|Thursday, 2 December 2004|
Leader of the Democratic United National Front and a Cabinet Minister in the last PA Government, Srimani Athulathmudali passed away yesterday at a private hospital.
Srimani who was 58 at the time of her death was the widow of Lalith Athulathmudali, a Minister in the 1977-94 UNP Administration. They had one daughter Serala. Although remaining in the shadow of her husband during his tenure as a powerful Minister in successive UNP Governments, with his tragic demise she emerged to give leadership to the DUNF co-founded by him following his breakaway from the UNP.
She broke into the national political stage contesting the Ratmalana constituency of her late husband at the 1994 General election from the People's Alliance and came first in the Colombo District obtaining 148,000 preference votes.
She was appointed Minister of Transport, Environment and Women's Affairs in the first Cabinet of the Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga Government and held that office till 1997.
At the 2000 General Election, she led an Independent Group from the Colombo District but failed to get elected. She thereafter maintained a low profile in politics and dedicated her time and energy towards promoting the causes of her late husband and related projects.
She was an old girl of Holy Family Convent, Kalutara, Holy Family Convent, Kurunegala and Ladies College, Colombo.
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