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Sunday August 15th, 2010


Hunt on for HIV+ Pros’ clients
Seven female sex workers who recently tested positive for the HIV virus are yet plying their trade in the Colombo suburbs, with authorities yet to trace any of their clients who may have contracted the deadly virus from them.
Health Ministry sources revealed that there could be many more sex workers who have contracted the disease, as these seven detections were made by just one NGO working with the National Sexually Transmitted Diseases (NSTD) & HIV/AIDS Prevention Programme.

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Most unkind cut
The Project for Capacity Building of the Parliamentary Oversight Committees, appointed to regulate and ensure the efficiency of the Parliamentary Committees such as the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) and the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), maintained on a World Bank grant, was terminated by the government on July 6. Some of the duties performed by this Project included inspecting the audit reports of the State institutions...

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READY FOR TAKE OFF

President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday visited Hambantota new Harbour, a day prior to today’s main ceremony to blast open the access to it. Here, the President accompanied by top officials and well-wishers inspecting the new harbour from its bottom. In the background is the stage built in the shape of a half vessel from which he will set off the blasts at the auspicious time this morning.

(Pic by Ishara Kodikara)

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Will Air Force Chief escape Justice?
Measures to tackle the growing problem of illegal construction of tourist hotels and holiday homes by the super rich in the protected Knuckles Range, which was recently adopted as a World Heritage site by the UNESCO, will be taken up at the Central Environmental Authority (CEA) tomorrow, with the participation of all relevant State sector organizations. There are said to at least 15 such illegal projects either completed or under construction in this pristine range...

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President approves GCM recommendations
President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday gave approval to the determination of the first Court Martial against General Sarath Fonseka, which strips him of all military ranks.
The General Court Martial (GCM) on Friday found Fonseka guilty of being involved in politics while in uniform, and recommended that Fonseka be dishonourably discharged of his rank, pending the President’s approval.

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NEWS

DNA rebuffs UNP overture
Following an open invitation by UNP Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya to DNA Leader Sarath Fonseka to join hands with the UNP, Anoma Fonseka speaking to The Nation, ruled out the possibility of any such coalition sans the JVP.

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Ex Snr. cop aided Sakvithi bolt
Master fraudster Sakvithi Ranasinghe had received the help of a retired high ranking Police officer to flee the country via the Bandaranaike International Airport, after swindling more than Rs.1 billion of investor money, the latest investigations reveal.

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Beruwala Mayor had stolen SUV
UNP Mayor of Beruwala, Mazahim Mohamed was arrested on Friday afternoon at Melbourne Avenue, Bambalapitiya, by officers attached to the Crimes Division of the Wellawatte Police, for allegedly retaining a stolen luxury Land Cruiser jeep.
A group of supporters of the suspect had allegedly stolen the jeep belonging to a Kaduwela area resident, at around 7:00 pm on June 2, while it was parked on Dharmarama Road, Wellawatte.

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Tamil migrants sail to uncertainty in Canada
Hundreds of Tamils seeking asylum from Sri Lanka sailed into Canada on Friday under the scrutiny of authorities, who vowed to screen out Tiger rebels after charges that the country is too welcoming.
After three months on the Pacific, a Navy frigate escorted the shabby, Thai-flagged MV Sun Sea cargo ship onto Vancouver Island. Authorities brought out the 490 migrants one by one, shielding them from view with black umbrellas.

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Cholera confirmed as UN chief to tour Pakistan floods
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said Saturday 20 million people had been affected by the worst floods in the country’s history as the UN confirmed the first cholera case.
Independence Day celebrations were cancelled as floods continued to bring misery to millions and aid agencies warned of a “second wave” of deaths from disease.
“The floods affected some 20 million people, destroyed standing crops and food storages worth billions of dollars, causing colossal loss to national economy,” Gilani said in a televised address to the nation.

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Father, son remanded for assaulting HQI
A father and son accused of aggressively obstructing the duties of the Police and assaulting the HQI of Mt. Lavinia Police, while in custody, were produced before Mt. Lavinia Additional Magistrate Ruchira Weliwatte on Friday and remanded till August 27. The remanded father and son were identified as Roshan Dushmantha and Shehan Priyankara of Kaduwela.

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Transport manager fined
The transport manager of a leading company who pleaded guilty to a charge of transporting pharmaceuticals without proper documentations of the Drug Control Authority was fined Rs. 20,000/- by the Additional Magistrate Mt. Lavinia Ruchira Weliwatte on Friday.
The court also ordered the Wellawatte police to hand back to the suspects the pharmaceuticals that can be transported without a permit and those that require permit to be handed over to the Drug Control Authority.

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POLITICS

Ranil playing it close to his chest
Politics in this country has rarely been without its fair share of surprises. Last week saw more surprises, even if the overall political climate was slightly cold, with most parties going into some degree of hibernation, after exhausting themselves at the recent presidential and general elections. The main focus of attention was the ‘crossover’ of two United National Party (UNP) MPs, P. Digambaram and Prabha Ganesan to government ranks. In so doing, the two parliamentarians expressed their dissatisfaction with the UNP leadership, while at the same time pointing out that they could serve their communities better only by joining the government.

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A feather like no other in the President’s cap
The newly launched Hambantota Harbour is more than a dream-come-true for President Rajapaksa. Offering numerous hitherto untapped economic resources to be exploited, the newly constructed harbour will be an employment hub whilst easing pressure on the Colombo Port.
The water filling ceremony of the Hambantota Port, which is the second largest harbour in the country, will take place today under the patronage of President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Full Story

NEWS FEATURES

Thalassaemia - Genetic disease filled with agony
A thalassaemia patient is left with a painful inheritance, an inheritance that is filled with agony. It is said that ‘we inherit the sins of our fathers’, but seeing the Thalassaemia patients residing at the National Thalassaemia Centre in Kurunegala it makes us wonder what sin could provoke such a fate. Thalassaemia is a genetic disease that shortens the life span of the red blood cells. The disease is the result of an inherent disorder within one’s genome.

Full Story

Lanka can be Pier of the East again
With water-filling ceremony (Karadiyawara Mangalyaya) of the Hambantota Port - the first inbuilt port in the history of the world to be inaugurated by President Mahinda Rajapaksa today, all eyes of not only those in Sri Lanka but all over Asia are focussed on Sri Lanka’s port in the deep down South.
Experts from various fields from shipping to logistics to energy to aviation believe that the country located strategically along the present day “Silk Route”- the West East Shipping Line of Communication (SLoC) or Sea Route which is the busiest in the world with a staggering hundred thousands ships passing Hambantota each year (nearly 290 ships a day), the...

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‘Target real dengue breeding sites’ – Dr Sugath Peiris
As Dengue cases and deaths continue to soar in certain parts of the country despite coming down at national level, with 76 local bodies in 65 divisional secretariats being declared as high risk zones for dengue, a health expert charged that the media was partly to blame for both the spread and the deaths caused by dengue.

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SPORTS

World Cup venues to be used for Windies tour
Sri Lanka Cricket is planning to play all the matches during the West Indies tour here in November-December at the three World Cup venues – R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo, Sooriyawewa in Hambantota and Pallakele in Kandy.
West Indies are due to play a series of three Tests and five One-Day Internationals during their tour of Sri Lanka. Presently, the venues allocated for the Tests are Dambulla, SSC and P Sara Oval and for the five ODIs – Hambantota, Galle, SSC and R Premadasa Stadium.

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Australia to trial split innings
A split innings 12-a-side one-day cricket format will be trialled in Australia’s national one-day cup this season, Cricket Australia (CA) said on Friday.
The new format will divide innings into two blocks, the first of 20 overs and the second of 25 overs, with fielding restrictions for the first five overs of each bracket that are relaxed slightly for the remainder.

Full Story

Selectors focused on World Cup (Point-Blank)
How seriously do national selectors take the main domestic tournaments and consider the performances in them for national selections?
We all know that the selectors’ job is a thankless one and every decision they take is not going to satisfy everyone, questions are always bound to be asked about why certain players have been overlooked and so forth. But as long as the selectors are fair by their choice of selections and are picking the players with a certain plan in mind, they cannot be faulted for leaving out certain players in the best interest of the national team.

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Sri Lanka Cricket helps Hennanigala Vidyalaya
In response to a request from the principal of Hennanigala Vidyalaya, Dehiattakandiya and recommendations made by the Provincial Coach, C Kodikara, the Chairman Sri Lanka Cricket, DS De Silva donated cricket equipment for junior cricket to the school.
A programme was held recently at Dehiattakandiya to hand over the cricket gear from Sri Lanka Cricket together with bags and T-shirts given by Prima Group.

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NEWS FEATURES

Money scammers played many for a sucker
With the hype that was created around the arrest of alleged fraudster Sakvithi Ranasighe, the nation took a look at the types of financial frauds that were identified in Sri Lanka. We believe that it is our duty to bring these fraudulent acts to the limelight so that the public could be more vigilant and avoid falling into another ‘Sakvithi trap.’
The Director of the Fraud Investigations Bureau (FIB), SSP Maxi Proctor, warned that ‘Sakvithi type’ scams are not the only thing that the people need to be vigilant about. According to SSP Proctor, some have extorted money from people under the...

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