ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-We want Eelam: WeƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ll call it ISGA for nowƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ – TNA

April 14th, 2013

Asada M ErpiniƒÆ’-¡ 

ƒÆ’-¡ Poor Sri Lanka paid such a heavy price to get back to the peaceful state that prevailed in the country before federalists, separatists, Eelamists and others of their ilk started demanding for an ever-increasing piece of the pie. May 2009 is a watershed in the history of the island nation, when those who were in the forefront in destroying the country were sent from the Nadhikadal lagoons to where they really belonged.ƒÆ’-¡ 

ƒÆ’-¡ Yet, the call for separation is alive and kicking, as is clear from the report in Nation on 14 April. The Bishop of Mannar, with his blood-brother colleagues in the Tamil National Alliance, has met the Indian Parliamentary delegation that completed a visit to Sri Lanka, and had stressed the need for a ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-separate self-governing mechanism where the Northern and Eastern Provinces are mergedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬. Additionally, this band wants India to acknowledge that the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Tamils in Sri Lanka have been subjected to genocideƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬. Preposterous is too mild to describe the stand adopted by the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”priestƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ and the terrorist supporters.

ƒÆ’-¡ The Tamil separatist group says that the government has not uplifted the living standards of the Northern population. The whole of Sri Lanka knows the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”enviableƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ living standards that the Tamils of the North enjoyed under the jackboot of the LTTE. The Sri Lanka government provided food and medicines, of which the major portion was siphoned off by the LTTE to maintain its fighting machine, during the entire period when the LTTE maintained its illegal dominance of the populace. The parents of the children in Jaffna had to stay near school gates to ensure that their young ones were not abducted to serve as cannon fodder in the macabre pursuit of the LTTE leader for a mythical Eelam. Every family in the North was asked to contribute to the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”liberationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ by giving one family member to join the fighting cadres. While all this was going on, the fat boy son of Pirabhaharan had been taken to school in an air conditioned SUV and the papa enjoyed his life of luxury cocooned in a bunker 40 feet below ground!

ƒÆ’-¡ It is not IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s business to decide on how the sovereign nation of Sri Lanka administers its provinces, although many in India and some in Sri Lanka think that the giant neighbour to the North has a God-given right to put its unwelcome finger in everything that goes on in the island. There is yet a point on which nearly all Sri Lankans agree with the TNA team and the Bishop: they too will wholeheartedly reject the 13th Amendment, just as the TNA would do, because it is not a constitutional change that they ever asked for, and the country would have a better chance of safeguarding its territorial integrity and sovereignty the day the amendment that Rajiv Gandhi rammed down Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s throat is thrown into the dustbin.ƒÆ’-¡ 

ƒÆ’-¡ The TNA, going by its very name Tamil National Alliance, is a group that cannot yearn for, and be satisfied with, anything other than a Tamil nation. Giving in to the demands, threats and the manipulations, supported by its Indian colleagues and the financial backers operating from the affluent nations, is a fruitless exercise. There are only two options open to Sri Lanka. A call for separation is illegal, as stipulated in the constitution of Sri Lanka, and those who demand it should be punished according to the laws of the land. The other is that there is Tamil Nadu, the land of the Tamils, a mere 30 kilometres away: ask the whole bunch to cross the Palk Strait and carry on with their ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-fight for freedomƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ with the over 70 million Tamils who reside in Tamil Nadu.

ƒÆ’-¡ The extracts below from the Constitution of Sri Lanka should be acted upon vigorously so that the actions of the TNA Parliamentarians, who incidentally are paid by the Sri Lanka government, are reciprocated through the available legal channels.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-(2) No Regional Administration or Regional Administrations shall attempt, by direct or indirect means, to promote or otherwise advocate an initiative towards

(a) The separation or secession of such Region or Regions from the Union of Regions constituting the Republic of Sri Lanka.

(b) Alteration of the area of such Region or Regions;

(c) Alteration of the boundaries of such Region or Regions:

(d) Alteration of the name or names of such Region or Regions;

(e) Formation of a new Region by separation of territory from any Region or by uniting two or more Regions or parts of Regions or by uniting any territory with a part of any regionƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬.

ƒÆ’-¡ Sri Lanka is not ready to even consider calls for separate identities and administrative regions for the Tamils: too much of precious blood has been shed and too many lives of the rural young men and women have been sacrificed to rid the country of the LTTE terrorist curse that plagued the nation for nearly three decades.

What is the best tactical move to safeguard the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka given the geopolitical forces that currently menace us?

April 14th, 2013

R Chandrasoma

ƒÆ’-¡ The conventional thinking is that threats to our survival are rooted in politics and that effective strategies to thwart such dangers must necessarily be of a political nature – in the wise choice of external relations or revamped internal moves to appease or mollify the discontented within.

This is standard thinking but it does not apply when dangers are imminent and our enemies sense weakness . It is clear – even obvious – that our enemies will use the famous and time-tested tactic of fomenting rebellion by giving all encouragement to minorities with declared discontents.

Indeed this strategy begins by weakening the regime in power and making the idea of regime-change a public obsession. If this move is successful, a climate is built up where rebellion by defeated and disaffected minorities becomes a real possibility – the point at which there is a political phase-shift with external enemies giving logistical and moral support to the rebellious elements.

This will be followed by a flow of arms that will spell the end of Sri Lanka as a free nation. Needless to say, this scenario will be a painful replay of what is happening in many parts of the world at this very moment. Indeed, it is the New Imperial Strategy that has, effectively, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”neutralizedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ rising Asian Powers such as Egypt.

The politically naive might hypothesize that our ‘friends’ – China or Pakistan, for example. will help us when we are in deep trouble. The fact of the matter is that when a rebellion turns into an internal armed conflict between supposedly indigenous forces, no sane nation will help us – certainly not the Chinese.

As for India. it is almost certain that the Indians will help the rebels. How, then, can we guard against this cancer of foreign-aided rebellion in an Island-Nation such as Sri Lanka? It has been famously said that power grows out of the barrel of a gun. The sovereign remedy for the political ills and external ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”infectionsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ that menace us is to build up our armed forces to meet future foreign-assisted ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”venturesƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ in much the same way as an enlightened leadership and a valiant Army destroyed the seemingly invincible Prabhakaran.

Any major threat to Sri Lanka in the near future will be through the use of arms by traitors within and enemies abroad. The need of the hour is to boost our naval coast-guard and to expand the highly trained Special Forces with extra battle-ready units. In the clamor over devolution and ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”restorationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ of rights, is it surprising that withdrawal of our armed forces from the North and East is the the constantly repeated refrain?

This ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”demilitarizationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ is the sine qua non for ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”freedom strugglesƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ that will ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”morphƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ into armed insurrection with delighted foreigners providing supporting arms to the would-be destroyers of Sri Lanka.

We are fortunate in having a patriotic leadership that understands the dangers we face. We must view with dismay the attempts by ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”bogus nationalistsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ to undermine the authority of what they pejoratively refer to the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Rajapakse regimeƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢. A replacement will be the first step on the long and heart-breaking road to political anarchy and surrender.

China’s Government Structure- Meritocracy at its best?

April 14th, 2013

By Dr. Nath Amerakone, Sri Lanka

A recent editorial in The Island Journal of 12th April, 2013ƒÆ’-¡  entitled “A Criminals’ Paradise” reveals the true situation of politics in our country. The Organization of Professional Associations (OPA) of Sri Lanka has discussed this subject on a number of occasions: The dilemma of Professionals who have to accommodate administrative manipulations by politicians for their survival. What then is the way out of this mess?

The solution lies in a change of the system of government. Western form of democracry criminalizes politics. Success in elections call for popularity among the masses with little or no education. The politicians have to placate criminal elements. TheƒÆ’-¡  legislators have to please their supporters to get back to power. Thus,ƒÆ’-¡  politicking has become a game forƒÆ’-¡  the criminals to feather narrow objectives by cornering the votes of the least educated and the least productive. They have to embezzle public funds to keep the system going.
ƒÆ’-¡ 
Western Imperialists parading democracy have survived as long as they exploited their colonies. After they were forced to abandon the colonies, they tried Neo-Colonialism to further their exploitation by criminalizing society.ƒÆ’-¡  Minorities are encouraged to demand special treatment embracing terrorism as a tool of choice. Religious fanaticism is promoted as freedom of belief. These dubious startegies are now gettig exposed. USA, as the foremost champion of democracy, is driven by arms manufacturers, arms dealers and international criminals like the LTTE diaspora and the drug mafia. UK is home to terrorists and criminals from all over the world. In this context, most European nations are struggling to survive. Western system of governance is failing in most countries.ƒÆ’-¡  What is the alternative?

As a solution to this dilemma of capitalist Western-style democracies, I submit an extract of article by Eric U on China’s Government Structure. We know very little of China to make use of their techniques to allay the problems of our nation.

Our President with a two third majority in Parliament is the only persons who couldƒÆ’-¡  even think of a solution. As a start the Ministers of Education, Higher Education, and Public AdminsitrationƒÆ’-¡  may be sent to China on a prolongedƒÆ’-¡  education tour. The members of the Oppositon in Parliament too may benefit from an in depthƒÆ’-¡  study of the China’s Government Structure.

The Chinese example in bringing about a meritocracy could be the answer to the lamentation in the Island Journal’s editorial as well.

You may consider giving the attachedƒÆ’-¡  article publicity at your website in theƒÆ’-¡  interest of the nation.

A Brief Look at China’s Government
Stuff You Thought You Knew, But Didn’t

A Bit of Background

You probably already know that China has a system of annual university entrance examinations, taken by about 10 million students each year. This set of examinations is quite stiff and perhaps even harsh, covering many subjects and occupying three days. The tests require broad understanding, deep knowledge and high intelligence, if one is to do well.

Any student whose results are near the top of the list, is in the top 2% or 3% of a pool of 1.5 billion people.

Getting a high mark qualifies a student to enter one of the top two or three universities, which will virtually guarantee a great job on graduation, a high salary and a good life. Moving down the scale of results, the prospects become increasingly meager.

You may not know that China also has a system of bar examinations which every graduate lawyer must pass in order to practice law in China.

For these, we can bypass “stiff” and “harsh” and go directly to “severe”. Out of about 250,000 graduate lawyers who sit for the exam, only about 20,000 will pass and obtain qualifications to actually be a practicing lawyer in China.

Once again, the exams require broad understanding of all matters legal, deep knowledge of the laws, and high intelligence.

So if you happen to meet a Chinese lawyer, you can be assured you are dealing with someone from top 1% or 2% of a pool of 1.5 billion people.

I mention these two items only to introduce a third – the Civil Service Examinations.

Becoming a Government Official in China

The Imperial examinations were designed many centuries ago to select the best administrative officials for the state’s bureaucracy. They lasted as long as 72 hours, and required a great depth and breadth of knowledge to pass.

It was an eminently fair system in that the exam itself had no qualifications. Almost anyone, even from the least educated family in the poorest town, could sit the exam and, if that person did well enough, he or she could join the civil service and potentially rise to the top.

The modern civil service examination system evolved from the imperial one, and today, millions of graduates write these each year. And for these, we can bypass “severe” and go directly to “brutal”, because out of the millions of candidates only about 10,000 will get a pass.

The Chinese Have High Standards

And that pass doesn’t get you a job; all it gets you is an interview. If you meet anyone in China’s central government, you can rest assured you are speaking to a person who is not only exceptionally well educated and knowledgeable on a broad range of national issues but is in the top 1% of a pool of 1.5 billion people.

Moreover, China’s government officials are all highly-educated and trained engineers, economists, sociologists, scientists, often at a Ph.D. level. Contrast this with the Western system where most politicians are either lawyers or those with no useful education.

We should also remember that the Chinese generally score about 10% higher on standard IQ tests than do Caucasian Westerners, and couple this with the Chinese process of weeding out all but the top 1% from consideration.

When you add further the prospect of doing your weeding from a pool of 1.5 billion people, you might expect China’s Central Government to be rather better qualified than that of most other countries. And it is.

The point of this is to bring your attention to the disparity between the quality of ‘politicians’ in Western countries and China’s government officials. The discrepancy is so vast that comparisons are largely meaningless.

Friends, Family and ‘Connections’

There are some who will tell you that family connections in China can produce a government job for some favored son, a claim that may be true in some places though extremely difficult at the national level.

But no amount of ‘connections’ will move you into senior positions or to the top of decision-making power; those places are reserved for persons of deep experience and proven ability.

“Of the Communist PartyƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s highest ruling body, the 25-member Politburo, only seven came from any background of wealth or power.

The rest of them, including the president and the prime minister, were from ordinary backgrounds with no special advantages. They worked and competed all the way to the top. In the larger Central Committee, those with privileged backgrounds are even scarcer.

A visit to any top university campus in China would make it obvious to anyone that the Communist Party continues to attract the best and the brightest of the countryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s youth.

In fact, ChinaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Communist Party may be one of the most meritocratic and upwardly mobile major political organizations in the world – far more meritocratic than the ruling elites of most Western countries and the vast majority of developing countries.” (1)

Choosing the Nation’s Leaders

Consider how it would be if a Western country could identify and assemble the 300 best, brightest, wisest, most educated and experienced people in the nation, men and women of great proportion whose depth and breadth of knowledge and ability were the envy of all. And consider this group selecting some to be their leaders – the Prime Minister, President, Cabinet members.

That’s essentially how China does it. On what basis can we tell them their way is wrong? For Westerners to refer to this as a dictatorship is offensive and merely stupid.

In contradistinction to the West, China’s system cannot produce incompetence at the top because in a population of 1.5 billion people there are just too many available candidates with stunningly impressive credentials.

In China’s system, leaders and officials are evaluated and selected by their peers, not by the unqualified and uninformed ‘man in the street’.

It is the only government system in the world that ensures competence at the top, because these people are evaluated on the basis of real credentials rather than public popularity or TV charisma.

Leaders are selected on the basis of true leadership, on their ability to bring together all factions, to create harmony and consensus on their realisable vision for the country, to wisely control and direct the military.

They have a firm understanding of the economy, of the nation, of society and its problems and the best way to meet them. They are not only admired and respected by their peers, but able to draw others to them in order to form that consensus and harmony that are so desirable and necessary for stability.

Education and Training of Government Officials

There is another factor to consider, that of education and training. In the West, senior government officials – the politicians – are seldom renowned for competence or even intelligence.

For the Western politicians who who exercise all the real decision power to shape a country, there is no education or training available or required. It is all a kind of ‘earn while you learn’ system.

In China, those who will become the senior officials and civil servants have entered a lifelong career in a formidable meritocracy where promotion and responsibility can be obtained only by demonstrated ability. Once in the system, the education and training are never-ending.

The system is generally well understood within China, and it meshes well with Chinese culture and tradition as well as conforming to the Chinese psyche in their Confucian overview and their desire for social order and (yes) harmony.

The Western world understands this dimly, if at all, and inevitably forms incorrect and often absurd conclusions about China and its government – especially the mindless references to China being a ‘dictatorship’.

The President Goes to School

The Central Party School in Beijing has been called the most mysterious school in China, and is like no other university or college anywhere.

Here is a link to an article on this university that will give you more information: Read here.

At various times, the most promising young and middle-aged officials attend this university for up to a year at a time, to expand their knowledge and understanding of all issues relating to China.

The Headmaster of the school is often the President of China, and the lecturers are usually foreign dignitaries, high-level officials, and renowned experts on everything from economics and international finance to social policy, foreign policy, industrial policy and even military matters.

The cornerstone of the school’s educational policy is that everything is on the table. There are no forbidden topics, and even reactionary, revolutionary or just plain whacky positions are discussed, analysed and debated to resolution.

All manner of planning, problems, solutions, alternatives, will be discussed, examined, debated, explained, with any number of prominent experts available as reference material. When these sessions are completed, all students will have an MBA-level or better appreciation of the entire subject. And this is only one subject of many they will encounter.

When you consider that these officials entered the government with an already high level of education, and with an already demonstrated broad level of understanding and exceptional intelligence, these additional layers of training and education cannot help but produce an impressive level of overall knowledge and ability throughout the government.

Nothing like this system exists in the West, which is why senior civil servants in most Western countries often look on their leader-politicians with a mixture of disdain and contempt for their lack of knowledge and ability.

The Functioning of China’s Government

Few Westerners have bothered to learn even the simple basics about the form of China’s government, preferring instead to parrot foolish Western supremacist nonsense about China being a dictatorship.

China has a one-party government. If you listen to Western ideologues, you will be told this is heresy in the eyes of the Gods of Goverment in 6 galaxies. But it is no such thing, and contains enormous advantages.

Here, there is no forced separation of officials on the basis of political ideology. China’s entire social spectrum is represented in government in the same way as in Chinese – or any other – society.

There is no partisan in-fighting. Unlike the West, China’s system looks for consensus rather than conflict.

Government decision-making is not a sport where my team has to win. It is simply a group of people with various viewpoints working together to obtain a consensus for policy and action for the overall good of their nation.

From everything I have seen, China’s one-party system is superior in many respects to what we have in the West. This is what has produced a growth rate of over 10% per year for 30 years, compared to perhaps 3% in the West.

And how can it be otherwise? China’s government doesn’t waste its time fighting juvenile ideological battles with ‘opposition parties’, but instead everyone gets down to the business of doing the best for the nation.

China’s government leaders manage by consensus, not by power, authority or bullying. It is their job to create agreement and unified willing participation in the country’s policies to meet its goals.

At this level there are no children, and there is no one person with the power to start a war just because he doesn’t like someone, or who is free to alienate other nations on the basis of some blind personal ideology.

Lobbying and Influence

In China, many people and industries are permitted to present their case, but private or short-term interests will not emerge victorious in this system.

Your proposals will receive support and will succeed only if they are to the long-term benefit of the country as a whole – the greatest good for the nation and for the population. That’s how it works.

In the US system, corporations control the government; in China’s, the government controls the corporations. And those firms may often not get their way even if they are government-owned.

Consider the introduction of HSR (High-Speed Rail) in China. Some Chinese airlines (especially the state-owned ones), complained like hell, and with good reason, about the inauguration of HSR. Some have had to dramatically scale back their flight schedules because many people prefer the train.

But the wide HSR network was seen as being in the best interests of the entire country and it went ahead. Read more here.

That is also why China has the best (and cheapest) mobile phone system in the world. Read more here.

The “Loyal Opposition”

China’s system also has an ‘opposition’, but this body has two major differences from Western governments. Also, it functions intelligently, so let’s make that three major differences.

First, it does not function to ‘oppose’ but rather to consult. This body is charged with the responsibility to consider not only the government’s directions and policies but also to devise alternatives and make recommendations. And the government must by law consider and respond to all these consultations – which it does.

Second, this opposition group are not the marginalised ‘losers’ as in the Western systems but a second tier of extremely competent people who were not selected to the top governing positions. And, rather than lose all this expertise, this secondary group was created to contribute to the development of their country.

The Success of Government

Probably the greatest deciding factor permitting China’s rise is the political environment. China’s one-party government is in for the long term; it makes no short-term decisions for the sake of political expediency.

China makes decisions for the good of the whole country and, having made them, implements them. There is no partisanship, no lobbyists, no special interest groups that skew these important decisions and rob the population of what they might have had.

The benefits of this system can be seen in its results. China has already far surpassed the undeveloped nations that adopted Western democratic governments,and likely has a brighter future than most of them.

Why is the West so eager for China to abandon a centuries-old system that clearly works well, in favor of one designed for ideological battles, conflicts and shouting wars?

Many foreign observers are now, (finally) admitting openly that China’s form of government exhibits signs of superiority over Western systems, and that it is largely responsible for China’s efficiency, for its rapid development, and for its speed of response in areas like the Sichuan earthquake and the planning and deployment of its high-speed train system.

The “Free World” could learn a lot from China’s government system. It works, beautifully. It has transformed the economy and brought hundreds of millions out of poverty.

It has put men into space, built the world’s fastest trains, the longest undersea tunnels, the world’s longest bridges, the largest dams. It is rapidly creating the world’s largest genuine middle class. And it’s hardly begun.

(1) From an article by Eric Li.

Colombo Telegraph website and Bodu Bala Sena

April 14th, 2013

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

One Dr. Sarath ƒÆ’-¡ Buddhadasa (SB) was given an opportunity by Lankaweb to print his writing on Boru Bana Sena. This is important because Lankaweb is the only non-governmental website that publishes essays written in support of Sinhala Buddhists and against the 13-A. This SB had his piece already printed by Colombo Telegraph which is so anti-Sinhala Buddhist. I do not know who runs this Colombo T, but it cannot say it is impartial. My guess is that it is a Christian agency of Colombo black-whites who want to create a Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  When I submitted an essay on world-level Christian plans to balkanize India it published it. ƒÆ’-¡ I was very pleased and thought that it must be a professional media outlet. But after when I submitted anti-13-A stuff, it asked me to submit a resume and my photograph. I told it that my resume is open on the internet and I do not want my picture on websites. Recently when I submitted an essay on Friday Forum in Colombo, it asked again not for a photograph but details about my doctoral degree. So I sent by e-mail all my degree transcripts (four of them from four universities) and my employment record since I graduate from University of Ceylon, Peradeniya in 1967.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  It published my essay but with a video clip about Ven. Gnanasara shouting at the police guards at Kottawa Southern Highway exit attached to it which was an attempt to sabotage the message I tried to give in my essay. ƒÆ’-¡ My subsequent explanation on why even a monk if he is not a politician would get mad/angry the way he was treated by the police guard was not published. Since then Colombo T did not print any of what I wrote about BBS.ƒÆ’-¡  It is in this light, I see what Lankaweb has done to this SB.ƒÆ’-¡  Giving room to different viewpoints is a good thing, but in Sri Lanka we do not have news people who are fair and reasonable. They are in a game to derail MahindaR and create a Tamil Eelam. ƒÆ’-¡ LankwebƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s goodwill is for them like the Interfaith game in Colombo, other religions come to temples to use temple premises but a mosque or a church is not open for Buddhist functions!

I therefore, propose the following for the consideration of the editor of Lankaweb. Let this SB (after all his parents thought he would be a servant to Buddha or is it not his real last name?) answer the following reasonable questions raised about his writing. If he refuses answering, then in future please do not print what he writes as he has ColomboT, DBSJeyaraj, Asian Tribune, Lankenews etc. while we have only the Lankaweb.

1.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB think it reasonable to make Buddhists buy things which include even tooth brushes with a halalized label?

2.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB think it not reasonable to prevent Talibanized women cover their face with only two holes for the two eyes because it is a security risk as any terrorist can wear a face mask this way?

3.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB not think that Jihad agents are busy in certain areas of Sri Lanka?

4.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does he not agree that the government with a Buddhsim PM has failed to prevent inroads by Taliban agents who thought of capitalizing on governmentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s weakness?

5.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Can SB give a single example of BBS harming any other human being or even a dog?

6.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB know that BBS is based on open discussion following the Lichchavi principles of Buddhist India?

7.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  What is SBƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s view on 13-A or 13-A plus?

8.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB agree with the LLRC decision that there are no homelands of any kind in Sri Lanka?

9.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB agree with the LLRC decision to empower people at the village (GSN) level?

10.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Does SB agree that in Sri Lanka political units starting with GSN units should be demarcated by ecological boundaries and not by language or caste?

ƒÆ’-¡ 

Cwije7@gmail.com

UN, a tool of Western colonialism

April 14th, 2013

Chaminda Perera (This interview was given before the UNHRC vote in Geneva)ƒÆ’-¡ Courtesy The Daily NewsƒÆ’-¡ 

Professor Nalin Kumara De Silva is a well known analyst and theoretical physicist who has expressed his candid views on many controversial issues ranging from the Arsenic issue to terrorism. An opponent of what he calls Western cultural dominance, Professor Silva says that members of the Tamil community do not have any problem merely because of being Tamil. He insisted that there should be cultural interaction between the Sinhala and Tamil communities.

While stressing that there is no language barrier, Professor Silva insisted that no one can be forced to learn the language of another community. Allowing the communities to mix with each other will enable them find their common language, he said.

Professor Silva added that the British sowed the genesis of racism in the country by discriminating against the majority community ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” the Sinhalese.

Excerpts of the interview:

Q: How do you see the problem of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka?


Professor Nalin Kumara De Silva. Picture by Ranjith Asanka

A: There is no problem for the Tamil people merely due to their being members of the Tamil community. The Tamil people have been facing problems due to their own leaders for over two centuries.

Q: But the Tamils have been permanent settlers in the country for centuries and they say that they receive step-motherly treatment from successive governments. What do you have to say?

A: The Tamil people were not permanent settlers in Sri Lanka. The Tamils in Jaffna today are really descendants of people who were brought from India by the Dutch for Tobacco cultivation. When the Dutch began tobacco cultivation in the country there were no Sinhalese people to work for them. The Sinhalese people by tradition did not work for any body. The Sinhalese were used to the Rajakari system and they never worked as labourers for wages.

After harvest these Tamils went back to South India. Because of that they introduced the Thesavalami law which encouraged these people to stay in the island.

This Thesavalami law is not a Tamil Law. According to late Gamini Iriyagolla, this law was brought in for the Muslims in South India.

There were no permanent Tamil settlements in any part of the country before the 12th Century. The same goes for the Muslims. This was stated by a Professor of the Jaffna University presenting a thesis to the University of London.

By 1505 the majority community in the Jaffna peninsula were Sinhalese and this fact has been mentioned by Portuguese historians(16th Century). There were certain groups of people who were brought from Kerala and they spoke Malayalam. They were called Vellakkara or mercenaries by the Sinhalese Kings.

Q: How can you prove that they were not early settlers of Sri Lanka?

A: I am ready to prove that Tamils are not early settlers of the country. I challenge anybody to go and read the Land Register and titles (Thombu) in the Jaffna Kachcheri on the families of Vellala Tamils in Jaffna, particularly the Tamil leaders. I challenge Parliamentarian R Sumanthiran to go and read the thombu at the Jaffna Kachcheri and have a better understanding on how they came and settled in the country. These are historical facts. These people claim that they have been here from the Gemunu – Elara era. There were Tamils during that time but they were not permanent settlers.

During the British era, the Tamil Vellalas were brought from the Poonamandal coast in India. They were agricultural labourers.

Q: Why do you say that British sowed the genesis of racism on Sri Lankan soil?

A: The American missionaries were chased out of Colombo with the arrival of British to the country and they started schools in Jaffna. Some of the Tamil Vellalas came to Colombo and their children received education in schools in the Colombo Academy (which later became Royal College), S. Thomas’s, St PeterƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s.

By that time there were more English speaking Tamils than English speaking Sinhalese.

The British sowed the seeds of racism by allocating a single seat for the majority community – the Sinhalese, who had been living in the country for more than 2000 years – in the State Assembly under the Donoughmore Commission. The composition of the Assembly was three Europeans – one Burgher, one Tamil and one Sinhalese.

This is the first racist step taken by the British government in the Legislature. Sinhala people with a history of more than 2000 years are the majority community in the country while the Tamils who were brought to the country by the Dutch, represented only 10 per cent of the population.

The British wanted to bring the English speaking Tamils such as Ponnambalam Arunachalam and Ponnambalam Ramanathan to power.

In the Legislature, Tamils enjoyed the majority compared to the Sinhalese or they were equally in number.

This injustice done to the majority community changed with the establishment of the State Council and the introduction of Universal Franchise.

With that the number of Sinhala representatives increased in comparison to the Tamil representatives in the council. That was a mistake done by the British from their(Tamil) point of view.

From about the end of the 19th Century, the Tamil leaders have been agitating for more representatives in the Legislature.

Q: Why do you say that the Tamil community in the Northern Province were not represented by leaders?

A: The Vellala leaders who identified themselves as saviours of the Tamil people did not represent the people in Jaffna and other parts of the Northern province.

Their aspiration was to become the leaders of the country at the expense of the poor Tamil masses. The ordinary Tamils were not affected by any of these things. They did not have any aspiration to be leaders of the country.

They were cultivators and toddy tappers. The children of these ordinary masses did not have schools. It was worse than in South Africa. These low caste Tamils had no aspirations and all perks and privileges were enjoyed by the Vellalas.

After the first Parliament was elected in 1947, S.J.V. Chelvanayagam, a Tamil Christian who was a follower of the South Indian Church realized that they could become leaders of the country.

He formed his own party in 1949 called Illangai Thamil Arusakachchi or Ceylon Tamil State Party in order to carve out a separate State in the North and the East. That was the beginning of the problem.

He organized a massive campaign in the North and the East and the plantation sector too. The Muslims were also organized under the umbrella of Tamil Speaking people.

In 1976, the Vadukkodai Resolution was brought in. Almost all Tamil parties including Former Muslim Congress Leader A.H.M. Ashraff supported it.

Q: How did the Separatist organization originate in Jaffna?

A: The low caste people in Jaffna wanted liberation from the high class Vellalas and some of them rallied under Prabhakaran and some other leaders.

There were some Marxist tendencies among the Tamil youth at that time. Almost all of them wanted Tamil Eelam. Prabhakaran was fighting against the Sinhala people as well as the Vellalas.

Prabhakaran was cruel though he was a good organizer. He became the sole armed group representing the Tamil people and the Tamil Vellalas had to give in due to various reasons. Prabhakaran started his killing spree with Jaffna Mayor Alfred Duraiappah. By this time India had extended training to these terrorist outfits against a sovereign country.

Q: Tamil leaders extended support for the independence of the country. How do you see their involvement in the independence struggle?

A: It was always only the Sinhala people who fought against the British starting from Keppetipola, Gongalegoda Banda, Kudapola Hamuduruwo. It took a cultural form during the latter part of the 19th Century. People like Anagarika Dharmapala fought against the British.

But Tamil leaders were never involved in the struggle against British. There was no resistance from anybody except the Sinhalese.

The British started some schools where they taught English and everything else. Tamil racism introduced and nurtured by the British is still continuing. There were Catholic priests smuggling arms to the LTTE. The Bishop of Mannar allowed the LTTE to carry the Madhu statue.

In some churches the national anthem was sung in Tamil during the last Independence Day. They have a grudge against Sinhala Buddhists. There is no injustice as such done to the Tamil people.

Q: Tamils say making Sinhala the official language was an injustice done to them?

A: The English speaking Tamil Vellalas were affected due to Sinhala being made the official language. This has been construed as a discrimination against the entire Tamil community. Our language was English before Sinhala was made the official language of the country. When Sinhala became the official language the ordinary Tamil masses become familiar with Sinhala more than English.

I think the ordinary Tamil man is benefitted by this move even in an indirect way.

The English speaking Tamils (Vellalas) and Burghers were affected by this and the English speaking Sinhalese (the elite class) too were against Sinhala being made the official language.

Q: How do you see the contribution of the SLFP led governments to the country?

A: Through various SLFP led governments the independence struggle continued. It is a process. We had some independence in 1948.

Former Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike made the country a Republic in May 22, 1972.

I do not know why the government does not celebrate this day (May 22). I suggested to all SLFP led governments to mark May 18 to May 22 as a sort of independence week because it is in 1972 that we became a Republic by declaring that the English King is not our king.

In 2009, we were able to defeat Tamil terrorism fostered by the British English and the West. Tamil terrorism and the racist ideology was defeated by us within the country but it still continues in the UK, Canada and the United States.

Q: Why is the Tamil Diaspora so strong in the West?

A: I do not use the word “Diaspora” it is a Biblical word referring to the Jews who were chased out of the Middle East and were living in other parts of the world. These are dispersed Tamils. The English speaking dispersed Tamils in many Western countries had the upper hand like their ancestors had the upper hand in Sri Lanka two decades ago. They do not want us to live as an independent country. The NGOs, the scattered Tamils, Catholic and Christian churches are used against all Afro Asian countries including Sri Lanka.

Some Marxists are financed by the Westerners to act against the Sinhala people. There are no Tamil leaders to lead the ordinary Tamils together with the Sinhala people against Western colonialism.

A part of the UPFA government led by President Mahinda Rajapaksa can do this. I say this because there are various rogues in the government who when the time comes will betray the President.

Q: How do you see the government’s development drive, the reconciliation and reconstruction effort?

A: The government is on the correct path. The country needs reconciliation. It is not a reconciliation of two groups of people who were against each other.

They have never been at loggerheads.

The country had a problem because the Tamil and Sinhala communities were living separately. The Tamil and Sinhala people were separated by the the UNP governments.

There should be cultural interaction between the Sinhalese and the Tamils. I think that the Tamil community has not been given an opportunity to improve their culture. Cultural troupes from the South should visit the North and vise versa. Sinhalese have been living in the country from the very beginning and their influence can be found in the Tamil culture.

That is why the Sri Lankan Tamil culture is different from that in South India.

The government should allow the Tamils to evolve by their own methods. They should be encouraged to practise their traditional medicine and traditional method of cultivation.

The government led by President Mahinda Rajapaksa has initiated a massive development drive in the Jaffna peninsula. It should extend assistance to the farmers in the Jaffna peninsula.

Q: Don’t you think that the language barrier hinders reconciliation efforts?

A: There is no language barrier. Let the people mix, they will find their common language. The common language cannot be forced. You can’t force Tamil people to learn Sinhala while the Sinhala people cannot be forced to learn Tamil.

Q: Do you think you can achieve reconciliation through learning three languages?

A: I know how I hated to learn English when I was forced to learn it. You should never force anybody to learn anything. Whether its maths or language or physics or anything. The moment you force, you hate. Let the people learn it if they want.

Tamil public servants coming to Colombo have to learn Sinhala while the Sinhalese public servants should have to learn Tamil when they work in Jaffna.

Learning is by necessity not by force. That is reconciliation, our way. We should not follow the British and Americans.

Sri Lanka Cricket should organize school cricket tournaments between schools in the North and the South with the aim of promoting interaction. I am not a fan of Cricket as it is a SuddaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s game (Colonial). But still it should be used to promote reconciliation.

The Cabinet of Ministers have differences of opinion about the 13th Amendment. Several Ministers say that the 13th Amendment should be fully implemented while others say it should be done away with.

Q: What do you think of the 13th Amendment under which the Provincial Councils were set up?

A: My view is that there is no necessity for the 13th Amendment. It was forced on us by India. It is an Indian type of solution for non existing problems.

If there are problems among the Tamils, those problems cannot be solved by establishing Provincial Councils. In India, more than 90 per cent of Tamils live in Tamil Nadu but 50 per cent of Tamils in Sri Lanka are living outside the North and the East.

Only 35 per cent of the population in the Eastern province are Tamil. There is no problem for the Tamils by merely being Tamils. That is a pseudo problem.

There are problems of poverty which can be found in many parts of the country including Hambantota, Moneragala, Kandy, Colombo and even in Wanathamulla.

How can you solve their problems (if they have any) If more than 50 per cent of Tamils are living outside the Northern and Eastern province. Even if you go by their definition, Provincial Councils are not a solution which was evolved by India depending on their experience. The 13th Amendment is not an Act of Parliament and it was not passed in Parliament legally.

To be an Act of Parliament, there are various other procedures that have to be followed.

The 13th Amendment was a regulation forced by JRJ using the 2/3rds majority. We have to question the legality of the provincial councils. These should simply be thrown out.

According to Former Supreme Court Judge Raja Wanasundera, the 13th Amendment was not passed in Parliament legally. The Marxists in the government who are clamouring for the full implementation of the 13th Amendment have no power basis.

The Left is left out.

Q: The United States has already announced that they would bring in another resolution against Sri Lanka at the forthcoming United Nations Human Rights Council session next week? What would happen to Sri Lanka if such a resolution was passed in the council?

A: The power balance that existed in the United Nations Organization is no more with the collapse of Soviet Union. The UNO has become an instrument of colonialism. In addition to NGOs, Christian and Catholic churches and dispersed Tamils, the UN is also promoting colonialism.

These forces are being used against many Afro Asian countries which have States and governments that are not in the good books of the West. The Westerners are ready to teach a lesson to the countries which are not to their liking, under cover of good governance, freedom of speech independence of the judiciary and human rights. These are nothing but rubbish. They cannot be found in any country in the West.

The English speaking people in Sri Lanka think that there is freedom of speech in the USA. There is no freedom of speech. How many people in the US read newspapers? The national newspapers are not read by the people in the USA. The people in the USA have no interest in the government as they know by their experience that they can do nothing to change the policies of the government. The ordinary people in the Western countries are passive observers. They do not take part in elections and voter turn out at US elections are very low. The United States has no democracy at all. Most Americans have not even heard of Noam Chomsky. All top secrets are hidden by the White House though they boast of good governance and transparency. No average person has access to any of this.

Sri Lanka is the reverse. All the Cabinet decisions are leaked out immediately. There is no secret in Sri Lanka. Everybody knows what is happening. Paikiasothy or Nimalka Fernando and their NGO bandwagon can live in the USA. They can go to Hyde Park and make a speech, but these will never be reported in the national press.

In contrast our media is giving prominence to Pakiasothy and Nimalka though they do not have any power base in the country. These elements in connivance with their Western masters are promoting colonialism and acting against the country.

Can we try Paikiasothy Saravanamuththu for treason? The moment we do that there would be agitation from the Western countries. But what will happen to Paikiasothy in London if he is engaged in treachery against that country. He will immediately be taken into custody, put in a jail and dealt with. That is the good governance that exists in those countries.

We are an open country. The colonials are using these crooks. The government will be under pressure by various UN organizations even NGOs like Amenesty International and so called watchdogs. The government should ignore these people and the organizations as in the case of the Human Rights Commission.

Whatever you do they will always bring in resolutions against the government. There are human rights reports against the United States but US media does not give any publicity to them. Almost all Western countries ignore these reports against their countries. Israel does not even go before the Council.

Why do we give so much prominence to these people and this useless summit. The media should give more prominence to the Sri Lankan womenƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s cricket team. They should be given more prominence than the Geneva council. It is an organization used by Westerners to continue their colonialism.

The so called representatives of Western countries and so called organizations including the UN meet Paikiasothy, Nimalka Fernando et al and the members of NGO bandwagon. Because they do not want to listen to the voice of the other side.

Why is that they are always meeting Paikiasothy Saravanamutthu not Nalin De Silva. DoesnƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t Nalin De Silva represent the Sinhala voice of this country at least to a certain extent. Is he not an opinion maker of this country? I have a voice and represent a certain group of people.

They do not want to listen to the other side. They call themselves impartial observers and open minded people but the truth is that they do not want to listen to the voice of other side. None of the Sri Lankan post graduates scholars in Western countries write a column to their national papers. That is the asymmetric. We are still dictated to by the IMF – this is colonialism.

Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s First Family celebrates New Year at Carlton House

April 14th, 2013

By Janaka Alahapperuma

When the entire country is gripped in a happy and festive mood, Sri Lankans celebrated the traditional ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Aluth AvuruddaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬- Sinhala and Hindu New Year in usual grand style. According to the reports, Sinhala and Tamil people throughout the country enthusiastically got ready to celebrate it. This is the fourth National New Year the whole country is celebrating in an environment of peace and tranquility since the total eradication of terrorism.

Firstfamilyny

The Sinhala and Hindu New Year is a great cultural festival that has been observed by all Sri Lankans from ancient times. Every year it is the festival that marks the great association of Earth with the Sun. Sri Lankans who are nurtured by an agricultural lifestyle meaningfully accepts the dawn of this traditional New Year on 13th and 14th April.ƒÆ’-¡  According to the astrological charts, the New Year was dawned at the auspicious time of 1.29 am today on 14 April. It is believed that the auspicious hours are extremely conducive to the country, the people, the President and the government. The auspicious hour for cooking food fell on 4.06 am this morning.

The Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s first family including President Mahinda Rajapaksa along with their sons Namal, Yoshitha, Rohitha and other relatives celebrated the Sinhala and Hindu New Year rituals at Carlton Residence in Tangalla, Hambantota today. First Lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa conducted all the rituals at the auspicious time with the President and other family members assisted her. At the auspicious time for the lighting of the hearth the President, First Lady and many other family members attended the symbolic tradition of boiling milk at the auspicious time.

As mentioned by astrologers milk rice was prepared with jaggery and ghee, attired in white and blue colours and facing the Southern direction. The auspicious for partaking of the first meal for the New Year was at 7.05am. In addition to taking the first meal, transactions were also conducted, attired in copper colours (yellow and red) facing the south. President Rajapaksa also joined the partaking of the meal prepared with new rice of a new yield, connected in this tradition setting an example for the whole country.

President Rajapaksa said the family bonds built up due to New Year customs and traditions helped to further strengthens Sri Lankan society and therefore all should follow centuries old New Year customs and traditions and bestow treasured heritage to the future generation.

Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, many other family members, Minister Johnston Fernando and many politicians participated the celebrations. They all are seen here with locals and PresidentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s close supporters enjoying Sinhala Avurudu traditions at Carlton House. The President also participated in the traditional transaction of the New Year and took part in the celebration of the New Year in warm fellowship with the people of the area.

After observing the traditional New Year customs, President Rajapaksa did not forget to perform the tradition that is undertaking transactions for the New Year by visiting the Bank of Ceylon and PeopleƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Bank local branches in Tangalla. PeopleƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Bank Chairman was present at the occasion.

Anti SL govt. protest by Muslims in UK

April 14th, 2013

by Sujeeva Nivunhella in London Courtesy: Sunday Island

ƒÆ’-¡ The Sri Lankan Muslim community in the United Kingdom did not participate in a demonstration staged by a group of Muslims opposite the Sri Lankan High Commission in London last week.

The protesters warned of Jihad (holy war) if Buddhists and the Sri Lankan governmentƒÆ’-¡ continued “to oppress Muslims”.

However, they said that if the Sri LankanƒÆ’-¡ governmentƒÆ’-¡ wants peace, they will be happy to have a dialogue.

A demonstrator, Abu Yusuf, saidƒÆ’-¡ althoughƒÆ’-¡ Sri Lanka is thousands of miles away, every problem a Muslim faces in any part of the world is another MuslimƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s concern. He said that Muslims in Sri Lanka were attacked because theirƒÆ’-¡ presenceƒÆ’-¡ is conceived as a threat.

“We are a threat. We are a threat to all kind ofƒÆ’-¡ tyranniesƒÆ’-¡ andƒÆ’-¡ oppressiveƒÆ’-¡ regimes”, he said.

Why are Buddhists attacking Muslims when Buddhism is a peace-loving religion?, he asked.

Demonstrator Abu Talha said that when Muslims face this kind of oppression andƒÆ’-¡ tyranny, they should resist by any means necessary. If they have to take to arms to defend themselves, they have to do so.

They donƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t have to wait for UN resolutions or the international community to give them support. Muslims should rise up and defend themselves. In other words, Jihad is the way to protect Muslims under threat, he pointed out.

Another demonstrator said that when the British and American army attacked Iraq and Afghanistan, they came home in body bags. He said Muslims believe in Islam and Jihad.

They held placards with slogans that read “Muslim nation is one nation. Our war is one. Our peace is one”, “Sri Lankan Govt. Enemy of Islam and Muslims. Tyrants must be removed”, “Stop the Genocide against Muslims”, “Jihad is the solution to liberate the oppressed Muslims”, “Muslims rise against the oppression. Remove Sri Lankan government”.

 

Energy, money and time saving cooking by applying simple principles of science.

April 14th, 2013

Dr Hector PereraƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  London

Now it the time of the most traditional times of the year, Sinhala Awrudu season then the people would like to resort to traditional ways doing all things including cooking. Its nothing like preparing ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”KiribathƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ on firewood stoves because itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s the traditional way Sri Lankans have been preparing this festive seasonal food. Honestly I cannot describe the happy atmosphere created during this time of the year but let me show some energy saving cooking ideas by gas fires because some people have gas cooking facility than firewood cooking.

By definition cooking means to prepare food by boiling, roasting, baking, broiling, etc to make food suitable for eating by using fire or heat.

My aim is to show the general public how to cook scientifically in order to save energy, money and time involved in cooking. Some people are under the wrong impression that cooking means itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s a tedious, time consuming and a nasty thing because of the cooking smells that are likely to get deposited while cooking. I am sure this wrong attitude can be changed if the following steps are taken. Some scientific terms are involved but let me simplify just a few only for the sake of majority of the people.

ƒÆ’-¡ AlwaysƒÆ’-¡ put lids on pansƒÆ’-¡ when cooking, the reason is this speed up the cooking process by up to 6 per cent. Scientifically all the gaseous molecules trying to escape are pushed back into the pan so due to intermolecular and interamolecular reactions so the food gets cooked faster. The molecules have more collisions with different kinds of molecules in the cooking pan and with each other when the lid is closed than when it is left open. Honestly I havenƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t seen a single molecule but one needs to visualize these things. Visualisation and imagination leads to creations that is what I think.

Apart from these mentioned reactions there are other forces acting such as different vapour pressures from different volatile ingredients. When the lid is closed the environment remains even so that cooking takes place almost evenly or harmoniously and there is not much difference of temperature gradient from top to bottom within the cooking pan.ƒÆ’-¡  Most Sri Lankan ladies open the rice pots when it froths then froth goes down then there is an uneven temperature gradient from the bottom of the pot to the top. Further some people put a long handle to check the water then add some water, then they say itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s gone for six or pear shaped. No wonder rice forms the roasted form or ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-DankudaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬. I am sure they are unaware of the fact that when they open the lid the above mentioned reactions are interrupted.

Whether you have a new budget or you are looking for ways to save more money, the kitchen is a great place to start.ƒÆ’-¡  If you are committed to cooking more efficiently, then you probably already know that eating at home, rather than at restaurant saves money. You can save more money without making sacrifices on quality or taste by making these changes. Two other issues of home cooking are they are healthy and clean.

The modern way of living is in apartments or in flats in high rise blocks for example just visit areas like Battramulla, Gampaha or Jaela apart from Colombo, many people live in these forms of limited space dwellings unlike in country houses. In England only the rich and wealthy can afford to live in country houses but in Sri Lanka itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s not always the case. I am certain they cannot use traditional firewood stoves unlike in villages. They have to rely on nothing but on gas or electric cooking. When I visited back home, I noticed the way they cooked their daily meals such as rice and curries on firewood as well as on gas cooking. I gave some practical helpful ideas to save energy only to some people who were really interested in energy saving. By following these steps you will be able to use less cooking gas (liquid petroleum gas LPG) without compromising your cooking.

The higher the temperature within a cooking pan the quicker the cooking, however when the temperature is too high the food may burn. In cases of rice when water evaporates quickly or not enough water to cook rice, no wonder it burns. This is the reason why these ladies always check the water using a long handled spoon like checking the oil in a car with a dip stick. Temperature and pressure are directly proportional to each other that mean when the temperature decreases the pressure as well, if the temperature is increased the force of molecules hitting the contents in the pan increases and this increases the pressure. This relationship of temperature and pressure is called Gay-LussacƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Law and makes up part of the ideal gas law. I will try and back up my ideas with respect to science so there will be less controversy. Once the liquid runs out, temperature inside the cooking pan tends to increase gradually then we call the things get burn for example if water runs out of cooking rice then rice gets burn forming ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-dankudaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬. This is where one needs to be aware of controlling the temperature otherwise food gets burn and waste energy as well.

ƒÆ’-¡ I cannot remember any British TV celebrity cook mentioned anything like that before and not applying any principles of energy saving. They are time conscious, rush rush from one to the other and not paying any attention to energy wastage. One of the reasons is they are not scientifically applying any knowledge or make any effort to save any energy. This principle is used even in fractionating column for separating liquids of different boiling points. Here is a point where most people waste energy.

Maintain shiny outer surface on cooking pans. The shiny surfaces reject heat (by convection) at a lesser rate than any dull or black surfaces do. As you know stainless steel pots and pans have shiny surfaces and clay pots have dull or black surfaces. It has been found by experiment that black surfaces loose heat quickly than a shiny surface that means clay pots loose heat more quickly than stainless steel pots. Just imagine, why these umbrella surfaces are made out of black clothes? Would you say the front of the space shuttles entering the earthƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s atmosphere should be made out of shiny metals or with matt black tiles?

If you happened to measure the diameter of a base or the bottom of an ordinary stainless steel cooking pan, you would notice some of the larger ones have 20 to 22cm in diameter. Normally the clay pots have a round bottomed base just like some round bottomed flasks in chemistry laboratories. When clay pots are placed in firewood stoves, a good part of the base sinks into the fire so that fire directly hits the base. These pots are not designed to place flat on gas cookers just like the stainless steel pots but a little modification of the cooker ring can accommodate even clay pots.

To get the efficiency of the fire one must use a pot or pan that is wide enough to cover the flame but not allowing the fire to spread out of the base. If there was a huge gap between the fire and the pot or the pan, some of the heat looses due to unnecessary radiation. Have you witnessed the firewood stoves cooking? Quite often fire spreads surrounding the base then more than half way up the pot. In a way that is the nature of firewood stoves cooking, I must admit itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s lovely to see but does this type of cooking save energy? As I said before clay is a bad conductor of heat and a good surface to loose heat quickly so would you say clay pots are energy efficient?

Most Sri Lankans eat rice and curries immaterial of the country they live presently but some of them pretend that they have given up that since they left the country, is that true? There is a nice Sinhalese saying; a cat would always meow even if taken to Singapore.

Once a curry comes to boil, reduce the flame so that it is just enough to maintain boiling. Again this cannot be easily done in firewood stoves but it is easily done with gas or electric cookers. A boiling curry will be at about 100 degrees centigrade. In a curry how many spices and ingredients are found? The spices have aromatic chemicals for example in cinnamon there are over 12 chemicals, each with a different boiling point. How about other spices such as chillies, cloves, cardamom, cumin, fennel, coriander, turmeric, black pepper, mustard, curry leaves, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-rampaeƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ and lemon grass then garciniaƒÆ’-¡  indica, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”gorakaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ and tamarind? Anybody cared to find out how many different chemicals are there and their chemical structures?

When some curries are cooked with right ingredients sometimes they can be smelled from a distant, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Love is in the airƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬. Chillies have a chemical called capsaicin and the structure is fairly complicated with 16 carbons with a ring attached to a linear structure. I am not going to mention the all chemicals in spices over here but the point is they all have different boiling points and very likely lower than the boiling point of water. When a chicken curry is boiling and piping hot, just imagine how many different volatile chemicals escape along with water vapour? Who would like a spicy bath and some of it might deposit on you, if you open the lid of a boiling curry. I am sure no one likes to walk like a mobile kitchen with body sprays of chicken cologne or Asian cologne. In that case let me show a way to minimise this cooking smell, how scientifically.

No matter how high the flame is, it is impossible to increase the temperature beyond that until all the liquid evaporates. ƒÆ’-¡ Therefore maintain a minimum flame required to maintain boiling. During the preparation do not add excessive quantities of water expecting to reduce the quantity of water by cooking over a long time on a high flame. Instead add enough water so that cooking can be done on a lower flame for the required duration. Keep the pan closed whenever possible because an open pan will allow heat to escape more rapidly than a closed pan would. Escaping steam too is a loss of heat. Trapping this steam inside the pan will allow cooking on a lower flame.

Make sure the flame is colourless or blue. Yellow flames are an indication that incomplete burning is taking place. In a gas cooker if this happened itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s better to get it checked. That shows the full energy within the gas is not being harnessed.

In some cases if possible use a pressure cooker because in a pressure cooker the temperature is fairly high due to pressure and food gets cooked faster. Cooking at a higher temperature can significantly save reduce the cooking time. In my case I adapt the normal cooking pans to create some pressure by leaving the lid on while cooking. This cannot be achieved easily unless you carefully experiment a few times to find out to which level one should adjust the gas level when it is boiling constantly. I call this position thermodynamic equilibrium position which really helps in creating a constant boiling temperature within the cooking pan.

In some cases you may cook certain things a little excess so that it helps because of what you left from the previous cooking. One must be careful in case of rice leaving in excess for the use on the following day since certain bacteria called Bacillus cereous might grow on them if not properly preserved. Your comments welcomed perera6@hotmail.co.uk

Navi Pillai a misfit at UNHRC

April 14th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala

The saga of the anti-Sri Lankan Resolution, whichƒÆ’-¡ snaked its way through the hands of the power-brokers in the corridors of the UNHRC in Geneva, has a rather intriguing history: it reveals more about the machinations of big power politics and the moral and institutional failure of the UN to uphold the scales of justice evenly than about any uncommon failure of Sri Lanka either in the battlefield or off it.

Since May 2009 the UNHRC has been used by the big powers of the West exactlyƒÆ’-¡ the way Colin Powell used the Security Council to demonize Iraq to push its anti-Saddam Hussein policy. All the evidence since thenƒÆ’-¡ has revealed that there were no weapons of mass destruction. The evidence only proved that Colin Powell was using the UN toƒÆ’-¡ pursue Bush’s personal vendettaƒÆ’-¡ of finishing his father’s unfinished war toƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ overthrow SaddamƒÆ’-¡ Hussein and grab oil wells. The current move against Sri Lanka at the UNHRC has only one difference: India too has joined US to pursue theirƒÆ’-¡ vendetta against Sri Lanka. Both are working in devious ways for regime change.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Human rights is only a fig leaf to cover their naked political agenda.

Parenthetically, it must be emphasized that this argument is not about the rights and wrong of Saddam Hussein’s regime but about the methodologies of the West to target anyone that comes within the sights of their firing range. There is no basic morality in the self-serving selection of the targetsƒÆ’-¡  of big powers.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Self-interest comeƒÆ’-¡  first. ƒÆ’-¡ Morality comes later after the firingƒÆ’-¡ and theƒÆ’-¡ killings to justify their violations of international humanitarian law. Similarly, the entire propaganda machine of the West, aided and abetted by local and international NGOs, is diverted to denigrate Sri Lanka as a swimming pool filled with the blood of Tamil civilians.

Demonizing a nation that is perceived to threaten Western interests is a standard practice to pursue neo-colonial power politics. From Castro to Mao, from Allende to Saddam Hussein it has been the same Machiavellian story of demonizing nations targeted by the West with media blitzkrieg, UN reportsƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ prepared ƒÆ’-¡ by hand-picked agents, predictable research papers produced by West-funded I/NGOs, resolutions and seminars of disaffected minority groups, and even local pundits posing as experts on national and international affairs joining the propaganda bandwagon.

Yesterdays’ cooked up fictions and partisan reports are used as today’s truth to beat the nations that refuse to bow down to the will of big powers. Colin Powell produced maps, reports cribbed from even an undergraduate’s outdated thesis, filmsƒÆ’-¡ etc., rejecting the reports of the inspectors on the ground to pursue Bush’s hate campaign against Saddam Hussein. The free media of the West,ƒÆ’-¡ which unfailinglyƒÆ’-¡ dances to the drum beat of their foreign offices, went alongƒÆ’-¡  merrily. Sri Lanka is feeling the heat ofƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ a similarƒÆ’-¡ hate campaign right now.

Demonizing is a Western pre-requisite to deligitimize the power of established states, whether it be dictatorial or democratic. Without saying so, the anti-Sri Lankan activists imply that obedience to Western/India masters is moral and pursuing domestic policies and solutions, where foreign interventions have failed repeatedly, is immoral. Not surprisingly, the anti-national elements in the Sri Lankan polity too, including some self-promoting political scientists, have jumped in, boots and all, to run down Sri Lanka as having lost “the moral high ground”. Like Colin Powell at the UN Security Council, they deny or brush aside the ground realities.ƒÆ’-¡  They deliberately opt to believe their own propaganda.

Any defence to the contrary is dismissed as state propaganda. In other words, they uncritically accept theƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ narrative put out by Western/Indian foreign offices but not theƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ narrativeƒÆ’-¡ of the Sri Lankan state. They feel superior and highly moral if they back up the foreign narrative, filled withƒÆ’-¡ fiction fed byƒÆ’-¡ I/NGOs,ƒÆ’-¡ than the local one.ƒÆ’-¡ For instance, the main narrative that the Sri Lankan forces acted with great caution to save the Tamil civilians used as a human shield is rejected in preference to theƒÆ’-¡  Western conclusion that theƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Sri LankanƒÆ’-¡ Forces failed to observe international human rights and international humanitarian law. According to the gospel of the NGOs, only the stooges of the government peddle the national narrative.ƒÆ’-¡ The fact that the NGOsƒÆ’-¡ are paid to believe and promote the foreign narrativeƒÆ’-¡ is suppressed.

However,ƒÆ’-¡ they are up againstƒÆ’-¡ theƒÆ’-¡ hard ground realitiesƒÆ’-¡ changing the post-Nandikadal political landscape. Besides, in the aftermath of 9/11 they cannot argue that there was anything wrong with combating or defeating the Tamil Tiger terrorists.ƒÆ’-¡ So they switched their accusation to blameƒÆ’-¡ Sri LankaƒÆ’-¡ for not fightingƒÆ’-¡ the war in the last five months according to norms of international humanitarian law. One does not now whether to cry or laugh when one reads suchƒÆ’-¡ weird logic.

It was, after all, the longest running war in Asia — from May 14, 1976 when the Tamil leadership declared war on the rest of the nation in Vadukoddai to May 18, 2009 when the Tamil Tiger terrorists were annihiliated on the banks of the Nandikadal lagoon. In such a long-drawn war it was inevitable that violations of international humanitarian law would occur on all sides, including the failed Indian IPKF forces which intervened to impose the Indian will as a political solution.

Besides, the internationalisation of Tamil separatist violence spread into the far corner of the Western world with practically every Western nation turning into a haven for fund raising, propagandizing, lobbying, arms procuring, blackmailing etc., — all which violated the entire gamut of UN Security Resolutions on terrorism. Considering the intricate and far-flung Tamil Tiger network that infiltrated the Western and Indian backyards, with the knowledge of each government, it can be argued that each of those governments can be held responsible for violating international and domestic laws against terrorism, in one form or another.

The grim reality is that despite these countries banning the Tamil Tiger terrorists they failed to apply the full force of the law that they applied, for instance, against al-Qa’ida. Despite their nominal banƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ of the agents of Tamil Tiger terrorists, Western government failed to prevent the raising of funds, propagandizing, lobbying, procuring of arms, done under their very noses, to destablize a sovereign nation. Tamil Tiger agents hadƒÆ’-¡ the full free run of the Western system because they did not threaten the Western regimes like the al-Qa’ida.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Their tactic was to keep the West safe fro them to destabilize Sri Lanka and that worked. Besides, destablizing Sri Lanka was tolerated by the Western bloc as it gave them a handle to meddle in the domestic affairs of Sri Lanka which they feared was drifting away from their sphere of influence in the post-Nandikdal period. Keeping the Tamil Tiger agents alive and kicking in their backyard was a handy tool to intervene in the domestic politics of Sri Lanka.

Even a glance at the knotted history of the internationalized history of the Sri Lankan crisis will reveal thatƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ harges thatƒÆ’-¡ the West and India should share aƒÆ’-¡ major part of the blame for theƒÆ’-¡  origination,ƒÆ’-¡ prolongation, the escalation and the brutal ending of the 33-year-old war. In short, Sri Lanka would not be facing the charges leveled by these Western countries had they cracked down on Tamil Tiger terrorism the way they did on the al-Qa’idaƒÆ’-¡ extremists.

While the war was on it was fairly easy for the West to keep Sri Lanka on their leash, what withƒÆ’-¡ the dodgy games played by peace brokers like Erik Solheim, a boozing buddy of Anton Balasingham, the theoretical and political guru of Velupillai Prabhakaran — theƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ mass murdererƒÆ’-¡ that killed more Tamils than all the other forces put together, according to Tamil leaders.ƒÆ’-¡ Ending of the war meant the ending of this leverageƒÆ’-¡ . So they speedily opted to deny the legitimacy of theƒÆ’-¡ victory thatƒÆ’-¡ put an endƒÆ’-¡ to the longest drawn war in Asia. When the war ended in May 2009 the West, with the collusion of the UNHRC, moved in rapidly to accuse Sri Lanka of not concluding the war according to international humanitarian law.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Did this reighteouos West ever contemplated takingƒÆ’-¡ President Harry Truman and Prime Minister Winston ChurchillƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ before the Nuremberg trials for not ending the war according to international humanitrian law? Has India shown a willingness or a capability to charge any of the Indian IPKF forces that committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in Jaffna?

A decisive Western policy against the Tamil Tiger terrorists, operating from their bases, would have cut short the war andƒÆ’-¡ saved the lives of tens ofƒÆ’-¡  thousands of Tamil civilians ƒÆ’-¡ But they were more prone to blame the Sri Lankan government than accept their responsibilities to protect the Tamil civilians.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ They use R2P to accuse only Sri Lanka. Isn’t itƒÆ’-¡ time that they calculated meticulously theirƒÆ’-¡ failure to protect the Tamil civilians by allowingƒÆ’-¡ the agents of mass murderer of TamilsƒÆ’-¡ to operate freely in their domains, violating international humanitarian law? Their policy during the 33-year-old war was to pinch the baby and rock the cradle.ƒÆ’-¡  However,ƒÆ’-¡ when the war ended suddenly,ƒÆ’-¡ runningƒÆ’-¡ contrary toƒÆ’-¡ their expectations, they were stranded in limbo like the Tamil Tiger terrorists. Suddenly, like the Tamil Tiger terrorists, they realized that there was no profit for them in peace.

Their next move was to deny the legitimacy of the victory. So they cooked up the most ridiculous concern about the war waged in the last five months — i.e., January to May 2009. There is no known example of a war which has been judged onlyƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ on the last five months,ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ excludingƒÆ’-¡ the gory blood letting of the preceding period — 33 years in the case of Sri Lanka.

Leaving aside all other moral, legal and political issues, this focus on the last five months of a 33-year-old war has reduced logic and rationality to a farcical level. On what moral principlesƒÆ’-¡  or logicƒÆ’-¡  can any argumentƒÆ’-¡  against Sri Lanka, or for that any war,ƒÆ’-¡ take only five months of a 33-year-old war and accuse only one party at that (i.e., Sri Lanka) excluding the others involved? It is as bizarre as bizarre can be. What made the anti-Sri Lankan accusers exclude the 32 years and seven months that preceded the dawn of peace on May 18, 2009? Neither America nor India, the prime movers of the anti-Sri Lankan Resolution, has explained this. When they selectively focus on the last five months does it mean that the preceding 32 years and seven months were fought with plastic guns and bullets? Where is the rationality and the validity in the morality that selectively focuses only on the last days excluding the entire length of the war? It is a surreal scenario which could not have been imagined even by Monty Python.

Besides, the sequence of anti-Sri Lankan events that unfolded in the immediate aftermath of the post-Prabhakaran period questions the very essence of the principles and the morality invoked by India and America at the UNHRC. In the preamble to the anti-Sri Lankan Resolution both India and America states that they were “guided by the UN Charter” and other related provisions of the international humanitarian law. Really?

Take, for instance, the speed with which Ms. Neo-Nazi Pillai moved against Sri Lanka at the UNHRC. She called for an international investigation within seven days of the ending of the war in May.ƒÆ’-¡ On what basis? She had no authorizedƒÆ’-¡ , or authoritative, or official report in her hands for her to take any action against Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡  TheƒÆ’-¡ “Report of the Secretary-GeneralƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka” was delivered to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon only on March 31, 2011. If she acted on that then there would have been some cover for her to legitimize her action. But to move within seven days is a bit too rich for anyone to believe that she acted on “credible and independent” evidence. Her indecent hurry to put Sri Lanka on the dock came on the heels of aƒÆ’-¡ joint move of the EU and USƒÆ’-¡ to move a resolution in the UNHRC within days of the war ending in May 2009. The coincidence is too stark to ignore.

Worst is, having accused Sri LankaƒÆ’-¡  in 2009ƒÆ’-¡ she hasn’t had timeƒÆ’-¡ over the yearsƒÆ’-¡ to visit Sri Lanka and see for herself the ground realities. Prof. G. L. Peiris states that he wrote to Ms. Pillai — and she accepted the invitation in writing — to visit Sri Lanka. He wrote to her 11 months before the 2012 Resolution. To this day Neo-Nazi Pillai who was in such a hurry to accuse Sri Lanka has not kept her promise. She is not only running away from her promises to Sri Lanka but also from obligations under the UN Charter.

Under the terms and conditions of her job description it is obligataory for her to fulfill her duties in an objective, balanced and non-partisan manner. For instance, UN General AssemblyƒÆ’-¡ resolution, outlining the founding principles of UNHRC, states that it resolved to create UNHRC “Recognizing the importance of ensuring universality, objectivity and non-selectivity in the consideration of human rights issues, and the elimination of double standards and politicization……”.

Clearly this defines her job in absolute terms. It states that she has no right to adopt double standards and politicize her office on partisan preferences. But that is precisely what she hasƒÆ’-¡ done. When it came to Sri Lanka she has moved heaven and earth, within a few days after the 33-year-old war ended, to point an accusing finger at Sri Lanka at the UNHRC. However, neither the same speed nor the identical moral standard has been applied to judge India, which she knows has been a prime violator of human rights on Sri Lankan soil during the IPKF operations. She also knows that India violated international law by exporting terrorism to Sri Lanka. On what principles did she call for an international investigation on Sri Lanka within days of ending the 33-year-old war and ignore the decisive role of India in destablising Sri Lanka and the SAARC region as a whole from 1980s?

Isn’t exporting terrorism to friendly and neighbourly Sri Lanka the prime cause that led to the accusations faced by Sri Lanka at the UNHRC today? Why wasn’t this violation of international law factored into her calculations that demanded an investigation into the last days of the terrorist war exported by India?ƒÆ’-¡ Besides, the Indian authorities have admitted that they too were actively involved in bringing an end to the Tamil Tiger terrorists who were a threat to them too. SoƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ India, according toƒÆ’-¡  norms of international law, is guilty on two counts: 1. for exporting terrorism to
SriƒÆ’-¡ Lanka and 2. for being a part of the war that ended the 33-year-old terrorism exported by India.ƒÆ’-¡ Which Navi Pillai are we to accept as the defender of human right eliminating double standards and politicization? Is it the Navi Pillai that accuses Sri Lanka or is it the Navi Pillai that overlooks and exempts the Indian violators of human rights in Sri Lanka?

Furthermore, can the CEO appointed by the UN to oversee human rights dogdge investigating her own accusations forƒÆ’-¡ nearly four years? Is she genuinely interested in human rights or is she using UNHRC and the issues of human rights to serveƒÆ’-¡ theƒÆ’-¡ political agenda of her patrons and clients? How come it took only seven days to accuse Sri Lanka but she has had no time for overƒÆ’-¡ fourƒÆ’-¡ years to check whether her accusations are correct or not by visiting Sri Lanka?

Most of all, does anyone care about the guardian of human rights betraying human rights? She gets away with her double standards and politicization of issues according to her partisan politics with no one checking her. She knows that if she backs the right horses in the international stakes her job will be safe. So she lends her willing back for the Western cowboys to ride all the way to theirƒÆ’-¡ goal posts. It’s a case of you-whip-my-back-now and I will lick yours in return later.

It is sad to say that she stands out as the most slippery, unscrupulous,ƒÆ’-¡ and, spurious symbol of human rights playing footsy with global power players of the day.

Way Forward : China-India-Russia strategic geopolitical alliance

April 14th, 2013

Shenali Waduge

Should the 3 powers of Asia combine to make a formidable global force? Its not a bad idea ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” in fact itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s an excellent idea and would provide Asia and inadvertently the world the balance of power and stability that is lacking. Against a declining West, AsiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s 3 formidable power houses are best placed to challenge USAƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s supremacy but the only issue is IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s mixed signals and its colonial-servant attitude in bowing to Western dictates. Yet, given the current world scenarios, Russia, China and India should combine and together as a common block enforce their demands to their ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-friendƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ the US and the West.

The triangular partnership was first mooted by former Russian PM Yevgeny Maximovich Primakov and today in the light of the WestƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s pursuance to militarily interfere citing humanitarian concerns should make the Asian giants realize the need to safeguard their interests (internal and external).

The power of the 3 nations combined is phenomenal. The 3 nations make up more than 40% of the worldƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s population and the significant rise in their economies would provide greater nation-to-nation links that would also entail a rise in the economic conditions of all Asian nations as well given that the nations still hold a wealth of natural resources that the West are desperate to take over.

The total area of the 3 nations is 29.96million sq.kim (22.5% of the total area of the world) ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” this clearly predicts potential human resources, huge potential of market and rich natural resources between them. China has common borders with Russia and India. If security poses a risk to the three nations individually once the three tie up to form a partnership the entire region will be protected. Russia can keep an eye on NATO while China can watch the USA. The 3 foreign ministers have already kick-started discussions and Sri Lanka must take every opportunity to encourage this partnership at even external ministry level.

As a possibly move towards that direction no sooner the President of China assumed office he headed to Russia to meet his counter part Putin. Symbolic meaning was that inspite of WestƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s relationship deteriorating China and RussiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s was not.

Crux of ChinaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s relationship has always been not to be dependent on any single-nation source. ItƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s a lesson Sri Lanka simply ignores. Relationships with China means that while China assures a nation they can depend on China, China will seek trade where it is offered the best leverage. These are all hallmarks of straight-forward preconditions which Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s officials again lacks ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” though Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike managed not only to continue ties with India and Pakistan but had the greatest of relationships with China. The leaders today can certainly take a leaf or two from her book.

Russia and China are very clear about their common positions on the value of sovereignty in international affairs and ChinaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s own choice of staying out of a countries internal affairs ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” in particular both will not allow Syria, North Korea and Iran from collapsing. These are clues as to why Sri Lanka needs to continue the ties with China and Russia.

If the West views Sri Lanka as a geopolitical tool ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” China, Russia and IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s views cannot be far different. The only problem is our leaders have yet to discover how to use our geopolitical advantage to Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s benefit and Governments continue to neglect the role of its Ports as a strategic logistical tool on all fronts. For starters corruption in these areas need to be seriously looked into from secretary level downward.

Moreover, these nations are beginning to see how the West is plotting to again plunder their nations. They have been quick to ponder over the establishing of a new international lending institution to challenge the IMF/World Bank global monopoly with one more suited for the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-developing worldƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬.

The formation of BRICS ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa has come up with that alternative source of development fund. The BRICS nations have a foreign currency reserve of $4.4trillion and already trade between BRICS nations is about $282billion annually and the 5 nations together make up 17% of global trade.

There is also the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” all 3 nations are very much involved in it. The more the threesome take a collective stand on international issues the influence of the West would be countered.

Then in comes the Ugly American ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” and India is offered permanent member status at the UN Security Council, aligning as AmericaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s ally in Asia ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” when India is in Asia why would it want to aspire to be selected as an ally. It is India that should be picking its allies given that India is placed in Asia and not America. Then the warmth turns to arm twisting with threats of sanctions if India does not reduce oil imports from Iran. So the US is all out to turn India into another Japan and has to a great extent succeeded given that India is led by a foreigner inclined towards the West and its ideologies. India needs to wake up and realize it is taking the baton towards the wrong direction.

The US visits are clear indications of how hard the US is lobbying to ensure India does not tilt towards China and Russia. Following visits of President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary, 5 cabinet level US officials have arrived in India in 2012 itself signaling tremendous pressures upon India to turn West and not East. India did however under pressure cancel Walmarts plan to enter India ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” something Sri Lanka needs to also learn to do. Saying no is sometimes far better than saying yes and regretting later.

We have China and India both accelerating rapidly and Russia returning to the great power status it once held ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” there is no reason why the three cannot combine to make a formidable global force that would help protect themselves and their Asia neighbors. There is no reason why Sri Lanka should not align itself to this block given that we are an Asian nation.

The Russia-China-India strategic alliance is the best way forward for their own interests and that of the entire Asia region and even the world at large and Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s officials must encourage this at diplomatic levels.

 

 

Has Sri Lanka Become a Colony Again?

April 14th, 2013

Ira de Silva London, Canada

Reading the various news reports in the Sri Lankan and Indian media recently, could and would the GOSL confirm that it is still responsible for governance or has it been delegated to the U.S. and India? Has Sri Lanka become a “colony” again?

After the infamous Indo-Lanka Agreement of 1987 and the 13th Amendment that was forced on Sri Lanka so Rajiv Gandhi could win votes in Tamil Nadu, there was the spectacle of J. Dixit, the Indian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka, strutting around attempting to behave as if he was the viceroy. In this effort he was ably assisted by J. Puri who was also in Sri Lanka and recently claimed that what India did then and now in Geneva was “right” for Sri Lanka.

Following the second U.S./ Indian sponsored resolution passed in Geneva it appears that the U.S. has also adopted a colonial attitude and seems to believe that after Geneva it is the U.S. that has the mandateƒÆ’-¡ to treat Sri Lanka as a colony ably assisted in this effort by India. ƒÆ’-¡ In the recent meeting with the Foreign Correspondents in Colombo the U.S. Ambassador outlined U.S. requirements of Sri Lanka. The Ambassador projects the impression that it is the U.S. that knows what is best and makes decisions on what Sri Lanka should or should not do. It does not seem to matter that it may not be what the people of Sri Lanka want or that itƒÆ’-¡ is not in the best interest of Sri Lanka. She was followed by Ms. A. Areial-Vogel of the U.S. mission in Sri Lanka calling for a meeting with the CEB.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ As a part of it’sƒÆ’-¡  new diplomatic role, is the U.S. mission in Sri Lanka going to manage the CEB?

The world knows that democracy for the U.S.ƒÆ’-¡  is just a word they can use to invade, kill and devastate other countriesƒÆ’-¡  in it’s world wide programme of regime change when they are not “happy” with the leadership within a country. History has a long list of “friends” of the U.S. who have later been assassinated by the U.S., illegal wars fought to depose one time friends and the latest craze of the U.S. to kill, maim and destroy any part of the globe who they consider are not “friends”. When the Secretary of State and other U.S. officials claim that the U.S. wants to be a friend Sri Lanka the country shouldƒÆ’-¡  take note of what the U.S. has done to it’sƒÆ’-¡ one time ƒÆ’-¡ friends, namely use, misuse, discard,ƒÆ’-¡  eliminate.

In this new role assumed by the U.S. Ambassador she is ably assisted by the subservient, colonial minded Indians. The attitude of the Indians in 1987ƒÆ’-¡ has beingƒÆ’-¡ revived,ƒÆ’-¡  refer toƒÆ’-¡  Puri , J. Singh, Manmohan Singh, Sonia GandhiƒÆ’-¡  andƒÆ’-¡  the current acts of aggression and terrorism against Sri Lankans in the state of Tamil Nadu.ƒÆ’-¡ Following every act of terrorism by the State of Tamil Nadu against pilgrims, schoolboys, students, monks, visiting politicians ƒÆ’-¡ and theƒÆ’-¡  various demands of Tamil Nadu and Central Government politiciansƒÆ’-¡  to invade, terrorise and dictate to Sri Lanka,ƒÆ’-¡  the Central Government of India claims that Sri Lanka is a close “friend”. Has the GOSL forgotten that it was India that created andƒÆ’-¡ supported the LTTE to terrorise the country for thirty years? Sri Lankans who suffered have not forgotten. What is frightening the people of Sri Lanka is that this rubbish of being “friends” ƒÆ’-¡ is being also claimed by he GOSL which seems to beƒÆ’-¡ abdicating it’s responsibility to uphold the sovereignty of the people and the country.

Has the GOSL by it’s supine, carelessƒÆ’-¡ attitude and subservience in the face of these dictates by the so-called “friends of Sri Lanka” handed over it’s authority to the new imperialists andƒÆ’-¡  signalled to them that Sri Lanka is no longer a sovereign country but a colony of the U.S. and India and anyone else who is interested?ƒÆ’-¡ 

Yours truly,

ƒÆ’-¡ Ira de Silva

London, Canada

Was life for Tamils better under LTTE?

April 14th, 2013

Shenali Waduge

Given that separation of Sri Lanka is out of the question the Tamils had 2 choices before them. To be ruled under a defacto armed LTTE or to remain under sovereign Sri Lanka ruled by a democratically elected Government that comprised representatives of all ethnic groups. The Tamils did live under the LTTE for well over 25years and the Tamil political party the Tamil National Alliance openly declared that the LTTE was the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-sole representative of the TamilsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ not once but several times. In so doing the TNA lumped all the Tamils en masse into a terrorist group and stigmatized their own people. How irresponsible for a political party to equate Tamils with Terrorism. The Tamils now need to undo this damage by disassociating themselves from the TNA which continues a separatist agenda if Tamils do not share the separatist agenda of both LTTE and TNA. It is long overdue for the Tamils to now come out and say whether life was better under the LTTE, whether TNA was correct to say LTTE stood for all Tamils and how life is today different.

Why is separation of Sri Lanka to form a Tamil Eelaam out of the question?

That is so because when 72million out of the worldƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s 77million Tamils live in a state which has a history of attempting to secede from India on the grounds that it wishes to form a Tamil Nation and that state is named after Tamils (Tamil Nadu ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” land of the Tamils), where Tamil is the official language, where Tamil culture, traditions etc reign supreme ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” by virtue of everything being done by Tamils, for Tamils, Tamil Nadu is where Tamil Eelaam should rightfully be not in a miniscule area in Sri Lanka where none of the worldƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s 77million could ever think of congregating.

The whole Eelaam in Sri Lanka quest was nothing but a ploy to delay the inevitable balkanizing of Tamil Nadu from India which India schemed to perfection. The only confusion came when external forces hijacked that plan to create a grander plan which ultimately led to the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. His death carried out by LTTE bore signs of a contract killing. India may well do to find out who exactly ordered the killing. The ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-newƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ state is like to comprise Tamil Nadu and North Sri Lanka which will end up nothing better than the Philippines which has been turned into an immoral state. It is a challenge for the Church and Christians to prove that the assumption that they supported the LTTE is wrong instead of simply calling those that pose the questions as racists, hate mongers and what not simply to avoid answering.

Who actually suffered under LTTE rule?

It is time we know who amongst the Tamils actually suffered. ƒÆ’-¡ In terms of who actually suffered we need to divide the Tamils as:

1.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Tamils living amongst the LTTE in the Vanni (Mullaitivu, Kilinochchi)

2.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Tamils living outside of LTTE ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-territoryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ in Sri Lanka

3.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Tamils living outside of LTTE ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-territoryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ overseas

The number of Tamils living in the Vanni amongst the LTTE through the 3 decades of LTTE rule are miniscule in comparison to the Tamils who live outside of LTTE ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-territoryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ amongst Sinhalese and those now living overseas.

It is from this miniscule number that LTTE made their manpower. Some of its cadres also were taken from impoverished areas of the East too. What essentially has to be remembered is that the Tamil members that LTTE ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-recruitedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ were kidnapped and forcibly taken from impoverished low-caste Hindu or converted Hindus whose women had to supply LTTE throughout the conflict. Did LTTE kidnap its cadres from high-caste Tamil homes in Jaffna, Colombo ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” NO. This is an area that has not been looked into but extremely important to derive at the manner LTTE selected its cadres. If there were high-castes in the LTTE they all held senior posts and were privy to the LTTE kitty which was USD300million.

Areas of Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi never even had electricity ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” children never went to school and the people had lived thinking that life was all about LTTE. Today, over 60% of these areas already enjoy electricity, schools are functioning, teachers can teach and there are students to teach.

It is these miniscule number of Tamils suffering under the LTTE that now sees a brand new life where none of the rest of the Tamils cared to speak on behalf of them ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” ever. Did the TNA ever ask the LTTE not to kidnap these children to manufacture them into killers training them in pretentious orphanages set up in the middle of the jungles to which were visited by Father Emmanuel raising questions as to why the Church would watch one of its leaders encourage children to be turned into killers.

Deriving at exact numbers is cumbersome in view of no proper census taking place in the areas that LTTE controlled for over 2 decades. It must also be pointed out that LTTE, humanitarian organizations having close links to LTTE including religious groups gave false figures of civilian populations in view of the GOSL sending food and essential supplies to the North which was a crafty means of hijacking these essentials to be used amongst LTTE. Figures are confused in the likelihood of ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-illegalsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ coming from Tamil Nadu and now posing as Sri Lankan Tamils. These Indian ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-illegalsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ need to first be identified. Then there is the visible numbers of Tamils making their way Southwards to live amongst the Sinhalese whilst others made use of the opportunity to cry discrimination and see asylum overseas. Therefore, with Tamils being 12% of the population of a 20m total populace ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Tamils can at most be 2.4million only. The estate Tamils numbering 5% are never part of any discussions proposed by TNA or the LTTE therefore they should not be included into the statistical figure simply to make Tamil representation 18%. As things stand with Tamils now living legally and illegally overseas the 12% has come down to bordering 10% if not less. The Sri Lankan Foreign missions should be asked to do a statistical figure on the legal numbers of Tamils living overseas whilst help should be sought from host nations to find out the illegal ballpark figure too.

Therefore, what needs to be clearly articulated is that the Tamils living amongst the LTTE were the real sufferers. All the other Tamils shared the same fears that the Sinhalese faced since it was the Sinhalese civilians who became the targets with every bomb and suicide attempt made. Yet, the Tamils living in Colombo and suburbs went about their employment, children attended schools and did everything that they would normally do alongside the rest of the communities but obviously sharing the same fears. There was nothing exclusive that they feared different to what the other communities feared.

The Tamils overseas however whether they were openly pro-LTTE or not had to make monthly payments to the LTTE kitty and they had to also participate in demonstrations and other events that LTTE front organizations organized. With time this arrangement bore much monetary benefit giving many positions in these front organizations, opportunities to travel overseas, rise in financial situation and moreover a chance to move around with VIPs and dictate terms to even Sri Lankan politicians. For most Tamils whether they like to admit or not there were some reasons to thank the LTTE while a handful of others were open enough to admit to LTTE atrocities but at great risk to their lives. The handful of moderates that did openly denounce the LTTE were all silenced and understandably that made any others warned into silence.

But it is a good time for us to know some hard truths. When we speak on behalf of the Tamils against the LTTE and find fault with the TNA for openly being their mouthpiece ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” we would like to know whether we are wrong to find fault? When we find fault with the LTTE for threatening intimidating Tamils and denying them progress socially through several decades ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” were we wrong to conclude so? We would frankly like to know whether our opinion of the LTTE and the TNA is the same as the Tamils or whether we are wrong to assume that the LTTE was a terrorist outfit and the TNA nothing but its mouthpiece and now taking over from where LTTE failed?

Somehow somewhere something is not right because after the victory over the LTTE as citizens of Sri Lanka we expected the Tamil community to also join us in the victory over terrorism and given the fact that the LTTE had been denying Tamils a host of human rights as well as violating Tamil human rights, we thought the rest of the Tamils living amongst the Sinhalese and those overseas would be happy that LTTE was no more and press for actions to be taken against the TNA since they were the only survivors of the separatism that linked to LTTE ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” we would like to know where our assumptions have been proved wrong by the Tamils themselves.

Genuine reconciliation cannot take place until these loopholes and gaps are given genuine and honest answers.

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Boru Bana SenaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ are 21st Century Devadattas Whose Bahaviour is Undoubtedly Against Buddhism and Sinhalese

April 14th, 2013

by Dr. Sarath Buddhadasa

ƒÆ’-¡ We entered Peradeniya university way back in the late 1970s with the hope of creating a future for our families and also to enjoy life while contributing to the progress of society, since it was the people of this country who sustained us in the universities by way of direct and indirect taxes paid to the government to provide us free education.

However, all our hopes and dreams were shattered with the birth of LTTE terrorism and Pirabaharan and his inhuman partners almost destroying our social and economic fabric.

We were fortunate that the country was saved from the clutches of terrorism by President Mahinda Rajapakse and his team, with the help of many supporters here and abroad, in May 2009. This gave us a new ray of hope and impetus. The nation drew a peaceful breath after 30 years and the people were confident of the countryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s future. We were sure that such a dark era will not befall us ever again. We started building peace and rebuilding the much needed trust between communities. There were many efforts and sacrifices made to rehabilitate and re-integrate disaffected youth and peace building was initiated with our Tamil speaking fellow countrymen and women.

Now what is the situation in our country today?

Just like what we saw way back in the 1970s as young university students and caused us to lose our hopes, this nation is again heading or being dragged towards a very pathetic and catastrophic destination. This time it is by a gang called BBS (Boru Bana Sena) creating havoc and frustration at every turn and in every corner in the country in the name of Buddhism.

Although the BBS may say so, I as a Sri Lankan and a Buddhist, frankly doubt whether this countryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Buddhists are against the practices of another faith, adhered to by our partner community. Surely, any true Sinhala Buddhist with a decent IQ level will realize by observing the behavior of this BBS gang that it is undoubtedly against Buddhism and Sinhalese.

Why do I say this? At the outset they created the halal issue. This was amicably resolved with the mediation of intelligent, educated venerable monks like Bellanvila Wimalarathana. Then they attacked business places belonging to Muslims. Later, they attacked Sinhala Buddhist girls and boys alleging that their love affairs are immoral and not compatible with Sinhala Buddhist principles or standards. They organized their ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”golayasƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ to attack Buddhists, throwing spoiled eggs at those who patronized businesses owned by another community. Just last week they unfairly criticized our High Commissioner in Singapore, a patriotic lady, Ferial Ashraf and now they are threatening our cricketers.

They are destroying our socio-cultural and economic landscape in an accelerated manner. They destroy the sentiments of peace loving people of this country. They destroy the image of the country. They draw the President and the government into an uneasy scenario, consciously or unconsciously serving the interests of our enemies and extremists.

Is this the Buddhist way of life? The Buddhism we know is not this. What the most Reverend Walpola Rahula did not teach us yesterday and would never have taught us, the BBS is trying to teach us today!

I donƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t think this will do any good to Buddhism or Sinhalese. This may serve our international enemies who are trying to destroy Sri Lanka. In that sense, I entertain doubts that this so called BBS is either directly or indirectly supported by some parties who are against Sri Lanka. This assumption is getting re-inforced when you see what is going on in Burma/Myanmar now.

We must be ashamed of ourselves if we allow this gang to continue in this way. I am sure if this virus-like menace is not stopped today, it will drag us to the graveyard tomorrow.

So, this appeal goes to the Mahanayaka Theros in this country and specially the Sinhala Buddhist community. Please unite and create awareness in our society asking each and every citizen not to get deceived by or patronize these anti Sinhala-Buddhist elements. Learn from our forefathers as to how they treated and lived in harmony with other communities in the past.

I remember how I used to go with my parents to the Dalada Maligawa in Kandy and attend the Sri Rajopavanaramaya Dhamma School at Getambe to study Buddhism, striving to mold myself as a person guided by the Buddhist way of life. Since our childhood, we have been trained in our Dhamma schools to chant every night before we go to sleep, the verse ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”siyalu sathvayo niduk vethwa, neerogi vethwa, suwapathwethwaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢. This is the Buddhism we know and try to practice.

According to the Buddha, we belong to the human race. When we forget this universal truth and allow these destructive behaviors and trends created by these 21st century Devadattas to continue, are you and I not forgetting about Buddhism?

[Dr Buddhadasa is Managing Director, Business Consultancy Services Pvt Ltd, Sri Lanka]

Wijedasa Rajapakse and Bodu Bala Sena

April 13th, 2013

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

Wijedasa Rajapakse (WR) wanted to bring a law to remove monks from politics.ƒÆ’-¡  What did this Sinhala Buddhist (he says he talks as a Sinhala Buddhist) do to Sinhala Buddhists? Does he not consider that putting a halal label even to a tooth brush or a spoon made out of a coconut shell and women covering their faces with only two holes for the eyes as unreasonable acts? Did he know that Ven. Soma came to politics because laymen and women like him were scared of opening their mouths for fear of death? Does he know that when princes Dutugamaunu and Saddhatissa were fighting against each other it was a monk who hid Saddhatissa under a bed and brought the two together?ƒÆ’-¡  WR says Mahanayakas and Anunayakas are there to solve problems without radical monks. Did he know that Buddhism was saved by the monks from coastal areas such as Migettuwatte Gunananda and the Vidyalankara Pirivena and not by Asgiriya or Malwatta?ƒÆ’-¡  British used A and M monks like the House of Lords in UK for decorative purposes.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  People like WR can talk big today because village boys and girls like the Hasalaka Hero saved the country for him. WR talk about businessmen appointed as ambassadors by MahindaR. If suitable people are not appointed it is wrong. But does WR know that UNP appointed as ambassador in USA one Devendra, who was a businessman? Hamid and R. Premadasa used send as trade reps those who can only speak in Sinhala or Tamil who hid from people at trade shows because the questions were asked from them in English!! This kind of stupidity or hypocrisy of people like WR came to my mind after I saw WRƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s interview with Derana 360ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Dilka Samanmali. My concern really was about what WR said about the 13-A. We must educate this man WR who is known as a golden brain in the present world of Sri Lanka. WR asked, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Why canƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t we give a PC to Tamils in NP just like we gave it to the south?ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ It is only an idiot who will not see that PCs in the south was hell.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  WR says that in India it was done amicably. This was what Anandasangaree used to say with his India-F formula. Now we know India is on logs (kota uda) with Tamil Nadu controlling Delhi. Delhi cannot impose Presidential Rule on Tamil Nad and even Hillary Clinton ignored Delhi and met directly Tamil Nadu jokers of Jayalalitha and Karnunadhi clans.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  If a person cannot see that 13-A means division of Sri Lanka as two warring countries that person is nothing but a Sinhala tiger like Jayalath Jayawardena. The path is so clear and WR is misleading people.

What is this clear path?

1.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Tamil separatists and local TNA say that 13-A is not enough;

2.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Anandasangaree who wanted Indian F model can no longer say that Tamil Nadu is not for separatism from India with a weak Delhi. Those days of Presidential Rule are gone;

3.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Sonia Gandhi is an Italian Catholic who runs the Congress Party. She is in support of the western Christian plan to divide Sri Lanka even if it will promote separation of Tamil Nadu as a separate country.ƒÆ’-¡  It was Subramanium Swamy who prevented her becoming PM of India using a legal rule in IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”‚if in Italy an Indian is not allowed to be Italian PM, then in India an Italian cannot become Indian PM. ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Thus, K. Godage, the retired diplomat, was wrong to say that Sonia like a Mother Teresa donated the PMƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s job to Manmohan Singh!!;

4.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  By 13-A Rajiv G made Tamil Homeland myth constitutional law in Sri Lanka. By rejecting any kind of homelands in Sri Lanka LLRC rejected 13-A;

5.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  LLRC wanted to empower people (devolution) at the lowest unit level. This also means not as PCs;

6.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Because the Tamil, Sinhala and Muslim population distribution map is like a scrambled egg, 13-A with a NPC for Tamils as WR think will not solve ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-problemsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ of the Tamils living outside NP. This is why village or GSN level power distribution is needed;

7.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Will WR deny the need for language-blind political unit boundaries?ƒÆ’-¡  Or demarcate GSN/village units according to natural boundaries as in New Zealand;ƒÆ’-¡ 

8.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Teach Sinhala and Tamil to students so that in 15 years there will be national leaders not Tamil or Sinhala leaders.

Cwije7@gmail.com

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Illegal to be non-Muslim in MaldivesƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬- Correction

April 13th, 2013

Asada M Erpini

A homosexual blogger from Maldives, who now lives in exile in Sri Lanka, is implied to have said that ………

Dear Editor,

My name is Hilath Rasheed and I am the subject of an article on your website written about me by Asada M Erpini titled ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Illegal to be non-Muslim in Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬.

It seems that Mr. Erpini has misinterpreted my comments to The Independent newspaper. As the first commentator to your article pointed out, I was referring to Maldives, not Sri Lanka. I was saying that it is illegal to be non-Muslim in Maldives. Maldives’ Constitution demands all Maldivian citizens to be Muslims. Sri Lanka is a multi-religious and multi-cultural society.

Therefore, I would greatly appreciate if you correct the article.

Thanking you in advance for yourƒÆ’-¡  kind cooperation.

Yours sincerely

Hilath Rasheed

Karunanidhi reiterates demand for abolishing death penalty

April 13th, 2013

Courtesy TheƒÆ’-¡ Hindu

Renewing his demand for abolishing death penalty, DMK chief M. Karunanidhi on Saturday made a fresh pitch for a state cabinet meeting to adopt a resolution recommending commutation of the death sentence awarded to three convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case.

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Our stand is that capital punishment should be abolished and should be taken off the law book,ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ Mr. Karunanidhi said, recalling his remarks that the death sentence of Murugan, Santhan and Perarivalan should be commuted on humanitarian grounds.

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-If the state government has to approach the problem truly, it should not just stop after adopting resolutions in the Assembly, but pass a resolution in a cabinet meeting and send it to the Governor,ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ the DMK patriarch said.

His statement comes a day after the Supreme Court dismissed death row convict and Khalistani terrorist Devinderpal Singh BhullarƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s plea for commutation of his death sentence in a judgement that can have a bearing on the fate of over 20 convicts facing execution, including those held guilty in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination.

On the apex courtƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s observation that commutation of death sentence to accused cannot be done in the case of terrorists or those involved in mass killings on the ground of delay in deciding their mercy plea, Mr. Karunanidhi said in a statement ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-it has come as a very big shock to many expecting the verdict as well as our thinking.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬

Mr. Karunanidhi cited the example of Thyagu, whose death sentence, he said, was commuted during his governmentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s tenure. ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-When we see that Thyagu has now become a writer and essayist, is publishing books and has become a respectable man in society, we should give a life to Murugan, Santhan and Perarivalan and should use them for society,ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ he said.

The DMK chief has been repeatedly pressing for abolition of capital punishment.

His earlier comments in this regard came against the backdrop of the hanging of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack convict Ajmal Kasab and Parliament attack accused Afzal Guru which triggered a fresh debate on the death penalty issue.

He had also virtually backed the demand for a CBI probe into the 1993 Palar landmine blast case in which four aides of sandalwood smuggler Veerappan are facing the gallows.

The four got a temporary relief in February this year with the apex court staying their execution on their plea seeking commutation of the sentence citing delay of eight years in disposal of their mercy petition by the President.

8 fishermen saved by ICG from Lankan navy

April 13th, 2013

By Express News Service – KARAIKAL/RAMANATHAPURAM .(The New Indian Express)

A day after eight fishermen of Nagapattinam district were assaulted by the Lankan navy off the coast of Kodiyakarai, another mid-sea confrontation unfolded on Friday where as many as 46 fishermen detained by the Sri Lankan navy were brought back toƒÆ’-¡  the Karaikal Marg port after Indian Coast Guard (ICG) personnel intervened and held a series of talks with their Lankan counterparts.

Sources said, 46 fishermen in five boats from various hamlets in the district ventured in to sea on Thursday. While they were fishing in the sea off Kodiayakkarai coast, it is said that Lankan fishermen approached the spot and allegedly had an altercation with them claiming that they have violated the maritime boundaries.

On information Lankan navy reached the spot and detained the Indian fishermen for damaging a boat belonging to a Sri Lankan fisherman. Subsequently, the Indian fishermen in one of the detained boats contacted the ICG through their walkie-talkie and appealed for their help. The ICG personnel reached the spot and held a series of talks. Later, all the 46 detained fishermen were handed over to the ICG personnel by the SL navy.

Meanwhile, emotional scenes were witnessed at the Rameswaram jetty when 19 fishermen reached the jetty on Friday. Family memebrs were ecstatic, broke out in tears and hugged the fishermen, who had returned home after being incarcerated in the Lankan jail for nearly 30 days. On March 13, the Lankan navy whisked away 19 fishermen of Rameswaram while they were casting their net in the sea and handed them over to Mannar police. Then, the 19 fishermen were lodged in Vavunya prison for five days after being produced before the Mannar court.

Meanwhile, the government sent a letter to the Centre urging it to take steps for the speedy release of the Indian fishermen.

The Mannar court while ordering the release of the 19 fishermen on AprilƒÆ’-¡  11, were handed over to the SL Navy on Thursday, who further handed over the fishermen to ICG at the IMBL who later escorted them to Rameswaram jetty

India’s retired diplomat Hardeep Puri flays Sri Lanka’s Rajapaksa brothers

April 12th, 2013

Asoka Weerasinghe Kings Grove Crescent . Gloucester . Ontario . K1J 6G1. Canada

11 April 2013

(Editor of The Hindu.ƒÆ’-¡  Sir,ƒÆ’-¡ kindly forward this letter to Mr. Hardeep S. Puri.ƒÆ’-¡  AW)

OPEN LETTER

Mr. Hardeep S. PuriƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ 
Recently Retired Senior Indian Diplomat, Class ofƒÆ’-¡  1974ƒÆ’-¡ 
Senior Diplomat at IndianƒÆ’-¡ High Commission in Sri Lanka, December 1984 ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” March 1988,
New Delhi, India

Dear Hardeep Puri:

Strange it may sound; there seem to be no ending of the smart Alec Indian diplomats coming out of the wood work, flaying their arms at Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡  The present President of India Shri Pranab Mukerjee was the last one that I wrote to on 6th April pointing this out.ƒÆ’-¡  I thought that would be the end he being the Head-Honcho of Indian diplomacy chalking his anti-Sri Lanka mark.ƒÆ’-¡  And I thought it would stop there.ƒÆ’-¡  But, Oh, No.ƒÆ’-¡  I didnƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t realize that there was a HardeepƒÆ’-¡  S. Puri waiting in the wings to come out flaying at Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  These past and present Indian diplomats seem to come in relays handing the truncheon to the one behind. Wow! Man, this is something!ƒÆ’-¡  This is provocative bully-murder-theatre at its best.

ƒÆ’-¡ ItƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s the Sri Lankan-Tamils that seem to be your problem who are thousand times better looked after in every sector of their lives by the Sri Lankan Government than your Dalits of India.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  I know and you know that you cannot challenge me on that statement. You know, Hardeep, I can bet my last sweat covered paisa that everyone of your Dalit population would move heaven and earth to exchange places with the Tamils that you are belly aching for.

Hardeep, these Dalits are your untouchables.ƒÆ’-¡  Lowest in your caste system, lowest in the rung of Mother Theresa-CulcuttaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s humanity who are looked down upon nor would they be able to sit at the same table with Hardeep S. Puri, to eat a luncheon plate of rice and curry, even in a remote hidden away boutique so that no one would notice yourƒÆ’-¡  humanitarian valour.ƒÆ’-¡  That is a reality check for you Hardeep.ƒÆ’-¡  Will I, a Sri Lankan-Canadian Sinhalese, sit at the same table in a restaurant with a low caste Tamil or one of your Dalits.ƒÆ’-¡  You bet, I will and I will also offer to pay his bill.ƒÆ’-¡  That is the difference between Hardeep S. Puri the retired Indian diplomat, and Asoka Weerasinghe, a Sinhalese-Canadian retired public servant.

In 2001 they made 16.2 per cent of your Indian population.ƒÆ’-¡  Do your arithmetic and you will find it to be a shocking number, and you seem to be worried about the Sri Lankan-Tamils, a dwindlingƒÆ’-¡  population of Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡  How come Hardeep?ƒÆ’-¡  DonƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t you think that the Dalits need your attention which is your home grown problem rather than worrying about the Tamils in Sri Lanka?ƒÆ’-¡  Where is your vision for your Dalits, Hardeep?ƒÆ’-¡  Your brazen interference in your neighbourƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s internal affairs and not worrying about your Dalits is moronic and despicable. Not saneƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬¦not good!

The news item in The Island of Wednesday April 10, 2013, headlined ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Indian Diplomat flays Rajapaksa brothersƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ which has been critiqued as a ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-brilliant articleƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬: in The Hindu says: ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-the brothersƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ running Sri Lanka appear to have no intention to move on political reconciliation and devolution.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒÆ’-¡  Then, Hardeep, what the heck do you think they are doing?ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Sucking their thumbs standing in a corner of their air-conditioned offices?ƒÆ’-¡  Coming out of a 27 year old war which you Indians have to be responsible for training the Tamil Tiger warmongers, giving them AK47 killing assault rifles and showing them how to shoot them at innocent Sinhalese and Muslim peoples, is a good reason for you Indians to be hauled in front of an International War Crimes Court for aiding and abetting human rights violations by the Tamil Tigers, Indira GandhiƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-boysƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬.ƒÆ’-¡  I am afraid Hardeep, you too will be in that mix of Indian War Criminals as you were aiding and abetting Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Eelam War killings and human rights violations..

But, Hey Hardeep,ƒÆ’-¡  the two Rajapaksa brothers have every right to act responsibly to satisfyƒÆ’-¡  their people thus have little inclination to satisfy a former Indian High Commission senior diplomatƒÆ’-¡ who happened to be stationed in Colombo during the ugly Indian bully months ofƒÆ’-¡  December 1984 to March 1988, just after the assassination of Indira Gandhi, the God Mother of Tamil Tiger terrorismƒÆ’-¡ in October 3, 1984 andƒÆ’-¡  later working with her son Rajiv’s administration.

Hardeep if your memory will not betray you, you will recall that it were the months in late 1983 until the most part of 1985, that you Indians trained the Tamil guerillas in military camps inƒÆ’-¡  Dehra Dun, Madras and in the districts ofƒÆ’-¡  Chengalpattu, Tiruchi, Pudukottai, South Arcot, Salem, Thanjavur, Ramanathapuram, Madurai, Coimbatorai and Anna, and graduatedƒÆ’-¡  them into beingƒÆ’-¡ the most ruthless terrorists in the world and sent them back to Sri Lanka to kill and destabilize that island nation. Remember, Hardeep?ƒÆ’-¡  You were right in the thick of it, as a diplomatƒÆ’-¡ in the ƒÆ’-¡ Indian High Commission monitoring the performance and the progress of these Made in India serial Tamil Tiger killers.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  How they performed to the satisfaction of the two Gandhi’s, your prime Ministers.ƒÆ’-¡  This qualifies you to be one of the Indians to be hauled in front of an International War Crimes court.ƒÆ’-¡  That is indeed the luck of the draw.ƒÆ’-¡  The world right now seems hard on human rights violations, whether you killed or whether you aided and abetted such killings. HmmmmƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬¦ Hardeep, you must be wondering how come you got tainted with such a horrible International War Crimes truth.

Hardeep, if you wereƒÆ’-¡ aƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ Senior diplomatƒÆ’-¡  in the IndianƒÆ’-¡ Mission in Colombo until March 1988, then you were part of Indian Government Bully Team when you all gave Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s High Commissioner in New Delhi less than an hourƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s notice that you all would be sending Mirage war planes sonic-boom screaming over the northern skies of Jaffna to drop 25 ton of lentils to feed 800,000 Tamils.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  You were in Colombo when you all parked two war ships outside the waters of Colombo to intimidate Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡  And you were in Colombo as part of the Indian Bully Team to force Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s President J.R. Jayewardena to sign the Indo-Lanka Peace Accord, and Rajiv Gandhi tellingƒÆ’-¡  the Tamil Tiger Leader Prabhakaran that , ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-I have got you almost all what you wanted.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒÆ’-¡  Remember, Hardeep?ƒÆ’-¡  That is how despicable you Indian Bully bunch were.

Hardeep, you were not a babe in the woods, as you knew all along what was going on when your India was intimidating Sri Lanka. When IPKF committed human rights violations which are reason enough to haul you all in front of a War Crimes Court. When the IPKF committed certain excesses such as the use of T-72 tanks to rescue some of your paracommandos who were encircled by the LTTE.ƒÆ’-¡  The fighting between your IPKF and the Indira Gandhi’sƒÆ’-¡  LTTE ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-boysƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ at Urumbiarai, the gateway to Jaffna, when Tamil civilians were killed and T-72 tanks ran over them.ƒÆ’-¡  The shelling of the Jaffna General Hospital by the IPKF when rumours were spread that the LTTE had taken refuge and the death of Doctors, patients and Ambulance drivers, angered the people.ƒÆ’-¡  And how your Indian helicopter gunships strafed the Chavacachcheri market building killing 65 civilians.

With all these happenings Hardeep S. Puri, you have absolutely no moral right to point your fingerƒÆ’-¡  and lecture at the Rajapaksa brothers.ƒÆ’-¡  I doubt they will take orders from you, as they know and I know, that you are a convincing candidate to be hauled in front of an International War Crimes Court for your involvement in the war crimes that took place in Sri Lanka during your tenure asƒÆ’-¡ a senior diplomat at theƒÆ’-¡ Indian High Commission in Colombo from December 1984 to March 1988.ƒÆ’-¡  Like the massacre of 32 novice Buddhist monks at Aranthalawa on the morning of 2 June 1987 which was executed by your Indira Gandhi’s “boys”, the Made in India, Tamil Tiger terrorists.

With that conclusion, I say Amen!.

Sincerely,

Asoka Weerasinghe

WIMAL WEERAWANSA SHOULD MOVE HIS APPLICATION AGAINST THE 13A NOW

April 12th, 2013

Jayantha Liyanage, General Secretary, Sinhala Jathika Peramuna (SJP),

Minister Wimal Weerawansa (WW) early this year on one Friday said that he is going to move an SC application against the 13A. But two days later on Monday he said that he is not going to move it because he belongs to one PSC committee therefore it would not be good to do so.

But when he said that he would move an application against the 13A, on Friday then the application set must have been ready on that Friday ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” 3 sets of the application for the three SC judges, the RegistrarƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s copy, the CouncilƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s copy and his copy. Therefore, he must have with him all those copies intact in his filing cabinet

The 13A problem could only be solved in favour of the indigenous Sinhala People through two avenues ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” First the legal avenue and second, the political avenue. Therefore, WW is in a position to launch a two-prong attack on the 13A in a concrete way.

According to the News item published in Lankaweb on 28th February by the SLSGC, it appears to be that GR, WW, Udaya Gammanpilla (UG), Champika Ranawaka (CR) together with Gunadasa AmeresekaraƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s 10 organizations with the support of SLSGC have met the President to initiate a political program to abolish the 13A. So we the indigenous Sinhala people are in a strong position to get rid of the 13A.

But as WW withdrew his application in two days time because of an unexpected reason, political moves even by the President could go wrong. Therefore, to be on the safe side (in the event the timeline agenda presented by the SLSGC does not materialize after the New year), WW should now invoke his application set (all he has to do is to change the date of his application) and file the application at the SC just after the Sinhala New Year.

This time he does not have to be the Petitioner as it was in last time. His good buddy, Piyasiri Dissanayake, or one of the leaders from Gunadasa Ameresekara team could become the Petitioner or Petitioners and why not the man UG himself. But in the event if they are all shy to be a Petitioner, then I personally would be ready for the action.

Therefore, I urge SLSGC to phone minister WW immediately and invoke the Petition without further delay. I am sure there must be plenty of auspicious times available during this time of the year to file a good application prepared in good faith.

 

12.04.2013.

Army inquiry to civilian deaths is a joke, according to TNA

April 12th, 2013

Asada M Erpini

ƒÆ’-¡ The response of Suresh Premachandran, an MP of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to the report of the army inquiry, as mentioned in the media on 11 April, is hardly surprising. Leaving the genuineness, objectivity and the veracity of the inquiry by the armed forces aside, the TNA stance has always been anti-Sri Lankan and anti-armed forces.

ƒÆ’-¡ Is it possible for the TNA to cite a single action or incident that would suggest even vaguely that it ever did anything to safeguard the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka? All that Sri Lanka hears and reads about is how TNA and its members ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” especially the MPs who are paid their salaries and are granted their perks at the (largely Sinhala) tax payerƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s expense ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” go round the world denigrating Sri Lanka.

ƒÆ’-¡ Have the TNA MPs done anything to develop Sri Lanka or improve the lot of at least the Tamils of the North for whom the TNA sheds crocodile tears? It is sad that the $300 million annual war kitty (JaneƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Defence Weekly) that the LTTE generated was spent on arms and for destroying Sri Lanka, instead of investing in industrial and commercial ventures, at least in the North, which would have benefited the Tamils and, in the meantime, saved billions for the Sri Lanka government to be spent on productive ventures.

ƒÆ’-¡ India was responsible for the protracted war. Period.ƒÆ’-¡  That is the stark truth. The Defence Secretary is merely elucidating a fact that everyone except the TNA knows. Though the TNA MP is not ready to admit it, it is a bitter pill that he has to swallow. In fact, it is not only India, but the Tamils secessionists under various names, from the beginning of the 20th century, who went on demanding special treatment for the Northern Tamils that are also culpable for the festering cankerous crime.

ƒÆ’-¡ The history of the conflict from the pre-independence period, which Premachandran may find unpalatable, goes as follows. ƒÆ’-¡ The Jaffna Association put forward the call for a 50-50 representation (50% for Sinhalas and 50% for Tamils and other minorities) in 1918. The Tamil Mahajana Sabha reiterated it in 1921. In 1923, Arunachalam founded the Ceylon Tamil Congress, and in 1926, Rasanayagam, the historian who is held in high esteem by the separatists, published his ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Kingdom of JaffnaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬, which is the Bible for the separatists to back their claims (Incidentally, it described how Cankili massacred the Sinhala Buddhists living in Jaffna in the 16th century). In 1939, while Ponnambalam took over the 50-50 representation demand, the Jaffna Youth Congress leader Balasingham wanted a federation with India for Tamils. What happened later is well known: the infamous ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Vadukkodai ResolutionƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ of 1976 and the killing of 13 soldiers of the Sri Lanka army in a bomb attack in Jaffna in 1983 are events that are too recent for even Premachandran to forget or brush aside.

ƒÆ’-¡ When there were signs that the JRJ government was leaning towards the West, Indira Gandhi thought it was her bounden duty (or so it was projected) to provide financial support and military training at IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s own military facilities to a rag tag bunch of street thugs from Velvetiturai and other parts of the Northern peninsula, transforming the latter to the most ferocious terrorists in the world. The Vadamarachchi Operation of 1987 of the Sri Lanka armed forces would have captured the LTTE leader, and the senseless bloodletting would have stopped, bringing normalcy to the country, if not for the fact that Rajiv Gandhi of India decided to lift Pirabhaharan to safety in India.

ƒÆ’-¡ Today, the Central Government of India is pampering to the whims and fancies of a motley assortment of former film stars past their sell-by-dates, celluloid heroes, script writers, and many other loquacious blabbermouths from its Southern State of Tamil Nadu, merely to remain in power. What happens to

Sri Lanka, a member of SAARC, that never created any problems to India is of no concern to the mighty neighbour that Sri Lanka continues, or is compelled, to refer to as a friend.

ƒÆ’-¡ Modern day India can never absolve itself of the crime that it has been committing against Sri Lanka for many decades. Premachandran may blame the forever-castigated ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Sinhala governmentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ and the Sinhala people, but it is his forefathers, aided and abetted by India that originated the mistrust and ensures that the divisions perpetuate. Sadly, the conflict will continue as long as the TNA and its supporters abroad fraudulently project the Tamil community in Sri Lanka as the innocent victim and continue with the intransigence that is their hallmark.

ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-All the mistakes are those made by the successive governments in Sri Lanka,” concludes Premachandran in his statement. Oh, what innocent babes the Tamil leaders have been! Sri Lanka government is a convenient scapegoat for the TNA to go on lambasting.

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-US ready to support Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬, says Kerry

April 12th, 2013

Asada M ErpiniƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  ƒÆ’-¡ 

For a change, the statement by the US Secretary of State, Mr John Kerry, on the occasion of the Sinhala and Tamil New Year, as reported on 12 April, does not seem to have the usual innuendos and the threats that emanated from the likes of Hilary Rodham Clinton and her underlings Robert Blake, Patricia A. Butenis and Michele J. Sison

It is only after May 2009 that Sri Lankans have been able to celebrate any event of cultural or religious significance without the fear or risk of getting blasted by an LTTE bomb. It is sad, however, that the very people in the political and military leadership who have been instrumental in delivering peace are being hauled over the coals by a group of affluent nations led by the US.

All peace-loving Sri Lankans hope and pray that the sentiments expressed by the US Secretary of State are sincere and genuine. Although Sri Lanka is a powerless, poor country, with only a handful of friends in the international arena, it will be glad to reciprocate; in whatever manner that it can, to ensure that there is a harmonious and mutually beneficial relationship between the two nations.

The statement, however, would have been worth its weight in gold if the oft repeated ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-reconciliation and accountabilityƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ did not creep into it. Then again, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Beggars canƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t be choosersƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬, or so the saying goes.

The bond of Buddha and all that it conveys is a bond between India and Sri Lanka which nothing can break

April 12th, 2013

MEDIA RELEASE Information Technology Division – Ministry of External Affairs Sri Lanka

Inaugurating an exhibition of photographs titled ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Buddhist Heritage of Sri Lanka: a shared culture with IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ at the India International Centre in New Delhi on 9 April, Foreign Secretary of India Ranjan Mathai, quoting from a speech made by IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru during a visit to Sri Lanka, then Ceylon, in 1950, said that the bond of Buddha and all that it conveys is a bond between India and Sri Lanka which nothing can break.

Elaborating on the shared culture of India and Sri Lanka, Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai spoke of recent steps in the cultural sphere and joint celebration of the 2600th Sambuddhatva Jayanti, which have further strengthened the historic bonds between the two countries. He spoke of the exposition of the Kapilavastu Relics of Gautama Buddha in Sri Lanka last year where over 3 million people paid homage to the Relics, and IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s gift of the 16 foot Buddha statue based on the Gupta period statue in Sarnath which is installed at the entrance to the International Buddhist Museum in Kandy. In this context, he described in NehruƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s words, the solace he had derived from the Samadhi Buddha statue in Anuradhapura, a photograph of which was his constant companion in the Dehradun jail: ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-….the strong calm features of the Buddha soothed me and gave me strength and helped me overcome many a period of depression.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬

Speaking at the exhibitionƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s inauguration, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka, Prasad Kariyawasam traced the historic civilisational ties between India and Sri Lanka. The photographs, he said, tell the story of the ties that have bound the people of India and Sri Lanka for thousands of years, the great civilisation that once flourished, and the moral and ethical codes of compassion, tolerance, selflessness and non-violence which in todayƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s modern world seem to be overtaken by materialism, egoism and parochial interests.

Photographer Benoy Behl spoke of the culture of all of South Asia being deeply unified by a vision of great compassion and stated that Sri Lanka is one of the great inheritors of this vision of life. In this context, Benoy Behl recalled the introduction of Buddhism to Sri Lanka in the 3rd Century BC during which time, artistes did not put their names on their work and ephemeral personalities were not considered important.

Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai was gifted a sapling of the sacred Bodhi Tree in Bodhgaya, nurtured and kept alive jointly by the people of both countries over thousands of years, as a symbol of the deep and abiding friendship between the people of the two countries and respect for the teachings of Gautama Buddha.

The exhibition of photographs by renowned Indian art historian, photographer and film-maker, Benoy Behl, is organised jointly by the Sri Lanka High Commission in India, the India International Centre and the India-Sri Lanka Foundation. The exhibition featuring 40 photographs of historic sites in Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya, Dambulla, Kandy and Kelaniya will continue up to 16 April.

The full text of the High CommissionerƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Statement is appended below.

High Commission of Sri Lanka in India
New Delhi
11 April 2013

Remarks by H.E. Prasad Kariyawasam
High Commissioner for Sri Lanka to India at the Inauguration of the Exhibition of Photographs ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”The Buddhist Heritage of Sri Lanka: a shared culture with IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢

India International Centre, New Delhi, 9 April 2013

Foreign Secretary Mr. Ranjan Mathai,
Excellencies,
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you for joining us this evening at the inauguration of this exhibition of photographs by Mr. Benoy Behl titled: ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Buddhist Heritage of Sri Lanka: a shared culture with IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬. This exhibition is organised jointly by the India International Centre, the High Commission of Sri Lanka and the India-Sri Lanka Foundation. On behalf of all these three institutions, I express deep appreciation to Foreign Secretary Mr. Ranjan Mathai for gracing us with his presence this evening as the Chief Guest, at extremely short notice, when Dr. Shashi Tharoor, who was to be the Chief Guest, had to travel abroad to represent the Government of India at the inauguration of the new President of Kenya.

As you would all know, India and Sri Lanka are geographically separated by a mere 48 kilometres of sea known as the Palk Strait. Being situated in such close proximity to each other geographically, it is abundantly clear that interaction between the people of India and Sri Lanka would have predated recorded history. Relations between our two countries are ancient and steeped in legend. The two great epics of India, the Ramayana and the Mahabaratha are believed to have references to Sri Lanka. So does the Skanda Purana associated with God Skanda. The Mahavamsa or the Great Chronicle which is the main source for the reconstruction of the early history of Sri Lanka talks of the arrival of a Prince from Bengal and Kalinga named Vijaya, in about the 5th Century BC, who settled in Sri Lanka and established its first Kingdom. ƒÆ’-¡ Although this legend is deeply embedded in Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s literature, its history and its folklore, there is no record of its visual or artistic depiction in ancient Sri Lanka. What is interesting however is that this story finds artistic depiction in a series of murals called the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Simhala AvadanaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ in the 5th Century monastic caves of Ajanta in Western India.

According to historical records, Buddhism was officially introduced to Sri Lanka around the middle of the 3rd Century BC, during the reign of IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s great Emperor Ashoka, who sent his own son Arhat Mahinda, an enlightened Buddhist monk, to Sri Lanka, with the Message of Buddhism. Soon thereafter, his daughter Sanghamitra, who had become a Buddhist nun was sent to Sri Lanka with a sapling of the Pipal tree under which the Buddha attained enlightenment in Bodhgaya. This tree continues to stand in Anuradhapura even today, and it is acknowledged as the oldest recorded tree in the world. It has remained in continuous worship since its inception in the 3rd Century BC. It was from this tree, which you will see in the photographs taken by Benoy, that the tree that you now find in Bodhgaya, was revived, when the original tree in India was no more. Our two countries, India and Sri Lanka, have jointly kept this sacred and historic tree alive. It stands as a symbol of our deep friendship, our commitment to peace, non-violence, tolerance, respect for all beings, and the teachings of Gautama Buddha.

The introduction of Buddhism to Sri Lanka also saw the introduction of the culture and the civilisation of Buddhist India to Sri Lanka. New forms of art, architecture, and cultural practices made a deep impression on Sri Lankan civlisation. It is even believed that it was Emperor AshokaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s son Mahinda, who had lived in large cities like Pataliputra, the capital of the Magadhan Empire and had seen great monasteries like Asokarama and Sanchi in Vidisha, who originally planned and laid out the Holy City of Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka.

For nearly 13 centuries, Anuradhapura remained the principal seat of government and the major centre of Sri Lankan culture and civilisation. Its monasteries were great centres of learning, visited by scholars and pilgrims from many parts of Asia. It housed an international trading community, which included traders from India, China, Rome, Arabia and Persia. Sri Lankan ambassadors were despatched on several occasions to the imperial courts of Rome and China from the court at Anuradhapura. The Great Indian Buddhist scholar and commentator, Buddhaghosa, spent many years in Anuradhapura during the 5th Century, codifying the Buddhist scriptures which had been lost in India. Gunavarman, the Kashmiri monk, who carried Buddhism to Indonesia and China, passed through Sri Lanka, and must certainly have visited the cityƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s monasteries. Monks from Anuradhapura went out to many lands, including India, China, Cambodia and Java, and they left inscriptions and records of their visits in those places.

Influences from southern India have been of fundamental importance in Sri Lanka from prehistoric times. For a thousand years before the arrival of the Portuguese, several conquerors from South India invaded parts of Sri Lanka and established short lived dependencies. At the same time, there was a long history of Sri Lankan rulers sending emissaries to Southern India for their queens and for cultural and economic pursuits. The Buddhist temples from the Polonnaruwa period (1017 ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” 1215) onwards incorporated Hindu shrines in their premises. This is a feature one would find in Buddhist temples even today and you would see this in BenoyƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s photographs as well.

The Kingdoms of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa declined due to a combination of factors. Invasions from South India were one major reason, and the seat of power shifted gradually southwards and to the central mountains in search of security. Southern Kingdoms also came under pressure from powerful naval expeditions of Chinese Emperors seeking tribute and obedience. These were before the arrival of the European colonial powers.

The ruins of great monasteries and cities, colossal man-made lakes, numerous inscriptions and a large body of ancient literature still survive as testimony to the achievements of the Sri Lankan people over a period of 2000 years and more. They indicate that Sri Lanka took its place with other countries in Asia, as one of the most advanced and developed countries of the pre-modern world from about 3rd century BC to about the 15th century. Throughout this period, the people of Sri Lanka had evolved its own distinctive culture and economy while keeping in close contact with the outside world and being open to ideas and exchanges with the countries of the Indian Ocean region and beyond.

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Mr. Benoy Behl, I am sure, is someone known to most of you. An art historian, writer, photographer and flim-maker, he excels in all these fields. Benoy is perhaps best known for documenting the vast art history of India in photographs and film and also for his book on the Ajanta Caves published in London and New York. He is famed for the development of a technique of capturing the images of paintings such as those in Ajanta with extremely low light. He has lectured and exhibited his work all over the world in important universities and museums.

Benoy,
It is a privilege for us to have had you visit our country, and photograph some of the important monuments, archaeological and historic sites in Sri Lanka. We thank you for capturing with such great skill, these images that tell the story of the ties that have bound our two nations and our people for over thousands of years; the story of the great civilisation that once flourished; and the moral and ethical codes of compassion, tolerance, selflessness, and non-violence which in todayƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s modern world seem to be overtaken by materialism, egoism and parochial interests.

Distinguished guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

In closing, I would like to once again thank all of you for joining us today and I hope all of you enjoy this exhibition and have a pleasant evening.

Trouble in paradise: The darker side of the Maldives

April 12th, 2013

Courtesy: The Independent (UK)

Public lashings. Religious extremists seizing power. A gay blogger with his throat slashed. Few of the million annual visitors to the Maldives will recognise the hellish side of these heavenly islands

Hilath Rasheed, the first openly gay and secular blogger in the Maldives, was about to walk through his front door one afternoon last year when he felt the box-cutter slice through his neck.

It took a moment to notice the blood pouring down his shirt. As his attackers sauntered off, Hilath staggered to the main road, clutching the loose skin over his throat with one hand. He managed to hitch a lift to hospital from a horrified motorcyclist. When a doctor in the emergency room asked him to move his hand away, a policeman and nurse fainted.

Following a miraculous recovery ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” doctors told him there was less than a 1 per cent chance of surviving such an attack ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Hilath, 35, now lives in exile in Sri Lanka. He misses home, but a country where it is illegal to be non-Muslim and violent forms of religious fundamentalism are on the rise is no place for a homosexual secularist, he says.

“Extremism is the biggest threat my country faces,” he said at a coffee shop in Colombo. “I was the first person to talk openly about homosexuality and religious freedom. People said I was brave, but often I think I was stupid.”

Recent weeks have put a spotlight on Islamic fundamentalism in the Maldives after a 15-year-old girl who had been repeatedly raped by her stepfather was sentenced to 100 lashes for “fornication”. A petition by the global advocacy group Avaaz has been signed by more than two million people demanding a tourist boycott until the flogging sentence is annulled.

In a rare interview at his home this week, President Mohammed Waheed told The Independent that he strongly opposes the court ruling. “This case should not have come to the courts at all. We see this girl as a victim,” he said, adding that he has set up a committee to “understand what went wrong”.

But that sits awkwardly with his recent decision to enter into a coalition with the religious Adhaalath party with elections to be held in September.

In a recent statement, Adhaalath backed the flogging, saying: “The purpose of penalties like these in Islamic shariah is to maintain order in society and to save it from sinful acts. We must turn a deaf ear to the international organisations which are calling to abolish these penalties.”

Few of the million visitors to the Maldives each year see this side of the country. Most are whisked off to uninhabited resort islands before even setting foot on the crowded, alcohol-free capital of MalƒÆ’†’©. But the flogging case was not an isolated incident ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Islamic hardliners, many trained in Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, have become a shadowy but powerful presence here. They are blamed for a raid on the national museum last year in which a priceless collection of ancient Buddhist artefacts was destroyed. They are also thought to be behind the killing in October of a member of parliament who had spoken out against extremism. The police have made little progress in either case.

Religious conservatives were also the driving force behind weeks-long protests that toppled the country’s first Democratic President, Mohamed Nasheed, in February last year.

Mr Nasheed’s election in 2008 had ended 30 years of dictatorship, but his liberal, Western style was used by opponents to paint him as un-Islamic ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” even a secret Christian. Although Mr Nasheed resigned on live television, he later claimed it was done “with a gun to my head” and that he was the victim of a coup.

The new President says the changeover was perfectly legal. But eyebrows were raised when he gave ministerial posts to the son and daughter of the former dictator Maumoon Gayoom, and chose three religious leaders from the Adhaalath party for his cabinet, even though the party holds no seats in parliament.

Dr Waheed defended his choice this week, saying: “They want to ensure Islamic values are protected. We are all working with that in mind.”

Out on one of the Maldives’ 200 inhabited islands, Mr Nasheed and members of his Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) were back on the campaign trail last week, hoping they can regain through the ballot box what was lost to the mob.

On most islands he receives a hero’s welcome, still the man who endured torture and years behind bars to bring democracy to the country. But this day’s campaigning brought him to the island of Huraa: as stunning as the rest, with its turquoise waters, palm trees and white sands, but a stronghold of conservative forces.

Women greeted Mr Nasheed with a table of whisky bottles to imply his alleged love of alcohol. As he tried to address a small crowd in the town hall, they stood outside shrieking maniacally in an attempt to drown him out. Attempts to approach them for their views almost triggered a riot.

“They are screaming because they are losing and they know it,” Mr Nasheed said at his hotel later that evening. “The coup has actually been a blessing in disguise. It exposed the mullahs. When they took jobs in government, it became obvious that they were just using religion for political ends. Hardly anyone is joining their rallies now.”

It is not yet clear whether Mr Nasheed will be allowed to stand in September’s elections. The current government and judiciary are doing their best to throw him in prison for his attempt to arrest a senior judge during the final days of his presidency. So far, his trial has been delayed by technicalities, but there are fears that more extreme measures are about to be deployed.

“There is no question that they wanted me dead during the coup,” Mr Nasheed said. “They have unfinished business with me.”

Such fears have put his supporters on edge. The islands have been gripped in recent weeks by news that a pair of alleged Armenian gangsters known as the Artur brothers have been photographed in the company of government ministers. Rumours quickly spread on social media that they were assassins sent to kill Mr Nasheed.

The brothers ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” who use the names Artur Sargsyan and Artur Margaryan ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” made international headlines in 2006 after being kicked out of Kenya amid allegations they had built a drug-trafficking empire with links to the highest government offices. They were deported only after pulling guns on customs officials in a Nairobi airport.

The Maldives government says they were in town to set up an investment company, and has hastily cancelled their permits in the wake of the media attention, but the episode showed how tense the political situation has become. “Everyone is worried about [Mr Nasheed's] safety,” said Eva Abdulla, an MDP politician. “Things look calm, but if he is jailed or killed, there will be huge amounts of violence on the streets.”

Despite their grievances, the MDP had its fair share of controversies during its time in power. The party was accused of bribing opposition MPs, sidelining critics and failing to clean up a deeply corrupt judiciary when it had the chance. Mr Nasheed’s decision to arrest the judge was condemned internationally and only fuelled the protests that led to his downfall.

“It’s true that we made mistakes,” Ms Abdulla said. “We underestimated how much power the old regime still had and they managed to build a lot of anger against Nasheed. But the coup has jolted people out of their apathy. People have realised that their new democratic rights are quite precarious.”

Mr Nasheed hopes that his focus on development will ultimately drown out the religious rhetoric.

He is particularly fond of his decision to allow locals to open guest houses on inhabited islands, which were banned. That is starting to break the monopoly enjoyed by millionaire resort owners, and bring tourist dollars into the rural economy for the first time.

He is also touting a financial-support scheme for single mothers ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” a particular hit because the Maldives happens to have the highest divorce rate in the world. “All the opposition can do is wave alcohol bottles at us,” one of Mr Nasheed’s campaign organisers said, walking away from the screaming women on Huraa. “We have actual policies, and eventually that will get through to people.”

Unwelcome guests: The ‘Artur Brothers’

The “Artur brothers” have caused quite a stir since they arrived in the Maldives last year.

Having reportedly registered the company “Artur Brothers World Connections” on the islands in October, it was not long before local media began to pick up on news reports from Kenya dating back to 2006 which alleged that the pair ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” who go by the names of Artur Sargsyan and Artur Margaryan ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” were involved in a drug-trafficking ring with links to some of Kenya’s highest officials.

Their activities allegedly culminated in a dramatic exit from Kenya, in which they pulled guns on customs officials. Media investigations later said the pair had been so close to senior government officials that they were granted Kenyan citizenship, and even appointed deputy police commissioners. They have also been said to hold Armenian, Czech and French passports. This month, photos of the Arturs appeared online apparently in the company of the country’s Defence Minister, Mohamed Nazim, and the Tourism Minister, Ahmed Adheeb.

Their presence coincided with a comment issued by the islands’ ousted leader, Mohamed Nasheed, in which he expressed fear for his life. According to reports, in 2011 the former Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga accused the brothers of involvement in a failed assassination plot against leading opposition figures in 2005. The brothers are said to have told a press conference that they were merely businessmen, who had been approached by the opposition to fund a campaign for regime change in Kenya.

In a statement on his website dated 4 April this year, the President of the Maldives, Mohammed Waheed, said he had been told that the brothers were in the country in January but that they “had not broken any laws”. It said the brothers “were being monitored by the police” and “the administration later decided to ask them to leave once their visa extension expired”.

This week, Mr Adheeb told Minivan News that he had “advised them to leave peacefully and they agreed”, adding that the pair “have now left”. Police have since recommended that an investment licence issued to the brothers by the islands should be revoked.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/trouble-in-paradise-the-darker-side-of-the-maldives-8567893.html

 

Avuruddha Celebrations in Malaysia

April 12th, 2013

Avuruddha Celebrations in Malaysia

 

Sunday, 7 April 2013; 11.30amƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Sanghika Dana in Memory of Departed Loved Ones

Buddhist Maha Vihara, Brickfields

Sunday, 7 April 2013, 5.00pmƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Transference of Merits to Departed Loved Ones

Sinhala Buddhist Cemetery, Loke Yew

Sunday, 14 April 2013; 7.30am ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Avuruddha Blessing Service and Exchange of Gifts

Buddhist Maha Vihara, Brickfields

Sri Lanka Buddhist Temple, Sentul

Sunday, 21 April 2013; 10.00amƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Sri Lankan Musical Performance

Buddhist Maha Vihara, Brickfields

Saturday, 27 April 2013; 5.00pmƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  A Pictorial Journey of the Malaysian Sinhalese
Malaysian Sinhalese Association, Brickfields

Saturday, 27 April 2013; 6.30pmƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Sinhala Avuruddha Cultural Show

Buddhist Maha Vihara, Brickfields

Sunday, 28 April 2013; 11.00amƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  Sinhala Avuruddha Open House

Buddhist Maha Vihara, Brickfields

British Airways resuming flights after 15 years sends a strong message of confidence in Sri Lanka ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Dr Chris Nonis

April 12th, 2013

Media Release The High Commission of Sri Lanka London

Sri Lankan High Commissioner to the UK, Dr Chris Nonis said that the fact that British Airways, the UKƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s National carrier and third largest airline in Europe, has taken the decision to resume flights to Sri Lanka is an excellent index of their substantial confidence in Sri Lanka and its future growth potential.

HighcommBA

ƒÆ’-¡ (From L to R)ƒÆ’-¡  H.E. Dr. Chris Nonis , High Commissioner forƒÆ’-¡  Sri Lanka to the UK with Mr. Keith Williams, Chief Executive Officer in British Airways, at the Sri Lanka High Commission.

British Airways suspended its flights to Sri Lanka in the late 1990ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s due to security reasons and resumes flights to Sri Lanka after a fifteen year absence in the island, and is represented by the Hayleys Group, one of the largest diversified conglomerates in Sri Lanka. The country offers a wealth of culture, history, heritage, and rich diversity of experiences from pristine beaches and stunning landscapes to wildlife and adventure, all within a compact location, and was named the top travel destination for 2013 by British Airways. The UK was the second largest source of tourists to Sri Lanka in 2012 at over 114, 000, from a total of over 1 million, Dr Nonis said.

ƒÆ’-¡ 

Keith Williams, Chief Executive Officer of British Airways, will be taking the inaugural flight on the 14TH April, andƒÆ’-¡  spoke at the Sri Lankan High Commission about his confidence in Sri Lanka. British Airways is the flag carrier airline of the United Kingdom and the largest airline in the UK based on fleet size, international flights and international destinations. Following its merger with Iberia, the International Airlines Group, IAG, created the world’s third-largest airline in terms of annual revenue and the second largest airline group in Europe, serving over 150 destinations.

ƒÆ’-¡ Keith Williams said ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-This is an extremely exciting new route for us.ƒÆ’-¡  Sri Lanka is experiencing a boom in tourism, and the industry is expected to grow further. The addition of BA would give British tourists additional flexibility, and create value for both the aviation and tourism sectors. The UK has the second largest number of tourists visiting the island after India, so itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s a greatƒÆ’-¡  opportunity for them to fly there with British Airways.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-

ƒÆ’-¡ Keith Williams saidƒÆ’-¡  ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-We will be operating flights to Sri Lanka from UK’s Gatwick airport to Colombo’s Bandaranaike international airport via Male in the Maldives. We will operate Boeing 777ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s, long-range wide-body twin-engine jet airliners in a three class configuration on a thrice-a-week flight schedule to Colombo. I am looking forward to our inaugural flight, at the time of New Year celebrations, and the dawn of a new opportunity for the UK and Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬

ƒÆ’-¡ The High Commission of Sri Lanka

London

ƒÆ’-¡ 12 April 2013

ƒÆ’-¡ 

ƒÆ’-¡ 

19 Lankan Tamil refugees reprieved, will not be sent back to Sri Lanka

April 12th, 2013

Karthick S (Courtesy Times of India)

CHENNAI: About 19 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees who feared deportation after they being stranded in Dubai can breathe easy with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Thursday refuting reports that they would be sent back home.

“UNHCR is looking for a solution to resettle the 19 refugees in other countries. We have full cooperation from the UAE government and there is no threat of the refugees being sent back to Sri Lanka,” said Babar Baloch, spokesperson for UNHCR in Geneva. There were reports earlier that the refugees who reached Dubai illegally would be deported on April 11.

Last October, 45 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees set out in a boat from Tuticorin and were stranded in mid-sea. They were picked up by a Singapore-registered cargo ship and taken to Dubai where they sought asylum through the International Red Cross. They were dropped off in Dubai and entrusted to UNHCR. UNHCR denied refugee status to seven and six were deported to Sri Lanka.

“We have been working sincerely to settle them in other countries. Fifteen of the 39 recognized refugees left UAE and 12 are in the process of departing. Resettlement for others may take time. The UAE government has been supporting UNHCR in sheltering the refugees,” Babar said. He was unable to answer how long the UAE government would keep them. “We do not want to speculate,” he said.

The refugees had appealed to Tamil leaders for help. MDMK leader Vaiko had requested Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to ensure that the 19 Tamils were not deported. VCK leader Thol Thirumavalavan and others issued statements in support of their resettlement.

The family of LTTE spokesperson Ilanthiraiyan, who disappeared during the civil war, are among the 45 refugees. TV presenter Lohini Rathimohan who worked for an LTTE-owned internet channel is among those waiting for resettlement. “She is depressed. She knows what happened to Isaipriya, another TV presenter with the LTTE channel, who was brutally killed by the Sri Lankan Army,” Ramanan, one of the 19, said.

Another refugee Niranjani travelled while she was eight months pregnant and delivered a girl in Dubai on December 25, 2012. “She is likely to be sent to the US. Her baby Abinaya is also in need of better living conditions. We stay in a small place near the seashore. We were told that the six deported Tamils are facing problems in Sri Lanka. Though they have no issues with the government, they are facing trouble. If we are forced to go back to Sri Lanka, there is no assurance that our lives will be spared,” Ramanan said.

Tamil NaduƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s IPL overreach -Only the Ministry of Home Affairs can regulate the entry of foreigners into India

April 12th, 2013

Shivprasad Swaminathan Courtesy the Hindu

Designating the letter written by the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu to the Prime Minister as communicating a ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-decisionƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ to ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-banƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ Sri Lankan players, officials and support staff from participating in any Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket game in Chennai would be imprecise. Rather, it is a putative ban; a statement of intent by the Government of Tamil Nadu to ban the Sri Lankan nationals on a future date should they set foot in the State.

The letter sought to justify the proposed ban on the grounds that the presence of the Lankans would have aggravated the already surcharged atmosphere in the State, and, presumably, have affected the law and order situation. This licences us to infer that at the appropriate time, the Police Commissioner of Chennai would have invoked, that ubiquitous and versatile tool, the prohibitory order under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”‚ something that was also recently invoked by the Commissioner of Police, Chennai to delay the release of actor Kamal HassanƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s film Viswaroopam.

Is a State Government in IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s constitutional set up competent to do what Tamil NaduƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s did? It is difficult to see how that question could reasonably be answered affirmatively as the Tamil Nadu GovernmentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s actions seem to fly in the face of the division of powers between the Union and the States contemplated in the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution.

Under Central domain

Regulating the admission of foreigners into the country falls exclusively within the purview of the Union GovernmentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s competence. Entry 19 of List I (the Union List) of the Seventh Schedule authorises the Union Government to regulate admission and emigration. Further, entry 17 of List I, gives the Union Government the power to regulate ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-citizenship, naturalization and aliens.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ This Constitutional authority is statutorily exercised by the Union Government acting under the Passport (Entry into India) Act 1920, Passport (Entry into India) Rules 1950, Foreigners Act 1946 and the Registration of Foreigners Rules, 1992.

The Constitutional and legislative regime in place gives the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), the exclusive power to regulate the admission of foreigners into India. If the State Government has concerns about the movement of foreigners in a certain part of India, it is at liberty to take up such concerns with the MHA. But the decision on which parts of India, foreigners are free to move in, could finally be that of the MHA alone. Once a decision to admit a foreigner without any geographical restrictions on his movements has been reached, by the MHA, it is not open to the State Government to refuse entry to a foreigner into the State.

Permitting the State Government to do so, would be to redraw the division of powers in the Seventh Schedule. State Governments and District Magistrates have the power to issue ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-inner line permitsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ for foreigners to visit ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-protectedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ or ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-restrictedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ areas. But it is the Central Government which designates these as ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-protectedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ or ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-restrictedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ areas, exercising powers under Section 3 of the Foreigners Act 1946. Furthermore, the State Government owes its power to issue these permits to the grant of the Central Government exercising its powers under the Foreigners Act, 1946.

Blanket ban

A blanket ban on all Sri Lankans ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”‚ solely on the ground of their nationality ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”‚ adds another wrinkle to the problem. The issue then ceases to be merely that of regulation of admission of foreigners and passes over into the realm of foreign affairs. Denying admission in a State, to nationals of a country, solely on the grounds of their nationality, directly (not merely incidentally) affects the relations between India and the other country. Entry 10 of the Union List makes ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-all matters which bring the Union into relations with any foreign country,ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ a matter in which the Union Government alone is competent to act. The Constitution does not empower each State to work out its own foreign affairs policy. Giving the Union Government the last word on foreign affairs is absolutely imperative given the diversity of voices in IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s democracy and the disparate welter of interests they represent. This proposition has, of late, come under a lot of strain with several State Governments seeking to reorient IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s foreign policy in line with their parochial interests. This result is somewhat odd since the Constitution envisages a kind of federalism in which the Union Government is generally meant to be the dominant constituent, and the sole arbiter in matters of foreign affairs. This is an area in which the Union Government must reassert its Constitutional authority. This is, of course, not to suggest that the States should have no say in foreign affairs. To be sure, the States can bring to bear their weight on foreign affairs through proper legal and political channels. But all such channels stop well clear of exercising a de facto veto power over foreign policy formulated by the Union Government.

What about the law and order concerns which ostensibly motivated the Tamil Nadu Government? Such concerns, however justified, can never give the Tamil Nadu Government legitimate grounds to deny the Sri Lankan players entry into the State. The Union Government alone is competent to take into account law and order considerations when it arrives at the decision to permit admission to foreigners into the country.

ƒÆ’†’©If the State Government is dissatisfied with the Union GovernmentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s decision, it can legally challenge the decision under Art 131 of the Constitution by invoking the Supreme CourtƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s original jurisdiction. However, the State Governments have no power to render otiose a valid exercise of Constitutional power by the Union Government on grounds of ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-law and order.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬

If ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-law and orderƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ concerns are recognised as a sound justification for the State Government to disregard the exercise of power by the Union Government, the Seventh Schedule, at least in its present shape and form, would become redundant. If a State Government is to run the governmental machinery in accordance with the Constitution, it must not be allowed to use ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-law and orderƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ as a fig leaf behind which it can trump the powers of other constituents of the federation and upset the distribution of powers in the Constitution.

(Dr. Shivprasad Swaminathan is Assistant Professor, Jindal Global Law School.)

 

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Buddhist philosophies are a way of lifeƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢

April 12th, 2013

Courtesy: Buddhist Channel

CHENNAI , India — A day-long national seminar titled ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”Philosophical Revisit to Buddhism in Tamil NaduƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢ was organised by the Department of Philosophy, University of Madras, here on Wednesday. The seminar focused on how Buddhism forayed into Tamil Nadu.

ƒÆ’-¡ Inaugurating the seminar D Raja, MP and National Secretary of the Communist Party of India, said, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Earlier all the Dalit colonies in northern Tamil Nadu had the photos of Buddha and Ambedkar. During my early years as a school student, I came to know about Buddha and Ambedkar through their birth anniversaries celebrated by the people of those colonies. Their birthdays were celebrated like a festival. Later I was introduced to the principles of Karl Marx through one of my school teachers. Then in my college days I came to know about Iyothee Thass, who organised the first conference on BuddhaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s teaching in Tamil Nadu. Thus I am shaped by the thoughts of both communism and Buddhism.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬

He added, ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-India made the first and foremost contribution to the world of philosophy in the form of Buddha. Buddha doesnƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t care about the existence of god or soul. His only problem was human beings. He believed that through his teaching, humans can walk in a good path. The principles of both Buddha and Karl Marx are more or less equal. Ambedkar was the first person who tried to build a link between Buddha and Marx.ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬

ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Buddha renounced everything. He went to people and spoke to them in their own language. He lived as a common man. He lived for the common man and so he too is a fighter. His philosophies are not religious principles, but a new way of life. We are influenced by western studies and hence we are not aware about Buddhist principles. The great irony in todayƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s scenario with regard to Buddhism is, in Myanmar Buddhist monks fought against the junta. But in Sri Lanka the scenario is different. There Buddha is bleeding,ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ he concluded.

Around 150 students from various colleges of the State participated in the seminar and nearly 20 papers were presented.

The Trojan Horses Theory of the Defence Secretary Mr. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa: How True!

April 11th, 2013

by Garvin Karunaratne Former SLAS- Government Agent, Matara

Our Defence Secretary has said well of Trojan Horses type of activity by foreign sources.

He has referred to Non GovernmentalƒÆ’-¡  Organizations(NGO).ƒÆ’-¡  To my thinking these nefarious activities have been done by Governments as well.

Sri Lanka is an unfortunate countryƒÆ’-¡  in terms of foreign interference.

In the 1971 JVP Rebellion it was established that the North Korean Government played a role in it and its Embassy wasƒÆ’-¡  closed down and the Ambassador and staff deported. It was found that the N.Korean Embassy had withdrawn and spent a colossal sum of money in a subversive manner.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  During the height of the JVP attack a strange ship appeared very close to Matara and Dondra and was seen over our field glasses to be unloading some thing to boats.ƒÆ’-¡  The Army UnitƒÆ’-¡  sentƒÆ’-¡  a message to headquartersƒÆ’-¡  and in response one of our planes came, flew over it and machine gunned the boats. The ship vanished.ƒÆ’-¡  AtƒÆ’-¡  that time we were holding the City of Matara and even the inner coast of Dondra was not in our control. In many Districts, the Police and the Government held only the major cities. Once in a casual discussion I had with Dr Colvin R de Silva, I asked him as to whether in his opinion Rohana Wijeweera was the leader of the movement.ƒÆ’-¡  Instead of answering me he asked for my opinion and I said that I felt that Wijeweera was only carrying out orders for someone else.ƒÆ’-¡  Dr Colvin said that he too felt it that way.ƒÆ’-¡  It was a Fidel Castro type of attempt to take over the country in one day.

Another covertƒÆ’-¡  operation that caused a major calamity was the Red Banna Settlements Project implemented by the Norwegian Government inƒÆ’-¡  the Eighties. Unknown to the Sri Lankan Government, the Norwegian Government opened up a land settlement scheme in the Weli Oya area- the bridge between the Northern and Eastern Provinces and settled Tamil youths from the hill country of Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡  This was done without the approval or knowledge of the Sri Lanka Government.ƒÆ’-¡ ƒÆ’-¡  This was a sheer attempt by the Norwegian Government to provide a handicap for PrabhakaranƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s LTTE.ƒÆ’-¡  It is ironical that the NorwegianƒÆ’-¡  Government was later entrusted with peace negotiations with the LTTE. The Norwegian Government should have been sent packing lock stock and barrel and we should never have had anything to do with them. The Norwegians also fully supported the LTTE. Though the Government trusted the Norwegians later, Norway showed its full support for the LTTE in the PTOMS Agreement signed with the LTTE where in administration the LTTE was accorded a greater role and power than the sovereign Sri Lankan Government.

Even then we yet go to lick the boots of the Norwegians.

It is unfortunate thatƒÆ’-¡  we have been unable to get rid of the Trojan Horse that was implanted on us by India. The Trojan Horse is the 13 th Amendment to our Constituition. ƒÆ’-¡ The aim is to bifurcate our country and divide it into sections so that the LTTE could rule the mergedƒÆ’-¡  North and the East while through the Provincial Councils the rest of the country will be divided into a number ofƒÆ’-¡  States.ƒÆ’-¡  We have seen how Vartharaja PerumalƒÆ’-¡  declared himself independent.

It is important to note that the 13 th Amendment was never passed by a Parliament that was free to vote. President Jayawardena had undatedƒÆ’-¡  letters of resignation from all Members of Parliament which he used as a method of forcing the Members to vote as he wished on pain of dissolving Parliament if they did not follow his instructions.ƒÆ’-¡  It is also a fact that President Jayawardena did incarcerate all Members of Parliament in a Five Start Hotel under military guard and he will personally go and escort the Members of Parliament to Parliament to vote as he wished. Thus the 13 th Amendment is not democratically decided on, though it was subsequently approved byƒÆ’-¡  the Supreme Court, by a majority of one.ƒÆ’-¡  This was the time when the bungalows of the Judges were stoned to make them heed.

Is it not a fact that Indian fighter planes flew in sorties over Colombo to frighten President Jayawardena to submission.

We are nearing the election to the Northern Prov incial Council.ƒÆ’-¡ 

To my mind the powers already given to the Provincial Councils ifƒÆ’-¡  implemented on will ensure that the working of all development work from the Central Government will come to a halt. The Provincial Councils already elected do not assert the powers conferred on them and thus the full force of the Provincial Councils has not been felt today.ƒÆ’-¡  An elected Northern Provincial Council which will compriseƒÆ’-¡  TNA personnel who are totally anti Sri lankan and entirely pro Tamil Nadu will lead to a situation where there will be a de facto different State.

As an officer of the Administrative Service for six years I was covering the entire island and I could never have implemented any work effectively if I had been constrainedƒÆ’-¡  by Provincial Councils. In detail.

I was once in charge of the Vegetable and Fruit Purchasing and Sales Scheme of the Marketing Department.ƒÆ’-¡  Sri Lanka is a small country with different climatic zones.ƒÆ’-¡  Up country vegetables have to find sales in Colombo and the urban areas and the Marketing Department purchased vegetables and fruitsƒÆ’-¡  all over the island. It was I that fixed purchasing prices for vegetables and fruits all over the island and at least twenty lorries and twenty wagon loadsƒÆ’-¡  came in every day, ƒÆ’-¡ which had to be marketed in Colombo.ƒÆ’-¡  The officers in the producer areas had to carry out my instructions and any interference by Provincial Ministers would have not enabled us to do marketing keeping a low margin of fifteen percent or less. That is how inflation was controlled till the Marketing Department was privatised and abolished by the IMF and the UINP. A detailed paper on the Marketing Department Scheme is in my book: Papers on the Economic Development of Sri Lanka(Godages,2012)

When I handled fertilizer distribution to the entire island it was a major task to send supplies and to approve loans to cooperative societies. If we had to work with Provincial Ministers and Provincial Secretaries this task would never have been possible.

When I worked in charge of the Southern Province I had to accept every day around twenty wagon loads of paddy from Batticaloa, otherwise the farmers in Batticaloa would not be able to sell their paddy.ƒÆ’-¡  Though I was physically in the Southern Province I handled the sales of Red Onions for farmers in Jaffna and the disposal of paddy for farmers in Batticaloa. In a 13 th Amendment situationƒÆ’-¡  the Provincial Minister in the Southern Province from whom I had to take instructions would not have allowed me to spend my time for other Provinces.

In other words the working of many development programmes will grind to a halt if there are Provincial Councils. They will be a hindrance.

Thus theƒÆ’-¡  13 th Amendment is a Trojan Horse and it is time that we set fire to that Trojan Horse before that Trojan Horse opens its sides and controls our country and bifurcates it. These days at times I sense that the militant youths in Tamil Nadu are intent on invading us.ƒÆ’-¡  The 13 th AmendmentƒÆ’-¡  is a path to that invasion!

What is sad is that we have amidst us immature and inexperienced persons who cannot fathom what will happen to our countryƒÆ’-¡  if the 13 th Amendment is implemented.

It would behove of the Government to have a referendum on the 13 th Amendment before that Trojan Horse dissipates us to oblivion.

Garvin Karunaratne

Former SLAS- Government Agent, Matara

10 th April 2013

RajapakseƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Dilemma : Allegiance to China ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” National Traitor ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Face War Crimes

April 11th, 2013

Shenali Waduge

The plot thickens. The ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-friendsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ of RajapakseƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s are increasing and their baits are not hard to read into. The choices before Rajapakse seem few and their lobbies appear in the form of India and Japan on the instructions of the US. Essentially the President must be mindful of the traps being laid before him. These are no ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-friendsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” The Presidnet must remember the fates of one time ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-friendsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ of the US ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Saddam, Mubarak and Gaddafi.

Let us look at some of these options Rajapakse is being lured into accepting.

For eliminating a terrorist movement the challenges before a President seems a bit profound but it is not difficult to see that the entire LTTE chapter was a mere whitewash of a mercenary functioning as an international proxy ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” first taking instructions from India and upon the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi taking instructions from Western forces. ƒÆ’-¡ 

India has become a vassal state as a result and today it is an Italian that dictates IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s policies. Its very manipulation of Sri Lanka has now being hijacked to the advantage of the West and is on track to create a Christian Pakistan out of Tamil Nadu and Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s North combined on a bogus ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-eelaamƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ ticket.

The 13th amendment, northern elections and a popular President are the only barriers to this objective. Aligning Tamil Nadu despite 72million Tamils has been a cakewalk for the West ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” there is no nationalism in Tamil Nadu. But there is nationalism in Sri Lanka and plans are already set to break that nationalism up. People need to be alert and throw aside petty politics and agendas. The country is at great risk.

With IndiaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s popularity in Sri Lanka at an all time low, the US now turns to its other strategic partner in Asia and alternate decoy ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Japan.

Enter Japan – again

68 years after US dropped 2 atomic bombs on the cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima killing over 250,000 Japanese in 1945 Japan-US ties are unbombable ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” Japan is one of AmericaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s key strategic partners inspite of objections by Japanese in view of the rise in rapes and crimes by US troops stationed in Japan.

Japan is aligned to AmericaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s China containment policy that must open President RajapakseƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s eyes to the reality that Japan-SL ties or ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-friendshipsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ presently shown have a greater objective behind the symbolism in the welcome afforded to President Rajapakse when he arrived days prior to the UNHRC sessions last month ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” the Emperor means business.

Therefore, whatever links are being currently pursued by the former peace envoy Akashi with Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s envoy in Japan needs to be looked with caution given US-Japan obsession is China and relations with Asian nations are with a behind the scene plan to counter China in Asia.

The sea lanes of the Indian Oceans are too important to ignore ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” the geographical position of Sri Lanka is realistically a modern day curse made worse by the inability of local politicians to use that to the countryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s advantage. More than 80% of the worldƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s seaborne trade in oil is said to transit through the Indian Ocean choke points of which 40% pass through the Strait of Hormuz, 35% through the Strait of Malacca and 8% through the Bab el-Mandab Strait.

Ironically more than half of the worldƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s armed conflicts are located in the Indian Ocean region. It is these conflicts that the West use as stepping stones to advance their agendas on the excuse of ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-securityƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ deploying forces in nations as has taken place in Diego Garcia and the US has over 1000 such military presence globally.

What unnerves the US and West with their gun boat diplomacy and human rights caning mechanisms through the puppet of the UN is the soft power approach adopted by China and China has meticulously found itself great opportunities in both Africa and Asia and subtly surrounded India with its string of pearls of which Hambantota Port in Sri Lanka is one. In no time China built a magnificent Lotus Tower another gift to show its presence in Sri Lanka. Into this blooming relationship has always been a thorn ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” India.

So the diplomatic space is now taken over by Japan and Akashi is back at what he is known best to do. ƒÆ’-¡ Incidentally, Akashi as Special Representative for the UN Secretary General in Yugoslavia is said to be the architect of the disaster in Bosnia.

That India and Japan are taking turns to woo Rajapakse to contain China and both are now using fears of war crime and US Resolution to push Rajapakse into snubbing China which is probably why like Santa, Japan is offering plenty of aid knowing the weaknesses of our politicians who lack any desire to think nationally. Let us not forget that US-India-Japan and Australia have a Quadrilateral Security Dialogue partnership signed between them and that is far more powerful than we can imagine.

The lesson for Rajapakse in wooing Japan too close and probably accepting a proposal to slightly diminish ChinaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s role in Sri Lanka is a dangerous option for Rajapakse to even think over. He may well like to turn to the events of Libya and Gaddafi to see how the US went out to strike deals with GaddafiƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s sons and also suggested to distance from China which ended with China simply abstaining when the Resolution to strike Libya came to the UN Security Council vote. However, China and Russia together are using their full force in Syria because whatever pressures the US is bringing, Syria remains firm and resolute and sooner than later the US and NATO will have to accept that even arming rebels and sending mercenaries to Syria has not worked so far. Sri Lanka cannot lose China ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” China is needed for Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s political survival. US canƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t do without China and China canƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t do without US either ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” but that doesnƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t stop either from attempting to gain global supremacy.

What Akashi has been sent to do possibly is what India has been unable to do thus far ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” implement the 13th amendment and go ahead with elections in the North. Probably this suggestion may be mooted as a possible bargaining tool to promise to get the block members to vote in favor of Sri Lanka at the periodic review of the UNHRC in September following the Resolution against Sri Lanka. Agreeing to such a proposal is hara kiri for President Rajapakse.

No sooner President Rajapakse agrees to hold elections and implement the 13th amendment the dual objective of creating the new ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-stateƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ and overthrowing President Rajapakse by his own folly would be set into motion. So the obvious plan is to ahead of the Presidential elections coming in 2016 to make a once popular President fall from fame by getting him to implement the 13th amendment, carry out elections in the Northern provincial council that is likely to kickstart an islandwide anti-Rajapakse campaign to project him as a traitor to the Sri Lankan nation and most of all to the valiant armed forces who sacrificed their lives to save the nation. ƒÆ’-¡ 

India is no friend of Sri Lanka

What baffles most is why Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s leaders continuously go behind India to offer investments that will end up putting Sri Lanka and its people in great difficulty in time to come. Can we not learn lessons from the parippu drop in 1987, the Indo-Lanka Accord, the forced signing of the 13th amendment, the insistence on the 13th amendment, then the economic leverage Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s leaders have given India is bordering the absurd. All these economic agreements are detrimental to the nations and inspite of warnings even the Sampor Coal Power Plant is going ahead or probably has been signed in secret as most of the detrimental deals signed thus far by successive Governments have been done in secret.

The phenomenal rise in deals struck with India and the BOI incentive of offering Indian Labor into Sri Lanka as well as professional expertise already shows a flood of Indians now living in Sri Lanka. It is nothing that Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Government can hide. Soon the people whose jobs are likely to get affected, the cost of living spiralling because of mismanagement and the useless deals that afford no return on investment to the people will make a once popular Government fall from grace to disgrace ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” this is the overall plan to get the leaders to cut their own grave and they are doing a splendid job of it by keeping a bandwagon of traitors around them from whom advice is sought and who take advice from the West.

If the leaders think that by offering these leverages India now a partner of the US strategic objective will say ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Let them off the hookƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” they are our ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-friendsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” our leaders are certainly dreaming. Once targeted ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” all the other offerings of compromise are simply to secure the stakes in the country in competition with China.

Whilst maverick advisors have got Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s leaders to consent to engaging US PR firms to build better rapport with the US and that would be like giving the fox (US) all the chickens for have we not learnt how the UK firm openly claimed on Channel 4 that they wrote PresidentƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s Speech at the UN!!!

The writing on the wall is clear enough and what needs to be next asked is do the policy makers of Sri Lanka seriously think that by giving India this that and the other ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” giving Japan this that and the other ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” giving the West this that and the other and most of all agreeing to sideline China ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” will President Rajapakse not be taken for War Crimes?

Removing or snubbing China will be the greatest damage President Rajapakse can do to himself and the entire nation. THIS IS NOT AN OPTION TO CONSIDER whether it comes from India, Japan or even the US.

President Rajapakse is doing hara kiri by listening to the peace envoys of both India and Japan who are obviously working in partnership with the West in a gameplan to keep China at bay and no sooner China is distanced by Sri Lanka, the country would have lost an ally that treated a friend as a friend. Let the President not be fooled to take this option ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” ever.

Preparing Sri Lanka for unilateral sanctions

The next plan that needs to be carefully thought out is to prepare for unilateral sanctions. These will mostly target the Rajapakse family and friends with freeze on assets, travel bans etc.. nevertheless the country needs to be prepared. We need to immediately plan a proper marketing plan to extend our exports to the real friendly nations and ChinaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s middle class can provide a great economic match for the export commodities. With our short-sightedness in giving India leverages in imports ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” we need to quickly devise new tax schemes to keep the currency afloat. The supermarkets are selling Indian onions and potatoes at a rate almost Rs40/- price difference to the Sri Lankan onions and potatoes ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” why are we knowingly killing our farmers. How hard they are toiling to provide the food for us to eat. Why should we import the commodities that we can grow in Sri Lanka? There are enough of politicians who have been jumping from one party to the other with federalist thinking who even say that people prefer Indian fish? In an island with fish around us are we insane to bring fish from India? Bottomline is our agriculture needs far more attention than it is being given and the State must have total control of the nationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s food production and supply. There has to be a proper policy.

Foolhardy decisions that have cost us dearly need to seriously stop and we need to get back to basics.

The plan is obviously clear ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” the West is using India and Japan as peace doves to bring in de-ropes to fool Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s leaders and get them to distance themselves from China. This is a detrimental move and one that will bring them closer to the noose.

All these gameplans have a target ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” that is the next Presidential election and these buildups are all timed to make President Rajapakse dig his own grave and that of the countryƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s too. There is a shield for the President but he has neglected that and he needs to re-align with it and fast because that is the only factor that will save him. It brought him to power ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬”…” it gave him the support to win an ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-unwinnable warƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ and it will protect the person who eliminated terrorism. They do not want him to turn himself into a national traitor by agreeing to the de-ropes being offered.

It is time for President Rajapakse to think wisely sans his advisors.


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