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‘Ceylon’ to change ‘Sri Lanka’

30 December 2010 03:08 am - 80     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


The Government has decided to change the names of all public enterprises that begin as ‘Ceylon’ with the word ‘Sri Lanka, the government information department announced.

Currently there are several public enterprises with the name of Ceylon, such as Bank of Ceylon, Ceylon Petroleum Corporation, Ceylon Electricity Board, Ceylon Tourist Board etc.

In ancient times, Sri Lanka was known by a variety of names: ancient Greek geographers called it Taprobane and Arabs referred to it as Serendib (the origin of the word ‘serendipity’). Ceilão was the name given to Sri Lanka by the Portuguese when they arrived in 1505, which was transliterated into English as Ceylon. As a British crown colony, the island was known as Ceylon, and achieved independence under the name Dominion of Ceylon in 1948.

In Sinhala the country is known as ශ්රී ලංකා śrī laṃkā and the island itself as ලංකාව. In Tamil they are both இலங்கை (ilaṅkai). The name derives from the Sanskrit श्री लंका śrī (venerable) and lankā (island),[19] the name of the island in the ancient Indian epics Mahabharata and the Ramayana.
In 1972, the official name of the country was changed to ‘Free, Sovereign and Independent Republic of Sri Lanka’. In 1978 it was changed to the ‘Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka’.

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  Comments - 80

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  • dsa Thursday, 30 December 2010 11:32 AM

    The fact is govt has neither the intelligence nor the cash to do anything more than such things.

    Faqi Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:08 PM

    Utter waste of time and money for nothing. Who cares? Changing the name will not make it a better country.

    ami Thursday, 30 December 2010 02:53 PM

    Can someone explain this? Information is that all the public enterprises which start with CEYLON will be changed to Sri Lanka.... Bank of Ceylon starts with Bank and not Ceylon.

    Either the information is not accurate or Bank of ceylon is not covered under this law.

    Economit Thursday, 30 December 2010 02:17 PM

    You have a point. However, you cannot deny tis will boost the local businesses and employment and increased trade in Name Boards, Signage and Advertising both locally and overseas. It is a good idea indeed and highly commendable for the thinking way ahead. Well Done.

    regaining sri lanka Thursday, 30 December 2010 01:55 PM

    so from now on its Bank of Sri Lanka. not bank of ceylon(BOC)....

    eddy Thursday, 30 December 2010 01:51 PM

    This Government has performed.We should support for a better future.Resistance to change will not help. the National Anthem also mentions. Our identity has been accepted by International World.

    Tamil Business Man Thursday, 30 December 2010 01:36 PM

    The name Ceylon values more than the name Sri Lanka in business world. But the name Sri Lanka may value more for the so called "patriots" of Lanka. But for the Tamils Ceylon means both Sinhalese and Tamils are under the English and Sri Lanka means we Tamils are uner Sinhaleese.

    G.O.N.H.A.R.A.K.A Thursday, 30 December 2010 01:15 PM

    Make it simple have one word. Ceylon is much better.

    Look at other countries they have one name.

    We have inherited to do things inefficient way.
    Look at our own names. When it comes to administration purpose, its very difficult to write our names in an application.

    Let's learn from past errors and be modernice.

    Gangodawila Orissa Nirmala Hewana Assey Ranasighe Arachilage Kelum Abeysinghe.

    Modaya Thursday, 30 December 2010 11:56 AM

    Well done President , I am with you , please change all these name , change Seylan Bank name as well , You are the only great leader who can guide us to super power .

    Think Mai Thursday, 30 December 2010 11:38 AM

    But Ceylon sounds more pleasant that Sri Lanka

    sarathG Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:07 PM

    I thought anyone who had a brain would change the Name Sri Lanka to Ceylon.. that would have more sense.. Also made us earn some respect back.. After all Ceylon is more famous that Sri lanka in more parts of the World...

    So now the big question is are we going to rebrand our tea as Sri lanka Tea? I think that should be the worst move ever in history.

    dsa Thursday, 30 December 2010 11:19 AM

    Good one!! Bravo.

    xlntgson Thursday, 30 December 2010 10:38 AM

    What punishment for using the same Ceylon after the change?
    5000/- like dengue case?

    Murali Thursday, 30 December 2010 10:25 AM

    what ever it is call Ceylon or Sri Lanka Tamils are the 2nd grade people of the country. only change the name is nothing for us.

    Pawlpakse Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:49 AM


    shihan Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:54 AM

    I agree with you ajith. Rather they change to Ceylon as it has glory and ceylon as you said was a lovely country. I hope they consider.

    Thomas Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:53 AM


    lankaman Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:46 AM

    True. Also renaming huge state enterprises will have massive costs associated with the move. Change of name boards, printed material, websites, ... etc. Who will bear the costs? Also as far as I am concerned "Ceylon" is a beautiful name and has a beautiful legacy associated with it. In other countries, the regimes try to preserve former identities like this. (Largest bank in Thailand is Siam Commercial Bank)

    oyage podi guru Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:38 AM

    Ceylon is a very nice name and one with a history. I find nothing wrong with the name Sri Lanka. But, I think messing around with name changes is a waste of time and energy that need to be given to development and growth and positive change.

    shehandvj Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:19 AM

    Are the going to rename "Ceylon Tea" as "Sri Lanka Tea???"

    lie detector Friday, 31 December 2010 05:41 AM

    now then, you ARE a GOBBAYA !

    hubertahjaya Sunday, 07 September 2014 10:47 AM

    I was borne in Ceylon I am country lost

    csj Tuesday, 04 January 2011 03:39 PM

    “Ceylon” will be called as “Sri Lanka is know as War crime against Humanity and Genocide Tamils

    Gobbaya Friday, 31 December 2010 11:02 AM

    The Numoroly of your intelligence adds to 0

    Matidala Friday, 31 December 2010 08:06 AM

    Ekane chile !

    fgzd Friday, 31 December 2010 07:19 AM

    True, but this is abt the only thing the govt can afford.

    James Friday, 31 December 2010 07:03 AM

    soon we may import TEA like coconuts, so maybe that's why all this change in aticipation....

    lie detector Friday, 31 December 2010 05:41 AM

    Thomas is homus.

    kalum Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:03 AM

    It will hit to the economy and better to keep also old name.ceylon know everybody but most of them dont know Sri lanka.

    lie detector Friday, 31 December 2010 05:40 AM

    Yes you are wrong.

    Rajitha Friday, 31 December 2010 03:35 AM

    is bank of ceylon a public institution? i really don't think it is

    Sharmali Friday, 31 December 2010 01:41 AM

    Numerologically Sri Lanka is a terrible name. It is a name that is completely devoid of peaceful life and God's grace.It stands for dishonesty amongst many other negative aspects and does not reap any benefits for the people. This is my humble opinion and I have always worried with much sadness if all our problems started after changed our original name Ceylon. I was born when we were called Sri Lankans. The name Ceylon is overwhelmingly good numerologically but it was also the name used by our colonial rulers. I earnestly request the Government to think twice before making any changes.

    anthony jones Thursday, 30 December 2010 10:58 PM

    We were called " CEYLONESE ", better than being called sri lankan and has more class. aj.

    Abeyratne Thursday, 30 December 2010 10:06 PM

    Aesthetically, Ceylon is a much better name. The words Sri Lanka sounds like some third-world region. It's been a long time since colonialism and native Sri Lankans have recaptured the name Ceylon from it's colonial past anyway.

    Moda Pissa Thursday, 30 December 2010 09:12 PM

    When the name CEYLON was in practice all the people were living in happyly. The total Numoroly number adds to 24. But after the name SRILANKA came into force from that day there is trouble in the country, no peace and only daily killing. When you add Srilanka the total comes to 18 this number gives the country or person evry time problems. There is no peace,. No 24 add to 6 the bet and lucky number.added 1+8 = 9 is the number no peace , all had to fight for everything.

    maru Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:51 PM

    do not change the name,my dear politicians, Change your hearts,change your minds.if u cant wash it in bleaching powder.

    indika jayasekera Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:47 PM

    I would say Ceylon is very power full Brand name than Sri Lanka. Some time we have to rebrand identity for brand health. But not “Sri Lanka” It should be "Ceylon" that’s very cool for advertising perspective

    Indika Tanzania

    mohammed Thursday, 30 December 2010 07:05 PM

    Let us use & call only single name for our country whether it is singala or Tamil or english, let us call as Srilanka only

    L. Perera Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:47 AM

    All good but we need to know what are priorities are and do these asap. People need development and progress not only name changes and national anthems. All these will automatically follow if we can uplift the people and their living conditions. These are good for politicians and when they get their living status uplifted to boast around and win elections.

    D. Gurubavila Thursday, 30 December 2010 04:12 AM

    True, but the problem is 'rich fool/s' cannot understand this.

    Dailymirror Thursday, 30 December 2010 04:09 AM

    Lets just name it Raja Pakishsthan

    tharanga Thursday, 30 December 2010 04:02 AM

    Does not government have something worth while to do rather than this kind of silly things??

    Ossan Salam - Doha Thursday, 30 December 2010 04:06 AM

    It should have been done long time back.......anyway good is ridiculous still we use Ceylon name while our constitution proclaimed as Sri Lanka......isn't it double standard?

    Matilda Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:57 AM

    Again they have got their priorities mixed up. With so many urgent problems needing solutions, for the govt. it is the name change that matters. Whom to tell, child!!!!

    Mihin Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:54 AM

    This is what our politicians discuss after couple of Wisky over the holidays. Changing the name is not a solution, changing the attitude of our leaders is the right thinking

    Potta Harry Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:51 AM

    Why not use the Most Famous name that is currently being used to name all mega projects in this country.

    Shari Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:44 AM

    Bank of Ceylon (BOC) is a trade name. These things are realy joks

    Wara Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:41 AM

    Good move. We all (Sinhala, Tamil and Muslims ) call Sri Lankans. So why can't use the same for everything. In every country it's like this. Only one name. We can't use ceylonians. So best thing is to change everythings to Sri Lanka. It will take some time. But good for long term.

    SriLankan Thursday, 30 December 2010 04:51 AM

    After 1972 Constitution this change was done in most places. Now after nearly 40 years we are on the same subject. This is another good sign for our speed of development. Like former Prime Minister said few day' s ago doing things with out any plan or thinking. 1980's for a short period we became
    "Shri Lanka" too. That era is not in the article.

    Dinesh Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:43 AM

    I am totaly agreed with you.It is not needed now

    ruwan Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:36 AM

    What about Ceylon Tea? We have spent billions to promote the name of "Ceylon Tea".. will it become "Sri Lanka Tea"? .. too lame..

    Sniper Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:39 AM

    I really don't see the point! :O

    Sicillain Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:33 AM

    I don't feel a need for it. May be I am wrong. Does anybody feels and can you tell me why?

    Prabhath Patabendi Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:33 AM

    Good move. We should establish Sri Lanka as a country with a clear identity. Keep it up.

    Mr Fantastic3 Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:30 AM

    another wonder for the people

    Thanx ur Excellency
    Thank you very much

    We are all WONDERING

    Channa Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:25 AM

    The curse that befell our country is the 1972 janaraja vyavasthawa that changes it from Ceylon to Sri Lanka. Ever since our country is down the pallang.

    raj Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:26 AM

    instead, government should consult with psychologist to find out how that name bother it. Changing name is not a good idea for the trade since cyelong is know for those product consumers.

    knight Rider Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:26 AM

    moving with times finally...hope the thinking and attitude also changes in those places.

    WANSAWEERA Thursday, 30 December 2010 07:44 AM


    kalum Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:59 AM

    The ceylon is also good name,look like Sri lanka dont want have historical name.its we need to remember historical rime.

    HarryH Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:48 AM

    The name Ceylon is assoicated with a beautiful country The whole world had a great respect for ceylonese. The current name Sri Lanka is associated with violence and terror and hell. I think it is approporiate it banish the name Ceylon from memory and continue with the name Sri Lanka.

    Sidath B Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:46 AM

    This is a very old outstanding annomally which should have been corrected about 50 years ago. This is a good move in the right direction. Long live Sri Lanka mother land of all of us !!!!

    ajith Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:46 AM

    That would be a terrible move, if they rename to Sri Lanka Tea.
    Ceylon has more brand value than Sri Lanka.. If they thinking of name change, I guess Ceylon is better than Sri Lanka... Ceylon was known as a lovely country, and Sri Lanka a trouble country... It was our worst move to change the from Ceylon to Sri Lanka.. Anyway thats my humble view....

    gona Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:38 AM

    move on and leave behind all things Colonial, however there are those who will use this as yet something Sinhala or use it for making derision of the government. Its minor, treat it as such but a necessary change.

    KHKaru Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:37 AM

    I can give you two reasons, Sicillain. 1. For uniformity ; only a few govt. institutions have the word 'Ceylon' at the beginning or the end. 2. All govt. and semi-govt. institutions must bear the identity of the Sri Lankan govt. in their names.
    An important decision, I guess, but way overdue.

    Gobbaya Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:22 AM

    Could the govt pls let us know how many hundreds of MILLIONS of rupees will be spent in this rebranding exercise?
    just imagine how much tax money will be spent on buying new sign boards, stationary, and new glass doors (which have permanent prints on them) in the HUNDREDS of buildings around SL (and other countries with BoC)
    it's all well and good that we want to be known as our independent name and not the given name by our old colonial masters. but at a time when costs are cut left right and centre, people are facing unemployment, hunger, and can't afford gas, electricity, or petrol, THIS is what the govt wants to spend hundreds of millions of rupees on?

    TRUTH FINDER Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:07 AM

    Need of the hour is not changing names or the language on which the National Anthem to be sung. Priority to be given to issues that would bring down COL and good governance.

    MARU PORA Thursday, 30 December 2010 08:04 AM




    Prabath Thursday, 30 December 2010 03:19 AM

    It is really difficult to understand whether this is the most pressing issue we have now. This change will cost millions and millions of ruppies for minor things linke changing name boards, letter heads etc.
    I think we have better things to do in this country rather changing names of these institutions. And most of these institutions are loss making and burden to the public e.. CGR, CEB etc.

    Ragava Thursday, 30 December 2010 06:50 AM

    Do the name change quickly as it is very important to improve our productivity. Even the prices will go down. Coconut can be 10/- once changed. It is very very important to our life to change names of the organizations. .

    Catherine Thursday, 30 December 2010 06:42 AM

    After all What's in a name. As far as I know CEYLON is known worldwide for tea, as "Ceylon tea". Ceylon is well known as the PEARL OF RTHE INDIAN OCEAN and THE GRANNERY OF THE EAST.
    On the other hand SRI LANKA is famous worldwide for WAR, TERRORISM, PRABAKARAN & MURDER. So, WHY CHANGE for the WORSE?

    Padmini Thursday, 30 December 2010 06:40 AM

    Most of people in Sri Lanka and out side the country like to use the name of the country as Ceylon. Ceylon tea is very popular in most of the countries. I think there is no need to change as Sri Lanka.

    Wara Thursday, 30 December 2010 06:21 AM

    I agree with you. This should be done in 1972 or even 1948.

    Lamaya Thursday, 30 December 2010 05:42 AM

    Shall we make the "Sri Lanka" name a little bit of Posh?

    rohandil Thursday, 30 December 2010 05:25 AM

    Changing names are'nt going to do any good to the general public ...but hope the government change it attitude and try to bring the consumer good prices down...

    Cheena Pattas Thursday, 30 December 2010 05:16 AM

    We do not want and need cosmetic change to Sri Lanka. We need real change. Change we need and change will come.

    sarath Thursday, 30 December 2010 05:11 AM

    name ceylon `Sinhale`pl refer the agreement signed between british rulers & kandyan chieftans on 2nd Mach 1815 clearly shows this Island was called `Sinhale` but Britishes called the Island as Ceylon for their convenience it should have been `Sinhale` not srilanka

    thara Thursday, 30 December 2010 04:57 AM

    Good One LOL.

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