Columnists

Etihad Airways – a mirage in the desert?

Views - 1856 Monday, 13 May 2019 00:00

Etihad Airways, based in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), began operations in November 2003. ‘Etihad’ means ‘unity’ in Arabic. Abu Dhabi, along with Bahrain, Oman and Qatar, had been a shareholder in Gulf Air, the ori


Going beyond agronomic research for plantation reform

Views - 284 Monday, 13 May 2019 00:00

The Sri Lanka plantation sector has been plagued by a number of recurring problems over the years which it hasn’t been able to fully resolve, including the issue of labour wages for tea plantation workers. The inability to find solutions to these p


Instilling hatred and fear – foundations for political power

Views - 258 Saturday, 11 May 2019 00:11

“Culture of fear (or climate of fear) is the concept that people may incite fear in the general public to achieve political or workplace goals through emotional bias.” (American sociologist Barry Glassner)


Australian Labor Party might show a new direction?

Views - 141 Saturday, 11 May 2019 00:10

Does Australia need change? This is the key issue at the forthcoming federal elections to be held finally on 18 May, and even before during the ongoing pre-polling. Already over a million out of 16.4 million registered voters have cast their decision


The nation crying out for a statesman

Views - 432 Saturday, 11 May 2019 00:01

Sarath Fonseka waited patiently for two weeks for President Maithripala Sirisena to appoint him as the Law and Order Minister. The celebrated General who, despite serving the army for 40 years and knows the real meaning of discipline, finally succumb


Cardinal reaches out to Muslims after Sunday violence in Negombo

Views - 5745 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:05

Negombo, called Meegamuwa in Sinhala and Neerkozhumbu in Tamil, is a multi-ethnic coastal town 31 km to the north of Colombo. The ethnic breakdown in Negombo is roughly 75% Sinhalese, 14% Muslim and 9% Tamil people. The population is mainly Christian


Overcoming wretchedness

Views - 396 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:04

Sri Lanka has been able to avoid physical attacks against the Muslim community in the aftermath of the deadliest bomb explosions on Easter Sunday. Nevertheless, the manner in which this crisis is being managed by the Sri Lankan State (except the inci


Sri Lanka tourism a success story: No tourism, no economy?

Views - 1126 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:00

The tourism industry in Sri Lanka has taken many hard hits before: be it a long period of a civil war lasting 27 years, in which the country fought a singlehanded battle, or the devastating Asian tsunami where the entire world rallied around to help,


Sri Lanka’s unsung cyber security champions

Views - 324 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:00

Gamini Fonseka’s ‘Nomiyena Minisun’ (Immortal Folks) was perhaps the first movie tribute to Sri Lanka’s war heroes. Screened in 1994, this movie which featured the veteran actor in its lead role too, started with scenes that showed General Ra


Urgent remedy for upheaval in urban-based downturn

Views - 118 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:00

The political crisis in October 2018 and followed unfortunately by the 21 April Easter Sunday ‘Terror Bombings’ have destabilised the country and its economy. Consequently, signals that have been conveyed to the international investors/community


Anatomy of an Islamist Infamy (III)

Views - 195 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:00

As said already in part (I) ordinary masses must be kept out of the terror equation and responsibility falls totally on political and religious leadership. The immediate task for the Government is to guaranty the safety and security of all innocent M


The Sixth Executive President of our Republic

Views - 251 Friday, 10 May 2019 00:00

The Sixth Executive President is the ‘title’ and the subject of this essay. Dead man walking is a euphemism for a person trapped in an untenable position and is about to lose his exalted roost.


Cost to tourism: LTTE $ 7.8 b, ISIS $ 1.5 b?

Views - 872 Thursday, 9 May 2019 00:10

The country is yet grappling to come to terms with the manmade disaster on 21 April. The attendance at schools is slowly recovering whilst the private sector is returning to normalcy. The Army Commander’s announcement that Sri Lanka is safe and re


Is Sri Lanka a failing State? If so, why not arrest this decline, starting now?

Views - 175 Thursday, 9 May 2019 00:00

The purpose of this article is to discuss whether Sri Lanka (SL) is at present a ‘failing’ (fragile) state or a ‘failed state’. This writer contributed two articles that appeared in the DFT of 26 February and 27 March this year on strategies


Creation of an ecosystem for every Sri Lankan to be responsible and accountable for building Sri Lanka

Views - 316 Thursday, 9 May 2019 00:00

The norm is that there are leaders and there are followers; there are speakers and there are listeners; there is clergy and there is laity. The existing status quo of many of the countries are the strong and active group that dictate terms of the jou


Say no to cyber-nanny state in Sri Lanka

Views - 455 Thursday, 9 May 2019 00:00

When a small but determined group of extremists weaponised airplanes, automobiles and other everyday objects in recent years, modern societies didn’t stop or restrict using these inventions. Instead, they stepped up vigilance and safety precautions


Cardinal Ranjith’s voice of sanity

Views - 689 Thursday, 9 May 2019 00:00

Anglican Bishop of Colombo, Rt. Revd. Dhiloraj Canagasabey speaking at a media briefing said politicians are ruining Sri Lanka. Rt. Revd. Canagasabey called on religious leaders, civil society and all citizens who truly love Sri Lanka to unite and fo


Recovery marketing plan for Sri Lanka Tourism

Views - 5832 Wednesday, 8 May 2019 00:00

The Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka have shaken the entire world, making it one of the most violent terrorist incidents in the recent past. While many discussions are going on regarding recovery plans, it is important to understand the real impact


Leadership lessons from the Easter attack

Views - 1286 Wednesday, 8 May 2019 00:00

After a brutal 30 year civil war, LTTE was finally crushed by the military in May 2009. Since then, Sri Lankans were enjoying the peace dividends for the last 10 years despite multiple challenges on different fronts. The Easter attacks have revived t


A Sri Lankan octogenarian speaks

Views - 1155 Wednesday, 8 May 2019 00:00

In my eighties, do I look forward or backward? On Easter Sunday, 21 April, I was numb with grief but my mind went racing with multiple thoughts. Let calm descend over me to take stock of the situation. This reprehensible dastardly act was the work of


Anatomy of an Islamist Infamy (II)

Views - 220 Wednesday, 8 May 2019 00:00

It takes two hands to clap and make a noise, and what a deadly noise did Sri Lankans hear during that fatal Easter Sunday? In the first part of this analysis, the Muslim leadership’s hand was identified and discussed. The second part looks at the h


Disaster mismanagement – Are we all part of the misdeed?

Views - 273 Wednesday, 8 May 2019 00:00

Easter Sunday 21 April was a fateful day for Sri Lanka. It was the day that animalistic instincts of a few individuals conquered the rights of scores of humans who wanted to live peacefully. I am not qualified to analyse the ideologies behind those e


Deciphering a carnage and a crisis

Views - 218 Tuesday, 7 May 2019 00:00

A comparatively small, disproportionately dynamic, unbelievably influential group calling itself ISIS is seeking to impose a totalitarian version of Islam on the world. To fight an idea, we must understand the idea. The common-sense approach demands


Are we on the correct direction to bring normalcy?

Views - 279 Tuesday, 7 May 2019 00:00

Easter Sunday carnage has left the country in a dilemma leaving all of us in a state of anxiety with a feeling of general insecurity. The events have shaken the peace loving world and brought our country to a virtual dead stop. Focus of attention on


How can Sri Lanka recover?

Views - 424 Tuesday, 7 May 2019 00:00

The well-coordinated suicide-bombings on Easter Sunday 21 April that left over250 people dead was a catastrophic failure. The world has learned a great deal about how to thwart terrorists since 11 September 2001. A crucial lesson is that it is vital


Economy is not in proper shape in the paradise island

Views - 4704 Monday, 6 May 2019 00:10

The Annual Report of the Central Bank for 2018 analysing in minute detail the state of the country’s economy today and outlining the prospects for the next five years has just been released (available at: https://www.cbsl.gov.lk/en/publications/eco


Anatomy of an Islamist Infamy: Part I

Views - 472 Monday, 6 May 2019 00:00

The Easter carnage that consumed the lives of nearly 250 innocent worshippers and bystanders including children, opens another chapter in Sri Lanka’s post-colonial bloody history of communalism and majoritarian rule. Unless one is prepared to accep


Bombings crisis exposes Sri Lanka’s intrinsic racism and dangers of a military dictatorship

Views - 587 Monday, 6 May 2019 00:00

According to Human Rights Watch there are some 1,600 asylum seekers in Sri Lanka and they need the urgent protection of the Sri Lankan Government as committed to the UN when they were accepted as refugees. They include Afghans, Iranians and Pakistani


Understanding the ‘prohibition to wear any garment concealing the full face’

Views - 876 Monday, 6 May 2019 00:00

The Sri Lankan Government brought into effect a ban on full face coverings by an Emergency Regulation on 29 April. Difficult and serious questions have arisen on the scope of this ban as well as its impact. In this short piece I offer four arguments


National security and school bags

Views - 493 Monday, 6 May 2019 00:00

Sri Lanka’s Minister of Education has said that all schools will be reopened on 6 May after all the security units reach a clear consensus on the security situation in every school. Anyway, just now I got a message that grades 1-5 are going to open


Today's Columnists

Soaring heights of NPLs in banking

Thursday, 27 June 2019

Capital inadequacy, political interference, abuse of power, wasteful and unproductive expenditure, corrupt deals, circumventions of regulatory directions, unscrupulous lending operations, imposed IMF and WB conditions for reforms, and window-dressed


New Land Policy: Ideal alternate development strategy, but accompanying policies needed

Thursday, 27 June 2019

It is reported that the Government has prepared a law to grant freehold possession of farm land held under lease from the Government. This may be a revision of the Land Development Ordinance (LDO) of 1935. This article proposes to discuss the pros a


Need for an education revolution: Future of our kids and the nation is at risk – Part II

Thursday, 27 June 2019

Lessons to be learnt from the Asian educational giants A journalist of New York Times requested Hideki Shirakawa, a Nobel laureate, to describe Japanese culture. He said, “Fundamentally, Japanese culture is based on rice farming. Rice cultivation r


Country’s reconciliation with English and Moragahakanda

Thursday, 27 June 2019

When the country received independence from British, it was blessed with an efficient administration, a high standard in education, and also sound foreign exchange reserves; the country was admired by other countries. The three major and several mino


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