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November 27, 2011

Nov 27-Dec 3:

Divine songster K.J. Yesudas: Singing in films for fifty years

Reputed Indian singer Kattassery Joseph Yesudas known to the world as KJ Yesudas celebrated his golden jubilee in singing for films on November 14th this year. It was on Nov 14th 1961 that Yesudas recorded his first film song for a Malayalee film at a Chennai studio.

Thereafter in fifty –years of singing for films Yesudas has sung over 50,000 songs in 17 Languages.He has won numerous awards and is regarded as a unifying voice of India. He turned seventy last year [Click here to read in full ~ on dbsjeyaraj.com]

Canadian Foreign Minister Baird praises UN for publishing report on Sri Lanka 

By Jessica Murphy, Parliamentary Bureau -cnews.canoe.ca

OTTAWA – Sri Lanka needs to take accountability for serious allegations of war crimes committed during its 25-year civil war, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said Thursday.

Baird’s comments to MPs at the Commons foreign affairs committee come after Prime Minister Stephen Harper publicly criticized Sri Lanka over its human rights record during the Commonwealth meeting in Australia in October. [TC]

He Retires and Continues – A Personal Tribute to Professor N. Shanmugaratnam

by Darley Jose Kjosavik

The seminar room at the Department of International Environment and Development Studies (Noragric), Norwegian University of Life Sciences UMB), was full.

Professor Nadarajah Shanmugaratnam (Shan) was in for a surprise. He was invited to a seminar, but was blissfully unaware of the special gift he was to receive. It was a Festschrift in his honour. As he unwrapped and opened the box I handed to him, on behalf of the Department, the surprise and the bewilderment were all too obvious. [TC]

Sri Lankan Govt does not want “Interference”by Organizations like Amnesty or Countries like Canada

Testimony by Amnesty International before Canadian House of Commons Subcommittee on Human Rights Situation in Sri Lanka

Good afternoon, everyone. It is November 17, 2011 today and this is the eighth meeting of the Subcommittee on International Human Rights of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development. We are currently studying the human rights situation in Sri Lanka. [TC]

New evidence unearthed regarding alleged Sri Lankan war crimes? 

Hello Freinds, The controversy over the issue of War crimes allegedly committed by the Sri Lankan Armed Forces with the sanction of high officials does not seem to receding into the background with the passage of time. [DBSJEYARAJ.COM]

President Rajapaksa Invites Diaspora to Return and Help Develop North 

President Mahinda Rajapaksa says that the Diaspora could contribute in a significant manner towards the development in the North. [TC]

The Lionel Bopage Story: A journey through Serendipity’s not so serendipitous times 

By Professor N. Shanmugaratnam

‘A biography by its very nature’, writes Michael Colin Cooke, in setting the scene for the Bopage Story, ‘reveals a life not only of an individual but of the society and times of that individual.’ A person’s life story, however, can be told in different ways. A biography may be rich in minutiae and fail to go sufficiently beyond the more immediate social context of the subject. [TC]

Tamil Buddhism in Ancient South India and Sri Lanka 

by J.L. Devananda

The Tamil film “7aum Arivu” (the seventh sense)directed by AR Murugadoss is now running in cinemas and is a box office success.

The film is based on the story of Bodhidharmar who was supposedly a Tamil Buddhist born In Kanchipuram and a scion of the Pallava dynasty. While relating the tale of Bodhivarmar at the start the film goes on to portray the modern saga of a character purported to be a descendant of Bodhidharmar [TC]

The military is taking over large chunks of land in North-Chandrika Kumaratunga

by Ranga Jayasuriya

Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga last week delivered a scathing attack on the government’s handling of the former IDPs at a discussion held in the South Asia Policy Research Institute in Colombo.

“You may be satisfied with it (reconciliation process), but I am not,” she said responding to Professor Rohan Gunaratna, who was the guest speaker. [TC]

“How can they say I am Biased when I Acquitted Fonseka on two of three charges Against him”: Judge Deepali Wijesundara

Deepali Wijesundara, President of the Colombo High Court Trial-at-Bar that convicted former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka to three years imprisonment in the “white flag” case spoke to the Sunday Times on the threats she faced during the trial , after the judgment and other matters.

Excerpts:

You have spoken of threats to your life due to the “white flag” case? Please elaborate? [TC]

Is US threatening action against Lanka at UN in Geneva if presidential pardon is not given to Sarath Fonseka? 

By Shamindra Ferdinando

The UPFA alleges the US embassy is increasingly interfering in domestic political issues, thereby undermine the government.

The SLFP-led coalition believes that the US is trying to cause a rift in the government over the imprisonment of defeated presidential candidate, former Army Chief, Gen. Sarath Fonseka [TC]

President stands by chuckling as his MPs assault the opposition in parliament 

by Namini Wijedasa

Sri Lanka is a noble nation with a rich heritage. We were always grand but we became positively marvellous after defeating the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, one of the meanest terrorist organizations in the world.

Indeed, in our current disposition–with the Tigers gone and a strong, stable government in charge–we are splendid. Not unnaturally, many ministers and ruling party politicians regularly allude to this magnificence in their speeches. It makes them feel self-important, poor sods. They have little else to do under this regime. [TC]

Taking law into their hands is a popular pastime among Rajapaksa acolytes

Don’t the people have the right to speak of anything taking place illegally?” Gen. Sarath Fonseka(Post-verdict statement in the White Flag case)

President Mahinda Rajapaksa takes umbrage at the strangest things. He once vented outrage at a Sinhala song, titled, ‘The people of that country are running crazy’. Such songs, the President remarked at his sanctimonious-best, would encourage separatism. [TC]

Broad-based dialogue needed to address public concern about politicisation of our justice system 

By Jude Fernando

“Judges should behave within the judiciary as well as outside it in such a manner as to consolidate the confidence of the people. Judges have no private behaviour. It should be remembered that when oppressive, criminal, arbitrary, despotic actions are taken against the people by the executive or authorities, it is the judiciary that will be the guardian of the people.” - Chief Justice Hema Basnayake, July 3, 1964.

I fully support the enforcement of law and order to preserve communal harmony. Harmony is a precondition for peace in whatever form it comes, and disharmony would obstruct a political solution to the ethnic conflict. [TC]

Duminda Silva: Frontline General in ruling family’s relentless campaign

On the day of the recent elections, Duminda Silva, ruling party politician, with his entourage of armed official and unofficial enforcers, rampaged through the streets of Kolonnawa, physically brutalising and intimidating the opposition.

Although the area had been heavily policed, the compliant and neutered arm of the law chose to remain limp, permitting Silva an unfettered run of the electorate. [TC]

President Mahinda Rajapaksa orders urgent relief to disaster-stricken people

pic by: RIA Novosti

Statement by Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, Sri Lanka
President Mahinda Rajapaksa has directed state officials to assess the situation in the areas hit by heavy rains and winds yesterday November 25 and provide urgent relief to the people affected by the disaster immediately.

The President has met with relevant authorities this morning at the Temple Trees to discuss the immediate measures need to be taken to provide relief to the people affected by the heavy rains and winds in southern coastal areas. [TC]

November 20, 2011

Nov 20-26:

Prabhakaran: Powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle

by D.B.S.Jeyaraj

Hello Friends

Today November 26th is the birthday of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE)Leader Thiruvengadam Veluppillai Prabhakaran. Had he been living Prabhakaran would have celebrated his 57th birthday today. [DBSJ]

Countdown begins for 'Great Heroes Day' showdown 

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The count down has begun for “ Great Heroes Day” (GHD) on November 27th. Rival factions of the overseas Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE)competing with each other to commemorate the event in Western countries where substantial concentrations of Sri Lankan Tamils are prevalent.

November 27th falls on a Sunday this year. This has reinforced the efforts of both factions as the chances of drawing massive crowds is greater because of Sunday being a holiday.In a scenario similar to a market place both factions are doing their best to ensure that the Great Heroes Day(GHD)events organized by them get the highest number of attendees. [DBSJ]

Mass struggle must be launched to defeat this dictatorial terror regime

by Dr. Vickramabahu Karunaratne

Text of a speech made at the inauguration of the multi-party,multi-ethnic, multi-religious “Movement for Justice” in Colombo on November 23rd 2011

Today there is a serious challenge to democracy in this country. On the surface, one sees only democratic tendencies. We can have press conferences and protest meetings. [TC]

Daughter Apsara wants signatures for ‘White House’ petition seeking justice for Sarath Fonseka

Dear friends,

As you all very well know my father was given another 3 years of imprisonment simply because the court felt he assisted in spreading a rumor that brought tension among ethnicities.

Although it is my dearest wish to comment on this “verdict” and the so called “justice system” in Sri Lanka, I will keep them to myself for the sake of my family, who has felt the wrath of the the Sri Lankan “law” more than any regular family that lives in the country. [TC]

Rajapaksa and Wickremesinghe must weed out their party MPs who misbehaved in parliament

by S.L.Gunasekara

Unruly scenes and episodes of thuggery in what is, for some quaint ‘reason’, termed the “August Assembly”, namely Parliament, are regrettably, nothing new.

Perhaps a new “low” was established by the scenes of rampant thuggery in the presence of the President of the Republic and the leader of the UPFA/SLFP while the President was reading the budget speech. [TC]

Is Ranil Wickremesinghes concern over judicial independence genuinely ‘bona fide’ or a ‘mala fide’ device?

by S.L. Gunasekara

Quick to seek some political advantage from the conviction of General Sarath Fonseka by the Trial at Bar on Friday the 18th, Ranil Wickremesinghe (the leader under siege) of the UNP has made a pronouncement condemning the treatment meted out to Mr. Warawewa who was the dissentient member of that Trial at Bar who held that General Fonseka was not guilty of any of the charges against him. [TC]

Rival LTTE factions in Canada clashing over ‘Great Heroes Day’ event unite due to soccer club efforts

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Both Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE) factions in Canada have agreed NOT to have different”Great Heroes Day”functions on Nov 27th 2011

Clashing LTTE factions in Canada have decided to conduct one “Great Heroes day” function in Ontario Province & another in Quebec Province only [DBSJ]

“Real number of dead and missing far too small to provide any substance to the absurd allegations of genocide and war crimes”

by Gotabaya Rajapaksa

Full Text of address by Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the Inaugural National Conference on Reconciliation: “The Way Forward for Post Conflict Sri Lanka”, on Nov 24, 2011 held at the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute of International Relations and Strategic Studies, in Colombo [TC]

US Senators urge Secretary of State to take lead in establishing independent international commission if LLRC fails to meet standards

Letter from US Senators dated Nov 4th, 2011 to US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, urging The United States to “take the lead in pressing for the establishment of an independent international commission, either by the UN Human Rights Council or under the Secretary-General’s own authority”, was released to the media today. [TC]

LLRC report states no need of international probe if govt implements its recommendations 

By Shamindra Ferdinando

The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) has, in its final report, said that no state should be asked to suspend military operations aimed at rescuing civilians forcibly held by a heavily armed terrorist group.

The failure on the part of a state to proceed with such operations will only allow terrorists to go on the rampage, the presidential commission has said. [TC]

The Tamil death toll in early 2009: a misleading count by Rohan Gunaratna

by Prof.Michael Roberts

Rohan Gunaratna presented a wide-ranging talk entitled “The Future of Sri Lanka’s Security: Countering the LTTE on the Western Soil” under the auspices of the British Scholars Association at the British Council in Colombo on the 16th November 2011.

In measured tone, he pinpointed several shortcomings in the government policies in meeting world-wide attention directed at the situation in Sri Lanka, such as the failure to present a White Paper on the last stage of the war and the failure to invite Ban Ki-moon’s Darusman Panel to visit the island as part of their investigation. [TC]

“We Should be Committed to Build a Nation that all of us can be Proud of”

by Mahinda Rajapaksa

Text of 2012 budget speech in Parliament by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on November 21st 2011

Hon. Speaker, I am indeed happy to deliver the 7th consecutive Budget Speech of our Government. I am also inspired to see you in the chair on this occasion. [TC] 

UNP members were assaulted by govt members in the presence of the President 

by Karu Jayasuriya

Press Release by Karu Jayasuriya, Deputy Leader, United National Party, on the assault of the main opposition, United National Party, by the Members of Parliament of the Government 22nd November 2011

We have to reiterate the fact that there is a severe eroding of democracy in this country. [TC]

Pandemonium in parliament as UPFA-UNP MPs clash during budget speech

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Pandemonium erupted in the Sri Lankan Parliament on Monday November 21st 2011 as MP’s belonging to the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance(UPFA) and opposition United National Party(UNP)clashed openly in the presence of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa during the presentation of the budget for the forthcoming year. [DBSJ]

Sri Lanka to devalue rupee by 3 pct

By C. Bryson Hull

Nov 21 (Reuters) – Sri Lanka’s president on Monday devalued the rupee currency by 3 percent in a shock monetary policy change that should boost export competitiveness and temper International Monetary Fund (IMF) pressure for exchange rate flexibility. [TC]

Tamil Resurgence Week in Tamil Nadu organized by Seeman will focus on LTTE armed struggle 

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

A 9-day”Thamizhar Ezhuchi Vaaram”(Tamil resurgence week)organized by”Naam Thamizhar Iyakkam” (We Tamil movement) is currently on in Tamil Nadu [DBSJ]

Twenty charges compiled against Ranil Wickremesinghe by UNP ‘dissidents’

By Maithri Guneratna

The paragraph pertaining to the party’s Constitution: 1.1: The party that is dedicated to democracy devoid of nationalism and clansman ship.

The action taken against members of the UNP to oust them from the Working Committee after they had spoken openly agitating for a leadership change and scuppering attempts of such members to air their views publicly. [TC]

Are The Rajapaksas planning to get Gen. Fonseka sentenced sequentially for this crime or that so he does not get to leave the prison?

by Tissaranee Gunasekara

“Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is not known as a moderate voice, and his remarks were emblematic of his downplaying government actions while exaggerating the opposition threat. It is interesting that he did not mention the allegation of coup plans by Fonseka, but his promise of more military purges to come was ominous”. -US Ambassador Patricia Butenis (Wikileaks)

For all their patriotic rhetoric, the two omnipotent presidential-siblings, Basil and Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, tend to be more open and truthful with major and minor US officials than with Lankan people. [TC]

Hirunika Premachandra addresses crucial issues affecting Sri Lanka in ‘Sirasa’ TV interview 

by Sumanasiri Liayanage

While young people all over the world are experimenting with new forms of social resistance, the young, energetic and brave 24 year-old daughter of the slain politician, Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra (BLP), Hirunika Premachandra in her interview with Sirasa, Kingsly Ratnayaka, proposed that in order to understand the incident that occurred at the local government election day, it has to be located in a broader political landscape of the island. [TC]

Sri Lankan Tamil refugees in India being issued Lankan birth certificates 

Nov 20, 2011, RAMANATHAPURAM:

In a confidence gaining initiative, Sri Lankan authorities on Saturday began issuing birth certificates to children of Tamil refugees who have been living in camps here.

Around 13 officials of the Sri Lankan Embassy led by the country’s Deputy High Commissioner in South India Vadivel Krishnamoorthy undertook the exercise of recording the birth of children at a special camp conducted at the district Collectorate. [TC]

‘Sthree Mela’: Grand Celebration Highlighting Great Accomplishments of Sri Lankan Women

The Voices of Sri Lankan Women Presents An Exhibition & Conference at the BMICH Colombo 8th 9th and 10th December 2011 Film Screening at Gall face Jubilee hall 7th December 2011

Over the centuries, women have played a significant role by contributing to our socioeconomic, cultural, political and human development processes in the country. [TC]

Sri Lanka’s first Braille newspaper ‘Wijeya Braille’ launched

By Cassandra Mascarenhas

Sri Lanka has come a long way since children who were either hearing or sight impaired were neglected and marginalised in society and did not have opportunities in gaining any education or fitting into society.

With the Ceylon School for the Deaf and Blind preparing to celebrate its centenary next year, it was timely that the first ever Braille newspaper in Sri Lanka was launched yesterday at the School for the Blind in Ratmalana. [TC]

The Sri Lanka reader edited by John Clifford Holt is a superb Anthology

by Tissa Jayatilaka

The Sri Lanka Reader ~ History, Culture and Politics
Edited by John Clifford Holt [TC]

Looking for the boy with the violin

Priyath Liyanage goes to Sri Lanka in search of the boy with the violin that abandoned his home in the final days of a civil war. [TC]

Nedumaran writes new 1000 page biography of LTTE leader Prabhakaran

 
by D.B.S. Jeyaraj
A 1000 page book on the life of Veluppillai Prabhakaran,leader of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) is to be released in January 2012
The book “Prabhakaran: Thamizhar Ezhuchiyin Vadivam” (Prabhakaran; Personification of Tamil resurgence) is written by Pazhaniyappan Nedumaran. [DBSJ]

No satisfactory permanent solution can ever be found under a unitary system of govt

by Veerasingham Anandasangaree

This is the full text of a letter sent to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa by former MP and Secretary-General of the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) Veerasingam Aanandasangaree:

I am compelled to write this letter to you being very much worried and upset over the happenings in this Country, since the end of the war. [TC]

The Tamil people have not been treated as equal citizens for a very long time-Sampanthan

In an interview with The Sunday Leader, R. Sampanthan also spoke on Sinhalese settlement in the North and East, as well as local and international efforts towards assuring accountability for alleged war crimes. [TC]

‘I bow my head in respect to the judge who acquitted me of the charges’–Gen. Sarath Fonseka

by Namini Wijedasa

As journalists, politicians and public waited for Sarath Fonseka to exit the Colombo High Court after his sentencing Friday, authorities smuggled him out the back, forced him down the steps and roughly bundled him into the van taking him back to jail.

But if they were hoping for a quick getaway, it was not to be. [TC]

Why Gen. Sarath Fonseka was found not guilty on all three charges 

By Manopriya Gunasekara

Excerpts of dissenting judgment by Judge W.T.M.P.B.Warawewa

This case is based on an interview the former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka gave The Sunday Leader Editor Frederica Jansz in December 2010.

Frederica Jansz is a journalist by profession who had begun her journalism career in 1990 with Viz News and then worked at The Sunday Times before moving to The Sunday Leader. [TC]

Why Gen Sarath Fonseka was found guilty on the first charge

By Manopriya Gunasekara

Excerpts of judgment by Deepali Wijesundara, President of the High Court Trial-at-Bar, and Judge Zulfikar Razeen

Prison guards dragging Fonseka to the prison vehicle-pic: sundayTimes.lk

It should be considered whether the accused had an intention of disrupting the Government and creating unrest among the public. In the statement made in courts it was evident that he had a grudge against the President and the Defence Secretary. [TC]

Sri Lanka spent 880 Million Rupees for bid to host 2018 Commonwealth games in Hambantota

By Rathindra Kuruwita

Sri Lanka spent around US$ 8 million (approximately SLR880 million) for the recent Hambantota 2018 bid to host the Commonwealth Games.

This included hundreds of millions spent on PR firms, to woo representatives from Commonwealth nations, and on the 120 strong delegation to St. Kitts and Nevis, while Australia sent only 20 representatives. [TC]

Arrest order for Duminda Silva: Will there be an oasis of justice in a desert of iniquity 

by Tisaranee Gunasekara

“This is what happens when men decide to stand the world on its head”. Hannah Arendt (Responsibility and Judgement)

Justice is an oddity, in unjust times.

In a lawful land, the arrest-order for parliamentarian Duminda Silva would have been issued just days after the Kolonnawa quadruple-murder. In a lawful land, the police would have unhesitatingly named Mr. Silva a suspect, given the abundance of prima facie evidence. [TC]

It is Sri Lanaka’s good fortune that Norway became a failed facilitator

by Gomin Dayasri

The official Norwegian assessment of its 12-year peace effort (1997-2009) in Sri Lanka titled “Pawns of Peace” is a mere surface scratch.

The judge and the jury in the report being Norway, the fault lines are spread in other directions omitting to mention the more sensitive mistakes Norway made. [TC]

NORAD funded evaluation of peace efforts in Sri Lanka is useful and good but analytically flawed

by Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka

The Norwegian (NORAD) commissioned study, Pawns of Peace: Evaluation of Norwegian peace efforts in Sri Lanka, 1997-2009, is useful and good, but analytically flawed at its very core.

It is useful because it shows us how the ‘liberal peace’ discourse goes and how that constituency views the conflict in retrospect. [TC]

Need of the Hour is an enlightened Central Govt and an efficient elected municipal administration

by Eran Wickramaratne M.P

In March 2011 there was a government announcement that another layer of government was to be created, namely, the Colombo Metropolitan City Corporation by bringing together the Colombo Municipal Council, Dehiwela-Mt. Lavinia Municipal Council, Sri Jaywardenepura-Kotte Municipal Council, Kolonnawa Urban Council, and Kotikawatte-Mulleriyawa Pradeshiya Sabha. [TC]

November 13, 2011

Nov 13-19

‘I do not at any stage accept this verdict’-Sarath Fonseka

Text of statement made by Gen.Sarath Fonseka after being sentenced

I am unsurprised by this verdict. A large number of Lawyers discussed with me ahead of this decision, and doubted whether justice will prevail in this case.

I told them the decision will take this direction. I truly admire justice Warauwwa for his guts for taking a dissenting stand in this judgment despite the odds arrayed against him. [TC]

Rajapaksa regime is telling ten lies to cover up one-Harsha de Silva 

by Marianne David

“New Law is an act to Ruin Economic Freedom” charges UNP

UNP Chief Economist and MP Dr. Harsha de Silva yesterday charged that the Government was now covered in mud from head to toe with what the party described as the ‘Act to Ruin Economic Freedom’. [TC]

Human Rights Watch Testimony to Canadian Parliamentarians on Sri Lankan Human Rights Situation 

Canadian House of Commons Sub-committee on International Human Rights of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development had hearings on Sri Lankan Human Rights Situation in November 2011. [TC]

“Lebara”: London based European Success Story of Sri Lankan Tamils

by Juliette Garside

Yoganathan Ratheesan, 35, says he has no idea how he made Lebara such a success, but admits he is good ‘at running things’

Yoganathan Ratheesan was 25 when he co-founded Lebara. Ten years on and the business of selling cheap international mobile phone calls to migrant workers in Europe and Australia is snowballing. [TC]

Is it possible or not to imagine a social and economic system which will permit all living beings to be happy? 

by Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka

Statement made at the New H u manism Initiative, UNESCO, Paris on 15th November, 2011

Louis Althusser who dominated the field of radical philosophy here in Paris in the 1970s, once said “I am only a philosopher”. Now I am not even a philosopher, speaking for myself, I am only a political scientist; though I have strayed thro u gh the realm of political philosophy back into ethics.

Video: Sri Lanka court jails former army chief Sarath Fonseka

BBC News

A court in Sri Lanka has jailed former army chief Sarath Fonseka for three years for implicating the government in war crimes.

The court ruled that he lent credence to allegations the defence secretary ordered Tamil Tigers to be killed as they tried to surrender in May 2009. [TC]

Two venues booked for 'Great Heroes Day' event in London cancelled at short notice 

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE)faction led by Segarampillai Vinayagamoorthy alias Vinayagam has suffered a major setback in Britain [TC]

Tiger factions gear up for Nov27th “Maveerar Naal”

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The French crackdown on the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE) in Paris was launched on April Fools day . In what may have appeared to be a cruel April fools joke to the tigers in France, French law enforcement authorities engaged in concrete action against the LTTE on April 1st 2007. [TC]

“Unless we live together in goodwill and with understanding tensions can develop and be exploited”

An Interview with Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha by Ishara Jayawardane

They say that every journey starts with a step. In truth Sri Lanka’s journey towards peace and reconciliation started when the man Sri Lanka had been waiting for – Mahinda Rajapaksa – finally arrived.

After taking the reins of the presidency in 2005, the bold leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksa brought an end to the war against the LTTE which cost a staggering amount of lives. [TC]

Peace process facilitated power shift, where ultra nationalism has moved from the margins to the centre of Sri Lankan politics

In this concluding section, we publish verbatim extracts from the Norwegian government commissioned evaluation of their peace efforts in Sri Lanka, on the lessons learnt from their experience in Sri Lanka:

We attempt to bring together the strands of a recurring theme in this evaluation, namely the primacy of domestic politics in the story of war-making and peacemaking in Sri Lanka. [TC]

Opinion of the Supreme Court Regarding the Expropriation Bill was a disappointment

By Hejaaz Hizbullah

President Barack Obama has a new slogan – ‘We Can’t Wait’. Delayed by a divided Congress, he has resorted to issuing executive orders to get things moving.

Although not having such difficulties in Parliament, President Rajapaksa’s government is in an equal hurry. [TC]

‘The murderer of Rajiv Gandhi is dead, but the Chinese are in and the Tamil issue is unaddressed’–Indian diplomat 

In this section, the evaluation team appointed by the Norwegian government to examine why their peace mediation effort in Sri Lanka failed, seeks to explain why things finally turned out the way they did:

Norway was chosen as a facilitator, not only for its expertise, but also because it was a small power without geo-strategic interests and colonial baggage. [TC]

Obama Reaffirms Asia-Pacific Foreign Policy Shift

U.S. President Barack Obama has reaffirmed Washington’s “unbreakable alliance” with Australia during a speech to parliament in Canberra Thursday. [TC]

Leadership will have to come from fresh, new people says Chandrika Kumaratunga 

by Ishani D. Premaratne

Chandrika Kumaratunga, the former president of Sri Lanka, painted a sobering picture of an island nation recovering from civil war during a talk at CGIS yesterday.

Kumaratunga, who led Sri Lanka from 1994 to 2005, described her administration’s unsuccessful attempts to resolve through peaceful negotiations the long-standing conflict between Sri Lanka’s majority Sinhalese and minority Tamil populations. [TC]

Cold war in the tropics: China, India vie for Maldives

By C. Bryson Hull

ADDU CITY, Maldives (Reuters) – On the pristine equatorial shores of the Maldives, an archipelago best known for luxurious resort hideaways swathed in coral reefs and cerulean seas, India and China’s regional cold war is warming up. [TC]

Norway was not a conscious proponent of Liberal peace building in Sri Lanka

 
In this installment, we continue publishing excerpts of the report of the Norwegian government commissioned study of the causes for the failure of the Norwegian peace mediation efforts in Sri Lanka. This section of the report seems to suggest that their mere presence and visibility in Sri Lanka undermined their very purpose:
Sri Lanka’s external environment has always been important. It is a small country separated from India, the regional hegemon, by a narrow strip of water, the Palk -Strait. As the country’s most immediate neighbour, India has always had an abiding interest in and influence on Sri Lanka’s development. [TC]

Tamils living in Australia have been the subject of abusive Sinhalese E-Mails and so have I 

By Bruce Haigh

There is a Tamil man from the north of Sri Lanka, sitting in an immigration detention facility in Victoria. He has been assessed as a refugee but is not allowed to be released. He is married. His wife is living with an Australian family.

The husband and wife are not allowed to spend time together. ASIO will not give him a security clearance. He will be in detention forever. It is sending the man and his wife mad. They are suicidal

Life and times of Karu Jayasuriya in the private sector 

By Ravi Ladduwahetty

Hello Friends

Senior deputy leader of the United National Party and Gampaha district Parliamentarian Karu Jayasuriya is a widely respected popular politician. Before he entered active politics this old Anandian had a distinguished record in the private sector.

In a recent article in “The Island” journalist Ravi Ladduwahetty has written a multi-faceted article about Karu Jayasuriya’s private sector past based on a conversation with him. It is an interesting article providing an insight into Karu’s previous “avatar”. [click here to read in full ~ on DBSJeyaraj.com]

Sri Lanka enjoys a strategically significant geographical position in the Indian Ocean

by Gotabhaya Rajapaksa

Text of Defence and Urban Development secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’s address at the inaugural session of the “Galle dialogue”-maritime symposium at the Light house Hotel in Galle on November 14th 2011

Minister of External Affairs, Excellencies, Secretary to the President, Secretary to the Ministry of External Affairs, Secretary to the Ministry of Ports and Highways, Secretary to the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Chief of Defence Staff, Commanders of the Army, Navy and Air Force, Distinguished delegates and invitees Ladies and Gentlemen. [TC]

Mahinda Rajapaksa govt will safeguard honest businessmen, their investments and their future progress 

by Basil Rajapaksa

Following are excerpts of the speech made by Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa in Parliament during the debate on the Revival of Underperforming Enterprises and Underutilized Assets Bill

All property included in this draft Bill is public property which belongs to the people and not private property. This should be stated categorically. [TC]

“We have not said anything abroad that we haven’t already stated here in the country”

 
An Interview with MA Sumanthiran MP by Ayesha Zuhair
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian well-known lawyer M.A. Sumanthiran, in an interview with the Daily Mirror, discusses the TNA’S recent visit to Washington, the government-tna talks, the land issues in the North and East, the reconciliation process and allegations of war crimes.
Following are some excerpts from that interview:
Q: How do you justify your recent visit to Washington for political discussions with US State Department Officials, as this is being viewed in some quarters as “treacherous”?

How and why the Oslo sponsored Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission failed in Sri Lanka

 
The Norwegian government commissioned evaluation team that went into the whole Norwegian involvement in Sri Lanka has paid special attention to the functioning of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission which operated under Norwegian leadership. What follows are excerpts from the report which give the reasons for the failure of the SLMM
The SLMM functioned for almost six years and comprised an average of about forty-five unarmed, non-uniformed monitors.
The CFA did not end contestation between the parties, but transformed it. First, it caused a near complete cessation – at least initially – of military offensives. [TC]

‘Ensure accountability for serious violations of human rights to truly solidify peace’ – US Deputy Asst Sec of Defense 

“I will make it clear that the United States needs to see continued progress in promoting the rights of all Sri Lankans and in taking concrete steps to bring about reconciliation with the Tamil population.”

Remarks as Prepared to the Galle Dialogue, Sri Lanka By Robert M. Scher, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asian Affairs:

Good morning. I’m delighted to be here today, along with so many distinguished leaders and practitioners of maritime security. [TC]

The leftist trend in the JVP has become irritant to party leadership

By M.S.M. Ayub

However much the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) may stress that it has not affected by the recent rebellion by a group more theoretic than the official leadership of the party, it seems to have ideologically shaken by the newest development.

The recent confession by the JVP leaders on their past alliances with the Peoples Alliance (PA) and forming the Democratic National Alliance (DNA) with the former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka seem to be an upshot of that development. [TC]

Hirunika Premachandra says family may seek redress internationally for fathers murder

Hirunika Premachandra, the daughter of Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra, said yesterday that her family would be compelled to seek redress internationally with regard to her father’s killing if the authorities failed to bring the killers to book.

Speaking to a private TV channel yesterday, Ms. Premachandra said UPFA MP Duminda Silva’s departure abroad to seek treatment was questionable, as he had not sought permission from the police. [TC]

‘Expropriation’ bill violates basic notion of separation of powers

by Sumanasiri Liyanage

The assertion of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, a French anarcho-socialist philosopher, that property is theft (What is Property? Or, an Inquiry into the Principle of Right and Government) is well-known to students of political science.

The word ‘theftocracy’ was used by Managala Samaraweera to denounce President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his family and associates in the discussion on The Revival of Underperforming Enterprises and Underutilized Assets Bill (RUEUAB). [TC]

Who got Norwegian funding during the Oslo facilitated peace process in Sri Lanka?

What follows are some extracts from the report of the evaluation of Norwegian peace efforts in Sri Lanka commissioned by the Norwegian government. This article deals with the disbursement of money by the Norwegians in Sri Lanka during their period of peace mediation

Economic development and donor involvement were closely connected to the conflict in Sri Lanka, partly because donor policies and programmes inadvertently contributed to political instability and inter-ethnic tensions. Several bilateral donors including Norway became engaged in conflict-related issues as a core aspect of their work. [TC]

Sri Lanka-Belgium Economic Relations: Retrospect and Prospects

by Ravinatha P. Aryasinha

Address by Ravinatha P.Ariyasinha,Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Belgium , Luxembourg & the EU at the “Table Diplomatique” of the Cercle de Lorraine The Brussels Business Club), Brussels , 9 November 2011 [TC]

Mahinda is making such comical political steps

by Dr. Vickramabahu Karunaratne

The year 1971, was a turbulent time. Government which swept to power claiming a socialist revolution had to face a youth rebellion led by a party claiming to be socialist!

It appeared to be a belated revolt. It was meant to be an uprising against the pro imperialist UNP regime, which the youth leaders, Wijeweera and others, assumed to be a power that could not be defeated in an election. [TC]

The greatest stumbling block to reconciliation is the Tamil National Alliance

By Gomin Dayasri

Metric that matters most is whether TNA with whom Government has initiated a dialogue genuinely want the reconciliation process to succeed. Or are they merely posturing together to placate foreign embassies? [TC]

We are aware that we cannot trust The Government of Sri Lanka

by Rajavarothayam Sampanthan

Text of a speech made by TNA leader R.Sampanthan at the Sri Iyappan Temple auditorium in Toronto on October 30, 2011

You are here in large numbers and we would like to thank you for that. In Canada, two major ethnic groups, who speak different languages have been living in different parts of the country.

R. Sampanthan MP in Toronto, Canada

These are people who speak English and French languages. They have self- rule in their respective areas where they live. [TC]

TNA objective is to find political solution within an undivided united country-M.A. Sumanthiran

By Arthur Wamanan

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) recently went to the United States and met with several US State Department officials and the UN Under Secretary General, Political Affairs, Lynn Pascoe.

M.A. Sumanthiran MP

TNA Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran, a member of the delegation, speaks to The Nation on their visit and the displeasure expressed by the members of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO) over their exclusion from the US visit and the talks with the government [TC]

Three inter-connected pre-occupations of the Rajapaksas: Extravagance, land grabbing and media-muzzling

cartoon by Hasantha Wijenayake-courtesy: lakbimaNews

By Tisaranee Gunasekara
Kleptocrat: A ruler who uses power to steal the country’s resources. – Oxford Dictionary

Mindless-extravagance; land-grabbing; media-muzzling: the three Rajapaksa preoccupations are intimately interconnected.

The Ruling Siblings need money to strengthen their power and to sustain their voracious appetite for exhibitionism, and the fastest way to make a fast-buck in a cash-strapped economy is grabbing other people’s properties and selling/leasing them. [TC]

Architect Chelvadurai Anjalendran wins Golden Award for Global Contribution to Architecture

by NAN

I quote from Architect Anjalendran’s acceptance speech in New Delhi on 17 October 2011 when he received the Golden Award for Global Contribution to Architecture by Architecture + Design & Spectrum Foundation.

Anjalendran’s most significant work to date has been the series of projects undertaken for SOS Children’s Villages International over a period of fifteen years, which have included orphanages in Nuwara Eliya, Galle and Anuradhapura, schools, retirement homes, and training centres.

It is an achievement of Anjalendran’s that needs to be noted by all Sri Lankans. He agreed with me when I said that recognition seems to come from abroad, not from within. Sad but true. [TC]

Non-academic strategies for dealing with endemic political violence in our universities

Professor Savitri Goonesekere-pic: UNIS

by Prof.Carlo Fonseka
When the history of university education in Sri Lanka in the early decades of the 21st century comes to be written, law professor Savitri Goonesekere should surely figure on a peak of resplendent courage.

Having sat next to me at fortnightly meetings of the University Grants Commission for several years, Prof SG knows my favorite quote from Ernest Hemingway : “If people bring so much courage to this world, the world has to kill them to break them, so of course it kills them” [TC]

Freedom of expression must not de-generate into wild ass freedom on cyber space 

by Victor Ivan

The Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (TRC) has blocked several news websites. Local and foreign media organizations have criticized and protested the government’s decision to block them.

The US and European Union embassies too, had issued statements expressing their concerns over this decision. [TC]

Expropriation Bill a wake up call to the Private Sector-Eran Wickramaratne

Eran Wickramaratne MP: eranw.org

Opposition Member of Parliament and former Bank Chief Executive, Eran Wickramaratne, speaking on the government’s Expropriation Bill in Parliament sounded a wake up call to the private sector as the government hurriedly pushed through a Bill to acquire private sector businesses on the basis of them being underperforming or having underutilized assets alienated from government over the past 20 years. [TC]

November 06, 2011

Nov 6 - 12:

'Sri Lankan Tamil' fishermen deprived of their own rights due to Indian boats fishing in Lanka shores

They are asking me weather 'Jaffna Tamils' have been resettled and whether their living conditions are good or bad and whether we are helping them. So why not help the fishermen? They are deprived of their own rights. So this is an unfortunate thing. So they must understand that too. [TC]

Parliament can be described today as an underperforming enterprise as it has been reduced to a rubber stamp

Text of speech made in Parliament by M.A. Sumanthiran,Tamil National Alliance MP on November 9th 2011 during the debate on the underperforming businesses and under utilised assets expropriation [TC]

Attack on Parithy in Paris: Intra-Tiger power struggle

By D.B.S. jeyaraj

The October 30th  nocturnal attack on senior French  tiger leader Parithy in Paris is a symptom of a malady currently afflicting Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora politics. [DBSJ]

Is Europe burning the Euro or the Euro burning Europe?

by M.S.Shah Jahan

Few years ago a small rural town in Spain twinned with a similar town in Greece. The Mayor of the Greek town visited the Spanish town. When he saw the palatial mansion belonging to the Spanish mayor, he wondered how he could afford such a house. [TC]

Pawns of Peace: Evaluation of Norwegian Peace Efforts in Sri Lanka

by Jonathan Goodhand, Bart Klem and Gunnar Sørbø

Norwegian peace efforts in Sri Lanka have been the subject of heated debate and controversy, ever since they became public in December 1999. This debate has spawned many different stories about Norway’s involvement in Sri Lanka, some of them very critical. [TC]

NORAD releases report on the 'failed' Norwegian peace efforts in Sri Lanka

Report evaluating Norwegian peace efforts in Sri Lanka, 1997-2009, commissioned by Norad (Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation) and Carried out by: Chr. Michelsen Institute/School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London [TC]

Al Jazeera 101 East: What can remedy bitter ethnic divisions in post-war Sri Lanka?

Since Sri Lanka ended a long-running civil war in May 2009, the country has attracted new tourists and trade. [TC]

Nepal Journalists condemn arbitrary blocking of websites in Sri Lanka

We believe the real motives behind the actions taken were to control the new media and hinder the free flow of information by refusing to ensure the democratic and pluralistic media environment. [TC]

There is no such thing called a Just War: Letters for humanity - I

by Kanishka Ratnapriya

Whenever we fought each other, we saw the death, destruction and disease that war brought. In the recent past of humanity from WWI, to WWII, to Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka any war that involves violence and killing ends up showing humanity’s darkest side [TC]

Remembrance Day (11.11.11) – Loved and were loved, and now we lie In Flanders fields

By Saba-Thambi

Ever since I bought the red artificial poppy in Colombo in the nineteen eighties, I have been fascinated by the symbolism behind the artificial flower. Red poppies are sold in memory of the fallen soldiers of the World Wars I & II. [TC]

Situation  in Sri Lanka Today is the most serious Tamils have faced in 2500 years of Recorded History

By Dr. Brian Senewiratne

The humanitarian situation in the Tamil-speaking area in the North and East, more than two years after the so called ‘end’ of the war, between the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and the Tamil people, is the most serious the Tamils have faced in their 2,500 years of recorded history. [TC]

We in Sri Lanka are passionate believers in social mobility

by Mahinda Rajapaksa

We in Sri Lanka are passionate believers in social mobility. Education, health facilities and modern communication, must be made available to all. [TC]

Show-casing Sri Lanka as "Emerging Wonder of Asia":Sanity,Vanity and Reality -Anila Dias Bandaranaike

By Ravi Ladduwahetty

Retired Central Bank Assistant Governor and outspoken Economist Dr Anila Dias Bandaranaike, recently, took on the government on policy related issues in post war Sri Lanka, adding that: "The country’s development potential is unlimited but we need to develop it with wisdom and balance." [TC]

Fifth death anniversary of TNA Jaffna MP Nadarajah Raviraj

by D.B. Jeyaraj

Hello Frinds, It was on November 10th 2006 that Nadarajah Raviraj was brutally gunned down along with his Police bodyguard  in broad daylight near his residence in Colombo. Five years have passed and no one has been punished for the  murders of the Tamil National Alliance(TNA) MP from Jaffna district nor Sgt.Lakshman Lokuwella the bodyguard. [DBSJ]

Raviraj was a connector of people and not divider of communities

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj 

Hello Friends, It was on November 10th 2006 that Nadarajah Raviraj the Tamil National Alliance(TNA) MP from Jaffna district  and his Police bodyguard Sgt.Lakshman Lokuwella  were killed in Colombo. Five years have passed and none have been penalised for the ghastly crime. [DBSJ]

Russia to present ‘Order of Friendship' award to Tamil writer D. Jayakanthan

The Russian Federation has announced the presentation of ‘Order of Friendship' award to noted Tamil novelist D. Jayakanthan. [The Hindu]

Malicious websites run by propaganda hitmen should not remain above the law-The Island

The government has drawn heavy flak from some quarters for ordering that all websites specialising in Sri Lankan news be registered with the Information Department immediately. [TC]

Arbitrary Blocking and Registration of Websites: The Continuing Violation of Freedom of Expression on the Internet

We also condemn the actions of the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC) that has, according to a Sunday Times news report, moved to block a number of specific websites in line with this. [TC]

Please give peace chance in Sri Lanka

by Chitranganee Wagiswara

The Star has once again issued an editorial to discredit Sri Lanka. Why harp on the final days of the war, conveniently ignoring the terrorist activities carried out in Sri Lanka by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (Tamil Tigers) for nearly 30 years? [TC]

Parliament passes controversial bill to take over businesses and assets by 122 to 46 votes

By Saman Indrajith 

The Revival of Underperforming Enterprises and Underutilized Assets Bill was passed by a majority of 76 votes in Parliament yesterday. The Bill received 122 votes in favour and 46 against. [TC]

Expropriation Bill – Unmasks the Private Sector?

 By Amrit Muttukumaru MA Econ.(Madras); MBM(Asian Inst. of Mgmt.)

Although the “Revival of Under Performing and Under Utilized Assets” Bill has dire implications to the well-being of the country in general and the private sector in particular, our valiant captains of industry and commerce as reflected in the leadership of the main business chambers are reportedly comfortable with this Bill except for “serious concern” over some of the entities included! [TC]

Lawyers file response in courts saying Sri Lankan General  Shavendra Silva Not Entitled to Immunity from War Crimes Lawsuit

The United Nations has a war criminal within its ranks. This is a moral and legal offense,” said Ali Beydoun, director at American University Washington College of Law’s UNROW Human Rights Impact Litigation Clinic and a Senior Partner at SPEAK Human Rights & Environmental Initiative. [TC]

'War tourism,' in an environment where survivors worry about next meal and still haunted by violent past

By Nita Bhalla

Now, as communities return to find their homes destroyed, possessions lost and little means of making an income, some aid workers and residents question this “war tourism” in an environment where survivors worry about their next meal and are still haunted by their violent past. [TC]

Practical realities must be looked at instead of a theoretical application of humanitarian norms to all situations

Speech by Sri Lankan  Minister of Justice Rauff Hakeem, on the Report of the International Law Commission at its sixty-third session [TC]

Frequent flooding of city after heavy rains will wash 'beautified' Colombo down the drain

by Anton Nanayakara

After all the work done in beautifying the City of Colombo or making it a Miracle City or Wonder of Asia, it will be sad if we see everything getting washed down the drain when a heavy rainfall plays havoc on the lives of the city dwellers rich and poor [TC]

Jon Snow to Revisit Sri Lanka's Killing Fields

By Alex Guest

Channel 4's investigation into the final weeks of the Sri Lankan civil war, Sri Lanka's Killing Fields, revealed war crimes committed by both sides in the hostilities. [TC]

Replacing words 'Arabs,' 'Hamas,' and 'Israel' with 'Tamil,' 'Tiger and 'Sri Lanka'

by Jonathan Kay

This isn’t a column about the Middle East. But to make my point, I’m going to start by asking readers to imagine a scenario from that part of the world. [TC]

IFJ condemns new move by Sri Lankan govt to block news websites

These include Lanka News Web, Sri Lanka Mirror, Sri Lanka Guardian and Lanka Way News. [TC]

Economic and political costs of over-extending military role

By Jehan Perera

Hello Friends

The war may be over but the Armed forces of Sri Lanka continue to play an assertive role in the affairs of the Country. [via DBSJEYARAJ.COM]

CH 4 Video: Torture perpetrated by military and police still continuing in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka's civil war ended with "credible" evidence that war crimes were committed. Now Channel 4 News can reveal mounting evidence that the government is still torturing Tamil prisoners. [TC]

Urgent need to prosecute security agents involved in torture-Amnesty International

Sri Lanka is not credibly investigating torture, Amnesty International said on the eve of a review by the UN Committee Against Torture into the country [TC]

Families search for thousands of missing victims from brutal war

by Andrew Buncombe

His name was Abi, he was six, and the last his family glimpsed of him was in the frenzied moments after deadly shells struck close to the bunker where they had been sheltering. [TC]

Single dominant ethnicity-religion 'enslaves' Independence Square

by Dushy Ranetunge

Sri Lanka is a multi-cultural, multi-religious republic, where leaders of all communities fought for the nations independence, frequently helping each other. [TC]

With 'enemies' such as these, what need has Sarath Nanda Silva of 'friends'?

by S.L. Gunasekara

Hello Friends, 

The recent motion signed by several MP's calling for the appointment of a Parliamentary select committee to inquire into allegations of misconduct by retired chief justice Sarath Nanda Silva has caused much excitement. [via DBSJeyaraj.com]

Failure to debate what happened in Sri Lanka may have consequences for Commonwealth

by Malcolm Fraser

Last weekend, representatives of 54 countries, mostly heads of government, attended the bi-annual Commonwealth Meeting. [TC]

Govt must hold Northern Provincial Council elections and sign a memorandum of understanding with NPC

by Sumanasiri Liayanage

A rumour goes like this: Speaker, Chamal Rajapaksa on his return from a recent visit to India suggested that some meaningful steps be taken, sooner rather than later, to devise a mechanism to resolve the national question in general and the Tamil national question in particular. [TC]

TNA travel to the USA viewed with hostility by the Mahinda Administration

by Vickramabahu Karunaratne

While the Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his diplomatic corps tried to put water on fires at the Perth Commonwealth summit, the Tamil National Alliance leaders were in the United States, meeting leaders in the Obama administration and the United Nations, to press for an amicable political solution. [TC]

Sri Lanka will survive even if Canada cuts off aid says Vasudeva Nanayakkara

by Lee Berthiaume

While he’s hoping Canada will not boycott the next Commonwealth summit in Colombo, Sri Lanka, or cut aid over war crimes allegations, a senior Sri Lankan minister says his country will survive if it does. [TC]

One law for the Rajapaksas and their favorites and another for the rest of us

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

The long-awaited LLRC report is, finally, ready. But can it promote accountability or assure justice in a country where contempt for law is a hallmark of governance? [TC]

Govt Targetting Sevanagala Sugar Factory as “underperforming”through new Law is Political victimisation

By The Sunday Times Political Editor

Sitting on top of a six billion rupee empire extending to several spheres, he is easily one of Sri Lanka’s top notch business entrepreneurs.

No more take-over of businesses under controversial new law assures Basil Rajapaksa

by Namini Wijedasa

The government will not introduce further laws to take over businesses nor will it acquire any more institutions by amending the schedule to the controversial Revival of Underperforming Enterprises and Underutilised Assets bill, said Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa in an interview. [TC]

Thou shallt not oppose the ruling family: New First commandment for Sri Lanka

by Tisaranee Gunasekara

Either you are with us or against us’: that was the Rajapaksa leitmotiv during the Fourth Eelam War. According to this credo, only those who supported and obeyed the Rajapaksas, uncritically and unquestioningly, were considered ‘friends’ by the Ruling Siblings. [TC]

New Colombo Mayor Muzammil Complains to Police about unlawful conduct of UPFA Councillors

By Chris Kamalendran

The row over the controversial opposition meeting held at the Colombo Municipal Council premises intensified yesterday with seeking police assistance to resolve the issue. [TC]