Wednesday, September 3, 2014
Uva is a historical Province. Badulla and Moneragala, the two siblings I guess own various assets when compared to their own belongings and most of them are immovable. Badulla is one of my favorite travel destinations because of its places ‘very attractive’ like water falls, bambarakanda, diyaluma, rawana Ella etc. Babarakanda is Sri Lanka’s tallest water fall.
UVA Wellassa is a very popular term among most of the people. The literal meaning of ‘wellassa’ is one hundred thousands of paddy fields. The University of Sabaragamuwa is a dynamic place for students and scholars. So there are things to discuss about UVA
Uva is specifically important to me because of its historical incidents happened in that area during the English’s Period. Before I move on to that let me refresh my mind about one of the visits to Thanamalwila area during my University ERA as a student of Sociology. We were supposed to do a survey on ‘women’s participation in POLITICS’, ‘why the women are not actively participating in POLITICS’ I remember interviewing women of that area chosen for us to meet and talk independently. This was back in 1995. Actually compared to the other areas we have learned and visited, the people of this area were facing problems because of wild Elephants that comes to the villages and to their chenas and destroy their harvest.
Chena cultivation; they mostly engaged in this type of cultivation especially during the YALA season where they do not get much rain to cultivate Paddy or any other vegetables. Cultivating grains normally they have to do even though that is not their preference of cultivation that is in their pre prepared cleared highland area locally known as HEINA chenas in yala season. I remember we had to present the data we collated and findings before an educated panel on a particular day after our field work. I remember presenting them and many questions were raised by the participants to clarify their minds on the things we discuss.
Actually I felt that it was a silly question to ask from the women of that area because the women had to take care of their chenas and their own houses, KIDS specifically other than engage in politics actively. I can’t remember any women responded positively back then because their main concern was to look after their chenas.
Why the wild animals coming in to the area where people live is a different question to be raised.
I did not visit the same village after 1995 but I like to believe that though they have no time to engage in politics, actively, because of their life schedules - current (I assume, I may be wrong) at least they have something more important to do than ‘sakalayo embeema’ (chasing away the birds to protect their harvest and looking after their chenas from the wild animals.
Changing role of women; I think this is not a new subject to discuss. The roles of men and women are changing rapidly or have changed incredibly because now all of them have to play multiple tasks other than ‘heading their own households’.
I think compared to those days ‘the political awareness’ of all type of people, groups, and, students, women are higher than in the past. They are aware of ‘their right to vote’ even the women do understand how they won the right to vote not only about their right to EDUCATION and JOB preferences. I think it is minister Wimal Weerawansa who have told at a rally (I believe) that Sri Lanka is one of the countries that the village people do not move that much to town areas looking for jobs’ compared to some (?) countries (I can not exactly remember the news article I read. but that is the core idea I grabbed from the news.
That is one of the RESULTS that we should expect from the development as one of the facets that is without trying to isolating the component called VILLAGE and its families, parents because of their children who move out of the village to seek for jobs. The resources should reach villages other than sticking them in the cities or towns. KOLAMBATA KIRI gamata KEKIRI perception is not anymore a valid perception and the villages have enough of kEKIRI grown in highlands ( chenas) and even the chena farmer can feed any number of mouth from their KEKIRI cultivation during the particular SEASON or even on any other days. I think RAIN water HARVESTING projects are still functioning in the areas. I think most the village people chosen ‘self employment’ as their livelihoods because of its independent features
Let me try to walk a little backward to the period 1815 – 1820 to memorize the UVA KERELLA (the UVA REVOLT) which was bread and born initially in Wellassa as a tiny infant changed in to a grown up child at the latter stage. I know that it is little odd to talk about revolts other than talking about ‘REVOLUTIONS’. REVOLTS OR REBELS played an important role back in 1800’s because we were a colony since the Portuguese set foot here in 1505 as one of the first Nations from the West. Since then from time to time our admin power was questioned and interrupted by the colonization , their admin authorities therefore we lacked in administrative POWER at various stages of its administration and in some of the provinces specifically depending on the power of the admin authorities - local other than the power of the king back then. For example king Weerabahu. So as a result of colonization as I mentioned already, the traditional ruling authorities became less powerful , powerless or inactive because of the then ruling system.
GAMAKA , or GAMPATHI , the village level administrative authorities assigned by the king of the country or of the thun korala, sathara korale, sath korale or nuwara kalawiya, Gangawata korale ( these terms were used in the old admin systems to demark the admin provinces, states) were not given including some of the the higher level hierarchical positions back then namely,‘Adhikaram’ , ‘Nilame’, ‘Disawe’ or were restricted to use their power as specified by the old local admin system of the big society, country. And little later after capturing the country totally ( after signing the agreement ) some of the facilities given to them as privileges not by any law but norms and traditions, customs of the old Sri Lankan society that were mainly decided , approved by the society of higher level but without showing any opposition people obeyed them were cut off. i.e. taking the hats off from their heads when the heads are arriving , using the carriages to go across the areas for instance ‘rivers’ etc
The REVOLT was organized because of other reasons. The top level admin authorities other than the king of the particular koralaya, provinces became unhappy because of the ways that they were treated by the English’s, after the English became a solid concrete in the land (23, March, 1815) after signing the agreement between Adhikarams and the governor Brownrig, thanks to some of the idiotic decisions and support given by the local hierarchical people misreading then situation to English to establish here as a representative of the Queen Elizabeth, the sole decision maker of the English kingdom. King Sri WcikramaRajasignhe was a Nayakkar and the Adhikarams wanted to own the crown, the whole country capturing the king by getting the support from the English. The objectives of the English were different to the objectives and visions of the Adhikarams. They did not want the Adhikarams to allow to heading the country as a result of that the dreams of the adhikarams to capture the country’s leadership, kingship from the Sri Wickrama Rajasigne became a no reality. The English did not follow the agreement as they promised earlier totally or fully. The English did not want to handover the power of ruling the country in to the hands of the locals. As one of the results some of the Adhikari’s were imprisoned and send away to another Island as prisoners. Keppitipola and Madugalle were killed. Not alone with the whole family. There were many related stories I am not going to essaying here.
According to those evidences, history says how important it is to get right decision at right time
So UVA is not less specific or less important. It is a huge and important province of our country. Its future depends on the votes and the intelligence of its voters.
Lets vote for a prosperous and peaceful , harmonious UVA