Harin Fernando

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Harin Fernando
Minister Foreign Employment Promotion & Welfare
Assumed office
25 February 2018
President Maithripala Sirisena
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe
Preceded by Thalatha Atukorale
Minister of Telecommunications and Digital Infrastructure
Assumed office
4 September 2015
President Maithripala Sirisena
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe
Member of Parliament
for Badulla District
Assumed office
In office
2010 – 5 August 2014
7th Chief Minister of Uva Province
In office
14 January 2015 – 1 September 2015
Preceded by Shashindra Rajapaksa
Succeeded by Chamara Sampath Dassanayake
Personal details
Born (1978-10-28) 28 October 1978 (age 39)
Political party United National Party
Alma mater St. Joseph's College
Occupation Politician
Profession Businessman

Harin Fernando, MP (born on 28 October 1978) is a Sri Lankan politician. He is a current member of the Parliament of Sri Lanka from Badulla District.[1] and the cabinet minister of Telecommunications and Digital Infrastructure of the United National Party led National Government.[2] He was the 7th Chief Minister of Uva Province,

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Wattala to a Roman Catholic family, Fernando was educated at St. Joseph's College, Colombo.

Political career[edit]

Fernando was appointed as United National Party (UNP) electoral organizer for Badulla District at age of 27 and won the highest number of votes in the Uva Province Council Election in 2005. He was elected as Member of Parliament for Bandulla District in 2010 and resigned on 5 August 2014 to contest as candidate for Chief Minister of Uva Province.[3] Even though Fernando won the highest number of preferential votes, the UNP lost in Uva Provincial Council election. Fernando became the leader of the opposition in the Uva Province Council.

Fernando played critical role in defeating Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Presidential Election 2015 which Rajapaksa called for early election when UPFA won narrowly at Uva Provincial Election. He had strongly criticised the Rajapaksa regime for its corruption, authoritarian rule and rise of lawlessness. Fernando also openly campaigned for the Common Candidate Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential Election which had curb the popularity of UPFA in the Uva Province compare to 2010.[N 1]

Soon after the Presidency Election, a number of UPFA provincial councilors backed him thus giving the majority in the Uva Province Council. He was sworn in as Chief Minister of Uva Province before the Governor and unseated Shashindra Rajapaksa from power.[4]

In August 2015, he was elected to parliament gaining the highest votes in the Badulla District. Shortly thereafter he was appointed as Cabinet Minister of Telecommunications and Digital Infrastructure.[5][6]

He criticized Facebook for being too slow to combat users who were using Facebook and WhatsApp to facilitate anti-Muslim riots in Sri Lanka.[7]


  1. ^ "HARIN FERNANDO, M.P.,". Parliament of Sri Lanka. Retrieved 21 August 2015. 
  2. ^ "New Ministers sworn in". www.adaderana.lk. Retrieved 2017-05-16. 
  3. ^ "Harin's triumph in defeat lifts UNP sky-high". The Sunday Times. 28 September 2014. Retrieved 21 August 2015. 
  4. ^ "Harin Fernando takes oath as Uva Chief Minister". adaderana.lk. January 14, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Preferential votes- General Election 2015". adaderana.lk. 18 August 2015. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  6. ^ "3 Chief Ministers and 4 opposition leaders elected to parliament". Hiru news. 19 August 2015. Retrieved 21 August 2015. 
  7. ^ Safi, Michael (March 14, 2018). "Sri Lanka accuses Facebook over hate speech after deadly riots". The Guardian. 


  1. ^ Significantly reduced Rajapaksa's popularity in Badulla and Monaragala after Harin's criticisms.