23rd July 2016

Hindu temple demolished to make way for Buddhist vihara in Jaffna

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

A Hindu temple in Jaffna has been demolished by the Sri Lankan military, who have built a statue of the Buddha in its place, said a priest earlier this month. Saivite priest  P S G Sri Ayyappadasa Sampasiva Shivachariyar said that the temple, which was located in the village of Veemankaamam has been completely destroyed by the military, in an interview with LankaSri earlier this month. The Pillaiyar temple provided a place of safety for the local Tamil population during more than 30 years of war, said the priest. Its destruction has now “created fear among the Hindu community,” he said, adding that it was a “painful” act. Noting that every human has a right to worship their own religion, the priest drew on the […]

Everyday Heroes: Untold Stories of Black July

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

July 23. The date has an awful significance for some, and has been blotted out by time for others. On that date, in 1983, a group of LTTE militants killed 13 Army soldiers. The attack brought simmering tensions between the Sinhalese and Tamils bubbling to the surface. The result: mobs of Sinhalese set upon and brutally attacked hundreds of Tamil civilians, and set fire to their property. Groundviews has consistently recorded the deep impact that Black July had on Sri Lankans. While the very phrase conjures up images of burning tyres, smoke and fear, there remains a counter-narrative. Stories of everyday heroes, men and women who risked their lives to save their Tamil neighbours, from giving them sanctuary in their own homes to saving their […]

‘Certain politicians resorting to various gimmicks’

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

Those who fall sick when in remand become very healthy overnight to join protest walks, once they are granted bail, Law and Order and Southern Development Minister Sagala Ratnayaka said. He was speaking in Parliament yesterday in response to a question raised by JVP MP Nalin Jayathissa during the round of questions for oral answers. MP Jayathissa said the Financial Crime Investigation Division (FCID) was under Minister Sagala Rathnayaka. “When politicians are remanded they are admitted to the Prisons Hospital or to the Colombo National Hospital,” Jayathissa said. “Is the FCID arresting only sick people? I think an FCID ward will have to be set up at the National Hospital”,” he said. He said such politicians could die when they walk from Kandy to Colombo. […]

Govt not taking political revenge from Rajapaksas – Samarasinghe

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

? Are you satisfied with the government’s attention on corruption allegations and the action being taken against them? A: Firstly, I have to remind that the current government was elected by the people to implement the law and they also wanted to remove the regime that corrupted the country and brought Sri Lanka to its knees. When the people voted in the new government they expected the new government to satisfy them by probing corruption allegations brought against the previous regime. But today, we can see there is a major delay in taking action against the corrupt, by the Financial Crime Investigation Division (FCID) and the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). When the government is so keen in arresting individuals like Basil Rajapaksa, Namal Rajapaksa or […]

‘Sparks of communal hatred’ only option for Mahinda and his Group

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

Last weekend’s clashes between two student factions of the Jaffna University send a stark reminder to the nation that although the war against terrorism is over, there are many in this country who would wish to reignite the sparks of communal hatred. The clashes erupted between students of the    Science faculty and the Arts Faculty of the Jaffna University during a welcoming ceremony for freshers and had definite communal undertones: it was reported that Sinhalese students were selectively targeted and attacked. The government has acted swiftly to close the university and evacuate affected students to prevent the issue from escalating further. Now, normalcy has reportedly returned and the campus is due to open shortly. That has however not deterred politicians in the South from trying […]

Premechandran on northern problems and Govt. inaction

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

EPRLF Leader and TNA member Suresh Premechandran Q: What is the latest with regard to the Jaffna University clash? A: I do not know why this much of exposure is given to this drama. Earlier there were three incidents in the Eastern University. There was some misunderstanding and as a result a brawl took place between Tamil and Sinhalese students; they were both assaulted and Tamil students were hospitalised. These things have happened earlier. This is not the first time. The Education Minister or the Higher Education Minister didn’t take much notice. But when it comes to Jaffna University, the matter was blown out of proportion. The Sinhalese students were assaulted, one child was hospitalised and he was later discharged. The Northern Governor went and […]

Task Force Calls On Diaspora To Make Submissions On Reconciliation

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

The Consultation Task Force on Reconciliation Mechanisms has invited the Sri Lankan diaspora to make submissions in an effort to advance reconciliation in the country. Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu The Task Force has called for submissions from diaspora organizations as well as individuals on the design of structures, processes and measures for truth, accountability, reparations and non-recurrence. The diaspora can make submissions on 1) An Office of Missing Persons 2) An office of Reparations 3) A Judicial Mechanism with a Special Counsel 4) A Truth, Justice, Reconciliation and Non-Recurrence Commission 5) Any other mechanisms, processes or measures for advancing reconciliation in Sri Lanka. Submissions can be made to the Task Force until July 28, 2016. Submissions can be sent to Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, Consultation Task Force […]

Armed forces were involved in enforced disappearances authorised by Mahinda, so these crimes should not be investigated?

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

Establishing the office of the Missing Persons is a betrayal of the armed forces who killed them? By Basil Fernando – Basil Fernando The statement made by Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa the former head of state in Sri Lanka, that ‘establishing the office of the Missing Persons is a betrayal of the armed forces’ is a statement unbecoming of a former head of the state and a prominent political leader in Sri Lanka. What it directly says is that enforced disappearances which is an internationally recognised heinous crime should not be investigated in Sri Lanka because the culprits may involve some members of the armed forces. It is one of the basic norms of a civilised society that crimes must be investigated, irrespective of whoever the […]

Jaffna University Sinhala-Tamil Student Conflict Was Insane!

23rd July 2016 // 0 Comments

By Laksiri Fernando – Dr. Laksiri Fernando When you come to think of it, the Sinhala-Tamil student conflict at the University of Jaffna last weekend was insane. This was all pretentiously about welcoming new students to a faculty of undergraduate studies. This said faculty is not about ‘performing arts,’ let alone physical prowess, but about Science. But the conflict was ostensibly about ‘drum and music’ (Thavil and Nathasvaram) and ‘cultural dancing’ (the Kandyan type!). As the Vice Chancellor declared last year in the Faculty’s Handbook, “I consider that the new entrants of the Faculty of Science are very fortunate to pursue their undergraduate programme in such a well reputed faculty. Thousands of science graduates passed out through the portal of the Faculty of Science during […]