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Sunday November 22nd, 2009


Ranil to contest as UNF candidate
With the strong possibility of Ranil Wickremesinghe coming forward as the UNF’s Presidential candidate, the big hullabaloo...

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SB, supporters to back
MR or retire

The National Organiser of the United National Party S.B. Dissanayaka and many more UNPers are threatening to either resign from politics or support President Mahinda...

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Outer Circular Highway work to commence on Dec. 7
President Mahinda Rajapaksa is to officially flag-off the commencement of work of the much protracted Outer Circular Highway Project (OCHP) with the laying...

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Presidential poll to be announced midnight tomorrow
The gazette notification announcing the date of the much anticipated mid-term Presidential election, due to be held in January next year, will be issued at midnight tomorrow...

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Welcoming freedom!

Displaced civilians housed at Menik Farm welfare village cheer the arrival of Senior Presidential Advisor and Parliamentarian Basil Rajapaksa, who yesterday paid a visit to Vavuniya. Rajapaksa whereupon declared that the government plans to afford freedom of movement to some 136,328 IDPs remaining in the camp, from December 1

(Pic by Ishara S. Kodikara)

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Fonseka rejects UNF conditions
General Sarath Fonseka has rejected the conditions laid down by the opposition United National Front for him to be their common presidential candidate, political sources revealed. He had made it clear that...

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Trinco coal power deal to go ahead
After concluding fruitful negotiations with Indian counterparts, the government is awaiting the green light from the Attorney General to go ahead with the signing of the joint venture agreement...

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Srikantha, Kisshor deny plotting crossover to govt.
TNA Parliamentarians N. Srikantha and Sivanathan Kisshor vehemently denied reports that they were about to cross over...

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IDPs get freedom to move from Dec. 1 – Basil
Senior Presidential Advisor MP Basil Rajapaksa, who visited the Menik Farm welfare village in Vavuniya last morning, said the Internally Displaced Persons...

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NEWS

UNP fails to bring threatened no-confidence against Hisbullah
Following the failure of the UNP to put forth the no-confidence motion against Health Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council, M.L.M, Hisbullah alleging...

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Health Ministry to import ‘Novel A/H1N1 2009’ vaccine
The Ministry of Healthcare and Nutrition has decided to immediately import a vaccine called ‘Novel A/H1N1 2009,’ which has been approved by the World Health Organisation, to treat patients.
Nearly 258 cases of the new Influenza disease have been reported from many parts of the island. SO far, five deaths have been reported.

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Cabinet approval sought for Jaffna Uni. Post-grad Institute building project
Higher Education Minister Prof. Wishwa Warnapala has obtained Cabinet approval for a Rs.42.35 million project to construct a three storied building complex for the Post-graduate Institute of Studies (PGIS) affiliated to the Jaffna University.
“This Institute is currently housed in a rented house lacking basic amenities,” the Ministry said yesterday.

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Public Seminar on NMDP
A Public Seminar on National Medicinal Drug Policy (NMDP), organised by the Health Action International Asia-Pacific in collaboration with the Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya and the People’s Movement for the Rights of Patients will be held on December 5 at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute, 100 Independence Square, Colombo 7 from 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

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Govt. team brings relief to stranded Lankans in Jeddah
Authorities are now finally expected to crackdown on those responsible for the human tragedy under the Kandahar Flyover in Jeddah, where a growing number of stranded Lankan migrant workers have taken refuge under trying circumstances pending deportation. A high level team headed by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Hussein Bhaila and General Manager of the Foreign Employment Bureau (FEB) H. Batagoda rushed to Jeddah on Tuesday to make a first hand assessment of the situation there and to provide some immediate relief.

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Health minor employees threaten strike
The JVP affiliated All Ceylon Health Service Union (ACHSU) is threatening to launch an all-out strike from the beginning of December demanding a series of benefits to minor staff attached to hospitals countrywide.

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Fresh amnesty for deserters
The government has offered a fresh amnesty to Army deserters to turn in and get themselves honourably discharged. The new moratorium will be available from December 7 to 31, according to Military Spokesman Brig. Udaya Nanayakkara.
He said they expected more than 5,000 to utilise the offer so that they will be free from their obligation to the Army.

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POLITICS

Absorbing political battle in coming weeks
The talk of the town is election fever these days, but speculation surrounding the polls has been confounded by a series of non-events that were expected to materialise this week, but did not.
It was widely expected that President Mahinda Rajapaksa would announce which polls - presidential or general - would be held first. The declaration was expected at the annual convention of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) last Sunday, but even before the event, there were newspaper headlines proclaiming that the much awaited pronouncement would not be made.

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Presidential, Parliamentary poll dates finalised this week?
Sarath Fonseka was born on December 18, 1950 in the Revati Nakshatra, Pisces Rasi and Thula Lagna. Currently he’s running Mars Dasa that started in February 5, 2006 and finishing in February 6, 2013 and Fourth House Mars is in Capricorn.
The Mars Dasa Mercury sub period which started for him in August 7, 2009 will end in August 4, 2010. It is during this period that he received his promotions. And now he’s forced by other opposition leaders to come as a political candidate in Sri Lanka against the President.

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NEWS FEATURES

IMF, Ranil: Fear-mongering as a last straw
My friend Sudath Pasqual (‘Passa’ to his friends), perhaps better known in cricketing circles (unfortunately, because the man has a way with words and a rare set of eyes), has written to me, commenting on a statement made by Director- External Relations, IMF, Caroline Atkinson.
Atkinson was responding to a reporter’s question regarding a note authored by the IMF’s Managing Director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, and addressed to Executive Director- Human Rights Watch, Asia Division, Brad Adams, responding to criticism about funding Sri Lanka. She said, “An economic collapse in Sri Lanka would make lives worse for everybody, and it was in that context that the international agency had decided to give economic support to the country”.

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Sarath, Mangala, Ranil against The President
Sarath Fonseka was born on December 18, 1950 in the Revati Nakshatra, Pisces Rasi and Thula Lagna. Currently he’s running Mars Dasa that started in February 5, 2006 and finishing in February 6, 2013 and Fourth House Mars is in Capricorn.
The Mars Dasa Mercury sub period which started for him in August 7, 2009 will end in August 4, 2010. It is during this period that he received his promotions. And now he’s forced by other opposition leaders to come as a political candidate in Sri Lanka against the President.
He has taken a ill advised decision and come as a candidate in the Presidential election, which will be a failure of his life career.

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SPORTS

Bowlers’ heartbreak, batsmen’s paradise
Sa’adi Thawfeeq reporting from India
The Motara pitch at the Sardar Patel Stadium here would run a close second to the National Stadium in Karachi for the flattest pitch ever made in Test cricket. In February of this year Sri Lanka and Pakistan scored a combined total of 1409 runs for the loss of 13 wickets at Karachi. Over the five days at the Sardar Patel Stadium venue of the first Test between Sri Lanka and India, the two sides played out a high scoring draw which produced a total of 1598 runs for the loss of 21 wickets.

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Mahela – a highly underrated batsman
Sa’adi Thawfeeq reporting from India
Mahela Jayawardene, the former Sri Lanka captain is arguably one of the more underrated batsmen in international cricket today. He doesn’t feature so much in conversations about the game’s greats too often, but the numbers suggest he deserves more than a passing mention. His Test career batting average of 54.67 has been bettered only by Australian Ricky Ponting (55.88).

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ICC out of control
On June 25 of this year, the cricket’s international governing body the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced that, following trials at domestic and international level, the UDRS (Umpire Decision Review System) would come into use from October. Under the updated rules, each side would be allowed two unsuccessful challenges per innings in a system similar to that used in American football and tennis.

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Welagedera a memorable comeback
Comparisons with great bowlers are dangerous for it can easily lead to the destruction of a budding young cricketer’s career. For fast bowler Chanaka Welagedera, popularly known until the morning of the first Test against India as the cricketer with the most number of initials UWMBCA against his name, stepping into the shoes of a bowler in the calibre of the great Chaminda Vaas is still a long way off. But at Ahmedabad last Tuesday Welagedera took a further step towards fulfilling that task when he rocked India with a spell of left-arm fast bowling that was reminiscent of the former fast bowler.

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INTERVIEWS

‘Public sector has wasted money’- Amunugama
While expressing that President Mahinda Rajapaksa will win future presidential election hands down, Cabinet Minister of Public Administration and Home Affairs and Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. Sarath Amunugama said that the public sector has failed to make money for the country and only wasted money
Q: The government initially decided to bring down interest rates on loans of public servants, now the government has decided to bring down all interest rates below 10%.

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