It is appreciated that the above drama festival for children is being
conducted annually. However, it is very much regretted to note that it
is being conducted only in Sinhala. This has created a heavy impact on
children of other communities, who are unable to show their talents and
succeed in life.
Having come to know that 1st stage of the drama festival has already
taken place, we the parents and well-wishers wish to inform you that at
least from this year onwards you must take necessary steps to stage
dramas in one stage of all communities. Then only the children will get
to know the culture of the other communities as well. Hope and trust you
will have the 1st stage early and have the price awarding ceremony
together and create a friendly and understanding atmosphere among the
children irrespective of racial, religious etc.
We fervently hope that both Sinhala and Tamil children should appear
together on stage and prove harmony. Today's youngsters are tomorrow's
heroes. Hence we request your good office to consider our request to
include some Tamil dramas to the Children Drama Festival 2010 and
cultivate Unity among children.
It was a great joy, but not without tears in my eyes that I spoke to
Ajahn Brahmavamso last Friday. Maybe it was my Kusala Karma that gave me
this great opportunity. I could only say "thank you for all the sermons
I had listened in the past six years or so". It was from CDs presented
to me by my son- in-law. It really helped me in this hard journey of
Our country tortured by the evils of war for the past 30 years now
needs good advises and religious leaders. It has left the country
crippled, and many people corrupt and sinful during these years.
We do have good religious sermons in Sri Lanka too, specially on TV
channels and I thank the organizers for it.
Ajahn Brahmavamso expounds the dhamma, with interesting stories, some
of them his own, and others from the dhamma but with great humour, which
makes it interesting to the listener.
All his sermons overflow with loving kindness, much needed in our
rather wicked society today.
Hundreds from all nationalities flock to this Buddhist center hall in
Perth every Friday, from far away in spite of the biting cold some days.
May the blessings of the Triple Gem protect him, and may we have good
Karma to listen to more of his talks in the future.
I wish to share the following I read and believe is ideally suited to
accommodate into our nation's psyche in the aftermath of war against
As citizens, we are affected by a variety of issues at the local,
district and national levels depending on the impact of these issues on
our daily lives and the lives of others, different roles and
responsibilities may be required of us.
Some attempt to meet this challenge - to make the difference - by
choosing the route of participating in community organizations' effort
to help those in need in variety of ways. Others make financial
contributions to support causes of interest and concern to them.
But many resist any kind of responsibility. They find it easier
instead to look to others to be the messiah to solve all the world's
problems. Rather than take any active role they feel no responsibility
for making clear choices about the quality of their citizenship. They
may even claim they are doing no harm to society, but the saying, if you
are not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem, is very
I appreciate information contained in the article of former High
Court Judge W. T. A. Leslie Fernando (September 23, 2009). As a
beneficiary of Central School system, started by late Dr. Kannangara, I
wish to clarify a few facts.
It is stated in the article that Dr. Kannangara was elected to the
Legislative Council in 1924 to represent Galle district. I wish to
explain the correct position. On April 13, 1923, O. C. Tillekeratne of
Bentara Walawwa, a kinsman of Dr. Kannangara, the member of the
Legislative Council for Southern Province, met with a fatal train
accident and died. Dr. Kannangara contested the vacant seat on May 23,
1923 and was elected by a majority of 1,854 votes. His opponent David de
Silva polled only 115 votes.
When reference is made to Central Schools, it is frequently reported
that opening up of Central Schools is a result of free education scheme.
The situation is different. Establishment of Central Schools was Dr.
Kannangara's own project. He started these schools, one in each of the
50 electorates of the State Council. He encountered lot of opposition at
the start. Page 1875 of August 31, 1944 of the State Council Debates
explains the position as follows:
"Kannangara: I am going to explain the position. These schools were
started only about three and half years ago. It was my own scheme. I
thought that this is the only way in which education could be spread far
and wide, but it involved a revision of school fees. The Financial
Secretary protested against this. I have numerous protests from the
Financial Secretary; and I do not think he has given them up as regards
this scheme. I am not blaming him, but I am simply telling you the
Everybody seemed to condemn this measure, and asked, "What is this
nonsense that you are starting?" So I thought I would start this
nonsense on myself. I tried this an experiment at Matugama in my own
constituency. Well, sir, somehow or other the school is getting on, and
what is more, the Member for Matale in his Budget speech about two years
ago also wanted a school of the same stamp established at Matale."
It is quite clear that in 50 seats of the State Council, 50 Central
Schools were established by Dr. Kannangara when he was Education
Minister. During the second part of the last Century, Central Schools
produced large number of talented youth who were sensitive to the
feelings of the ordinary people. They hold high office in every field
including the Legislature, Universities etc. Products of Central Schools
have to be ever grateful to Dr. Kannangara. The most deserving honour
the country can offer to this great patriot is to name these 50 Central
School as 'Kannangara Madhya Vidyalaya' and suffix with the name of the
The recommendations of the Special Committee on Education, chaired by
Dr. Kannangara on medium of instruction are as follows:
Para 356 - Sessional Paper xxiv of 1943
(7) The medium of instructions in the primary school shall be the
mother tongue, but English shall be a compulsory second language.
(8) The medium of instruction in the lower department of the
post-primary school may be either the mother tongue or bilingual.
(9) The medium of instruction in the higher department of the
post-primary school may be English, Sinhalese, Tamil or bilingual."
It is regrettable to note that these recommendations were not
properly implemented. Neglect of English closed the golden gate for
From time to time there are news items of various celebrities or
distinguished members of the public being awarded an assorted type of
awards, honours, trophies etc. by various organizations.
This is being done no doubt to reward them for meritorious services
to the country.
However I do remember that the Government also rewards various
persons for their distinguished services by giving awards like
Kalasuriya, Deshabandu, Deshamanya etc. but apparently this has been
forgotten by the authorities due to their being pre-occupied by the LTTE
war and other issues. I hope they will start this healthy practice once