Death of M. S. Alif
Mr. M. S. Alif, retired Cabinet Secretary passed away in Colombo recently at the age of 80. Mr. Alif who held the dual post of Cabinet Secretary and Director General of Cabinet Affairs under the Sirimavo Bandaranaike Government of 1970 to 1977 played a key role in the formation and functioning of the United Front Government.
Together with the late Mr. T. B. Ilangaratne, Mr. Alif who enjoyed the confidence of both Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike and the leaders of the LSSP and CP, played a big role in helping the United Front to function together despite the vicissitudes of coalition politics.
Mr. Alif who remained an SLFP loyalist right to the end joined the SLFP in 1953 and worked in various capacities for the Party.
An Attorney-at-Law who was in active practice up to his demise, Mr. Alif celebrated his completion of 50 years at the Bar a few years back.
Mr. Alif who had a MSc in Town and Country Planning was considered an expert in Housing and made a significant contribution towards the formulation of Housing Policy in Sri Lanka and also served on several Housing related missions for the United Nations.
He also served as the United Nations Housing Adviser to the Government of the United Arab Emirates. He also played a big part in forging links with the Arab world and also served as a Special Envoy of the Prime Minister to the Middle East.
Mr. Alif took a great interest in the affairs of the Muslim Community. He worked closely, with the late Sir Razik Fareed in helping to put Muslim Ladies College Colombo on a sound footing while he worked closely with the late Dr. Badiuddin Mahmud in relation to the political and development related matters affecting the Muslims.
After his retirement from active politics Mr. Alif continued his work for the welfare of the Muslims. He directed his energies towards helping to build two important institutions which are of considerable benefit to Muslims.
The first was the establishment of Ilma International Girls' School, a non profit making girls school, where he remained a director of the School Board since its inception. He also was a founder director of Amana Investments Ltd which is the pioneer Bank involved in Islamic finance.