By Farweez Imamudeen –
Living With a Time Bomb
Nearly thirty kilometers away two youths who are not even remotely connected to my life launch a spree of attacks on several Buddha statues damaging and defiling them, and my WhatsApp is suddenly barraged with messages calling all Muslims to take caution and remain safe. The fact that those two youths share my faith is the only reason why I have to be vigilant. As illogical and insane it may sound this is the capricious reality that I have been living through since I can remember. Religious and racial labels aside, when a certain individual commits a heinous act, then a people who share a common denomination with that individual – Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Malay, Burger, Sinhala or Tamil – are chastised for the mere reason of the common denomination; “Mung okkoma mehema thamai!” (All of them are alike!).
But this time I don’t want to be responsible. I don’t want my daughter who has just lost her milk teeth to be responsible. I shall not become a victim for no reason.
The vile and cowardly act of damaging the statue of Buddha who is venerated by millions across the world should be denounced and condemned. Whoever committed this abhorrent act should be subjected to the full extent of the law.
However, the fact that the two suspects share the faith of Islam should not become a reason for the rest of us who share the same faith to assume responsibility for a crime that we never committed.
Our slogan should be loud and clear;
“WE ARE WITH THE BUDDHISTS!”
How the Muslims Should Act
We Muslims have largely isolated ourselves from the mainstream society. A majority of the Muslims live within their own communities. Secluded and alone we have created a limited circle of our own religious and political concerns, and our struggles therefore are largely for the sake of our own religious and political rights. We creep out of our private spaces as though from deep hibernation only when we perceive a threat to our religious and communal existence. Our activism is strictly defined within the limits of religion and community. We are selective in fighting for justice and this attitude is gradually alienating the Muslims from other communities.
It is crucial that we step out of our secluded and isolated conclaves, and participate and contribute to solve the bigger problems; the problems that are crushing the entire nation.
Where were we during the recent political crisis?
Where were we when the people of Rathupaswala were shot dead for asking for water?
Where were we when the doctors called a strike demanding better schools for their children?
Where are we when the entire nation needs us?
Therefore, we need to leave those placards bearing religious and communal slogans aside; instead of shouting for our religious right we need to fight for justice and freedom for the people; we need to fight for a democratic education system for our children; we need to fight for the liberation of the oppressed; we need to become a part of mankind.
Thus, it is our responsibility now to condemn this base act. True! We are not responsible, but we are against all forms of acts of hatred. We should proclaim that freedom of religion is a universal value and that it should be preserved at all costs.
How All of Us Should Act
What is important is not only ensuring that the full extent of the law is exercised on the perpetrators, but also to find out the true intention behind their action. This could reveal a vital truth about the social psyche. What caused their action is a vital question that needs to be asked to objectively analyze this fatal incident.
Human emotions when untamed can run amok in society. From Dostoevsky to Freud this truth has been elaborated. We who consider ourselves normal people have experienced this in small doses. When we lose our temper we lose ourselves. But when the storm abates and we sit down and contemplate the truth begins to slowly surface, and then we tell ourselves, ‘Maybe I was at fault’. That passion overwhelms reason is a documented fact.
What was the driving force behind the actions of these individuals?
Since 2014 we have witnessed two religious riots in Sri Lanka perpetrated by Buddhist extremist factions against the minority Muslims. They unleashed their ruthless violence on a minority; on women, children and the elderly, who were vulnerable and defenseless, torching their homes, shops and livelihoods. This unrestrained act of hatred and violence left a deep scar on those who were affected; questions that kept pricking them like an untreated wound; am I being targeted because of my faith? If not the state then who will protect us?
Terrorism nurtures terrorism. The incidents that happened in 2014 in Aluthgama, Beruwala, Darga Town and in 2018 in Digana would have certainly had an impact on the social psychology of the victims. This psychology is a God-given to the extremists who are laying under-cover impatiently for an opportunity to stir the oppressed against the oppressor. It would hand the extremists a victory they could scarcely have achieved for themselves. Therefore we need to ask the question;
Are these riots behind this incident? Is this an act of vengeance or is this an isolated incident?
We cannot just walk past dead bodies, charred homes and shattered dreams with a dejected face giving away a few dry rations, used clothes and a few thousand rupees, and saying all the while to those who have lost everything, ‘Bygones are bygones!’. Empathizing is not enough. We need to speak up, raise our voices, and fight for justice and equality side by side with the oppressed and marginalized. We need to give them hope. In fact we need to become a part of their hope. Therefore our slogan should be loud and clear;
“WE ARE WITH THE OPPRESSED!”
This country has bled profusely due to racial and religious violence, since its so called independence from the British Colonialists. We have attempted to stop the bleeding by sticking plasters, yet the bleeding continues through the deep gash. It’s crucial therefore, that we sought the root cause of the issue and fix it.
Thus the question is vital – Why did they do it?
critical thinking / December 28, 2018
Sri lankan education minister and NIE should take some responsibility for this damage. They do not design a comprehensive education policy suitable to Sri Lanka. A comparative religious education is a must to Sri Lanka now at this age of social net works and globalisation.. no point in merely blaming these so called youths. Think where did they get this ideas? who taught them radicalism? what role education and school play in radicalisation. Ministry of Education and NIE are responsible to design a comparative education in religions. That is not there in SL. All communities live in water tight compartments. now they blame these people. wrong is wrong no doubt about it… But where did they get wrong from ? from Salafi/ Wahhabi .. Please go and tell them not to export us this form of Islam? Please go and tell Obama who created ISIS that you are responsible this violence in the world today…
Sri Lankan schools badly need to teach all 4 religions so that children learn sentiment of each religions. They are not babies but they can be radicalised… that is a fact.. Blame the system not young people..
Amarasiri / December 28, 2018
Thanks. Well written article with very good questions.
Now there are more than 70 different sects in Islam, with additional vilolent sects being added as the years go by. Some are peaceful and some are violent.
The violent ones are the cancers in the community. Unless the Muslim community removes these cancers surgically, the whole community as well as those who are non/Muslims will be affected.
It is s very good idea to make it compulsory, to teach the basic theologies and beliefs of Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity and Islam, just reporting, for knowledge, without critical analyses, so that the students are aware of the others beliefs.
When the students grow up become mature adults, those with intelligence can then sort the good from the bad.
For now, we all now Wahhabis, Salafis and their clones are bad, and follow the Devil, Satan per the prescient Hadith of Najd.
Thappu / December 31, 2018
My dear Farweez Imamudeen, You have spun a wonderful story; But, I am not impressed.
A majority of the Muslims live within their own communities.
___ It is just not Muslims. It is just not in Sri Lanka. Whichever part of the world you go to the stories are similar. The reasons are identical. Survival of the minority communities.
Struggles therefore are largely for the sake of our own religious and political rights.
___ Not entirely true. The reason is again the same. Religious and other rights fall in place only when inequalities are addressed.
You have asked very many, ‘Where were we … …’, questions.
___ Your questions are reasonable, but not as reasonable as they sound.
The attacks have been happening ever since. Your complacency, when it was not you who was at the receiving end, had had blinded you.
Thiru / December 28, 2018
The problem of periodic riots against Tamils and Muslims is not new: It has been going for decades for Tamils, but for Muslims it is even longer.
Most of Sri Lankans propose various ineffective solutions to prevent this. They never worked. Why?
The reason is very simple: Most of the perpetrators were not identified and prosecuted or jailed meticulously at all in most of the anti-Tamil riots starting from 1956. Same in the case of Muslims, I suppose.
The reason why Sinhalese mobs riot against the minorities is simply impunity, impunity, and impunity. The Sinhalese controlled state never considered the matter seriously and took appropriate legal action to punish the rioters. There will always be miscreants in every community: That does not mean that the majority community takes it as an excuse for blanket attacks on the minority community concerned.
All the anti-Tamil riots have established that rule of law does not apply to the rioting mobs of Sinhalese. The climax of this lack of rule of law happened during the latter part of the war.
Compare the youth riots in Britain several years ago: Every rioter was hunted down and punished – courts were set up to expedite those rioting cases. Will the youth riot again in Britain? A resounding no. The British state did not give impunity to the rioters.
Will Sri Lanka do it? I say no..
Why would any citizen from any community live in fear if a country if its rulers respect the rule of law and enforce it rigorously.
Even the president, who should be an exemplar, violated the rule of law recently because he feels he too has impunity to violate the laws!
What Sri Lanka needs is: Rule of law to straighten its rioting problems.
Sarrij / December 29, 2018
Answer.a) Fast application of the rule of law; LAW in good old SL moves at snail’s pace,
b) Get rid of the culture of Impunity; a very tall order?
c) A new set of young, educated political leaders; ?a dream.
Al-faqurlah / December 30, 2018
“Get rid of the culture of impunity” – Yes it is a very tall order.
Please help in bringing Hisbullah to justice for destroying a Hindu temple in Eravur, building a shopping complex on the land and distributing it to Muslims, Badiurdeen for damaging a church in Mannar and the Muslims who destroyed a Hindu temple in Sammanthurai and built a mosque over it.
Thiru / December 28, 2018
Another reason for the periodic rioting is, apart from the lack of prosecution of Sinhalese rioting mobs in the past, that the securities forces and police also took the side of the rioters and showed apathy toward the victims.
The rule of should apply to everybody: miscreants, rioters, armed forces, ministers, judges and even the president.
Do the ruling politicians have the sincerity and determination to apply the rule of law without fear or favor? Not in my opinion. Why? Rulers fear they will lose the votes of the majority community.
So much for the practicality of democracy in Sri Lanka.
The minority communities continue to live in fear of riots.
Good Student / December 29, 2018
Thiru and Varathan,
Comments of you both ignore the primary fact that its your Tamil ancestors who caused all these racial and religious violence in Sri Lanka. When the Sinhalese Buddhists built Anuradhapura your Tamil ancestors attacked it for more than a millennium and finally wiped it out about AD 1000. Raja raja did it.
When the heroic Sinhalese built a new civilisation in Polonnaruwa your Tamil ancestors (Kalinga Maga et al) attacked that as well for several centuries and wiped that from the face of the earth as well.
When our Sinhalese Buddhist ancestors relocated their capital and civilisation to Kandy, the Portuguese Catholic Christians attacked us all. Our Sinhalese Buddhist Kings Senarath and Rajasinha gave refuge as an act of compassion, in Kandy and EP to the Muslims during that period of persecution. (Muslims had previously persecuted the Spanish/Portuguese). The Muslims never valued it and simply exploited our compassion and destroyed Sinhalese traders. You don’t see any Sinhalese traders in Kandy or surrounding towns and villages.
When those appalling riots happened in March this year in Digana and Theldeniya Muslims shops torched and destroyed. But no one asked what happened to the Sinhalese shops? But there are n’t any Sinhalese shops because the Muslims have destroyed them all by Islamic finance and other underhand methods.
The Muslim population is deliberately by being increased by Muslim extremists to change the demography of this over crowded island.
When you compare Buddhism to Islam and Christianity, its 2600 old history has been extraordinarily peaceful. We never wiped out civilisation after civilisation as the Spanish Catholics did to the Aztecs in Mexico or the Maya in central America or the Inca or Bolivian people in South America. Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, French, British, Belgians and Arabs also committed genocide against black African people. raping of African slave women was normal!!!
Manilal / December 29, 2018
Do not forget the Mongols and what has Buddhism left to our own indigenous population ??
Do not confuse the smaller following smaller effect with religious doctrine, peace is at the heart of all these theories,
The Sinhala tribal politics is primarily responsible for destroying the Sinhala merchant class, southerners who owned urban property lost them to the tenant Muslims who were empowered by nationalisation and Banda unleashed the dogs !!
R. Varathan / December 28, 2018
If civilised and democratic governance is at play in Sri Lanka it is the duty of the Govt to ensure each and every Muslim in the four corners of the country and their assets are protected. Muslims should be personally assured of their safety by the Police and Forces authorities in their own areas. It is sad for sometime now our Muslim brethren are fated to live in much fear and anxiety. Let not the Muslims suffer the fate that visited Tamils for many decades and in several State-aided programs. In all of these Govt-favoured thugs and criminals, often encouraged by the Police and the armed forces on the spot killed, robbed Tamils and set their homes and trading establishments on fire. The biggest threat comes from radical Buddhist clerical organisations and activists who have become a cancer in the body politic of the country operating with impunity under the very noses of the Police. In all these instances the Govt and their Police have remained helpless or inactive These events earned for the Govt and the majority Sinhalese an unenviable reputation throughout the world that will take a long time to fade from memory.
K.Pillai / December 28, 2018
The “Defiling Of The Buddha Statue” has not been commented yet by the Police, IGP or the PM. Yet here is Farweez Imamudeen’s claim that it was by two who ‘share the faith of Islam.
The defilement is a serious matter and if we ASSUME credibility to the Farweez claim then it is very very grave indeed. Should the Muslim MPs take the responsibility to defuse or even better for ACJU who instructs the Muslim MPs as to what to do.
Farweez ends with the question “Why did they do it?”. Implies the two did it. Curious to say the least.
Farweez Imamudeen / December 29, 2018
Thank you for your comment. I clearly refer to them as ‘suspects’ not convicts. I do agree that the question ‘why did they do it’ implies a conclusion. But that is not what I meant. If they had committed it we need to ask this question. That is what I intended.
Shenal / December 29, 2018
“Why did they do it?” It is for the same reason why Taliban destroyed the Bamian Buddhas.
Mohamed / January 5, 2019
Do you have any personal relationship with them?
Raj-UK / December 28, 2018
This is the result of appointing yobs & thugs to Parliament. These self serving uneducated yobs have no vision for uplifting the country, instead resort to exploiting the ignorance of similar village thugs to remain in power. The racist card is a political strategy which even Trump & the ‘Brexit’ politicians of UK have put to good use. I hope the general public is wise enough now to understand the desperation of failing politicians & rise above petty differences (religion being a personal choice) at a time when the country is in a severe economic & political turmoil.
The country can’t afford another racially or religiously motivated violent uprising.
Critical thinking / December 28, 2018
You have a lot of philosophy to talk about now ..
I wish ibn Sina; ibn Rushd and al- Farabi are born agian now to argue for and against this mess in Sri Lanka …religious fight between all Sri Lankan ethic groups …..
Can you put your philosophical ideas on this issue how to build peace and harmony in SL
Amarasiri / December 30, 2018
What was the political and religious environment during that period, which allowed those Philosophers, intellectuals and society to thrive and progress?
Do we have that now ? The answer is there.
Mohamed / December 28, 2018
“our struggles therefore are largely for the sake of our own religious and political rights” – Farweez Imamudeen, That is because, SL Muslims are selfish.
Bodin / December 29, 2018
Much worse than that. Islam has rules against the worship of idols. The same was/is true of various fundamentalist Judaic sects. Muslim radicals terrorized the west when Mulsim anger was directed against a Danish cartoonist, and against the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. Lives were lost.
This is because today Islamic leadership has passed on to the hands of radicals, fueled by oil money. We need not say which Kings or Sheiks of the middle east, in collusion with the West, have spread this radical violent Islam. Today people have forgotten the enlightened Islam of the Mogul emperors s in India or the times in medieval Spain when Jews and other religious groups could practice their religions under the patronage of Islam. The largely enlightened Islamic religion of Sri lanka during the times of people like Mr. Azeez of Zahira college should not be forgotten but revived, and the more recent fundamentalist Islam, trying to foist out dated interpretations of Sharia law etc should be condemned.
Muslim politicians and Muslim leaders who favour the continued oppression of women, support of child marriage etc should be thrown out, together with the Friday prayer leaders and Mullahs who spew out ideological hate and rank medieval mythology.
I as a Muslim find much to regret in what I see as a result of oil wealth in the hands of ignorant rulers.
shankar / December 29, 2018
“Muslim politicians and Muslim leaders who favour the continued oppression of women, support of child marriage etc should be thrown out, together with the Friday prayer leaders and Mullahs who spew out ideological hate and rank medieval mythology.”
sooner you do it the better.These idiots are taking you down the abyss worldwide.
Hindus and bhuddhists also must nip in the bud any extremism in their communities.Recently some fellow started in jaffna saying beef eaters should leave.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 29, 2018
This is because Muslims in Sri Lanka a generation ago , despite calling themselves “Sri Lankan Moors ” were Tamils by culture, heritage, customs, dress, thinking and were following the extremely tolerant enlightened form of Islam that they brought from the Tamil homeland in South India , that was introduced there around a 1000 years ago. Now other than their language , which I think they will soon give up , in favour of Arabic/Urdu or something else to suit their fundamentalist/opportunist fancy, there is nothing Tamil about them, they gave given up everything aspect of their ancient Tamil Dravidian origin and heritage and have become pathetic carbon clones of the Gulf Arabs of Saudi Arabia or Quarter , in dress , names , culture , the way they behave m nasty aggressive , most of the have given up their 1000 year old tolerant enlightened form of Islam that, originated in the Tamil country in South India and still largely practices there and have taken up to the extremist intolerant Wahhabi Islam from the Arabian Gulf and is alien to the island. They have largely become very aggressive and nasty . They have given up everything nice tolerant Indian/Tamil about them within a generation and become nasty intolerant and Arab . Basically from being Tamil Muslims they have become Arab clones. You can see in the dress. The men have become more fundamentalist intolerant and extremist , due the influences of extremist intolerant forms of Islam from the Arabian Gulf and have forced the women to give up their traditional dress of the saree covering their head , the Pavadai.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 29, 2018
contd: The Islamic fundamentalism found in the all-Muslim town of Kattankudy in the eastern Sri Lankan district of Batticaloa, like in the rest of Sri Lanka, is rooted in Wahabism, sanctioned and practiced in ultra-conservative Saudi Arabia. Developed between the 13th and 18th centuries, Wahabism has sought to rid popular Islam of “innovations, superstitions, deviances, heresies and idolatries” and get people to adhere strictly to the Quran and the Hadis (sayings of Prophet Mohammad). Wahabism is against music and dance, and the social mixing of the sexes. Being acutely monotheistic, it is opposed even to the display of images of humans and animals; praying at graves; and assigning divinity to the Prophet, praying to him and celebrating his birthday. Wahabists also reject non-religious cultural practices and beliefs which are inherited or imbibed from other cultures. Within Islam, Wahabism is virulently opposed to Sufism because Sufism does not recognise the duality between self or man, and God.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 29, 2018
cantd: In Sufism, God has to be reached through personal experience by gaining knowledge of one self. Sufism believes that saints and wise men are necessary to guide one’s search for God. It sanctions worship through music and dance and paying obeisance to saints and teachers, both living and dead.
The Prophet is considered divine and celebrated. Inherited and imbibed non-religious cultural practices are not rejected outright. Wahabis consider such ideas heretical. In Kattankudy, the conflict has been between two versions of Islam. On the one hand, there is the entrenched and popular version which is culturally integrated with the local Tamil environment, and which could be loosely described as Sufistic. On the other hand, there is the new entrant, Wahabism.
Prior to the entry of Wahabism in the mid 1970s, (thanks to the oil boom and the rise of Saudi Arabia) Kattankudy Muslims were praying at the graves of Auliyas or saintly men; seeking favours from God through prayer; singing songs in praise of God; and organising grand festivals and distributing food in observance of the Prophet’s or a Saint’s birthday; and using flowers in prayer.
Many of their social customs and rituals were of Tamil or Indian origin. Men and women mingled in religious festivities.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 29, 2018
Contd: In earlier times, Muslims participated in Hindu temple festivals and made vows like the Tamils. As their ancestors were HIndu Tamils. They also had regular roles to play in Hindu temple festivals,” recalled KMM.Kaleel of the Federation of Mosques. “To stop this, the Ulemas of those days encouraged Muslims to start similar festivities in their own mosques,” he explained.
According to the Sufi Sunnat-ul-Jamaat leader, Maulvi A Abdur Rauf, not all of these practices can be branded as un-Islamic. He argued that many could be justified on the basis of the Quran and the Hadis as these were matters of interpretation. In the past, there had been varying interpretations, he pointed out.
Rauff was popular. But given the changed global Islamic situation in the 1970s, the elitist Colombo-based All Ceylon Jamiat Ulema issued a fatwa against him.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 29, 2018
Contd: He was accused of bringing in the beliefs and practices of the Hindus of Tamil Nadu, where he had studied. But resistance to Rauf at Kattankudy itself, took time to develop. Change in thinking began to show up in the mid-1980s, when a large number of locals started going to the Middle East, especially Saudi Arabia.
“There, they were introduced to Wahhabism in special preaching centres,” said MBM Firdous, of the Centre for Development and Rebuilding. Back in Kattankudy, people were coming under the influence of P Jainul Abedin alias PJ, a powerful Wahabist preacher from Tamil Nadu. Organisations like the Saudi-funded Centre for Islamic Guidance cropped up in the early 1990s, Firdous said. Young men from Kattankudy began to get scholarships to study in religious universities in Saudi Arabia and Egypt. It is these young men who spearheaded Wahhabism when they got back. Now everything Tamil/Indian and Sufi has gone out of these Tamil Muslims in the east and the rest of Sri Lanka, replaced by fundamentalist Wahhabism and they have all become pathetic carbon clones of the Gulf Arabs. The Sri Lankan government and the ruling Sinhalese establishment together with the Muslim politicians and elite encouraged this , to deliberately create a rift between the largely Hindu Tamils and these Tamil Muslims called Moors of Sri Lanka , by deliberately Arabising them and the Islam they practised to distance them from their Tamil roots and heritage, now they are reaping the results of what they have sowed.
Fathima / December 29, 2018
I did not read your essays in comments or not interested in your content as I know your topics is about. As a part of CT forum community I am asking, “Why don’t you try write articles for CT, instead of squeezing yourself into these word-counted comment boxes?
mike / December 29, 2018
Fathima – You are absolutely correct, what is more, this comment is Shit, Shit, Shit all the way!
Pandi Kutti / December 30, 2018
Mohammed or Ahmed pretending posting as mike. . This is the truth and is historically accurate. May be shit for an Arab worshipping , pretend Arab Thullukka Wahhabi of South Indian origin. Pattama also does not like the truth and feels very uncomfortable.
M. Sajjad / January 5, 2019
But why get angry, that bugger writes so much in a comment and then multiples of those, so Fathima advised him right. What is there for you to get angry other than that you and him are Tamils???
And we all know that you were brought here for tobacco plantation by colonial master, and now you act like the originals.
We don’t have to worship Arabs, we do very well here in SL and give job opportunities for 100’s others. It is you who worship Whites for earning EU residency, even as a refugee after landing there by an illegal rusty fishing boat telling all the lies about Sri Lanka for this petty reason, cheap fellow. All you know is, be a suicide bomber, or a terrorist, or a refugee in a White’s land and skim credit cards of Whites in the night time.
And don’t forget you are the fav slaves of the White since long. so they converted you to their religion easily.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 30, 2018
You have read everything and are fuming as you fake Arab immigrant Dravidian largely low caste Tamil Hindu converts to Islam , who in the name of Islam and fake a Arab origin , that even the Arabs themselves have stated that you people do not have or hardly have and declared Sri Lankan Muslims as descended South Asian( Tamil) coverts to Islam, were siding and aiding abetting the Sinhalese racists to commit genocide and ethnic cleansing on the indigenous native Tamils of the north and east , with the intention of stealing their land with Sinhalese help , were playing the victim , whilst in reality were the aggressors with the Sinhalese armed forces and establishment overt and covert help , to destroy Hindu temples/ deities, convert many of these former temples to mosques, killing , ethnically cleansing and stealing the lands of Hindu Tamils, who ancestors gave you ungrateful converted low caste Indian Tamil immigrant opportunists , refuge from the Portuguese and the very same Sinhalese whom did not want more of you in the Central province and started to persecute your ancestors , so that had to be given refuge in the Tamil east. Now that the truth is coming out these Arab worshipping Wahhabi/Salafist low caste South Indian fake Arab converts are not happy. Where were all these columns and condemnation from Muslims , when attacks on Tamils and Hindu places of worship being done immigrant these South Indian origin converted fake Arab Wahhabis in the north and east with Sinhalese state help? They were keeping quiet and watching the fun salivating at the thought of a future Wahhabi Islamic state formed on stolen Tamil lands for their fake Arab , Dravidian South Indian origin immigrant community. Now that it has happened in Sinhalese areas , they have become scared and started posting numerous columns condemning this vandalization and to remind the Sinhalese how good and the Muslims were to their genocidal cause , so to spare them.
sacre blieu / December 29, 2018
The animal in man comes out when mind over matter begins to erode by the distraction that is around us, daily, in our lives, and base desire encouraged by greed, and more so, when leadership is weak and vanning very wanting.
soma / December 29, 2018
Please give us an example of a Muslim majority country to follow.
Real Revolutionist / December 29, 2018
One of the arrested youth has mentioned that according to the Quran, Allah is the only almighty god.
Let him cling in to his religious thought as far as it’s not a problem for anybody of different faiths.
Especially Buddhists are not bit bothered about it.
Buddha was a human being still living in the hearts of millions as a superior being; even mightier than god/gods
The problem is, how/where did that youth find power/permission to destroy any kind of statue that’s venerated by many?
Hindu & Christian people have images of their gods, to make statues.
Why can’t Muslims create the image of Allah for the followers to worship?
That’ll reduce their jealousy/hatred towards others’ gods & venerated people.
sinhalese buddhist / December 29, 2018
We should all support Sri Lanka the country, as opposed to our own ethno/religious groups.
All of us are complicit AND victims at the same time. Even if the Sinhalese are the majority, they are also victims. There are many minority businesses that discriminate against the sinhalese in hiring, promotions, and business dealings.
We need to break down this mistrust and start building trust. In order to do that we need clear-minded objective and far-sighted leaders from all ethnic groups to become vocal and challenge the thuggery that is practiced by politicians and their henchmen in the military/paramilitary and the police.
Children from different faiths should be compelled to study in the same classrooms, instead of mono-ethnic/lingual classrooms. They will then learn to deal with each other better than their parents and grandparents.
The court system needs to be reformed to be truly impartial and a functional, corruption-free police should be nurtured.
The entrenched-elite ( MR, RW and all the corrupt SOBs with “family connections” and ill-gotten wealth) should be challenged; for it is they who perpetuate the ethnic strife, so that the middle and poor classes of different ethno/religious groups do not unite and challenge the hegemony of this elite group who control all our lives.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 30, 2018
Eelam War II set in motion a calculated series of
aggressive attacks by the Shri Lankan Security Forces
against the Tamils of the Eastern province. The process
of genocide of the Tamils’ or the ‘De-reliction of the
Tamils’ by the Security forces received the active
support from both the Muslim militancy as well as the
Muslim politicians. In particular, Ampara District which
had a permanent and long-standing Tamil population of
thousands of families, were subjected to all forms of
violence by both the Muslim hooligans and Muslim Home
Guards. When I refer to the word ‘Muslims’, it undoubtedly refers
specifically attributed to the destructive activities by
Muslim Home Guards, Muslim Hooligans and the Muslim
politicians. By this process, they ensured the compulsory
displacement of the Tamils from their traditional habitat
and to strengthen their own positions with ulterior
motives. The fact that the security forces went on the
rampage in Tamil regions in the Ampara District paved the
way for the Muslim forces to plan and carry out
calculated activities to achieve their objectives.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 30, 2018
contd: In the process of destruction directed against the Tamils, the community lost a number of the educated Tamil intelligentsia. Several Hindu Temples were set on fire and destroyed. The Tamils lost all their belongingsincluding houses, agricultural lands, movable and immovable properties. They were compelled to vacate theirtraditional villages and move out to safer areas.
The Muslims who acquired both political as well aseconomic strengths utilized the terrific war situation to establish and seize by force a political platform to suit their needs. Result: Amparai District, portions of which were once under Tamil regimes over a period of traditional occupation with a proud heritage overnightbecame alien property. Hindu Temples with centuries-old heritage, which contributed to their moral and religiousways of life, were destroyed completely leaving no
traces. Tamil villages in the District such as Palamunai,Panama, Meem Odai Kaddu, Oluvil, Nintawr, Samnlanthurai,Karavalupattu, Deegavapi, Maanthoddam, Kondavedduva,Poorani, Thangavelauthaplram, Udumpankulam, are strange lands to the Tamil community
having been converted to Muslim areas. Moreover, otherTamil villages with a preponderant Tamil population,namely, Addapallam, Chavalakadai, Thiraaikemi,Sorrikalmunai, Veeracholai are nay facing eminent dangersof being engulfed by Muslims using their politica and
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 30, 2018
contd: All forms of destructiveactivities directed by the security forces against theTamil ommunity as well as their economic targets, pavedthe way for the Muslims to reap the harvest and
strengthen their position. Tamils were murdered systematically on a planned basis. The remaining Tamils were strangled economically with no prospects of carrying out farming activities, marketing their produce or evenmoving freely without fear. The sole objective was to drive out the remaining Tamils from their villages. Forthat purpose, it was calculated to erase out their heritage which came under the umbrella of ‘Hindu Worship’. Destructive activities were directed against
the Hindu Temples in all the villages. Here are a few
Sammanthurai – Kali Amman Temple destroyed by the Muslims in 1990
Karaitivu – Kannaki Amman Temple damaged by the Muslims who were accompanied the security forces.
Addaipallam – Meenachchi Amman Temple damaged by the Muslims during the same period.
Karavalu – A village in close proximity to Kalmunai – An ancient Kali Kovil completely destroyed by Muslims. At present, a Mosque stands at that – place.
Meen Odai Kaddu – Pillaiyar Temple completely destroyed by Muslims. Muslim community settled at that site.Oddamavadi – Batticaloa District – Pillaiyar Temple taken
over forcibly by Muslim. A Beef Stall stands there now.
Siva Sankaran Sharma / December 30, 2018
contd: . Here is an unforgettable
incident: In 1990, Nintavur village was rounded up by the
security forces and Muslim Home Guards; 64 youths males
and females were taken to the Nintavur Murugan Temple.
They were slain and shot. Those killed and the groaning
lot were set on fire along with the temple. The strro1ge
thing is that there is no trace of the existence of a
temple at that site which was once a recognised place of
worship. This area, is now one where no Tamils can go
into it and it is now a Muslim region.
Tiraikerui – An incident of aggression by Muslim hooligans in 1990. Muslim Hooligans armed with swords and knives entered the village and terrified the villagers. They sought refuge in their village Pillaiyar Temple.The hooligans after damaging the temple entrance door
attacked the helpless victims using their destructiveweapons and after they were killed set the temple on fire. Veeramunai – During the same time, refugees who were
accomodated in the Pillaiyar Temple; they were rounded up by the Security forces and the Muslim Home Guards. They selected the educated and the well-built youths numbering 85, took them inside the temple premises; they were slain and Shot by the Muslim Home Guards. This particular incident took place in the presence of the relatives of those killed – When the security forces
were simply watching While the Muslim Home Guards performed these horrible murders. Amparai Tamils often tell such similar stories through their experiences. The Tamils of these regions did not have the courage and the strength to fight the politically strong Muslim
leadership who gave all the help and assistance to the Muslim, Home Guards and the hooligans to carry out their plans to destroy the Tamils.
Lasantha Pethiyagoda / December 30, 2018
Very brave of the author to have taken a very direct approach to the problem…yet, his wise words will generally fall on deaf ears..that is the pity..
Thiagarajah Venugopal / January 3, 2019
Thank you. Let us agree the case is not final and we do not know who did what.
However the question you raised in all your article is what matters?? Why are we so inward looking when our response should be with the affected by this act? the sentiments of the Buddhists be it this time around is hurt?? then how we all respond to that event in public or be it in private matters…………spot on.
This is the challenge for us all as is why we are disintegrating as a Nation……always the incorrect solutions/responses to what the challenges are………..I would not blame the public because they were all oppressed at gunpoint specially since 1970 to think freely and elect whom they want.
We have always killed the solution providers and celebrated the ‘problems’ as our leaders???? what you expect.
Other Nations with similar issues post colonial time have navigated national and international stresses better because there were no gun point democracy.
North is the sacrificial cathode now and next is the East for the cancer cells that were inserted by ‘neighbourly love’ who would not accept this as their solutions. You can not choose neighbours I guess with such breeding program.
I really think whoever argue and make hate politics even in the comment sections here are all the same agents who are full time employed to spread the hate/misinformation to destroy us as a Nation. Far too many layers of the same.
What a miserable life we all lead talking the same non sense instead of creative future.