Columnists

Ecosystems, not just institutions – Homagama, our own Silicon Valley!

Views - 492 Thursday, 27 December 2018 00:16

Silicon Valley in USA, Boston again in USA, Tel Aviv in Israel, Eindhoven in Netherlands are well-known in today’s world – they are economic hotspots! I am not too sure of a similar understanding in the local context when one considers the expre


Sustaining democracy

Views - 184 Tuesday, 25 December 2018 00:00

St. Augustine’s ‘City of God’ was perhaps the book Sirisena was following since the beginning of his presidency in 2015. A kind and calm leader from humble beginnings was seen trying to be righteous yet appeared cornered, isolated and perhaps p


Imran Khan takes guard

Views - 414 Tuesday, 25 December 2018 00:00

Imran Khan, the new light radiating in South Asia. A troubled geographical area not known for prolonged, incremental and sustained “light”. Activities under the constant watchful eyes of Uncle Sam. Any semblance of righteous effulgence socio-eco


The polarisation of American politics: Lessons for Sri Lanka

Views - 1323 Tuesday, 25 December 2018 00:00

Back in 1984, President Ronald Reagan won 49 out of 50 states in America. Reagan was a Republican (same party as Donald Trump). President Johnson (Democrat) won 44 out of 50 states in 1964. Today, it would be beyond a miracle if a Republican can win


And so are they all: ‘honourable men’

Views - 1099 Monday, 24 December 2018 00:12

The appointment of the Hon. Ravi Karunanayake, MP as the Minister of Power and Energy has set the polecat among the pigeons. It has got a knowing glance from the national press. While setting social media ablaze. And one can see why. But one might al


Undercover Islamophobia and rebirth of anti-globalisation

Views - 205 Monday, 24 December 2018 00:04

From the USA to Australia, and all Western democracies in between, immigration control, border security and population planning have taken centre stage in political campaigns. The last of these is looming as an election issue in Australia. These iss


Tale of two leaders: A Christmas reflection

Views - 484 Monday, 24 December 2018 00:00

Leaders and laggards are much in talk these days in the midst of a political turbulence that ravaged the country. Christmas is approaching with its associated festivities as usual. Apart from the traditional message of peace and harmony, this “fest


Economy at a crossroads: The way out for Sri Lanka

Views - 6628 Monday, 24 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


The rise and fall of the hardest-working man in the brutally-competitive auto industry

Views - 122 Monday, 24 December 2018 00:00

Carlos Ghosn, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Nissan, Mitsubishi and Renault Corporations who is also known as Mr. 7-11, Mr. Fix or Mr. Turnaround according to Economic Times, has had a stunning fall from grace due to financial misconducts at


Bangladesh elections: Will authoritarianism dent Hasina’s developmental plank?

Views - 207 Saturday, 22 December 2018 00:10

As Bangladesh goes for general elections on 30 December, the million dollar question in people’s minds is whether or not Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s authoritarian actions will dent her impressive developmental plank. Hasina’s 10-year tenure


Aftermath of a political coup

Views - 207 Saturday, 22 December 2018 00:10

Along with the Supreme Court (SC) order to quash the proclamation of the President to dissolve the Parliament, and the declaration that the said proclamation was null and void, the coup launched by the President to forcibly acquire State power was de


Rightfully restored Premier Ranil may hold early Parliamentary elections

Views - 5475 Friday, 21 December 2018 00:01

The seven-week-long curse which blighted this beautiful and bountiful land from 26 October onwards ended over the mid-December weekend.On Saturday 15 December former President and Kurunegala District MP Mahinda Rajapaksa terminated his illegitimate t


The Second Freedom Struggle (Part II)

Views - 426 Friday, 21 December 2018 00:00

Although the political group that deserved the ruling power has been reinstated on account of the lawful and bold judgment given by the Judiciary, it will not act as a deterrent in preventing the collapse and the decadence of the State. The malicious


MS tries ambitious agricultural stroke and is caught in the deep

Views - 375 Friday, 21 December 2018 00:00

In cricketing parlance, the concept of a textbook shot by a batsman is attributed inter-alia to class, perfection, command, etc. It’s usually executed with authority, accuracy and authenticity. Not everyone can do it. There are some essential pre


UNF Government should not squander this last opportunity

Views - 423 Friday, 21 December 2018 00:00

President Maithripala Sirisena appointed a 29-member Cabinet yesterday after two months of political turmoil. It was reported that the UNP has sent in 36 names to the President to be appointed as Ministers and that President Sirisena had struck off


Lesson from India to Sri Lanka as India powers to $ 2 trillion

Views - 1055 Thursday, 20 December 2018 00:00

In the backdrop of the exchange rate fluctuations due to the strengthening of the dollar, the Indian Government pushed for ‘governance’ by asking the British Government to extradite the Indian liquor baron Vijay Malaya who has taken refuge in the


Fruits, flowers and futile triumphalism at Galle Face?

Views - 406 Wednesday, 19 December 2018 00:05

Every morning, I play voyeur and watch that nice neighbourhood uncle pluck flowers to pooja-fy his guardian deities. He is quite religious about it. And industrious to boot. The problem, of course, is that he doesn’t restrict himself to his garden.


Will Kyaukpyu overtake Gwadar and Hambantota?

Views - 564 Wednesday, 19 December 2018 00:00

China last month signed a $1.3 billion contract for Myanmar’s Kyaukpyu port project. The figures doing rounds in media in the run up to this port deal were as high as $7.9 billion which had ignited enormous curiosities. The Chinese had been negoti


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

Views - 384 Tuesday, 18 December 2018 00:20

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


Tweaking the New Inland Revenue Act (Part II)

Views - 297 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 - 658 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


Advancing gender parity in Sri Lanka

Views - 234 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 - 498 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 - 362 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 - 6490 Monday, 17 December 2018 00:00

The analysis so farIn 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 - 257 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 - 247 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 - 98 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 - 302 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 - 1157 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


Today's Columnists

Automation and machine learning: Helping organisations extract deeper value from data

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

The world is in the midst of a data explosion. Humans are generating an estimated 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every single day1, according to Forbes, and more data was created in the past two years than in all of human history. No wonder data now r


SL tourism: From TOM to experience the brand in 2019

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Last week I had just crossed the border that separates Laos from Thailand and was on route via land to Thailand. My mind was on Laos – a country branded globally as ‘Simply Beautiful’ (backed by the ADB in 2018) to attract visitors into the cou


Questionable (or absurd) official report on poverty indicators

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

The latest Report issued by the Ministry of National Policies and Economic Affairs on ‘Poverty Indicators’ is both questionable and outrageous.1This Ministry is under the responsibility of the Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe. Most of the sta


Teaching the younger generation to observe professional ethics is the need of the hour

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

When Sri Lanka got independence in 1948, it was one of the most promising nations both in Asia and in the Commonwealth countries. It had luckily emerged unscathed after the Second World War unlike our neighbours. Sri Lanka furthermore did not have to


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