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Sri Lankan author Shehan Karunatilaka wins Booker Prize

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The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida by Sri Lankan author – Shehan Karunatilaka, has won the Booker Prize.
The Sri Lankan writer’s novel is about a photographer who wakes up dead, with a week to ask his friends to find his photos and expose the brutality of the Sri Lankan civil war.

Camilla, the Queen Consort, presented the prize, and the author said it had been “an honour and a privilege” to be on the shortlist. Pop singer Dua Lipa was the star guest.

The prestigious £50,000 prize, for a single work of fiction published in the UK in English, also gives the other five writers on the shortlist £2,500 each.

The writer said he decided in 2009 to write “a ghost story where the dead could offer their perspective” after the end of the Sri Lankan civil war, “when there was a raging debate over how many civilians died and whose fault it was”.

Karunatilaka said as he accepted his prize: “My hope is that in the not too distant future… Sri Lanka has understood that these ideas of corruption and race-baiting and cronyism have not worked and will never work. “I hope it’s in print in 10 years… if it is, I hope it’s written in a Sri Lanka that learns from its stories, and that Seven Moons will be in the fantasy section of the bookshop, next to the dragons, the unicorns and will not be mistaken for realism or political satire.”

The opening of the book sets the slightly absurd tone. It starts in the afterlife, which turns out to be bureaucratic and banal. It then flips back and forth between the underworld and the real world during the Sri Lankan civil war in 1990 as Maali Almeida tries to work out who killed him – and why.

Shehan Karunatilaka says the book has been in his head for 10 years and goodness his brain must have been busy. But he struggled to find an international publisher.

The Seven Moons of Maali is Karunatilaka’s second novel, having previously won awards including the Commonwealth Book Prize for his debut book Chinaman, which was called the “second best cricket book of all time” by cricketers’ almanac Wisden.

Born in 1975, the writer has also worked as an advertising copywriter, and his songs, scripts and stories have been published in Rolling Stone, GQ and National Geographic.

He is the second Sri Lankan-born author to win the prize, following Michael Ondaatje for The English Patient (1992).

(Excerpts : BBC)

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“Ambiguous: A Painfully Honest Depiction of the Story of Our Lives”

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“Ambiguous: A Painfully Honest Depiction of the Story of Our Lives” is an exhibition by Rajitha Rupasinghe in collaboration with the Colombo Think Tank, it will be held on the 28th of April 2024  from 3.00 pm to 5.00 pm in front of the National Art Gallery, combo 07.

The exhibition will discuss the spatial aspect of artworks, the affordability of space, and the unspoken background stories and drives behind artworks.

Rajitha Rupasinghe was trained as an architect from the University of Moratuwa and holds a bachelor’s degree in Architecture. His enthusiasm for art history and cultural theory was restrengthened by the postgraduate Institute of Archeology, the University of Kelaniya, and the Colombo Think Tank. His work is closely related to historical and cultural criticism of art and architecture.    

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Nelum Pokuna to be decked with ‘Colours of Love’ 

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‘Navage Gee : Colours of Love’, a musical extravaganza featuring beloved tunes of prominent music director and composer Navarathna Gamage, will be held this weekend at the Nelum Pokuna auditorium, Colombo.

The show, organized by the Old Boys’ Association of Nalanda College, will be held on both April 20 and April 21 at 6.30pm.

The musical evening will feature the work of Navarathna Gamage spanning across 03 decades and 42 well known singers in the country.

Tickets : Sumudu : 071 798 9189 / Kasun 071 968 765

Online:

April 20:

April 21:

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Court restrains Senaka Batagoda from singing 7 songs

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The Colombo Commercial High Court yesterday issued an Enjoining Order restraining popular singer Senaka Batagoda from singing seven popular songs including “Api Kavuruda” and “Api Senasille”.

The order was issued by Colombo Commercial High Court Judge Priyantha Fernando after considering a complaint filed under the Intellectual Property Act by musician Janath Kulathilake who was the combined lyrics, melody and music compositor of those seven songs sung by Senaka Batagoda.

The Colombo High Court Judge also censured the giving of those songs to other parties without written permission of the plaintiff.

The seven songs which was restrained under the enjoining order are “Api Kavuruda”, “Api Senasille”, “Alu Yata Gini”, “Rastha”, “Heena Walata Panak Thiyenawa”, “Senasuma” and “Hodama de”.

The plaintiff informed court that the intellectual property right related to these songs is a right that cannot be violated by anyone and singer Senaka Batagoda had violated the intellectual property rights of the plaintiff.

Considering these facts, an Enjoining Order was issued against singer Senaka Batagoda restraining him from singing seven songs by the Colombo Commercial High Court.

The case was filed by musician Janath Kulathilake alleging that singer Senaka Batagoda has violated his intellectual property right and copyright by not giving the economic benefits due to him. The plaintiff also seeks Rs.100 Mn compensation for the damage committed by the accused.Attorneys Thilini Hewawitharana and Sandun Senadhipathi appeared for the plaintiff.

(dailynews.lk)

(This story, originally published by dailynews.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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