Apr 29 - May 5:

tweets of the day: ‘Blessed Wesak to all in Sri Lanka’

Its the time to decorate the streets in Sri Lanka for Vesak. [TC]

Inamaluwe Sumangala Thero, Rangiri cricket stadium and Thilanga Sumathipala

By Michael Roberts

The following article was written by Prof. Michael Roberts on July 10th 2007 and appeared in Cricinfo.com. under the heading “Rangiri Cricket Stadium &Its Tempestuous History.It is being reproduced here as it sheds some light on the commercial interests of Ven Inamaluwe Sumangala Thero who spearheaded the deplorable attack on the Mosque in Dambulla. I am inclined to wonder whether some sordid money making motive is behind the sudden move initiated by the saffron-clad entrepreneur to demolish the Mosque and Kovil-DBS Jeyaraj [DBSJ]

‘Kalimann Vandi’ and history of Sri Lankan modern Tamil theatre 

by Sivagnanam Jeyasankar

A Response to the leaflet issued before the beginning of the performance of Kalimann Vandi the Tamil language stage production of “Mettikaraththaya” and to the performance itself

The “Tamil language production of Mettikaraththaya” refers to Mirhchakadikam, a Sanskrit play written in B.C. 300-400 by Chudraka. It was produced in Tamil as ‘Kaliman Vandi’ translation of the Sinhala version of Mettikaraththaya at the Swami Vipulanda Institute of Aesthetics Studies, Batticaloa, Sri Lanka. [DBSJ]

Kurunegala Anglican Bishop Emeritus Andrew Kumarage – An Appreciation 

by Rt.Rev Kumara Illangasinghe

It was with much sadness that we learnt of the passing on of our beloved Bishop Andrew Kumarage, the Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Kurunagala, in the early hours of April 21, 2012. He was ailing for some time, but briefly and was a wonderful relief for some of us to know that he has ended his life on earth and being relieved from all pains, agony and suffering of this world. [DBSJ]

Muslim community is strongly opposed to demolition or relocation of Dambulla Mosque 

By Ayesha Zuhair

President Mahinda Rajapaksa is expected to summon a meeting shortly to discuss a matter of vital national importance.

This follows a discussion he had with Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) Leader Rauff Hakeem on Monday, during the course of which the President promised to resolve the dispute that has arisen over the Dambulla mosque, without harming the interests of the Muslim community. [DBSJ]

UN Rep on Children and Armed Conflict tells AlJazeera children are being targeted in Syria


More than 34 children have allegedly been killed in Syria since the UN-brokered ceasefire between security forces and opposition fighters officially took hold last month. [TC]

LLRC Report recommended access to Information Law

by Patricia. A. Butenis

The 20th century American politician Thomas “Tip” O’Neill once famously said that “all politics is local.” That was often true of the news in the last century as well. With the advent of so many technological changes, however, the truism for information in the 21st century has become “all news is international.” [TC]

Catholic Bishops Conference wants govt to implement LLRC recommendations

By Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith and Bishop Norbert M. Andradi

Much has been written and discussed since the publication of the Report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC). [TC]

Karunannidhi wants Sampanthan to demand an Eelam which Sri Lankan Tamils dont want 

by M.S.M. Ayub

The visit by the Indian joint Parliament delegation to Sri Lanka was no doubt a novel experience not only for the members of the delegation but also for the Sri Lankan politicians as well as the general public. [TC]

Maldives: C’wealth ultimatum causes call for pull-out

by N. Sathiya Moorthy

With the People’s Majlis, or Parliament, confirming the nomination of Vice-President Mohammed Waheed Deen, an element of political continuity and consequent stability has been injected into the Maldivian polity for now. [TC]

Australian Immigration Minister Bowen Should Raise Concerns with Sri Lanka-Human Rights Watch

Cooperation on People-Smuggling Risks Further Abuses

(Melbourne) – Australia’s immigration minister should raise concerns with Sri Lankan officials about alleged arbitrary arrest and torture of people who were refused asylum and sent back to Sri Lanka when he visits this week, the Human Rights Law Centre and Human Rights Watch said today. [TC]

Moves on to remove Tamara Kunanayakam as UN envoy in Geneva 

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Sri Lanka ’s ministry of External Affairs has initiated moves targeting Tamara Kunanayakam, Sri Lanka’s permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva

Ms. Kunanayakam who returned to Geneva last week after participating at the UNCTAD conference in Doha, has been informed over the telephone that she should move out from Geneva at short notice and take up duties in a Latin American Country by June this year. [DBSJ]

Hate rhetoric articulated by radical Buddhist Monks in Sri Lanka is uncannily similiar to that mouthed by ‘Hindutva’ proponents in India 

By Sudha Ramachandran

A mosque in the central town of Dambulla was attacked with petrol bombs and vandalized around 10 days ago by a mob led by radical Buddhist monks. To add insult to injury, the government has bowed to the mob’s demand and ordered the mosque’s demolition and relocation. [DBSJ]

President Rajapaksa a Buddhist married to a Catholic who worships at Hindu shrines has been a friend of Muslims

by Arjuna Hulugalle

Man, living in community will invariably have social and political problems. This applies to a tribal society, a nomadic society, a settled rural society or a highly structured civilization, whether Greek, Roman, European or Asian. [DBSJ]

Ensuring peoples prosperity is the best tribute to working class-President

The best tribute we can pay on this International Workers’ Day to the former leaders of the working people and the sweat and tears of our workers is to ensure the prosperity of the people and the country, President MahindaRajapaksa said. [TC]

Religious Extremism: The Post War Reality in SriLanka

by Rameez Aboobacker

There is a lot of debate and controversy in the public discourses over the last few days following the malicious attack on a Mosque in Dambulla by a group of extremist Buddhist led by monks in robes, hampering to perform Muslims’ Jummah prayers on Friday, 20th April 2012, and demanding the demolition of the mosque immediately since, what they regard, it is located in a Buddhist sacred area, but the Muslims, on the other hand, rebut the claim saying that the mosque is in existence over the last 60 years with a legal registration. [TC]

Why asking D E W Gunasekara to act as Minister of External Affairs was a brilliant idea

by Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

When we were in Geneva in the dark days of March, I was surprised to read that Senior Minister D E W Gunasekara had been appointed Acting Minister of External Affairs. [TC]

Eastern Province can be Sri Lanka’s political laboratory or political minefield

by N. Sathiya Moorthy

The Eastern Province in a way is a microcosm of the Sri Lankan nation, given the confluence of all major communities, the Upcountry Tamils too not to be left out. Post-war, it can set a stellar example for the rest of the nation to learn from. [TC]

Defunct Tamil Eelam Supporters Organization(TESO) revived in Tamil Nadu by Karunanidhi 

by A Special Correspondent

Reiterating that a Tamil Eelam alone will offer a permanent solution for the Sri Lankan Tamils, who have been subjected to the “biggest ethnic cleansing of the century,” DMK leader and Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) president M. Karunanidhi on Monday said that the goal should be achieved only through non-violent methods. [DBSJ]

Tamil Diaspora cannot ignore realities and transparency 

By S. V. Kirubaharan, France

I humbly feel that if we don’t share our views openly and honestly, there is no use talking about unity. Therefore, I will be frank and honest.

We Tamils from the North East or Eelam Tamils have had many rises and falls – the non violent struggle, the armed struggle in self-defence which came to a halt in May 2009 – the debacle of Mullivaigzhal. [TC]

If ‘hand of politics’ had not deprived team of ‘full strength’ in Manila, Lanka would have been 2012 Asian Rugby Champions

By T.M.K. Samat

SRI Lanka ’s fall at the final hurdle of the A5N rugby tournament in Manila last week evokes much regret. The failure to get among Asia ’s top five nations is obviously disappointing, but more hurting was seeing the triumphant march of a team of brave young Sri Lankans finally come to grief. [TC]

The Dambulla crisis and need for a policy for multiculturalism and post-war social integration 

by Dr. Darini Rajasingham-Senanayake 

Sri Lanka has a long and proud tradition of religious co-existence which is attested by the presence of multi-religious sacred sites throughout the island, as well as, its uniquely mixed cultural geography. [DBSJ]

‘Why India? I don’t know why everybody talks about India’? – Basil Rajapaksa 

By Namini Wijedasa

I think very healthy. India’s vote in Geneva on the US-led resolution is only one incident. As a whole, there has not been much change in the relationship [DBSJ]

Tea Industry as a whole is said to be profitable while most estate operations report loss

By Dr. U. Pethiyagoda

As a sector of indisputable importance to the nation, the tea industry draws periodic comments and now seems such a time. [DBSJ]

TNA Leader Sampanthan writes to President over issues of arrested Tamil youths and Pillaiyar Temple in Trincomalee

By Franklin R. Satyapalan

TNA Leader and parliamentarian R. Sampanthan has sought President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s intervention to secure the release of several youth taken into custody during the recent search operations in the Eastern Province, particularly in the Trincomalee District. [TC]

Hakeem says Muslim Congress would not agree to proposed relocation of Dambulla mosque

BY Harischandra Gunaratna

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress yesterday said that it would not agree to the relocating of the Mosque in Dambulla. [TC]

The Govt must apologise to the Muslim community over Dambulla Mosque Incident 

By Dr Laksiri Fernando

The violent mob attack on the Dambulla Muslim Mosque in the presence of the Police on 20 April is a serious event that can ignite communal disharmony in the country, including open violence, if the government fails to apologise to the Muslim community and take appropriate action to thwart the efforts by communal elements among its own ranks to create rift and mischief. [TC]

13th Amendment ‘child of rape’ must be legitimized or exchanged for legitimate baby of the nation

By Somapala Gunadheera

The homemade response to the UNHRC challenge has to begin with a clear understanding of the perspectives of the complaint. The Resolution calls for the implementation of the LLRC recommendations. But that does not imply that all the recommendations had not been complied with. [TC]

‘Sinhala Buddhism’ is worlds apart from the tolerant non-violent Buddhism of the Gautama Buddha 

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

“Ordered disorder, planned caprice, And dehumanised humanity…”
Brecht (The Exception and the Rule)

That the ancient-city of Dambulla is not sundered by religious violence is thanks to the sense and sensibility of its ordinary inhabitants (of all faiths) and the security personnel on duty. [TC]

Dambulla Mosque controversy: Conflicting versions prevail 

By Raisa Wickrematunge and Niranjala Ariyawansha | reporting from Dambulla

Muslims in Dambulla are still reeling from last week’s events, which could mean the demolition and relocation of a 65 year old mosque.

We were there until the last minute… people were throwing rocks and stones, so we had to leave at around 1:30 pm,” said Hariff M Yasir, a trustee to the mosque, describing the chaotic scene. [DBSJ]

Immediate investigation needed for Dambulla Mosque incident 

by Javid Yusuf

The incidents surrounding the Dambulla mosque and its aftermath have left the Muslim community shaken and uneasy. The Muslims have over centuries lived in harmony with their brother communities and enjoyed excellent relationships with both the Sinhala and Tamil communities. [DBSJ]

Why are Indian Leaders like Krishna and Sushma Always ‘Mishearing’ Whatever President Rajapaksa says? 

by Namini Wijedasa

Is it something in the water?

Or is the gravy spiked?

Every time the Indians come here–and chow down on presidential grub–they lose their ability to understand the words that leave Mahinda Rajapaksa’s mouth. [TC]

Dambulla demonstrators regard minorities as invaders threatening Sinhala Buddhist identity of Sri Lanka

by Tisaranee Gunasekara

“The sleep of reason produces monsters” – Francisco Goya(The title of 43rd painting in the Los Caprichos series)

The mini-war in Kelaniya displays, in microcosmic form, the future that is in store for Sri Lanka under Rajapaksa Rule. [TC]

We are appalled that leading politicians and religious leaders have justified forcible removal of the mosque 

by National Peace Council

The dispute over the presence of a Muslim mosque on Buddhist temple land in Dambulla points to an underlying tension in Sri Lanka’s multi religious society that is being exploited by extremist forces. [TC}

Communal intolerance in Lanka: Cry my beloved country 


by Shanie

“I many times thought peace had come, When peace was far away;
As wrecked men deem they sight the land at centre of the sea,
And struggle slacker, but to prove,
as hopelessly as I ,
how many the fictitious shores
before the harbour lie.” - Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

Alan Paton, the South African anti-apartheid activist wrote his first and most celebrated novel Cry, The Beloved Country in 1948. [TC] 

Corruption, intrigues and power games in modern China – Part II

By M. S. Shah Jahan

It was 14 November 2011. Neil Heywood, a Beijing resident, arrived in the fog shrouded Chongqing and checked into Sheraton Hotel, as he was summoned on short notice for a meeting in Chongqing with representatives of the family of Bo Xilai, the local Communist Party chief. [TC]

Lalith Athulathmudali was accepted as a leader nationally and internationally

by S.V.D. Kesarralal Gunasekera

(19th Death Anniversary of Late Lalith Athulathmudali.)

Nineteen years ago on April 23 as I sat in the hospital varandah unable to muster enough courage to see the slain body of Mr. Lalith Athulathmudali, I had a sad and strange feeling that this was the end of great politics in our nation. Today, as we are challenged by the international community, I still feel the loss. [TC]

President Premadasa was no ordinary leader but an ‘Epoch-Maker’

By “Deshamanya” K.H.J. Wijayadasa

19th Death Anneversary of President Ranasinghe Premadasa

President Premadasa was no ordinary leader. He was a self made, self educated, self disciplined and self motivated man.

Mentally and physically he was nothing but a computer operated human dynamo. He was a philosopher- politician, a thinker, a patriot and above all an extraordinary man. [TC]

Sri Lanka with 103,000 Players is the Second largest Rugby Playing Nation in Asia next to Japan

by Emma Stoney

WELLINGTON — When you think of Sri Lanka, rugby is not generally something that springs readily to mind.

The island nation is certainly better known for cricket, tea exports and its recently ended civil war. But Sri Lanka’s British colonial forefathers left behind more than cricket as a sporting staple. [DBSJ]