Hope LSSP examines past: Failure to accommodate minorities

By Sydney Knight

Thanks to the work of two LSSP stalwarts, the publication of ‘Selected Speeches and Writings of CRdeS was made possible.

This publication was released at a launch at the N.M. Perera Centre on March 6, 2007 by another stalwart Batty Weerakoon (BW) with Tissa Vitharana (TV) chairing the launch.

Seated there listening to BW and TV in the context of my own study of CRdeS and the LSSP I was able to see the history of our Island Home in a new perspective. Very specially the history after we were granted Universal Adult Franchise in 1931 with the Women in the U.K. getting it only in 1928.

The post 1931 saga is a story of what in political circles is termed majoritarian. The majority Groups in Ceylon/Sri Lanka taking over power at the Centre.

Why is this School of Thought valid? In the 1930s there was the first attempt at Sinhala only which led to Tamil also.

The post 1948 era began with the disenfranchisement of the persons of recent Indian/Pakistani origin.

The work of the 1956 Government is of course very much a part of our history. Sinhala only.

All these plus others have marginalized the Minorities. For me this was very visible when I was seated for my visa to travel to a European Country.

I have been overseas since my Peradeniya days. Over the years I have seen the changing complexion of those who travel.

Today it is not us travelling within the Global Village for holiday or work only. A certain section of people in our island home are leaving permanently.

Studying those who were there for their visas, I was made to think that here were people who are unhappy in Sri Lanka and are thus migrating.

All those over the decades responsible for this majoritarianism must be held responsible for this sad reality.

A person leaves home for various reasons. These are being compelled to leave.

The LSSP in fact could have been the third force in the centre with the UNP and the SLFP but they failed us. Those whom they attracted were some at Peradeniya for instance and also the minorities. So I hope the LSSP too will undergo a re look at their past and the failure to take the minorities on board their ship.

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