Friday 28 June 2019

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam
28 June 2019


[President Maithripala Sirisena and the government are at loggerheads and the country is like a rudderless boat. Their latest battle is over the 19th Amendment (19A). The President never misses an opportunity to condemn 19A as a curse and call for its abolition together with the 18th Amendment (18A). He seems to be under the impression that it is the only problem the country is beset with. The government is defending 19A to the hilt.] Island article headed ‘Constitutional legerdemain’

The person driven by desire often is not able to envision the other side of enjoying the fruits of that desire. We have political opposition in democracy to offset such manifestations. If the President claims that the 19th Amendment is a curse - one driven by true investment in the Constitution would know to classify such as an expression of current desire or the other side of past desire. Unless the Opposition negates it - the Parliament would experience with passage of time - the other side of desire - which is fear. That is a law of nature for the emotionally driven. If the President’s conclusion is genuine - then one is entitled to conclude that the President is now experiencing ‘fear’ and ‘anxiety’ - which are the other side of his desire when he effectively said ‘yes’ to the 19th Amendment through his election promises to the public who believed in the Presidency.  

It is for these reasons that strong opposition is essential in democracy where one is entitled to the freedom of belief based speech. We are so entitled even if the law of the country does not specifically spell it out but we actually believe in the substance our expressions as if we are both sides. 

Let us say - there was no 19th Amendment to the Constitution. It is highly likely that Mr Sirisena who lacks the will to take responsibility but is rather driven by his master’s voice would have become the medium through whom Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa would have become the next president. If he were able to show economic affluence - the voter driven by immediate  enjoyment would vote for him and also for the other side - fear and anxiety of ‘foreign’ rule. As per my understanding of the system of karma - I take ‘senior’ position with a defaulting debtor. This actually stops the other side manifesting to hurt the person who enjoyed the fruits of my work. Hence when a lending nation - say China -  cannot be repaid and  we become their juniors - we stop the return of karma in the form of the equal other side i.e. - fear of invasion. But if we claim that we are sovereign power - then we have earned the liability of invasion. The duty of an Opposition in Democracy is to prevent such invasions by producing the other side immediately.

When votes are taken without belief in promises expressed - and the vote-taking politician does not become a mental junior  to the voter - the other side returns. Mr Sirisena is confirming this return through attacks on the 19th Amendment - which essentially is the manifestation of the other side of his election promises. If Mr Sirisena had become mentally humble with the Sri Lankan who voted for him on the basis of that promise - he would have stopped the return of the other side of his desire - as fear. Last night this was the basis of our discussion in the beautiful home of a global minded Sri Lankan of Sinhalese origin. Such true sharing invokes the blessings of the system of truth which empowers all those to whom that place is ‘home’. The voter who identifies with the truth - protects Sri Lanka from the return of such other sides of political desires. It is towards this prevention that the 19th Amendment ought to have happened. 

As per the above article:
[UNF MP Dr. Jayampathy Wicrkremaratne thinks the solution to the present crisis is to restore the original version of 19A. The country is in the current mess because the architects of 19A worked according to a hidden agenda; they wanted to strip the President of some of his vital executive powers and transfer them to the PM. As a writer points out in his article on the opposite page, the Supreme Court, in the Nineteenth Amendment determination, said that such action would be inconsistent with Article 3 read with Article 4 of the Constitution. This is exactly what has happened. How 19A in its original form could help bring order out of chaos is anybody’s guess. The executive presidency has been enervated and the position of the Prime Minister strengthened.

If the original 19A is to be adopted, then there will have to be a referendum. It is surprising that the current version of 19A was passed without being approved by the people at a referendum, for the Constitution has undergone fundamental changes.]

The 19th Amendment in terms of Rights of the individual citizen is less powerful than the 1972 Constitution - the history of this which is presented by Wikipedia as follows:

[Executive power was nominally vested in the Sovereign of Ceylon, while legislative powers were vested with a semi-independent parliament. Several perceived weaknesses of the 1947 Soulbury Constitution, however, eventually led to calls for a replacement, particularly from nationalists and the Left, the Lanka Sama Samaja Party's Colvin R. de Silva being a central figure in the movement.

“We seek your mandate to permit the members of Parliament you elect to function simultaneously as a Constituent Assembly to draft, adopt and operate a new Constitution. This Constitution will declare Ceylon to be a free, sovereign and independent Republic pledged to realise the objectives of a socialist democracy; and it will also secure fundamental rights and freedoms to all citizens.”

— Manifesto of the United Front, 1970, 
The United Front, led by Sirimavo Bandaranaike's Sri Lanka Freedom Party, won the 1970 general election with a two-thirds majority. As Prime Minister, Bandaranaike convened a number of committees to draft a new constitution, including a drafting committee chaired by the Minister for Constitutional Affairs, Colvin R. de Silva.]

The resulting document was tabled in parliament, voted on and adopted on 22 May 1972 by a vote of 119 to 16 against.]

There was no referandum facilitated for the People to directly  approve the new constitution which afforded Buddhism foremost place in Sri Lanka. This logically means that non-Buddhists are juniors in Sri Lanka. That deprived Sri Lanka through its constitutional rights - of its validity as a member of any democratic group and therefore support of that group’s natural powers. In wider world - Sri Lanka becomes a junior to  nations that have majority power including through custody of money. The other side happens in our mind automatically if we fail to consolidate the two sides through common belief. The Easter Bombings through which we have learnt of Middle Eastern monies flowing unofficially into Sri Lanka - confirm this kind of autocracy by affluent people living off the work of their seniors  and ancestors  but without paying due respects to those ancestors and  seniors. The senior-junior relationship needs to be completed through respect and/or gratitude - for it to naturally empower the whole. 

Had Equal status to all religions been specified in the Constitution - the Buddhist clergy are less likely to have played the senior’s role in politics. Each time Buddhist politicians drew benefits as per the system of Democracy - they automatically promoted the parallel of Buddhism foremost in other religions where the respective religion’s members are in majority.  Hindus thus showed this power by showing Indians as their seniors and Muslims - by showing Middle Easterners as their seniors. 

It is to stop the wheels of karma continuing in a particular issue at the lower level that we need the equal other side - emotionally - through people who see only their side or reliable laws that facilitate us to intellectually see both sides through a law born out of truth discovered by a group. To the extent the judiciary respects our judicial ancestors - from whom we inherited a certain law - - be it customary law of this land or the law genuinely practiced by rulers from other lands - that law is reliable. To the extent we use the laws without paying our respects -  we open the pathway for the return of the other side at the lower level - which upsets the mind order of both side litigants. 

Mr Sirisena who sought the direction of the Judiciary in relation to his term in the current position, has the duty to refrain from disrespecting the judiciary also through his emotional criticism of the 19th Amendment. The transfer of Executive power from the President who enjoys immunity from prosecution, to the Prime Minister who could be dismissed by no confidence motion - in Parliament - has made the Constitution more democratic. The parallel of that in terms of religion would be to make Buddhism of equal status to other religions - and thus stop the return of the other side by foreigners from India and Middle East where they have their religious heirs, at a level where the seen is believed. 

Every person is born with the capability of self-governance in his/her  home environment. If that home is not developed within lawful borders due to government restrictions - members of that group  have the moral right to consider others from outside that land - in this instance Sri Lanka - to realise their Sovereignty. If they are punished for this - by using a law that the punisher does not believe in - the return happens to exponentially hurt that leader and all those who failed to Oppose that leader despite being entitled to the democratic power to do so. Thus Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith made himself  a junior to Buddhism foremost Political leader. Hence he lost the power to protect his followers from the attack of those who did so oppose. 

The Sydney taxi driver who drove me to the airport said to me about the Easter Bombings - that the Muslim community ought to have disciplined the bombers at the early stages of rebellion. Muslim women became the first target of this government - and one is entitled to conclude that this is because they are seen as being less powerful than the men in Muslim community. Such a government has no moral authority to expect internal discipline by Muslims with intuitive power to confidentially transform the weak members of their families. In addition, the Christian community in Sri Lanka also failed to discipline its leadership which was promoting Buddhist seniority and therefore lost the protection of Democracy. Every time we genuinely oppose breach of democracy - we are blessed by democracy.

Recently I wrote as follows about such ceilings that we allow others to place on us:
[If the litigant does not have a say - including about delays - to my mind, it places a ceiling on our participation ,  at that level. The rest is a game of subjective powers between lawyers and their influence over judges.]

Ultimately we the citizens are responsible for what happens - to the extent we failed to participate in good governance through our own true experiences. It is our duty to complete experiences at the level from which we expect returns.

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