Dr. N. M. Perera
Colvin R de Silva
Dr. S. A. Wickramasinghe
William de Silva
Doric de Souza
Prof Osmund Jayaratne
Prof. Thissa Vitharana
The Lanka Sama Samaja Party was founded on 18 December 1935, with the broad aims of Sri Lankan Independence and Socialism, by a group of young politicians. The group at the foundation numbered a bare half-dozen, and composed principally of students who had returned from study abroad, influenced deeply by the ideas of Karl Marx and Lenin. The original group consisted of Leslie Goonewardene, N.M. Perera, Colvin R. de Silva, Philip Gunawardena and Robert Gunawardena.
The Lanka Sama Samaja Party, often abbreviated as LSSP (literally: Lanka Equal Society Party, Sinhala: ලංකා සම සමාජ පක්ෂය, Tamil: லங்கா சமசமாஜக் கட்சி), is a major Trotskyist political party in Sri Lanka. It was the first political party in Sri Lanka (then British Ceylon), having been founded in 1935 by Leslie Goonewardene, N.M. Perera, Colvin R. de Silva, Philip Gunawardena and Robert Gunawardena. It currently is a member of the main ruling coalition in the government of Sri Lanka and is headed by Professor Tissa Vitharana. The party was founded with Marxist-Leninst ideals, and is classified as a party with Socialist aims.
The LSSP emerged as a major political force in the Sri Lankan independence movement during the 1940s, during which time the party was forced to go underground due to its opposition to the British war effort. The party played an instrumental role in the Indian independence and later Quit India Movement through the Bolshevik–Leninist Party of India, Ceylon and Burma (BLPI). Through its efforts, India gained Independence from Britain in 1947, followed by Sri Lanka in 1948.
The LSSP grew out of the Youth Leagues of Ceylon – societies of young people, mainly intellectuals, who wanted independence for the British ruled Sri Lanka – in which a nucleus of Marxists had developed. The party’s leaders were predominantly educated returnees from study in London; youth who had come into contact with the ideas of the European Left and were influenced by Harold Laski, an English political theorist and professor at the London School of Economics. Dr S.A. Wickremasinghe, an early returnee and a member of the State Council from 1931, was part of this group. The Youth Leagues campaigned for independence from Britain, notably organising opposition to the so-called ‘Ministers’ Memorandum’, one which in essence called for the colonial authorities to grant increased power to local ministers
Secretary-General : Leslie Goonewardene (first; 1945–1977)
Leader N.M. Perera (first; 1947–1959)
Professor Tissa Vitharana is the present leader.
Founders of LSSP
- Leslie Goonewardene
- N.M. Perera
- Colvin R. de Silva
- Philip Gunawardena
- Robert Gunawardena
Founded 18 December 1935
Headquarters 457 Union Place, Colombo 02
Newspaper Samasamajaya,Janadina daily Janasathiya
Youth wing Congress of Samasamaja Youth Leagues
Ideology : Marxism with socialisam
Political position : centre-left