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Strengthening innovation in Sri Lanka: In conversation with Anushka Wijesinha

Anushka Wijesinha is a Research Economist at the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka and is one of the most prominent voices in Sri Lanka today championing innovation. We begin by Anushka explaining what innovation means to him in a Sri Lankan context, and why it is so important to support it in post-war […]

Questions the public must ask in Sri Lanka

Photo courtesy BBC In the few days following the UNHRC meetings in Geneva, we have witnessed several act of blatant criminality by mobs on people and property- in greater Colombo, Killinochchi and elsewhere. A common factor has been the passivity of the Police. They have looked the other way (reminiscent of July ’83) and suppressed […]

‘Where every prospect pleases, man alone is vile’

Image courtesy Aaron Joel Santos The title of this article is a line from a beautifully haunting hymn written by Bishop Heber of Calcutta who, clearly, had an imperialistic mindset.  He visited our island in 1825, and the hymn must have been written around that time.  The next line reads, ‘The Heathen in his blindness bows […]

A Tolerant Sri Lanka: How far will we go?

The past few weeks have seen a rise in incidents and publicly expressed sentiments against the Muslim community by groups who claim to represent the rights of Sinhala Buddhists in Sri Lanka. Expressing concerns of undue place given to Muslims in Sri Lanka – from entrance to the Law College to issuing Halal certification to […]

Impeachment of Sri Lanka’s Chief Justice and its impact: Poll results

Photo courtesy Euronews From 6 – 21 March 2013, Groundviews ran an online poll to ascertain opinions on the lasting impact of the unprecedented impeachment of Sri Lanka’s Chief Justice. The online poll was hosted on Typeform.com. 177 responses were generated. The questionnaire can be downloaded as a PDF here. The full poll results, for […]

Taking old friends too seriously: Sri Lanka, Burma and Buddhist extremism

People collect pieces of metal from the rubble of a neighbourhood in Pauktaw township that was burned in recent violence October 27, 2012. REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun (Caption and content from Reuters) Sri Lanka’s long relationship with Burma is something that anyone who has even a nodding acquaintance with Sri Lankan history is aware of. In both […]

Helping the Police arrest brutish “monks” in Sri Lanka

Apparently the infamous Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) has condemned the attack on Fashion Bug warehouse a few days ago and asked the Police to arrest those involved in it, even if they are monks. A Daily Mirror news report suggests BBS thinks the individuals captured on film destroyed private property were actually impostors. Prima facie, […]

Responding to Geneva by Exemplary Restitution

Robert O. Blake has once said, “International mechanisms can become appropriate in cases where states are either unable or unwilling to meet their obligations.” After Geneva March 2013, US officials have reiterated this in stricter terms. TNA MP Suresh Premachandran has said the final Geneva Resolution will not relieve the affected Tamils and reminded the […]

A Missing Person in Sri Lanka: Heartfelt Issues & Ground Realities

Image courtesy Salon / AP Photo by Eranga Jayawardena When I was in Sri Lanka from mid-April to early June 2009 I was on holiday with my wife and not able to pursue investigations in any depth. In contrast my sojourn in May-June 2010 focused on a range of studies and travels. One gem of […]

#unlk: Archive and visualisation of tweets on Sri Lanka at HRC’s 22nd Session

The 22nd regular session of the Human Rights Council was held from 25 February to 22 March 2013 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. As Groundviews did with conversations on Twitter over Sri Lanka during the UPR sessions last year, we archived every single tweet from Thursday, 21st February 2013 to Tuesday, 26th March […]

The State of the Free Education System in Sri Lanka: Confessions of a Disgruntled Student

Image courtesy The Nation I am one of the 243,876 lucky students who sat for the Advanced Level Examinations in 2011. It has been almost one-and-a-half-years since then, and I received my university registration form only yesterday (6 – 4 – 2012). I was privileged enough to receive A/L results four times in the space […]

Interview with Nimalka Fernando: The UN HRC resolution and beyond

Nimalka, now we’ve seen that the council voted for the resolution on Sri Lanka. What is your initial impression? It’s a serious voting pattern. Because if you look at the resolution, the resolution has very substantial  concerns raised by civil society for a period of time. From holding elections in the North, addressing issues of […]

Inter-Religious Integration in Sri Lanka—Inclusion not Intrusion

Image courtesy Maliban Biscuit Over the past months Sri Lankans have been educated on two Arabic words: halal and haram (that which is permissible and not permissible). Unfortunately the circumstances of learning have been an unprecedented antagonism towards the Muslim community much deeper than the halal issue. This trend must be addressed without delay by […]