Proving SL’s critics wrong
Languages and Social Integration Ministry whose responsibility
it is to help in the all-important task of nation-building is
foremost among government institutions in implementing the
principal recommendations of the LLRC report and on this it
needs to be commended. The minister concerned, Vasudeva
Nanayakkara, is on record that his ministry is making steady
progress on this front and our ardent wish is that other state
organizations and entities too would follow suit.
The country is facing one of its most exacting challenges in
the foreign policy sphere in decades in the form of a mainly
Western-sponsored resolution on what are described as
accountability issues and while it is the duty of every
right-thinking person to back Sri Lanka in this crucial hour by
rallying round the national banner, we believe that it would be
in order to remind our citizenry that these challenging times
are also a blessing in disguise of a kind.
For one thing, these times would act as a catalyst in
bringing the country together as a single, united people.
Accordingly, every citizen with deep concern for Sri Lanka is
obliged to clearly demonstrate his or her loyalty to the country
today. Next, these times need to be seen as an acid test of the
ability of the state and the public to keep the reconciliation
process going steadily. The country is challenged into changing
course and proving that it will rejuvenate itself on new and
historic humanistic foundations. It is for these reasons that
one must regard the current foreign affairs challenges as
constituting a blessing in disguise.
If the example set by the National Languages and Social
Integration Ministry is anything to go by, then, the challenges
of the present could be met provided the will to succeed exists.
If progress in the nation-building effort has been slow over the
decades, it is because this all-important will has been absent.
However, we could not delay these tasks any longer. The moment
must be seized by us as a people and we must prove beyond all
doubt that we could be magnanimous towards each other and be
amply accommodating of each other, regardless of petty, man-made
differences. This is nation-building in its essentials.
Accordingly, the more practicable LLRC recommendations must
now be implemented if the critics of this country are to be
proved wrong. If the LLRC report is our principal defense
against those nebulous allegations which are being leveled
against this country, then the prescriptions for the betterment
of this country which are contained in this report must be
steadily and systematically implemented.
In this connection, it must be also said that while a massive
public display of popular support for Sri Lanka is perfectly in
order and is, in fact, needed, such gestures of solidarity
should not be allowed to degenerate into the xenophobic jingoism
and rabid communalism, noticeable in some local sections, which,
in the past, have been instrumental in tearing this country
apart. The test of all would be to be loyal to Sri Lanka while
not succumbing to the pull of narrow, sectional loyalties. If
any sections do crumble under the appeal of narrow, sectional
loyalties, they would be only proving the critics of this
Therefore, no time should be lost in rejuvenating this
country along humanistic lines. In fact, this is one of the
principal messages of the LLRC and is, in fact, part of our
national heritage, because humanism is the bedrock of all the
major religions practised in this country. That is, humanity is
our permanent religious and cultural heritage. Now is the time
to make judicious use of this ancient, timeless heritage.
None can prevail on us to do what needs to be done at the
present moment. The solution to our issues has to be a
home-grown one that draws on the expertise available in our
country. That is, a home-grown, indigenous-based and independent
solution. But we need to add that this solution must be
characterized by humanity and equity.