APSL 10th Anniversary Celebrations Report

APSL celebrated its 10th Anniversary in grand style with a Symposium followed by a Dinner Dance held at the Grange City Hotel, Tower Hill, London on 21st June 2014.

Celebrating the tenth anniversary in the United Kingdom for a Sri Lankan Association is a very significant event and therefore this year the APSL executive committee decided to allocate all the proceedings from this event to a selected project for alleviating the Chronic Kidney Disease in Sri Lanka.

Both events were well attended by the members, their families and well wishers.

The occasion was graced by the presence of Her Excellency Mrs Kshenuka Senewiratne, Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of External Affairs in Sri Lanka (a former Sri Lanka High Commissioner for Sri Lanka in the United Kingdom and a past Patron of APSL) and His Excellency Dr Chris Nonis, the current High Commissioner for Sri Lanka in the United Kingdom and the current Patron of the association.

Symposium – Achievements Sky is the Limit

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Mr Mervyn Silva (President, APSL) welcomed the attendees and moderated the Symposium with Dr Mahesh de Silva (General Secretary, APSL).

The Symposium  was addressed by the following three eminent Sri Lankan professionals who have reached extraordinary heights in their careers.

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Professor Terrance Fernando – Director of THINK lab at the University of Salford
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Professor Mrs. Shervanthi Homer-Vanniasinkam – Consultant Vascular Surgeon, The General Infirmary, Leeds, Honorary Professor, Division of Surgery and International Services, University of London

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Professor Chnadra Wickramasinghe – An internationally renowned Astronomer and Honorary Professor and Director of the Buckingham centre of Astrology at the University of Buckingham.

In line with the theme of the Symposium the speakers gave highly inspirational accounts of how they were able to achieve such heights in their respective disciplines and the work they are currently engaged in their respective fields.

The interactive Q&A session at the end of the presentations gave the audience an opportunity to ask several questions in relation to their speeches.

During the Symposium the following APSL project Leaders also gave presentations on their respective projects outlining the work done so far and what is planned in the future.

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Mr. Rohan de Alwis (Immediate Past President) – “We Sri Lanka” . This project focuses on the reconciliation between the Sri Lankan communities living in the UK and Mr. De Alwis gave an account of the many events carried out under this project since the commencement of the project in 2010.

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Professor I M Dharmadasa (Past President) – “APSL Awards Scheme”. Professor Dharmadasa explained the two APSL Awards Scheme projects carried out in Sri Lanka by APSL to date; The essay competition on ‘How to develop Sri Lanka’ for school children and the competition for  proposals on the theme ‘converting green energy ideas into green products’.

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Mr Thushara Madurasinghe (Treasurer APSL) – “Eastern Values – Living in the UK”. Mr. Madurasinghe outlined the objectives of this project, where speeches targeted to second or third generation Sri Lankan children on how to lead a successful life in the UK while preserving the Sri Lankan culture and its values. He also gave a brief account of the events held to date mainly at the Birmingham Jethawana Buddhist Vihara.

Dinner Dance

The Symposium was followed by the highlight of the 10th Anniversary Celebrations, the grand Dinner Dance to the music of the most popular band in the UK – “Sky High”.

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The evening event began with the welcome address by APSL President Mr Mervyn Silva, who gave an account of the work carried out by APSL during the past ten years fulfilling the objectives of the association.

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Mr. Mervyn Silva’s speech was followed by the keynote address by Mrs Kshenuka Senewiratne. During her speech she thanked the APSL for inviting her for this important occasion and praised the work done by APSL over the past ten years for the benefit of the Sri Lankan community in the UK and also in Sri Lanka. She also mentioned APSL is unique in comparison to other organisations due to the diversity of the membership and the demonstration and maintenance of very high standard of professionalism in all its activities. She also gave an account of the development work undertaken by the current Sri Lankan government under the leadership of His Excellency Mahinda Rajapakse, President of Sri Lanka and requested APSL to join hands with the government’s development programmes in whatever way taking the country forward to the next decade as a developed country.

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His Excellency Dr Chris Nonis also addressed the gathering with his inimitable style and he also praised the good work done by the APSL for the benefit of the Sri Lankans here in the United Kingdom and Sri Lanka. Furthermore he expressed his continuous support to the association.

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Maintaining the theme of the event on supporting a project to alleviate the Chronic Disease in Sri Lanka, Mr Leslie Dep (Immediate Past General Secretary) gave a presentation on the current status of this disease, the projects which can help prevent this disease spreading further by providing purified water in the affected regions and how to support the people suffering from CKD and their families. CKD is a killer disease rapidly spreading among the farming communities in the districts of Anuradhapura, Medawachchiya and Vavuniya and requires immediate and effective assistance from everyone to completely eradicate this problem.

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A novel idea of a “Dutch Auction” conducted by Mr Ranjan Perera (a Vice President of APSL) was highly entertaining with the participation of everyone for raising significant amount of funds for the above cause. In addition, the raffle draw organised by Mrs Gayani Senaratne (Membership Secretary) was also successful raising  a record amount of funds.

The members and their guests were treated to a sumptuous authentic Sri Lankan dinner and special thanks go to “Sky High” for their beautiful lively music keeping everyone on toes until very late into the night.

  • APSL wishes to thank the following sponsors who supported our event by      providing adverts for the souvenir or raffle draw prices; Trico Freight, UK
  • Glen carriers, UK
  • Nandy and Co Solicitors, UK
  • Magna Arts, UK
  • Lewke Printers, UK
  • The Royal Calibre Group of Companies of Sri Lanka in the United Kingdom
  • John Keels Residential Projects (Private Ltd), Sri Lanka
  • Commercial Bank, Sri Lanka
  • Inforgrid Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, Sri Lanka

We also wish to thank the following local media for publicising the event adverts.

  • Newslanka
  • Sesatha Web
  • SL Events Web
  • Serendib News
  • Lanka Times Web

With great pleasure we wish to offer our sincere thanks and gratitude to all those who attended both events and especially to Her Excellency Mrs Kshenuka Senewiratne who came all the way from Sri Lanka accepting our invitation to attend this event showing her admiration and  appreciation to APSL.  We also wish to offer our thanks to His Excellency Dr Chris Nonis for attending both events and for supporting APSL events over the years.

Finally many thanks to the 10th Anniversary organising committee lead by Dr Andrew Nayagam (Past President) ,Dr Mahesh de Silva (General Secretary) and Mr. Thushara Madurasinghe (Treasurer) for all the hard work carried out with the fullest corporation and support form all other members of the executive committee to make this event a very big success in achieving the main objective of the event.

Article prepared by Leslie Dep (Immediate Past General Secretary)

View Sysposium photos

View Dinner Dance photos

Ask the Accountant Event – 2

Suraj  and Lushani

It is unusual to start an article by stating that we were fortunate to listen to four excellent presentation by accounting, legal and management professionals, the event organised by the Association of Professional Sri Lankans(APSL) was held at the Sri Lankan High Commission in London on the 18 Jan 2014 in our continuing “Ask the Expert” series.

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The first speaker Mr Suraj Wijendra gave an overview of the UK economy, with some crystal gazing into the future on topics such as signs of recovery, emerging trends and 2014 & beyond.
Suraj, graphically illustrated the trend of a declining manufacturing sector in the 70’s to an ever increasing service sector in the UK economy and provided an insight to the current UK debt, trends in employment, wages and inflation. He complimented his rational with an analysis of the housing market and the growth of retail sales via the internet.
Further, he concluded by stating that the UK will remain the fastest growing major European economy in 2014.

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Mr Rohan de Alwis a solicitor by profession, presented “Successful personal investing in Sri Lanka and the UK” and gave an insight into savings, surplus funds, with suggestions as to how to use extra cash to stay ahead of inflation.
Rohan’s presentation covered the topics of investments, how to invests, various methods of investing and the associated risks factors were explained and stressed the importance of retirement planning and ways to minimise your tax exposure with a poignant reminder that death and tax are two things you cannot avoid but taxes, with the right planning, can be minimised.

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The next speaker, Mr Thushara Madurasinghe gave an equally excellent presentation on “How to Budget & Manage Finances” with a simple suggestions to save £10000pa !!!, by tracking your expenses, the pros and cons of using credit cards, credit fitness and the importance of protecting your identify and emphasised the use of the internet to research websites such as Quidco for refunds on your purchases, ways to reduce the cost of rail tickets, energy and insurance bills to get the best discounts.

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Finally, our last speaker was Mrs Lushani Kodituwakku who gave a presentation on “Managing small and Medium Businesses” stressed the importance of three key areas ; understanding your business, how to survive the current market and raising finance & succession planning, with emphasis on knowing your customer with a clear vision of the end objectives and goals.

The meeting was extremely well attended with over 50 participants and was concluded with a lively Q&A session.

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Mr Ranjan Perera delivered the vote of thanks on behalf of the APSL President Mr Mervyn Silva and the executive committee.

9th AGM and Dinner Dance

The Association of Professional Sri Lankans in the UK (APSL) held its 9th Annual General Meeting on Saturday 27 th April 2013 at the City Grange Hotel,  London.

After two years as President of APSL, Mr. Rohan de Alwis stepped down and Mr. Mervyn Silva, Business Development Manager at NHS Bradford and Airedale was elected as the new President for the coming year.

Mr. Leslie Dep, General Secretary, presented the annual report for the year 2012 to 2013.   PHOTO


1. “We Sri Lanka”: Project Leader Mr. Gihantha Jayasinghe: For the third year running, the We Sri Lanka event was held on the 6th October at Birbeck College, University of London. This successful event had the main objectives of reconciliation and rebuilding of the war affected areas in Sri Lanka . The proceedings from the event have been allocated to several charities in Sri Lanka including the Mettha Foundation.

2. Research Symposium: Project Leader Dr Mahesh De Silva: For the second year, this event was held at the Hilton Sheffield Park Hotel in Sheffield on 17 th November 2012. The symposium consisted of three sessions; Engineering and Built Environment Research, Poster Session and Medical, Biological Sciences and Chemistry research.

3. Award Scheme 2: Project Leader Prof I.M Dharmadasa:  The second Award Scheme project was conducted this year with a competition for submitting proposals for converting Green Energy Ideas into viable Green Energy Products. The  objective of this competition was to promote green ideas into viable business ventures. Fifteen proposals were received and the results of this scheme announced at the Dinner Dance were as follows;

Four Winners:

-1. Mrs W. P. Somawathie: Ranrasa Products, food drying and packaging centres around the country.

-2. Mr Lal Wickramasinghe: Hemp (Pan) Industry Centres on a commercial level all over the country.

-3. Mr N. Geekiyanage; Duru Maduru, Mosquito repellent from betel leaves and solar energy.

-4.Mr.M.Hettiarachchi : Giridisia Project for liquid manure from leaves and sticks for power generation.

Three Runners Up

-1. Cottage industry using Vetakolu fibres.

-2. City development – Bio Gas Project

-3. Milk Production centres – for food and manure production

The four winners will receive a cash prize of Rs. 25,000, a trophy and a plaque.

The award ceremony details will be announced later. The Sri Lankan newspapers sponsored the publicity.

4. ‘Ask The Expert’ Series: Project leader Dr. Andrew Nayagam

Two events were held under this series.

– ‘Ask The lawyer’. This event was held on 26th January at the Sri Lankan High Commission, by three lawyers practising in the UK

– ‘Ask the Doctor’ – This event was held on 6th March at the Sri Lankan High Commission by four doctors working in the UK

5. ‘Living in the UK’ – Project leader Mr. Thushara Madurasinghe.

This event, on March 3rd, led by Mrs. Gayani Senaratne, was for educating children on Eastern and Western values, such events are regularly held at Jethawana Buddhist Vihara, Birmingham.

6. Newsletter – Editor Dr. Chesmal Siriwardane, Graphic Designer, Mr. Sudarshan Gunasekera

Two newsletters ‘The Professional’, Autumn 2012 and Spring 2013, were published with interesting articles on APSL projects.

We wish to thank H.E. Dr. Chris Nonis for allowing the APSL to hold ‘Ask The Expert’ series and events at the High Commission and also to Mr. H.M.K. Herath, First Cultural Secretary, and his staff for making all necessary arrangments.


Other Activities

1. APSL and UAE

In September 2012 the president and general secretary attended the launching of APSL  UAE in Abu Dhabi under the patronage of H.E. Sarath Wijesinghe, the Ambassador for Sri Lanka in The United Arab Emirates.

2. A MOU was signed between APSL and the National Science Foundation (NSF) in Sri Lanka, to work together in the development of research studies. Prof.I.M. Dharmadasa initiated this agreement with DR. Noble Jayasuriya of NSF.

3. Mr. Derrick Brainerd organised a sucessful fund raising event for APSL at Lancing.

The Treasurer, Mr. Thushara Madurasinghe presented the annual statement of accounts for the year 2012 to 2013, showing a strong financial position.

At the election of office bearers, the following were elected-

President -Mr. Mervyn Silva

Vice Presidents – Mr.Ranjan Perer, Mr. Suraj Wijendra, Dr. Mahesh de Silva

Treasurer- Mr. Thushara Madurasinghe

Executive Committee Members -Mr. Mohan Siriwardane, Dr. Marc Dissanayake, Prof Sir Sabaratnam Arulkumaran, Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy,

Dr. Andrew Nayagam, Dr. Roger Srivasan, Mr. Derrick Brainerd, Dr. Thilak Abeyawardane, Dr. Asanga Fernando, Dr. Chesmal Siriwardane,

Dr. Athula Sumathipala, Prof I.M. Dharmadasa, Mr. Janath Jayawardane, Mr, Lal Jayawardane, Dr. Mrs. Sadani Wahalatantri, Mrs. Nirmalie Peris,

Dr. Miss Anushini Mututantri, Mr. Asaf Bakeer Markar, Mr. Rohan De Alwis (IPP)

The newly elected president thanked the members and asked for their continued support in carrying out his duties.

During the AGM members were given the opportunity to put forward their ideas for the coming year. Several members expressed ways to take forward the association both for the benefit of members and for the success of future projects.

The AGM was followed by an enjoyable dinner and dance.

The chief guest was H.E. Dr. Chris Nonis, Patron of APSL and the Sri Lankan High Commissioner in UK. He delivered a keynote address on ‘Sri Lanka and its journey forward’ and later engaged socially with many members.

The evening included a grand raffle draw, music by Aundre Martinesz and Fusion, and authentic Sri Lankan cuisine.

Thanks were given to Mr. Nazoomi Azhar (grange Hotels) and staff, to Ms. Ruki Pinidiya for selling a large number of tickets for the event, and to all those who advertised in the APSL newsletter.

Ask the Lawyer Event

‘Ask the Lawyer’ Event 26th January 2013, at the Sri Lankan High Commission, London

“Ask the Lawyer” Event at the Sri Lanka High Commission, organised by the Association of Professional Sri Lankans, (“APSL”) in association with the Sri Lankan Solicitors Network in the UK (SLSN)
After a very successful “Ask the Expert” Series  two years ago, APSL re-launched the Series this year with “Ask the Lawyer” on 26th January 2013 at the Sri Lankan High Commission under the patronage of the Sri Lanka High Commissioner, His Excellency Dr.Chris Nonis.
Mr Neville De Silva, the Deputy High Commissioner, members of the APSL and members of the Sri Lankan community attended this event.
Mr Rohan de Alwis, President of APSL in his welcome Address explained the purpose of the
“Ask the Expert” Series, which was to reach out to the Sri Lankan Community through opportunity for discussion, sharing ideas and information.
 He said that the current event “Ask the Lawyer” was being presented in association with the Sri Lankan Solicitors Network (www.slsnuk.com)
and was the first among many “Ask the Expert” Series to follow this year.
Dr Chris Nonis, the High Commissioner, in his Address expressed his admiration for the work
carried out by APSL.
“We Sri Lanka Reconciliation Events” (to help promote harmony and integration within the UK based SL Community),
the Young Researchers Symposium (to provide a forum for young Professionals of Sri Lankan
origin to present their Papers before an audience of experienced professionals),
“Living in the UK” Series, which addresses the issues of young second generation Sri Lankans, as well
as that of the first generation parents), all for the benefit of the Sri Lankan community in the
He noted that by holding events of this nature and by engaging with people across the
community without narrow boundaries, APSL was a significant contributor towards
achieving a pluralistic community.
Following on, three topics relevant to the community were made by three Solicitors
practising in the United Kingdom.
Firstly, the APSL President, Mr Rohan de Alwis, started the event with his presentation on “ How to start a business in the UK’.
 He explained the various ways of setting up a business; on your own (sole proprietor), with others as owners (Partnership) and with others
as shareholders (Limited Liability Company). He stressed the importance of writing a
business plan and also getting the right funding to start the business, the difference between
entrepreneurs and businessmen and much more.
Secondly, a detailed Presentation was given by Mrs Daksheenie Abeyewardene,  on “Wills and Probates and Inheritance Tax”
 In her presentation, Daksheenie, highlighted the importance of writing a will when you are in a good state of mind.
 She also mentioned what should be included in a will and the consequences of not writing a will, and also of using the services of a Solicitor.
The third and final presentation was made by Miss Ruki Pinidiya, on “Living and working in
the United Kingdom” in relation to the current immigration and nationality laws with an
overview of the rules applicable for students, business people and skilled workers.
Ruki  clarified the five tiers of immigration under the current law and gave a detailed analysis of these categories.
During the Question and Answer session it was noted that the majority of the questions were related to the presentation “Wills and Probate” and how to minimise exposure to Inheritance Tax in the UK.
The event concluded with the vote of thanks by Mr Leslie Dep, the General Secretary of
APSL. Whilst thanking the presenters for their very informative presentations and also
the members and guests , he especially thanked His Excellency Dr Chris
Nonis for allowing APSL to use the High Commission premises for this event and also Mr
H.M.K.Herath, Minister Cultural at the High Commission for making all the
necessary arrangements.
Please note that the above three presentations are available at APSL web site
The next event on the “Ask the Expert” Series will be “Ask the Doctor” which will be held on16th
March 2013 at the Sri Lanka High Commission
. The details of the event will be issued to
the local media shortly and APSL would welcome all to attend the event.

Festival of Cricket 2013 Photos


APSL had a stall at the “Festival of Cricket” event held on 28th July 2013 in London. It was the 25th Anniversary of this famous Sri Lankan annual event and APSL was proud to be part of it. The stall was visited by many interested to know more about the association, resulting in more new memberships.. APSL should continue to take part in this event as this is a great platform to showcase our activities and also our presence as a reputable and a credible professional association in the UK thereby attracting anyone interested in joining the APSL.

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APSL donation to Meththa Foundation

Dr. Andrew Nayagam making the APSL donation of £1150 to Dr. Bandara Panagamuwa, the founder of the Meththa foundation


APSL has been supporting and sponsoring various charities. In keeping with this principle, APSL raised funds for the Meththa Foundation – UK.

The Meththa Foundation’s objective is to provide artificial limbs to people in need, predominantly but not exclusively in the Vanni region, who lost their limbs as a result of the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka and help in their physical rehabilitation. For details please visit http://www.meththafoundation.org.uk

On behalf of the Association of Professionals in the UK, Dr Andrew Nayagam donated a cheque for £1150.00 to Dr B Pnangamuwa at the Annual General Meeting of the Meththa Foundation on the 18th of May 2013.


APSL Awards Stage II


Competition Held in Sri Lanka for Converting Green Energy Ideas into Green Energy Products
(GEIs to GEPs)
The APSL held the second successful stage of the “APSL Awards Scheme  with a competition to submit project proposals to convert green energy ideas (GEIs) into green  energy products (GEPs). The deadline for the submissions was 31 December 2012.
Fifteen submissions were received from participants all over Sri Lanka and the  results of the competition were announced at the Annual General Meeting of the APSL held on 27th April 2013 at the City Grange Hotel, London.11176642

The award ceremony was held at the National Science Foundation Auditorium in Sri Lanka on 7th August 2013.  Chairman NSF-Prof. W. L. Sumathipala, Director NSF-Anusha Amarasinghe, and Director IFS-Prof. C.B.Dissanayake, participated as the Chief Guests. Director IRD Dr. Athula Sumathipala, Prof. I.M. Dharmadasa,  Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy and Dr. Chesmal Siriwardhana represented the APSL UK.
The APSL Awards Stage 2 was an island wide open competition to generate bright ideas/proposals in the clean  energy sector, and to select the most promising ideas, by an eminent body of scientists and introduce these  selected projects to funding bodies, local industry and the Government Ministries to further develop these  ideas/proposals, guide & nurture, incubate and scale-up, for possible manufacturing and marketing the final  products in future. The competition was widely publicised by the Sunday Times, Lankadeepa and Veerakesari  papers (Sponsors for publicity in Sri Lanka) and open to all Sri Lankan citizens living in Sri Lanka and abroad
without any age restrictions. Final assessment selected four winning ideas for awards, and each winner received a Rs25, 000 cash prize,a trophy and a certificate from APSL.

The winning project proposals;
Mrs W. P. Somawathie, c/o (Mr W.G.Ariyawansa) Ranrasa Products,Food drying and packaging centres round the country.

Mr Lal Wickramasinghe
: Hemp (Pan) Industry Centres,–commercialise traditional hemp products

Mr N Geekiyanage- : Durru-Maduru-Mosquito repellent from betel leaves and solar energy

Mr M Hettiarachchi-: Lquid manure from leaves and power generation from sticks.

The three runners -up;

Mrs Sumana Dissanayake -: Cottage industry using Vetakolu fibres

University of Moratuwa-: Sustainable city development & bio-gas project

Mr M Siriwardane-; Milk production centres for food and manure production and job creation round the country.

The awards ceremony included a lively discussion between the academics, scientists, entrepreneurs, award
winners and the general public on various nationally important green energy related topics and problems faced by
small -scale green energy industry.
During the discussions, it was clear that there are three different categories of research;

BlueSky Research, Applied Research and Knowledge Transfer Research Programmes. The first two categories can take decades of
research activities to see any impact on people’s lives. However, at present Sri Lanka needs urgent attentions
from the third category activities; Knowledge Transfer Research Programmes, for immediate jobs and wealth
creation to contribute to the rapid economic and social development of Sri Lanka.
This competition was purposely designed and carried out by the APSL-UK to fulfil this most necessary requirement.
The awards event was organized through joint collaboration of the APSL,-UK, NSF, IFS and IRD.

Finally APSL would like to thank Prof Dharmadasa (Project Leader) and his team, the sponsors for publicity, NSF,
IRD, IFS and most importantly the participants for the successful completion of the Award Scheme Stage II

4th APSL Convention

MaheshSecond APSL Research Symposium was held on Saturday 17th November 2012 at Double Tree Hilton Hotel, Sheffield.

The 4th APSL Convention-Research Symposium (APSL-RS 2012) Second APSL Research Symposium (APSL RS 2012) was held on Saturday 17th November2012 Double Tree by Hilton Sheffield Park Hotel in Sheffield
APSL RS 2012 provided a platform for UK based young Sri Lankan and international researchers to come together, share knowledge and start effective collaborations.
It was also an exciting opportunity for the delegates to learn about cutting -edge research and technologies.
Since its launch APSL -RS 2012 attracted significant interest from Sri Lankan researchers around the UK.
Following a comprehensive review process 19 papers were selected for presentations and posters giving attention to social and commercial benefits of the research projects.
APSL-RS 2012 host Prof.I. M.Dharmadasa welcomed the guests , while APSL President Mr. Rohan de Alwis introduced numerous projects in the UK and Sri Lanka and  events organised by APSL for the professional Sri Lankan  community in the UK.
The symposium consisted of three sessions.
1. Prof. Dharmadasa and Dr. Mahesh de Silva co -chaired session one on engineering and built environment research.
Prof.Dilanthi Amaratunga Head of the Centre for Disaster Resilience at the University of Salford, delivered a keynote speech entitled
‘Rebuilding for Resilience.’
Reconstructing Infrastructure in the North and East of Sri Lanka commenced session one.
Session one presentation topics included ‘Electroplating of semiconductor materials for photovoltaic and optoelectronic device applications’ by Obi Echendu,
Innovations in lightweight structures & electric propulsion in aviation by Asela Jayampathy, ,Process capability maturity modelling in the construction
industry’ by Mohan Siriwardena and ‘Satellite link availability enhancement by integration of time diversity in the 2nd generation Digital Video Broadcasting system for Satellite (DVB-S2)’ by Leshan Uggalla
2. The poster session (session two) which  included posters titled ‘ Challenges faced by the steel industry’ by Amal Karunathilaka
 ‘Development of ZnTe layers using electrochemical technique for applications in thin film solar cells’ by Fijay Fauzi,
 ‘Solar villages for sustainable development’ by Ajith Weerasinghe,, ‘Reducing the scarcity in mental health research from low and middle
income countries,  a success story from Sri Lanka’ by Chesmal Siriwardhana and ‘Reforming higher education to contribute to lifelong learning in the built environment’ by Mohan Siriwardena.
3 Dr. Andrew Nayagam, Consultant in Genitourinary Medicine at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust and Dr.Mahesh Nirmalan, Senior Lecturer and Consultant in Anaesthesia and Critical Care Medicine at University of Manchester co -chaired session three on medical, biological sciences and chemistry research.
Dr. Mahesh Nirmalan delivered a keynote speech commencing session three.
Session three presentation topics included,  ‘Assessment of Mental Health and Physical Wellbeing of left behind family members of
international labour migrants: a national comparative study in Sri Lanka’ by Chesmal Siriwardhana,
‘Structural Insights into the Initiation of DNA Synthesis in Eukaryotic Replication’ by Rajika Perera,
 ‘Evolution of human conserved non -coding elements (CNEs)’ by Dilrini De Silva
and ‘Enhancement in Photoelectrochemical Properties of Microwave Treated Zn(OH) 2 , TiO 2  and Fe 2 O 3 Electrodes’ by Nirmal Peiris
At the end of each presentation delegates had the opportunity to ask questions and share their knowledge with the researchers.
After session three Prof. Dharmadasa launched his latest book ‘Advances in thin film solar cells’ and the attendees had an opportunity to win a copy of the book.
APSL President, Mr. Rohan de Alwis presented certificates to presenters appreciating their contribution to APSL RS 2012
The Symposium Chair, Dr. Mahesh de Silva thanked the special guests, keynote speakers, presenters and delegates
during his closing remarks and invited the delegates to join APSL to strengthen the association and expand its activities
The Social event, dinner and dance, followed, with a welcome address by APSL -RS 2012 host Prof. Dharmadasa
followed by an address by the APSL P resident Mr. Rohan de Alwis.
A message from His Excellency , Dr.Chris Nonis, the Sri Lankan High Commissioner to the UK was also read .
Dr.Nonis, was unable to attend the event due to a prior engagement.
Dr. Ruwan de Soyza conducted an interactive Sri Lankan musical experience following the dinner.
The presence of Mr.Bill Forbes, a veteran UK based Sri Lankan singer,was the surprise guest and highlight of the night.
A raffle draw was held organized by APSL executive committee member Mrs. Gayani Senaratne. Proceeds going to APSL projects in Sri Lanka.
Mr. Mohan Siriwardane, APSL Membership secretary, delivered the vote of thanks, including thanks to APSL
members Lal and Mangalika Jayawardane for their support in organizing the event ,and the evening closed by the singing of
 the national anthems of Sri Lanka and UK.

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APSL Awards Stage I











The APSL-Awards scheme was introduced in order to positively contribute to the sustainable development of Sri Lanka. The first stage of APSL-Awards in collaboration with the Institute of Research and Development (IRD) was introduced in July 2010 in order to get active engagement of the general public with the Sri Lankan Government’s rapid development process. Sixteen to nineteen year old pupils were invited to write an essay on the five most important issues relevant to the development of their districts, after discussions with their relatives, teachers and colleagues. The island-wide essay competition was widely publicised by the Sunday Times, Veerakesari and Lankadeepa newspapers, and submissions closed on 31st December 2010.

A good response was received as 110 essays were submitted from 19 districts. The first stage of the assessment was carried out by teachers at the National Institute of Education (NIE), and the best 20 essays were forwarded to the APSL Committee in London. The second stage of assessment consisted of three independent examiners for each essay and a professional examination board took place to determine the winners. Eight finalists were selected from all three media (Sinhala, Tamil and English) and the following adjudged winners.

Name of Winner School


Mr Shehan Mohammed St. Sylvester’s College, Kandy


Miss Thamodhiram Ghaanaroobini Sri Ganesha Tamil Maha Vidyalayam, Koslanda

Miss M H Farina Hasna St. Joseph Balika Maha Vidyalaya, Kegalle

Mr V. Kobishanth St. Sylvester’s College, Kandy


Miss E M T Eshani Ekanayake Ibbagamuwa Central College, Kurunegala

Miss H A K Eshani Hettiarachchi D S Senanayake Jathika Pasela, Meerigama, Gampaha

Mr T H Maduranga Talakotuna Vijitha Madya Maha Vidyalaya, Pulasthigama, Pollonnaruwa

Miss R D E Muthumali Wijendra Ibbagamuwa Central College, Kurunegala

The Award Ceremony took place at the conclusion of “Solar Asia 2011” Conference held at the Institute for Fundamental Studies (IFS) in Kandy during 28-30 July 2011. The proud winners with their parents and teachers joined over 125 participants of this international solar energy conference.

Each winner collected their trophy, a framed certificate and Rs 10,000 cash prize in a ceremony in the presence of a learned scientific community boosting their confidence for rapid progress in their chosen fields. The winners were congratulated by a large group of international scientists after which they faced the photographers including a group photograph with these distinguished guests.

The ideas that came through the grass-root level are extremely important and interesting for the rapid progress in sustainable development of Sri Lanka. These ideas will be widely disseminated in the future for the benefit of all concerned.

APSL is currently designing the second stage of APSL-Award scheme in order to convert bright and innovative ideas into manufacturing of useful products to help communities.

APSL was represented by its Immediate Past President Prof I.M. Dharmadasa, Vice President Dr Indrajit Coomaraswamy, and two members, Mr Ajith Weerasinghe and Dr Chesmal Siriwardena. Both IRD & NIE were represented by Dr Godwin Kodithuwakku, Aruna Walisundara, Charmali Jayasinghe and Dr Anushka Adhikari.

The APSL & IRD gratefully acknowledge the support of the International Conference on Information and Automation for Sustainability (www.iciafs.org), the generous contribution of Rs 25,000 made to cover expenses of preparing trophies and certificates for the winners in this essay competition. Our grateful thanks go out to IFS and Solar Asia 2011 organisers led by Prof C. B. Dissanayake and Prof Lakshman Dissanayake for their invaluable contributions to make this Award Ceremony a success.