Sinhala colony schemed with expansion of Buddha temple at Punaa'nai, Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Friday, 19 January 2018, 22:24 GMT]
A small worship place with a Buddha statue, which was left behind by the occupying Army of genocidal Sri Lanka in 2016, has now been expanded into a big Buddhist temple establishment at 121st Mile Post on Colombo - Batticaloa Road in Punaa'nai East in Koa'ra'laip-pattu North (Vaakarai) division. The expansion has taken place in an accelerated phase in December 2017. The jungle area without any civilian settlement has been selected for Sinhala colonisation and the Buddhist vihara establishment has become the anchoring point, Tamil civil sources in Batticaloa North said. In the meantime, more than 150 Sinhala families have been settled near Punaa'nai Railway station three years ago. The settlement near the railway station was also commenced with the establishment of a similar Buddhist vihara.

The occupying SL Army erected a Buddha statue in 1990 when it established a military base at the locality for the first time.

In 2016, when the SLA moved out from 121 Mile Post, a group of Buddhist monks seized the locality hoisting Buddhist flags at the abandoned site on A4 Highway.

The LTTE used the jungle area as a pass way between Batticaloa and Vanni since early 1990s and the SLA stationed at the locality to monitor and contain the movement of LTTE formations during the height of war.

Meanwhile, the extremist Sinhala monk based in Batticaloa city has been trying to revive the Buddha structures left behind by the SL military also in other locations of the district.

Although the SL Constitution attempts to project all religions as having equal status, the constitutional provision of ‘foremost place’ and various other arrangements such as the SL police having a special division to protect the Buddhism under the guidance of SL Ministry of Buddha Sasana, have made it a crime if anyone attempts to peacefully dismantle even a Buddha statue in the occupied country of Eezham Tamils

Article 9 (chapter II) of the current Sri Lankan constitution promulgated in 1978 says "The Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism the foremost place and accordingly it shall be the duty of the State to protect and foster the Buddha Sasana.."

Eezham Tamils say that this Article constitutes a particular obstacle in negotiating any degree of regional autonomy with the genocidal State of Sri Lanka because it is an 'entrenched' section of the constitution. Article 9 can be amended or repealed only with the support of two thirds of all the members of the SL Parliament and only if such amendment or repeal is thereafter approved by the people in an island-wide referendum.

The proposals for new constitution are also not going to change this reality and federalism is not possible under the genocidal configuration of the Sri Lankan system. The fundamental genocidal character will continue to exist despite cosmetic reforms.


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