Announcement: Re-defining the Civil Societies in Asia

The attempt by the Sri Lanka Guardian is to create an accurate database on most of the active civil society organisations and bring their viewpoints to the general public. This, we believe, will be helpful to all concern parties to identify, and exercise the fruitful long-term journey.


Note from the Editorial Board

(July 12, 2017, Colombo – Boston – London – Hong Kong SAR, Sri Lanka Guardian) We are happy to announce our new initiative “Re-defining the Civil Societies in Asia” where we at the Sri Lanka Guardian will bring broader perspectives and more detailed narrations on the civil society organisations in the region. Our aim is to promote the organisations working hard against any form of violence and intimidation while enhancing accountability and transparency in their progressive managing process.

Re-defining Civil Societies in Asia was initiated by Nilantha Ilangamuwa, founding editor in chief, prior to the occasion of its tenth anniversary.

The Sri Lanka Guardian was founded in August 2007 and since then the newspaper has gone through the most difficult time due to the suppression of freedom of expression. As a result of this the Sri Lanka Guardian was banned for its viewers in Sri Lanka for five years, but with the dawn of more enlightened politics in Sri Lanka in 2015, the newspaper was released to the general public again. Hundreds of thousands of viewers and hundreds of writers around the globe stand with the Sri Lanka Guardian and with their helping hands we can now move forward.

What did we learn?

Any form of suppression is a deadly tool of the coward. That is nothing but an indefinite obstacle to free society and personal liberty. There is no doubt by anyone who believes in freedom that they must oppose suppression of any kind by any means necessary.

Emerging Civil Societies in Asia are a result of socio-political suppression by regimes in Asia and elsewhere. Government sponsored suppression has wounded freedom and evaporated the hope for achieving civil liberty by replacing it with a new form of slavery. Civil Movements, many people, believe is a strong alternative to achieve standard of life with dignity and integrity.

Therefore, Civil Societies mushroomed and billions in funds were allocated by donors, mostly in the West, hoping to enhance their objectives. But, decades later, these same questions remain unanswered.

Was/Is it a meaningful mission?
Does it help the victims?
Do the civil societies play a significant role to improve the socio-economic conditions in Asia?
Are they accountable to each other?
Do they follow the managing principles to enhance comfortable working environments?
What is the actual reputation those Civil Societies perceived among the general public?
What is the present situation of the social crisis the region is facing?

In an interview with us, a well-known human rights defender in the region, Rev. Fr. George Pulikuthiyil said, “… there are around 3.5 million NGOs in India and according to reports, over 70% of them are fake. I understand those “fake” organisations never file necessary documents to the government, no proper auditing, no properly constituted governing body, no annual returns, no audit reports etc.” This ground-breaking statement has alerted people to the scenario and the danger facing the dignified civil society organisations in the region.

In fact, many, not only in the region but around the world have lost faith in civil society organisations and believe that it is high time for, not only the societies themselves but also the donors and other interested parties to rethink and redesign the strategies in order to achieve their objectives.

The attempt by the Sri Lanka Guardian is to create an accurate database on most of the active civil society organisations and bring their viewpoints to the general public. This, we believe, will be helpful to all concern parties to identify, and exercise the fruitful long-term journey.

We would like to invite the civil society organisations in Asia to share their views with our readers. If you are interested send us an email with your detailed profile, the name of a contact person and how we can reach you. Reach us at feed@srilankaguardian.org

Let’s unmask the injustice!
Let’s talk about your activities!
Let’s fight against wrongdoings!

Author: Sri Lanka Guardian

Sri Lanka Guardian has been providing breaking news & views for the progressive community since 2007. We are independent and non-profit.