Amendment of laws on Buddhist temples will take decision-making power away from Maha Sangha: Ranil

Saturday, 16 August 2014 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has claimed that the Government is planning to bring new laws that may affect the Buddhist order and the temples. Addressing a meeting held at the Youth Services Centre auditorium in Maharagama, the UNP Leader stated that the Government’s attempt to amend the Temples and Religious Sites Act is unconstitutional. He explained that under the proposed amendments, instead of the current Commissioner of Buddhist Affairs, a new post of Buddhist Commissioner General will be created and that person will be vested with the powers of the Commissioner. The Opposition Leader charged that the amendments would allow the Commissioner General to take the powers the Ministry of Buddhist Affairs and the Chief Prelates now have into his hands. Wickremesinghe said the UNP in 1978 created the post of Commissioner and the Commissioner does not have executive powers. The powers are vested with the Chief Prelates. But with the Government’s move the Commissioner General will be empowered to make important decisions regarding registration of Buddhist temples and their functioning. He said the Government’s proposed amendments will take the authority of Buddhist temples from the Maha Sangha and give to Government officials and that this was a violation of the Constitution. The UNP Leader defined the Government’s move as militarising the Buddhist order.  

 Mahinda  is only leader capable of establishing a righteous society: Asgiri Mahanayake

 President opens Sangavasa building of historic Udawaththa Kale Sri Rama Viharaya, Kandy
The Maha Nayake of the Asgiriya Chapter Most Venerable Udugama Buddharakkitha Thero said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa is the only leader at present capable of establishing a righteous society in Sri Lanka. “No one can deny this reality,” he said. The Mahanayake Thero made this observation at the historical Sri Rama Vihara Temple in Udawattakele last week. The President declared open the newly-renovated Sanghawasa building at this temple. Ven. Buddharakkitha Mahanayake Thero said that the President is showing significant interest in developing the country and said all members of the Cabinet and the public officials should extend their utmost support to make the President’s attempt a success. He pointed out that all people should extend support to the Government to provide concessions to the drought-stricken people in the country. The President opened the newly-renovated Vihara Mandiraya and Awasageya of the ancient Sri Rama Viharaya, at Udawatta Kela, Kandy. The renovation has been done with allocations made by the Central Cultural Fund.