The Fifth Column

31st August 1997

Much ado over nothing

My Dear Sira

By the time you read this, you might be in exile once again, but I still thought of writing to you because of the controversy your brief visit generated.

Of course, Sira, if there is one good thing that emerged from the whole issue, it was that it reinforced our belief in the judicial system.

But then, it also showed us that people like Chandrananda, whom we believed were honest public servants could be "misled" to "mechanically" issue orders. When is he resigning, I wonder?

Anyway, Sira, I think your case was a lesson to your own party as well. Firstly, they were not happy with the Premadasa Commemoration ceremony you had organised.

Then, they were quick to disarm you when they took you into custody and started spreading stories about a conspiracy to kill Satellite.

But now, when the Courts have vindicated your position, they are quick to hail you as a UNPer and say that the verdict was a triumph for democracy!

But, Sira, we know you are a veteran in the field, so you must be used to such fast changing loyalties. Yet it must have shown you who your true friends are!

On the other side, Sira, Satellite is having her own problems, with all her coalition partners on the war path. Srimani, as we all know, is very very angry but last week even Vasu gave young Mangala a piece of his mind, and even Mangala blushed, they say, though you may think that is hardly possible.

Anyway, Mangala has come up with this 'Me Kawda, Mokada Karanne' style campaign for selling the package. They call it the "Saama Thavalama" or the 'Peace Caravan'. Well, they seem to think that dogs may bark but the caravan moves on!.

But even then, Ashraff is having what they call a "friendship" with Anura and Thonda as usual is making some more demands for "his people". And, with "Jaya Sikurui" not living upto it's name, it's no wonder that Satellite got a headache and had to have a medical check up!

Despite all this, Sira, the greens are silent and they can only stage a lukewarm protest holding a loaf of bread. So, why don't you advise them about the ways and means of coming back to power? At least a few of those methods must surely be democratic!

So, why don't you come back and teach them a few things before saying goodbye? But then, even that might be a problem with Batalanda, isn't it?

Yours truly

Punchi Putha.

PS - This is the best time to remind the public about Satellite's broken promises because there are no cricket matches for the next two months and Sanath won't distract the people with his daring deeds.

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