26 September, 2020

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Rights Group Wants Sri Lanka To Investigate Paedophile Somaratana’s Orphanage

By Uvindu Kurukulasuriya –

Somarathana

Convicted pedophile, Chief Sanghanayaka Thera of Great Britain and chief incumbent of the Thames Buddhist Vihara Pahalagama Sri Somaratana continues to run an orphanage for under age children in Gampaha. Pahalagama Somaratana, was convicted at Isleworth Crown Court in London on Tuesday,  on four counts of indecent assault on a female under 10 years between January 1, 1977 and December 31, 1978.
Somarathana runs an orphanage called Pahalagama Orphanage in Gampaha. According to “THE GAZETTE OF THE DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF SRI LANKA -Part II of May 07, 2010, the Pahalagama Sri Somarathana Nayaka Thero Foundation”, a private Bill presented in Parliament by Vijitha Herath, MP for the Gampaha District, Somaratana can establish and maintain institutions for educational and social service activities such as children’s’ homes, elders’ homes, hostels and other social service institutions.
“We would like to unequivocally request the Government of Sri Lanka’s institutions for Child Protection which are the Ministry for Child Development and Women’s Affairs, the National Child Protection Authority and Department of Probation to look into the orphanage run by Ven. Pahalagama Somaratne. A monk convicted of sexual violence cannot be responsible or trusted with tender young lives. This orphanage ideally should be brought under state control or be handed over to a respected and credible organization to run. In the alternative, it can be closed up and the children transferred to other orphanages. The state cannot abdicate its responsibility by the children of this country,” the head of Colombo-based “Justice for Victims” Visakha Tillekaratne said,
After visiting the Pahalagma Orphanage Visaka Tillekaratne said, “they look extremely vulnerable with not much happiness on their faces”.
“Children living in orphanages or homes are more prone to child abuse because of several reasons,” a former Chairman of the National Child Protection Authority Prof. Harendra de Silva said.  “They are powerless and have no parents or relations: to whom can they complain? Only to the authorities in the home who are likely to be the perpetrators or linked to the abusers through monetary or power gain. Some are dependent on the persons for employment and are likely to be silent – ‘passive perpetrators’”, Prof. Silva pointed out. However, Child Development and Women’s Welfare Minister Tissa Karaliyedda said that he was not aware of the conviction of Ven. Somaratana Thero and that he would have to look into the legal aspect of him running an orphanage if found guilty by the courts.
He said that there were other monks who operated orphanages in the country and was therefore unable to identify the Pahalagama Orphanage by name.
Karaliyedda said that he would now look into the matter.

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Latest comments

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    Please get your facts correct. I have been to this orphanage and the children are extremely well looked after. A credit to Sri Lanka. Visaka Tillekaratne were you wearing glasses when you visited this orphanage. May be you your self needs to be investigated.

    Rev Somarana Nakake thero was set up by a group of Trash Sri Lankans, who have no respect for their mother land and Trash papers like you, publish this rubbish. Get a life and remove all this Incorrect journalism.

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      SUJAN WHEN ARE U TAKING UP THE ROBES??????

      By the way please call him Mr Somaratna dont disgrace budhists

      He is a VP PRISONER IN WORMWOOD SCRUBS SPECIAL UNIT FOR PIDOS, WANT TO JOIN HIM ??????

      SUJAN GET ACLIFE DONT TALK LIKE A STUPID ASS

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      VISITINg y NOT ALOWED U CAN MEET HIM AFTER A FEW YEARS BACK IM SL WHEN HE WILL BE DIPORTED FROM UK STRAIGHT FROM PRISON WITH WHAT HE WAS WEARING AT THE TIME OF CONVICTION.I THINK HE WILL NEED A LIFT FROM KATUNAYAKE AIRPORT, wonder if you will be free to pick him up.

      Pleae take some clothes so that he wont disgrace the robes. I AM SURE AFTER ABOUT 11YEARS HE WILL NEED A LIFT IN YOUR VW BEETLE.

  • 0
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    sujan, facts of what happened in UK leading to conviction of the monk are given elsewhere by Dushy Ranetunge.
    Please read it.

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    where is [Edited out] the somarathnas girl friend. some says she is in Sri Lanka.this monk is waiting to grab her money .

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    Das – I actually know the facts. Rev Somaranata Nayake Thero was only charged on four accounts of indecent assault. There was no evidence at all, just the words of a person and jury. Why wait 37 years for this. Why didn’t the parents say some thing at that time. This should have been dealt with 37 years ago, Responsible parents would have dealt with this immediately. We as Sinhala Buddhist, Sri Lankan’s should be together, have you ever heard of Christians/Muslims & Tamils send out e-mails and critiising their religious leaders.NO THEY DO NOT. Time will prove that Rev Somaranata Nayake Thero is innocent.An injustice has been done by our own Sinhala people. People who contribute to this and run down Sri Lanka/Buddhism and some Sinhala people are traitors, and one should be a shamed of your self. Most people who comment on this issue hide under incorrect or false names, Why !!!! I do Not.

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      Let’s go and cover up a guilty person, all because he is from our religion. Guarding that kind of people is our duty, right???

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        I LAUGHED NON STOP.OFCOURSE IT’S SOMEONE’S DUTY TO SPREAD AND GUARD THE EVIL IN THE NAME OF RELIGION. GET LOST SUJAN. A JOKER.

        • 0
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          thanks pitakotte

          This guy sujan visits SUPER BRIGHT HOTEL in gampaha
          Ans a shair holder check him out he is a pido too

    • 0
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      SUJAN:
      YOU ARE GOING FULL SPEED TO COVER UP THIS
      ROBE CLAD PaedophilAC Somaratana.
      PLS DONT CALL HIM REV THERO.
      DO NOT GIVE BAD NAME TO WE BUDDHISTS AND OTHER SRI LANKANS.
      IT IS SHAME OF YOU TO DRAG BUDDHISTS, CHRISTIANS, TAMILS, MUSLIMS, IN TO THIS. THIS SOMARATRHNA HAD DONE NOTHING TO BUDDHISM.
      HE HAD BROUGHT DISGRACE TO OUR BUDDHISTS AND OUR COUNTRY.
      HE SHOULD BE GET DISROBED
      AFTER ALL, YOU ARE NOT A BUDDHIST, ARE YOU A PAEDOPHILEAC???????????.

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      you dont have a daughter, do you? because if you did, you would not be speaking the way you are. parents speak out 30 years ago? when their children were barely old enough to understand what had happened? damage their entire futures by acknowledging the fact that they were ‘damaged goods’ so to speak? sujan my friend, it is best if you just keep quiet without exposing your religiously-biased stupidity.

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      I think sujan is a pedo too talking rubish.remember he was prosecuted in the uk. Not srilanka

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    Sujan

    Your place in the Sri Lankan diaspora is with the 24 witnesses who gave character certificates to this erring priest,There are many rogues in Priests clothing today and Somaratne is no exception.It is also shameful that the Dayaka Saba of the Thames Vihara Temple had in its programme the administration of nine precepts and Punayadumodana by this Somaratne Thero in its Wesak Programme for this year.But the administration of British Justice had him behind bars instead.It is time that the Dayaka Sabha of the Temple built in the name of Lord Buddha involve themselves in a cleansing programme and not seek prominence by being photographed with the High Commissioner and visiting Sri Lankan Dignitories

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      WELL SAID RATNAMALIE. ALL THESE ATTENTION SEEKERS SOON WILL BE DOOMED IN THE NAME OF K A R M A. CRYING AND WORSHIPPING A PEDOPHILE IS A SIN. WHEN WILL THEY LEARN?

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      WELL SAID RATNAMALI YOU ARE A REAL GEM OF SL

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    SOme so called supporters of a pedophile must be themselves one. A registerd pedo is always a pedo. Would these ignorant supporters will ever learn their mistake.Or they too covering up their sins unashamedly. Realising and addressing the severity of this crime is more noble than covering up this kind of crime . the bad karma will follow them to their next birth for supporting a pedophile. Do they know that ? They will never am sure. Those who cried unashamedly in support of this pedophile have no conscience . they should be dis regarded among this community for certain .

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    This Man has two INNs called “HAPPY BRIGHT” Makewita Gampaha- Ja Ela Rd. and another one at Bandarawatta Gampaha.Young Couples and Some men come with prostitudes to have sex to these places.

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      Saadhu….Saadhu…….Saadhu
      May all beings be happy – spiritually and sexually – at least inside INNs.

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    this is a conspiracy to insult buddhisam from other religions.

    • 0
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      KUMA PLEASE DONT BE A ASS (FACTS ARE STUBBORN)

      Do u wear a robe too????????

      • 0
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        hay are you the man who hold the lamp for this incident? you know all the facts.

  • 0
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    Stop child ordination/conscription in to the Sanga.

  • 0
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    PLEASE LET IT GO
    GUILTY AS CHARGED
    JOB DONE
    ONE MORE PIDO OUT OF THE WAY

    Move on dont drag it any further dont bring more shame to SRI LANKA

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

    THANK YOU ALL

    I REMAIN
    TRUE SRI LANKAN

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      Hay True Sri Lankan it s seems to be that you have a clean and white character. God Bless you!

  • 0
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    True sri lankan – You are not a True Sri Lankan- You are a traitor and a absolute moron.You haven’t even got the guts to put your true name down.

    Just just the —- up.

    • 0
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      you’re just the same PSEUDO OBSERVER.Pot telling the kettle BLACK.

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    My wife and I knew Ven. Somaratana and all the other Buddhist monks at London Buddhist Vihara, Chiswisk very closely from 1977 when I was living in Chiswick so close to the temple. I am so confident Ven.Somaratana would never have done anything with this regard to this accusation. In my view it’s totally fabricated and malicious. At that time we went to the temple often and at times my wife waited at the temple for me to come from work. Giving a polo or sweets is nothing, what all priests did was anything remaining / excess from what they received from dayakas, they gave it to all of us (anyone who wanted). We were in London from 1977 to 1982 and now we live in Australia but I wish I was in London now to truly to come forward and defend Ven Somaratane, the Buddhists and Sri Lanka. The damage this false accusation (in my view and my wife’s view and I am sure shared by many others) has caused to Ven Somaratena, the Buddhists of the world and Sri Lanka as a whole is enormous. What I cannot understand is (1) Why was this allegation ever brought towards Ven. Somaratana (2) How come a lady (at that time 9 years old girl) bring this allegation after 35 years and (3) How come a jury found evidence beyond reasonable doubt of Ven.Somaratnas guit in Indecent Assault? (4) How can anyone ever imagine that a rape or indecent assault could have ever taken place at London Buddhist Vihara, Chiswick (at that time a very small building).
    If Ven.Somaratana would ever have even attempted to do anything like this he would have definitely be banished from the temple at that time. He was only a podi hamuduruwo at that time. Ven. Saddhatissa, Ven. Piyatisasa, Ven. Khemananda, etc., had so much power and influence. Further more if I ever got even a hint of this at that time I would never have even attempted to defend Ven. Somaratana. Why I am defending him is because I am so sure that he never even hinted of any such behaviour at that time (We were physically there and went to the temple at least twice a week). What he wanted at that stage was to get to know many people, develop positive realationships and learn English. All of which he has done so well for over 35 years. Yes ! he use to smile with us and joke and he treated us extremely well. He was an outgoing monk who had a lot of potential. Also originally being from Gampaha I know for sure that he did tremendously well for his Pahalagama temple. Our parents have been dayakas of Pahalagama temple for so many years. Now I am in Australia and I am sorry that I am not in London to be of assistance to Ven Somaratana at this time of need.
    Further more if anyone knows the then London Buddhist Vighara which had only 3 small rooms upstairs and one toilet kitchen and a shrine room cum hall down stairs no one could ever imagine that anyone could ever attempt to abuse a child or rape. It’s totally indecent for the lady (then a child) to have fabricated / or thought of how she (at age 9) has been at this small building all alone on Sunday. Obviously (if she ever went to the temple) she would have come to the temple with her father or mother or an adult Uncle or Aunty. Then where were these people when the said incidents happened? In London no child ever goes to Sunday school on her own. Also if it happened after Sunday school where were the other 20 or so children and their parents! Also Sundays were very busy days at the temple and in that temple on Sundays there was no privacy at all for anyone. What nonsense is to say that even an attempt of rape or child abuse could have ever happened in the Shrine room above all places. If the lady (then the girl) ..

    [Edited out]

    I would also kindly request all who write responses to be more thoughtful and avoid writing specially about things they hardly know about. If anyone can write “I was there in 1977 or 1978 and try to substantiate his / her point of view” I would like to hear your views with an open mind.
    About the conviction (which is definitely not rape) but only child abuse (I cannot believe that it ever happened !). How come the jury think that the lady was not truthful about rape but she was truthful about making her sit on the hamuduruwos lap, etc. When one can say one lie telling so many other lies is simple. That’s why as a positive thinker I believe one should not lie even once. Where is the evidence that it ever happened? Has anyone given evidence that they ever saw the hamuduruwo being ever involved in this type of an offence? How can a jury find this hamuiduruwo guilty purely on the word of one lady (then a child aged 9). In my view the jury could have easily been swayed by the lady’s breaking down (which is said to have happened in court). But the jury in my view should have found Ven.Somaratana innocent ! From what I know of law an accused is presumed innocent until found guilty beyond reasonable doubt:
    “ The presumption of innocence, sometimes referred to by the Latin expression Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat, is the principle that one is considered innocent until proven guilty. Application of this principle is a legal right of the accused in a criminal trial, recognised in many nations. The burden of proof is thus on the prosecution, which has to collect and present enough compelling evidence to convince the trier of fact, who is restrained and ordered by law to consider only actual evidence and testimony that is legally admissible, and in most cases lawfully obtained, that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If reasonable doubt remains, the accused is to be acquitted”. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Presumption_of_innocence)

    (Edited out)

    I respect anybody’s views provided they are backed up with substantial evidence !
    I sincerely hope and wish for the sake of Ven. Pahalabama Somaratna, Buddhism as a whole and Sri Lanka as nation the real truth will come out soon.

    Yours Truly,

    Kushan Dharmawardena

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      You are a great and respectable man. I honor you. any thing you have expressed here you have openly said without hiding Identity. Great man

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    You are making a vain attempt at proving the monk’s innocence.If he was innocent why has he pleaded that those crimes could have been done by another monk and that this case is one of mistaken identity? Doesn’t itself show that committing such a crime was possible in those surroundings according to the defendant himself? I do not know whether you are a relative or friend of this particular monk but you seem to defend him as if you were personally there the whole time.You are not the only person who had been in and out of that temple during the period which you specify.I also have been visiting there during the period 1975 to 1981.Anyway it is absurd crying over spilled milk or defending the culprit to protect your faith.I have my doubts whether you are a lawyer when considering how you have commented. One fact is apparent. That was a totally vain attempt to do your duty by him.

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    OBSERVER
    HAVE YOU GOT SHARES IN THE 2 inns of mr somaratne
    By the way i am suraj senanayake
    Observer what is your pedo name?? Somaratnes brothef?? The taxi driver from gampaha??????
    Shut observer u r a ass

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    Many monks are homosexual and engage in relations amongst themselves. This monk chose to pursue heterosexual targets…his crime is that it was with a child and without mutual consent. Monks are human and they wear loose robes.

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    True Srilankan – It seems that you are the pedo- never heard of [Edited out] – may be u run a brothel in Maradana, u must be a friend of that old Dr’s (Dr D) – , you must also look like you are embarmed.

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    Dear Kushan Dharmawardena,

    I can assure you that the accusations and subsequent conviction of Mr Somaratne are completely justified. The British justice system may not be perfect, however it is not foolish enough to blindly imprison a pedophile on just an accusation.

    As with most cases of sex abuse he was statistically more likely to be acquitted than convicted, therefore you’re belief that he was innocent and convicted on simple hearsay is absurd to say the least.
    You’re blind faith does the victims of abuse an incredible injustice and protects the perpetrator’s of such heinous acts.

    In regard to you’re patronage of the temple I would like to make it clear that I also attended the temple from its creation in Croydon and also prior to that from its inception in Plumstead, South East London.

    My sister and I are in our early 40’s and when this allegation was first made we spoke about it for the first time and discovered that we were also subject very disturbing and inappropriate behavior by this man.

    To our shame and after discussion with our family we did not report this to the police for fear of being persecuted by our own idiotic community. Our parents preferred for us to keep quiet so I completely understand why this accusation took so long to be made. In addition to the mental and physical anguish the accuser would have to deal with the gossip and conjecture of the small-minded community to which they belong.

    I hope I never have to read the defense of a pedophile by someone whose only interaction has been as an occasional visitor to a temple. You’re opinions are just that ‘Opinions’ and should therefore be considered carefully when being publicly defending a CONVICTED abuser.

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