Church influence on Mr. R. M. B.Senanayake’s reply
Posted on February 5th, 2014

C. Wijeyawickrema, LL.B., Ph.D.

“Necessity is the mother of invention”

“Freedom is the recognition of necessity”

Lankaweb vs. Colombo Telegraph

I was pleased to see Mr. Senanayake’s (RMBS) reply printed on Lankaweb. I wish those who write to Colombo Telegraph come out of the hole and write to Lankaweb, either to educate Lankaweb readers or to get educated themselves from Lankaweb writers.  I hope other writers to CT will follow RMBS’ decision. CT does not print when I challenge CT writers. This is why RMBS had to write to Lankaweb when RMBS saw one such challenge by me to Somapala Gunadheera’s CT essay printed on Lankaweb but not by CT. CT cannot say it is an unbiased journalism office. The rejection pattern I faced shows that it is a pro-UNP, anti-Sinhala Buddhist website.

When Somapala Gunadheera and a cosmopolitan Christian like Tissa Jayatileke talk about ultra-Sinhalayas (that segment of Sinhala Buddhists who have now realized that they were treated all these decades by their own so-called Sinhala Buddhist politicians as if they were the proverbial kind-hearted women), surely RMBS cannot expect me to be kind to them. Calling them black-whites is not snide; it is pointing out their true social status. Each country has its own elitist class and in ex-colonies this class is called black-whites. That is all. I follow Bodu Bala Sena’s Ven Gnanasara method which is in turn the Anagarika Dharmapala method. We have no guns or bombs but the power of words.

Having made that point clear, RMBS’ reply reminds me Maitland’s (second governor of colonial Ceylon) civil servants. Maitland had to handle a corrupt civil service. So he hired as civil servants, boys of age 11, 12 & 13 and so on. They learned by trial and error just like CAS cadre today. Then they become trains on track. Any officer today with ability to think out of the box is doomed to fail. It is like police having a new PC who practice the Five Precept! But RMBS’ excuse that unhappy lower grade officers somehow messed up the fine officer system and his response to my essay shows that he is still a child in his eighties safe in the church’s shadow. His position is same as the church position in providing ladders to separatism. The Catholic Cardinal promotes a Tamil homeland and RMBS is his lamb.

RMBS may have a hard time in digesting the fact that Sri Lanka is ruined by an Evil Triangle, the politician-officer-and the NGO. But this is a field-tested truth. The glorified CCS clerks were used to run affairs from office with his OA or the chief clerk. Often the servant knew both his job (clerical) as well as the master’s (glorified CCS clerk) job, while master knew only his own job. The historic example of this arm-chair glorified clerical work was when Neville Jayaweera was broadcasting over radio false numbers sent to him by field agents about the “success” of Dudley Senanayake’s grow more food campaign. Dudley lost his job (election) and NJ became a Christian with a job as world Christian propaganda director!

Ecological boundaries

RMBS, because of his Christian frame of mind (shadows) saw evil on a map of Sri Lanka dividing it into Seven River Basins. He failed to see that the real purpose of the map was to show how a village-level (GSN level) empowering of people can end up as seven river basin regions at provincial level, if that is what Tamil politicians’ want (a larger geographical space to achieve their aspirations (ethical dignity?) without becoming a threat to Sri Lankan unitary state). Since Sri Lanka has 103 river basins, the agglomeration can be into seven, seventeen or seventy basin units. RMBS objects to GSN-level empowerment saying it is too small as an administrative unit. I have written on this subject extensively and wish to give him two links to two short essays.

APRC and the bioregional vision

Language-blind regional development units

The world has moved far beyond the days of Small is Beautiful. The global ecological crisis demands ecological units and local management, not the Kachcheri system with the Establishment Code.

The simple, ecological, rational and the Buddhist suggestion to demarcate Sri Lanka’s lowest level civil administration unit (GSNs) on ecological basis is no magical dream to those who know about the Trinity of civil administration in the island known as village-water tank and-temple. DLO Mendis in a recent publication (2013) writes about this Trinity. It was the Jaffna gardens which in 1857 the colonial secretary Emerson Tennant compared with the market gardens of Fulham and Chelsea in London. DLO describes them as eco-villages. In other dry zone areas of Sri Lanka these eco villages thrived with the use of a technique called “Vatiya” (Vatiya pronounced as in vanish or valid). R. L. Brohier talked about a step-wise irrigation system, but the real beauty of the Vatiya was uncovered only in the 1990s by accident by another irrigation engineer, P.A.G. Paranagam working on the Walawe left bank. What Vatiya did was to raise the water level of the river bottom so that during the rainy season it overflowed and reach the red soil of the dry land above. After saturating the red soil the Vatiya takes water back to the river at a lower point of the river valley. At that point a new Vatiya starts the job again. So what people thought as abandoned tanks were not water tanks but remains of Vatiyas upstream. (modernized BSc engineers destroyed these primitive tank bunds). Dry Zone was full of highland eco-villages fed by the Vatiya concept. I would like to know what RMBS has to say about this Vatiya concept, which was not in the Establishment Code (the rail track).

Story of water is the story of man (woman)

In New Zealand, all its local government units must be based on ecological (river basin) boundaries. So if we adopt that same idea here in Sri Lanka how can it become an ethnic issue? Yes, it can become a Sinhala-Tamil issue if there are other hidden agendas such as RMBS’ church-influenced agenda.  For example, I wish to show to readers a comparison of RMBS’ concerns with questions raised by another reader who asked about the boundaries of the Seven River Basins when Colombo Telegraph printed one of my essays recently.

A former university professor in science (physiology), Dr. Rajasingam Narendra (RN) asked, “Why should not 4 [Mahaveli] be extend to the coast through 7 [Ruhunu]? Why cannot 6 [Kelani] and parts of remaining parts of 7 be merged? Why cannot 1 [Yaalpaanam], the eastern part of 2 [Raja Rata], the eastern part of 4 and 5 [Deegavaapi] be merged? Parts of Anuradhapura and Polonaruwa can be part of this combined entity extending along the eastern coast. Can you please explain the rationale for the proposed design as 1 as proposed does not have any perennial rivers and is not part of the Mahaweli diversion scheme as it exists today” (for readers benefit:  No. 3 is Dambadeni).

These questions, remind me an incident that took place in Colombo, recently.  A top CAS officer who saw this map in the company of a politician commented, “Yes, yes, Sinhala people will be very happy with this map.”  Knowing the true colors of this officer, I intervened immediately to stop him and said, “No, no, Mr. X, this map has nothing to do with the Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim people. This is a scientific approach to solve our country’s problems.”

Ginigathena police station

When I told a nephew of mine from Akuressa that rain water falling on the two sides on the roof top of the Ginigathhena police station goes to two rivers, Mahaveli and Kelani, he said, uncle, that same thing happens here with the Walave and the Nilwala Ganagas. So when Dr. RN asks why 4 and 7 cannot be combined, he is forgetting a basic rule in river basin physiography (and hydrology). That is, a river has a highest point from which it moves downward. So when he asks why Yaalpaanam is separate from Mahaveli he ignores basic geography and geomorphology that there are seasonal rivers flowing north toward the Jaffna lagoon as against the rivers flowing southward from the crest of high points that mark the boundary line between 1 and 2. A diversion is human action to alter this natural physiography via a tunnel or an artificial surface canal, like the Mahaveli diversion that Dr. RN mentioned.

What troubles RMBS?

Now, think of the questions that RMBS has. I used RMBS’ own words below to let the reader to judge himself/herself how RMBS has found an anti-Tamil plan in a river basin map. He is blinded like that Tamil Mannar priest who compared Prabhakaran to Jesus or Bishop Wickramasinghe (Ranil W’s uncle) in the past who compared SJV Chelvanayagam to Moses. With a religion that says “come and believe, not come and examine,” RMBS cannot think reasonably or rationally to properly assess my proposal.

RMBS says:

1.In the 1920s Indian National Congress accepted language-based state boundaries was a good idea; In 1948 Linguistic Provinces Commission recommended that it was not a good idea.

(that the formation of provinces on exclusively or even mainly linguistic considerations is not in the larger interests of the Indian nation. It recommended the reorganization of the provinces of Madras, Bombay and Central Provinces and Bihar primarily on the basis of geographical contiguity, financial self-sufficiency and ease of administration).


No. 1 is contradictory and out of date. He missed what Nehru was forced to do in 1956, to implement language-based division of India, which Nehru himself regretted later as a mistake done in a hurry to save the life a Telugu leader who was fasting unto death seeking a Telugu state. (This Telugu state was divided again into two in 2013). The demands are there which will create at least 60 language based states in India in the near future. Even Tamil Nadu will split into three states.

RMBS says

2.  River basin-based division ignores people’s sentiments;

Clarification: No 2. An ecology based Tamil village cannot harm Tamil sentiments. An ecology based village with Tamils and Sinhala people cannot kill Tamil or Sinhala sentiments.

RMBS says

3. River basin division will not end religious and ethnic divisions;

Clarification: Ecology-based division will take people away from ethnicity and more toward harmony as hundreds of ecology unit could be completely mono-ethnic or ethnically mixed. Small ethnic units cannot be a threat to other ethnic units.

RMBS says

4. The nine-province division by the British was not entirely on language basis;

Clarification: No province was created on language or ethnicity basis. It was SJVC who thought of using Eastern Province as part of a mythical homeland.

RMBS says

5. Any unit of government must be socially cohesive to enable co-operation in the business of government;

Clarification: There is no province in Sri Lanka which is socially cohesive. Perhaps, only such cohesiveness can be found within caste-based communities, now one can see with PC elections.. But under an ecology-based GSN units plan there can be so many such units giving Tamils a kind of spatial pride and room for promoting harmless aspiration (anything but separatism)

RMBS says

6. Sinhala was made the official language in 1956 despite the opposition of the Tamil people.

7. Re-drawing boundaries or settling Sinhalese in Tamil areas is a spurious solution to the problem which promotes only conflict.

8. The demand of the Tamil people is to use their language as the language of administration in the government. This was the alternative to parity of status for both languages which was rejected by the Sinhala political parties including the UNP.

Clarification: These have nothing to do with ecology-based GSN idea. Here RMBS cat jumps out of the bag. The church wants a division of Sri Lanka into two with a Tamil homeland. This was what Catholic Archbishop now Cardinal asked from LLRC. Sinhala was made OL, to remove 10% people using English to suppress the rest of the country. Church used JRJ in 1957-8 to sabotage SWRD’s reasonable use of Tamil bill.

RMBS says

9. This proposal for devolution on the basis of river basins in order to undermine the demand for a Tamil State was unworkable and those in the public service were not stupid to think it could be forced down the throats of the Tamil people.

10. We are still laboring under the delusion that by reducing the Tamil majority we can get rid of the demand for a linguistic province. Those familiar with the history of nationalist movements in the former Yugoslavia and even the former Soviet Union know the futility of such harebrained schemes. 

Clarification: Am I wrong if I label RMBS as a Sinhala Christian separatist tiger?

RMBS says

 11. Another idea which was touted by armchair intellectuals is to devolve power to Villages or groups of villages. But the village is too small to provide some services since it lacked technical personnel and couldn’t raise the revenue to hire them either. In fact the Local Government Commission of the 1990s said that the village was too small to function as a viable unit. Most countries have two or three tiers of government. So devolution of power to the village can only be in respect of services they can afford to provide and have the technical competence to manage.

Clarification: RMBS is real trouble here with the LLRC report and the ecology-bound world with global warming. Tsunamis do not care if one is Tamil or Sinhala. Landslides, floods, droughts, pollution harms all. Small scale is the new way (Human Scale by Kirkpatrick Sale, 1980 is good reading for RMBS to cleanse his CCS out of date rust on the size of an Admin unit).  If he is referring to the Report of the Local Government Reforms Commission (Sessional Paper No. 1 of 1999) (the Abhayawardena Report), that report was a cry for the old (pre 1978) local government set up. RMBS has to understand what Indian Panchyathi Raj Institutions are doing in India, after a delay of 40 years. Gandhi and Vinobha Bhave were ignored by Nehru with the factory as the new temple (theertha).  Of course empowerment of people with a non-political party based ten member elected committee is an idea that needs lot of adjustments and flexibilities. One does not have to be a rocket scientist to figure that out. I must tell RMBS that the Gamidiriya program has been doing this people empowerment at village level very successfully, until the Divi Neguma monster invaded it. If this Gamidiriya was introduced to NP three years ago, NPC election results could have been different.

Plan to break the Eastern Province

Dr. RN is direct and clear in what he wants to know. RMBS on the other hand is confused and repeating his same old Church-influenced position of a Tamil homeland. A lack of basic understanding of the physical geography of Sri Lanka is one part of the reason for the perception that the river basin map is a Sinhala conspiracy to break the EP. Blind faith for a viable geographical region for an expanded Tamil homeland area can be another strong reason. The birth of EP in 1832 is by a line like the line separating Canada from USA. It was a result of a decision by the colonial government after the 1818 Rebellion, to “weaken the influence Kandyan feudal leaders had on people.” So the Sinhale Kingdom that they captured by fooling the feudal leaders who were jealous of each other, had to be reduced in size by dismembering it into pieces, creating a western, eastern, northern and southern province as recommended by the Colebrooke-Cameron Commission. If not for this colonial intention, all the land of the Kandyan kingdom taken as the EP would have been in the CP, making EP like a long rope along the eastern coast. The Malaria mosquito limited Tamils and Muslims to a few coastal settlements.

Mr. Wigneswaran would like to add the river basin map to his list of items of “Sinhalization,” but one cannot legislate against geography.  Sri Lanka is a pear-shape tiny island with a central mountain mass with 103 rivers running radially from it. So many such rivers run from the mountains in the west to the ocean in the east, and the EP was created cutting across all these, smaller and larger rivers. EP is an artificial creation just like all the other provinces for efficient administration of colonialized people. Most problems in Africa and in the Middle East are due to artificial country boundaries imposed upon the natives by the colonial masters cutting across tribal geographical distributions. These are basic truths and facts, however hard and painful for us to accept when we are ethnically emotional. This is why Dr. RN is asking why 1 and parts of 2, 4 and 5 cannot be combined. He cannot understand that such a combination is not a division based on river basins.

I have copied below a river basin map of Sri Lanka that I saw on the Internet. As one can see, because we have 103 river basins, they can be grouped into any plan one likes as long as the geographical integrity of the particular river basin is respected. Each of the larger seven basins that was first proposed by the geography Professor C.M. Maddumabandara, which I subsequently presented to the LLRC with an operational plan, has so many other smaller river basins within it. They are like the Russian nested dolls (this aspect will be clearer when we discuss the operational plan below). But one has to remember that there is no way that the elongated EP can be protected that way when water resource issues become acute sooner or later as the EP is running north-south whereas all the rivers are running west-east. The colonial master created a long coastal province because there was not enough population in the area to make a smaller compact province. They had to link Trinco and Baticaloa together for cost-saving purposes. So they created a province with an inland extension of empty lands.

Sri Lanka’s two-sided ethnic problem and the new war front    

Number one problem from the Sinhala side is the fear they have that Tamil Nad and Tamils will join to capture Sri Lanka (the Christian plan to balkanize India will be much easier with a Sri Lanka base and those who use Prabhakaran money in the world to bribe white politicians are Christian NGO backed). Number one problem from the Tamil side is that they have no political space for their collective aspirations to grow.  Even the rich Tamils in Colombo always feel that they are living in a Sinhala world, despite the fact that they are rapidly populating the Colombo City Area creating little Jaffnas (Muslim issue is a separate new problem that can be separated from this Sinhala-Tamil problem). In fact Gotabhaya R is now accused of using funds to beautify Colombo for its 70% Tamil and Muslim crowd, while rural schools are without toilets or drinking water!

Apart from this ethnic issue, there are other issues affecting everybody such as the destruction of structural democracy since the 1950s (e.g., removal of independence of the judiciary and public service), destruction of territorial democracy after 1978 (removal of voter from his representative), and the invasion of lowest civil administration by an army of GSNs which increased from 4,000 to 14,000 during the R Premadasa time.  The result is today we have a highly corrupt, inefficient, crime-ridden system of governance that looks like nobody is bothered. This requires a new war front.

There is a classic Tragedy of the Commons. Everybody is stealing the public goods, whether it is public time (officer on cell phones while people are waiting for service), environment (forest destruction, soil erosion), ancient ruins (robbers of archaeological sites), air, public roads, or wasting foreign exchange.  As it is there is not a single function of government that one can say is working satisfactorily.  This situation cannot be remedied by defeating MahindaR or getting UNP or a combination into power. From the past history of what it did, voting for UNP will be like jumping from frying pan to fire.  A revolution like change is needed, throwing out the black-white crowds in Colombo and now in Provincial Council buildings.

This is why we need ecology-based GSN units empowered so that at least basic issues of people are handled at village level by people themselves. RMBS needs to know that the river basin division is only a cartographic picture of a basic change needed in Sri Lanka to get rid of plans by so many agents to break Sri Lanka into two. Any Tamil who wants to divide Sri Lanka will oppose it. But villagers who saw this map liked it. It is a map that will get oxygen from village level ecology-based GSN units. It refuses anything other than ecology as a boundary demarcation. The map below is crying for reason, not a Tamil homeland. RMBS and his church and NGOs cannot suppress it. Yes, Tamils need space for aspirations, but not a homeland in Sri Lanka. That homeland is in Tamil Nad.  RBMS may not know and Lalth Weeratunga may not know that under the Prabhakaran government after CFA 2002, there were detailed plans of development using GSN unit-level maps. Prabhakarn rejected RBMS’ kachcheri approach.

25 Responses to “Church influence on Mr. R. M. B.Senanayake’s reply”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    NO divisions whatsoever.

    We don’t want ethnicity based divisions, river basin divisions or any other divisions.

    Divisions create conflict.

  2. Sirih Says:

    I have studied this RMBS, articles at CT, and this guy has no self respect and at his old age looking for church funding to survive by selling his heritage.. I would say this bugger has no heritage and he fits in to the American criteria called “House Nigger” doing white mans dirty work.

    All his life work is linked to the church and possibly a 5th columnist doing dirt work for colonial christian agenda to bring Sinhalese Buddhist heritage to fail.
    How these kind of morons sleep in the night ? He is in our database and CT is a nice place to go hunting and we know most of these CT writers that are anti state.
    Did CT know who and why their wen site was hacked.. ( I would not print the dates, they should know)…

  3. Lorenzo Says:

    On war crimes BS everyone should RE-READ this.

    LW has reproduced this today.

    From Sri Lanka, questions about wars
    The Hindu, November 20, 2013

    Copied from that.

    “The numbers

    It is important to understand why so many different numbers exist, what they mean, and what they imply.
    The methodology behind these figures was first proposed by the University Teachers for Human Rights, a Jaffna-based human rights group. In essence, the UTHR proposed deducting the number of civilians who arrived at the government’s refugee camps from those known to be living in the so-called no-fire zone. This gave a number for people who could be presumed to have been killed.

    However, no one knows how many people were actually living in the no-fire zone to start with. The government agent in Mullaithivu district, K. Parthipan, estimated the population to be around 330,000 in February 2009. Mr. Parthipan, though, had no way of conducting a census in the no-fire zone; he relied instead on reports from local headmen. He did not have any tools to distinguish civilians from LTTE conscripts and irregulars. He had no way of accounting for people who fled the zone to safety as the Sri Lankan forces closed in.

    Mr. Parthipan’s numbers weren’t supported by the United Nations Panel of Expert’s analysis of satellite images, which suggested a population of 267,618. The U.N. experts then attempted a rule-of-thumb calculation of 1:2 or 1:3 civilian dead for every person known to be injured, which suggested 15,000 to 22,500 fatalities — much lower than the estimates that have now become commonplace. Finally, the panel plumped for an estimate of 40,000, based on Mr. Parthipan’s numbers.

    Notably, the panel did not distinguish between civilians and the LTTE cadre — a fact noted by the U.S. State Department’s December 2009 report to Congress. The LTTE’s regular forces, estimated by experts at around 30,000, were backed by irregulars, the makkal padai, as well as press-ganged conscripts.

    Deliberate killing?

    It isn’t unequivocally clear, either, that disproportionate or indiscriminate force was used to eliminate these forces. Satellite imaging shows that right up to May 17, the Sri Lankan Army was facing fire from the LTTE’s 130 mm, 140 mm and 152 mm artillery. The Sri Lankan Army claims to have been losing over 40 soldiers a day during the last phases of the war. The former U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Robert Blake, sent a confidential cable to Washington, DC, on January 26, 2009, saying that the Sri Lankan Army “has a generally good track record of taking care to minimise civilian casualties during its advances.”

    Jacques de Maio, head of operations of the International Committee of the Red Cross, concurred: on July 9, 2009 he told a U.S. diplomat that Sri Lanka “actually could have won the military battle faster with higher civilian casualties, yet chose a slower approach which led to a greater number of Sri Lankan military deaths.”

    It is worth noting, too, that the U.N. panel acknowledged that the LTTE put some of those civilians in harm’s way. The report found “patterns of conduct whereby the LTTE deliberately located or used mortar pieces or other light artillery, military vehicles, mortar pits, and trenches in proximity to civilian areas.”

    D.B.S. Jeyaraj has graphically described how the LTTE forced civilians into the Karaichikkudiyiruppu area to defeat an offensive by the Sri Lankan Army’s 55 division and 59 division.

    Photographs taken by a cameraman for The Times of London on May 24, 2009, for example, show what appear to be pits for siting mortar, an arms trailer and a bunker, in the midst of a civilian location in the no-fire zone.

    None of this, of course, settles things one way or the other — and that’s the point. There is very little doubt that the Sri Lankan forces did commit crimes. They worked with savage paramilitaries who were out to settle scores with the LTTE. It doesn’t follow from this, though, that Sri Lanka’s campaign against the LTTE was genocide.”

  4. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    “Yes, Tamils need space for aspirations, but not a homeland in Sri Lanka. That homeland is in Tamil Nadu”. Both Sinhalese and Tamils must always remember that and in case they forget then they should be reminded of that point. The Tamils at best are guests in another land and at worst occupiers in another land. The voice of the Buddhist Sanga, the Sinhalese people and the government they vote are the dominant voice of the land.

    The historical documents of the Mahavamsa, the Culavamsa, the Dipavamsa, the Rajagilya and the Bhodivamsa cement this point in the collective written history of the land of Sri Lanka. There is no Hindu Tamil, Muslim or Christian version to these documents that date as far back as 300 BC.

    The reconstruction of Dagobas, Buddha Statues, Viharas and monasteries will reclaim what the Europeans tried so hard to annihilate in order to destroy the Buddhist Doctrine. The memory of Sri Lanka’s soldiers to her ancient warriors should be commemorated by monuments in every part of the land

  5. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    The Sinhalese nationalist movement is being hindered by the Tamil Diaspora. Time to bury the human rights issue as I addressed this in another article in the Lankaweb and focus on nation building, on Buddhist nation building, on making Buddhism a state faith, and put in place a reconversion of Buddhists converted to Christianity, Islam, or any other faith.

    My Grandfather was a Buddhist and a Buddhist scholar who translated and transliterated ancient Pali scripts that even the Buddhist monks found difficult. I was born a Catholic and baptized as one but if it means that I convert to Buddhism in order to make the point that the need for the converted by reconverted I would gladly do so. The circle is now complete. The days of the Christian western hegemony is ending and the rise of the cultures they invaded, vandalized and finally conquered are now rising again.

    Now it is time for the majority of the world which is NOT western, which is NOT Christian tell them the values of civility and human values.

  6. aloy Says:

    This write up by CW is a gem. Until today I did not know that a concept known as Vatiya described as follows existed in ancient Sri Lanka:
    “In other dry zone areas of Sri Lanka these eco villages thrived with the use of a technique called “Vatiya” (Vatiya pronounced as in vanish or valid). R. L. Brohier talked about a step-wise irrigation system, but the real beauty of the Vatiya was uncovered only in the 1990s by accident by another irrigation engineer, P.A.G. Paranagam working on the Walawe left bank. What Vatiya did was to raise the water level of the river bottom so that during the rainy season it overflowed and reach the red soil of the dry land above. After saturating the red soil the Vatiya takes water back to the river at a lower point of the river valley. At that point a new Vatiya starts the job again. So what people thought as abandoned tanks were not water tanks but remains of Vatiyas upstream. (modernized BSc engineers destroyed these primitive tank bunds). Dry Zone was full of highland eco-villages fed by the Vatiya concept.”. Perhaps this was the bedrock on which our hydraulic civilization was founded.

    I do not know whether what I am going to write would attract interest of many a reader. Until recently the flood control and hydraulic and hydrological systems in the US were developed by an engineering section of the US Army. They put out software packages known as HEC1 (Hydraulic Engineering Centre), HEC-RAS, HEC-GEO and so on, and were used by many engineers all over the world. Later a Danish Institute incorporated Digital Terrain Modeling part to to their own similar system to capture various geographic information and statistics for the analysis. These are known as MIKE 11, MIKE 22 and so on and these appear to be standards of the day, but to my knowledge these do not capture the time element in the Vatiya method or anything equivalent.There is a Europeon version also and I have a copy of that too.
    I would like to ask LHI (Lanka Hydraulic Institute), CMC and the technical team of MOD where these packages are being used under the guidance of Danish experts to embark on the development of software based on our own hydraulic civilization. I remember I once met a head of one of these organizations and suggested, in passing, that he should initiate such an effort as he claimed to have over 200 engineers under him. I found him to be not receptive.

  7. Sirih Says:

    @ Mr. Bernard W, Putting the country first is commendable, Buddhist are not against any other religion as long as they do not use colonial tricks and using their religion as a imperial tool.
    We should all coexist as human beings.
    You should be proud of your heritage….

  8. Nanda Says:

    “But under an ecology-based GSN units plan there can be so many such units giving Tamils a kind of spatial pride and room for promoting harmless aspiration (anything but separatism)”

    No. No way. Tamils and Harmlesness do not go together.
    This is a different breed. They should always be ruled. This is why until late 2010 we had proper peace. That peace is gone now, as they are convinced that they have some power now.
    Now even Gods from America come to see a terrorist widow in Jaffna. They must be already planning to capture whole of Sri lanka.

  9. SA Kumar Says:

    Tamils and Harmlesness do not go together. This is a different breed. They should always be ruled. This is why until late 2010 we had proper peace !!!!

    Nanda , North Korea also have proper peace !!!

    Remember a saying !
    in Sinhala , Fish mouth is its enemy ( Malu marana Kadda …..)
    in Tamil , Thaval Than vaayal Saakum ( Frog die because it mouth)

  10. Fran Diaz Says:

    Remove the 13-a and activate the 6-A.

    After that carry out Referendums involving the Voting population of Lanka re any major changes to administrative divisions etc. Our Voting population needs to become the rulers of Lanka, the thinkers for Lanka. That is a true Democracy.

    It is because our systems of governance are still Colonial (to suit foreign rule) and somewhat archaic that Diaspora Tamils
    (DTs) and some Tamil Nadu leaders push for Separatism in Lanka. For most Tamils of Lanka who perceive this as their group strength, they go along with DTs and TN leaders. It is also recognition of lower castes in Lanka by the Tamil leaders who want to gain Eelam.

    Since we still have the Roman/Dutch/British Law in place, are we free of the past Colonial times ?
    Question for Tamils of Lanka : Which side of the Palk Sts. do you belong to ? Who feeds you, shelters you, educates you, and pays your wages ? To whom do you owe Thanks and Allegiance ?

    What does Independence (4th Feb) really mean ? Independence from what and whom ?

  11. Fran Diaz Says:

    Add: Foreign interests go with any ‘Divide & Rule’ policies. Does INDIA want Colonial history to repeat itself ? NO !

  12. Lorenzo Says:


    SL Tamils asked for Tamil Elam FIRST.

    Tamil Madu asked for it SECOND.

    Diaspora Tamils asked for it THIRD.

    The problem is Tamils in SL. Others cannot interfere in SL if SL govt has a backbone.

  13. Lorenzo Says:

    Sobitha Thero is the new Sarath Gonzeka.

  14. Fran Diaz Says:


    SL Tamils asked for Tamil Eelam First – that is true, but that was during the Cold War times, and they had heavy under cover backing from vested interests.

    Now the Cold War is finished. Now the backing is for ‘divide & rule’. Tamils of Lanka must decide which side of the Palk Sts they belong. Have a Referendum and ask them which side they prefer. It’s worth the costs. If North of Palk Sts. then those who chose that must go to Tamil Nadu. Those who chose Lanka can take an Oath of Allegiance to Lanka along with the rest of us.

  15. Lorenzo Says:


    “SL Tamils asked for Tamil Eelam First – that is true, but that was during the Cold War times, and they had heavy under cover backing from vested interests.”

    NOT true.

    Tamil Elam demand is OLDER than the COLD WAR.

    Cold war started after WW-2. Tamil Elam demand was made as far back as 1931 or earlier. Because of this reason TE demand DID NOT die with the cold war.

    I agree on the Oath of Allegiance to Sri Lanka but KNOWING how Tamilians behave, they will take this oath and still support TE. It has to be followed up by action.

  16. aloy Says:

    Coming back to the ‘Vatiya’ method of irrigation described above by CW, he says it was discovered accidentally by one engineer Paranagama. It appears this has not received much attention as BSc engineers have continued to destroy the system. I think the minister of Irrigation should advise the University dons to carryout research work on this and if possible bring it to the attention of World Food Program. They can also try to restore what was there. A good part of world population suffers from poverty and hunger, but there are plenty of areas in the world like what we have in the dry zone (or Raja Rata, which was the granary of the east even sending rice to far away places like Rome). These are almost flat land that could be developed with that Vatiya system. This is nothing but a pumping system sending water from a low potential (ground) to a high potential with no cost, using the nature which is a marvelous thing. All the known irrigation systems (including those software systems developed by the west using the modern technology) bring water from a higher ground to a lower ground.

  17. Fran Diaz Says:


    Yes, that is also true that the idea of Tamil Separatism was there in Lanka earlier during the time of British rule, as early as the 1930’s some say, but not as an idea as a separate state as such. It was more an exclusively Tamil area attached to the rest of Lanka. You can be sure that the British kept a check on it in Lanka. Later, after Independence from Britian (1948), it changed to firm Tamil Federalism.

    THE IDEA OF SEPARATISM WAS NOT BORN IN LANKA. IT WAS BORN IN TAMIL NADU, AND KEPT ALIVE IN LANKA PARTICULARLY AFTER THE PM NEHRU ANTI-SECESSION LAWS WERE ENACTED IN INDIA (1962). Tamil Separatism is there in Lanka for a number of reasons, too long to write up here. Suffice to say that Tamil Nadu led the North-South Separatism in India (Southern Dravidian states vs North Indian rule in Delhi) for a very long time, before the Tamil Separatist idea came to Lanka. Generally speaking, Tamil political leaders reek with Separatism, whether in Lanka or India. That is their motto. Am I right about the above ?

    Politically speaking, it was as messy as it could get. It is a wonder that Lanka is still standing.

    What we can do re Security :

    * Lorenzo, if children (whatever ethnicity) are taught an Oath of Allegiance to Lanka repeated in a meaningful way several times a week , it will certainly help integration.

    * Also, activate the 6-A.


    Thought for the Day:

    If mankind is born to seek the Godhead by seeking the Peace WITHIN (comes with the chip inside us), why seek divisions and wars ?
    All the religions affirm that which we seek in life is already within us all, waiting to be discovered.

  18. Fran Diaz Says:


    The ‘Vatiya’ method is fascinating. I am assuming that this ‘Vatiya’ is a sort of bund across the river which creates a reservoir
    to enable the water to collect and then overflow into the arid areas. These waters are collected after irrigating the arid parts and taken back to the river to serve another ‘Vatiya’ downstream. Am I right in this assumption ?

    I am familiar with the term ‘Niyara’ but not with the term ‘Vatiya’. Thank you for bringing up this point.

  19. Fran Diaz Says:

    I should say that the ‘Vatiya’ is created by some sort of bund across the river.

  20. aloy Says:

    Yes, I also thought so. By having some sort of a bund across the river water can be diverted during the rainy season to further areas and that could be trapped in tanks (reservoirs) at higher levels. This water then flows backward to the river entering it at another low point, irrigating the land on the way. This is the way, I think, it should work. I am fascinated by the ingenuity of our forefathers. We already know how the Yodha ela canal, has been constructed by them ( perhaps two thousand years ago) in the same dry zone to take water as far as 40km with only a head loss of 40cm for irrigation.

  21. Fran Diaz Says:


    I have heard that the irrgation canals had something like 1″ gradient per mile allowing flow in the direction required – how that is made possible, I cannot fathom.
    Yes, our forefathers were irrigation ‘wizards’ and ‘wizards’ of sorts in more ways than one. Time to revive that tradition.

    Thanks again for your input.

  22. aloy Says:

    Fran, Yes that is the hydraulic gradient it works out to be and I used it in a simple tool called FlowMaster (also from HEC, originally) installed in my computer. Assuming the channel to be about 40m wide and 2m deep, it gave me a flow velocity of 1m/second and 80 cubic meters of water flow per second. It takes almost half a day for the water to reach the other end giving a flow of 7 million meter cubes a day (=5800 acre feet). This I believe is a substantial quantity in terms of irrigating capacity (there is need to make adjustments taking into account of the correct dimensions)
    A close relative of mine who is working in a global rice research initiative as the Program Lead called me last night from overseas to find out more details of this interesting thing we have stumbled upon. I need to get more info by contacting Eng. Paranagama, perhaps through the writer, before I oblige.

  23. Fran Diaz Says:


    I shall copy what you have written here to some of our engineering friends.

    Good luck ! Wishing us all more Serendipity stumbles !

  24. aloy Says:

    Fran, I am sure the irrigation engineers will dismiss the notion that they did not know what is Vetiya as every gamarala (rice farmer) use these to raise water level in their little channels and divert water to adjoining patch (liyadda). But what they did not know was the concept of using those in a mega scale, perhaps like in the case of Yodha Ela, in a cascading manner. Even though the former irrigation directors like Kennedy and the Surveyor Broheir had a good knowledge of our ancient irrigation system while our own BSc fellows seemed to be clueless about them. The destruction of the Kivulekada reservoir built by King Mahasen (273- 301 AD) in 2011 as explained in the link bellow is a case in point:
    This was sent to me by the rice research person mentioned in my above comment. This also shows that the outside world knows what happened here in the past.

  25. aloy Says:

    correction: “…ancient irrigation systems, our own BSc engineers in irrigation department seemed to be unaware about them until 1990.”

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