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THE FORGOTTEN MAJORITY – THE WAY FORWARD?

Photo via World Snap The elections are over and much will be said and written about these historic days. Amidst these discussions I present a preliminary analysis of an often forgotten and misunderstood constituency. The Change-makers The euphoria of victory has engulfed us all. Many will want to take credit for their role in the […]

Sri Lanka stunned? Sri Lanka’s 2015 presidential poll and [un]warranted exclamations

Image courtesy Salon.com On 9 January 2015, Dr Oliver Walton, a lecturer at the University of Bath, published an article entitled ‘Sri Lanka stunned as Rajapaksa gamble fails to pay off’ (emphasis mine). Walton notes that ‘Sri Lankans are shocked at the scale and manner of Rajapaksa’s defeat, which has brought his tenure to an […]

Post Election: Real Vs Perceived Risks

Meme via Sri Lanka Memes The election of Sri Lanka’s new President Maithripala Sirisena has undoubtedly marked the dawn of a new era in Sri Lanka politics. Around the country and across the world we have witnessed a heightened level of optimism and hope, among many Sri Lankans. When the election results started to pour […]

Honour our trust, Your Excellency Maithripala Sirisena

Photo courtesy Maithripala Sirisena website January 9th 2015 The very moment we are penning this letter, you are being sworn in as the 6th Executive President of Sri Lanka. We congratulate you and wish you all the very best to you as you are poised to walk through an avenue of challenges. This rocky path […]

Rejection of the Clan and the Dawn of a New Era!

Photography via Yahoo News A dark cloud hanging over the sky in the tiny Island of Sri Lanka has started to move away into the Indian Ocean after the defeat of Rajapakse regime in the election held on the 8th of January 2015. Millions of Lankans who demanded security of person and property for years […]

Sri Lankans voted for Sirisena: Not Tamils, Muslims, Buddhists, Christians or Sinhalese

Photo courtesy Yahoo I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word. Martin Luther King, Jr. I have […]

A(n) (un)Presidential Swearing in?

Photo by Ishara S.KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images via Huffington Post A presidential swearing in ceremony, in a polity with an executive presidency, is a moment of tremendous solemn national pride. In the case of a presidential inauguration (investiture) in France, for example, a common pattern is followed, with limited scope for variation. It is customary for the outgoing […]

Democracy has triumphed: Will the opportunity be seized?

Photo courtesy VOA News The New Year 2015 began yesterday, 9th January 2015! Though there were the traditional celebrations on the 1st, these were on a subdued note, given the fears and uncertainties of an election that was a week away. But yesterday it was quite different for those of us who wanted a new […]

Some Reflections on Post-Election Day

Photo courtesy Die Presse The results are all in and Mahinda Rajapaksa has been defeated at the polls. This is a great victory for almost all concerned. It is a victory for the coalition, which dared to challenge the regime with key players, who either voluntarily or through persuasion gave up their prominence. It is […]

Maithripala Sirisena’s Victory: Winning the Hearts of Women

Photo courtesy The Hindu As the campaigning for both candidates has ended, and the celebrations for the victory of Maithripala Sirisena have begun, larger battles are still being waged, and will be still more important now that the elections are over. The elections held yesterday represent something much greater than a face-off between two personalities, […]

The Chandrika Bandaranaike factor in Sri Lankan politics, Part I

Photo courtesy DBS Jeyaraj A Gaullist executive presidency for Sri Lanka was an idea that J.R. Jayewardene cherished since the early years of the Dominion state. Having won a spectacular majority against Sirima Bandaranaike’s United Front in 1977 (by then disunited and disintegrating), Jayewardene was finally in a position to give expression to his ultimate […]

Voting for Lasantha Again, 26 Years Later

Photo courtesy CNN A quarter century ago, as an eager first time voter, I cast my maiden vote for a young journalist friend who had recently taken to electoral politics. Lasantha Wickrematunge was contesting in the Colombo District from the main opposition party, SLFP, at the General Election of 15 Feb 1989. It was the […]