The never ending British Conspiracies against Sri Lanka
Posted on January 18th, 2016

Dr Sudarh Gunasekara, President Mahanuwara Senior Citizens Momement


The age old British ‘pregnancy craving’ to own Sri Lanka as a permanent Colony of their own and the conspiracies to disintegrate and destabilize Sri Lanka and destroy this Sinhala Buddhist Nation is still not over.

Ever since the British took over this Island from the Dutch in 1796 their main objective was to create disunity among the Sinhala people, set them against the non Sinhala, specially the Tamils, and try to disintegrate the Lankan society on ethnic grounds. For this they used language, religion and even regional differences such as newly created Kandyan and Low country notions. Their first attempt was to create dissentions and disunity among the Sinhala people by dividing them in to two antagonistic groups as Cinglese and Kandyans. They called those who lived in the narrow coastal belt taken over from the Dutch, Cinglese and those who lived in the rest of the country including the hill country, that was called the Kandyan Kingdom by them, Kandyans (People living on the hills).  According to this notion KAndyans are not Sinhala people.Thus in 1803 Robert Percival a British soldier for the first time divided the Sinhala nation in to two groups as Cinglese (Sinhalese) and Kandyans..

This is how he differentiated the two groups. ‘ The Cinglese, who inhabit the low lands and parts contiguous to the coasts, live entirely under the dominion of whatever European nation has been able to acquire possession of that part of the Island. The subjection under which they have lived, while has effaced the feature of barborous independence has at the same time tended to humanize and soften their dispositions. The Cinglese are a quiet, inoffensive people; exceedingly grave, temperate and frugal. The milder virtues form the most prominent features of the Cinglese character. They are gentle, and charitable and friendly and have scarcely any of the false, treacherous and designing arts which are often found among the Candians. On examining the countenance and carriage of these two classes of Celonese it is easy to perceive the difference arising from the respective circumstances, in which they are placed. The countenance of the Kandian is erect, his looks haughty, his mind lofty, and his whole carriage marked by the pride of independence.. The humble yielding deportment of the Cinglese, on the other hand, with the patient or rather abject endurance which is painted in their faces, plainly denotes the dependent and helpless state of which they are reduced. The looks of the Cinglese even denote a degree of effeminacy and cowardice, which excites the contempt of the Candians.’

Percival was the first British on record who perceived the importance of owning this country as a British territory as way back in 1803 when he said ‘the attention and the enterprise of this country a new acquisition of the greatest importance both in a commercial and political point of view I am enabled to affirm that its retention in our hands must prove of the greatest benefit to our East India trade and our commerce in genera…. I was enabled to notice the many advantages to be derived from this valuable possession, so that it would not be given up at any future peace….. for it contains the only harbor on the Coromandel or Malabar coasts in which ships can moor in safety at all seasons of the year and even before it came in to our possession, its internal produce presented rich articles of commerce’. (An account of the Island of Ceylon Robert Percival 1803).

So it is not difficult to understand why British have been craving to possess this Island right from the beginning and why they persistently try to have a control even today over this country. In this backdrop possibly he would have perceived that the first thing they have to do is to divide the Sinhalese people who comprised the majority and may be why he divided them as Kandyans and low  country people leading to a long journey of divide and rule policy of communal politics in this country. Thus Percival may be called the father of ‘the Colonial divide and rule policy in this country.

British invaded the Kandyan Kingdom in 1803 and had to retreat in defeat but succeeded in 1815 under the able espionage of D’oyly who had netted almost all the monks and chieftains in the whole Kandyan Kingdom with his fluency in Sinhala and professional acumen.  Immediately after signing the Kandyan Convention Governor Brownwrigg issued a Royal Proclamation on Nov 21 1818 in the wake of the Uva Rebellion, violating the agreement between the two nations and almost suspended the Kandyan Convention and ruled the country by such Royal enactments thereafter.

In 1833 they divided the Island in to five Provinces as Northern, Western, Southern, Central and Eastern and unified the maritime belts with the Kandyan Kingdom. This is the first time the Island was divided more or less on ethnic basis marking a departure from the 2000 year old conventional geopolitical Tun Helaya or Tun Rata political divisions. Rajakariya was abolished in 1833, Village Councils were disband and maintenance of all irrigation works –the nerve system of local agriculture banned.Native system of temple based education system was replaced with Church based missionary and government school system which was heavily concentrated around Colombo and Jaffna. By 1845, out of a total of 103 English schools in the Island, 45 were located in Jaffna. This clearly shows the hidden agenda of British to elevate a Tamil elite class above the Sinhalese to take over the governance of the country.

In 1840 they began forcible acquisition of native land with the introduction of the Encroachment on Crown Lands Ordinance and took over lands belonging to people, Temples and Devalas. Within the Kandyan areas alone they took over more than 600,000 acres of land mainly belonging to Temples and Devalas, destroyed the prime forest cover on them and started Coffee plantations displacing thousands of native people.

In 1848, after the Matale Rebellion Governor Torrington appealed to the British Government to settle down South Indian Tamil in the Central hill country firstly, to counter the natives and secondly, to build up an Indian Tamil population right at the centre of the country to facilitate their ulterior motive of future divisive politics and destroying Sinhala identity of this country. With the Temple lands Ordinance Ordinance of 1853 they took over the Temple Lands thereby breaking the backbone of the nation, the Buddhist Temple. After the Coffee blight they introduced Tea and brought an army of South Indian labour and settled them all over the central hill country and created a Tamil enclave right at the centre of the country creating an eternal socio-political and economic headache to this nation. In 1897 whatever left was also taken under the Wasteland Ordinance impoverishing the native Sinhalese.

In 1915 when riots between Sinhala and Muslim people took place the then Government took the side of the Muslims and took actions against the Sinhala leaders. When they were compelled to leave the shores with emerging new world political situation they left in 1948 granting nominal independence leaving behind a legacy of over one million Indians on these plantations. They gave us a ‘made in England’ constitution that did not replace the name of the country taken over by them in 1815, that introduced the concept of the presence of many nation in this country with the creation of a political party called UNP which implied there were more than one nation in this country and that made special provisions in the constitution empowering minorities equal rights.  They also left behind their own legal and administrative systems trapping us in an alien system without allowing a new nation to be born.

Even after 67 years since that ‘fake Independence’ they still continue to interfere in our internal matters using political, diplomatic and trade leverage. The ‘pregnancy craving’ they had over this Island in the 18th century as expressed by Percival seems to be still there in their heads. Otherwise why all these big British guns are coming every day to this country. Why Cameron, Blair, Hugo Swire and even their Ambassador in Sri Lanka are so concerned about the Tamils in Sri Lanka. It is only two days ago Hugo Swire in Jaffna said that it was  his dream to see IDPs’ (Tamil) children returning to their original places. He said that it is now a reality in North. Sabapathy IDP camp. No wonder they behave like this when we have a bunch of backboneless and subservient leaders like the present.

My question is when are we going to assert as a free and independent nation and who will take us to that final goal? Why can’t our leaders put a stop to this nuisance and sue the British for all damages they have done to us from 1796 onwards up to date.

5 Responses to “The never ending British Conspiracies against Sri Lanka”

  1. Fran Diaz Says:

    Our thanks to Dr Gunasekara for this article.


    None of the ex-British colonies have recovered yet.
    Britain gave back her colonies purely because the Brit Empire was bankrupt after WW II. The ‘giving back’ really did not happen.

    In the case of Lanka, INDIA is now being used to re-capture the island Nation of Sri Lanka. The younger generation wants modernisation – the time is ripe for re-capture, thinks the coloniser.

    Modernisation can easily happen without giving in to getting re-Colonised. Do not allow that to happen, for the sake of all in Lanka. Remember the sufferings of the past, under colonists, be it Brits, Portuguese, or Dutch (least). India is being used as fishing rod to the needful !! India has suffered greatly under the Brits. They ought to know that they too will be dismembered in turn if Lanka is split up.

    India’s surging Dalit problems will be used against the country. Watch it, India ! See:

  2. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:



  3. Christie Says:

    Dear Dr Gunasekara

    Please go for a walk in Mahanuwara. Then count how many British you come across and how many Indian colonial parasites you come across.

    Dear Fran

    There was no India to suffer under the British. India was made by the British and . Like Dr Gunasekara, Fran when you go to India next tie count how many Brtis are there, the go to British Isles and count how many Indians are there.

  4. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    DR. Just one more thing you have to keep in mind. Like the IDEA of the Bridge from South India to Sri Lanka, some nut has proposed to build a BRIDGE across the Kandy Lake. Already a Foreigner has expressed his thoughts about it, and said, it will destroy the entire beauty of the Lake. This was said by * Oney Gonekuta Yuddey karanna puluwan, avi aryuda dunnoth*

    These ideas are compatible to the BRA episode.

  5. Fran Diaz Says:

    Dear Christie,

    The Colonists use Kalu Suddas – they do not need to keep the white British in large numbers in any of their colonies or ex-colonies. The ‘conversion’ is quite complete to the extent of killing one’s own folk ! Watch BBC series “Empire” – it is a fairly truthful documentary of self examination of the British Empire, in all its glory and gory.

    India, though not ‘one India’ suffered as separately governed bodies at the time of the British Raj. The British ruled the area as one area for convenience and later deliberately did a ‘divide & rule’ through Jinnah forming Pakistan. Jinnah was educated in the UK as a lawyer. He was brought in deliberately to India by the British for political purposes. India was/is the Jewel in the Crown of British Empire. Britain’s PM Cameron’s first visit out of country was to India where he gave a fighter plane as a part gift (check details). PM Cameron famously said “most of the trouble in the world today is due to Britain”. We like his then honesty.

    Ordinary Tamil folk are used in various ways by ex-Colonists. Tamil folk ought to wise up as to where their honor and values lie, also their lives and livelihoods.

    We ought to be honest as possible in our evaluations too, and not be blinded by fear (or greed of some).


    One Lanka, One Law, One People !
    Need of the hour is PATRIOTISM.

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