2 June, 2023


Defenders Of The UNHRC Resolution Or Defenders Of The Oppressed?

By Ranjith C. Perera

Ranjith C. Perera

Thanks Dr. Laksiri Fernando bringing into the focus again the article on oppressors and oppressed. Yes, in the first article instead of UNHRC inadvertently was included UNCHR. However it have been corrected later on. Coming to your article I fail to understand how an article ‘written with a colonial mindset’ when its theme is on oppression of people. You have missed the main theme of the article. It talks for the oppressed against the oppressors everywhere in the world. The plea was to redefine the word ‘sovereignty’ in favour of the oppressed not of the oppressors as it stands now. That is why the article began by saying “Most countries when confronted with human right violations in their countries they hide behind the ‘sovereignty’ principle of the UNHRC.” 

Therefore international organization should not allow rulers to misuse the word ‘sovereignty’. On the other hand Human Right violations should not be regarded as ‘internal matter’ of any country, but should be considered as a “universal matter’. Otherwise what is the point of having an international organization like UNHRC if any country could use the term ‘internal matter’ as a shield. If a country is violating human rights and the oppressed do not have any other mean to fight against them without resorting to violence why shouldn’t they bring them to the notice of international organizations. It has to be reminded that it is the present rulers of this country who showed to Sri Lankan people the path to Geneva in 1970s as they thought there are human right violations by the then government. Wasn’t it’s a case of seeking the assistance of colonial powers then or as Dr. Laksiri says with a ‘colonial mindset’? Why this double standard? 

Dr. Laksiri says that writer is ‘allergic’ to present government and 20th amendment of the constitution. May I remind that it was the prominent members of the clergy, who openly fought to bring the present government to power, vehemently opposed publicly against the 20th amendment of the constitution. Some members of the government also initially supported that move. It is anybody’s guess what happened to those opposition. I do not think any sane person could support the 20th amendment ‘lock, stock and barrel’. It is not a question of ‘Allergy’ It is a question of ‘Sanity’.     

The appointment of military personnel to civil administration is another issue UNHRC has brought out. The president himself criticized such an officer appointed by himself saying to the effect that officer has not doing his duty properly. Very recently another military personnel appointed as a secretary to a ministry was removed according to reports on the request of the particular minister as he had found the secretary is not competent to handle the ministry functions. However nobody can approve such appointments when there is a specially trained and experienced set of Administrative Officers in the country. In one way it is a violation of human rights of the young people who aspire to be in that service and also a violation of human rights of the officers presently in that service, vis a vis to their career development.    

Thus the prominent charges included in the UNHRC report other than the civil war cannot just be overlooked as minor matters. They are in fact relates to human rights either generally of the people of Sri Lank or of specific group of people. It is unfair to say the charges framed on such issues as some put it as just ‘hear says’, because the reports are not prepared by one person but there are working groups of specialist in each subject area who collect information, analyze, discuss with others before submitting the reports to relevant authorities.   

One prominent plea in the article was not to enforce sanctions or restrictions for the country as a whole or for the oppressed, if there are human right violations. Sri Lankans can remember during the regime of the present rulers’ in their previous ‘incarnation’ (before 2015) how many people lost their livelihood and faced all kinds of hardships due to some sanctions like GSP+ removal which had been enforced on human right violations. Why should people suffer due to the in capabilities or indifferences of rulers vis a vis the general public. Let the violators of human rights face the music. Is that request unfair? Or bizarre as Dr. Laksiri puts it? 

As mentioned above the article may be ‘idealistic’ but was aimed at the need for a redefinition of the word ‘sovereignty’ to accommodate the real human rights issues of oppressed not of the oppressors. These oppressions very often are visible in Asia, Africa and Latin American countries. The countries in these regions do not have proper mechanisms to fight against oppressors as in the so called colonial countries. Because either the necessary mechanisms  are just not there or they have been suppressed by the oppressors. Lastly I like to state Dr. Laksiri that I too have as much as you have the freedom to express ones views. Because it is a fundamental human right. May I say, in the political arena or is it political wilderness, everything ultimately boils down to human rights.   

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Latest comments

  • 9

    Ranjith C. Perera, Sir,
    Your gentle push is not going to persuade Laksiri Fernando refrain from more of the same rubbish he is so fond of dishing out. I hope that he proves me wrong!

    • 2

      When you can’t fight against oppressors, terrorism starts against the oppressors.

  • 7

    Ranjith C P, “These oppressions very often are visible in Asia, Africa and Latin American countries. The countries in these regions do not have proper mechanisms to fight against oppressors as in the so called colonial countries. Because either the necessary mechanisms are just not there or they have been suppressed by the oppressors”
    True and 100%. Why look elsewhere, try to reason as to,
    1 Why SLPP wanted 2/3rd majority and
    2. Dismantled independent commissions, by the 20th amendment
    3. Ability to dismissal of Cabinet Ministers w/o PM consent
    4. Dismissal of PM
    as claimed by the leaders, because they do not want to waste time in providing probity and they “claim” to loose time in court cases with no progress.
    So we are not different to any other African country in Timbuctoo

  • 4

    Everything is appearing perfect. Very correct explanations and intellectually well formed ideas of what should be the Sovereignty and Human Rights. Time for all to leave Laksiri Fernando Class or UOJ Saddampy class behind and go forward to inform people the right path. Mainly Buddhist Sinhalese contribution to the democracy and Law Order is needed now. We wrote here many times the common emery here is Aanduwas and the paid coolies of these Aanduwas. Because Aanduwas has modified all election laws to enable them only come to power, here external forces intervention needs is imperative. UNHRC should focus on HC’s report. Buddhist Sinhalese have to contribute that to happen. Many writers like RCP have to take the arm (,the pen). on their hands.

  • 1

    These 2 errors need change. ‘path to Geneva is not 1970s as written but it has to be 1980s. Small grammatical error’ It have been corrected’ has to be ‘it has been….’

  • 5

    Dear Author,
    Thanks for your response to Dr. Laksiri. He has lost his credibility when he blamed a Human Right Commissioner as bribed by UK. It was a serious crime accusing a public official without any evidence or Proof. His anger is not about Sri Lanka but it is about Rajapaksas.

  • 4

    Dear Ranjith, people like Laksiri, Rusiri and late Rajiva are here as propagandist for the oppressors. I am told they were one time freelancers, but now turned freeloaders. Rajiva within days after Easter tragedy penned an article blaming the whole Muslim Community, there by urging hatred and violence against the community. Rusiri distorts and at times full of blatant lies. Recently he wrote an article justifying the wrongs as though he had read the whole report of the commission on Easter tragedy. Its obvious no one including AG had full access to report. Laksiri instead of outright lying , tends to give excuses and hide behind such terms as sovereignty and constitution.

  • 2

    Now that the Rajapaksas are back in power, Laksiri is campaigning for the re-award of the PhD to Mahinda by the University of Colombo.

    • 3


      I don’t know from where are you coming with that talk. Two days ago, in a village meeting, King said he did enough killing to get the first PhD and now working for his 2nd one. Karumam!

      Comedy Thamai.

  • 1

    Dear Ranjith C. Perera,
    Thank you for having had the courage for going through with this very necessary response to the threats that you predictably faced when you published your first article on the 26th of February. I wrote out my enthusiastic response to that article before I could see what others seeing it were going to say.
    This time I have taken a little time and carefully digested your very necessary but courageous words. Today I received a warning from a sincere friend. A year ago, he used to tell me that my many comments were ineffective but safe to make if I got satisfaction saying things.
    He did not ask me to stop writing. However, he said that we will see no change in our lifetime, but now it’s getting dangerous. He gave credible reasons. You and I are both taking risks by writing; thanks for having the courage to do so, because I’m sure that you wrote only when you saw that it had got necessary for future generations. We may fail miserably, and not be remembered by anybody. Tyranny may flourish for ever.
    Now for my message to Laksiri.

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