MAITHRI PANAGODA UNDISPUTED LEGAL PRODIGY IN NSW OF SRI LANKAN ORIGIN ,DIRECTOR OF LANKAVISION, EDITOR IN CHIEF SLE,PATRON OF MUTHUHARA OF SLRC,FOUNDER OF OLD ANANDIAN ASSOCIATION NSW -by Sunil Thenabadu
Photo source: Sydney University
Maithri Panagoda is one of Australia’s prominent reimbursement lawyers. Educated in both Sydney and Sri Lanka, Maithri has over 40 years’ skill in lawsuit and debate resolution. The Law Society of NSW accredits him as an individual grievance professional.
Maithri practiced as a lawyer in Dubbo a city in the Orana region in NSW for nearly 10 years before joining Carroll & O’Dea Lawyers in 1991. He worked with the Western Aboriginal Legal Service and since joining Carroll & O’Dea Lawyers he had renewed his loyalty to representing the Aboriginal people. He has been involved in many lucrative claims being brought by members of the Stolen Generation.
Fluent in Sinhalese, Maithri is involved in various activities with the Sri Lankan community in New South Wales. Maithri has also been a member of Law Society’s Medico Legal Liaison Committee, Senior Solicitors’ Committee and the Litigation Law and Practice Committee. Maithri has published abundant of articles and publications and is a regular orator at legal conferences cum seminars. He is the author of the chapter on workers’ benefit in the Lawyers Practice Manual published by the Thompson Lawbook Co.
By virtue of his professional standing, Maithri is consistently invited to address legal seminars .present seminars to fellow lawyers and university students studying law.
The Stolen Generations project is confessed as the biggest achievement in his career. Not many law firms would have ventured into this area because of it is a substantial venture capital in time and money while the consequence is vague, but we have been able to get results mainly because of the way he relates to his clients and his methodology with the parties implicated.
In a nutshell the description of this genius : Maithri has a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Sri Lanka and a Master of Laws degree from the University of Sydney.He also completed post-graduate studies in Sociology and Law at Brunel University in England. He was admitted to practice in England and in Sri Lanka. He was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 1981.He joined Carroll & O’Dea Lawyers in 1991 and became a partner in 1996.Maithri has been a registered migration agent since 2002.He is a Fellow of The Australian and New Zealand College of Notaries in 2013.Maithri was appointed Adjunct Professor
Maithri Panagoda is not only a reputed lawyer but an acclaimed Poet.At Ananda College he had excelled as an orator par excellence had been a gifted lyricist for many popular vocalists like WD Amaradeva.Maithri was involved and is still participates in activities with the Sri Lankan community in New South Wales.He is a director of Lankavision that provides a satellite television service to the Sri Lankans living in Australia and New Zealand. He has been the Editor-In -Chief of SLE the first Sri Lankan multimedia web magazine with E Mag technology.
Maithri has taken an active starring role for the welfare of the Sri Lankan community ‘down under’.In addition in assisting those to navigate over legal matters confronted with.Had involved in giving radio talks and with written community journals. He is one of the founding members of the past Anandian’s association of New South Wales taking an active role in the welfare of the Sri Lankan community in Australia particularly those challenged with legal issues.Maithri is one of the founding members of Past ‘Anandian’s Association of New South Wales.
After the tsunami catastrophe in year 2004 with fellow Sri Lankans formed ‘Australanka Helpline’ to support the children orphaned by the disastrous event.
Maithri Panagoda was born in Wathumulla a hamlet nestled between Gampaha and Minuwangoda. After completing his secondary education had entered the Sri Lanka Law College.
Many are unaware that Maithri is the patron of “Muthuhara” children’s program still popular at the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation. Through the past decades the program had been chiefly instrumental in grooming so many talented youngsters to become stars in the likes of singers, actors, actresses, presenters hosting radio and television programs.Still many television channels host programs with these little personalities who are now adults some in many other professions and in the fields in arts.
After completing thirty five years actively involved in work connected to law it had been a long hectic and grueling journey.With his son and daughter Gajanath and Ruvani married and settled down, Maithri has decided to revisit his passion in the poetical journey enjoying with the grandson Ravi and granddaughter Saati in his twilight years. All would wish Maithri Panagoda good health and longevity.
Sunil Thenabadu in Brisbane
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