Weliweriya : Attempting a “Sri Lankan Spring” through a Civil Coup D’etat
Posted on August 5th, 2013

Shenali D Waduge

The tragedy that befell Weliweriya has given early Christmas for those who had been splitting hairs wondering how to serve their sponsors to showcase a state of chaos in Sri Lanka. The usual coterie of anti-Sri Lankan destabilizing operators some of whom are columnists were quick to action writing aggrieved accounts about the incident claiming they could not sleep thinking about the 3 deaths. We wonder how they slept through 3 decades of terror with people blown to pieces virtually every day or their lack of sleep about the fatalities that occur daily as a result of reckless driving. However, we need to separate the issue of Weliweriya by first identifying the factors that led to the demand for unpolluted drinking water, which the residents of the area had every right to do and then to establish what mischief took place after an agreement was reached following extensive discussions between all stakeholders initiated by the Defense Secretary and it was agreed to test the drinking water and conduct necessary investigations and provide temporary drinking water supply for the people deprived of proper drinking water.

When the same lot of people gang up together and come up with the same set of notions joined by the US embassy quick to issue a statement we have to wonder that there is something far more than protesting against drinking water. This is the very country responsible for over 50 covert operations that have overthrown legitimate governments and propped puppet dictators and some of the locals pointing finger are direct recipients of funds meant to facilitate regime change in Sri Lanka. We cannot therefore disassociate these realities from the tragedy that took place in Weliweriya.

Let us therefore, first disentangle the issue from the eventual tragedy and look at the issue itself.

Post-Weliweriya has turned to be everything but solving the drinking water crisis. The headlines were easy to decipher. The aim was to build up a notion that the Sri Lankan military was not the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-disciplinedƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ force it projects itself to be, the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-water crisisƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ was no different to ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Mavil AruƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ that set off the end of the LTTE, Thursday Black July was sufficient to draw the gavel of guilt on Friday Black July, the ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-shootingsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ were enough reason to conclude that the army is guilty of war crimes, shooting at people who raise their hands in surrender and inside a Church was a dead giveaway ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” all these similes were meant to juxtapose the Weliweriya event with May 2009, and the icing on the cake came with a newspaper claiming that the supposedly ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-extremist Buddhist monkƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ associated with the Bodhu Bala Sena gave orders for the army to enter Weliweriya and thus diminish the status of the army while showing Buddhist extremism at its height with Buddhists ordering the killing of Buddhists ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” a new phenomena being established to distance the public from their war heroes.

The commenting coterie also happens to be the same set of people who were LTTE sympathizers and there is sufficient material available that depicts their open sympathy for the LTTE though it is irrelevant for the present discussion. Nevertheless, they are all going along the same garden path and that is what is relevant. The same set demand police and land powers for the Northern province, incidentally the party contesting were also representatives of the Tamil people in other provinces but the campaign propaganda did not rest on land and police for these provinces as is the case presently. This is why at every turn situations like Weliweriya are twisted to conclude what they said was right and what the army did was wrong. If according to their recipe of governance ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” to get rid of the Government, what next is never answered? Alll the nations that fell for this slogan are today feeling sorry for being naƒÆ’†’ƒ”š‚¯ve to buy the lies ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” just ask any Egyptian, Libyan and even those from Kosovo or Haiti. Let it b e also known that these very commentators defended these ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-liberationƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ movements too and did not speak a word on the atrocities being committed by US and NATO in Iraq, Afghanistan or on the unmanned drone attacks killing scores of civilians.

Who provoked whom?

The answer to this question can be revealed in the video footage that is now under judicial review and probably under military investigation too. Nevertheless, what needs to be ascertained from the images is to differentiate who were the residents and who were not. This will be a vital clue as to pin point the elements that turned a ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-peacefulƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ protest into one of mayhem. As for mayhem situations it is not difficult for any to throw a stone and for that action to become contagious corresponding with a few emotional lines. Not too recently we heard of how school children went amok and totally ruined the new principalƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s vehicle.

Human beings are emotional, the people of Weliweriya came out to protest on 27thƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ July 2013, the meeting with the Defense Secretary took place on 1stƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ August 2013 reaching an amicable conclusion ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” there was enough time to galvanize forces and create the planned ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-SpringƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚. Therefore, the authorities must look at the footage and reveal all persons not associated with the water issue who turned up to create the eventual mayhem. Let us also not forget that while the accusing finger points at the army there are also plenty of army deserters who continue to posses military fatigue and many of the recent crimes that have taken place have been led by these army deserters. So there is no ruling out of such individuals also being used.

Armed ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-peacefulƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ protestors

Be that as it may just like July 83 was conveniently turned to project the notion that the Sinhalese Buddhists burnt and destroyed Tamil homes which was far from the truth, the army cannot be held responsible if protestors are provoking an onslaught. A photo of a man aiming a blunt weapon at a soldier from behind and others carrying poles give much to the imagination. Just as a son mourns the death of his father, a soldiers son is also human and we cannot expect soldiers to stand and take onslaughts without defending themselves. Their job is not to stand still and watch petrol bombs thrown at them just to please a set of people who had all through 3 decades wanted the army to function as guinea pigs for LTTE weapon tests!

Much of what can be answered will be answered when the judicial inquiry concludes therefore the questions that needs to be answered will probably emerge in a few days time.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  However, we need to first ascertain how far ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-protestorsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ can be defined as ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-peacefulƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ if they use any type of weapon that can create harm to another. How can protestors carry bottles, Petrol bombs, swords, stones, if it is a peaceful protest?

Possession of such does not meet the criteria for peaceful protestors. However, what must then be ascertained is whether the people in possession of these ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-ammunitionƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ were in fact residents of Weliweriya or whether they were thugs brought in by vested interest groups to create the necessary Spring that is now part and parcel of crisis situations all over the world. In Asian and African continents it is somewhat difficult to use white regime change operatives at the fore front of situations and therefore the planning goes on interior and the locals are generally paid to do the dirty work. Let us not forget that it took just ONE CIA man to overthrow a democratic Government in Iran and place the Shah in power and he did the job by paying Iranian men to stage public protests and put up placards and posters against President Mossadegh who was deposed. So when US issues statements we hope that US does not think that we do not know or remember its history of deposing legitimate governments.

The US issuing a message of concern to Sri Lanka may like to kindly refer to theƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ investigation undertaken by law clinics at NYU, Fordham, Harvard, and Stanford has concluded, after eight months of study, that the NYPD abused Occupy Wall Street protesters and violated their rights on numerous occasions during the 2011 protests. ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-According to journalist David Lindorff, the FBI planned to assassinate the leaders of the now moribund Occupy movement ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”¹…”via suppressed sniper rifles,ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ In the latest example of racism following the verdict in favor of Zimmermen a wave of protests throughout the US also turned violent and these ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-peaceful protestorsƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ were arrested by the US police wearing heavy body armour!

MediaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s history of distorting facts

Weliweriya was certainly a curtain raiser and was just perfect for the necessary conclusions that have been quick to reach print and these are certainly perfect as a backdrop to the arrival of the UNHRC head ever ready to issue statements against Sri Lanka and the hosting of CHOGM for despite confirming their presence foreign parliamentarians must sing for their additional perks through veiled threats that are meant to turn the heat on Sri LankaƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s organizers who should be wondering for what reason a former colony should be commemorating the brutalities that were part of colonial rule but then even the Opposition Leader wanted the country to celebrate the arrival of the Portuguese oblivious to the crimes committed during Portuguese rule!

The media to regain its credibility must first accept its foul methods of fooling the public. We are well aware of how the mainstream media had lied about the Iraq War, the fabrications of bombings and attacks in Syria, how they had not even been at the scene of crimes but used false footage to reveal lies to gullible watchers and how even photographs had been used over the years to fool the people. In this context we cannot accept as the TRUTH all that the media relays and people should not be naƒÆ’†’ƒ”š‚¯ve enough to accept these notions either.

Authorities are at fault ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” Politicians are to blame

Weliweriya incident also shows the authorities how easy it is to turn innocent situations into uncontrollable events. The Welweriya incident would never have taken place had the authorities who were paid to do their jobs did their job properly and officials must take direct blame for the situation including politicians. The President must ensure that the present manner Provincial Councilors and local authorities function improves without excuses ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” all people ask is drinking water, a road, proper facilities ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” is that too much to deliver?

Regularly we see numbers of protests rising in Sri Lanka. Some of these have very valid reasons and they all conclude to one simple fact. Public service mechanism is in disarray ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” Public officials are not taking decisions that they are paid to take, politicians are ruining the country by thinking that once elected they can do what they like, when they like and to whom they like. Now these are the factors that all political parties now need to wake up and change. People are not prepared to be pushed around from one table to the other, to be frustrated by their lethargy and waste. Giving safe drinking water is a fundamental right of all citizens of Sri Lanka. If the residents claim that a factory located in the area is contributing towards the pollution of the water, these residents would have made the necessary complaints over a number of years. Why has no action being taken? Waste by factories contributing to water pollution is even written and taught in school text books therefore, the authorities concerned should have investigated the complaints far before it reached this level and taken action. Does the factory have necessary approvals by local authorities, was the waste of their glove manufacture discussed before approvals were given, where was this waste water to be diverted and did the authorities look at the possibilities of the well water of the residents getting affected BEFORE approvals were given to set up the factory or was the fact that a big investment was being made sufficient enough to overrule all criteria that should have been looked into especially the needs of these residents? These are the questions that people should be asking and not the innuendoes that are being thrown for they provide no answers but attempt to create further chaos and incite emotional elements into action.

The issue is the water problem ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢¢”š¬…” can we return to that problem and solve it without taking the issues in all sorts of directions. The people of Weliweriya have no requirement for the political debates juxtaposing one incident with another nor do they need to be told that the army of the police is against them simply because it suits other peopleƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s agenda. Drinking water was what brought the residents to the streets in protest having exhausted all other avenues, therefore this is what the lethargic officials need to wake up and address. In the meanwhile, the investigations into the mayhem that caused the deaths must take its course and the rest of the public must be appraised of the handful of miscreants who are being outsourced to create mischief no different to the imported ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-publicƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ that caused the fall of Libya and now Syria.




41 Responses to “Weliweriya : Attempting a “Sri Lankan Spring” through a Civil Coup D’etat”

  1. Lorenzo Says:


    Look at the ROOT CAUSE here.

    It is NOT violence, protests, shooting.

    The root cause is WATER. Why aren’t these people entitled to good water that is pumped OUT of their areas and sent to other areas for wasting?

    If anti-govt. forces are going to give them clean water they should join them!!

    The govt. is anti-Sinhala.

    Govt loses Sinhalese for IGNORING their basic needs.
    Govt. losing Tamils for OVERDOING things without Tamil Elam.
    Ultimately this govt. loses both the north and the south.

    A very sad situation where anti-SL forces will be AUTOMATICALLY preferred by the people.

    This is what happened in 2001. People were economically suffering and they DISREGARDED UNP-LTTE pacts and voted for them.

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    EXACTLY 7 years ago Sinhala people demanded water in Mavil aru.

    Some of them started a fast unto death. Govt. first blamed them for disrupting the peace process (my foot!) and blamed political parties with vested interests and war mongers.

    Then they ACTED.

    But they did NOT shoot the innocents begging for water. They shot the Endians who were ROBBING their water. The matter was resolved.

    What happens now is the complete opposite.


  3. Fran Diaz Says:

    We want to know :

    (1) How was the water polluted ? the factory owned by Hayleys have pointed out that they kept the effluent water within the rules of pollution. Water was regularly tested for pollutants.

(2) Why was the water polluted at this point in time ?

    (3) Why protests at this point in time ?

    (4) Who authorised the protestors to throw petrol bombs etc ? These are acts of VIOLENCE, not peaceful protests.

(5) The President has already emphasized the need for clean water due to the CKD issue. Why not take this chance to provide clean water to ALL cities and suburbs, even though it is a long term project. Pipe borne water to all households would be a wonderful idea. Would CHOGM chip in ?

    Water is a Basic Need. The entire Government ought to be concerned, not just GoSL.

  4. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    If there is a lesson to be learned then it is to take any opportunity to paint your rival or enemy in the worst manner. The Tamil party and those sympathetic to the cause of Eelam have grabbed this tragedy in Weliweriya to put the government in the worst light.
    The same can be done with Chennai. Caste problems are endemic in Tamil Nadu and among the Tamil diaspora around the world. It is so bad that Britain recently decided to enact regulations on how to deal with the Dalits of Great Britain.
    The Caste system is a system that is malicious, cruel and violates every aspect of human decency and respect. It goes far more than just human rights violations for the hell that it continues to cause is worse than slavery, segregation and apartheid put together.
    Since Tamil Nadu’s leaders are controlling the decisions of New Delhi regarding Sri Lanka it is time for Colombo to push the UNHRC to deal with the horrors of the Caste system in Tamil Nadu. No Tamil Hindu Temple should bar any low casts and that law must be enforced. No place that is the exclusive right of the Brahmins should bar the untouchables. If Jayalalithaa wants to take on Sri Lanka on human rights issues concerning Sri Lankan Tamils then Sri Lanka which is the oldest Buddhist nation in the world next to India should demand (and not request) that Tamil Nadu be sanctioned for violating the basic human rights of her people and her leaders should face the Hague for crimes against humanity. Put Jayalalithaa and her Hindu Tamil goons on the defense.

  5. Lorenzo Says:

    The real problem is NONE of the above Fran.

    The real problem is WATER. This is only the TIP of the iceberg of what is to come. With a MASSIVE population in CROWDED GHETTOS in Colombo, more and more water will have to be pumped OUT of the Kelani river basin DEPRIVING people living in this areas good ground, pipe and river water.

    Pollution impact INCREASES when the volume of water reduces.

    Peolpe have a RIGHT to clean drinking water.

    Water resource is LIMITED. We need a proper way to distribute it.

    Govt. takes EXTRENE CARE not to attack Tamil and Muslim protestors. They only attack Sinhala protestors, prisoners, etc.

    And also mosque burning protestors, protestors throwing stones to shops are NOT attacked.

    e.g. There were many violent Muslim protests. In one they CHOPPED a policeman. NOTHING happened to them!!

    Give water to people to solve the problem.

  6. mjaya Says:

    Lorenzo, you are right that the root cause was water but the violent protest occurred AFTER a settlement had been reached through negotiations. One of the people killed was a resident of Gampola (get the picture!).

    The villagers had a genuine reason to protest. It is very sad that three lives had to be lost.

    But this situation was exploited by anti-gov forces for their political gain.

    Who went from house to house? None other than VH. Who offered to provide a grand funeral for those who were killed? the JVP.

    Another thing is that the the factory in question had been there for 18 years and one of the last factories in SL to produce rubber gloves. If this factory closes down, then we will have to import Indian rubber gloves. Now do you get the picture?

    Also it is true that the gov. is afraid of minority protests, but the gov didn’t attack the protest in Hiriyala and Ragama by Sinhalese where trains were blocked!

  7. Fran Diaz Says:

    I agree with mjaya.

    Ltte terrorism is over and the water problem is foremost (apart from 13-A). CKD due to polluted water existed for over 20 yrs yet no one said anything because of ltte terrorism taking front lines !

  8. Dilrook Says:

    People must use the ballot box instead of violence. Defeating the ruling party at the forthcoming elections is the most sensible thing to do. Without doing so there is no hope for 13A, a people friendly government that depends on the people’s verdict for its political survival and to reduce corruption.

    Leaders must set an example for the people to follow. If Duminda Silva evades due punishment, it signals the people to follow the path of violence with no consequences.

    All this must translate to an election defeat for the ruling party if peaceful dissent still has a voice. Using violence is wholly unacceptable. Instigators of violence must be punished.

  9. mario_perera Says:

    Thank you Lorenzo for your penetrative analysis of the Weliweriya episode.
    We cannot stand to attention like fools and defend the undefendable.

    There is a passage from the Gospel which reads as follows: “You fathers—if your children ask for bread, do you give them a stone? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? At Weliweriya it was about water, and the answer were live bullets fired by troops more brainless than the most brainless donkeys of Delft. Sadly they acted more like hardened and licensed criminals than simple brainless donkeys.

    Shenali, I wonder how you would have assessed this situation had you been the mother of the several young boys brutally mowed down by men clad like front line soldiers facing a barrage of enemy fire, or like the nun who was assaulted inside the Church. I do not think the defense of the government should blind us to the cleavage between rationality and irrationality, between far sight and the primitive instinct to kill. The opposing forces were totally unequal while some of those of died were school children.

    We all know the accusations leveled against the forces by the white powers, their institutions (UN, Geneva and other), the diaspora and their organizations. They are breathing down the Rajapakse necks calling for vengeance. This tragic incident and others have only propped up the case of the accusers and eroded the Rajapakse credibility not only world wide but also within the country. One does not need magnifying glasses to see that.

    This massive onslaught is unleashed virtually on the even of the visit of the Tamil woman of the Geneva UNHRC who is a persuasive voice for the Tamil case against the final army assault on the LTTE and its civilian shield. It occurs with the Northern elections at sniffing distance. Still more it occurs with the CHOGM in sight. Who but a headless horseman would have charged as the army did at Weliweriya? Indeed the image of a bull in a China shop is quite appropriate in the circumstance.

    Weliweriya has substantiated all the allegations against the army atrocities in the North. It has reinforced the TNA claims against the army and its reign of terror in the North. The regime has cut its nose to spite its face. On that fatal day anyone, including you Shenali, could have stopped a stray bullet fired by the lunatics in army fatigues. There flies away the theory of the disciplined army and of its humanitarian endeavours. Its behaviour is that of low caste licentious village bums with automatic guns in its hand and the permission emanating from the top, of a mad hatter to shoot to kill, irrespective of who, what and where.

    Let us face it instead of sticking our heads in the sand like ostriches. The army showed its colours, the colours of butchers of civilians. The man who gave that fatal order must stand trail as all criminals must: so too as those who obeyed that murderous command. In such a case as Weliweriya the imperatives of the moral conscience supersedes all military dictates. That is the crux of the Nuremberg verdicts. The word ‘Ranaviruwo’ has turned so sour that the need now is to purge it from both ends.

    Sadly the Rajapakse clan has played up to the expectations of all who point accusatory fingers at it. This country is caught up in a network of violence and immorality so deeply ingrained in its very fibers. The country lives in the throes of fear and no life is safe here.

    Mario Perera

  10. Kosala777 Says:

    this is a very sad moment. than analysis and preaching, must think about those who lost loved ones

  11. Kosala777 Says:

    like Roshen Chanaka, Brhatha Lakshman, Chilaw killing – people will soon forget this one

  12. Kosala777 Says:

    “Weliweriya has substantiated all the allegations against the army atrocities in the North. It has reinforced the TNA claims against the army and its reign of terror in the North. ” – not true

  13. Lorenzo Says:


    With all due respect……..

    Pollution takes time to take effect. Look at CKD. Still unresolved.

    CKD + Weliweriya = BOPAL of SL

    I’m sure now many others will come to light.

    I AGREE this should NOT be turned into a party political nonsense. Then what happens is people will continue to suffer. Water bowsers is a TEMPORARY solution. Pipe borne water should be provided to ALL in the district. This is the MOST IMPORTANT district to protect nationalist forces. We should NOT be shooting at them. It is better for BR to shoot himself.

    BTW the KKS cement factory and Paranthan chemical factory will NOT start operations. Why? It causes health problems to TNA voters!!

  14. Chanaka B Says:

    These situations will arise again in the future. Let’s learn a lesson from this – both sides should exercise caution, especially from the government side.

    Like Lorenzo says Water is going to be a major issue in the future. The quality of drinking water (both well and pipe borne) is getting deteriorated, mainly due to pollution by industries and lack of a proper system of drainage. I heard even some of the bottled water for sale is not of good quality. More than 20,000 of our brethren in Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa districts are seriously affected with kidney disease and many are on dialysis (about 5,000 have died). As a nation we must mobilse ourselves to help them (those are the people who provided us with the rice thus far)

  15. Fran Diaz Says:

    That PETROL BOMBS were used by diabolical people intent on taking peaceful demos to violent levels in the crowd is shocking. This was NOT a peaceful demonstration at all. Also note the TIMING. That 3 people died is regretted. Perhaps in the future, the Police & armed forces should use only rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse crowds ? We await the investigations into the riot.

    Brings to mind the 1983 Riots – so carefully planned by the planners, that to this day what went on behind the scenes lie hidden. The 13-A is a result of the 1983 Riots.

    Re clean WATER, action has been taken by GoSL and plans already made to rectify matters through various Committees and organisations. This is in regard both to the CKD issue as well as the Weliweriya issue. Any results coming out of actual ACTION taken should be made PUBLIC immediately.

    Concerned Sri Lankans need to watch carefully subtle disruptive plans to destabilise the country. Watch State Resources (Peoples’ property) carefully. This is how a true Democracy works.

  16. . Says:

    The factory manager says that their effluent water disposal facility is certified by the relevant authority. It is possible that we don’t have a strict control over effluent disposals.So, it is a policy issue and when we move from agrarian economy to industrial based economy these problems bound to happen and that should not be a reason for mass demonstration against the government. Increased population and sewage disposal directly into the water table may have been the other reason for contamination of the ground water. We have to find an acceptable solution to this problem and that takes lot of time, till then, people should accept piped water without any argument. It is a natural disaster and GOSL has no control over it.Trouble makers should be locked up until we find a technical solution. GOSL has already started this process.

  17. Fran Diaz Says:

    From the Daily Mirror 6 Aug 2013 :

    “Gunfire was directed at the soldiers –Govt.
    TUESDAY, 06 AUGUST 2013 17:17
    The government said in Parliament today that a section of the protesting crowd in Weliweriya hurled petrol bombs at soldiers, prompting them to take action for self-defense and the safety of public property.

    In response to a statement made by opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe on the August 1 shooting incident in Weliweriya, Leader of the House Nimal Siripala de Silva said though some protestors left the place upon request by the security authorities on that day , there were others pelting stones and hurling petrol bombs at the soldiers on duty.

    “There are reports that gunfire was directed at the soldiers by someone from the protesting crowd. There is a broad investigation now underway. They were also engaged in the acts of damaging public property,” the Leader of the House said.

    Besides, he refuted allegations by Mr. Wickremesinghe that those who entered the church premises in the area for safety were targeted by the military.

    The Leader of the House said it would be investigated whether another party provoked this crowd to be violent”.

  18. Fran Diaz Says:

    Also from DM of 6 Aug :

    Weliweriya victims
    TUESDAY, 06 AUGUST 2013 17:52
    Compensation is to be paid to the family members of those who died and injured in the Weliweriya incident on the directive of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Government Information Department said.

  19. nilwala Says:

    One thing that should be kept in mind is that Sri Lanka is one place where, as long as we do not have prolonged droughts, there will be water. Right now, the climate changes are bringing MORE rain than usual. Ground water levels will rise or at least remain IF OUR RESERVOIR SYSTEMS ARE MAINTAINED FOR RAINWATER RETENTION.
    The problem will be to provide clean and potable Drinking Water. This can be done.

    Way back in the late 1960s, when the Thulhiriya Textile Mill was constructed by the State Eng. Corporation, Neville Ladduwahetty (as Chief Eng/Constuction who was involved with the negotiations with East Germany that provided Aid for the project) insisted that the Effluent from the factory be treated to potable water levels BEFORE being allowed to flow into the Kelani River, citing the fact that downstream from the factory site, people used to bathe in the river and use water for their drinking, cooking needs etc. This was done through a Multiple Filtration System. Today, the current owners of the site claim the credit for the GREEN ENVIRONMENTAL value of their factory which is touted as a MODEL!

    The Weliveriya situation is obviously very complex as there are political and other divisive factors meshed in with the actual fact of the water situation. Hayleys is a very responsible company and heed should be given to their claim that they conformed to standards.
    Obviously, there could be multi-pronged and behind-the-scenes organizational efforts being made at sabotaging Hayleys and also alongside it, the current government, and emanating from competitive political as well as even competitive global corporate sectors. The police which form the local law enforcement authorities are hopefully meshing well with the Army, so that there is no competitive element in that sector which is responsible for maintenance of national security.
    A full enquiry will generate the answers as to what really happened and who was responsible for this fiasco which could not have come at any worse time than now. In the meantime, the drinking water problem should be resolved through arrangements for bowsers providing the needful as was done during the tsunami.
    The Defence Forces should be trained and ready with men and resources in each District/group of Districts, for providing the needful during such disasters which are bound to occur more and more in the Future.

  20. callistus Says:

    Fran Diaz, the answer/s to your questions :(2) Why was the water polluted at this point in time ?

    (3) Why protests at this point in time ?
    Because 100 JVPers were thrown out from Hayleys for disruptive acts a few days before. The NGOs saw the opportunity, the LTTE diaspora paid.

  21. Fran Diaz Says:

    We agree with nilwala’s points.


    Thanks for info, Callistus. So now we see more facts added to our knowledge of the scene.

    The JVP factor MUST be addressed properly by all concerned people. They have not been listened to – what do they really
    want ? Their frustrations were never properly addressed, were they ?. They must be listened to and the worthiness and dignity of the present day members restored, or else they will continue to be a source of discontent and trouble in the future too.

    As far as I can see, the JVP in the early 1970 & 80s, got caught in Cold War politics mixed with their own discontent, first with the Soviet bloc and next with Maoism, as their leader, Rohana Wijeweera jumped from one bloc to the other.

  22. Fran Diaz Says:


    Do you know why the JVP folk were dismissed fro the glove factory ? Also, why 100 ?

    Also if anyone else knows the answers to the above pls respond.

  23. aloy Says:

    People try to put various spins to this tragedy. The people in the area actually had a problem of water contamination. A close relative of mine lives few hundred meters to this factory. He had been there for the last twelve or so years without much problem. Since of late he says he and his family members started getting stomach problems, irritation of skin and other strange sicknesses. Many times he did not come to work saying he is going to hospital or clinics for tests and consultations. When he tested water from his well which appeared to me about 40ft deep the PH was 4. I myself have found this value naturally occurring in another country where we had to use special cements for construction. One thing I found is that where this high PH value is found there are no villages as such places are not suitable for people to live. I suspect the factory must have started releasing untreated effluent perhaps with harmful chemicals. There are various forces working against our people. They can even connive with the chemical suppliers to send poison to us and even the factory owners may not know. There had been some labour disputes after which many non Sinhala people have been brought in to work. According to my relative that was not an issue for the people.
    At the last presidential election 40% of voters did not vote for the ruling party. So, it is natural to have some people who are hell bent on working against it. To my mind the best thing would have been to send only the police who are trained to handle such situations.

  24. aloy Says:

    Please read “…where this high PH value is ..” as “…where such high acidity due to Sulphates is ..”

  25. nilwala Says:

    Agree with Aloy that Police should be be resorted to as #1 respondent to a local crisis. At what point the crisis moves beyond that is very tricky, however, as quick decisions have to be taken at a very high level to call in military help.
    Aloy who is more familiar with the local situation through his friend, agrees with those who say that poisonous contaminants have been released for some time now, it means there are some terrible things going on beneath the surface in several parts of the country… the PKDu and the Milk Powder contamination are now emerging problems. If Hayleys authorities had been informed of the problem at Weliweriya and nothing had been done, which is NOT like the normal Hayley’s response as their standards conform with international norms of GMPs etc., … that should be looked into and the company has to accept responsibility for lapses if any.
    An answer to Fran Diaz’s question re. the reasons for the JVP dismissal is needed.

  26. nilwala Says:

    First line should read “#1 Responder”….

  27. Indrajith Says:

    AI has already requested “Don’t let Army do its own investigation”, Daily Mirror reported. They’re always against SL army. See who is benefitted from this incident?

  28. Fran Diaz Says:

    It takes a fair amount of effort to maintain good quality drinking water from a well. Here are some guidelines from a US Source :

    Over 15 million U.S. households rely on private, household wells for drinking water.

    If polluted ground water is consumed, it could cause illness. Ground water pollution can be caused by seepage through landfills, failed septic tanks, underground fuel tanks, fertilizers and pesticides, and runoff from urban areas.
    It is important that private ground water wells are checked regularly, once a year at a least, to ensure that the water is safe for drinking.
    Typically, private water systems that serve no more than 25 people at least 60 days of the year and have no more than 15 service connections are not regulated by the EPA (USA).

  29. Fran Diaz Says:

    AI ? AI ?

    Apoi Iwarai ? Aiyo Ilawwa ? Anney Investigate ? Amnesia International ? Arrrgh ! got it, got it ! Amnesty Interference ? Amnesty International !! We had forgotten AI for some time ! So solly !

    Amnesty International : Head Quarters based in London, UK. Here’s the address : 17-25 New Inn Yard, London EC2A 3EA, UK.

  30. Lorenzo Says:

    There is a water QUANTITY issue as well.

    We CANNOT assume FRESH WATER is a limitless resource. It is NOT.

    Population increase in Colombo City has to be controlled because MOST water wastage and usage is in Colombo city. But the City does NOT produce it. It is pumped from OUTER SUBURBS. Soon we will see these outer suburbs LACKING good water.

    Looks like the water problem will NEVER be resolved as the govt. and the other parties blame each other and the matter ends as a political fight!!

    Shooting the army……

    Did the dead people shoot the army and then the army killed them?

    IF NOT the army shot dead the WRONG PEOPLE!!

  31. Lorenzo Says:


    JVP can’t take it on the people or the govt. even if they were dismissed.

    There is a GENUINE WATER PROBLEM according to residents in Weliweriya.

    It has to be resolved.

  32. Lorenzo Says:


    IF the army didn’t fire LIVE BULLETS most of this GRIEF AND HOWLING (on BOTH SIDES) could have been avoided.

    Or as someone said if the police was used (which should be the case) instead of the army.

    Arabic Spring….. No way. People are not as foolish as Arabs!

  33. Fran Diaz Says:


    Violence came first from the PETROL BOMBS plus some shots fired at the army. Violence was PLANNED by some people in what was to be a peaceful demo. Who did those deliberate acts of Violence ? That’s what we want to know. We hope a full investigation is carried out and the public kept informed.

    Some people WANT the grief & howling to create an HR issue at this point in time !

  34. Lorenzo Says:


    Sure. No disagreement on those who use violence ON BOTH SIDES (including the army that shot LIVE BULLETS). ALL of them must be PUNISHED.

    BUT lets NOT get sidetracked here.

    The PROBLEM is WATER and that problem needs a SOLUTION.

    And that is what REMAINS UNRESOLVED amidst all this political mudslinging!!

  35. Ben Silva Says:

    To solve the water problem, scientists, engineers, doctors and the general population need to get involved, without being idle and with victims facing all the problems. Over 500000 people are affected by CKDU and orphans areproduced. Very few people appear to care, which is typical of SinhHhaLA bUDDHIST CULTURE just like the 13A.

  36. Lorenzo Says:


    Lets look at some FACTS. I do NOT wish to BLAME you as you are a patriot. Lets just look at some FACTS.

    1. War heroes during 2005-2009 NEVER SHOT AT civilians killing them!!

    2. War heroes GAVE people water when they wanted it by sacrificing THEIR OWN LIVES!!!

    e.g. Mavil aru

    What happened to those war heroes?
    Have they been politicised?

    3. The current army commander REHABILITATED 14,000 TERRORISTS. Such kindness should be appreciated. They did FAR WORSE crimes than throwing bottles with petrol and fire!! They threw REAL BOMBS, SHOT at the army using anti-aircraft guns BANNED for use on land!!! But they were NOT shot at!!! They were given free food, free education, free kindness, etc.

    Why this double standards?

  37. Lorenzo Says:

    Why this double standards?

    Because those 14,000 TERRORISTS who SHOT AT the army, threw REAL bombs and other HORRENDOUS CRIMES have Navi Pillai, Karunanidhi, Jeyalalitha, TNA, AI, HRW, USA, EU, Tamil Madu, GTF, BTF, LTTE Diaspora, etc. (the list is TOO long).

    In 2011 Arabic terrorist calling grease devils CHOPPED a police officer to DEATH and permanatly disables 2 more police officers. NONE of them were shot at!! None of them ended up in prison!! They have the POWERFUL Arabic countries!!


    Not even good water to drink!

    This is why the Sinhalese are shot at but Tamils and Muslims (DESPITE COMMITING FAR WORSE CRIMES) are UNTOUCHED.

  38. Fran Diaz Says:


    I have long thought that sectors of the Sinhela people have been marginalised in their own country ever since Colonization of Lanka, nearly 500 yrs ago.

  39. Fran Diaz Says:

    More thoughts :

    Sri Lanka has to go for manufacturing more goods. Then more people will have access to goods such as fridges, cookers, washing machines etc. which are considered standard equipment for a household in the developed countries. These items should not ‘status goods’ as considered in the poorer countries, but standard necessities.

    Human Needs of all have to be met and this requires many, many factors to come together, including a good education to meet the needs of the country. This is not an easy task. It requires awareness of ground realities and participation from every sector of society.

    Look at the state of poverty in America today, from MailonLine of 7 Aug 2013 :

    “The number of Americans living in poverty has spiked to levels not seen since the mid 1960s, classing 20 per cent of the country’s children as poor.

    It comes at a time when government spending cuts of $85 billion have kicked in after feuding Democrats and Republicans failed to agree on a better plan for addressing the national deficit.

    The cuts will directly affect 50 million Americans living below the poverty income line and reduce their chances of finding work and a better life”.

  40. Fran Diaz Says:

    read as ” …. should not be ‘status goods’ ….”

  41. Fran Diaz Says:

    correction : ” … MailonLine 2 April 2013″.

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