The perils of ‘traitorisation’

Views - 9933 Thursday, 2 February 2017 00:29

  “Amirthalingam was called a traitor and killed. Neelan Thiruchelvam was called a traitor and killed. Over 30 years we have lost all these people.  And after  killing them, what have we achieved?  So n

Yahapalanaya in 2017: To be or not to be?

Views - 7959 Friday, 13 January 2017 00:00

  The Yahapalanaya Government faces existential questions as it steps into its third year in office Every year on 8 January, a quiet gathering takes place at a grave inside the Borella cemetery. Words are spoken softly

Troubled waters

Views - 8249 Thursday, 15 December 2016 00:10

The Japanese vessel Hyperion Highway, which was seized and detained by striking port workers in Hambantota for four days, being escorted out of the harbour by the Sri Lanka Navy on Sunday (11)   Navy Chief Vi

More equal than others

Views - 10949 Thursday, 24 November 2016 00:01

Radical Buddhist monks threatening demolition of majority Muslim suburbs of Colombo and employing violent, racist and threatening rhetoric against public officials continue to enjoy impunity under the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe Government, which was

COPE: A bridge between despair and hope

Views - 8335 Thursday, 3 November 2016 00:00

    The Committee on Public Enterprise (COPE), a body of parliamentary oversight into the performance and fiscal discipline of corporations that are fully state-owned or in which the Government has a financial stake, has

January 8: The promise and the pain

Views - 11750 Thursday, 20 October 2016 00:10

    When Maithripala Sirisena decided to contest against Mahinda Rajapaksa in the January 2015 presidential poll, he took his life in his hands. He was not the only one, but as Rajapaksa’s direct challenger, Sirisen

The political blind-spot

Views - 12014 Thursday, 13 October 2016 00:00

In September 2015, a furore erupted when President Maithripala Sirisena decided to take his son to the UN General Assembly session in New York During the visit, the President’s son also sat in on arguably Sri Lanka&

Wigneswaran: The slow death of a moderate?

Views - 10990 Thursday, 6 October 2016 00:00

    How did the sitar-playing, sage-like Chief Minister of the Northern Province fall within the grasp and influence of Tamil nationalists and bankrupt politicians in only three years? And can the TNA bring him

‘Eluga Tamil’ and the constitutional litmus test

Views - 11219 Friday, 30 September 2016 00:11

Nationalists are mobilising in the North and the South against a constitution building process that will soon step out of the shadows In an ironic twist, last Saturday marked an epoch in the lifespan of two nationalist movements in

The fractured North

Views - 11637 Thursday, 8 September 2016 00:10

  As a quiet crisis within the TNA deepens, the need for a constitutional power sharing arrangements to address the root causes of ethnic conflict, meet the aspirations of the people and empower Tamil moderates grows ever mor

SLFP: A war within

Views - 9393 Thursday, 25 August 2016 00:10

    As the Government of ‘national unity’ celebrated the completion of its first year in office last week, President Maithripala Sirisena was grappling with a problem that preceded his presidency.  For

Invisible crime, recurring nightmare

Views - 9469 Thursday, 18 August 2016 00:10

      “The Report of the 1994 Presidential Commission of Inquiry to investigate the Disappearances of Persons noted that its investigations echoed the common yearning; Never Again” – Dr. Vas

The politics of the ‘missing’

Views - 11781 Thursday, 11 August 2016 00:48

   The Paada Yaathra in March 1992 led by Mahinda Rajapaksa, the 47-year-old SLFP Parliamentarian from Hambantota, was epic. Over 17 days, the marchers travelled 280 kilometres from Viharamahadevi Park in Colombo to Kataragama, i

And miles to go

Views - 13542 Thursday, 21 July 2016 00:00

The clashes at the University of Jaffna indicate that the process of national reconciliation may be progressing far too slowly     Student clashes at the University of Jaffna last weekend underscore the c

Gambling on good governance

Views - 11159 Thursday, 23 June 2016 00:10

 Indi Samarajiva, Sri Lankan blogger and founder of the popular website, recently released a video that simplifies the Treasury bond scam in a most entertaining way. Titled ‘The Bond Game’ and featuring ‘Casino Centr

Fault Lines

Views - 11668 Thursday, 16 June 2016 00:01

On economic affairs and foreign policy, political fault lines inside the ruling UNF-SLFP coalition have begun to emerge more clearly than ever this past week. As the campaign against Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran begins to crystallise, wi

‘Something is rotten’

Views - 16044 Thursday, 26 May 2016 00:10

The appointment of ex-TRC Director General Anusha Palpitato high bureaucratic office in the Home Affairs Ministry and tolerance of senior officials publicly hobnobbing with sinister and notorious corporate entities like the Avant-Garde Chairman sm

Corruption: The inconvenient truth

Views - 12591 Thursday, 12 May 2016 00:10

   Slow progress on investigations against the former regime and ongoing allegations of Government corruption threaten the stability of a fragile ruling coalition and puts its plans for democratic and constitutional reform in gra

A crisis of the ‘deep state’

Views - 13125 Thursday, 5 May 2016 00:10

   After the success of his dissident May Day rally that drew huge crowds to Kirulapone at the beginning of the week, former President  and Kurunegala District lawmaker Mahinda Rajapaksa was on the receiving en

Out of the shadows

Views - 13624 Thursday, 28 January 2016 00:05

He’s back.  After a year in the shadows, Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara, the controversial monk who leads the radical Buddhist group Bodu Bala Sena, is front and centre of the news cycle again. He is storming into courtrooms, insulting Gov

The slow death of ‘politics as usual’?

Views - 9424 Thursday, 12 November 2015 11:04

  In the end it took only five days for the unthinkable to happen.  For the first time in recent memory, a minister of Cabinet rank was forced to tender his resignation following a massive public outcry over h

The long road from Geneva

Views - 8246 Thursday, 1 October 2015 00:05

   For two weeks, Sri Lanka has been a hot topic at the 30th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, after a report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Investigation (OHCHR) found evidence of prob

Human rights, foreign policy and the battle for Sri Lanka’s soul

Views - 11221 Thursday, 10 September 2015 00:05

   Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera     Sri Lanka's controversial human rights record comes up before the UN Human Rights Council in September, this time in the backdrop of monumental pol

The fallen king?

Views - 10634 Thursday, 27 August 2015 00:10

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa   After a double whammy of electoral defeats this year, will spoiler-in-chief be the only role left for Mahinda Rajapaksa to play on the political stage? The small village of

Battle lines drawn in Hambantota

Views - 7756 Saturday, 15 August 2015 00:00

With Rajapaksa shining less brightly in the family’s home base, Sajith Premadasa making inroads for the UNP in the district and Sirisena loyalist Mahinda Amaraweera emerging as the UPFA strongman in the area, the Hambantota race will be an i

The new political order

Views - 9134 Thursday, 6 August 2015 00:00

The post-8 January public seek more than just cosmetic changes in the body politic. They seek systemic, institutional change. They seek to reclaim the republic. Is any political party really ready to deliver?     In

Rajapaksa 2.0

Views - 10963 Thursday, 23 July 2015 00:10

    Unaccustomed to running election campaigns without State power, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa finds himself in an awkward position Sri Lanka’s blind soothsayer, Indika Thotawatte, has stru

The Darley Road rebellion

Views - 8271 Friday, 17 July 2015 00:26

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the head of the table at the SLFP’s Darley Road headquarters, flanked by the two General Secretaries of the SLFP and the UPFA     The pictures taken at the SLFP

Revolution, betrayed?

Views - 17367 Friday, 10 July 2015 00:01

 Did President Maithripala Sirisena just betray the 8 January ballot box revolution and put the lives of his ‘revolutionaries’, ranging from Buddhist monks to lawyers, academics and artistes, precariously on the line? 

Chasing Mahinda’s ghost

Views - 10472 Thursday, 25 June 2015 00:50

As President Maithripala Sirisena grows more assertive in the presidency and focuses predominantly on consolidating power within the SLFP, will he continue to allow Mahinda Rajapaksa to dictate the political agenda?    Pr

Today's Columnists

Reaping relevant results: Reflections on ‘Mind before Action’

Monday, 17 December 2018

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.

The quality of some justice

Monday, 17 December 2018

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

JVP’s task ahead

Monday, 17 December 2018

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

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

Monday, 17 December 2018

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

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