Author Archive for Kamalika Pieris

ERASING THE EELAM VICTORY Part 18D Pt 5B

Tuesday, May 18th, 2021

 KAMALIKA PIERIS OFFICE OF THE HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS (OHCHR) The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is a separate body. It is not part of the UNHCR. It is a department of the Secretariat of the United Nations. Unlike the UNHCR, the Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) […]

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ERASING THE EELAM VICTORY Part 18D Pt 5a

Monday, May 17th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL (UNHRC) The Human Rights Council of the UN is, as its name indicates, the UN body which deals with human rights. However, UNHRC does not rank as one of the principal UN organizations. UNHRC is designated a subordinate body of the UN. It is not therefore, a powerful […]

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THE POHOTTUWA GOVERNMENT OF SRI LANKA Part 2 C9a

Friday, May 14th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS  A National Physical Plan for 2011-2030, was prepared under President Mahinda Rajapaksa   and gazetted in 2011. When the Yahapalana puppet government took over in 2015, this plan was discarded. Yahapalana said that the 2011 plan was now outdated as several key national and international developments have taken place since then. The Yahapalana government […]

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ERASING THE EELAM VICTORY Part 18D Pt 2b

Sunday, May 9th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The Report on Sri Lanka presented by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, to the 46th session of the UNHRC in February 2021, carried an invitation to the Member states of the UN, to report Sri Lanka to the International Criminal Court (ICC) or prosecute Sri Lanka in their own country, under Universal […]

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ERASING THE EELAM VICTORY Part 18D Pt 3

Saturday, May 8th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS Revised 9.5.21 Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International supported the Report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Human Rights Watch said that UNHCR, at its upcoming session, should act on the recommendations of the UN High commissioner for Human rights, and adopt a new resolution to enhance scrutiny of Sri Lanka’s […]

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ERASING THE EELAM VICTORY Part 18D Pt 2A

Friday, May 7th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, (UNHCHR) presented to the 46th session of the UNHRC in February 2021, her report on Sri Lanka. (UN Doc A/HRC/46/20). This is the latest in the stream of reports on Sri Lanka since Sri Lanka won the Eelam war. This report can be read at https://undocs.org/en/A/HRC/46/20. […]

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ERASING THE EELAM VICTORY Part 18D Pt 1

Wednesday, May 5th, 2021

  KAMALIKA PIERIS When Pohottu came to power in 2019 it informed the Human Rights Council of its decision to withdraw Sri Lanka’s  co-sponsorship of  UNHRC  resolution 30/1 and related resolutions 34/1 and 30/1.   A responsible government is obliged to withdraw from such a Resolution, said Pohottu. The previous government, a puppet government, in a […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 14

Sunday, May 2nd, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The MEP government of 1956 lasted for just three years during which it faced much opposition, but the government   still managed to get things done. What the MEP     achieved in such a situation is truly impressive said Ananda Meegama.  The impact of the 1956 MEP government was such that there was no turning […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 13

Friday, April 30th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The most important achievement of the 1956 government was the entrenchment of Buddhism. MEP government gave Buddhism its ‘rightful place.’ It is tempting to make fun of this phrase but it is an accurate description of the historical role of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. Buddhism came to Sri Lanka in the time of […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 12

Thursday, April 29th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS SWRD Bandaranaike was assassinated in 1959. This was followed by two attempts to remove his successor, Sirimavo.  First, the failed coup of 1962 and second, the JVP insurgency of 1971. The 1971 rebellion was the first armed uprising against the state. Mano Ratwatte, son of Mackie Ratwatte, Private Secretary to Prime Minister Sirimavo, […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 11

Monday, April 26th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The possibility of a coup d’etat had been known from 1958.  In Parliament in November 1958 NM Perera had dropped hints of a plan for a coup d’etat. He referred to Sidney de Zoysa, not by name, but as a person who was gathering power by placing his men in key positions in […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 10F

Monday, April 19th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The most sneering, contemptuous opposition to SWRD came from the English speaking elite drawn from all communities. SWRD was scorned for changing his religion to Buddhism, getting into national dress, hobnobbing with his social inferiors and supporting a low level, backward, indigenous language, Sinhala which should be trampled into oblivion.   SWRD Bandaranaike […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 10F

Thursday, April 15th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The political and social upheaval caused by the 1956 government received a mixed reaction in Sri Lanka society. 1956 had different connotations for different groups.  For the English speaking elites in Colombo  and elsewhere in the island, the world turned upside down. From 1948 to 1956 political power in Ceylon had been held […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 10D

Wednesday, April 14th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The popular mood, after the 1956   elections, was such that everything was to change, the way institutions were run and certainly the persons manning them. The popular mood was not just for language change, though this had priority with an insistent lobby behind it, but it included a lot more, said Bradman Weerakoon. […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 9D

Tuesday, April 13th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS S.W.R.D Bandaranaike was Prime Minister for a very short time, 1956- 1959. Throughout this period, he was soundly ridiculed. Praise for Bandaranaike came several decades later when the MEP period came into historical review and it was found that changes initiated had become entrenched, also that they were good. Then they started to […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 5E

Sunday, April 11th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS REVISED 12.4.21 The 1956 achievements are popularly credited to SWRD.  Ananda Meegama rectified this and showed that it was Philip who was behind most of the changes. It is now acknowledged that Philip was responsible for most of the progressive measures instituted in the MEP regime, said WTA Leslie Fernando. Philip contribution to […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 5F

Sunday, April 11th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS Philip was universally considered a man of high principles, honesty and integrity.  He was very austere in his ways. DB Dhanapala recalled that he found him a mild kind of man who liked to listen to you with as little comment as possible.  Everyone who knew him remarked, that   in private he was […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 5D

Thursday, April 8th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS Philip Gunawardene accomplished much in food and agriculture during his short stay of three years in the MEP government. These are described at length in other essays in this series. This essay looks at certain aspects of Philip’s vision. Philip studied the rural sector carefully. Philip said that the   peasantry had many problems, […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 5B

Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS Philip Gunawardene returned to Sri Lanka in 1932 after ten hectic years abroad. Of all the socialist politicians in the island, Philip Gunawardene is the only politician to have had close contact with socialist movements abroad, observed Ananda Meegama.   He had met with revolutionaries and freedom fighters in four continents. Philip said he […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 5C

Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS Garvin Karunaratne observed that it was one thing to make hair raising speeches, another thing to be an efficient minister in a government. Philip was very efficient as a Minister, he said.  I worked in his ministry throughout the MEP  government period and I can say that the forceful ideas that he uttered […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 9C

Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS This video has many informative photographs and information on the life of Mr. S.W.R.D.Bandaranayeka  which are not found elsewhere,

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 10C

Saturday, April 3rd, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The 1956 government attempted to radically reform the economy. It was the first Sri Lanka government to try to do so.   It was also the first government, and the only government to date, to see the need for a modern policy of Industrialization for Sri Lanka. There were no local industries when MEP […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 10B

Friday, April 2nd, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS This essay looks at two important ‘results’ or ‘consequences’ or whatever, of the 1956 General election. They are firstly, the emergence of the SLFP. Secondly, the rise of Sirimavo Bandaranaike as the world’s first woman Prime Minister. SRI LANKA FREEDOM PARTY SWRD Bandaranaike formed the SLFP for two reasons, said Wiswa Warnapala. Firstly, […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 10A

Wednesday, March 31st, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The results of the 1956 election baffled even the architects of its victory, said analysts. The MEP was stunned by its victory.  SWRD was not expected to win. He had no proper candidates and the MEP coalition lacked financial resources.   The 60 MEP candidates were facing a solid phalanx of 76 UNP, many […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 9B

Friday, March 26th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS It is a wonder that the 1956 government was able to achieve anything at all, considering the obstacles the MEP government had to face, said analysts. First, there were natural disasters.  An unprecedented drought  in 1956  and   unprecedented floods    in 1957. Then there were two ethnic riots, the Gal Oya riots of June […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 9A

Wednesday, March 24th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The general election of 1956 introduced to its joyful and triumphant public something they never ever expected, political assassination.  SWRD Bandaranaike was assassinated in 1959. This was not the first assassination of a Head of state in South Asia. Liaquat Ali,  Prime Minister of Pakistan was assassinated in 1951. Bandaranaike was probably the […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 8A

Monday, March 22nd, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The Maha Sangha played a significant role in mobilizing support for the 1956 victory. The Sangha used their traditional leadership role in the villages to influence the public to vote for the MEP. 1956 was the climax of a political awakening that had started long before. Ananda Meegama traces the beginning of this […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 3A

Sunday, March 14th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS The MEP government of 1956-1959 made many excellent, praiseworthy changes, some of which are well known and others which are not so well known. This essay and the one that follows it do not list all the improvements made by the 1956 Government.  They contain only the most visible and best known changes. […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 3B

Sunday, March 14th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS SOCIAL LEGISLATION Bandaranaike‘s government made   a lasting contribution to the social legislation of the country, specially Labour legislation.  The MEP government set up Conciliation Boards   , Labour tribunals, The Employees Provident Fund and passed the Prevention of Social Disabilities Act, No. 21 of 1957.These laws and bodies are now taken for granted.  The […]

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THE GENERAL ELECTION OF 1956 Part 3C

Sunday, March 14th, 2021

KAMALIKA PIERIS This essay concludes the  selective  list of improvements made by the 1956 government. MEP government brought in the Suspension of the Capital Punishment Act No 20 of 1958, which suspended the death penalty from May 1958. Voting age at general election was brought down to 18 years from 21 years. Elections Amendment Act […]

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