Archive | April, 2015

In Memoriam


Tribute to Nihal Fernando by Herman Gunesekera

Posted on 29 April 2015 by admin

In MemoriamTo members of the family and staff of Studio Times
Through the kind courtesy of the Secretary of the Peterites Pre 70's Group, I have been informed of the passing away of a legend in the art of Photograhy.
Perhaps none of you may know me or even have heard of me. Although I am a old PeterIte, it is through the Advertising Industry that I first met Nihal.
I had the pleasure of knowing Nihal years ago, perhaps in the early to mid '70's, when I entered the field of Advertising first at Zenith Advertising, then at Grant Advertising, later at De Alwis Advertising and finally at Creative Services Ltd. In all these places of work, I had the opportunity of visiting and meeting Nihal and Pat Deckker who predeceased him. As a youngster, I learnt a lot from Nihal's words of wisdom in his office in the Fort and continued to engage his services at his present location in Skelton Road.
Nihal was a straight and forthright man who cherished and loved his profession and was not one to compromise his professionalism for the sake of business or what he would term 'an idiotic Client'!
I would like to convey my sincere condolences to the Nihal's family and members of the Staff of Studio Times and will remember Nihal in my prayers.
Very Sincerely,
Herman Gunesekera
Editor's Note – Herman Gunesekera belongs to the Pre-70s Group. His two older brothers Elmo (deceased) and Frankie both attended SPC. Elmo played for the College 1st XI as an effective spinner.


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St. Peter’s win first-ever schools U19 Double-Wicket tournament

Posted on 28 April 2015 by admin

St. Peter's beat St. Sebasitan's to emerge champions of the St. Benedict's schools invitation double wicket tournament played on Sunday at the St. Benedict's College grounds in Kotahena. The tournament was organised in connection with the 150th jubilee of St. Benedict's College.
The Peterite batting pair of Chandula Jayamanne, their captain this year and Dineth Thimodya made 37 and then restricted the Sebastianite pair Avishka and Mishen Fernando to 27.
On their way to the final the Petes beat the Thomians and the Sebastianites beat the Mazadonians.
Peterite batsman Dineth Thimodya was adjudged the best batsman while Avishka Fernando of St. Sebastian's was adjudged the best bowler.
Algi Wijewickrema – SPC OBU


The Old Benedictines Sports Club and St. Benedict’s College Cricket Wing came forward to jointly organize Sri Lanka’s first ever invitational Inter schools Under 19 “Double Wicket” tournament as their contribution towards the festivities of their “Alma – Mater”.

The tournament took place on the 25th & 26th April at St. Benedict’s College Grounds, Kotahena, patronized by Provincial Visitor, Rev. Bro. Denzil Perera FSC. The official draw was held on the day of the launch and it was as follows;


All Pre Quarter Finals :

St. Peters College, Bambalapitiya Vs. St. Anne’s College, Kurunegala

St. Anthony’s College, Katugastota Vs. St. Benedict’s College Kotahena

St. Aloysious College, Galle Vs. Royal College, Colombo.

St. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia Vs. St. John’s College, Jaffna.

St. Joseph’s College, Darley Road Vs. De Mazanod College, Kadana

St. Mary’s College, Chillaw Vs. Ananda College, Maradana

St. Sebastian’s College, Moratuwa Vs. Prince of Wales College, Moratuwa.

Zahira College, Maradana Vs. De La Salle College, Mutwal.


The concept of this tournament was follows:

Each team will field two players each for a match; will be conducted on a Knock-out format, consisting 15 matches during the course of 02 days; There will be 09 neutral players to do the fielding, for each match from a pool of 15 players, being picked by the Organizing Committee, namely from Lumbini Maha Vidyalaya, Moratu Maha Vidyalaya & Thurstan College.

The duration for a match will consist of 04 overs; 02 overs each bowled by one side (02 players), while the other side (02 players) will bat all the overs; there will be a penalty of 05 runs against the batting side, each time a batsman gets out.

Tournament got under way with the first match been played between St Peters College Bambalapitiya and St Annes College Kurunagala. Peters won that match easily and adavnced to the quarter finals. In the second match the hosts took on against St Anthony’s College Katugasthota. Bens won the match by 29 runs. Royal College Colombo thrashed St Aloysius College Galle to earn their place at the quarter finals. S Thomas's College Mount Lavinia edged past St Johns College Jaffna in their PreQuater Finals while St Joseph’s College lost to De Mazenod College Kadana by 1 run in a nail biting encounter. St Sebastian’s College Moratuwa played agaisnt their arch rivals Prince of Wales and managed to win by 5 runs. The final Pre Quater final was played between Zahira College Maradana and De La Salle College Mutuwal. Zahira came on top and secured the final spot in the quarter finals.

Quarter finals took place on the second day. The hosts took on St Peters College in the first quarter final. It was a close match but ultimately St Peters came on top by only 3 runs. Second quarter final was between Royal College and S Thomas's College which saw the former beating their arch rivals by 4 runs in nail biting encounter. Ananda College after being given a walk over in their pre quarter finals, failed to make use of that chance when they met De Mazenod College in the quarter finals. De Mazenod winning by 10 runs sealed a spot in semi finals. Final quarter final was between the strong St Sebastian’s College and Zahira College. St Sebastian’s thrashed Zahira Collegeand claimed 37 run victory.

Four schools sealed their places in the semi finals. St Peters College took on S Thomas's College in the first semi final where the Peterites managed to score 41 runs in their four overs. The Thomians only managed to score 23 runs in their four overs giving St Peters College an easy win and a place in the final. The second semi final was played between St Sebastian’s College and De Mazenod College. De Mazenod batted first and scored 29 runs in their quota of four overs. It wasn't enough at the end when St Sebastian’s chased it down with ease. St Peters College and St Sebastian’s College rightfully earned their places in the final

The final was a hard fought match. St Peters College batted first and scored 37 runs which was an average score. St Sebastian’s were doing it easy as they scored runs easily. In the final over they only needed 15 runs. They manage to score boundaries off the first two balls but the Peterites managed to pull them back by taking wickets and finally restricting them for just 26 runs. Both teams played really well right throughout the tournament, at the end of the day St Peters College emerged champions in the first ever double wicket tournament. Dineth Thimodya yet again did his bit for his school and was named best bastman of the tournament. Avishka Fernando of St Sebastian’s College was given the best bowlers award for his figures of 5 for 17 runs. Savith Dilshan of Moratuwa Vidyalaya was named best fielder for his work behind the stumps.




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Pre-70s Old Peterites group get-together was a total success

Posted on 27 April 2015 by admin

TRAVICEOld Peterites of the pre-seventies era got together at Randiya Hotel in Moratuwa on May 24th and had a rollicking time. The event was subsidized by the Pre-70s Group and a nominal charge of Rs. 1000 was levied to defray incidental costs associated with the event. It was a celebration of fellowship and camaraderie combined with a nostalgic reunion of Old Peterites living in Sri Lanka and abroad.

Harold Jansz, President of the Pre-70s Group, Malcolm Atton his able General Secretary, Eraj Fernando, Algi Wijewickrema, Retd. Major Jayantha Atapattu, former IGP Sri Lanka Police Chandra Fernando, Indra Cumaranatunga, Angelo Gooneratne, 60s Peterite Cricket captain Travice Fernando, and opening pair of the 60s Ravi Fernando & Adithiya de Silva were all at hand to boost the attendance. A special guest was Upali Obeyesekere, President of the joint Josphian-Peterite Alumni Association of Canada who was on holiday in Sri Lanka.

A splendid time was had by all!

A “Stag” get together of the “Old Peterites’ Group of Pre 1970” will be held on Sunday, 24th May, 2015 at Hotel Randiya, 389 Koralawella, Moratuwa, from 10.00 A.M onwards. A great opportunity once again to meet and greet fellow Peterites’ of the Pre 1970 era.

The cost of participation is Rs.1,000/- per person and includes a welcome drink, buffet lunch, limited local hard liquor and beer, chasers and bites. You are also welcome to bring your own liquor including beer, free of corkage. A token will be issued on Registration at the event for the buffet lunch.

The subsidy extended to participants is made possible thanks to the generous support received from our fellow Peterites’ at our annual get together held in November, 2014. As participation is subsidised you will appreciate if we restrict participation only to those old boys who left college in 1970 or prior to that.

We look forward to welcome many of you to the stag get together. Please register early through anyone of the committee members listed below.

Yours in fellowship,


Harold Jansz David Crusz

President (MB 0777328633) Chairman Events Sub Committee (MB 0776261001)



General Committee 2014-2015:-

President – Harold Jansz,

Immediate Past-President – Maj. Jayantha Atapattu (Retd)(mb 0777310434)

Senior Vice-President – Harindra Sirisena (mb 0777345967)

Vice-President – Algi Wijewickrema (mb 0767730441)

Hony. General Secretary – Malcolm Atton,(mb 0777634590),

Hony. Asst. Gen.Secretary – David Crus (mb 0776261001)

Hony. Treasurer – Nihal Wijeratne (mb 0714018049)

Hony. Asst. Treasurer – Srinath Fernando (mb 0714945518)

Committee Members – Hilal Abdulla (mb 0777341999), Erajh Balasuriya (mb 0777313724), Anton Blake (mb 0777440125), Howard Daniels (mb 0773161601, Ranjith de Silva (mb 0770745773), Stanley Lumanauw (mb 0777786726), Rodney Martenstyn (mb- 0755001628), Cyril Wijesena (mb 0776698693),

Hector Pietersz (mb 0777378607), Mahinda Sarnapala (mb 0777261179)

Correspondence: Malcolm Atton, Hony.General Secretary – Mobile 0777634590

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Isipatana beat Peterities in 20-18 thriller

Posted on 24 April 2015 by admin

Inter-school Rugby.

Roshen Steelman in














Isipatana College, Colombo continued their unbeaten run as they beat St. Peter’s College, Bambalapitiya 20 (4 unconverted tries) points to 18 (1 goal, 1 unconverted tries and 2 penalties) in an Under-20 Singer inter-school Rugby encounter played at Bamabalapitiya yesterday.

St. Peter’s playing under lot of pressure, after having lost two games did not have enough fire power to overcame Patana defense line. Skipper Kevin Dixon was an exception.

Patana are faring badly with the boot in this year’s league and the trend continued yesterday.

Patana drew first blood when skipper Omalka Gunaratne, by far the best schools rugby player this season sneaked through few defenders to touch down near the right side of the post. Isuru Udayakumara failed to add the extra points as the score red five points to nil three minutes into the game.

Then Petes made some attacking moves to obtain a 25 meter penalty which was successfully booted by Sandesh Jayawickrama.

Patana’s winger Dilan Gallge got his act together, fended off more than two Peterities to touch down near the left flag corner. Isuru failed to add the extra points again.

Sandesh Jayawickrama did no mistake with his second penalty in the 28th minute with score line reading ten points to six.

Patana skipper Gunaratne who is the highest try scorer of the league scored his ninth try in the 36th minute off the driving maul as the half time score red 15 points to six.

In the second half, St. Peter’s broke the try deadlock when they scored the first try of the evening. Harshana Peiris crossed the try line left side of the post. Jayawickrama failed to add the extra points.

Then Rehan Silva came good for green shirts when he sneaked through few defenders to cross the try line. He took the score to 20 points to 11 in their favour.

The last try of the day came when centre player Nishan Perera ran collected a smart kick by Kevin Dixson to finish just right side of the post. Jayawickrama added the extra points as the game ended 20 points to 18.

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Featuring British politician Nirj Deva – he was educated at St. Joseph’s College

Posted on 24 April 2015 by admin

An Old Josephian, Niranjan Joseph De Silva Deva Aditya a.k.a. Nirj Deva is a pride to his alma mater. Please see below an interview conducted by Anusha David with the dynamic British politician! Editor, TSL


Anusha David spotlights the hottest styles and statements in and around Sri Lanka – from political leaders to celebrity CEOs, masters of the game to fashion icons and stars of the silver screen and stage. Here are society’s leaders talking about the determination, vision, smarts, competence and professionalism. Today, she speaks to Niranjan Joseph De Silva Deva Aditya.

Niranjan Joseph De Silva Deva Aditya FRSA DL (born 11 May 1948; commonly known as Nirj Deva) is a politician from the United Kingdom. A member of the Conservative Party, he has been a Member of the European Parliament representing South East England since 1999. He was previously a Member of Parliament (MP) in the British House of Commons from 1992 to 1997, representing the constituency of Brentford and Isleworth.

Deva was born into a politically active Sri Lankan family, and was raised in Britain. He was only the fourth Asian-born person to be elected a Member of the House of Commons,and was the first Asian-born person to be elected as a Conservative member of the European Parliament. He spent his primary and secondary education at St. Joseph's College. He holds Sri Lankan and British citizenship. Deva was educated at Loughborough University, where he completed a degree in Aeronautical Engineering and was subsequently a Postgraduate Research Fellow in Economics.

Deva's family has extensive business interests in Sri Lanka including tea, rubber and coconut plantations as well a distillery and residential property.

Deva is married to Indra – a French-speaking Mauritian. They have one son.

What is the extent of your political involvement in Sri Lanka?

I have basically no political involvement at all in Sri Lanka. What I have done over the past several years is that I have supported and helped whoever has been elected through a proper electoral procedure as Prime Minister or President. I am a member of the European Parliament, a British MP. Had I not been of Sri Lankan extraction but been British that is exactly what I would have done to support a friendly country and to support the legitimately elected government. A lot of Sri Lankans are very divisive in the way they think. It's either your camp or somebody else’s camp and they have been very puzzled by the fact that I can help Presidents Jayawardene, Premadasa, Chandrika, Ranil, President Rajapakse and now Ranil again, but it's my duty to help whoever has been elected and that’s what I have been doing.

After the result of the recent Presidential elections, what are the current perceptions of Sri Lanka within the European Parliament?

A very substantial change in perception that the new government of Sri Lanka is more agreeable to reconciliation, rehabilitation and forgiveness, than the previous government. I have to say that the Rajapakse government went out of its way to rapidly rebuild the destroyed areas of the North and East and resettle people very efficiently.

Do you see Sri Lanka’s relationship with the EU improving over the next decade?

Very much so. Sri Lanka is the EU’s largest trading partner, we have a historic relationship with Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka has three European countries whose histories are inextricably bound with that of hers; Portugal, Holland and Britain. Those ties can't be undone and there is a huge level of sympathy, sentiment and goodwill between Sri Lanka and the EU.

Do you think Sri Lanka needs to demonstrate substantive progress before its readmission to GSP+?

As a result of the programme that we have started with the new government, I am very confident that the 67 different steps that have to be taken before the EU will look at regranting GSP+ is under way but we will not grant GSP+ to a country that has been red flagged over the fishing business so it is a pre condition to getting GSP+ that we have a good fisheries policy in place and that we get the fishing ban lifted. It is only when the fishing ban is lifted that the application for GSP + can be extended.

With such a large number of interests across Sri Lanka’s business landscape, what do you think of the current government’s approach to the development of the private sector?

I think the private sector was taken aback by the severity of the budget in relation to windfall profits. I don’t think the message was explained properly as to what these taxes were. In Britain we levied taxes on windfall profits because we felt that those profits were made excessively or from a monopolistic point of view and that competition was not in operation, and when that happens both the Labour party and the Conservative party have introduced a one time windfall tax. I presume that is what your Finance Minister was doing when he introduced these taxes on the commercial sector as a one time tax, and that is some sort of recognition that in the previous regime they had an undue advantage.

You are of Rajasthani descent – can you elaborate on this?

Yes, if you read the Mahavamsa, my first ancestor Thakura Artha Adittiya came here at the time when a General called Mitta had seized the Sri Lankan throne during the Polonnaruwa Yapahuwa period and killed Buwanaka Bahu the V. My ancestor whose sister was married to the king – she was from the Udaipur family in Rajasthan; he came and chopped off the head of Mitta (it's all described in the Mahavamsa) and put Buwanaka Bahu the VI back on the throne. After that, members of the family were made Mandalika Rajas of Ratnapura and other places and there is a story of how Addittiya Bandara who wrote a very evocative love poem called Siri Bara Kuda Malaya for Siri Mal Kuda Menike, his wife to be (and this is part of Sri Lankan poetry) was then living in an area called the Four Korales in Ran Kothu Vila, when they got a Maha Sanasa for a big chunk of land between Moratuwa and Panadura to protect the sea coast (they were a military family you see) from pirates.

The family then went on to meet the Portuguese in battle and lost and so the family tree goes through all these very ancient Sanskrit Sri Lankan names and then suddenly you see Pedro, and Ignatius and Deodartus and so on and that is because we had to convert to the Catholic faith and then when the Dutch came, we got persecuted for being Catholics and then we had the British to get rid of the Dutch and I think we prospered quite well thereon. One branch of the family were the De Soysas, Sir Charles de Soysa and Lady De Soysa, Jusey De Silva’s daughter, so I’m really De Silva De Soysa, however when my father was at Oxford – some old lady had asked him if he was a Portuguese coolie, decided he had had enough of this and went through our old baptism certificates and changed our name. He was born Kingsley De Silva and died Kingsley Deva Addittiya.

Have you ever encountered any form of racism in your career? Judging by your performance it would seem not as last year you were re-elected for the fourth consecutive time with an increased share of the vote of 724,560 votes and being placed no. 2 on the list while your party in other regions of the country suffered a massive defeat at the hands of the newly-formed United Kingdom Independent Party which came first with the Conservative Party nationally trailing third behind the Labour Party which came second.

In my political career I must have shaken hands with over 2 million British people. At every election I go from house to house and the only form of racism I have encountered in my entire 30 odd years in British politics was when I was on the streets in Hammersmith, campaigning and an old lady came up to me and said why don’t I go back to the jungle from which I came? So I looked at her and said ‘Madam, 700,000 Indian, Pakistani and Sri Lankan soldiers died in two world wars so that you could tell me that in English rather than in German’! To which she screeched and ran away!

You have been called one of the greatest Parliamentarians in modern history. You have a very interesting story to tell; spanning a career where you worked with Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher, John Major, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and now David Cameron in the UK and Presidents Jayewardene, Premadasa, Wijetunga, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe and President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Sri Lanka, as well as other European and world leaders. Could you tell our readers a few highlights of your very interesting career?

Well I have been in politics for 45 years and in parliament for quite a long time. I was the first non white post colonial Conservative member of British parliament. I was the first Asian to be in government after the Second World War, post colonial in the British government in the Scottish office. Mr Keith Vaz came in after me. He was not in government. And I was then the first Asian born member of the European parliament. All this is a part of being there at the right time. In fact when I sat on the Conservative benches as the only brown face amongst all those white faces it was rather an odd feeling. Now we have eleven brown faces on the Conservative benches and one Cabinet minister! So I feel very proud of being a trail blazer, broke the glass ceiling so to speak. People would tell me ‘You are nuts. You are never going to be elected to the House of Commons’. People in Sri Lanka were laughing at me and saying you are completely mad! But it did happen. It wasn’t easy I had to go to 126 parilamentary meetings in 126 seats before I got my first seat in Hammersmith and then 48 interviews in 48 seats before I got Chiswick in Brentford Islesworth, who elected me to the British parliament. But I enjoyed it. Determination I suppose. The European parliament has been a very exciting development and it's been very satisfying to take money from rich people and give it to poor people.

You were awarded with the honorary title of Vishwa Keerthi Sri Lanka Abimani by Ven. Tallale Meththananda Thero, Chief Incumbent and Chief Adikarana Sanganayaka of the Saddharmakara Vidyaratne Privena, Pinwatta in Panadura. "For the first time this title was presented by a group of Buddhist Bikkus to a non-Buddhist person in Sri Lanka,” said Ven. Meththananda thero after conferring the title on you. What led to this?

I’m not sure but I think it was because of the work I did after the tsunami. We brought in about 400 million. We built homes, resettled people, gave them a livelihood; and I did it because that’s what I had to do and that’s what we do. But very kindly this group of Buddhist clergy recognized the work I had done and gave me this title.

What are your views of the BBS and their ‘performance during the last regime?

I think they tried to divide this country which is not a Buddhist thing to do at all. They are certainly not a part of civilized living. They are certainly not a part of the ancient and proud, tolerant, loving and caring Buddhist culture.

In 1985, you became the first Asian-born person to be appointed by Queen Elizabeth II to the office of Deputy Lieutenant for Greater London – a position which you hold for life. What led to this appointment?

I don’t quite know. I was very young, normally Deputy Lieutenants are very senior 60, 70 year olds, who have retired from whatever they were doing, generally generals from the army, admirals from the navy, or chairmen of banks; generally big shots. I was a mere 34 when I received a letter saying they wanted to appoint me, so I became the youngest ever to represent the Queen.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

Knowing that the money that we raise for international development actually goes to the people we want it to go to. We have some very satisfying results from the millennial development goals. We have almost eradicated malaria, polio, tuberculosis in certain parts of the world. We have fed millions and millions of people who would otherwise be dead. It's politics, where I am using the political will or the goodwill of the EU, especially David Cameron who ridfets 0.7 % of GNI for overseas development, even in a time of recession, so that poor people, dispossesed people, starving people are kept alive and fed. It's not enough though, so I’m thinking of new ways and I’m now getting the private sector involved in international development. I had a major conference on this in Brussels to see how private sector funds can be channelled and I have comes across astonishing companies where there’s 6 billion dollars of micro credits out there and their default rate is 1 %. And they are operating out of Switzerland. I have got all of them to agree to give $500 each to a group of women to give them a livelihood. Poultry or sewing, or catering, that way you are not just giving them a hand out but helping them stand on their own feet, create a business, possibly generate employment, it's very fulfilling.

What’s the best compliment you ever received?

That my fish dish was the best ever! The recipe was my invention.

What is your goal as a parent?

Leave one's children to get on with it, not to interfere.

What’s your most cherished family tradition?

Chrismas lunch and New Year's lunch. We all get together. It was started by my grandfather. 36 people sitting together and the Christmas pudding, burning the brandy, falling asleep afterwards; it's still something I do.

Who were your heroes or role models when you were a child?

The adventurers like Sir Francis Drake, Captain Cooke, Livingston, the discoverers. Those who were either perceived to be mad and didn’t count the risks. In that sense I admire the British people. They have done things which most other nations haven’t. On the 15th of June we celebrate the Magna Carta and the MEP, which is the first time in human history that a king agreed to live by the same laws as his subjects. Never before and even today in the European parliament I am immune to arrest because the European model doesn’t have this. A President of a country is immune to arrest. But the Prime Minister of England or the Queen's children are not immune to arrest. Princess Anne for instance has been hauled up for speeding. In Britain no one is above the law.

How do you like to relax?

Reading, used to play tennis, used to go horse riding, used to go swimming. Don’t do any of that now though. I used to be quite fit when I was young. I’m totally unfit now.

Which single book has greatly influenced you, and why?

Gosh I must have read over a 100,000 books! The history of the Second World War by Churchill I guess or the life of Gladstone. He used to cut down 20 trees everyday and would walk 30 / 40 miles everyday. He lived to the age of 96. Ask me for a film, I could answer that better. I saw this film recently and I must have seen it at least 10 times, it's called ‘A 100 Foot Journey’. It's about an Indian family who have a little restaurant in England and they decide to pack up and go off to France. They break journey in this little village and they camp opposite this restaurant and start making their curries and chapattis and end up by getting a Michelin star! How this Indian family who couldn’t speak a word of English managed all this – it's amazing.

Interviewed by Anusha David – Courtesy: LIFEonLINE

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Nihal Fernando – Old Peterite

Posted on 23 April 2015 by admin

ObituariesQuoting Ruwan Silva from Colombo.

Today's newspapers carry the news of the passing away of a great human being and true lover of Sri Lanka and nature – Nihal Fernando an old Peterite of the Fr. Nicholas Perera/Fr. Basil Wiratunga era.He founded Studio Times and was Sri Lanka's greatest photographer.There are many publications displaying his talents.His Handbook of the Ceylon Traveller should be read by anyone wanting to explore Sri Lanka.He was in the forefront of the protection of the environment specially the Eppawala issue

Ceylon Daily News – 23 April 2015

FERNANDO – NIHAL (Studio Times Ltd.) – Husband of Dodo, father of Anu and Yohan Weerasuriya, father-in-law of Christopher Silva and Nishka Wickramasingha, grandfather of Shenuka, Anya and Maya, passed away peacefully on 20th April 2015 and was cremated according to his wishes. Those who cherished him in life, please plant a tree in his memory. This would have been his wish. 18, Skelton Road, Colombo 05, 058796

St Peter's should be proud of Nihal Fernando though he was virtually unnoticed by Peterites.The late Maurice Perera wanted to hold an exhibition of Nihal's work together with other reputed Peterite artists but sadly it did not see the light of day with Maurice's demise and others did not seem to realise the value of Nihal
His obituary says that to plant a tree in memory would be best way to remember him.I wish Peterites do so where ever they may be
May his soul rest in peace.

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Nielhaan Samaranayake


Tribute to Dr. Nielhaan Samaranayaka by Prof. Wilfred Perera

Posted on 22 April 2015 by admin

Nielhaan Samaranayake A tribute to Dr. Nielhaan Samaranayaka by Professor Wilfred Perera.

I decided to write this appreciation for my worthy student of the NCMC. Dr. Nielhan Gerald Samaranayaka, a tall handsome perfect gentleman with a clean shaven head and face with an endearing personality. He had his primary education at St.Peter's College Colombo where he did brilliantly and was appointed the Head Prefect, Games Captain, President of the Drama and Debating Society and was awarded the prize for the best all round student for two years consecutively.

His father Dr. Gerald Samaranayaka, a good friend of mine was a well known General Practitioner. The doctor trio, Chris Raffel, B.P.N. Jayasekara and Samaranayaka carried out a very successful family practice at Galle Road, Wellawatta for over 30 years. He was a GP Obstetrician who attended to normal deliveries at St.Anne's Nursing Home Bambalapitiya and St. Michael's Nursing Home at Colpetty. He worked with the well- known consultant Prof. Henry Nanayakkara and assisted at his surgeries.

Athletics and rugby has been Nielhann's passion. He captained his school and university teams in both athletics and rugby and received colours from his school and the university for both. He did a diploma in sports medicine in Australia and has travelled abroad on many occasions with the national teams of Sri Lanka as the sports physician. Nielhann entered the North Colombo Medical College Ragama from the sixth batch and did brilliantly well. He obtained seven distinctions during his under graduate career and passed out in 1994 and was batch top in the final MBBS with a first class and distinctions in Obstetrician & Gynaeocology and Paediatrics. He was awarded the Frank Gunaratne gold medal for Paediatrics.

While awaiting his internship in 1995, I became not only his Guru but also mentor as he had decided to specialise in my field. He assisted me at my surgeries at St. Anne's Nursing Home and learnt all my surgical techniques. He obtained his specialist qualifications of MS OBGYN from the PGIM in 2001. He had the best results in the part 1 winning the gold medal. He had two years training as specialist registrar at the Prof. unit at the De Soysa Hospital and Teaching Hospital Sri Jayawardenapura prior to leaving for UK. I got him a place as registrar at Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport for one year under Dr. Asoka Weerakkody, who was my trainee at the Colombo South Hospital in 1972. After that he was the registrar in the Royal United Hospital, Bath for one year and returned to Sri Lanka after obtaining his MRCOG in 2002. After his return from UK he worked two years in the Prof. Unit as senior registrar at Mahamodara Teaching Hospital Galle.

I was expecting him to be an academic and join the Colombo Medical Faculty. He applied for a senior lecturer post, but for some reason or other he was not selected although he was best qualified for the post. Nielhann was thoroughly disillusioned after this and in 2004 joined the private sector as a visiting specialist obstetrician and gynaecologist and Laparoscopic surgeon at Nine Wells Mother and Baby Hospital and Joseph Frazer Hospital. His specialty was minimal access surgery in which he under went training and completed many advanced courses. He has had training in advanced Laparoscopic and Hysteroscopic surgery at KK Women's Hospital in Singapore for two years and also trained under Prof. Kurian Joseph in Chennai in 2007- 2009. He underwent advanced Foetal scanning under Prof. C. Anandakumar in Singapore University. He has attended many international conferences and made presentations through out the years.

He enjoyed reading, travelling and listening to music and most of all he enjoyed and found time to be with his wife and two children. Nielhann was always well dressed and had a very good rapport with his patients and nursing staff and others working in the hospitals. He worked with a smile and was jovial. He didn't like to live in the city and he bought a large property at Thalangama South on Lake road close to the lake and built his residence there. I have many times been to his residence and enjoyed his hospitality where he used to have many parties for his friends. He and his wife Dilko were perfect hosts.

Nielhann was very loyal to his alma mater and he did tremendous work for the College as President of the OBU for several years. I had the privilege of delivering normally his daughter Oshadi and his son Kaveesha. I had the pleasure of knowing Dilko's parents Ratna Deshapriya Senanayaka and Gloria. I had operated on her at St. Anne's Nursing Home many years ago. They entertained me in Jakarta when I attended a conference there. Her husband was the ambassador at that time. Nielhann joined the Volunteer Force of the Sri Lanka Navy. I was very happy when a Naval Officer who paid a tribute to him at Kanatta mentioned that as Surgeon Commodore he had conducted weekly clinics for the wives of the Naval personnel and performed over 260 operations at the Naval Hospital.

Nielhann was conferred the Fellowship of the Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists UK. He had made arrangements to fly to Australia in April to attend the RCOG Congress where he was to receive his Fellowship Certificate from the President. How ever the Sri Lanka College did not consider awarding the Fellowship to him. During the past 10 years of working as consultant he has rendered a great service to his country.

It was very unfortunate that at the height of his career he had to leave the world. Just six months ago he was diagnosed with a cancer of the pancreas, and had a successful operation at Colombo South Teaching Hospital by gastro enterological surgeon Professor Mohan De Silva and his team and made a rapid recovery. How ever he developed secondaries in the liver and died two weeks after his 49th birthday. His wife Dilko was a tower of strength to him during his illness. I was amazed at the very large crowd that attended his final farewell at Kanatta, which I have never seen in my life. The Navy had organised the proceedings meticulously. It was a very solemn final farewell with a gun salute by the Navy. This brought to a close the life of a very lovable medical professional. Nielhaan has fought the good fight and run the race.

Good bye Sweet Prince. May the host of angels carry you to paradise to be with the Heavenly Father for ever, and where we fervently hope we will meet on that beautiful shore one day.

Professor Wilfred Perera.

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St.Peter’s trounce Wesley 45 – 22

Posted on 10 April 2015 by admin

Meanwhile St.Peter's College trounced Wesley College by 45 points (five goals, two tries) to 22 (one goal, three tries) in their inter-schools under 20 rugby encounter played at Longden Place yesterday after leading 26 – 5 at lemons.

Centre Nishon Perera (two), Prop Forward Rahul Delpechithra (one), Hooker Raveen Yapa (one), Winger Diyath Fernando (one), Full back Kevin Dickson (one) and Number Eight Shehan de Silva (one) scored tries for Peterites while Sandesh Jayawickrama converted five tries.

Chamika Samaratunga (two), Asanka Samarawickrama(one) and Rasthan Sahabdeen (one) scored tries for the Wesleyites with Samaratunga adding extra points to a try scored by himself.

Irshad Cader refereed.

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St. Peter’s beaten: Bens crowned Under 19 Schools Twenty20 champions

Posted on 09 April 2015 by admin

SBC Team 2015St. Benedict’s College won the Schools T20 crown 2015 when they defeated St. Peter’s College by 22 runs in the final played at R. Premadasa Stadium on Thursday.

The Benedictine skipper Mahel Jayalath won the toss and elected to bat. The left-handed Mahela and his opening partner Thulina Dilshan got their team off to a flying start as they stroked 71 runs for the first wicket in just 7.1 overs to set the tone.

Thulina made his knock of 45 in just 20 deliveries. The Bens innings fell apart when spin was introduced by the Peterite skipper Chandula Jayamanne.

Left-arm spinner Ashanth Malka wrecked through the Benedictine batting line up taking 5 wickets for just 15 runs. Right-arm off spinner Savin Gunasekara captured 3 wickets as St. Benedict’s were bowled out for 114 in the 20th over after being 71 for no loss at one stage.

St. Peter’s chasing a modest target of 115 runs to win the trophy lost their first 7 wickets for just 20 runs on the board after completion of only 4.4 overs. Right-arm fast-bowler Geethika Fernando was the chief wrecker taking 4 wickets.

After being 20/7, wicket-keeper batsman Lakshina Rodrigo and all-rounder Taneesha Weerakoon constructed a 58-run stand for the 8th wicket in 60 balls but could not take their team over the winning line as the Benedictine bowlers won them the game in the 18th over.

Right-arm off break bowler Madushan Kularathne scalped 2 wickets as well. Lakshina took only 33 balls for his 39 while Taneesha consumed 40 balls for his 25 unbeaten runs. The Peterite innings ended with 92 runs on the board.


Chief Scores:

St. Benedicts College – 114 all out in 19.3 overs: Thulina Dilshan 45, Mahel Jayalath 24, Ashanth Malka 5/15, Savin Gunasekara 3/23.

St. Peters College – 92 all out in 17.3 overs: Lakshina Rodrigo 39, Taneesha Weerakoon 25*, Geethal Fernando 4/18, Madushan Kularathne 2/7.

S. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia clinched the 3rd place beating Lumbini College by 46 runs earlier in the day. Left-handed Nipuna Gamage smashed a stunning 73 runs unbeaten for the winners while Sachitha Jayathilake did the trick with the ball taking 6 wickets from his right-arm leg break deliveries for the school by the sea.


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Peterites beat Thomians to advance to Twenty20 final

Posted on 05 April 2015 by admin

April 5, 2015, Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Chandula Jayamanne’s effort with both bat and ball helped St.Peters become one of the finalists of schools U19 T20 tournament when St.Peters over-powered high-riding St.Thomas, Mt.Lavinia in the first semi finals concluded today at Kettarama. St.Thomas opted to bat first after they won the toss hoping to give their opponents a bigger target, but St.Peters bowlers using the early morning conditions at Kettarama wicket for their advantage turned in niggardly spells keeping St.Thomas down to a modest total before Chandula Jayamanne’s  unbeaten 43 following his two wickets in Thomian’s innings and Savin Gunasekara’s 28 charged St.Peters to their third successive win in the tournament that ensured their place in the finals to be played on 9th April at the same venue.

In an innings all top-order batsmen failed, Sachitha Jayathilaka (26) and Dilendra Gunathilaka (20*) scored most runs for Thomians in their  total of 127 for 8 in 20 overs after taking the first lease and in reply Bambalapitiya boys reached the target with 6.2 overs and six wickets to spare.


Chief scores

 St.Thomas College, Mt.Lavinia

127-8 in 20 overs (Sachitha Jayathilaka 26, Dilendra Gunathilaka 20*, Vinu Mohotty 2-21, Ravindu Silva 2-25, Chandula Jayamanna 2-19)

St.Peters College, Bambalapitiya

130-4 in 13.4 overs (Chanduala Jayamanne 43*, Saveen Gunasekara 28, Nipuna Gamage 2-29

St. Peter’s booked a berth in the final of the Inter School Under-19 Twenty20 Tournament as Chandula Jayamanne led Petes’ reply with an unbeaten 43 runs to beat S. Thomas’ by six wickets in the semi-final, played at the R. Premadasa Stadium on Saturday. Chasing 128 runs to win Petes lost four wickets for 77 runs but Jayamanne’s quick knock of 43 runs, inclusive of four sixes and two fours, ensured that they reach the target with six overs to spare.


  • S. Thomas’ 127 for 8 in 20 overs (Sachitha Jayathilaka 26, Dilendra Gunathilaka 20 n.o.; Ravindu Silva 2/25, Chandula Jayamanna 2/19, Vinu Mohotty 2/21)
  • St. Peter’s 130 for 4 in 13.4 overs (Dineth Thimodya 19, Chanduala Jayamanne 43 n.o., Saveen Gunasekara 28; Nipuna Gamage 2/29). (RF)

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