Butterfly kisses for Apsara Fonseka

By Dharisha Bastians
For anyone in the military, the year 2007 will not be easily forgotten. The military’s final push to Thoppigala to clear the last Tiger bastion the in the east was successful after months of fighting in the jungles and rocky terrain of the area.
But for the man himself, Army Commander Lt. General Sarath Fonseka, June 2007 will be a memorable month for more than one reason. For on June 8, the Commander gave away his firstborn, Apsara, who married Danuna Tillekaratne, her childhood friend and sweetheart.

Danuna, who lives and works overseas, is a computer analyst. The groom is also the son of a military man – Brigadier (Rtd) Tissa Tillekaratne, so the families have been friends since their children were very young, The Nation learns.
Apsara and Danuna were married at General’s House, Colombo 7 amidst a bevy of high profile guests, including the President himself. In fact, President Mahinda Rajapaksa signed witness to the marriage for Apsara while Gen. (Rtd) Hamilton Wanasinghe signed for Danuna. Also present at the ceremony were several cabinet ministers and senior government officials, including Defence Spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella and Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.

The bride was dressed in a beautiful, pure white, heavily-worked lace saree draped Indian style and carried a bouquet of white orchids, which she also wore in her hair. Her bridesmaids, three in all, including her sister Aparna Fonseka, wore salmon pink sarees and carried orchids of the same shade as the bouquets. There were a total of 14 in the bridal retinue, including two page boys and two little flower girls. The bride and her party were dressed by Salon Seventh Avenue, which is owned and managed by the groom’s mother.

The sweet and gentle mother of the bride, Anoma Fonseka wore a canary yellow osari and a yellow orchid in her hair, the same flower that also served as the boutonnière for General Fonseka.
The couple’s going away outfits stole the show, with the bride draped in a dull gold-biscuit-coloured silk osari, trimmed with an elegant, red-patterned beeralu work border. She wore red roses in her hair and carried a bouquet of red roses and yellow marigold flowers. Her groom wore national dress in the same colour and fabric, also accentuated by a narrow shawl worked in the same beeralu pattern.

Apsara’s first dance at the ceremony was with her new husband, but she reserved the second for her father, guests at the ceremony said. There were no speeches and more importantly, no alcohol served at the wedding or the homecoming ceremony, sources and guests added.
The homecoming ceremony was held at Galle Face Hotel, Colombo.


Poson Bakthi Gee at Museaus College

Students of Museaus College singing Mal Sugande Dam Sugande Sil Sulan Rel, at the Poson Bakthi Gee programme held at Museaus College, Colombo The Principal of the College, Luxmi Senanayake was the Chief Guest on this occasion.


Gateway’s ‘Walk for the Child’

Children’s issues will be the poignant theme of the culmination of Gateway College’s 10th anniversary celebrations, one of the main events of which will be a charity walk entitled ‘Walk for the Child’ on Saturday, July 28.

“Today we have children affected by conflict, children on the streets, children who face a great deal of stress in the present-day highly competitive world,” says Director, Gateway Group, Dr. Harsha Alles. “There is untold suffering that they face whether in the city or in a conflict zone and we wish to dedicate the closing of our 10th anniversary celebrations to focusing on these burning issues so that people will be concerned about doing something to resolve them. Every child deserves his or her childhood and many are robbed of that for one reason or another. We want to focus on these problems in order to create a future with hope for our children.”

The walk will be preceded by street dramas held a week before at Excel World, at 7:30 p.m. and Nugegoda junction at 5:30 p.m. on July 21 and 22 respectively. These short dramas will focus on some of the problems faced by children. They will be largely bilingual to attract a wide audience.


Attention to plantation workers

Community Development and Social Inequity Eradication Minister and Leader of the Up-Country People’s Front, P. Chandrasekaran handing over a document pertaining to plantation workers, to Head of the Political Bureau of American Embassy, Michal De-Tar, at his residence recently. Deputy Minister P. Rada Krishnan was also present on the occasion.


Premadasa Ran Piyawara launched

Chairman of the Premadasa Center, B. Sirisena Cooray presented the first copy of the book Premadasa Ran Piyawara to Tourism Minister, Milinda Moragoda at a ceremony held on June 23, at the New Town Hall to make the 84th birth anniversary of late President Ranasingha Premadasa.
The book contains winning essays by the school children who took part in an island-wide competition on President Premadasa and his vision.


District Governor arrives from USA

District Governor Lion Mahesh Pasqual MJF of District 306 B2 being welcomed on his arrival after taking oaths in Chicago by President, Lions culb of Colombo, Somerset Lady Lion Shalini Senanayake. Lady Lion Dr. Manel Pasqual is also in the picture.


Doom era

Doom era, a poster campaign was held on World Environment Day, June 5, organised by Saatchi and Saatchi Sri Lanka for Mihimadala, a local environmental journal,
The campaign focused on the era of doom trees in Sri Lanka facing. The object was to make people realise that they were destroying their lives too in the process.



Leslie Dahanayake

It is with deep regret that I pen this tribute to one of the finest veteran editors of the present era - Leslie Dahanayake.
He was one of the Editors of The Sunday Observer at Lake House, before joining The Sunday Leader, until his demise on June 24, after a brief illness.
He held a doctorate, but was not a conceited personality.
Leslie was sick for some months, and I visited him at his home at 25 Fairline Road, Dehiwala. He knew even then, that his end was near. He said that he never feared death, as he had led an exemplary life, doing his duty as a media man and doing his duty by his loving and caring wife and equally loving and caring daughters and son and sons-in-law.
He was a well-built, tall and strong man and attracted attention in any gathering.
He was a very good and correctly forecasting astrologer. He read my horoscope correctly-of course it was a free reading.
He had a very good memory. He never failed to publish a single letter or appreciation forwarded by anyone. He used to tell me ‘a few letters of yours are with me,’ and even stated their headings - such was his memory.
In his leasure time he used to write articles on Buddhism.
He hailed from a very respectable aristocratic family. His father was a mudliyar. He used to tell me about this often and that he was very proud of this fact.
I would like to end this tribute by quoting.
“Viyohi vippayoga dukko appiyhi sampayoga dukkho”
‘It is sorrowful to depart from the loved ones. Equally it is sorrowful to associate with the not friendly one.’
May he attain the ultimate bliss of Nirvana.
V. K. B. Raamanayake


Marhoom Al Haj M.I.M. Jabir

On June 19, 2006 (Jamaad-Ul-Awwal 22, 1427), our beloved father at the age of 83, closed his eyes for the last time. He passed away when he was able and of sound mind as he had always wished and prayed for. Alhamdulillah! A great man was no more and he left behind a void which will be difficult to fill.

As a human being, he was a man of honour, integrity, and discipline in addition to his wit, humour and cheerfulness. His greatest attribute was his respect and love for all people rich or poor, adult or child, any colour or creed. He set very high standards of conduct for himself and strived to achieve them.

He was a gentleman to the core; well mannered, smartly dressed and meticulous in his deeds which earned him a lot of respect. Generosity was second nature to him and in addition to what we observed, there had been many meritorious deeds done by him which we came to know only after his demise. Education was of paramount importance to him. To date, we have not encountered anyone like our father who encouraged children to excel in their studies and appreciated those who did.
His piety developed over the years and was a devout and knowledgeable Muslim. He, being an avid reader, constantly referred to the Holy Quran and the Sunna of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). This enabled him to present informed views with authority. One of his favorite quotes was; “InnaAllaha ma’as sabireen (Verily, Allah is with those who have patience)”.

He retired from the Postal Department in 1978 as Chief Postmaster, Kandy. During his career he earned the respect of his staff, peers and superiors as a man of diligence, fairness and very high integrity.
As a father he was firm but fair to all his six children. He exerted all his efforts towards transforming us into strong upright citizens. He particularly concentrated on giving us a broad educational foundation in addition to academic qualifications. He would praise our achievements but also criticise our failures. No, we were not born with silver spoons in our mouths, nor were we raised in the lap of luxury. However, he ensured that we were not in want of anything that was essential. He lived to see us all gainfully employed, married to deserving partners who equally loved and respected him and was blessed with a brood of grandchildren whom he doted upon and as with us, instilled on them too the same set of values.

What we miss most is his wisdom and wise counsel. We now have to think for ourselves and act as he would have. It is now our responsibility to emulate him in word and deed and considering the foundation he has given us, it will be carried out in a manner which he would have been proud of.
We pray that Almighty Allah keeps our father with those who are near and dear to Him.
His Loving Children


SLAHAB training sessions

The Sri Lanka Association of Hairdressers and Beauticians (SLAHAB) has organised a series of workshops to train those representing Sri Lanka at the Organisation Mondial Coiffure (OMC) Asia Cup Open 2007. The competition, which is organised by Nayana Karunaratne, founder of SLAHAB in her position as the president of the Asia Zone – OMC, is to be held in Beijing, China on July 19 and 20.

A total of 24 training sessions are open to both male and female participants, with a background in hairdressing. They will be trained under the broad categories of hair, beauty and make up, depending on where their talent and skills lie.
Ramzi Rahman, Yohan of Cutting Station and Kanjana Godigamuwa of Salon Nayana, who had the opportunity to attend a training programme organised by the OMC focussing on how to guide participants who are to compete in international competitions make up the training team.

Internationally renowned World Creative Director, Make up, OMC, Nanara Berezina will be in Sri Lanka in June for a three-day training session on fantasy, stage and bridal make up, body and nail art, among others.
“The aim of these workshops is to help elevate the hair industry in Sri Lanka to an international level as well as serving as awareness programmes to enlighten and prepare prospective participants for the big event – OMC Asia Cup Open 2007,” Karunaratne said. The OMC Asia Cup Open 2007 is an event held every two years and is held as a prelude to the OMC Hair World Championships, to be held in Chicago in 2008.


India’s assistance in Nanasala in Sri Lanka

High Commissioner of India, Shri Alok Prasad inaugurated the first of the 20 Nanasala that the government of India is financing at a cost of Rs. 13 million. Irrigation, Water Management, Ports and Aviation Minister, Chamal Rajapaksa was the Chief Guest and Secretary to the President, Lalith Weeratunga, also participated in the inauguration. The 20 Nanasalas have been carefully selected so that most of the districts in the island benefit from project.


Short & Verse, a collection of short stories and poems by M.T.L. Ebell will be launched On July 16, at the National Library Services and Documentation Board, 14, Independence Avenue, Colombo 7.



The people of Ladakh, high up in the Western Himalayas, still have strong connections to the psychic energies of gods and demons through their belief in Tantric Buddhism. The Geshe (a professor of metaphysics) could fly if he wanted, say the peasants in the remote valley, although he refuses since it is immoral to practice magic. Nevertheless a young man seduces a girl by magic techniques.
Ladakh In Harmony With The Spirit will be shown at the Goethe Holl, German Cultural Centre, on July 18, at 5:30 p.m.


Poson Poya celebrations

Under the Poson Poya celebration programme, the Sports Club of Union Bank of Colombo Limited, entertained the children at the Vajira Sri Children’s Home with music and songs, followed by dinner.
On Poya Day, bana was preached by Venerable Maharagama Mahinda Thero of the International Buddhist Centre, Wellawatte, followed by bakthi gee by the Bank staff.


Hellenic Aid aids health and education sectors

The Head of Hellenic Aid special Mission to Colombo of the Embassy of Greece in India, George Filippeos, Minister Counselor – Development Cooperation, stated that Hellenic Aid is funding the construction of two Gramodaya Health Centres and a psychiatric ward building in the Batticaloa District, which is facing severe health needs.
The tsunami of December 26, 2004 resulted in a number of health facilities along the coastal belt of Sri Lanka being partially or fully damaged. Following this devastation, there were several resettlement plans, which also created a need for new Health facilities and the relocation of some of the existing Health Care Units.
Hellenic Aid is presently financing several development projects in the eastern part of the country in the education and health sectors.
The construction of the two Gramodaya Health Centres in Kaththankudy and Mankadu and the psychiatric ward in Valaichenai Base Hospital is being implemented by the INGO MdM Greece. MdM Greece Mission Coordinator Maria Tsolka said that the INGO had signed an MoU with the Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry and that all tendering and selection procedures for the two Gramodaya Health Centres have been completed while the construction work is due to start by mid July.



July 17
Eight Men Out (120 min - 1988), at the American Centre, at 6 p.m.

July 17 & 18
Romaine, by Agnès Obaldia (82 min – 1997) in French with English subtitles, at the Alliance Française, at 3:30/6:30 p.m.


July 15
Here For A Fit-on, a comedy written and directed by Indu Dharmasene, at the Lionel Wendt Theatre, Colombo 7.


July 20
A tabla recital by Peshala Manoj of Bhatkhande Music University, Lucknow, India, at the Indian Cultural Centre, at 6 p.m.

July 20 – 22
Evolution, presented by the Old Joes Choir, at the Lionel Wendt Theatre, Colombo 7.


July 15
An exhibition of paintings by Royden Gibbs, at the Lionel Wendt Gallery, Colombo 7.

July 20 – 22
An exhibition of paintings by Indika Wijeratne, at the Lionel Wendt Gallery, Colombo 7.

July 21 – 23
An exhibition of paintings by Mohan Sudusinghe at the Harold Peiris Gallery, Colombo 7.

Until July 30
Remue-Ménage, an exhibition of posters on families in Third World Countries, at the Alliance Française Auditorium. Entrance free.

Public talk

July 15
Attention Is The Flame In Which Sorrow Ends, organised by Krishnamurti Centre, Sri Lanka, at the Public Library, Colombo 7, at 10:30 a.m.


July 18
The Indian Connection In Kandyan Dancing by Srilal Perera (a past pupil of Chitrasena Kalayathanaya), at the Indian Cultural Centre, Colombo 4, at 6 p.m.


With your lagna lord Kuja (Mars) in your first house, Ravi (Sun) and Shani (Saturn) in the 4th, although you engage in your affairs with extra will, yet land/property matters will bring problems. You will get entangled in legal matters to inherit property from your parents.

Ravi (Sun) with Shani (Saturn) in your 3rd house and your lagna lord Sikuru Venus) in the 4th will bring you a week of mixed fortune. Even though you will be fortunate to inherit property, secret enemy activity will cause obstructions. Your brothers too will face obstacles during the week.

You will take major decisions for your future. Those involved in educational activities will face success. Those expecting employment will find their expectations fulfilled. A favourable week for the purchase or construction of your dream home. Successful marriage proposals will come the way of the unmarried.

Shani (Saturn) with Ravi (Sun) in your 1st house and Kuja (Mars) in the 10th brings you a week plagued with mental worries. Sinus, throat infections and phlegm related ailments will bother you. Family life too will disturb you, and happiness will be elusive.

The planetary positions indicate a week where expenditure will be high due to illness to self and spouse. Be extra careful in dealings with the fairer sex as public humiliation may result in such matters. Disputes indicated in marital life. Favourable for those engaged in educational activities.

Lagna lord Budha (Mercury) in your 10th house and Ravi (Sun) in the 11th indicates a week of mixed fortunes. Promotions in career and cooperation of your co-workers and accolades from superiors indicated. Social services will bring popularity. Increase of income for those in the clerical service and for those in the agricultural field.

Career-wise a highly favourable week for you. Praise from your superiors. Income can be expected from agricultural sources. A decrease in neighbourly relations indicated. Be patient in dealings with your spouse as stubborn decisions may affect your marital future.

A week of mixed fortunes according to your planetary conjunctions. You will work with will and extra effort. Enemy activity will increase. You will gain popularity and social respect. Income will be favourable. Children’s educational activities will be successful. A week where you will get assistance from your neighbours.

Not a very favourable week for your career. Superiors will cause you problems. You will be lethargic in your work place. You will be also afflicted by phlegm or heat related ailments. But successful marriage proposals will come your way. Increase in cooperation for those in joint ventures.

Your lagna lord Shani (Saturn) with Ravi (Sun) in the 7th house will distance you from your spouse as a result of arguments. Disputes among partners indicated. Your career too will suffer due to disputes among work mates. You will be lethargic in your dealings this week.

An energetic week indicated both in career and at home. Accidents or illnesses indicated to spouse even though your health will be satisfactory. Opposition to your progress in many spheres will decrease. Income from your career will be good. Success for students. Accidents to brothers indicated. Increase in cooperation for those in joint ventures.

Lagna lord Guru (Jupiter) in the 9th house with Ravi (Sun) and Shani
(Saturn) in the 8th brings you a week of mixed fortunes. Expectations fulfilled for those expecting foreign travel for educational purposes or employment. Favourable week for purchase of houses or renovation of residence. A good week for students in their studies. Increase in income for those in the industrial field. Your children may suffer from sinus or phlegm related illnesses. Not a very favourable week for your career. Superiors will cause you problems. You will be lethargic in your work place. You will be also afflicted by phlegm or heat related ailments. But successful marriage proposals will come your way.


Rahu period

Sunday: 4.02 - 5.32
Monday: 7.02 – 8.32
Tuesday: 2.32 – 4.02
Wednesday: 11.32 – 1.02
Thursday: 1.03 – 2.33
Friday: 10.03 – 11.33
Saturday: 8.33 – 10.03

(Applicable both day and night)









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