5 February, 2023

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Ballad Of A Nation’s Debility: From Bòtale (Mirigama) To 5th Lane (Kollupitiya)

By Vishwamithra

“Ultimately, it is only a powerful civil society movement which can break the vicious cycle of corruption in any society.” ~ Prashant Bhushan

Standing at back: D.S. Senanayake
seated left to right: D.C. Senanayake, Amadoris Mendis, unidentified person, F.R. Senanayake
seated on the grass in front: unidentified person, Carolis (DS Senanayakes valet in later years)

That morning the people rose to the unceasing ringing of bells. It was February 4th, 1948. Seventy four years ago, in every temple, church and in every Hindu Kovil the temple-keepers were busy, heralding a new era. An era of independence, liberty and self-governance was presumed to have dawned on Ceylon. From serfdom under the Portuguese, Dutch and the British colonial powers, Ceylon, the Teardrop of the Indian Ocean, once again rose to a breathtakingly beautiful sunrise with her wings unclipped and minds unshackled. That was seventy four years ago.  

About sixteen months before that date, on the eve of India’s Independence, towards midnight on 14 August 1947, her first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru delivered his historic “Tryst with Destiny” speech in English-language to the Indian Constituent Assembly in Parliament. Nehru articulated on the aspects that transcended many internal divisions in India. He began his oration thus: “Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially. At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom”. And India did indeed.

From Bòtale to Woodlands to Kandawela

Sixteen months later, the man who stood on the rostrum at the Independence square in Colombo 7 on that memorable day was no ‘Oxbridge’ savant. He did not possess the richness of Nehru’s English vocabulary. His education was limited to the eighth standard. But the mastery of knowledge and experience and proficiency of the local lifestyle and its inner content qualified him to lead a young democracy rooted in an ancient hydraulic civilization. His engagement in the agriculture field and its rapid development which he personally initiated during the preceding two decades as a member of both the Legislative and State Councils stood unequal among those who were credited with degrees in Oxford, Cambridge or London School of Economics. He gained preeminence in the ‘Taxila of Life’ and knew no bounds of common sense, political acumen and wisdom.

DS Senanayake hailed from Botale (pronounced like the Sinhala word for bottle), a village in Mirigama and rose to be a leader in the Temperance Movement, Ceylon National Congress and reached the summit of power as the first Prime Minister of Ceylon. His journey was not a rapid one. As a leader he always exercised supreme patience and maintained a balanced yet intrinsically radical approach to power politics. Steeped in rustic culture, DS merged his commonsensical demeanor with inborn self-confidence. As a result, he developed a quintessential sense of superiority. Yet his allegiance to what was British and colonial set him apart from those who shed those elements such as attire etc. to suit the prevailing sense of cosmetic patriotism. It was not only the ordinary folks who shivered in his presence; the rich and powerful dreaded to see him when summoned to his quarters. 

When he formed the United National Party (UNP) on the eve of Ceylon gaining Independence, his balancing of conflicting interests in the larger community of Ceylonese was vivid in his deep-down judgment of all Ceylonese men and women as equals of the same family. Being devoid of ethnic or religious discrimination of whatever degree, DS’s value as a giant persona dominated the then Ceylonese passages of power. The UNP DS Senanayake formed was founded on solid economic principles and identified agriculture as the sector that needed the greatest of attention and investments. Even his land-policies were critically significant to the people’s wellbeing and fair distribution of the country’s assets. But one glaringly flawed policy decision his government took soon after Independence was the disenfranchising of the upcountry Tamils and that blatantly discriminatory policy-adoption created a tremendous disconnect between the country’s largest minority and overwhelming numbers of Sinhalese, especially Sinhalese Buddhists. The distrust so created between the UNP and Tamils continued long after D S’s demise. 

Yet another flaw was, a manifestly regressive policy, that of nepotism. Instead of passing the baton on to the next senior man, Bandaranaike, he chose his own son Dudley and established a most injurious tradition of nepotism, the ruinous effects of which are still echoing in our political corridors. 

Dudley’s leadership qualities were yet too premature to manifest themselves openly. As a result of the fall in the rubber prices in the world market, Ceylon had to confront a major foreign exchange issue leaving the then Finance Minister JR Jayewardene proposing to withdraw the free rice rations. This caused a breakdown of law and order in the wake of the leftists NM Perera, Philip Gunwardena and the rest calling for an Island wide Hartal, forcing Prime Minister Dudley Senanayake to resign. Sir John Kotelawala became the next Prime Minister.

Kotelawala, although a new face at the helm, hailed from the same social stock and was connected to old DS by way of the Attygalle family. Sir John was the son of Alice Kotelawala (nee Attygalle) who happened to be the elder sister of FR Senanayake’s (D S’s elder brother) wife. In a previous column I wrote extensively about this so-called ‘Attygalle Inheritance’. Power has now passed from Botale to Woodlands (Dudley’s residence in Borella) to Kandawela, Sir John’s Colombo residence. 

From Kandawela to Rosmead Place to ‘Braemar’, Ward Place 

Ascension of Sir John to leadership of the UNP and consequently to Premiership in Ceylon, notwithstanding a seemingly legitimate succession story, was an incongruity in the context of the sooner-to-be-prevalent Ceylonese mindset, is remarkable, to say the least. Influence of the Attygalle Inheritance aside, real political power residing in Colombo 7 and its immediate vicinity speaks volumes to the fact that the so-called Independence gained in 1948 was largely one enjoyed and exploited exclusively by those who graduated from the Mercantile class to the new Capitalist class in the evolution of Ceylon from Feudalism to the current socioeconomic station.

Nevertheless, Bandaranaike and his grossly nationalist policies spearheaded by Sinhala-only policy and accelerated hike towards socialist economic policies in the wake of the ’56 transformation, changed not only the prevailing economic conditions, it supplanted an utterly destructive mindset on the otherwise docile and traditional one the people of Ceylon were thereto known for. The ‘entitlement syndrome’ that used to dominate the pre-independence mindset took deep root during this period and the radically adverse consequences of this singularity are being felt even today. 

Transfer of power from Kandawela to Rosmead Place, (in effect from Horagolla, Bandaranaike’s birthplace to Balangoda, Sirimavo’s birthplace) in one instance from husband to wife/widow), taken in the context of a practicing democracy, is remarkable. The psyche of serfdom of the greater majority of our people was visibly manifest in the successive election results. In other words, the plight of the nation is not only owing to the incapability, incapacity and corruption of our leaders, but also to a greater extent to the brazen nepotism and unquestioning fidelity of the voting adult.

It was against this unadulterated nepotism which was practiced by Sirimavo Bandaranaike with the intention of passing power from mother to son Anura Bandaranaike, that in 1977 JR Jayewardene launched his election campaign with the slogan ‘I have no prince to crown’ (Mata otunu palandanna kumarayek neta). The voters rejected the Bandaranaikes outright by handing JR and the UNP a five sixth majority in Parliamentary elections. J R Jayewardene was one politician against whom no critic could attach nepotism, although his younger brother HW Jayewardene, Queen’s Counsel (QC) was more than qualified to be in politics. On the other hand, it was JR who nominated R Premadasa, a full-blooded ‘Common Man’ for candidacy for President in 1988 disregarding the intentions of Gamini Dissanayake and Lalith Athulathmudali.

From Ward Place to Keselwatte and back to Rosmead Place       

R Premadasa was totally another cup of tea. Instead of directly identifying with the common man and the downtrodden segment of our population, he started rewriting his own history, portraying himself and his family pedigree as hailing from a different caste sect. Today’s Sri Lanka does not recognize caste as a classification for purposes of distribution of power, wealth and respect. Such rude and obscene classifications belonged to an age gone by. Yet Premadasa’s obsession with this element of sociocultural makeup had penetrated into his being and his behavior after assuming the office of Presidency was more or less dictated by that inferiority feeling he obviously experienced. It was indeed tragic.  

But Premadasa’s contributions to the sustenance of the country’s economic boom and alleviation of poverty through his 100 garment factory program bore fruit and the poor man identified himself with him although he did not return the favor. That may be why some, especially those who hailed from the downtrodden classes, resorted to the most despicable act of lighting crackers at the news that he was assassinated by an LTTE assassin. 

After the assassination of Premadasa, Gamini Dissanayake was nominated as the UNP’s Presidential candidate and he too became a victim of Prabhakaran’s assassination squad. With the demise of Gamini, the UNP’s fate was sealed- game, set and match! Ranil Wickremesinghe’s rise to leadership of the UNP signaled the oncoming cascade of failure after failure. He lost more than twenty five (25) elections that included some local government elections too. But at the helm of the country was Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, arguably the second worst President in our history, second only to the Rajapaksa-combine.

From Rosmead Place to Meda Mulana (Beliatte) to Fifth Lane

Against many a pundit’s advice but bowing down to the cantankerous cabal of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Chandrika had to accommodate Mahinda Rajapaksa as her Prime Minister. When Tsunami hit the Island, while the whole of Sri Lanka was wailing, there was one family that enjoyed the byproducts of this great natural disaster. That was the Rajapaksa’s family. Via the ‘Helping Hambantota’ project, Mahinda managed to learn the fine art of scavenging- playing out public funds. A saga of unrestrained corruption, naked nepotism and public dishonesty began to unfold. 

I do not wish to labor much on the current sociopolitical conditions as I have written many a column on this particular subject recently and I’m sure it must be still fresh in the reader’s mind. However, the demise of Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s powers and the unexpected rise of Ranil Wickremesinghe deserve a couple sentences. The wheel has turned again and after seventy four years, through the wailing of the majority and for the joy of the Colombo 7 pukka sahibs, Ranil Wickremasinghe, one time traitor and other times lotus-eater of Sri Lanka’s politics has ascended to the throne. And his first act was to manhandle and imprison the protesters who were clamoring for a system change.             

Nearly a quarter century has passed since the establishment of an independent Sri Lankan governance process. Many politicians including Prime Ministers, Ministers, Governor Generals and even Presidents have held their reign over an unsuspecting citizenry in respective times. While some have failed miserably in the execution of their office and discharge of the responsibilities, some select few engaged willfully in deliberate deception, consummate corruption and nefarious nepotism. Both the Rajapaksa siblings and Ranil Wickremesinghe fall into the second category. The country’s power has not really travelled on a linear line; it has merely going around a circle. For the time being it’s residing on the Fifth (5th) Lane. The chief occupant of the Fifth Lane residence is the ‘Joker’ of the Pack- Ranil Wickremesinghe, the unelected President.

The Royalists and Thomians (DS, Dudley and SWRD) have done hardly anything, except perhaps SWRD, who began an utterly destructive policy-implementation on ‘Sinhala Only’ Act, thereby deprived the majority of Sinhalese of a worthy English education. In addition, his pseudo ‘place under the sun’ for the ‘Common Man’ has done irreversible damage to the profession of politics whereby he encouraged the uneducated and unwise to enter into politics and desecrate a noble enterprise- politics. The man from Issipathana (Mahinda) taught others how to corrupt a system and the only Anandian (Gotabaya) deserted his office for the second time (first time was when he ran away from the Army), paving the way for another traitor of ‘Royal’ kind. The ‘Common Man’ (R Premadasa) who pretended that he studied at St Joseph’s but in actual fact was a student at St. Lawrence College, Maradana debased the office of Presidency by introducing a ‘thug culture’ into politics.   

Yaso Hami in the rural country, Mohideen in the distant East and Natarajah in Jaffna are still waiting for the dawn of a new beginning. Their hopes and aspirations had had their cycle of occurrence. What was visibly real in April, May, June and July of this year has evaporated into thin air. That same air is now saturated with exhaling sighs of curse and dry tears; their cheeks and lips are parched and tongues locked; their collective life is beginning to settle down to an ominous breather. The Galleface Green has lost its charm and beauty without the Aragalakaruwos. Yaso Hami, Mohideen and Natarajah, all three, living in the parched and desolate arid zone, are silhouetted against the darkening, dimming skies, not yet bereft of hope. Every which way they look, they figure, it’s time they started dreaming again.

*The writer can be contacted at vishwamithra1984@gmail.com      

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Latest comments

  • 9
    5

    I only have this to say ” nice picture, especially the guy smoking pipe” , only the glass in hand is missing”. (sure it’s not SWRD ???)

    • 10
      1

      That picture unforgettably adorns a book cover:
      .
      https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/235163.Nobodies_to_Somebodies
      .
      Compulsory reading, chiv.
      .
      Also await Rajan Hoole’s new book.

      • 10
        1

        One slip, dear Vishwamithra;
        .
        I don’t think that Mahinda R. was at Issipathana (then Greenlands College). Substitute Thurstan, then you’ll be right. He was in two schools before that: Richmond, and Nalanda. It’s not a serious mistake; I haven’t bothered to check (with e.g. Wikipedia). But if that order is correct, it’s a bit odd. He’s gravitated from very prestigious to less prestigious schools. Richmond was the best Methodist school, perhaps the best school in the country. This scholar was a product:
        .
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._F._C._Ludowyk
        .
        On a more personal note, my father,David Nicholas de Alwis Edirisinhe, also studied there, just a few years junior to Ludo. He became a good teacher, but nothing as distinguished as Ludo.
        .
        My maternal great-grandfather worked at Richmond for 49 years:            Charles Edward Wikramanayake ( 1843-1936)
        Affectionately called the “Grandfather of Richmond College Galle”, He was the Head Teacher of the Boys Anglo Vernacular School (1876 — 1916)

      • 6
        0

        Thank you for the reminder, S_M.

        Incidentally, Kumari captioned that photo:
        ‘The “Nobodies’ of the temperance movement, pictured informally’.

        I have personal memories of Botale, not really relevant here but might be of interest to ‘somebody’ or even to a ‘nobody’ — &, oddly enough, there’s even a link with another ‘nobody’ who became a ‘somebody’ but, as they say, ‘heavy is the head that wears the crown,’ & some collapse under its weight.

        It’s a toss-up now between

        • 3
          0

          It’s a toss-up now between being an N or an S.

    • 5
      1

      If one read the caption, there would have been even fewer words to say.

  • 5
    0

    DS was also called “Kele John”, for his explorations of the jungle in search of locations for colonies. I have driven by the Botale Walauwa and recall seeing a mausoleum/tomb near the gate. I belive the ashes of DS and Dudley are entombed there.

    • 6
      2

      “His engagement in the agriculture field and its rapid development which he personally initiated during the preceding two decades as a member of both the Legislative and State Councils stood unequal among those who were credited with degrees in Oxford, Cambridge or London School of Economics.”
      Pardon me, dear Vishwamitra, but is that really what you wanted to say?

  • 24
    5

    Not only did DS Senanayake and his government make one million Indian-origin estate Tamils, who had lived on the island for generations and then earned most of the foreign exchange stateless, but he was also the one who spearheaded the colonisation of ancient historic Tamil areas, with outside Sinhalese and then renaming or changing the original Tamil place name to Sinhalese. The Gal oya colonisation scheme in Amparai. The original Tamil name Pattipalai Aru was renamed Galoya and Tamil Amparai Sinhalised to Ampara. The beginning of the rot. Of depriving the Tamils of their lands, language and everything. Oh lastly, there are far more Nadarajahs and Sivans in the east and these people are the original population of the east and more representative, than South Indian origin Tamil Muslims, Mohideens and Mohammeds who only arrived in the east a few centuries ago as refugees., However certain interested parties are now ganging up together and at a drop of a hat are trying to portray the ancient Tamil Hindu east as Muslim land, Strange when 72% of the island’s Mohideens and Mohammeds live in the Sinhalese south. The Sinhalese only act may have deprived the vast majority of English education but only but it deprived the island’s Tamils of everything and marginalised them.

  • 5
    0

    Great analysis that gives context.Thank you author.

    In contemporary terms who backed whom and how will the voting play out as the election draws near ?
    The leadership voice is as always don,t dare tell us what to do just keep giving the money!!!
    Will Basils vist to the US help him, or will turn fowl?

    California here we come.

    • 3
      0

      History of a country is the history of the kings. Why you give such prominence to the village they were born or the prestigious schools they studied.

      History of a country is the history of the people who inhabit and it is the society that creates the leaders and people deserve the leaders they get!.
      The system that elects and vacillate the leaders

      Think about a total systemic change !

    • 0
      0

      Sorry –…foul

  • 7
    0

    At the risk of being shouted down for bringing irrelevancies to a CT discussion, might I draw attention to a temple — with fascinating murals – that cries out to a recently-returned ‘somebody’ > ‘nobody’ who might return to ‘somebody’ (though I sincerely hope not): the Botale Gothabhaya Rajamaha Viharaya. At least, that was how we transcribed the name when documenting it 40 years ago.

    At that time, the murals were dated to the early 1930s & are especially fascinating for their ‘surrealist’ hell fire scenes. A book on the rock & wall paintings of Sri Lanka (1986), the product of those documenting days, has some excellent, if horrible, reproductions of the Pretalokaya & the Asura nikaya. But not all the murals are of this type; there are also delightful scenes from the Vessantara & Dahamsonda Jatakas (see book).

    I just found a 4 min video on line showing the temple & the frescoes, though it doesn’t have as good a repro of the hell fire scenes as the book. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OKrz69iGtP8&list=PLjqgOQaRFDiCaA7i9iH-HNqa37Z6qODAC&index=37

    I wonder how the temple came to be called ‘Gothabhaya’ – anything to do with hell fire?

  • 6
    2

    Why can’t we have separate states for north and the East and have central govnt overall, let us have our own education system, law and order….
    Give it for 10 yrs period for trial

    Why are we being dragged on to this,look at the plight,we being chased away, discrimination violent

    Still no arrest but given VIP treatment ,even the minister clearly said he will be protected, but they after the Aragalaya, soon gas and fuel available without waiting everything will be forgotten.

  • 4
    1

    What is the use of analysing the past ……… if now ……. is where it has got us to?

    Past , present or future ……… what we need is one mighty blood-bath ……… a river of blood.

    A river of blood to wash away the sins of the past.

    Native won’t agree …… he faints at the sight of blood.

    Truth needs no agreement ……. it stands alone …….. without canvassing for votes …………..

  • 4
    3

    Lot of people criticising our Hon prez dont have mandate,but actually soon you get into poor_liment you are free with huge packages houses cars VIP status along with diplomatic passports have your husbands/waives as your secretary afford to send your children to persuade any studies to abroad,
    Even this doctor woman as a MP she state she would resign and give way for failed army and prez, I wonder what do the people who elected her thinks or opinion
    People are fleeing, even served prez has to fled what a mother Lanka

  • 10
    2

    Vishvamitra surely could have mentioned that the real reason for the disenfranchisement of the Up-Country Tamils is at wherever there was no CWC candidate they had voted in droves for left candidates. (Uva, Sabaragamuwa Southern Provinceand Kalutara District). I can’t remember the candidates and voting details.
    Kuar D

    • 5
      0

      That is part of the picture.
      But DSS had made up his mind much earlier I suspect.
      The Kandyan Sinhalese elite wanted stronger representation in parliament and the Hill Country Tamils were an obstacle.
      Also the vote of the plantation workers was not guided by strong political awareness. There was a leadership hierarchy with the kangani quite high in the ladder and very influential.
      The LSSP fared well in parts of Badulla and Matale where the plantation worker was less isolated.
      *
      Now what did the LSSP do in turn to fight for the Hill Country Tamils who were supportive? Once the vote bank dried up the LSSP lost interest.

  • 13
    0

    My sincere apologies for a factual inaccuracy in the above column: Mahinda Rajapaksa was not an Issipathanite. He was Thurstanite.

  • 6
    3

    The evolution of political leadership from D.S. Senanayake to Ranil Wickremasinghe – when considered in terms of rootedness among the people, ability to inspire and mobilize the ordinary Sri Lankans, ability to communicate and relate to everyday people, being a team builder, public speaking skills, and finally the X factor, Charisma – is like going from an elephant to a mosquito. But to give some credit to the man, Ranil has a sense of humour which tickles him more than tickling others, has read a helluva lot of great books but has never written an article discussing them, and has many influential friends in the West for whom he’s just another little brown man looking for help.

  • 14
    0

    ‘Sinhala only’ act affected not only the Tamils but also the Singhalese by depriving them of chances to excel in English which was a gateway to thrive in the whole wide world. English would have acted as a LINK language between the Tamil and Singhalese. This would have led to good understanding between the two races and prevented misunderstandings. We have over the 7 decades been in self destruction mode. It is time for the YOUNG GENERATION to lead the country and DO THE RIGHT THINGS in order to get US out of the MAFIA type of Government that is stiffling /preventing the SYSTEM CHANGE/ SYSTEMIC CHANGE/ PARADIGM SHIFT. God save Lanka.

  • 10
    3

    Did this Eagle ‘blind’ Eye bugger kick the bucket or something? I have not seen any of his stupidity around here for sometime.

    • 2
      3

      Pls
      CT gives update of Eagle eye he is so contributing and patriotic but he should be eager eye

  • 9
    2

    To my knowledge, 1948 was the only year the people in Jaffna and Batticaloa celebrated the independence.I was a student at Manipay Memorial English school at that time and some students including me represented our school at the celebrations held at Victoria College in Chulipuram, one of the four senior state run colleges in the Northern Province. That was the first and the last celebration ever held in Jaffna and other Tamil areas as a national event.
    Tamils from then on started losing their sense of freedom from thinking, movement, social equity and so on giving rise to political Buddhism and paving way for power politics which is the root cause for the current calamity.

    • 8
      4

      Rajeswaran the country is now in this sad bankrupt state due to the policies and selfish racist opportunistic behaviour of all southern politicians and most of their elite from the time of independence and it looks like this nasty opportunistic racist selfish behaviour is going to continue, despite the fact that even their own precious Chingkalla people are now starving and suffering, let alone the Thamizh, whom they started to harass and torment from the time of independence. Yet they still write praises about them and say how wonderful they were. The north and east must separate and go our own way and get out this mess

      • 5
        6

        “The north and east must separate and go our own way and get out this mess”
        Piglet, the way things are, if they go separate they will also go separate ways.

    • 4
      6

      “That was the first and the last celebration ever held in Jaffna and other Tamil areas as a national event.”
      What was the reason if it seems some kind of an avoidance? They had Tamil ministers in key positions up to 1956.
      Was it celebrated across the island in grand fashion after the year of independence?
      *
      Decision not to observe the occasion was by the FP in 1957. The FP even hoisted black flags.
      The Left was even more negative about ‘Independence of 1948’ until then.

    • 2
      1

      Mr. Rajeswaran, do you remember A 40 cars, Raleigh bicycles, 3 Roses cigarettes, the colonial hat, Eveready torchlight, Henley shirts, Parker pens, Quink, HMV radio, The Times of Ceylon, Dreadnought box of instruments, Palabodhini, Ambulimama, Tarzan comics, AM Raja-Leela songs, thodampala inippu and Bubble Gum? How simple life was then … …

      • 0
        0

        ASD,
        “How simple life was then … …”
        Not really. You should have tried to open a current account, or cash a cheque, get a telephone. Or try to get a passport from Trincomalee or Galle.

  • 2
    10

    PR the cause of political Buddhism rising is much deeper. Centuries of Tamil invasions have made the Sinhalese Buddhists fear and mistrust the Tamils. Despite the Tamils being a minority in SL they are viewed as a gigantic majority with Tamilnad being just 50 miles away. Over the centuries Buddhism and the Sinhalese race have become symbiotic in the Sinhala psyche, each one depending on the other for survival. A very sad state of affairs given the Indian roots of both the Sinhalese and Buddhism.

    • 14
      1

      “Centuries of Tamil invasions”
      Can we have a short chronology?
      The Theravada Buddhist leaders were more hostile to Mahayana Buddhists than to Tamils even after Chola invasion of Anuradhapura.
      Most of the South Indian ‘invasions’ were by mercenaries (velaikara armies) on invitation by rivals. (Many good Sinhalese are perhaps descendants of the mercenaries.)

      • 8
        0

        (Many good Sinhalese are perhaps descendants of the mercenaries.)

        That is why their descendants must go back to their motherland. When they go they also must take their Tamil brethren with them, initially of course the most pain in the a.. types.

        • 2
          5

          “the most pain in the a.. types”
          Have you packed your bag? Remember the ball.

          • 6
            0

            SJ

            “Remember the ball.”

            Yes, I believe you have it between your legs.

            • 1
              5

              I have my pair in pretty good shape, so I can assure that I have no use for any that you may have lost– including your glass ball.
              You may approach one of two professions: the Police and the medical— beware of the quacks writing to CT.

              • 3
                0

                These two geeky guys are really getting down to the nuts and bolts.

      • 6
        0

        SJ,
        “The Theravada Buddhist leaders were more hostile to Mahayana Buddhists than to Tamils”
        They still are. Hindu temples are allowed, but not Mahayana ones. This is another forbidden topic, like child ordination and the provenance of a certain relic.

    • 6
      0

      Svenson

      “Centuries of Tamil invasions have made the Sinhalese Buddhists fear and mistrust the Tamils.”

      Are you real?, Have you ever checked your reality?

      Those Sinhala/Buddhists are the descendants of the Tamils now converted to Sinhala/Buddhism and call themselves the great patriots, are the trouble makers, including all the front line bigots and racists, most of the saffron brigades, ……. JR, Banda, Sangili Karuppan, …..

      Aren’t you one of them?

      BTW Tamil Nadu is only 20 miles away.

  • 7
    2

    Blame the Indian king Ashokan forced the Buddisam to wrong people all over
    He may be fascinated, but it’s like put the car engine in to the plane and try to fly
    Mahasangam told dont kill the cobra instead kill the Tamil first
    Sadu sadu sadu
    Good Gota haven’t build the chambers he knows very well will run out of gas
    Not like his brother build an air port not.for a single plane

    • 1
      0

      C
      The first generation aircraft had engines functionally akin to a car engine.

      • 2
        0

        SJ,
        You beat me to it. Some car engines can fly.
        https://youtu.be/hFy9-ZExFoU

        • 8
          0

          old codger

          Don’t you think at this age SJ should stick to teaching mechanical engineering and leave politics and economics to younger readership who has completely different experience and perspective about this island.

          He is like his leaders Mahinda, Sirimao, Mao, is … refusing to gracefully retire.

          • 2
            2

            So desperate to see SJ off!
            Did not the glass ball say that the person to write is Editor CT and one should request blacklisting? Did not the bearer polish it?
            However, I should warm against the risk of its boomeranging.

  • 5
    1

    S
    I have no problem with agreeing with some of the history …….and I say some because the Singhalese also arrived here.The races get on quite well most of the time and some, always. The issue is what are the politicians up to and is this a game on both sides by them ??? The first people to tell me this first were drivers ! Its common knowledge.

    But come election time race and religion is music to the ear. Of course sitting leaders making more money than the opposition.
    Sometimes a bomb here and there helps and you hear crackers on victory.

  • 2
    2

    Pls
    CT gives update of Eagle eye he is so contributing and patriotic but he should be eager eye

    • 6
      0

      cugan

      You are right, we need a clown or a villain to entertain us.
      We are running out of clowns, most of them are aging.
      Bring back all our patriotic clowns.

      • 5
        0

        Native,
        “We are running out of clowns”. Punchi Point, Jester…. Perhaps they were all Rajapaksa employees?
        But isn’t N Perera a new apprentice?

        • 7
          0

          old codger

          N Perera is around at least for 2 1/2 years.
          He is a run of the mill Rajapaksa clown.
          Harmless and brainless, in fact I don’t mind sharing a pipe with him.

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