Sri Lanka is officially known as the Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. Before this name, during the beginning of the British colonial rule until 1972 it was known as Ceylon (Feizal, 2008). Sri Lanka is the country in South Asia which is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, southeast of India. There has been some evidence of prehistoric human settlements in Sri Lanka dating back to about 125,000 years southwest of the Maldives (Feizal, 2008). The geographic location of Sri Lanka and the deep harbors it possesses made it an excellent strategic location from the time of the ancient man through the world war.
Sri Lanka is a diverse and multicultural country (Feizal, 2008). It is a home to many religions, ethnic groups, and languages. In addition to the majority Sinhalese, it is home to large groups of Sri Lankan and Indian Tamils, Moors, Burggers, Malays, Kaffirs and the aboriginal Vedda (Feizal, 2008). This country is a typical symbol of Buddhist culture in rich history (Feizal, 2008). Also, it covers a variety wide of diverse ethnic groups, education, politics, religions, and health economics. However, there are two reasons for choosing the country study. First, there is a great appeal to be studying Sri Lanka that reveals wealthy Buddhist religion and politics. I do research two ethnic groups that caused by the Civil War (Feizal, 2008).
Second, deaf Sri Lankans cultures are attractive to me. As I study the deaf organizations, they are designed to help deaf people with good leadership, deaf education, sign language, and career opportunities. I feel organizations are important to me (Feizal, 2008). As a leader, I involve in organizations to support deaf people with human rights for career opportunities and deaf schools.
Now, there are six items that Sri Lanka explains and analyzes in the paper: Geography, History and Politics, Living condition, Social Condition, Economy and People with Disabilities. First, this paper provides a detailed description of the geography (Feizal, 2008). It also offers a history of the Sri Lanka and explains politics that governs the country. In addition to this, it describes in living conditions and gives four examples of Sri Lankas social conditions or social health. It also focuses on economics and finally it discusses people with disability including deaf (Feizal, 2008).
Sri Lanka is the pear-shaped island in the Indian Ocean, located in Southern Asia. It is an Island in the Indian Ocean having a central location in relation to other countries in the region.The Island is alienated from India by the narrow Palk Strait about 32 kilometers wide. It is bordered by Gulf of Mannar and Bay of Bengal on the southeast of India. Reddy (2004) reports Sri Lanka has a latitude of 7.0000 N and longitude of 81.0000 E. It looks like West Virginia, but it has a slightly larger than West Virginia (Reddy, 2004). The area of Sri Lanka covers a total of 65,610 square kilometers (25,332 square miles) with a land area of 64,630 square kilometers and water of 980 square kilometers (World FactBook, CIA, 2007). According to the report from Wanasundera (2002), it measures the country in size; the distance from Point Pedro in the north to Dondra Head in the South is 270 miles (435 km), widening Sri Lanka at 140 miles (225 km). The distance between South India and island is 30 miles (Wanasundera, p.7).
The atmospheric setting of a place depends on the temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and direction of the wind, etc. A collection of data on weather for a long time enables to get an idea about the climate (Feizal, 2008). The atmospheric setting of a place depends on the temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and direction of the wind, etc. A collection of data on weather for a long time enables to get an idea about the climate. Sri Lanka has a wet, hot climate throughout the year. Its tropical monsoon consists of; northeast monsoon from December to March and southwest monsoon from June to October (Reddy, 2003). According to the Wanasundera (2002), the temperatures in the coastal regions vary at an average of 80F and 83F (27C and 28C). Temperatures in the northwest of the island can stretch up to 100F (38C) and higher while high temperatures in the northeast of Sri Lanka can reach 38 C. On the other hands, the temperature in south-central hovers over 50F (10C) (Feizal, 2008). The factors that influence the variation of temperature in Sri Lanka are (Feizal, 2008):
1. Latitudinal location
2. Altitude (height of land)
3. Distance from the sea
4. Proximity to the Indian landmass
5. Effect of the monsoons
Rainfall is one of the major aspects of the climate of Sri Lanka (Feizal, 2008). The nation receives rain all through the year. The mean annual rainfall varies between 750mm and 6000 mm. Sri Lanka receives rain by three methods:
Convectional rain Although convectional activity occurs year-round, it is subdued during monsoonal periods. Sri Lanka experiences convectional rain mainly in the inter-monsoon months of March-April and October-November (Feizal, 2008). The unique feature of convectional rain is that it is accompanied by thunder and lightning and is received in late afternoons (Feizal, 2008).
Southwest Monsoon rain The moisture-laden winds blowing over the Indian Ocean crossing Sri Lanka brings a lot of rain to the Southwest and Western parts of the hill country. This pattern dominates from May to September (Feizal, 2008). These winds rise the slopes of the mountains in the interior of Sri Lanka and cause heavy precipitation due to condensation (Feizal, 2008).
Northeast Monsoon rain These winds from the Indian landmass and coming all the way from the Bay of Bengal penetrate Sri Lanka from Northeast between December and February. However, these winds are not so powerful as the Southwest monsoon (Feizal, 2008).
Sri Lanka has a particular identity by way of climate when compared with other countries of the world (Feizal, 2008). The bio - diversity created by this climatic pattern has attracted many tourists. A unique feature about the climate is that the outstanding regional variation could be received in a single day trip across the country (Feizal, 2008).
Cyclones The country experiences a significant rainfall by cyclones or depressions. Cyclones happen mostly during the months of October and November (Feizal, 2008).
The U.S. Department of State summarizes Sri Lanka divides climate into the wet zone on the southwest and dry area on the northeast. Rainfall ranges from one region to the next region; light in the northeast, fall, and winter, with an average rainfall of 50 inches and thick in the southwest, summer, and fall, with a mean rainfall of 200 inches. (U.S. Department of State, 1995). Also, Wanasundera (2002) reports the central highlands receives the heavy rainfall of more than 200 inches while the eastern slopes receive less rainfall at under 138 inches every year.
L.R. Reddy (2003) implies that varied terrain in the country encompasses mostly low, flat to rolling plains; mountains in the south-central interior. Also, Pidurutalagala is the one of highest mountains, at an altitude of 2,524 meters, marking the south central region of Sri Lanka (Reddy, 2003).
Territorial area of Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka as an independent country has its boundaries. This is the same for any other independent country in the entire world (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). Although the coastline is a clear definition of Sri Lanka it has some of its boundaries extending into the Indian Ocean, There were disputes and conflicts among nations regarding the territorial boundaries (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). To resolve the national boundary disagreements, the International Convention of the Sea was adopted. Sri Lanka placed the signature on to this convention 10th of December 1982. Nevertheless, this Convention came into effect worldwide only from 16th of November 1994 (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). Based on this convention the territorial limit of any country bordering the sea extends up to 12 nautical miles from the coastline of that country. Since a nautical mile is equal to 1852 m, the national boundary of Sri Lanka lengthens up to 22,224 m (12 nautical miles or about 22 km) into the sea from the coastline. In the North and Northeast, however, the narrow sea strip is shared by India and Sri Lanka (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006).
Any nation has a legal right to the airspace, seabed, and all complementary resources within its national limits. There are coral reefs, islands, rocks and shallow beds of seagrasses within Sri Lanka's territorial limits (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). The shallow continental shelf that covers most of this zone is plentiful in seafood. This factor supports a flourishing fishing industry. Similarly, bays and lagoons along the coastline as well as coral reefs and other wonderful sea resources have attracted many tourists (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006).
Administrative divisions of Sri Lanka
Although Sri Lanka is a small island, it has been divided into many units for purposes of administration (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). These divisions have been based on diverse types of boundaries. Any house, as well as school, has its boundary (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). These limits could be changed due to various reasons. Natural boundaries like mountain ranges, rivers, canals or manmade roads are used as boundaries of administrative units in Sri Lanka. The least unit of administration in Sri Lanka is Grama Niladhari Division. There may be several Grama Niladhari Divisions when villages or towns are colossal (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). Conversely, one G.N. Division may cover large areas when their populations are small. Every Grama Niladhari Division has a number and a name. Every building in a Grama Niladhari Division has a household number. Grama Niladhari is the adjoining officer to the villagers. Various G.N. Divisions constitute a Divisional Secretary's Division of Sri Lanka. The district is a group of D.S. Divisions and two or more districts make a province. The structure of administration in Sri Lanka is based on these local units (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006).
Various staff members are appointed at G.N; D.S. Division, district, and provincial levels to ease administration and separate files are maintained for various activities (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006). From these files, we can get information on land, population, and housing, agriculture, industries, roads as well as on communication networks. Also, there is information on natural disasters such as floods, landslides, droughts and cyclones (Wickramasinghe & Nira, 2006).
The history of Sri Lanka reverted over than 2,500 years as the first Indo-Aryan tribes from northern India - Prince Vijaya and his settlers reached the island in the 6th century BCE. Their descendants were called, Sinhalese. In fact, Wanasundera (2002) implies that Vijayas father, Sinhabahu, was believed to be the offspring of a lion, and the princess; hence the name Sinha, or Sinhalese referring to Vijayas descendants (Wanasundera, p.21, 2002). In a few days later, a fewer Dravidians from southern India were followed by the first settlement of Sinhalese. They landed the island with their own Hinduism, religion. They called the Tamil. Sri Lanka had the assorted ethnic groups; the majority of Sinhalese and minority of Tamil people.
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