Category Archives: population

Predator-Proof Fence to create Huge Wild Life Sanctuary

Paige Taylor  in The Australian, 13 June 2017,   where the title is “Predator-proof ploy foils feral-fed catastrophe”

Work has begun northwest of Alice Springs on the world’s largest predator-proof animal enclosure. It has come to this for our endangered species. The 185km electrified fence will separate feral cats from the marsupials they have pushed to the edge of extinction.  The non-profit Australian Wildlife Conservancy is buying vast tracts of the bush and fencing out feral cats that kill between five and seven animals each night.

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Returned Tamil Asylum Seekers Today: A Jaundiced and Gullible Australian Reporter’s View

Greg Bearup, in The Australian, 31 October  2016, where the title isIn the Wash-Up Asylum Loser Wins” …. with emphasis in this presentation being t e work of The Editor, Thuppahi.

The crab-trapper of Jaffna is a happy man; he has a sturdy boat with a new Suzuki motor. Each morning he rises before dawn to motor out to a vast lagoon in his new auto rickshaw to fish for prawns and crabs — partly funded by the $5000 given to him by Australian taxpayers. In August 2012, when Marcus Pireesan fled Sri Lanka for ­Australia in search of a better life, Jaffna, the northern Tamil capital and his home town, was a very different place from what it is today.

marcus Pireesan with some of his childrenPic Greg Bearup

The long civil war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam ended in 2009 – a UN report estimating that 40,000 people died in final months of the conflict, mainly civilians – but the Rajapaksa regime, which brutally obliterated the Tigers, was still in power; young Tamil men were still being bundled into government vans and never seen again. “We lived in constant fear,” Pireesan, 40, tells me, “just knowing information was dangerous. You could be stopped at a roadblock and kidnapped (by the government forces) and no one would ever know.” And fishermen like him were told where and on what days they could fish. Continue reading

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Debilitating Political Ignorance in Sri Lanka’s Populace?

Sanjana Hattotuwa,  from The Island, 8 October 2016, where the title is The new constitution that may never be”. .. Emphasis below via highlighting is an imposition by the Editor, Thuppahi.

Gramsci spoke of the pessimism of intellect and the optimism of will. How does this relate to Sri Lanka today? The deafening silence around the process of constitution making, justified by key architects as inevitable in order for progress around tenacious issues to be made, indicates to all but the most delusional the reform process has little to no traction in the public imagination. This is a problem. Basic intelligence suggests a process as vexed as writing a new constitution, without public traction or debate, dumped by government elites for approval just before a referendum risks confusion at best and opposition or rejection at worst. And yet, Sri Lanka really needs a new constitution.

If the constitution expresses the will of the people, it needs to be one that guides us away from the structures of power and identity that led to what we are still hostage to – a violent, racist State, largely unable as a first step to even recognise the degree to which it excludes and discriminates. The optimism of will, when embodied in a constitution, is what can guarantee to the extent possible a better future for all citizens, independent of what government, Executive or Prime Minister are, say and do. Continue reading

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Sri Lanka leads World in Path to Eliminate Malaria

Sarah Boseley, in The Guardian Weekly, 22 September 2016, where the title reads Beginning of the End for Malaria,” ... https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/sep/09/malaria-sri-lanka-china-iran-malaysia-end-for-disease 

Hopes of eliminating malaria from more than 30 countries with a total population of 2 billion have risen following the successful removal of the disease from Sri Lanka. Public health officials said 13 countries, including Argentina and Turkey, had reported no cases for at least a year and may well follow the success of Sri Lanka, which this week declared itself malaria-free after meeting the criterion of going three years without an infection. By the end of the decade, another 21 countries, including China, Malaysia and Iran, could be free of the disease, which kills 400,000 people, mostly babies and pregnant women, every year.

Public health officials believe that in years to come the elimination from Sri Lanka, highly symbolic because the island came within a hair’s breadth of defeating malaria more than 50 years ago, may be regarded as the beginning of the end for the disease.

aa-lanka-malaria-11-eranga-j-for-ap A Sri Lankan worker fumigates buildings to control mosquitoes in Colombo. Photograph: Eranga Jayawardena/AP
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Discontent and Confrontational Violence in Sri Lanka, 1948-2009

Gerald Peiris, being Chapter 7 from his book Political Conflict in South Asia (2013, University of Peradeniya)  — a chapter based on his previous writings  [1]

 The survival of the principle of representative government based upon universal adult franchise since its introduction to the constitution more than eighty years ago while ‘Ceylon’ was still a colony of the British Empire is a feature often accorded prominence in scholarly discourses on the political history of Sri Lanka. Over the first three decades after independence (1948) the regularity of peaceful transfers of power from one regime to another, based upon the will of the people as expressed at national elections, was also widely acclaimed as a feature that made Sri Lanka unique among the emergent nation-states of the post-colonial era. The radiance of that achievement has, of course, dimmed considerably in the more recent past, due mainly to the violation of democratic norms in affairs of governance, and the intense rivalry that features the sub-national disputes which often find expression in confrontational violence.

1958-riots-22  Scenes in Colombo from 1958 riots after OEG led crackdown1958-getty

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Dayan Jayatilleka dissects Sambanthans’ Approach and the Issues of Devolution

Dayan Jayatilleka, courtesy of Colombo Telegraph , where the title reads “Weakening The Center Through Covert Federalism: Reading Sampanthan’s Spin,” https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/weakening-the-center-through-covert-federalism-reading-sampanthans-spin/……… and where many comments will be found. Also see https://www.facebook.com/pages/DrDayan-Jayatilleka/550235091746278

aa-Map SLSampanthan

What Mr. Sampanthan did not say in Matara recently was as important as what he did say. What he said was as follows: “…This Constitution is going to be framed one with the framework of a united, undivided and indivisible Sri Lanka…We do not want this country to be divided. But the people want power to be devolved within the regions. The power that is required to maintain the unity and territorial integrity of the country, Defence, the Army, Navy and the Air Force will be under the control of the Central Government. Foreign Affairs Currency and Finance, Immigration and Emigration to be under the central government. These powers need to be kept at the Centre to ensure the unity and the indivisibility of the country. Other powers will be devolved…The Southern Province will have their Provincial Council with enhanced powers. The Sabaragamuwa, Central Province will have their Provincial regions with extraneous enhanced powers. Similarly the North, East and Central Provinces will have their own areas with enhanced powers.” Continue reading

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Deep Ethnic Fissures on the Rudiments of Constitutional Reform

PK Balachandran, courtesy of the Indian Express, 9 May 2016, where the title is Different Ethnicities in Sri Lanka Have conflicting views on Constitutional Reform”

The Public Representation Committee (PRC) set up by Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to ascertain the views of the public on constitutional reform, encountered sharp differences on ethnic lines. Express learns from reliable sources that the Sinhalese, Lankan Tamils, Muslims and Plantation Tamils of Indian origin held different and conflicting views on the Nature of the State, Devolution of Power and the Unit of Devolution.

The PRC would be submitting its report with its recommendations to the PM any day after May 11. The report will then be sent to the Steering Committee of the “Constitutional Assembly” which is a committee of the entire membership of the Lankan parliament charged with the task of drafting a new constitution for the island nation. aaa-Demographic map 1 MAP courtesy of https://southasiablog.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/sri-lanka-ethnic-map.jpg

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