Sinhala nationalist MPs vow to fight peace deal

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 May 2002, 22:07 GMT]
A large gathering of Sinhala Parliamentarians Tuesday resolved before the statue of King Duttu Gemunu in the island's ancient capital of Anuradhapura to struggle against what they called a conspiracy to divide Sri Lanka through peace talks with the Liberation Tigers. Duttu Gemunu was an ancient warrior extolled in Sri Lankan Buddhist tradition for killing Ellalan, a Tamil king of the island in the 2nd century BC, and for unifying the island under Sinhala rule.

Mr.Tissa Karaliyadda, MP for the Anuradhapura district reading out the five objectives of the movement 'pancha maha prathignawa' at the Adistana Pooja opposite the King Dutu Gemunu statue at the Ruwanwaliseya Temple on Tuesday. (Photo:TamilNet)

Former Prime Minister, Mr. Ratnasiri Wickremanayaka MP, and Sri Lanka's former cricket captain, Mr. Arjuna Ranatunga MP, also took part in the inaugural events of the movement which, according to one of its organisers, aims to "rouse the Sinhala nation against the conspiracy to divide the country".

The Parliamentarians and the chief minister of the North Central Province, Mr. Berty Premalal Dissayanaka and the leader of the Sinhala nationalist party, the Mahajana Eksath Peramuna, Mr. Dinesh Gunawardana MP, a senior coalition partner of the People's Alliance, walked in a procession along with more than fifty Buddhist monks led by the Ven. Elle Gunawansa, a powerful Sinhala nationalist priest, from the Sinha Kanuwa (Lion Pillar) Junction to the Sacred Bo Tree in the Anuradhapura town around 10.30 in the morning.

After worshiping at the Sacred Bo Tree, the politicians and the monks walked to the memorial of King Duttu Gemunu where a religious ceremony (adisthaana pooja) was held.

The lion flag of King Gemunu was presented by the MPs to Ven. Pallegama Sirinivasa the chief priest of Ruwanwaliseya and the eight temples.

The Ven. Alle Gunawansa tying the lion flag at the Dutu Gemunu statue at the Ruwanweliseya. (Photo:TamilNet)
Addressing the gathering of MPs and monks by the statue of king Duttu Gamini, the Ven. Elle Gunawansa alleged that the United National Front government has an ulterior plan to divide the country by engaging in peace talks with the Liberation Tigers.

"This is the first time in Sri Lanka's history that MPs have come together against the division of the country". He called on the UNF government not to lift the ban on the LTTE.

The memory and example of king Duttu Gamini's has been traditionally evoked by Sinhala nationalist politicians to rally the Sinhala people against granting concessions to the Tamils and to exhort the Sri Lanka army to defeat Tamil militancy.

The medieval Pali chronicle, the Mahavamsa, says that when Gamini was overcome by remorse for having massacred many Tamils he was assured by a group of Buddhist celestial beings that he had slain only one and a half human beings, one who had practices the five precepts and another who had uttered the ëthree invocations' at the time of his death. They told the king that he could be certain of being born in heaven as all the others slain by him were not to be esteemed more than beasts.

Mr. Dinesh Gunawardana, leader of the MEP, Berty Premalal Dissayanaka, Chief Minister North Central Province and Mr. Ratnasiri Wickremanayaka. former Prime Minister, worship at the Sri Maha Bodhiya (the Sacred Bo Tree) in Anuradpura. (Photo:TamilNet)


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