My People and Their Resilience

Hansani Bandara

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For the longest time I was convinced that this country has no hope. I was certain that the people of this country (including me) will never have the courage or the need to take a stand and demand for change.

Today, the very people whom I was disappointed in, proved me wrong. They gave me hope, courage and the will to take a stand.

I saw how humanity reigned, when multiple people were handing out water bottles, milk packets and ice cream for those protesting. I saw how people were encouraging each other to battle on. I saw how everyone looked out for each other.

I saw the unity in people when everyone stood in solidarity to raise their voice, putting aside race, religion or ethnicity. I saw unity when our Muslim brothers and sisters came to participate despite the fast, knowing full well that they will have to protest in the hot sun with no water to quench their thirst. Unity was celebrated when the everyone had organized a communal ifthar.

I saw love for the motherland when everyone was so careful not to litter. Even if a person or two would litter, five others would rush to pick it up and dispose it properly.

What I saw at Galle Face today is not just a protest, but it is the Sri Lankn spirit, united as one to free our motherland.

To the powers that be, listen to the pulse of the people. Listen to what united Sri Lankans are asking of you. Listen for the sake of the country and future generations.

Go home.