Fashion Bug Attack, Gota, BBS And The Anti-Muslim Hatred

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By Kshama Ranawana -

Kshama Ranawana (1)

Kshama Ranawana

Facebook is full of posts from Sri Lankans thanking the eight countries that voted against the United States sponsored UNHRC resolution that censured Sri Lanka on Human Rights violations. Considering the wave of anti-Muslim hatred being unleashed by the so-called patriotic forces in Sri Lanka, it’s ironic that several of those that supported the country in the final vote are Muslim countries.

Those who believe that Sri Lanka has been wronged need to look beyond the Sri Lanka can do no wrong ideology. The UNHRC resolution is pretty lenient, asking only for a “credible form of domestic accountability.” Sri Lankans should be grateful for this watered down resolution- which indicates that the so-called “foreign interventionists” are even now willing to give the country more chances. However, if the current trend to openly suppress religious minorities continues, Sri Lanka will certainly be facing stricter censure.

Instead of posting “thank you’s” on Facebook, those who are pained by the UNHRC resolution should be banding together to stem the vile behavior of the Bodu Bala Sena and their supporters. That would definitely save Sri Lanka from digging itself into a deeper pit than it is in already.

The Sinhala community has valid concerns. They fear the spread of Muslim exclusive schools and the introduction of Sharia Courts in Sri Lanka. They also worry about Buddhists converting to Christianity. However, whipping up the public into a frenzy and taking the law into their hands will not resolve the issue.

It has taken the attack on the “ Fashion Bug” group of companies for the Rajapaksa regime to wake up from its slumber and condemn those who fan communal and religious hatred. Secretary to the Ministry of Defense  Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and the government information department have issued statements warning of legal action against those who carry out such attacks or spread anti-religious or communal sentiments. What prevented the government from arresting those who have been spreading such venom these past months?

Those leading the attacks on religious minorities are a fringe group; one that appears to have Ministry of Defense Rajapaksa’s blessings. After all, he attended the opening of the groups’ training centre. Despite the controversial nature of the BBS, the fact that the powerful Rajapaksa, who has the huge security forces apparatus at his disposal, officiated at a key ceremony gave the impression that with a nod and a wink, he approves of their extremist philosophy.

And who is to blame for the trouble? The Rajapaksa’s once again flog a dead horse, the one that has been used ad nauseam since this regime took power; “local and foreign elements against the country are attempting to destabilize the peace and reconciliation……” Why not arrest the leaders of those groups who have been regularly spewing hatred on stage and on the airwaves? Are they not disturbing the peace of the country with all the speeches they have been making against Muslims and Christians? By the Defense Secretary’s own admission, it is these very same people who are working against the country! How ludicrous then to ask that people report to him personally about those who are fanning anti-communal and religious ideology? If one were to accept the argument of the State, then it is these extremists who must be hand in glove with the “foreign” hand. Where is the “unpatriotic” label that the government and its supporters use to tarnish anyone they perceive as not abiding by their version of politics?

Four individuals, the alleged culprits who vandalized “Fashion Bug” are reported to have been arrested, even as I write. Are they the real culprits or are they scapegoats? Will we see the appointment of yet another Presidential commission, the report of which, like so many others before, may never see the light of day?

It is reported that the attack on “Fashion Bug” took place following a meeting at a nearby temple. During this meeting, allegations were made that a Muslim employee of that establishment had raped a Sinhala Buddhist girl. Should we be adopting mob mentality in resolving the issue? Stoning and attacking the employees of Fashion Bug is similar to the behavior of those in some Muslim majority countries where the slightest provocation would result in the physical and psychological abuse of those who are not of the Islamic faith, behavior that has, in some cases, resulted in death.

Reading the speeches and articles of those defending the rights of Buddhists, it is clear that they want a mirror image of Muslim majority countries in Sri Lanka, where those of other faiths, are declared infidels and have little or no rights.

During the four years my family and I spent in Pakistan, I was often accosted in public and admonished for not covering my head. We dared not eat anything in public during the month of Ramazaan for fear of censure.

Attempts to build an Anglican church and Buddhist temple were thwarted many times, by religious political parties similar to the Bodu Bala Sena, until the enlightened government of the day intervened and granted land within the diplomatic enclave to build the temple.

Is that what we want for Sri Lanka; a country where minorities must live in fear?

Buddhists are now discouraged from working for Muslim owned businesses; in doing so, Buddhists are paving the way for Muslims to hire only Muslims.

The Ministry of Religious Affairs recently stated that legislation would soon be introduced to ensure that only original teachings of the four main religions- Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Christianity would be practiced in Sri Lanka. Now, that would be an interesting exercise. How or where do we start? Buddhist ritual, as practiced in Sri Lanka is so deeply entrenched in Hinduism. On Buddhist holidays, greeting cards are sent out to friends and relatives in a manner copied from the Christian custom. Similarly, other religions in Sri Lanka have co-opted customs from each other and from Buddhism as part of the healthy contamination that occurs when different cultures live together. Adam’s Peak/Samanalakanda, for instance, is a perfect example; it is a shared symbol of faith and pilgrimage between different religious origin stories. What will we declare as authentically ‘Buddhist’, ‘Muslim’, ‘Hindu’, or ‘Christian’? More importantly, who will decide authenticity? Religion has been heavily influenced by cultural practices, and to declare one branch of it pure would be to deny the right of another.

In Pakistan, the Ahamadiya’s have been declared non-Muslim; the Sunni’s and the Shia’s are at eternal loggerheads. When the Shia’s observe Muharram the government deploys the police to protect them from the Sunni’s. We witnessed many processions of the Sunni’s chanting “Kafir, kafir, Shia Kafir” (Shia are infidel). The world witnessed not so long ago the carnage that resulted from the Hutu-Tutsi conflict in Africa.

A Sinhala only Act drove away a large part of the Burgher community and was one of the main issues that caused tension amongst the Tamils. Leaders of the Sinhala and Tamil communities acted selfishly, playing to their constituencies instead of forging a united country. The result was a conflict that has left wounds and pain that will last for many years to come. The current situation should also serve as an eye-opener to Sinhala Christians who opted to hide behind their Sinhala identity in the Sinhala –Tamil ethnic conflict. Sri Lanka’s Muslim’s too used that conflict to their gain never realizing that they would be the next target. None of the communities in Sri Lanka have attempted to genuinely forge a Sri Lankan identity; we grew up with and still hear the “anti” rhetoric, whether it be Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim or Burgher.

It is crucial that Sri Lankans understand that the country is a in a post-war situation and that the root causes for the ethnic conflict remain unresolved. The triumphalism of the government has helped to bring to the surface the majoritarian ideology that has been simmering amongst the professional and educated class for many years.

On a holiday to Sri Lanka in 1996, we were dismayed by a dinner table conversation that took place at a friend’s home, where guests were unanimous that Muslims should not be allowed to further expand their businesses in the country.

Radical speeches of those such as the Bodu Bala Sena have resulted in many Christians and Muslims being harassed, their places of worship attacked and now Muslim business establishments too are not spared.

The monks leading the charge in Sri Lanka are the same purveyors of outrage that you will see in the shrill sloganeering of Muslim extremists in Pakistan, the Shiv Sena in India and the Koran-burning Christians in the United States. While such ideologists will always be around, it is the responsibility of governments and the saner elements of society to hold them in check.

If not, then this is the beginning of a slippery slope once more. In Pakistan there are no more Hindus and Sikhs in significant numbers for the extremists to slaughter. So the majority Sunnis go after the minority Muslim Sects and the poor Christians.

So in the BBS driven Sri Lanka where will society head? Once the Muslims are cowed – as the Tamils are now, the few anti-Christian skirmishes may well blow into major incidents –Then after that, what? The Sinhalese who believe that Sri Lanka belongs only to them can start annihilating each other; they can begin with the Kandyan versus the other Sinhalese and, when that is done, kill each other over the supremacy of their castes.

When the Ministry of Religious Affairs has figured out which form of Buddhism is the “perfect” form, they can begin slaughtering everybody who does not adhere to that prescribed format.

What a future we prepare for ourselves when we refuse to learn from history.

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145 Responses to Fashion Bug Attack, Gota, BBS And The Anti-Muslim Hatred

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    The BBS is a political creation in a long-term agenda of an US Citizen managing Governance behind the scene. He has to to something to keep his skeletons in the cupboard in tact. This is only a stepping stone and once a Black-July kind of offensive is concluded, everything will be set to empower the Government under Emergency rules with postponement of all elections. The sooner the island-wide BBS turmoil takes place the better for the Regimes dynastic rule continuously under Emergency! The deeds of (Rev.!) Galagoda Thero can be read here lankaenews.com/English/news.php?id=13626

    punchinilame
    March 31, 2013 at 12:33 pm
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      There is some truth in some of the stories in L-e-N but most of it are rumours or hyped heresy at best. Never once have I seen a story of any good work by the government. The fact that LeN have taken out its comments section of late shows its partility and one sided stand. Even the days that LeN had comments section with their fib, it was open only to their sycophants who confirm its yarn. Other like us who gives out a contrary view were banned. So much to their openness and democracy. In that sense, CT is a very fair journal indeed, and that’s why the government cannot ban it. Leela

      Leela
      April 1, 2013 at 2:07 am
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        Leela, You must defend this psycho, cos birds of a feather flock together ne? :)

        Nabil
        April 2, 2013 at 9:00 am
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    The author has conveniently forgotten the atrocities of the Burmese Buddhist majority on their hapless Karen (Kayin) Christian and the Rohingya and other Muslim minorities. In Cambodia too the Cham Muslim people are persecuted by the Buddhist majority. So citing only the issues in Pakistan casts a cloud on her balanced approach. As others have pointed out she also talks of non existent Sharia courts and makes a farcical statement of practically non existent Muslim exclusive schools.

    Fair play
    March 31, 2013 at 2:13 pm
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      I think she has tried to point out the BBS concerns/reasons over the attacks and hatred towards Muslims. Since attacks against Muslims in SL and Burma are almost similar, taking that example wouldn’t go well. Don’t see that in antagonastic way.

      Manoj
      April 1, 2013 at 3:28 am
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        A perjury construed is a perjury in venom.

        Dhatu Gharba
        April 2, 2013 at 8:54 am
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    I am waiting to see what the venerable Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith has to say regarding this matter. ‘the few anti-Christian skirmishes may w’ell blow into major incidents”

    Leon
    April 1, 2013 at 1:49 am
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    “The Sinhala community has valid concerns. They fear the spread of Muslim exclusive schools and the introduction of Sharia Courts in Sri Lanka. They also worry about Buddhists converting to Christianity.” This is wrong. This should not be the Sinhala Community, but certain groups like BBS or whatever.

    Manoj
    April 1, 2013 at 3:30 am
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      Manoj, To identify BBS as a ‘certain group’ you must be in the WOG or a colombian group who are out of touch with sentiment of the mass.

      noble
      April 1, 2013 at 9:06 am
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        You seems to be not that noble as your name says. If you consider “BBS” and “Sinhala Mass” as the same, I don’t see any difference between you and BBS mate.

        Manoj
        April 5, 2013 at 9:59 am
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      Manoj, the reason for exclusive Muslim Schools are the Sinhalese themselves. Will any of you allow a Muslim to Study at any of the exclusive Buddhist schools? What choice do we have? Please be reasonable. On the one hand you bash Muslims for being backward, then you bash us for having schools only for Muslims and then you say you are worried. At the same time you will do everything to stop us from joining the mainstream schools.

      Nabil
      April 2, 2013 at 8:57 am
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        Nabil, Dear you haven’t clearly got my point. What I said is was it is wrong to mention that the “Sinhala Community” is against Muslim schools or whatever but only certain groups like BBS.

        Manoj
        April 5, 2013 at 9:57 am
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    The author is purhaps thinking in the right direction, but as others have pointed out, she has attempted to be ‘balanced’ by fishing into her limited personal experience and overly relying on the biased and ill informed writings of one single author who has published in the dailynews. There is this unnecessary hysteria about this immaginary threat of wahabism. Why can’t the author just do a simple check with the authorities on weather sharia courts really do exist and what is the role and function of the quazi courts. It is blantant ignorance to proclaim some thing as far reaching as a proxy legal system in the country which is something that completely undermines our constitution. On the schools matter, I would like to urge some one to do a study on the number of year 1 students coming out every year among the muslim community and the number of spots given to the community by mainstream schools. Schooling for our children is a huge issue. Most of us can barely afford to pay the lofty tuition fees of these budding low standard international schools which we are forced to send our children out of no choice. Most muslim parents would love to send their child to one of the many centuries old national schools, but I doubt we even get the places which are proportionate to our population in the country. We have stood by the Sinahalese during all their hard times during the last few centuries, from before the time of our struggle for indenpendence to the LTTE conflict and all you can do is listen to some zionist propaganda on the internet about some imaginary threat of wahamism. Please ensure you have your sources correct before you talk about something which clearly you know very little about. Never the less, I congratulate the author on getting on the right direction albeit with some ill-informed facts. Please don’t stop here, dig further.

    Ahmad
    April 1, 2013 at 8:23 am
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      Ahmad, To propose that wahhabism is an imaginary threat and suggest it as an unnecessary hysteria, I suspect you yourself may well be Wahhabi ideology inclined or abandoned your traditional Sufi wisdom. Anyway, read my reply to Jayantha above as an addendum to this comment which is applicable to you as well. Surely, you cannot be unaware of about ideological struggles and the subsequent court cases and fights between Sufi M.S.M.Abdullah known as “Rah,” and his ‘All Ceylon Thareekathul Mufliheen’ had with Wahhabi infested ACJU. In October 2004, more than 200 homes of Sufi followers were burnt down by Wahhabi Jihadists in Kattankudi. When a dead Sufi leader Abdul Payilvan died in Colombo was buried in in his home town Kattankudi. Wahhabis organised a hartal next day and demanded the dead be exhumed and rebury elsewhere for Wahhabis claim Kattankudy soil is sacred and Sufis are unclean. When another Sufi Muslim was buried in a another Mosque ground, Wahhabis had dug it up and dumped the body on a local road as an act of protest. Kattankudi Police recovered the body, re-buried it in the original burial ground and guarded burial ground for few days. Kallathoni Wahhabi preacher named Jainul Abedin from Tamil Nadu has been the leader of Wahhabi Jihadism in Kattankudi for sometime. A fight between followers of a Sufi sheikh and a Wahhabi congregation in Beruwal in 2009 left a lot of damage and mess. Last year, Hiru tv reported that a maulavi named M.M.Karim preached his congregation in a mosque in Mutur to explain Saudi judgement on Rizana Nafeek is right and is in accordance with shariyah. He said shariyah is the law of Allah and no one can oppose Allah and therefore beheading is a must regardless of age. To say it all in short, Saudi agents have successfully penetrated Sri Lankan Muslims social fabric and have defeated the Sufism in Sri Lanka. Do you disagree? Leela

      Leela
      April 1, 2013 at 10:39 am
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        You narate of a conflict that has happened in this country, while I did not go in to detail verification of everything you narated, it is true that that such events has taken place. It is a conflict, similarly Sufi followers had caused similar damage to the non-suffi in Beruwala. We Muslims don’t have things perfectly in order and this is certainly an issue. Noted. I don’t however agree the labelling of the ‘other’ party in the conflict as Wahabi. Wahabi is a term assigned to the followers of a Islamic reformist scholar from the eighteenth century at the most. I wouldn’t term the people in this conflict as Wahabis and you tell me if they called themselves this? How do identify a Wahabi from some other muslim? Don’t tell me that every extremist muslim is wahabi, then how do you define extremist? Is it something you define as it is convenient to you? I don’t deny that there are visible changes to the muslim community in Sri Lanka over the years, take for example dress and appearance. In the eighties our ladies would have covered their head with a shawl, but today they cover their head completely with the hijab. Likewise in the eighties your ladies wore skirts close to the ankle but today I can see their thighs. I’m sure you don’t expect things to be the same over time, and root cause of such social changes are complex to say the least. Our community has gone through changes no doubt, reasons for this change is another discussion, but to say Wahabi infiltration is trying to simplify things too much and frankly not accurate.

        Ahmad
        April 1, 2013 at 12:04 pm
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          WAHABISM is also a form of extremism and don’t try to paint it. Please study about its roots and also about its leaders. I do not want to go deep into it.

          DODU
          April 1, 2013 at 4:12 pm
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        Leela pls explain what is the creed of Sheik Muhammed bin Wahab, who is accredited with this so called Wahabi Movement and what is the differences if any with the Islaam preached by its founder. Please give me proper references from the works of Sheik Muhammed not from some Tom, Dick or Harry who says , “he says, she says” and so on. Since you seem to have done some research we would like to have scholarly notes and the usual rubbish you exude.

        Jamal
        April 1, 2013 at 2:05 pm
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          Jamal, The name of the man we are talking about is Muhammad ibn ʿAbd al-Wahhab (1703–1792). Wahhab is said to have had early religious education in Medina and then ventured to Basra and to Baghdad. When returned home after that learning spell, Wahhab began to attract followers including the ruler of Uyayna, Uthman ibn Mu’ammar. With Mu’ammar’s support, Wahhab started to implement some of his ideas for reform. First, he cited Islamic teachings that forbid grave worship, he persuaded Ibn Mu’ammar to level the grave of Zayd ibn al-Khattab, a companion of Muhammad, whose grave was revered by locals. Next, he ordered that all adulterers be stoned to death, a practice that had become uncommon in the area. Indeed, he personally organised the stoning of a woman who confessed that she had committed adultery. In fact Wahhab wanted to return to act by Muhammed at his time. That is what you call Wahhabism. Read and follow every word in the Koran, Hadith and Sunnah. You cannot miss out any verses, or words, or words in between lines. When in difficulty to interpret them ulemas would translate it for you. Do you understand? When Wahhab was forced to leave Uyayna, he was invited to settle in neighboring Diriyah by its ruler Muhammad bin Saud. At their first meeting bin Saud declared: “This oasis is yours, do not fear your enemies. By the name of God, if all Nejd was summoned to throw you out, we will never agree to expel you. And Wahhab replied, “You are the settlement’s chief and wise man. I want you to grant me an oath that you will perform jihad (holy war) against the unbelievers. In return you will be imam, leader of the Muslim community and I will be leader in religious matters”. — Madawi al-Rasheed, ‘A History of Saudi Arabia’, Glassé 2003: 470. If that is not enough to satisfy you here is a link for you to learn more about his extreme doctrine. Leela

          Leela
          April 1, 2013 at 4:03 pm
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            This is again highly irrelevant KYMP stuff!. I know who he is but I asked you what his creed was and what were the differences if any with that of Islam as preached by the Prophet of Islaam!

            Jamal
            April 13, 2013 at 1:52 am
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        my last sentence should read …” and NOT the usual rubbish you exude”

        Jamal
        April 1, 2013 at 2:06 pm
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        MUSLIMS KILLING EACH OTHER, YOU MUST BE HAPPY, SINCE YOU ARE WORRIED ABOUT THE INCREASE IN MUSLIM POPULATION. WHAT IS YOUR REAL PROBLEM.? SIMPLE- YOU BUGGERS ARE ALL ENVIOUS OF MUSLIMS BECAUSE THEY ARE GOOD AT BUSINESS .YOU GOVIYAS AND DHEVARAYAS ARE A LAZY LOT. YOU CANNOT SEE THE MUSLIMS GETTING RICHER. LET ME TELL YOU WE BELIEVE IN ALLAH WHO IS OUR PROVIDER. EVEN IF ALL THE WORLD TURNS AGAINST US ALLAH’S DECREE WILL PREVAIL. THAT IS THE SIMPLE TRUTH.

        AYMAN
        April 4, 2013 at 6:22 pm
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    Ultimately the point I am trying to make is that there is no systematic foreign intervention called Wahabism as people make out. What you see of the muslim community is of their own doing and nothing more nothing less

    Ahmad
    April 1, 2013 at 12:13 pm
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      So then what is all the fuss about and why are the Saudis not treated as an autocratic dicatorship… not a decent Monarchy.

      Peter Casie Chetty
      April 1, 2013 at 11:17 pm
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    Leela you are wasting time with hair-brained critics. A learned commentator like Izeth Hussain, a former Ambassador confirmed in an article after verification that the Muslims in Sampur did not shed tears for the execution of Rizna Nafeek, the under-age girl because foreign elements had influenced the minds of Muslims there.So they considered she deserved execution. Hussain did not mention the Wahabis but it was to be understood.The former Ambassador who is a well informed person is an orthodox Muslim as he claimed. The problem is everyone these days is an Internet Hero or Heroine. They mushroom overnight into prominencewith many ready to say ‘hoyya’. A good example is this woman who has written this article from an upside -down position which appears to be her preferred posture in looking at things. If not how could she associate the attack on Fashion Bug outlet at Pepiliyana as atttacks on all Muslim Fashion Bug Companies.It is people like this who are creating mischief through spreading wrong information.

    Babulas
    April 1, 2013 at 12:53 pm
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      Babulas, Thank you for your advice but I am determined to disseminate the truth about ‘One God’ and its followers. Here, I wanted to spread the truth about Islam to those that do not know it. Leela

      Leela
      April 1, 2013 at 5:37 pm
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        Thank you for your advice but I am determined to disseminate the truth about ‘One God’ and its followers. Here, I wanted to spread the truth about Islam to those that do not know it. Leela Babulas Leela is trying to spread his idea of what the truth should be and directed to those who hate Islam. Read what this mountebank says and pit it against honest intellectuals of the standing of Ghandiji, Bernard Shaw, Thomas Carlyle, La Martine, Goethe and many more. You will realize the hollowness of this charlatan.

        Jamal
        April 14, 2013 at 6:53 am
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      The attack on Pepiliana Fashion Bug store is to get the Muslim owned Clothing business Market share by the Sinhala traders specially during the Sinhala Tamil New Year season. [Edited out - Please don't post gossip links ] The only worrisome is if this could spresd to other cities and towns as well. At the moment there’s a rumor to close dow Muslim owned businesses in Ehaliyagoda. So she could be correct.

      Jayantha
      April 2, 2013 at 8:28 pm
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    The countries that voted against Sri Lanka are those who have committed more crimes in the name of freedom and democracy against the muslim countries like iraq, Afgahistan, Syria, Libya, Tunisia and Eygypt. Now they are in the process of trying to undo their mistakes.. for keeping the dictators in power till the Islamic uprising took place. The Muslims can rely on the Buddhists at least sometimes wheras the Christians Jews want them to be wiped off. What have you heard about the 100 or more prisoners in Guantanamo on a hunger stike that is almost 50 days long now. Have they relented. Most of the hunger strikers are men who were found not guilty of any offence but are kept locked up. A few elements in a mob is nothing. Mobs too express themselves. There were no dead and no injured.. only property loss. Hoa many drones have killed innocent men women and children in the Muslim countries from Pakistan in the East to Turkey in the West? Why are they after Iran and Syria? Why does this idiotic woman not talk of the hatred towards the Muslims by Christian countries.

    Peter Casie Chetty
    April 1, 2013 at 11:15 pm
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      oi kasi, what are you on about. before i add my comments to your crap talk i would like to remind you about our earlier encounter where i asked you about your origins. you disappeared after that and now you have resurfaced. i am still waiting for your explanation. now you are saying western countries have committed more crimes. does it mean sri lanka has committed less crimes and it’s acceptable to you. right. tamil militancy was born because of sinhala atrocities against innocent tamil people since independence from white rulers. tamil militancy was the answer to sinhala extremism. can’t you understand that you thicko. now that the sinhala extremists have finished with tamils , they are taking on the muslims. it’s not totally unexpected. anyway mongolian buddha and mongolian buddhism are on the way out. it’s not built on strong foundation as such it cannot survive for too long. can i ask why black sinhala people worship yellow skinned mongolian buddha. i remember you saying something about a catholic church. what was your original faith before you converted to an alien faith. kasi, don’t runaway for the second time without providing me with all the answers.

      Rama
      April 2, 2013 at 8:16 pm
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      I 100 percent agree with you. There is no justice in the world. It’s v ery difficult to say who is correct and who is wrong. Did you also notice how Talibans shot the girl who encouraged Polio vaccine among children in Pakistan. Also the torture and punishment they bring upon their own Muslim women and their helpless Muslims communities by their own people. See in Nigeria and Sudan how they kill each other, their own people. All I could say is that there’s an evil spirit roaming in the world which make people go crazy. Yes Guantanamo is a crime to human kind and should to be shut down.

      Jayantha
      April 2, 2013 at 8:18 pm
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    kshama akka, i enjoyed reading your article. you are such a bleeding-heart liberal. i wish you all the best.

    Rama
    April 2, 2013 at 7:47 pm
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    TOTAL NGO VISION REPEATED IN THE ARTICLE, WE ALREADY CHANGE THIS WAY OF THINKING! When you guys told us that LTTE cannot be defeated. Yes we are thinking outside the BOX !! already.

    Jamec Corea
    April 3, 2013 at 4:02 am
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    very goog artcle showing reality without bias. We all must take responsibilty to protect journalist like ksama, of cause our state is going behind them

    country
    April 4, 2013 at 5:58 am
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    ‘The Sinhala community has valid concerns. They fear the spread of Muslim exclusive schools and the introduction of Sharia Courts in Sri Lanka. They also worry about Buddhists converting to Christianity.’ I don’t know about the Muslim part but about conversions – surely you don’t deny that people have the right to adhere to whichever religion they wish? And the argument of ‘conversions’ also assumes that people who convert don’t have a brain and can’t think for themselves? The case against ‘unethical conversions’ by Christians has also repeatedly come up in Sri Lanka, citing the case of the charity or development work Christians do. Again, this disrespects the agency of the beneficiaries to think for themselves and decide, and assumes that just because a Christian gave me some humanitarian relief, I am going to convert. If there are really cases of something unethical or unlawful going on, by all means address them. But don’t think that anyone who converts can’t think for themselves or are stupid. Haven’t several people and celebrities converted to Buddhism – from Dr. Ambedkar in India to Richard Gere? Should the faiths they are from have ‘valid concerns’? Everyone should have the right to follow the religion of their choice I say, even if it means converting from one to another!!! And anyone can have the right to make a case for their religion and it is upto the hearer whether they want to believe in it or not!

    KP
    April 4, 2013 at 9:33 am
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    I must add that I agree with most of Kshama’s article!!! :)

    KP
    April 4, 2013 at 9:35 am
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    PS Where do you think the Sri Lankan Buddhists originally came from? Didn’t Buddhism come from India? So the original adherents in Sri Lanka were ‘converts’ right?

    KP
    April 4, 2013 at 9:36 am
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      According to traditional Sri Lankan chronicles (such as the Dipavamsa), Buddhism was introduced into Sri Lanka in the 4th century BCE by Venerable Mahinda, the son of the Emperor Ashoka, during the reign of Sri Lanka’s King Devanampiya Tissa. SO ANOTHER MAHINDA CONVERTED DEVANAMPIYA TISSA.!!!! THIS WAS THE FIRST CONVERSION AND NOT BY CHRISTIANS MUSLIMS OR OTHERS. THE FIRST CHRISTIANS AND MUSLIMS WERE NOT CONVERTED IS THIS AN ETHICAL CONVERSION?”GOAT-ABAYAH” OVER TO YOU!!!!!!!! SO PLEASE DO NOT TALK OF CONVERSIONS.

      AYMAN
      April 4, 2013 at 6:35 pm
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        LOARD.BUDDAH is a HINDU, Ashoka is a Hindu, people here in Sri Lanka, before Mahinda were all HINDUS! So, I believe, the great conversion took place in the history of the Sri Lanka only when Budhism was introduced here. So, all Sri Lankans are converts.

        DODU
        April 5, 2013 at 1:12 am
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          Vijaya was the first terrorist in Sri Lanka who killed Kuveni and took this land by force. Then he marries a princess from Madurai and therefore the children have Tamil blood. Mahavansa talks about cohabitation between a lion and a woman. This a myth and Mahavansa starts with a myth. We talk about our great civilisation- how many kings were killed by their own family members. Son killing the father, brothers killing each other Then incest is recognised by the kings. Brother marries sister- I think incest may be a cultural concept.

          priya
          April 16, 2013 at 8:53 pm
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    A clean fast is better than a dirty breakfast. plorpoguelo

    TowstoommaBor
    October 28, 2013 at 6:29 pm
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