Dayasiri’s exit time for introspection for UNP says Karu

Published : 1:42 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: Front Page  |  16 Comments  |  2,804 views  |  
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By Dharisha Bastians Expressing deep regret about the fact that the United National Party had lost one of its young politicians with a promising future, senior Opposition legislator and former deputy leader of the party Karu Jayasuriya called for a moment of introspection and self-evaluation yesterday. “He had the best possible future with the UNP,” Jayasuriya said referring to the defection of Kurunegala District MP Dayasiri Jayasekera to the Government last afternoon. “There is no family bandyism in the UNP,” he said. Jayasuriya said that his exit was a moment to reflect on why people were quitting the UNP at a time when the situation in the country was deteriorating on the economic... 


Cairn, Govt. talking commercial terms

Published : 1:40 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: Front Page  |  1 Comment  |  1,029 views  |  

Cairn India revealed yesterday that discussions are on with the Sri Lankan Government regarding commercial terms and gas pricing, following successful discoveries made in the Mannar basin. Last year, Cairn made two gas discoveries in the block, out of the four exploration wells drilled under phase I and II. “The company continues to consider appraisal options for the gas discoveries made and for continuing into exploration in phase III. Monetisation of the existing discoveries continues to be evaluated under various development and commercial scenarios. Discussions with the Government of Sri Lanka regarding commercial terms and gas pricing are progressing,” Cairn India said in a note accompanying... 


Total nears Sri Lankan study contract for deepwater oilfields

Published : 1:40 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: Front Page  |  1 Comment  |  1,247 views  |  

Bloomberg: Total SA (FP), Europe’s third-largest oil company, may win a contract from the Sri Lankan Government in a month to study the prospect of oil and natural gas deposits deep off the island’s fabled white-sand beaches. Eni SpA (ENI) of Italy has also expressed strong interest in the blocks located in waters more than two miles deep, said Saliya Wickramasuriya, Petroleum Resources Development Secretariat Director General, the entity which will give out the contracts. Talks are on with Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and India’s Oil & Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC), which have yet to evince interest, he said. “We have six very large blocks, with very sparse data that we’re offering on a... 


TISL urges prompt action on COPE report

Published : 1:39 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: Front Page  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,425 views  |  

Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) yesterday called for prompt action on the findings and recommendations from the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) released on Tuesday. “TISL believes that by exposing the weaknesses of public enterprises in the COPE Report 2013 and making recommendations on how improvements can be effected, the Parliamentary Committee on Public Enterprises has taken a positive step forward, and requests the President and the  Government to follow up with further investigations and meaningful sanctions,” the anti-corruption watchdog said in a statement. TISL endorses the view that for public enterprises to be effective, they must be held accountable for their... 


Game is up on casinos charges Karu 

Published : 1:38 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  676 views  |  
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Following months of subverting the controversial casino licensing issue, the Government had finally shown its hand that it was promoting gambling in a big way, the main Opposition United National Party said yesterday. Senior UNP Parliamentarian Karu Jayasuriya said yesterday that the Government was forging ahead with its casino zone plans despite stiff opposition from civil society and religious leaders and even requests from the Mahanayakes. Addressing a media briefing, Jayasuriya said that the Government had earlier repeatedly pledged in Parliament that it was not planning to issue new casino licences. Criticising the infamous James Packer, project Jayasuriya said these projects were being... 


British parliamentarians visit UK-funded demining site in North

Published : 1:37 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,128 views  |  
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A six member delegation of British Parliamentarians visited the North of Sri Lanka yesterday. Their busy programme included a visit to a UK-funded demining project run by UK charity, The HALO Trust. They heard about the widespread use of mines during the conflict, and the massive efforts that have been made since to clear the dangerous minefields and return people to their homes. The delegation leader, Eleanor Laing MP, said the parliamentarians were “all full of admiration for the work that has been done by The HALO Trust. The clearing of mines in the former conflict zone is absolutely essential if people are to resettle in their communities. And that resettlement is essential to the growth... 


In brief

Published : 1:35 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  705 views  |  

More troops removed from Jaffna Amid calls for demilitarisation and a return to civil administration in the north, the military yesterday said that it has further reduced troops from several parts of the Jaffna district and have transferred them to the Palaly Cantonment. Army Spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said that a decision was taken to move troops from 13 small military camps located in the Walikamam sector in Jaffna district to the Palaly Cantonment. Other locations occupied by the military for which it was paying rent would also be returned to their owners, he said.   Govt. slams TNA The Government has criticised the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) over the comments it has been... 


Two drawings by George Keyt stolen

Published : 1:34 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: News  |  1 Comment  |  1,247 views  |  

By Lakmal Sooriyagoda The Colombo Fort Magistrate yesterday issued an order on the Controller of Immigration and Emigration to prevent anyone leaving the country with two paintings of Sri Lanka’s most distinguished and renowned modern painter George Keyt, valued at Rs. 12 million, which are reported to have been stolen from John Keels Holdings PLC. Meanwhile, the Magistrate Thilina Gamage directed the police media unit to take necessary action to make the public aware over the stolen two renowned paintings, namely ‘Mother and Child’ and ‘Wasanthi’. Lodging a complaint with Slave Island police, an employee of John Keels Holdings alleged that two paintings valued at Rs. 12 million which... 


Most passengers rescued after asylum seekers boat sinks off Indonesia

Published : 1:33 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: News  |  Leave a Comment  |  743 views  |  

Reuters: Three people died but another 157 suspected asylum seekers were rescued after their boat sank off the southern coast of Indonesia, officials said on Wednesday after earlier reports that as many as 60 may have perished. The latest case of a boat sinking while attempting the perilous journey came five days after Australia slammed the door on would-be refugees with a deal to send all boat arrivals to Papua New Guinea for assessment and eventual settlement. The debate over refugees and people smuggling has long been a hot political issue in Australia and has intensified with an election looming in a few weeks. Earlier on Wednesday, News Ltd. and other Australian media reported that the boat... 


Less developed nations will look to emulate SL: President

Published : 1:24 am  July 25, 2013  |  Category: Business  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,025 views  |  

Sri Lanka becoming the ‘Wonder of Asia’ is no longer a dream with the country experiencing rapid development in every sector and its benefits being equally distributed to all parts, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said on Tuesday. The President recalled that in the past there was a notion that the country should emulate its fast developing neighbours such as Singapore and South Korea. “In the same manner other less developed nations may look to emulate Sri Lanka’s success in the future as the country reaches greater heights,” he added. The President noted the above addressing a large gathering in Pattiwila where he opened the Biyagama Water Treatment Plant which adds 180 million litres...