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    "Rajitha, a symbol in practical politics"

    May 27, 2014

    by Daya Sri Narendra Rajapakshe

    (By the 29th of May 2014, the parliamentary membership of Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, the Hon. Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, will be 20 years while also, completing 41 years of his political career. Also his date of birth falls on that date. This special letter is issued on recognition of his services. )

    Dr. Rajitha Senaratne gets into history by being appointed in the year 2007, as the first Minister of the Ministry of Engineering and Construction Services in Sri Lanka and he is a Minister who has shined in history as the Minister when in reviewing how he as a Minister Constructions and Engineering Services and also as the Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development gave leadership and handled the Ministries of Constructions and engineering services and the Fisheries and aquatic Resources development along with the ministry affiliated other institutions If a brief reference is made to him, who is presently running the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, it could be said that without getting fame and publicity, for himself he is leading as the Minister who acquires fame and publicity to his Ministry by adding value to it. Therefore it is colorful to recollect the values he has contributed to the country much more than wishing a happy birth day to him at this occasion.

    Dr. Rajitha Senaratne only a handful of politicians who falls into the category of super category of character in the arena of political history of this country. Also out of them, the politicians who spent their lives for the common man such as Dr. N.M. Perera, Colvin R.de Silva, and Leslie Gunawardena got a special niche. These super grades of politicians had unique qualities different from the orthodox politicians. They, besides their knowledge they acquired from their education, because of the knowledge they derived by reading books, both local and international they became practical politicians. They fought against capitalism as well as against feudalism. Also of their own will went to the common man and by mixing up with them by giving medical treatments to get them out of the malaria epidemic and providing them with food and other relief were committed to serve the people. By moving and mixing with such caliber of practical politicians and getting a training from them, by learning the alphabet from the left political movement, even from today, Dr. Senaratne could be introduced as the person who has carved out a name for himself.

    Not only that it is not an exaggeration, to introduce Dr. Rajitha Senaratne as a political student who has educated well the new trends in the left wing politics and its spread and decay not only in Sri Lankan left its politics but in many countries of the world. Because of this the character of Dr. Rajitha Senaratne has turned out to be a revolutionary character in the politics of this country. Therefore he has won a name for himself as a person who practices what he preaches and one who says only what he does. To, win a name in this manner in the context of the present day politics, is an arduous task, but it could not be applied in the case of Dr. Ragitha Senaratne.

    He gets engaged in his political activities much earlier than any one may get up in the morning. He in order to get a balanced thinking in his politics he starts the day by engaging in physical exercises and in meditation, and throughout the day he dedicates himself moving closely with the people and the Ministry officials for the development of the fisheries sector. Every day after finishing his routine work he goes to sleep at mid night when all others have gone to sleep. In some days he gets engaged in the official duties even without sleeping and it is due to the education knowledge and the practice in politics he had received and also equally due to the association with famous political characters that from out of Rajitha Senaratne that this type of seasoned political characteristics are reflected. Because he daily reads and study books on social and political changes both local and foreignand his knowledge gets up dated daily. It is a specialty in him that due to this he demonstrates a capability to talk and discuss on any subject matter in any field of activity.

    Dr.Senaratne is a person who has taken an interest in politics from his young days. It is because of that during his school days itself, having read relevant books and studying famous characters and making and analysis of what he had studied that he entered into politics. Because of that training on those lines, he got the opportunity to associate some of the famous left wing politicians in Sri Lanka very closely. Due to this training he had got that he developed an inborn talent to talk on any political theory and its practicability. Hence he has spent a part of his life span, on politics He always speaks of politics. Though he is a highly talented dental surgeon and had gained popularity in the country, he has surpassed that stage to become a highly talented practical politician. This victory he has achieved is due to none abandoning of the principles he has inculcated on any day. Where ever he is his practice is to to stick on to his principles, he had experienced and appears on defense of those principles and also to talk on them.

    Dr. Rajitha Senaratne who always stood up against nepotism, capitalism and feudalism by joining up with a leader who had the concept of uniting the country, working against feudalism, which was a curse to the country. , in the year 1994 he joined the United National Party and won a parliamentary seatas a United National Party member in the 1994 parliamentary elections to give leadership to the people. Since then Dr. Rajitha Senaratne developed himself to be a popular politician who spoke and fought against corruption,fraud, ethnicity and racism, while when he is engaged in parliamentary proceedings he always speaks with facts and figures and having gathered proper facts and information on frauds and corruptions he became a popular character not only within the parliament but also among the people . He became a source for providing facts without fear regarding frauds and corruptions to the public media.

    Dr. Senaratne who displayed his talents as an orator, on the political platforms, was an impressive orator who cannot be dispensed with, and he too became a useful character to the media. To view any T.V.debate, for which he is participating as people were awake waiting to listen to his debates and therefore those T.V. channels too became popular. Rajitha Senaratne who became the silver tongue of the opposition against the government any political platform or the Television debate sans Rajitha Senaratne was empty.

    Also Dr. Senaratne was a close friend of the media personnel. Many of the media personnel’s were with the view that he is a source of supplying news to the media. Many of the media personnel say that his speeches and the discussions have had informative values. Also Dr. Rajitha Senaratne respects the media personnel and they too give respect to him. It should be said that the main cause for it is, his respect for principles, sincerity and honesty. Due to this his party politics apart, many media personnel respected his principles, the honesty and the sincerity.

    RajithaSenaratne was born on 29 th May as the son of Dr.N.H.D.A.Senaratne and Mrs.D.W.B.Senaratne, and had his primary and the secondary education at NalandaVidyalaya and AnandaVidyala in Colombo respectively. Thereafter in the year 1971 he entered the dental faculty of the University of Peradeniya and qualifying as a Dental Surgeon, in the year 1974 joined the public service, as a dental surgeon. Dr.Rajitha Senaratne who is married to Dr.(Mrs.) Sujatha Senaratne is a father of two sons, eldest being studying at the Medical faculty of the Colombo University and his younger being engaged in higher studies. Specialist Dr. Sujatha Senaratne has worked as the Former Additional secretary to the Ministry of Health, and is presently the Private Secretary to the Hon Minister.

    Rajitha Senaratne started his university career at the Peradeniya, as a riotous student. During the period from 1971-1973 he was the General Secretary of the Inter-university student's Federation and also was the representative of the medical Student's Association of the Peradeniya University.

    Within a few days of assuming the post of governmentdental surgeon, due to his vibrant leadership in the year 1975, he got appointed as the General Secretary of the Dental Surgeons Association.

    Since 1989, for over a period of 14 years, he gave a long period of leadership as the General Secretary due to his vibrant leadership qualities. Dr. Senaratne became a fearless leader who fought not only for the rights of doctors, but also for the democratic rights of the people. Because of this not only among the doctors but also among Sri Lankan politicians, he became a rebellious character much talked of.

    Dr.Senaratne who stood neck to neck by face with the leaders such as Dr. Colvin R.de Silva, Peter Keneman, K.P.Silva, Vasudeva Nanayakkara, Anura Bandaranayake, Mahinda Rajapkshe, Chandrika kuaratunga and Vijay Kumaratunga, took leadership and is a shining character in the political platform.

    He who always thinks of "the country to the front than the self "and in the year 1982, he became a progressive member of the Sri Lanka Mahajana Party started by Vijaya and Chandrika giving leadership to it. Dr. Rajitha Senaratne who spent lavishly both his wealth and fame, he earned through his medical profession for the sake of the party and because of the chaotic conditions that erupted within the Mahajana Party, by representing Chandrika he left the Mahajana Party and joined the Bahu Jana Independent Front which was started under the leadership of madam Chnadrika and he became its General secretary.

    He who believed that a permanent peace could be established by mutual friendship trust and good will among the races and therefore he always stood for that. Hence he is able to get the love kindness and acceptability of the all the races who are living in this country. This is an experience he had derived while being engaged in left politics. When the socialist blocks of the world powerful in the decade of 70's he was able to travel in those countries and had the courage to criticize in public the socialist type of upper class elites in those countries by associating with socialist friendly societies by pointing out their rights and wrongs without being puppet of theirs and creating certain theories based on arguments, he was able to make a popular name among his peers. Due to this he was able to preside over some of these friendly societies. He not only eschewed racism, religiosity, cast system, ethnicity and clans, but also at every opportunity he did not fail to attack those. Similarly to the minorities of the society who are being suppressed and who are being subjected to social injustice and harassment through his heart feelings and therefore his name Rajitha is impacted in the hearts of the minority communities. Therefore not only the people from the South but also the people of the North East embrace this humanitarian politician without the differences of race, religion, caste and political party differences whole heartedly. It is because of this political straight forwardness that he faced bomb attacks one from the extremists of the South and another from the extremists of the North. Therefore it is not an exaggeration to introduce Dr.Rajitha Senaratne as a politician who still having the pellets of Bomb blast in his body and the pain that emerged out of it being used for bringing about peace prosperity and amicable living among all the races.

    One remarkable feature of Dr. Rajitha Senaratne which I have observed in his character is the un sullying nature he never accepted defeats and also not moved by any actions. This is a rare quality found in the politician. That is because those persons involved politics in his country this quality is hardly to be found. Also his geniuses and dedication have made him molded as a politician. Also his popularity among the people is due to his planned program of activities and due to his oratorical capabilities.

    His present personality and oratorical talents from which he could get the attraction the masses as held to captive the large number of viewers through electronic media of this country. We have seen how people of this country flock around TVs to listen to the debates of Dr.Rajitha Senaratne relayed over those channels. In those debates what is debated is his oratorical talents as well as efficiency in arguing out and producing attractive proofs. This is a rare quality found in a politician.

    Dr. Rajitha Senaratne is a politician with rare character. That is because his politician who works according to his conscious and think of the country first than himself honest sincere and brave politician. He does not always try to establish his own view but always try to explain his view to others, subjects his view for debates to tries reach at what is most correct. Similarly he tries to understand what is not aware of. Hence he always believed that politics should for the good common man. Therefore he keeping the country before self by taking a correct decision and correct moment joined the government with other 18 UNP members to strengthen the hand of His Excellency the President Mahinda Rajapaksha. It was historical decision in his life that is because he took this decision to relive this country from the dreadful war which plagued this country over the period of 30 years. I saw in the mind of politician Dr. Rajitha Senaratne satisfying humbly within himself the way it had happened.

    Dr. Rajitha Senaratne performs his ministerial duties on experience he had gained with a humanitarian friendly vision of his own. Accordantly it is an outstanding feature ofhis character by living moving among the people from Grass Root Level he is taking steps to solve their problems. Therefore he has become popular among the masses for being able to identify not only there problems of day to day living but also their expectations andchallenges they are faced with. Also his philosophy is not to approach problems of the people in a top bottom approach but to reach them in a bottom top approach and provide solutions. With regard to the other issue of this country Dr. Rajitha Senaratne had the clear vision. He draws his attention for an administrative system that bestows justice and equality to all the ethnic groups living in this country. The 13thamendment that has got approved, he feels as a beneficial methodology it is a special feature of his is to have self-confidence to support it without even slightly moving away from it.

    Also Dr. Rajitha Senaratne is character who eschews third class politics therefore he announces In public that the people should west political power only to those intelligent, educated and good character persons and not to the rogues, highway robbers and corrupt persons. Also always he appeared for the good and principled politician.
    A fine example of his statesmanship is his manner of handling the Indo- Sri Lanka fisheries problem, to reach at a permanent solution to the indo Lanka Fisheries issue which had remained unsolved for over a period of number of decades to reach at a solution by means of discussion. Recently he visited Delhi and met the minister of External Affairs Mr.Salman Kurshid and the Minister of Agriculture who is in charge of the subject of fisheries and by the discussions held between the two parties, had been a great success. He was able to get the release of all the Sri Lankan fishermen with their boats, also to solve the fisheries problem, of both the countries a statesman's Committee was formed and it has by now laid a foundation to arrive at an everlasting solution, India received the Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne with open arms extending their long standing arm of friendship A clear example of it is how India provided security to him and the receptions extended to him at the state level. This reveals the depth of his principled political thinking which is of very high quality which has been inculcated within himself, by the Hon. minister.

    Because of this, it is an accepted norm that now not only the Sri Lankan politicians from both the government and opposition sides, but also internationally too, it has been recognized that he should be a person who should remain in Sri Lankan politics.

    Last modified on Tuesday, 27 May 2014 15:52

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