SLA disrupts Hindu festival in Thenmaradchy
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 11 April 2007, 08:52 GMT]
The annual Hindu celebrations
at the historical Panrithalaichi Amman Temple
in Manthuvil along Kanagampuliyady
Junction- Jaffna Point Pedro road in Putur area
in Thenmaradchy was disrupted when Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldiers
conducted a cordon and search operation Moday morning, civil society sources
of disappointed devotees who thronged the area
were prevented from proceeding towards the temple.
"Pangunithingal" festival is conducted each year
soon after the farm land cultivation is over and
when the agricultural crops are at their peak
production. The feast draws around twenty five
thousand devotees from areas throughout the
The public bring in their farm produce
to the temple and cook meals in the premises where many of them stay overnight.
In a pre dawn operation lasting till noon,
thousands of SLA troops conducted an intense
search of Madduvil, Chavakachcheri, Sarasalai,
Kangampuliyady Junction and desolate shrub lands
in Kapoothu areas preventing the devotees from proceeding towards the temple.
Civilians including those from
Vadaamaradchy arriving through Kapoothu
Kanagampuilyady road and those from Valigamam
travelling through Vaharawaththai Putur road and
a large number of devotees from Chavakacheri were
denied permission to proceed towards the temple
Later in the day less than thousand
people were permitted by SLA to participate in the festival.
Prior permission had been obtained by the temple
management from SLA to conduct the festival and
this was a deliberate attempt to deny the basic
rights of the people, civil society sources said.