The Lanka Academic

AUGUST 12, 2000 EST, USA
VOL. 1, NO. 129

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(The proposed new constitution)
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Malaysian News. LABUNORUWA, Sri Lanka, Aug 1 (Bernama) - The dusty track in this village is like another village path in Sri Lanka's harsh dry zone except that the nameboard has some unique features unlike normal nameboards and bears some unusual names. "Our young are just dying away in the war," laments rice farmer Heen Appuhamy, who himself lost a son in the war. If losing their sons or husbands is enough grief to the village, it is worst when government compensation schemes don't reach them. More...
US State Department. Colombo, 4 August 2000 - The U.S. State Department announced on July 31 that the mail-in period for the next U.S. Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program (DV-2002) will run from noon, October 2, through noon, November 1, 2000. There is no application fee and no special application form is required. The application with the necessary information can simply be typed on a blank sheet of paper. More...
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T  O  P      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E
Sri Lanka war budget bites hard, august 13. Four months after Sri Lanka poured unprecedented amounts of money into stalling an equally unparalleled Tamil rebel offensive, the fighting has eased but the national budget is in tatters. Parliament rushed through a string of supplementary estimates last week, voting an additional 28 billion rupees (356 million dollars) for the military to pay for urgent requirements. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 23:18:35 EDT 2000

No Connection Fee! Calls to Sri Lanka, only 39c/m!
O  T  H  E  R      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E  S
Curtains for Sri Lanka's mother-and-daughter political union, august 12. For Sri Lanka's Bandaranaike clan ruling the country is a family business, and the reluctant resignation of the mother as prime minister underscores a divided and diverging dynasty. The ailing 84-year-old Sirima Bandaranaike was forced to step down from the premiership Thursday to clear the way for her daughter, President Chandrika Kumaratunga, to appoint a younger person to lead a robust election campaign. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 22:27:10 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
So long, say Lankan icons  -
Bandaranaike was a tough customer  - IndiaAbroad

RAW financing terrorist outfits of LTTE, Hizbul Mujahideen from its secret funds
JAL News, august 2. Is India becoming a terrorism-sponsoring state? So it would seem going by reports that India has gifted away Rs 400 crores in the last few weeks to dreaded LTTE and Hizbul Mujahideen through the good offices of the home-grown cloak and dagger outfit Research and Analysis Wing, popularly known as RAW.According to sources in New Delhi, soon after New Delhi gave Rs 450 crores as credit to Colombo to buy food articles from India, the LTTE expressed its displeasure to India through some friendly Tamil Nadu leaders.Apparently in a bid to assuage the hurt feelings of the Tamil Tigers, New Delhi ordered the RAW chief, Mr. Avtar Singh Dulat, a 1965 batch IPS officer of Rajasthan cadre, to give Rs 200 crores from his organization's coffers.The sources said that in view of the sensitive nature of the assignment, Mr. Dulat personally supervised the delivery of Rs 200 crores to the LTTE. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 13:18:31 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
UNP tells India to stop 'interfering' Sri Lanka  - PRIU

Sri Lankan President offers to resign
NDTV/MSNBC, August 12. The Sri Lankan President has offered to resign. Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga has made this offer on the condition that Sinhalese nationalists who oppose constitutional reforms, are able to provide a workable alternative to resolve the 17-year Tamil separatist war. Ms. Kumaratunga was speaking during an interview broadcast over state television. It was the first nationally televised speech made by the President, since her government was forced to postpone a parliamentary debate on Tuesday, after coming up 12 votes short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass the constitutional reforms. Ms. Kumaratunga called the defeat a "temporary setback" and said her government would "fight back." More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 00:45:43 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chandrika pledges to enact new Constitution  -
Sri Lanka leader vows statute reforms in two months  -

Colombo taxi drivers rebel over uniforms
BBC South Asia, august 12. Trishaw drivers in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, are planning a series of protests over the next week against proposals to make them wear a uniform and carry an identity card. The drivers of the distinctive three-wheeled taxis complain that the uniform will be uncomfortable to wear in hot weather. They particularly dislike the yellow colour of the proposed jackets and the fact that they will carry advertisements. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 23:00:33 EDT 2000

Chandrika firm on new statute
The Hindu, august 12. Describing the new Constitution as a path to peace, she challenged hardline nationalist groups to find 20,000 Sinhala youth willing to go up to the front for battle against the LTTE. ``They should be prepared to accept half their salaries, and stop all development work if they want only a military solution to this issue and not a peaceful political one. Even after achieving a military victory, any Government will have to offer a political solution without which it is definite another Prabhakaran will emerge again.'' More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:15:44 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chandrika plans to convert Parliament into constituent assembly  - The Hindustan Times
President Chandrika to go ahead with reforms  - The Asian Age
Kumaratunga challenges Sinhala nationalists to resolve war  - HT
Kumaratunga challenges Sinhalese nationalists to resolve Tamil separatist war  - NDTV/MSNBC

Monks warn Kumaratunga not to restore Sri Lanka reform bill, August 9. Sri Lanka's influential Buddhist clergy Wednesday issued a "final warning" to the government to completely withdraw a draft bill aimed at ending the country's bloody Tamil separatist conflict. Sri Lanka's four most senior Buddhist monks have taken over a campaign to force President Chandrika Kumaratunga's government to scrap the bill, which would see power devolved to eight regional councils. Sri Lanka's four most senior Buddhist monks have taken over a campaign to force President Chandrika Kumaratunga's government to scrap the bill, which would see power devolved to eight regional councils. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 02:01:05 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka Buddhist monk calls for more opposition  - MSNBC

Kumaratunga vows to go ahead with reforms
Times of India, August 12. Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga said she would go ahead with the proposed constitutional reforms despite the failure to obtain a two-third majority to enact the new constitution. The President said she was prepared to enact the new constitution before the dissolution of Parliament on August 24 midnight, if the opposition United National Party agrees to support. Otherwise, she is determined to enact the new constitution after winning the next parliamentery elections. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:30:43 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Chandrika hopeful of getting reform Bill ratified  - The Hindu NUS
Chandrika vows to enact new constitution  -
S.Lankan President Vows to Push Through New Draft Constitution  - AsiaGateway
Sri Lankan President to go ahead with the proposed constitutional reforms  - NDTV/MSNBC

Lanka panel to review draft statute
Times of India, august 12. Sri Lanka's new prime minister will head a panel to review a draft constitution that was touted as a solution to the Tamil separatist war but failed to win parliamentary support, a newspaper reported on Saturday. Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka will lead the four-member committee, the Daily Mirror reported. The bill could not muster the required two-thirds support, falling short by 12 votes Tuesday. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:19:30 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
No respect for justice: Lanka PM  - The Asian Age
Chandrika sets deadline for UNP on Bill  - The Hindu (International)
Sri Lanka to pursue peace effort  - BBC South Asia
S.Lanka president to fight on for new constitution  - ABC News

Mosque massacres revisited
Daily News, august 12. On Friday August 4, 1990 over three hundred Muslims, men and boys, were prostrate in prayer at the Meera Jumma Mosque, fifty yards from the Kandy Batticaloa Road. None of them were armed.A stones throw away from the Meera Jumma is the smaller Hussainya Mosque. There was a smaller gathering of approximately forty people here -- prostrate in prayer too. The power cut had been effected by the large group of LTTE cadres on their murderous mission. More...
Published: Sat Aug 12 16:05:06 EDT 2000

New constitution after polls: Kumaratunga
Times of India, August 12. Setting at rest all speculations Sri Lankan Pesident Chandrika Kumartunga on Friday said the new proposed constitution will be tabled only after the next general elections. In an interview to Rupavahini (state television), the president said her government had the capability of approving the constitution even without a two-third majority in Parliament. She was hopeful of passing the constitution in the new Parliament with a simple majority and go for referendum before implementing it in January next year. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 22:01:38 EDT 2000

Militancy must be defeated, says new Sri Lankan PM
The Hindu NUS, August 11. Sri Lanka's new Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake has said terrorism should be defeated by military means and at the same time the grievances of the minority communities should be addressed by the majority community. ``Terrorism does not respect justice, fairplay, law and democracy. Democracy and terrorism cannot go hand in hand. Therefore, war is the only means to eliminate terrorism. However, if the minorities have any grievances, we should find solutions to them,'' Wickremanayake said while speaking in Parliament after he was sworn the 16th Prime Minister of the country. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 11:16:09 EDT 2000

Sri Lanka jets pound Tamil rebel targets, august 11. Air force jets pounded suspected Tamil rebel targets in northern Sri Lanka Friday amid reports the guerrillas had acquired new stocks of surface-to-air missiles, officials said. The newly inducted MiG-27 aircraft and Israeli Kfir ground attack aircraft kept up an intense attack against targets of the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the Jaffna peninsula, officials said.Three days ago the MiG-27 swing-wing type aircraft destroyed the sea-base of the LTTE at Chalai. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 09:06:24 EDT 2000

Top LTTE commander killed in combat
Times of India, august 12. A top commander was among 17 Tamil Tiger rebels killed by government troops fighting to keep control of Sri Lanka's embattled northeast, a government spokesman said on Friday.Maravan, who led the intelligence wing of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in the Kattaparithchan region, was killed in Trincomalee Thursday along with three fellow combatants when government forces attacked them, said U. Gajaman, deputy government spokesman, quoting monitored rebel radio transmissions. The government identified Maravan by a single name. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 16:56:15 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
17 LTTE militants killed in attacks  - The Hindu (International)
At least 17 killed in latest Sri Lanka clashes  - ABC News

Ill-fated ‘operation buy-off’
The Island, August 12. Sources said that it was reported that money had been collected in large sums from book makers and wheeler dealer businessmen by the two ministers to bribe UNP MPs to get the two thirds majority for the new constitution promising appointments for these businessmen on the national list next time.They said that it was heard that the sum collected ran to Rs.100 million but only Rs.1.5 million had been paid to one UNP MP as an advance.UNP sources said that the party leadership who were aware of the plan carried out by the two ministers had put one of their confidantes into the team the ministers were eyeing to buy over. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 20:35:26 EDT 2000

Chinese leaders call for Lankans to unite
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 1.25 p.m. SLT Friday August 11. Chinese leaders are reported to have told a Special Envoy of President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge, Minister D M Jayaratne that they hoped the Sri Lankan government and all other concerned parties will unite to find a solution to the ethnic conflict.

The message was conveyed when Minister Jayaratne met with the Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister in China this week to hand over two letters from the Sri Lankan President to the President and Prime Minister of China. The letters expressed thanks to the Chinese leaders for extending their support during Sri Lanka's hour of crisis. Economic and Trade matters between the two nations was also discussed at the meeting.
Published: Fri Aug 11 04:20:57 EDT 2000

A squandered opportunity - An Editorial
The Hindu, august 11. In forcing the withdrawal of Ms. Chandrika Kumaratunga's constitutional initiative, Sri Lanka has squandered an opportunity it should have seized. The draft Constitution tabled in Parliament is on the whole a radical improvement on the existing Constitution marking a paradigm shift in Sri Lanka's constitutional evolution. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 10:06:20 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
A bridge too far - An editorial  - HT
Setback in Colombo - An Editorial  - Deccan

Chinese and Taiwanese women arrested in Colombo suburb
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 1.10 p.m. SLT Friday August 11. Two Chinese women and one Taiwanese have been taken into custody by the Mirihana police for the alleged murder of a Malaysian male national. The Malaysian millionaire, a well known exporter of fruit, was killed at his residence in Nugegoda last week after having been sprayed with acid and stabbed to death with a knife. A van belonging to another Taiwanese national has also been found, which police believe was used in order to carry out the murder. The foreign women were arrested when hiding at a house at Rajagiriya. They were produced this morning before the Gangodawila magistrate and are being held as police conduct further investigations into the murder.
Published: Fri Aug 11 04:20:57 EDT 2000

India to sell military hardware to Lanka
newindpress, Friday, 11 august. India has decided to sell military hardware to Sri Lanka and negotiations are on to clinch the deal on an offshore patrol vessel for the Sri Lankan navy. The navy has earmarked an offshore patrol vessel (OPV) êiINS Shardaêr, made at Hindustan Shipyard Limited, Vishakhapatanam for sale to the island nation, sources in the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said. The OPV is for the Sri Lankan navy to effectively patrol its coast and mainly try and prevent the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) from bringing in arms and ammunition. The Sri Lankan navy will also be getting weapon systems like surface-to-surface guns fitted in the OPV from India, sources said. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 06:45:57 EDT 2000

LTTE acquires surface-to-air missiles
Times of India, august 12. The missiles pose a threat to the air force's MiG-27 aircraft, which are being used for the first time for attacking the rebel positions in northern Sri Lanka.The government's top spokesman Ariya Rubasinghe, however, said the missiles in the rebel hands are not going to deter the air force from carrying out bombing missions. "We are going against the terrorists in a big way and this is not going to stop," Rubasinghe said. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 17:01:32 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Was it a Russian SAM, US Stinger or any other? LTTE fires missile at MiG-27s  - AsiaGateway
LTTE ''acquires'' Sam and Stinger missiles  - The Hindu NUS
LTTE acquires surface-to-air missiles  -
Tamil rebels acquire surface-to-air missiles  - TOI

S.Lanka gets new tourism, civil aviation ministers
ABC News, august 11. Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Friday further reshuffled her cabinet by swearing in new ministers for tourism and civil aviation, government officials said. They said Reggie Ranatunga, father of former Sri Lankan cricket captain Arjuna Ranatunga, was made the new civil aviation minister. H.B. Semasinghe was appointed as the new tourism minister. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 09:16:21 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Reggie Ranatunga gets Civil Aviation portfolio  - The Hindu NUS

Bandaranaike: The iron grip loosens
Times of India, August 12. Sirimavo Bandaranaike, the world's first woman Prime Minister, has retired a lonely woman wracked by a family feud.

The 84-year-old stepped down from the government of her daughter, President Chandrika Kumaratunga, on Thursday, finally giving in to frail health after a career spanning four decades during which she became prime minister thrice. But for most of her latest stint as prime minister, she had been little more than a figurehead. Sources close to the family say the rift between Chandrika and her brother Anura Bandaranaike has weighed heavily on Sirimavo. Anura opted to go over to the opposition United National Party when Sirimavo passed on the mantle of leadership of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party to Chandrika. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 22:03:20 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
Wickramanayaka succeeds Bandaranaike as Sri Lankan PM  - AsiaGateway

Chandrika calls Cabinet meeting to discuss bill
newindpress, Friday, 11 august. Amidst speculation about likely dissolution of parliament any time, President Chandrika Kumaratunga has called a special meeting today to discuss with her Cabinet colleagues the future of the constitution bill, voting on which has been put on hold.Quoting highly placed sources, local media reported that the meeting will decide whether the inconclusive debate on the bill should be proceeded with along with suitable amendments before the August 24 dissolution of parliament.The issue of feasibility of incorporating more amendments suggested by the Opposition United National Party and other Tamil parties, including an amendment to the transitional provision of the executive president, is also likely to figure in the meeting.The UNP had accused the government of including the provision in the draft constitution without its consent. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 06:48:00 EDT 2000

Lankan govt revamped for election
Times of India, august 12. President Chandrika Kumaratunga's Cabinet shuffle and her promise to resolve the separatist war have brightened her chances in the upcoming election, analysts said on Friday.Wickramanayaka, who takes a tough stand on the Tamil Tiger separatists, has vowed to defeat them militarily and address the grievances of the rest of the Tamil population separately, seeing them as two issues as many Sri Lankans do. Elections are due by November. More...
Published: Fri Aug 11 16:58:22 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka set for polls with new Premier  -

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