Finally, everybody found ‘him’. For the last few days, Sri Lankan public wanted to know one thing and one thing only. They immediately wanted to find, ‘who raped and murdered Seya Sadeumi?’ The often asked question by media, certain segment of intellectuals and professionals, Ranjan Ramanayake and other politicians and many who protested in cities including Buddhist monks was who could do this kind of heinous and appalling crime. They never expected the question could turn out to be this traumatic encounter. However, now every body found the most traumatized answer which made us all ashamed of ourselves, which made our whole existence completely meaningless as politician, critics, educators and law makers. When one seeks the truth, it comes back to you in a traumatic manner. Always the encounter of truth is more true than truth itself.
                         Desire=Drive (to know) – Truth=Knowledge (the effect of truth and the hitherto                                    traumatic encounter)
Who is he? He is someone who could not read or write, or did not even have a mobile phone. He does not wash his face or brush his teeth. He used to eat raw fish or steal cooked rice from neighboring houses. According his mother, his ultimate school education was grade one or so…so on and so forth. He is someone who does not even know the ‘fundamental rules of a civilization’. He may not narrate to us an inner/hidden story of some obscene spiritual origin. We will find a fundamental ideological deadlock of impossibility of judging him in line with modern civilizational rules. According Zizek, he is someone who was made ‘disposable’ by the present capitalist system. This condition is applied to Seya Sadewmi and the victimized school child as well, They are all ‘once used’ and then discarded, neglected and damaged irreparably as if they are non-humans. These people are of no use to the true function of the capitalist system. They are very marginal consumers of its commercial space and commodities. For Zizek, those who have ‘entered’ the capitalist system can see its infinite possibilities to actualize their dreams; speed cars  which go in light speed, pornographic existence to discover your inner potentials and limits  to sustain obscenity, find the right partner so that you reach the ultimate form of happiness and travel to some exotic country so that you may meet you spiritual tranquility etc. All the good and services are at your fingertips in a matter of few seconds. The man who is held responsible for the murder of Seya is someone without this fundamental dream of self-actualization. He did not get access to the list of itineraries that ‘modernize’ you! This list always provided by the consumerist commodities that give you perfection and radicalize your existence. (The Liberals can now argue that if he at least had access to pornography, he would not have committed  this crime – he being a voyeur!). 
In the logic of capitalism, while satisfying some segment of its consumers, a vast majority of citizens (sometime entire Nations) is neglected or considered useless or permanently unusable to its current productive needs (including university students and teachers). It does not need the so called professional now. They are in advance unusable according to its new rules of apartheid and doomed to face a very nihilistic future. It uses its military and police authority to further distance such individuals from the system. The phrase ‘global’ actually doe not mean global. There are so many countries, nations and entities in Asia, Africa and South America where capitalism even does not bother to enter. In the same way, in producing labour to function the capitalist system, there are areas in Sri Lanka where bourgeois education, law or humanity do not bother to enter. No government agency could at least properly ‘rehabilitate’ Kondaya when he was first caught for a similar crime (if I use the same bourgeois terminology). In some part of rural Sri Lanka, there are areas where one cannot buy a piece of soap without walking two-three kilometers. How can the modern capitalism ‘civilize’ them? What mega plans does it have to take these people into its command? Since its logic of profit does not focus on any further expansion into distant areas, I think, these people will be subjects permanently abandoned by capitalism.   
The public reaction to these murders is not difficult to understand. They wanted the government to perform the duty of the executioner. If one carefully watched the media coverage of this event, what people were demanding was to publicly ‘hang’ the murderer (the obscene carnival) or to ‘slowly torture’ (banal barbarism) him until death. They forced the police to act irrationally and immediately (which put lot of people in unnecessary trouble) as if they saw an epidemic was about to kick off. Even the Sri Lankan President Hon. Maithripala Serisena, being an ‘Stalinist instrument of public outcry’ and an authentic instrument of the obscene capitalist function of exclusion, commented that he too does not have any objection in legalizing death sentence. It seems that the President consider the public outcry as a metaphor of ‘objective meaning’ of some historical necessity. It is an obscene fantasy of general will that hypocritically covers their own guilt. Such capital punishment can ritualistically be performed in a Stalinist carnival that paradoxically twists ‘yesterday the King today a beggar’.     
We found him hidden in a ‘jungle’ not very far from a major suburb in Sri Lanka. Kondaya is a worthless, disposable non-human subject (watched by thousands of ‘worthy and harmless’ spectators in the Negombo Hospital) marginalized by the present status quo waiting his capital punishment. Now the promoters of capitalism  can swiftly say that their project is still ‘unfinished’ (please remember that this phrase was not borrowed from Habermas), and, in the next phase of commodity fetishism, we will surely humanize/civilize the uncivilized. Those who march in the streets demanding death sentence never talk about the everyday cry to ‘violate rules’ and actualize your desire. In our passive subjectivity in capitalism it is always easy to find one isolated individual/event and hold it responsible for our constant guilt
…all that remained to hope was that on the day of my execution, there should be a huge crowd of spectators and that they should greet me with howls of execration’  
Mahesh Hapugoda

ඔබේ අදහස කියන්න...


  1. Dear Mahesh, I agree with most of the points you make in your article but it kind of gives the impression that the state of the life of this boy is the reason for the crime he committed and it is NOT. In other words there are well educated, well-dressed and sophisticated vouerists and phidophiles who has the potential of committing the same crime. On the otherhand if you also look at the way the print and the electronic media reported this incident (Divayina hedlines are a case in point), wouldn’t you agree that this so called “Sinhalese Buddist Nation” is a nation of perverts? Aren’t they the readers,viewers these media climb on each other’s necks to cater to? Also you are very correct in pointing the neo-liberal, late capitalist -or whatever you may call it – system’s responsibility creating such perversion in society. This would be a good example:

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