COVER STORIES

UL has to meet its debt obligations, or it cannot...

Cover Story
Read excerpts of CounterPoint’s exclusive interview with former CEO of SriLankan Airlines, Suren Ratwatte, as he weighs in where Sri Lanka’s national carrier is headed. Q. What kind of restructuring should UL adopt and what kind of strategy should UL implement if it wants to survive in future? A. As long as SriLankan Airlines (SLA) exists as an entity, under the Companies Act it is liable for its debts. Some of these (adding up to almost USD 455 million in dollar denominated debt and LKR ...Continued

SriLankan Airlines continues to bleed money- who would care enough...

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Heavily unionized and long used as a playpen by politicians, the SriLankan Airlines Group has incurred a loss amounting to billions in rupees. Years of high costs and low revenues have been aggravated by the ongoing global pandemic. In an exclusive interview, former CEO of SriLankan Airlines Suren Ratwatte, points out that the Airlines all over the world are struggling with a crisis the like of which has never been seen before. Read excerpts of the interview below: Q. How bad is the crisis caused ...Continued

Why does President Gotabaya Rajapaksa seek power to sack PM?

Cover Story
Vishvanath
  The proposed 20th Amendment is full of controversial provisions which have caused the government to draw heavy fire. They have been discussed at length before the Supreme Court and at other fora, and it is now evident that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa seeks much more power than he is currently vested with. But why does he want power to sack the Prime Minister? His elder brother is the current Prime Minister. This has led to much confusion, a public discussion and the concoction of various ...Continued

Sri Lankan Government’s Response to Human Rights Allegations?  

Cover Story
How has the threats to Sri Lanka changed after end of the war in May 2009?  When war ended and peace returned to Sri Lanka in May 2009, the ideological and operational threats to Sri Lanka originated mostly from overseas. They include Ideological extremism which resulted in Easter Sunday attacks; the separatist ideology from a segment of the Tamil diaspora aiming to revive the LTTE which resulted in more than dozen plots; the flow of narcotics from the subcontinent and the Far East into Sri ...Continued

Where is the airline industry headed?

Cover Story
Suren Ratwatte
The airline industry is just 100 years old. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines founded in 1919 is a claimant for the crown of the ‘oldest’, but it ceased operations for a few years in the 1940s during the Second World War. Avianca of Columbia was founded in 1919, but was originally named SCADTA. So Qantas, founded in 1920 claims the title as the ‘world’s oldest continuously-operating airline under one name’, and had planned a huge party to celebrate its centenary in November.   Along came a ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom – The Conclusion

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
A decade of appeasement had only helped the Muslim League gain greater legitimacy. When the Second Round Table Conference came in September 1931, the League leadership played an even more divisive role. Jinnah and the Aga Khan were present in London for the Conference on behalf of the League. Gandhi was the lone Congress representative. Dr. B R Ambedkar was there representing the Depressed Classes. There were envoys from several communities including the Sikhs, the Parsis, the Anglo-Indians, and the Concord of Princes. Behind Gandhi’s ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom – Part VI

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
When strategy became policy at Lucknow in 1916, and the Khilafat and Moplah lay bare the slide of the Congress, many leaders were genuinely worried. They realised that the appeasement policies of the Congress were helping the League in furthering its separatist agenda. Despite his best efforts at placating the League and striving for Hindu-Muslim unity, Gandhi could not achieve much. When attempts were made to pacify the Moplahs in the name of Gandhi’s non-violence, they bluntly replied that Gandhi was a Kafir, and he could never ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom – Part V

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
The Khilafat misadventure was not without consequences. It had set a trend, both in the Congress as well as the League. For the League, it was more demands, and for the Congress, more capitulation. Moplah Rebellion: The Khilafat movement had led to massive violence in the Malabar Coast of Kerala when a local leader, Variankunnathu Kunjahammad Haji declared himself as the Khalifa and also designated two tehsils as ‘Khilafat Kingdoms’. He instigated his followers against the British. The rebellion, famously known as the Moplah Rebellion or the ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom – Part IV

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
What began as a tactical move to wean away the League from the British soon became a conviction within the Congress, that without Muslim League coming along, there would be no freedom. For the British, the League not joining hands with Congress meant no united resistance. Hence, both started patronizing the League. The last three decades of the independence movement were a saga of this competitive bargaining with the Muslim League. Sadly, in its competitive bargaining for the League’s support, the Congress leadership gave up ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom – Part III

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
The emergence of the Muslim League on the political horizon and the open patronage that the British extended to it came as a challenge to the Congress. Hitherto the Congress had projected itself as the collective voice of all the Indians. The earlier efforts to create a rift between Hindus and Muslims and distance Muslims from the freedom struggle did not succeed much. After the formation of the Indian National Congress in 1885 a big section of the elite Muslims too joined it and started ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom – Part II

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
The British had attempted their first partition of India four decades earlier in 1905. They decided to partition the Bengal province into two. The capital of British India, until 1911, was in Calcutta (today’s Kolkata) in the Bengal province. Bengal was the largest province in British India with over 80 million population in those days, almost 1/5th of the population of the entire country. Bengal was also home to a strong resistance movement against colonial rule. A large number of revolutionaries in India’s freedom movement ...Continued

Partitioned Freedom- Part I

Cover Story
Ram Madhav
On the night of August 14-15, 1947, when India was celebrating its independence, the architect of the independence movement, Mahatma Gandhi was not among the revellers. When his protégé Jawahar Lal Nehru was making that epochal speech about ‘India’s tryst with destiny’, and the ministers of his new cabinet were taking the oath of office, Gandhi was not rejoicing. A 1000 miles away in Kolkata, he was in a sombre mood, tired of the day-long fasting and prayers. Overnight, the land under their feet, on ...Continued

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