“I REFUSE to be a RACIST” Rotaract campaign attempts to create “A World without Hate”

Published : 12:00 am  March 22, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  987 views  |  

As a timely attempt to both mark the International Day for the Elimination of Racism and to create a global platform for the youth of the world to stand up against racism, the Rotaract Club of Colombo Millennium City launched the “Anti-Racism” online campaign. The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is observed annually on 21 March. On that day, in 1960, police opened fire and killed 69 people at a peaceful demonstration in South Africa, against Apartheid pass laws. Proclaiming the day in 1966, the United Nations General Assembly called on the international community to redouble its efforts to eliminate all forms of racial discrimination. However the declaration... 


Statement condemning arbitrary arrest and detention of human rights defenders, Ruki Fernando, Fr. Praveen Mahesan, victims and their families

Published : 12:00 am  March 22, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,501 views  |  

Head; Statement condemning arbitrary arrest and detention of human rights defenders, Ruki Fernando, Fr. Praveen Mahesan, victims and their families We, the undersigned welcome the release of prominent Sri Lankan Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) Ruki Fernando and Fr. Praveen Mahesan on 19 March 2014. We however strongly condemn their arbitrary arrest and detention by the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) in Kilinochchi (Northern Province) on 16 March 2014. We also note, that this release was an exception to the general pattern, and was only made possible by sustained pressure and efforts by a wide range of individuals, organisations and governments advocating with the Sri Lankan Government to... 


Today is World Water Day – Drained out or new potential?: Hydropower and Sri Lanka’s energy challenge

Published : 12:00 am  March 22, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  754 views  |  

By Chatura Rodrigo and Athula Senaratne Water and energy are linked with an eternal bond. Many countries blessed with rivers and waterfalls have harnessed their inherent kinetic energy through hydro-electricity in fulfilling their energy needs. Sri Lanka is one such country. But the rising demand for electricity and the limited generation potential of existing hydro plants have reduced the relative contribution of hydro power in the country’s electricity generation. As a solution to this, Sri Lanka has taken a policy decision to move towards thermal and coal for electricity generation. However, this is leading to issues such as rising electricity prices and negative environmental externalities.... 


Water infographic poster for schoolchildren launched for World Water Day

Published : 12:00 am  March 22, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  609 views  |  

The Colombo- based International Water Management Institute (IWMI), launched an infographic poster for schoolchildren to mark World Water Day 2014. The poster (23.5cm x 30 cm) is a colourful illustration of some of the water related issues facing Sri Lanka. It is available free of charge to all schoolchildren who visit Keells outlets island-wide today and throughout the week. You can also download it from the IWMI website: www.iwmi.org/srilanka. Nihara Jayatilleke, aged 12 was one of the first children to receive a copy.  “I love this poster,” she said. “It tells us a lot about water facts in an interesting way that is easy to remember.” “World Water Day is an annual event celebrated... 


Reliability of GDP and per capita income numbers in Sri Lanka

Published : 12:00 am  March 20, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  1 Comment  |  2,188 views  |  

By Raja B.M. Korale There has been an interesting exchange between the columnist at Daily FT, W.A. Wijewardena (WAW), and the Director of Statistics of the Central Bank (DSCBSL) on the differences between the Per Capita Income (PCI) estimated from national accounts, and PCI calculated from household income and expenditure surveys. Such interactions are useful to facilitate the public to understand the crucial issues involved in the estimation of the size of the economy through national accounts and welfare levels of people ascertained from household surveys. This note was prepared not in any way to dilute the issue that is raised in the paper prepared by WAW as to whether the current GDP aggregates... 


Potential output: The reality behind the fiction

Published : 12:00 am  March 20, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  1 Comment  |  487 views  |  

In his customary article in the Daily FT on Monday, 17 March 2014, W.A. Wijewardena blames politicians for trying to achieve higher and higher growth. He sees such attempts as “impatience”. I am surprised to hear such an argument from someone like Mr. Wijewardena who is regarded by some as a reputed economist.  Mr. Wijewardena should know that when it comes to individual economic ambitions, any rational economic agent’s intention is to grow as fast as possible. This could be done in two ways. First, try to achieve the maximum growth within his or her capacity. Second, try to increase his/her capacity in order to continuously sustain such growth. For example, individuals continue to learn... 


Debate on GDP Per Capita Income and Household Survey Per Capita Income

Published : 12:00 am  March 17, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  594 views  |  

By Statistics Department Central Bank of Sri Lanka A recent article published in the Daily FT by W.A. Wijewardena highlighted the deviation between the GDP Per Capita Income (GDPPCI) and Household Survey Per Capita Income (HSPCI). The Central Bank provided a clarification on this issue by highlighting the underlying reasons of the said difference between the two estimates based on a thorough understanding on the concepts involved in compiling them. However, the honoured scholar seems to be still confused and is of the view that the deviation between GDPPCI and HSPCI as an error in compiling these estimates and that this perceived error is something which has to be rectified. This is not the... 


Ultimate goal of Geneva resolutions

Published : 12:00 am  March 17, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  3 Comments  |  615 views  |  

by Jayampathy Molligoda During the last few weeks, serious concerns have been expressed in print and electronic media about the possibility of imposing economic sanctions on Sri Lanka and trade embargos, actions against alleged war crimes committed by Sri Lankan armed forces, and immediate international intervention on Sri Lanka etc. Storm in a tea cup The third ‘UN Resolution’ (the 1st and the 2nd passed in 2012 and 2013) will be hopefully passed on 28 March 2014 on Sri Lanka’s human rights record. Here are the relevant extracts from the draft resolution put up by US. “…Calls upon the Government of Sri Lanka: to conduct an independent and credible investigation into allegations of... 


Unsolicited bids and the Hilton project

Published : 12:00 am  March 17, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  1 views  |  

The Leader of the UNP Ranil Wickremesinghe has raised a very interesting issue about unsolicited bids for large scale development projects. Political opposition apart, it is evident that certain large or even small projects cannot be done for practical reasons by following tender procedures to the book. In these matters we have to trust that those in power are acting in the interest of the country and also have no selfish motives like getting commissions and bribes. Experience has shown that soliciting bids is no guarantee of honesty. Many a time the tender procedures are fixed before hand in order to select one particular tender. Just because a project wins a contractor on the basis of an unsolicited... 


Channel 4 doth protest too much: Sri Lanka revisited

Published : 12:00 am  March 15, 2014  |  Category: Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,664 views  |  

Following is a release from Engage Sri Lanka pertaining to the book Corrupted Journalism: Channel 4 and Sri Lanka   In February 2014, Channel 4 and Callum Macrae published The Uncorrupted Truth, their response to Corrupted Journalism: Channel 4 and Sri Lanka, Engage Sri Lanka’s critique of Channel 4’s misreporting on Sri Lanka.1 To quote Queen Gertrude in Hamlet, act 3, scene 2, Channel 4 perhaps “doth protest too much”. In the continuing controversy over Channel 4’s deeply questionable programs on the end of the Sri Lankan civil war, Channel 4 is absolutely right in one thing. It has described its response to legitimate, carefully-presented criticism of the appalling journalism... 


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