Saturday, November 25, 2017

EC says polls possible for unaffected local bodies

The Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Desapriya told a JVP delegation yesterday he would inform Court on December 4 that there was no impediment in conducting elections to the local bodies unaffected by delimitation.

A petition has been filed in the Court of Appeal against the

President ready to leave all positions for struggle against corruption & fraud

“If there are undue criticism and complaints against the decisions taken by me to stop corruption and fraud, I am ready to leave all positions and join the people to continue the struggle,” says President Maithripala Sirisena.

He was speaking at a public meeting held yesterday(24) in

Friday, November 24, 2017

Gotabhaya’s arrest put off!

An expected arrest of former defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa by the FCID on November 22 was postponed following a meeting between a group of Buddhist monks and the president at the latter’s Paget Road, Colombo residence on the previous day, ‘Ravaya’ reports.

The attorney general has given permission to the IGP to arrest the

PM asks UNP whether polls be held before Feb.4

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has directed the legal unit of the United National Party (UNP) to check and inform him whether it would be possible to hold the local government elections before February 4 next year.

Sources close to Mr Wickremesinghe told Daily Mirror that he had

Suspended sentences for Hirunika’s supporters in abduction case

Six supporters of MP Hirunika Premachandra, who pleaded guilty to the abduction of a youth from Dematagoda, have been sentenced to 2 years rigorous imprisonment suspended for 12 years by the Colombo High Court.

The sentence was delivered by Colombo High Court Judge R.

Nimal Siripala recruits more casual railway workers

Transport minister Nimal Siripala de Silva has recruited more than 500 workers on casual basis to the Railway Department, which has been having around 2,000 workers in the non-permanent cadre for four years, railway trade unions allege.

De Silva has also enrolled 210 workers on permanent basis, and is

President gives into ‘caste’; extends Navy chief’s term!

President Maithripala Sirisena has given a six month service extension to Navy commander Vice Admiral Sirimevan Ranasinghe, reports say.

Due to retire on November 19, he will now remain in the position until May next year.

Previously, the president justified the mere one month extension

UNP back-benchers tell Musthapha to resign

UNP back bench parliamentarians yesterday challenged Provincial Councils Minister Faizer Musthapha to resign from his portfolio before the gazette on delimitation was proved incorrect.

UNP MP Kavinda Jayawardhane told a news conference held at the parliament complex that the minister should resign and sit at the

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Qatar donates town to Sri Lanka!

President Maithripala Sirisena said Qatar has promised to build a town in Sri Lanka complete with all amenities.

He said this while addressing a function at Water’s Edge hotel recently.

The President said Qatar has said we could select the location of the

‘Private sector’ under probe for funding CWG bid campaign!

The government is to investigate the private sector institutions that had reportedly funded in 2011 the then regime’s bid to host the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

The Finance Ministry will separately look into if those institutions had paid their tax dues.

Acting on a complaint it had received several months ago, the FCID

JO brings ‘no confidence’ motion against Faiszer

The Joint Opposition (JO) handed over a ‘no confidence’ motion against Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government Faiszer Musthapha, a short while ago.

The no confidence motion was submitted to the Speaker Karu

Police officers who probed Aloysius’ phone details face inquiry

Police officers who investigated the phone details of Perpetual Treasuries owner Arjun Aloysius on the order of the bond commission are under investigation by the police hierarchy, alleges MP Vasudeva Nanayakkara.

This is an indirect challenge posed to the presidential commission, he says.

Also, the police hierarchy has ordered the withdrawal of security given to Anitha Wijesuriya, who

Ship carrying substandard fuel still at Trinco Port: Ministry

The ship, which was rejected by the Lanka Indian Oil Company (LIOC) for carrying a stock of substandard fuel, is still docked at the Trincomalee Port, the Petroleum Resources Development Ministry said recently.

Commenting on this, Ports and Shipping Ministry Media Secretary

‘Government Allocated Rs. 1,000 Million To Refurbish 25 Railway Stations’: Transport And Civil Aviation Minister

The government has allocated Rs. 1,000 million for the refurbishment of 25 railway stations in the 2018 Budget, said Transport and Civil Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva.

Speaking at a ceremony held in Kurunegala on Monday, to open a 75 m new fifth platform at the Kurunegala Railway Station, the

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Podujana Peramuna to field Buddhist monks!

The Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna that will contest the upcoming polls for local government bodies under the leadership of Mahinda Rajapaksa is to field a considerable number of Buddhist monks (Theravada) with the intention of increasing votes for the party.

Reports say they will comprise between 25 and 30 per cent of the

NFF’s crisis deepens as its secretary resigns

Priyanjith Vitarana has resigned as secretary of the National Freedom Front led by Wimal Weerawansa.

In a facebook posting, Vitarana thanks all those who have supported him.

Weerawansa’s lankacnews website claims the secretary has

LG elections postponed

The Court of Appeal issued a stay order today (22) preventing the implementation of the Gazette notification on the delimitation of Local Government councils.

This decision was issued when the petition submitted by six voters was taken up before a three member judge bench.

Accordingly this stay order will be effective until December 4.

Therefore, the Local Government Elections which were scheduled to be held on January 27, will delay further, it is reported.


Sujeewa speaks out on phone calls to Aloysius

State Minister of International Trade Sujeewa Senasinghe says that technology is so advanced  yeasterday  that phone calls can be made using any number – be it the President or Prime Minister’s phone number- to another phone. “Therefore not all these reports are accurate,” he said.

However, the State Minister says that he is not saying he did not

Attempt to arrest Gotabhaya

The former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday, that there is a plan by the government to take into custody the former Defense Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.

The main thrust of this government is to imprison him and members

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Lively Pitches Await India-Sri Lanka In Nagpur And Delhi For India-Sri Lanka Third And Fourth Test Matches

India's second and third Tests against Sri Lanka in Nagpur and Delhi are likely to be played on surfaces conducive for fast bowling. According to a report in ESPNCricinfo , the Indian team management, led by coach Ravi Shastri, has urged the BCCI to prepare more lively pitches as part of India's preparation for the tour of South Africa that gets underway on January 5 in Cape Town.

The second Test against Sri Lanka begins on November 24 at the

Earthquake prediction unacceptable

Sri Lanka and 10 other countries in the Indian Ocean will be affected by a major earthquake before December 31, according to a report handed over to India’s prime minister Narendra Modi by a geological research institute of that country.

The report says mainly the coastal areas of Sri Lanka, India, Japan,

Gamini Senerath , three others granted bail

The Chief of Staff of the former President’s office Gamini Senerath and three others who were remanded in connection with the misappropriation of public funds were released on bail today (21).

They were released on cash bail of Rs. 50,000 each and two sureties

Ranjan Ramanayake arrives at Supreme Court

Deputy Minister of Social Empowerment, Welfare and Kandyan Heritage Ranjan Ramanayake arrived at the Supreme Court a short while ago to respond to the allegations levied against him for being in contempt of court.

The Supreme Court issued a notice to Deputy Minister Ranjan

Presidential Commission Of Inquiry Investigating Bond Issue Concludes Hearing: Final Report On December 8

The Presidential Commission of Inquiry investigating the Treasury bond issue concluded its hearing yesterday with the testimony of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

The final report of the tribunal is expected on December 8.

President Maithripala Sirisena appointed Supreme Court Judges

No phones were tapped: PCoI clarifies

Responding to insinuations by “several persons”, the Bond Commission issuing a special statement said no phones of parliamentarians were “tapped” as alleged, and instead all the data revealed were from extracting data from the phones of Arjuna Mahendran and Arjun Aloysius.

The statement which was read out after the conclusion of the evidence of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, stated that the extraction of the data was done on the orders of the Commission.

The statement said that the statements made alleging the tapping of phones were based on “misconceptions and are factually erroneous”.

The full statement follows:

Our attention has been drawn to various statements made by several persons in the political arena, which have been published in the media, and which relate to the evidence with regard to telephonic communications between Mr. Arjuna Aloysius and several persons including several Members of Parliament and also telephonic communication between Mr. Arjuna Mahendran and several persons.

Many of these statements appear to have been made based on misconceptions and are factually erroneous.

We wish to make it clear that, on the orders of the Commission of Inquiry made in terms of the Provisions of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, the mobile telephones and other electronic devices used by Mr. Arjuna Aloysius and Mr. Arjuna Mahendran were examined by the CID.

This examination revealed the telephonic contact and electronic contacts which Mr. Aloysius and Mr. Mahendran had with a large number of persons.

The identities of the persons who received or initiated such telephonic and electronic communications with Mr. Aloysius and Mr. Mahendran were ascertained where the officers of the Hon. Attorney General’s Department who are assisting this Commission of Inquiry considered that doing so was relevant to the mandate issued to this Commission of Inquiry.

This entire process was based on the data found on the mobile telephones and other electronic devices used by Mr. Arjuna Aloysius and Mr. Arjuna Mahendran and also information provided lawfully by Telecommunication Service Providers.

The telephone records of any Member of Parliament were not obtained and were not examined.

With regard to the evidence led on the last day of proceedings- i.e. on 16th November 2017, only the dates and times of telephone conversations and electronic communications were produced in evidence.

The contents of any conversations or communications were not obtained and have not been produced in evidence before us.

It is only this evidence which was presented to the Commission of Inquiry by the officers of the Hon. Attorney General’s Department who are assisting this Commission of Inquiry on 16th November, 2016— i.e. 4 days ago.

In the case of Mr. Aloysius’ mobile telephone, some text messages had been extracted several month previously. Those text messages were produced in evidence in August of this year — i.e. more than 3 months ago.

The claims that the telephones of several Member of Parliament and other persons have been “tapped” or recorded in the course of this examination, are utterly false.

This Commission of Inquiry does not intend to make any further investigations in this regard as we have now terminated the reception of Evidence and will, from now on, engage solely in continuing with the preparation of our Report.

Our mandate does not require this Commission of Inquiry to embark on any such further investigation.


Monday, November 20, 2017

CID to probe false rumours of fuel shortage

The Ministry of Petroleum Resources Development has lodged a complaint with the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) regarding false information being spread alleging a fuel shortage in the country.

Addressing a press conference held today in Colombo, Minister

CEB to incur losses in 2018

The CEB is incurring losses this year and is projected to suffer a financial loss in the coming year too, according to budget 2018.

The budget report says the CEB will lose Rs. 35,141 m in 2017 and is projected to lose Rs. 16,507 m in the following year.

However, the CPC will earn a before-tax net profit of Rs. 14,404 m

PM arrives at the Bond Commission

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe arrived at the Presidential Commission of Inquiry to record a statement over Central Bond scam,a short while ago.

The Prime Minister was given summons last week to appear before

PM to appear before Bond commission today

Today (20), Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe is to appear before the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into the alleged Bond Scam.

Meanwhile, speaking at a meeting in the Deraniyagala area yesterday, General Secretary of the United National Party (UNP)

DRS controversy: Perera gets SLC backing

Sri Lanka batsman Dilruwan Perera on Sunday courted controversy when it appeared that he may have sought dressing room help for taking a DRS review call even as Sri Lanka Cricket outrightly rejected the assumptions.

Perera was adjudged LBW off Mohammed Shami by on-field

Mumbai Indians likely to release Malinga for IPL auction

In what would have seemed an unthinkable move a few years ago, IPL side Mumbai Indians are set to release their premier fast bowler in history, Lasith Malinga, for the IPL auctions, the Indian media reported.

With the teams likely to be allowed to retain a maximum of three players, the IPL 2017 winners are unwilling to keep hold of

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Avant Garde Case: Gotabaya , 7 others to be tried on Feb.26 and Mar.26

The Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court today refused to put off for another date the reading of the charges to the accused and fixed the trial on the corruption case against former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and seven others.

The Bribery Commission (BC) filed 19 charges against the suspects

Radicals seeking to destroy peace will be brought to justice – Bathiudeen

Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen urged all Sri Lankans irrespective of race or religion to act with patience and harmony in light of the tense situation that unfolded in several areas of Galle yesterday (17), due to a clash between two groups.

Circulating a special message to the media, Minister Bathiudeen

Conversation with Aloysius was in 2015: Rajakaruna

MP Harshana Rajakaruna told Parliament yesterday that his phone conversation with PTL owner Arjun Aloysius was in January 2015, long before he became a parliamentarian.

He said Mr. Aloysius was a family friend. "Mr. Aloysius' grandfather was a close friend of my father and they had known

Kabeer, Yapa pressurising Lanka Puthra Bank

State Enterprise Development Minister Kabir Hashim and State Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena have ordered Lanka Puthra Bank to reinstate the bank’s General Manager who was removed after having been found guilty of financial irregularities.

The letter sent by the Ministers to the Chairman of Lanka Puthra

Constitution’s formulation to take up time until late 2018!

The formulation of the new constitution and its presentation to parliament will take up time until late 2018, according to Ravaya.

The newspaper has quoted a spokesman for the steering committee of the Constitutional Assembly as saying that the formulation of the

Bond issue: COPE Chairman wants phone details presented to Parliament

COPE Chairman and JVP MP, Sunil Hadunnetti yesterday requested Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to take steps to record in the hansard the details of the telephone conversations said to have taken place between some COPE members and PTL owner Arjun Aloysius, during COPE proceedings on the bond issue so that

Notice Calling For Nominations For Local Government Polls To Be Issued On Nov 27 – Elections Commissioner

The Elections Commissioner declared that the notice calling for nominations for the Local Government elections would be issued on 27th November.

Accordingly nominations for the LG polls will be accepted after 14

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Wimal – Basil clash : Nomination crisis within lotus bud

Due to Wimal Weerawansa demanding the inclusion of over 800 candidates of the  National Freedom Front (NFF) in the nomination list for the upcoming Local Government elections, Basil Rajapaksa, who is in charge of compiling the nomination list of the Sri Lanka

Accusations against attorney general at UNP WC meeting

Deputy ministers and backbenchers of the UNP have raised with prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe the delay in filing court action with regard to FCID and CID investigations into incidents of fraud and corruption.

The FCID has concluded probing 92 cases and the CID 25 cases,

Compensation Paid To British Tourist Arrested Over Buddha Tattoo: Court Orders Payment Of Rs.800, 000

The Supreme Court yesterday ordered that compensation be paid to British tourist Naomi Coleman who was arrested and detained at the Bandaranaike International Airport in 2014 for having a tattoo of the Buddha tattooed on her upper arm.

Accordingly a sum of Rs. 800, 000 was ordered to be paid to Ms.

Promoting HR cannot be done overnight: SL

Promoting and protecting human rights is a work in progress and it is not something that can be done overnight despite the most sincere of commitments, Sri Lanka told the third cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) session of the country in Geneva yesterday.

In the opening statement, the Head of the Sri Lankan Delegation,

Govt. borrows Rs. 4.7 trillion in 3 years: Wimal

Joint Opposition MP Wimal Weerawansa said today the government had obtained Rs. 4.7 trillion as loans for three years whereas only Rs. 5.2 trillion was obtained as loans for nine years during the previous regime.

Speaking during the budget debate, he said the debt burden had

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Colombo Fort Magistrate Orders Former Navy Spokesperson D.K.P Dassanayake Transferred To Prison Hospital

The Colombo Fort Magistrate this morning ordered that former Navy Spokesperson Commodore D.K.P. Dassanayake is transferred from the Welisara Navy Hospital to the Welikada Prisons Hospital.

Former Navy Spokesperson D.K.P. Dassanayake was arrested on

Gamini Senerath, Piyadasa Kudabalage And Neil Bandara Hapuwinna Further Remanded Till November 21

Former President’s Chief of Staff Gamini Senerath, former Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation Managing Director Piyadasa Kudabalage and former Samurdhi Commissioner Neil Bandara Hapuwinna were today further remanded till November 21.

The three men are alleged to have misused public funds worth Rs. 4

Avant Garde takes Navy to courts!

Avant Garde Maritime yesterday (14) filed a case in the Colombo high court, accusing the Navy of having seized one of its ships involved in maritime security.

The company claims having incurred a Rs. 2.4 billion loss due to the seizure of its ship.

The respondents cited are chief-of-defence staff Admiral Ravindra

Mangala under fire over tax cut on beer

Venerable Dr. Omalpe Sobitha Thero says that it is doubtful as to whether the Finance Minister had sought the opinion of the President, Premier or relevant parties before amending the duties on beer.

He stated that reducing the prices of beer just because the number

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Champika wants Sinhala, Tamil National School in Colombo

Megapolis and western Development Minister Champika Ranawaka yesterday made a request to President Maithripala Sirisena to establish a Sinhala and Tamil medium National School with all facilities at the heart of Colombo.

Attending a ceremony to publicize the ‘Laksetha Sewana’ housing

Maersk Line supports budget initiative to liberalize Sri Lanka’s Shipping & Logistics sector

Maersk Line - The largest container shipping line globally and a market leader in Sri Lanka fully supports the 2018 budget proposals made by Hon Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera to open up the shipping & logistics sector to foreign investments & introduction of an independent port regulator.

Mr. Steve Felder, Managing Director India, Sri Lanka &

Monday, November 13, 2017


ලක්‍ෂපාන ජලාශයේ සිට පොල්පිටිය ජල විදුලිබලාගාරය දක්වා ජලය රැගෙන යන කිලෝ මිටර් 07ක් වු උමං මාර්ගයේ ආරක්‍ෂිත දැලක නඩත්තු කටයුත්තක් හේතුවෙන් විදුලිබලාගාර 04ක විදුලි උත්පාදනය තාවකාලිකව අත්හිටුවා ඇති බව වාර්තා වේ.

මෙලෙස තාවකාලිකව විදුලි උත්පාදනය නවත්වා ඇත්තේ ලක්‍ෂපාන, නව