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The Army will not close down camps in the North and East

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

The Army will not close down camps in the North and East, but will shrink its deployment in a manner that will not jeopardise national security, Army Commander Lt. Gen. Mahesh Senanayake said. “We are ready to release another 522 acres in the North and East but we have to adjust ourselves prior to releasing these lands to the owners. We have our own infrastructure requirements and for us to move, I have to now construct billets. Hence, I have requested money for this from the government and around Rs 800 million is required of which we have already been granted Rs.100 million so far. However, even if the balance is given to me today, I cannot have these camps move overnight and I require […]

NPC board of ministers unconstitutional – Governor

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Chaminda Silva Governor of the Northern Province (NPC), Reginald Cooray has asked NPC Chief Minister CV Wigneswaran to appoint a new board of ministers. The existing provincial council board of ministers has more members than the constitutionally prescribed number. The Constitution says the number of ministers must be limited to five, but there are six ministers in the NPC currently. The Northern Provincial Council had no legal authority to administer the province, Cooray told The Island. Given the situation, the best option was for the current ministers to resign and to appoint a new provincial council cabinet, he said. Last year Wigneswaran sacked two provincial council ministers, Education Minister T. Kurukularaja and Agriculture Minister P. Ingaranesan, over corruption and fraud allegations. Ingaranesan has filed […]

Sri Lanka’s treacherous failure to counter Geneva project …from Nanthikadal to Colombo defense seminar 2018

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Shamindra Ferdinando For nearly a decade Sri Lanka neglected its responsibility to counter unsubstantiated war crimes allegations directed at its Army. War-winning Army, too, cannot under any circumstances absolve itself of its failure to address accountability issues. Having defeated the LTTE, in May 2009, the government and the Army never really bothered to examine war crimes accusations. Today, Sri Lanka accused of deliberately targeting the Vanni civilian population, with the Northern Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran alleging genocide. War-winning Army Chief, the then Gen. Sarath Fonseka’s entry into politics, in late 2009, caused chaos with him accusing his troops of executing surrendering LTTE cadres on the Vanni east front. Fonseka’s explosive declaration, made in an exclusive interview with the then Sunday Leader editor Fredrica Jansz, […]

Wartime abductions, killing of TNA MP Raviraj – Suspect alleged to have fled country with Admiral’s help arrested in Colombo

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Shamindra Ferdinando http://www.dailymirror.lk/article/Navy-Sampath-arrested-154029.html A high profile-government inquiry into the alleged abduction and disappearance of 11 Tamil youth by the Navy during Vice Admiral Wasantha Karannaoda’s tenure as the Commander of the service has taken a dramatic turn with the arrest of Lt. Commander Prasad Chandana Hettiarachchi allegedly involved in the case. Police headquarters yesterday confirmed the arrest of the officer whose recent disappearance led the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to accuse the incumbent Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Ravi Wijegunaratne of having helped him to flee the country in a Fast Attack Craft (FAC). The disappearances took place mostly in 2008. The majority of abductions were allegedly carried out in Colombo and its suburbs. The on-gong CID probe has come under the scrutiny of the […]

9200 million fraud ! Complaint lodged with Bribery and Corruption Commission against Basil !

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

(Lanka e News -12.Aug.2018, 11.30PM) Under a project of the Water supply and drainage board owing to the pressures exerted by Basil Rajapakse , a fraud to the tune of US $ 57.5 million was committed , according to a complaint lodged day before yesterday (10) by a group including Attanagalle pradeshiya sabha member Dinesh Indika Rajapakse with the Commission to investigate allegations of bribery and corruption . The engineers of the Water Board had estimated a cost of US $ 172 million in regard to this project which was planned in 2012. While this was the estimated amount , this project was handed over without calling for tenders to a Chinese Co. –China machinery engineering Corporation Co. at a cost of US $ 229.5 […]

Seventy Years After Independence

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By V. Thirunavukkarasu – Vallipuram Thirunavukkarasu Seventy years into Independence from British rule, it is apt to draw up a modest balance sheet, having regard to the different dispensations comprising the two ruling parties, viz., the UNP and the SLFP and their respective allies. Well, one of the first acts of the DS Senanayake-led UNP Government, was the decitizenising/disenfranchisement of the Plantation sector workers, ironically as Independence dawned. It was an anti-Tamil and anti-working class step, and was thus 2 birds with one stone. The Plantation workers , as is well known, were imported by the Colonial Government from the neighbouring Indian State of Tamil Nadu. So, the Plantation workers, given their early identification as “Tamils of recent Indian origin” were isparagingly referred to as outcasts or coolies” […]

CID to grill Mahinda on abduction of journalist Keith Noyahr

15th August 2018 // 0 Comments

The Criminal Investigations Department (CID) is to question former President Mahinda Rajapaksa on the abduction of journalist Keith Noyahr. The CID has told Rajapaksa they will visit his home on August 17 to record the statement.  Last year six Army officers were arrested in the case over the abduction and assault of journalist Keith Noyhar but were later granted bail. Noyahr was abducted in May 2008 and was severely assaulted before being set free.  The former Associate Editor of The Nation newspaper fled the country with his family following the incident fearing for his life. (Colombo Gazette) http://www.ceylontoday.lk/print-edition/2/print-more/10959 Parliamentarian Mahinda Rajapaksa has been noticed to appear before the CID on 17 August to record a statement with regard to a case of the alleged assault and abduction […]

Weerawansa had given NHDA houses to his family members says Minister

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

Minister of Housing and Construction Sajith Premadasa and Joint Opposition (JO) Parliamentarian Wimal Weerawansa locked horns in Parliament yesterday (9), despite repeated orders from Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to stop arguing after Weerawansa alleged that Premadasa was hiring workers in excess of the need, to the National Housing Development Authority (NHDA). Weerawansa, at the beginning of yesterday’s Parliamentary sitting, claimed that Premadasa was hiring workers in excess of needs to the NHDA, on daily wages. This manner of hiring workers was causing huge financial burdens to the Institution, Weerawansa further claimed. Premadasa replying to this said that he had not recruited any worker to the permanent cadre of the NHDA.  “I have not distributed houses built by the NHDA to close associates and family members unlike my […]

BJP refuses to set free seven Rajiv Gandhi assassination convicts who had been in jail for 27 years

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

The seven Rajiv Gandhi assassination convicts jailed in Tamil Nadu cannot be released, the Indian Government told the Supreme Court today, asserting that the case involves the assassination of a former Prime Minister, NDTV reported. The CBI, which investigated the case, has opposed the release of the seven convicts, the court was told.  Tamil Nadu had been informed of the decision on April 18, the centre told the court. The seven convicts had been in jail for 27 years.  The court had asked the centre to decide and respond to Tamil Nadu’s request to release them. A constitution bench of top Supreme Court judges had said in 2015 that the convicts cannot be released without the central Government’s consent. The convicts, Perarivalan, Murugan, Santhan, Nalini Sriharan, […]

Sampanthan to remain as leader of the opposition

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) leader R Sampanthan is to remain as the leader of the opposition. Speaker Karu Jayasuriya told Parliament today that under the Parliament standing orders he cannot change the post of Speaker. The joint opposition however raised concerns over the decision and insisted that the decision be reconsidered. Jayasuriya however refused to change his decision saying it was in line with the Parliament standing orders. Leader of the House Lakshman Kiriella said that the demand by some joint opposition members to appoint a new opposition leader can be considered, only if those members leave the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) and become independent members of Parliament. (Colombo Gazette)

Colombo high rises a major fire risk, says UK expert

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

The fire risk in high rise buildings in Colombo is very high according to Dr. David Kirkham. Why? Because many developers are using combustible cladding. Cladding is a covering or coating on a building. It was made infamous by the Grenfell Tower fire in the salubrious area of North Kensington in West London which left 72 people dead last year. File picture of the collapsed Wellawatte building Dr. Kirkham, an internationally recognised expert in fixed fire-fighting systems, has examined in minute detail the causes behind the Grenfell Tower fire, labelled “The Shame” by a public enquiry in the UK. Why shame? Simply because it needed a major disaster for legislation to be changed in the UK. “I hope Sri Lanka is clever enough not to […]

Jaffna’s New Citizen Journalists: From The Community, For The Community

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

Every Friday, Benislos Thushan, a programme officer at the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) boards an overnight bus from Colombo to his hometown in Jaffna. He lands at dawn on Saturday and a few hours later, goes to the American Corner—the American Centre’s educational outreach branch—to conduct weekend classes on digital storytelling. “One of the things that really excites me about coming every Saturday and Sunday to Jaffna..,” he says, “is to be with these young people who are passionate about storytelling, who want to go out, and who want to tell stories.” Having been caught in the crosshairs of the war and growing up in a refugee camp during his early childhood, Thushan recognises vacuums that need to be filled in Jaffna […]

Lies & Mahinda Rajapaksa

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Sarath de Alwis – Sarath De Alwis The former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has warned buyers of our national assets that he would review those deals when returned to power.  He has asserted most forcefully, that the current government had no mandate to sell national assets. He has vehemently condemned the “authoritarian manner” adopted by the government in leasing out the sea port in Hambantota and the airport in Mattala – the outstanding national assets that he built for us after ending a debilitating war.   Mahinda Rajapaksa is outstandingly non-moral. He does not utter false hoods. He does not speak the truth either. He manufactures facts. He is a strange creature, who lives in the world where knowledge exists on sufferance. On reading the former president’s brave declarations in […]

Mannar mass grave excavation Media and NGOs banned, why?

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan Police have obtained a written Order from the Mannar Magistrate not to permit the Media and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), that are working closely on the missing and enforced disappearances issue, to visit the Mannar mass grave site to collect information or report on it. Police have claimed that several Media outlets have misinterpreted the information given to them by the officials at the burial site. Police have urged the Media and NGOs to obtain permission from the Mannar Magistrate through the Magistrate’s Court Registrar when seeking to visit the site. Ceylon Today learns this move is to prohibit journalists and NGOs from visiting the site, due to the Media allegedly misinforming the public on the findings at the mass grave. NGOs […]

Indian Tamils ! Know your limits please!

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

[Karunanidhi, who earned sobriquets of ‘Thalaivar’ (The Leader) and ‘Kalaignar’ (The Artist) from his ardent followers, became DMK president in 1969 and held the position till his death] – Thalaivar Karunanidhi is dead, leaves void in Tamil Nadu – by Press Trust of India One who did not groom an heir to a secular institution confirms high level of subjectivity. The official retirement age in Indian Public Service is reported to be 60. Thalaivar Karunanidhi therefore retired from position of Thalaivar at the 34 years ago. Thereafter he was Kalaignar – free to do as he pleased. Tamil Nadu failed to draw the line between Structural leadership and Spiritual leadership. The other example of indiscriminate mixing of the two through subjective powers is Mr N […]

Overwhelming minority vote consisting of Tamils and Muslim, is still against the Rajapaksas.

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Vishwamithra – “When a political organization loses contact with its origin, it declines and risks implosion.” ~Robert Esposito Some writers whose political insensitivities and bare naiveté have been mistaken for objective analysis are still defending the indefensible atrocities of the Rajapaksa era. Their insensitivities have taken them from being mere Rajapaksa supporters to the fringe politics of post-Independent Sri Lanka. Ceylon, as it was called then, has undergone unrecognizable changes; she has embraced nihilist aspects of political evolution; ethnic violence has erupted multiple times and led to a thirty-year old war that ended in the decimation of a terrorist army that was never seen in Ceylon in the last half of the millennium. That war has enlarged the gulf between the two peoples. Tamils are being perceived […]

Implement the 13th Amendment in full.

10th August 2018 // 0 Comments

By Dayan Jayatilleka – Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka “…an instant invitation to an overpowering onrush of self-righteous recidivism, against which reason can only erect the feeblest defences.” ~ Mervyn de Silva, ‘Paradise & Hostage to the Past’, Far Eastern Economic Review, January 1984 One of the most distressing moments of my turbulent life was a fleeting episode at the Shangri-La conclave some months ago organized by Viyath Maga. It was something that was generated by the ideological atmosphere and social semiotics of that event. It was when a well-known and respected name in the IT industry, who operates from both Colombo and Jaffna, an articulate, cosmopolitan Sri Lankan of Tamil ethnicity, Mr. Mano Sekaram, thought fit to open his presentation by thanking the organizers for “the gesture of inclusivity” they had made […]

A Forgotten Community: Remembering Black July

8th August 2018 // 0 Comments

Writer S Karunakaran reflects on Black July from the perspective of a marginalised and often forgotten community – the Malaiyagha Tamils – and specifically those who tried to resettle in the North of the country. The Malaiyagha Tamils settled upcountry and in Colombo. A section of this community was displaced from the South following violence in 1958, 1977 and 1983, Karunakaran explains. Those from the North returned to their ancestral homes in Jaffna, Vavuniya and Mullaitivu. However the Malaiyagha Tamils who attempted to go North were not absorbed into Jaffna, or into any of the major towns such as Mullaitivu, Vavuniya, Mannar or Kilinochchi. “There was enough and more State lands in Jaffna and other Districts in the North. But, these people were not handled in […]

MULLIKULAM: A STEP CLOSER TO REGAIN NAVY OCCUPIED LANDS AND HOUSES FOR 11 YEARS?

8th August 2018 // 0 Comments

A near 11-year struggle by villagers for their land and houses On 17th July 2018 about 80 families, including children and elderly left behind the brick houses they have been living in, with water, toilets, furniture, kitchen and other household goods, and moved to live in tents in a forest like area. The move was to resettle in their beloved, traditional village, Mullikulam, after nearly 11 years of displacement due to Navy occupation of the village. Throughout this period, while struggling to survive without the resources Mullikulam provided, the villagers also battled to regain their lands, with many negotiations, meetings, petitions, letters and protests. The responses were mostly betrayals and broken promises, by the present and previous governments. In 2012, their struggles led to limited […]

Chinese Projects halt in North, As India Intervenes!

4th August 2018 // 0 Comments

It is reported that the development projects undertaken by China in North have had to be closed by the Government. Internal sources affirm that the decisions had to be made according to a special request made by India. A special representative of the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has visited Sri Lanka, and at a meeting with the President and the Prime Minister, said that these concerns were discussed. The delegation has stressed by the representative that China’s entry to North of Sri Lanka can develop a serious challenge for India’s National Security. The special representative has pointed out that any development activity in the South is not a problem for them, except steering into North however can become one to India. The representative has […]

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