Author Archive for Malinda Seneviratne

Cabinet re-shuffle: the cards that keep floating to the top

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE President Maithripala Sirisena was hopeful.  He said the Cabinet reshuffle will provide a new impetus to Sri Lanka’s development.  Prof G.L. Peiris was generous.  He said that it is unfair to blame Ravi Karunanayake for the economic failures and fiscal shortcomings of the government since he operated with clipped wings considering that […]

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‘The SAITM Issue’ and the politics of misnaming

Thursday, May 11th, 2017

 BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE Whoever is against SAITM should also be opposed to fee-levying institutions such as private nurseries, tuition classes, outfits that offer all kinds of certification and practices such as channeling services.  This is an argument that is widely tossed around by those opposing opposition to SAITM.  The flak that Dr Anuruddha Padeniya of […]

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Yahapalanaya moves to besiege freedom

Saturday, May 6th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE ‘At least there’s freedom now!’  This has been the stock (consolation?) response of those who defend the yahapalana regime whenever it is pointed out that corruption, nepotism, abuse of state resources for political purposes and other wrongdoings have not ceased after the January 8 ‘revolution’.   No more white van abductions, true.  Journalists have […]

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Post May Day blues (for the blues and greens)

Saturday, May 6th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE May Day (in Sri Lanka) is not about workers.  It’s about show.  This time it was about challenges thrown and accepted, oneupmanship and bragging rights. The regime-thinking was abvious.  They believed the JO could not fill Galle Face Green.  They did.  Although the Joint Opposition (JO), perhaps in the permissible magnanimity of […]

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Yahapalanaya moves to besiege freedom

Sunday, April 30th, 2017

by Malinda Seneviratne Courtesy The Island ‘At least there’s freedom now!’  This has been the stock (consolation?) response of those who defend the yahapalana regime whenever it is pointed out that corruption, nepotism, abuse of state resources for political purposes and other wrongdoings have not ceased after the January 8 ‘revolution’.   No more white van abductions, […]

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Repeating the error of self-inflicted torture

Friday, April 28th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE Any conflagration and especially one marked by the clash of arms that lasts over several decades can be defined in multiple ways.  For some, the conflict in Sri Lanka, was a matter between the Sinhalese and Tamils.  They call it ‘Ethnic Conflict’.  Others could say that it was a battle between state […]

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High time for ‘Right to Recall’ legislation in Sri Lanka!

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE The stench from Meethotamulla, metaphorically speaking, is being matched by the stench of political rivals lobbing chunks of political garbage at one another.  The politically dispassionate pointing out that there are countries where such disasters resulted in the resignation of relevant subject ministers or officials, called for the resignation of those responsible.  […]

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Who ‘owns’ the R2P (Responsibility to Protect) Syria?

Sunday, April 16th, 2017

Malinda Seneviratne  There’s saber-rattling in Washington.  There’s saber-rattling in Moscow.  Tit-for-tat talk.  Rattle-for-rattle. Neither the USA nor Russia is under attack.  Neither country can claim that there is a threat to its security. It’s all about a country that is located almost 11,000km from the USA and about 5,500km from Russia. Syria. It all followed a chemical attack […]

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Repeating the Ginger for Chillie error

Saturday, April 8th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE  There was a time when victory over enemies was about bashing heads in, seizing their women and enslaving their children.  It still happens of course.  The cost-effective way is for the powerful to dictate, the weak to submit, hands to be shaken with the key representatives of the respective parties facing the […]

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Wigneswaran: the judge who forgot ‘the whole truth’

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

Malinda Seneviratne A highly successful lawyer was once asked why he was not interested in becoming a judge.  He had laughed, ‘I would rather talk a load of rubbish all day than listen to a load of rubbish.’  Judges have to listen.  That’s their job.  And one of the things they have to listen to […]

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Staying in power and staying power

Sunday, March 19th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE It has become a tradition for Ranil Wickremesinghe to visit various signature tents at the Royal-Thomian and respond to questions put to him.  It’s all light-hearted.  The questions are often tongue-in-cheek stuff and the responses are calculated to generate some laughter, one feels. It was no different this year.  Two questions stood […]

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Recognizing the yahapalanaya party

Sunday, March 19th, 2017

by Malinda Seneviratne March 18, 2017, 5:53 pm Arjuna Mahendran, the former Governor of the Central Bank, is reported to have transferred out some 500 members of his staff.  The Government is all set to demarcate specific areas for protests.  The Government got some egg on its face with the appointment and removal of judges.  […]

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Yahapalana brain-fade in Geneva

Saturday, March 18th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE  Way back when Mahinda Rajapaksa’s government was getting slammed left, right and centre by the ‘international (sic) community’, especially at the UNHRC, his detractors were thrilled.  Little did they care that the accusers were tainted in ways that made Sri Lanka look pretty innocent in terms of (alleged) ‘war crimes’.  Rajapaksa was […]

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Yahapalana brain-fade in Geneva

Sunday, March 12th, 2017

by Malinda Seneviratne March 11, 2017, 7:05 pm Way back when Mahinda Rajapaksa’s government was getting slammed left, right and centre by the ‘international (sic) community’, especially at the UNHRC, his detractors were thrilled.  Little did they care that the accusers were tainted in ways that made Sri Lanka look pretty innocent in terms of […]

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A love-bite release is hardly a palliative

Sunday, March 5th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE What’s the difference between this government and the previous one?  Ask some random person on the street and the most likely answer would be ‘nothing’.  That’s a perception of felt benefits.  In fact some might even say ‘this lot is worse’ and if pushed might explain, ‘they said they would be different […]

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The claims and counter-claims of intransigence

Thursday, March 2nd, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE  Leader of the Opposition and the senior citizen of Tamil Nationalism R Sampanthan in an adjournment motion has made some interesting points.   “All people who lived in Sri Lanka, irrespective of their ethnicity, religion, or any other difference, whether Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim or Burgher made their fullest contribution to the achievement […]

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Congratulations Mister Prime Minister!

Tuesday, February 21st, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was conferred an honorary doctorate by Deakin University, Australia. He’s not the first premier thus honored and he probably will not be the last.  However, an honor it is and as such warranted media coverage.    What was newsy, though, was not the event but a statement he had […]

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Wigneswaran and the puppeteering with ghosts

Thursday, February 16th, 2017

Malinda Seneviratne  Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara’s recent comments on Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran contained valid observations, old news delivered as though it was new, half-truths and some uncalled for insults.  Wigneswaran’s response was, in contrast, quite sober though not unproblematic. In Jayasekera’s opinion, Wigneswaran is ‘nothing but a bhoothya’.   An evil ghost […]

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A ‘cannot’ and ‘will not’ Government

Thursday, February 16th, 2017

Malinda Seneviratne When the Government’s staunchest apologists sound disappointment it is a sure sign that things are more than ‘pretty bad’.  According to one yahapalanist, Jehan Perera (see “Going back to an alliance that can win elections” published in ‘The Island’, February 14, 2017) the public perception is that the Government has not (cannot?) tackle corruption, […]

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Grievances and resolution: the question of true dimensions

Friday, February 3rd, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE  Grievances.  ‘Grievances?’ rather.  A word and a question.  The former implies a list or at least two issues that somehow cause distress.  The latter, the question that is, is something that has been customarily ignored or caused much shy-making, toe-watching and navel-gazing.  At best it prompts a highly emotion and even highly stylized narrative which is marked […]

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Don’t underestimate Ven Athureliye Rathana Thero

Friday, January 27th, 2017

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE Ven Athureliye Rathana Thero, quite silent and almost a non-factor in the public domain for almost a year, made the headlines of all national newspapers last week.  ‘Rathana Thero goes independent,’ or versions of this, made the headlines.  The truth is that Rathana Haamuduruwo had already been made independent.  He had been unceremoniously evicted from the Jathika Hela Urumaya.  […]

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Cheating Sinhalese in proposal and Tamils through outcome

Thursday, December 22nd, 2016

 Malinda Seneviratne JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake has made two statements regarding reconciliation via constitutional reform. Firstly, he has said that a referendum on a new constitution should not be approached the way the Presidential Election was fought. In that election, the Northern and Eastern Provinces overwhelmingly voted for President Sirisena, who was the default […]

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The planetary preferences of yahapalana apologists

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

By Malinda Seneviratne Courtesy The Daily Mirror  A self-proclaimed Marxist recently listed 12 things that the Yahapalana Government cannot achieve. He should have put it this way: ‘Should but cannot achieve’. As someone who once said ‘we must hope that the Government will not defeat the LTTE’ when the latter’s invincibility braggadocio was being put to […]

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Foreign Policy and self-imposed non-negotiability

Friday, August 19th, 2016

Malinda Seneviratne Small nations typically do not have much by way of bargaining power vis-à-vis powerful nations; ‘small’ meaning economically and militarily weak rather than land size.  Weak, however, does not mean helpless. Indeed there are very few if any relationships between the powerful and the weak that are not characterized by contestation and continuous negotiation […]

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USAID Moves On The Bar Association

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

By Malinda Seneviratne  First they offer help and then they enslave ‘First they had the book and we had the land. Then they said “close your eyes, let us pray”. When we opened our eyes, we had the book and they had the land.’ — Bishop Desmond Tutu on the relationship between invader and missionary in […]

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සංඛ අමරජිත් වෙනුවට ලක්ෂ්මන් කිරිඇල්ල

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2016

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE  “කැකිරිලන්තයේ මීළඟ පුවත්” ශීර්ෂය යටතේ මූණු පොතේ විටින් විට පළ කරන ලද ‘ප්‍රවෘති’ එකතුවකි මෙලෙස ඉදිරිපත් කරන්නේ  “කිරිඇල්ල ගේ දේශපාලන විද්‍යාව” කෘතිය විශ්ව විද්‍යාල සඳහා නිර්දේශ වේ  උසස් අධ්‍යාපන ඇමති ලක්ෂ්මන් කිරිඇල්ල කැළණි විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයේ දේශපාලන අංශ ප්‍රධානියා ට ලියා ඇත්තේ එම අංශයේ ‘තාවකාලික කථිකාචාර්ය’ තනතුරක් ඔහුගේ හිතවතෙකුට ලබා දෙන ලෙසයි. මේ වනාහී […]

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On Ekneligoda, in spite of Ekneligoda and his pals

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

Malinda Seneviratne Six years ago, I wrote about Prageeth Ekneligoda in the state-owned ‘Daily News’. This around the time he was picked up as the poster-boy of NGO racketeers strutting around as champions of human rights.  Ekneligoda, as someone recently observed, was no journalist.  He drew some cartoons and they were nice, but there was […]

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Farah Mihlar and others tossed cats out of the bag in Geneva

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE They say that if you give some people enough rope they will hang themselves with it.  On March 19, 2012, in Geneva, no one needed give any rope to several individuals who came to talk about ‘Rule of law and human rights violations in Sri Lanka’.  They came with enough rope and […]

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ECTA hush-hush a typical UNP/Ranil preference?

Monday, February 29th, 2016

MALINDA SENEVIRATN​E “And there’s history.  A history of India meddling in the affairs of Sri Lanka.  There’s the whole story of supporting terrorism with arms, money and training (before the idea backfired).  Then there’s the Indo-Lanka Agreement.  That’s important and relevant because it was thrust down Sri Lanka’s throat. No discussion.   No entertainment of query.  […]

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“මම රාජ කුමාරයෙක් නෙමෙයි…මම ගමේ කොල්ලෙක්!’ සහ කැකිරිලන්තයේ වෙනත් රස කතා

Saturday, January 23rd, 2016

“මම රාජ කුමාරයෙක් නෙමෙයි…මම ගමේ කොල්ලෙක්!’ — මෛත්‍රිපාල BY MALINDA SENEVIRATNE  ප්‍රශස්ති ගීත සාහිත්‍යයේ “ලැජ්ජාසහගතම” ගණයට වැටෙන “අභිමාන පුලතිසි මහා පැරකුම් විජයබා කුලයේ…බ්ලා බ්ලා බ්ලා” සින්දුව මෛත්‍රිපාල විසින්, මෛත්‍රිපාල සමග, මෛත්‍රිපාල සඳහා කළ නිර්මාණයක් බව ඔප්පු වී හමාරයි. එසේ නොවේ යැයි කීමට ගොස් ශ්‍රී ලංකාවේ ජනපති ද ඔහුගේ පරිවාර වන්දිභාට්ටයින්ද තව තවත් නා ගන්නා බව […]

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