22 May 2022
Aaya Ram Gaya Ram (Ram has come, Ram has gone)
Tamil Australians who acknowledge my deeper investment in Current Sri Lanka, ask me about the reality in terms of shortages – especially of food.
There is a saying in Tamil that the complaint of lack of salt by one who drinks ‘kanji/rice water and that of lack of sugar by one who drinks milk are equal parallels. One who drinks milk would not even think of rice water. Mr Ranil Wickremesinghe would complain of lack of sugar and not of salt. Likewise, members of the Sri Lankan diaspora.
On 20 May, the ABC (Australia) reported under the headlines - ‘Sri Lanka Prime Minister warns of food shortages amid economic crisis and lack of fertiliser’:
A decision in April last year by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to ban all chemical fertilisers drastically cut yields and although the government has reversed the ban, no substantial imports have yet taken place.
Neither of the above seems to be ‘Sri Lankan made’. Both are American.
One of the major moves by Gandhi was to forego British makes and hence the handlooms. That was essential to be self-reliant. Some unknown power (karmic?) seems to have directed me to learn about the folks at grassroots level, after I challenged the Australian authorities on the basis of Racial Discrimination. The courts failed me but I knew that I had shared my experiences with wider Australian community. During the time in courts – migrant women officers who also had felt similar pain confirmed to me after the official sessions - said that they also had had similar experiences. To my mind that was sharing of social intelligence in a ‘free’ environment. To the extent it is true intelligence – it is naturally and continuously shared. This is the power of social media. To my mind, my email communications are structured social media. My ‘internal sharing’ with family and friends is less structured due to high level of commonness.
My responses to the last of the above groups is that they are not as bad as the challenges during the war years. Those who adjusted to reality developed the intelligence towards new ways of life. Hence, the current economic challenges are not an issue for war-victims who learnt to live within their means. The losses they accepted as reality became their higher intelligence. That is the way karma balances at the individual level.
Exams are going ahead despite the challenges and those students have not complained of hunger and therefore it is difficult for me accept ‘starvation’.
Last week’a Sunday Times article headed ‘GotaGoGama is a non-partisan protest, open to any political ideology, say young activists’ has reported as follows:
[Certain people are trying to hijack the protest site in one way or the other, but all in all this has to be considered as an apolitical movement, said Sahan Weeratunga, on behalf of the protesters…..
“I was involved in making demands. The first and foremost is our main demand for the President to resign, that is the base of the movement. We considered several aspects as well, one of them is human rights violations and preserving human rights. Creating political, economic stability at the same time creating an environmentally-friendly country,” Sahan said.
He added that the Galle Face protest site is a collective which discusses and argues on policy formulation, and how to change the present direction of the country onto a better path.
“We have a tent dedicated as a People’s University at the site, and educating people on policy formation happens there guided by experts,” he said.
Citizens began protesting in areas around the country over a month ago, demanding the President’s resignation and ensuring the country’s political stability as the country’s economic crisis worsened, manifesting in severe shortages of essentials, increasing prices, and protracted power outages.]
The demand for the President’s resignation is in violation of the Constitutional provisions. Breaches of Due Processes lead to structural damages. The protestors seem to have allowed facilitated this. This would NOT improve the political system but make it more chaotic.
Through that chaos, India’s Tamil Nadu – currently ruled by anti-Hindu leader seems to take come into occupation in Southern Sri Lanka.
The Daily News reports as follows:
[Several Indian investors in Tamil Nadu keen to invest in Sri Lanka
M. K. Stalin Tamil Nadu Chief Minister ceremoniously hands over samples of 9,000 metric tons of rice, 200 metric tons of cow milk powder and 24 metric tons of essential items over to Sri Lankan Deputy High commissioner Dr Venkateswaran to assist the people of Sri Lanka from the people of Tamil Nadu in Chennai.