Court orders temporary removal of Buddha statue

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 18 May 2005, 13:18 GMT]
Mr.M. Ganesharajah, Trincomalee Magistrate and Additional District Judge Wednesday instructed the Police to take all possible steps to temporarily remove the controversial Buddha statue erected near the bus stand by having direct talks with the parties concerned. Long term solution to the matter can be found by legal action by the Urban Council, the magistrate said, according to legal sources.

Magistrate further instructed the officers concerned to take legal steps on all other unauthorised temples of other faiths in the east port town after a careful reviw of registered complaints.

He made this order following submissions by police officials that they have received reports of several unauthorised Hindu temples in the Trincomalee town, legal sources said

The inquiry into the application of the Trincomalee Police regarding the tense situation over the unauthorised erection of a Buddha statue on a land belonging to the Trincomalee Urban Council and the general shut down called by the Trincomalee District Tamil Peoples' Forum (TDTPF) demanding the removal of the statue was held Wednesday.

UC Special Commissioner Mr.S.Arumainayagam, UC Secretary Mr.S.Vipulanandan and TDTPF President Mr.V.Vigneswaran appeared in court on the notice issued.

However, Mr.Keerthi Priyalal, Secretary of the Three Wheelers' Association, which was responsible for the erection of the statue, did not appear in court, legal sources said.

The Police told the court that violent incidents had taken place during the general shut down in which one person was killed and three others injured, legal sources said.

Lawyers appeared on behalf of the UC officials and TDTPF President told court that they revered Lord Buddha and are not against the Buddhist religion. But they said they suspected political motives behind the erection of the statue and only a court order for temporary removal of the statute will lead to the restoration of peace in the town, the lawyers added according to legal sources.

Meanwhile normalcy of the Trincomalee town was disrupted second day Wednesday following a general shut down on Tuesday. Schools were closed down. Provincial council offices did not function, and bus services came to a standstill, Police said.

Two explosions took place in the heart of Trincomalee town around 1 p.m. Wednesday. The person killed in an explosion Tuesday afternoon was identified as Mr Susantha of Madathady, Trincomalee, police said.

 

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