I light a Candle for you Sri Lanka

I light a candle for you Sri Lanka, I light a candle for you,

That your suffering may soon end.

I light a candle for you … no I light four 

For the lives that fell yesterday;

fell that you may arise out of this darkness – brought on by leaders who betrayed you.

Four felled by live ammunition – not rubber bullets, the international norm to quell voices raised too loud against oppressive governments. 

I light a candle for their four families … for whom they fought to put food on the table, that their sons may not have been murdered in vain. 

I light a candle for you Sri Lanka,  for everyone of those protesting at Galle Face.

May their light burn bright showing us a way out of the darkness;

May their lights never be dimmed by fear or fatigue, 

Or be snuffed out by winds of power as these four were.

I light a candle for all those joining them around the country .. indeed around  the world, making their voices heard,   

crying out for salvation for YOU  Sri Lanka, our beloved mother land.

I light a candle for you Sri Lanka; 6.2 million candles I light now

With the hope that all those (6.2m) who were duped into darkness and drew you down to these depths 

Will join the cry to draw you back into the light.

359 candles too are burning for you Sri Lanka; Their light has never died or dimmed.

Three long years they’ve burned bright; Waiting for justice to be served.

I light a candle in prayer dear martyrs of the Easter bombings,

in prayer that your vigil is over, and that you can soon rest in peace with your Creator. 

I pray that ‘soon’ is now.

That NOW is the hour Sri Lanka; That NOW is the time.

Mr President – Your time has come; Your hour is here.

It can go down in history as your finest hour!

Walk out of the dark corridors of power you’ve buried yourself in. 

Walk out into the light of a new day for a new Sri Lanka with a new leader. 

Walk out Mr President. 

Walk out now.

Save your soul. 

Save this nation.

These thoughts were written the day after the first protest at the President’s personal residence in Mirihana pn 31st March, 2022.

The youth of the nation continued their peaceful protest that has become a beacon to the world of how to change things peacefully. The President did not go home as requested. He greedily and unrelentingly held on to power. The peaceful protest ‘Aragala’ continued with a single slogan #GoHomeGota. The brilliance, the humour, the unparalled organisation and setting up of a ‘village’ ‘Gotagogama at the site of the protests is a story for the history books as each milestone was reached.

9th May the first of the Rajapaksa brothers – Basil, Finance Minister handed his resignation. 9th June, other brother, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa stepped down after inciting mayhem and violence against the protesters. 9th July, the President fled into hiding and the protesters -the Aragala, took over his official residence, the Presidential Secretariat and the Prime Minister’s official residence. Two days later the President secretly crept out of the country and submitted his resignation via mail from overseas.

All honour and kudos to the ‘Aragala’ (peaceful protesters) who led the way with their single slogan #GoHomeGota . The nation owes them a debt of gratitude that is hard to quantify or repay.

Protests outside the Presidents private Residence 31st March 2022

Crying for Justice

I penned the reflection SRI  LANKA I CRY FOR YOU on this blog in April 2019 just after the Easter carnage in my land.  Six bombs went off simultaneously at 6 different locations at 8.35 am on Easter Sunday 2019  – 2 in national Catholic Shrines,  1 in Zion Church, 2 in leading five star hotels and one in a guest house. 
In fact, the cry I referred to in my reflection penned in the first few days, turned to weeping when we found out that the government had received prior notice of the impending attacks,  and for reasons best known to them and for  political expediency, failed to protect our people.
The then President in fact, ‘conveniently’ left the country on ‘holiday’ two days before the attack.  Two days after the attack, the present President staked his claim to lead the country and contested the next elections. They both belong to the same political party. 
Questions abound … why did not the Government and the forces respond with appropriate action on the intelligence received from the Indian and US Intelligence services, which even named Zahran (who died in the attack) as the leader of the suicide mission?   
Despite report after report of Presidential committees and commissions interviewing hundreds of persons and ‘naming names’  of those whose negligence – wilful, intended or otherwise – resulted in the murder of 259 persons and injury to over 500,   NO JUSTICE HAS AS YET BEEN SERVED. 
POLITICAL EXPEDIENCY!  Divide and rule politics? Fear mongering politics?    
On this day when we commemorate the second anniversary of the Easter carnage in our land,   coincidentally a significant day for the cause of justice with the landmark ruling in George Floyd’s murder when JUSTICE WAS FINALLY SERVED IN THE USA  – Thank you Lord  –   may the cries of the dead, the wounded, the living bereaved, of the Easter Carnage in Sri Lanka be heard by the Risen Christ, and justice be served without delay on those who orchestrated this murder. 
 Sri Lanka I cry for you  =  A reflection on the Easter Bombings

The Devil is at the gate !!

Truth be told, I have been very un-civic minded, totally unconcerned about the forthcoming Presidential elections. Did not want to waste my time.

The UNP that I have traditionally backed has failed to deliver.  They have failed to deliver justice for crimes of previous regime as promised and have created their own.  Ranil is intent on hanging onto power with no compunction whatsoever.

The incumbent President is intent on making the most of his position.  He cannot decide which camp he falls into, or which horse to place his fortunes on. Although elected with much hope, he has turned out to be devious and scheming.  We realise now that he showed his true colours in ousting/betraying the President of his own party.

Rajapaksha himself is always tainted by scandals whilst in and out of office  but continues blithely in his own bubble. Appointed PM in a questionable action Continue reading

Sri Lanka I cry for you

Fairest of lands

Graced with azure skies and  tranquil seas – Rolling hills and green gold – tea.

Leopard, elephant, whales blue – fauna of every hue;

Tainted now with shades of red, where innocent blood was shed.

Pearl of the Indian Ocean, you were just beginning to raise your head

after the civil war drained you of your very life

with bullets and bombs filled with lead

over foolish egoist ethnic strife.

Pearl of the Indian Ocean, you were just beginning to raise your head,

to shine to glow to beckon –

“2019 Destination”  Lonely Planet said.

with rave reviews from far and wide, well deserved oh Land of mine – 

for peace brought out the best of you, paradise isle by God’s design.

And one cruel morn was all it took to dash our hopes and smite our hearts;

8.45 am one sacred Easter morn our very souls were torn apart

For with vicious taint unknown in a land that had seen it all –

Evil exploded heinous bombs for my Christian brothers and neighbours to fall,

In pools of blood, their breaths stilled, or breathing still with loss of limb.

The dead, the wounded intermingled

Along with the blood of the perpetrator.

Sacred space profaned as you entered to test the faith.

Grieving souls, holding on, letting go.

What were your thoughts I wonder as you tousled the head of the little girl?

Humanity unwittingly slipped through your zombie like action

that left destruction in your wake

as you pursued your brainwashed ideology.

A nation mourns for we have lost our children

and once again we have lost

Our innocence, our peace, our hopes and dreams

I cry for you Sri Lanka.   Do you cry with me ??

I pray for you Sri Lanka, that you may overcome;

that you will meet hate with love and understanding

to turn back the tide of evil snatching our youth and our lives;

I pray for you Sri Lanka,  that you will not again

traverse the road we travelled before.

and that our children may continue to dream, and hope, and build.

I pray for you Sri Lanka, that we will “fight to maintain the peace”

if there be such an expression ….

Fight within our inner beings to rise above judgement

of the misguided youth who let zeal overthrow love.

I pray for you Sri Lanka, that you guard your children well

so  they will not stray into the folds of evil ones –

but will choose good over evil, peace over war and love above hate.

If this too be your prayer, will you pray with me Sri Lanka?

Easter carnage in my land

We are shattered, numb with shock.  The spectre of hate and war has raised its head again in my land and on this holy of holy days. Easter Sunday, when thousands were gathered in churches to worship the Risen Lord,  bombs exploded in three of the most visited Shrines – and in three hotels celebrating Easter brunch.

The death toll in the first 3 hours has risen to 180 and hundreds more injured.

The day started off as a day of peace and promise as we had a simple traditional meal Continue reading

Port City Project

I posted my comments on this a few months back.   This cartoon from the newspapers last week captures it well :

Cartoon Port City Project

Land-filling 450 acres of ocean  will sink Sri Lanka in more ways than one.   Fiscal … there is a chance of recovery – generations for the next few centuries can pay the debt.

Destruction of the environment – IRREVERSIBLE.

Port City Development – or Destruction !!

These are some shots I took of the Port City Development – attempts to ‘land fill’ the ocean!

There is a huge controversy behind this project which was done by the Rajapakse regime without any Impact Assessment. Who needs EIA’s when money beckons?

I do not find any beauty in these pictures  – destruction cannot be beautiful !!

For those who may be interested, also adding the ‘vicinity’ of the Port which is in the heart of Colombo as at present.

MMC 027

Galle Road at the end of Galle Face promenade

MMC 035

Filling of the ocean ….

MM 022

The end of the famous Galle Face green.