Mahinda Rajapaksa sworn-in as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka for the fourth time, before President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara

By Lahiru Pothmulla Former President and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa was sworn-in as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka for the fourth time, before President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara this morning. Prime Minister Rajapaksa was sworn in at the auspicious time as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka’s 9th Parliament before the …

Continue reading ‘Mahinda Rajapaksa sworn-in as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka for the fourth time, before President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara’ »

Group of “Gotabaya Golayas” From Viyathmaga and Yuthukama Enters Parliament as Both Elected and Appointed MP’s From the SLPP

By Shamindra Ferdinando Civil society organisation Viyathmaga has emerged as an influential group within the SLPP (Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna) parliamentary group with eight out of nine contestants gaining entry into parliament at the just concluded general election. The SLPP won 145 seats, including 17 National List slots. The parliament comprises 196 elected and 29 …

Continue reading ‘Group of “Gotabaya Golayas” From Viyathmaga and Yuthukama Enters Parliament as Both Elected and Appointed MP’s From the SLPP’ »

Rajapaksa Rajya! Vandana, Vandana! Voters of Sri Lanka Have Through Their Franchise Handed Over the Sovereignty of the People to the Rajapaksa Kingdom

By Lucien Rajakarunanayake The voters of Sri Lanka have created the new Kingdom, the Rajapaksa Rajya. This is a very rare example of how a democracy can move into a realm ensuring the sovereignty of a single family. It will certainly be recorded in the history books of this era, documenting the vast move from …

Continue reading ‘Rajapaksa Rajya! Vandana, Vandana! Voters of Sri Lanka Have Through Their Franchise Handed Over the Sovereignty of the People to the Rajapaksa Kingdom’ »

SLPP in Landslide Win with 145 5eats Including National List; Sajith’s SJB Comes Second with 54 Seats; TNA Third with 10;JVP gets 3; UNP Loses Badly with only One National List Seat; Other Parties Together Gain 12 Seats

The Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) has secured a landslide victory at the 2020 General Election securing a total of 6,853,693 votes, which is a percentage of 59.09%. The Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) secured a total of 2,771, 984 votes (23.90%). The Jathika Jana Balawegaya or the National Peoples’ Power (NPP) came at third with …

Continue reading ‘SLPP in Landslide Win with 145 5eats Including National List; Sajith’s SJB Comes Second with 54 Seats; TNA Third with 10;JVP gets 3; UNP Loses Badly with only One National List Seat; Other Parties Together Gain 12 Seats’ »

Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna In Landslide Win is Just Five Seats Short of Two/Thirds Majority; Parliament to Convene on August 20th;Mahinda Rajapaksa to be Sworn in as “New” Prime Minister.

By Meera Srinivasan Sri Lanka’s ruling party has won the recently held parliamentary elections, securing a huge majority of 145 seats, just five short of a two-thirds majority in Parliament. The Rajapaksas’ Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP or People’s Party) was widely expected to win the polls that came nine months after President Gotabaya Rajapaksa …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna In Landslide Win is Just Five Seats Short of Two/Thirds Majority; Parliament to Convene on August 20th;Mahinda Rajapaksa to be Sworn in as “New” Prime Minister.’ »

Polling Concludes for Sri Lanka;s Parliamentary Election with 71% Voter Turn Out Despite COVID -19 Pandemic Threat

By Meera Srinivasan Polling for Sri Lanka’s parliamentary election concluded on Wednesday with a voter turnout of 71%. The results will be released on Thursday, the Election Commission said. After postponing the elections twice in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Sri Lanka became the first South Asian country to hold election months after COVID-19 …

Continue reading ‘Polling Concludes for Sri Lanka;s Parliamentary Election with 71% Voter Turn Out Despite COVID -19 Pandemic Threat’ »

“The Gotabaya project is one of ultra-nationalist, polarising, supremacist Counter-Reformation. It does not stand or fall with today’s election result”

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka This column appears on the day after ‘E-Day’. It is a good time to discuss thematic political issues, including those that go beyond the elections. Most pressing are two core issues which I had flagged back in 2013, the answers to which we shall know with the results of this election. Interviewed …

Continue reading ‘“The Gotabaya project is one of ultra-nationalist, polarising, supremacist Counter-Reformation. It does not stand or fall with today’s election result”’ »

Aug 5th Parliamentary elections looks like a one-horse race with the ruling Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) led by the redoubtable Rajapaksa brothers on its way to getting a comfortable majority

By P.K.Balachandran The Sri Lankan parliamentary elections to be held on August 5 looks like a one-horse race with the ruling Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) led by the redoubtable Rajapaksa brothers on its way to getting a comfortable majority in the House of 225. Partly because of such an expectation or estimation, there is …

Continue reading ‘Aug 5th Parliamentary elections looks like a one-horse race with the ruling Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) led by the redoubtable Rajapaksa brothers on its way to getting a comfortable majority’ »

Sri Lanka is First Runner-up in 2020 World School Debating Championship; Canada wins Competition where 68 Nations Participated ;Sri Lanka Named Best English as a Second Language Team.

Sri Lanka National Debating Team became the first runner-up in the online World Schools Debating Championship 2020, while Canada beat Sri Lanka to win the Championship, in the final held on Sunday. Sri Lanka was also named the best ESL (English as a second language) team. Sri Lanka team’s Shalem Sumanthiran won the seventh place …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka is First Runner-up in 2020 World School Debating Championship; Canada wins Competition where 68 Nations Participated ;Sri Lanka Named Best English as a Second Language Team.’ »

New Parliament Elected On August 5 General Election will Meet on August 20th :President Hotabaya Rajapaksa Issues Gazette Notification With Announcement on Aug 3

Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has summoned the newly-elected parliament to meet on August 20, 2020 (Thursday) following the General Election to be held on August 5. The President made this decision under the powers vested in him by the Constitution of Sri Lanka and the Parliamentary Election Act. The Extraordinary Gazette notification announcing the …

Continue reading ‘New Parliament Elected On August 5 General Election will Meet on August 20th :President Hotabaya Rajapaksa Issues Gazette Notification With Announcement on Aug 3’ »

Sri Lanka’s Human Rights Commission Chairperson and internationally renowned Human Rights Defender Dr Deepika Udagama Tenders her Resignation with Effect from Sep 1

by Arjuna Ranawana Sri Lanka’s Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission, internationally renowned Human Rights Defender Dr Deepika Udagama has tendered her resignation, a Parliament spokesman said. Director Media of the Parliament Shan Wijetunge told EconomyNext that Udagama’s letter of resignation reached them today and that she will function in her office until September 1. …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka’s Human Rights Commission Chairperson and internationally renowned Human Rights Defender Dr Deepika Udagama Tenders her Resignation with Effect from Sep 1’ »

A post-election SLPP regime will try to consolidate its Sinhala-Buddhist voter base by primarily servicing the latter’s material, political and ideological needs

By P.K.Balachandran The August 5, 2020 Sri Lankan parliamentary elections are likely to be a one-horse race with the ruling Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) being streets ahead of its rivals in popular estimation. Nevertheless, the election campaigns of the various parties have thrown up key issues which will determine what Sri Lanka will be …

Continue reading ‘A post-election SLPP regime will try to consolidate its Sinhala-Buddhist voter base by primarily servicing the latter’s material, political and ideological needs’ »

Disillusioned farmers in Sri Lanka’s “Rice Bowl” Polonnaruwa district ask why they must vote when their suffering persists amid unkept electoral promises

By Meera Srinivasan A week ahead of Sri Lanka’s parliamentary elections R.A. Karunavathi, a farmer in Chandana Pokuna village in Polonnaruwa, located in the island’s North Central Province, is looking for a reason to vote. “Why not boycott? We are forced to think like that,” she says, obviously fatigued with polls and politicians. Polonnaruwa district …

Continue reading ‘Disillusioned farmers in Sri Lanka’s “Rice Bowl” Polonnaruwa district ask why they must vote when their suffering persists amid unkept electoral promises’ »

We are positioning Sri Lanka for the potential explosion of communal and ethnic hatreds that may even surpass all that this country has experienced so far.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene On the eve of a General Election that promises to be (ominously) portentous for Sri Lanka, the inglorious jostles with the plainly ridiculous. Incredulous attempts to deflect responsibility A prominent criminal investigator long in the crosshairs of this Government and once in the forefront of majorly controversial cases ranging from massive …

Continue reading ‘We are positioning Sri Lanka for the potential explosion of communal and ethnic hatreds that may even surpass all that this country has experienced so far.’ »

Nationalism, determination, self-confidence and the belief in the capabilities of one’s own people will not be enough to get the Sri Lankan economy going again.

By Gamini Weerakoon (Gamini Weerakoon is former editor of The Sunday Island, The Island and Consulting Editor of the Sunday Leader) Politicians and lovers have a common failing: Politicians fighting for survival at elections and lovers during ecstatic moments make rash promises which they haven’t the foggiest notion about fulfilling when the time comes. Lankan …

Continue reading ‘Nationalism, determination, self-confidence and the belief in the capabilities of one’s own people will not be enough to get the Sri Lankan economy going again.’ »

While Hindu Nationalists Use Rama as Rallying Point Against Muslims in India ,Sinhala Buddhist Nationalists in Sri Lanka Use Ravana as Rallying Point Against “Outside Forces”like India and the West

By P.K.Balachandran The Hindu epic Ramayana has had the unusual function of providing rallying points for two contradictory and clashing nationalisms, namely, Hindu-Indian nationalism in India, and Sinhalese Buddhist nationalism in Sri Lanka. While the Hindutvic forces in India have been assiduously turning the Ramayana and its protagonist, Rama, into a rallying point against Indian …

Continue reading ‘While Hindu Nationalists Use Rama as Rallying Point Against Muslims in India ,Sinhala Buddhist Nationalists in Sri Lanka Use Ravana as Rallying Point Against “Outside Forces”like India and the West’ »

Tamil National Alliance Faces Biggest Challenge in Parliamentary Elections in Ten Years After the War Ended.

From Meera Srinivasan in Jaffna As Sri Lanka gears up for the August 5 parliamentary election, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) — the main grouping representing minority Tamils living in north and east — is facing its biggest test yet in its constituency, since the war ended a decade ago. Though the Tamils have repeatedly …

Continue reading ‘Tamil National Alliance Faces Biggest Challenge in Parliamentary Elections in Ten Years After the War Ended.’ »

SLFP Chief Candidate in Jaffna Angajan Ramanathan Allegedly Violates Election Laws on Massive Scale With the Connivance of the Election Disputes Resolution Unit Head Who was Allowed by the Election Commission to be “the non -playing Captain”

By Prof.S.Ratnajeevan H.Hoole (The writer is a member of the Elections Commission. The opinion expressed is his own and not necessarily reflective of the Commission) EDR Jaffna The Election Dispute Resolution Unit under the Election Commission (EC) is key to conducting clean elections. I believe it is to gain control of the unit that the …

Continue reading ‘SLFP Chief Candidate in Jaffna Angajan Ramanathan Allegedly Violates Election Laws on Massive Scale With the Connivance of the Election Disputes Resolution Unit Head Who was Allowed by the Election Commission to be “the non -playing Captain”’ »

Committed to the ideas of excellence in scholarship combined with activism for social justice, Neelan and Sithie were a nucleus around which scholars of South Asia, young and old, gathered.

By Dr. Radhika Coomaraswamy (written for the 21st Death Anniversary of Dr. Neelan Tiruchelvam) This is the time to remember Neelan and Sithie Tiruchelvam. Along with Kumari Jayawardena, their living rooms were spaces where scholars and activists from all over Sri Lanka, South Asia and the world came to think, discuss, break bread and just …

Continue reading ‘Committed to the ideas of excellence in scholarship combined with activism for social justice, Neelan and Sithie were a nucleus around which scholars of South Asia, young and old, gathered.’ »

Economic mismanagement by Gotabaya Rajapaksa govt is the main cause for the suffering people were undergoing and not the Coronavirus pandemic says UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe

by Zacki Jabbar Former Prime Minister and leader of the UNP Ranil Wickremesinghe is hoping there will be a high voter turnout at the forthcoming general election, which, he believes, will prove advantageous to the UNP. “The higher the number of votes cast, the better for the UNP,” Wickremesinghe said in an interview with The …

Continue reading ‘Economic mismanagement by Gotabaya Rajapaksa govt is the main cause for the suffering people were undergoing and not the Coronavirus pandemic says UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe’ »

“Do we want this ‘new normal’ of unchecked power, ‘authoritarian leadership’ and militarisation to facilitate or ensure economic growth and the sustainable development of our country? – Friday Forum.

( Text of a Media Release Issued by the ” FRIDAY FORUM” on 29th July, 2020 Under the Heading “VOTING IN THE ELECTIONS 2020: FOR PUBLIC OR RULERS’ WELFARE?) On August 5th 2020, we as citizens will choose the people who may join the President in governing this country for the next five years, if …

Continue reading ‘“Do we want this ‘new normal’ of unchecked power, ‘authoritarian leadership’ and militarisation to facilitate or ensure economic growth and the sustainable development of our country? – Friday Forum.’ »

It’s a dirty picture — that’s what Sushant Singh Rajput’s death reminds us about Bollywood

By Shekhar Gupta The coronavirus pandemic has also unleashed a rash of viral memes. My favourite is one which has a patient asking a doctor when he thinks the scourge will end. “I don’t know,” says the doctor. “I am not a journalist.” It is with that sobering thought that I dare to wade into …

Continue reading ‘It’s a dirty picture — that’s what Sushant Singh Rajput’s death reminds us about Bollywood’ »

” Sri Lankan authorities Must end all forms of harassment, threats, and abuse of legal processes and police powers against lawyers, human rights defenders and journalists”- Joint Statement by Ten International Human Rights Organizations.

The Sri Lankan government should end the targeted arrests, intimidation and threats against the lives and physical security of lawyers, activists, human rights defenders and journalists, 10 international human rights organizations said today. A campaign of fear has intensified since the 2019 presidential election, and has cast a shadow over the 2020 parliamentary election campaign. …

Continue reading ‘” Sri Lankan authorities Must end all forms of harassment, threats, and abuse of legal processes and police powers against lawyers, human rights defenders and journalists”- Joint Statement by Ten International Human Rights Organizations.’ »

UNP Expels 115 Members Following Working Committee Decision: 54 Out of 102 Previously Suspended for Seeking Nominations From SJB and 61 Local Authority Members Axed

By Asiri Fernando The United National Party (UNP) yesterday expelled 115 members, after its Working Committee affirmed a pervious decision to terminate the membership of those who sought nominations from the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) for the upcoming General Elections. UNP General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said the Working Committee which met yesterday decided to …

Continue reading ‘UNP Expels 115 Members Following Working Committee Decision: 54 Out of 102 Previously Suspended for Seeking Nominations From SJB and 61 Local Authority Members Axed’ »

Rajapaksas are Canvassing for a Two-thirds Majority to Introduce a New Constitution Without Telling the People Anything About What is Going to be in it

By Ranga Jayasuriya Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and the fellow travellers of the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) are asking for a two-thirds majority in the general election. For what? They want to abolish the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, one of the few progressive constitutional provisions to be adopted in the independent history. (It …

Continue reading ‘Rajapaksas are Canvassing for a Two-thirds Majority to Introduce a New Constitution Without Telling the People Anything About What is Going to be in it’ »

Chamal Rajapaksa Brings Retd Gen. Boniface Perera to Jaffna and Introduces him as the Next Governor of the Northern Province

By Prof.S.Ratnajeevan H.Hoole (The writer is a member of the Elections Commission. The opinion expressed is his own and not necessarily reflective of the Commission.) Old and new attitude to laws The old style of election management is to use the army to scare voters from areas not friendly to the Government. Chamal Rajapaksa brought …

Continue reading ‘Chamal Rajapaksa Brings Retd Gen. Boniface Perera to Jaffna and Introduces him as the Next Governor of the Northern Province’ »

How can there be peace or stability, if the guiding ideology of the state sees a potential enemy in every non-Sinhala-Buddhist?

By Tisaranee Gunasekara This week, 27 years ago, Sri Lanka was burning. During Black July, Sinhala mobs murdered not just Tamil men, women and children; they also killed prospects of peace and stability. They torched not just Tamil property, but also to prospects of economic development. Black July was the darkest episode in the post-Independent …

Continue reading ‘How can there be peace or stability, if the guiding ideology of the state sees a potential enemy in every non-Sinhala-Buddhist?’ »

Sri Lanka’s 72-year-old democracy is being Transformed into some sort of military regime with the appointment of military and ex-military officials to key posts in civilian administration

By Gamini Weerakoon (Gamini Weerakoon is a former editor of The Sunday Island, The Island and Consulting Editor of the Sunday Leader) War is a continuation of politics by other means’ is a saying of a Prussian general, Karl Von Clausewitz around two centuries ago. In recent times in this country, the use of this …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka’s 72-year-old democracy is being Transformed into some sort of military regime with the appointment of military and ex-military officials to key posts in civilian administration’ »

Amending the Antiquites Ordinance Through a Committee Including the Maha Sangha May Lead to the Fashioning of an Exclusivist Political Narrative that Further Marginalises Sri Lanka’s Minorities.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene There is a measure of dreadfully coincidental irony in President Gotabaya Rajapaksa determining this week that Sri Lanka’s pre-colonial Antiquities Ordinance must be amended in order to reverse ‘destruction caused to antiquities’ following a meeting held by his Buddhist Advisory Council even as public outrage grew over a 13th century ‘Kings …

Continue reading ‘Amending the Antiquites Ordinance Through a Committee Including the Maha Sangha May Lead to the Fashioning of an Exclusivist Political Narrative that Further Marginalises Sri Lanka’s Minorities.’ »

Names of Dutugemunu and Parakramabahu Eclipsed by Buvanekabahu as Electoral Politics Takes a Great Leap Backwards Into History

By Lucien Rajakarunanayake Electoral politics has taken a huge leap back into history. King Buvenakhabahu II and the Kingdom of Kurunegala are big players in the politics of 2020, pushing the realities of economic and social hardships of the country and people into a holding bag among the key opposition players. The Pohottuva Players in …

Continue reading ‘Names of Dutugemunu and Parakramabahu Eclipsed by Buvanekabahu as Electoral Politics Takes a Great Leap Backwards Into History’ »

Govt Revoking Circular 5/2001 Will Lead to Hundreds of Thousands of Forest Cover Lands Being Released to Local and Foreign Investors for Large Scale Commercial Agriculture That Will Harm Small Farmers

By Lasanda Kurukulasuriya The government’s recent move to do away with an important land circular, announced by the Cabinet Spokesman, Minister Bandula Gunewardena on 02.07.20, has opened up a can or worms that can tunnel into many areas of government policy. Circular 5/2001, issued in August 2001 by the Ministry of Forest Resources and Environment …

Continue reading ‘Govt Revoking Circular 5/2001 Will Lead to Hundreds of Thousands of Forest Cover Lands Being Released to Local and Foreign Investors for Large Scale Commercial Agriculture That Will Harm Small Farmers’ »

President JR Jayewardene Created the Infamous System Which Enables MP’s of the Ruling Party to Enter Into Business Transactions With the Government and PLunder Public Property

By Victor Ivan From 1948 to 1978 Sri Lanka had a parliamentary system of government. A fully-fledged parliamentary system of government on British Westminster model was established by the Soulbury Constitution, which gave Sri Lanka the Dominion status. The position of the Governor General under the Soulbury Constitution and that of the President appointed under …

Continue reading ‘President JR Jayewardene Created the Infamous System Which Enables MP’s of the Ruling Party to Enter Into Business Transactions With the Government and PLunder Public Property’ »

SLPP vs SJB: The 2020 election is a Battle Between the Breakaways

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka Democracy in Sri Lanka came to rest on stable two-party system much before it did in India. When Yahapalanaya distorted that system by hooking the moderate-(statist) nationalist SLFP up with the neoliberal-globalist UNP, a breakaway from the SLFP was inevitable. With the UNP failing to produce an elected leader of the country …

Continue reading ‘SLPP vs SJB: The 2020 election is a Battle Between the Breakaways’ »

Tamil National Alliance Releases Election Manifesto Emphasising Mahinda Rajapaksas Repeated Assurances to the Indian Govt that it would “implement the 13th Amendment in full and build upon it so as to achieve meaningful devolution”.

By Meera Srinivasan Campaigning for Sri Lanka’s August 5 general elections, the country’s main Tamil party has foregrounded the promise Colombo made to New Delhi on power devolution, the need for greater connectivity to India from the northern Palaly airport, and the need to expedite the return of Sri Lankan refugees living in India. Releasing …

Continue reading ‘Tamil National Alliance Releases Election Manifesto Emphasising Mahinda Rajapaksas Repeated Assurances to the Indian Govt that it would “implement the 13th Amendment in full and build upon it so as to achieve meaningful devolution”.’ »

Sri Lanka’s tiny community of Malays (40,189 as per the 2012 census) had an overwhelmingly dominant position in the island’s military and police in the colonial period,

By P.K.Balachandran Sri Lanka’s tiny community of Malays (40,189 as per the 2012 census) had an overwhelmingly dominant position in the island’s military and police in the colonial period, thanks to the trust the Dutch and the British had in this immigrant group in the context of hostility from the indigenous Sinhalese. But come independence …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka’s tiny community of Malays (40,189 as per the 2012 census) had an overwhelmingly dominant position in the island’s military and police in the colonial period,’ »

Sri Lanka’s Civil Aviation Authority Wants to Officially Research the Aerial Route By Which Mythological Demon King Ravana Brought the Abducted Sita in his “Pushpaka Vimaanam” or “Dandu Monara”

By Meera Srinivasan Sri Lanka’s Civil aviation authority has said it will lead a research project to study the mythological character Ravana’s “aviation routes”. In a recent newspaper advertisement in Sinhala, the Civil Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka has sought any relevant documents and literature from the public, asking them to contact an email ID …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka’s Civil Aviation Authority Wants to Officially Research the Aerial Route By Which Mythological Demon King Ravana Brought the Abducted Sita in his “Pushpaka Vimaanam” or “Dandu Monara”’ »

Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne yesterday Tells CID that it Institute legal action against journalist Dharisha Bastians if they are able to find evidence that she had sought to obstruct investigations

Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne yesterday told the CID that it could investigate and institute legal action against journalist Dharisha Bastians if they are able to find evidence that she had sought to obstruct investigations into the alleged Swiss Embassy abduction case. The Colombo Chief Magistrate indicated this after lawyers for Bastians clarified to Court …

Continue reading ‘Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne yesterday Tells CID that it Institute legal action against journalist Dharisha Bastians if they are able to find evidence that she had sought to obstruct investigations’ »

Why Cannot the Police Which Waited fo 15 Months After April 2019 Bombingds Wait Two Weeks More Until Elections Are Over And Summon ACMC Leader Rishad Bathiuddin for an Inquiry?

By S Ratnajeevan H Hoole We have the police to uphold law and order, and to support democratic institutions. Unfortunately, there are dangerous signs that they, the police, are a tool in the hands of the government in power. It is as sad an indictment as it is ominous to our democracy. There is ample …

Continue reading ‘Why Cannot the Police Which Waited fo 15 Months After April 2019 Bombingds Wait Two Weeks More Until Elections Are Over And Summon ACMC Leader Rishad Bathiuddin for an Inquiry?’ »

To Sinhala hardliners rallying round the Pohottuwa Party, the mirage of Sinhala immortality remains and Gota is the flag bearer.

By Gamini Weerakoon Higher Education Minister and Cabinet Spokesman Bandula Gunawardena in the current election campaign has been promising to establish so many universities reminiscent of politicians in the past promising to open public toilets in towns where they were addressing political rallies. We have been unable to keep an accurate count of the promised …

Continue reading ‘To Sinhala hardliners rallying round the Pohottuwa Party, the mirage of Sinhala immortality remains and Gota is the flag bearer.’ »

The mantra of patriotism, the worship of the ‘Ranaviru’ (warriors) and the myth of the Sinhala Buddhist master race.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene If Stalinist Russia, Nazi Germany and the unfolding multiple crises in the United States teach us anything, it is that a country is lost not by a spectacular turn of the coin in a single event but by a series of challenges to the moral resistance of a people, each one …

Continue reading ‘The mantra of patriotism, the worship of the ‘Ranaviru’ (warriors) and the myth of the Sinhala Buddhist master race.’ »

Two Rajapaksa Centres of Power in Ruling Party After Presidential Electionsl One is Around Gotabaya and the Other Aroound Mahinda

By Victor Ivan After the Presidential Election, it became evident that there were two centres of power within the ruling party. One power centre was built around President Gotabaya. The other was centred on the President’s brother, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa The confusion caused by the COVID-19 epidemic has not yet disappeared. In the circumstances, …

Continue reading ‘Two Rajapaksa Centres of Power in Ruling Party After Presidential Electionsl One is Around Gotabaya and the Other Aroound Mahinda’ »

We Have Come to the Manifesto Stage of the Election Campaign but the Real need is for a truly new manifesto for progress, honesty and Service; and not the Pipe Dreams of glory for Political families, crooks and catchers.

By Lucien Rajakarunanayake We have come to the Manifesto stage of the current election campaign. The Samagi Jana Bala Balavegaya and the UNP have now issued their manifestos, on meeting the challenge of the Podujana Peramuna. The Manifesto was a declaration of importance in world and local politics in decades gone by. There was the …

Continue reading ‘We Have Come to the Manifesto Stage of the Election Campaign but the Real need is for a truly new manifesto for progress, honesty and Service; and not the Pipe Dreams of glory for Political families, crooks and catchers.’ »

Citizen’s Collective Named “Nidhahasa” (Freedom) launched by Group of Responsible Citizens on 8 July in Colombo ahead of Sri Lanka’s crucial elections scheduled in early August

A group of responsible citizens have come together in a citizen’s collective, ‘Nidahasa,’ to upholding and defending Sri Lanka’s most valuable political legacy and hope – democracy. The movement was launched on 8 July in Colombo ahead of Sri Lanka’s crucial elections scheduled in early August. At a press briefing held in Colombo on 15 …

Continue reading ‘Citizen’s Collective Named “Nidhahasa” (Freedom) launched by Group of Responsible Citizens on 8 July in Colombo ahead of Sri Lanka’s crucial elections scheduled in early August’ »

Former CID Director Shani AbeysekeraSays who was suspended from service for seven months with no formal inquiry so far has filed a Fundamental Rights petition in the Supreme Court seeking an order yo reinstate him to his previous position.

Former Director of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Shani Abeysekera, who is under suspension from service, yesterday filed a Fundamental Rights petition in the Supreme Court seeking an order reinstating him to his previous position. He cited the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Maj. Gen. (Rtd.) Kamal Gunaratne, Acting Inspector General of Police C.D. …

Continue reading ‘Former CID Director Shani AbeysekeraSays who was suspended from service for seven months with no formal inquiry so far has filed a Fundamental Rights petition in the Supreme Court seeking an order yo reinstate him to his previous position.’ »

Sinhala-Buddhist supremacism/supremacists will weaponise the Presidency and ‘Palestinianise’ the Tamils and Muslims who will have neither autonomy at the periphery nor equal, non-discriminatory citizenship in practice.

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka An attitude of arrogant myopia; rejection of the outlook of scientific rationality; regarding intelligence-gathering as sufficient and downgrading scientific medical investigation/data collection/analysis (hence the Sri Jayewardenepura pullout); ignoring the Chief Epidemiologist-led, medical specialist-driven, globally acknowledged best practices constituting the managerial model of successful COVID-19 suppression; brusque contradiction of the warnings of the …

Continue reading ‘Sinhala-Buddhist supremacism/supremacists will weaponise the Presidency and ‘Palestinianise’ the Tamils and Muslims who will have neither autonomy at the periphery nor equal, non-discriminatory citizenship in practice.’ »

Though Mahinda Rajapaksa Says He is for Abolishing the 19 A , Will The PM Opt to Get His Wings Clipped by Doing So Or Prefer to Enjoy Full Prime Ministerial Powers Granted Under 19 A?

By Austin Fernando With the General Election campaign warming up, reference is made to the 19th Amendment (19A) in positive and negative forms. The positive form was highlighted recently by the civil society actors, supporting the 19A. The negativity of the 19A is highlighted mostly by Government politicians led by the Prime Minister (PM). The …

Continue reading ‘Though Mahinda Rajapaksa Says He is for Abolishing the 19 A , Will The PM Opt to Get His Wings Clipped by Doing So Or Prefer to Enjoy Full Prime Ministerial Powers Granted Under 19 A?’ »

Covid-19 is here to stay. People will have to adapt. The world is not experiencing a second wave: it never got over the first -The Economist

It is astonishing how rapidly the pandemic has spread, despite all the efforts to stop it. On February 1st, the day covid-19 first appeared on our front cover, the World Health Organisation counted 2,115 new cases. On June 28th its daily tally reached 190,000. That day as many new cases were notched up every 90 …

Continue reading ‘Covid-19 is here to stay. People will have to adapt. The world is not experiencing a second wave: it never got over the first -The Economist’ »

Tamil National Alliance Leader R.Sampanthan Tells Tamil media that the International Community and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are “Standing Behind Us”

By Meera Srinivasan With the campaign for Sri Lanka’s August general election heating up, India and its role in resolving the lingering national question have begun figuring prominently in the election discourse, especially in the Tamil-majority north and east. Addressing a recent public meeting, the Tamil National Alliance’s (TNA) former parliamentarian S. Shritharan said: “India …

Continue reading ‘Tamil National Alliance Leader R.Sampanthan Tells Tamil media that the International Community and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are “Standing Behind Us”’ »

Lanka Sama Samaja Party Strongly Opposes The MCC, ACSA and SOFA Agreements With the USA

By Prof. Tissa Vitarana President Gotabhaya Rajapakse had requested the Cabinet of Ministers to submit their opinions on the Prof.Lalithasiri Gunaruwan Report on the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) agreement with the USA. This has now been extended for a further two weeks. Though not a Cabinet Minister, but as the leader of the Lanka Sama …

Continue reading ‘Lanka Sama Samaja Party Strongly Opposes The MCC, ACSA and SOFA Agreements With the USA’ »

Recent Spike in Coronavirus Cases in Sri Lanka Makes Election Commission “hope and pray” that the general election could be conducted on August 5 as scheduled Says its Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya

By Meera Srinivasan The Election Commission of Sri Lanka is “closely monitoring” the situation following a recent spike in coronavirus cases, and “hopes and prays” that the general election — that was postponed earlier — could be conducted on August 5 as scheduled, its Chairman said. Postal voting for the island nation’s parliamentary election began …

Continue reading ‘Recent Spike in Coronavirus Cases in Sri Lanka Makes Election Commission “hope and pray” that the general election could be conducted on August 5 as scheduled Says its Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya’ »

No Action Taken Against Suspect Policeman Implicated in Welikade Prison Massacre of 2012 Who Frogmarched Photo Journalist Within High Court Premises

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene From a photojournalist being frogmarched by a suspect cop implicated in Sri Lanka’s 2012 Welikada prison massacre in the very premises of the High Court this Friday as aghast bystanders scuttled out of the way to lawyers being obstructed by members of the Special Task Force (STF) from conducting confidential consultations …

Continue reading ‘No Action Taken Against Suspect Policeman Implicated in Welikade Prison Massacre of 2012 Who Frogmarched Photo Journalist Within High Court Premises’ »

Being a military man, our new President inducted the military even for traffic regulation in Colombo. Many unthinkingly found it praiseworthy little realising the doors they were thereby opening widely to the detriment of our democracy.

By Prof. S.Ratnajeevan H.Hoole (The writer is a member of the Elections Commission. The opinion expressed is his own and not necessarily reflective of the Commission) Elections are soon due in the Syrian Arab Republic, Sri Lanka, Belarus, Montenegro, Iran and New Zealand. From responses solicited by ACE, the Electoral Knowledge Network (with several heavy-weight …

Continue reading ‘Being a military man, our new President inducted the military even for traffic regulation in Colombo. Many unthinkingly found it praiseworthy little realising the doors they were thereby opening widely to the detriment of our democracy.’ »

Remembering Nagalingam Sanmugathasan, Sri Lanka’s first and only hardline communist

By Veeragathy Thanabalasingham Many of Sri Lanka’s Leftist leaders began their political life in the early part of the last century with the laudable intention of bringing about radical changes in the politics of the country. But within two decades, they had become prisoners of the very past they were trying to break out of. …

Continue reading ‘Remembering Nagalingam Sanmugathasan, Sri Lanka’s first and only hardline communist’ »

Why Couldn’t the President or Prime Minister Intervene and Stop the Nonsense of Kumar Sangakkara Being Grilled For 9 to 10 Hours By the Police Over an Unsubstantiated Complaint by a Minister?

By Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka Quite recently in a town in Germany—significantly in what used to be West Germany, not formerly communist-run East Germany—a statue of Lenin was erected after a court battle, and made world news. Having been a bit of a Lenin buff myself it reminded me of a Lenin quote which ran “…one …

Continue reading ‘Why Couldn’t the President or Prime Minister Intervene and Stop the Nonsense of Kumar Sangakkara Being Grilled For 9 to 10 Hours By the Police Over an Unsubstantiated Complaint by a Minister?’ »

President Rajapaksa must get Mahindananda Aluthgamage to apologise in his presence to at least the three senior cricketers, Aravinda de Silva, Mahela Jayawardena and Kumar Sangakkara for the damage Caused by this Shameless Politician

By Neil Perera (former Honorary Secretary BCCSL and Manager of several Sri Lanka Cricket teams) The outburst of Mahindananda Aluthgamage, about alleged match fixing in the 2011 Cricket World Cup final, has received wide publicity in the sporting world, so much so that an article has appeared in a newspaper of a relatively unknown cricket …

Continue reading ‘President Rajapaksa must get Mahindananda Aluthgamage to apologise in his presence to at least the three senior cricketers, Aravinda de Silva, Mahela Jayawardena and Kumar Sangakkara for the damage Caused by this Shameless Politician’ »

“If President Rajapaksa signs the MCC agreement he will commit political suicide” – Federation of National Organisations

By Arjuna Ranawana A Nationalist organisation is saying that if President Gotabaya Rajapaksa signs the controversial Millennium Challenge Compact (MCC) he will “be committing political suicide.” Addressing a press conference in Colombo, on Tuesday, July 7, the General Secretary of the Patriotic National Movement Dr Wasantha Bandara said it is clear the President will not …

Continue reading ‘“If President Rajapaksa signs the MCC agreement he will commit political suicide” – Federation of National Organisations’ »

Premature Explosion of Bomb at House of Rehabilitated Ex-LTTE couple in Iyakkachchi Leads to Uncovering of Plan by Group of ex-LTTE cadres and Youths to Mark “Black Tigers Day” in Mullaitheevu on July 5th;Two Bombs and Detonators Discovered;Injured Husband Taken to Anuradhapura While Teacher Wife is Arrested

By Dinasena Rathugamage The bomb which exploded prematurely in a house at Iyakkachchi, Kilinochchi, on Saturday, was to be taken among other things to Mullaithivu for a clandestine operation to mark the Black Tiger day, which fell on Sunday, according to police. The first Black Tiger, Vallipuram Vasanthan, drove a small truck laden with explosives …

Continue reading ‘Premature Explosion of Bomb at House of Rehabilitated Ex-LTTE couple in Iyakkachchi Leads to Uncovering of Plan by Group of ex-LTTE cadres and Youths to Mark “Black Tigers Day” in Mullaitheevu on July 5th;Two Bombs and Detonators Discovered;Injured Husband Taken to Anuradhapura While Teacher Wife is Arrested’ »

A new constitution by itself is no panacea for Tamils as Federalism is a “no go” area for President Rajapaksa but there are a host of other “doables”.

By Col R Hariharan Election contretemps The much debated and delayed Sri Lanka parliamentary election is now scheduled to be held on August 5. After missing two dates set earlier for the election, after the disposal of eight fundamental rights cases, the Election Commission (EC) announcement came with a lot of conditions on conduct of …

Continue reading ‘A new constitution by itself is no panacea for Tamils as Federalism is a “no go” area for President Rajapaksa but there are a host of other “doables”.’ »

President Rajapaksa Appoints Five Member Committee to Examine and Report on Developing the State -run Jaya Container Terminal and the East Container Terminal to be Constructed Together With India and Japan

Wading into the issue of the East Container Terminal (ECT), President Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday appointed a five-member committee to examine and report on how to develop both the State-run Jaya Container Terminal (JCT) and the new ECT of the Colombo Port. The committee is headed by Ministry of Ports and Shipping Secretary M.M.P.K. Mayadunne, Ministry …

Continue reading ‘President Rajapaksa Appoints Five Member Committee to Examine and Report on Developing the State -run Jaya Container Terminal and the East Container Terminal to be Constructed Together With India and Japan’ »

“The constitutional proposals in Sajith Premadasa’s manifesto are identical to the proposals in the draft constitution tabled in Parliament by UNP leader Ranil Wickremasinghe in early 2019” – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa

(Text of a media release issued on July 5th 2020 by the Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa under the heading “SJB a cat’s paw of communalistic political parties”) The leader of the newly formed Samagi Jana Balawegaya was the UNP presidential candidate in 2019. The manifesto that Sajith Premadasa issued for the presidential election titled in …

Continue reading ‘“The constitutional proposals in Sajith Premadasa’s manifesto are identical to the proposals in the draft constitution tabled in Parliament by UNP leader Ranil Wickremasinghe in early 2019” – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’ »

Summoning Sri Lanka’s celebrated cricketers Before investigation committee to inquire into a wild allegation by a politician with a sleazy reputation was to simply demonstrate that those who are in the seats of power can humiliate anyone and disparage anyone.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene What does the summoning of Sri Lanka’s celebrated cricketers to appear before a special investigation committee of the Ministry of Sports tasked to inquire into a wild allegation by a former Sports Minister that the 2011 ICC Word Cup cricket final was ‘fixed’ have in common with the ad hoc appointments …

Continue reading ‘Summoning Sri Lanka’s celebrated cricketers Before investigation committee to inquire into a wild allegation by a politician with a sleazy reputation was to simply demonstrate that those who are in the seats of power can humiliate anyone and disparage anyone.’ »

Electing an MP of one’s choice is a bedrock principle of parliamentary democracy That is now being endangered by the Elections Commission’s actions.

by C.A.Chandraprema As the parliamentary election campaign gathers momentum, candidates belonging to all political parties are chafing under the Elections Commission’s decision to implement the 1981 elections law to the letter. At this moment, the rule that all candidates are most annoyed with is their inability to display their number so that voters will know …

Continue reading ‘Electing an MP of one’s choice is a bedrock principle of parliamentary democracy That is now being endangered by the Elections Commission’s actions.’ »

Police End Inquiry Into Alleged Match Fixing of 2011 World Cup Final:Match Fixing Allegations by Mahindananda Aluthgamage Rubbished by After Probe by Special Investigations Unit

by Imesh Ranasinghe The probe into whether the 2011 Cricket World Cup final was fixed so that Sri Lanka would lose launched by the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) of the Ministry of Sports is over. The head of the Chief of the SIU SSP Jagath Fonseka has told Media that the statements of cricketers who …

Continue reading ‘Police End Inquiry Into Alleged Match Fixing of 2011 World Cup Final:Match Fixing Allegations by Mahindananda Aluthgamage Rubbished by After Probe by Special Investigations Unit’ »

Mahindananda Aluthgamage’s Claim of Having Complained to International Cricket Council in 2011 About Match Fixing in 2011 Denied by Head of ICC Anti Corruption Unit Alex Marshall Who Says There is no Record of Any Letter From Sports Minister Then

by Rex Clementine Hours after Sri Lanka Police announced that they were discontinuing an investigation that the 2011 Cricket World Cup final was fixed, the International Cricket Council issued a statement saying that they had no reason to believe that the final was corrupt or did not feel the need to initiate an inquiry. Police …

Continue reading ‘Mahindananda Aluthgamage’s Claim of Having Complained to International Cricket Council in 2011 About Match Fixing in 2011 Denied by Head of ICC Anti Corruption Unit Alex Marshall Who Says There is no Record of Any Letter From Sports Minister Then’ »

Sri Lanka Increases Surveillance along its northern coast following reports of some Sri Lankan refugees in India attempting to return by boats following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic

By Meera Srinivasan and T.K. Rohit Sri Lanka has raised surveillance along its northern coast, following reports of some Sri Lankan refugees in India attempting to return by boats following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, authorities in Tamil Nadu denied any large-scale attempts by refugees to leave the country illegally. “We have alerted …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka Increases Surveillance along its northern coast following reports of some Sri Lankan refugees in India attempting to return by boats following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic’ »

Ilham and Inshaf: Why Did The Ibrahim Brothers Become Suicide Bombers?

By Samanth Subramanian There’s a video of the exact moment Inshaf Ibrahim decided to abandon his life as a rich young man and turn into a mass murderer. In one sense, he had made up his mind weeks earlier, which was why he was loitering in the Cinnamon Grand hotel’s breakfast buffet on Easter Sunday …

Continue reading ‘Ilham and Inshaf: Why Did The Ibrahim Brothers Become Suicide Bombers?’ »

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa Tells Tamil Media Representatives That “the TNA did not speak about issues such as lack of drinking water, road development to ensure easy access or issues with regard to overall economic development in the North”

Renewing his pledges to address issues in the North, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said the Government will set up a mechanism to increase investment in the Northern Province to improve living standards in area and support communities still struggling to overcome the impact of the conflict. The Prime Minister expressed these views during a …

Continue reading ‘Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa Tells Tamil Media Representatives That “the TNA did not speak about issues such as lack of drinking water, road development to ensure easy access or issues with regard to overall economic development in the North”’ »

The UN Core Group on Sri Lanka Wants SL to ensure that the country’s democratic space remains open and accountable and callsfor detentions and arrests to follow due process and be compliant with international norms and universal rights

The UN Core Group on Sri Lanka yesterday called on Sri Lanka to ensure that the country’s democratic space remains open and accountable, and called for detentions and arrests to follow due process and be compliant with international norms and universal rights. UK International Ambassador for Human Rights Rita French delivered this statement on behalf …

Continue reading ‘The UN Core Group on Sri Lanka Wants SL to ensure that the country’s democratic space remains open and accountable and callsfor detentions and arrests to follow due process and be compliant with international norms and universal rights’ »

There is no evidence that any Lankan Muslim turned to armed violence and weapons training against Sinhalese, BEFORE the anti-Muslim agitation by the Bodu Bala Sena

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka The regime’s promises and claims of “putting professional expertise first” is belied by the fact that having placed ex-military brass is in charge of everything from archaeology to agriculture, not to mention virtue—matters in which they have no particular expertise—President Gotabaya Rajapaksa delivered a parade-ground dressing down on prime time TV to …

Continue reading ‘There is no evidence that any Lankan Muslim turned to armed violence and weapons training against Sinhalese, BEFORE the anti-Muslim agitation by the Bodu Bala Sena’ »

Parliament must pass laws that MPs cannot engage in defamation of members of the Election Commission so as to make the EC look the other way out of fear when party leaders wreak havoc.

By S.Ratnajeevan H. Hoole Our main job on the Election Commission is to uphold election laws and conduct free and fair elections. Of necessity, this involves interdicting election law violations, usually by powerful politicians. Politicians promote the fiction that when they violate the law, we must not name them; that naming them is to violate …

Continue reading ‘Parliament must pass laws that MPs cannot engage in defamation of members of the Election Commission so as to make the EC look the other way out of fear when party leaders wreak havoc.’ »

Had Veluppillai Prabhakaran heeded the advice of Comrade Shanmugathasan he and his militia may not have been obliterated on the banks of the Nandikadal lagoon.

By Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka Birth Centenary of “Comrade Shan On July 3rd A political personality must be judged against the backdrop of his/her own time but also viewed with the benefit of hindsight so as to ascertain the more lasting relevance of his/her effort. So it is with Nagalingam Sanmugathasan, better known as N. Sanmugathasan and …

Continue reading ‘Had Veluppillai Prabhakaran heeded the advice of Comrade Shanmugathasan he and his militia may not have been obliterated on the banks of the Nandikadal lagoon.’ »

“Karuna may have given up murdering people, but the yahapalana cabal has not given up trying to divide the country” – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday urged Sri Lankans not to get distracted by minor issues overblown by the opposition like Karuna Amman’s campaign claim that he killed thousands of soldiers in one night at Elephant Pass, but to have the broader picture in mind when it cause to politics. “If we are able to distinguish …

Continue reading ‘“Karuna may have given up murdering people, but the yahapalana cabal has not given up trying to divide the country” – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’ »

The silence of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka is shameful given that former greats of the profession stood up to the State even in the most chilling of times.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene Governance in Sri Lanka today is transitioning from a constitutional (albeit flawed) system of checks and balances to tugs of war between competing political power centres that are constrained not by the Constitution or statute but by the sheer praxis of force. In that unseemly struggle over which looms the spectre …

Continue reading ‘The silence of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka is shameful given that former greats of the profession stood up to the State even in the most chilling of times.’ »

Should the leader of the Catholic Church in Sri Lanka not have the right to make statements that relate to the politics in the country, which will affect voting by Catholics?

By Lucien Rajakarunanayake The restrictions of Covid-19 have not removed the enthusiasm of the General Election, with statements by non-leader candidates drawing more attention than huge crowds at meetings or the distribution of goodies among voters. Karuna Amman and Harin Fernando are the main players in the current political drama. The Elections Commission has controlled …

Continue reading ‘Should the leader of the Catholic Church in Sri Lanka not have the right to make statements that relate to the politics in the country, which will affect voting by Catholics?’ »

Many of Mangala Samaraweera’s “New Deal” Proposals are at variance with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s vision for the country as spelled out in his 2019 elections manifesto.

By Lasanda Kurukulasuriya Former minister Mangala Samaraweera’s decision not to contest the upcoming parliamentary election, despite his name being on the candidates list, is unlikely to have been an arbitrary one. Samaraweera is not the type of politician to fade into oblivion simply based on the chance that he may lose. An advocate of far-reaching …

Continue reading ‘Many of Mangala Samaraweera’s “New Deal” Proposals are at variance with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s vision for the country as spelled out in his 2019 elections manifesto.’ »

All Candidates Suffering Under irrational and inexplicable restrictions Imposed by Current parliamentary elections law Who Get Elected to Parliament Must Get Together And Enact Much Needed Amendments to Election Law

by C.A. Chandraprema An issue that this writer has been highlighting in this newspaper from time to time for the past several years has now finally come home to roost and how! Today it has become a national issue affecting the candidates of all political parties in the country. This Parliamentary election will have to …

Continue reading ‘All Candidates Suffering Under irrational and inexplicable restrictions Imposed by Current parliamentary elections law Who Get Elected to Parliament Must Get Together And Enact Much Needed Amendments to Election Law’ »

A tongue lashing by the President of senior officials in the banking sector may please those who want the President to exercise dictatorial powers in governance.

by Prof. Savitri Goonesekere During the last few weeks, the media has paid a great deal of attention to fundamental rights cases filed in our Supreme Court. The electronic media, typically expressed half-truths or incorrect information on what these cases were about. Sadly, but perhaps not unexpectedly, opposition parties who should have been concerned with …

Continue reading ‘A tongue lashing by the President of senior officials in the banking sector may please those who want the President to exercise dictatorial powers in governance.’ »

Milinda Moragoda urges political parties to consider abolishing the Provincial Council system

Milinda Moragoda, Founder of the Pathfinder Foundation and former Cabinet Minister, called on political parties to clearly state their positions on the Provincial Council system in their policy platforms for the forthcoming general elections. He urges parties to consider repealing the 13th Amendment, thereby abolishing the Provincial Council system. Moragoda reiterated his earlier proposal that …

Continue reading ‘Milinda Moragoda urges political parties to consider abolishing the Provincial Council system’ »

Fort Magistrate Ranga Dissanayake asks CID Officers to Leave His Chambers After They Tried to Show Photographs of Arrested Lawyer Hejaaz Hizbullah To Children Prior to Recording Statements From Them; Identification Parade with 10 Child Witnesses Cancelled Due to Defence Lawyers Protesting Against Exercise to “Legitimise an Illegal Process.”

Fort Magistrate Ranga Dissanayaka said in open court that officers of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) had attempted to show photographs of Hejaaz Hizbullah at his chambers prior to the recording of statements from two children. When the matter was taken up before Dissanayake on 24 June, he told Hizbullah’s lawyers that prior to the …

Continue reading ‘Fort Magistrate Ranga Dissanayake asks CID Officers to Leave His Chambers After They Tried to Show Photographs of Arrested Lawyer Hejaaz Hizbullah To Children Prior to Recording Statements From Them; Identification Parade with 10 Child Witnesses Cancelled Due to Defence Lawyers Protesting Against Exercise to “Legitimise an Illegal Process.”’ »

If the Incumbent Lankan Regime with its ‘Asiatic Authoritarian-militarist mode’ is Perceived by India and the US as having Transitioned to a category of China’s “most favoured” States Like Pakistan,Cambodia and Myanmar the Consequences could be Unfavourable.

By Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka It was hardly a textbook example of the “correct handling of contradictions” (Mao). Future historians may conclude that the achievable dream of the 21st century as an Asian Age in a multipolar world order, died in mid-June 2020 in the Himalayas, in the Galwan valley in Ladakh. The ferocious and lamentable …

Continue reading ‘If the Incumbent Lankan Regime with its ‘Asiatic Authoritarian-militarist mode’ is Perceived by India and the US as having Transitioned to a category of China’s “most favoured” States Like Pakistan,Cambodia and Myanmar the Consequences could be Unfavourable.’ »

Five Inernational Organizations Call Upom Sri Lankan authorities to stop targeting, intimidating, and harassing journalist Dharisha Bastians and her family and Ensure Their Safety

(Text of a Media Communique Released by the Human Rights Watch of a Joint Statement Issued by the Amnesty International,Committee to Protect Journalists, Front Line Defenders. Human Rights Watch and Reporters Without Borders on behalf of Beleaguered Sri Lankan Senior Journalist Dharisha Bastians) The Sri Lankan authorities should stop targeting, intimidating, and harassing journalist and …

Continue reading ‘Five Inernational Organizations Call Upom Sri Lankan authorities to stop targeting, intimidating, and harassing journalist Dharisha Bastians and her family and Ensure Their Safety’ »

COVID-19 has compelled us to ask questions about leaders and leadership. What kind of leaders do we have?

By Krishantha Prasad Cooray “It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You can take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.”_ — Nelson Mandela Nelson Mandela was a rare leader. It would be hard …

Continue reading ‘COVID-19 has compelled us to ask questions about leaders and leadership. What kind of leaders do we have?’ »

The “Crucial flaw” affecting credible investigation into any ‘high profile’ crime in Sri Lanka is its “capture by the political arm of the State”- Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena.

By Meera Srinivasan As investigators in Sri Lanka move into the “final stages” of the probe into the April 2019 Easter terror bombings, concerns over apparent lack of adherence to due process have risen from several quarters. Sri Lanka police recently said they are about to conclude investigations of the deadly serial bombings that claimed …

Continue reading ‘The “Crucial flaw” affecting credible investigation into any ‘high profile’ crime in Sri Lanka is its “capture by the political arm of the State”- Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena.’ »

Ex-Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera Writes Letter to Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa In Defence of the Central Bank After President Gotabaya Rajapaksa castigates CB Officials Publicly

Sri Lanka’s ex-Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera has come out to defend the central bank after it was slammed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for inaction saying a credit guarantee scheme is needed to help move loans. Ironically Samaraweera’s economic program was hit by monetary instability in 2018 triggered by pro-cyclical rate cuts and liquidity injections which …

Continue reading ‘Ex-Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera Writes Letter to Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa In Defence of the Central Bank After President Gotabaya Rajapaksa castigates CB Officials Publicly’ »

If President Rajapaksa Continues to Centralise Power in the Presidential Secreariat Like Appointing an ex-DIG an Ombudsman Thereby , Dupicating Constitutional Institutions Then What is the Need For a Constitution in Sri Lanka?

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene If President Gotabaya Rajapaksa can be so bold as to set up institutions running parallel to constitutional bodies situated in his Presidential Secretariat, the consequential question arises as to what need is there of a Constitution for Sri Lanka? Duplication of constitutional institutions This query becomes pertinent in regard to the …

Continue reading ‘If President Rajapaksa Continues to Centralise Power in the Presidential Secreariat Like Appointing an ex-DIG an Ombudsman Thereby , Dupicating Constitutional Institutions Then What is the Need For a Constitution in Sri Lanka?’ »

Does the Tamil polity have the wisdom and maturity to undertake a critical analysis of the strategies that need to be adopted in the post-COVID-19 world?

By Veeragathy Thanabalasingham COVID-19, the pandemic that is claiming lives all over the world, has thrown global politics into disarray, crafting a new normal in which nothing will be the way it was. Political scholars are writing extensively on the challenges that will characterize the post-pandemic world order. This is the time for international cooperation …

Continue reading ‘Does the Tamil polity have the wisdom and maturity to undertake a critical analysis of the strategies that need to be adopted in the post-COVID-19 world?’ »

April 2019 Easter Bombings Investigation now focusing on financial networks connected to suicide bombers with role of foreign groups being Suspected; 200 suspects so far arrested

By Meera Srinivasan Sri Lanka’s probe into the April 2019 Easter terror bombings is in its “final stages”, authorities have said, while raising suspicion that the suicide bombers were funded by “two foreign outfits”. The Colombo Crime Division, Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and the Terrorism Investigation Department (TID), who are investigating the attacks of last …

Continue reading ‘April 2019 Easter Bombings Investigation now focusing on financial networks connected to suicide bombers with role of foreign groups being Suspected; 200 suspects so far arrested’ »

Father Ernest Poruthota Was the Patron Saint of Sinhala Theatre and Film.

By Dr.Sarath Amunugama I thought of writing this note as I am one of the few survivors from the halcyon days of the nineteen seventies when Father Ernest Poruthota nurtured a small group of young middle class urbanites who were breaking into the hitherto exclusive preserves of Sinhala theatre and film. Many of these young …

Continue reading ‘Father Ernest Poruthota Was the Patron Saint of Sinhala Theatre and Film.’ »

Lucien de Zoysa: Cricketer, actor, playwright, producer, cricket commentator, journalist and raconteur extraordinary

by R. B. Wijesinha (Jnr.) Had Bertie Wijesinha been alive on May 24, he would have been 100 years old. Sadly, he fell just short of his century. This year is also the 25th anniversary of the passing of his great friend, teammate and fellow commentator, Lucien de Zoysa. Four years older than Bertie, their …

Continue reading ‘Lucien de Zoysa: Cricketer, actor, playwright, producer, cricket commentator, journalist and raconteur extraordinary’ »

The chaos reigning on the streets of the USA should ensure the re-election of President Donald Trump as many Americans would see him as the only thing standing between them and total anarchy

by C. A. Chandraprema If Sri Lanka’s own experience is anything to go by, the chaos reigning on the streets of the USA should ensure the re-election of President Donald Trump at the presidential elections later this year. In 1988, Prime Minister R. Premadasa’s victory at the presidential elections of that year was more or …

Continue reading ‘The chaos reigning on the streets of the USA should ensure the re-election of President Donald Trump as many Americans would see him as the only thing standing between them and total anarchy’ »

President Trying to bypass Prime Minister, Cabinet and Ministries and establish a form of direct government coming under his control Through Presidential Task Forces – National Peoples Front

The National People’s Power (NPP) yesterday, expressed grave concern regarding the appointment of a series of Presidential Task Forces (PTFs) by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in recent times. Issuing a press release the NPP stated that PTFs posed a significant threat to democracy in Sri Lanka and pledged to resist such attempts to bypass mandated, established …

Continue reading ‘President Trying to bypass Prime Minister, Cabinet and Ministries and establish a form of direct government coming under his control Through Presidential Task Forces – National Peoples Front’ »

“Yahapalana” Minister Who Faced Protess for Allegedly Giving “Dud” Job Appointments to the Youths of Hambantota is now Contesting From Colombo Instead of Hambantota – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa has in a speech called on all candidates to be mindful of the election related guidelines issued by the health authorities and also to conduct an environmentally friendly and exemplary election campaign. The following is the text of the PM’s speech: After the Presidential election of 16 November 2019, we will …

Continue reading ‘“Yahapalana” Minister Who Faced Protess for Allegedly Giving “Dud” Job Appointments to the Youths of Hambantota is now Contesting From Colombo Instead of Hambantota – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’ »

Mangala Samaraweera is firm in his conviction that he should move away from the extremely rotten old political culture and commit himself to the cause of building a new mass political movement aimed at rescuing the country.

By Victor Ivan The decision reached by Mangala Samaraweera who is considered a colourful, controversial, daring and creative political figure in the old or the traditional political landscape of Sri Lanka, which is currently on the verge of decay and death, to abandon the course of traditional politics and choose to tread on an alternative …

Continue reading ‘Mangala Samaraweera is firm in his conviction that he should move away from the extremely rotten old political culture and commit himself to the cause of building a new mass political movement aimed at rescuing the country.’ »

Indian and Chinese Troops Clash in Galwan Valley Along Sino-Indian Border in Most Serious Incident Since 1962 War: Officially India Acknowledges 20 Dead but China Remains Silent Though US Intelligence Estimates at Least 35 Chinese Casualties

By Keith Jones The most serious border clash between Indian and Chinese troops since the two countries fought a brief border war in 1962 has reportedly resulted in dozens of fatalities. Fighting erupted Monday night in the Galwan Valley, one of at least four places along the disputed Sino-Indian border where troops have been arrayed …

Continue reading ‘Indian and Chinese Troops Clash in Galwan Valley Along Sino-Indian Border in Most Serious Incident Since 1962 War: Officially India Acknowledges 20 Dead but China Remains Silent Though US Intelligence Estimates at Least 35 Chinese Casualties’ »

Sri Lankan educators fear that the uneven access to gadgets and internet connection among students might bring new divides in the country’s free education system.

By Meera Srinivasan Forced to shift to online platforms due to the coronavirus pandemic, Sri Lankan educators fear that the uneven access to gadgets and internet connection among students might bring new divides in the country’s free education system. Ever since Sri Lanka reported its first local case of COVID-19 on March 10, public health …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lankan educators fear that the uneven access to gadgets and internet connection among students might bring new divides in the country’s free education system.’ »

SSP Who Allegedly Suppressed Evidence to Shield Suspected Murderers of Lasantha Wickrematunge Appointed Director of CID;Slain “Sunday Leader”Editor’s Daughter Ahimsa Asks National Police Commission to Remove A.R. Prasanna J. Alwis and Take Steps to Produce him in Court as Ordered by Acting IGP Before 2019 Presidential Election

Ahimsa Wickrematunge, the daughter of late journalist and Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge, has appealed to the Police Commission to block the appointment of SSP A.R.P.J. Alwis as Director of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). Wickrematunge releasing a statement said that Alwis was ordered to be arrested in connection to her father’s murder and he was unsuited …

Continue reading ‘SSP Who Allegedly Suppressed Evidence to Shield Suspected Murderers of Lasantha Wickrematunge Appointed Director of CID;Slain “Sunday Leader”Editor’s Daughter Ahimsa Asks National Police Commission to Remove A.R. Prasanna J. Alwis and Take Steps to Produce him in Court as Ordered by Acting IGP Before 2019 Presidential Election’ »

Ultimately the outcome Prabhakaran and the LTTE achieved for the Tamils was negative: destruction, and a situation in which the Sri Lankan military completely dominates the North and East and its citizenry.

By Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka “Can you gather grapes from thorns or pick figs from thistles?” – Matthew 7:16-20 Tamil politics is devoid of a strategic calculus. While the recent welcome offers to the Prime Minister and the President (in that chronological order) of conditional cooperation by the TNA leader Sampanthan followed by its rising star …

Continue reading ‘Ultimately the outcome Prabhakaran and the LTTE achieved for the Tamils was negative: destruction, and a situation in which the Sri Lankan military completely dominates the North and East and its citizenry.’ »

TNA Leader R.Sampanthan as a Sri Lankan Tamil and Devout Hindu Writes Lengthy Letter to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa Over Appointment of “Sinhala Buddhist”Task Force To Allegedly Preserve Archaeological Heritage of only The Eastern Province Excluding Other eight Provinces

(Text of a letter sent by TNA leader and former Trincomalee District MP Rajavarothayam Sampanthan to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on the Estabishment of a Presidential Task Force for Archeological Heritage Management in the EASTERN PROVINCE) 15th June 2020 R. SAMPANTHAN LEADER TAMIL NATIONAL ALLIANCE PRESIDENT GOTABAYA RAJAPAKSA President Socialist Democratic Republic of Sri Lanka, Presidential …

Continue reading ‘TNA Leader R.Sampanthan as a Sri Lankan Tamil and Devout Hindu Writes Lengthy Letter to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa Over Appointment of “Sinhala Buddhist”Task Force To Allegedly Preserve Archaeological Heritage of only The Eastern Province Excluding Other eight Provinces’ »

Presidential Task Forces (PTFs) has no provision to bring public officials under the control of the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Says Defence Secretary Maj. Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne.

By Asiri Fernando The role of the Presidential Task Forces (PTFs) has been misinterpreted by some and there is no provision to bring public officials under the control of the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence (MOD), said Maj. Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne. The statement by the Secretary to the MOD comes in the wake …

Continue reading ‘Presidential Task Forces (PTFs) has no provision to bring public officials under the control of the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Says Defence Secretary Maj. Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne.’ »

Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne Directs CID to Obtain a report from the Government Analyst on Whether the laptop belonging to journalist Dharisha Bastians Seized by the CID had been Tampered with Between June 4 to June 10

By T. Farook Thajudeen and Yoshitha Perera The Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne today directed the CID to obtain a report from the Government Analyst on the laptop belonging to journalist Dharisha Bastains had been Tampered The laptop is currently in the custody of the CID in connection with the investigation into the alleged abduction …

Continue reading ‘Colombo Chief Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne Directs CID to Obtain a report from the Government Analyst on Whether the laptop belonging to journalist Dharisha Bastians Seized by the CID had been Tampered with Between June 4 to June 10’ »

Following Application Made by Journalist’s Lawyers Colombo Chief Magistrate Orders Govt Analyst to Examine Laptop Computer of “New York Times” Correspondent Dharisha Bastians That was Seized by CID to See Whether Any Alterations Had been made to it

By Meera Srinivasan A Sri Lankan journalist attached to the The New York Times has said police recently raided her home and seized her laptop, in connection with the alleged abduction of a Swiss Embassy staffer in Colombo last November. On Monday, Dharisha Bastians, a correspondent for The New York Times and a former editor …

Continue reading ‘Following Application Made by Journalist’s Lawyers Colombo Chief Magistrate Orders Govt Analyst to Examine Laptop Computer of “New York Times” Correspondent Dharisha Bastians That was Seized by CID to See Whether Any Alterations Had been made to it’ »

CID Searches Colombo Residence of Well-known Journalist Dharisha Bastians and Seize Computer used in the Past by her; Former “Sunday Observer” Editor who was Forced to Leave Country After 2019 Regime Change Concerned that “Interested parties” may Compromise the integrity of hardware, software, data and documents of the laptop

CID officers have searched the Colombo residence of career journalist and former Editor of the State-owned Sunday Observer, Dharisha Bastians, and taken away her computer last week. Bastians, who was forced to leave the country after the change in Government, after her name was dragged into an investigation Involving the alleged abduction of an employee …

Continue reading ‘CID Searches Colombo Residence of Well-known Journalist Dharisha Bastians and Seize Computer used in the Past by her; Former “Sunday Observer” Editor who was Forced to Leave Country After 2019 Regime Change Concerned that “Interested parties” may Compromise the integrity of hardware, software, data and documents of the laptop’ »

Reliance on military for civil tasks may be popular at this time But unwise

by Jehan Perera The signs of elections, and the short term changes that they bring, are upon us today. Posters of candidates are coming up with their party symbols, preference numbers and their vote-catching mottos. Although this is only a caretaker government and hence restricted in its ability to spend state funds and make far …

Continue reading ‘Reliance on military for civil tasks may be popular at this time But unwise’ »

Resisting the militarisation of Sri Lanka with all means at our collective command must be our first priority Ahead of the 2020 Parliament Election.This must be the unifying clarion call from the North to the South.

By Kishali Pinto Jayawardene To those who scoffed that the Gotabaya Rajapaksa Presidency would not come in with a sweepingly heavy hand after the first few months of sweetness and charm, this frightening moment of the iron hand in the iron glove that Sri Lanka is experiencing at its onset must surely teach otherwise. The …

Continue reading ‘Resisting the militarisation of Sri Lanka with all means at our collective command must be our first priority Ahead of the 2020 Parliament Election.This must be the unifying clarion call from the North to the South.’ »

The Fundamental Rights Petitions Relating to The General Elections

By Nigel Hatch PC The five Judge Bench of the Supreme Court by its decision on June 2, 2020 speaking through its majority rejected the preliminary objections raised by the Respondents to the maintainability of the several Fundamental Rights (FR) petitions challenging the legality of the presidential proclamation of March 2 dissolving Parliament. A Petition …

Continue reading ‘The Fundamental Rights Petitions Relating to The General Elections’ »

Political Implications of Elections System Mechanics

by C.A.Chandraprema The long awaited date of the parliamentary election has been announced and the beleaguered Elections Commission has been able to somewhat vindicate itself. The August 5 date is not too far off nor too close for more accusations to be hurled at the EC. Up to the time of writing, we have not …

Continue reading ‘Political Implications of Elections System Mechanics’ »

If the Military Task Force Appointed by the President continues to function Sri Lanka would have established a military regime, within what is expected to be a civilian administration&a parliamentary democracy under a written Constitution – Friday Forum

(Text of Media Release Issued by the “Friday Forum”on June 11th 2020 Under the Heading ” The Rule of Law and Democratic Governance”) At the Annual National law Conference 2020 organised by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka 2020, President Gotabaya Rajapakse in the course of his address said, “The time has come for all …

Continue reading ‘If the Military Task Force Appointed by the President continues to function Sri Lanka would have established a military regime, within what is expected to be a civilian administration&a parliamentary democracy under a written Constitution – Friday Forum’ »

Did the police brutality in Colombo against democratic demonstrators show that Sri Lanka is moving towards the democracy of the Retired Uniforms?

By Lucien Rajakarunanayake How did Sri Lanka get so distant from global realities, so soon? Why is a protest near an embassy of the United States a matter for such concern for the Police to even obtain a court order against, when the whole democratic world is carrying on such protests? One may not be …

Continue reading ‘Did the police brutality in Colombo against democratic demonstrators show that Sri Lanka is moving towards the democracy of the Retired Uniforms?’ »

Sri Lanka today may be high on security with our omnipresent armed forces but it is not a safe place to speak or work for many. There is a difference between security and safety.

By Dr.Radhika Coomaraswamy In the first few days, as America burned, the world looked on amazed and bewildered, wondering what this would mean for the immediate and long-term future. As the protests settled down and drew larger crowds with an overwhelming number of young people, one began to think of other movements in Hong Kong, …

Continue reading ‘Sri Lanka today may be high on security with our omnipresent armed forces but it is not a safe place to speak or work for many. There is a difference between security and safety.’ »

Why would Sri Lanka, which successfully fought three civil wars using the National Security Council, require a militarised Presidential Task Force to build “a secure country” in peacetime?

by Dayan Jayatilleka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa appointed a Task Force of the heavy mob, which will press its collective knee into the neck of the new, socially legitimate Parliament that will arise thanks to the Supreme Court judgment which cleared the way for the Election Commission to name a date for voting. Lankans live at …

Continue reading ‘Why would Sri Lanka, which successfully fought three civil wars using the National Security Council, require a militarised Presidential Task Force to build “a secure country” in peacetime?’ »