A tribute to a gentleman par excellence

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By 2018-01-16

Deshabandu Deivanayagam Eassuwaren, a former President of the National Chamber of Commerce (NCC), passed away on 6 January 2018. The President and Council of the National Chamber of Commerce issued a statement paying tribute to his service, which is reproduced in full below.

It is with profound sorrow that we record the demise of one of our well-respected past Presidents of the National Chamber of Commerce, Deshabandu Deivanayagam Eassuwaren, held in very high esteem by the Chamber, who did a yeoman service in his tenure of service to the Chamber and to the public at large. During his tenure, he brought up the concept of conducting an Ayurveda Expo by the Chamber, an activity the Chamber continues to date by the Chamber. Affable, gentle, kind and charming, the late Eassuwaren leaves a mark characteristic of gentlemen of a past era, leaving a trail for others to follow. He was a genial head of his organization who never admonished his subordinates for any misdemeanor, but advised them gently as to their requirement. He was a well-respected and recognized business leader amongst the business community and headed Eswaran Brothers, a premier tea export company, founded by his father, V T V Deivanayagam, establishing their humble beginnings in 1964 with their first export of 300 chests of tea to Somalia. He received many accolades in his lifetime, including the prestigious Deshabandu National Honor Award from President Maithripala Sirisena just last year. He held many important posts, including former Honorary Consul of the Republic of Mauritius, Trustee of the Varatharaja Vinayaga Temple, Former President of the Kanban Kalagam Literary Association, and Trustee of the Manitha Neyam Trust, among many others. He was also a philanthropist, providing facilities to less-privileged schools.

One of Eassuwaren's notable qualities was that, despite being a devout Hindu, he generously contributed to the Buddhist community and culture at large, including the construction of the 70-foot tall Samadhi Buddha statue in Rambadagalla, a famous landmark today, and to many other Buddhist institutions and other causes of the needy. The large gathering of Buddhist clergy from various temples chanting and partaking at his final rituals was a testimony of his harmony with the Sinhala Buddhists.

We pay solemn tribute to our dear departed President, Deshabandu Deivanayagam Eassuwaren and pay silent homage to his memory.

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