I’m a twenty-one year old, currently reading for a special degree at
the University of Peradeniya. From the days I could remember, poetry has
played a large role in my life. I used poetry as an outlet to release my
emotions and views on life.
Coming from a school that is thought of as comparatively unpopular,
my poems were often regarded with disdain. But I never gave it up and
‘The Colour of My Dream’ was a dream come true to me. It provided an
impetus that I have been looking for throughout my life. I was so
thrilled to hear about the anthology that I was speechless for a few
The publishing of ‘The Colour of My Dream’ was like casting a magic
spell over my mirage of publishing a poetry book and making it a
I wish to thank all those who toiled to publish ‘The Colour of My
Dream’. The gratitude I fell cannot be expressed in words. May the good
Lord bless you and your staff.
Vive la Daily News!
Our ancestors who lived along the coast of our island had contrived
ingenious methods to combat sea-erosion which deprived them of portions
of their precious land, annually.
One such was to plant groves of Vetakeiya (Pandunus) bushes along the
vulnerable points of the sea coast - subjected to heavy marine
onslaughts during the periodical monsoons. Another method was to plant
coconut trees, contiguously, on the beach border.
Presently, considerable amounts of money is expended to fill up the
shores at places susceptible to sea-erosion with granite boulders. I
surmise that we could save an appreciable amount of money, if we resort
to these indigenous systems which are very simple in execution.
The other useful venture is to introduce the ‘oil-palm’ to the
coastal areas which may thrive well.
It will check the washing away of the coast, and also be a reliable
source of income to the poor coastal dwellers whose financial resources
I hope the relevant authorities will take note of these suggestions.
How many days does a person need to learn to drive a car or a bus or
any other light or heavy vehicle? Can you get a licence to drive a
vehicle only after 15-20 days of learning in a driving school?
This is my personal experience. My younger daughter who is waiting
for her G.C.E. A/Level results, wanted to get a driving licence for dual
purpose vehicles and all types of cars.
I went to one of my friends and asked for a suitable driving school
where a young girl can learn ‘none other than’ driving as now-a-days are
not suitable for young girls to move free and easy.
My friend recommended a driving school in the town and boasted that
even lady doctors learn from this ‘School’ without any hesitation. I
have enrolled my daughter to ‘the school.’
According to the school, there are no daily lessons and only two days
per week was the pattern they have. My daughter went for only 19
practical lessons of 15-20 minutes each.
After two weeks I went to the school to settle a portion of the
course fees which was Rs. 8,000 including medical certificate charges. I
asked the lady instructor about the subject matters of the course and to
my total astonishment came to know that there are no lessons regarding
the mechanical side.
My daughter followed the so-called ‘course’ and faced for the written
and practical tests as well. Now she is having temporary driving licence
to drive dual-purpose vehicle and all cars.
Two weeks ago I asked my daughter to take the wheel of the family
vehicle and drive along a secondary road.
Within a few minutes I have understood that she doesn’t have
confidence to drive and the very next moment she knocked a pedestrian by
her left side mirror. However he escaped without any injuries.
As an experience driver now I am doing lessons for her. And following
are some shocking facts I have revealed.
* She doesn’t know anything about the functions of the engine; break
system or the electricity circuit of a vehicle. Once she asked me to
teach how to operate wipers.
* She does not know anything about night driving rules.
* The medical test was just a show off and not a proper test.
* Before the practical test, all learners were briefed by the
‘Instructors’ about the ‘behaviourial pattern’ of the examiner and
pre-rehearsed to act accordingly.
* Only isolated roads are used for driving lessons and the stretch,
which will be used for the practical test, is very frequently followed.
* The accelerator of the vehicle used for learning and the practical
test was adjusted to pick up the vehicle even without giving a throttle
* There are no introductions at all about the automatic gear
* The licence holder does not have an idea about left, middle and
right side lanes in a wide city highway.
* The licence holder doesn’t know anything about blind hills, blind
corners, ‘clutch balance’ on a hilly position etc.
Were these facts enough to teach us to see the deadly reality of
thousands of ‘drivers’ driving vehicles daily in our roads? Who is
responsible for deaths and injuries happening to innocent people very
frequently, using public roads?
Why can’t the authorities regularise for these ‘mock’ driving schools
and lay down a valid system for the standards for instructors, driving
lessons and medical tests? Are we heading for a disastrous end?
I am happy to read in the Daily News of November 20 that Minister
Sumedha Jayasena is to initiate action to reactivate the above
punishment, which at present lies dormant.
I consider this to be the only way that killings including the crimes
of today could be reduced, while crimes against children and women could
also be reduced cleansing the society as far as possible.
Unless the above action is implemented, the prevalent situation is
bound to keep on advancing and increasing day after day, causing fear
among the general public.
The non implementation of the above, makes a criminal destroy the
lives of so many innocent people at once or in stages, which should not
be allowed to continue. Accordingly, if human rights applies to
criminals, it should apply to their victims as well.
Hence, it is up to those in authority to ensure the safety of the
people specially the women and children, who cannot defend themselves.
I trust at least now this situation would be activated eradicating
criminals from society, instead of breeding them, which is what we are
doing right now, ensuring their right to live and not the right of their
victims, which is funny, but true.
It is with much frustration that this public complaint is made about
the irregular manner in which garbage is collected by the CMC Kirulapone
At the time of writing this letter, garbage has not been cleared for
more than three weeks on this road which has now become a terrible
health hazard not only for the residents living in this highly
residential area but also to the pedestrians and motorists.
It is a common scene to witness garbage strewn all over the roads by
the stray dogs. Unlike in any other places, Poorwarama Road has become a
paradise for stray dogs mainly because of the non-collection of garbage
for which CMC should squarely take the blame.
The accumulation of garbage has occupied a major portion of this much
narrowed road, which the motorists use as a short cut to Nugegoda town
because of the heavy traffic jam on Highlevel Road during the festive
season and road accidents are imminent.
Unable to bear the stench emanating from the pile of garbage on
either side of the road and this serious health hazard caused, some
residents have collectively proposed to hire the services of a private
garbage collector to clear the garbage menace at their cost and submit
the amount incurred with documentary evidence to the Mayor/Commissioner
for reimbursement as a last resort, if the garbage is not collected
before new year.
The supervisory arm of the garbage collection depot at Kirulopone is
both lethargic and ineffective in that it does not appear to have made
any mode of supervision over their crew in the garbage collection
It demands an immediate reshuffle, if not a suspension from the
duties for the negligence and the dereliction of this basic duty to the
Despite all these willful failures, the garbage collection crew would
definitely call over at our residences with a self-made collection list
in order to collect ‘Santhosam’ for the New Year, as usually happens
presuming that they have discharged their duty to the ratepayers.
This unethical practice must also be stopped by the Mayor as the
residents are at the mercy of these collectors because of their arrogant
and high handed behaviour.
Trust, this letter would awake the CMC authorities from Mayor to the
garbage collector from their deep slumber.