The Sunday Leader

The beginning of a journey

It  takes skill, determination and commitment to be a journalist. Proper guidance will make you a good journalist.

After a successful stint at EFM Radio as a news presenter my career as a print media journalist began at The Sunday Leader in the year 2004.

I remember my first day at The Sunday Leader where the then Editor, Lasantha Wickremetunga and my colleagues, including well respected journalists in the caliber of Dharisha Bastians, Marianne David and Amantha Perera, to name a few, gave me encouragement and advice on being a good journalist.

The road from there was far from being smooth. The pressure on meeting the expectations of the newspaper was, at times, demanding and stressful.

My first stint at The Sunday Leader which lasted between 2004 – 2005 saw me covering the aftermath of the devastating tsunami, the brutal war and meeting people from all walks of life. One of my most memorable experiences was living in a tsunami tent in Ahungalle with a family who had lost everything. Sleeping on a bare floor, drinking water sparingly helped me understand just some of the suffering those people had to face.

I remember my friend and colleague Jamila Najmuddin, who also took the trip and stayed in an adjoining tent with some women, telling me at the time how an experience like this is what journalism is all about. I could not agree more.   In 2005 I moved out of The Sunday Leader and made use of my experience gathered at the newspaper to further my career as a journalist. Today, back at The Sunday Leader as the Deputy Editor I should say the task is challenging but one which I have accepted with open arms.

Working with a team of both experienced and young journalists helps me to both share what I have learned and get ideas and learn more in the process. Over the years, while giving the people what they wanted to read The Sunday Leader has had to face many struggles in its effort to stay alive. The pressure of that struggle was felt by the journalists but teamwork and dedication kept them going over the years and even today.

Easwarn Rutnam – Deputy Editor

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