The Lanka Academic

VOL. 5, NO. 121

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Headline Summary
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President in two minds whether to commence upper Kotmale power project or not
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, August 4, 2004, 9.49 p.m.. President Chandrika Kumaratunga has appointed a five member ministerial committee to report to her within two weeks whether it is feasible for the Government to go ahead with the 150 MW Upper Kotmale Hydro Power project.

According to reports, during last Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting, she had also refused to give the green light for the power project mainly due to environmental concerns.

The Upper Kotmale Hydro Power project was first mooted in 1994. Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) done thereafter have pointed out the adverse effects of the project and project proposes were requested to consider the Yoxford option which would cause the least environmental damage. Besides, seven of the country's fascinatingly beautiful waterfalls, which are tourist attractions, would be affected by this project.

The construction of the Upper Kotmale Hydro Power Project was thrice rejected by the Central Environment Authority considering the damage it would cause to the environment. The disturbance of the ecological balance would contribute to earth slips and earthquakes in the central hill country, was one aspect seriously considered for rejecting project earlier, but was later given approval, however many environmentalists continue to oppose this project.
Published: Wed Aug 4 11:55:40 EDT 2004

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President scolds JVP for going public against ISGA
J. S. Nalin in Colombo, August 4, 2004, 8.47 p.m.. President Chandrika Kumaratunga has severely reprimanded her main ally for going public against the LTTE proposed Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA). During the United Peoples Freedom Alliance Executive Committee meeting yesterday, the President told the members of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) to take up such ‘sensitive’ matters with her, before going public on the matter. She noted that it was not the ‘least ethical’ to take up such matters by the JVP alone, as now they are part of a coalition Government. The JVP several weeks back initiated a poster campaign against the LTTE and its demand for the ISGA, and called upon the people to defeat any moves by anyone to grant a ISGA to the Tigers.
Published: Wed Aug 4 11:23:23 EDT 2004 Back to the top

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Minister criticizes cabinet colleagues over lack of support to control gas price
J. S. Nalin in Colombo, August 4, 2004, 8.37 p.m.. Consumer Affairs Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle criticized his cabinet colleagues for not giving any support for his proposals to the cabinet, to prevent the recent gas price hike. The Minister said that there was no proper attention for his Cabinet paper, according to his proposal gas price could have been avoided if the Cabinet agree to exempt the Value Added Tax from Liquefied Petroleum Gas. “I presented the Cabinet proposals for gas to be exempted from VAT but no one paid attention and didn’t want to pass the proposal”, he complained.
Published: Wed Aug 4 10:40:43 EDT 2004 Back to the top

Sri Lankan govt not to discuss rebel self-rule proposals, XINHUA
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 15:01 EDT . - - River Basing Development Minister and General Secretary of Sri Lanka - Freedom Party Maitripala Sirisena said that President Chandrika Kumaratunga who chaired the Executive Council Meeting of the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) attended by representatives of all the constituent parties of the alliance on Monday had informed them that the UPFA has not changed its original stand in respect of the proposals on an Interim Self- Governing Authority (ISGA) put forward by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels... Back to the top

S.Lankan govt denies reports on rejection of rebel proposals, XINHUA
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 12:59 EDT . - - tatement denying there is absolutely no truth in this story that has been attributed to him, a government statement said... Back to the top

Sri Lankan opposition says govt must make up mind on peace, XINHUA
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 12:56 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lanka - 's main opposition Wednesday blamed the government for its inconsistent policy on revival of peace negotiations with the Tamil Tiger rebels. G... Back to the top

EPDP asks international Community to tell Tigers to stop killing
J. S. Nalin in Colombo, August 4, 2004, 8.36 p.m.. EPDP leader Douglas Devananda urged the international community to urge the LTTE to stop assassinating human beings, which they have been committing in succession... Back to the top

Sri Lankan president relinquishes leadership of governing alliance
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 09:07 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) President Chandrika Kumaratunga resigned as the leader of Sri Lanka - 's ruling alliance on Wednesday, her office announced... Back to the top

Tourists hospitalized after wasp attack at famous Sri Lankan tourist site
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 11:21 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Dozens of foreign tourists and school children were hospitalized Wednesday after being stung by wasps at a fifth-century fortress in central Sri Lanka - , police said... Back to the top

Chandrika rejects LTTE s blueprint for interim self-rule, August 04, 2004, 7:45 EDT. Colombo, Aug 4 (UNI) Expressing the firm stand of the ruling Freedom Alliance Government on the resumption of the stalled peace talks, President Chandrika Kumaratunga has said, ''it is not ready for peace talks with the LTTE'' on the basis of the organization's blueprint proposals for an interim self-rule in the North-East Back to the top

Sri Lanka peace U-turn attacked, 4 August, 2004. Sri Lanka's main opposition has accused the government of taking a cavalier and casual attitude towards the peace process with Tamil Tiger rebels... Back to the top

Jayawardene century steadies Sri Lankan innings
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 09:47 EDT . TREVOR CHESTERFIELD - Associated Press Writer - GALLE, Sri Lanka - (AP) Mahela Jayawardene notched his 12th test century Wednesday to help Sri Lanka - overcome an early collapse and reach a first innings score of 279 for seven wickets at the close of the first day of the first test against South Africa... Back to the top

Sri Lankan court orders Frenchman to leave country for sexually harassing airline staff
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 07:46 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A Sri Lankan court found a Frenchman guilty of sexually harassing four airline crew members and ordered him to leave the country within 14 days, a newspaper report and lawyer said Wednesday... Back to the top

Grenade attack at EPDP office injures five
J. S. Nalin in Colombo, August 3, 2004, 11.58 p.m.. The Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) office at Valachchenai was attacked with a grenade this morning allegedly by LTTE cadres, resulting in four EPDP members and a police constable being injured... Back to the top

Muslims in eastern province observes death anniversary of 103 Muslims
J. S. Nalin in Colombo, August 3, 2004, 11.56 p.m.. Muslims in several towns in the eastern province staged a hartal today (general shutdown) to mark the 14th anniversary of the killing of 103 Muslims by the LTTE... Back to the top

Jaya opposes move to introduce ferry service with Sri Lanka, Wednesday, August 4, 2004. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has opposed any move to introduce a ferry service between Tuticorin and Colombo, saying it would affect the internal security of the country... Back to the top

Catholic church defies Sri Lanka’s religious debate, Wednesday, August 04, 2004. By Amal Jayasinghe, St Anthony’s Church underscores the religious co-existence in Sri Lanka despite legislative moves that could undermine harmony... Back to the top

Complaint: Woman from Sri Lanka held as
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 02:34 EDT . BC-Complaint: Woman from Sri Lanka - held as The owner of a Gloucester County computer firm was charged yesterday with keeping a woman from Sri Lanka - as his family's virtual slave for more than two years, authorities said... Back to the top

Barricades are back in troubled Sri Lanka, Aug 3. Soldiers, sandbags and barricades have returned in force to the capital of Sri Lanka in the tightest security since its 2002 cease-fire, after slayings and a suicide bombing that have raised fears that this tropical island could slip back into war... Back to the top

Sri Lanka vs. South Africa scores
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 06:21 EDT . - - GALLE, Sri Lanka - (AP) Scores Wednesday at tea on the first day of the first cricket test between Sri Lanka - and South Africa at Galle: Sri Lanka - Marvan Atapattu c Boucher b Pollock 9 Sanath Jayasuriya c Klusener b Pollock 12 Kumar Sangakkara c Boucher b Boje 58 Mahela Jayawardene not out 64 Thilan Samaraweera lbw b Pollock 13 Tillekeratne Dilshan not out 20 Extras: (2nb) 2 TOTAL: (four wickets) 178 Overs: 55 Batting time: 232 minutes... Back to the top

Sri Lanka to play two or three tests in Pakistan, August 04, 2004, 7:45 EDT. Sri Lanka will play either two or three Tests against Pakistan in Pakistan when they tour in October-November this year... Back to the top

Chef's visa problem threaten S.J. eatery
Associated Press, Wed August 4, 2004 02:17 EDT . - - And the professional chef they had in mind when they opened in June, Janaka Rodrigo's sister, is still stuck 10,470 miles away in the island nation of Sri Lanka - off India... Back to the top

Sri Lankan main opposition not to support govt peace efforts, XINHUA
Associated Press, Tue August 3, 2004 13:26 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lanka - 's main opposition United National Party (UNP) said Tuesday that it has decided not to support the government on its moves to revive the stalled peace process with the Tamil Tiger rebels. A UNP statement said that its leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has told his group of parliamentarians that it was no longer possible to support the government in view of continued snubs by the ruling party politicians... Back to the top

Deputy Public Trustee remanded over Visa scandal
J. S. Nalin in Colombo, August 3, 2004, 11.53 p.m.. Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has arrested Deputy Public Trustee Tilak Devagiri Bandara in connection with a US visa scandal... Back to the top

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