Author Archive for Malinda Seneviratne

Whither research (institutes)?

Sunday, November 20th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne There are two questions. First, does research really matter or rather does research drive decisions when it comes to policy planning? Second, what is the role or research institutes or, put another way, do policy-makers understand the worth of such bodies?   My friend Sugath Kulathunga raised an interesting point recently with regard to […]

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Amaradeva: a name for everything that is our little island

Thursday, November 3rd, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne There are rain clouds, not too dark and not threatening.  It might rain later.  There was rain last night.  Tomorrow, there will be other clouds of similar shade.  Non-threatening for a while.  There might be rain.  The city pulsated in rhythms acquired over the years.  In some village in the Dry Zone, there […]

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AMARADEVA: THE VOICE OF OUR NATION

Thursday, November 3rd, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne පින් කෙත හෙළ රන් දෙරණේ යලි උපදින්නට හේතු වාසනා වේවා  There are differences in playing to a full and captive audience in a magnificent theatre, engaging in a light rehearsal at home with table and hand-pumped harmonium or a full rehearsal with an entire orchestra and sophisticated sound system, and in responding to a […]

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Towards a peaceful and inclusive European Union

Thursday, November 3rd, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne A good hearted woman, Barbara Undershaft, devotes all energies to help the poor as a major in the Salvation Army. She sees Andrew, her millionaire father, an arms dealer, as someone who needs to be saved. At one point though, she is forced to accept a large contribution from the errant father to […]

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Rehabilitation: the broad and narrow, global and local

Thursday, October 20th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Rehabilitation is a word that presumes a previous state of perceived acceptance or agreement. Its etymology is interesting and revealing, deriving from re– again” or to turn” and habitare– make fit” which in turn comes from the Latin habilis– easily managed, fit.” In other words, rehabilitation is about restoring someone or something to a previous state; […]

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India reconfirms enemy-status

Friday, October 14th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Yes, we need peace. We need reconciliation. Such needs are the inevitable outcomes of conflict-end. Fixing these to exaggerated grievances and out-of-this-world aspirations and tying it all to a constitutional amendment obtained by a bully is unacceptable. Ridiculous, in fact.  Indra Mani Pandey. Remember the name. He’s India’s Permanent Representative in Geneva. He’s […]

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Enter the ‘God-Police’ amid liberal aiders and abetters

Friday, October 7th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Rosy is out of order. Colombo’s liberals and leftists are out of order. Democracy-advocating NGO personalities are out of order. Funded Voices, Rent-a-Protest Agitators, Born Again Nazis, Candlelight Ladies, Colombots, Stink Tanks and other Kolombians are out of order. And that’s good, for they reveal themselves when they shout and when they are silent.  […]

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Fruit forbidden to liberals.

Thursday, September 29th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne One of the most thorny problems for self-styled liberals in Sri Lanka is that they use the liberal label as though it’s some kind of impenetrable shield, hiding behind which they take on specific enemies in accordance with preferred outcomes. Scratch them and you find some grotesque creatures. You would find colonial remnants, […]

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Constants: tired, boring, obnoxious and laudable

Thursday, September 29th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Sri Lanka is a resilient nation. That’s almost a given. A constant. All talk of peace, human rights, democracy, good governance, reparations  and other such goodies emanating from Washington, London and other empiric capitals are disingenuous and laughable. Constant. Meddling, self-righteous and downright obnoxious North American and European diplomats: well, almost par for […]

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Julie Chung and fire hoses of falsehoods

Wednesday, August 31st, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Courtesy Courtesy The Daily Mirror When it comes to fire hoses and falsehoods, the USA would be tough to beat. Chung and Biden ought to know. US Ambassador Julie Chung was spot on. A few days ago, she pointed out, correctly, that ‘fake news – and fake tweets – are a real problem.’ She […]

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Beware the NEDdas!

Thursday, August 25th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne In Sri Lanka’s political lexicon there are two terms that have obtained a lot of play over the past 8 years or so: Toyyas and Bayyas. Bayyas are sometimes taken to be Rajapaksa loyalists but the truth of that identity goes beyond that family and could be best understood as a contradistinction of Toyyas. Toyyas are certainly anti-Rakapaksa but that’s not […]

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Political geographies: imagined and real

Friday, August 19th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne In his ‘The Ballad of East and West’ Rudyard Kipling put the issue of political geographies in a nutshell.Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God’s great Judgment Seat Literally, yes, where one ends the other starts and apart from […]

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China and India: friendship and ‘friendship’

Friday, August 5th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne India is reported to have ‘raised concerns at the highest levels’ over Sri Lanka’s decision to allow the Chinese research vessel Yuan Wang 5 to dock at the Hambantota Port. Yuan Wang 5 is said to be a ship engaged in marine scientific research, but benign though that sounds, it is also one […]

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අරගලයේ දේශපාලන ඉතිරිය

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne “ස්වයං විවේශනය, දුෂ්ටත්වයේ හරය තෙක් දිවෙන දරුණු, නොමසුරු, අනුකම්පා විරහිත විවේචනය නිර්ධන පාන්තික ව්‍යාපාරයක ජීවය සහ හුස්ම පොද වේ” — රෝසා ලක්සන්බ(ර්)ග් අරගලය අවසන් වුනා කියල සමහරු කියනවා. අරගල ඉවර වෙන්නෙත් නෑ ඉවර කරන්නත් බෑ කියල තවත් අය කියනවා. කෙසේ වෙතත් ‘අරගලය’ නමින් හැඳින් වූ දේශපාලන ක්‍රියාවලිය එක්තරා ආකාරයක නිමාවකට ඇවිල්ලයි තියෙන්නේ. අරගලය […]

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අරගල, විප්ලව සහ දේශපාලයේ අවලස්සන යටිපැත්ත

Monday, August 1st, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne ජනතා නැගිටීමක්, උද්ඝෝෂණයක්, රටක දේශපාලන නායකත්වයට අභියෝග කරන දේශපාලන ක්‍රියාවලියක්, දේශපාලන පෙරළියක් — මේ හැම එකක්ම අරගලයක් කියල කියන්න පුළුවන්. විප්ලවයක් කියල කියන්න බෑ. සමහර අරගල විප්ලව බවට පරිවර්තනය වෙන්න පුළුවන්. කොන්දේසි තියෙනවා. පහුගිය මාස කිහිපය හරහා ලංකාවේ සිදුවුණා නැත්තම් සිදු කරන ලද අරගලය විප්ලවයක් බවට පෙරලුනේ නැහැ. ඒක ‘අරගලයක්’ නෙවෙයි, ඇත්තටම. එතන […]

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Ambassador Chung and xeroxable change

Friday, July 29th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Aragalaya. Translatable as revolt, uprising, protest, agitation, struggle or even insurrection. Aragalaya is singular, but considering statements and actions it was certainly not marked by concert, ideological agreement, unity of purpose etc. Eclecticism was the signature of the rumbling. There was mumbling, nothing more, about system-change, but a revolution it certainly was not. So, aragalaya: singular; aragala: […]

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ජනසතු අරගලය ජනතාකරණයට ලක් වුනාද?

Thursday, July 21st, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne ජනතා අරගලයක් අලුතින් ජනසතු කරන්න ඕනේ නෑ.  තිබ්බේ අරගලයක් නෙවෙයි, අරගලයන්. බහුවචනයෙන් තමයි කතා කරන්න වෙන්නේ. එක් එක් අරගල වල එක එක ජන කොටස්. සමපාත වුන තැනුත් තිබුනා. නොවුන තැනුත් තිබුනා. වඩා නිවැරදිව කිව්වොත් කවුරු කවුරුත් ‘අරගලයක්’ තුල හිටියා, ඉන්නවා සහ තමන් තේරුම් ගත්ත කුමන හෝ අරගලයක් සමග අනන්‍ය වුනා, අනන්‍ය වෙලා ඉන්නවා. […]

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The Aragalaya: a postscript

Thursday, July 21st, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Ranil Wickremesinghe is no longer president in an acting capacity. He is the president, period. Did someone say ‘I don’t know whether to laugh or cry?’ I am pretty sure someone did. Did someone say, ’who wudda thunk?’ Well, if two or three years ago, if anyone suggested that in July 2023 Ranil […]

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ව්‍යවස්ථා සංශෝධන මාෆියාව/මේනියාව

Monday, July 18th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne #gotagohome අරගලය නොහොත් ගෝටව ගෙදර යැවීමේ ව්‍යාපෘතිය නොහොත් ආදරයේ අරගලය අනන්‍ය වූ ඇතැම් පුද්ගලයින්, සංවිධාන සහ බලවේග මුල සිටම ව්‍යවස්ථා සංශෝධන අවශ්‍ය යැයි තර්ක කළෝය. ආර්ථික අර්බුදය කෙසේ වෙතත් දේශපාලන අර්බුද වලට දිගු කාලීන විසඳුම එය යැයි ප්‍රකාශ කරන ලදී. 1978 ව්‍යවස්ථාවේ අවුල් දකින්නත් විසඳුම් යෝජනා කරන්නත්, විසඳන්න ඉදිරිපත් වෙන්නත් අර්බුද අවශ්‍ය නොමැති […]

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Vee da (වීද) hoo da (හූද) people?

Saturday, July 16th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Sri Lankans make a unique and hilarious knicker-twisted nation, exasperated over lengthy fuel lines to the point of ousting a president and then entire families sweating lengthier lines under umbrellas to see his residence. Any uprising cast as being spontaneous invariably runs into a bunch of problems, the most serious being the one […]

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When the centre cannot hold…

Wednesday, July 13th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne  I write (it is 12.09 pm, on Wednesday) at a time when there’s a remarkable and unprecedented lack of political clarity in the country. As I write, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has left the country. As per the Constitution, if indeed Rajapaksa did resign, or, as reported, Rajapaksa citing Article 37.1 of the constitution , […]

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De-dollarize!

Thursday, June 30th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Sometime in the year 1992, an Economics student at the University of Peradeniya confessed confusion over a comment by Dr S B De Silva regarding multinational corporations. Apparently he didn’t have an issue with MNCs and the student had been shocked. Elaboration cleared it all up. What he had meant was that it […]

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The international community, the opposition and the people

Sunday, June 26th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne Gotabaya Rajapaksa is the worst President we’ve had. He’s the worst leader, counting all presidents, prime ministers, ministers, chairpersons of local government authorities and maranaadhara samithi. He’s the worst Sri Lankan ever. Let’s assume. Let’s assume that as the all-powerful Executive President, all ills are attributable to him. Let’s assume that although this implies […]

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Constitutional Reform: the wages of haste, sloth and expediency.

Thursday, May 26th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne There are certain rules of thumb with regard to constitutional reform. First, such exercises should never be predicated on political expediency. In other words, one’s allegiance or otherwise to the immediate beneficiary, beneficiaries or political party/coalition should not be a factor in offering support or objecting, respectively. Secondly, one’s allegiance or otherwise to […]

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Personalities and Systems

Thursday, May 19th, 2022

MALINDA SENEVIRATN​E ‘The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte,’ one of the more literary essays written by Karl Marx famously, contains many quotable quotes which are of course frequently used in contexts that have little to do with the thrust of the man’s thinking. This, however, is apt for our times: ‘Men make their own history, […]

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The BASL proposals: A review

Saturday, May 14th, 2022

MALINDA SENEVIRATN​E Crises prompt proposals for management, recovery and future prosperity. Of the many we’ve seen, perhaps on account of public profile, the set of proposals submitted by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) is one which calls for serious consideration. Indeed, the BASL proposals have been approved by multiple political groups/individuals including the […]

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පුද්ගල චරිත මතුවේ, නිර්පාක්ෂික හැව ගැලැවේ, අරගලය ඉදිරියටම….

Thursday, May 12th, 2022

MALINDA SENEVIRATN​E අදේශපාලනික අරගලකරුවන් සිටිය නොහැක. නිශ්චිත නොවුනත්, දේශපාලනික පක්ෂ සහ ඒවායේ අරමුණු සමග අනන්‍ය නොවුනත්, අරගලකරුවා දේශපාලනිකයි. අදේශපාලනික අරගලකරුවන් සිටිය නොහැකි නමුත් නිර්පාක්ෂික අරගලකරුවන් සිටිය හැක.  නිර්පාක්ෂික අරගලකරුවන් අනිවාර්යයෙන්ම නිර්පාක්ෂික නොවූ අරගලකරුවන්ට වඩා උසස් වන්නේ ද පහත් වන්නේ ද නැත. එහෙත් යම් දේශපාලන සංවිධානයක් සමග අනන්‍ය වී ඇති අතරම තමුන් ‘නිර්පාක්ෂික’ යැයි කියන, ‘නිර්පාක්ෂිකයෙකු’ […]

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The Aragalists and the challenge of re-mapping Sri Lanka

Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

MALINDA SENEVIRATN​E It was expected and yet shocking. Expected, because that’s what history has taught us: those in power, having enjoyed all the luxuries that come with power, and especially through abuse of office, are lulled into believing that power is permanent, and therefore rudely shocked when they realise otherwise, seldom exit peacefully. They fight […]

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ලෙයට ලෙය වෙනුවට ආලය

Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

Malinda Seneviratne මසක කාලයක් ගෝල් ෆේස් හි ගොඩනැගු ගෝටාගෝගමෙහි දහස් ගණන් තරුණ තරුණියන් මෙන් ම නොයෙකුත් මතවාදී ධාරාවන් නියෝජනය කරන අන් අය එකට බැඳ තැබූ සුන්දර වරපටය ආදරයයි. එකට එක් වී වැපුරුවේ ආදරයයි. යෙදුනේ හෙට දින රට හදන ව්‍යායාමයක පෙරහුරුවකයි.  අහිංසකත්වය, අවිහිංසාවාදය, නිර්මාණශීලිත්වය, එඩිතරකම, ඉවසීම, සාමුහිකත්වය යනාදියෙන් අරගල භූමිය සුවඳවත් විය. එවැනි අහිංසක, අවිහිංසාවාදී, නිර්මාණශීලී, […]

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Tomorrow, tomorrow and so forth…

Thursday, May 5th, 2022

MALINDA SENEVIRATN​E Even in uncertain times, especially times of political turmoil marked by continuous and widespread agitation as well as unmistakable confusion regarding governance and indeed governability, there is clarity on certain matters. It is clear, for example, that for all the political brouhaha of parliamentary intrigue and agitational grandstanding, what brought the citizen out […]

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