All the presidents’ mien

Views - 341 Monday, 21 January 2019 00:10

I’m conflicted about the presidency we have. Do we need it like a fish needs a bicycle, or a baboon needs a parliament? Has the opportune time come for stakeholders as diverse as civil society led by a free media movement, conscientious objectors t

Banks should subsume technology before technology subsumes them

Views - 6811 Monday, 21 January 2019 00:08

Returning to IBSL is like ‘coming home’ It is a privilege for me to return to the Institute of Bankers of Sri Lanka, popularly known as IBSL, after the lapse of some 10 years. I had a long association with IBSL from its very beginning – from ar

AI in 2019: Start small, win big

Views - 75 Monday, 21 January 2019 00:00

A new generation of point AI solutions will prove themselves in 2019. They’ll build new trust, urgency and understanding of what ‘AI’ actually is, and just how much it can deliver. Voice-driven solutions will lead the charge. And we’ll see pi

Sri Lanka needs better focus on logistics and distribution beyond 2020

Views - 780 Monday, 21 January 2019 00:00

The time has come for Sri Lanka to make all efforts to transform its advantage of speed and connectivity into a major logistics hub in the Indian Ocean which can have many positive spinoff effects in terms of becoming a more vibrant manufacturing, tr

Making democracy a national heritage

Views - 132 Monday, 21 January 2019 00:00

We are in the year of elections. It is the season of political name calling. Everybody is busy conferring some name on some body. Neo liberal, liberal, dictator, fascist, neo fascist, NGO agent, imperialist lackey are some of these devices that come

Ravi K’s discourse on W.A. Wijewardena’s involvement in Treasury bond issue

Views - 3125 Monday, 21 January 2019 00:00

In his article published previously in the Daily FT, Ravi Karunanayake (the MOF during the period of the infamous CBSL bond scam) appears to have attemptedto pull wool over the eyes andto make a mountain out of a molehill. This exercise gives an impr

Unless addressed, wages issue will keep troubling Bangladesh’s garment industry

Views - 231 Saturday, 19 January 2019 00:10

The recent week-long mass protests by garment workers in Bangladesh came to an end after an upward revision of wages for six classes of workers. But even after the upward revision, the Bangladeshi garment worker gets less than what workers in compara

Is the Navy lying? Is our press serving us well?

Views - 536 Friday, 18 January 2019 00:00

Newspapers of 16 January report Indian poachers turning on our Navy. An earlier incident of 23 December where poachers really used violence was hardly reported. All this mis- and non-reporting raise questions of the veracity of our Navy and the irres

Elimination of bribery and corruption

Views - 451 Friday, 18 January 2019 00:00

Bribery and corruption can be regarded as a malicious cancer that has penetrated into almost every strata of Sri Lankan state. It can be considered a major factor affecting Sri Lanka’s poverty, backwardness and indebtedness. Abuse of power by thos

Evaluation of economic performance: 4 years into Yahapalana Government

Views - 354 Friday, 18 January 2019 00:00

The Yahapalana Government completed four years on 8 January this year. The four-year journey was a rough ride with a clear rift between the President and the UNP; the ruling party. The Government continues to face severe criticism from both inside an

Is GDP the ideal metric of the future?

Views - 366 Friday, 18 January 2019 00:00

In an age of stark contradictions, we live in a world where the exclusive 1% enjoy access to an abundance of wealth and resources but also a world where a billion people scarcely have enough to eat and have limited access to health and education. Whi

Open letter to M.A. Sumanthiran, MP

Views - 1762 Thursday, 17 January 2019 00:00

Happy Pongal, Mr Sumanthiran! You and I are from two very different generations. In fact you belong to my uncle’s generation (sadly I don’t get along very well with my uncle). You are a child of the ’70s. I’m a child of the 90s. In a more tex

Politicians and cricketers: Expected role, selection and performance evaluation (Part 2)

Views - 161 Thursday, 17 January 2019 00:00

Before commenting on the selection process, it is better to understand the ground realities and the nature of the beasts. Sri Lanka has a good theoretical education system. This system prompts students to ‘Cram-Remember-Express’ or ‘Read-Rememb

The birth of airlines in the USA

Views - 74 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

The first non-stop trans-Atlantic flight took place in 1919, when two English flyers, John Alcock and Arthur Whitten Brown, flew a modified Vickers Vimy bomber from Newfoundland, Canada to County Galway in Ireland. While this won them knighthoods and

FCCISL on Government’s road to FTAs: How rational? Part 3

Views - 136 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

(8) An analysis of overall effectiveness of Australian FTAs According to the Australian productivity research report (2010), businesses in Australia have provided little evidence that Australia’s Bilateral and Regional Trade Agreements (BRTAs) have

Politicians and cricketers: Expected role, selection and performance evaluation (Part 1)

Views - 137 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

I am an apolitical person. I am neither a political analyst nor a sports analyst. However, I closely observe both activities. I attentively observed recent political turmoil in Sri Lanka from a remote location via mass media. I watched the performan

Morals and ethics take a nosedive in Sinhala-Buddhist Sri Lanka

Views - 914 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

As a Sri Lankan first, as a member of the predominant ethnic community, Sinhalese, as a follower of the Buddhist philosophy and as a grandmother, I have taken it upon myself to address the youth and young adults of Sri Lanka, amongst them – the fut

A lie is also a truth

Views - 547 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

Gotabaya Rajapaksa is a determined contender for the presidency. His trenchant lecture to activists of the Viyathmaga forum demonstrated the man’s spiritedness and impulse to act. He is a driven man. What drives him?

Why Gota gave me a ‘Gotler’ feeling

Views - 535 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

Bourgeoisie venues It is no accident that presidential-candidate hopeful Gotabaya Rajapaksa holds his Viyathmaga meetings in bourgeoisie spots. Once, it had been Shangri-La. Last Saturday, 12 January, it had been Waters Edge. Gota’s speech offered

Sri Lanka must focus on quality of exports rather than value

Views - 340 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

Whilst Sri Lanka needs to be commended on the exports value of $ 17 billion that was achieved last year (the numbers include merchandise and export of services), a point to note us that Sri Lanka is ranked the lowest in our part of the world for new

Critical review of accountancy education in Sri Lanka

Views - 320 Wednesday, 16 January 2019 00:00

Sri Lanka is having three accountancy bodies, The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka ( which was founded in 1959 by Act of Parliament, Association of Accounting Technicians of Sri Lanka ( which w

FCCISL on Government’s road to FTAs: How rational? Part 2

Views - 203 Tuesday, 15 January 2019 00:08

(5) Approach to FTAs of other countries (a) Lessons from India-EU FTA negotiations It is good for Sri Lankan negotiators to learn from their counter parts in India and EU. This is an exemplary occasion where negotiators from both India and EU showed

India and leadership of global democracy

Views - 422 Tuesday, 15 January 2019 00:03

After shouldering the leadership of global democracy for over seven decades, the United States is seen withdrawing from the rest of the world. The European Union is not as united as it once was with Brexit and far right movements getting more likely


Views - 100 Tuesday, 15 January 2019 00:00

A phrase that does not have much meaning with the rest of the world yet an integral part of the American political way of life. A distinct dysfunction of a working democracy in that. A default mechanism that works wholly and totally against the peopl

Seeking IMF support is necessary, but ailing economy needs permanent treatment

Views - 6679 Monday, 14 January 2019 00:10

Hitting a dying man on the head A high-level delegation led by Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera has left for Washington DC to meet IMF’s high-ups. The purpose? To negotiate for the restoration of the Extended Fund Facility or EFF temporarily su

Wahhabi Salafi orthodoxy and an apostate

Views - 440 Monday, 14 January 2019 00:04

“Don’t let anyone break your wings, you are free, fight and get your RIGHTS,” were the words tweeted by the 18-year-old apostate, Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun from Saudi Arabia, who renounced Islam, ran away from her family and sought asylum in a f

FCCISL on Government’s road to FTAs: How rational? Part 1

Views - 328 Monday, 14 January 2019 00:00

The policy debate towards negotiations on Free Trade Agreements (FTA) has been intensified after Sri Lanka signed a Free Trade Agreement with Singapore in 2018. Almost two decades ago, Sri Lanka entered into its first-ever FTA with India, followed by

Significance of sustainable HRM: A salient Sri Lankan effort

Views - 800 Monday, 14 January 2019 00:00

I witnessed the launch of a book with a difference recently. It was Senior Professor Henarath Opatha, a veteran researcher in the field of HRM presenting his newest contribution titled ‘Sustainable HRM’. Today’s column is about the nature and f

Man is born free but corrupt political system has chained us without any mercy (Part 3)

Views - 157 Saturday, 12 January 2019 00:04

Ever since the dawn of our human civilisation, laws had been made to protect citizens from harm and to guarantee equal protection to everyone for the greater good. The leaders of our political parties should possess fundamental values and principles

Issues in implementing reservation for the poor among India’s Forward Castes

Views - 172 Saturday, 12 January 2019 00:02

Earlier this week, the Narendra Modi Government got the Indian Parliament to pass the 124th Constitutional Amendment bill to give 10% reservation for the “poor” among the “Forward Castes” or communities in the country. This was to address a

Today's Columnists

Wounding the social psyche

Friday, 19 April 2019

In this article, I intend to discuss the serious wounds inflicted on the psyche of Sri Lankan society, which have not received adequate attention, but need immediate cure, for they might develop into a dangerous cancer if not treated without further

No more stones to break Sri Lankan bones

Friday, 19 April 2019

Trial by fire is not a new ordeal to Christian community. It predates Notre Dame and Nazism by millennia. In fact, a decade or so before Nero torched believers to light Roman avenues, Jewish religious leaders put Jesus-followers to the test as the Ch

What 5G could be to Game of Thrones (and vice versa)

Friday, 19 April 2019

We will be hearing a lot about these two seemingly unrelated topics this month. In a hurriedly but meticulously organised event, Dialog Axiata recently demonstrated 5G applications for the first time in South Asia. 5G will be commercially available

On time – Only for a week! A must-change!

Thursday, 18 April 2019

We are in April and the month where we witness the declaration of a new year as per our traditional practice. It is that period of time when a huge majority of our population, which certainly can be counted in millions, intends to act in unison and q

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