Crowned Emperor of silver screen. GAMINI FONSEKA – by Sunil Thenabadu Gamini Shelton Fonseka-Nidhanaya Sembuge Gamini Shelton Fonseka is comprehensively measured as the undisputed emperor of the silver screen enthroned. Almost 13 years ago Sri Lanka’s heroic epoch era of Sinhala cinema died, alongside with the abrupt demise of the legendary film celebrity and politician. It was analogous to the shutting down of the screen of the Sinhala cinema where he stood very elevated for nearly three decades dominating in various spheres spaced out with his unique, characteristic own inimitable techniques of performing. Gamini Fonseka was born on 21 March 1936 in Dehiwala the third child of William and Daisy Fonseka. After starting school at Presbyterian Girls School along station road, Dehiwala, located in his neighbourhood. Gamini was later admitted to the prestigious S.Thomas’ College Mt. Lavinia. As a youngster, he had impressed with his innate talents when he gained ...

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Sir John Kotelawala: Bequeathed his treasured assets to the nation – By Rear Admiral Dr Shemal Fernando PhD   Source:sundayobserver.lk Sir John Kotelawala, CH, KBE, KSTJ was a planter and soldier turned statesman, who served as the third Prime Minister of Ceylon from October 12, 1953 to April 12, 1956. Erect and soldierly in his bearing, ‘Sir John’ as he was affectionately known was undoubtedly one of the most colourful personalities of his time. An accomplished politician and a seasoned military officer, his interests ranged from sports and politics to mining, agriculture and architecture. He was a true and proud nationalist who loved his country and its people. Sir John, a skilled and gifted horse rider was commissioned in the Ceylon Light Infantry in 1922, climbed the ladder steadily and was promoted a Colonel in 1940. He first got elected to the State Council in 1931 from Kurunegala. He was ...

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The architect of Sri Lanka’s independence From bondage to freedom D. S. Senanayake and Sri Lanka labour movement leader A.E. Goonesinghe Source:Dailymirror The first Prime Minister of Sri Lanka (Ceylon) D.S. Senanayake entered the National Legislature in 1924. He was relatively unknown in the country and was pushed into prominence by his elder brother F.R. Senanayake, who was a very popular and active figure in the social and political arena. Many were surprised and taken aback to see D.S. entering the political field, as they were expecting his brother F.R. to fit the role. Perhaps the only person who had faith in D.S’s capability at that time was none other but F.R. Senanayake himself.  Ceylon (Sri Lanka) as it was then known was under foreign domination from 1505 to 1948. Three Colonial Powers namely the Portuguese, Dutch and the British ruled parts of the island till 1815 when the entire ...

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COLOMBO-CHETTY BUGGERS – by Des Kelly Quite apart from the Burghers, who still bear the same fond “alias”, the introduction by Maxwell Gerreyn, of the C.C.B. need absolutely no enhancement at all, so, as far as I am concerned, lets get on with it, and give our e’Lanka’s special members/readers, far & wide, a most interesting account of this very minute, yet important minority of Ceylon, then, Sri Lanka, now. Let me just take the chance, as a Burgher Bugger, to wish all the Colombo-Chetty Buggers, only the very best for the New Year of 2022. We do love them, especially when I remember that it was those buggers we always went to, during the “good old days”, when we needed a loan. My friends, please read on, and “thank you” again, Maxie.           Desmond Kelly. (Editor-in-Chief) e’Lanka. BRIGHT STARS OF COLOMBO CHETTY COMMUNITY by ECB ...

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MR. D.N.PEREIRA – Profile of a Legend that has passed through the realms of St. Thomas’ College Mount Lavinia – both as a student and later as a well respected Master on the Staff. D.N.Pereira – born 27th April 1915 & departed this life to eternal peace on 25th April 1993. by Mrs. Corinne King – (neé Pereira)  I am Corinne King – the only child of the late Mr. D.N.Pereira – (Douglas Noel), (D.N.P.), (D.N.) or otherwise known as “Bulto” to the many hundreds of students he taught during his long teaching career.  I am so honoured to have been requested to write an article about my Dad for the S.T.C. OBA (Sydney Branch) Dinner Dance Souvenir of 2013.  Thank you to Messrs: Milroy Berenger & David Sansoni for this opportunity. I will start this profile of Dad giving you some family background details which not many of you will ...

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Is there a credible political alternative for Sri Lanka? by Tissa Jayatilaka Why do Sri Lankan voters elect and re-elect corrupt and discredited politicians?  This topic has been much talked about and commented on in newspapers and social media ever since Gotabaya Rajapaksa, in a rare moment of self-realisation, asked the above question from the voters of Sri Lanka. Why indeed? Two years before the president posed this question in November 2019, I asked myself the very same question when to my disbelief and dismay, 6.9 million voters elected Gotabaya Rajapaksa (GR) as executive president. For the purposes of this essay I consider GR to have been a politician since 2005 when, as a political appointee to the post of secretary to the ministry of defence, he wielded more power than any other politician except his older sibling, the then executive president. A few months after the presidential election, when ...

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Dudley Senanayake: some personal anecdotes Excerpted from the Memoirs of Snr. DIG (Rtd.) Edward Gunawardena Source:Island Dudley Senanayake was a truly charismatic leader. By his exemplary behavior he enjoyed the respect of both sides of the House. He always entered the chamber from the main doorway and walked majestically down the aisle to his seat. Almost all Members rose from their seats to show their respect. He was an excellent debater. If he had to make a speech it was a studied contribution. He never spent his time in Parliament without making use of every minute. If he was not in the chamber he would be in discussion with his colleagues and members of the opposition as well; or he would be in the library or even learning different aspects of Parliamentary procedure from the Clerk of the House. A remarkable characteristic of Dudley was his ability to concentrate and ...

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The Burghers of Ceylon/Sri Lanka- Reminiscences and Anecdotes by J. Godwin Perera   Source:-island “The Burghers were a riotous lot With song and dance and many a ‘shot’ Were drivers, guards in the Cee Gee Ar For higher jobs were below par” This is only partly true. It was a small segment of Burghers who worked in the CGR and as they would have said ‘did a bloody, damn good job.’ But, there were Burghers and Burghers. Let’s give credit where credit is due. Higher in the social hierarchy were the Planters. Many, having been ruggerites in their colleges, it was an easy jump to the central hills where they were appointed as ‘Sinna Dorays’ (SDs) and later Periya Dorays (PDs) in the tea plantations. They had the endurance and intelligence to rule their kingdoms (‘Thottams’), very, very, successfully. Some ended up as CEOs in the head offices of the ...

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  “SENANAYAKE, THE GOOD SAMARITAN” – By Des Kelly   It was indeed a proud political name, in the Ceylon I remember. Prime Minister Donald Stephan Senanayake, born 1883, and died in 1952, from wounds incurred in a tragic fall from his favourite horse, which unfortunately tripped, due to an unnoticed hole on the Galle-Face green, throwing this highly popular P.M. completely off. Don Stephan was a U.N.P. (United National Party) Stalwart,  highly educated both in English & Sinhala, was voted in as the Island’s first Prime Minister, and, not only did a superb job, but looked the part, as far as I was concerned. A truly distinguished Statesman, taken too soon.           D.S. Senanayake was succeeded by his eldest son.  Dudley Shelton Senanayake, immediately after the death of his father, was also popular with the people, as I remember, but could not follow in his ...

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