2nd Lead (Adds photo)
New Buddha statue evokes protest in Trinco
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 17 May 2005, 11:14 GMT]
Normal life in Trincomalee town was disrupted Tuesday when Tamil residents, responding to call made by the Trincomalee District Tamil Peoples Forum (TDTPF), observed a general shut down Tuesday to protest the unauthorized erection of a Buddha statue close to the Trincomalee bus stand. TDTPF has been demanding the removal of the Buddha statue, sources said
Schools, provincial council offices, business establishments and bank branches were closed, sources said.
Bus services came to a standstill around noon following two explosions that took place in the heart of the town. Around noon an explosion took place near the bus stand. The security forces diffused a live grenade found on the Dockyard Road later, police said.
A person was injured in an explosion that took place Monday night around 11 p.m. near the place where the Buddha statue was erected. Later at the same night a person was assaulted near Srimavopura, a suburb in the east port town, police said.
Two conferences organized by the Police Monday evening and Tuesday morning to settle the dispute over the matter failed to reach a consensus. Hindu and Catholic priests, Muslim dignitaries and members of Buddhist clergy participated in these conferences, police said.
Newly erected Buddha statue near the Trincomalee bus terminal.