The Buddhist Advisory Council commended President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for following advice and implementing suggestions of Maha Sangha. Member Theros of the Council are confident that the policies being followed by the President will be instrumental in building a fair and virtuous society.
Five months ago, President Rajapaksa decided to set up the Buddhist Advisory Council to seek the advice and views of Maha Sangha in the process of implementing policies of the Government.
The first meeting between Maha Sangha and the President took place on April 24th at the Presidential Secretariat. During the meeting President apprised Theros of the measures taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 pandemic and the future activities of the Government. President informed that he intends to meet the Council on the third Friday of every month and invited Theros of the three chapters to participate.
Member Theros of the Council presented their advices and suggestions to implement strategies pertaining to several areas included in “Saubhagyaye Dekma” national policy statement during previous 5 sessions.
The Buddhist Advisory Council which met for the 6th time at the Presidential Secretariat on Friday reviewed the progress of the implementation of proposals so far. Maha Sangha commended and invoked their blessings for paying attention of the Government and executing several proposals put forward by them including protecting historical places with archaeological value, developing Pirivena education by removing deficiencies, providing deeds to Vihara lands, Dhamma School education, National Education Policy, early childhood development, prioritizing national security, controlling the drug menace, environmental protection, creating the background for discourse on Buddha Sasana and taking Buddhist Universities under the purview of Ministry of Education.
The Council praised the President for taking measures to lay a strong and viable foundation for the future of Ministry of Education by appointing 4 State Ministers for the first time in the history. The Maha Sangha pointed out that the decision to amend the Antiquities Ordinance to address the long standing issues related to Viharas built on archaeological sites has been welcomed by many.
While highlighting the importance of the Advisory Council which meets once a month, President Rajapaksa said that it had helped him as well as the officials to gain a better perspective of various fields. President assured to take steps to rectify prevailing shortcomings.
Maha Sangha representing the Buddhist Advisory Council, Principal Advisor to the President Lalith Weeratunga, Ministry Secretaries and heads of several institutes were present at the meeting.