In Appreciation of Saman Kelegama

Shavindra Fernando. in Daily News, 29 June 2017. with the title reading as Last conversation with a beautiful mind”

My last conversation with Dr Saman Kelegama was about Oxford. It was a place that he was so fond of, and he always remembered his Oxford days with gratitude. He read Industrial Economics for his doctorate at St Catherine’s College. He was a St Cat’s man. Some of us Reuter Fellows, the first reporters to be sent to Oxford in the late 1980s got to know him at St Giles, where we were housed at Queen Elizabeth House.

The press was focused on Sri Lanka at that time, though the Sri Lanka fraternity was tiny as always. The Indian army had been asked to leave by the Sri Lanka government under siege by the JVP Marxist rebels. Kelegama’s views were of interest to us. He was a Sri Lankan who had studied Mathematics in India and was seen as someone who had insight into the psyche of both countries. Continue reading

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Burgher Tennis Club in Galle, circa 1928

Left to right – Standing: Messrs R. W. E. de Vos, Vyvil Loudowyk, Fred Bastiansz, E. F. C. Ludowyk Jnr., R. A. de Vos, Bubsy Austin, E. F. C. Ludowyk Snr, W. Colin-Thomé, Dudley de Kretser, Arthur Arndt, Bertie Toussaint

Seated: Miss Mina de Vos, Miss E. Koch, Mrs Glen Altendorf, Mrs Bertie Joseph, Mrs R. A. de Vos, Mrs Bertie Toussaint, Miss Rita Kale, Mrs E. F. C. Ludowyk, Mrs W. Colin-Thomé, Mrs Dudley de Kretser, Mrs Bessie Bartholomeusz,

Seated on ground: Earnleigh de Krester, Miss Owen Ludowyk, Miss Ina de Zilwa, Miss Mabel Arndt, Miss Mavis Ludowyk, Miss Dagmar Toussaint, Francis Toussaint.

A NOTE: I discovered this photograph mounted on cardboard in my Mss depository, but cannot recollect how i got it . …. possibly from Rene Ludowyk or Percy Colin-Thomé,  The latter would have been the one who identified the personnel for the details inserted i with the image in my sister’s book, Galle As Quiet as Asleep. Continue reading

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52 Tea Parties to boost Ceylon Tea …and swamp that in Boston

THE Sri Lankan High Commission will celebrate 150 years of the tea industry in its country with a global tea party across time zones.

High Commissioner Somasundaram Skandakumar says the invitation-only tea party, which will be held on July 6 at the Sri Lankan High Commission in Yarralumla, will be echoed at all 52 Sri Lankan diplomatic missions at precisely 5pm in each time zone around the world. It’s been organised by the Sri Lanka Tea Board, which is the government’s main arm for promoting Ceylon tea, in collaboration with the Colombo Tea Traders’ Association. Continue reading

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Under One Umbrella … Popsicles across Faiths

The annual feast of St. Sebastian’s was celebrated by the parishioners of Nayakakanda, Wattala on Sunday. During the procession, Chief Incumbent of Hendala Temple Ven. Saddananda Thera distributed popsicles to devotees. Parish Priest of Nayakakanda Rev. Fr. Ranjan Silva, too, received a popsicle from the Thera ….. Picture Courtesy St. Mary’s Church, Nayakakanda, published in The Island 28/6/17

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Those without a Faith overtake the Catholics in Australia’s 2016 Census

News Item in June 27, 2017

DESPITE a scare campaign about Australia becoming a “Muslim country”, those ticking “no religion” in the Census, has now overtaken the number of Catholics. It’s the first time in Australia’s history the number of people who claim “no religion” has overtaken Catholics. The latest Census showed those ticking “no religion” rose from 22.6 per cent to 29.6 per cent — nearly double the 16 per cent in 2001. Meanwhile, those identifying as Catholic dropped from 25.3 per cent to 22.6 per cent.

The number of Christians in total still made up 52 per cent of the population, but this is much less than the 88 per cent in 1966 and 74 per cent in 1991.

 Australia’s Population density before this census—  a/c

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Alleged ‘Land Grabbing’ by the Security Forces in Sri Lanka

Gerald Peiris, … an essay that is part of  Chapter 11 in a forthcoming monograph titled Sri Lanka: Land Policy for Sustainable Development, by G. H. Peiris, currently in the press (as a Visidunu Publication, 471 Lake Road, Boralesgamuwa, Sri Lanka) [1]

In view of the significance accorded in recent public debate and discussion on the subject of ‘land grabbing’ in several conflict-ridden countries of the Third World it is necessary to devote attention to a series of facts that are of crucial relevance to a balanced understanding of the related  situation in Sri Lanka.

Gerald Peiris Bhavani Fonseka  Mirak Raheem

Land Grabbing: Concept and Empirical Application  

The phenomenon referred to as ‘land grabbing’ lacks definitional clarity. In many writings of recent times (Keely, 2009; Borras,, 2011; Deininger & Byerlee 2011; Rulli, et. al., 2013; Brimayer & Moon, 2014; to name only a few), especially those sponsored by civil society organisations, this phrase has been used exclusively in the specific connotation of large-scale acquisition of land in the poorer countries by foreign governments and private firms that are based in the politically and economically powerful countries. Estimates of the extent of grabbed land worldwide vary. The prestigious journal, The Economist (21 May 2009) placed it at 15-20 million ha. According to the World Bank, it is as high as 45 million ha, with an overwhelmingly large proportion of it in the less densely populated areas of Sub-Saharan Africa, South and Central America and Southeast Asia. In a major World Bank sponsored study (Deininger & Byerlee, op. cit.) ‘land grabbing’ has been portrayed as a phenomenon of both positive as well as negative impacts which nevertheless requires effective regulation. But more generally, this process is perceived as an exemplification of neo-colonial economic exploitation that has adverse consequences on the local people in the form of violation of fundamental rights, incitement of inter-group conflict, mass impoverishment and environmental degradation. What should be noted here is that in none of the research writings on the subject of ‘land grabbing’ as a global phenomenon do we come across a specific reference to Sri Lanka as a country that has been seriously affected by this phenomenon.[2] Continue reading

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Rilavu! Rilavu! Outstanding Monkeys in Sri Lanka

Malinga’s Monkey Bouncer draws Ministerial Castration = see

Lasith Malinga’s pithy and folksy comment“What does a monkey know about a parrot’s nesting hollow? This is like a monkey getting into a parrot’s nest and talking about it.”


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