How Free is Free Education? The Impact of Tuition on Exam Marks Photo courtesy Rose Sri Lanka Sri Lanka’s Free Education Scheme aims to provide each child an equal opportunity at educational success, but there is debate over to what extent it succeeds in this endeavor. Notably, some critics are concerned that private spending on education (for private and international schools, universities, and tuition) may be diluting the Free Education Scheme’s ability ...

TID arrests a Tamil woman and 8 year old French daughter Background Ms. JeyaGanesh Pakeerathy was a member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) Sea Tigers unit for around four years (exact years unknown). She was heavily injured and was discontinued in 2000. After receiving intensive treatment at home, she recovered. However, even today she is unable to do heavy work. In 2003, she married a man who ...

A Tale of Two Chief Justices: From Process to Principles – Part II AFP PHOTO/ Ishara S. KODIKARA, via The Malaysian Insider By Luwie Ganeshathasan and Sanjayan Rajasingham. Read Part I here. A Broader Analysis The legality of Mr. Sirisena’s decision to reinstate Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake through executive order was questionable, though not strictly illegal.[i] This is largely because it stemmed from a unique situation. This involved the initial removal of Dr. Bandaranayake – ...

Human Rights and 50 days of Sri Lanka’s new Presidency Image courtesy Maithripala Sirisena website It’s now 50 days since Sri Lanka’s new President took oaths on 9th January 2015. This is an attempt to reflect on the first 50 days of the new Presidency. It’s not meant to be comprehensive assessment of the 50 days, but a reflection based on my personal experiences, what I’ve seen and heard ...

Whose democracy is it anyway? While domestic and international observers have been praising the peaceful transfer of power in early January, Sri Lanka’s civil conflict continues and Tamil rights remain in question. TSA has obtained a series of highly credible reports about people who disappeared during the final days of combat from September 2008 – May 2009. This year, the Government of Sri Lanka ...

Unity of the Ruling Political Class and the National Government Photo by Ishara S.KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images via The Baltimore Sun The talks of establishing a national government, among other things, highlight the underlying unity of the ruling class in Sri Lanka. Irrespective of party differences and occasional incidents of politico arrests and then release on bail, the ruling class in Sri Lanka has commonalities in terms of family connections, school friendships, ...

Army in the North: Contesting the views of Prof. Rohan Gunaratna Photo by STR/AFP/Getty Images, via A Sri Lankan Quest This is in response to the views expressed by “International Terrorism Expert” Prof. Rohan Gunaratna to Zahrah Imtiaz in the article titled “Don’t Withdraw Army from North: Prof. Rohan Gunaratna” published in the Ceylon Today of Sunday 15 February 2015, page 10. Security I do agree with Prof. Rohan Gunaratna that ...

A Tale of Two Chief Justices: From Process to Principles – Part I Photo courtesy The Malaysian Insider / AFP PHOTO/ Ishara S. KODIKARA By Luwie Ganeshathasan and Sanjayan Rajasingham Introduction The declaration that Mohan Peiris’s appointment as Chief Justice was void ab initio (invalid from the beginning), and the subsequent reinstatement of Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, raises many questions. What was the legal basis for these acts? Was the proper procedure followed in deciding that ...

Beating the Communal Drum by Hardcore Sinhala Nationalists Photo courtesy Daily FT Yesterday’s rally in Nugegoda organised by the hard-core Sinhala nationalists, i.e. Weerawansa, Dinesh, Gammanpila and Vasudeva with the blessings of former President Mahinda Rajapakse and their pseudo intellectual appendage Dayan Jayatilleke reminds us that the politicians who made a life out of Sinhala communalism/nationalism at the expense of a pluralist, liberal democratic Sri Lanka are ...

Deconstructing  Independence Day Discourse 2015: A Response to  Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena, via South China Morning Post The 2015 Independence Day celebration was invested with the dignity of understatement – a complete departure from the showmanship and bravura performances which characterized the previous events under the patronage of Mahinda Rajapaksa. In total contrast to the former President’s rhetoric, which generally included noble sentiments in Tamil, President Sirisena’s speech ...

Open Letter to the Government of Sri Lanka: On the Port City Review Image courtesy Yamu Prime Minister Hon. Ranil Wickremesinghe Minister Hon. Rajitha Senaratne Minister Hon Lakshman Kiriella Dear Sirs, On the Port City Review I am writing this open letter to you all as I have doubts that you might receive it through the layers of bureaucracy and entrenched interests that support the proposed ‘Port City’ project. A recent news ...

Photo courtesy Ingulfed Review of Nation, Constitutionalism and Buddhism in Sri Lanka by Roshan de Silva Wijeyeratne , Rouledge, London, 2014, ISBN 978-0-415-46266-2,250pp ### This treatise encompasses a vast span of time and straddles both the pre-modern and modern periods of Sri Lanka’s history down to the present moment. It engages, deploys, transcends and weaves through a vast array ...

SMS news alerts: Going beyond cricket and politics Mainstream politics & cricket dominate SMS news alerts in Sri Lanka. This infographic was made up from 320 SMS updates by a single news provider, covering the period of 23.10.2014 to 16.2.2015 and totalling around 5,228 words. Attribution to the service provider, at the end of each SMS, was stripped from the text that fed into the word cloud, so ...

Where are our loved ones who have been abducted, arrested and disappeared? Image courtesy Today ### To His Excellency Maithripala Sirisena President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka Respected President, In the journey towards good governance where are our loved ones who have been abducted, arrested, and disappeared? The 3 decades of war in our country affected all communities, irrespective of ethnicity and religion and left them with unforgettably ...

Sri Lanka’s Political Moment: Part 2 Photo by REUTERS/Stringer, via Al Jazeera A transformation of the political agenda Despite many detailed analysis of Sri Lanka’s present political moment by a myriad experts, two of its significant aspects have so far been all but overlooked. It is perhaps to be expected that the visible change of regime that took place on 9th January would overshadow the less ...

Who rules? Image courtesy Yamu The media of the 13th Friday had two very different statements on the fate of the ‘Port City “ project. The Daily Mirror reports The Government of Sri Lanka through its acting cabinet spokesman; Minister Lakshman Kiriella stated, “The Port City Project has been automatically stopped as there were so many shortcomings in the EIA report. ...

How Free is Free Education? Private Household Spending on Education in Sri Lanka: 1985-2010 Photo courtesy Rose Sri Lanka Sri Lanka’s Free Education Scheme aims to provide each child an equal opportunity at educational success, but there is debate over to what extent it succeeds in this endeavor. Notably, some critics are concerned that private spending on education (for private and international schools, universities, and tuition) may be diluting the Free Education Scheme’s ...

Expectations and the Disappointments of the New Government Photo courtesy Asia One The new coalition government formed on January 9, 2015 has just completed its first month, and this leaves only a little more than two months before the parliament is dissolved. During the election campaign, a number of issues were highlighted against Mr Rajapaksa, and they were extensively used as key weapons to challenge the former ...

FM Samaraweera Calls for Patience on Human Rights Front and Improved Sri Lanka-USA Relations Photo courtesy MFA Sri Lanka Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera in his first visit to Washington, D.C. after assuming office addressed a full-house gathering at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP) on Wednesday February 11th. The CEIP, founded in 1910, is the oldest international affairs think tank in the United States. In the last few years Carnegie has established ...

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