ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Aragalaya versus Struggles

A Story of Inclusions and Exclusions

The impact and relevance of protests demanding President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s resignation, referred to as the aragalaya, need to be scrutinised with respect to the issues related to the ethnic conflict, the truth and justice demands of the Tamil community and post-war state action, such as militarisation, which exacerbated the discrimination and violence suffered by the Tamils.

Aragalaya means “the struggle” in Sinhala language. The word bec­ame commonplace during the protests against Gotabaya Rajapaksa and his government in 2022. But what does aragalaya mean to a Tamil, who has no knowledge of Sinhala?

The protests in 2022 were unique in that they were not organised by political parties or trade unions. The flagship protest site that came into being at Galle Face at the centre of Colombo called ­GotaGoGama was especially unique in its heterogeneity in terms of social groups that participated. The moment was hailed as one of unity. But was it?

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Updated On : 26th Dec, 2022
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