1 October, 2020

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Judge Not, Lest You Be Judged

By Upali Cooray –

Upali Cooray

Upali Cooray

The exclusive T.V interview of former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga (CBK) by “SIRASA” TV few days ago can only be called vituperative and boastful in that, the total substance was Mahinda bashing and claiming credit in toto for the political maneuver in making Maithripala Sirisena the President. We have not seen Chandrika appearing in electronic media for some time and this was the first for many years. There doesn’t appear to be any change in her demeanor that of aristocratic arrogance and pretense.

Mahinda Rajapaksa, the all powerful President a little over a month ago is now the whipping boy of all and sundry. True, he and his regime mismanaged the country to the extreme that people got frustrated and fed up with him despite having the opportunity of becoming the greatest post worldwar (11) Sri Lankan leader who brought prosperity and peace to his country. He was digging his own grave by bad governance. The writer is not attempting to white wash or extend any sympathetic consideration whatsoever for all the MR wrong doings. As the saying goes, even the Devil should get it’s due. The TV anchor pointed out to CBK at the end of the interview, hadn’t there been any good done by MR? According to CBK it’s almost nothing !

According to CBK, seventy five percent of the war was won by her; MR did only the balance twenty five percent. So, she reluctantly gave a crumb of a credit to MR for finishing the war. The nation heard and saw on the 4th of February President Maithripala Sirisena in his address to the nation was gracious enough to credit the former President Rajapaksa and General Fonseka for the war victory. The Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe too was not reluctant to mention it was MR who ended the war, while addressing the media subsequent to taking oaths. It is now public knowledge that Ranil has told MR when he met him at Temple Trees in the wee hours of 9th January that “we have to protect you for what you have done for our country”. That says everything.

Ranil ChandrikaWhat CBK knows but ignores in her favour is that one of the most ignominious defeats of the Sri Lankan forces happened during her leadership. While the Norwegians were purportedly trying to work out a peace accord, in April 2000 the LTTE launched parallel attacks on the most fortified Sri Lankan Army camps in Elephant Pass and Ayakachchi and overran those overnight, killing over one hundred SL army men. So much for CBK‘s claim for winning the war.

She failed to mention at the interview about her wisdom of PTOMS and her offer to hand over the rule of north and east to Prabhakaran for ten years. Perhaps it was convenient to ignore those subjects.

If it was not for Mahinda Rajapaksa’s single minded mission to defeat and eradicate terrorism from our land ,the democratic political change that occurred in January 2015 would not have been possible. However much efforts are taken by political rivals such as CBK to demean it ,this fact will be solidly embedded in the annals of Sri Lanka for the rest of it’s history.

Considering the axis of Chandrika-Ranil-Sampanthan now in operation, a reconciliation process based on the implementation in full,the 13th amendment is in the books. Be that as it may, R. Sampanthan and his TNA proxies of the LTTE diaspora including Suren Surandiran of the GTF who is leaving no stone unturned to bring Mahinda Rajapaksa before the war crimes tribunal in The Hague on charges of genocide, will not give up their mission to have a federal state in the north and the east which would be the stepping stone for cessation.

According to recent media reports, a decision has been taken to allow the public to see the Temple Trees to show the alleged luxury life the Rajapaksas’ were living at the expense of the public. It is also suggested that the governing party take a little effort to clear the over grown scrub on the left side of the Parliament complex so that it would bring to view a foundation of a Presidential palace laid for a lavish Rs.700 million CBK project, which was abandoned by MR after public outcry. Also just before retirement she attempted to gift herself a block of prime land near the parliament complex through a cabinet paper submitted by Minister Dinesh Gunawardena.

The lust for power is very visible at the interview. President Sirisena would have had no chance in contesting the presidency had there not been a legal impediment for CBK in contesting. She was fined three million rupees by the Supreme Court for involvement in the sale of land at water’s edge. Her cronie Ronnie Peiris obtained for his company this 224 acre land for a song to make it a golf course. CBK was found guilty of abuse of power by the supreme court. People living in the Kotte and Kaduwela Municipality areas are ever grateful for this court decision because the decision paved way for the MR government to completely resurrect the water retention network of canals and lakes in the area while developing recreation areas and walk ways. One should remember even the Parliament got flooded during heavy rains.

The deals done by Ronnie Peiris,the CBK crony, is far too many to mention in detail. The Katunayake expressway project was previously awarded to Keangnam Ltd. during CBK presidency and it is alleged that the deal was manipulated by Ronnie Peries. The JHU and the JVP which are lambasting MR now for being surrounded by deal makers should also look into whether CBK’s deal makers are back in business.

One would remember the daily power cuts over three hours; the country faced during the previous UNP regime. The church in Puttlam did everything to stop the construction of the proposed coal power plant and as a result the country was facing dire consequences by not having adequate electricity. Neither Chandrika nor Ranil had the back bone to counter these disruptive elements. It is MR who took the bold decision to go ahead despite the protests. Similarly upper Kotmale was also launched despite protests from the environmental lobby. Norachcholai coal power plant may have had its initial teething problems but it now bears the major part of the load of power needed by our country.

Neither the Mattala Air port nor the Hambantota harbor were fancy projects of Mahinda Rajapaksa as claimed by his detractors. As per international air safety rules, a country like ours should have a second air port in the event of closure of one air port. We experienced this draw back during the war when Katunayaka had to be closed many times and planes diverted to Chennai or Maldives costing extra fuel to Aircraft. The idea did not originate from MR .He only implemented it and the present location was selected when many other areas close to Colombo were given up on account of objections from people. A Character like Jayalalitha in Tamil Nadu could even prohibit Sri Lankan planes landing in Chennai in an emergency. There is no assurance that this would not happen in the future and it is no fantasy.

Similarly the port at Hambantota was a concept which prevailed for last four decades on account of the it’s ideal location, being close proximity and halfway in the busy east west shipping lanes. Singapore is having a virtual monopoly as a bunkering port. Annual traffic on this route is around 36000 ships and 4600 tankers. The busy shipping lane is just 12 miles off Hambantota port. The Sri Lankan government first offered the project to India but they were smart to decline since it would have affected Indian ports such as Mumbai and Chennai. What is now required is a concerted effort to market the port by giving better services than other ports such as Singapore and lure the ships to the port than looking for scapegoats.

Hambantota is the one of most economically backward areas in the country. The effort to develop the area is worthy of credit. It was a hotbed of militancy in the past due economic deprivation and social injustices as the cast system. MR being born in the district may have had a special bond with the region in him but other areas of the country too ,specially the war torn north saw immense benefits extended to the war weary population in raising their standard of living.

The standard of the net work of the roads was raised to unprecedented levels during MR regime.Reducing the distance between people, markets, services and knowledge – or simply ‘getting people connected’ – is a great part of what economic growth is all about.

Although virtual connectivity has become increasingly important today with the emergence of new communication avenues, a good and reliable transport network remains vital. There is a very strong positive correlation between a country’s economic development and the quality of its road network. The criticism that this is not a priority in Sri Lanka is coming from those who have no vision or else they just require MR vilified claiming these road projects are grandiose.The alleged corruption on these road projects are not a reason to vilify the vision. Those allegations are needed to be investigated and proved. Let’s not throw away the baby with bath water. The Colombo Jaffna and Colombo Kandy highways should be given priority in the economic program of the new government. Who gets the contract for the projects is immaterial. The reconstruction of the rail road to Jaffna is a project done by MR with foresight.

It was reported in the media that this government has the intention of probing the human rights violations that happened in this country during the last phase of the war through an internal probe as an alternative to the UNHCR probe. It is the most welcome thing to do rather than allowing UNHCR to do it. However, investigations should not be limited to the short period of last phase of the war only. This is a trap laid by the Diaspora and the so called international community. The probe should cover the entire period of the war against terrorism.

The prevention of Terrorism act implemented in 1983 during the JR regime led to unbridled torture of citizens not only in the north but in the south as well. Nearly thirty thousand Sri Lankans in the prime of their youth perished after capture by Sri Lankan forces. Most of them found dumped on the road sides tortured and killed. There are large number of people specially parents and wives still seeking justice for what happened to their dear ones under the JR regime. The infamous Batalanda torture chambers come to one’s mind. It was the “Abu Ghraib” of Sri Lanka. The commission which investigated the issue was very specific that RW was aware of the chambers existence. The report states “Wickremesinghe and the SSP Nalin Delgoda, are indirectly responsible for the maintenance of places of unlawful detention and torture chambers in houses at the Batalanda Housing Scheme”. The commission strongly recommended to government of CBK to bring the wrong doers to book. It was strongly believed Douglas Peiris the Policeman who was in charge of the torture chambers were given amnesty for his testimony against RW. The irony is that MR who is now being accused of human rights violation during his rule was a human rights campaigner who went to Geneva, to place before the UNHCR the situation in Sri Lanka at that time.

To mention just one of the numerous scams done by RW regime in the two year period they were in power 2001/02; Yasasiri Kasturiarachchci the strong UNPer and businessman who obtained a loan of 4.1 Billion from the People’s bank was given a crooked bail out formula by then RW adviser and famous fixer Paskaralingam through DR. Wickrama Weerasooriya another RW fixer to declare that the outstanding amount is not Rs.4.1 billion but 100 million and Kasthuriarachchi to pay an amount of Rs.10 million from this outstanding amount and given below is what CBK the President at that time had to say the Chairman of Peoples’ Bank Lal Nanyakkara.

“It is extremely unfair for a State Bank to extend privileges to an individual, however politically powerful he may be which are denied to others, less influential.

I consider such patronage to be a travesty of justice. I categorically state that the privileges not extended to others should never be extended to Yasodha Group and any violation of this practice will be investigated into.

I also learn that your Board is considering reaching a settlement on the basis of the recommendations by this third party investigator”.

As the Head of State, I severely warn you to desist from any unjustifiable settlement and any steps taken by the Bank, which lacks transparency, will be subject to a special inquiry and dealt with severely.

It is in your best interest to strictly adhere to legal process through the Court of Law.” (Daily News – February 2, 2004)

Prime Minister RW‘s attempt to send Navy Commander Karannagoda for a two weeks foreign trip so that two LTTE ships bringing arms for the LTTE deliver the goods safely was thwarted by CBK during the time the CFA was in operation.

Another astonishing thing that baffles many people is that an important portfolio, if not the most important, Minister of Finance is held by someone indicted by the Supreme Court for money laundering of Rs. 390 million. While it is correct that one is not guilty unless proven, a person with such allegations should have been kept out from any responsibility until the verdict is given. Besides, Ravi Karunanayake’s past record as the trade minister does not warrant a higher responsibility to be given to him. He has become famous for unmaking of institutions such as SATHOSA. It baffles me why a person like Dr. Harsha De Silva was not considered for this all important post. He is young and fresh blood devoid of dark clouds hanging over him. For that matter, Eran Wickramaratne would also have been a choice.

RW should actually have done an MR by dumping the out dated senile seniors such as John Amaratunga, Joseph Michael Perera, Jayawicrama Perera Et Al. as senior ministers.

John Amaratunga should resign before the no confidence motion, if the governement is serious about god governance.

These are random thoughts which come to one’s mind when politicians in power talk of good governance. Seeing on TV news the other day, CBK getting a courtesy kiss from her childhood friend RW one cannot but conclude to what brazen levels our politicians go to gain power.

These are the custodians of “good governance”

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Latest comments

  • 23
    7

    Upali,

    I can say the same thing to you also,’judge not, lest you be judged’.

    At the very beginning you claim that the Rajapaksa rule was ‘mismanaged to the extreme’. Then you go on to disrobe CBK corrupt practice by corrupt practice. Then you go on to heap praise on Rajapaksa to the extreme. You claim that white elephants such as Mattala Airport and the Hambantota ports are good investments. And you brush aside the enormous amount of peoples money plundered by insanely inflated road projects. The sum total of your writing is almost waxing lyrical about the achievements of the Rajapaksas. You do not for a moment mention how the Rajapaksas highjacked the judiciary, the police and used thugs in saffron robes to foment racial violence. You never mention about the sordid company the Rajapaksas kept, such as murderes and casino barons and kudu mudalalis.

    I can say the same thing to you also Upali,’judge not, lest you be judged’.

    • 16
      6

      You took the words right out of my mouth.

    • 7
      2

      Upali does not seem to be able to differentiate between winning the war, and the subsequent corruption of a massive scale.

    • 8
      2

      BBS Rep, I agree with you.

      The problem with the likes of Upali is, that they cannot recognize a wrong coming from “their” camp or “their” champion. It is a serious Sri Lankan illness, which many self acclaimed “political scientists” also suffer from.

      Any blind bat could see how this country was living beyond its means, but not the likes of such Political Scientists. The outright thievery, drug and ethanol pedaling by parliamentarians, the tolerance shown to those who did the worst of crimes but came from the right camp, the sheer intimidation, the murders which went unresolved, the sheer duplicity of the entire cabal that ran the show…….the totality of chaos caused, the ego trips of an individual, the unnecessary public spending, the sheer garishness of any occasion which some individuals attended (all at our cost)… the list is endless.

      I think this country lacks people who have self respect. If not, they would at least now stop crowing about who stopped the war and instead say “that’s what we gave them power for”.

      Each of us have a job to do, and if we manage to do it, you are only doing your job. No need to go on one’s knees in acknowledgement for stopping a war.

      If acknowledgment is called for, I would rather give it to Fonseka (and other service personnel )who after all had to carry his intestines on his lap as a memento or thanksgiving for battling it out there in the heat of the battle.

      As long as we have this subservient mentality, we will be exploited by scheming politicians, unworthy of the high office they are elected to.

    • 1
      0

      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/

  • 9
    5

    Upali Cooray –

    RE: Judge Not, Lest You Be Judged.

    Nice Picture. The duo behind toppling Medamulana Humpty Dumpty.

    Let’s hope Mrs. Wickramasinghe is broadminded and will not be jealous.

    “Mahinda Rajapaksa, the all powerful President a little over a month ago is now the whipping boy of all and sundry”

    Medamulana Mahinda Rajapaksa earned with the help of his Shills, Cronies and whitewashers.

    “RW should actually have done an MR by dumping the out dated senile seniors such as John Amaratunga, Joseph Michael Perera, Jayawicrama Perera Et Al. as senior ministers.”

    Yes. The fossils.

  • 7
    3

    Having a 2nd Airport may have some justification though its not to be constructed in a middle of a bird sacturary nor any independent environmental assesment. (not to mention the kickbacks that the Rajapaksas got in here)

    Then the Hambantota Port, once the port construction was completed the Engineers found a big undersea rock which was to be demolished with USD25Million of tax payers money and for now., this port is another white elephant as no ship is going to birth in this place unless the ‘forced’ vessels that Rajapaksas have done like the David Peiris company was ordered to ship their Bajaj auto parts to re-fix from H’tota airport and then move to the factory at Kesbewa? what an idea, so now the company is planningt to buid a new factory in H’tota and what will happen to that workforce?

    CBK may have her own faults at her regime thogh what Rajapaksas did was to tae that to another level which reminds only those African and South American dictators.

    What we need now is to punish those Rajapaksa goons for their crimes and got the illgotten money for our national coffers.

    • 6
      2

      Oo…h Matilda, you are driving us crazy with your sexy remarks again.

      Only your comment “What we need now is to punish those Rajapaksa goons for their crimes and got the illgotten money for our national coffers.” is sending us to unstoppable laughter.

      The Colombo Magistrate Thilina Gamage has said that the police have failed to produce any evidence against Upali Attanayaka to back the charges of forgery and raising ethnic unrest against him.

      All attempted ‘cases’ against Gotabhaya have exploded in the hands of Mithreepala and Ranil.

      So where is the next case coming from, darling? Will there be one before the 100 days are (and the curse is) over?

      Pleasure yourself in the meantime love, world could be lonelier after the 100 day curse!

  • 2
    3

    Mahinda did not have a “Single Minded Mission to eradicate and defeat terrorism in our land”. He does not even mention this in his election manifesto of 2005. He wanted to talk to Prabhakarm. It was the JHU and Sarath Fonseka who convinced him that the battle can be won. He was at the correct place at the correct time. Brothers and a tight family control helped him as well to win the final battle. After this instead of celebrating he should have healed wounds. What was there to celebrate anyway. It was Srilankans killing Srilankans. What he did instead was that he played the ethnic card., dividing our land. He created tension amongst our different communities. Like Kashyapa on Sigiriya Rock he thought he was a Demi God. Dutugemunu reborn and all that rubbish. We wasted five precious years after 2009.
    These years should have been spent in developing a Sri Lankan identity, while keeping our Singhalese, Tamil, Muslim and Burgher roots, which makes this country so special.
    I have no sympathy for MR. He dug his own grave and nearly dug all of ours as well. Let’s keep him and his family and anybody’s family for that matter away from politics. This could be our Sri Lankan awakening, our rennasaince.
    I hope our new leaders get the message that this country and its people need a Collective Identity. SRILANKANS.

  • 1
    1

    i thought Hambantota port is not a viable option because of the huge rock formations on the sea bed. It truly is a white elephant then. Please correct me if I am wrong.

  • 4
    3

    Lets be honest that Chandrika has her own faults. Nothing much happened during her term.

    Give her credit for being the mastermind to topple Rajapakse who everyone thought cannot be kicked out.

    It is the biggest achievement of her life and more important than the period that she was the President of the country,

    Well done Chandrika.

  • 5
    2

    This is just like Opposition bringing corruption charges against then UNP rule MP’s. It’s joke so as this. They were in power for so many years only now they have woken up to bring corruption charges. On the other we have won the freedom to write whatever we want.

    Even the present government so far has done nothing but bringing corruption charges against plethora of MARA regime henchman but so far nothing else has happen. The wast majority of intelligent citizens (ppl who voted against MR) are getting agitated. Surely there is enough evidence to take in to custody some of the kamba horu ! why is on the earth is it not done yet? if this continue for 2-3 weeks more MS/RW Gov will lose it’s credibility. It is understood we have to follow the rule of law. But this has gone beyond time limits of rule of law.

    If not MS/RW government is fearing if they start taking Kamba Horu in, that they will not get support for the activities of 100 day program.

    All what this author has written maybe true but what is more important is we have defeated a megalomaniac who was taking this country towards total slavery. For that we have to give credit to MS/RW/CBK/Sobitha Thero/JHU Clan and more importantly the % of voters who used their brains while deciding to vote for SWAN.

    Wimale is saying only MR can save Lanka. Wimale/Udaya Gammanpila (Kaluwara G) and that mucker Muzammil they live in different universe (not even a different galaxy).

    So stop bloody talking about the past and see how we can move forward.

  • 4
    4

    Many valid issues and concerns brought up in this article.

  • 5
    4

    Upali Cooray

    Chandrika’s speaking style in the TV interview may have been a little colorful, but that’s how she is. Very outspoken. But she backed her claims with solid evidence. I think what irks you is that she has the balls to go after Mahinda, but you don’t even after he is defeated.

    • 4
      1

      Losing Mullaitivu and Elephant Pass are ‘solid evidence’ of having won 75% of the war?! Well probably correct if she is thinking of a ‘win’ for the LTTE!!!!

      This is like Chamberlain claiming he did 75% of defeating Nazi Germany and Churchill merely did the ‘last bit’

  • 6
    4

    Clueless as to who you are I did a check on Google. The only known Upali Cooray has been dead for over five years. I wished it was you instead of that Cooray.

    Your comments were in poor taste, erroneous, malicious, and unwarranted.

    You did not have the grace to let go a few exaggerations. You had to nit pick. You were not honest to admit the fact that but for Chandrika Bandaranaike, it was never a certainty that Mahinda Rajapaksa would have been sent home.

    Keep your mouth shut tight. You are a blood thirsty body louse.

  • 7
    2

    I FULLY agree that the best thing CBK could do now is to attend ceremonial functions, receive flowers, kiss babies (leave the old men alone), and essentially keep quiet. The more she opens her mouth, the more she generates backlashes and devastating anatomical dissection of her own regime, such as by the above article. For a fuller version of her misdeeds, I recommend the book by Victor Ivan, who has an open invitation to sue him.

    I do not agree with the glorification of the MR regime, not the least because they have done it themselves ad nauseam, over the past 5-10 years.

    • 3
      2

      This should be valid to any president who completed their offices.

      Law should be equal to everyone. May be MR s decisions being tough could have worked on the defeat of LTTE victory -but that could be an alles or not (all or not ) reaction. His capablities in admnistration -however he has proved well in the post war sessions, leading the country to anarchial state. Even today, people stay brainwashed similar to any other states ruled and left by dictators. In Germany, people behave even today – after 65years of hitlor days – people are scared still to open their views fearlessly.

      No matter all proofs keep emerging, there are masses still in the country that would hardly do much against Rajanos – thanks go to his media work that was above every other high profile abuses – deliberately had been carried out by him and his oligarchs.

  • 4
    2

    Like American Presidents, it would be best that the Bandit Queen simply keeps out of the way and not claim credit for anything. She also killed as did her mother and her father and are guilty of war crimes. This includes young Sinhalese men and women. Whether or not that is the case, she should have the goodness to keep out.

    • 0
      1

      Your guy VP – the represenative for you not other tamils was barbaric towards not only lanken army but also your own community. So you should learn to forget when any other politciians do any wrong doings in their terms, finally, they did not go and kill civlians there in the northern part. Please think before leap. If CBK did not react, much more towards the harm of the nation would have occured. That 6.2 milliions clearly got, while you the dimwits yet to get.

  • 0
    6

    “The writer is not attempting to white wash or extend any sympathetic consideration whatsoever for all the MR wrong doings.”
    I don’t know what the writer IS attempting to do, but if he is attempting to tell the truth, he has failed totally.
    This could be considered “An ode to hypocritical lying,” not much else!

  • 0
    0

    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
    1

    Upali,

    How foolishly you have stated in your article that by International safety rules,a country like ours should have two airports
    in the event, the main airport becomes non functional and you also further stated that diverting to Chennai & Maldives will cost extra fuel. Please note that in the event the destination airport is closed
    for weather or any other reasons, the aviation rules say that airline should have an alternate airport on the flight plan, in close proximity
    and it does not say that it should be in the same country and extra fuel is always carried by any airline for the alternates like Madras,
    Maldives and Trivandrum, which airports are also closer to BIA . Do you think that a country like Singapore has two airports . Whether one flies to Mattala or Chennai, they have to use extra fuel.

    Building an airport at Mattala is a colossal waste of Economy . Feasibility studies carried by foreign airlines proved that operation
    via Mattala will not be profitable and that is why airlines skipped
    Mattala all these days. Is this now clear to you. Suggest govt.hands the airport to Air force to operate their flights, train new pilots and have an aviation school to make this airport functional. It is
    indeed a white elephant

  • 2
    1

    Well said Upali Cooray ! CBK sounded not only ‘sour grapes’ but also like a common or garden fishwife (no disrespect to actual fish sellers, man or woman – just the idiom). She went to bed with the kottiyas and is responsible for dragging on the war, sacrificing innocent people on both sides. She thinks she is an expert in political science? Read on – all that has been written by imperial suddas, and she believes all that rubbish as gospel? Idiot woman, go away. Leave Maithree alone and don’t interfere in politics ever again!

  • 2
    2

    A well written ,well balanced article.Think of the people running the people controling this government. Chandrica of infamous watergate racket,ptom, military debacles etc,Ranil of batalanda torture chamber,Mangala of kurudupolu democracy, Ravi of millions of foreign exchange fraud and runing of CWE.Mahinda government had its faults,but by comparison Mahinda government is far far better.

  • 1
    1

    She was the worst leader Sri Lanka ever had. The Tamil people were stopped at checkpoints and treated like Terrorists. The searches reduced them to tears for often the women were dragged out at night in their bedclothes. She gave the orders like her mother did when the JVP rose in 1971. The Bandaranaike family has nothing to be proud of.

  • 0
    0

    Upali, thank you for your very balanced article which bring to our memories what today savours have done in the past. Thank you.

  • 0
    0

    There were executive presdents and able service commanders right throughout the 30 year war up to 2005 without seeing a finish. What was the significant change during 2005 – 2009 which brought about this finish?It was the military cum political leadership of Gota &’MR and public baking for the military action, sheer commitment to
    get the job done and also most importantly letting known to the western busy bodies where to get off. Basically it is the difference in management and commitment as a team towards an objective.

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