SLA permits opening of HSZ temples for Sivarathiri celebrations

[TamilNet, Monday, 16 February 2004, 19:40 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has allowed celebrations for Maha Sivarathiri day to be held with some restrictions in three Hindu temples, Murugan Kovil and Valliamman Kovil in Kaithady-Navatkuli area and Thoppur Pilliayar Kovil in Maravanpulo area, which are located in the High Security Zones in Thenamaradchchi division in Jaffna district, security sources said. Maha Sivarathiri day falls on February 18, civil sources said.

Government sources said the SLA has given permission in this regard following a request made by the Prime Minister's advisor Dr. C.Kunasingham to the army high command.

SLA has informed the residents of the areas that devotees would be allowed in vehicles with army protection through the forward defense line of the SLA located at Kovilakandy to reach the said temples on Maha Sivarathiri day. Devotees would be allowed to stay only during daytime in these temples, sources said.

The SLA officials located at the site Monday took the Thenmaradchchi Divisional Secretary to the three Hindu temples, which are located in the HSZ, sources said.

The SLA has declared these areas as HSZ since the end of 1999 when residents of these areas fled to other areas due to military offensive launched by government troops, civil sources said.

 

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