Robert Siddharthan Perinpanayagam, in Groundviews, 22 August 2011, where the title reads “Caste And Politics” …. An article that drew 19 comments including some responses from “Sid”… reproduced here with highlighting imposed by The Editor in circumstances where my friend “Sid” from Peradeniya days is no longer around to dispute matters … as he surely would have.
Over the years, the claims of the Tamil people for justice, equalty and dignity have been rejected with a variety of specious arguments. It is not necessary to go into these exercises here again. However, the latest attempt in this direction is to raise the issue of caste in Jaffna society. Former civil servants, who spent three or four years being de facto kings of the North, have sought to comment on this issue in many recent hero-stories that they have published in the newspapers. In these hero-stories they report not only how they defeated one departmental head or another or humiliated a hapless village headman, but how they vanquished the evil designs of the Tamils as well. Indeed everything seems to become grist to the mill of Tamil-bashing. Even a casual remark made in a cricket match is used by a famous historian to claim that the Tamils of Jaffna are cravenly caste-conscious. Off-the-cuff social commentators as well as the tribalist pundits in the newspapers have also got into this act. The implication of these commentaries is that the Sinhalese do not have the problem of castism and only Tamils do. One recent commentator is so ignorant of the political history of the island as to invoke Ponnambalam Ramanathan’s castism! It was indeed the fear of Karava ascendancy by the Goigamas that elevated Ramanathan to high stature by making him the representative of the “Educated Ceylonese” in the Legislative Council.
The presentation of an essay in the Sinhala language on “Caste in Sinhala Society” in April 2017 within Thuppahi came to the attention of Thomas Fernando in UK recently. Tommy promptly took up the challenge and is now proceeding to address the article and topic. This is his NOTE to me: “however laborious it is to plough through the Sinhala text, I hope to have a good look at this article on caste in SL as I have not read a good description on this important topic which has a very significant impact on life even today in SL.”
HILLEL ITALIE in Associated Press, 25 April 2023, ….“Harry Belafonte, activist and entertainer, dies at 96” … with highlights imposed by The Editor, Thuppahi
Harry Belafonte, the civil rights and entertainment giant who began as a ground-breaking actor and singer and became an activist, humanitarian and conscience of the world, has died. He was 96. Belafonte died Tuesday of congestive heart failure at his New York home, his wife Pamela by his side, said publicist Ken Sunshine.
Shamara Wettimuny in Financial Times, 12 April 2023 … with highlighting added by The Editor, Thuppahi
On a muggy Friday afternoon, the auditorium of the National Library of Sri Lanka slowly filled with an eager audience from Colombo, the Hill Country and beyond. It was the launch of a book by Associate Professor of Anthropology, Dr. Mythri Jegathesan, of Santa Clara University.
Her book, a work on and of solidarity with the Hill Country Tamils of Sri Lanka, ‘Tea and Solidarity: Tamil Women and Work in Post-war Sri Lanka’ was originally published by the University of Washington Press in 2019 to widespread acclaim. It was awarded the 2020 Diane Forsyth Prize for the best book featuring feminist anthropology research and in 2021, it won the Michelle Z. Rosaldo Book Prize for its significant contribution to feminist anthropology.
TULANA is a Sri Lanka Jesuit Province Apostolate mandated by the Superiors and founded in 1974 by its current Director, the Asian Jesuit Theologian, Indologist and Buddhist Scholar, Fr. Aloysius Pieris, s.j.
“The name TULANA has its roots in Sanskrit and means four things taken together: elevation, weighing, comparing and deciding for the weightier things – in short DISCERNMENT.”
Revd Aloysius Peiris, s.j.
Its primary founding motivation was as a response to two challenges – the challenge of the spirituality and philosophy of Sri Lanka’s major religion, Buddhism, and the challenge of the socio-political aspirations of the highly educated but marginalised rural youth.
A former SAS commander whose mercenary business in Sri Lanka is under investigation for war crimes has left millions of pounds in his will.
Attached photo of Colonel Johnson leading an SAS parade in 1960. (Image: Imperial War Museum)
One of Britain’s most rapacious mercenaries amassed a fortune worth £4m before his death in 2008, an investigation by Declassified UK has found. The soldier of fortune, Colonel Henry ‘Jim’ Johnson, was once described by a senior British diplomat as having “political ideas [that] are probably to the right of Genghis Khan” – a reference to the infamously brutal Mongol emperor.
Michael Patrick O’Leary, in The Island, 12 March 2023, where the title reads “Time to Think Part One”
Transgender Issues in Sri Lanka:
Sri Lanka’s first president, JR Jayewardene, famously boasted that the newly-created executive presidency gave him the power, “to do anything, except make a man a woman, or a woman a man”. Today, there is much conflict in many countries about making a man a woman or a woman a man. The issue recently contributed to the downfall of Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, who had seemed unassailable. In Ireland, the government is under attack because the Equalities Minister, Roderic O’Gorman, has been siphoning money off to trans activist groups that had been earmarked for the Traveller and Roma communities, migrant integration and redress for children who had been abused by the state and the church. There are some who believe that if a man says he is woman – “self-identifies” as a woman – then he is, indeed, a woman. Wishing makes it so. Those who dispute this are labeled “transphobic” and are brutally attacked in the trans wars. JK Rowling has been vilified simply for saying a man cannot be a woman.
Muttukrishna Sarvanandan,** whose preferred title reads thus: “Chinese Lending to Sri Lanka: A Factual cum “Reality” Check. A Rejoinder to Umesh Moramudali and Thilina Panduwawala”
Abstract: This is a response to the Briefing Paper entitled Evolution of Chinese Lending to Sri Lanka since the mid-2000s – Separating Myth from Reality, written by Umesh Moramudali and Thilina Panduwawala published by the China-Africa Research Initiative of the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at the John Hopkins University, USA. This response identifies a few factual errors (both quantitative and qualitative) and provides alternative data, and contests the interpretations of the data and conclusion drawn therefrom by Moramudali and Panduwawala by providing concrete examples to the contrary. We characterise Chinese lending to Sri Lanka between 2007 and 2022 as quasi-predatory lending, having defined the characteristics of predatory lending………….Keywords – China, Hambantota Port, Predatory Lending, Sovereign Default, Sri Lanka
Introduction: This is a response to a Briefing Paper (No.8 dated November 2022) written by Umesh Moramudali and Thilina Panduwawala entitled Evolution of Chinese Lending to Sri Lanka since the mid-2000s – Separating Myth from Reality published by the China-Africa Research Initiative (CARI) of the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at the John Hopkins University (JHU) in the United States of America (USA).
Capt. Elmo Jayawardena, in The Island, early February 2023, where the title runs thus: “75 Years – What have they done? It is a paradise misplaced”
Our island was called Lanka in pre-King Vijaya times. Valmiki’s immortal Ramayanaya had King Ravana ruling the land from the city of Lankapura. That was almost four thousand years ago. The Arab traders termed it Jaziratul-Yaqut, island of rubies. Some called it Serendib, some Ceilan, from which the Portuguese picked Ceilao and the European mapmakers coined Ceylon. Many were the names from the many that came. Bar none, everyone agreed and noted in their chronicles that this Island was indeed the complete Paradise.
Thuppahi's Blog · This web site presents the interventions of MICHAEL ROBERTS in the public realm with reference to Sri Lankan political affairs. It will embrace the politics of cricket as well. ROBERTS was educated at St. Aloysius College in Galle and the universities of Peradeniya and Oxford. He taught History at Peradeniya University and Anthropology at Adelaide university. He is now retired and lives in Adelaide.