Friday, January 18, 2013

UGC Circular No. 1000 on Revision of Allowances

Download UGC Circular No 1000



Courtesy Maurice Anghie- CPA, Ex Partner Grant Thornton, Director
Mining Co.- Perth
(RC Rugby Capt 1959-Son Of BC Anghie-RC Warden & Master In Charge- RC
Rugby & Brother
of Dr Trevor Anghie & Tony Anghie)

 My dear Sri Lankans,
 I write with despair as I trouble for what my country is currently
going  through. I have traveled well enough to know that our land is
blessed by  God and is a land better than any other. The riches
embedded in our history,  culture and spirit are richer than the
commercial wealth of most countries and this is why I hurt when I see
that our identity, freedom and spirit of a  nation is threatened and
held ransom by our politicians.

 I write not with animosity against the President, the Government, the
Opposition, ethnicity or creed but I write against the corrupt political
culture of our country created by successive governments and
facilitated by coalition parties and the opposition members for the
sake of perks and  positions. If I sound critical or personal, it is
only because of my anxiety  for the issues that are plaguing our
nation and for the importance of  highlighting the people responsible
for the seriousness of the issues. I do  apologize in advance for any
criticism that might take precedence over what  modesty may demand
when addressing the head of state and members of  parliament. Contrary
to what you are made to believe by the government this  country is
heading towards a colossal economic, political, moral and social
collapse and the following calls for your serious attention if you
care for Sri Lanka .

 Here are a few points to ponder as to why you should act.
 • On the 18th of May 2009 when the war drew to a close I was eager to
 usher in a new beginning with the President declaring that all people will
 be equal. I was hoping the government would make it a level playing field
 for every Sri Lankan irrespective of race, creed or cast to compete, thrive
 and progress for self and country. We fought a war to protect our
 sovereignty and independence but 3 years on, the country is as polarized or
 even worse than before. We won a war but we have lost our hope, we won a war
 but we have lost our dignity and the right as a people, we won a war but
 have lost our identity as Sri Lankans. There is more hatred, anger and
 insecurity than ever before and the environment is being primed for another
 militant uprising. So I ask, have we won at all?

 • I was told for 30 long years that we were fighting a war to protect
 our freedom, identity and sovereignty as a nation and I salute soldier
 Prasanna from Galle and soldier Ranjan from Hingurakgoda who along with
 thousands of others laid down their lives for us. But today we are staring
 down the barrels of the same guns that silenced the Tigers, for expressing
 our opinion that the Government doesn't want to hear. When the President
 said that every Sri Lankan is equal, I am certain that he meant the
 journalists, too. Where is the freedom, the identity and the sovereignty
 that Prasanna and Ranjan gave us? Have we won at all?

 • The dawn of yet another day in Sri Lanka , which is supposed to
 commence with hope, starts with abductions, horrific murders and rapes. Far
 too excessive for a small country like ours to handle. The long arm of the
 law covers-up a story linked to the government and is slow to exercise the
 law to protect the democratic rights of people. When a government spokesman
 himself knows that deep within, he is falsifying facts to fabricate a story
 to mislead people, and the police are forced to issue a statement contrary
 to true events, I ask, have we won at all?

 • Do we measure freedom by the lack of checkpoints and by the growing
 number of restaurants, flashy cars and stylish boutiques mostly patronized
 by people with ill-gotten wealth from a manipulated stock market and we call
 this progress and development? When 2 kilometers from the heart of Colombo a
 mother is struggling to feed her children and her husband has drugged
 himself into a drain with the produce from a politician, I ask, have we won
 at all?

 • Can a mother or a daughter walk on the streets of Sri Lanka without
 being hurled with verbal and physical abuse. They go to the Police station
 to make a complaint and the policeman rapes the mother. Then a politician
 attacks and kills a foreigner because he wants to rape his fiance. The
 politician is released on bail and is roaming freely because he is related
 to the President. Is the ambition “Wonder of Asia” to be rated as the
 highest for sexual abuses in South Asia ? When the government and the very
 authority that is there to protect the public, turns against you, I ask,
 have we won at all?

 • The media is controlled and manipulated to share everything but the
 truth and if you dare speak the truth you will be dealt with in a manner
 that there is no trace of you or the person who attacked you. Do you
 honestly believe that a government that silenced the world’s deadliest
 terrorist group is unable to apprehend the killers of a journalist or
 abductors of another? They don't pursue such criminality, as they only know
 too well that if they do they will only end up apprehending themselves. With
 injustice like this, have we won at all?

 • I open the newspapers and switch-on the TV only to hear what the
 government has sanctioned to be told to the public; praise for the rulers,
 their families and their representatives in parliament. When Prasanna and
 Ranjan died for us they also died for the journalists so that they can
 express themselves through a free media in a freer Sri Lanka . However, today
 the journalists and the public are asked to live in silent obedience when
 all they ask is for their freedom. Have we won at all?

 • Being in leadership is to guide people to be better citizens but
 when politicians, whether in government or the opposition, are seen in
 public and in the media exposing poor moral standards it only contributes to
 the making of an unhealthy society that has manifested itself in the form of
 rapists, murderers, cheaters and robbers. As a result our children are
 exposed to this vulgarism that is as corrupt as pornography polluting the
 environment that they grow up in. They fight on the streets with a vengeance
 having understood that this is the way you survive in the “new” Sri Lanka .
 Their parents decide to take the administration into their own hands by
 rejecting the appointment of a school principal by hurling stones and abuse.
 Is this what we have come down to? I ask, have we won at all?

 • A frail constitution initiated by an insecure former President has
 embedded a sense of insecurity in all of us that make us fight each other
 for our survival. Legal parlance aside, a nation’s constitution is to give
 us the people the power to decide and the confidence to progress and thrive.
 The Executive Presidency that every President after Jayawardene promised to
 eliminate has only intoxicated this President and the others with more
 power, making them unaccountable for their wrong-doings. Know this people!
 Little do we realize that the policies and consistent undemocratic action by
 this government and the past governments, are equal to the threat of the
 sovereignty of our country that was once laid siege by the Tigers. So I ask,
 have we won at all?

 • The cancer of these respective governments is spreading through
 their families and cronies into the state services, hospitals, sport
 (particularly in cricket & rugby), the media, schools, the stock market etc.
 and it is all evolving into a dictatorship under the guise of democracy.
 Therefore, have we won at all?

 • Have you stopped to wonder how a so-called noble man who claims that
 he is from a village has amassed so much wealth? Following a resolution
 presented in Parliament by the Minster of Parliamentary Affairs in November
 2006 under Article 36 (4) of the Constitution the monthly salary of the
 President was increased from Rs. 25,000 to Rs. 61,250 effective from January
 01, 2006 and again to Rs. 97,500 effective from January 01, 2007. Double
 this amount or triple it or multiply in by ten or a thousand and you will
 still be short of the billions of rupees they have amassed as a family.
 Money rightly for the people has now become theirs. I ask, have we won at

 • “If you are not for us then you are against us” seems to be the
 motto of this government that claims to run a democracy. The threat is
 serious and far-reaching and is not limited to institutions, business
 establishments, the public or the media. It has now infiltrated the
 judiciary and reached the Chief Justice. We are fast becoming a nation of
 puppets and stooges of an ugly regime where even the law of the land cannot
 be enforced if it does not suit the hidden agenda of the ruling family. If
 only my fellow Sri Lankans pause to understand the serious implications and
 insult that has been cast upon our dignity and our sovereignty you will then
 ask yourselves, have we won at all?

 • A number of those living in Colombo and other commercial cities are
 comfortable and self-sufficient enough not to feel the pain and folly of
 this government at least for today as poverty is still a distant future away
 for these privileged few. But for us the common man, the farmer, the
 laborer and the likes of those whose votes count immensely to make a
 President and to elect a government in this country, will suffer the most.
 The one who works and toils hard will continue to be taxed and robbed by the
 government through bribes. The government’s intention is to keep us poor and
 dependent on them so that they can manipulate us in any which way they want.
 They rob our money daily to fuel their ugly lifestyles. This has been the
 strategy of the PA & the UNP. It will be the strategy of the JVP, Sarath
 Fonseka, Weerawansa, Rauf Hakeem, Sampanthan and all other current leaders,
 too if they are in power. It’s all about the ugly greed for power and money
 and not about empowering the masses and growing them to be a strong
 middle-class society, which in turn will drive our economy forward and
 making our nation competitive and self-reliant.

 • Yes! It is true that Western nations and the UN are after us because
 we faltered in many areas that the public does not see other than for what
 the government wants you to falsely believe. This government is in serious
 trouble whether we like it or not. However they have cleverly made this
 international setback an advantage to dramatize the rhetoric against Western
 nations. Every time the government looks weak in the eyes of the people they
 fan anti-western and anti UN propaganda just to mobilize support to keep
 them in power by working you up against western nations. Please don't fall
 for this well-orchestrated diversionary tactic. It’s only a few of us who
 know how humble, meek and obedient they are to the Western Powers in Geneva ,
 EU and the US . If tomorrow these western nations whom we so despise close
 the tap and stop trading with us or lending us money we will crumble to the
 foundation. I don't doubt that the UN and the Western nations have their own
 hidden agenda but it is the initiative of this government and the past
 regimes that have made Sri Lanka slaves and dependents to these bodies. So I
 ask have we won at all?

 • The former Army commander who effectively led a war against the
 terrorists shamelessly claims that he is the sole success of the war and
 therefore should be considered to lead the country. Whilst we have to credit
 him with the leadership he gave the military it does not necessarily qualify
 him to lead this country. It was he who implied that the minorities should
 be thankful to be living in this country (like as if they were some
 visitors) and therefore must learn to live with the majority” A man who is a
 racist from the core has no stature of a true general and definitely does
 not have the quality to be the President of our multi-ethnic country. With
 this kind of narrow thinking leaders that a war produced, I ask, have we won
 at all?

 • The price of victory from war is only a seed to grow into another.
 One rejoices and the other grows with the pain of deep hurt and immense
 loss, not of possessions but their pride and dignity. The Sinhalese, Tamils,
 Muslims, Malays, Burghers, Moors, Sindhis, Borahs, Chinese and all other
 communities, however big or small, are all part of this vibrant society
 called Sri Lanka . It is the intercultural and interethnic weave that makes
 the fabric of our society so rich and strong. Let us prevent this seed of
 ethnic disharmony from being planted again by these politicians. They were
 the cause of this divisive post-independence rule that manifested into a
 war. If we care for the future of our children then let’s protect them from
 harvesting yet another war of hatred, by opposing these politicians. It is
 then that we can truly say we have won a war.

 I am impressed but equally appalled by the tolerance and patience of our
 people. How long should we wait to realize that we have a voice so that it
 may be heard, dignity that needs to be safeguarded and sovereignty to enjoy?
 It is time for us to find a new leader beyond the Rajapakses,
 Wickremasignhes, Jayasuriyas, Premadasas, Fonsekas. Sampanthans, Hakeems,
 Weerawansas, Pillayans and Karunas. The many more pseudo leaders in
 Parliament and just outside Parliament agitating to get-in are simply there
 to grab more power and money. None of them have the intellect or metal to
 lead this country in the 21st century. Let’s end this misery and show
 dissent by rejecting this leadership in whatever peaceful but determined
 way. But let your voice be heard this time. It’s time!

 Rise , Sri Lanka ! Rise!

 Yours sincerely,

 A Fellow Sri Lankan who has nothing to gain but his own country

 Please share this on email, blogs, social media and all other print and
 digital media. Please translate it in to Sinhala and Tamil and please
make sure it gets
 circulated to as many as possible if you care for our country, Sri Lanka .

Dayan Jayatilleka - on FUTA, 

Special interview for with Dayan Jayatilleka.

You are going back into the corridors of academe in SL. Your thoughts
on the future of university education in the context of the
unprecedented recent FUTA strike.

The FUTA struggle was an important one, in that it represented an
awakening of one of the most vital social sectors in this or any
country. Not since the general election campaign of 1970 has there
been such a mobilization of the university academics. The future of
any society resides with its educated youth and therefore with its
institutions of higher education, especially the universities. A
country that boasts of 7-8% growth must surely invest more in higher
education, including in its cadre of university teachers which
constitutes the segment in society with the highest levels of
education. A highly educated populace is a foundation of national
security and sovereignty. Absolutely nothing can justify the declinein
the spending on education in postwar Sri Lanka. How is it even
conceivable that a country spends less on education in peacetime than
it did in wartime? This will make Sri Lanka far less able to deal with
the challenges it faces in the Cold war that is being waged against it
by the separatist faction of the Tamil Diaspora. We can win the Cold
war only if we have the highly educated and internationally
competitive human resources to do so.

This having been said, I must add that there were tactical errors and
a rhetorical inflation in the FUTA struggle, which brought it to a
risky impasse. It is good that Dr. Nirmal Ranjith Devasiri and Ven
Dambara Amila Thero, who are politically literate, managed to avoid a
July 1980 type defeat that would have resulted from the tactic of
frontal confrontation.

One of the weaknesses of the FUTA strike was that there were a large
number of academics who did not sign up; who did not participate. I do
not refer to the handful who took the side of the Establishment; I
refer to the middle ground. So it seems to me that FUTA should have
continued the public pedagogy and agitation for a longer period,
broadening and deepening its support base, convincing the middle
ground among the academics, before it resorted to strike action.

Internet petition for Uni students’ release

Daily Mirror, 18/01/2013

An internet petition signing campaign was held yesterday by the members of the Movement of the Equal Rights at the Lions Club Rajagiriya demanding the government to release the arrested University students in Jaffna. Pix by Nisal Baduge

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Ruhuna Uni Student leader attacked by thugs 17/01/2012

(Mirror) - The President of the Ruhuna University Students Council, Mr, Harasha Gunewardene has been attacked by thugs, according to reports. He has been attacked by a group who had come in a Defender vehicle and is now warded in the Matara General Hospital with a fracture in one of his hands.

The assailants had attacked the student leader  when he was in front of the Maddawatte hostel by thugs and although there were other students around, only he was targeted.

 It is  believed that this attack could be connected to the one where some students of the university had been attacked  recently.

කොළඹ විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයේ ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨයේ ආර්ථික විද්‍යා පාසැලක් ආරම්භ කිරීම පිළිබඳ යෝජණාවලිය සම්බන්ධව කොළඹ විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයීය ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨ ආචාර්යවරුන්ගේ සංගමයේ නිරීක්ෂණ

I.            ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව ආර්ථික විද්‍යා පාසැලක් (මින් පසුව පාසැල) බවට පත් කිරීමේ යෝජණාව රජයේ ප්‍රතිපත්තිමය ආස්ථානය සමඟ සමපාත වෙයි.  පශ්චාද්-ගැටුම් සංවර්ධන ක්‍රියාවලියේ මූලික අදියරේ දී ශ්‍රී ලංකාව ගෝලීය දැනුම් කේණ්‍ද්‍රස්ථානයක් බවට පත් කිරීමේ  ජාතික ප්‍රතිපත්තිමය අරමුණු වලට මෙම පාසැල දායක වෙතැයි කියැවේ.  (බලන්න, යෝජනාවලිය පි. 17).

ආර්ථික විද්‍යා පාසැලක් ආරම්භ කිරීමේ අරමුණ ආර්ථික විද්‍යා අධ්‍යාපනය වාණිජකරණයට ලක් කිරීම බැව් ඉතා පැහැදිළිය.  ඒ වනාහි විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයීය ආචාර්යවරුන්ගේ සංගමය ඉතා මෑතක සටන් කල අරමුණු වලට ඉඳුරාම ප්‍රතිවිරුද්ධ ය.  6% ක් අධ්‍යාපනය සඳහා වෙන්කර ගැනීමේ අරගලයේ දී අප රාජ්‍ය අධ්‍යාපනය රැක ගැනීම උදෙසා පොදු ජනතාව සමඟ ගිවිසුමකට එළැඹි අතර එකී රාජ්‍ය අධ්‍යාපනයට රාජ්‍ය විශ්වවිද්‍යාල පද්ධතිය ද ඇතුළත් විය.  මෙම සටනේ දී ආචාර්ය සංගමයට ලැබුනු අති විශාල මහජන සහයෝගය ඔවුන් එම අරමුණු සමඟ සපුරා එකඟ බවට වූ සාක්ෂියකි.  මෙම සහය අපගේ වේතනමය හා අනෙකුත් ඉල්ලීම් දිනා ගැනීම උ‍දෙසා ද තීරණාත්මක ව බළපෑවේ ය.  එවන් තත්ත්වයක් තුළ, යට කී සමාජ ගිවිසුම උල්ලංඝණය කිරීමට අප හට කිසිඳු සදාචාරාත්මක අයිතියක් නොමැත.  දිවයිනෙහි ස්ථාපිත විශ්වවිද්‍යාලක එවන් පාසැලක් ආරම්භ කල හොත්, අප වනාහී ආත්මාර්ථකාමී ආචාර්ය කොට්ඨාශයක් යන්න පිළිගැනීමට ලක්වීම කිසිවෙකුට වැළැක්විය නොහැක. 

ආර්ථික විද්‍යා විෂය සම්බන්ධයෙන් පමණක් විශේෂීකරණය වූ මෙම පාසැල ආරම්භ කිරීමේ ලා වන සාධාරණීකරණය ලෝකයේ වෙනත් කිසිදු ආර්ථික විද්‍යා පාසැලක් සමඟ සංසන්දනය කළ නොහැකි ය.  සාමාන්‍ය‍යෙන් පාසැලක අරමුණු ශික්ෂණ ගණනාවක් එකතුව ඇති අධ්‍යාපන පාඨමාලා නිර්මාණය කරමින් කේවල විෂය සීමාවකින් ඔබ්බට යාමයි. 

වර්තමාණයේ ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨ සම්පත් වෙන් කිරීමේ ප්‍රමුඛතා සළකා බලන විට එම මුල් තැන ජනමාධ්‍ය ඒකකය හා ඉංග්‍රීසි භාෂා ඉගැන්වීම් ඒකකය දෙපාර්තමේන්තු බවට යාවත් කිරීම සඳහා වෙන් විය යුතුය.  ශිෂ්‍ය අනුපාතය සළකා බලන විට වැඩිම ශිෂ්‍ය සංඛ්‍යාවක් ආකර්ෂණය වන්නේ ජනමාධ්‍ය ඒකකයට වන නමුත් එහි ස්ථිර ආචාර්ය මණ්ඩලය තිදෙනෙකුගෙන් පමණක් සමන්විත වෙයි.  විශාල ශිෂ්‍ය සංඛ්‍යාවකට ඉගැන්වීම් කෙරෙන ඉංග්‍රීසි භාෂා ඉගැන්වීම් ඒකකය සතුව මූළික පහසුකම් හෝ නොමැත.  උදාහරණයක් ලෙස ඉගැන්වීම් කටයුතු සඳහා අනෙක් දෙපාර්තමේන්තුවල දේශන ශාලා ලබා ගැනීමට යැදීමට එයට සිදුව ඇත.

      පීඨයේ දෙපාර්තමේන්තු අන්‍යෝන්‍ය සහයෝගයෙන් ක්‍රියා කරන අතරම පොදුවේ ගැටළු නිරාකරණය කර ගනිමින් එක්ව සංවර්ධනය විය යුතුය.  විදේශීය විශ්වවිද්‍යාලවල පවත්නා තත්ත්වය වන්නේ වර්ථමාණ දැනුම් ආර්ථිකය තුළ අඩු ආකර්ෂණයක් සහිත එහෙත් වැඩි වැදගත් කමක් ඇති නර්තන, දර්ශන වැනි දෙපාර්තමේන්තු අනෙක් දෙපාර්තමේන්තුවල සම්පත් පවා කැප කරමින් පවත්වාගෙන යාමයි. 

      දිවයිනේ බොහෝ ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨ තම නම් සමාජීය විද්‍යා සහ මානව ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨ ලෙස වෙනස් කරගෙන ඇති අතර අවශ්‍ය නම් අපට සියළුම දෙපාර්තමේන්තු හා සමඟ පීඨය එකම පාසැලක් ලෙස ප්‍රතිනාමකරනය කළ හැකිය. 

      එසේම මෙකී යොජණාවලිය ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුවෙහි දී සාකච්ඡා කර ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨයෙන් ස්වාධීන ආයතනයක් ලෙස පාසලක් ස්ථාපිත කිරීමට එහි සාමාජිකයන් සියල්ල ගේ අනුමැතිය ලබා ගත්තේද යන්න පැහැදිළි නොමැත. 

      පහත ඇක්වෙන ආකාරයට මෙම පාසැල හා ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨය අතර යෝජිත පාර්ශ්වීය සම්බන්ධතාව තෘප්තිමත් විය හැකි මට්ටමක නොමැත. 

      එසේම ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුවෙහි අවශ්‍යතාව එය ස්වාධීන ආයතනයක් බවට පත් කිරීම නම් එය ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨයෙන් සහමුලින්ම වෙන් විය යුතුය.  එසේම ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨයයේ නව ආර්ථික විද්‍යා ‍ දෙපාර්තමේන්තුවක් ආරම්භ කර ඒ සඳහා වෙන් කෙරෙන තනතුරු, ස්ථාන සහ සම්පත් පිළිබඳව සාකච්ඡා කළ යුතුය. 

ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨය හා යෝජිත පාසැල අතර වන පාර්ශ්වීය සම්බන්ධතාව ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨ දෘෂ්ඨි කෝණයෙන් ගත් විට පහත කරුණු මත පිළිගත ‍නොහැක. 

II.            පාසැල හා පීඨ අතර සබඳතාව යෝජිත පාසැල, ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව විසින් දැනට පීඨය තුළ සිදු කරන කාර්යයට අමතරව කිසිදු නව දායකත්වයක් ලබා දෙනු ඇතැයි නිරීක්ෂණය කල නොහැක.  එහෙත් ඉන් ඇතිවිය හැකි අයහපත් ප්‍රතිඵලයක් වනු ඇත්තේ පීඨයේ පවත්නා තත්ත්වය පහත වැටීම පමණි. 

එසේම පීඨයේ හා පාසැලේ වාර්ෂික කාල සටහන් සමමුහුර්ත කිරීමට යෝජිතය.  කෙසේ වෙතත් කිසියම් හේතුවක් මත පීඨයේ පාර්ශවයෙන් ඊට බාධා එල්ල වුවහොත් පාසැල පීඨයට වග කීමකින් තොරව දේශන පැවැත්වීමට බැඳී සිටී.  එවන් තත්ත්වයකදී කාල සටහන් සෑදීම, විභාග පැවැත්වීම සහ ප්‍රථිඵල නිකුත් කිරීම ආදී සියළුම අදියර වලදී පීඨය හා පාසැල අතර ගැටුම් පැන නැගීම නොවැළැක්විය හැකිය. 

එසේම, පාසැල ප්‍රථම උපාධි පාඨමාලා මුදල් අයකර පැවැත්වීමට තීරණය කළ හොත් එය රාජ්‍ය විශ්වවිද්‍යාල පද්ධතිය පිළිබඳ අපගේ අර්ථකථනවලට සහමුලින්ම ප්‍රතිවිරුද්ධ වනවාට අමතරව එවන් තත්ත්වයක් තුළ ඊට මැදිහත් වීමට පීඨයට බලයක් නොමැතිවනු ඇත. 

සම්පත් බෙදී යාම
      වර්තමාණයේ දෙපාර්තමේන්තුව සතු සියලු සම්පත් පාසැල විසින් අවශෝෂණය කර ගනු ඇත.  එමඟින් පීඨය සතු සම්පත් පාසැලට ලබා දීම නිසා පීඨයේ සම්පත් හානියක් සිදුවනු ඇත.

      ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුවට අනුමත ස්ථීර ආචාර්ය තනතුරු 25 ක් ඊට අහිමි වනු ඇත.  මෙම තනතුරු හුදෙක් ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව සතු ඒවා නොවන අතර මීට පෙර අවස්ථාවල දෙපාර්තම්න්තුවල ස්ථීර තනතුරු හුවමාරු කර ගැනීමෙන් ඒ බව පැහැදිළි වෙයි.   

      දැනට ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව සතු කාර්යාල අවකාශය, සම්මන්ත්‍රණ ශාලා, දේශන ශාලා සහ අනිකුත් අවකාශ පීඨයට අයත්ය.  මෙම අවකාශවල පරිපාලනය පාසැල සතු වේ නම් පීඨයේ අනෙකුත් දෙපාර්තම්න්තු සහ ඒකක සඳහා එම අවකාශ ලබා ගැනීමේ පවතින ඉඩ ප්‍රස්ථා මොනවා ද?

      සම්පත් බෙදී යාම පිළිබඳව සළකා බලන විට පීඨ සංවර්ධනය සඳහා පාසැලේ ආදායමෙන් 5% කින් දායක වන බව පැවැසේ.  මෙම 5% ප්‍රතිශතය කිනම් මුළු ආදායමකින්ද?  වර්තමාණයේ දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව උත්පාදනය කරන අරමුදල් අනුව ගත් විට රුපියල් වලින් එය කවර මුදලක්ද?  පාසැලේ යෝජිත සිව් වාර්ෂික සැලැස්මට අනුව වසර 04 ක් අවසානයේ මෙම ප්‍රමාණය රුපියල් වලින් කවර මුළු මුදල් ප්‍රමාණයක් වෙයි ද? 

      එමෙන්ම දැනට දෙපාර්තම්න්තුවට ලබා දී ඇති අවකාශ වලට අමතරව පාසැලේ ගොඩනැගිලි අවකාශ තවදුරටත් ව්‍යාප්ත කිරීම සඳහා ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨාධිපති සමඟ සාකච්ඡා කර ඇතැයි පැවැසේ.  මෙය  ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨයේ පීඨ මණ්ඩල රැස්වීමේ දී සාකච්ඡා කළ යුතුය. 

ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨ ශිෂ්‍ය ප්‍රජාව කෙරෙහි වන බලපෑම
      වර්තමාණයේ දී ආර්ථික විද්‍යාව පිළිබඳ පෙර පුහුණුවක් නොලද ශිෂ්‍යයන්ට පවා ආර්ථික විද්‍යා ප්‍රථම උපාධි පාඨමාලාව හැදෑරිය හැකිය. එසේම ආර්ථික විද්‍යාව පිළිබඳ පුහුණුවක් සහිතව පීඨයට ඇතුළත් වන ශිෂ්‍යයෝ ද ආර්ථික විද්‍යා පාඨමාලාව හැදෑරීමට යොමු වෙති.  ඉZසෙඩ් අගය මත පදනම් ව යෝජිත පාසැලට සෘජුව ම ශිෂ්‍යයන් ප්‍රතිපාදන කොමිසම මඟින් ඇතුළත් කිරීමෙන් ආර්ථික විද්‍යා පාඨමාලාව හැදෑරීම සඳහා පීඨයට ඇතුළත්වන ශිෂ්‍යයන්ට අසාධාරණයක් සිදුවිය හැකිය.  එසේම යෝජණාවලියෙහි දැක්වෙන ආකාරයට පාසැලට සෘජුව ම ශිෂ්‍යයන් ඇතුළත් කරගත හොත් ඊට සාපේක්ෂව පීඨයෙන් පාසලට ඇතුලත් කර ගන්නා ශිෂ්‍ය සංඛ්‍යාව අඩු කෙරේ  (බලන්න යෝජනාවේ 5.1.3 කොටස).

      මේ අනුව පාසැල හා පීඨය සම්පූර්ණයෙන් ම වෙනස් නීති හා රෙගුලාසි අනුගමනය කිරීම නිසා එය අයහපත් ආකාරයට ශිෂ්‍යයන්ට බළපෑ හැකිය. 

විෂය නිර්දේශ
      යෝජිත ආර්ථික විද්‍යාවේදී  (BEcon) උපාධිය සඳහා වන විෂය නිර්දේශ කුමක් විය හැකි ද?  ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨ‍යේ පිරිනැමෙන කවර පාඨමාලා, කවර සංඛ්‍යාවක් ආර්ථික විද්‍යාවේදී උපාධිය හදාරන ශිෂ්‍යයන් හැදෑරිය යුතුද?  ආරම්භයේ දී යම්කිසි පාඨමාලා සංඛ්‍යාවක් ආර්ථික විද්‍යා ශිෂ්‍යයන් හැදෑරිය යුතු වුවත් එකී ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨ‍ පාඨමාලා සම්පූර්ණයෙන් ම ඉවත් කිරීමට පාසැල කටයුතු කළ හොත් එය වැලැක්වීමට පීඨය සතු වන බලය කුමක් ද? 

      මීට පෙර අත් දැක ඇති අවස්ථා අනුව සළකා බැලූ විට මෙම පාසැල ස්ථාපිත කිරීමේ අරමුණ ස්වාධීන ආයතනයක් බවට පත්වීමේ අභිලාශය වන බැවින් පාසැල ස්ථාපිත කළ පසු පීඨය, පාසැල හා විශ්වවිද්‍යාලය අතර වන සම්බන්ධය අනිවාර්යයෙන්ම දුර්වල එකක් වනු ඇත. 

කළමනාකරණ මණ්ඩලය
      පාසැලට අදාළ කාරණා තීරණය කිරීමේ දී කළමනාකරණ මණ්ඩලයට ඇතුළත් ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨ නියෝජිතයන්ට සැළකිය යුතු බලපෑමක් කිරීමේ හැකියාවක් නොමැත. 

      මෙම කළමනාකරණ මණ්ඩලයේ සංයුතිය සළකා බලන විට පෙනී යන්නේ එය පාසැල් කළමනාකාරීත්වයට වඩා පක්ෂපාතීව ගොඩ නැගී ඇති බවයි.  කෙනෙක්, රජයේ විධායක නිලධාරීන් ස්වාධීනව කටයුතු කරතැයි තක්සේරු කල විට පවා පාසැල් කලමණාකාරීත්වයේ බලපෑමෙන් තොර වැය හැකි සියළු සාමාජිකයන් පිරිස 09 දෙනෙක් වන අතර පාසැල් කලමණාකාරීත්වය විසින් පත් කෙරෙන හා එහි බලපෑමට යටත් පිරිස 11 ක් වෙයි.  එම සංඛ්‍යාවට විෂය ධාරා 05 නියෝජනය කරමින් පත්වන දෙපාර්තම්න්තු ප්‍රධානීන් 05 දෙනා ඇතුළත් වූ විට එය 16ක් දක්වා ඉහළ යනු ඇත. 

      එසේම පාසැල දෙපාර්තම්න්තු මට්ටමින් සීමාකාරී වන පරිපාලනමය හා මූල්‍ය රෙගුලාසි වලින් ස්වාධීන වීමේ අභිලාෂයෙන් යුතුවන අතරම එහි අධ්‍යයන හා පරිපාලන කාර්ය මණ්ඩල වල වැටුප්ගෙවීම සඳහා විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයේ අනුග්‍රහය දිගටම ලැබෙනු ඇත.  තවද පාසැල් කාර්ය මණ්ඩලයට ද විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයට බලපාන රෙගුලාසිම එයාකාරයටම බලපායි.  උදාහරණයක් ලෙස විශ්වවිද්‍යාලය තුළ වෙනත් පරිපාලනමය හෝ අධ්‍යයන තනතුරක් දැරීමට, රාජ්‍ය සේවය සඳහා නිදහස් කිරීම සහ සප්ත වාර්ෂික නිවාඩු ලබා ගැනීම හෝ අධ්‍යයන නිවාඩු ලබා ගැනීම සඳහා එහි කාර්ය මණඩලය නිදහස් කිරීම (බලන්න, යෝංනාවේ අංක 6.5 දරන කොටස) දැක්විය හැකිය. 

      ඊට අමතරව පීඨයට හා පාසැලට අදාල පොදු ප්‍රශ්ණ සාකච්ඡා කෙරෙන අවස්ථා සඳහා හැරුණු කොට ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨ මණ්ඩලය සඳහා පාසැලෙන් ද නියෝජිතයන් පත් කිරීමේ  අර්ථය අපැහැදිළිය. 

ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨයෙන් ස්වායත්ත වීම
      ආර්ථික විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව පාසැලක් බවට පත් වීම ශාස්ත්‍රපීඨයේ ඒකාබද්ධතාවය බිඳවැටීමේ ආරම්භය වනු ඇත.  වෙනත් පීඨ ද මෙයාකාරයෙන් විසුරුවා හැරීමට එය උත්තේජනයක් වනු ඇති අතර අවසානයේ එය විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයයේ ඒකාබද්ධතාවය බිඳ වැටීමටත් අවසානයේ රාජ්‍ය විශ්වවිද්‍යාල පෞද්ගලීකරණය වීමටත් බලපානු ඇත. 

      එසේම වෙනත් දෙපාර්තම්න්තු ද තනිව හෝ ඒකාබද්ධව මෙයාකාර පාසැල් ආරම්භ කිරීමට යොමු වීමේ වැඩි ඉඩකඩක් පවතී.  උදාහරණයක් ලෙස සමාජ විද්‍යා දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව වසර ගණනාවක සිට විෂය ධාරා හතරක් යටතේ වෙනම පාසැලක් ලෙස වර්ධනය වීමේ වැඩි ඉඩකඩක් පැවැතුණි.  සමාජ විද්‍යාව, මානව විද්‍යාව, සමාජ වැඩ හා සමාජ ප්‍රතිපත්ති යනුවෙන් දෙපාර්තම්න්තු 04 කට වෙන් වීම පිළිබඳව එම දෙපාර්තම්න්තුව දිගු කලක සිට සැලසුම් කළ ද අවසානයේ මානව සම්පත් රැක ගැනීමේ අරමුණ මත පීඨයෙන් වෙන් වීමේ තීරණය දැනට අත් හැර දමා ඇත. 

      මේ අනුව සමාජ විද්‍යා පාසල, ජාත්‍යන්තර සබඳතා පාසල යනුවෙන් නොයෙකුත් පාසල් ආරම්භ කළ හැකිය.  එසේ නැතහොත් සමාජයීය විද්‍යා පාසල හෝ භාෂා පාසල හෝ මානව ශාස්ත්‍ර පාසල යනුවෙන් පාසැල් ආරම්භ කළ හැකිය.  වර්තමාණයේ පවත්නා මූල්‍යමය හා පරිපාලනමය රෙගුලාසි වලින් විනිර්මුක්තව එවන් පාසල් විධායක බලය සහිත අධ්‍යක්ෂවරුන් පත් කරමින් ස්වාධීන ආයතන බවට පත්විය හැකි වුවත් අවසාන වශයෙන් එය පීඨයට, විශ්වවිද්‍යාලයට හෝ අනාගත පරම්පරාව වෙත ලබා දෙන අධ්‍යාපනය වෙත ඇති කරන බලපෑම කුමක් ද? 

      විවිධ පාසල්වලට වෙන් වීම ශාස්ත්‍ර පීඨයේ ඒකාබද්ධ භාවයට හානි නොකරතැයි මතයක් වෙයි.  නමුත් එවැනි තත්ත්වයක් උදාවීම ශ්‍රී ලංකාවේ විශ්වවිද්‍යාල ආරම්භ වූ දා පටන් උසස් අධ්‍යාපනයේ ශක්තිමත්ම ‍ක්ෂේත්‍රයන් ව පැවති මානව ශාස්ත්‍ර හා ලිබරල් කලා අධ්‍යාපනය අවසන් වීමේ ආරම්භය වනු ඇත. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Impeachment, A Perfect Blunder – 2

DayanJ 360px 13 01 07
Special interview for with Dayan Jayatilleka, one of Sri Lanka’s leading intellectuals, ex-diplomat, Political scientist, university don and raconteur.

His first interview, given to Harasha Gunewardene, since completing his assignment as Ambassador to France.

Your thoughts on the Impeachment crisis?
Having spoken in support of President Rajapaksa in his re-election campaign in December 2009 - which I do not regret for a moment - I criticized the detention of Gen Sarath Fonseka, in an article in the Daily Mirror and The Island published on Feb 15th 2010, under the title ‘A Perfect Blunder’, in which I listed ten reasons for characterizing it as such. I would call the impeachment motion and the manner of its implementation ‘A Perfect Blunder – 2’.
All religions preach that one should do unto others as you would have them do unto you and that one should not do unto others as you would not wish them to do unto you. It is on this basis that Immanuel Kant put forward his dictum of the Categorical Imperative, which means that one should take action only if one wishes those actions to be raised to the level of a universal practice. Therefore, those who rightly decry unfairness in the accusations and indictments of the Sri Lankan authorities by international bodies must not be so hypocritical as to practice blatant unfairness in domestic processes.DayanJ1 500px 13 01 07At UNHRC, Geneva
I view this impeachment as a diplomat, or more accurately an ex-diplomat, a political scientist, and as a citizen. I am appalled that in a context in which we are scheduled to host the Commonwealth summit and are subject to a growing campaign of hostility by the anti-Sri Lanka movement in the UK, the government has made this country a larger target and has made the task of these lobbyists easier by embarking on this impeachment motion in this crude fashion. I am aghast that we have undermined our own argument that the TNA should enter the PSC, and reinforced the TNA’s argument as to why it is reluctant to do so, by permitting a PSC to treat the Chief Justice in the manner that it has!
As a political scientist I am appalled that alongside and behind this impeachment motion there is a claim that the legislature does not have to adhere or respond to the strictures of the judiciary. While it is indeed the legislature that draws up laws, it is none but the judiciary that can decide on the legality and constitutionality of such laws. Just as we go to a trained and professionally credentialed doctor in the matter of ill-health, we turn to the judiciary to rule on whether a move is legal or not. While the 1978 Constitution– unlike the ’72 Constitution in which parliament was supreme --grants pre-eminence to the elected President, pre-eminence does not mean monopoly, or else the Sri Lankan political system would be classifiable as absolutist. The irreducibly autonomous spheres of competence and authority of the three arms of government must be respected.
DayanJ2 500px 13 01 07With Alain Juppe, Foreign Minister of France under President SarkozyIt is with excellent reason that the old adage has it that ‘justice must not only be done, it must be seen to be done’. Our most internationally renowned and distinguished jurist, Judge CG Weeramantry has enunciated the basic protocols that must be observed if justice is to be done and be seen to be done. Given his strictures, it is clear that due process has not been observed in the manner that the impeachment motion has proceeded.
Today there is a dangerous disequilibrium between two pillars of the state and the third and a consequent polarization in the polity. If the parliament does not accept the rulings of the court on matters of legality and constitutionality, who then decides on what is legal? How then to avoid a situation in which the very legality of parliament and the legislation that issues from it, are called into question? There may be a serious crisis of legality and legitimacy of the government itself. We had an analogous situation with JR Jayewardene’s coercive and fraudulent referendum of December 1982. We seem to be on a time-machine back to that period.
The only way I see out this dangerous mess is the appointment of an Independent Presidential Commission consisting of or headed by Justice Weeramantry, to review the whole issue andrestore equilibrium. We need a neutral umpire or referee.

You appear to be quite adamant in not seeking another term? Why? It is the country who will be the loser…
While I still believe that President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s historical contribution and merits outweigh his de-merits; while in the absence of a better alternative I regard him as part of the solution and refuse to cast him as the villain of the piece, still less demonize him,it is also my no less strongly held conviction that in the postwar period, the government has deviated from the path that would lead to social progress and a sustainable peace. This deviation has led to a deterioration of policy and distortion of the policy process, which in turn has resulted in degeneration of the System. From a strategic standpoint, Sri Lanka can no longer be successfully defended internationally without renewing its stock of moral capital and re-taking the moral high ground which it has lost in the postwar years. Defending Sri Lanka internationally now requires reforming and democratizing Sri Lanka domestically. The struggle to defend Sri Lanka in New York and Washington, Geneva and Delhi, Pretoria and Brasilia, and in the court of world opinion, now requires a struggle for democratic transformation as well as a struggle against undemocratic measures and the dominant political culture at home. DayanJ3 500px 13 01 07Dayan and Sanja Jayatilleka with Bernard Kouchner, former Foreign Minister of France
In this context, seeking another term or even an extension would mean continuing a relationship with the status quothat I do not wish to maintain unaltered, given my deep disgust at the dominant ethos and the degree of decay and decrepitude in the System. The famous Cuban national hero Jose Marti used a phrase that became legend; he said he had “been in the belly of the beast and knew its entrails”. He was of course referring to the Biblical legend of Jonah who was in the belly of a whale. I too have been in the belly of the beast that is the Sri Lankan Establishment, the System, and I no longer can abide the thought of continuing to inhabit itwhile its ethos remains unchanged.
As to the loss to the country that you mention, it is my firm conviction that Sri Lanka’s international position is deteriorating and the country will be placed at great risk, precisely because of domestic dynamics, i.e. the positive reforms that are not being undertaken and the negative actions that are underway. In today’s situation I would be harming the country more if I did not point out the dangers to the national interest and to our strategic and security situation, of the grave mistakes and distortions that are taking place.
In the recent past, it was Ambassador Kunanayakam, and then followed by Ambassador Godage and now yourself? Your thoughts...
There are commonalities but also differences in our situations. Having beaten back in full public view, a vicious attack on me from within the System early in 2012, I served out my full term in France - carried my bat through the innings as it were - gave three months notice and clearly and publicly disengaged of my own accord. It’s a great pity that an outstanding senior professional such as Mr. Godage on the one hand and a European educated multilingual woman of Sri Lankan Tamil ethnicity such as Ms Kunanayagam were so shabbily treated by the System and that the country was deprived of their services in the international arena.

You are going back into the corridors of academe in SL. Your thoughts on the future of university education in the context of the unprecedented recent FUTA strike.
The FUTA struggle was an important one, in that it represented an awakening of one of the most vital social sectors in this or any country. Not since the general election campaign of 1970 has there been such a mobilization of the university academics. The future of any society resides with its educated youth and therefore with its institutions of higher education, especially the universities. A country that boasts of 7-8% growth must surely invest more in higher education, including in its cadre of university teachers which constitutes the segment in society with the highest levels of education. A highly educated populace is a foundation of national security and sovereignty. Absolutely nothing can justify the declinein the spending on education in postwar Sri Lanka. How is it even conceivable that a country spends less on education in peacetime than it did in wartime? This will make Sri Lanka far less able to deal with the challenges it faces in the Cold war that is being waged against it by the separatist faction of the Tamil Diaspora. We can win the Cold war only if we have the highly educated and internationally competitive human resources to do so.
This having been said, I must add that there were tactical errors and a rhetorical inflation in the FUTA struggle, which brought it to a risky impasse. It is good that Dr. Nirmal Ranjith Devasiri and Ven Dambara Amila Thero, who are politically literate, managed to avoid a July 1980 type defeat that would have resulted from the tactic of frontal confrontation.
One of the weaknesses of the FUTA strike was that there were a large number of academics who did not sign up; who did not participate. I do not refer to the handful who took the side of the Establishment; I refer to the middle ground. So it seems to me that FUTA should have continued the public pedagogy and agitation for a longer period, broadening and deepening its support base, convincing the middle ground among the academics, before it resorted to strike action.
Your greatest achievements in both spells as Ambassador?
In my first spell, as Ambassador in Geneva, they were:
• Firstly, preventing the EU from being able to table a resolution to stop the war before it had ended in victory for Sri Lanka.
• Secondly, after the war had been successfully concluded, preventing the same group from passing a critical resolution calling for war crimes investigations and accountability at the UNHRC in May 2009.
After the sessions, two people immediately sent text messages of congratulations to a member of our delegation and through him to me while we were still in the UNHRC hall after our victory in the vote. They were the (then) Army Commander Gen Sarath Fonseka and Navy Commander Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda.
The recently released Charles Petrie Report on the role of the UN during the Lankan war and its last stages has almost two pages on the UN Human Rights Council April-May 2009. It reveals or rather, confirms, that the West had tried to get a Special Session on Sri Lanka through the UN Human Rights Council in April 2009 in order to stop the war, but failed to do so because it was thwarted from obtaining the requisite 16 signatures by the efforts of the Sri Lankan delegation.
DayanJ4 500px 13 01 07Dayan and Sanja Jayatilleka with Herbie Hancock, Jazz icon, in ParisAs to the second achievement, it is better quote from hostile sources in the interest of objectivity: 
• The Cage by Gordon Weiss 
“On 27 May at the Palais des nations in Geneva, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, NavanethamPillay, addressed the Human Rights Council and called for an international inquiry into the conduct of both parties to the war. While the EU and a brace of other countries formulated and then moved a resolution in support of Pillay’s call, a majority of countries on the council rejected it out of hand. Instead they adopted an alternative motion framed by Sri Lanka’s representatives praising the Sri Lankan government for its victory over the Tigers...” (p229)
In his concluding chapter Weiss describes my role: “Dayan Jayatilleka, one of the most capable diplomats appointed by the Rajapaksa regime, had outmaneuvered Western diplomats to help Sri Lanka escape censure from the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva”. In his Notes he makes this evaluation: “Jayatilleka was the most lucid of the vocal Government of Sri Lanka representatives...” (p 330)
• Nirupama Subramanian in the The Hindu:
"As Sri Lanka mulls over last month’s United Nations Human Rights Council resolution, it may look back with nostalgia at its 2009 triumph at Geneva. Then, barely a week after its victory over the LTTE, a group of western countries wanted a resolution passed against Sri Lanka for the civilian deaths and other alleged rights violations by the army during the last stages of the operation. With the blood on the battlefield not still dry, Sri Lanka managed to snatch victory from the jaws of diplomatic defeat, with a resolution that praised the government for its humane handling of civilians and asserted faith in its abilities to bring about reconciliation." (The Hindu)
• Research scholar David Lewis at the University of Edinburgh:
“Many of the battles over conflict-related norms between Sri Lanka and Europe took place in UN institutions, primarily the Human Rights Council (HRC)…it was Sri Lanka which generally had the best of these diplomatic battles...Although this process of contestation reflects shifting power relations, and the increasing influence of China, Russia and other ‘Rising Powers’, it does not mean that small states are simply the passive recipients of norms created and contested by others. In fact, Sri Lankan diplomats have been active norm entrepreneurs in their own right, making significant efforts to develop alternative norms of conflict management, linking for example Chechnya and Sri Lanka in a discourse of state-centric peace enforcement. They have played a leading role in UN forums such as the UN HRC, where Sri Lankan delegates have helped ensure that the HRC has become an arena, not so much for the promotion of the liberal norms around which it was designed, but as a space in which such norms are contested, rejected or adapted in unexpected ways...” (Lewis: 2010, ‘The failure of a liberal peace: Sri Lanka’s counterinsurgency in global perspective’, Conflict, Security & Development, 2010, Vol 10:5, pp 647-671.pp. 658-661)
In my second spell as Ambassador, in Paris, my task was rather different from that in Geneva, and therefore required a different skills-set and brought to the forefront a different aspect of my personality. I had extricated myself from a two year renewable contract as Senior Research Fellow of the Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore, in answer to the President’s invitation and the External Affairs Minister’s request to return to representing my country so as to help protect it from the adverse effects of the UN Secretary-General’s Panel of Expert’s report, aka the Darusman Report, which was on the horizon. Since France is a P-5 member of the Security Council, this posting was doubly important and challenging.
I would regard my main achievements in Paris as:
• Having come in at a time that France was fairly strident in supporting the call for full-on international accountability on the final stages of the war, and to have succeeded through honest, sincere, and open dialogue at the policy making and academic levels, in communicating the complexities of the Sri Lankan situation, and establishing common ground and concord based on shared or compatible values.
• Having been an active, frontline participant in the successful battle for the recognition of Palestine by UNESCO.
• Initiating and organizing a UNESCO international scholarly symposium on “The Contribution of the Buddha’s Teachings to Universality, Humanism and Peace”, in commemoration of the 2600th anniversary of the Buddha’s Enlightenment, in partnership with the Asia-Pacific group and the participation of scholars from 7 countries.
• Practicing a policy of outreach, non-discrimination, multi-ethnicity, multiculturalism,multi-religiosity and integration; maintaining a dialogue with the moderate segments of the Tamil Diaspora, and for two years running, being invited by the Tamil cultural association in the Parisian suburb of Bondy which has a large Sri Lankan Tamil population, to be the chief guest and distribute certificates along with my wife Sanja, at the Tamil school.
• Recruiting to the Embassy a multiethnic, multi-religious cadre of second generation Sri Lankan students with excellent French academic training and credentials and encourage their effort to reach out to and network their peers, resulting in a sparkling cluster of French-Sri Lankan postgraduates and young professionals, calling itself What’s Next, which hopes to be a bridge between France and Sri Lanka.

Your thoughts on the current situation regarding the Jaffna University?In Sri Lanka the LTTE has been defeated on ground. What is the situation now - is it triumphalism still, or is reconciliation possible?
My view is rather different from the two extremes, the liberals and radical leftists on the one hand and the neoconservative securocrats on the other. If we take the example of India and Kashmir, it is obvious that any country, however democratic, which has a restive separatist sentiment in a vulnerable buffer/border region across which there exists an unfriendly pro-separatist populace, tends to be ultra-sensitive and super-vigilant on security issues.I disagree with those who regard the students’ commemoration of Mahaveera day as justifiable or excusable and therefore regard any counteraction as reprehensible, just as I disagree with those who regard the students’ commemoration as heinous and therefore deserving of the crackdown by the state. If the need was to commemorate the Tamil dead, including those who fought on the side of the LTTE, a different day could have been chosen. The fact that it was Mahaveera day clearly shows sympathy for and some tacit endorsement of the LTTE, whose remnants are active across the border in Tamil Nadu and in the Western Diaspora. Only the naïve will fail to recognize the interlock and overlap of separatist proxies, front organizations and fellow travelers, and the Sri Lankan Security Forces and majority of the country’s citizenry are not that naïve. The TPNF of Gajan Ponnambalam is clearly pro-separatist. The TNA is neither pro-Tiger nor pro-separatist, but there are a few elements within its fold who are. It is asked whether it is wrong for the dead Tigers to be commemorated on MahaveeraDay while JVPers who died in the neo-barbaric surge of the late 1980s are commemorated on Mahaviru day. That is a valid and important question but the bottom-line is that the LTTE is a proscribed organization in Sri Lanka (and India) while the JVP is not. Furthermore, in many countries, there is a difference in the manner in which Stalinist, Maoist or ultra-leftist excesses are regarded and separatist and fascist atrocities are viewed.The argument of iconic scholars such as Eric Hobsbawmis that leftist crimes arose from a distortion, debasement and derangement of praiseworthy original universalistideas of social justice, while those of a separatist or fascist movement do not originate from such noble impulses and are not a distortion of lofty ideals. Look at neighboring secular democratic India: public opinion, the mass media and the intelligentsia regard the Naxalites with their savage excesses, very differently from the manner in which they regard the Khalistani or Kashmiri separatist terrorists. However, I regard the Sri Lankan state’s current crackdown as dangerously counter-productive. 
The erroneous ideas of the students who commemorated Mahaveera day can be combated only by correct political ideas; by debate and ideological engagement and challenge. This should have been left to the anti-Tiger Tamil political tendency. The question should for instance have been posed as to whether those Tigers who killed Jaffna University academic Dr Rajani Tiranagama, and those LTTE leaders who ordered the killing, are Mahaveeras or not, and whether and when the Jaffna university students will commemorate the killing of Rajang and denounce her killers, the Tigers. Naming and shaming is the right way to go, not beatings and detention without due legal process. Though they may be enamored or remain uncritical of the LTTE and its war, these youngsters are not hardcore Tigers and probably not even hardcore separatists.Repression will only radicalize them further, when what is required is precisely a contrary policy of de-radicalization. As for the rehabilitees, generous start up loans and ‘decent work’, to borrow the ILO’s slogan, are the best method of de-radicalization.
In 1972, dozens of Tamil youth were arrested and incarcerated for putting up black flags, and now, forty years later, it is for lighting lamps in however misguided a cause. Those arrests in 1972 did not help stabilize the situation; they sowed the seeds of conflict. My father, Mervyn de Silva who was editor of the Daily News, warned against it in an editorial in that newspaper in early 1972. Nobody listened. We know the consequence of that. After all we’ve been through, is anybody listening today? Why are we repeating the same blunders—and in a far more seriously hostile external environment?
As for the second part of your question, I fear that triumphalism has afflicted the vision of the leading elements of the State but reconciliation is still possible. Having fought and won a basically Just War, the state and the country’s leadership have failed to establish a Just Peace. The crisis of the state is partly a crisis of reconciliation. It must be understood that there are only three possible pathways to reconciliation: equal citizenship, eliminating all forms of discrimination against or for any segment of the populace on the basis of ethno-lingual or religious markers; a reasonable sufficiency of devolution of power to the provinces; or a hybrid of elements of both approaches, with improvements in one realm offsetting inadequacies in the other. For the moment though, I count far less on the state for the process of reconciliation, and far more on interactions and initiatives in the social and artistic domains, especially by the educated young people. It alarms me that there is an absurd tendency to denounce as separatist conspiracies, any attempt by lawyers, academics, students and youth activists, to build bridges between North and South or even to mobilize on a multiethnic or non-ethnic basis. DayanJ5 500px 13 01 07With Stephane Hessel, author
Any suggestions for making our diplomatic missions more relevant to the country's need?
In the first place we need a coherent foreign policy, which is conformity with the enlightened self interest of Sri Lanka. Today we do not have such a policy. There is no single centre or stable collection of designated individuals who make foreign policy decisions and oversee their implementation. There is a strange combination of semi-anarchy and the pressure of parasiticpatronage networks. What passes for a patriotic foreign policy is an attitude of truculent parochialism. It is discordantly irrational to invoke indigenous cultural values as an immunity defense in UN forums such as the Human Rights Council—something I never did in May 2009 - because of the glaringly obvious fact that UN forums are founded precisely on universality; on shared values and norms that we have all subscribed to.
We must understand that on the one hand, foreign policy cannot be a simple projection of domestic policy; a propaganda discourse that may sell in a protected domestic market – the provinces of Sri Lanka - does not travel well, does not do well under international standards and norms. On the other hand we must also realize that there cannot be a growing disconnect between our international stance and domestic practices and that what happens in the country is quite transparently seen by the world and impacts upon world opinion, which former UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali designated ‘the other superpower’. We have almost depleted our soft power and we continue to erode it with every irrational move.
We have deviated from and forgotten the basic objectives of diplomacy, namely serving the national interest by maintaining a continuous dialogue with the state and society to which the Embassy is accredited and honestly, intelligently, presenting the case for Sri Lanka to the host state and society. The Embassy is an institutional bridge between Sri Lanka and the state in which it is based, while the diplomats are a living bridge. The basic function of diplomacy is not to serve the émigré Sinhala community, centers of religious worship and partisan lobbies back home! Furthermore: Sri Lankan diplomatic practice must not alienate the professionally and academically accomplished elite of the Sri Lankan Diaspora, Sinhala and Tamil, Muslim and Burgher, in favor of émigré strata with resentful views and no niche in the society of the host country. We must be capable of harnessing the best brains of the Diaspora, especially its youth—but the profile, attitudes and sub-culture of our Missions are such that the educated youth of Sri Lankan parentage—the second generation-- feel utterly alienated from them. Sri Lankan diplomacy must realize that no country or may I say no other country, regards its diplomatic missions as places of religious worship and ritual, nor permits diplomatic decision making to be intruded upon by religious clerics.Currently Sri Lankan diplomacy is strangled by intersecting networks of political patronage, religious sectarianism and ultranationalist political partisanship. If we do not break through this suffocating net, how is the country to compete with and prevail over the sophisticated campaign that is underway to isolate and encircle Sri Lanka? Unless we change for the better, unless we change the System for the better, we shall be unable to raise our diplomatic game to the highest international levels and we shall be unable to win the Cold war that is ongoing on all continents against our country. We must exit the Matrix!