By Achini Ediriweera –
In the midst of all this that is going on regarding Hon. Mr. Ravi Karunanayake, I recall how my father lost his temper and fortunately or unfortunately punched Hon. Ravi Karunanayake on Air on the LIVE National Television program called “Rathu Ira”. This program was telecasted on the Sri Lankan TV channel Swarnavahini.
Somehow everyone of us including my father’s office knew he was going to really get physical before he left for the show. He was furious as he had solid facts as evidence on how Mr. Karunanayake robbed the Lalith Athulathmudali’s funds post our beloved Lalith Athulathmudali‘s assassination.
What happened was Hon. Ravi Karunanayake had just crossed over to the UNP. My father presented papers and evidence of Mr. Karunanayake’s involvements with stealing funds from our beloved Hon. late Lalith Athulathmudali. This was an ongoing feud. When my father presented these facts with evidence, of Mr. Karunanayake stealing from the Athulathmudali’s funds, and Mr. Ravi Karunanayake kept denying it, matters got heated and my father could not stand the fact that he was sitting there and lying in this manner to my father’s face about stealing from the country! Therefore my father unfortunately or fortunately punched him during this live TV show, on air. As for the tape of what became the final episode of this TV show ‘Rathu Ira’, I personally wrote to Swarnavahini recently and requested for this tape to be retrieved from their archives. Unfortunately they wrote back to me stating they never archived things back then. While I am a little puzzled about that response I am hopeful that I could speak to the Director of the TV channel Swarnavahini and retrieve the recording of this episode mentioned.
According an interview of my father Ediriweera Premaratne that was published in the Divaina News Paper on 29 October 1995, Mr Karunanayake first entered the parliament through the national list through the Lalith Pila. That is thankful to those that win enough votes for the political party during an election. Among others who were responsible for winning those votes for the party enabling appointments through a national list was my father.
My father can’t stand people that steal from the innocent man. He would even hit us if and when we take the cars here and there to roam around in our childhood days. He has always told us he will not be that guy to steal from the public. He spoke of what a great sin it is to steal from these innocent people of our county, to rob them of the prosperous livelihoods that they rightfully deserve. He would stress on the fact that it is a sin that generations and generations and generations into future will have to suffer. Ediriweera Premaratne stayed loyal to his mission that is to somehow to help the poor and to work for “them” and to “fight” for “them”. To fight for their fundamental rights of the citizens of Sri Lanka. Poverty is not foreign for Ediriweera Premaratne because that is where he came from. He understood what it felt like to be hungry as a child because he was that child. He tells us and reminds us this every day since we lived in a ‘Colombo 7 world’, as he would like to describe it. Father tells me you do not understand Achini. Your world is not the world of this country. That world you are in only accounts for a very tiny percentage. People have very hard difficult lives. These words were not understood then, but echoes in my head many years later.
Getting back to the point, I do not condone violence at any point. Although these absolute jokers in Sri Lankan politics with that smirk on their faces while they trick and steal from the nation, can really push the buttons of those loyal to the people. Not those loyal to a political party, not those loyal to a political leader, but those loyal to the benefitting the people. With all due respect, our country is not made up of the Colombo 7 crowd.
Think. “yeah! yeah! Mr. Ravi Karunanayake is corrupt”. We have known this since the day he stole from our beloved Lalith Athulathmudali’s funds. Yet he has been allowed to continue just like any other corrupt politician in this country.
You see, every time I am lied to. I am offended not merely because I am being lied to! BUT! I am offended how my intelligence was underestimated.
We have already established the fact that he is corrupt. However taking into account these: “snake bite lies” and the “no I don’t know how much rent my wife was paying” or “I don’t know how much rent I was paying”. Lies, the ” I can’t remember lies” and you wonder where did their audacity come up from with these nonsensical, hilarious lies. I suggest you direct your attention straight to the ones listening and accepting these lies. The ones these lies are delivered to.
Now just imagine the level of the intellectual capacity of those who these lies are delivered to. Is it the judiciary? A certain independent commission? The public? Think. Tell me, are you worried now? Yeah? You ought to be worried as to understand the intellectual capacity of who runs this country! Either they are intellectually challenged or corrupt. You decide.
In essence lies are calculated, according to whom are the lies being said to? In other words those who are the subject of the lies. In this instance it is the general public of Sri Lanka to whom Mr. Karunanayake owes answers to and also the “learned” and “honourable” judiciary.
Learning this logic, and truly acknowledging this logic, If I was you I would be more concerned about the listeners than the corrupt liar himself. It is because these people that listen and accept these lies, they are the people that run the country. Example: the public, the judiciary, any authoritative commission. I cannot stress any further that it is so concerning that they are receptive to such absolutely ludicrous, nonsensical trash that makes the world laugh!
Most unfortunately every government and our legal system in Sri Lanka is a mockery of the people. How this cycle continues with every corrupt politician and any corrupt system is because the people unfortunately do not realize the role they play in this, while they continue to complain. It is time to speak to the people now and to address the issue at where it needs to be addressed.
My message to the people is please understand “fully” your power and stop allowing this atrocious cycle, this corrupt cycle that destroys and robs the poor man off their livelihoods, from continuing any further! Use your power dear people and stop this awful corrupt cycle of politicians from continuing to undermine your intelligence and continuing to rob the future of the children, your future! Don’t fight for politicians fight for YOU. Don’t rally up sweating wasting time for politicians do it for YOU.
YOU are the key to the solution of these issues. YOU are the key to solving the issue, than continuing to complain after the facts have already been established.
(It genuinely hurts me to write this or speak on it because Mr. Ravi Karunaratne’s sweet daughter is a very sweet, good girl/person. I am sincerely fond of her since our school days and she is a good person with nice values. I am sorry to her. I don’t bother saying this if I do not feel so sincerely. It’s not the children’s fault. )
*The writer Achini Ediriweera is the daughter of former Late Minister Ediriweera Premaratne. She works as a Legal Secretary in Perth Australia and also studying Anthropology, Sociology and International Relations at the Curtin University in Western Australia.