CPA Comms Officer on 20 February, 2024

Vedukkunari Hill Aathi Lingeswarar Temple

High atop Vedukkunaari Hill in Sri Lanka’s Vavuniya district, an ancient temple stands at the precipice of a religious and legal storm. Revered by the local Tamil community as the Vedukkunaari Aathi Lingeswarar Temple for over 3,000 years, it now finds itself embroiled in a complex dispute with the Department of Archaeology, which claims the […]

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Centre for Policy Alternatives on 27 October, 2018

Paradise Lost? Preliminary Notes on a Constitutional Coup

Asanga Welikala There were three dramatic announcements on the evening of Friday 26th October 2018 from the Presidential Secretariat, which occurred in the following order: (a) the announcement of the withdrawal of the UPFA from the government; (b) the swearing-in of Mahinda Rajapaksa before President Maithripala Sirisena as the Prime Minister; and (c) the announcement that […]

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Centre for Policy Alternatives on 16 March, 2018

Understanding a State of Emergency: March 2018

Sri Lanka’s last state of emergency lasted for 28 years, and was terminated in August 2011, having continuously been extended by governments since it was first declared in 1983. On March 6th 2018, President Maithripala Sirisena declared a state of emergency in order to address and contain the violence unfolding in the Kandy district, where violent […]

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Centre for Policy Alternatives on 21 June, 2017

An enduring fear: Aluthgama in 2017

The homes that were burned and the stores that were damaged have been rebuilt; Aluthgama’s infrastructure hides the violence that it recently bore. Three years ago, around Poson poya day that fell in the middle of the month of Ramazan in 2014, a destructive display of racially-motivated violence occurred that continues to haunt its streets, […]

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Centre for Policy Alternatives on 8 March, 2017

Rising Above – Life, family and hope at Methsara Uyana

The Centre for Policy Alternatives has for years documented the stories of people affected by the rapid development drive that occurred under the previous regime, when the Urban Development Authority commandeered evictions across Colombo to make room for what has materialised as mixed development projects that promise a luxurious future for those who can afford […]

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Centre for Policy Alternatives on 13 July, 2016

Transitional Justice: Where Are The Champions?

by Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu There is no getting away from the issue of international participation in the accountability mechanism, specifically that of foreign judges. The 2015 Geneva resolution co-sponsored by the Sri Lankan government explicitly allows for this in terms of the active participation of internationals but does not spell out their precise role. The issue keeps surfacing with […]

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Centre for Policy Alternatives on 22 June, 2016

A Space for Faith: Reflections on Religious Freedom for Muslims in Sri Lanka

Through the months of June and July, Muslims across the globe observe the holy period of Ramazan. It is even more significant this year in Sri Lanka as June 2016, that marks 2 years since the violence in Aluthgama, falls within the holy month. In a time when there is rampant misrepresentation of the Islamic […]

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