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Last updateSun, 20 Aug 2017 6pm

Local News

Sri Lanka Customs nab State Intelligence Service officer attempting to smuggle gold

The Customs Department arrested an officer of state intelligence service while trying transport two kilograms of gold illegally at the Katunayake international airport. The preliminary investigations show the suspect has confiscated the gold stocks inside the shoes. The estimated cost of the gold is around 9.1 million rupees. The media spokesman of Customs Deputy Director Parakrama Basnayake said further investigations are being carried out in this connection.

The President says, what is needed for reconciliation is everybody's support ,but not brick bats.

President Maithripala Sirisena says that what is the needed for the reconciliation programme of the government is everybody's support but not criticism.


Prohibition of the Polythene is effective from the 1st of September.

The Central Environmental Authority says, that polythene food wrappers, polythene bags and expanded polystyrene products, will be banned with effect from the 1st of September. Legal action will be taken against those who utilize these polythene materials against environmental protection.


The Telecommunication tax is removed. The Bicycle and motor cycle tax reduced.

The Finance ministry decides to reduce taxes on telecommunications and motor vehicles including motor cycles. According to the new decision motor cycles having lower than 150 horse power have been reduced by 90 percent with effect from tonight.

Minister Mangala Samaraweera addressing a media briefing said that the tax imposed on internet amounting to 10 percent will be removed from the 1st of September.

The finance ministry says, that it has issued necessary instructions how to activate government's loan schemes with interest flexibilities, according to a budget proposal. It is being implemented 31st of March. The government has allocated 4470 million rupees for the interest reduction scheme. 50 thousand employment opportunities are to be developed. Maximum loan obtainable under gold harvest loans scheme, is exceeding 70 million rupees.

The government bears 50 percent of the interest of the loans. Among the proposals are agro related institutions and harvest increasing technology introduction , as well as introducing high-tech milling facilities to rice millers and providing loans for the people who are involving fishing industry. Under the Riya shakthi Loan Scheme school van facilities with 28 seats will be obtainable.

In addition to this loans will be provided to improve livestock, horticulture, domestic engineering , tourism and information technology. Under the "Soduru Piyasa" loan scheme self employment and those who construct housing for themselves will be facilitated.
The maximum loan granted to a family is 200 thousand rupees.

The National Economic Council will be Established.

A National Economic Council will be established. The proposal was brought forward to the cabinet by the President Maithripala Sirisena and was approved by the cabinet. The council consists of the president, the prime minister , the finance minister and the governor of the central bank including 3 permanent secretaries of the relevant ministries.

Addressing a media briefing held at SLFP headquarters in Colombo minister Sarath Amunugama told the reporters that resolving complex economic issues within a short period is the major objective of the council. In addition to that the council will address progressive economic march as well.

Joining the press briefing minister S.B.Dissanayake said that, the SLFP is celebrating its 66th anniversary with pride.
At the Meantime the press briefing observed that Mrs.Shiranthi Rajapakse has a number of allegations from law enforcement authorities regarding "Siriliya Saviya" organization.

Minister S.B.Dissanayake questioned that which is wrong to question about spending Siriliya Funds on to unexpected objectives. Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardhana said that Central committee of the SLFP will decide on party's future decisions and actions.

The President presents legal deeds to Mahawelli settlers in the Victoria and Kothmale areas.

Under the programme of providing 100 thousand land deeds to Mahaweli settlers a special event has been organized tomorrow to distribute land deeds to dwellers of Victoria and Kothmale Mahaweli zones under the patronage of the President Maithripala Sirisena.

The function will be held at Central Provincial council sports play ground in Deegana. The residential project manager Ubaya Kalyana Kumara of Victoria and Kothmale projects said that 1300 recipients will receive formal deeds from the president.


Among these recipients there are number of Mahaweli zone dwellers who did not have formal deeds for more than 5 to 15 years. During the previous week President handed over more than 10,000 farmers of these type of deeds among Walawa and Mahaweli H Zone.

The need of maintaining collective responsibility of the government ministers was emphasized at the UNP working committee meeting. The Final decision on Monday.

The attention of the UNP working committee is being paid for the delaying of court cases being heard in judiciary. It was emphasized the importance of protecting the collective responsibility of government ministers during the meeting too.

These facts were revealed to the media by state minister Ravindra Samaraweera after this afternoon's meeting of UNP working committee. He further said all the decisions taken by the working committee will be released to the media on Monday.

Minister Kabeer Hashim and parliamentarian Tennakone Nilame also addressed the media briefing.
Party leader Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe led the working committee meeting this morning at party headquarters "Siri Kotha".

At the meantime a housing unit constructed by the green blood organization affiliated to UNP was handed over to the relevant family at an event held at Siri Kotha this morning.

Project for power generation through waste inaugurated today.

The renaming of the "Mihisuru Viyamana" waste management project at Karidiyana as a resource management centre and the project to generate power through waste was commissioned today, by President Maithripala Sirisena.


Constructions in the Kalu-Ganga conservation area are to be removed .

The Kalutara district environmental committee has decided  to evict all constructions within the Kalu Ganga Conservation area. The Survey Department  is conducting survey of this conservation area these days. Based on the report of this survey all constructions  within the said area, will be evicted within the next few days.


Kuliyapitiya Base hospital to be acquired by the government.

Minister Rajitha Senarathne stated that the Kuliyapitiya Base Hospital will be acquired by the government. He further stated that this is with the intention of establishing a medical faculty for the Wayamba University. Medical faculties affiliated to the Sabaragamuwa and Moratuwa universities will also be implemented.


Foreign News