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Sri Lanka arrests astrologer over political prediction

Chandrasiri Bandara
The astrologer made one prediction too far

The authorities in Sri Lanka have arrested a popular astrologer who predicted that the president will be ejected from office, police say.

Chandrasiri Bandara announced last week that the government would flounder in September and October because of political and economic problems.

The opposition have condemned the arrest and warned that the country is heading towards a dictatorship.

Astrology is taken seriously by numerous Sri Lankan politicians.

Police told the AP news agency that Mr Bandara told an opposition meeting that the prime minister would take over as president on 9 September and the opposition leader would become prime minister.

He was arrested on Wednesday night to investigate the basis of his prediction, police spokesman Ranjith Gunasekera said.

Mr Bandara made his forecast despite the president's high approval ratings following the defeat of Tamil Tigers rebels in May, bringing an end to nearly 26 years of civil war.

The CID (Criminal Investigations Department) is questioning the astrologer," Mr Gunasekara said.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa (left) and Lt Gen Sarath Fonseka (18/05/09)
President Rajapaksa takes astrological predictions seriously

The astrologer predicted that a planetary change on 8 October will be inauspicious for parliament and the government may not be able to contain rising living costs - a forecast which correspondents say has already been made by private economists.

"The crime which Chandrasiri Bandara committed was publishing an astrological column which was adverse to the government," said opposition United National Party General Secretary Tissa Attanayake.

So convinced are Sri Lankan politicians over the accuracy of astrology that many have their own personal seers who decide the auspicious times to launch any new initiative.

President Rajapaksa has declared himself to be a believer, telling foreign reporters earlier this year that he has often consulted a favoured astrologer for advice on what time to make speeches or to depart for trips.

Mr Bandara - who has a weekly television show and writes controversial political columns for a pro-opposition newspaper - is one of the most popular astrologers in the country.

Media rights groups have complained of continued efforts by the government to stifle freedom of speech despite the end of the war.

On Wednesday the main media organisations in the country urged the government not to re-establish a body that can fine and imprison print journalists.

According to Amnesty International, at least 14 journalists and staff at news outlets have been killed by suspected government paramilitaries and rebels since the beginning of 2006. []


In US, FOX news channel is still openly spreading many conspiracy theories (birth place, religion, etc) against President OBAMA.

In Sri Lanka, no one in news business can even think about anything like that against M.R.

In west, conspiracy theories whether true or false are allowed by the governments because people are trained. People believe in themselves and make their own decisions.

In east, governments don't allow conspiracy theories since majority of people are not trained. People neither believe in themselves nor make their own decisions.

Posted by: CHIRP | June 26, 2009 09:13 AM

Please any sinhalayo how your lovely brain works?

Posted by: R.Veera | June 26, 2009 09:54 AM

sinhala brothers and sisters please wake up this dump brothers going to ruin your lives soon.

Posted by: R.Veera | June 26, 2009 10:25 AM

Remember there are only two categories of people in Sri Lanka. Those who love the country and those who dont. Predicting or even desiring the president's downfall is tantamount to "not loving the country" hence his arrest. To love the country is to love its president, the dear leader. Its elementary...

Posted by: dingiri | June 26, 2009 10:57 AM

The astrologer made a very bad mistake.He predited that October 8 planetary change will be inauspicious for parliament.But if it bad for parliament how can it afeect President? If parliament adjourn or dissolve it affect only to MP's. So how can PM Rathnasiri become President.

That mean if President step down,demise or get killed PM become President.The demise won't happen because President is in good health.And he won't step down because country need him.So this astrologer hint that our President get killed soon?

So the CID has very good reason to arrest him[astrologer] and question him.

Posted by: anonymous | June 26, 2009 11:01 AM

Article says:
"According to Amnesty International, at least 14 journalists and staff at news outlets have been killed by suspected government paramilitaries and rebels since the beginning of 2006"

I have not heard that any journalist have been killed by tigers since 2006. Is there any? So what is meant by the 'rebels' in this statement?

Also we know Many of them killed by direct order by the Top Gov officials. That does not mean - 'suspected government paramilitaries'.

This is where BBC, a great news agency, looses his top elite credibility.

It is simple. 90% of the Sinhalese will say, he was a supporter of tigers. Case closed.

Posted by: kavi | June 26, 2009 11:39 AM

Upto now it was the Tamils - and to some extent, some Sinhalese - who were
made by State action "to see stars" Now it has hit the astrologers too.
Doubtless, this man could not have foreseen his own curious fate.
Like many other striking features in Sri Lanka even Astrologers are identified by political colours. Will the fate that befell poor Tissanayagam, the journalist allowed to go blind, catch up with Chandrasiri Bandara mahathmaya as well? By the way, why is Tissa incarcerated still - to his and the horror of his young family? Does not the life and well being of this young citizen matter to the Police and the Govt? Is this because he is a Tamil? Is anyone - but the darlings of the regime - safe here anymore in a country an American academic has referred to as a "brutal dictatorship masquerading as a popular democracy"?


Posted by: Ilaya Seran Senguttuvan | June 26, 2009 11:57 AM

Sri Lanka is getting obscenely and tragically hilarious.

Posted by: Ramesh | June 26, 2009 12:05 PM

I always thought that the "Pirith Noola" worn on both wrists is supposed to protect them.Last time I checked the photos all three brothers and Sarath F were wearing it.I suppose for additional protection they should get one tied around their neck as well and if anything were
to go wrong they should go after the skin heads who tied the thread.

Posted by: Siva | June 26, 2009 12:36 PM

A classic case of shooting the messenger.

All Sinhalese should be petrified of the gang of terrorist running the country.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 26, 2009 01:26 PM

This is funny...

"The opposition have condemned the arrest and warned that the country is heading towards a dictatorship"

Towards a dictatorship.... what do they have now? democracy? maybe Chinese version of democracy.

Posted by: aratai | June 26, 2009 05:40 PM

This is proof that President Rajapakse's government is not exclusively Sinhala Bubbhist in orientiation. They also read the Bible... ok, ok, perhaps just the Old Testatment.

The penalty for false prophecy, according to the biblical context, is capital punishment (Deuteronomy 13:1-5).

Posted by: Gini Appu | June 26, 2009 06:27 PM

We suspect these Thagalle brothers & co. may have fallen into "Lunatic" due to fear of Suriyadevan's existence as per some quarters, don't know! Should be taken to Mulleriyawa immedietly, prior to disturb the whole Singhala community.
No singhala wedamahathayas can cure this chronic disease!


Posted by: | June 26, 2009 08:38 PM

Soo funny. Naked Kingdom

Posted by: Randy | June 26, 2009 09:03 PM

I agree with the comment by anonymous.

Posted by: AusTa | June 27, 2009 03:46 AM

How about a military attack on the planets and stars?
Not even the sun, moon and asteroids must be spared!!!!
Forget piddling matters of human rights, the universe itself must be made to obey!

Gini Appu, in the Bible at least they had to wait to see if the prophecy came true.
But not so in Rajapakse's SL.

Perhaps it will all end with the Rajapakse gang behind razor wire and armed guards, but in their own delusory minds it will be the Universe that is behind the razor wire and armed guards!

Posted by: N2 | June 27, 2009 05:33 AM

I would firmly say one thing without bias.Those who are
going after astrologers for their daily responsibilities should not be trusted of their discharge of duties or businesses.They do not believe
in their ability to do things.Astrologers are simply
playing with the souls of weak people.

Posted by: muzammil | June 27, 2009 09:05 AM

Michael Jackson was given a clean bill of health only a few months before he died of cardiac arrest. Likewise nobody knows when the creator will ask you to leave your mortal body and come. You may be visibly healthy but anything can happen to a human anytime or anywhere nobody is exempt even he or she may be a President, Head of the State a King or a Queen. You don’t have to arrest an astrologer who has the habit of raising the curtain to see what is stored of oneself in future. He may be right or wrong in his predictions. Are we having a dictatorial regime in Sri Lanka. Where nobody is allowed to say anything about the rulers. Even in China they have this freedom.

Posted by: Martin Thomas | June 28, 2009 04:14 PM

Interesting prediction. I reckon he knows a lot more than he is saying.

The current gathering of three planets (Neptune, Jupiter and Chiron) at 26 degrees Aquarius is at a hostile angle to MR's sun at 25 degrees Scorpio. Guess that's what the astrologer is referring to. (This trio of planets is also what toppled VP, who had Pluto right opposite, at 26 degrees Leo, and the sun squaring it at 26 Taurus on May 17, the day he died.)

There are however some good planetary transits too for MR on Oct 8. Wonder how this will play out. If MR does lose power in October, we should expect to see bad transits on Gotabhaya's chart too. Looking at G's chart, I have no doubt he will soon lose power. The opposition between Saturn and Uranus (tradition vs the new) in the skies, which builds up till April, will afflict G's sun to an exact point. It's the very same transit that cost McCain a victory last November. G will no longer receive help from Pluto, the planet of power.

Maybe there's hope after all! Of course, this is assuming that the published birthdates of the two men are true.

Wickremesinghe's chart is exceptionally active right now through to the following few years. There are signs of drama, with a mix of highly significant good and bad transits. The true node will be on his Jupiter in September, which was where it was for Obama on Inauguration Day. If W succeeds, he will have a very tough tenure though. He may have to watch out for an assassination.

Posted by: starstruck | June 29, 2009 10:21 AM

Ha! Ha! Ha!
What a country!! What a President!! What Qoolayas to President!! What an Intelligence division!!

God bless the country!!

Posted by: true_patriot | June 30, 2009 02:55 PM

An astrologer from Argentina, http://WWW.ZODIACGUILLE.COM is predicting right now that a country from Asia with the letter “M” is going to have a huge change (I guess it is Myanmar) because the leadership of a sick man under Aquarius Sign is going to explote in his umbilical part of his body. He also said that the country will be GOVERN further under the sign of a GEMINI person. Apart from this, Zodiacguille said that an old name is coming back for happiness of his people.
Then, the argentine horoscope man sent a message to Sri Lanka Goverment begging to liberate the arrested Astrologer Chandrasiri BANDARA saying " Please, MERCY Dear President Mahinda Rajapakse for him, because his relate is maybe a mistake..."
The Argentine Astrologer said: "If it is neccesary to travel to Sri Lanka I may go on behalf of all the associated astrologers world wide. Chandrasiri is press astrologer so the roles are acceptable and maybe there is a mistake".
This Astrologer Don Zodiac Guille also predicted the civil-military destitution for the President Zelaya in Honduras, but he also predicted that the President will returns to power.(Dorys Dodier from Madrid – Spain

Posted by: Dorys Dodier | July 1, 2009 11:23 PM

Doris, my dear:

If you have a line to Don Zodiac Guille pls dissuade him from coming to our thrice
Blessed Isle - now ruled by Brothers Four (Remember the old US College Band) Poor man, his intentions are good and one can sympathise with his feeling for one in his tribe/trade. But there is every chance he will be locked up too and conveniently called "a White Tiger - under the pay of the Tamil diaspora"
Why bother - as they say in Bambalawatta where all those fine lads and lassies have burghered off down under before all this tamasha began?


Posted by: Ilaya Seran Senguttuvan | July 3, 2009 07:58 PM

MexDF.Independient.Press report:

A week ago, the very well known TV future teller was arrested by Colombo city sri lankan Police because he preticted the President of the Nation would be removed from the Government of Sri Lanka.

Without giving details of statements, the argentinian horoscope man also added in his homepage,, two URLs, one corresponding to Mr. Chandrasiri Bandara and, of course, the other: Sri Lanka President´s oficial site.

"Up to now, I couldn´t log in Chandrasiris´blog; it seems "stars" aren´t helping..." he joked. "but to President´s site is quite interesting and easy to contact His Excellecy ..."

Many astrologers all over the world are on "esoteric" expectation about the Sri Lankan Government decision. To finish, Don Zodiac Guille said: "I would respectfully like to have a look on the Mundane Astral Chart already built by Mr. BANDARA because the Police want a logical explanation about those political predictions on President Mahinda Rajipakse´s destitution".

Don Zodiac Guille ended saying :"Astrology is a millenary social we have to moderate our concepts when a Country Chart is going to be published specially if the land situation is difficult"

Posted by: MexDF.Independient.Press | July 4, 2009 07:01 AM

Astrologically, I dont think the story is over yet. Let us look back in about 3 years on the situation today.

Posted by: Niru | March 16, 2010 04:13 PM

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