« Returning after an emotional day in Mullivaikkal, nine years after the end of the war, I struggle to keep faith that the few exceptional voices and initiatives will prevail and Sri Lanka will overcome the May 18 disconnect. Reconciliation will remain elusive till then. »
The International Centre for Ethnic Studies is pleased to launch its online Museum of Memory and Coexistence. The museum will seek to celebrate diversity, coexistence, resilience and solidarity, while archiving social exclusion, loss, and personal trauma.
We warmly thank Vincent Faugère for allowing us to upload unpublished photographs he took during the anti-Tamil pogrom of 1983. Vincent Faugère came with his father to visit Sri Lanka in July 1983. He was then 15 years old. It happened that Vincent and his father were in Colombo when Tamil people were killed and chased from the town.
Featured image courtesy Vikalpa/Ishara Danasekara
Featured image courtesy Vikalpa/Ishara Danasekara
“This is the money that my daughter and I collected every day in a till. It used to be on the cabinet. The notes can no longer be found. The coins were caught in the flames and were burned.”
He took the coins one by one and held them in his hands. His breath caught in his chest.
To him, the value in these coins was clearly more than the rupee or two that they were worth.
“We’re not angry with the Sinhalese”, were his last words to me.
Vikalpa traveled to Digana and surrounding areas in the aftermath of riots targeting the Muslim community in March. The following story is a translation of Vikalpa’s coverage.
Read the full article here.
After a nearly three-decade civil war those devastated by it had to rebuild their lives and finding employment was a challenge. The strategy adopted by the Government was to expand credit and promote self-employment. But then things took a turn for the worse when their livelihoods did not flourish. People could not repay the mounting debts. The once war-torn areas of the country are now mired by multiple loans which include ‘predatory’ microfinance loans and loans provided by informal lenders at exorbitant interest rates.Failed attempts at self-employment coupled with accumulating high interest loans have now driven families to the brink of poverty.
A multimillion dollar Chinese-funded water supply project has run into controversy with former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga openly demanding its suspension and an inquiry on the grounds that it is overpriced. In August 2016, the National Water Supply and Drainage Board (NWSDB) awarded a contract to China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) for the Gampaha, Attanagalla and Minuwangoda Integrated Water Supply Scheme. The project cost is US$ 229.5mn (Rs 35.8bn). It is 85 percent funded by a China Development Bank (CDB) loan while the Bank of Ceylon will lend the Government 15 percent of the contract price or US$ 34mn (Rs 5.3bn) as local funding.
It would take at least another ten years to revive the fallen education system in the North, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said today.
Police and politicians backed by the country’s former strongman President Mahinda Rajapaksa joined anti-Muslim riots that rocked Sri Lanka’s Kandy district this month, according to witnesses, officials and CCTV footage reviewed by Reuters.
Sri Lankan police have arrested two army corporals for their suspected involvement in anti-Muslim riots in the central highlands district of Kandy last month, police said on Tuesday.
Torture remained endemic throughout Sri Lanka in 2017, the US has said, highlighting limited progress made by the government in establishing additional transitional justice mechanisms.
It was time to reclaim the holiday. To put the Buddha back into Vesak, so to speak.
But as Sri Lankans prepared to celebrate Vesak, the holiday this week commemorating the Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death, the government shook a stern finger. The celebrations had become too indulgent, a directive warned.
Lester James Peries
லெஸ்டர் ஜேம்ஸ் பீரிஸ்
Figure majeure du cinéma srilankais, Lester James Peries vient de s’éteindre à l’âge de 99 ans. Il est né en 1919 sur l’île de Ceylan, alors colonie britannique. Il a commencé sa carrière cinématographique au Royaume-Uni, tout en exerçant le métier de journaliste. En 1952, il a regagné son pays devenu indépendant pour travailler au développement de la création cinématographique locale. Il a connu son premier grand succès en 1963 avec Changement au village et a réalisé une vingtaine de longs métrages au cours de sa carrière. [En savoir plus sur suravi.fr]
Considered the father of Sri Lankan cinema, Lester James Peries just died at 99 years of age. He was born in 1919 in the then British colony of Ceylon, and began his film career in Britain while working as a journalist. He returned in his newly independent country in 1952 to help with the growth of the local film industry. His first big success came in 1963 with the film Changing Village and since then he has made about 20 feature films. [more on suravi.fr]
When it is pointed out that Sri Lanka has, in fact, never experienced an act of violence attributable to Islamists, and that at this rate of conversion it will take the island’s Muslims about 10,000 years to convert the rest of its 21m inhabitants, Mr Gnanasara simply shrugs. His hoard of evidence does not really need to add up. In Sri Lanka, as across most of South Asia, surprisingly large numbers of people among groups that enjoy overwhelming numerical superiority seem eager to convince themselves that their identity is somehow in mortal danger.