House remembers late colleagues Ratna Deshapriya and W.I. Fernando
Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa presided when Parliament met at 1.00 p.m
yesterday. After the presentation of papers and oral questions, the
House took up the condolence votes on ex-MPs late Ratna Deshapirya
Senanayake and late W.I. Fernando.
Leader of the House, Irrigation and Water Resources Management
Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva: "I present the condolence motion of
ex-MP late Ratna Deshapriya Senanayake. He was born on September
He contested the General Elections to elect members for the first
Parliament in 1947 from the Communist Party for the Gampaha seat. But he
could not win the election. He served as a journalist, Sub Editor and
News editor in the Lankadeepa newspaper. His column which was titled
"Wanahi' was very popular among the readers. He was the first president
of the Sri Lanka Journalists' Association.
He was the Chairman of the CWE during the period 1960-65. He held
several ministerial and deputy ministerial portfolios. He also served as
a Supreme Court lawyer. He died on January 21, 2012 at the ripe age of
Deshapriya entered Parliament during the 1970 General Elections,
representing the Minneriya electoral seat from the SLFP.
During former President Chandrika Bandaranaike's tenure, he was
offered the position of Sri Lanka's Ambassador to Indonesia and the
Philippines and served in those diplomatic positions. He was also the
author of the book titled "Inside Story of Tibet".
'He provided his services for the development of agriculture'
John Amaratunga (UNP): Late Ratna Deshapriya Senanayake was a former
minister who represented the Minneriya seat. He contributed for the
development of the country through politics. He was a senior Journalist
as well as a senior counsel in his profession. He provided his services
to develop agriculture in Minneriya.
Urban Affairs Senior Minister A.H.M. Fowzie: He was a revolutionist
and honest politician. He proved himself as a people's leader. He was
very prudent and was a good listener.
Deputy Chairman of Committees Chandrakumar Murugesu takes the chair
Petroleum Industries Deputy Minister Sarana Gunawardena: Late ex-MP
Ratna Deshapriya was a dedicated SLFPer. He contested the 1960 General
Elections as a rival of then late Prime Minister Dudley Senanayake. He
was defeated by about 1,700 votes, but he was a good competitor for the
then Prime Minister. He was a very humble and simple human being.
Foreign Employment and Welfare Minister Dilan Perera: I first got to
know late ex-MP Ratne Deshapriya through the China-Lanka Friendship
Association. My parents and I were members of it during that time, he
was the President of the Association. Late Deshapriya made a huge
contribution behind the scene to get a grant offered by China to
construct the BMICH during the late Sirimavo Bandaranaike's regime.
Kamala Ranatunga (UPFA): Late ex-MP Deshapriya Senanayake did not
earn money from politics, but instead he earned the goodwill of the
He was never carried away by the positions he held. He was a talented
speaker as well as a lawyer.
A.H.M. Azwer (UPFA): The House has seen very colourful personalities
who represented the people. Late Ratne Deshapriya Senanayake added more
colour and dignity to this House. He was a good debater and suave in
debating in this House.
Karu Jayasuriya (UNP): Late Senanayake was an outstanding politician
and a journalist.
He closely mingled with the people and was a people's friendly
leader. He led a very simple life and had noble qualities. He was a
great friend of China.
Rural Affairs Senior Minister Athauda Seneviratne: Late Senanayake
started his political career from the Communist Party. He had a vast
knowledge about Communism and Marxism. He was also a close friend of
China. He was a very talented and popular debator.
Deputy Chairman of Committees Chandrakumar Murugesu (In Chair): I
also join with the expressions of condolence of both sides of the House
and order the Secretary General of Parliament to send copies of the
motion to the family members of ex-MP late Ratna Deshapriya Senanayake.
A genuine doctor who valued culture and traditions.
Leader of the House and Irrigation and Water Resources Management
Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva: I present the condolence motions of
Aryurveda expert and ex-MP late W.I. Fernando. He was born on October
25,1917 and studied indigenous medicine very deeply and had a thorough
knowledge of Aryurveda medicine. He served as a specialist Aryurveda
Doctor for over 70 years and was an eye specialist too. He was very
popular among the public. He was a genuine Sinhala doctor and valued
local culture and traditions.
He resigned in 1993 after serving 4 years and 7 months as an MP
bestowing his parliamentary seat to late ex-MP Anura Bandaranaike. He
provided yeoman service for the revival of indigenous medicine. He
earned many accolades for his dedicated service.
He passed away on May 15, 2012 at the age of 95 years. He also served
as the President of Colombo-Maradana Sri Lanka Medical General Assembly
from 1962 to 2011.
He was also appointed President of the All-Island Lanka Aryurveda
Medical Federation in 1976 and held the position until 1994.
His attire was always the sarong, shirt and coat
Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe: I was the Leader of the House
when W.I. Fernando first joined Parliament as a member. Later, we had to
discuss the attire of his and of the male MPs. His attire was a sarong,
the shirt and coat.
He was a doctor of indigenous medicine. During the regime of J R
Jayewardene, he paid much attention on indigenous medicine. Later on,
during the Premadasa regime, much attention was paid on indigenous
medicines. W. I. Fernando was appointed as a member from the National
List. He had a good knowledge of indigenous medicine, Sinhala and the
English languages as well. He acted as the President's advisor as well.
Sriyani Wijewickrama takes the Chair.
Indigenous Medicine Minister Salinda Dissanayake: He was a great
physician in indigenous medicine. He was a well built person and was
very eloquent in the language. He first entered Parliament in 1989, but
always showed the great qualities of an indigenous doctor. He was
awarded with many honorary titles for the services he rendered to
indigenous medicine. He resigned his seat to give way to late Anura
Bandaranaike to enter Parliament. He made this sacrifice at a moment
when he lacked just only 3 months to be entitled for a pension.
John Amarathunga (UNP): Late President R Premadasa who knew the
popularity and knowledge of indigenous medicine, appointed him a member
from the National List. He treated Sri Lankan as well as foreign
patients. He was a witty person. His death is an irreparable loss to our
Karu Jayasuriya (UNP): He was one of the greatest indigenous medicine
physicians. He was a lecturer at the Rajagiriya Ayurvedic Vidyalaya and
later became its minister.
Late President Premadasa informed us on several occasions of his
skills in the field of indigenous medicine. He was a devout Buddhist. He
led an exemplary family life and was the father of 9 children.
Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody takes the Chair.
He never forgot his traditional manners
Ranjith Madduma Bandara (UNP): I am able to recollect that when he
was appointed a member, he took his seat in Parliament with great
dignity. Though he held many positions and was married to an English
teacher, he never forgot his traditional manners and also his attire.
He used his seat to develop indigenous medicine
A H M Azwer (UPFA): When W I Fernando was appointed a member of
Parliament, he said that he would never give up treating patients
because of his seat in Parliament. He said that he would not change his
sarong, shirt and coat as well. He was good at his language. He said
that he would use his seat for the development of indigenous medicine.
He had to cut his Parliamentary journey short in order to pave way for
late Anura Bandaranaike.
He was fondly referred to as the Konda Veda
Gayantha Karunathilake (UNP): The late W.I. Fernando was a rare
person who represented this House. He hailed from a family with an
aryurvedic background. He became popular due to his hair style. He was
referred to as the 'Konda Veda' by the people. He had a thorough
knowledge of indigenous medicine and the Sinhala language.
Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody in Chair: I also join with the
sentiments expressed by both sides of the House and direct the Secretary
General of Parliament to send the copies of this motion to the family
members of late ex-MP W. I. Fernando.
The House was adjourned until 1 p.m today.
UNP MP barred from debating adjournment motion
Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody yesterday refused permission to
debate the adjournment motion which was to be moved by UNP MP Ranjith
Maddumabandara in Parliament.
The Deputy Speaker announced this decision when the Leader of the
House and Irrigation and Water Resources Management Minister Nimal
Siripala de Silva, raised a point of order stating that almost all
issues raised in this motion had been discussed and clarified on
He noted that the Finance and Planning Deputy Minister Geethanjana
Gunawardena made a detailed response with regard to the increase of
import taxes on vehicles in the House on Tuesday.
International Monetary Cooperation Senior Minister Dr Sarath
Amunugama also stated that there was no point in repeating the same
facts that were discussed the previous day.
Considering these facts, the Deputy Speaker asked UNP MP
Maddumabandara to amend the motion excluding the points already
discussed and present it on another date for debate.
Speaker requests for a tour of Norochcholai by MPs
Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa yesterday instructed Power and Energy
Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka in Parliament, to arrange a tour so
that all MPs could visit the Norochcholai power plant as it was a new
The Speaker made this observation, following the debate on the
statement by Minister Ranawaka that he felt sorry for the lack of
knowledge of MP Ravi Karunanayake in connection with the coal power
plant in Puttalam. The minister made this observation while responding
to a question raised by MP Ravi Karunanayake. Minister Ranawaka further
stated that the only country that supplied electricity round the clock
in the region was Sri Lanka. He added that all other countries in the
region curtailed the electricity supply for a few hours on a daily
He also said that the first hydro power plant in Sri Lanka took 30
years to generate electricity from its inception. He added that it was
expected to double the power generation in the Norochcholai power plant
after rectifying technical faults.