Provinces of Sri Lanka

Last updated
Province
පළාත
மாகாணம்
Sri Lanka provinces.svg
CategoryFirst level administrative division
Location Sri Lanka
Created1 October 1833
Number9 (as of 1 January 2007)
Populations1,061,315–5,851,130
Areas3,684–10,472 km²
Government Provincial council
Subdivisions District
Administrative divisions
of Sri Lanka
First level
Provinces
Second level
Districts
Third level
Municipalities
Fourth level
Wards
Fifth level

In Sri Lanka, provinces (Sinhala : පළාත, romanized: Paḷāta; Tamil : மாகாணம், romanized: Mākāṇam) are the first level administrative division. They were first established by the British rulers of Ceylon in 1833. Over the next century most of the administrative functions were transferred to the districts, the second level administrative division. By the middle of the 20th century the provinces had become merely ceremonial. This changed in 1987 when, following several decades of increasing demand for a decentralization, the 13th Amendment to the 1978 Constitution of Sri Lanka established provincial councils. [1] [2] Currently there are nine provinces.

Contents

History

Anuradhapura Kingdom

Maya Rata, Pihiti & Ruhuna 1000pxancien trisinhalaya-locator-map svg.png
Maya Rata, Pihiti & Ruhuna

British Ceylon

Emblem of Sri Lanka.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Sri Lanka
Flag of Sri Lanka.svg   Sri Lankaportal

After the British took control of the entire island of Ceylon in 1815 it was divided into three ethnic based administrative structures: Low Country Sinhalese, Kandyan Sinhalese and Tamil. In 1829 the British established the Colebrooke–Cameron Commission to review the colonial government of Ceylon, including its administrative structures. [3] The Commission recommended that the existing three ethnic based administrations be unified into a single administration divided into five geographic provinces. [3] Accordingly, on 1 October 1833 five provinces under one administration came into being: [4] [5] [6] [7]

Over the next fifty years four additional provinces were created, taking the total number to nine: [6] [7] [8]

Sri Lanka

The short lived North Eastern Province Sri Lanka North Eastern Province locator map.svg
The short lived North Eastern Province

The number of provinces remained static until September 1988 when, in accordance with the Indo-Lanka Accord, President Jayewardene issued proclamations enabling the Northern and Eastern provinces to be one administrative unit administered by one elected Council, creating the North Eastern Province. [12] The proclamations were only meant to be a temporary measure until a referendum was held in the Eastern Province on a permanent merger between the two provinces. However, the referendum was never held and successive Sri Lankan presidents issued proclamations annually extending the life of the "temporary" entity. [13] The merger was bitterly opposed by Sri Lankan nationalists. On 14 July 2006, after a long campaign against the merger, the JVP filed three separate petitions with the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka requesting a separate Provincial Council for the East. [12] On 16 October 2006 the Supreme Court ruled that the proclamations issued by President Jayewardene were null and void and had no legal effect. [12] The North-East Province was formally de-merged into the Northern and Eastern provinces on 1 January 2007.

Sri Lanka currently has nine provinces, seven of which have had provincial councils from the start. [2]

Provinces

Current

All population data are from the most recent census of Sri Lanka, in 2012.

ProvinceArea mapProvincial
capital
Date
Created
Land
area
in km2 (mi2) [14]
Inland
water
area
in km2 (mi2) [14]
Total
area
in km2 (mi2) [14]
Population
(2012) [15]
Population
density
per km2
(per mi2) [lower-alpha 1]
Central Province.png  Central Sri Lanka Central Province locator map.svg Kandy 1 October 18335,575 (2,153)99 (38)5,674 (2,191)2,571,557461 (1,190)
Eastern Province Flag (SRI LANKA).png  Eastern Sri Lanka Eastern Province locator map.svg Trincomalee 1 October 18339,361 (3,614)635 (245)9,996 (3,859)1,555,510166 (430)
North Central Flag.png  North Central Sri Lanka North Central Province locator map.svg Anuradhapura 18739,741 (3,761)731 (282)10,472 (4,043)1,266,663130 (340)
Flag of the Northern Province.svg  Northern Sri Lanka Northern Province locator map.svg Jaffna 1 October 18338,290 (3,200)594 (229)8,884 (3,430)1,061,315128 (330)
North Western Flag.png  North Western Sri Lanka North Western Province locator map.svg Kurunegala 18457,506 (2,898)382 (147)7,888 (3,046)2,380,861317 (820)
Sabaragamuwa Province Flag.png  Sabaragamuwa Sri Lanka Sabaragamuwa locator map.svg Ratnapura 18894,921 (1,900)47 (18)4,968 (1,918)1,928,655392 (1,020)
Flag of the Southern Province (Sri Lanka).PNG  Southern Sri Lanka Southern Province locator map.svg Galle 1 October 18335,383 (2,078)161 (62)5,544 (2,141)2,477,285460 (1,200)
Flag of the Uva Province (Sri Lanka) SVG.svg  Uva Sri Lanka Uva locator map.svg Badulla 18868,335 (3,218)165 (64)8,500 (3,300)1,266,463152 (390)
Western Province Flag (SRI LANKA).png  Western Sri Lanka Western Province locator map.svg Colombo 1 October 18333,593 (1,387)91 (35)3,684 (1,422)5,851,1301,628 (4,220)
Total62,705 (24,211)2,905 (1,122)65,610 (25,330)20,359,439325 (840)

See also

Notes

  1. Population density has been calculated using the land area rather than the total area.

Related Research Articles

Western Province, Sri Lanka Province of Sri Lanka

The Western Province is one of the nine provinces of Sri Lanka, the first level administrative division of the country. The provinces have existed since the 19th century but did not have any legal status until 1987 when the 13th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka established provincial councils. The province is the most densely populated province in the country and is home to the legislative capital Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte as well to Colombo, the nation's administrative and business center.

Uva Province Province of Sri Lanka

Uva Province is Sri Lanka's second least populated province, with 1,259,880 people, created in 1896. It consists of two districts: Badulla and Moneragala. The provincial capital is Badulla. Uva is bordered by Eastern, Southern, Sabaragamuwa and Central provinces. Its major tourist attractions are Dunhinda falls, Diyaluma Falls, Rawana Falls, the Yala National Park and Gal Oya National Park. The Gal Oya hills and the Central mountains are the main uplands, while the Mahaweli and Menik rivers and the huge Senanayake Samudraya and Maduru Oya Reservoirs are the major waterways.

Eastern Province, Sri Lanka Province in Sri Lanka

The Eastern Province is one of the nine provinces of Sri Lanka, the first level administrative division of the country. The provinces have existed since the 19th century but did not have any legal status until 1987 when the 13th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka established provincial councils. Between 1988 and 2006 the province was temporarily merged with the Northern Province to form the North Eastern Province. The capital of the province is Trincomalee.

North Eastern Province, Sri Lanka Historical Province in Sri Lanka

The North Eastern Province was one of the provinces of Sri Lanka. The province was created in September 1988 by merging the Northern and Eastern provinces. This merger was declared illegal by the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka in 2006. The province was formally demerged into the Northern and Eastern provinces on 1 January 2007. The capital of the province was Trincomalee.

Colombo District Administrative District in Western, Sri Lanka

Colombo District is one of the 25 districts of Sri Lanka, the second level administrative division of the country. The district is administered by a District Secretariat headed by a District Secretary appointed by the central government of Sri Lanka. The capital of the district is the city of Colombo. The district of Colombo was officially recorded in 2016 as having the highest income on average, per household.

Kilinochchi District Administrative District in Northern, Sri Lanka

Kilinochchi District is one of the 25 districts of Sri Lanka, the second level administrative division of the country. The district is administered by a District Secretariat headed by a District Secretary appointed by the central government of Sri Lanka. The capital of the district is the town of Kilinochchi.

Kingdom of Kandy political entity

The Kingdom of Kandy was an independent monarchy of the island of Sri Lanka, located in the central and eastern portion of the island. It was founded in the late 15th century and endured until the early 19th century.

Mullaitivu District Administrative District in Northern, Sri Lanka

Mullaitivu District is one of the 25 districts of Sri Lanka, the second level administrative division of the country. The district is administered by a District Secretariat headed by a District Secretary appointed by the central government of Sri Lanka. The capital of the district is the town of Mullaitivu.

Vavuniya District Administrative District in Northern, Sri Lanka

Vavuniya District is one of the 25 districts of Sri Lanka, the second level administrative division of the country. The district is administered by a District Secretariat headed by a District Secretary appointed by the central government of Sri Lanka. The capital of the district is the city of Vavuniya.

The Eastern Provincial Council is the provincial council for the Eastern Province in Sri Lanka. In accordance with the Sri Lankan constitution, EPC has legislative power over a variety of matters including agriculture, education, health, housing, local government, planning, road transport and social services. The constitution also gives it powers over police and land but successive central governments have refused to devolve these powers to the provinces. EPC has 37 members elected using the open list proportional representation system.

Legislative Council of Ceylon

The Legislative Council of Ceylon was the legislative body of Ceylon established in 1833, along with the Executive Council of Ceylon, on the recommendations of the Colebrooke-Cameron Commission. It was the first form of representative government in the island. The 1931 Donoughmore Constitution replaced the Legislative Council with the State Council of Ceylon.

Northern Province, Sri Lanka Province of Sri Lanka

The Northern Province is one of the nine provinces of Sri Lanka, the first level administrative division of the country. The provinces have existed since the 19th century but did not have any legal status until 1987 when the 13th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka established provincial councils. Between 1988 and 2006 the province was temporarily merged with the Eastern Province to form the North Eastern Province. The capital of the province is Jaffna. The majority of the Sri Lankan Civil War was played out in this province.

Kandyan Convention curry_30

The Kandyan Convention was an agreement signed on 02 March 1815 between the British and the chiefs of the Kandyan Kingdom, British Ceylon for the deposition of King Sri Vikrama Rajasinha and ceding of the kingdom's territory to British rule. The king, of South Indian ancestry, faced powerful opposition from the Sinhalese chieftains who sought to limit his power. A successful coup was organized by the chieftains, marking the end of 2358 years of self-rule on the island and resulting in the imprisonment of the king in Vellore. The treaty is quite unique in that it was not signed by the monarch on the throne but by members of his court and other dignitaries of the kingdom.

Mannar District Administrative District in Northern, Sri Lanka

Mannar District is one of the 25 districts of Sri Lanka, the second level administrative division of the country. The district is administered by a District Secretariat headed by a District Secretary appointed by the central government of Sri Lanka. The capital of the district is the town of Mannar.

Maha Dissava

The Mahâ Dissâvas was a Great Officer in the Amātya Mandalaya, or Sinhalese Council of State, in the Sinhalese Kingdoms of premodern Sri Lanka. Like many of the existing high offices at the time it had combined legislative and judicial powers and functioned primarily equivalent to that of a Provincial governor. The office of Dissava was retained under the successive European colonial powers, namely the Portuguese Empire, the Dutch East India Company and the British Empire. A Dissava was the governor a province known as a Disavanies. With his province, the Dissava held both executive and judicial authority.

The 1999 Sri Lankan provincial council election was held on 25 January 1999, 6 April 1999 and 10 June 1999 to elect members to seven provincial councils in Sri Lanka. No election was held in the eighth province, North Eastern, which had been governed directly by the national government since March 1990. The People's Alliance, which was in power nationally, won the majority of seats in two provinces. It was also able to form a majority administration in the other five provinces with the support of smaller parties such as the Ceylon Workers' Congress.

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Provincial council elections were held in Sri Lanka on 21 September 2013 to elect 148 members to three of the nine provincial councils in the country. 4.4 million Sri Lankans were eligible to vote in the election. Elections to the remaining six provincial councils were not due as they had their last election in 2009 or 2012. This was the first provincial council election in the Northern Province in 25 years.

Provincial governments of Sri Lanka are the devolved governments of the nine Provinces of Sri Lanka. In accordance with the Sri Lankan constitution, provinces have legislative power over a variety of matters including agriculture, education, health, housing, local government, planning, road transport and social services. The constitution also gives them powers over police and land but successive central governments have refused to devolve these powers to the provinces.

Provincial council elections were held in Sri Lanka on 29 March 2014 to elect 159 members to two of the nine provincial councils in the country. 5.9 million Sri Lankans were eligible to vote in the election. Elections to a third provincial council (Uva) were held on 20 September. Elections to the remaining six provincial councils were not due as they had their last election in 2012 or 2013.

References

  1. Law, Gwillim (2010). "Provinces of Sri Lanka". statoids.com. Retrieved 19 January 2010.
  2. 1 2 "Introduction". Provincial Councils. Government of Sri Lanka. Archived from the original on 7 July 2009. Retrieved 16 January 2010.
  3. 1 2 "The Colebrooke-Cameron Reforms". Sri Lanka. Library of Congress . Retrieved 16 August 2009.
  4. Mills, Lennox A. (1933). Ceylon Under British Rule 1795–1932. London: Oxford University Press/Humphrey S. Milford. p. 68. Retrieved 16 August 2009.
  5. Mendis 1946, p. 39.
  6. 1 2 Samarasinghe, L. M. (21 March 2003). "River basins as administrative divisions". Daily News (Sri Lanka) .
  7. 1 2 "Sinhala Colonisation in the Hereditary Tamil Regions of the Island of Sri Lanka". UN Commission on Human Rights 56th Sessions: March/April 2000. Tamil Nation. Retrieved 16 August 2009.
  8. Karalliyadda, S. B. (4 February 2009). "Independence Struggle for a Hundred and Thirty Three Years". Daily News (Sri Lanka) . Retrieved 16 August 2009.
  9. Mendis 1946, p. 51.
  10. 1 2 Mendis 1946, p. 84.
  11. Mendis 1946, p. 85.
  12. 1 2 3 Selvanayagam, S. S. (17 October 2006). "North-East merger illegal: SC". The Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) . Archived from the original on 3 April 2013.
  13. Sambandan, V. S. (14 November 2003). "Sri Lanka's North-East to remain united for another year". The Hindu .
  14. 1 2 3 "Table 1.1: Area of Sri Lanka by province and district" (PDF). Statistical Abstract 2014. Department of Census and Statistics, Sri Lanka.
  15. "Census of Population and Housing of Sri Lanka, 2012 – Table A1: Population by district, sex and sector" (PDF). Department of Census & Statistics, Sri Lanka.

Bibliography