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Friday, September 30, 2016

Royal College Cricket Team 1957

Mahinda Wijesinghe is Prof Chnanna Wijesinghe's brother and still writes to Sri Lanka newspapers. Ben Eliyathamby was a lawyer with a lucrative practice whom I used to meet at JC's place until he passed away recently. Perayerawar was a good athlete. I met him once at JC's. NJS de Mel was in the University Science Faculty. EL Pereira is best known as Prof. EOE Perera's son. An outstanding sportsman who is now in Australia. I hva met RK Samarasinghe at one of Senerat Jayatilake's parties. Sarath Samarasinghe is RK's brother and a close friend of Ken Balendra. Their father Dr. AM Samarasinghe was an Appointed MP like Revo's father.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Ananda College Cricket team 1957

Seated L-R: AP Jayasinghe, Palitha Premasiri, Anuruddha Polonowita, Daya Amarasinghe, Ananda Ranasinghe.
Standing L-R: Palitha Wijesekara, Anura de Zoysa, SP Ekanayake, Sonny Yatawara, NG Ekanayake
On the ground: Ranjith Thabrew, Sirisoma Wijeggonewardene, Neville Ratnayake

APJ entered the Eng Faculty and worked as an engineer. Passed away early. Palitha Premasiri (my classmate) never studied. Owned Southern Drapery Stores at Borella Junction. Deceased.
Anu Polonnowita joined the Colombo Municipality. Married Chitranganie (daughter of the late Prof. PB Fernando who was Professor of Medicine before Prof. Rajasuriya.
Daya Amarasinghe joined the Prisons Dept. Ranasinghe was at Ceylon Insurance.
Palitha Wijesekara (deceased) was the elder brother of athlete Vijitha Wijesekara and Dr. Rohitha Wijesekara (our junior batch).
Anura de Zoysa also died some years ago.
SP Ekanayake also did a Physical Science degree in the University and joined the Army. Died a few years ago as a Major.
Sonny Yatawara joined Ceylon Tobacco soon after leaving school. Died early in life.
NG Ekanayake too died some years ago.
Thabrew was in the Science Faculty. Wijegoonewardene joined the Army as an Officer Cadet and retired as a Major. Neville Ratnayake was another classmate of mine who joined the Ventral Bank.

Almost 60 years later, the 1957 captain Anu Polonowita is second from left in this picture with Suren Iyer.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Academics Vs Sportsmen

By Dr Nihal D Amerasekera

I remember Bryan Claessen as one of the finest sportsmen of my era at Wesley College. Although he was eight years my senior we struck up a friendship when he contacted me after reading my article in the 125th Anniversary School Souvenir. He spoke to me many times about the lack of recognition given to academics from school compared to sportsmen. He felt this was grossly unfair. Coming from a sportsman of his calibre I gave serious thought to this issue.

I have maintained the Double Blue International website for 20 years. In the DBI there is a whole page for Sports but no pages for Academics or their achievements. So I am partly to be blamed for this ‘willful neglect’. Even in the daily newspapers there is a section for sports but none for academia although they get a mention in the general news items.

During the school years we always gave respect to those who were clever and did well in their studies. The end of term reports and the year end promotions to the class above depended on the academic performance. The Annual Prize Giving made awards to those who performed well academically. The Medals and the Scholarships were special awards for bright students. So the academics too got their fair share of applause and acclaim.

Over the years I have enquired from many sportsmen and academics. I have also asked sportsmen who are academics. I asked my son who played cricket and hockey for a British Public School and followed a course in medicine at Cambridge where he was awarded the Cambridge hockey blue. He said on looking back he was more proud of his achievements in sports than his academics. He said academic achievements were for his personal gain and career, whereas the sports were for his team and his school and University. This perhaps explains the extra recognition and adulation one gets from the school and friends.

Bryan Claessen was a gentleman in every sense of the word and I appreciate his concern. Team Sports have been in existence since Greek and Roman times. We live in a world that loves sports. Bryan is right, Academic awards are very few even when inventions and discoveries benefit humanity and the society. The recognition is disproportionately poor. Such are the ways of the world.

We all enjoy sports and remember sportsmen more than academics. The clever clogs at school do get their recognition. I will continue to manage the Double Blue International without a page for Academics. They fit in well in the rest of the DBI pages.

Bryan Claessen passed away in Adelaide Australia  on 16th March 2010, at the age of 74.

(This appeared in Double Blue International administered by ND)

Monday, September 26, 2016

St. Joseph's College Cricket eleven 1957

St. Joseph’s College 1st XI Cricket 1957. Standing (L to R) – Ranjan de Almeida, Neville Athukorale, Ranjit Malawana, Emilton Fernando, Claude Perera, Priya Perera, Derrick Francke,
Joe Mustapha, Angelo Rayer, Jerry Fernando, Tissa de Soyza, Neville Jayawardena.
Seated (L to R) – Michael Berman, Zacky Mohamed, Kirthi Caldera, Mr. Joe Ekanayake, Rev.Fr. Peter Pillai (Rector), Mr. John Pulle, Fr. Lucien Dep, Carlyle Perera, Peter Leanage.

 Ranjith Malawana later played for Bloomfield. Michael (aka as Brian). Both of them were my neighbours at Manning Town up to 1956. Michael/Brian entered the Engineering Faculty and is now in Australia. Priya Perera also did so but later did Physical Science. He died very early in life. Angelo Rayer was in the Science Faculty and I knew him well when I was doing the 6 months course. Kirthi Caldera was in the Air Force and died early. Carlyle Perera captained the University team that won the Sara Trophy in 1963. He was in the "300 Batch" and I knew him well. Tissa de Soysa was a good athlete. Zacky Mohamed later played for Saracens.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

A bit of nostalgia

This post is mainly for cricket fans who have been following the game from early days. There are well known names among those who had played for their respective schools in 1957. Among them Prof. AH Sheriffdeen (no introduction needed here), the late Lasantha Fernando (National tennis champion) who married our senior Dr. Manel Bogollagama and father of former internationally ranked tennis player Lihini Weerasuriya, Sports journalist Elmo Rodrigopulle, former Army Commander the late Gen. Cecil Waidyaratne (whose brother Dr. Kulasiri did the 6 months course with us in 1961), the late Major General Lucky Algama who died in a bomb explosion during an election rally.

Lionel Fernando  was in the famous Nomads cricket team under DH de Silva  that scored some 900 runs in an innings in a Sara Trophy match. DH's brother DP and  Anu Polonowita also played in that team. DP and DH were brothers of Sri Lanka cricketer DS de Silva. I think Lionel Fernando also played a few matches for All Ceylon. Allan Gunasekara and Rayen were good hockey players as well. Together with Elmo R and Neville Casiechetty, both of them played for Tamil Union later.

Anton Rambukpotha and Ranjit Doranegama were at the Peradeniya Arts Faculty.
Click on:

Saturday, September 24, 2016


Sanath Lama has sent in this with a "justification" for inclusion as a blog post.

Professor Sanath P. Lamabadusuriya

06:48 (7 hours ago)
to me
 Dear Lucky,

Would you consider posting this on our blog spot? After all 33 in our batch were old Royalists and quite a few of the girls (Swyrie, Sriyanee, Sura,etc) are married to old Royalists!

Kind regards,


Creative Spot by Indra Anandasabapathy

TWO DIFFERENT ORCHIDS IN BLOOM- below the moth orchid, phalaenopsis, above Odontoglossom.
                            Odontoglossum, the Kandyan dancer orchid belongs to this group.
BUDDLEIA- the butterfly bush. Summer bloomer, commoner in the UK than the USA.

                                          TRUE TO ITS NAME- the butterfly bush

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality. What is it and what are its uses?

Virtual Reality is a computer technology that uses realistic images, sounds and other sensations to  replicate a real environment or an imaginary setting to make the user feel he is really present in the simulated environment so that he sees, hears  and is able to interact with this space.

How it is done
It is made possible by the use of a head set incorporating video, sound and other technology using computer science. It owes its availability to the computer age and is one of the most important methods of the 20th century. Two companies, HTC and Valve Corporation, produced it.

Its history
Its concept has been there and used in films in the mid-1900s but it really owes its advancement to the computer age. We can all remember the early ‘infant’ of 3D viewing by View master glasses. With the advent of computer technology the method improved by leaps and bounds but strangely it never ‘took off’ as predicted. However its use is expected to be more and more sought after in the future with the relentless advancement of computer technology and its use in cinema production and games.

Its uses and applications
Its commercial use in films and games for entertainment, and its use in games arcades as found in California are well known. We can also socialise by VR, we can do business, we can have a prior view of, for example, where we shall go on holiday and we can even ‘meet’ our relations on the other side of the world with a realistic effect of them being in the same space as ourselves and with modern equipment even the sensation of touch can be brought into the experience.

In Medicine, it is used in the treatment of pain. Morphine is said to relieve 20% of pain but VR uses scenes of ice and snow to immerse the patient in, so that his or her pain is felt as a cold sensation with immediate and complete relief without the disadvantages of drug therapy.
It can be used in the treatment of drug addiction and phobias where VR is used to put the subject in such an environment that he can imagine a completely different situation, for e.g. a phobia for flying being cured by VR bringing the subject to get into the plane and experiencing safety and comfort and absence of danger. Hence in phobia treatment it is done by repeatedly exposing the patient to the feared situation and showing that no harm takes place. 
It has been used in the training of surgeons where a 360-degree view of the operation is provided by VR thus allowing subject to get a closer and more realistic appreciation of the operation. The fist VR surgery took place in Oxford. Remote control surgery has been performed by VR using a robot doing the surgery in one place and the direction coming from a real surgeon in a remote situation, even another country. For anxiety disorders it is equivalent to seeing a therapist face to face but cheaper. Why has it not been used to a greater extent? It has been the cost to some extent but in 2 to 3 years it is expected to be cheaper and more freely available.  Your smart phone can also deliver it!
Work has been made easier by VR where a person could work from home while feeling he is in the office environment with colleagues giving one the benefit of being in the same space. Thus one can be in two places at once with VR.
It is used in immersive Journalism where VR makes the reporter feel that he is, for instance in a jungle with a bear in front of him and hearing the roar making it more realistic for the reporter and viewer.
The Travel Industry is going to use it to sell e.g. Holidays where the customer is shown the actual place with scenes, sounds and touch e.g. feeling of the breeze on oneself and seeing the sun shine using VR to give him a 360 view plus a physical experience.

What are the disadvantages?
We’ll end up living in a virtual world. The personal touch the eye contact, the feedback are all going to be lost to some extent. The projection however is that it will not have the take up of the level of smart phones. The latter was one and a half billion but VR take up is projected to be in the tens of millions range.  But the potential is great.
It has been used in the present time to give subjects a virtual trip tothe past for example to be virtually transported to a Museum of 500 years ago to experience looking at art of that era as if it were happening now.
It is expected that VR, which is a technique of the late 20th century, is about to take off in the next 2 to 3 years!

Sent by Zita Perera Subasinghe

References: Programmes on BBC Radio, Accounts on Wikipedia and other Internet sites.


I would like to acknowledge and thank Mahendra (Speedy) for his expertise in formatting text, converting the image to correct format and even correcting mistakes in my article. It is not often that one can get this sort of service and I am truly grateful to him.

Galle Intern group photo 1968

Sent by Kumar Gunawardene

Sriani/Rohini Ana, 

Please make corrections and add. Help identify especially the Peradeniya guys. You can do it as a "comment".


Seated L-R: Ranjan Fernando, Amitha Samarakoon, ?Vasantha Thuraisingham, Maldeniya, ?????, Rohini Abhayaratne, Vipula Aryasinghe, Dharmani Perera, Sriani Dissanayake, Chitra Perera, Rohini Senaratne, Swarna Withane, DR Ramyasiri

Standing L-R: Percy Karunatilake, Siddique Cassim, Jupiter Moonemale, S.R. (Sunna) de Silva, ?????, Kumar Gunawardene, ?M.Viswanathan, ?Byrd Gunasekara, ????????, PG Cooray, Daya Mudannayake, Ranjit Jayawardene, Lakshman Thenuwara, Fulgentius, DSC Attale

Monday, September 19, 2016

Felicitation of Teachers by the 4th Batch of students of the Ruhuna Medical Faculty (Karapitiya).

I have received this through kind courtesy of Sanath Lamabadusuriya and I have pleasure in posting the group photograph on the blog. I have made use of information provided by Sanath in framing the text.

A couple of days ago, the 4th batch of Ruhuna Medical Students felicitated their teachers at a re-union held at Raffles Residencies at Mirihana, Nugegoda. As you can see, those seated in the front row are the teachers and the ex students are standing at the back. 

Front row, left to right Rohan Hattotuwa, Malik Gunawardene, LAW Sirisena, Sarath de Silva, Shyam Fernando, Harendra de Silva, Susiri Weerasekera, Anoja Fernando, Ranjit Jayewardene, Sanath Lamabadusuriya, Sanath Liyanaratchchi, Tissa Perera, PS Perera, Pushpa Fonseka, Kumudu Wijewardene, Ranjan Dias, Parameshwaran.

Of interest to us is that Ranjith Jayawardene did the 6 months course with some of us at the Thurstan Road Science Faculty in 1961 but went to Peradeniya. He is now the Head of Psychiatry at the Malabe Private Medical School (SAITM). Pushpa Fonseka (nee Siritunga), LAW Sirisena and Anoja Fernando were in our junior batch in Colombo. 

Some members of this batch are well known consultants today.

Sanath Lama had made a presentation titled "The Creation of Karapitiya, the Sweat and Toil" on this occasion.
As an aside, it should be stated that about 14 photos of the students taken from their record books were projected on the screen and the teachers were asked to identify them. Sanath L had won the prize for the highest number of correct answers!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Creative Spot by Mahendra (Speedy) Gonsalkorale

This guy's in love with you

I thought you might like a little change from Nature's wonders to some music.
This is a Burt Bacharach song sung by me to Karaoke Music.

Burt Bacharach is an American composer, songwriter, record producer, pianist, and singer.  I am sure he will be familiar to many of our Batch Mates for such popular songs like- Always something to remind me, Walk on by, Make it easy on yourself, Alfie, I'll never fall in love again, Raindrops keep falling on my head.

Hope it will go down well.


Sunday, September 11, 2016

CoMSAA 2016

                                              From the batch that entered in June 1962
Left to Right: Revo Drahaman, Lalantha Amarasinghe, Pramilla Senanayake, Lakshman Abeyagunawardene and Sanath Lamabadusuriya.

Sri Lanka Central Bank Central Bank regulations on abandoned property

Do be careful about your Non-Operative Sri Lanka accounts. Please check with your local banker.



In the exercise of the powers conferred by Sections 72 to 76 of the Banking Act No. 30 of 1988, last amended by the Banking (Amendment) Act No. 46 of 2006, the Monetary Board hereby issues these Directions under provisions of Section 46(1) of the Act in respect of identifying, reporting, transferring and maintaining abandoned property of licensed commercial banks.
1.These Directions may be cited as the Banking Act Directions No. 5 of 2009.
The Sections referred to in these Directions are those of the Banking Act No. 30 of 1988, last amended by the Banking (Amendment) Act No. 46 of 2006.
2(1) In terms of Section 73(1), all licensed commercial banks holding any articles defined as abandoned property in Section 72 of the Banking Act,shall submit a report to the Monetary Board on an annual basis, within six months from the end of each financial year. Licensed commercial banks shall report abandoned property in accordance with the format at Annex I.
2(2) If there is no abandoned property identified by a licensed commercial bank during a financial year, the respective licensed commercial bank shall formally communicate this fact to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. Such communication will be considered as a ‘Nil’ report.
2(3) Pursuant to filing of the report on abandoned property, licensed commercial banks shall maintain documents necessary to substantiate the information submitted in the report for a period of at least ten years from the date of submission.
3(1) In terms of Section 74 of the Banking Act, all licensed commercial banks shall, within 30 days of submitting the report required under Direction 2(1) above,
(i) publish a notice in Sinhala, Tamil and English daily news papers stating the name of the owner and particulars concerning the property, and
(ii) dispatch by registered post, a notice containing the particulars of such property to the owner’s last known address.
Reporting of abandoned property to the Monetary Board.
Publication of the notice on abandoned property.
Directions, Determinations, and Circulars issued to Licensed Commercial Banks 327
3(2) All licensed commercial banks shall confirm in writing to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka of compliance with these requirements, within seven working days from the date of publishing and despatching such notices.
4(1) All licensed commercial banks shall create “control accounts” for abandonedproperty, based on the currency, in the banks’ books and shall transfer tocontrol accounts all monies reported to the Monetary Board as abandonedproperty in accordance with Direction 2(1) above.
4(2) All licensed commercial banks shall transfer monies that have already beenreported to the Monetary Board as abandoned property in accordance with theCircular dated 2 May 2006, to the “control accounts” referred to in Direction4(1) above, within seven working days from the date of this Direction.
5(1) In terms of Section 73(2) of the Banking Act, the Monetary Board hasdetermined that licensed commercial banks shall transfer ninety per cent ofthe monies reported as abandoned property, maintained in Sri Lanka Rupees(LKR) in a control account, to a special account in the Central Bank of SriLanka, within forty five calendar days from the date of reporting the abandoned
property each year.
5(2) Licensed commercial banks shall transfer ninety per cent of monies that havealready been reported as abandoned property in accordance with the Circulardated 2 May 2006, maintained in LKR, and the interest on such moniescalculated up to the date of transfer, to a special account in the Central Bank of
Sri Lanka, within thirty calendar days from the date of this Direction.
5(3) Licensed commercial banks shall transfer the monies reported as abandonedproperty referred to in Directions 5(1) and 5(2) above to the following accountin the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, and notify it in writing to the Chief Accountantof the Central Bank with a copy to the Director of Bank Supervision.
Name of Account : Abandoned Property of Licensed Commercial Banks
Account Number : 4679
6(1) Ten per cent of the monies reported as abandoned property maintained inLKR, remaining after the transfer as specified under the Direction 5(1), andabandoned property maintained in foreign currency shall be retained in the
“control accounts” of licensed commercial banks referred to in Direction 4(1)above. These monies shall be utilised to meet any claims on the abandonedproperties, upon the licensed commercial banks satisfying themselves of theidentity of the claimants.
6(2) Once a payment is made in terms of Direction 6(1) above, licensed commercialbanks shall report it to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka within seven days fromthe date of such payment, along with relevant information, i.e., details of theowner, description of property, date of reporting of such abandoned property,amount of payment and date of payment. All licensed commercial banks shall
prepare a report of such repayments on an annual basis and submit the samewithin six months of the end of each financial year, in accordance with thereporting format at Annex II, along with the report referred to in Direction 2(1)above.
Transfer ofabandonedproperty to “control
Transfer of moniesto a specialaccount in theCentral Bank.
Repaymentof claims.
328 Directions, Determinations, and Circulars issued to Licensed Commercial Banks   ;
6(3) Any claims in LKR made in excess of ten per cent of the funds retained in therespective control account by the licensed commercial bank, will be repaidby the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in terms of the provisions of Section 75 ofthe Banking Act. When any such claim is made, licensed commercial banksforward the same to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, along with a lettecertifying the identity of the owner of such abandoned property.
7(1) Licensed commercial banks shall prepare a Safe Deposit Inventory Sheet torecord the details of safe deposit boxes opened. Opening of safe deposit boxesshall be carried out in the presence of two responsible officers who are, interalia,specifically assigned with such task and one of whom should be at leastat Senior Executive level. All items contained in safe deposit boxes that are
considered to be abandoned, shall be included in the Inventory Sheet withoutexceptions. All items contained in the safe deposit boxes shall be itemised andkept in safe custody after opening the safe deposit boxes. No item should besold, destroyed or disposed of.
7(2) The Inventory Sheet shall be signed by the officers mentioned in Direction7(1) above. The Safe Deposit Inventory Sheet shall be prepared in accordancewith the instructions to these Directions and reporting format at Annex III andsubmitted to the Monetary Board within six months of the end of each financialyear, along with the report on abandoned property referred to in Direction 2(1)
8 In view of the introduction of this Direction, Circular Letter
No. 02/17/402/0079/001, dated 2 May 2006, titled Implementation of theprovisions of Sections 72 to 76 of the Banking Act on Abandoned Property’ ishereby revoked with respect to its applicability to licensed commercial banksand without prejudice to anything duly done under or in terms of such Circular
Opening of Safe
Deposit Boxes.
Determinations, and Circulars issued to Licensed Commercial Banks
Instructions for completing the Annexures on Abandoned Property
In terms of Section 73(1) of the Banking ActDetails of the property, as defined in terms of Section 72 of the Banking Act, should be recorded inalphabetical order of the owners’ last name, to the extent possible, branch wise and currency wise.
Name of Bank : Enter the name of the reporting Licensed Commercial Bank.
Reporting Date : Enter the date as at when the reporting is done
(last calendar day of the financial year).
( Enter the name of the branch in which the customer account is held.
( Enter the owner’s last name followed by the first name and middle name/s infull. Enter information that would aid in identification such as Miss, Mr., Mrs.,after the middle name.
If a single item has two or more owners, the names of all such owners must bereported, with the relationship.
If your records do not show the name of the owner of an item, enter the owneras “unknown”.
( Enter the complete address available in your records. If no address is available,indicate this fact. In the case of several owners, if the address is the same, theaddress may be entered once and indicated that it is the same for the others.
( Enter the owner’s National Identity Card No., Passport No., Date of Birth orany other information that will assist in identifying the owner. These will beessential at the time of paying claims and if known, must be included in thereport.
( Select the description of the item from the list or, if it is not available, enter thedescription with sufficient detail.
( Enter your identification number for each item such as Account No., etc.
( Select whether the item is interest bearing or not.
( Indicate the date when the last deposit, withdrawal or contact was made by theowner. It could also be the date a dividend became payable, cheque or draft wasissued, certificate was purchased etc.
( Indicate the nature of the last activity. E.g. A withdrawal, a deposit to theaccount etc.
( Select the currency in which the account is maintained from the list or, if it isnot available, enter the relevant currency.
( Indicate the total amount due to the owner, including all interest, dividendsetc., earned up to the reporting date, without deducting any service charges. Inthe case of safe deposit boxes or other items held for safekeeping, identify the
contents and include the description of any item that has a value. For all safedeposit boxes, include an inventory sheet as in Annex III.
( Enter the amount of deductions made which should include only any lawfulcharges.
( Indicate the nature of any deduction made such as service charges, tax etc.
( The net amount due after the deductions mentioned.
( Indicate the exchange rate applicable in the case of any currency other thanLKR, as at the end date of the reporting period.
Directions, Determinations, and Circulars issued to Licensed Commercial Banks 333
( The net amount due in LKR.
( Indicate the terms agreed with the owner, such as interest rate, paymentinstructions etc., that will be essential in the case of any payment of claims. Alsoindicate any special considerations attached to such property and the date of
maturity in the case of term deposits.
( Total of the net amount due in LKR in (
( Indicate the year of reporting/identifying the particular property as abandonedproperty in reporting to CBSL.
( Indicate the date of settlement of the claim to the customer.
( Indicate the full name(s) of the owner(s) including information useful for identifyingthe owner.
( Indicate the safe deposit box number.
( Indicate the place at which the vault containing the safe deposit is located.
( Indicate the date the safe deposit was opened.
( Indicate the quantity of items in the safe deposit box.
( Indicate the nature of each item contained in the safe deposit box.

( Indicate any other relevant information.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Suren Iyer in Sri Lanka

Suren Iyer is in Sri Lanka right now. He and Swini have been here for some time. They arrived here due to his mother's illness. She later passed away a few weeks ago at the ripe old age of 95.

We met last night at dinner at the Boardwalk, Waters Edge.