5 June, 2020

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Follow WHO Guidance – Respect Burial Rights: Civil Society Urge President

164 Civil Society activists and 17 organisations have today urged President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to follow WHO guidelines on the disposal of of deceased persons.

Issuing a statement they said: “We also call upon your Excellency to address the country’s greatly distressed Muslims and put to rest their fears that they are somehow being punished, or that the country has little respect for their concerns.” 

We publish below the statement in full:

H.E. Gotabaya Rajapaksa, President of the Democratic, Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka 

CC:
Hon. Pavithra Waniarachchi, Minister of Health

Dr. Anil Jasinghe, Director General Health Services
 

Dr. Sudath Samaraweera, Chief Epidemiologist, Epidemiology Unit

Dr. Hasitha Attanayake, Director, Infectious Diseases Hospital

Dr. Ajith Tennakoon, Chief Judicial Medical Officer 

Dr. Deepika Udagama, Chairperson, Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka

Dr. Razia Pendse, WHO Representative to Sri Lanka.

Your Excellency, 

Disposal of bodies of deceased persons who were infected with and suspected of being infected with COVID-19

We write to you as the person leading Sri Lanka’s effort to prevent and deal with COVID-19. 

We, at the outset, would like to express our gratitude to the public officials in Sri Lanka for their contribution towards preventing and dealing with COVID-19, particularly the untiring and selfless service of health sector workers. 

We write with regard to the disposal of bodies of persons who died due to being infected with, and those that died who are suspected of being infected with COVID-19. We were pleased that the Ministry of Health Provisional Clinical Practice Guidelines on COVID 19 Suspected and Confirmed Patients dated 27 March 2020 allowed for burial under certain conditions, and the family of the deceased to view the body at a designated place at the hospital. We were however concerned to learn that an individual of the Muslim faith who died due to COVID-19 was cremated on 30 March 2020 in contravention of the said Ministry of Health Guidelines and against the wishes of the family. 

We note that the Ministry of Health Provisional Clinical Practice Guidelines on COVID 19 Suspected and Confirmed Patients were thereafter amended and the new document dated 31 March 2020 as well as the Ministry of Health (MOH) Circular no EPID/400/2019 n-cov issued on 1 April 2020, which reproduces the amended Guidelines, require that all COVID-19 victims be cremated. We also note contradictory media reports on 2 April 2020 that Cabinet Spokesperson Bandula Gunawardena has stated that the government will adhere to WHO Guidelines in disposing the bodies of those who have died as a result of COVID- 19, as well as the appointment of an expert committee to decide on appropriate and practices to deal with the bodies of those who die due to COVOD-19. 

When we face such a grave public health crisis there is a need to ensure that the mental health of our population is also given due attention. In this regard, the disposal of bodies of persons who died during the pandemic requires particular attention. In the Muslim faith it is required that the dead be buried and cremation is not permitted. The possibility of compulsory cremation therefore is a matter of great distress to practicing Muslims. In these times of distress and uncertainty this is an added stressor that may adversely impact the mental health of large numbers in the population. 

At present, the religious identity of certain victims has been highlighted due to which, in both mainstream and social media, we have seen outpourings of vitriol, and hate speech against Muslims for their actions or inactions in not preventing or causing the spread of COVID-19. In this context, it is important that the decisions made regarding burial are not perceived as punitive measures against such perceived irresponsibility by infected persons. We must also recognize that there is widespread anti Muslim sentiment prevailing in Sri Lanka and has been for the past several years. The negative stereotypes about Muslims were exacerbated by the terror attacks on Easter Sunday in 2019 carried out by an ISIS inspired group of Muslims. It is important to ensure that decisions regarding matters of public health do not result in the persecution or marginalization of the Muslim population. Within such a context, we note with concern that the revised MOH Guidelines dated 31 March 2020 and the aforementioned MOH Circular disregard Muslim religious sensibilities and requirements, and provide no succor to the already distressed. 

In this regard, we urge you to consider the WHO Interim Guidance dated 24 March 2020 on Infection Prevention and Control for the Safe Management of a Dead Body in the Context of COVID-19. The Guidance states that ‘cadavers do not transmit disease’ and that ‘It is a common myth that persons who have died of a communicable disease should be cremated, but this is not true. Cremation is a matter of cultural choice and available resources’. The Guidance further advises the authorities to ‘manage each situation on a case-by-case basis, balancing the rights of the family, the need to investigate the cause of death, and the risks of exposure to infection’. Where disposal is concerned, the Guidance says that ‘People who have died from COVID-19 can be buried or cremated’. We recognize that the option of burial might not be available in certain instances due to legitimate public health requirements such as the depth of graves. To address these concerns, the state could identify suitable burial grounds that meet WHO standards in all districts and request the particular community religious authorities to prepare themselves to adhere to those standards. 

In seeking to ensure the well-being of all Sri Lankans at this difficult time, we highlight the need to also ensure dignity in death. In addition to the issue of Muslim and perhaps Christian burials, we have witnessed that the media is permitted to cover the cremation of those who died from COVID-19 without any consideration of the wishes of the bereaved families. While preserving the health of our population must be paramount, it must not be at the cost of our common humanity and the dignity of our dead. WHO guidelines state that, ‘The dignity of the dead, their cultural and religious traditions, and their families should be respected and protected throughout’. 

Moreover, to encourage persons to report possible exposure and seek medical advice and help, we highlight the need to not stigmatize patients or criminalize them in any way, which will only lead to persons hiding their symptoms and further infecting others. It is also important to ensure there is public information in all three languages regarding the behavior required under different circumstances as well as regarding the available medical care. The availability of such information will reassure the general population that being infected with COVID-19 is not a death sentence. 

We therefore urge you to reconsider the MOH Circular of 1st April 2020 and amendments dated 31 March 2020 to the MOH Provisional Clinical Practice Guidelines, and instead follow WHO Guidance on the disposal of bodies. We also call upon your Excellency to address the country’s greatly distressed Muslims and put to rest their fears that they are somehow being punished, or that the country has little respect for their concerns. 

THE LIST OF SIGNATORIES 

  1. Dr. Asha Abeysekere 
  2. Hilmy Ahamed 
  3. Silma Ahamed 
  4. Azhar Ahamed 
  5. Nihal Ahamed 
  6. Prof. Arjuna Aluwihare
  7. K. Aingkaran, Attorney-at-law
  8. Dr. Harini Amarasuriya, Open University Of Sri Lanka
  9. S.M. Aneefa
  10. N. Abdul
  11. Faaiz, Ameer , Attorney-at-law
  12. Prof. Ameer Ali
  13. Swathika Arulingam,  Attorney at law
  14. Niranjala Arulanathy
  15. Subajini Kisho Anton, Attorney at law
  16. M.M. Baheej, Attorney-at-law
  17. Capt. A.G.A. Barrie, SLE, P.Eng.
  18. Jiffriya Barrie 
  19. Faahima Cadar
  20. Angelica Chandrasekeran
  21. Anushya Coomaraswamy
  22. Radhika Coomaraswamy
  23. C.  Colombage
  24. Danesh Cassie Chetty 
  25. Shalomi Daniel
  26. Amalini De Sayrah
  27. Bishop Duleep de Chickera
  28. Geetha de Chickera
  29. Marisa De Silva
  30. Shaanea Mendis de Silva, Artist
  31. Dinesh Dogangoda, Attorney-at-law
  32. Prabu Deepan
  33. K.M.Deen, All Ceylon YMMA Conference
  34. Dinushika Dissanayake
  35. Asma Edris
  36. S.C.C. Elankovan
  37. Sarala Emmauel
  38. Rev. Sister Nicola Emmanuel.
  39. Mohamed Faslan, University of Colombo
  40. Rashika Fazali
  41. Ilma Fareez
  42. Latheef Farook, Journalist
  43. Rizvi Farouk
  44. Khalid Farouk
  45. Ian Ferdinands
  46. Dr. Kaushalya Fernando 
  47. Dr. Nimalka Fernando, Attorney-at-law
  48. Ruki Fernando
  49. Tamara Fernando 
  50. Rev. Reid Shelton Fernando,  Retired Priest, Colombo
  51. Angela Forman
  52. Bhavani Fonseka
  53. Manel Fonseka
  54. Mushtaq Fuad
  55. Aneesa Firthous
  56. C. Ranitha Gnanarajah Attorney -at law
  57. Shyamala Gomez
  58. Dr. Mario Gomez
  59. Gehan Gunetilleke 
  60. Prof. Camena Guneratna
  61. Harsha Gunasena
  62. Anberiya Hanifa, Muslim Women’s Research and Action Forum
  63. Dr. Farzana Haniffa, University Of Colombo
  64. Sa’diya Hassen
  65. Adel Hashim 
  66. Prof. Rajan Hoole 
  67. Prof. S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole
  68. Prof. Qadri Ismail
  69. Zumaiya Ifthikar
  70. Fathima Nabeela Iqbal
  71. Ashraff Jainudeen
  72. U.L. Jaufer, Attorney-at-law
  73. Dr. Sivagnanam Jeyasankar
  74. Sr. Victorine James, Holy Cross School of health Sciences Jaffna
  75. Dr. Ahilan Kadirgamar, University Of Jaffna
  76. Niyanthini Kadirgamar
  77. Sakuntala Kadirgamar
  78. Dr. Ramya Kumar
  79. Chulani Kodikara
  80. Mohamed Kubais 
  81. Mahaluxmy Kurushanthan 
  82. Annie Kurian
  83. Jayanthi Kuru-Utumpala
  84. Shaheera Lafeer
  85. Jeremy Liyanage, Bridging Lanka Ltd.
  86. Ismath Majeed. 
  87. Jensila Majeed
  88. Justice. Dr. Saleem Marsoof
  89. Izath Manal
  90. Mohamed Mahuruf
  91. M. Meera Saibu
  92. Dr. Farah Mihlar 
  93. Juwairia Mohideen
  94. Buhari Mohamed
  95. Nawaz Mohamed, Former Working Director, SLRC
  96. F. Muflik
  97. F. Z. Nasrullah
  98. Nagulan Nesiah
  99. Devanesan Nesiah, Retired Secretary, Ministry of Transport, Environment and Women’s Affairs
  100. 100.Prof. Vasuki Nesiah, New York University
  101. M.N.M. Nowras
  102. Prof. Arjuna Parakrama, University Of Peradeniya
  103. Nicola Perera, University Of Colombo.
  104. Dylan Perera
  105. Anna Peter
  106. Dr. Jehan Perera, National Peace Council 
  107. Srinath Perera, Attorney-at-aw, United Socialist Party
  108. Rev. Dr. Jayasiri Peiris, Church of Ceylon
  109. Fathima Rameeza
  110. Nalini Ratnaraja
  111. K.S. Ratnavel, Attorney-at-law
  112. Dr. Ramola Rasool, University Of Kelaniya
  113. Prof. Harshana Rambukwella, Open University Of Sri Lanka 
  114. A.R.A. Ramees
  115. Y.R. Ranjan
  116. Sheila Richards
  117. Ahamed Rislan
  118. Yasmin Raji
  119. R. Rasmin
  120. Peter Rezel – Chartered Accountant
  121. Amna Rifky
  122. Thyagi Ruwanpathirana
  123. Afrah Sidiqi
  124. Vanie Simon
  125. Prof. Sivamohan Sumathy, University Of Peradeniya
  126. Prof. Gameela Samarasinghe, University Of Colombo. 
  127. Sampath Samarakoon
  128. Rev. Selvanathan Selvan
  129. M.N Shamla
  130. Shaheed Sangani
  131. Ambika Satkunanathan 
  132. S.Sivathasan
  133. Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu 
  134. Dr. Seyed Sheriffdeen
  135. Sharmila Seyyid, Social Worker
  136. Revd. S .D .P. Selvan
  137. N.M. Saroor
  138. Joanne Senn
  139. Shreen Abdul Saroor 
  140. Krishanthi Tharmaraj
  141. Mahendran Thiruvarangan, Lecturer (Probationary), University of Jaffna
  142. Dr. Minna Thaheer,  Senior Researcher, Centre for Poverty Analysis
  143. Azkha Thariqshad
  144. Fathima Nusra Thameem
  145. Mathuri Thamilmaran – Attorney at Law
  146. Visakha Tillekeratne, Chief Commissioner, Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association
  147. Hafsa Uvais.
  148. Mass Usuf, Attorney-at-law
  149. S. Vinothan
  150. Kamala Vasuki 
  151. Emil van der Poorten
  152. Stella Victor
  153. Piyumi Wattuhewa
  154. Shamara Wettimuny 
  155. Lal Wijenayake, Attorney-at-law
  156. M. Wahid
  157. Varuni Weerasinghe
  158. Annouchka Wijesinghe
  159. Upul Kumara Wickramasinghe – Durham University
  160. Riza Yahiya, Architect
  161. Deshamanya Godfrey Yogarajah
  162. Fr. V. Yogeswaran
  163. S.A.C.M. Zuhyle

Organisations:

  1. Sisterhood Initiatives
  2. National Peace Council
  3. Northern Muslim Civil Society
  4. INFORM Human Rights Documentation Centre
  5. Rural Development Foundation
  6. International Institute for Research, Information and Action (IIRIA)
  7. Mannar Women’s Development Center 
  8. Women’s Action Network 
  9. Muslim Women Development Trust
  10. International Centre for Ethnic Studies (ICES)
  11. Centre for Policy Alternative
  12. Human Elevation Organization  
  13. Islamic Women’s Association for Research and Empowerment 
  14. Centre for Justice and Change, Trincomalee
  15. Centre for Human Rights and Development
  16. Eastern Social Development  Foundation
  17. Law and Human Rights Center, Jaffna. 
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Latest comments

  • 17
    11

    WHO Guidance is not to be followed but to be used to formulate your own guidelines. You need to understand the difference.
    WHO can not formulate only single guideline for the entire world. It is practically impossible, inaccurate, and illogical and will create chaos within nations and within communities. Let the Health authorities of respective countries decide on what should be done to the dead in order to save the living!
    Religious followers should pray to their respective Almighty Gods (or whoever that they believe to possess the supreme power) to punish those who don’t allow them to bury/cremate the dead bodies of their loved ones. WHO is no the Almighty God (or vice versa) and it has no power to punish any country (big or small) even if a country commits gross human rights violations; please understand this difference.
    Had RW+MS duo been in power, this exception could have been probably granted (some may think) but remember, there could have been more burials too!

    • 0
      0

      We can compare the struggle of man with the epidemic at different epochs of history and what we are experiencing today. How do these epidemics spread when people die of epidemics in the pre-modern era? Humans had no idea how to challenge them. Instead, they blamed the plague, blamed God on the rage, or believed it was a hoax. What they did in this situation was to lead the Lord in prayer to God. This is due to the widespread spread of disease-causing germs. In the 14th century, the Black Death killed about a quarter of the population of Europe and Asia. But man couldn’t find the cause. In the 16th century, smallpox and other epidemics killed about 90 percent of American civilizations, such as the Aztecs and the Incas. But nobody knew. Why do so many people die from these epidemics? Today you are drowsy but you are slow to accept. so the people’s information is mixed up to someextent going by their life styles. Those who go more after astrology and various other myths would not easily realize it. they are in between their beliefs and the information being provided by the media. Developed world, how they feed their people with information through main stream media is highly connected with CODE of ethics while developing world have mixed it up with their commercial gains. Latter has developed to cancer like situations as of today, so that the viewers become easily misled. Today, the most that make aware them through TV news. But srilanken TV news have become a nightmare sofar. Just biased news become their headlines so that the easy targets are forced to mislead. This according to the analysis of the expert a result of a symbiosis between vicious political underhand and the media owner.

    • 3
      8

      The THERAWADA RACISTS (GOTA GOVT., ) is so much experienced in RAPING, KILLING, Taking pictures of Boobs & Vaginas of stripped naked dead bodies, Burning the dead and masturbating seeing them is nothing new. The world knows as to what type of a monster the NATO/Israeli allies have created in INDIA & SRI LANKA to fight Islam. The silly side of the story is, that the LION BRAVERY (Stray Dogs masqueraded as LIONS) that is shown in the 100% local racist media owned by the (GOVIGAMA MAFIA gangsters) is SHAMELESSLY needs MUSLIM money and the PETROLEUM to run the show, The minute the MUSLIMS begins to practice the SAME Rajapakse brand SINHALA BOW-DDA racism, the bastardy will lose everything by way of embargo. When that happens the Brave Lions will shed their Lion clothing and fall on their knees for clemency. Money will talk much better than the DOGGY-LION combination barks. All the world know who the Sinhala politicians (UNP, SLFP, SLPP, MEP, JHU, JVP etc) are. All of them play the same RACIST Islamophobia politics, sometimes openly and many times hidden. Thank You Chatura Alwis for exposing the entire Sinhala racist mafia who participated in the debate and some played open racism and others played being silent by not defending the rights of the Muslim dead bodies. Politics on dead bodies played by the low-life Sinhala Racist bastards????

    • 4
      5

      WHERE are the GODS? Did anyone saw the GODS? Where is HEAVEN? Did anyone saw HEAVEN? All bullshit. Then why GODS can not stop this CORONA VIRUS? Whole world now knows there are no GODS in this world. Only GODS are DOCTORS, Nurses, Medical Staff, Scientist, and Medicines.

  • 10
    13

    If these people who signed the petition can approve life insurence for the lives of those getting killed in the near future (for those carrying the body to the burial ground) and after some decades or millennia because excavating a burial ground made virus to come and start ,living causing a humongous epidemic in Sri Lanka. Because ancient virus had been found. It says, those excavated EGYPTIAN MUMMIES DIES SUDDENLY. IT MAY BE BECAUSE OF UNKNOWN VIRUSES THAT WERE HIDING IN THOSE BURIAL CHAMBERS.
    How many doctors who signed here are medical practitioners ? OR JUST ONES WHO HAVE ANCIENT (more than 50 years) PhDs ?.

    • 2
      3

      It appears that this controversy of burial or cremation is going too far. Burial fanatics are saying that burning a dead body amounts to mutilation and when you burn the air will get polluted, while cremation pragmatists are saying that body has to be burnt to kill the virus in the body as otherwise it can multiply in the grave and spread disease. So we have to satisfy burners that virus will be killed and to satisfy buryers that there will be no mutilation of the body. The compromise solution is to boil the dead body in water heated to over 300 degrees centigrade which will cook the body and not roast it which will kill the virus and at the same time does not cause structural change, and once done to bury the body under the guidelines of WHO. I am sure that the moderate burner faction will agree to it and if the extreme buryer faction does not, tell them off.

    • 3
      3

      JD
      Try not to be clever,displaying your ignorance.

  • 12
    1

    From what I gather from Internet the Corona can last from 24 hours upto 74 hours on different types of surfaces. How long does it last on the outside skin of dead body?
    If it dies immediately as these petitioners and supporting commenters imply the body can be handed over to the relatives immediately upon the death to do the final rituals as they wish.
    The best solution is to handover the the body to a representative of these organisations immediately after death who can arrange for safe transport and burial in a suitable grave of recommended depth. Expensive , disposable safety gear will not be needed for the representative’s team. Non Muslim health workers should not be exposed in the process to avoid any controversy.

    Soma

    • 1
      2

      somass

      “How long does it last on the outside skin of dead body?”

      This may delay your planned pogrom against the non-Sinhala/Buddist people.
      Why don’t you toss all dead bodies either into Kalyani River or dump them in Bay of Bengal as the Ranavirus chose this kind of burial between 1987/91 and at the tail end of the war?

      Take care.

  • 20
    10

    In islamic nations like saudi arabia, infidels are reminded very clearly that they are in a muslim country. And they are not allowed to flaunt their religion or they will be jailed, executed or deported if they do so.
    But in the so called infidel nations, everybody has to bend over backwards to appease muslims and their sensitivities.

    • 4
      2

      So are you suggesting everyone should do the same because a backward country like Saudi does that? We are not Saudi Arabia, and being sensitive to minorities, is the right and democratic thing to do.
      We do not want to be another racist India.

  • 12
    9

    Thirty three muslims attended a Wa habi association summit in India and now have found some are to be covid-19 positive. what should these people say. Let them go wild and allow them to infect every body.

    • 0
      1

      The real joke here is, why the indian govt allowed them for the summit? Were they stupids? Understand ththere’s nothing to do with religion or individuals. No one know whether I’m carrying the virus or not. There are people who got the COVID 19 even after the quarantine period. So that summit has nothing to do with the virus. Its the fault of the government

  • 12
    11

    What an impressive List of the Elite , Anglican , Vellala and the Wahabi elements in Colombo..
    It definitely looks like the Cream of the Crop.

    They have all bonded together to reinforce Mr Rauf Hakeem’s demand that his Clansmen should have the right to take the COVID-19 infected Muslim corpses to bury in their own Patches.

    The problem is none of those in this Illustrious List get their beloved buried or cremated in any other place than the Colombo General Cemetery in Kanatte , where they must have already reserved their Plots.
    Or have their Family Plots.

    The rest of them who live in the West may also have already bought their Plots there because the real estate value in Cemeteries are growing faster that the Houses and Apartments.

    The problem with those Muslim Burial Plots is, those are mainly in poor neighborhoods where the great majority are non Muslim poor people.

    I don’t know wheret this WHO Boss gets his info from.

    Even in NYC the CoVID-19 Corpses are put in Body Bags and kept in Refrigerated Trucks until the Municipality People dressed like Astronauts come and take them to be cremated.

    May be Mr Hakeem and his Clan have that sort of protective gear for them against the COVID-19 ..

    But what about the poor souls who live around those Muslim Houses and the Muslim Burial Plots?.

    Even this allegation that Sinhala Buddhists going after the Muslim brothers and Sisters for a long time is a bit hard to believe.

    Mr Hakeem, Mr Bathudeen were heavy weight Ministers in the Rajapakasa Government for a decade, until they jumped ship in the last Election to keep their Minister Jobs intact.

    And in fact they did very well with one of the Ministers Family having LKR One Billion in one bank .

    • 3
      0

      They are not cremating all the bodies in NY that’s a misleading statement and this is the problem with individuals just making up stories to justify there point and that is a sad state of affair as there is no Credibility in comments like this please do not everything what anyone writes on the WEB please verify the information
      I live in NY and there are many articles and news reports on this please take your time read them.
      Thank you for time

    • 0
      0

      if you don’t know about other countries don’t lecture
      see your self what they are doing in usa
      https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/04/02/funerals-during-coronavirus-pandemic-no-hugs-big-gatherings/5102855002/

  • 12
    7

    Sri Lanka is a multi cultural country. When there is a funeral Buddhists, Muslims , Catholics and Hindus have different ways of pay the final respect to the dead. But the current situation is different. This is a situation the whole have not seen for long time and it is out of control. Lucky it is not very bad at the moment. But it looks like it is going to get worse because of the carelessness of the people. If it get worse it is not possible to do the traditional ways of paying the final respects and burial. The only and quickest way will be the cremation. Save the who are alive first.

  • 13
    13

    Please note that Sri Lankan government has decided to cremate its COVIT-19 infected dead bodies.(PERIOD).
    If anyone wants differently, he can take the body and leave the shores of Sri Lanka. Remember, this is not Sirisena/Ranil government.

    • 2
      2

      Bastard, De ALwis@
      .
      You could rather say – WHO has informed any govt to respect burials the manner no viruses would remainfurther…. that is why we as a nation is entitled to do so.
      :
      Sirisena RANIL govt may have done some mistakes, but they were good at holding it to laws and investigations. That is why your ballige puthas have failed to ruin you guys today. Else, they would have gone tohold the elections over your dead bodies, leaving the innocient be easily infected.
      If OPPOSITION did not warn the bastard duo, nothign would work to this level with QUARANTINING… like or not, believe or not, bastards, let some INFECTED be mingled with the innocient people without their lknowledge.
      Get your facts right you idiot !

    • 3
      1

      Jayantha de Alwis / April 6, 2020 @

      Thuggery and hurt cant help achieving a lot.

      By 2015, bugger DUO proved it to you and me. That was settled by MODAYA Sirisena respecting Mr RW the decent man.. but later, he was raped by bugger DUO with your support. You guys would wash their backsides, but we are happy at least over 6 mio of voters would not never allow bastards to ruin the nation.
      :
      Wait and see, COVID 19 CRISIS will teach them a lession forever. Either GOTA and MARA get killed, leaving the nation inpeace, or nature will punish them. Latter will be a reality .. soon or some what later.

    • 3
      4

      Tough guy eh? What if all those Arab nations told the Sri Lankans who are non Muslims to leave their shores, and stopped poor Sri Lankans from earning their living there? The Sri Lankan government would lose their no. 1 revenue, and this country will be in bigger trouble.
      Think twice before you show your arrogance.

    • 3
      0

      Jayantha de Alwis,

      There is a hypothesis floating around that postulates , by cremating , the dust particles carry the live virus, protected by the ash, floats in the air to be breathed and inhaled, by the people in the vicinity, and they will get the Corona virus. Does the Government have evidence, independent evidence, that this is not the case? Did the virus spread in Italy and China that way, resides the other methods?

      Is cremation safer than burial, on evidence-based data? If so, present the data.

      The molecular genetics data of the Land of Native Veddah Aethho, show that all except Native Vedda Aethho are Patadeshis, Paras, strangers.

      The monks did the Pirith to stop the virus. Is there any data that the pirith has an effect? On the contrary, the number of cases kept going up. Do, based on evidence, the monk purith first not work on the Corona virus.

  • 2
    1

    I read in another site about an incident that took place in 1990 causing an outbreak of Cholera epidemic. A dead body infected with Cholera brought from India had been washed in Hamilton Canal. This has spread Cholera among the people who use water in that canal. Is there any truth in this story?

  • 5
    0

    The comments so far somehow does not seem to be a rational and sympathetic consideration of the issues that are of concern to another human being who for most of us is a friend, colleague, neighbour, business/professional associate etc.

    If such recognition is given, then there would be a rational discussion of the merits of the case towards resolving the issues to everybody’s satisfaction and acceptance.

    Instead what we see is a venomous expression of rejection which to some extent confirms the feeling that decisions are being taken more on emotions rather than on fundamental issues.

  • 0
    0

    single clear known fact- covid19 die at high temperatures. . short/long term effects of this hitherto unknown virus following burial is totally unknown. This is no time for experiments to find out if burial is safe. clearly cremation is the 100% safe option and should be done without delay. case closed. letters signatories try to bring in easter sunday incident, ethnicity,/religious hatred etc to the equation to win sympathy/leverage. Those are not relevant ,decision must base on medical/science fact not religion. I agree that media should be kept away from funeral sites except for valid reasons and ethnicity or religion of patients or deceased should not be published.

  • 3
    3

    The Coronavirus was discovered less than six months ago.So there is no human being or organisation that knows all about this novel virus.In fact scientists have no consensus on issues such as how the virus spreads, how long it can remain viable outside the human host on different surfaces and whether masks should be worn and so on .When the WHO guidelines say that cadavers do not spread the virus, it is easy to understand, but it is the process by which the cadaver is disposed that people have issues with. When the WHO guidelines say that bodies of those who succumb to the Coronavirus should be cremated is a myth, then one assumes that the WHO is suggesting that burial is safe. Shouldn’t this statement be qualified? It should read, “At the present time, it appears that burial of individuals who have succumbed to the Coronavirus is a safe practice”.
    Can the WHO or any of the one hundred and sixty odd signatories to this letter be certain that there will be no adverse effects at a future date from burial of these bodies?No they cannot.
    Just because burial is allowed in 180 odd countries does not mean that we should follow suit.These countries could well realise their folly at a future date.
    One does not have to be a rocket scientist to say that cremation as soon as possible is the SAFEST way at the present time to dispose of bodies that have succumbed to the virus to minimise possible transmission after death.
    It is not as though our Govt. is forcing all those who die be cremated hereafter.This is only for a limited period until more facts are known about the virus.
    We urge the Government not to change its stance on this issue.

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      “Can the WHO or any of the one hundred and sixty odd signatories to this letter be certain that there will be no adverse effects at a future date from burial of these bodies?No they cannot.”
      BS!
      You call yourself a doctor. If you are a medical doctor, have you any idea of how viruses survive?

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    Now little does the disposal of the dead matter anymore.
    ===/==========/===/=======
    What is scary is hate ,racism , blind faith ritualism and loads of disgustingly stupid conspiracy theories, all of it are diverting the people from being educated about this dangerous invisible killer.

    I will end my comment here and would be grateful if The CT Editor will kindly consider publishing the link of the article I am sharing below and hopefully all sincere members from all communities will take time and read it and educate the people that we are being attacked by an invisible killer who can not be stopped by racism ,,religous rituals ,or sacrifing a scapegoat.

    Instead people must be educated about the reality.

    Honestly if the world does not unite and follow the Medical experts advice , we can loose millions every 2 to three weeks
    That is reality .

    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://amp.smh.com.au/national/the-perfect-virus-two-gene-tweaks-that-turned-covid-19-into-a-killer-20200327-p54elo.html&ved=2ahUKEwjKve-pltToAhUN9XMBHfXgAHMQFjAAegQIARAB&usg=AOvVaw32rWKOU_9Hvw7YM6t2eD3v&ampcf=1

    https://www.theage.com.au/national/the-perfect-virus-two-gene-tweaks-that-turned-covid-19-into-a-killer-20200327-p54elo.html

    Rgds
    Fahim.Knight

  • 1
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    Curfew and forced quarantine was good as testing waters for short term;but not long term
    What is need is make social distancing a emergency regulation, followed by random testing , using more sophisticated testing kits, which will be available within next few months is my firm.belief and then follow by quarantine.
    Please do not live in belief that anyone is going to come up with a cure in few weeks or months and be careful of Myths of indigenous meds , magical powers , Spritual healing etc and various medias promoting all sort of fake tablets.
    Please understand there are no medicines for this or any virus .
    It’s our own immune system ( Our Army within us which need to eliminate the enemy Corvid 19).
    So we need to find patients who have recovered who.athete immuned to Corvid 19, experts then have to do lot of research on them and once through , they need to take their serum to make the vaccines to cure the sick and immune those who are at risk
    Please do not buy into Trump’s ))bunch of myth promoters , like that Indian PHD running for Senate on republican ticket
    This Vaccine is going to take anytime between 18 months to 2 years .yes we have hope and it will be done.
    This Virus is not going to vanish just because you lockdown nations, they will.be back again .
    So it’s a matter of everyone following basic practice that need to become a part of our daily life and be decipline.
    And always maintain social distance, carry tissues or hanky , wear a mask all time when outside , carry hand sanitizers , wash your hands often , no gathering in crowds, no.matter even if its religous and even if it means angering some to accuse you of
    sacrilegious, the answer is no gathering no congregations period.

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    can anyone name a country except sri lanka doing this way,hate and ignorance play a bigger part here.

    • 1
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      The real issue here is the ground water level in sri lanka and most people still use well water. This is a rarest of rare country blessed with easy access to ground water
      The second issu is sri lanka is of very high population density. When you bury a corona body it literally somebodies backyard.
      Keep all religions aside for few months.

      • 1
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        Lasitha
        How does the IDH and other hospitals dispose of waste water, tissues, urine, faeces, laundry water and also hand wash from their Corono wards? Are these water kept carefully apart and disposed? How is it disposed? Won’t Corono be spread through this water?

        How would this compare with a decomposing body 6 ft. under the ground?

        • 0
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          In all hospital biohazard clinical waste are incinerated and in epidemiological settings waste water is chemically treated. Tx for interest. Yes sewerage can cotain corona virus but mercifully 5he virus dose is very low when diluted in chemicals and water

  • 1
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    We need to find away to protect our Country’s economy , we can not afford to let it detioriate anymore , the dollar has slided to 199.00 .
    I hope The Entire parliament members and professionals will.come up with an effective solution.
    Quote:
    DR.Sara Kayat ,
    Practicing at NHS UK

    A vaccine will take 18 months to 2 years .
    End qte.
    We need an alternative to the Curfew asap and find away to let the economy move at a slow phase and monitored .
    We must protect our economy .
    We have no large reserves.
    We must face reality .
    We can not give handouts.

    We need to let trustworthy NGOS to operate and help us with some funding to help the poor .

  • 1
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    Lions international and Rotary need to step in and The government need to consider giving them all the cooperation they can .
    These two Organization can help the poor in a great way.
    And take alot of burden off the government

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    It appears that almost every controversy in Sri Lanka is now somehow connected to Muslims and has a Muslim element in it. That is not a good trend. There are far more important issues such as poverty of day workers who lost their jobs, the elderly and sick unable to leave their homes, the children crying for milk that is not available, emergency workers being exposed to the deadly virus, congestion in acute care or intensive care units in hospitals where asthmatics, cardiac arrest and stroke victims are at risk. Somehow, the Muslim drums always seem to beat loud each time. It’s time to turn this noise down and tune out.

  • 0
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    These civil society people can offer to make mausoleums at there homes and keep bodies to show their bleèding hearts. Where were they when easter bombs blasted. Hypocrites

  • 1
    2

    For god sake have common sense people. Corona is spreading rapidly amongst muslims. We have to protect these peoples lives and donig so save other communities as well. Lets give a break to All religeous fantacies for 3 months

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      Please note that 87% of the Corona suspected persons are Sinhalese.

  • 1
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    WHO guidance, that is a joke. This is the same WHO that appointed Robert Mugabe as its ambassador.

  • 0
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    ………We also call upon your Excellency to address the country’s greatly distressed Muslims and put to rest their fears that they are somehow being punished, or that the country has little respect for their concerns…….

    Do the Muslims have this concern or fear only on this cremation issue or in general on the political front since they have lost a privileged position they enjoyed earlier?
    If it is on the cremation issue it would not be difficult for the President to assure them that they are not being penalised on the basis that they are Muslims, but in the longer term of checking the spread of this virus and to play safe in the best interests of the country.
    Will this address the Muslim concerns?

    • 0
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      Come on Ralph! The majority in the country is Sinhalese.

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