Memories of Sirimavo Bandaranaike on the Centenary of her Birth



Mrs. Bandaranaike photographed in Baghdad in 1975 with the writer (center) and Ambassador Faisal Junaid.

by Leelananda De Silva

I was in the main hall of the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) last week to commemorate the 100th birth anniversary of Mrs. Bandaranaike and memories of 40 years ago came flooding back. In March 1974, the Annual Sessions of the Economic Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ECAFE), now called ESCAP, was held at the BMICH, and the Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs was responsible for its organization. It was then the largest international conference to be held in Sri Lanka, and the first conference of any kind to be held at the BMICH. Mrs. Bandaranaike saw this conference as a trial run for the Non Aligned Summit. She was our Minister, and not only the Prime Minister.

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