IMF-Sri Lanka talks positive-BY CHAMIKARA WEERASINGHE Source:Sundayobserver The talks in Colombo between the nine-member staff mission from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and senior officials from the Finance Ministry have made key progress in restructuring the country’s balance of payments for much needed financial consolidation, sources at the Prime Minister’s office told the Sunday Observer yesterday. “IMF-Government negotiations have moved in a positive direction from the start. The chances are that the IMF will reach a staff-level agreement with Sri Lanka,” a Finance Ministry official said. “This will be critical for channelling IMF funds for an economic stabilisation program. It will also create a positive background for obtaining external loans.” When the country enters into a staff-level agreement with the IMF, the country will not have to deal with issues like the recent refusal by an international bank to serve as a guarantor for Sri Lanka’s purchase of fuel, which ...

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 Tablets to students a hoax, toilets a more priority  – by Sunil Thenabadu One of the Presidential Election “Gundus” before the Yahapalanaya Government came to power was to provide “Tablets” to all students in Sri Lanka which appeared to have got its priorities mixed up. All less affluent students were anxiously stayed in sheer anticipation. When the promise was about to get off the grounds there were protests from opposition those tablets are not going to help students in their studies and that they would get educated in other areas apart from assisting in their basic studies. This was a huge disappointment for majority of the less affluent students. The promise with all the spade work made is not going to get off for the sheer disappointment of many students.    The previous government too instead of carrying out activities to resolve the urgent needs of people exhausted billions of rupees on ...

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Cardinal says voting on 20A by some Muslim MPs should be probed as it seems part of a ’deal’ Source:Dailymirror Archbishop of Colombo Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith said today that international forces were behind the Easter Sunday terror attacks stating that his remarks he made on Sunday evening had been misunderstood as he was not referring to any local political group being directly involved in the Easter attacks.  “My remarks on Sunday has been misunderstood by many. I did not refer to a local political group when I said politics was behind the Easter Sunday attacks but international forces. There are some forces who develop weapons and uses religious and ethnic extrimsm such as Wahabism to create conflicts. This is done to market their weapons. I was referring to such groups,” the Cardinal told a press conference today.  “Only a small group of Muslims are involved in extremism. Therefore I would ...

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Remembering Dr. Neville Fernando Source:Island This tribute is in remembrance of my father-in-law, the late Dr. Neville Fernando who would have celebrated his 90th birthday on 9th March 2021. He passed away unexpectedly on the 4th of February 2021 due to the deadly COVID-19 virus. His birthday will be remembered with an almsgiving to the priests at the Kotikawatta temple to invoke merits on him to attain the Supreme bliss of Niravana. Religious observances on his birthday were an annual occurrence even during his lifetime. As I ponder his memories, being ‘no more’ is the saddest thought that crosses my mind. I suspect that if you are reading this you understand what I mean logically. Death means that our loved ones never grow a year older, although logic does little to clear up our confusion when his birthday continues to happen year after year. ...

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Estranged strange bedfellows Source:Island Tuesday 2nd March, 2021 The JVP has torn the Easter Sunday Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) report to shreds. Its leaders have picked many holes in the document, and their arguments are tenable. Their position is that the PCoI has served no useful purpose as it has failed to identify the masterminds of the terror strikes. One cannot but agree with them on this score. JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake, MP, has gone a step further; he has demanded to know why Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was the Prime Minister at the time of the Easter Sunday attacks, has been let off the hook. We asked the JVP a similar quetion when the COPE (Committee on Public Enterprises), which probed the Treasury bond scams, went out of its way to ensure that Wickremesinghe’s name did not appear in its report. The COPE probe, under the chairmanship of ...

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Interesting facts about Kandy’s Audience Hall-by L.B Senaratne The Audience Hall Source:Daily News The Audience Hall of Kandy is to be the centre for the swearing in of Ministers of the ‘new’ Government on August 10 – a Tuesday. This hallowed spot is in the shadow of the Sacred Tooth Relic. The area which houses the Temple of the Tooth (Sri Dalada Maligawa) has been used for the swearing in of Presidents as well. Former President Ranasinghe Premadasa took his oaths at the Paththiruppuwa against the advice of the then Diyawadana Nilame. ...

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  SRI LANKA NEWS –  (NOVEMBER  2019) –    Compiled by Victor Melder. Sri Lanka’s top court on Tuesday effectively blocked a plan by the president to bring back hangings for the first time since 1976 before he leaves office this month. Maithripala Sirisena said in June that he had signed death warrants for four drug offenders — mirroring the Philippines’ no-holds-barred anti-narcotics drive — alarming rights groups and the international community. A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court extended on Tuesday a stay order until the hearing of 15 petitions filed against Sirisena’s bid. “The bench extended the stay order till December 9,” a lawyer representing civil society groups, who call hanging a “cruel and degrading”, said after a brief hearing. Sirisena is not seeking re-election and must leave office as soon as a winner is declared after the November 16 election, more than three weeks before the court resumes hearings. There ...

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