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Need to find a way to outlast Pujara in summer series: Cummins        La Liga can resume week of June 8 - Spanish Prime Minister        Extend loan automatically to all eligible borrowers without fear of 3Cs: FM to banks        Will try to restart international flights before August: Puri        Iran warns US not to interfere with Venezuela oil shipment        Sri Lanka to ease coronavirus restrictions from May 26        Coronavirus cases cross 10,000-mark in Ahmedabad, 24 deaths        Amphan toll rises to 85 in Bengal; protests over electricity, water supply        Prisoners aged above 60 to be released on emergency parole to decongest jail in Delhi        Record jump in COVID-19 cases, 137 more deaths        Bryant items fetch premium prices, Trout card sets record        Baseball players respond to MLB on virus protocols        RBI extends moratorium on loans for another 3 months till Aug        Sensex, Nifty turn choppy; RIL jumps on KKR deal        Quarantine must for domestic air travellers: Kerala govt        At least 57 killed in Pakistan passenger plane crash in Karachi        China introduces new security bill in parliament to tighten controls over Hong Kong        Trump lashes out at scientists whose findings contradict him        COVID-19 death toll climbs to 3,583 in India        Pak troops shell LoC areas in twin sectors of Poonch, Rajouri        
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International News
Sri Lanka govt defies Sirisena to resume parliamentary probe into Easter blasts
 
Colombo, Jun 11 (PTI) The Sri Lankan government on Tuesday began the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) investigation into the security lapses surrounding the Easter Sunday suicide attacks that killed 258 people including 11 Indians, despite strong objection by President Maithripala Sirisena.

President Sirisena, who is the head of the Cabinet, warned last week that he would not attend the Cabinet unless the government took immediate action to halt the parliamentary investigation.

The PSC began hearing testimony from Muslim leaders who said they repeatedly warned the authorities to dangerous radicalisation. The committee summoned former governor of the Western province Azath Sally to testify before it.

The cabinet meeting which is usually held on Tuesday mornings was not called by Sirisena, officials said.

President Sirisena last week asked the Cabinet to halt the hearings, citing national security concerns.

Sirisena said that it was uncalled for and a serious threat to national security as the top intelligence personnel are identified through the media. He said he would not allow any serving defense official to testify before the PSC.

He wrote to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya urging a halt to the PSC.

Jayasuriya, however, replied that the PSC was a parliamentary issue and it would proceed.

Sirisena has insisted that as minister of defence and law and order he was unaware of precise intelligence warnings from India about the attack on April 21.

He suspended police chief Pujith Jayasundara and dismissed his top defence official Hemasiri Fernando after it was found that there were intelligence failures before the attacks.

Sirisena said that none of the serving officers would be authorised by him to testify in future.

Jayasuriya stressed that all officials are bound by parliamentary privileges and they would be compelled to respond to summons by the PSC.

Nine suicide bombers, including a woman, carried out a series of devastating blasts that tore through three churches and three high-end hotels frequented by tourists in the country's deadliest violence since the devastating civil war with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam ended in 2009.

The Islamic State claimed the attacks, but the government blamed local Islamist extremist group National Thawheed Jamaath (NTJ) for the bombings.

A three-member committee appointed to probe the attacks that killed 258 people, including 11 Indians, submitted its final report to President Sirisena on Monday. The details of the report were immediately not available.

Sirisena's opposition to the PSC has triggered another clash between the executive and the legislature.

The president and his coalition partner, prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe are at loggerheads and in October last year the president sacked the premier unconstitutionally.

The political and constitutional stand off lasted for nearly two months before Wickremesinghe was ordered to be restored by the Supreme Court.


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Coronavirus: Beijing announces wearing masks outdoors not necessary
Four ISIS terrorists killed in Pakistan's Punjab province
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KERALA NEWS
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12 fresh COVID-19 cases in Kerala, total rises to 642
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29 fresh cases in Kerala; Over 67,000 under observation
NATIONAL NEWS
Coronavirus cases cross 10,000-mark in Ahmedabad, 24 deaths
 Ahmedabad: Coronavirus cases in Ahmedabad crossed the 10,000-mark and rose to 10,001 after 277 new p
Amphan toll rises to 85 in Bengal; protests over electricity, water supply
Prisoners aged above 60 to be released on emergency parole to decongest jail in Delhi
COVID-19 death toll climbs to 3,583 in India
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