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“We don’t understand it because it’s in Tamil”: The JHU’s comment on the NPC’s Letter

Image taken from video produced by Vikalpa I just came across an excerpt of a statement made by Mr. Nishantha Warnasinghe, the National Organiser and Media Spokesperson of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), at a recent press conference of the party. This excerpt, which was available on a Sri Lankan news website, was titled ‘JHU […]

Tiananmen Square, Egg Wash and Tank Man: Reflections after 25 years

AP Photo/Jeff Widener, courtesy The Atlantic‘s terrific photo essay ‘Tiananmen Square, Then and Now‘ In 2009, Canadian author Denise Chong published a book called “Egg on Mao: The Story of an Ordinary Man Who Defaced an Icon and Unmasked a Dictatorship”. The main subject of the book is a friend of mine, exiled Chinese dissident […]

POST-ELECTION 2015 SCENARIO: GOTABAYA’S ENTRY TO ELECTORAL POLITICS

Image courtesy Business Today The news, based on an exclusive interview, that Mr Gotabhaya Rajapaksa may formally enter mainstream politics by contesting Colombo at the parliamentary election (Deshaya and Daily FT) casts a significant light — some may say shadow— on the character of the regime as it will emerge recomposed after that election which […]

A modest proposal for the development of the Buddhisms and Tourisms also

Image via Newston Last time I am writing opened letter. Peoples are reading it and telling me, The Silva, you are writing very intelligent things in support of Our Majesty and his country. We are proud of you. Even His Majesty is sending text message early in the morning saying well done! It is true […]

In conversation with Kalana Senaratne: Religiosity, politics and identity in Sri Lanka

Kalana Senaratne is a distinguished columnist and researcher. Readers of Groundviews would be most familiar with his writing on the rise of militant Buddhism in Sri Lanka, though he has written consistently of issues of governance, rights, politics and religiosity since 2009. We caught up on TV recently to talk about at greater depth and […]

War, Peace and the Manufacturing of Rajapaksa Myths

Photo courtesy the Daily Beast “Twenty-five years ago, I said there would be a hero-king from Ruhuna…now he’s the one we believe, President Mahinda Rajapaksa.” Sumandasa Abeygunawardane, Astrologer; Executive Director, National Savings Bank; Director, Employees Trust Fund; Advisor, Independent Television Network[i] Lankans in general are distressingly indifferent to the plight of the country’s most majestic […]

OVERCOMING THE POST-WAR MALAISE: WHY SRI LANKA NEEDS A REFORM MINISTRY AND WHAT IT SHOULD DO

The High Priests of Liberal Conservatism: Edmund Burke and D.S. Senanayake are the paradigms of thought and action for the Reform Ministry  [Photo credit: The Empire Youth Annual, 1952] “For centuries the Sinhalese and the Tamils have lived together in peace and amity. We have been governed by their kings and they by ours … […]

In conversation with Gihan de Chickera: Cartoons, politics and theatre

Gihan de Chickera, who I’ve known since our halcyon days at S. Thomas’, is an actor, with experience in both stage and film productions, though perhaps even more loved and followed for his political cartoons, published in the Daily Mirror. Gihan is humble about his work to a point of fault and dare I say, […]