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News  


 

POLITICS OF DATES
The annual Muslim fasting month of Ramadan is expected to be announced this week with the sighting of the new moon, but politics of dates have already begun with complaints that this sweet fruit usually donated in large quantities by wealthy Gulf states in West Asia for their fasting brethren here is often not going to poor people it was meant for. Since these gifts of dates are sent by the rulers in those countries to leading Muslim politicians here the meanest allegation is that these politicians end up channeling much of it to others to curry favour.

SLMC TOP MAN OFF THE HOOK?
A top leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) may have escaped by the skin of his teeth from being issued a rule by the Supreme Court for contempt of court as happened earlier to S. B. Dissanayake for shooting his mouth disparagingly about the judiciary without thinking and was sentenced to a prison term by a bench presided over by the previous Chief Justice Sarath Nanda Silva. The top SLMCer being a member of the black coated fraternity should have known better, but the latest disparaging uttering about the top judiciary was made at a workshop held recently under the auspices of the Bakeer Markar Foundation to get media engaged in the new constitution making process, therefore to a limited invited audience and can even be counted as an academic exercise, unlike SB who fired his mouth at a public meeting. But the same man was seen at a wedding soon afterwards sheepishly talking with a top judicial officer.

ANOTHER CAN OF WORMS?
Did Rehabilitation and Prisons Minister D.E.W. Gunasekera help to open yet another can of worms when he was recently quoted in a daily newspaper as having said that widows of EROS leader V. Balakumaran and one time LTTE spokesman and negotiator Yogaratnam Yogi were among northern war widows who sought assistance from him? During the last days of the war and thereafter there have been reports that Balakumaran, Yogi and some other top Tiger leaders had surrendered to the forces. Minister Gunasekera tells us that out of about 11,600 Tiger cadres who surrendered, there are close to 8,000 still undergoing rehabilitation, while others have been released and all those who are still in custody are in touch with their families. Among this lot are about 1100 hardcore cadres, but no Tiger leaders. Balakumar of course, had much blood on his hands, especially in the 80s.

EXACTING JUSTICE
SriLankan unions have apparently ensured that some justice was exacted from a top notch recently forced out of the airline for signing a questionable deal that has cost the airline dearly at a time the carrier is losing bns. A bird whispers that this personality is not being allowed to take the official vehicle with her after paying the usual nominal sum to the carrier due to pressure brought on particularly by a pro-government union.