Rupee at 368-370 to TT dollar

Jun 23 (EN) SL’s commercial banks were offering US dollars for telegraphic transfer at around 368 to 370 dollars for small transactions as the country is facing severe forex shortages from a broken peg. Banks offered to buy inward remittances at 357.90 rupees. A guidance rate for interbank transactions announced by the central bank was also was unchanged at 360.90 on Thursday. On Wednesday the guidance rate was strengthened 95 cents despite severe forex shortages for imports. more..

Sri Lankans express anger, frustration over president’s tweet after cricket win

Jun 23 (EN) Hundreds of Sri Lankans, battered by the country’s worst ever forex crisis, took to Twitter to vent their frustration at Prez Rajapaksa this week when he tweeted a congratulatory message to the national cricket team which won a five-match cricket series against Australia. A young SL cricket team won the fourth game held in Colombo by just four runs to secure a series win after conquering the five-time more..

India Women beat SL Women by 38 runs in 1st T20I

Jun 23 (CI) SL have never beaten India in a T20I at home. They last won a T20I against them in 2014, which was just one of their three wins in 19 encounters against India in the format. India ensured this record stayed intact by beating the hosts by 34 runs in the first of 3-match series in Dambulla. Jemimah Rodrigues at No. 5 made a crucial 36* first to help India get to 138 for 6, before the spinners applied the brakes on the SL batters. India didn't get desired start after opting to bat. more..

Tamil Nadu sends second batch of relief materials to Sri Lanka

Jun 23 (Hindu) The second ship, carrying over 15,000 tonnes of relief materials donated by the Tamil Nadu govt, sailed from the VOC Port here to Colombo Harbour on Wednesday. Minister for the Welfare of Minorities and Non-Resident Tamils Gingee K.S. Masthan; Food Minister R. Sakkarapani; Minister for Fisheries and Animal Husbandry Anita R. Radhakrishnan; and Minister for Social Welfare P. Geetha Jeevan flagged off the merchant vessel VTC Sun that carried more..

Indian delegation meets Prez, PM; discusses economic crisis

Jun 23 (EN) The higher level Indian delegation led by Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra met Prez Rajapaksa and PM Wickremasinghe held discussion on Thursday in which importance of promoting bilateral investment in the fields of infrastructure, connectivity, renewable energy and deepening economic linkages. The talks come as SL has sought more loans for its neighbour to face the ongoing economic crisis that has led to more..

Constitutional reforms won’t be in effect till next parliament: Opposition leader

Jun 23 (EN) 21st amendment proposed to SL’s constitution, if passed, will come into effect only after the current and ninth parliament and thus the president’s executive powers and the status quo will stay in tact till then, opposition leader Sajth Premadasa said. Responding to an allegation by PM Wickremesinghe that an opposition boycott of parliament was delaying the 21st amendment, Premadasa tweeted that the proposed amendment will be of no consequence to our current more..