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TNPF strikes hardline, won’t join Tamil National Council

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Claims Sumanthiran trying to protect Prez

By Dinasena Ratugamage, our Vavuniya corr.

 

The Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF) has declined to join the proposed Tamil National Council (TNC) scheduled to be established in Vavuniya on Feb. 26.

TNPF National List MP Selvarasa Kajendran told the media in Jaffna on Monday (22) that it would never throw its weight behind the TNC. The TNPF parliamentary group consists of two lawmakers with Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam being the other MP.

MP Kajendran said that the TNPF had boycotted talks recently held in Jaffna to discuss the proposed alliance as the conduct of five Tamil National Alliance (TNA) members wasn’t acceptable to his party. The TNA parliamentary group consists of 10 lawmakers.

Alleging that Jaffna District TNA MP, M. A. Sumanthiran, PC, had been the main obstacle for them to reach a consensus, MP Kajendran alleged that the MP had betrayed their cause. MP Kajendran claimed that Sumanthiran was trying to protect President Gotabaya Rajapaksa though he served as the TNA spokesperson.

Commenting on the ongoing Geneva sessions, MP Kajendran said that the TNA should take responsibility in case the UNHRC issued a diluted resolution in respect of Sri Lanka. Tamil political party representatives said that they were disappointed at the way the UNHRC handled the issue. They alleged that the Core Group on Sri Lanka as well as UNHRC members hadn’t been receptive to their proposals.



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Southern MP warns that Russian & Ukranian tourists working here are at risk

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“They may be knifed or their lives threatened”

ECONOMYNEXT – Tourists from Russia and Ukraine who are staying in houses in Sri Lanka for long periods are engaging in business activities and should be taxed to prevent them being knifed by competitors, SLPP MP Chandima Weerakkody told parliament on Friday.

“There are many tourists who are staying long term in houses,” he said. “Though they come here they cannot use their credit cards – especially Russian and Ukrainian tourists who cannot use their money through their cards. As a result they have been forced to work and earn something in Sri Lanka.”

He called on the government to have a system where they can use their money.

“In our areas many tourists are cutting hair, some are doing tinkering work, some are setting up pizza shops, some are selling cannabis – I think there is a new name now *for ganja),” Weerakkody said. “If we send the immigration behind the tourists who are coming, even those that are coming will not come.”

“No taxes are being charged from any of these tourists who are doing business. Our (local people’s) taxes are raised. I am asking at least to have a system for the government to collect some taxes

“I want to say in Parliament that in our areas, a knifing (pihi anumak), or some other threat to life (jeewitha tharjanayak) may happen if this situation continues.”

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Kidney sale racket unearthed in Colombo

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Five duped to sell their kidneys at Rs. 15 million each

By Norman Palihawadane

The Colombo Crimes Division (CCD) has informed the Colombo Additional Magistrate Ranjindra Jayasuriya that an investigation has been launched to arrest the suspects involved in the organized racket of obtaining kidneys from poor people promising big money and selling them to local and foreign people.The CCD told the court on Thursday that four men and one woman have parted with their kidneys, and despite promising to pay Rs.15 million per kidney nothing was paid.

CCD reported to court that the victims were operated at a Hospital on Cotta Road in Borella and no money was paid. A mother who was nursing a one-and-a-half-year-old infant was among those cheated.

The police told court that a person from the Bloemendhal area had referred these people through another man and a woman. Required medical tests had been conducted at three private hospitals.

Evidence has been obtained that kidney surgeries had been performed at a private hospital in Borella and the CCD stated in court that this racket was organized targeting poor families in Colombo.

It informed court that they have already launched investigations and will arrest the suspects and produce them before court.After considering the relevant submissions, the Magistrate ordered the CCD to conduct investigations and arrest the suspects and present them to court.

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Record highest number of school students visit Parliament

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School children wave during their visit to Parliament on Thursday (1). Serjeant-at Arms Narendra Fernando said that the largest number of school students in the history of the Parliament visited the Parliament on Dec 1. Over 5,000 students from 32 schools from different provinces visited the Parliament on that day, he said. More than 25,000 students representing schools in different parts of the country had visited to observe the Parliamentary debates after the Public Gallery was reopened for school students from Sept 19.

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