D R Wijewardene remembered | Sunday Observer

D R Wijewardene remembered

The 134th birth anniversary of D.R Wijewardene, the founder of the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd. (Lake House) falls today (February 23). Wijewardene, a towering figure in the Independence Movement campaigned against colonialism through his newspapers published in all three languages.

Religious ceremonies including a Sanghika Dana were held on Friday (21) at the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Limited (ANCL), Colombo. An all-night pirith chanting ceremony was held at the Lake House premises on Thursday night with the participation of the Lake House management, staff and invitees. Among the invitees was Ranjith Wijewardene, the son of D.R Wijewardene.

Information and Communication Technology State Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena and ANCL Chairman, W. Dayaratne, PC also participated. The chief incumbent of the Colombo Fort Sri Sambuddhaloka Vihara Ven. Ittademaliya Indrasara Thera, Gangarama Vihaadipathi Ven. Kirinde Assaji Thera and several members of the Maha Sangha participated. D R Wijewardene established an array of daily and weekly newspapers in all three languages, including the Dinamina and the Daily News, both of which are now over 100 years.

In 1929, he moved all newspaper operations to the present Lake House building, now recognised as a historic and architectural landmark in Colombo, on the banks of the Beira Lake. His life was dedicated to improve Lake House, which he moulded into becoming the country’s biggest publishing group.