Sri Lankan

Popularly referred to as ‘the tear drop of India’ or ‘the pearl of the Indian Ocean’, Sri Lanka is an island country situated in South Asia in the Indian Ocean. The largest exporter of tea and the originator of the spice cinnamon, Sri Lanka has taken up quite an important place in the world map. The country boasts of highest literacy rate in the entire South Asia. These are some of the many interesting facts about Sri Lanka as a country. Talking about its nationals or Sri Lankans, the country has served as the address of numerous famous writers, scientists, politicians, singers, artists, restaurateurs, journalists, engineers, philanthropists and so on.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote For Your Favourite Sri Lankan Personality

 1 Muttiah Muralitharan

Muttiah Muralitharan
19
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Cricketer
Birthdate: April 17, 1972
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kandy, Sri Lanka

 2 Kumar Sangakkara

Kumar Sangakkara
10
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Cricketer
Birthdate: October 27, 1977
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Matale, Sri Lanka

 3 Jacqueline Fernandez

Jacqueline Fernandez
25
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: June 2, 1985
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Manama, Bahrain

Talent knows no geographical boundaries and Sri Lankan actress and model, Jacqueline Fernandez, showed it with her success in Bollywood and the numerous awards she won. Raised in a multi-ethnic family, she is known for glamour and found a place in Forbes’ India list of 100 celebrities. Fernandez is also noted for her concern for animals as acknowledged by PETA.

Recommended Lists:

 4 Yohani

Yohani
15
Listed In: Singers
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: July 30, 1993
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 5 Radhika Sarathkumar

Radhika Sarathkumar
6
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 21, 1963
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 6 Dhee

Dhee
3
Listed In: Singers
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: June 26, 1998
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 7 Lasith Malinga

Lasith Malinga
7
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: August 28, 1983
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Galle, Sri Lanka
You May Like

 8 Michael Ondaatje

Michael Ondaatje
3
Listed In: Writers
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: September 12, 1943
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sri Lanka

Michael Ondaatje is a Sri Lankan-born Canadian poet, writer, and filmmaker. Born in Sri Lanka, he eventually migrated to Canada. He studied at Bishop's University and embarked on a teaching career. His literary works include poems, novels, and essays. He is the recipient of multiple prestigious awards, including the Giller Prize and the Booker Prize. 

 9 Sanath Jayasuriya

Sanath Jayasuriya
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: cricketer
Birthdate: June 30, 1969
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Matara, Sri Lanka

 10 Pooja Umashankar

Pooja Umashankar
4
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: June 25, 1981
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Recommended Lists:

 11 Mahinda Rajapaksa

Mahinda Rajapaksa
15
Listed In: Lawyers & Judges
Famous As: President of Sri Lanka
Birthdate: November 18, 1945
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Weeraketiya
The highlight of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s political career as the Sri Lankan president was ending the 30-year-old civil war with the Tamil Tigers. The Freedom Party member lost the 2015 election but came back to power as the leader of the Sri Lanka People's Front, becoming the country’s prime minister. 

 12 Sirimavo Bandaranaike

Sirimavo Bandaranaike
13
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: Prime Minister of Sri Lanka (1960-65, 1970-77, 1994-2000)
Birthdate: April 17, 1916
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Mahawalathenna, Sri Lanka
Died: October 10, 2000
Sirimavo Bandaranaike served as the prime minister of Sri Lanka and was the world's first female prime minister. She was initially married to prime minister S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike and participated in charitable work for rural women. She joined the Sri Lanka Freedom Party after her husband’s assassination.

 13 Sujatha

Sujatha
1
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: December 10, 1952
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Galle, Sri Lanka
Died: April 6, 2011

 14 Tillakaratne Dilshan

Tillakaratne Dilshan
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Cricketer
Birthdate: October 14, 1976
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kalutara

 15 Sukumari

Sukumari
3
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 6, 1940
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Nagercoil, Travancore, British India (present-day Tamil Nadu, India)
Died: March 26, 2013

Sukumari was an Indian actress known for her contribution to Tamil and Malayalam films. One of the most acclaimed actresses of her generation, Sukumari acted in over 2,500 films in a career that spanned over 50 years. In 2003, she was honored with the Padma Shri. In 2011, she won the National Film Award for her performance in Namma Gramam. 

 16 Maithripala Sirisena

Maithripala Sirisena
6
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: President of Sri Lanka
Birthdate: September 3, 1951
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sri Lanka

Former president of Sri Lanka Maithripala Sirisena, son of a World War II veteran, first stepped into politics with the Ceylon Communist Party and then led the Sri Lanka Freedom Party. A probe into the 2019 church bombings in Sri Lanka found he had ignored prior hints about the attack.

 17 Angelo Mathews

Angelo Mathews
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: hews
Birthdate: June 2, 1987
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 18 Ranil Wickremasinghe

Ranil Wickremasinghe
8
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: 10th Prime Minister of Sri Lanka
Birthdate: March 24, 1949
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Former Sri Lankan prime minister Ranil Wickremasinghe was born into a family of print media moguls and grew up to become an advocate. The United National Party leader had also been in the news for his rounds of peace talks with the LTTE. He is married to academic Maitree Wickremasinghe.

 19 Nirosha Radha

Nirosha Radha
2
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: January 30, 1971
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 20 Ranasinghe Premadasa

Ranasinghe Premadasa
6
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: Third President of Sri Lanka
Birthdate: June 23, 1924
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Died: May 1, 1993

Ranasinghe Premadasa was a Sri Lankan politician who served as the third president of Sri Lanka from 1989 to 1993. Before serving as the president, Premadasa served as the prime minister of Sri Lanka from 1978 to 1989. In 1986, he became the first Sri Lankan to receive the prestigious Sri Lankabhimanya, the country's highest civilian award.

 21 Sonali Deraniyagala

Sonali Deraniyagala
2
Listed In: Writers
Famous As: Memoirist, Economist
Birthdate: 1964 AD
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 22 Aravinda de Silva

Aravinda de Silva
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: October 17, 1965
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Colombo

 23 Arjuna Ranatunga

Arjuna Ranatunga
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: December 1, 1963
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Gampaha

 24 Chandrika Kumaratunga

Chandrika Kumaratunga
4
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: Fifth President of Sri Lanka (1994-2005)
Birthdate: June 29, 1945
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

Chandrika Kumaratunga is a Sri Lankan politician who became the first female president when she was elected as the president of Sri Lanka in 1994. Having served as the president from 1994 to 2005, Kumaratunga is the only female Sri Lankan president to date. She also served as the head of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party from 1994 to 2006. 

 25 Arul Pragasam

Arul Pragasam
1
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: Former activist who had a part in forming the group Eelam Revolutionary Organisation of Students (EROS) in January 1975
Birthdate: April 13, 1948
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: affna, Sri Lanka
Died: December 3, 2019

 26 Ananda Coomaraswamy

Ananda Coomaraswamy
1
Famous As: Philosopher
Birthdate: August 22, 1877
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Died: September 9, 1947

Ananda Coomaraswamy was a Ceylonese Tamil philosopher of Indian art, metaphysician, and pioneering historian. He is credited for being one of the earliest interpreters of Indian culture to the West. He is also held responsible for introducing ancient Indian art to the West. Apart from bridging the gap between East and West, Coomaraswamy's works also aimed at rehabilitating original Buddhism.

 27 Anagarika Dharmapala

Anagarika Dharmapala
3
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: September 17, 1864
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Matara, Sri Lanka
Died: April 29, 1933

 28 Sreeja Chandran

Sreeja Chandran
1
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: August 6, 1986
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Tiruvalla, Kerala, India

 29 C. W. W. Kannangara

C. W. W. Kannangara
2
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: Diplomat, Politician
Birthdate: October 13, 1884
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Sri Lanka
Died: September 23, 1969

 30 S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike

S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike
1
Listed In: Lawyers & Judges
Famous As: Diplomat, Politician, Lawyer
Birthdate: January 8, 1899
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Colombo
Died: September 26, 1959

 31 D. S. Senanayake

D. S. Senanayake
13
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: First Prime Minister of Sri Lanka
Birthdate: October 20, 1883
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Mirigama
Died: March 22, 1952

Sri Lanka’s first prime minister, D. S. Senanayake, was the son of a plantation owner and graphite miner and was raised as a devout Buddhist. An amateur cricketer in school, he later took to rubber planting and formed the cooperative-society movement. He rejected the honor of a knighthood.

 32 J. R. Jayewardene

J. R. Jayewardene
5
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: President of Sri Lanka (1978-89), Prime Minister of Sri Lanka (1977-78)
Birthdate: September 17, 1906
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Died: November 1, 1996

J. R. Jayewardene was a Sri Lankan politician and leader. He served as the prime minister of Sri Lanka from 1977 to 1978 and then went on to serve as the country's second president from 1978 to 1989. A controversial figure, Jayewardene's actions have been recognized as a contributing factor to the commencement of the Sri Lankan Civil War.

 33 Kusal Perera

Kusal Perera
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: August 17, 1990
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kalubowila

 34 Dhananjaya de Silva

Dhananjaya de Silva
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: September 6, 1991
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Hambantota

 35 W. D. Amaradeva

W. D. Amaradeva
1
Listed In: Singers
Famous As: Singer, Composer
Birthdate: December 5, 1927
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Moratuwa, Sri Lanka
Died: November 3, 2016

 36 Marvan Atapattu

Marvan Atapattu
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: November 22, 1970
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kalutara

 37 Ajantha Mendis

Ajantha Mendis
4
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: March 11, 1985
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Moratuwa

 38 Madhumila

Madhumila
0
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: May 23, 1988
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Jaffna, Sri Lanka

 39 Bernard White

Bernard White
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: June 8, 1959
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 40 Thisara Perera

Thisara Perera
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: April 3, 1989
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Colombo

 41 Chandran Rutnam

Chandran Rutnam
0
Famous As: Film director and producer, Screenwriter
Birthdate: July 22, 1948
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sri Lanka

 42 Duṭṭhagāmaṇī

Duṭṭhagāmaṇī
1
Famous As: King
Birthdate: 0000 AD
Birthplace: Hambantota, Sri Lanka
Died: 0137 AD

 43 Dinesh Chandimal

Dinesh Chandimal
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Sri Lankan cricketer
Birthdate: November 18, 1989
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Balapitiya

 44 Sarath Fonseka

Sarath Fonseka
1
Listed In: Leaders
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: December 18, 1950
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ambalangoda

 45 Dinesh Kanagaratnam

Dinesh Kanagaratnam
0
Listed In: Singers
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: August 30, 1981
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Badulla, Sri Lanka

 46 Susanthika Jayasinghe

Susanthika Jayasinghe
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Famous As: Athlete
Birthdate: December 17, 1975
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Uduwaka, Sri Lanka

 47 Ranjan Ramanayake

Ranjan Ramanayake
2
Famous As: Actor, Politician
Birthdate: March 11, 1963
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Negombo, Sri Lanka

 48 Jackson Anthony

Jackson Anthony
1
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: July 8, 1958
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Podiwee Kumbura, Ragama, Sri Lanka

 49 Parākramabāhu I

Parākramabāhu I
3
Famous As: King
Birthdate: 1123 AD
Birthplace: Punkhagama, Lanka
Died: 1186 AD

 50 Isaipriya

Isaipriya
0
Famous As: Actress, journalist
Birthdate: 1982 AD
Birthplace: Sri Lanka
Died: 2009 AD
Some of the most iconic Sri Lankan role models include CWW Kannangara, an educationist who is noted as the father of free education, Dr GP Malalasekara, an orientalist of world fame, George Keyt, a foremost painter and artist, Mahela Jayawardene a cricketer and so on. Nanda Malini, a world-class singer, is credited for starting a new chapter in Sri Lankan classical music. Her outstanding talent for music has made her the most respected and idolized singers of the country. Booker prize felicitated writer and novelist Michael Ondaatje is a Sri Lankan by birth. Find out in details about famous Sri Lankans, their life and their works through this section.