Tag Archives: Sirimavo Bandaranaike

Sri Lanka’s Ban Of Facebook, Temporary Be It, Was Unbecoming & OMINOUS!

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE and glance at here. From “Reuters”. Google “Sri Lanka Facebook” for more.


Sri Lanka needs to be BETTER than this.

Sri Lanka, for all of its convulsions for the last 70-years, is meant to be PROUD democracy.

It is NOT China, Egypt or some tinpot African dictatorship. I was disappointed to read about this. I though ‘we’ (though I gave up my Sri Lanka citizenship 35-years ago) had put media censorship behind. [More on that in a second.]

The ban on Facebook was during the latest spate of violence against the Muslims. The Government, rightly or wrongly, believed that Facebook posts were inciting the troubles. They had declared a 10-day State of Emergency, so everything, including closing down Social Media was game.

Ceylon/Sri Lanka and ‘State of Emergency’. I remember them well though my life there, 1953 – 1967 was during a relatively peaceful time!

Following the wildly and widely successful ‘Schools Takeover‘ [i.e., forced nationalization] program, Prime Minister (Aunty) Sirimavo Bandaranaike and her then favored henchman, my adoptive father, mounted a ‘Newspaper Nationalization’ program. My Adoptive Father, a conflicted fish as I came to learn, had a strong socialistic streak. He was all in favor. I remember though that unlike with the ‘Schools Takeover’ (where they was no dissent within the circles we moved), he got got a bit of pushback from friends and family. He used to argue vehemently that we needed it for the good of the country. Thankfully that program never came to be. I think Aunty B. ceased to be P.M.

So, let’s not try and revisit past ghosts.

I worry that this is the INCREASING Chinese influence on Sri Lanka.

If I was still Sri Lankan I would do whatever I could to make sure this didn’t happen again.


Last Google Doodles:
Check Category ‘Sri Lanka’.


by Anura Guruge


In Sri Lanka Women May Not Be Allowed To Buy Alcohol, But They Can — And Have Been — President Or Prime Minister.

by Anura Guruge


Click image to access ABC News original.


Click to access the UK “Daily Mail” original.



I did not know about this ban — or its reinstatement — until a friend e-mailed me a link Monday morning. It was all news to I. I never knew that there was such a ban — primarily because I have never tried to buy alcohol in Sri Lanka.

Anywho … anybody who thinks that this ban reflects badly on Sri Lanka’s treatment of women obviously is not familiar with what makes Sri Lanka truly GREAT.

The World’s first democratically elected female Head of State (i.e., Prime Minister)
— in 1960. My aunty Bandaranaike.

Got that. FIRST female Prime Minister in the World.

We have also had a female President.

I am sure Hillary Clinton would have gladly forgone her right to buy alcohol if she could have been President. {Smile}

Something else to consider. This ban is said to have been instituted in 1979 — by Sri Lanka’s increasingly rabid Buddhists.

OK. Since then there have been two female Heads of State (albeit mother and daughter). They obviously did not see this as a major women’s issue — i.e., being precluded from buying alcohol.

Yes, Sri Lankans are funny — real funny — about everything to do with alcohol.

It is a Buddhist thing — though all that Buddhism asks from you is that you TRY and refrain from partaking in intoxicating substances.

Growing up in Ceylon (the prior name of Sri Lanka) in the 1950s and 1960s, alcohol was a taboo subject among middle- and upper-class Sinhala buddhists (such as my adoptive family).

My adoptive parents (and grandparents) were genuine teetotalers. Alcohol was never served at our house — even when my adoptive father was an Ambassador in Paris (France) and Washington D.C. My parents really frowned upon those that drank and had a hard time coming to terms that I was basically a hopeless wino.

Some of my uncles drank — and we all knew of their penchant for drink. But, they drank in private! It was a crazy society.

Yes, women not being allowed to serve or make alcohol is a problem.

But, not being able to buy alcohol should not really be a problem. For all of our faults, Sri Lankan males tend to be a gallant, chivalrous and RANDY bunch of buggers. We would never dream of letting a female buy a drink. We would always get them one. {Smile}

So …

Not good, BUT not the end of the world.

Yes, Sri Lankan Buddhists are a dangerous bunch. I have said that before.

But, do NOT extrapolate this to mean that women are downtrodden in Sri Lanka.

Just remember. Just remember: Sirimavo Bandaranaike — the World’s first female prime minister.


Related posts:
Search ‘Queen’.


by Anura Guruge