Columnists

Ranu Mondal: A story of using the social media aptly

Views - 114 Wednesday, 11 September 2019 00:00

Social media brings us closer to those who are far away, but takes us far away from those who are close. This is a widely-discussed topic nowadays. There is a bitter truth in this. People are busy with connecting with their friends who are far away


MCC Compact: The need to redo the Constraints Analysis

Views - 208 Wednesday, 11 September 2019 00:00

The arguments surrounding the MCC Compact are numerous and diverse. There are many advocates of the Compact including Advocata, Pathfinder, Dr. G. Vignarajah, etc. who have already contributed to newspapers, and also professionals, academics and top


Bargaining for the right chips from USA

Views - 159 Wednesday, 11 September 2019 00:00

As the debate on Millennium Challenge Corporation grant and SOFA agreement with USA continues, it is paramount that we get an understanding of the history of SOFA agreements. Two such agreements worth analysing are the ones USA entered with Japan and


Announcing dates for the Presidential Election

Views - 566 Wednesday, 11 September 2019 00:00

Although the President was elected on 9 January 2015, because of the 19th Amendment, he will go out of office earlier, on 8 January 2020. Section 31(3) of the Constitution says that a Presidential Poll shall take place “not less than one month and


Find your brands voice

Views - 243 Tuesday, 10 September 2019 00:13

I used to manage the Vick’s Cough Drop brand in India. The biggest challenge the brand faced was that it was perceived as being ‘fuddy-duddy’ and old in comparison to a new and exciting menthol brand – Halls. I distinctly remember that the r


Three cheers for Lakshman Kiriella! What a showdown!

Views - 335 Tuesday, 10 September 2019 00:00

If he has anything in the name of dignity, Kabir Hashim should resign both from his position of party Chairman and Minister. Announcement But, first some related preliminaries. Upon hearing that the Sajith faction’s intimidatory campaign for nomin


Perplexity regarding the delay in Provincial Council Elections

Views - 112 Tuesday, 10 September 2019 00:00

When an Act is passed by Parliament it becomes Law. Everyone has to abide by it. The Parliament of Sri Lanka passed the Provincial Councils Elections (Amendment) Act, No. 17 of 2017, which was certified on 22 September 2017. This was an amendment to


Deshamanya M.A. Bakeer Markar left his mark in every Sri Lankan’s heart

Views - 223 Tuesday, 10 September 2019 00:00

Passionate in his noble thoughts with an undying belief in unity for the sake of peace, coexistence and above all the development of the nation, Deshamanya Al Haj Mohammed Abdul Bakeer Markar was a prominent lawyer, a formidable politician and a lovi


Ravindra Fernando does it again: Releasing two books on forensic analyses of crime and torture

Views - 3379 Monday, 9 September 2019 00:25

Perhaps, it is only the LSE based economics don – the late Harry G. Johnson – who might have beaten Ravindra Fernando, emeritus professor of forensic medicine and toxicology of the Colombo Medical School, off his book publishing track. Johnson wa


Is a ‘new face’ in executive governance the answer to all our woes?

Views - 160 Monday, 9 September 2019 00:00

I haven’t written to the print media for a while now, mostly out of sheer disgust at what is displayed daily, rapid decline in all spheres of Government and for the same reason have also limited my airtime on electronic media to once-a-month now; I


Economics of elections and electioneering

Views - 87 Monday, 9 September 2019 00:00

Conducting elections for the presidency or Parliament or Provincial Councils is a hugely expensive affair. The Chief Financial Officer of Sri Lanka’s Election Commission recently reported that it would cost an estimated Rs. 4 billion to conduct any


Gotabaya and national security

Views - 525 Monday, 9 September 2019 00:00

With the UNP (at the time of writing) yet to decide on their choice of candidate for the upcoming Presidential elections, former Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa (GR) from the SLPP remains the leading candidate for President. T


The myth of strategic planning

Views - 281 Monday, 9 September 2019 00:00

Walk into a pottery centre and you will see craftsmen (or women) seated at their pottery wheel, crafting a pottery design of their own. Slapping on a lump of clay, combining their hands in a skilful motion of their nimble fingers, the potter begins t


Political parties in Sri Lanka: Undemocratic by design or practice?

Views - 152 Saturday, 7 September 2019 00:10

Of the three major parties contesting for the Presidency, JVP and SLPP have already named their candidates. The process of selection is clear - in one, it is a matter for the politburo, and in the other, it is a family matter. In contrast, the UNP’


A spectrum of opportunity: Employing people with autism

Views - 235 Saturday, 7 September 2019 00:05

“She catches on very quickly,” Amanda de Moore explains. “I have to teach her only once, then she gets it and does it properly.” Amanda is talking about Raquel, a young autistic intern at her office. Raquel works five da


‘50% plus one’ captures public fancy but have we forgotten about abolishing EP?

Views - 243 Friday, 6 September 2019 00:30

IF ALL GOES WELL, in a little over three months from now the voting population of Sri Lanka will go to the polls to elect the country’s next executive president. Now the focus of the polity seems to have shifted to the numbers game, as some early n


Ignoring the main problem

Views - 380 Friday, 6 September 2019 00:25

Although the 19th Amendment to the Constitution has removed the executive powers of the president, reducing his official status almost to a level of a nominal president, the failure to change the method of election of the president to suit his altere


Why we pay more to promote inefficiency

Views - 364 Friday, 6 September 2019 00:00

Recently Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera stated the salaries of public servants doubled since 2015. He further said over the past five years, the Government has raised the salaries of public servants by more than twice when they were under the p


Sri Lankan household sinking: HH consumption drops 4.7%

Views - 835 Friday, 6 September 2019 00:00

Whilst powers may be busy forging alliances and contemplating how one can stay in power, the poor housewife is squashed between meeting the needs of the family and balancing the disposable income she has in her hand. When we hear the narratives of th


Change of heart and mind could upset presidential race apple cart

Views - 433 Thursday, 5 September 2019 00:57

I AM BY NO MEANS SANGUINE about politics as the practice of the possible. We have invested too much over the years in this art of the attainable to let it go to rack and ruin now. But time and again the men, the machines, and movements we have truste


Who can fathom the Mangala Sutra?

Views - 326 Thursday, 5 September 2019 00:41

Kid’s adventure Try to find the hidden. This is like a kid’s mystery-finding adventure. Is it merely the attempt by some younger ministers to get to the top quicker, coming under the wing of a leader closer to them in age? Is it the frustration o


Symbolic egalitarianism: A drop of water to a withering plant

Views - 146 Thursday, 5 September 2019 00:38

Symbolic egalitarianism is today’s focus. Social equality, of which organisations are concerned about, is a concept very important for the betterment of mankind. Power assigned to different ‘managerial positions’ in the organisations inevitably


Bitcoin and cryptocurrency: Myths and realities

Views - 259 Thursday, 5 September 2019 00:33

Bitcoin, Blockchain, and cryptocurrencies are the new phenomena of the 21st century. There is so much hype surrounding these subjects that it is almost impossible to ignore them and how they may affect our day to day lives. However, not all of us may


Essays of a Lifetime by Prof. Carlo Fonseka

Views - 303 Thursday, 5 September 2019 00:00

Time was when science was just one endeavour of many for the great scientists of the world. For example, Sir Isaac Newton was a true polymath – a celebrated master of astronomy, chemistry, mathematics, physics and theology1. Another polymath was Th


Economy, security and supremacists

Views - 75 Wednesday, 4 September 2019 00:00

The most disappointing and disturbing fact about the presidential race so far is the absence of any statement or discussion about the state of the economy and measures to promote economic growth. Only the JVP candidate has at least referred to the ne


It is best for democracy if SLFP contests

Views - 150 Wednesday, 4 September 2019 00:00

Whatever the mistakes in the past or in recent times, the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) is an important component in the democratic equation in the country. It has been the middle path party, the general orientation of which the country needs in pol


To the polls again…

Views - 204 Wednesday, 4 September 2019 00:00

We are in a period of waiting, the incumbent Government is moving towards closure, the pith and substance of the future government, unformed and unclear as yet. Some of the recognised political parties have already announced their candidate for the p


A room glut and cutthroat competition?

Views - 444 Wednesday, 4 September 2019 00:00

Sri Lanka tourism was riding high early this year, with arrivals for the first three months reaching 740,600 and exceeding last year by close to 5%. However the devastating crisis that hit the country on Easter Sunday in April, was really the ‘moth


Economic policies must address external sector risks facing the Sri Lankan economy

Views - 283 Wednesday, 4 September 2019 00:00

In this article, I review the recent performance of key areas in the external sector of the Sri Lankan economy that includes the trade balance, current account, tourism earnings, workers’ remittances, foreign direct investments and the exchange rat


‘Woke’ is the new talk

Views - 138 Tuesday, 3 September 2019 00:31

We always did Vox Populi or Vox Pops for our pitches. This was basically a simple method of video recording actual consumers by asking them specific and sometimes detailed questions about the brands that one was pitching for. “Marketing people alw


Today's Columnists

State of the economy of Sri Lanka

Saturday, 21 September 2019

I am not an economist nor do I profess to be an economic analyst. The views expressed in this presentation are those of a layman who has always been interested in the economic progress of Sri Lanka.


Premadasa, Père et Fils

Saturday, 21 September 2019

We are what time, circumstances and history has made of us. We are trapped in history. At age 77, I refuse to trap history in my mind. This essay is an obligation to history. Although J.R. Jayewardene introduced ‘Executive Presidentialism’, coer


Economy, business community and the Prime Minister

Friday, 20 September 2019

The speech made by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Chief Guest of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit 2019 deserves very careful consideration by the country due to several reasons. This will no doubt be his last speech on economic policy to be


Sri Lanka needs to invest more on soft infrastructure

Friday, 20 September 2019

Developing countries like Sri Lanka will have to prepare for further downside risks in 2020 with the growing debt problems and the growth problems in Europe and the slowdown in Asia. Slower growth is already visible in weakening global trade and comm


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