Photo by Ima Hassen

“I, Glorious Honorable Excellency Chaminda Pusswedilla is cumming to the Lynel Went stage. I now planing World Peece! Now there are too many kachal fellows in the world. So i colling oll the fellows to the “Coconut Trees” (Polgas Mandiraya) in ARSIK LAND and sorting out World Peeece. Mewa mata simple wada.. You can olso come and see me at the Lynel (still trying to see where he Went) in Septmebr 29,30 and Octobber 1 & 2. I hope that fellow Wikrama Nikamsinghe dosn’t come… oohari apaley..”

Apparently, the local censor board unanimously voted to deny a public performance license for the play because it deals with Sri Lanka, Sri Lankan Politicians and institutions. Consequently, the country name was changed to ‘Arsik land’.

My Heartiest Congrats to the playwright, director and producer for the brilliant political satire which is well timed and appropriate.

Thank you for your spunk in producing the play when society is afraid even to express a whimper of protest against the putrid affairs of the State.

Your very clever use of ‘Singlish’ written on the ticket and spoken in the play is incomparable together with the wit, sarcasm and clowning of those who hold power.

Sadly, many in the audience could not appreciate the subtle nuances in your skilful use of our poor English pronunciation. I am sure the targets of your political satire will not even notice it. Too bad!

This a brilliant way of bringing out the grim reality of the putrid state of affairs in ‘arsik land’ (‘our sick land’)such as:

  1. Autocratic, egoistic, ‘frog in the well’ style of governance which lacks decency, justice, ethics and morals.
  2. Use of cunning, treachery, thuggery and intimidation in eliminating opposition and suppressing constructive criticism.
  3. Lack of strategic planning or thinking in governance leading to artless and manipulative statecraft and thoughtless response to issues
  4. Inefficient and servile public service which is stripped of independence, respectability and accountability
  5. Suppression of media freedom and free expression
  6. Weak opposition and kept opposition leader
  7. Lack  of understanding of international diplomacy and its consequent adverse  impact on the State
  8. General trend of bungling and buffoonery in managing affairs of the state.

Three cheers for the production. We loved it – both young and old. Hopefully, the mirroring of the leadership will lead to positive change –wishful thinking?