Opinions have evolved through the suspicion or identification of
arsenic as a cause operating chronically through water giving rise to a
syndrome associated with kidneys of human beings in a specific area of
Curiosity among medical circles has been aroused on this in areas
associated with proximal ends of limbs among the higher age groups of
agricultural community of Rajarata during past two decades.
Clear records seem to be available only among the human species.
Relatively long life span of human beings compared to other animals is
shown as the reason for this providing the way for the cause to operate
for a long period. However similar reports are not recorded even among
elephants who live almost a similar life span to human beings and
exposed to the environment of Rajarata where tank water plays a crucial
role in agricultural and animal life cycles. Therefore it could be
suspected that a hereditary factor is also involved in this issue.
Nevertheless the activists in Veterinary Medical Science must not be
complacent or satisfied about this situation since further vigilance
especially in the field of wild life could bring more light on this
Although this is not a perfect analysis of the problem, this is
written with the intention of drawing attention for contribution from
Veterinary Medical Science aimed at revealing the real truth behind.
With reference to the series of articles and letters on the above
subject appeared in a Sunday newspaper, I wish to add the following and
emphasize the necessity of wider publicity and awareness to the society
and factual statements on the correct usage on the above. It would be
useful if the other newspapers would also publish these statements to
confirm that they too reflect the importance of correct usage of titles!
Doctor, is commonly a title used in Sri Lanka for those Registered in
the Sri Lanka/General Medical Council as a medical practitioner.
Doctorate, however, is awarded for those who earned a PhD or
similar/equivalent qualification usually through Research studies at
recognized universities, listed in Documentation for the purpose.
Furthermore, a Doctor (Honoris Causa), ie a Honorary Doctorate can be
also conferred on a person by a Senate or equivalent Academic body of a
recognized University as mentioned above.
Professor, is usually a cadre position in an Academic department of a
University and is referred to as the Chair. For those promoted on merit,
the position and the title is conferred. In both instances and also for
the position of Associate Professor there is a very rigorous scheme of
assessment in the Sri Lankan Universities. At this stage it should be
made clear that the Doctorate and Associate Professorship/Professorship
are two separate titles and that for Professorship an earned Doctorate
would be of an advantage. After a specified period of service and other
requirements the title senior professor would be conferred by the Senate
of a University. Finally on retirement from the University, the Senate
of the University could confer on its own criterion, the Emeritus
Doctorate is an Academic title/qualification either earned or
honorary and as such, the person could use the title continuously as
specified by the respective university unless for some rare valid reason
according to the regulations of such a university it is withdrawn.
Professor title is somewhat different. While in service at the
respective university the title Senior Professor/Professor/Associate
Professor should be used. On leaving the University service, the
Professor title can be used only if the Senate of the respective
university as per its criteria, has granted the status of emeritus
While the University Grants Commission is very specific on the use of
word “University” for a higher education institute, it would also have
to include the legality of the use of these personal titles when
considering the amendments to the University Act.
Several unprotected, unattractive and oily canals are cutting across
through various congested places in Colombo. These canals are not only
an eye-sore and risk for health but are also dangerous to human life.
Those canals clearly appear to have never been given a thorough cleaning
from the bottom itself. The stagnated waters in many canals are a
breeding heaven for mosquitoes and a hell for those who breathe the
A few days ago, a small child fell into such an unprotected canal at
Maligawatte and drowned. There is a possibility for more casualties.
There may be plans of evacuating the people from such areas in the
future, still the canals need some sort of fencing.
Almost always, background “music” in TV dramas drowns the dialogue.
Music which is part of a show such as an Independence Day marchpast, a
Royal wedding, the Kandy Perahera, viewers want to listen to the band,
the church ceremony, the famous drumming.
They do not want the history, politics and opinions comments without
a pause while the procession or ceremony is going on. There were two
commentators who try to outdo each other drowning the live sounds of the
spectacle, in a TV programme which irritated many viewers.
Is there no one in a position of power sensitive enough to know when
a commentary is acceptable and when the commentators have to be told to
just “shut up”?