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Bouquet to Beliatta Police Station



A theft of peeled cinnamon ready to dispatched for sale, took place on the night of 30th July, from an estate in Beliatta. The doors of the stores where were forced open. The robbery was reported to the OIC Crimes, Beliatta Police. The police were extremely busy, organizing security for the arrival the Prime Minister, to Beliatta town, the following day, for a meeting.

On my complaint, immediate action was taken by the OIC to send a team of officers to investigate the theft. The team arrived within an hour after carefully and intelligently tracing clues, they concluded that the culprit was not an outsider, but that it was an inside job, done with the knowledge of the watcher of the place and the watcher into custody and questioned along with two others, who gave telephone calls to him that particular evening and were able to solve the matter, with 24 hours.

I will be failing in my duty if I do not place on record the speedy and professional manner in which they acted upon the complaint. All police officers involved in this investigation dealt with the owner of the estate and others who helped the investigation in a friendly manner, and should be appreciated and commended, as well. When there are complaints to the police department for the unruly behaviour of some officers, the behaviour of the Beliatta police officers, in this matter, is a bouquet to the whole police department.

Dr Keerthi Tillekeratne




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Meat eating



Recently, I have made it a point to listen carefully to dhamma discourses by erudite Bhikkus , very specially on the consumption of meat by Buddhists and the Vinaya rules laid down by the Buddha on this subject.

To begin with it was one of the conditions which Devadatta insisted on as mandatory, which the Buddha in his profound infinite knowledge declined as impractical. He even cited instances where previous Buddhas declined such requests. What the Buddha said was that killing was not at all permissible, but the consumption of meat was left to the discretion of the persons concerned whether it be the lay persons or bhikkus.

Some may dislike meat out of sheer sansaric habit while others may relish it, but the Budhdha laid down certain important pre-conditions on the consumption of meat. He prohibited eating the flesh of 10 animal species like the lion, elephant, tiger, leopard, bear, horse, dog, cat, snake and human flesh.

On the other hand he prescribed an important Vinaya rule known as the ‘thri kotika paarishudda‘ which literally means that whoever gives it as an offering or consuming it must make sure that the meat comes from an animal which was not specifically slaughtered for the purpose. Meat bought at a market is without doubt such a meat and may be offered to and received by a Bhikku..

A previous Buddha has even assisted a bhikku through his infinite knowledge by suggesting that he should go begging for alms on a particular street where a lay dayaka was preparing a meal of rice with crab curry. The bhikku concerned was extremely pious but could not attain arahat status as he had an excruciating earache. No sooner he ate the crab meal his acute pain ceased and he concentrated his mind on the dhamma and attained Arahathood then and there. The layman who offered the crab meal noticed the difference in the Bhikku and was thrilled to know that he had given alms to an Arahat.. This hppy thought came back to him at the time of his death, whicn occurred very much later.

His Chuthi chiththa was so powerful that he was born in a splendid divine abode with a huge mansion which had the insignia of a large golden crab at its entrance to remind him and all of the crab meal which was offered to an Arahat.

A lay person once asked the Buddha whether it was correct to recommend the eating of foul smelling flesh like fish for instance and the Buddha has replied that tanha irrsiya krodha maanna dhitti are more foul smelling and should be eschewed completely if you wish to attain the bliss of Nibbana. Looking down on people who consume meat is also a sinful thought which should be avoided , as it does not benefit anyone.

Dear friends, I have tried to tell the English speaking folk who do not have the opportunity to listen to our Sinhala sermons some profound truths. They even do not know that there have been more than 500,000 Buddhas in the past aeons of time and a Mahaa Kalpa is an enomous space in time which only a Budhha can comprehend. The knowledge of a Sammaa Sambuddha is infinite.

Lastly a word of caution to those who obstruct the doing of good deeds. They cannot even receive the Anumodnaa Kusalaya by a mere wish of happiness at a good deed, [sadhu] but will certainly reap the evil rewards of obstructing good deeds, May you all be well and happy.

Cecil de Mel,
Tel. 011 2648565

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Nuclear power for Sri Lanka



There is much talk at the moment of nuclear power generation for the country. The idea is certainly very good. We do need more energy to run the county and the future demand will be far higher than now.

I do understand that nuclear energy is clean, cheap and harmful effects on the environment are minimal. So far the thinking is fine; but it’s important to bear in mind that in case of an accident, the damage will be colossal as we have seen in Chernobyl. What a disaster that was! And in a country much more disciplined than us and with far better technological knowledge and experience. Our knowledge will be wanting.

If all does go well, it will be fine but in case of an accident I hate to think of the kind of disaster we shall have to face.

We have a reputation for using cheap material and also for taking short cuts. Our work ethic too is most wanting. A nuclear power plant needs to be handled with the greatest care. An accident will cause much irreparable damage.

If we do go ahead with the nuclear power proposal, the project (including, most importantly, construction) must be handled by those who have experience and an unblemished record.Nuclear power will be a must some time or other. We must tread the road towards it extremely cautiously.

Padmini Nanayakkara

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It was with the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna government of SWRD Bandaranaike that the nationalization programme started with the Ceylon Transport Board being the first. When this was done it was a stupendous task as those who were handling the takeover had to get all the buses belonging to the bus companies throughout the island along with their properties and the all the workers. Those who were absorbed into this vast public transport organization were known as Section 38 employees.

During the Dudley Senanayake government, Mr. GG Ponnambalam, who was the Minister of Industries, established two important factories, namely, the cement factory in Kankasanturai and the paper factory in Valaichenai. These two factories were later transformed into the Cement Corporation and Paper Corporation respectively. They were functioning well and saved a lot of foreign exchange for the country.

Then we got a gift of the Steel Corporation from the then Soviet Union which functioned from Oruwela. The talk at the time was that Russia had dumped some time expired machinery in establishing this factory. I am not sure how far this is true.

The other semi government ventures that were established were the Sugar Corporation in Pelwatte and Sevanagala, the Milk Board in Narahenpita, the Mineral Sands Corporation in Pulmoddai, the Salt Corporation in Hambantota and the Ports Authority.

The most important and largest semi government Board that was established was Ceylon Transport Board (CTB). This was done by taking over all the bus companies that were operating throughout the island lock stock and barrel which meant not only the buses, but also the properties where the offices and workshops of the bus companies were located and all the work force.

Mr. SWRD Bandaranaike himself handpicked Mr. Vere de Mel, a former Civil Servant, to be the first Chairman and with the help of some Civil Servants such Messrs. M Rajendra and Edwards, they were able to run the affairs of the CTB efficiently. Asia’s biggest passenger transport organization ran so effectively and efficiently from day one that even the owners of the then well-run bus companies such as the South Western Bus Company were flabbergasted as to how it was done with none of the top level administrators having had any experience in running such an enormous venture.

However, with changes of governments at various times the organization was politicized and gradually the rot set in. Now the politicians wanted make the CTB an employment base to get their henchmen in at various levels. Then there were far too many employees and this plus the lethargy of employees resulted in the downfall of the CTB.

The Ports Authority too had to face this same fate. Once when a Member of Parliament from the Eastern Province was assigned the portfolio of Shipping, he filled the Ports with constituents from his electorate and the Port of Colombo had such a large number of employees, the Ports Authority did not make any profit as the salaries and overtime payments were so high.

When the Paddy Marketing Board (PMB) was established with Mr. MJ Perera as its first Chairman, it was doing a good job, buying all the paddy harvested at a price that helped the farmers who toiled hard to get a good harvest. But later on, the PMB was so ineffective it could not buy the paddy that the farmers had harvested at a reasonable price as their overheads were high.

Politicization of these once well organized and functioning Corporations have ruined them, some beyond resurrection.


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