Daily News Online
http://www.liyathabara.com/   Ad Space Available Here  

Wednesday, 23 January 2013






Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette



Reportedly, the elders of Sri Lanka's considerable Muslim community are on the verge of making a formal proposal to the government to prohibit, by law, Muslim women going to the Middle East in search of Dirhams and Riyals. No doubt this is an immediate reaction to the beheading of the housemaid Rizana, who was sentenced to death by a Sharia court for the alleged crime of murdering an infant in her care.

Community-wise or otherwise, it is extremely wise that there is agitation, incrementally, to ensure that Sri Lankan women are not prey to rapacious employment agents and heartless employers that exploit the poverty of these females. But, this however is a vexed issue.

Any ban of women going to oil rich countries as domestic aides should be across the board, and should not be confined to any one category of persons in a given community, but perhaps the recent agitation by the Muslim religious elders and the leaders of the community is a start. The dignity of the women going for employment is paramount, as is their safety of course.

In that context, the first meaningful lesson came from the deceased girl's mother, who in a gesture of admirable equanimity and self-assurance, declined any financial aid from any family or organization based in Saudi Arabia as compensation for the death of her daughter. This should gladden people's hearts as it proves beyond a shadow of doubt, that these people who send their daughters out of the country in search of a meagre pot of gold, nevertheless place the highest value on the dignity of their kin in alien climes, among strange people -- though often the poor are invisible to the media, and are prejudged as being uncaring of any human fallout.

But the Rizana affair is certainly not an exclusively 'Muslim issue' in any sense and it is advisable that all Sri Lankans close ranks with the Muslim community, and show support for the current agitation for a moratorium on Sri Lankan female domestic workers leaving for employment in Saudi Arabia, and other Arab countries.

Such a closing of ranks should also be seen as a display of shared values between two communities that are coexisting as they did for hundreds of years, despite the fact that there are intermittent tensions beneath the surface in this longstanding partnership of amity. Just the other day, the Minister of Justice Rauff Hakeem had made a rather pained statement that aspersions cast on the Muslim community should stop, and that all ethnicities should exist side by side or words to that effect. Sri Lankans couldn't agree more with the minister with regard to these sentiments that will be echoed across the length and breadth of this country, but any notions of imminently eruptible tensions between the two communities are also vastly exaggerated.

There are some points of discontent in certain quarters and in a happy marriage between two disparate communities, this is normal, and to be expected. But that these very minor irritants are anywhere near reaching boiling point is nonsense, if anybody entertains such a notion -- and not that it is being said here that the Minister is being alarmist.

But on the issue of reactions to the Rizana killing, there is a wonderful opportunity to reassert common cause, and therefore, the majority community leadership in Parliament should perhaps explore in detail the proposals made by the Muslim elders to enforce a moratorium on future female domestic workers embarking for jobs in the Middle East.

The issue is multi-faceted of course, and there is some measure of patronizing elitism also, to the aspect of elite elders of the community taking decisions that eventually effect the poorest of the poor, no matter which community is involved.

In simple terms, there will be other prospective housemaids who will say, why are we deprived of the opportunity to better ourselves by the rich and the comfortable, when we are prepared to take the risks? Of course that will not be a tenable argument considering the risks involved, but however, let there be a new inter-community discourse on this multi-layered and complex issue aimed at reaching a satisfying and consensus based outcome in the near future.

The road from TIMBUKTU may be paved with GOLD

To many people, Timbuktu these days sounds nothing more than an allegory for a distant and outlandish place of no particular significance; Even fewer people would have been exposed to the facts that Timbuktu is a real city in the West African nation of Mali; It was the capital of the Empire of Mali in the 14th century, and was one of the most advanced cities in the world during the Dark ages in Europe.

Full Story

Reminiscences of Gold

Vijitha Yapa - books and basics

From the most humble of beginnings ending up as one of the most influential people in Sri Lanka, Vijitha Yapa’s is a success story. He has been a leading journalist and editor and is now a publisher. Vijitha Yapa is a well known name in Sri Lanka being the Founder, Chairman, and Managing Director of the largest English bookstore chain in the country. Reminiscences of Gold spoke to Vijitha Yapa about his life experiences and achievements.

Full Story

The Human Dimension

Would you change if this was your LAST 24 HOURS ON EARTH?

Many among us would give an arm and a leg for another day, another 24 hours to spend with their loved ones. So many are facing life threatening illnesses that teach us the value of life we take very often for granted. To savour the laughter of a child, to capture look of love in your mother’s eye ..to see a sunset in all its glory, to witness the beauty of a new dawn. Most of us take these everyday simple pleasures for granted. Some of us just pass life by, mindlessly passing these moments, never stopping to smell the flowers, the coffee or return the smile.

Full Story



KAPRUKA - New Year Gift Delivery in Sri Lanka
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 © 2013 The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd.

Comments and suggestions to : Web Editor