22 January, 2021

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When Monks & Politicians Behave Like Virologists & Hydrogeologists

By Mass L. Usuf

Mass Usuf

“The corrupt and the good are not equal, though the abundance of the corrupt please thee.” ~ (Quran: Chapter 5 Verse 100)

The government has clearly messed up a simple matter which could have been resolved by firm executive action. With the outbreak of Covid-19 virus pandemic in late 2019, the WHO guidelines with regard to the disposal of Covid-19 infected dead bodies were already out. It very clearly recommended either cremation or burial as a safe mode of disposal. When the WHO give guidelines, they do it with authority and certainty. There are highly trained and experienced professionals who serve in that world body. In its Code of Conduct for Responsible Research, it is stated:

“WHO is committed to the highest standards of research integrity and promotes high quality research that is ethical, expertly reviewed, efficient, accessible, transparent, carefully monitored and rigorously evaluated.” (Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct, April 2017 of WHO).

Research is defined as the development of knowledge with the aim of understanding health challenges. This definition covers the full spectrum of research, which spans five generic areas of activity: 

1. measuring the problem; 

2. understanding its cause(s); 

3. elaborating solutions; 

4. translating the solutions or evidence into the policy, practice and products; and 

5. evaluating the effectiveness of proposed health solutions.

It is sequel to such strict research conditions that the WHO had prescribed that both burial and cremation are safe. As such there was no reason at all for anyone to doubt the recommendations of the WHO. But, only in Sri Lanka, the WHO guidelines were not followed. A very unusual challenge coming from a developing country which does not have the benefit of diverse and cumulative specialist knowledge as that of the WHO. Moreover, daring to do so, without any state-of-the-art laboratory research infrastructure and lacking the scientific knowhow in comparison to the WHO.

Unnecessary Change 

This was the beginning of the sinister plot, as the narrative reveals, which has unfolded itself in its fullest form. Something that was not conspicuous at the time it was hatched early last year. The Quarantine and Prevention of Diseases Ordinance No.3 of 1897 under Section 3. (1) states, “The regulations made under section 2 may provide amongst other things — “for prescribing the mode of burial or cremation of any person dying of disease;” vide Section 3 (1) (i).  

Reportedly, the first action in the plan was to amend the regulation under the Section 3 (1) (i) of the Ordinance. The Ordinance clearly stated that the mode of disposal can be prescribed as burial or cremation. It is important to bear in mind that if the WHO guidelines for burial had been followed, there would have been no need to amend the law. This whole drama would not have then evolved. What happened, however, was the hush, hush and hurried amendment to the law. An amendment which was diametrically opposed to the WHO recommendation which permitted burial. An amendment to the law which was unnecessary and making it mandatory to cremate Covid-19 infected dead bodies.

The reason adduced for this mandatory cremation was the ‘possibility’ of ground water contamination via the Covid-19 virus, if burial is allowed. It sounded a fair and reasonable judgment at that time. The public was ignorant and they prima facie believed the advice of our local experts to be correct and done with integrity. Though the benefit of expert knowledge in relation to the relevant areas of a pandemic namely, epidemiology, immunology, virology and hydrogeology were not in hand at the time.

Prick Of Conscience

Who is to be blamed for this unprofessional, unsubstantiated and disastrous decision? Can only a single person or authority be held responsible? Are several people responsible? Has there been a lapse in executive action from the side of the government? Those engaged, directly or indirectly, in making a mountain of this molehill are in a better position to apportion the blame. Their conscience will keep pricking them for the injustice perpetrated against an entire community of innocent people who have been forced to cremate their dead. 

From a Public/Administrative law point of view, can this be considered a gross abuse of authority. Can there be a judicial review challenging the administrative act of amending the regulations, as ultra vires, on several grounds for example, that they have failed to take into account relevant considerations, etc.  Delictually, can this be a case for damages for misfeasance in public office against those responsible? Or, even for malfeasance, for that matter. It was held, “’Misfeasance in public office’ was concerned with a deliberate and dishonest wrongful abuse of the power given to a public officer and the purpose of the tort was to provide compensation for those who suffered loss as a result of improper abuse of power.” (Three Rivers District Council v. Bank of England reported in (1996) 3 All ER 558). In Administrative Law by Sir William Wade, 8th Edn. (page 765) “misfeasance in public office” has been defined inclusively as malicious abuse of power, deliberate mal-administration and other unlawful acts causing injury.”

The State Minister of health is reported in the media stating that the Covid 19 is a new disease and that initial recommendations made by the WHO are subject to change with new emerging evidence. Excellent! Since last year, the initial recommendation of WHO was that burial was not harmful, why was the law changed without following guidelines which said burial is safe? After the lapse of one year, still that same recommendation is in effect and why has it not been followed in Sri Lanka? Where is the logic in what the State Minister is saying? Or, is it that WHO recommendation is followed only when it is convenient?

Bogus One Country One Law 

There is then this often-bandied statement by the venerable monks that the decision to bury or cremate must be taken based on scientific evidence and not as per any religion. No Muslim ever asked the government or the health authorities to ignore scientific evidence and give preference to religion. If tomorrow the WHO states that burial is harmful and cremation is the only way to dispose COVID 19 dead bodies, the Muslims will have no objection. They would accept such guidelines for the greater welfare of the living persons. The problem is when burial is safe and recommended, why has it been denied. Then there is something wrong, somewhere.

The irritation of the politicians and venerable monks, pseudo actors of nationalism, making a noise about one country one law is unbearable. What a nonsensical and utterly ignorant claim is this?  Look at the major laws of this country. The Constitution of this country which is the supreme law governs everyone. Did the Muslims ask for a separate constitution? The Penal Code of this country which is the body of substantive criminal law is applied to everyone. Did the Muslims ask to be governed by the Sharia criminal law? The corpus of Civil Procedure Code and the Criminal Procedure Code are the procedural laws of this country which everyone follows. Did the Muslims ask for the application of Islamic procedural laws?  Each move that is taken or the words that are spoken exposes their ulterior motives. By doing so, they clearly demonstrate their bias, prejudice and hate towards the Muslim community.

What is the primary objective in the minds of these people? Is it to destroy the Muslims or the development and future prosperity of this nation? If the former is the intent, then the latter will never be achieved. No country has developed when its citizens are disunited and are at the throats of each other. What will be sure is continued bloodshed, racial riots, death and destruction.  Every time this happens, the economy takes a hit. With the economic situation so fragile and vulnerable, this nation cannot afford internal instability. Is this the path that the venerable monks and politicians want to tread?  

President, Act Now

The majority of the people in this country must make their voice heard against moving on this path. This is not a Muslim issue; this is a national issue which has got internationalised. Our country is going back in time and our progeny will curse us for what they would inherit. 

It is nauseating to see some professionals behaving like ignorants and some monks and politicians speaking like experts. Mr. President, the WHO guidelines permitting burial as safe is already available. The College of Community Physicians of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Medical Association have clearly given their recommendations. The recommendations of several other internationally acknowledged Sri Lankan experts in the field have stated that burial is safe.  

This waiting game must stop before more bodies get burnt. There is no need to wait for any so called ‘expert’ committee decision or report. The evidence is clear and you have the authority. It is time that you just take a firm decision, in your capacity of the Executive President of this country, permitting burial. Here is an opportunity for you to display Statesmanship. Already, one year has passed under your watch, it is time that you focus on moving forward with more important priorities of the country.

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Latest comments

  • 10
    3

    L.Usuf!

    It is a pity that you don’t seem to understand that when a person is Elected to the Parliament, he/she becomes an expert in Medical science, Teaching, Engineering,
    Architecture, Finance and what not. What ever said by them is beyond question. Unfortunately they only lack the art of governing.

    • 1
      0

      Mr. Uluf, why were 2 committees on the same subject set up?! Seemingly to contradict each other, cause confusion and game the narrative?!! Who set up 2 committees? Why is the Govt. doing such stupid things?! What force is behind this fiasco of 2 committee and the WHO’s false positive PCR tests and the Covid-19 hoax? t Is it the foolish Minister Pavithra or the 5th grade educated US citizen who runs the Covid-19 Task force for GOSL? Or GMOA or the Medical association that is bleating for vaccines?!
      The whole Covid-19 project is a massive set up, Covid-19 is milder than flu so of course burying bodies is Fine! But Covid-19 narrative is part of the hybrid war – Economic war we saw at Easter Sunday 2019, to destroy Asian economy and cause conflicts – particularly Muslim – Buddhist conflicts in Asian countries, and then get the MCC project and US bases established…
      The manner in which minorities and poor people are being targeted with false positive Covid-19 PCR tests and lock downs by the “surveillance” robots set up by the US-CIA at the USAID funded Covid-19 hospital in Iranawilla, formally and presently, the Voice of America Station shows that the US deepstate project is on-going with the Fall Army Worm and Bird flu bio-terrorism attacks in Sri Lanka and India. This is the big picture of the Covid-19 burial issue – which is to Divide, and Distract from what is actually going on!

  • 3
    8

    Usuf is claiming the King is vested with 20A by Muslims, so now he must declare the 1500 years old Arabian Paani is superior to 2500 years old Nepali Paani. He says Sharia scientists, the Mullahs are one knows everything (Law, politics, science, medicine, banking, commerce…..), but Kandy Ayatollahs are only dumbs, know nothing. He says he is not asking to enforce Sharia. He says it is not dictatorship if EP bend the law to fulfill the wish of Riyal Traders, who claim they work secretly and silently to change government’s decision. The problem is Usuf is dumb, has no idea that Aanduwa knows what Sharia Paani is, what SB Paani is and what WHO’s Paani is. (WHO worked with China to spread Covid-19, hoping China will develop the vaccine and lead on it. WHO declared it was only China and Lankawe controlled the Covid-19. Aanduwa, with its Aappa Diplomacy, knows how to deal with WHO, UNHRC…. they don’t need any more Hakeem or Rishard or other Muslim ministers for false witnessing in Geneva). Aanduwa gives out the correct dose of Paani according to everybody’s need. Patriotic Muslim spies claim that they penetrated the Vanni, with their DPF, captured Karuna and Pirapaharan. When Aanduwa penetrated Aluthgama, it was unpatriotic LTTE DIG Indran saved Hakeem, Harris’ gangs. Medicine Mullah Harris demanding Kalmunai lockdown be released because of Tamils Medical officials wanted that.

  • 0
    1

    WHO is committed to the highest standards, Never doubt the thoughtful advise given with confidence and courage by WHO. It is better to keep mouth closed and let people think you are a fool, not stupid simply because he is ignorant than to open it with wrong opinion and blamable in front of the world and the refelection about country is that wiser and intelligent are full of doubt.

  • 6
    2

    They say God works in mysterious ways. We are now witnessing this. The same Buddhist Thug Monks who brought this government to power are today opposing the same government’s actions. It may be that Rajapakses promised them Benz Cars before the election and they have not given them, or it may be Chinese Govt as in South Korea is bribing the monks to show opposition to policies that will not favour the Chinese interest in SL.

    In Korea and in certain countries around India, Chinese govt bribes the trade unions to oppose the govts policies if they are not for the benefit of the Chinese policies. It is definitely happening in Sri Lanka as well. Chinese overseas policy is this and it was confirmed to me by a friend of mine’s mother who was a diplomat of the Chinese Govt in Africa.

    Even the MPs and Ministers are being bribed by the Chinese Govt in Sri Lanka.

  • 4
    0

    Mass Usuf and other Muslim scholars have written more article here on CT than number of Muslims who have died due to Covid in Sri Lanka.

    • 2
      0

      I have no respect for any ******* who believes that apostates should be killed.

      Soma

  • 5
    0

    “With the outbreak of Covid-19 virus pandemic in late 2019, the WHO guidelines with regard to the disposal of Covid-19 infected dead bodies were already out. It very clearly recommended either cremation or burial as a safe mode of disposal.”

    Mass Usuf is misleading the readers by inserting the word ‘SAFE’ to recommendations of WHO for disposal of Covid-19 infected dead bodies. WHO use the term ‘CAN BE’ but do not use the word ‘SAFE’. Here are the guidelines from WHO issued on 04 September 2020.

    Burial or cremation
    People who have died from COVID-19 can be buried or cremated according to local standards and family preferences.
    •National and local regulations may determine how the remains should be handled and disposed.
    •Family and friends may view the body after it has been prepared for burials, in accordance with local customs. They should not touch or kiss the body and should perform hand hygiene after the viewing. (6,7)
    •Family and friends should also follow local guidance regarding the number of people that can attend a viewing or burial, and local mask requirements. (6,7,16,22)
    •Those tasked with placing the body in the grave, on the funeral pyre, et cetera, should wear gloves and wash their hands with soap and water after removal of the gloves once the burial is complete. (6,7)

  • 3
    1

    Mass Usuf,
    I have not read the reports of local experts. I am sure you did before writing this article. From what I gathered from others who have written about these reports is they have recommended burial as an option under strict conditions but they have not said it is ‘SAFE’. According to one writer, they have said the possibility of contaminating water is there but the risk is minimal. Therefore, I kindly request you to tell us where in these reports they say it is ‘SAFE’ to bury Covid-19 infected dead bodies.

  • 1
    3

    Issue of burial or cremation is not the issue. The real issue is that discrimination against minorities in this country by Sinhala Buddhist Fundamentalist regimes. Today it is reported Hejazz Hisbullah a Muslim lawyer who was arrested in false accussation was infected by Corona inside the jail. Recently, Saharan’s wife (?) was arrested and put her in jail. Jail is the breeding place of Corona for the purpose of political discrimination.
    Further Health minister announced that cremation will continue.
    Muslim community should stand for the oppression of minorities, not for the burial rights after death. People are being forced to death and why you should bother daed bodies.

    • 0
      1

      People are being forced to death and why you should bother daed bodies.
      Ajith you may not want to engage in commonsense questions. A Tamils, if talking for Tamils, or not talking in trifling matters of other races are labelled as Racists by jobless, but well settled Tamils, to sell their hypocrisy human right activism. Please be aware talking about Hejazz’s fundamental right is supporting of terrorists under the Muslim leaders and enlightened Muslim writers’ perception.
      Just for a talk, even if he had planted the bombs, a recognized person by state as PC (PC comes from QC- that means the person is intelligent and have well deserved character credits so Queen to believe in him/her as her personal lawyer.) and a lawyer still active in many cases, needs permission to talk to his clients and other lawyers, until he release procedural-ly him from important responsibilities he under took. Have you seen any Muslim writer explaining why SLMC called back its lawyers from the Burial Case at Supreme Court? Will Muslim lawyers accept the responsibility in that for playing out their partners, Christians, in the middle of the ocean when they decided to secretly & silently deal with Ministers, through Riyal Traders?

      They don’t care about law or ethics, but repeat their chest beating.

  • 1
    0

    One superstition (local) against another superstition (Arabic).

  • 0
    0

    Dear Usaf

    Common Bro…is Covid misery and am sure we could give and take a little for the sake of our Country??

    Next issue we have is overpopulation and we need to start family planning too??? so please help us all work on I-regressive things so our children can enjoy the land in the future please.

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