Daily News Online

Saturday, 12 November 2011






Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Strengthening the Bridges of Unity

Pakistani High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Ms Seema Ilahi Baloch, gave the South Asian region and the world outside, ample food for thought when she said recently at an inaugural film of the Pakistani Film Festival held in Colombo, that the need of the hour is for the well-meaning of the world to focus strongly on the multifarious suffering and destruction, war and conflict engenders. Referring to the ravages of war in some parts of her country, the High Commissioner said: 'We did not ask for this war. We know, just as you know with your experience of war and its atrocities that war destroys a nation - physically and spiritually'.

Indeed, we in Sri Lanka have lived through the traumas of conflict, well over 25 years, and know fully well that the suffering and destruction such situations engender, is very real and that it does no one any good. This is a lesson of universal significance and is a message SAARC has to take to the world in the years and decades ahead.

Meanwhile, all eyes would be on Sri Lanka as she forges ahead with the task of nation-building. Sri Lanka, of course, scored a 'first' by defeating the terrorism of a most ruthless variety and is greatly admired on account of this, but she would need to look beyond the conflict and speed ahead in the all-important project of healing wounds and bringing together in a spirit of fraternity her communities and social groups.

In respect of nation-building too, then, Sri Lanka would be seen as a prospective role model and she would need to live-up to these expectations as SAARC winds-up its 17th Summit and gets down, hopefully, to implementing the core projects on its agenda. As President Mahinda Rajapaksa said emphatically during the Summit, the time is "now" to take forward the SAARC programme. As the President pointed out, SAARC has engaged in extensive deliberations over the years, but the task before the organization is to act fast with a sense of purpose and direction.

As we pointed out a couple of days back, the prospects of speeding ahead with the SAARC enterprise are now brighter than ever before, with economics tending to dwarf politics. East and South Asia have emerged as the engines of global economic growth and there is no better catalyst in bridge-building among countries and nations than economic cooperation.

As mentioned earlier, the Pakistani initiative of according Most Favoured Nation Trade Status to India, a few days back, is likely to stimulate further improvement in Indo-Pakistani relations, besides hastening the process of regional economic cooperation. This is also a pointer to the fact that the dynamic economic growth being experienced in this region, is helping in the bridge-building effort among the SAARC Eight.

However, India is on record that a key to the forging of a more secure SAARC region is the enabling of the countries of SAARC to be strong stakeholders in the bourgeoning growth process of India. That is, the facilitation of regional economic cooperation is the key to regional stability and security. Progressive opinion in this region would like to see this happening in the days ahead.

President Rajapaksa's emphasis on the need for social justice and equity also needs to be pondered on and acted upon by SAARC. We could have tremendous economic growth but very little economic equity or social justice. And on this score, very much is being left to be desired by South Asia and the world beyond.

It needs to be remembered that the vast majority of the world's poor is in the SAARC region. Action to rectify this anomaly is long overdue.

It must be ensured that economic growth percolates down to the most needy and on the success of this initiative lies, to a great degree, domestic as well as regional socio-political stability. Accordingly, the importance of social equity and justice could never be underplayed.

In the days ahead, then, the SAARC Eight would do well to increasingly focus on the process of cooperation on every conceivable important level. This is one of the most assured ways of defeating divisions within the SAARC fold. Consequently, it is the key to saying goodbye to conflict and war.

Hopefully, SAARC would strongly focus, as never before, on programmes and projects that would enable stronger regional cooperation. Swords have to be transformed into ploughshares and this process should be of overriding concern among us, if we are to see an end to bloodshed and dehumanizing turmoil.

India in bid to make SAARC deliver on peace, prosperity

There are promising signs that South Asia is increasingly getting plugged into the growth dynamic of Asia. Despite all the difficulties, we have been able to maintain a respectable growth rate in the last few years. This encouraging trend has coincided with the growing pace of SAARC integration. This shows that we are on the right path,

Full Story

State enterprises unsuccessful?

The Ceylon Transport Board was created because the private bus services were so very bad. Over its history from 1958 to 1977, the old CTB did very well, not only providing a service, but also being a motor for industrial development. It provided bus services in rural areas and on uneconomic routes and late at night and early in the morning. The CTB was actually the model which was adopted later, along with many of its innovative practices,

Full Story

Moratuwa Univ. students surpass world’s best in programming skills

Moratuwa University students have shown the whole world that Sri Lankans can match, and surpass, the world’s best programmers with their exceptional intellectual performance. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) is the world’s premier technical professional society in the fields of Electrical,

Full Story



Donate Now | defence.lk
LANKAPUVATH - National News Agency of Sri Lanka
Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (TRCSL)

| News | Editorial | Business | Features | Political | Security | Sport | World | Letters | Obituaries |

Produced by Lake House Copyright © 2011 The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd.

Comments and suggestions to : Web Editor