The chronicle of a farce


There is another chapter in this Wansa Kathava.

You mean the Weerawansa chronicle?

It is not about Weera or bravery at all, but about the theatrics of fasting. It could be titled the Upavaasa Rangana Kathava – the story of Fasting Performance.

What is so special about these fasting theatricals?

They are stopped without achieving the goals of the fast … gives the impression more of a farce than a fast.

The first fast-farce, if I may say so, was against Ban Ki-Moon and the United Nations, But it was stopped without any response from Ban Ki Moon or the UN: not even a message from New York.

How was it stopped?

That was the high drama – He was given a glass of King Coconut water by the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa. There were plenty of empty Crunchie biscuit packets around, that may have helped extend the fast by a day or two. But it was the politically nourishing King Coconut water that mattered, coming from the Presiden’s own hand.

Do you think he considered it as some holy water?

It certainly was politically blessed, given by the President’s, making Weerawansa forget everything about Ban Ki- Moon.

How did the latest fast come to its end?

It was certainly holier than the first. He was moved to abandon the farce by the Yellow Robes – Mahanayakes and Anunanayskes saw the need for him to remain his usual self.

But didn’t the Yellow Robes bless him on his fast?

Yes. That was outside the Welikade Prison, where he was held in Remand Custody. But things changed after that. The Maha Sangha who came to bless him with more Pirith at the National Hospital, saw the need for him to remain Weerawansa and not an Upavaasa Wansa – or one with a tale of fasting.

So what happens to his demand that led to his fast? I mean his opposition to being held in Remand Custody.

There is always time for another fast…or some other political gimmick . A man of such theatrical experience can always stage a new performance.

So what about the claims, by his JO supporters, that this fast was not about wanting to come out of Remand Custody, but to protest against national issues such as the cost of living, heavy taxation, the sale of public assets to foreigners, especially the Hambantota Port transaction?

In fairness to Weerawansa, he may have thought those who made these statements would do well to launch their own fasting protest campaigns on these issues.

Now that the news grabbing fast is over, do you think the government will listen to JO leaders and get the courts to change the Remand Custody on Weerawansa?

Well. That is a Catch 22 for the Government…If it happens, Weerawansa and all others will be laughing, about the Government’s claims about the Independence of the Judiciary.

But, hold on. The Yellow Robe intervention and calling off of the fast, could also make it easier for state intervention with the courts. After all, there is no fasting protester now.

You think he will return to parliament to serve his people, while still in Remand Custody?

Come on, he came there earlier, and even celebrated a birthday while in remand. So what is there to prevent him from enjoying all the privileges of parliament? Don’t forget that Wimal Weerawansa is a great performer. He is a political long jumper, who has seen more than one party. He has been in more than one government. He must be looking at the now abandoned fast, as one more chance to do some political leapfrogging.

You mean all this will go to the new chapter in this Wansa Kathava?

There will be a little more, too. About how his daughter who is almost an adult, was treated for father sympathetic fasting at the Lady Ridgeway Children’s Hospital. That is the stuff of Weerawansa. Get all the benefits to the family. Like the allocation of cars in his former ministry and also giving houses from that ministry. The family came first. It is a great family chronicle…from one farce to another.

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