The Lanka Academic

JUNE 1, 2001 EST, USA
VOL. 2, NO. 56

Headline Summary
F R E E      C L A S S I F I E D S
T  O  P      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E
Nepal's king, queen, 7 others reportedly killed
CNN, June 1. A shootout inside the Narayanhiti Royal Palace on Friday left at least nine members of Nepal's royal family dead, including the king and queen, police and military sources said. Crown Prince Dipendra, 30, opened fire and shot all the members of the royal family including King Birendra, Queen Aiswarya and Prince Nirajan, the sources said. He later shot himself. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 19:03:12 EDT 2001

No Connection Fee! Calls to Sri Lanka, only 39c/m!

ValuComOnline: Call Sri Lanka
Send in a question to the veteran Sri Lankan politician, Mr. Vasudeva Nanayakkara and receive his answer! We are pleased to announce the fifth guest at our online Q&A sessions at The Lanka Academic.

Mr. Vasudeva Nanayakkara began his political career as a student activist in the Lanka Sama Samaja Party in 1958. He was elected to then National Assembly in 1970 as a member of Parliament from Kiriella in the United Front government of the SLFP, LSSP and the Ceylon Communist Party. In 1975 he split from the LSSP of Dr. N.M.Perera, Dr. Colvin R. De Silva et al. to launch the Nava Lanka Sama Samaja Party along with Dr. Vickramabhahu Karunaratne. Although defeated in the general election of 1977 Mr. Nanayakkara was back in parliament in 1989 as a member of the United Socialist Alliance(USA). He rejoined the LSSP and the PA in 1994 and was elected as an MP. in 199, he crossed over to the opposition. In 1982 and 1999, he also contested as a Presidential candidate. To ask a question, click here.

Do you have a recommendation for a future guest at our Q&A sessions AND you know how to put us in contact with him/her? If yes, email us.

O  T  H  E  R      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E  S
President calls on the international community to persuade the LTTE to enter peace talks
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 1620 slt 01.06.01. President Chandrika Kumaratunga has called on the international community to do all it can to persuade the LTTE to enter peace talks with the government. Addressing 34 foreign participants who were attending a seminar on 'The Media and Democracy' organized by the Worldview International, The President said her government has done everything possible to facilitate talks. The President said her government was committed to granting the legitimate rights of the Tamil people with or without the LTTE. The President said the government was committed to peace and that it would re-commence the process to draft a new constitution. The President said the problem she had was her government did not have the required two thirds majority in Parliament to pass a new constitution. She said that she was hopeful that she could
Published: Fri Jun 1 08:21:13 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka toll mounts to 14 as more civilians perish, Jun 01 2001 17:23 IST. COLOMBO, June 1 (AFP) - Tamil Tiger rebels escalated attacks against government forces in northeastern Sri Lanka Friday, killing six security personnel and four civilians, defence officials said. Four members of the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were also killed in the skirmishes, defence ministry spokesman Sanath Karunaratne said. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 08:23:26 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Six dead in Tiger attack on Sri Lanka patrol  -
Twelve killed in clash in Sri Lanka's northeast  -

Kumaratunga to press with Constitutional reforms
Press Trust of India, Colombo,Friday, June 01, 2001. Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga has said she wants to go ahead with her plans to usher in constitutional reforms to confer more rights on the Tamil minority regardless of the LTTE participating in peace talks, but will need the opposition's cooperation. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 15:39:21 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Malaysian investors invited to study ventures in Sri Lanka
The Star, june 1. SRI LANKA is inviting Malaysian investors to look at the possibility of setting up industries in the island nation and enhancing collaboration with local industries, particularly in the electronics and electrical components sector. Visiting Sri Lankan Minister of Internal and International Trade and Commerce, Shipping Development and Muslim Religious Affairs Rauff Hakeem said that since it was already known for its electronics and electrical components, it was appropriate for Malaysia to seek access to bigger markets in the region through Sri Lanka. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 21:59:32 EDT 2001 Back to the top

India/Pakistan Inadequate laws expose Tamil women
Asia Times, may 31. On the night of March 19, Sri Lankan navy personnel entered a guesthouse at Uppukulam, a suburb of Mannar town 312 kilometers northwest of the capital Colombo, and arrested two women, Sinnathamby Sivamany and Ehamparam Vijikala. Shanmugam Nanthakumar, Vijikala's husband, was arrested as well and Sivamany's six-year-old son was asked to accompany his mother. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 21:56:59 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Wickramesinghe meets Jaswant, discusses peace efforts
Hindu, june 1. Visiting Sri Lankan Opposition leader Ranil Wickramesinghe today apprised the Indian Government of the situation in the island nation and hurdles coming in the way of finding a lasting solution to the ethnic crisis. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 20:10:24 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka opposition leader leaves on India visit  -
Wickremesinghe meets Jaswant  - Yahoo India

Court lifts cash bar on Sri Lanka cricket board
Times of India (Breaking News), Friday, 1 June 2001 . COLOMBO: A Sri Lankan court on Friday lifted an order barring an interim body from operating the cricket board's accounts. The court ruling means the four-member interim committee can resume financial transactions with funds from the cricket board's accounts, said former Sri Lankan captain and the committee's chief executive Anura Tennekoon. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 12:07:16 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka Govt Willing To Pay Port Workers More
Yahoo India, Friday June 1, 5:33 PM. The Sri Lankan government has agreed to a pay hike to try and prevent some 3,000 employees of the country's main Colombo port from striking over a wage dispute, port ministry officials said Friday. They said acting ports development minister, Chamal Rajapakse, standing in for minister Ronnie de Mel who is overseas, had conveyed the government's fresh stance at a meeting he called with all port union leaders Friday. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 16:03:52 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Indian Navy had plans ready to evacuate trapped Lankan troops
Yahoo, May 31. The Indian Navy was ready to evacuate Sri Lankan security force personnel from the island's northern Jaffna peninsula during a major military offensive by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) early last year, according to the defense ministry's annual report for 2000-2001. "Operation Jalnikas was initiated in May 2000 in the face of an imminent crisis prompted by the rapid advance of the LTTE in Jaffna," the report said, adding that the Eastern Naval Command was asked to be ready at short notice for evacuation of the security force personnel from the peninsula. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 11:33:02 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Public urge minister to reinstate BCCSL
Yahoo India, Friday June 1, 7:12 PM. Too many cooks will spoil the soup. If Sri Lankan cricket is the soup I am talking about, then who are those cooks spoiling it. Plenty! I guess you know them all. Cricket in this country is no longer a mere sport, it is a life style and many more attributes; a lucrative business, leading export earner, potential market place in the trends of commercialization and above all I reckon you may not disagree with me if I say it is an industry. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 15:42:39 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka editors demand access to war zone, Jun 01 2001 17:50 IST. The Editors' Guild of Sri Lanka Friday welcomed the lifting of a three-year military censorship as "long overdue," but urged the government to lift a ban on travel to the island's embattled north-east. The Guild said it wanted free access for all accredited journalists to the embattled northern and eastern regions which are currently off-limits apart from on government tours. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 09:25:16 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Lankan media welcomes lifting of sanctions  -

Former cricket Board President says he will not appear before investigating committee
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 1615 slt 01.06.01. Thilanga Sumathipala, the former President of the Cricket Board said today that he will not appear before the investigating Committee appointed by the Sports Minister Lakshman Kirialla. " Those appointed to the committee are not independent people" Sumathipala told a news conference at his residence today. The Committee is to investigate allegations of corruption and mis management in the board. Sumathipala said that he would well come if a Parliamentary select committee is appointed to look into the allegations. " Then we can with confidence bring forward various irregularities committed by the earlier board members and the members of the first interim committee" Sumathipala said.
Published: Fri Jun 1 06:34:23 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Senior energy expert warns of worsening energy crisis in Sri Lanka
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 1825 slt 01.06.01. A senior energy expert Thilak Siyabalapitiya has warned that the current energy crisis in Sri Lanka would worsen in the future, FM 99 radio reported. He said the crisis in the result of faulty implementation of power projects. He said that unless alternative methods of power generation is introduced quickly, consumers will be forced to pay double the current prices for power. end
Published: Fri Jun 1 08:21:14 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Rs 36 cr worth brown sugar seized
Yahoo India, Friday June 1, 11:05 AM. In a major haul, Customs officials attached to the Kanyakumari wing seized 36 kgs of brown sugar, worth about Rs 36 crore in the international market, from Edinathakarai fishing village in Tirunelveli district today.The drug was meant to be transported to Sri Lanka, the sources said. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 16:04:41 EDT 2001 Back to the top

?Norwegian peace initiative suspect among Sinhalese?
India Abroad, June 01, 2001 14:25 Hrs (IST) . Norway's peace efforts in Sri Lanka are "suspect" among the majority Sinhalese community, a senior Sri Lankan minister said on Friday. "Norway's role is suspect for most Sinhalese because of the pro-LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) statements it had made in the past," Fisheries and Aquatic resources Minister Mahinda Rajapakse said in an interview. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 09:04:15 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Colombo High Court set aside freeze on cricket board bank accounts
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 1611 slt 01.06.01. The Colombo high court today set aside an earlier order restraining the interim committee of the cricket board from operating its bank accounts. The court decision came after the Appeals Court last week rejected a request by the former officials of the cricket board to issue an interim order cancelling the dissolution of the board.
Published: Fri Jun 1 06:34:23 EDT 2001 Back to the top

62 Sri Lankan illegal immigrants arrested in Southern Italy
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 1610 slt 01.06.01. 62 Sri Lankan illegal immigrants have been arrested by police in Southern Italy. The immigrants have been abandoned by the smugglers who transported them to Italy. Police say the illegal immigrants would be expelled from the country
Published: Fri Jun 1 06:34:22 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka Marxists and capitalists demand halt to English, Jun 01 2001 13:38 IST. COLOMBO, June 1 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's Marxists have joined forces with a right-wing party to oppose a government plan to allow students to study all subjects in English rather than in their mother tongue, the party said Friday. The Marxist People's Liberation Front (JVP) and the main opposition United National Party (UNP) demanded parliament look into the implications of the decision which means students can be taught wholly in English for the first time in 45 years. More...
Published: Fri Jun 1 05:12:04 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Chandrika risks losing no-trust vote
The Hindustan Times, may 31. FACING possible defeat in a no-confidence motion which the opposition United National Party proposes to move soon, Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga is on a desperate damage control and wooing exercise to thwart a collapse. More...
Published: Thu May 31 20:49:18 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Religious leaders make urgent appeal for wide ranging democratic reforms
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 1800 slt 31.05.01.

The Congress of religions which bring together all four major religions in Sri Lanka today issued an urgent appeal to all political parties and the people for wide ranging democratic reforms. " Our motherland is facing a severe crisis,unheard in its past history" the religious leaders said in a statement issued at the end of an all party conference at the B.M.I.C.H.

The conference was summoned by the Congress of religions to discuss ways out of the current crisis. " We are convinced that a mere change of Government through elections nor a change in the personalities who rule us, will not solve the problems we face. What is essentially needed is a new political vision based on peace and development,an economic vision that can eliminate poverty,unemployment and malnutrition, a social vision founded on ethical values of the four great religions practised in our country. The law and order destroyed by the existing politics and the underworld has to be firmly re-established" the statement said.

The Congress of religions put forward an eight point agenda for urgent implementation- reforming the executive presidency, formulate a new constitution that guarantee democracy, development,unity and territorial integrity of the nation, the establishment of a independent elections commission,an independent public administration commission, an independent police commission, strengthen the independence of the judiciary, new legalization to deal with bribery and corruption,child abuse,drug trafficking and robbery of artifact and the formulation of a national economic policy.

The statement was signed by Ven. Bellanwila Wimalaratne nayake thero, Ven.Maduluwave Sobitha Thero, Rev. Oswald Gomis President of the Catholic Bishop's Conference, Rev.Kuhanantha Sarma secretary of All Ceylon Brahama Sangam, Moulavi Hifzur Rahman vice president of the Council of Muslim Theologians and Rev. Ebenezer Joseph General Secretary of the National Christian Council. A notable absentee at the conference was the ruling People's Alliance. Other political parties that were represented accepted the agenda put forward by the religious leaders.
Published: Thu May 31 08:25:38 EDT 2001 Back to the top

LTTE told not to place unacceptable terms for talks
Times of India (Breaking News), Thursday, 31 May 2001, 13:15 GMT . COLOMBO: Faced with the grim prospect of its peace initiative collapsing over the issue of lifting the ban on the LTTE, Sri Lanka has asked the LTTE not to place unacceptable conditions for talks. "I call upon the LTTE to abstain from putting unacceptable conditions before commencing peace talks and help the government bring the conflict to a swift end," media minister and Cabinet spokesman Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said in a statement to the state-owned media. More...
Published: Thu May 31 09:12:36 EDT 2001 Back to the top
Related News Stories
Sri Lanka talks 'deadlocked'  - BBC South Asia
Lanka asks LTTE not to place unacceptable conditions  - Press Trust of India

NPC Calls for Lifting of Self Censorship
Saroj Pathirana in London, Thursday 31/05/01 1725 GMT. "Now once the government censorship has been officially lifted, are the journalists going to tell the real story of war" asked Jehan Perera, the media director of the National Peace Council (NPC), while welcoming the government?s decision to lift censorship on war-related reporting. Mr. Perera maintained the view that even before the government imposed a censorship, many journalists did not genuinely cover both sides. The ban was lifted without any explanation, said Jehan Perera, because the government wanted to indicate to the international powers that it intends to pursue a negotiated settlement to the ethnic problem. He pointed out that the government had to resort to this measure after the Norway brokered peace process reached a stalemate.

The NPC official said that the authorities should now prove their genuineness by putting BBC?s Sinhala and Tamil programmes, back on the SLBC broadcasts. These programmes were banned after the Sri Lankan Army was defeated by the LTTE in Elephant Pass, last year. In an interview with BBC?s Sandeshaya, he said that it is only one of several possible goodwill and confidence-building measures for Norwegian brokered peace process.

Welcoming the move, the Free Media Movement (FMM) said that it hoped the censorship will not be re-imposed once the military situation escalates again. Meanwhile, left-wing "Haraya" Editor Gnanasiri Kottigoda talking to "The Lanka Academic" questioned whether mainstream journalists in the South who write to help the government win the war, will now stop writing from Colombo and go to the war-torn area to give their readers the real story.
Published: Thu May 31 13:25:33 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Lankan MPs want subsidized Parliament meals done away with
India Abroad, May 31, 2001 14:45 Hrs (IST) . Raising food prices usually make Sri Lanka's lawmakers boil with indignation but, for once, a group of members of Parliament (MPs) is protesting against low-priced meals in the Parliament restaurant. Some 35 MPs from the main opposition United National Party (UNP) have petitioned Speaker Anura Bandaranaike to have the huge subsidy on members' meals removed and called for prices more like those their constituents have to fork out. With price tags ranging from Rs. 6.50 for an all-you-can-eat lunch and just 45 cents for a cup of tea, a meal at the Parliament restaurant barely makes a dent in an MP's wallet. Not only do members have their cake, but, often, they have friends and relatives over to eat it too. More...
Published: Thu May 31 08:39:45 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Match-fixing report cosmetic: Dalmiya
Age, 1 June 2001. World cricket's controversial former chief Jagmohan Dalmiya scoffed yesterday at the International Cricket Council report into match-fixing, saying it was cosmetic and lacked substance. The Indian businessman, who was ICC president last year when the anti-corruption unit was set up, said he was disappointed the report had not probed the scandal deeply enough. "The report does not say anything new, nor does it help in solving the issue," Dalmiya said. "It appears to be a hasty compilation," Dalmiya said. "Some parts have been taken from the Qayyum report in Pakistan, some from the King's commission in South Africa and some from the CBI report in India. More...
Published: Thu May 31 23:27:20 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Sri Lanka Eases Investment Restrictions For Non-residents
Yahoo India, Thursday May 31, 4:07 PM. Sri Lanka's central bank said Thursday that it has created a special scheme which will enable Sri Lankans living abroad to invest in the island nation. There will be no exchange control restrictions, it added. Sri Lankan citizens who work overseas or have migrated can now invest in Sri Lanka via a Rupee Account for Non-resident Sri Lankan Investment, or RANSI, the bank said in a statement. More...
Published: Thu May 31 15:36:02 EDT 2001 Back to the top

Tamil political parties meet to discuss deadlocked peace talks with LTTE
Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo, 14.18 slt 31.05.01. 10 Tamil political parties are meeting in Colombo today to discuss the deadlocked peace talks between the government and the LTTE. The talks are deadlocked after the Tamil rebels demanded that the government lifts the proscription of the LTTE. President Kumaratunga has refused to comply with the demand. The Tamil political parties are to discuss ways to break the deadlock. end
Published: Thu May 31 04:27:56 EDT 2001 Back to the top

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