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Last Updated = Tue, Jul 26, 2016, 12:10 am SL Time

* Empty land in Sri Lankan capital to be developed immediately

July 25 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government has decided to immediately develop the vacant prime land in capital Colombo, the Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government Faizer Mustapha has said.
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* Sri Lanka's largest multi-functional Irrigation Project is a personal dream come true for President Sirisena

July 25 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena said the implementation of the Moragahakanda-Kalu Ganga Irrigation Development Project is not only a fulfillment of a long awaited aspiration of the farmers but also a personal dream come true for him. He made these remarks during the national ceremony to enshrine treasures to build the main dam of the Moragahakanda-Kalu Ganga Irrigation Development Project. The ceremony in this regard was held Monday (25) under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe in Moragahakanda.
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* Joint Opposition says the 'Pada Yathra' protest march will be successful

July 25 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's joint opposition, the group of parliamentarians loyal to former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, says the 'Jana Satana Pada Yathra' protest march from Kandy to Colombo will be held successfully against the government on July 28 as planned regardless of any obstacle.
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* Sri Lanka Marxist party says there is a growing trend of communal clashes

July 24 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Marxist party, Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) says a growing trend of communal clashes is beginning to emerge again in Sri Lanka. Leader of the JVP, MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake addressing a literary event organized by the Socialist Youth Union in Jaffna said the country has observed a growing a trend of communalism recently and it is faced with the challenge to win the national unity among the communities.
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* Sri Lankan PM questions how fighting corruption is political revenge

July 24 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has questioned how implementing law against corruption becomes political revenge as the joint opposition claims.
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* President to deposit treasure items in Moragahakanda - Kalu Ganga reservoir project tomorrow

July 24 (CP) Colombo- All arrangements are in place for the President Maithripala Sirisena to deposit the treasure items (Nidhan Wasthu) in the main dam of the Moragahakanda - Kalu Ganga reservoir project tomorrow.
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* 16 Thiruvalluvar statues to be installed in Sri Lanka soon: Minister

July 25 (Hindu) Sixteen statues of Thiruvalluvar, the author of Tamil treatise on ethics Tirukkural, will be installed across Sri Lanka in the coming weeks, according to V. Radhakrishnan, State Minister of Education.
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* President calls for national policy on integration, reconciliation

July 25 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena has directed the Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation to prepare a draft national policy on national integration and reconciliation as soon as possible. The President has also urged the Ministry to launch a programme to educate the general public on the constitutional reform proposals relating to integration and reconciliation.
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* Empty lands in Colombo city limits to be developed

July 25 (DM) The Colombo Municipal Commissioner has been directed to develop empty lands within the city limits as soon as possible. Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government Faizer Mustapha directed the Commissioner when he was inspecting the market places in Deans Road, Kollupitiya and Dematagoda recently.
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* Namal emerges out of MR’s shadow

July 24 (Island) The present government did much to further Namal Rajapaksa’s political career by arresting him. The government’s contention was that he had taken a bribe from a property developer on the pretext of a promotional campaign for rugby.
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* Paada Yathra: Public dissent against Govt.

July 24 (SO) All 40 SLFP MPs in the Joint Opposition (JO) will participate in the Jana Satana Paada Yathra which will kick off at George E.de Silva Gardens, Kandy on July 28 at 8.00am after religious observances at the Sri Dalada Maligawa, UPFA Ratnapura District MP Ranjith de Zoysa told the Sunday Observer yesterday.
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* Colombo pays for Hambantota's debts - Minister Arjuna Ranatunga

July 25 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Minister of Ports and Shipping Arjuna Ranatunga says the government is facing many difficulties paying off the US$ 1.2 billion loan taken for Hambantota Port and the profit earns from the Colombo Port is used to pay off the Hambanthota debt.
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* Sri Lanka woos Chinese firms for $10 billion project

July 25 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka has started talks with Chinese investors on the $10 billion Hambantota Economic Project to be implemented in the southern region of the island nation. The project would encompass the establishment of oil refineries, a power generation plant and industrial zones, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said.
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* Families of deceased Sri Lankan migrant workers to receive compensation and salary dues tomorrow

July 25 (CP) Colombo- Families of deceased or disabled Sri Lankan migrant workers employed overseas will receive compensation and salary dues from the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Minister of Foreign Affairs Mangala Samaraweera will be handing over approximately Rs. 65 million in compensation and other dues to families of deceased or disabled migrant workers.
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* Canada encourages Sri Lanka to fulfill its commitment to UNHRC on the anniversary of Black July

July 24 (CP) Ottawa- Canada, which has a large number of Tamil community, today asked the Sri Lankan government to fulfill its commitment made to the United nations Human Rights council (UNHRC) last year to achieve reconciliation and accountability.
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* Government warns plantation companies failing to pay Rs. 2500 wages increment to workers

July 24 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan Government informed regional plantation companies that they are also required to pay the Rs. 2,500 rupees salary increment given to the private sector, to the estate workers.
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* Sri Lankan President instructs to raise VAT on tobacco and remove private healthcare charges

July 24 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's President Maithripala Sirisena said he has instructed the relevant sections to raise the Value Added Tax (VAT) on cigarettes and completely remove the private hospital charges from the tax.
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* Wang Yi's visit boosts China-Sri Lanka ties, sparks concern in India

July 25 (Daily Times) China, Sri Lanka's biggest donor of foreign aid this year, has assured its 'fullest cooperation' to develop the South Asian island nation amidst increasing concern by India.
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* Executive Presidency should go: President

July 25 (DN) President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday reiterated that he will continue to set in motion measures to abolish the Executive Presidency and introduce a new constitution. The President said that he always believed the Executive Presidency which has vast powers should go and added that this has to be done constitutionally.
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* Does Sri Lanka really need a Provincial Council System?

July 24 (SLG) I am very happy to note that even without some Provincial Councils in operation, Sri Lanka seems to be managing quite well with the network of public officials, even with their lethargic bungling.
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* Ministry passes buck on coal tender to Cabinet

July 24 (ST) The Power and Energy Ministry will ask Cabinet to decide whether to cancel a controversial multibillion rupee coal tender and face a substantial compensation claim, or to continue with a contract which was awarded in a manner that the Supreme Court said had shocked its conscience.
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