|General The Honourable
|Member of the Sri Lanka Parliament
for National List
1989 – 2 March 1991
April 4, 1931|
|Died||March 2, 1991
Colombo, Sri Lanka
|Political party||United National Party|
|Spouse(s)||Delande Surya Bandara|
|Alma mater||St Thomas' College|
|Service/branch||Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force|
|Years of service||(1984–1988)|
|Unit||Sri Lanka Rifle Corps|
General Ranjan Wijeratne (4 April 1931 – 2 March 1991) was the former Sri Lankan Cabinet Minister of foreign affairs, Minister of State for defence (deputy defence minister) and Minister of plantation industries from 1989 to 1991 in President Ranasinghe Premadasa's cabinet.
Born to Walpola Mudalige George Hercules Wijeratne and Rosalind Maria Senanayake he was educated at S. Thomas' College, Guruthalawa and S. Thomas' College, Mt. Lavinia. Ranjan's younger brother was Hemachandra Wijeratne. Wijeratne began a career as a planter, holding many high positions in the tea plantation sector of Sri Lanka. In 1978 he was made Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Agricultural Development and Research and Chairman of the Agricultural Development Authority. In 1984 Ranjan Wijeratne was commissioned as Lieutenant Colonel in the Sri Lanka Rifle Corps with its formation, which was established to provide security to the plantation sector.
Ranjan resigned from all government posts and his commission when he went into active politics in 1988 when he was appointed Chairman of the United National Party. He later went on to become the General Secretary of the Party. Wijeratne led the party in 1988 Presidential elections followed by the 1989 General Elections. Wijeratne was appointed from national list to parliament in 1989 and was appointed as cabinet minister of foreign affairs and minister of state for defense by President Ranasinghe Premadasa.Wijeratne invariably made many enemies due to his tough position. He was equally hawkish in dealing with LTTE and JVP Militants. He masterminded the JVP near rout in 1989 and the LTTE was to follow.
He was assassinated on 2 March 1991, by the LTTE organisation using a remote controlled car bomb while he was travelling to his office in Colombo on Havelock Road, during rush hour killing 19 people including the minister and five bodyguards and 13 civilian bystanders. Ironically,two days before his assassination Wijeratne laughed -off the LTTE threats to his life saying"Good Luck to them". He was known to have a hard line stance towards the LTTE.
Lt. Colonel Ranjan Wijeratne was posthumously promoted to the rank of General and Kotelawala Defence Academy (now Kotelawala Defence University) at its second convocation, conferred an honorary degree of Doctor of Law (LLD) (Honoris Causa).
- List of political families in Sri Lanka
- List of Sri Lankan non-career Permanent Secretaries
- Havelock Road Bombing, 1991
- List of assassinations of the Sri Lankan Civil War
- List of attacks attributed to the LTTE
- Sri Lankan Civil War
- Suicide terrorism: a global threat, www.janes.com
- About Late General Ranjan Wijeratne, Ranjan Wijeratne Foundation
- Menan Ramesh.Explotion Setback.IndiaToday.March.31.1991.
- Menon ramesh.Explotion Setback.IndiaToday.31 March 1991.
- Jane's Sentinel examines the success of the LTTE in resisting the Sri Lankan forces
- Patterns of Global Terrorism: 1991, Asia Overview, Federation of American Scientists
- 1991: Sri Lankan hardliner among 19 killed in blast
- The Rediff Special
- "Col. Charles laid to rest in Ki'linochchi". Tamilnet. 9 January 2008. Retrieved 9 January 2009.
Abdul Cader Shahul Hameed
|Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka