The Lanka Academic

VOL. 1, NO. 246

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Ask Karu! session has ended. Answers to your questions to Dr. Karunasena Kodituwakku, the spokesperson of the United National Party, are here.
The Lanka Academic carried an online "Question and Answer" sessions with the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Mr. Mangala Moonesinghe from September 1, 2000 through September 24, 2000. You can view the questions from visitors like you and the answers by Mr. Moonesinghe here.
The Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka
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Bandula Jayasekera, in Colombo. Tibetan monk and poet S. Mahinda is considered a National Hero of our country. He supported Lanka's freedom struggle with his patriotic poems. The country has honoured him by issuing a commemorative stamp and school children proudly recite his poems even today. Tibetans are no strangers to the island and Sri Lanka has a common link with Tibetans because of Buddhism. However that link has not helped to find an answer to one of their burning questions. Will their political and spiritual leader the Dalai Lama ever be allowed to set foot in Sri Lanka? Successive Lankan governments have refused to allow him to visit the country. More...
US State Department, November 28, 2000. What it comes down to is this: we have had a very, very close presidential election in the United States - the closest in recent memory. The difference in the vote between the two major candidates, nationwide, and particularly in the crucial state of Florida, is so thin - something under one one-hundredth of one per cent in Florida, the last I checked - that the judiciary has been asked for its guidance on what the most reasonable steps to assure an accurate vote count might be. More...
I also wholeheartedly endorse the statement by Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar regarding the paramount importance of fulfilling Sri Lanka's international obligations with respect to human rights and the serious consequences that could flow from a failure to do so. I also share Foreign Minister Kadirgamar's view on the importance of creating greater awareness of human rights laws among Sri Lankan security and law enforcement officers. I am, therefore, heartened to learn that human rights training will be incorporated into the curriculum of study for security and law enforcement officers. More...
Ranjita Misra, Ph.D., CHES., Ohio University. The health promotion era began in the mid 1980s with government policies focused on disease prevention and health promotion behaviors (Green and Ottoson, 1994). The national goal is to attain better health for the people through lifestyle changes that would decrease the prevalence of chronic disease and increase life expectancy. The Surgeon General has placed highest priority on strategies to eliminate destructive personal habits and to promote lifestyles conducive to health. Economic, medical, and social concerns are the reasons for the increased attention to health promotion and disease prevention activities. More...
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'Fernandes's flirtation with the LTTE is ominous for Sri Lanka'
Rediff, December 7. It is the secret the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government wants to hide. Unfortunately, Union Home Minister L K Advani does not think so. Which is why, on November 13, he despatched a high level team of officials from the Multi-Disciplinary Monitoring Agency -- an outfit with officers culled from various intelligence agencies -- to Sri Lanka. Officially, their brief was to seek the extradition of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam chief V Prabhakaran.The MDMA team gathered evidence on the alleged nexus between India's politicians and the outlawed LTTE. The Sri Lankan government apparently stated that the LTTE's biggest supporter in India is Defence Minister George Fernandes. Others on the LTTE sympathisers's list include some Tamil Nadu ministers and the Bharatiya Janata Party's partners in the ruling National Democratic Alliance. The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and Pattali Makkal Katchi, in particular, are said to hobnob with the LTTE. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 19:06:01 EST 2000

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Vaiko wants Prabhakaran extradition notice withdrawn
Rediff, december 7. The National Democratic Alliance's (NDA) Tamil partners - MDMK and PMK - are exerting pressure on the government to withdraw a notice sent to the Sri Lanka Government for extradition of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam supremo Prabhakaran for investigations in the conspiracy that led to the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 19:08:18 EST 2000
Related News Stories
Nedumaran criticises Advani stand  - yahoo

Four civilians killed east of Polonnaruwa in a grenade attack
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 3 p.m. SLT Thursday December 7. Four civilians were killed in a grenade attack east of Polonnaruwa this morning. The military believe that the attack was instigated by the LTTE. Three other civilians injured in a claymore mine blast at Batticaloa yesterday are in a serious condition.

Meanwhile 1 soldier was killed and three others injured in rebel mortar fire at Maduvil North of Jaffna today.
Published: Thu Dec 7 10:10:48 EST 2000

Related News Stories
Four killed in grenade attack on Sri Lankan village  - MSNBC
Four killed, one injured in Tiger attack in Lanka  - TOI
Tigers suspected in Sri Lanka village massacre: military  -

Sri Lanka says more than 30 rebels killed
yahoo, december 7. Government troops killed more than 30 Tamil tiger rebels in an offensive in northern Sri Lanka and were now clearing the area of mines, a military spokesman said on Wednesday."The fighting is over now, but we believe 31 terrorists were killed and 56 were wounded," military spokesman Brigadier Sanath Karunaratne told in Colombo.He said 12 soldiers were killed and 36 wounded, including three officers, in the operation which seized control of part of a key highway in the northern Jaffna Peninsula. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 19:13:33 EST 2000

‘Lanka paid no heed to Rajiv’s warnings’
The Hindustan Times, Colombo, December 7. THE PREMADASA Government in Sri Lanka had turned a deaf ear to former Indian PM late Rajiv Gandhi’s repeated warnings that the LTTE was taking it up the garden path in the “peace” talks and that the LTTE would scuttle the talks and go to war at a time and place of his choosing, a former Sri Lankan Deputy High Commissioner in New Delhi said here today. Writing in The Island daily, Ambassador K. Godage said: “I recall, and Prof. Stanley Kalpage, then High Commissioner in Delhi, would bear me out, the number of times we were informed by no less a person than Rajiv Gandhi himself that the LTTE was not serious about the protracted negotiations they were having with the government. Mr Gandhi said they were using the time to prepare their forces and would attack when they were ready. He was wrong only with regard to the date he predicted, August - they attacked in June!” More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 17:00:13 EST 2000
Related News Stories
Lanka promises concessions to rebels if interested in peace  - Yahoo

Ranil offers one year's salary to build Jaffna library
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 12.10 p.m. SLT Thursday December 7. Opposition Leader, Ranil Wickremasinghe, has offered to donate a full year's earnings to help build the Jaffna Library. Wickremasinghe made the offer in Parliament following a request made by Prof. Leslie Gunawardane, Minister for Science and Technology who asked every member of parliament to donate a month's salary towards the reconstruction of the shattered northern library.

Wickremasinghe's offer however was not unconditional as he stated that he would donate his annual earnings only if the government lifted the present embargo on food, medicine and other essential items to the Wanni region.

Leslie Gunewardena has criticized the opposition leader's offer saying when he made the request it was not to be acceded to with any strings attached.
Published: Thu Dec 7 10:10:47 EST 2000

Defence budget up by Rs. 30 million
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 10.10 a.m. SLT Thursday December 7. Deputy Defence Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris told Parliament yesterday that the government has overshot its defence expenditure by almost Rs. 30 million this year. He said since the LTTE escalated its battle with state security forces, the expected defence budget of some Rs. 52 million has shot up to Rs. 83 million.

Prof. Peiris further asserted the government would not be able to bridge the budget deficit which had been at around 7.5 GDP and was expected to rise to 8.7 GDP.

He said the continuing war situation in the country's northern and eastern regions was a serious setback to all economic and development projects in the island nation. The deputy finance minister further claimed that the government was unable to place the annual budget before parliament this November due to the recent polls and the fact that the cabinet had increased considerably holding a record number of 44 ministers and an almost equal number of deputy ministers.
Published: Thu Dec 7 10:10:47 EST 2000

‘Govt ready to talk to Prabhakaran’
chennaionline, december 7. The Sri Lankan Government is fully committed to resolve the ethnic problem while continuing the constitutional reform process in Parliament, Deputy Finance and Planning Minister G L Peiris has said.Referring to LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran's offer for unconditional peace talks, Peiris told the Colombo-based diplomats yesterday that the government was ready to ‘take the bull by its horns’, the state media reported. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 17:53:02 EST 2000

Sinhalese doctors in the East vacate their posts
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.05 p.m. SLT Thursday December 7. Sinhalese doctors serving in Batticaloa have decided to vacate their posts after three doctors were injured in a claymore-mine blast yesterday when the Colombo bound bus they were travelling in went over the buried explosive.

The doctors who are forced to serve an internship in war torn areas for a minimum period of one year have for some time being protesting against the appointments which they say are unfair. Some 300 Sinhalese doctors serve in the northern and eastern province and have all said that will be leaving their posts after yesterday's incident.

Dr. Anuruddha Padeniya, Secretary for the Government Medical Officers Association (GMOA) today said the situation for the Sinhalese docotrs has been bad and not been addressed by the authorities concerned. He said that doctors serving in these locations are not even given their due allowances for serving in high risk areas.
Published: Thu Dec 7 10:10:47 EST 2000

No mobile phones: Lankan assembly, Thursday,December 7,2000. COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's parliament Thursday ordered a ban on mobile telephones during assembly sessions after a legislator used his cellular phone interrupting fellow MP's, officials said. Speaker Anura Bandaranaike ordered that MP's should not use cellular phones in the parliamentary chamber. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 06:29:14 EST 2000

Lanka's economy ruined by defense spending
India Abroad, Dec 07, 2000 17:15 Hrs (IST) . RI LANKA'S successful bid to keep the Tamil Tigers out of the northern town of Jaffna has come at a heavy price with massive defense spending blasting a hole in the national budget. Military spending leapt to Rs. 83 billion ($1.04 billion), up from the Rs. 52.43 billion estimate made earlier this year, Deputy Defense Minister G. L. Peiris said on Tuesday while presenting an interim budget in Parliament. He told legislators that the government's heavy spending on emergency arms supplies to reinforce embattled troops in the north had widened the budget deficit to 8.7 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP). The deficit this year was previously estimated to be around 7.5 per cent of GDP. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 08:46:56 EST 2000

Split in Sri Lanka's Sinhala extremists signals emergence of a fascist organisation. - A Political Analysis
World Socialists Web Site, December 4. In the aftermath of the Sri Lankan general elections in October, a bitter faction fight opened up in the extreme rightwing grouping, Sihala Urumaya (SU) or Sinhala Heritage, over who was going to take the single parliamentary seat that the party had won in the poll. The dispute, which led to the resignation of party president S.L. Gunasekera and seven other SU central committee members, heralds the transformation of the party into an openly fascistic organisation. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 14:22:02 EST 2000

Moopanar rejects charge against Pondy Minister
The Hindu (Southern States), Friday, December 08, 2000. CHENNAI, DEC. 7. The TMC president, Mr. G.K. Moopanar, today rejected the party rebel leader in Pondicherry, Mr. P. Kannan's allegation that his rival and Ministerial colleague, Mr. `Theni' Jayakumar, had nexus with the LTTE. Reacting to Mr. Kannan's charge that Mr. Jayakumar had harboured two LTTE activists in his house, Mr. Moopanar said, ``Mr. Kannan brought Mr. Jayakumar into the party, made him an MLA and a Minister. And now, why is he levelling such charges?'' More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 16:55:56 EST 2000

TN: Jayalalitha demands dismissal of DMK Govt.
The Hindu NUS, 18.00 hrs (IST) on December 7, 2000. Chennai, Dec. 7. (PTI): AIADMK today demanded an immediate ban on pro-LTTE militant outfits Tamil National Liberation Army, Tamil National Retrieval Troops and Tamil Nadu Liberation Front and dismissal of the DMK Government accusing it of having prepared "fertile grounds" for the growth of these anti-national outfits in the State. Party supremo Jayalalitha, in a statement, said all political leaders lending support to these "dangerous" organisations should be taken to task and proceeded with according to law. Jayalalitha also demanded an all-out hunt to apprehend forest brigand Veerappan and TNLA chief Maran. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 13:50:40 EST 2000

More deputy ministers to be appointed?
Island, Thursday, 07 November. With the appointment of a second Deputy Minister of Finance on Tuesday, the number of ministries with two deputies has gone up to seven, political sources said adding that more ministries were likely to get an additional deputy in coming months.Although Tuesday’s appointment of Samurdhi, Rural Development and Parliamentary Affairs Minister S. B. Dissanayake as the second Deputy Minister of Finance was raised throughout the day’s proceedings in parliament by members of the opposition as to the distinct responsibilities of the two ministers, he was not the first second minister appointed to a ministry under the PA, the sources said yesterday. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 04:15:30 EST 2000

Tigers blast civilian bus, Sri Lanka toll rises to 47, Dec 06 2000 18:45 IST. COLOMBO, Dec 6 (AFP) - Tamil Tiger rebels blew up a civilian bus in eastern Sri Lanka Wednesday killing four passengers, as the death toll rose to 43 in heavy fighting elsewhere, defence officials said. The separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) guerrillas set off a powerful Claymore-type bomb besides the bus in the district of Batticaloa, military spokesman Sanath Karunaratne said. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 09:59:28 EST 2000
Related News Stories
Tamil bomb kills four civilians  - The Times, UK
Three killed, 23 injured in Lanka bus blast  - The Hindu NUS
Three killed in Sri Lanka bus blast-military  - ABC News
Sri Lankan bus attacked  - BBC South Asia
Four civilians killed on Sri Lankan bus by Tiger landmine  -

53 killed in Sri Lankan military operation
Times of India (Breaking News), 6 December 2000 . At least 53 combatants were killed in an operation launched by government troops in the northern Jaffna Peninsula to wrest back territory from the Tamil Tiger rebels, a government spokesman said on Wednesday.Troops recaptured at least 6-square kilometres of land in Nunavil east, including two kilometres of a highway that links the peninsula with the rest of the country on Tuesday, U Gajam More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 07:48:54 EST 2000

Sri Lankan Govt. committed to resolve ethnic problem, Dec 7 2000 13:21 IST. Colombo, Dec 7 (UNI) The Sri Lankan government is fully committed to resolve the ethnic problem while continuing the constitutional reform process in Parliament, Deputy Finance and Planning Minsiter G L Peiris has said. Referring to LTTE Leader Velupillai Prabhakaran's offer for unconditional peace talks, Mr Peiris told the Colombo-based diplomats Wednesday that the government was ready to ''take the bull by the horns'', the State media reported. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 04:12:29 EST 2000

Jaya wants Centre to spell out stand on LTTE
Times of India (Breaking News), Wednesday . 6 December 2000

The AIADMK on Wednesday said the NDA government at the Centre should clarify its stand on the LTTE as some of its constituents were voicing different opinions on the issue and also demanded immediate ban on the pro-LTTE outfits, Tamil Nadu Liberation Army and Tamil Nation Retrieval Force. AIADMK leader Jayalalitha said that pro-LTTE propaganda had been increasing in Tamil Nadu and posters extolling rebel leader Prabhakaran appeared all over the state on the eve of his birthday last month. Posters, photographs and literature in support of LTTE were being openly sold, she alleged. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 07:50:26 EST 2000

Sri Lanka Business Briefs: SriLankan Airlines E-Bookings
Yahoo Asia, Thursday, December 7 10:57 AM SGT . National carrier SriLankan Airlines launched an E-bookings system Thursday, enabling customers to reserveand purchase airline tickets over the Internet. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 01:26:59 EST 2000

Protesting S.Lanka MPs swap limos for bullock carts
MSNBC, Dec 06 2000 10:31 IST. A group of Sri Lankan lawmakers swapped their limousines for bullock carts on Wednesday to protest against a fuel price hike.Eight lawmakers from the main opposition United National Party turned up at a parliamentary session, convened to approve an interim budget, in two bullock carts, waving placards which said their luxury vehicles were now too expensive to drive.The protest was led by A. Maheswaran, a parliamentarian from the war-torn northern district of Jaffna which was severely affected by last month's two-rupee per litre increase in diesel and kerosene prices. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 00:26:57 EST 2000
Related News Stories
Lawmakers protest Sri Lanka oil-price increase  - Virtual New York
Sri Lankan MPs hauled by bullocks  - BBC South Asia
MPs ride to parliament on bullock-carts to protest Sri Lanka prices  -

UNP MPs come to Parliament in bullock carts
Island, 07 December 2000. It was back to the bullock cart for some Opposition Parliamentarians yesterday. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 21:45:56 EST 2000

S.Lanka ready for concessions to rebels-state media
ABC News, 12/06/2000 00:28:00 ET. COLOMBO, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka said it would make concessions to Tamil guerrillas if they were sincere about peace, but stopped short of granting a key rebel demand to lift an economic embargo on the north, state media reported on Wednesday. "...if the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) were seen to be sincere, the government would be implementing a requisite programme in consultation with the other parties," said the state-owned Daily News newspaper, quoting a statement from the prime minister"s office. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 07:53:20 EST 2000
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka ready for concessions to rebels-state media  - Yahoo
Lanka peace talks geared to Prabhakaran's sincerity  - Times of India (Breaking News)

The Tiger is not for taming
Infolabs-Weekend Express. Reflections by Dayan Jayatilleka - A Feature Article, November 4. If one can assassinate Nehru's grandson and not just get away with it, but have Western democracies beat a trail to your door thereby conferring legitimacy on you as a desirable peace partner, then you become a success story and role model. This is not only a question of ethics and morality, but very much a police problem with truly global implications. What is the signal that is being sent out and the message that will be received? That the tactic of suicide bombings and assassinations, if persisted in over time, can wear down democracies to the point of negotiations, which in turn confer vital, de-facto recognition and legitimacy? This may not be a problem for Norway or Britain, but for India, Russia and the united States it should. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 19:59:04 EST 2000

US lawmaker lauds Lanka on human rights
Times of India, 7 December 2000 . An influential US lawmaker has lauded the Sri Lankan government for establishing a committee to coordinate responses to human rights issues, marking a shift from his earlier strongly critical stand.Rep Benjamin Gilman, who chairs the powerful House International Relations Committee, said the setting up of the Permanent Inter-Ministerial Standing Committee "is a positive measure that will serve to illustrate the goodwill of the Government of Sri Lanka with regard to sensitive human rights issues that have been brought to the attention of the international community." More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 17:41:56 EST 2000

Lankans wonder about India’s beauty record
The Hindustan Times, 07 December 2000. INDIA’S S WAY over the Miss World contests has set some Sri Lankans wondering if these contests are fixed. Other Lankans attribute the success to the mystique of Indian women. The starry eyed describe feminist criticisms as rubbish. Others see the hand of Western multinationals eyeing the Indian beauty market. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 17:27:51 EST 2000

Interpol seeks Sri Lankan rebel chief's arrest
Virtual New York, Wednesday, 6 December 2000 13:23 (ET). Interpol has issued a notice for the arrest of Tamil Tiger rebel chief Velupillai Pirabhakaran and two of his associates in connection with terrorist activities in Sri Lanka and India. For the first time the international police organization has taken the initiative for the arrest of Pirabhakaran and his accomplices, who have been fighting for Sri Lanka's division over the past 18 years.The other two names mentioned in the notice are of Sellaiah Navaratnam and Charles. Both are wanted by courts in Sri Lanka and India and have been declared fugitives in the assassination of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 15:55:28 EST 2000

Indian textile show opens in Colombo
Times of India (Breaking News), 6 December 2000 . An exclusive Indian textile show to facilitate establishment of strategic linkage between the Indian fabric manufacturers and Sri Lankan garment industry was opened here on Wednesday. More...
Published: Wed Dec 6 07:51:10 EST 2000

Sri Lanka Shrs End Slightly Up; Foreign Selling Continues
Yahoo Asia, Thursday, December 7 3:11 PM SGT . Sri Lankan shares ended slightly up Thursday on some select local activity, brokers said. But sustained foreign selling amid weak sentiment continued to dominate overall trade, they said. The benchmark All Share Index ended up 0.8 point at 438.1, according to provisional data from brokers. More...
Published: Thu Dec 7 04:14:14 EST 2000

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