On Law Entrance Exam And Anti-Muslim Sentiment

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By Jehan Perera -

Jehan Perera - colombo telegraph

Jehan Perera

The great hopes of a leap forward to a new era that came with the end of the war have now been dispelled.  The anticipated prosperity and inter-ethnic reconciliation that was expected to be Sri Lanka’s after the war has still not materialized.  The continuing bailouts of loss making government enterprises and the impeachment of the Chief Justice are but two examples of the failure of governance.  The mobilization of the country to win the war has not been accompanied by a restructuring of the state to deal with the challenges of winning the peace.  Life continues to be hard for the vast majority of people and competition is intense due to limited economic opportunity within the country.

This is the context in which the dispute over admissions to the Law College has taken on an ethnic dimension.  The statistics show that a disproportionate number of successful applicants has come from the Muslim community. This has led to allegations that there has been cheating at the examinations and Muslim students have been the beneficiaries.  In a context in which political power is seen a source of patronage to constituents, the fact that the Minister of Justice is himself a Muslim has been used to give a communal and conspiratorial interpretation to the matter.

An organization called the National Intellectual Council (NIC) has urged the authorities to cancel the Law College Entrance Examination results and hold the examination again.  They have said they suspect the students to have received the paper with the support of hierarchies in the Ministry of Justice.  In addition, a Member of Parliament of the mainstream opposition UNP has been reported in the media saying that the party suspected a fraud after it was found a group of influential candidates had held on to the top 50 slots in the rankings.  All these students are alleged to have studied at the same institute and taught by the same teacher.

The Justice Ministry has responded to these accusations with a lengthy statement.  The minister’s media secretary has said that results of the Law College entrance examination to admit students for the year 2013 have generated much discussion and have now developed into a controversy involving a number of organizations making allegations against the Minister Rauff Hakeem.  He has pointed out that the Law College is managed by an independent Board which is under the supervision of the Council of Legal Education headed by the Chief Justice.  The examination is itself carried out by the Department of Examinations, which is not under the Justice Ministry.

WEAK ADMINISTRATION

Under normal circumstances, the Justice Ministry’s explanation should suffice to quell suspicions of a conspiracy. However, the recent actions of the government that undermine the independence of state institutions demonstrate the need for such institutions to be truly independent of political manipulation.  The Chief Justice who heads the Council of Legal Education is in the process of being impeached in a manner that violates the basic requirements of due process.  Even if the members of the Council of Legal Education score high on personal integrity, the larger political environment is hostile to their independence.

Sometime ago the administration of the Law College came in for criticism on account of the way it held its final examinations.  A son of President Mahinda Rajapaksa was alleged to have been given special consideration by sitting for his examination is a separate room away from the rest of the students.  It is circumstances such as this that creates unnecessary doubts in the minds of the general public about the manipulation of examination results due to the weakness of internal administrative systems.  The 18th Amendment to the Constitution that gave to the President the power to appoint anyone he desires to the topmost positions in the state apparatus has contributed to the politicization  of the public service and to the erosion of standards in it.

The breakdown of confidence in the Law College examination has occurred soon after a similar incident that affected the Ordinary Level examination, which is of crucial importance to hundreds and thousands of school children.  Many of them were similarly affected by a leak of one of the question papers in the Science subject.  Police investigations have revealed that the science paper was leaked to a tuition teacher who in turn coached his students to obtain excellent results in that subject.  In this instance, the suspect was of Sinhalese ethnicity and presumably most of the beneficiary students were also of Sinhalese ethnicity.  The Minister of Education nor the Commissioner of Examinations under whose purview the Ordinary Level examinations are held are also of Sinhalese ethnicity.

It is relevant to note that no voice has been raised that the cheating that took place at the Ordinary Level examination was a Sinhalese conspiracy. Rather it was a criminal action and the accused tuition teacher and his accomplices in the Education Department have been arrested.   The communal interpretation given to the alleged acts of cheating at the Law College examinations need to be challenged.  They appear to be part of a larger campaign against the ethnic minorities.  The deliberate fostering of Sinhalese nationalism by politicians to suit their political agendas is a recipe for trouble in the coming period.

MUSLIM BRIDGE

Recently it was reported that the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka together with the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama, the apex religious body of is Islamic Theologians, met Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to explain the situation.  They had explained that around 19 websites identified by them are spreading anti-Muslim ideas in the country. In addition, there are Facebook and SMS campaigns also against Muslims.    According to the news report the Defence Secretary had assured them that the rising incidents of extremism were not the stands of the government, Sinhala society or the Buddhist monk community and the government would not allow disrupting the hard built peace in the country.  This promise is to be welcomed.  It is alleged that some of the extremist Sinhalese nationalist groups enjoy unofficial government patronage at the highest levels.

The three decade long war, and especially its last three years, saw an unprecedented mobilisation of nationalism on both the Sinhalese and Tamil sides.   Both the government and LTTE engaged in nationalist mobilization of the human resources at their disposal.  But what was deemed to be necessary in a time of war must not be permitted to continue into the future is proving to be divisive and counter-productive to the government’s efforts to reunify the country and develop the economy.  The diversity that exists in the country, and the different links that each of the ethnic and religious communities have with different sections of the international community must be made an asset and a strength, and not be made into a liability.

So far, however, the portents are not positive in this regard.  It seems that whenever government leaders are at a loss for new ideas or explanations for the difficulties that face the country, they speak about protecting the country from anti-Sri Lanka groups working abroad and their collaborators within the country.  As all the major religions practiced in Sri Lanka are universal ones, it is inevitable that the religions practiced by the minorities will have large numbers of adherents abroad.  This becomes a source of threat to Sinhalese who have a historical memory of repeated foreign invasions that lay waste to the ancient kingdoms and to the suppression of Sinhalese civilization. This sense of threat in turn prompts them to take action against the minority religions, to the point where there have been several attacks against Christian churches and Muslim mosques.

The great pity in all of this is that inter-ethnic and inter-religious relations between people at the community level are largely amicable and free of animosity.  Those who have experience of inter-religious work will speak of the positive response they get from adherents of all religions, and in particular the Muslims.  As they are generally bilingual and conversant in both Sinhala and Tamil languages, the Muslims can be a bridge between the Sinhalese and Tamil people.  They also share the Tamil apprehension about the erosion of minority rights; at the same time they share the Sinhalese commitment to a united and undivided country.

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59 Responses to On Law Entrance Exam And Anti-Muslim Sentiment

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    If any sane mind compare the law entrance results of 2010/11/12 and its not a miracle to see how the results were a direct result of mass scale cheating. We have 27% of law college entrants from Muslim famillies and this was like 900% increase compared to the years 2000 to 2009. Folks do not have any trust in the dept of Examinations who have just accepted some of the staff did sell the Science O/L exam paper for 100,000 for a famous Tuition master who in turn gave 19 of MCQs in a individual class. What a shame this country is heading now? can anyone with Law college information update us in here how Namal Rajapaksa got throug his final exam? a. is it true that he was given a private aircon room with Internet access and rest of the other students? b. As a politician and regime joker he was out of Colombo most of the time with parliamentary sessions and so many other events and not sure he had anytime to concentrate on his law exam. c. Was this Namal baby drop out from a UK Uni enrolled to study law and probably find you cannot doctor the results in UK d. the present Law College principle was to be named as a new PC by papa – MARA – isnt it a gratitude for helping the family? e. a certain law student who was to go onto the press of Namal baby’s cheating was beaten and threatened with life and any whareabout of this boy? I am not sure what the legal faternity in the country and BASL and judiciary have any say in here? or are they all tired with CJ’s issues and let these issues go unnoticed?

    Matilda Ellepola
    December 31, 2012 at 5:41 am
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      also i have heard Namal baby got a 98 out of 100 and a record in Final year Law college exams.

      Matilda Ellepola
      December 31, 2012 at 7:49 am
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      Any number of factors could have contributed to the anomaly of more Muslim students gaining entrance. Firstly one needs to check if the pass rate is proportionate to the numbers who sat the examination in the three streams. Most importantly, if Sri Lanka does not adopt systems and processes which are independent of language and ethnicity, we are going to have this problem every time competitive exams are held

      M Y Foote
      December 31, 2012 at 8:42 am
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      [Edited out] So I am not surprised that Namal passed with flying colours after he was accommodated in a special room to sit his exams away from all the other students. Part of this comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy http://colombotelegraph.com/comments-policy/

      Uthungan
      December 31, 2012 at 12:41 pm
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      At one time, A Tamil, SLFPer I think Kumarsooriyar, was the minister of the postal department and the Postal department was full of Tamils. Even in Sinhala reas, you could not anything done if you did not talk in english or Tamil. I suppose, now the minister responsible for the Law college area should be a Muslim. When they have the upper hand, they serve to themselves as much as they can. When they can not they complain saying that they are not treated properly.

      Jim Softy
      January 1, 2013 at 12:58 am
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        There was a time most departments had a large number of Tamils and their ministers were not always Tamils. Do not try to tie a knot between a bald head and a one with a kondey ( knotted hair). Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
        January 2, 2013 at 1:56 am
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        this is a problem in this country. whenever a minister is appointed he get jobs for his henchmen. Almost every1 does that. That is against the governance and equality in this country. That is a problem that should be solved. Now if the minister is sinhala, he gets his henchmen into the ministry. His henchmen are most probably sinhala. Therefore sinhalese who helped minister would get opportunity. That is the same with tamil or muslim minister. Giving this an ethnic angle is incorrect.

        sach
        January 2, 2013 at 6:47 pm
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    I don’t understand Jehan speaks for whom: Is it for justice, ethics or ethnically motivated moves. Initially he was stating that – “It is relevant to note that no voice has been raised that the cheating that took place at the Ordinary Level examination was a Sinhalese conspiracy. Rather it was a criminal action and the accused tuition teacher and his accomplices in the Education Department have been arrested. The communal interpretation given to the alleged acts of cheating at the Law College examinations need to be challenged. They appear to be part of a larger campaign against the ethnic minorities. The deliberate fostering of Sinhalese nationalism by politicians to suit their political agendas is a recipe for trouble in the coming period.” which is wonderful and stand for justice against by interpreting crime if any should be taken as crime but not under communal paint. Then again he state that – “Recently it was reported that the Muslim Council of Sri Lanka together with the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama, the apex religious body of is Islamic Theologians, met Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to explain the situation. They had explained that around 19 websites identified by them are spreading anti-Muslim ideas in the country. In addition, there are Facebook and SMS campaigns also against Muslims. According to the news report the Defence Secretary had assured them that the rising incidents of extremism were not the stands of the government, Sinhala society or the Buddhist monk community and the government would not allow disrupting the hard built peace in the country. This promise is to be welcomed.”. But This is a partial statement of what Defence Secretary gave to the segment of the Citizen of this country who are Muslims by religion. The balance part of the saying over lap this statement which is already being published in this same CT Website. According to S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole article published state as follows. “Government hypocrisy became obvious when Muslim representatives went to Gotabaya Rajapakse to protest patently racist demonstrations against them. Suddenly discovering democracy, Gotabaya claimed that obstructing rallies against minorities is an act against democracy and would lead to a state crisis. He should tell his troops who selectively assaulted Tamil students” Allowing extremist activities against 10% of the population who are by religion Muslims in the name of Democracy and stating them we give protection does not make sense. The question is Jehan speaks for whom which I can not figure out in this article.

    A Citizen of Sri Lanka
    December 31, 2012 at 5:59 am
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      Citizen, So, you do not ‘understand Jehan speaks for whom’? What a silly thought. Think deep, Jehan always speaks for NGO cohorts and their paymasters for he lives on them.

      Villager
      December 31, 2012 at 9:41 am
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    Great article… Revealing the truths and actual situations of Sri Lanka

    Rinas Mohame
    December 31, 2012 at 6:29 am
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    This dude must have a Masters in “Spin’. The great Sinhala Buddhist majority who are in the rural sector and 75% of the population for that matter wouldn’t have even 0.0001% going for a LLB. If 50 students whom the writers tags as Muslims got in to Law , good luck to them and the Sinhala majority will say weel done mates. But Mr jehan Perera’s cheer squad may be hurting if their previleged kids missed out.

    K.A Sumanasekera
    December 31, 2012 at 6:30 am
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      K.A Sumanasekera says: “The great Sinhala Buddhist majority who are in the rural sector and 75% of the population for that matter” Why are they living in my ancestral land? They should go back to Tamilnadu or Sinhapura where they originally belonged to. India is much larger country than this island. There are plenty of land available even after land grabbing by the politicians and Corporate India. This island is not big enough for all of us to share with Tamils and Sinhalese. Please go home.

      Native Vedda
      December 31, 2012 at 8:48 am
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      Why the adjective ‘ Great’ ? Is it because they have been greater than than others in Sri Lanka, because of what they have achieved in the past and present or because they are in greater numbers? Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
      January 2, 2013 at 1:59 am
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        Yes I agree.This is a stupid thing to say. Like Great Britain!

        Dubdoc
        January 5, 2013 at 9:46 pm
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    Well, well, what goes around, comes around! The Muslim politicians have been playing ethnic politics, supporting the brutal and racist Rajapakse regime against the Tamils for their personal benefit. The Tamils have been laid low by Sinhala fundamentalists of the JHU and weeravansa and Prabakarn. Now the Muslims are being taught the same lessons by the Sinhala fundamentalist ! Moral of tale: minorities should stick together – rather than being DIVIDED AND RULED BY the racist Rajapassa regime and stooges! Same goes of the Sinhala masses!

    Dinuk
    December 31, 2012 at 9:32 am
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    An excellent analysis by Jehan as usual. Best wishes to him for the new year to come out with more innovotaive writing Subra

    subra jayahanthan
    December 31, 2012 at 9:37 am
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    How can this Jehan, who did know that the Eastern coastal belt was under the Kandyan king’s control during Dutch time, explain 500% or 900% increase in Muslim law student pass rate?

    C. Wijeyawickrema
    December 31, 2012 at 10:24 am
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      What has knowing whether the land that is now the eastern province was part of the Kandyan Kingdomhave to do with the explanation regarding the law college entrance examination? Did you know that the King of Jaffna was the supreme king of Lanka for a period of 12 years and the sacred tooth relic was in his possession ? Did you know that the other kings of Lanka paid him an annual tribute during this period? Do you know that the Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims are essentially the same people, though communally different now? History is what we choose to remember selectively to further our agenda and interests. Let us view the issue of the law college entrance examination as one concerning Sri Lankan citizens. As citizens we have to make sure examinations are above board and trustable. Every citizen has a right to results of his/her efforts and have faith in the process they go through. They must feel confident that they have earned their grades fairly and squarely. This is what we have to demand and ensure. As someone here has pointed out, is the leaking of the O-level physics paper to a Sinhalese tuition master a Sinhala conspiracy. Can the Minister of Education, Bandula Gunawardene- a former tuition master- be accused of favouring his Sinhala colleague ? Should he also be fired or impeached? Let us not pursue this issue like how the government is pursuing the impeachment process against the CJ . Justice must not only be done, but it also must be seen to be done. Let us also not go tribal at a toss of a hat. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
      January 1, 2013 at 12:34 pm
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    Once upon a time the Tamils were accused of being favoured at public examination, as a prelude to introducing the standardisation scheme for university admissions. This seeded a long civil war and both state and Tamil terrorism. It seems we are incapable of learning lessons from history. Are we a nation of imbeciles? Jehan Perera has highlighted the contradictions and the meanness inherent in our approach to issues. We see ghosts where there are none and then spend time, money and energy fighting these imaginary ghosts. Unfortunately, these imaginary ghosts, take real form in time and learn to fight back in a meaner manner in time, as did VP’s Tigers. This is typical Sri Lankan alchemy. Instead of creating a leak-proof examination system, we spend our time finding scape goats, especially when perceived that a minority has fared better! Why should not a minority fare better in one examination? Is this not within the realm of probability ?” Dr.Rajasingham Narendran.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
    December 31, 2012 at 10:30 am
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      Narendran, Once upon a time there was a man called Wilmot Perera. He was a pure samathana person like the old LSSP in the 1940s. But after he found undeniable proof that Tamil examiners are leaking questions and lab tests, he accepted that the allegation that Tamil examiners favor Tamil students illegally in exams was true. The famous example was the life cycle of the Malaria mosquito. If you are not old find out this from an older person. Equal opportunity to all is good, but cheating to get higher rates is dirty. One cannot hide such human cheating under the rug of ethnic conflicts.

      C. Wijeyawickrema
      December 31, 2012 at 5:00 pm
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        I am old enough to know how the web was spun and the fly was trapped, despite what Wilmot Perera had to say. What Cyril Mathew and his kind of low life uttered yet ring in my ears! If there were problems they should have been corrected without undermining the future of a whole generation of clever, hardworking and ambitious students. Instead, what may have possibly been a minor problem, was exaggerated beyond all proportions venomously and made a crusade against the Tamil community. We as a nation paid a price for this cardinal sin. A highly centralised system of education at all levels , highly centralised system examinations in multiple languages and the large number of students involved, in the country that is Sri Lanka leads to many problems. Let us find ways to simplify the system and make it effective. The US model of decentralised education and examinations may help. A provincial system of Universities competing for students, instead of students competing for university places will also help. A parallel system of private universities with their own criteria for admissions may also help. The unnessary competition for preferred fields of study and professions is undermining values in this country and undermining not only our faith in the education and examination system, but also undermining communal amity. Dr. Rajasingham Narendran

        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
        January 1, 2013 at 12:42 am
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        C. Wijeyawickrema “One cannot hide such human cheating under the rug of ethnic conflicts.” Instead we should celebrate all such effort. Here are a few incidents of national disease for you to treasure or reminisce: Teachers’ unions allege that the question papers of this year’s Grade Five Scholarship Exams had been leaked ahead. January 1, 2013 newsfirst.lk Law College Exam Leaked Sri Lanka DECEMBER 29, 2012 Sri Lanka University and Cambus News Tutor held for leaking exame paper in Sri Lanka 24 December 2012 Khaleej Times All these incidents occurred within a short pace of time and I hope you will not sweep such human cheating under the rug of ethnic conflicts, instead celebrate the fact that the perpetrators were non Tamils. Happy holidays.

        Native Vedda
        January 1, 2013 at 1:06 am
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        This Tamils favouring Tamils and Christians favouring Christians was a well known old game. Remember apothecaries! Just before I went to the UK in the mid sixties, if I remember right, 80% of apothecary students were Tamils from Jaffna. This continued to happen every year and year after. But none was surprised or had agitated like now for it was a common knowledge then that most of them got there by cheating.

        Villager
        January 1, 2013 at 4:38 am
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          Villager, I am also aware of instances of Tamils favouring Tamils and Tamils from a particular village favouring those from the same village. Also,Thomians favoured Thomians and Royalists favoured Royalists regardless of communal labels. I remember my colleagues at Perdeniya in the 1960′s wearing their college ties to the viva-voce examination because the examinations were Roalists and Thomians. I am sure Sinhalese in positions to do so favoured fellow Sinhalese, of their kind. This is what I call our medieval heritage! It is human nature, we have not learned to transcend yet! However, until the late 1960′s the examination system was above board and sterling silver. More Tamils were selected to various professions because they worked hard to pass examinations. Their sole goal in life was to become government servants and professionals. The parents and society relentlessly pushed them in this direction. The same pressures were not seen among the Sinhalese and very much less so with the Muslims at that time. Among the Tamils too, it was limited to mostly the Jaffna Vellahlas . Tamil parents at one stage mortgaged or sold everything they had, to send their sons to the UK for university studies. Please do not draw lopsided conclusions from random facts, without understanding societal dynamics and circumstances prevailing at particular times in history. Today, the same Tamils are risking hazardous sea voyages in leaky boats to Australia to seek a better life for themselves and their children. They may be making unacceptable excuses and false reasons. These do not diminish the fact that they are prepared to give all they have, including their lives, for a better life. This is the same force that drove the Tamils in yesteryears to seek jobs as professionals and government servants within Sri Lanka. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

          Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
          January 1, 2013 at 8:10 am
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            Well said DR RN. I am in 100% agreement with you

            Anpu
            January 1, 2013 at 9:16 am
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          Villager says: “This Tamils favouring Tamils and Christians favouring Christians was a well known old game.” Sinhala/Buddhist do not have to favour the Sinhala/Buddhist since the state is owned by the Sinhala/Buddhist and run by Sinhala/Buddhists. All laws are made by Sinhala/Buddhists for Sinhala/Buddhists and administered by Sinhala/Buddhists.

          Native Vedda
          January 1, 2013 at 9:34 pm
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      Dr. Rajasigham, You have posed a good question in your comment. We stand with your view. You have exposed in communal envy inherited and rooted in a section of majority community.

      J.Zuhry Ahamed
      January 1, 2013 at 3:57 am
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    there has been no mention that the original paper was set in English and it was translated to sinhala and tamil. Anyone who knows what an aberration it is to translate English into Sinahala will agree that the questions set in Sinhala will be far more difficult even for a Sinhala student to understand and this time the translators made matters worse. Not willingly I might add, but just ask a person as conversant in English and Sinhala to read the papers. He will opt to answer in English as his result would be far better. So the result is not at all a surprise, and to be expected. It is time the jokers stop bringing race into it and try and explain reality for a change. THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RELIGION OR RACE!! NOT MAKE IT ONE PLEASE

    Patta Pal
    December 31, 2012 at 11:52 am
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    There are certain ethnic connotations in the accusations by the National Intellectual Council (NIC). Hakeem is only the minister and only since Nov 2010. Just because a muslim is the minister does it mean that the entire ministry and examinations dept connived with him to fix the law exam result? I cant imagine Hakeem prowling around in the dead of night copying the questions and preparing the answers without anyone else noticing? Why cant the CID investigate into this instead of people spreading ethnic hatred throughout the country. I think this NIC is a racist organistion consisting of representatives from different political parties such as the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), United National Party (UNP), and Patriotic National Movement (PNM). Two are rabid racist parties. So it is not surprising that they make such accusations.

    Safa
    December 31, 2012 at 12:31 pm
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      You must be a Safa-Marwa!In real Safa’s view,UNP is nowhere near a racist party.Where’s your luggage?

      whywhy
      December 31, 2012 at 5:39 pm
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        Why and who from the UNP is in the NIC? Please check yourself.

        Safa
        January 1, 2013 at 12:46 am
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      JHU and PNM are ‘rabid racist parties’ whereas Muslim Congress, TNA, TC, EPRLF and all those Eelam parties are fully democratic and totally egalitarian political entities. Is that what you say?

      Villager
      January 1, 2013 at 4:53 am
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        Exactly, rabid because they keep attacking and biting others.

        Safa
        January 1, 2013 at 6:24 am
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          Please read my comment below. It fits for those with your mindset.

          Villager
          January 1, 2013 at 9:19 am
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            JHU and PNM are racist parties because they attack other races and religons. Other parties are based on ethnicity in order to politically represent their people not to attack others. “Buddhist militants in Sri Lanka are stepping up attacks on Christian pastors and churches across Sri Lanka, rights investigators said Friday, June 27. A monk and supporters of the radical Buddhist Sinhala Nationalist Party (JHU) attacked Pastor Pradeep of the Assembly of God Church Sunday, June 22, in the town of Middeniya in the country’s southeastern Hambantota District. A JHU monk “gathered a mob of over 5,000 and attempted to enter the church after conducting a quick ceremony to re-name the road with a Buddhist title,” ICC said. Police reportedly intervened, providing a barricade in an attempt to keep the pastor safe. “However, the mob managed to break through, and it took forceful action on the part of the police to drive them away,” said ICC, which closely monitors the situation. The attackers allegedly decided to retaliate by distributing hate leaflets against the Christians. Pastor Pradeep was reportedly advised by police to hold a scheduled Sunday church service and was warned to not step outside of his home. The pastor was quoted as saying that he is “afraid to leave home and have been unofficially told not to step out or else.” He was allegedly told by locals that he a monk of the JHU personally announced that within 14 days they would drive him out and claim the land on which the church now stands. There was no immediate independent confirmation from the JHU.”

            Safa
            January 2, 2013 at 12:39 am
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            These are facts not a mindset. JHU has launched physical attacks on many places of worship.

            Safa
            January 2, 2013 at 12:49 am
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    Hats off to you Jehan.As a muslim and on behalf of Muslim and Tamil community along with real peace loving majority,I thank you for your display of well balanced approach.The only thing I feel impressed from this kind of article is,to encourage and appreciate contributions that stand for equality among communities and when it comes from a Perera, forget everything else.We, all Srilankans are,trained by some of our GREAT LEADERS and for many generations to work with their ugly communal agendas which lead us nowhere but to gradual destruction.It’s now in the blood of all communities and it’s high time that ordinary people take their own affairs into their hands and stay away from poisonous elements that create hatred among communities for every single, simple or serious issue.One thing we should remember that our politicians will never do something new to bring us together.Reason is simple.Communal hatred is their survival kit and they are largely dependent on it. More hatred more business and more prosperity for our morons.So people must come forward to defend themselves. And from that point of view I really admire Jehan’s work.

    whywhy
    December 31, 2012 at 1:14 pm
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    The anti Muslim websites can also be the work of trouble makers outside the country. There is a strong movement backed by millions of dollars even in the US, that has tried to propagate anti Islamic/Muslim rhetoric and false information, which stems from hate, bigotry, and anger against all Muslims. We should not be surprised if these trouble makers tried these antics in our small nation, to promote racial strife and discord. Be careful Sri Lankans.

    Menik
    December 31, 2012 at 2:03 pm
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      Menik,this and other govts,all had and have different sources of hate spreading mechanisms in place to achieve desired results at anytime they are in trouble or to invite trouble if necessary, for their benefit and some times even minority parties silently betray their supporters unquestioned loyalty to go with all malice.So,the only thing we should be watchful is,we don’t allow these morons,whoever they are and whatever ethnicity they represent,to ride on our back to destroy ourselves.The time has come that either we learn or they do it.If we try to put the blame all the time on outsiders,that also will help real culprit to escape from being identified and punished.This govt definitely plays double game and only they have experts within themselves for the job.FOR THEM,IT IS VICTORY AT ANY COST.

      whywhy
      December 31, 2012 at 5:28 pm
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    As far as possible we should move to computer corrections of multiple choice questions, to get rid of the suspicion of a racial bias in marking answer scripts. I believe 75% of the marks should be given to such computerised corrections. Statistical analysis can be used to determine whether there is a statistically significant variation between the different language streams in the balance 25% of the answers. We must not leave room for creating such racial tensions.

    De Mel
    December 31, 2012 at 3:21 pm
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    I am impressed!!!

    Mueez
    December 31, 2012 at 6:38 pm
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    By the way is that servile Law College Principal who received the prince,heir to the throne, by offering a sheaf of betel on his arrival for the Law College Entrance Exam still there? I think we are expecting too much from a system rotten from the top to the bottom!

    Saman Wijesiri
    December 31, 2012 at 7:53 pm
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      yes he is… he was well rewarded recently with a Presidents Council by the Pappa MA-RA.

      Matilda Ellepola
      January 1, 2013 at 2:32 am
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    Jahan, You said right. I like your objectivity and rationality in this article. In this complaint against law entrance exam, the anti muslim sentiment is clearly pictured. It is nothing other than intolerance and envy. Why cant a single ethnic group capture all the slots in a open competition examiniation?. In sri lanka, only Sinhalese get more slots in many competitive examinations to vital posts and university entrance dispropostionately. Can people say the results are frauded as most of the employees are sinhalese. If this communal sentiments persists, the nobody will be in peace in Sri lanka. People are happy there are some sinhalese who are not racist in the country like Jahan

    J.Zuhry Ahamed
    January 1, 2013 at 3:48 am
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      You said “… some sinhalese who are not racist ….” You obviously meant; most Sinhalas are racists. On the contrary, not just prejudiced mindsets like Jehan but the entire Sinhala community and country as a whole has been reasonable in every aspect to all minorities in Sri Lanka than in any Muslim majority country anywhere in the world. Since you are a Muslim and for brevity, I shall just take the case of Muslims only here. Do you know that when Muslims are a minority they demand religious freedom, minority rights, human rights and all kinds of rights but whenever and where-ever they are the majority, they curtail all those rights to all the minorities there. Just look at Maldives for example. According to its constitution; all Maldivians have to be Muslims. Just like in Saudi, not even a Vesak cards or Christian cross allowed through the Maldives airport. But here in Sri Lanka we allow all Maldivians not just to use our schools, hospitals but give them all rights as equals. Then look at what majority Sunis do in Pakistan: They not only persecute and harass Christians and Hindus but they accuse their fellow Muslims of other sects (Shia, Sufi and etc) as infidels and bomb them to kill on a routine basis. We do not do such things. So, tell us what exactly you and Jehan have in mind when you accuse sinhalas as racists?

      Villager
      January 1, 2013 at 7:20 am
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        SAUDI AND MALDIVES ARE 100 PERCENT MUSLIM COUNTRIES. STATUES AND PICTURES ETC ARE NOT PERMITTED. THOSE COMPLAINING OF DISCRIMINATION IN THOSE COUNTRIES ARE THOSE WHO HAVE GONE FOR THE MONEY SINCE THEY WILL OTHERWISE BE BEGGING. IF YOU DO NOT LIKE BEING DISCRIMINATED, YOU HAVE THE OPTION TO REMAIN AT HOME AND BE ENTERTAINED BY THE RUHUNU PUPPETEERS. AS FOR MUSLIMS IN SRI LANKA, READ HISTORY BOOKS AND YOU WILL KNOW WHEN THEY CAME HERE, MAYBE LITTLE AFTER VIJAYA. COMING TO BUDDHISM IN SRI LANKA.IT WAS BROUGHT TO THE ISLAND BY MAHINDA NOT RAJAPAKSE.SO IT WAS NOT THE RELIGION OF THE ORIGINAL INHABITANTS, WHO WERE VEDDAHS, YAKKAS AND NAGAS AND THEIR RELIGION WAS NOT BUDDHISM. WHEN DID THE FIRST BUDDHA STATUE APPEAR? CHRISTIANITY TOO DOES NOT PERMIT STATUES. COMING TO MINORITY RIGHTS-ITS JUST TO PRACTICE OUR RELIGION WITHOUT HARMING OTHERS,AND OTHER BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS, WHICH IS ENSHRINED IN OUR CONSTITUTION.IS THAT ASKING TOO MUCH?

        AYMAN
        January 3, 2013 at 9:05 am
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    Jehan writes for Donor satisfaction.He is tricky and knows how to mislead for donors money.Only talks without work.He never answered the question why he and his NGO refused to sign the Civil Society Representation to UN periodical session in March.

    Sonlight
    January 1, 2013 at 5:56 am
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      Sonlight says: “He is tricky and knows how to mislead for donors money.” By any chance are you a government auditor? Do you have access to transactions relating to donor’s money?

      Native Vedda
      January 1, 2013 at 11:14 am
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        Thumb sucking babies cannot understand what I said.I am not a agent of the Govt.I am looking for justice for all. I strongly condemn when bogus NGO Papas make free money by selling sufferings of the people

        Sonlight
        January 2, 2013 at 4:04 pm
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          Sonlight Stupid man says: “I am not a agent of the Govt.” Did I call you an agent of Government? This is what I wrote: By any chance are you a government auditor? There is huge difference between auditor and agent. You say: ” I strongly condemn when bogus NGO Papas make free money by selling sufferings of the people” In the same way the state and its rulers are selling fear to the people. Now they are selling a new improved re-branded product, international conspiracy, the axis of evil, CJ and the international conspirators in collusion with Tamil Diaspora and exiled Sinhala journalists”

          Native Vedda
          January 3, 2013 at 9:25 am
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    In reality, if wanted every one whether they are sinhala, muslims or tamil should be able to get into the law college. Then the market needs and their capabilities decide whether they are employed. There fore, there is no need to compare the statistics saying who had more space.

    Jim Softy
    January 1, 2013 at 5:25 pm
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    Law college should start charging money from the students and give admission to every one who is qualified to enter.

    Jim Softy
    January 1, 2013 at 5:26 pm
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      Jim Softy: “Law college should start charging money from the students” So that you can altogether price out the poor from the legal profession. The rich will be awarded qualifications not judged by their ability but by what they don’t possess. The legal profession will of course become a rich man’s exclusive club. It a good idea for the filthy rich.

      Native Vedda
      January 1, 2013 at 9:30 pm
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    I chanced to glance through some comments above and it motivated me to jot down a few words. Dr. Narendran’s comments are very realistic and appreciable. I wonder why the most of the readers of this column can’t understand his ideals. We need more and more professionals like you Dr. to make this a paradise.

    good citizen
    January 2, 2013 at 10:12 am
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    the sinhalese just need somebody to vent their hate on. Now it’s the muslims’ turn.

    peebee
    January 3, 2013 at 2:43 am
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    THE FEAR IS BECAUSE ISLAM IS GROWING NOT JUST HERE BUT WORLDWIDE.

    AYMAN
    January 3, 2013 at 9:09 am
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    I cant believe my result because i hope over 70 marks but i have received 56 this should be impossible.

    d.hettiarachchi
    January 6, 2013 at 5:23 am
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    I WISH TO ENDORSE EVERY LETTER IN THESE FEW LINES.ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. “Once upon a time the Tamils were accused of being favoured at public examination, as a prelude to introducing the standardisation scheme for university admissions. This seeded a long civil war and both state and Tamil terrorism. It seems we are incapable of learning lessons from history. Are we a nation of imbeciles? ” THIS WAS THE BEGINNING OF ALL THE PROBLEMS WE ARE FACING TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    AYMAN
    January 8, 2013 at 5:59 am
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    I WISH TO ENDORSE EVERY LETTER IN THESE FEW LINES.ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. “Once upon a time the Tamils were accused of being favoured at public examination, as a prelude to introducing the standardisation scheme for university admissions. This seeded a long civil war and both state and Tamil terrorism. It seems we are incapable of learning lessons from history. Are we a nation of imbeciles?

    AYMAN
    January 8, 2013 at 6:40 am
    Reply

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