fifty years ago May 29, 1970 Archives

Ceylon’s Choice

(From an editorial)

What was one of the closest fought elections in Ceylon’s history has not only given a landslide victory to the united front of three parties — led by Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike, but has returned her own Sri Lanka Freedom Party with a clear-cut majority. By becoming again Ceylon’s Prime Minister, she will be raising the world tally of women holding such high office to three, in the company of Mrs. Indira Gandhi and Mrs. Golda Meir of Israel. With political pulse-feelers predicting a neck-to-neck between the ruling United National Party of Mr. Dudley Senanayake and the leftist United Front, if not a decisive verdict in favour of the U.N.P., the results must have taken many by surprise. The heavy polling — as high as 85 per cent — testifies to the keen interest of the population in the outcome, while the peaceful voting is an index of its maturity as a people wedded to democracy. The rout of the U.N.P., in spite of its excellent five-year record in office, may be the price that a government in office has often to pay for just being that. The break-through in agricultural production that it achieved, bringing Ceylon within sight of self-sufficiency in rice, has evidently cut little ice with the voters. The shortages that are inescapable of notice in a developing economy, the sizable unemployment among educated youth and rising prices seem to have served as effective ammunition in the hands of the main rival party to discredit those in power.

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Printable version | Jul 2, 2020 1:18:29 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/archives/ceylons-choice/article31697735.ece

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