Journalists

Sirilal Kodikara

Sirilal Kodikara is a novelist, poet, journalist, and radio play writer who writes in Sinhala. He was a Buddhist priest in the early part of his life.

Work

He started his journalistic career in 1948 writing for a weekly Sinhala newspaper, Sinhala Jathiya. Later he worked under Editor-in-Chief D. B. Dhanapala at the newspaper Davasa, founded in 1961 by M. D. Gunasena. This period of journalism by Kodikara and his contemporaries has been described as “a golden era in the history of local media in Sri Lanka”. Later Kodikara wrote for the newspapers AththaHeta, and Ravaya. He has authored many books on various subjects.

Sirilal Kodikara is famous for his stint as a journalist of now defunct Aththa (Truth) newspaper. His daily column “Ranchagoda Lamaya”, in the form of a two stanza poem, was heavily laced with biting criticism of whomever was in power and was very popular during the 1970s and 80s. In addition to his short stories, poems, and novels, he wrote “Mahawansa Vimansana” (non-fiction) exploring the myths of the chronicle Mahawamsa. His “Manasa Vila” was produced as an opera by Premasiri Khemadasa.

He received a 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Editors’ Guild of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Press Institute.

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