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"Wife will dislike ... but carry out my last will as told" -- What Professor Carlo told while on sick bed


"Wife will dislike ... but carry out my last will as told" -- What Professor Carlo told while on sick bed

Professor Carlo Fonseka is a distinguished man who invaded the conventional doctor's role in this country. It was common knowledge that he was a brilliant medical student in the university. Subsequently, he was an equally distinguished mentor who bestowed basic education to thousands of doctors in this country. Professor Carlo Fonseka held the position of professor of Physiology and head of the faculty at the Colombo medical faculty too excelling as a clever administrator as well. 

His style of teaching was so fascinating that most doctors still recall what they learned under him ...
with great adoration. Professor Carlo Fonseka who went beyond the conventional physician was also a clever aesthetist. Some enchanting sweet and meaningful songs flowed from his pen. Professor Carlo Fonseka's compositions in writing was not confined to the science of medicine alone. This eminent man who has written a host of documents relating to the arts, religion, social science and philosophy is indeed an outstanding writer. This person who values Buddhism as a philosophy is an incomparable man in the true sense of the word. He in fact was someone who was kind enough to afford his service to the best of his ability to any person who seeks his help irrespective of his or her status and therefore was so rich in heart, devoid of miserliness. 

Professor Carlo Fonseka's name is retained constantly in the hearts of the public nt because he was a doctor of medicine. Though he was subjected to honour as a humanist doctor in the field of medicine who would treat anybody gratis who used to come to him those days; there were more reasons for his name to hit the limelight. He was a well-known lyricist, an academic and was a popular speaker on the arts and literature. This man who was a physiologist was on the other hand a cut-out image in Sri Lanka Communist party. 

To prove that people engaging in fire-walking was just a myth ... he too walked the fire. He threw a bet that if devils, ghosts, prethas, voodoos, charms etcetera are proed, he would give Rs. ten lakhs. However nobody came forward to take up his challenge. 

The song "Raththaran duwe .. ape raththaran duwe" which is heard sung in an emotional tone at almost every wedding function these days. He was the lyricist of several memorable songs. He who was an outstanding speaker in fact was an indispensable character at functions when a book is launched. Most people wished to listen to his speeches which were coloured by humour and calmness. 

The professor was an active member of the communist party and his nephew Vijaya Cumaratunga helped this party when it was established. His name became popular for the last time when everywhere in the country when he assumed the chair of president of Sri Lanka medical council when a conflict erupted against the SAITM campus. After he bade goodbye to the president's chair of the medical council in the year two thousand seventeen, his students organised a farewell party for their mentor. But because Professor Carlo Fonseka was not in favour of the function, they gave it up. Having retired from his position of president of the medical council, and this person who bade farewell and returned home fell sick the following day. He while under treatment at Colombo national hospital has requested that he be taken home. 


Carlo Fonseka who summoned his wife, son and Dr. Chandana Atapattu to his side ... expressed his last will. The Professor who said that his wife will not be in favour of his last will asked that after his bereavement to have him dressed up in the colour red and rush his body as soon as possible to be handed over to medical college. For the very reason of being a rationalist, is final request had been to go on his last journey dressed in the colour red. On that very request, Professor Carlo Fonseka's body was handed over to the medical faculty last afternoon itself (2). 

(Note by -- Dr. Chandana Atapattu). 

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