Destined to a rich landholding and mining family, Kotelawala had a troublesome adolescence with the suicide of his dad and money related challenges that followed.
Kotelawala was conceived on 4 April 1895 to John Kotelawala Snr, a police assessor, who later turned financial specialist and Alice Elisabeth Kotalawala (née Attygalle), girl of Mudaliyar Don Charles Gemoris Attygalle, a well off land and mine proprietor. He had a more youthful sibling Justin Kotalawela and a sister Freda, who later wedded C. V. S. Corea.
Youthful Kotelawala went to Royal College, Colombo, speaking to the school in cricket, tennis, boxing and football. He played in the Royal–Thomian. He needed to leave attributable to associations in the uproars in 1915, setting out on a visit through Europe, with World War I seething. He stayed in Europe for a long time, investing a large portion of that energy in England and France, gone to Christ’s College, Cambridge to contemplate horticulture. Kotelawala cherished games, horseback riding and cricket and, especially as a youngster, got into physical battles when he was offended. He was familiar with Sinhala, English and French. In the wake of getting back to Ceylon, he turned into a grower, running his family ranch domains and mines, which incorporated the Kahatagaha Graphite Mine in Dodangaslanda. He filled in as a Justice of the Peace.
He was taught at Royal College, Colombo and Christ’s College, Cambridge before getting back to turn into a grower and run the family bequests and mines. He entered dynamic governmental issues at 35 years old years having been chosen for the State Council of Ceylon. With Ceylon picking up autonomy in 1945, He was chosen for Parliament and turned into an individual from the primary Cabinet as Minister of Transport. Disregarded for the post of Prime Minister when the principal Prime Minister of Ceylon, D. S. Senanayake kicked the bucket out of nowhere. After a year he succeeded Dudley Senanayake as the third Prime Minister of Ceylon serving until his gathering lost the overall political decision in 1956. Kotelawala resigned from legislative issues from thereon. He joined the Ceylon Light Infantry as a reservist arriving at the position of Colonel; he was allowed the position of General on his deathbed.
The Kotelawalas lived in extensive solace attributable to the significant land and mine property of his granddad Mudaliyar Attygalle, which his dad oversaw following the passing of his granddad. After he was constrained out of the administration of the Attygalle domains by the family, Kotelawala Snr went into undertakings including the Ceylon-Japan Trading Company. In 1907, he was captured and seen as blameworthy of plotting to kill his brother by marriage, Francis Attygalle. While the homicide trail was in progress, Kotelawala Snr ended it all by poisioning himself.
Kotelawala was eleven years of age when his dad passed and the family fortunes declined. Alice Kotelawala who had changed over to Christianity, gradually developed the family riches through cautious administration of their outstanding area property and the portion of the Kahatagaha graphite mine, which she got from her more youthful sister Ellen and brother by marriage, Fredrick Richard Senanayake. She was presumed for her social work and was later granted a MBE in the 1939 Birthday Honors and a CBE in the 1951 Birthday Honor.
In when serving in the volunteer powers was esteemed and a polite interest, Kotelawala increased a commission as a second lieutenant in the Ceylon Light Infantry on 15 September 1922. That year the regiment got hues from the Prince of Wales. He advanced with advancements to lieutenant on 27 October 1924, skipper on 23 August 1929 and major in 1 October 1933. On 1 July 1939 he was named second in order of the Ceylon Light Infantry and served till 1 September 1940. He was elevated to Lieutenant Colonel on 1 October 1940 which was presented on Ceylon Defense Force.
With the episode of World War II in the Far East, the Ceylon Defense Force including the Ceylon Light Infantry was assembled with the for administration with the British Army. Kotelawala as the Minister of Communications, turned into an individual from the Ceylon’s War Council and filled in as the Commander-in-Chief of the Essential Services Labor Corp. He gave his home, Kandawala to work as the officials wreck for the wartime RAF station at Rathmalana. He was elevated to Colonel on 2 July 1942, the most noteworthy position that a Ceylonese could accomplish at that point and resigned in 1945.
Skipper John Kotelawala challenged the Kurunegala seat in the 1931 political race for the State Council of Ceylon. He increased 17159 votes, a greater part of 9045 over his rival from the Ceylon National Congress. Chosen for the State Council, he filled in as a backbencher in its first term. He was reappointed unopposed in the 1936 state gathering political race from Kurunegala and was chosen as Minister of Communications and Works, the seat Communications and Works Committee in the Second Board of Ministers of Ceylon. As the Minister, he managed the commencement of a few significant public works ventures in the island.
As executive, Kotelawala drove Sri Lanka into the United Nations and added to Sri Lanka’s growing unfamiliar relations, especially with other Asian nations. In 1955 he drove his nation’s assignment to the Bandung meeting in Indonesia where his exhibition earned him the appellation Bandung Booruwa (Bandung Donkey) in Sri Lanka, for his absence of information on the presence of the US seventh Fleet in the South China Sea, and his powerlessness to articulate “Formosan”. His uncontroversial first discourse at the meeting was composed by columnists at the Lake House gathering, However, he had been impacted by the British Government, just as by his US-adjusted perpetual secretary Gunasena de Soyza to make against Communist comments. He offered these comments at a public interview, however hence pulled back them. He admitted later in Parliament that he had just offered these comments since he was constrained by de Soyza.  At the meeting he expressed his conviction that elegantly Marxist enemy of colonialist way of talking overlooked Communist barbarities. In a private discussion with the PMs of Pakistan, India, Burma, and China, he asked Chinese head Zhou Enlai in the event that he needed to carry Communism to Tibet. Zhou answered that it was unfeasible and unwanted, and that the PRC had gone to Tibet since it was “a fundamental aspect of the Chinese state” and in light of the fact that it had been undermined by “radical interests” from the British and Russian domains.