Columnists

The evils of translocating wild elephants

Views - 183 Thursday, 13 February 2020 00:16

Sri Lanka is said to have a wild elephant population of about 6,500, although exact numbers are not really available, in spite of some form of census that was carried out some years back. This approximately accounts for about 10% of the world’s Asi


Coronomics and Sri Lanka

Views - 259 Thursday, 13 February 2020 00:02

Coronomics (Corona + Economics) is an eye-catching word coined by Prof. Ajith De Alwis in his column which was published in Daily FT on 6 February. This article is intended to further analyse the economic implications of coronavirus.


Why are banks drowning under Non-Performing Advances?

Views - 3394 Thursday, 13 February 2020 00:00

Of late, banks and other financial institutions are engulfed in a massive quagmire due to increasing Non-Performing Advances (NPAs). The situation is not only alarming but also leads to many questions, such as those pertaining to the fundamentals of


Learning Lee Kuan Yew’s lessons for Lanka

Views - 1128 Thursday, 13 February 2020 00:00

Unarguably, Lee Kuan Yew (LKY) is the most universally respected Asian statesman of our time. He is esteemed from Washington to Havana, from Moscow to Beijing; from East to West and North to South, both for the quality of his mind and his conspicuous


Muslims, be vigilant over distasteful scenarios

Views - 231 Wednesday, 12 February 2020 00:00

Changing times bring in a variety of changes in people’s thinking, faiths, ideologies, lifestyles, interactions, etc. One’s changes in thinking or behaviour should not affect others. People speak and act without any regard for others, and call it


Nature’s fury and the final frontier

Views - 123 Wednesday, 12 February 2020 00:00

Each passing day in 2020, it is news about nature’s fury. The situation is becoming worse each day for the citizens of Planet Earth. Of the four great elements, three of them are probably at the peak of their fury. Since January this year 2020, her


Public sector lets down the people of Sri Lanka?

Views - 514 Wednesday, 12 February 2020 00:00

Last week shocked every Sri Lankan when the global media revealed the Rs. 17 billion scandal at SriLankan airlines on the purchase of aircrafts from Airbus. Given that the investigation was done at a global level, the credibility of the facts are st


Convocation at Baldaeus Theological College, Trincomalee

Views - 245 Wednesday, 12 February 2020 00:00

Reginold Soundararajah Siyastan, graduating with High Distinction through a GPA of 4.0/4.0, and at the top of his class from Baldaeus Theological College (BTC) on 30 January, led the graduation procession proudly holding the college flag. Dean/Regist


Techlash and tech policy trends in 2020

Views - 224 Wednesday, 12 February 2020 00:00

With the very real prospect of lawmakers and regulators taking a firm stance on how to control the genie that tech has unleashed, lawmakers and policymakers globally will unleash on big tech what is coined as techlash (technology+backlash) resulting


The 2030 economic precipice for Sri Lanka

Views - 431 Tuesday, 11 February 2020 00:22

A knowledgeable individual gave his frank opinion of the economic strategy that I have proposed – “it is too risky”. Of course, I respect his opinion. However, though it may appear risky, in my mind what’s more risky is a continuation....


Other people’s money: Lessons from the Airbus corruption case

Views - 676 Tuesday, 11 February 2020 00:18

An insightful writer I follow had written that the corruption revealed in the Airbus case, technically described as a deferred prosecution agreement, is intrinsic to capitalism or to the market system. The implication is that it may not be intrinsic.


SLFP a significant third force for election victories

Views - 365 Tuesday, 11 February 2020 00:04

In Sri Lanka, election victories largely depend on the right formation of political alliances. Based on the last Local Authority Election in February 2018, which is the most recent election that parties contested individually....


The thirst for emergency power (and blackouts)

Views - 678 Tuesday, 11 February 2020 00:02

It is that time of the year, when CEB goes to the Cabinet and the regulator (PUCSL) asking for emergency power – or its new euphemism “contingency power”, a term that does not exist in the Electricity Act nor a defined procurement process.


Parliament COPE findings have become things of the past!

Views - 211 Tuesday, 11 February 2020 00:01

Matters that came up for investigation before the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) sometime back, debated with much ardour, appear to have lost the passion and consigned to oblivion.


Cupid vs. corona: Valentine’s Day vandalised?

Views - 680 Monday, 10 February 2020 00:14

Fear and anixiety since the coronavirus outbreak is spreading across the globe. The love and romance associated with Valentine’s Day is somewhat subdued this year due to health alerts. Having celebrated 72 years of Independence last week as an isla


Demonise the devils, not honest men and women at EPF

Views - 12347 Monday, 10 February 2020 00:08

Asani: Grandpa, of late, many have started demonising EPF for losing the monies belonging to members through fraudulent investments. They have named some devils in EPF in both pre-2015 and post-2015 periods. Their source is the recently-released fore


Coronavirus – natural phenomenon, accident or well-planned bio-terrorist attack?

Views - 903 Monday, 10 February 2020 00:03

When this article is published, the number of people affected with the virus would probably have exceed 30,000 and the number of deaths more than 700. There is no doubt this virus is spreading and fatalities are increasing. In a well-researched artic


Sri Lanka electricity supply – Seeking fossil-fuelled security

Views - 238 Monday, 10 February 2020 00:00

The Sri Lankan Cabinet recently approved the construction of two coal plants and two-LNG plants. The planned capacities of these new plants would exceed 1,000 MW. This decision is a 180-degree turn from the earlier pronouncements made by the Presiden


Producing management graduates of global quality: Challenges for Sri Lankan universities

Views - 287 Monday, 10 February 2020 00:00

In Sri Lanka, we talk about the role of a citizen with different interpretations. How we can contribute to the development of the nation as citizens is something which should be redefined in this context. But this article aims to discuss the challeng


Sajith Premadasa in a hole

Views - 1045 Monday, 10 February 2020 00:00

Never, ever, known as adept in strategic thinking, Sajith Premadasa seems to be getting himself into a deeper and deeper hole. Presidential campaign Sajith’s whole Presidential Election campaign exhibited folly in strategic play. He grabs nominat


Addressing the gap between the haves and have-nots

Views - 222 Saturday, 8 February 2020 00:10

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa speaking at the 72nd Independence Day ceremony at Independence Square said: “The public will only achieve true freedom when social and economic inequalities are minimised.” Even today, he said, “There is a large gap


Decline of the Judiciary

Views - 393 Friday, 7 February 2020 00:00

Despite the Legislature and the Executive of Sri Lanka being backward and corrupt, still the country could have been saved from its present state of wretchedness, provided it had a Judiciary with a proper vision on its social responsibility. Yet, unf


Is Sri Lanka really open for business?

Views - 1024 Friday, 7 February 2020 00:00

At a recent press conference, the newly-appointed ‘Investment Promotion’ Minister Prasanna Ranatunga is quoted as having said that the Government is eyeing $ 2.5 b worth of foreign direct investment (or ‘FDI’) for 20201. An ambitious objecti


Post-independence reflections: The gaps in our freedoms

Views - 181 Friday, 7 February 2020 00:00

Seventy-two years ago, Sri Lanka gained independence from the shackles of British rule. This meant the autonomy to govern our people, the freedom to create and maintain our institutions and the ability to carve our own political narrative. Beyond pol


The President’s strategy of appointing good people: Will it produce results?

Views - 406 Friday, 7 February 2020 00:00

The problem Many State-Owned Enterprises are making losses. This problem has been persisting for years and is a major drain of Government revenue. The President has rightly given priority to eradicating this financial cancer. His solution is to appoi


Unity with equality for ‘prosperity with splendour’

Views - 184 Thursday, 6 February 2020 01:43

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa (PGR) coined the phrase ‘prosperity with splendour’ and promulgated it as the chief objective of his presidency. It is a tacit acceptance that 72 years of independence had neither brought prosperity nor splendour. Wh


The tragic two-thirds trap

Views - 874 Thursday, 6 February 2020 00:34

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s crisply yet firmly delivered (and electorally pitch-perfect) Conservative nationalist democratic discourse, the presence as ‘special distinguished guest’ of Russia’s Gen. Salyukov, Commander-in-Chief of Land For


Creating a ‘Cyber Resilient’ society

Views - 203 Thursday, 6 February 2020 00:21

While technology is opening a whole new world of opportunities, the threats posed from terrorists are no longer purely physical attacks but have also expanded into the digital world. The danger may not venture into weapons or create a battlefield wit


Does the Trump White House make China the force for good in the Middle East?

Views - 84 Thursday, 6 February 2020 00:00

By Dr. Patrick Mendis When the US assassinated Iranian General Qassem Suleimani in Iraq, Teheran leaders ordered a series of missile attacks on the American military bases in Iraq in response. For fear of escalating asymmetric warfare, President Dona


Retributive justice: Crime and punishment

Views - 67 Thursday, 6 February 2020 00:00

National intelligence agencies in a country cannot operate in a vacuum. They must have guidance from the people they serve. They exist as tools of government to gather and assess information, and if they do not receive direction, the chances are grea


Today's Columnists

Withering of expectations and prospects of new ones

Friday, 21 February 2020

The election of Gotabaya Rajapaksa as President at the last Presidential Election can be said to have been the ultimate wish of the majority of Sinhala Buddhist people. Yet, the people were not aware that the President they were electing does not hav


Upsurge of populism

Friday, 21 February 2020

“Populism: denies the pluralism of contemporary societies. It promotes hostility to “enemies” and flirts with violence. It is generally gripped by a territorial mentality that prioritises borders and nation states against ‘foreigners’ and


Diplomatic drone strike, Indo-Lanka equation and constitutional change

Thursday, 20 February 2020

The ‘diplomatic drone strike’, the dramatic US strictures against the Army Commander, Lt. Gen. Shavendra Silva, tells us that Big Brother IS watching. This isn’t the usual suspects, its way out of their league. This is the Big League, the big b


Solar and wind power can resolve electricity crisis, early and cheaper, if allowed

Thursday, 20 February 2020

The country is facing the worst power situation in the history, with electricity generation being unable to meet the demand, with generation costs among the most expensive in the world. With the current scenario, the country cannot be expected to com


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