In the Sinhala New Year Let us hope
Posted on April 14th, 2024

Garvin Karunaratne

My We alleviate poverty that afflicts over half of us

Mind you By the Sixties we had alleviated poverty

We did control our economy then, made things.

We imported only what we could not make

In 1977 we embraced the IMF’s Structural Adjustment

Sent all development workers to the barracks

yet we pay them fat salaries!

Once in the Fifties, I remember, we even grew cotton and

the air was filled with pollen. Now we import.

Once in the Sixties under Dudley we were self sufficient

in Paddy, while giving a ration of rice free to everyone

Sorry, Premadasa promoted all Agrl Overseers to do

deskwork as Niladharis and till today no trained officer at the Grassroots.

We even import Paratha, Cakes, Biscuits, Fruit Juice and everything

We can set up industries to make them in twenty four hours.

It is easier to pay in dollars (on loan) than roll up sleeves and work.

In 1971 as Matara GA I set up Coop Crayon in three months

Coop Crayon was sold islandwide

Minister Illangaratne banned all imports of crayons.

Is that not yet the way ahead.

Our leaders should visit Bangladesh To see the Youth Self Employment Programs

which I designed and set up in 1982

It is yet going strong- being implemented by those I trained.

It has guided over three million to employment and production.

Could that not be the motto this New Year.

Let our leaders shoulder the wheel to set up industries,

Importing is not the way ahead.

If only our leaders dare, I will be there to shoulder

and assure success

Garvin Karunaratne

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