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Tuesday, 20 March 2012






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Government Gazette

A distinguished person and a noble son of Sri Lanka

Our distinguished person is no other person than Gamini Dissanayake. This noble human being possessed a powerful, charming, pleasant personality. He was born on March 20, 1942 at Kothmale; his basic values were cultivated in this rural milieu social surrounding and environment.

Gamini Dissanayake

He had his education at Trinity College in Kandy and entered the Law College, where he took his oaths as an Advocate. He was born to serve the country, so this energetic politician became the people's representative in Nuwara Eliya District. He extended a yeoman service to all constituents with devotion, commitment and sheer dedication using his typical charismatic approach. He was a unique and extraordinary politician who listened to the masses, solved their problems. Anyone who was keen in meeting him had easy access.

Historic achievement

He served our district for over 20 years. He provided acres of land to farmer families. He also successfully set up the 'Waterfield Armstrong Educational Centre' in Nuwara Eliya in the year 1986 which has produced several graduates with knowledge of English and Computer. His vision included educating children among under-privileged to learn English and to achieve excellence and compete in the modern world. He also introduced the Hatton pool Bank to train youth in technical fields.

His greatest historic achievement was the administration of the diversification of Mahaweli Scheme which resulted in transforming vast areas of our country into fertile paddy fields. Due to Gamini Dissanayake's clarity of speech efficiency and far-sighted vision and wisdom, Sri Lanka gained Test Status in cricket. He became the king and an administrator of a great game. He was responsible for the construction of the headquarters of Board of Control for Cricket in Sri Lanka.

National gratitude

One of his dreams was to erect Kothmale Mahaweli Maha Seya. He could not live to see the completion of his dream project. On October 23, 1994 at Thotalanga, a bomb exploded at midnight which caused the untimely death to our noble distinguished figure, the Presidential Candidate Gamini Dissanayake. This tragic death shattered all hopes and thwarted people's dream of their leader becoming the President. The entire country and particularly the hill country was grief stricken over his brutal killing.

As a gesture of national gratitude on April 11 in the year 2003 the 'Kothmale Reservoir' was appropriately renamed as the 'Gamini Dissanayake Reservoir' by unveiling his statue at a ceremony presided by the then Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe.

This event became more significant as it took place at a time when the farmers were blessed with a bumper paddy harvest deprived them for a long period of time.

We Sri Lankans must not forget this visionary leader whose vision was based on human values, supported by appropriate skills.

The writer is a former Senior Lecturer, Department of English Language, Gamini Dissanayake Institute of Technology and Vocational Studies


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