Impose ban on
very much welcome the ruling of the Supreme
Court to ban loudspeaker use between 10 p.m
and 6 a.m. This ruling however does not
appear to have had any effect on the
religious sector, especially the Buddhist
temples that continue to blare pirith
over loudspeakers in the wee hours of the
I am a devout Buddhist and live in a
highly residential area adjoining a temple.
The loudspeaker nuisance emanating from the
temple has been a bane to me and my family
as well as those in the neighbourhood. Most
residents though they feel bitter about the
whole thing do not want to complain either
due to the respect they have for the temple
or their fear of the monks.
The question arises as to why we should
respect a place (the temple) or the monks
when they do not respect human rights or the
welfare of the residents in the
Are the monks so selfish as to not think
of the children who need to concentrate on
their studies, sleeping infants, the sick
etc? It is simply impossible to have a
conversation without having to speak in
It could be understood if the
loudspeakers are used on special occasions
such as katina, poya days,
etc. But as it is, the residents have to put
up with this nuisance on a daily basis.
It would be a relief to be rid of these
noise-polluting instruments. Besides, a
radio is a part of almost every household;
and any person wishing to listen to
pirith as in the past, can continue to
listen to the radio within the walls of ones
own premises without causing any hazard to
My initial complaint to the police about
our neighbouring temple seems to have fallen
on deaf ears. Wouldn’t it be appropriate to
remove all the loudspeakers from religious
places and issue permits for use only on
Lessons to be
learnt in Sri Lankan politics
Politics has made Sri Lanka the laughing
stock of the world. Honesty, patriotism and
dignity seem to be words banned in Sri
I remember my late father-in-law who
contested the general elections in
1960/1965/1970 and the 1975 by-election
representing Mulkirigala electorate on the
UNP ticket and finally won in 1977. In
1983 he was not given nomination by the UNP
for no fault of his.
After his nomination was rejected he used
public transport to return home and
continued to use public transport until his
demise. Adding insult to injury he was
remanded simply for supporting the SLFP
candidate in that election. He supported the
SLFP candidate because he was not given
nomination from the UNP, a party for which
he sacrificed his whole life. But the
person who was nominated from the UNP was a
total stranger — not even a member of a
The UNP has to learn hard lessons if it
needs to come back to power. The UNP must
not forget the people who have been with it
even in defeat. They are the true UNPers.
They do not join the governing party for
greed of power.
Today the true UNPers are still with the
UNP while those who crossed over to the UNP
for personal gain, and opportunists, elected
by the UNP voters have joined the government
simply for perks and positions.
I hope the leadership of the UNP will
accept this fact and be cautious in giving
nominations for future elections.
Son-in-law of a former UNP MP for
Rule the umpires
Umpires play hell once in a way
ruining the image of a country, robbing
records held by players and ICC member
When we were in a winning position in the
second test, within reach of the target set
by the Aussies, umpire Rudi helped the white
skinned players by giving a wrong decision.
Even in the first test Sanath had to leave
the ground due to poor umpiring.
What is the use of having a third umpire
and a match adjudicator? If a
doubtful decision is given the third umpire
should correct it immediately and recall the
batsman, or if the third umpire also is
ignorant the match adjudicator must step in
to correct the situation.
If players are fined, the umpires must
also be subjected to removal, fines etc. for
wrong decisions. SLC should ask ICC to
change the existing rules and insist that
all umpires should seek the assistance of
the third umpire to get a correct decision.
When athletes and tennis players are
tested for the use of drugs and are found
guilty their medals are withdrawn even after
many years. Marion Jones is a case in point.
We should play cricket, not just obey the
umpire if he is deaf or blind. Sanga is a
gentleman who plays good cricket. He did not
even discuss the issue, but said, "it’s all
over." That is the quality of Asians.
Rudy robbed Sanga’s double century and
helped the Aussies to win the second test.
Sanath was also a victim — if not, he would
have added more runs enabling the team to
avoid an innings defeat.
This is not cricket Rudi! Once Ian Botham
said that they play against 13 in Pakistan.
In Australia we had to play against 12.
A cowardly act
I wish to join the thousands who
condemned the recent dastardly arson attack
on your newspaper press thereby attempting
to prevent the duty you so well perform by
the people, and also causing a huge
financial loss, inter alia.
I being one of the thousands of your
loyal and ardent readership was relieved to
see The Sunday Leader smiling in the
newstands last Sunday nevertheless!
Although all know that this cowardly act
is the result of The Sunday Leader’s
fearless pursuit of bringing the truth to
the doorstep of the people the perpetrators
fail to realise that the light shone by the
Leader group cannot be diminished by
such cowardly acts! I know this for
sure because the Leader group has
survived many such previous attacks and
The light of the Leader continued
to shine, and shine did it more brightly!
The Sunday Leader, after such
ill-intended ventures, commenced a mid week
newspaper The Morning Leader and I
hope very soon a daily will be born.
The glory lies not in never falling; but
in rising after every fall! Likewise,
The Sunday Leader has grown stronger
after all attacks and threats against it,
and I have no doubt whatsoever, that The
Sunday Leader will grow much stronger in
the days to come and the light shone by it
will not only brighten up the dark skies of
media freedom in Sri Lanka, but also will be
the leading light of the freedom
of expression in Sri Lanka.
My best wishes for a prosperous future.
A loyal reader
Keep up the good
It is with deep sorrow that I write this
on hearing the immoral action of setting
The Sunday Leader press in Ratmalana on
fire. I have had relatively very little
experience on contemporary Sri Lanka. But
the few months I spent in Sri Lanka earlier
this year revealed that our society has
degenerated so rapidly and I was wondering
whatever happened to the moral fibre of our
State sponsored terrorism against
ordinary members of the public happens daily
with absolute impunity. There is no law and
order on our roads and the general public is
treated by the state organisations with
Your journal as well as a few others show
courage in informing the public about what
goes on in spite of these barbaric actions.
Irrespective of whether this act was state
sponsored or not, please keep up the good
Any person with some common sense can
guess whose work this is.
With best wishes to The Sunday Leader.
Don B. Wijetunge, MB, FRCS
Hats off to the
I salute the editor and staff of
Leader Publications on their courageous
stance for truth, justice and freedom. May
God grant you all and your families
protection and strength to survive the
satanic forces of this corrupt regime.
Rev. S. J. Emmanuel
Lady Elina Jayewardene
Memoirs of a just,
caring and endearing personality
The demise of Lady Elina Jayewardene (nee
Rupasinghe) occurred on November 17 – barely
a month prior to the celebration of her 95th
birthday. I must emphasise that I never
failed to observe September 17 and December
15 each year — the dates on which late
President and Lady Jayewardene celebrated
their birthdays — to meet and greet them.
I do not wish to elaborate on the late
President Jayewardene and his unmatched
success academically, professionally and
politically. To say that Lady Jayewardene
was the unseen strength behind his
incredible success is certainly not an over
assessment. However, she shunned the
political and public limelight and kept as
low a profile as she possibly could —
fulfilling her duties as wife and being a
loving and devoted mother to her only child
It is with a deep sense of nostalgia that
I reflect upon the life of Lady Jayewardene
through my association with her son, Ravi,
which began when I was 10 years old.
Ravi and I received our education at
Royal College, Colombo. I travelled daily
with Ravi to school and back in his car. Our
friendship, which blossomed throughout the
entirety of our academic careers, brought
about and ensured a very close relationship
between the two families, and it is with a
deep sense of nostalgia that I reflect upon
her life and the impression her gracious
personality left on me.
Elina Jayewardene carried the mantle of
‘First Lady’ of our nation with distinction,
and decorum and aplomb. She was an extremely
charismatic and modest person who despite
her gentle manner possessed a strong
Lady Jayewardene embarked on and was the
founder and driving force of the ‘Seva
Vanitha Movement’ and, as a result, the
beneficiaries from this organisation are
No doubt, the memory of this magnanimous
deed will linger in the hearts of many Sri
Lankans who have derived benefits from this
worthy endeavour. Absolute honesty and
worshipful ideals are extremely rare,
however much you search.
But, Lady Jayewardene stuck to her
ideals, set high standards and believed in
truth, and thereby achieved her goal in
serving the needy. Sri Lanka has lost one of
her illustrious daughters — a modest,
amiable, yet humble, lady.
As a human being Lady Jayewardene rates
high as a woman of honour, integrity and
discipline. Her greatest attribute was the
love and respect she had for all people, be
they rich or poor, adult or child. She
impressed me as a person with immense
Evidence of her popularity and deep
affection was portrayed by many and this was
clearly and amply displayed by the vast
gathering both at ‘Braemar’ and those who
assembled at the cemetery to pay their
respects and bid her goodbye.
To re-iterate once again I must confess
that the physical sensation that brings
about the pain of losing a caring, endearing
and gracious person becomes more manageable
with the advent of time, but it never leaves
all together which, in effect, is an
experience difficult to come to terms with.
Her light may be extinguished but her
spirit will live on in her family members —
they are special people who will continue to
make her proud.
A thought that crossed my mind was
probably the same thought which struck most,
if not all, who received the sad news of her
demise and graced the funeral ceremony, viz.
the awesome reality that Lady Elina
Jayewardene had passed from our midst into
the realms of glory.
Words could never describe Lady
Jayewardene adequately, however much I may
try. She was a colossus in her time. I will
miss her, but never forget her, as she will
always have a very special place in my
In conclusion, I wish to add that Lady
Elina Jayewardene was without doubt one of a
kind — a lady in every sense of the word.
God Bless her !