The Lanka Academic

VOL. 1, NO. 172

Email news to a friend
Get daily email news
Suggest a news item
The archive
LAcNet home
How to advertise
The Lanka Academic, will carry a series of online "Question and Answer" sessions with prominent Sri Lankan personalities. As the first guest in the series, the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Mr. Mangala Moonesinghe will answer questions submitted by you. A moderator will maintain the decorum of this online forum. While the scope of the questions is wide open, it's expected that the questions submitted would fall within the areas of expertise relevant to Mr.Moonesinghe's background as a politician, scholar and a diplomat. The guidelines and instructions for sending in questions and viewing answer are posted at current issue of The Lanka Academic here. The current Question and Answer session will end on September 24th, 2000.
The Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka
[PDF Version]

(The proposed new constitution)
Latest Results
Current Colombo weather
CNN Colombo forcast
Satellite pix (visible)
Satellite pix (infrared)
Where is MIR today?
Chulie Kirtisinghe de Silva, LAcNet. This story relates the realization of a dream of a dedicated virtual community of globally dispersed volunteer Sri Lankan academics, who mobilized Sri Lankan Diaspora for funding; and then formed horizontal partnerships with local and international agencies to set up a computer center in rural Sri Lanka. It also relates the metamorphosis of an out of work teacher to be the Digital Ambassador for Sri Lanka through training and empowerment. It is the story of two communities coming together; one virtual in cyberspace, the other a land based poor rural community; one the haves, and the other the have nots; - the empowered, empowering and bridging the digital divide. More...
Kesara Ratnatunga, The Sunday Times, Colombo. The computer screen was their window to the rest of the world and they were having a field day. Exploring with wide-eyed wonder what lay beyond their horizons, were the grade seven and eight students of Nivaththaka Chethiya Maha Vidyalaya, Anuradhapura, the first beneficiaries of the Lanka Academic Network's (LAcNet) 'Computers for Sri Lankan Schools' project. More...
The Ordeal of Civilians in Thenmaratchy
September 7, 2000 University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) People from all communities and from all parts of the country have been through many horrors and ordeals from the time the flames of conflict engulfed this country in July 1983. But seldom has anything been so prolonged and full of constant terror and anxiety as what several thousands of people in Thenmaratchy, the south-eastern sector of the Jaffna peninsula with Chavakacheri as its main town, endured for three weeks and more. 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...
 The Lanka Academic News stories are provided by independent correspondents. Views expressed are not necessarily those of LAcNet. Updates are triggered by events, 24hrs a day. Funding is provided by LAcNet. Redistribution is strictly prohibited. To ensure our continued existence, please support LAcNet.
Write to the editor
Send your feedback
Electroteks,,,, ...
Wanna give the gift of knowledge to a rural student in Sri Lanka?

Help LAcNet expand the horizons of underprivileged children in Sri Lanka.

Your financial support of LAcNet helps in carrying out initiatives such as the "Computers for Schools Project". Visit our photo gallery to learn more about one such project at Nivaththaka Chethiya High School, Anuradhapura. If you would like to help us, here is how.
T  O  P      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E
European monitors stunned by Lanka poll violence
India Abroad, Sept.25, 2000 2:54 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: A European Union (E.U.) team monitoring Sri Lanka's parliamentary elections expressed serious concern Sunday over a shooting incident during campaigning and said they were stunned by police inaction. The E.U. observer mission said its members were in the central hill resort of Kandy when violence broke out at a campaign rally. They said they were not direct witnesses but had spoken to the victims and the police. "I take this matter very seriously and expect it to be investigated thoroughly," E.U. team chief John Cushnahan said in a statement. "I am concerned as to how this matter is currently handled," he added. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 18:39:26 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
EU concerned over Sri Lanka violence  - BBC South Asia
Sri Lankan Govt. chastises EU poll observers  - The Hindu NUS
EU poll monitors concerned over Sri Lanka shooting  - MSNBC
EU monitors under fire in Sri Lanka  -
EU concerned over Sri Lanka police inaction  -

Ask Mangala Answers 1-37 Now Available. Q&A ends: September 24th. Hurry! Send questions to the H.C. of Sri Lanka to the UK, H.E. Mangala Moonesinghe and receive answers.
No Connection Fee! Calls to Sri Lanka, only 39c/m!
O  T  H  E  R      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E  S
LTTE 'abducts' 10 girls
The Hindu, Monday, September 25, 2000. The LTTE abducted ten school girls in the eastern province to conscript them for filling up its depleted ranks after the Sri Lankan troops captured Chavakachcheri in the Jaffna peninsula, an Army spokesman, Brig. Sanath Karunaratne, said. They were abducted from Kokkadicholai when they were returning home after attending their tuition classes on September 14. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 19:05:13 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
LTTE abducts school girls to fill up ranks  - Times of India

Major crash averted at Colombo airport
The Hindu NUS, 16.00 hrs (IST) on September 24, 2000. Colombo, Sept. 24. (PTI): A major disaster was averted at Sri Lanka's Bandarnaike Airport recently when a Sri Lankan Airlines A-330 Airbus, piloted by a Sri Lankan and two Indian trainees, landed despite warnings missing by seconds collusion with three military aircraft being cleared off the runway, according to airport officials. The pilot of the Sri Lankan Airbus, which was on a training mission last month, landed despite being told to wait while the ground staff moved two Israeli-made KFIR bombers and an AN-32 military transport aircraft from the runway, the Sunday Times reported here today. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 07:16:01 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Crash averted in Colombo  - The Hindu

CID told not to arrest Ranil
SundayLeader, September 24. The CID has informed the government it is not in a position to arrest UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe or frame charges against him based on the allegations contained in the affidavit of murder accused Douglas Pieris.The CID earlier sought legal opinion to arrest both the UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and the party's Colombo East Organiser Milinda Moragoda on allegations by Douglas Peiris and his son Asanga that the opposition leader had assisted Peiris in obtaining a forged passport. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 19:26:12 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Plan to arrest Lanka's opposition leader shelved  - India Abroad

Sihala Urumaya not racist: An interview with S.L. Gunasekera- Leader of Sihala Urumaya
The Island, september 17. Sihala Urumaya was founded to fulfil a long-felt need in our political firmament by giving the Sinhalese a voice in Parliament. Both major parties have taken the Sinhalese for granted and, acting on the assumption that both have ‘block’ Sinhalese votes which will never change whatever they do to the Sinhalese, obsequiously woo the forces of Tamil and Muslim chauvinism in the belief that they hold the key to power, pander to their unconscionable demands and whims and sacrifice the rights of the Sinhalese in the process. Thus it is that both the Government and the UNP have agreed to destroy every trace of a unitary state and convert this country into a federal state. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 21:12:46 EDT 2000

Anura: "The PA is losing the election"- An Interview with Anura Bandaranayake
InfoLabs-SundayLeader, September 17. The PA is losing this election. From the president onwards everybody is losing this time. So what the PA is trying to do is to subvert the process by unleashing violence. This took place even before the nominations. It all started with the assassination of the JVP member in Colombo ad the UNPer in Rambukkana. This is reaching absurd proportions with the PA ministers assaulting each other. In Ratnapura, John Seneviratne was assaulted by Pavithra Wanniarachchi. So there is no control and I think everything is going from bad to worse. There will be a bloodbath if the president does not bring thin under control. It is entirely in her hands because she is the commander in chief. If she does not put her foot down the entire blame will be on her. The violence we see today is because of the PA's weak position. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 21:16:00 EDT 2000

Is UNP for or against LTTE? - PM
CDN, September 24. Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake, addressing an election meeting at Naula in the Matale District Friday, threw an open challenge to Opposition Leader to say whether he was for or against the militarily elimination of LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran. "I am directly posing this question to Mr. Wickremasinghe for an immediate answer. It is a simple answer. Is it yes or no"? he queried. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 21:20:06 EDT 2000

Irangani Serasinghe asks Chandrika to include two verses in Tamil in the national anthem
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 6.30 a.m September 24. Sri Lanka's most respected actress and activist Irangani Serasinghe appealed for National unity and has requested President Chandrika Kumaratunge to include two verses in Tamil in the National Anthem. Serasinghe who is a close relative of both President Kumaratunge and opposition leader Ranil Wickremasinghe speaking to Lacnet said that she had asked only one favor from the President "I asked her to include two Tamil verses in our National anthem. It is only then that all Sri Lankans will sing the national anthem with feelings. It is important today to build a very strong bridge between the two communities."

Serasinghe said that she made the same request from Lalith Athulathmudali when he was the Minister of Education in the UNP government. Irangani Serasinghe is affectionately refereed to as 'Chandi Nanda' by both Wickremasinghe and Kumaratunge. When Lacnet asked if she could bring both President Chandrika Kumaratunge and Opposition leader Ranil Wickremasinghe together Irangani Serasinghe said " I wish to god that I could bring them together"
Published: Sat Sep 23 20:39:46 EDT 2000

LTTE collects $ 4m monthly
The Hindustan Times, Colombo, September 23. THE LIBERATION TIGERS of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) collects anything between $ 3 million and 4 million every month from fellow Tamils residing overseas for its armed separatist movement in Sri Lanka, according to Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshaman Kadirgamar. Kadirgamar, himself a Tamil, told the International Conference on War Affected Children in Winnipeg, Canada, last week that with the huge amount of money collected overseas, the LTTE was not only arming itself to the teeth, but recruiting and deploying boys and girls as young as ten in combat roles. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 14:18:03 EDT 2000

Troops turn tables on Tigers as Jaffna gears for ballot amid bullets, Sep 24 2000 09:47 IST. JAFFNA, Sri Lanka, Sept 24 (AFP) - Only five months ago India was about to send its navy to evacuate beleaguered Sri Lankan troops from the northern peninsula of Jaffna as Tamil Tiger rebels advanced rapidly, but now the tables have been turned. Journalists in the Indian capital were trying to book berths on ships put on stand-by to rescue the 30,000-strong Sri Lankan army as the Tigers captured the garrison guarding the entrance to the peninsula in April. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 05:40:14 EDT 2000

Navy kills six Lankan fishermen at Trinco
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 7.45 p.m. SLT Saturday September 23. The Sri Lanka Navy last night shot dead 6 Lankan fishermen who had strayed into a high security area close to the harbour at Trincomalee. The altercation took place at around 11.30 p.m. at Sri Lanka's eastern port between Fort Frederick and Foul Point.

Six other fishermen are reported to have been seriously injured while the Navy arrested another six. One boat was sunk in the attack.

Wounded fishermen who were admitted to the Base Hospital at Trincomalee say that some 50 fishermen were in the area South of the Trincomalee Bay when the Navy indiscriminately opened fire. At least two Sinhalese died together with four Tamils.

The Sri Lanka Navy meanwhile have maintained that they opened fire on a rebel flotilla of boats.
Published: Sat Sep 23 10:10:30 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
"We pleaded but Navy kept firing"- survivor  - TamilNet
Sri Lanka navy kills five suspected rebel fisherman  -

Lanka Muslim Congress to shed sectarian identity
India Abroad, 24 Sept. 2000. Sri Lanka's main Muslim political party, the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC), appears set to shed its sectarian identity and adopt a secular image, a top party official has said.The SLMC's joint leader, Rauf Hakeem, has described the party's ethnic identity as an impediment for a "truly national political ideology" and said the party would eventually be submerged by the newly formed National Unity Alliance (NUA). More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 09:29:14 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka's main Muslim party to embrace secular identity  -
Sri Lanka's main Muslim party to change name, focus  -

Shoot at sight orders in Sri Lanka
Virtual New York, 1:50 GMT Sunday, 24 September 2000 . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, Sept 24 (UPI) - Sri Lanka police have issued 'shoot-at-sight' orders to prevent stuffing of ballot boxes and violence during the Oct. 10 parliamentary elections. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 05:42:59 EDT 2000

War of words dominates Jaffna polls
The Hindu (International), Monday, September 25, 2000. JAFFNA, SEPT. 24. In the absence of any meaningful campaign in this strife-torn peninsula, the dispirited run-up to the general election here has so far been dominated by a war of words between the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) and the Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP). Bereft of charismatic leaders to capture the imagination of an exhausted people, and unable to claim any contribution to bringing back peace to the peninsula, the two parties, each of which sees the other as its main opponent for the election, have resorted to pulling each other down in a vociferous slanging match. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 19:14:34 EDT 2000

Nine killed, four injured in northern Lanka
Times of India, 24 September 2000 . Sporadic clashes in northern Sri Lanka killed nine Tamil Tiger rebels and injured two, while two army soldiers were also wounded in the fighting, the government's principal spokesman said Saturday. Meanwhile, Vishwalingam Vijayalakshimi, a 15-year-old school girl who had been kidnapped by the LTTE, escaped and arrived at a military camp in Batticaloa, asking for help More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 16:41:50 EDT 2000

War-weary Sri Lankans in Jaffna yearn for normalcy
ABC News, 09/23/2000 03:43:00 ET. JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (AP) _ Miles of devastated space stretch out where a proud city once stood. Now, it"s just a gutted hulk, dotted with dilapidated buildings, caved-in roofs, walls pocked with bullet holes. Jaffna, along a slim peninsula that juts from this teardrop shaped island off India"s coast, has been so battered by 17 years of war that it"s hard to believe hundreds of thousands of people still live here. Residents who spoke to journalists during a rare visit allowed by the military said they yearned for peace. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 07:06:33 EDT 2000

Democracy receives the kiss of life?
The Island, september 23. The courage and resolve of the Commissioner of Elections, Mr. Dayananda Dissanayake, to ensure a free and fair election no matter what the obstacles might be will find him in a very distinguished place, like the still remembered Mr. Felix Dias Abeysinghe (Commissioner upto 1977), when the history of democracy in Sri Lanka is written. The brave and just stand he has taken on the conduct of the General elections, 2000, along with the pledges made by several political parties to abolish the Executive Presidency, reduce the duration of parliament to five years and set a fixed date for re-election, offer much hope for Sri Lanka to resuscitate its moribund democracy and perhaps, lay to rest the grand fraud of facade democracy that was perpetrated on the people for so long. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 20:02:15 EDT 2000

Environmentalists lambast politicians
Sunday Leader, 24 September 2000. Environmentalists have expressed their concern over political parties showing scant regard for the environment in their political manifestos.They said that of the 41 registered political parties in Sri Lanka, only about three have placed emphasis on the enviornment in their manifestos while others have not even "bothered" to mention the subject.They also said that political parties were violating environmental regulations by decorating rallies with colourful polythene sheets and strips and then dumping them indiscriminately."Party organisers don't even understand that it is difficult to destroy polythene sheets as they are not bio-degradable. Decorating rallies and the streets with polythene may be attractive, but no one pays any heed about taking the decorations off once the meeting is over ,as none of the parties give a thought to the adverse effect polythene brings subsequently," an environmentalist complained. More...
Published: Sun Sep 24 00:18:11 EDT 2000

‘State broadcasters slanted towards ruling party’
India Abroad, Sept 23, 2000 15:45 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: Sri Lanka's state-owned radio and television organizations have been slammed by the opposition for giving too much airtime to candidates of the ruling People's Alliance (PA) coalition. The opposition United National Party (UNP) has filed action complaining that the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) and the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC) have allegedly violated election laws by giving excessive publicity to the PA's campaign ahead of the October parliamentary elections."This arbitrary practice of the SLBC and the SLRC is prejudicial to the UNP's ongoing election campaign," said the opposition petition to the Court of Appeal. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 10:24:40 EDT 2000

Susanthika wears yellow band, wins heat
The Island, september 23. Susanthika Jayasinghe injected politics into the Olympic Games in Sydney yesterday by wearing a yellow head-band, to campaign for a free and fair election in Sri Lanka, in the fourth heat of the 100 metres, which she won in a time of 11.15 seconds, the fifth fastest in the heats, behind Chryste Gaines of the USA, who clocked 11.06 in heat 10 . More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 20:07:56 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Susanthika strikes blow for Sri Lankan democracy - An Editorial  - The ISland

PA accuses UNP leader of backing LTTE
The Hindu NUS, 20.00 hrs (IST) on September 23, 2000. Colombo, Sept. 23. (UNI): A ruling People's Alliance candidate Ratnasiri Wickremanayke today threw an open challenge to the Opposition and United National Party leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to publicly state whether he would support the elimination of LTTE leader V Prabhakaran militarily. ``I am directly posing this question to Wickremesinghe for an immediate answer. It is a simple answer, is it yes or no,'' Wickremanayke asked. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 14:21:07 EDT 2000

Lankan Navy sinks two rebel crafts
The Hindu NUS, 20.00 hrs (IST) on September 23, 2000. Colombo, Sept. 23. (Reuters): Sri Lankan forces sank two suspected Tamil Tiger rebel boats off the northeast coast on Saturday, the Navy said. A flotilla of rebel attack boats including a suicide craft was intercepted by the Sri Lankan Navy while it was headed towards Chalai, a Naval statement said. ``During the confrontation one enemy log craft and one attack craft was destroyed,'' the statement said. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 16:36:10 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
Navy destroys rebel boats in eastern Lanka  - Times of India
Sri Lanka says sinks two rebel boats  - MSNBC
Sri Lanka says intercepts rebel flotilla  - MSNBC

Fishermen issue
The Hindu, Sunday, September 24, 2000. NEW DELHI, SEPT. 23. India and Sri lanka today decided to consider setting up a monitoring mechanism which could periodically review the problems concerned with fishermen in custody in both the countries. At a high-level meeting here today, both sides agreed that the problem of fishermen should be dealt with in a spirit of compassion and understanding and that the release of those in custody should not be delayed More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 16:24:56 EDT 2000

Tamil leader given kidney transplant in Norway
Norway Post, September 22. One of the leaders of the LTTE guerillas on Sri Lanka, the Tamil Tigers, was last winter brought to Norway and given a kidney transplant at the National Hospital in Oslo. The LTTE chief negotiator and spokesman, Anton Balasingham, who is also the movement's chief ideologist, was brought from Sri Lanka to Oslo in secret, and and operated on. The transplant was successful. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 07:23:41 EDT 2000

On Govt. Printer’s decision: Two Govt. Press officers removed
Island, Saturday, 23 September. Two officers attached to the Government Press have been prohibited from attending to the printing of ballot papers, the Government Printer, Neville Nanayakkara said yesterday. The officers concerned are Deputy Government Printer, Lalith de Silva and Assistant Government Printer, Adihetti. They have also been debarred from entering building of the Government Press where ballot papers are being printed. Mr. Nanayakkara speaking to ‘The Island’ said that complaints have been received to the effect that Deputy Printer, Lalith Silva is presently serving as a technical officer at Lake House and that his appointment is purely political. More...
Published: Sat Sep 23 06:40:30 EDT 2000

© Copyright 2000, Lanka Academic Network.