Columnists

Tweaking the New Inland Revenue Act (Part II)

Views - 7 Tuesday, 18 December 2018 00:17

In the backdrop where the recent amendment to the country’s supreme law is called in question, it may be appropriate to recall that the passage of the new Inland Revenue (IR) Act through Parliament was far more controversial. Nevertheless, the new


What’s next after the Supreme Court decision?

Views - 14 Tuesday, 18 December 2018 00:00

Last Thursday, just before the courts closed for Christmas holidays, the Supreme Court, sticking strictly to a legalistic path, put an end to the controversial issue of defining the powers of President Maithripala Sirisena, leaving the nation to wres


Things to do in a Democracy when you’re dead…

Views - 10 Tuesday, 18 December 2018 00:00

In yesterday’s column, I argued a case for not impeaching the chief executive of the coup that has left our country situation in ruins. At the end of a pitched battle between the forces of unconstitutional ambition on one hand and democratic resist


Advancing gender parity in Sri Lanka

Views - 10 Tuesday, 18 December 2018 00:00

Asia-Pacific today is a true engine of growth in the world—a region that has barely tapped its potential to develop, invest, and innovate. But as the region speeds ahead, the dynamics of its workforce, one that was predominantly male in the past, i


The quality of some justice

Views - 227 Monday, 17 December 2018 02:20

We must, if we are rational beings and not mindless beasts, treat the herd instinct with due vigour. In the week before the Incarnation of the Son of God, a Son of the Soil seems fit for Crucifixion. The UNP’s sleek bloodhounds, some crossover SLFP


Reaping relevant results: Reflections on ‘Mind before Action’

Views - 252 Monday, 17 December 2018 02:19

The recent political turbulence that shattered the prestige edifices of governance proved several fundamental points. For me, one such is the need to have holistic thinking with emphasis on far reaching implications before taking a crucial decision.


Sri Lanka’s economy at crossroads: The ignored export sector for creating prosperity

Views - 2535 Monday, 17 December 2018 00:00

The analysis so far In the previous part, we noted that Professor H.A. de S. Gunasekara, the first Ceylonese Professor of Economics at the University of Ceylon, was a legend in economics teaching in Sri Lanka. His doctoral thesis to the University of


If the new regime fails to uphold democratic good governance, society will bark loud and bite

Views - 167 Monday, 17 December 2018 00:00

Let the leaders of the new regime clearly realise that the civil society and citizen voters are watching with eyes open, ears attentive, and minds alert, and the body ready to spring into mindful strategic action to establish whether the much hard-fo


JVP’s task ahead

Views - 178 Monday, 17 December 2018 00:00

Ranil Wickremesinghe has reclaimed his Prime Ministership, not because he deserved it but because of President Sirisena’s impulsive irrationality driven by hunger for power and because of a determined commitment by JVP, TNA and Muslim parliamentari


Economic and regional issues upstage Hindutva plank in Indian State elections

Views - 75 Saturday, 15 December 2018 00:01

Results of the recently-concluded State Assembly elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Mizoram show that economic and regional issues have upstaged “Hindutva” – the ideology of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJ


The Pinguttara of our politics

Views - 262 Saturday, 15 December 2018 00:00

Tale of Pinguttara There is an interesting piece in the LankaEnews of 13 December that refers to President Maithripala Sirisena as a ‘Pinguttara.’ I like to pick up that idea and develop on that. ‘Pinguttara,’ is a term that is ascribed to so


Rationality of Sirisena’s irrationality

Views - 1064 Saturday, 15 December 2018 00:00

Man becomes a little cog in the machine, and, aware of this, his one preoccupation is to become a bigger cog said Max Weber, the founding father of sociology. Maithripala Sirisena became a small cog after the 19th Amendment. Then he decided to be a b


Getting more women in the workforce

Views - 156 Friday, 14 December 2018 00:00

The current female labour force participation in Sri Lanka is around 36%. This means that a disproportionate majority of women still remain outside the labour market, with limited or no access to wages, pensions and other benefits tied to gainful emp


Overcoming the crisis: The second freedom struggle

Views - 655 Friday, 14 December 2018 00:00

The crisis that has been developing in Sri Lanka, manifesting itself in varied forms at different times since independence, has now taken the form of a constitutional crisis, threatening the survival of the Sri Lankan State. Regardless of the Court


The vote, the verdict, and the TNA ‘backstop’: Beyond ’56

Views - 642 Thursday, 13 December 2018 00:00

“Leader of PLOTE and TNA MP D. Dharmalingam …stated that he believes that Ranil Wickremesinghe has handed in a written assurance of several promises. …The promises are said to include agreements on constitutional amendments, freedom for politi


Our chit-chat – Can conversations make a nation?

Views - 216 Thursday, 13 December 2018 00:00

We are living through fascinating times dominated by online conversations with offline taking backstage. From the Arab spring to Yellow vests in France, the online has proven its potential and power – be it destructive or constructive! A reading o


What is next for middle-income Asia and Sri Lanka?

Views - 332 Wednesday, 12 December 2018 00:00

Decades of sustained economic growth have left the Asia Pacific with few lower-income countries. Absolute poverty levels are and will continue to keep falling. This is cause for celebration. But it also requires a new partnership between countries an


We don’t want an executive presidency

Views - 410 Wednesday, 12 December 2018 00:00

The executive presidency was established in 1978. Since then there has never been as much hope for its abolishment as there is right now. It however still requires many actors to come together to work towards its abolishment. The 20th as brought to


Xi Jinping: China’s story of Moses

Views - 726 Wednesday, 12 December 2018 00:00

Xi Jinping’s story resembles the story of Moses in many ways. Moses (Prophet Musa as known to Muslims) though an Israeli, was adopted by the Egyptian Pharaoh. Moses was known as the Prince of Egypt, until he fell out of favour with the Pharaoh and


Why didn’t they tell the President?

Views - 862 Tuesday, 11 December 2018 00:01

The President appears to believe that he still possesses the full executive powers he derived from the Constitution when he was elected to his office in January 2015. Three months later, he sat during a tumultuous session in Parliament, and witnessed


The implications and consequences of the verdict, whatever it is

Views - 698 Tuesday, 11 December 2018 00:00

Quite obviously I haven’t the slightest notion of what the Supreme Court verdict will be, unlike my friend Eran Wickramaratne who announced publicly (and rather curiously) that he doesn’t have the slightest doubt about it. However I do know, as a


Sri Lanka’s economy at crossroads: The 1972-76 Five-Year Plan and its diagnosis of economic ailments

Views - 6280 Monday, 10 December 2018 02:00

The economist who produced ‘From Dependent Currency to Central Banking’ Professor H A de S Gunasekara, popularly known as HAdeS, was a legend in economics in Sri Lanka. The doctoral thesis ‘From Dependent Currency to Central Banking in Ceylon


Are you monitoring logistics cost in your supply chain?

Views - 274 Monday, 10 December 2018 01:59

On the internet a simple explanation of logistics says: “Logistics is generally the detailed organisation and implementation of a complex operation. In a general business sense, logistics is the management of the flow of things between the point of


Sri Lanka needs its own leaders

Views - 421 Monday, 10 December 2018 00:22

We are in the era of chaos. Breaking news has now become very common because of some sections of media. People talk about corruption, discipline, and all the weaknesses of politicians. But how many among the general public in Sri Lanka would like to


Immigration control & border security: Another distraction?

Views - 97 Monday, 10 December 2018 00:10

From the US to Australia, and all Western democracies in between, immigration control and border security have taken centre stage in political campaigns. These issues are a 21st Century avatar conveniently discovered to distract from the growing publ


Bystander effect in Sri Lankan society: perils and pitfalls

Views - 185 Monday, 10 December 2018 00:00

It was indeed shocking to hear the inactivity of the observers in preventing a murder committed by a group of school students in Matara recently. It was equally shocking to see a video circulated in social media, showing how a person strangled his fi


With hope in our hearts, we will walk on

Views - 275 Monday, 10 December 2018 00:00

When you walk through a storm Hold your head up high And don’t be afraid of the dark At the end of a storm There’s a golden sky And the sweet silver song of a lark Walk on through the wind Walk on through the rain Though your dreams be tosse


Worries over adverse impact of political crisis on Lankan economy

Views - 158 Saturday, 8 December 2018 00:10

Even as the people of Sri Lanka are waiting with bated breath for the Supreme Court’s ruling on the dissolution of Parliament and the functioning of Mahinda Rajapaksa as Prime Minister, European nations, which have close economic relations with the


Should we not look for a solution to the crisis?

Views - 234 Saturday, 8 December 2018 00:10

Since 26 October, following the political changes effected, the country has been witnessing a series of developments emerging, culminating into a crisis situation. The removal of the Prime Minister, appointment of a new Prime Minister and a Cabinet o


Matters to mind (while you wait for Justice to toll the knell)

Views - 377 Friday, 7 December 2018 00:10

Some people can handle pressure. They positively blossom under the spotlight. From celebrities to sports stars, many if not most Sri Lankans in the spotlight have panache and pizzazz. This, it seems sadly, does not include certain leading lights amon


Today's Columnists

Tweaking the New Inland Revenue Act (Part II)

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

In the backdrop where the recent amendment to the country’s supreme law is called in question, it may be appropriate to recall that the passage of the new Inland Revenue (IR) Act through Parliament was far more controversial. Nevertheless, the new


Advancing gender parity in Sri Lanka

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Asia-Pacific today is a true engine of growth in the world—a region that has barely tapped its potential to develop, invest, and innovate. But as the region speeds ahead, the dynamics of its workforce, one that was predominantly male in the past, i


Things to do in a Democracy when you’re dead…

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

In yesterday’s column, I argued a case for not impeaching the chief executive of the coup that has left our country situation in ruins. At the end of a pitched battle between the forces of unconstitutional ambition on one hand and democratic resist


What’s next after the Supreme Court decision?

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Last Thursday, just before the courts closed for Christmas holidays, the Supreme Court, sticking strictly to a legalistic path, put an end to the controversial issue of defining the powers of President Maithripala Sirisena, leaving the nation to wres


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