By G.L. Peiris –
Following the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna’s resounding victory at the local government elections, a rumor began circulating in the social media that the Bodu Bala Sena had made facebook posts in support of the SLPP. Then articles appeared in the newspapers quoting a letter written to the press by Mr. N.M. Ameen of the Muslim Council stating that SLPP cadres had allegedly harassed several Muslim individuals in Ugurassapitiya in Kandy and Veyangalla in Agalawatte for not supporting the SLPP. If any such incidents had occurred, they should be reported to the police and dealt with.
The public is well aware of the strategies that were orchestrated before the last presidential election to alienate the Muslim community from our leadership. The book written by prominent Jathika Hela Urumaya activist Asoka Abeygunawardana titled ‘Yuga Peraliya’ the first copy of which was formally presented to President Maithripala Sirisenaon 23 March 2015 has explained the strategies adopted to send the Muslim community en masse onto the other side before the last presidential election. Audio clips of the main conspirators discussing these strategies over the phone were subsequently circulated in the social media. We admit that our government was not decisive enough in dealing with this conspiracy.
Everyone will remember that as the yahapalana government rapidly declined in popularity in 2017, there was yet another spate of attacks on Muslim businesses and houses.Then a monk at thecentre of these incidents was granted bail three times in a single day and everything was swept under the carpet. Even though the yahapalana government appointed Presidential Commissions to look into matters like the renting of space in the Mahiyangana Pradeshiya Sabha shopping complex, they never appointed a Commission to look into the far more important issue of the Aluthgama incident, because all the perpetrators are now in the yahapalana government.
The Muslim community has now realized the deception that has been practiced on them, and the results of the local government election clearly reflects that. It is therefore not surprising that conspiratorial elements are once again at work. The public should be vigilant and not be misled a second time. The government should immediately establish a Commission of Inquiry into the Aluthgama incident, the incidents that led up to it, the sudden flare up of extremist activity in 2017 and the Gintota incident. In the meantime, the full severity of the law should be brought to bear on such incidents in the future.
With the concurrence of the party leaders’ committee of the Joint Opposition.
Professor G.L. Peiris, Chairman – Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna