19 November, 2017

Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Politics?

By Latheef Farook

Latheef Farook

SLMC abandoned Muslims for positions and perks; Isn’t it time for Muslims to reassess their politics?

Spate of latest scandals involving Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) parliamentarians and its leadership demand that the Muslim community should reassess their politics and free itself from this party which, many accuse, betrayed the community for positions and perks .

The SLMC came with the slogan of Islam and Unity. However this slogan was abandoned  since inception. Throughout it has been a one man show of its founder Late M.H.M. Ashraff, and has been known for scandals.

History of SLMC has been history of compromising community interest for positions, scandals and corruption. The latest spate of scandals involving SLMC parliamentarians and its leadership show the lowest moral depth to which they have descended to.

It is difficult to understand by what yardstick they claim themselves as Muslims.

They have caused immeasurable damage to the image of the community. The emerging consensus is the increasing support to wind up this party as early as possible.

I had highlighted these scandals in many of my articles. In my book” Nobody’s People-The Forgotten Plight of Sri Lanka’s Muslims” I stated as follows ten years ago;

“Muslims were fed up with their SLMC politicians known for autocratic leadership, allegations of corruption and opportunism, greed for power and positions, factional fighting, sex scandals and the tendency to betray their own colleagues for positions

The general feeling among the Muslims, especially among professionals, intellectuals, religious scholars and even businessmen and others, is that the SLMC has let down the community.

Muslims did not want a separate political party. However Sinhala leaderships’ indifference pushed them for a party to have a platform of their own to raise their issues.

For example since early 1980s, the Muslim community was deeply disappointed with the then UNP government. They were longing for a forum to voice their grievances especially on issues affecting the very survival of the Muslim community.

For example, in the aftermath of the 1983 anti-Tamil riots, President Jayewardene openly insulted Muslim politicians and the community when he told them that they could leave the government if they did not agree with him to establish an Israeli interest section in the United States Embassy in Colombo.

Thus Jayewardene’s arrogant dismissal of Muslims, overall disappointment with UNP, atrocities of Tamil militancy, Indian manipulations in local politics and Ashraff’s political ambitions ended up with the establishment of SLMC.

However many Muslims advised him to confine the party to the east and not to make it an island-wide one. They warned that such an island-wide Muslim party could harm traditional good relations between the Sinhalese and the Muslims in the rest of the country.

However exploiting the mood of the community Ashraff started the SLMC.

Then Prime Minister Chandrika Kumaratunga formed the UPFA Government, with SLMC support, providing the SLMC with an unprecedented bargaining power and influence that was not to the liking of especially the hardliners in the majority community.

In his hour of glory, Ashraff failed to read the mood of the majority community. His irresponsible utterances such as his claim that the “SLMC has emerged as the kingmaker and without its support the government could not be formed” angered both Sinhalese and Muslims alike.

His Digavapi land issue and unwanted public debate with Ven Soma Thero created Sinhala animosity towards Muslim community which bitterly opposed and detested Ashraff on these issues.

Unfortunately ego resounded from this thinking made him blind to the realities around him. Those who were close to him accused him of inaccessibility, arrogance and ill-treatment. There were even allegations that he treated his own supporters who helped him climb the political ladder very shabbily. This led to large number of senior members starting to distance themselves from the party.

“Ashraff’s policy of exploiting Islam as a weapon to enhance his personal political agenda damaged the image of the Muslim community in the eyes of other communities.

In the midst, in the most unexpected moment, Ashraff was killed together with eleven others in a helicopter crash in September 2002 near Uragala jungle, adjacent to the central hill town of Mawanella.

His death triggered leadership struggle between Rauf Hakeem who was not a founder of SLMC and Ashraf’s wife Ferial which subsequently led to numerous splinter groups.

The Sinhala leadership picked up one group to provide ministerial portfolios and related perks to put them against the other. The result has been endless splinter groups of sell outs who were only interested in positions, perks and accused of amassing wealth.

This struggle for position, power and perks was not based on the interest of the community but purely on personal interests. These Muslim parliamentarians joined the government as individuals and small groups. They negotiated, before joining the government, not as a bloc but as individuals and groups and got what they wanted: ministerial portfolios and the associated perks.

In the process Sinhala leaderships came to know that they could  manipulate side-line and make the community voiceless. In fact this is exactly what is happening now.

Early this month former President Chandrika Kumaratunga told a group of Muslims that Muslim parliamentarians failed to raise important issues such as education, jobs, land problem, resettlement and all other such issues affecting the community.

Muslim parliamentarians in the government need to raise Muslim issues with one voice and draw the attention of the government to bring about a peaceful solution. Such a joint effort would attract the attention of the government that needed the support of these parliamentarians for its own survival. But unfortunately these Muslim ministers opted to remain silent angering and insulting the community.

For example in the August 2016 elections more than 95 percent of the Muslims voted for United National Party and brought it to power which lost more than two dozen elections. However the UNP led government abandoned the community and started rolling red carpet to Israel, sworn enemy of Islam and Muslims, who have turned the Middle East into a killing field.

Israelis who called Sri Lankan as “Monkey looking people” are here not because they love Sri Lanka but as part of   their global agenda. They would pit Sinhalese and Tamils against Muslims and even Muslims against Muslims. The SLMC is constituent party of the government. Did they speak a word about Israeli presence here? Perhaps that is not their agenda.

On the other hand heated debate is underway for a new constitution for the country. Isn’t it the   responsibility of SLMC to take every possible step to ensure the rights of Muslims too guaranteed in the new constitution?

The efforts of many Muslim individuals and organizations to bring these Muslim parliamentarians together to jointly take some measures to deal with issues that threatened the livelihood of Muslims proved futile.

It was under such circumstance about four years ago eighteen national organisations got together and formed the National Shore Council which is striving to establish better ties with other communities while helping the community to deal with various issues.

The unanswered question is “what are these Muslim parliamentarians doing? Whom are they working for?”

Speaking out on behalf of the community and still remaining in the government is a difficult task in this highly commercialized, criminalized and corrupted political environment. Thus they prefer to abandon the community rather than antagonising Sinhala leadership. As a result Muslims have lost their confidence in the SLMC’s ability to protect their interests.

The SLMC   not only failed to make its own contributions on national issues but also separated the Muslims from national parties all of which ignore the Muslim community. As a result Muslim community is left out in almost every important policy debate.

This is the sorry state of affairs that Muslim politicians have brought upon Muslim community especially at a time when extremely hostile local and international forces are here in the island, hell-bent on implementing their evil agendas against Muslim community.

Need of the hour is for Muslims to join national parties and it is up to national party leaderships to absorb the Muslims into the mainstream politics if they are sincere. Under the circumstance the only option for Muslims is for civil society to play a key role to safeguard the rights and interest of the community.

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Latest comments

  • 15
    1

    Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Politics?

    Yes, it is high time they did it.

    But, the sad part is they don’t have a genuine leader with with vision, integrity or determination to rally the Muslim masses to a purposeful goal.

    • 5
      13

      Tamils have the most reliable leadership, perhaps the Muslims should join force in civic matters.

      • 11
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        Ceylonese , which “Tamil Leadership”are u referring to.Is it 1) TNA Sampanthan Faction,2) TNA Sivagilingam faction,3) LTTE / TGTE faction 4) Karuna Faction,5)Douglas Devananda Faction,5) Pilliyan Faction or 6) The Cheif Minister Wigneswaran Faction?The Tamil community is the most splintered minority thanks to one man: Karavan Vellupillai Pirbhakaran.Surely he must rot for the untold misery he heaped on us Tamils. And you are taking about a “Tamil Leadership”!!!

        • 1
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          Are the above mentioned people any better than the current Sinhalese? The last regime sold the country in debt for a few generations to the Chinese. Just like the current one to the WB/IMF.

    • 15
      17

      Latheef Farook asks:

      “Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Politics?”

      Isn’t it time for Sri Lankan Muslims to build their own Caliphate and elect their Caliph?

      I suggest the people elect Latheef Farook or Izeth Hussain as the the first Caliph of Islamic Republic of Kattankudy.

      • 6
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        Saudi Arabia is bankrupt. For the first time in recent years, they have applied for a loan from IMF. If Arabs do not want to import tea if Srilanka supports Israel, then they can very well do so and start drinking petrol. Myth of Arab prosperity is being blown off largely due to foolish Arabs like Gadaffi and Sadham Hussein who tried to challenge western supremacy in petrol and finance.

        Late Ashraf insulted Buddha and was blown to pieces. The same fate will befall any Muslim including Allah. Only concession given to Muslims by the Sinhalese is to attack Tamils and nothing more. If they try to be funny, they will get the works, which other than a few stupid Muslims, rest know. Best thing for Muslims is either to convert to Buddhism or migrate to a Muslim majority country.

        • 8
          5

          Al-faqurlah

          “Best thing for Muslims is either to convert to Buddhism or migrate to a Muslim majority country.”

          We have heard about pristine Buddhism. We have seen/experienced practical Buddhism. We have also witnessed the destruction brought by political Sinhala/Buddhism.

          Now we hear about the Buddhist Restorationism or Primitivism, a sort of Buddhist version of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

          Thanks for your introduction.

          Please go back to Sarnath.

        • 2
          1

          Al-faqurlah

          Saudi Arabia is bankrupt because they have asked for a loan from IMF for the first time.This itself indicate how strong Saudi is. US is sinking in commercial borrowing.The way you under the guise of some Arab name insult Muslims and Islam Muslims would not venture in to ridicule Buddhism or any other religion. Your Buddhism started 2500 years ago. New version of Islam started 1400 years ago. What is your number and what is Muslims number. What ever the obstacles put across by what ever powers in another 100 years Islam will rule the world. Just check in the google for the fastest growing religion in the west and the world over you will get answers. Sins committed by Muslims are not taking liquor, females covering their body and so on. People like you are helping the growth of Muslims by totally illogical filthy attacks on Islam and Muslims.

          • 1
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            Reader Citizen, obviously a good Muslim, claims “New version of Islam started 1400 years ago..” Please educate us when the old Islam started, by whom/where and what happened to it until
            Mohamed, the warrior and merchant, copied Christianity and made it Islam – 700 years after Christ.

            Leslie Mostley

            • 2
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              Leslie Mostley

              Islam started with 1st man Adam.Allah is the only god is the 1st part of belief. Second part changed with hundreds of thousands messengers and prophets who came from the time of Adam. Muslims have to believe in Adam, Eva, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Jesus and all other prophets to be a Muslim.

      • 0
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        Native Vedda,

        Bad news for our present Muslims you name in their sustained anti-Israeli campaign. PM Netanyahu in the White House today said
        it is the first time in his life leading countries in the Islamic Sunni/Shia world want to be Israel’s allies – whereas they were sworn enemies until now calling for the destruction of the State of Israel. The dynamics in Middle East politics is fastly changing.

        Will our Muslim lay preachers that you name learn the realities of today. The Saudis and the Iranians, it is reliably learnt, have been in surreptitious contact with Netanyahu’s regime in recent times. Whereas here in Sri Lanka, some recently Saudi-returned Mullahs brain-washed in toxic Madrasas in the Middle East preach to young Muslims here anti-Israel/Jewish venom day in and day out. For a few thousands of rupees they get monthly, these selfish young Mullahs endanger the future of the entire Muslim community. The Sinhala community, on the other hand, want to learn from the scientific advances and benefits offered to Sri Lanka by Israel. They do not want the Muslims to stand in their way.

        It is time the more educated and liberal Muslims in the community save our Muslim friends from the clutches of these designing
        so-called religious leaders. Fortunately, some reasonable Muslims are beginning to see the right from the wrong – as seen by some comments in CT as well.

        A.D.J. Perera

        • 4
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          A.D.J. Perera

          “PM Netanyahu in the White House today said it is the first time in his life leading countries in the Islamic Sunni/Shia world want to be Israel’s allies – whereas they were sworn enemies until now calling for the destruction of the State of Israel.”

          Historically and factually not true that “it is the first time in his life leading countries in the Islamic Sunni/Shia world want to be Israel’s allies”.

          Alliances tended to change all the time. Shia Iran had had close relation with Israel during the reign of Shah and during Iran/Iraq war. Egypt has very close relation with Israel including intelligence sharing and military to military relation.

          The most important and not well publicized aspect of Israely/Arab/Muslim relation is the trade among these countries.

          Please read:

          The Badly Kept Secret of Israel’s Trade Throughout the Muslim World

          There’s a good chance that Iran’s computer systems, the electricity in Indonesian PM’s office and the body armor protecting Saudi soldiers came from Israel.

          Shuki Sadeh Jan 19, 2012 4:53 AM
          read more:

          http://www.haaretz.com/
          israel-news/business/
          the-badly-kept-secret
          -of-israel-s-trade-
          throughout-the-muslim-world-1.408103

          Take it with a pinch of salt.

    • 8
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      you mean rally the Muslims towards Jaffna Vellala’s goal? LOL

    • 6
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      Latheef Farook

      RE: Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Politics?

      Yes.

      Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Theology as curretly interpreted by the Ulama, Mullahs, Imams?

      Yes.

      Isn’t It Time For All Muslims To Reassess Their Theology as curretly interpreted by the Ulama, Mullahs, Imams, in lught of theUIblis, Devil following Wahhabis and theit Clones?

      Yes.

      Isn’t It Time For All Muslims To Reassess Their Theology as curretly interpreted by the Ulama, Mullahs, Imams based on the errors of Hamid Al Ghazali, 900 years ago, that made Muslims backward since the 12th Century?

      Yes.

      Isn’t It Time For All Muslims To Reassess Their Theology as curretly interpreted by the Ulama, Mullahs, Imams per misinterpretations of REASON AND REVELATION, that has prevented from getting to the Age of Reason and Enlightenment?

      Yes.

      • 1
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        Amarasiri:

        It is their prophet mohommad who started double standard religion.

        From one side he began the war to convert because many did not agree with him. Muslims killed million in the name of Mohammad and the religion.

        From another side, he asked his people to co-operate and learn from people coming from Asia. Becuse, he knew knowledge was power. that is how Baghdad, Persia became centers for knowledge.

        • 6
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          jim softy

          Based on history, it looks like Prophet Mohamed wanted a Prophet for the wild Arabs, to “civilize” them, but later the Arabs wanted to “civilize”, the others as well, and expanded the definition to all mankind.

          After Prophet Mohamed, the interpretation was in the hands of the successors, and religious “scholars” who pushed Revelation above Reason and observations and Islamic “Philosophers”, who pushed Reason above Revelation. This tug of war went on for 500 years, and the religious “scholars” won out, due to political reasons, just like the Sinhala “Buddhist” Monks prevailing in the Land of Native Veddah Aethho.

          It was decline since the year 1,200 CE, courtesy of Ulama, Mullah, and Imams.

          The Islamic Philosophers, lovers of wisdom, were sidelined due to political reasons.

          Stupidest Muslim Vs Neil Tyson – How ideology can ruin intellectual power.

          Question: Does this guy, Islamic “Scholar” have 46 or 48 chromosomes?

          Published on Nov 10, 2014
          This is not a debate between some Muslim and Neil Tyson. But this video shows the thinking of some very well educated 21’st century Muslim (I don’t know he is ignorant, stupid or dishonest. But he is one for sure) and Neil Tyson speaking in a lecture about how Muslims intellectual power ruined by an ideology.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uyCxrL9-C84

        • 10
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          Isn’t Budhist monk driving luxury vehicle a way of reaching Nirvana not double standard ?

        • 1
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          jim softy.
          you have a knack to pen rubbish. One wonders what your motive is for the anti Muslim venom. One wonders if it is a personality disorder or a genuine ignorant “pissa”.

    • 7
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      In the first place, they never had a mandate to represent the Muslims of Sri Lanka. The party was formed for Muslims of the Eastern province who always alienated themselves from the rest of the Sri Lankan Muslims.

  • 13
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    As I see it the problem starts with ALL communities failing to recognise that befre anything else:

    ALL of us are HUMAN BEINGS.

    It is next true that when talking about what is going on in this island, we are all part of a political entity known as Sri Lanka, and that we all ought to be equal citizens.

    We can all have our own cultures, but we must bring up our children to interact with everybody else around us.

    As for religion, the problem appears to be that they all grew in societies very different from one another, and not one of them has a monopoly of the TRUTH. The adherents of religions unfortunately rarely face up to this.

    I’m afraid that those who find it most difficult to accept this are the Muslims, and unfortunately, from what I have read in the Koran, that sort of “being special” is more deeply embedded in that book than in almost any other religious book.

    This is very difficult for Muslims to accept. First think of yourselves as fallible human beings, then consider yourselves to be those following Muslim traditions in private life, but even within your families give women and, even more importantly, children the right to think independently.

    Please DON’T have special “Muslim” schools. Are you ready for that, Mr Latheef Farook?

    • 9
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      What about Buddhist schools (Dumbparcel)

      • 13
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        There should be an attempt by all, including Buddhists and Christians, to be tolerant rather than dogmatic.

        Let us not try to make the pace of change too hectic. Most people get very emotional about their religious beliefs. They shouldn’t, but that’s a different matter.

        I’m mulling the idea of saying something about the Christian schools in Uduvil and the four S. Thomas’ schools where I have first hand knowledge that attitudes could improve. Will I be allowed to say something objective, to which others can add emotion! I admit that what has already been written on the subject has been too subjective – but it’s not been untrue.

        Buddhism is a system of beliefs so rational that any attempt to brain-wash goes counter to its central teaching. So, yes. It is only proper that they ought to cease to exist in their present form.

        Let’s “make haste slowly; they stumble who run fast”. Now, I wonder who first said that?

        • 9
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          Sinhala_Man

          “There should be an attempt by all, including Buddhists and Christians, to be tolerant rather than dogmatic.”

          “Religion is the Opium of the masses”- Karl Marx.

          Dogmatism is part of Religion. Dogmatism allows the Monks, Priests, Ulama, Mullah etc. to maintain their dogmatism and hegemony.

      • 1
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        Ceylonese:

        where should Sinhala buddhists go to have buddhist schools ?

        • 6
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          jim softy dimwit

          “where should Sinhala buddhists go to have buddhist schools ?”

          Sri Sambuddhathva Jayanthi Mawatha, Colombo 10, Sri Lanka

        • 7
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          Go anywhere where there are young boys and goats for midnight fun

    • 4
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      Don’t have Muslim schools? I agree but there are many hurdles in allowing Muslim children to study in Sinhala schools. They will have to adjust many aspects of running the Sinhala schools. They will not do that. 😂

      • 8
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        I know that there will be reluctance.

        Why do you say this? “They will have to adjust many aspects of running the Sinhala schools.”

        Let us stop calling them “Sinhala Schools”. Just call them “Schools for Growing People”.

        We, too, have to adjust our thinking!

      • 3
        3

        Muslims migrate to west. they don’t ask any of these things. They just get adopted to the system. Tamils are no different.

        Only in Sri lanka, they want to be Muslims and Tamils.

        Ask Latheef Farook whether his children or grand children go to the muslim school or to the Christian school and live among other kids. Ask Tamils when they are in the west they talk only in Tamil.

        • 6
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          jim softy dimwit

          “Only in Sri lanka, they want to be Muslims and Tamils.”

          The reason is that the Sinhalese and Buddhists are slowly being converted to Sinhala/Buddhism.

          “Ask Tamils when they are in the west they talk only in Tamil.”

          I am told they converse in sign language in addition to Thanglish which is similar to Singlish.

        • 5
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          Muslims can speak any language they want. Tamils can speak whatever language they want. Who are you to question that you saree wearing tranny!

  • 11
    1

    Brother Latheef

    I am in full agreement with you that the “Need of the hour is for Muslims to join national parties and it is up to national party leaderships to absorb the Muslims into the mainstream politics if they are sincere.”

    It was the new Constitution introduced by JR in 1978 in the misguided belief that it would ensure that the UNP will remain in power for a very long time that, inter alia, created the space for the emergence of Muslim Political Parties and the entry of Buddhist Monks into active politics.

    Prior to 1978, Muslim MP’s were elected from predominantly Non-Muslim electorates and Muslim voters extended their ready support to Non-Muslim candidates by in all electorates. The Muslims have and will always vote for candidates who, in their opinion, will look after the interests of the Muslim Community – specifically, the non-violation of the basic need of Muslims for Physical Safety. The ethnicity and religion of such candidates do not matter to a Minority Group which constitutes less than 10% of the total population.

    It is time for the National Parties to once again, as in the pre-1978 period, ensure that there are in their ranks, men and women of standing who can regardless of their race or religion, win the confidence of the Muslim Community.

    • 7
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      Dear Bisthan Batcha,

      On an earlier occasion, too, I found you speaking eminent common sense. You replied me about exaggerations by non-Muslims about the rate of population growth with regard to the supposed population explosion. Trying to find the link to the article which led to that response will take longer than I think it worthwhile.

      I agreed with you that although Moor birth rates seemed to be higher than those of other communities, there is no real need for anxiety. Education will make a huge difference, and also sensible amendments to MMDA so as to give women greater rights. Why doesn’t Latheef address that issue?

      I’m going to see how my responses to:

      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/when-elections-whom-to-blame/

      Nothing really relevant there, I find, and so on to Prof. Jeevan Hoole’s other article:

      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cbk-war-crimes-the-rule-of-law/comment-page-1/#comment-2074225

      There I think that I must say something about Language policy and the rights of the various ethnic groups – having personally checked it out at the local Divisional Secretariat in an area with a mixed population.
      What I have to say there has to be studied by Latheef Farook, not by Bisthan, with whom I have no issue.

  • 5
    5

    Will they give East to the Vellalas for money and positions and engage in corruption?..

    SLMC dudes are not going to live in the East , the same way as the dudes in the TNA.

    It will be the poor Muslims and the poor Sinhalese who will get shafted..

    • 3
      1

      Because Sinhalese are Dalits p

  • 5
    2

    KASmaalam K A Sumanasekera

    It will be the poor Muslims and the poor Sinhalese who will get shafted by the Sinhala/Buddhist politicians.

    • 0
      2

      Dear Native,

      I forgot to mention the poor Sinhala Catholics in the Bible Belt and beyond.

      Thanks for reminding me.

      Guess what mate..They are also aided and abetted by Anglicans ,LGBT and the ex LTTE.

      Happy Valentine’s day..

      • 4
        0

        KASmaalam K A Sumanasekera

        “Happy Valentine’s day..”

        I am happy that Valentine’s Day being included in our 2500 year heritage, culture, history, Buddhism, myth, paranoia, ……. with or without the awaken’d one’s blessing.

        Another opportunity to drink, eat, dance and ……

      • 3
        0

        Oh you are celebrating LGBT Valentine’s Day? Good progress.

  • 12
    2

    Each community should develop their own set of values and at the same time co-operate in building the country by respecting each other’s faith. Human beings are one race and thus should strive to live in peace. The blame game is a waste of time and effort. There is a lot of opportunities if we all unite to invest our wealth and expertise for the benefit of our country. Unfortunately, most of us rely on Politicians to take the lead.

    • 8
      1

      Hussain Fahmy, you couldn’t have said it any better.

      The important point that you have made seems to be that “humanism” must take precedence over even religion, where none of us is CERTAIN about anything. I hope no overly zealous adherent resents my saying that.

      Now let me migrate to the Jeevan Hoole article and talk about what I learnt at the Divisional Secretariat here.

    • 2
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      Hussain Fahmy

      Each community should develop their own set of values and at the same time co-operate in building the country by respecting each other’s faith.

      In the west, muslims or any other community, practice their religion only in the mosque or Kovil. Once they come out of the Church or the Kovil, they respect christian values and the Capitalism.

      Go to Saudi Arabia or to a muslims country. women have to cover their heads. If not they are hores. Men drink only in hiding.

      Ask Latheef Farook, what things he enjoys where he lives. He knows, it it is nothing. that is why he wants to change Sinhale.

      All muslims, Tamils, christians and NGOs know that Sri lanka can be bullied. Because, Sinhala buddhists are just silent. Politicians are bending to every thing if they can stay in power.

      • 5
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        How is it different from Budhists drinking alcohol and eating meat ? Worst hypocrite in the world

  • 2
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    I strongly believe that a federal constitution is the way forward for our island country. This would somewhat dilute the need for national political parties based on racial/ethnic or religious lines. After all the issues and grievances of an ethnicity or religious group differs from one geographical entity.

  • 6
    0

    Dear Latheef Farook,

    Apart from churning out lots of articles yourself, and perhaps, reading the comments on those articles, don’t you try to find out what others are blogging about?

    For example, this:

    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/halt-religious-indoctrination-18-should-be-made-in-law-the-age-of-ordination-to-clergy/

    I don’t know anything about the writer, but have read and commented.

  • 5
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    Latheef Farook

    Your article is an excellent eye opener to the Muslim community.

    I recall we lived in peace with the Sinhalese until Ashraf began his politics and argue and challenge Soma Thero about some land in Kalmunai.In response and to my unexpected surprise I found some Sinhalese were up in arms against all Muslims quoting what Ashraff was fighting with Budhst monks. Ashraff was an eastern Muslim and he or his party was not accepted by non eastern Muslims. In order to overcome this obstacle and rouse the emotions of all innocent Muslims he sought refuge in slogans like ” Islam and Our Muslim rights ” and misled the Muslims from other Non- Eastern areas. Ashraff was a lawyer but he simply did not have an understanding of the gravity of his fight wit Budhist monks from whom I do not expect much concern and feelings for non- Budhists.Ashraff was ambitious beyond any human limit and his reckless conduct caused the Sinhala Muslim animosity which is perpetuated continuously. From this moment the Sinhalese began to feel the Muslims were trying to make Sri Lanka a Muslim country with their money power coming from the Muslim world. This is now embedded in some minds also because of the way some extremist Muslims preaching, building too many mosques,criticising other religions, fanatical behaviour etc.

    The present leadership in the SLMC as Latheef rightly said for their perks, positions and political power are abusing the community’s interest and welfare.SLMC is a party of the eastern Muslims and we should not allow the SLMC to be the party for all non- eastern Muslims. I feel extremely sorry the way how 10 young Muslim youth were massacred because of Rauf Hakeems activities.

    However, you can never find a perfect leader in any community and I do not think we can find a perfect leader as such. In my opinion the best solution for the community is to join the mainstream politics and promote eduation and understanding among the Muslim public to be aware of their civil rights and NOT allow themselves to be misled by the SLMC by using backward and uncultered slogan like” We Munlims, Our religion, Muslim rights etc”

  • 0
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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

    • 1
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      I challenge your decision of not allowing publication of this/my comment.I have referred your comments policy and I feel I have NOT breached them. I will refer this to the Press Council for appropriate scrutiny and approval for publication please.

      Noor Nizam.

  • 4
    0

    Mr. Farouk
    Muslims did not have any political agenda or would have any such agendas for them to reasses. It is very sad to say the Muslim community is not interested in politics or in the interest of the country as a whole . They are interested in making money with the exception of a few. Take for example minister Hakeem. He seems to be an opportunist as he seeks a minister portfolio in any government that comes in. He doesn’t have a political agenda for his community but a self seeking agenda. There were a few Muslim political leaders in the past but not now.

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    This religiously-inspired fanatical hate of Israel by many of our Muslims in recent times is perplexing. Isn’t Latheef Farook aware both Saudis, leaders of the Sunni world and Iran, of the Shia equation – are in surreptitious touch with Israel. Egypt, the most important country in the Islamic world and PLO too. Sri Lanka stood to gain much with better relations with Israel if not for the fact ACS Hameed, MH Mohamed and the community they led sabotaged the efforts of JRJ’s UNP in the early 1980s to establish diplomatic relations with Israel. India has been doing this for decades. The Muslim mafia at that time misled JRJ feeding him with the falsehood our lead role in the Tea market in the Middle East will be lost if we recognised Israel.

    To the credit of Mahinda Rajapakse, he took the bold and pragmatic step of opening up to Israel irrespective of the fact he was once President, SL-Palestinian Friendship Society. Unsurprisingly, the Arabs are continuing to buy our Tea, perhaps in relatively larger quantities. Rajapakse’s message clearly was we can be friends with both
    Israel and the Arabs/Palestinians simultaneously.

    The country is fully aware the in-fighting between Muslim leaders in the country is not to advance the interest of the Muslim community but to get as much ill-gotten wealth as they can for themselves and their families. Houses in London, in Colombo 7 and other massive wealth is more important to them than housing displaced Muslims in Puttalam and the greater good of the poor Muslims in the country. The crux of Mr. Farook’s article confirms this view.

    Muslims in the country are unfortunately caught in the current global
    derision of the religion and its many offensive features. It cannot be denied this dominates the politics of the USA, EU, Britain and even Australia. The focus of Muslim leaders ideally should be to improve their relations with both major communities. Both see them with suspicion and distrust. The events of Batticaloa centuries ago and Puttalam decades ago -where giving them succour and safety in times of their helplessness only worked against their hosts – their saviours.

    Kettikaran

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    “Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Politics?”

    yes they should have identified with the language they speak at home and joined with the Tamils long ago.

    secondly they should stop their drift towards extremist Islamism and adopt more liberal Islamic faith.

    If they this that some Middle East Islamic country is going to bail them out and give the Eastern Province then they are living in cloud cuckoo land or should I slay cloud Allah land

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      correction
      “If they think that some Middle East Islamic country is going to bail them out..”

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    Mr. Farook.
    Writing generalities without specifics has been the bane of Sri Lankan media contributors. Just raising issues without facts only leads to everyone and their grandparents, offering unqualified opinions.

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    Vellala CM in the North says, he will not give even one Acre to extend Palay Air Strip..

    And it is like a Trump guarantee brags ex LTTE Prabakaran’s BIL.

    Batalanda Ranil gave 250 Acres of Mahavamsa Prime real Estste in Kurunegala, to Diaspora Selva for nothing.

    And another 100 acres of the same to Diaspora Lokka @ LKR 100 per Acre.

    What is the SLMC CM ging to do about Bataalnda Ranil giving our Mahavamsa Harbour to Hindians, to park their Navy, build Oil Tank Farms and bring in Hindians under ETCA to pump Diesel to Indian ships to keep an eye on Chinese ?.

    Will the SLMC. do a deal on that too?..

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    Probably more than 90% of Muslims are opportunistic selfish people that make them short-sighted too.

    They unite when there is a threat, and they separate when they feel proud. And SLMC is no exception.

    Muslims need to reform themselves in many aspects to understand the rights and wrongs, especially in these challenging climates. Until such a time, calling for political reassessment in CT seems premature or useless.

    Probably Friday Jumma preachings would be highly effective for initiating reforms but unfortunately, the time is wasted mostly with nuisance and historical things.

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    The SLMC is a wasted party altogether and there is no point in the Muslims either in the East or outside supporting the party any more. However, it will not also serve any purpose in the Muslims or for that matter all the people of the country expect the UNP or SLFP to lead the country towards a corrupt-free and united nation. Therefore, the whole country has to think of a new political order that could bring about radical changes for the benefit of all people.

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    The Tamils are the most splintered of the minorities in Sri Lanka, thanks to the handy work of one single Tamil man: Karavan Vellupillai Pirbhakaran.Let alone the Muslims joking them,the Tamils have their own problems to solve among themselves.We have the impossible task of bringing together a motley crowd like Wiggy, Douglas Deva, LTTE/TGTE rump,Pilliyan,Sampanthan,Sivagilingam,Karuna etc etc

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    Once again this boy obfuscate issues and brings his irrational Islamic hatred towards Israel into Sri Lankan muslim issues. FACT: You are worshipping ARABISM and ARAB ISIS WAHABI rubbish. Try looking at India: Has diplomatic relations and strong ties with Israel with the world’s 3rd or 4th larges Muslim Indian population. Think like Sri LAnkans and not Arabs and definitely not Wahabi Saudi Arabs with total black garb and Kattankudy fanaticism please. Arabism is a failure.

    List Ten Arab Nobel Prize winners in any field please. Now look at Jewish Nobel Prize winners. Stop being foolish and hateful. Get along. You have millions who also live in Christian lands and adapt.

    The foolish minority try to force their views and try to force Sharia crap on us. You have no right to force Arab Sharia crap on christian liberal tolerant nations you seek refuge in. Why are your Arab Muslims not fleeing to Saudi Arabia? Why not go there and establish your Caliphate?

    Why run to USA and Europe? Why? because those refugees know that they have a better chance to provide for their children than in Arabistan. Why not establish a Caliphate in Maldives where we cannot even take a Buddha Statue? Yeah why not?

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    Latheef is convoluting the talks. Of cause before Ashraff created his SLMC, Muslims were voting for SLFP, UNP and FP. They were never liberal democrats, but party independent.

    LaTheef is rejecting Ashraff’s SLMC (the current corrupt political leadership is fitting his description in his essay- But how Muslims should deal with it is a different subject)

    Isn’t It Time For Sri Lankan Muslims To Reassess Their Politics?

    Latheef is calling Muslims to convene a convention to form a party he is asking for. The is going to be the worst damage to Muslims than Ashraff did. Because Latheef’s call is suggesting he wants to form theoretical ISIS. Muslims should not follow his path, but should ignore him.

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    Brother Latheef Farook

    It is quite nice of you to write about the issues facing the Muslims not only in Sri Lanka but also in other parts of the world.

    But, what is disheartening is your constant attacks on a man – Ashraff – who left this world more than 16 years ago. I NEVER voted the SLMC but that does not mean I hate Ashraff. He has had his opponents and critics among the Muslims, both politicians and non-politicians. But, how does it help to keep on maligning a long dead man?

    Rather than spending time on vilifying him, wouldn’t you be using your time profitably by making meaningful efforts to unite the community? Don’t forget, you will be answerable in the Hereafter for all your needless attacks on Ashraff.

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      Farook’s article doesn’t villify Ashraf. The latter was a politician and it is to be accepted that criticism of his wrong policies would be constructive in the formation of new and better policies.
      I still see people blaming SWRD for all the ills in this country, due to his “Sinhala only” policy.
      Though I personally would recommend that all political parties should avoid the Sinhala,Tamil, Muslim, Burger, Buddhist, Hindu,Muslim and Christian titles.
      Just remain within political parties with an agenda of justice for all and honesty.
      Yes I know, but then it not forbidden to dream!!!!!!!!

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        The UNP, SLFP, the Tamil parties and the Muslim parties would never want to do away with different identities for their corrupt political needs. It is only the JVP which propagates the thinking of with an agenda of Justice and Equality for all and honesty sans communal or religious differences. The JVP is the only hope for a future harmonious Sri Lanka.

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    On the salient point raised by a writer…why do we like to blame dead people for the current situation.

    Yes, how is it the party claiming to representing Muslims allowing a confirmed womeniser to lead it for the last several years.

    I am not using the word fraud, because none of the accusers have ever produced proof as yet, except to leverage the information for personal profit.

    How Islamic is any of this?

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    get gnanasara arrested for aluthgama.
    no justice for muslims.

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    Sri Lanka does not need any political party. Sri Lanka can prosper without president, prime minister, ministers, mps, mpcs, mayors,, mlgs etc. Administrative service can administer the country and judicial service can make the policies in consultation with other services. Chief justice and other heads of large departments can function as head of state on a monthly rotation basis for ceremonial purpose. Try to change the constitution to that effect.

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    yes. muslims have to think about some thing new in politics. for several decades their politics was to support sinhala govts against tamils and enjoy the fruits. but now those days are over. sinhalese after defeating the ltte have opened their eyes and trying to build up irrational cases against the muslims. the primary political task of the muslim leadership is to fortify against sinhala attacks thro’ reconciliation efforts and join hands with rational factions among sinhalese ant tamils. do not try the ltte formula.
    -dayal

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      Muslims in Sri Lanka, who have no legitimate claim as indigenous to the country, are desperate to claim even a very small part of the country as their own. They fear Tamils regaining their historical areas – with the support of the international community – is inevitable. Therefore, they desperately steal the lands of EP Tamils using temporary political power as their tool. But this will not last long. Tamils will re-possess their historical lands sooner than later.

      Muslims fanatically try to get Arab support for a firm foothold in the EP. Pakistan is being actively canvassed for this. Pakistan’s support is based on the assurance they will help in different ways but on the proviso their designs to destabilise the nearby South India should be supported. Already Kattankudy is made to look like part of arid Arabia with some men/women dressing like in the desert Arabian lands.

      Sinhalese have now become wise to this and vow to frustrate this conspiracy. They now believe it is better to deal with indigenous Tamils rather than those who conspire to make part of Sri Lanka under Sharialand. Interestingly, Muslims in the Sinhala South do not see eye to eye with the Muslims of the EP. They believe all their current troubles all began with Ashraff misleading the EP Muslims. They want to get back to the days where they were part of UNP-SLFP politics.

      A.D.J. Perera

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