Monthly Archives: April 2012

Dambulla Protests An Insult To Buddhism (Lanka Web)

by  anuradhini


All Sri Lanka patriots should ponder over aftermaths of  the Dambulla Mosque incident.

First of all it is worthy of mentioning that there was a rumor spreading in foreign lands that a mosque has been demolished or burnt down by a mob attack lead by Buddhist priests. Such rumors have surely been purposefully alighted by anti- Sinhala-Buddhist enemies within and the evil west. No such incident took place.

Watching the incident one can clearly see the agitated crowd marching  towards a poorly constructed shed used as a mosque by Dambulla Muslim community.  Intention appeared to be causing damage to the controversial shed constructed illegally(as alleged)  in the sacred area of Rangiri Dambulla and to show off the mighty people’s power.  Peoples power movement  and protest method of removing regimes was a new method introduced by the west to get rid of long standing single party governments and dictatorships ( as they call it).  It is the reaction to such protest by armed forces that will normally fuel the process further  to continue and grow. However, police forces acted extremely well to contain the anger of people and the heated arguments followed.

What was interesting was the dialogue took place between a female Muslim resident and the yellow robed person acting as the Chief Monk. The lady spoke with respect to the person in robes and said that the mosque was there for a long time. While the reason given by the lady would not validate the legality of the presence of the mosque in the sacred area of cultural heritage, the reply of the robed person was harsh, arrogant and is an insult to Buddhism. This is where the systematic demolition process of Buddhist culture is clearly evident as taking place.

This yellow robed person is not a “Buddhist Monk”. The proof of this statement is given in  Kakachupama Sutta. Here,  the  Buddha has described his followers as follows.

Monk should be trained this way. In any event, you should train yourselves:

• ‘Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words.

• We will remain sympathetic to that person’s welfare, with a mind of good will, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading him with an awareness imbued with good will and, beginning with him, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an awareness imbued with good will equal to the great earth — abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.’ That’s how you should train yourselves.

As an example The Buddha goes on , “ If a Bandit were to carve your limb savagely with a saw?

Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled

saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourself.

After the incident government has indicated the intention to relocate the praying shed to a location outside the Dambulla sacred area. Neither demolition nor burning down took place and the Government acted in a commendable way with the help of police forces and officials.

Leaving aside the incident, disgusting behaviour of persons wearing robes of traditional Shagha and calling themselves as “Sangha” should be condemned by all Buddhist. If the person is really the Chief Monk of Dambulla, he should be removed immediately, even before the demolition of the shed used as the mosque. That will be a great benefit to Buddhism.

Results of this act by yellow robed bandits is a complete insult to Buddhism and what would probably happen is that the  Muslim residents  will get a properly constructed beautiful mosque somewhere else instead of the shed and this incident would likely to add fuel to  diminution process of  real Buddhism in Sri Lanka, unless these yellow robed persons are not allowed to lead the general public in a disgraceful manner.

Meanwhile Islamic  extremism will be spread gradually, unless proper legal methods of containing  aggressive  movements determined to  demolish Sinhala-Buddhist culture in Sri Lanka are established.

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Will the Real Buddhists Stand Up?

At a time when the enemies of Sri Lanka, especially those of the pro-LTTE Diaspora are spreading a claim of discrimination of the minorities by the “ majority Buddhist Sinhalese”, it is a shame that the Dambulla Mosque incident took place  in Sri Lanka.

It is quite shameful that people who call themselves Buddhists conduct themselves in such an uncivilized and violent way to claim ownership of land.

I am a Buddhist who lives outside Sri Lanka who has on many occasions witnessed on international TV, rude and shocking behavior of some Sri Lankan men in yellow robes calling themselves the Buddhist clergy.  Do they practice the precepts they preach? Do they believe in non-violence? Have they given up worldly possessions?

What is more surprising is that the population living inside Sri Lanka seems complacent about all these horrible things happening in the country; they don’t seem to care. Politicians of all parties turn their heads when these individuals, in the name of religion destroy the  fabric of the country. Sri Lanka is supposed to be a nation of law abiding citizens guided by  the principles of kindness , gentleness and peaceful co-existence. Just because the countryside is strewn with Buddhist statues, it doesn’t mean the religion is practiced by these hooligans who take the law into their own hands.

We, who are Sinhalese, Buddhist Diaspora have no answers to questions people ask us about these incidents of disharmony and violence in a Buddhist country. I personally believe the  time has come to  put an end to pandering to the  so called Buddhist  clergy who do not practice the basic tenets of Buddhism. They should not be political; nor should they enjoy the luxuries of lay life. They should be involved in Dana, Sila and Bhawana and find some caves in which to meditate.

We are tired of  seeing these quasi clergy seeking power to destroy the Buddhist stance of non-violence. Give them a begging bowl and teach them humility or ask them to disrobe and enter politics.

A concerned Buddhist

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Irked by UN chief’s comments, SL to take it up at UN

April 29, 2012, 10:18 pm

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By Shamindra Ferdinando

A statement attributed to UNSG Ban Ki-moon regarding the final phase of the conflict and post-war reconciliation efforts will be taken up by the Sri Lankan government once the former South Korean diplomat returns to New York from Myanmar.

Authoritative sources told The Island yesterday that External Affairs Minister, Prof. G. L. Peiris had instructed Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative at the UN, Dr. Palitha Kohona to take up the issue as the comments attributed to the UN chief were inappropriate. The comments were made in an exclusive interview with The Times of India during a brief visit to India before he left for Myanmar.

The Sri Lankan government feels that the UN chief’s statement is unfair and could be exploited by the LTTE.

Responding to a query by The Times of India, regarding reconciliation and what President Mahinda Rajapakse should do in the wake of recent criticism of Sri Lanka by the UN Human Rights Council, the UN chief said: “I appreciate the difficult process the Sri Lankan government has undertaken, that they had to go through, fighting against terrorism. But in the course of the final few months of the military operations, it was also seen that unfortunately, tens of thousands of people were killed and human rights have been seriously violated. I have been urging president Rajapaksa and his government to address this issue for a sustainable social and political path. Accountability should be taken. I have established a panel of experts and the Sri Lankan government, upon strong urging from the international community has instituted their own Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission. They made good recommendations. It’s important for President Rajapakse to implement the recommendations of the LLRC as well as those made by my panel of experts. Now that president Rajapakse has been re-elected he has a strong political mandate. This accountability system has to be fully restored as soon as possible.”

( Courtesy of The Island)

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“UN finds of cluster munitions in Sri Lanka,” – a canard

Sat, 2012-04-28 07:14 — editor

By K.T.Rajasingham
Colombo, 28 April, (Asiantribune.com):

Asian Tribune concludes that the sensationalized news report “UN finds cluster munitions in Sri Lanka,” is a canard and nothing else. I personally took the trouble to contact all those involved in that news report, and to go into the bottom of it, I spoke to Ravi Nessman, AP Bureau Chief For South Asia based in New Delhi, who filed the News item.

Also I contacted Allan Poston, the technical adviser for the U.N. Development Program’s mine action group in Sri Lanka, Ms. Madushala Senaratne, Communication officer of the UNDP Office in Colombo, Monty Ranatunga – Director, Mine Action centre in Sri Lanka, and Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasuriya Spokes person of the Sri Lanka Army.

After analyzing their responses, I came to the conclusion that the story was planted, someone is fishing in the troubled waters – a revenged at last realized.

Ravi Nessman in his news story “Cluster bombs find in Sri Lanka,” said that, “The Associated Press obtained a copy on Thursday of an email written by a U.N. land mine expert that said unexploded cluster bomblets were discovered in the Puthukudiyiruppu area of northern Sri Lanka, where a boy was killed last month and his sister injured as they tried to pry apart an explosive device they had found to sell for scrap metal.”

Ravi Nessman wrote that “The email was written by Allan Poston, the technical adviser for the U.N. Development Program’s mine action group in Sri Lanka. He confirmed that his email to superior officials in the UN Headquarters, which was quoted by the media, was only meant to explore the possibility of obtaining further assistance for Mine Action Program in Sri Lanka and that he made no reference to alleged use of cluster munitions by the Sri Lankan Forces.

He added, “After reviewing additional photographs from the investigation teams, I have determined that there are cluster sub-munitions in the area where the children were collecting scrap metal and in the house where the accident occurred. This is the first time that there has been confirmed unexploded sub-munitions found in Sri Lanka,” the email said.

In the meantime Media Centre For National Security said in a press release, “The UNDP official quoted in the news report has confirmed that his email to superior officials in the UN Headquarters, which was quoted by the media, was only meant to explore the possibility of obtaining further assistance for Mine Action Program in Sri Lanka and that he made no reference to alleged use of cluster munitions by the Sri Lankan Forces.”

Asian Tribune contacted Allan Posten for his comments. He told Asian Tribune to contact UNDP and the Mine Action Group.

Asian Tribune tried to contact the UNDP chief in Colombo Subinay Nandy and I was told that he was on an overseas telephone call and my call was passed on to Ms. Mudushala Senaratne, the Communication Officer at the UNDP office in Colombo. She was of little help and requested to send in an e-mail, but until at the time of posting this news report, the email sent by Asian Tribune went unanswered.

Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasekera , Sri Lanka Army spokesperson to media said that the National Mine Action Centre is the authority which coordinates the entire gamut of things when it comes to mine clearings , and issuing of certificates for resettlements of people .

He said that National Mine Action Centre has regional offices all over especially in the North and East and none of these regional offices have informed about such findings and Mr. Allan Posten also has not indicated any substantial evidence to his claim.

Army Spokesperson added that when mines are found those mines are destroyed not by those agencies involved in the demining, but by the Sri Lanka Army, with the supervision of the National Mine Action Regional officers.

He added that at no point of time has there been a report to say that such items are brought to the notice of the Sri Lanka Army for the purpose of destruction once it has been discovered. But this has so far never happened. I do not know on what evidence Mr. Posten is basing his claim.

In fact he has not issued a statement but what happened is it has been quoted that one of his e-mail as the source of the AP News. We do not know how true is this either.

When Asian Tribune asked the Army Media Spokesman how these Cluster munitions are fired, he said though I am an artillery officer we have not been trained about how either to handle or fire cluster munitions.

When asked whether there was any possibility for LTTE to have such unexploded cluster munitions. He said that the question is too hypothetical because we are not certain whether unexploded cluster munitions were found as reported by the AP news report, but he said that he can’t rule it out that Cluster munitions were in LTTE possession.

When Asian tribune contacted some journalists in Sri Lanka they informed that about the writer of the news story, Ravi Nessman there are some information to say that he has some personal grudge against the Sri Lankan Government for not issuing his visa for his continued stay in Sri Lanka.

“This gentleman has some personal grudge against the Government of Sri Lanka for his visa was not granted.” said a journalist whom I contacted who wishes to remain anonymous.

In the meantime, It was reported in the Tamil Net dated 22 July 2009,” Associated Press reported Tuesday that AP’s bureau chief in Sri Lanka, Ravi Nessman, left Sri Lanka Monday after Colombo refused to extend Nessman’s journalist visa. “We find this failure to renew Ravi’s visa disturbing,” John Daniszewski, AP’s senior managing editor for international news, was quoted as saying in media reports. Colombo reports said that Nessman broke news of private U.N. reports outlining civilian death tolls, and also revealed the “first word of a government document from January outlining a plan to keep hundreds of thousands of displaced” Tamil civilians in the camps for up to three years. “

When I contacted Allan Poston, the technical adviser for the U.N. Development Program’s mine action group in Sri Lanka, he said I know what you exactly wanted to talk with me, but the best person you should talk is the people in the National Mine Action Centre or you can talk directly to UNDP. I am not answering any questions.

When I reminded him that his name is there in the AP News report and also that they have more or less based this news report on the E-mail of yours. He said I am not going to answer anything.

When I asked him how was it possible that Ravi Nessman was able lay hands on the e-mail you have sent to someone?

Allan Posten said I am not going to say anything. You ask Monty Ranatunga – Director, Mine Action Sri Lanka, or the UNDP. When I asked whether he sent an email to Nessman, he said with finality that he is not going to answer my questions and said “Have a wonderful weekend. “

Subsequently When I contacted the UNDP Office in Colombo and asked the telephone operator to connect me to UNDP Chief Subinay Nandy, the operator put me on the hold and came back to me that he is on an overseas telephone call and suggested me to speak to Ms. Madusha Senaratne, the Communication Officer of the UNDP office in Colombo.

When I spoke to her I found that she is of little or no use to me. She requested me to send her an email and accordingly I e-mailed her with my questions and unfortunately I did not receive any response from her until such time I post this news.

When I asked Monty Ranatunga – Director, Mine Action Sri Lanka,
about the AP news item which reported of the findings of unexploded cluster munitions in the North, he said they are investigating on the report and so far they haven’t received anything whether such unexploded cluster munitions were found in the North. He said that the Sri Lanka Army is conducting the investigation on that news item and until the investigation is over he won’t be able to give an authoritative response, He said so far the demining people from the North has not reported of any such finds of unexploded cluster munitions.
He also said that though he is the director of Mine Action in Sri Lanka he has so far not come across any unexploded cluster munitions.

When asked whether he knows Alla Posten he said yes I know him. He said that even this morning he spoke to Allan Posten on some other technical matters but he did not raise anything about the findings of unexploded cluster munitions in the North.

At last When I contacted Ravi Nessman AP Bureau Chief For South Asia whether you were in Sri Lanka he said yes. When asked whether Sri Lanka Government refused his visa extension, he said that I can find that information in the internet and his visa was not renewed. I told him that you have filed this cluster munitions story because if the vengeance you nursed against Sri Lanka Government, He said that I can’t comment but I will tell you that this visa story incident is now three years old. I haven’t lived in Sri Lanka in the last three years and he asked me how long a human being can hold grudge – harboring grudge over a visa issue for that I said ‘I don’t know. It depends on individual’s mentality.’

I told Ravi Nessman that I have visited every nook and corner of Vanni, spoken to several dozens of IDPs and I am in touch with lot of Army officers and I haven’t come across anybody mentioning about whether cluster munitions were ever used in the final stages of the battle with the LTTE.

I told him as a Sri Lanka I trust what Sri Lankan Army says,
He said that Allen Posten did not send him the e-mail on which he based his news story. He said that he has his email, but he did not say how he got that e-mail and said that he does not want to comment on that. He also said Allen Posten did not know him and he has nothing to do with him.

– Asian Tribune –

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Karunanidhi’s eelam project (The Island, April 26, 2012)

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Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and president of DMK M. Karunanidhi (MK) had opted to step into the old shoes of mass killer Prabhakaran with the intention of continuing the ‘Elam struggle’ that the late LTTE leader failed to achieve, when he had reportedly declared that his only dream in life is to see a Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka. Refuting the Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’s charge that supporters of Tamil Eelam are terrorists, MK had said that, ‘We are not in support of terrorism as part of the struggle for Eelam’. (Sunday Island 22 April)

 

Recently, media published a picture of some Eelam backers in India displaying Prabhakaran’s photo on the stage, where a meeting had been held to canvass support for the LTTE which is classified by the FBI as ‘the most ruthless and deadly terrorist outfit in the world’. Prabhakaran’s pictures and the LTTE flags are widely used in propaganda rallies in support of Eelam. While making use of the LTTE image in this manner, MK cannot disclaim terrorism, which is synonymous with LTTE’s modus operandi.

 

To the Defence Secretary’s statement that, MK can have Eelam in India, if he so desires, but not in Sri Lanka where the LTTE that fought for separatism had been defeated at a huge cost of wealth and human lives, he had said that Eelam is needed in SL to ‘prevent atrocities on SL Tamils, whereas in India, no such situation prevails’.

 

Making a statement in Lok Sabha, the Opposition leader Sushma Swaraj who came to SL leading a 12 member all party Indian Parliamentary delegation, had reportedly said that, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and the DMK leader Karunanidhi did not send their delegates with them because, had they done so, the falsehood propagated by them that Tamils in SL are subjected to harassment would have been exposed. On the contrary, they had observed how the SL government had undertaken speedy rehabilitation and reconstruction programmes incurring huge expenditure in N/E, ravaged by 30 years of warfare, and civilians in those areas are leading normal lives, engaged in usual activities of farming and fishing. T. K. Rangarajah, Indian Marxist party delegate was of the view that no one in areas they visited in SL spoke of separatism, and they were happy to live in a united country.

 

It is evident that, MK is attempting to boost his sagging popularity by rallying the supporters of LTTE sympathisers who could be lured into his Eelam cry, but it is certain that the central government would not approve his evil design to create dissension in SL. A bankrupt politician cannot have any discretion to poke his dirty fingers in internal affairs of another sovereign territory.

 

The Sunday Island of 22 April also reported that the Global Tamil Forum, that had amassed huge amounts of money using the LTTE’s name, is ‘buying’ British politicians, to embarrass Sri Lanka. There is a strong likelihood that the GTF had extended it’s tentacles to India too, to ‘buy’ South Indian politicians as well, to propagate Eelam ideology.

 

Stanley Weerasinghe

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Eelam is Not a Goal of Tamils in Sri Lanka ?

Unlike the beating of the Eelam drum by the Pro-LTTE Diaspora who live in  Western countries and the Pro-LTTE politicians in Tamil Nadu, Tamils in Sri Lanka are not pursuing  a course of separatism. This is according to MP TK Rangarajan an Indian Parliamentarian who toured Sri Lanka as a member of  a  delegation from the neighbor to the north who voted against Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council last month.

The delegation of Indian parliamentarians was lead by the Leader of the Opposition,  Ms. Sushma  Swaraj . In answer to a question on the separatist agenda of the Chennai politicians who support Ealam, Mr. Rangarajan stated that Tamil leaders in Sri Lanka supported a political solution within the framework of a United Sri Lanka and further remarked that the Tamil leadership they met in Sri Lanka did not support the issue of a separate Tamil homeland.

Being further questioned about the Indian politician, Karunanidhi’s  idea of demanding UN  intervention and a referendum for Tamil Eelam, , Mr Rangarajan said that no Tamil leader in Sri Lanka,  including  Sri Lankan MP and  TNA leader Sampanthan expressed any desire to divide the country on the lines of such states as East Timor, and  Kosovo.

The leader of the delegation from India, Ms Sushma Swaraj discussed with President Rajapaksa such issues as elections and further autonomy in the North.

 

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Canadian Tamils for Peace and Democracy calls on Diasporas to fight against the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam

Friday, 2010-04-30 00:52 — editor
Toronto, 30 April (Asiantribune.com):
The Canadian Tamils for Peace and Democracy (CaTpad) calls on the Sri Lankan Diasporas to unite worldwide to fight against the Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) created by the Terrorist Tamil Tigers.

There is an urgent need to build and mobilize an alliance to oppose and prevent the illegal formation of Transnational Government of the Tamil Eelam (TGTE) in all the ways, the press statement said.

The need of the hour is to unite all the Sri Lankan Diasporas to fight against politically in all the capitals throughout the world. It would be a grave mistake on the part of Sri Lankans abroad to let them go without countering the formation of an illegal de facto Terrorist Government, the statement added.

The political support of some European Union countries and huge monetary earned by illegal means of money laundering, forceful collections, abductions and credit card frauds throughout the world made the Terrorist organization a come back. Though defeated militarily and politically in the recent elections in Sri Lanka, the Tiger Diasporas are becoming more active to disturb the peace achieved in Sri Lanka and create a political uncertainty in the North and East by creating a de facto Terrorist Government abroad.

The ultimate aim of the Tiger Terrorist is to challenge the democratically elected Sri Lankan government and the democracy achieved by the Tamils of the North and East by eradicating terrorism, wiping out the entire leadership of the Vanni regime. It is a well known fact that democracy and peace is intolerable to Vanni regime at all times and has destroyed all democratic institution during their rule. Therefore it is the duty of each and every Sri Lankan and the Sri Lankan Diasporas abroad to unite for a good cause to save the country, the statement read.

“We Canadian Tamils for Peace and Democracy calls upon the Sri Lankan Diaspora to be united for a noble cause to fight separatism abroad and to be committed for a united Sri Lanka,” the statement said.

This article was published in 2010 but is still relevant. Instead of arguing among ourselves, let’s work for a united Sri Lanka. All peace loving diaspora population MUST UNITE for the benefit of preserving our beautiful island and we need to be peaceful towards one another. THE WORLD IS WATCHING. DO WE HAVE THE  INTELLIGENCE, COURAGE, COMPASSION, AND STRATEGIES TO MEET THE CHALLENGES WE FACE. LET’S UNITE.

THANK YOU

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