Colombo, Fiction / Creative Writing, Satire

Rajapakse: Now the most popular surname in Sri Lanka?

Banyan News Reporters

Colombo, Sri Lanka - Banyan News Reporters (BNR) learns from the Registrar of Names that a record number of people in Sri Lanka are requesting a change in their surnames. Over the last few months, the Registrar of Names notes that most of the applicants have requested to change their surname to Rajapakse, or to add it on as an additional surname.

“This is unprecedented. Never in my thirty years at the department have we had so many applicants” confirmed Mr Satish Rajapakse, Director of the Applications Unit of the Registrar of Names. He noted that since the end of war, the number of applications increased exponentially. Mr. Rajapakse refused to discuss with BNR any details regarding the profile of the applicants.

However, BNR learned through a highly-placed source at the Ministry of Defence, which is also monitoring this situation that the majority of these applicants are young male graduates. The source opined that these individuals may think a Rajapakse surname aids chances of securing better employment and also marriage prospects. He speculated that many of these graduates may end in the public sector following the Government’s announcement that 17,000 graduates will be provided State employment.

BNR contacted a variety of sources who all confirm that the Rajapakse name is seen as a passport to success. The National Human Rights Council has received a record number of complaints relating to transfers and extraordinary promotions in the State sector. An unofficial source, Ranil Rajapakse [not real name] stated that many of the complaints alleged that individuals with the Rajapakse name were given special preference. Other complaints allege that various boards in institutions such as schools and hospitals are requesting that existing officers be replaced by those with a Rajapakse surname. He also added that the NHRC had not made any decision on the complaints and were waiting for an indication from the Presidential Secretariat as to how to proceed.

“We must express our deep gratitude to the President Rajapakse and the Rajapakse brothers for winning the war” says Sangamithage Rajapakselage Thera. “He is our Dutugemmunu. We cannot do enough to thank our king. The royal family according to our 2,000 year old culture are due sovereign rights so we must grant them what they are due. They are a noble family so they must all be given positions of authority throughout the land, without the inconveniences of democracy and elections” the Thero stated. The thero also pointed out that the temple Sri Rajapakse Maha Viharaya has come to be closely associated with the President’s Family and that there are plans to build the largest stupa in the country in an adjoining piece of land, appropriated from a non-Rajapakse in the national interest.

BNR spoke to Colombo’s leading kapuwa, Kumaradasa Liyanage who stated that individuals with the Rajapakse name are in high demand.

“Usually foreign passport holders and highly qualified professionals are those most in demand. But now I have a lot of families asking if we can find a Rajapakse for their son or daughter.”  He refused to comment if he advises families to change their name to Rajapakse if the marriage prospects seem weak. He did, however note that with elections looming anyone with the Rajapakse name, regardless of dowry, employment, height, complexion and educational background could expect to secure a good match.

“The Rajapakse name is mark of success. Just turn to any page in my magazine and you can see it- they have the best parties and the best weddings!!! They are the most accomplished personalities!!!” pointed out the editor of leading social magazine Who!, Chamalie Ukwatte. “Frankly speaking, if I am judging a beauty contest, I would give more marks to a Rajapakse. That family has done so much for us, that’s the least we can do” she went on to say.

Though BNR approached the President’s office and the MoD for comment, unofficial sources told us that a response would take time since both institutions were currently engaged in a frantic efforts to identify unpatriotic miscreants attempting to portray themselves as Rajapakses and mislead the nation.

  • Humanist

    The august assembly of the people yesterday passed a bill that those with foreign names such as Fonseka, Perera, Fernando, etc. will not be allowed to stand for election in the future. In introducing the bill, the honourable minister of foreign affairs, pointed out that those who were already members of the assembly with such unfortunate names would be given a grace period of two months to change their name to Rajapakse.

  • Gamaya

    Oh my God!! have our people gone completely insane. We are doomed

  • Stewart Sloan

    What Humanist said makes perfect sense to me. So, if I change my name from Sloan to Rajapaksa, have two thirds of my brain removed and move to Sri Lanka, can I become the Minister for Labour?

  • Janusis

    @Stewart That is a highly offensive remark! As a Sri Lankan I must protest! You expect to become Minister with no gang connections? No mistress? No previous qualification as a Grade A footware taster?
    Get thee hence to the country where you came from! But first donate some money to fund for the resettlement of IDPs. We need it y’know..

  • Pearl Thevanayagam

    Would a noble Kandyan change his name to a low-country goviya name like Rajapakse. My knowledge of the Rajapakses is that they are a bunch of thugs. In Jaffna Rajapakses were opticians like the Fernandos.

    I know Sri Lanka’s south is abound with ganja and arrack and the southern mind is in a perpetual state of stupor but changing the name to Rajapakse takes the biscuit.

    Even Premadasa with all his delusions of grandeur did not stoop this low.

    But then the Bandaranaikes and the Senanayakes were toilet contractors and carters for the British circa 1800. Look where they are now.

    Chee aney, these Rajapakses have no shame no.

  • RTV

    This is sad… How low can people go?

    This country is turning into a monarchy just cause he won the war. But what after the war? The economy is still down, unemployment is up, etc etc

    OH but the best thing is. If your a Rajapakse and apply for visa to england . Its a high chance that your not going to get it. HAHA

  • pularika

    Dear Stewart Sloan – It depends on where you originate from. If you are Australian, British or from New Zealand, you will actually have to implant half of a fellow country mans brain in your skull in order to qualify as Minister for Labour. Don’t worry, proven scientific research reveals that there is enough space in your skull for up to 3 such brains (which incidentally are required If you wish to work as a bus conductor or similarly skilled position in Sri Lanka).

  • Stewart Sloan

    Dear Pularika,

    Actually, I’m Scottish, so none of the above apply.

  • sanath

    I think we shd remove all foreign names like , fonseka, Silva alwis and get then to use real Sinhala names, I agree ppl from down south cunning and selfish, and you can identify them easily way they act within pour community, I have noticed even with few digress , after few drinks low cast atitiude come out

  • Humanist

    Well, Stewart, if you are Scottish, we’ll exempt you from the requirement of having underworld connections, a mistress and what was it… grade A footwear tasting… as part of the “most favoured foreigner” status.

  • nandasena

    Who knaows all these people who changed their names now, may feel sorry in a couple of months and would prefer to revert back to their former names!!!!!

  • Atheist

    Stewart Sloan

    So you’re Scottish and you are thinking of coming to Sri-Lanka with the little brain you are left with. Please do remember to bring a big vat of haggis to last you during your stay. By the way, don’t forget your bagpipe either; you’ll need it for your highland dance. Forget about a kilt as your checked sarong, which you probably run around the neighbourhood in, will come in handy. Fold it in two – and away you go with the wind in your sails!!!

    Perhaps, you can teach some of these caste conscious commentators on this thread to do a jig to the following song:

    Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
    For auld lang syne, my dear,
    For auld lang syne,
    We’ll tak a cup of kindness yet,
    For auld lang syne!

  • pularika

    Fact can be stranger than fiction…