Daily News Online
http://www.liyathabara.com/   KRRISH SQUARE - Luxury Real Estate  

Tuesday, 11 December 2012






Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette


Reverend Duleep de Chickera, former Bishop of Colombo, has joined a queer and essentially Colombo-based bandwagon of loud-hailer exponents and sundry Cassandras who see connected calamities in every corner-shop crisis.

The Reverend has decried what he calls a sanction on remembering the dead in Jaffna, referring to an on-campus fracas where the army is supposed to have entered university premises. He has then frowned upon the recent prison riots in Welikada and the impeachment trial of the Chief Justice.

Taking these totally unconnected events together, Revered Chickera then joins the dots, and Eureka, comes to the grand conclusion that the three events jointly signify a constricting democratic space, and what he calls ‘expanding type of governance’.

Those who want to see the end of the world will see it in the dimpled face of a new born baby, but the fact remains that paranoia aside, sowing mass discontent for no reason is not constructive. The three separate issues and events cited by Bishop Chickera have to be considered on their own merits to discern what they in fact signify.

The first is with regard to commemoration of the dead. There is no argument that people have a right to remember their dead, and if relatives gather and do so for instance at a candlelit vigil, it is hard to see anyone objecting. But, when a university campus organizes a commemoration that smacks of a remembrance event of the now defunct LTTE, it is hard to think that the army would take kindly to what they would see as an attempt to resurrect the disruptive spirit of a defeated terrorist group.

Blanket statements saying that ‘people have a right to remember their war dead’ therefore do not help in assessing the truth with regard to the above mentioned incident at the Jaffna University. The army ended a thirty year long war, and lost thousands of men and women in battle.

The slightest hint of an LTTE commemorative event is therefore a spark that ignites a powder keg of passions among our armed military men. This may not be good from a strictly dispassionate academic or spectator standpoint, but then, it is easy for outsiders to judge.

The army has had a different experience, and therefore it is difficult to be harshly judgmental about these types of reactions when memories of war are still fresh in the minds of our soldiers.

With time, the hard edge with regard to soldier reactions to civilian events such as commemorations is bound to soften, but those who do not view issues such as these in their proper perspective are both unfair and alarmist -- and are certainly not Christian, because the Christian spirit is supposed to be one of empathy towards all, including the most hardened and cynical.

The Welikada incident was a bad prison riot, and show us a country where there has never been a bad prison riot in history, and we will show you a piece of fiction. Successive governments have been trying to get the prison situation under control, but Welikada particularly has been gangland paradise, and sending in the STF when there was a confrontation was not ‘undemocratic politics’ but sheer objective practicality under the circumstances.

The impeachment crisis is an entirely different matter. It was essentially an integrity issue, and constitutional provisions as they are available in the 78 constitutional document were used to investigate the Chief Justice.

Judges have been removed over integrity related charges all over the world. To tie an impeachment issue that the opposition leader himself said has to be pursued by a Parliamentary Select Committee to an incident in Jaffna, and the Welikada prison riots, and manufacture a grand narrative of ‘expansion’ and ‘constriction of democratic space’, needs a substantial leap of imagination. Rev. Chickera should have tried his hand out at fiction writing – maybe he would have excelled in that department.

What is sad is that the current reality of peace and the resultant freedom enjoyed by everyone including the Northern campus students so easily escapes the attention of the former Bishop of Colombo. There was a time when Jaffna University students could not commemorate the deaths of, say, a parent and a grandparent because they were at the point of a gun, forcibly conscripted and taken away to pay obeisance to one V. Prabhakaran. Rev. Chickera was conspicuous then in his silence about such real heartrending calamities.

‘...these countries are not PERSONALLY ANGRY WITH US’ – Part III:

Rich, full and meaningful relationship with India

The late H.V. Perera, Queen’s Counsel, who sat on the Rhodes Scholarship Board when I was selected as the Rhodes Scholar of this country said, “You can find authority for any proposition in some part of the world. The authority is not what matters." He always told his juniors, “Argue from first principles, be clear and logical and then you will find that these principles can be supported by authority”.

Full Story

CJ Bandaranayake HOISTED by her own PETARD

One of the arguments thrown in to defend the Chief Justice, Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, claims that nowhere in the world does Parliament / legislature sits as accuser, judge, juror and executioner. It is argued that this is a violation of Baron de Montesquieu's political theory of separation of power where the legislature, executive and the judiciary are compartmentalised to prevent one dominating the other.

Full Story



Destiny Mall & Residency
Casons Rent-A-Car
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 © 2012 The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd.

Comments and suggestions to : Web Editor