Kovil Ritual To Go Ahead
- Animal Sacrifices At Munneswaram After September 12
By Indika Sri Aravinda
The government has agreed to allow the Munneswaram Kovil to proceed with their animal sacrifices, Hindu Affairs Advisor to the President Ravi Shankar said.
He said that the agreement had been reached between the chief priest of the temple Kali Mutta Shivapada Sundaram and President’s Secretary, Lalith Weeratunge.
Animal sacrifices can take place after September 12, when the sacred Kapila Vastu relics leave the island, Weeratunge has told Sundaram.
Sundaram and Weeratunge met last Tuesday, where Weeratunge conveyed the President’s gratitude for postponing the sacrifices.
Weeratunge, who said that he has also visited the sacrifices several times, had assured police protection for the sacrifices to move forward.
Weeratunge advised Sundaram to inform him on the proposed date for the sacrifice, to ensure that the ritual takes place without outside influence or protests. Sundaram was however questioned the next day for close to three hours by the Chilaw police, citing a complaint by a Buddhist monk.
A special police team has been deployed at the Temple, who are alleged to have inspected the various rituals that are taking place at the temple.
Presidential advisor Shankar had instructed the priests of the temple to inform Weeratunge of the harassment by police officers. Sundaram claims that First Lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa, Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe, President’s Chief of Staff Gamini Senerath and late President Ranasinghe Premadasa have taken part in the ritual sacrifices.
Premadasa is said to have imported four white goats from Pakistan specifically for the sacrifice.
Minister of Public Relations, Dr Mervyn Silva, vowed earlier to stop the sacrifices at any cost.