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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2641

When born Christians like me, Ravi and Ranil insult Buddhist monks, “it goes against my grain” says Jeyaraj Fernandopulle

By Walter Jayawardhana

Colombo, 06 August, (Asiantribune.com): Accusations and counter accusations hurled at each other about a Mercedes Benz owned by Venerable Ellawela Medhananda has become the main attraction of UNP politics after Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe ridiculed the Leader of the Jathika Hela Urumaya that Medhananda Thero wanted the vehicle to travel along the Noble Eight Fold Path.Jeyaraj Fernandopulle:  “Like me, Ranil Wickremesinghe and Ravi karunanayaka were born Christians. It is wrong for them to use the accusing finger at a priest of a different religion and call him names.”Jeyaraj Fernandopulle: “Like me, Ranil Wickremesinghe and Ravi karunanayaka were born Christians. It is wrong for them to use the accusing finger at a priest of a different religion and call him names.”

The Roman Catholic Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle says that non-Buddhist UNP politicians have made use of the issue to insult Buddhist monks. Addressing a mammoth rally of the SLFP at Kurunegala Fernandopulle said, “Like me, Ranil Wickremesinghe and Ravi karunanayaka were born Christians. It is wrong for them to use the accusing finger at a priest of a different religion and call him names.”

He said ever since President Junius Richard Jayewardene has allowed the import of tax free vehicles for parliamentarians and provincial council members Ranil Wickremesinghe has obtained four permits to import vehicles and he challenged him to produce those vehicles. He said 90 per cent of the permits obtained by UNP parliamentarians have been sold to earn a pretty penney.

Some parliamentarians keep the vehicles and use them. Venerable Medhananda Thero has donated his vehicle to his party. Every parliamentarian has obtained the permits to import tax free vehicles and he asked what is it so special about Venerable Medhananda.

He said the truth lies somewhere else . He said Ranil Wickremesinghe is worried that the archeologist monk is attacking LTTE with his vast knowledge of the history of the country.

“I being a Catholic, never insult Buddhist monks and ridicule the practice of the monks like Ranil and Ravi,” Fernandopulle pointed out and added, “It goes against my grain.”

United National Party rebel parliamentarian Hemakumara Nanayakkara addressing the same rally said when Venerable Medhananda attacks Prabhakaran with facts Prabhakaran gets high temperature and Ranil starts boiling the medicine pot for Prabhakaran. He said all politicians before their political demise, have ominously insulted Buddhist monks.

While the United National Party charges that Venerable Ellawela Medhananda’s Mercedes Benz registered under KH1715 at the Registrar of Motor Vehicles has been transferred to one Nishantha Hemantha , allegedly a UNP suppporter who has handed over the vehicle for the use of Ranil Wickremesinghe the Registrar of Motor Vehicles says it is still in the name of Venerable Medhananda.

UNP parliamentarian Ravi Karunanayaka said that Nishantha Hemantha had been forced by the JHU to give a statement to the Homagama Police that he was not abducted by the JHU. Karunanayaka claimed Nishantha Hemantha met Ranil Wickremesinghe thereafter and handed an affidavit explaining what happened. He also claimed that the JHU threatened him to return the vehicle. He said now the UNP will request a parliamentary select committee to inquire into the incident.

Meanwhile the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) denied they know anybody by the name Nishantha Hemantha and Ranil Wickramasinghe would go into history as the first leader of opposition in the country who robbed a motor vehicle. Udaya Gammanpila , the legal advisor of the JHU said Ranil Wickremesinghe has no legal power to use the car , the title of which is on Venerable Ellawela Medhananda and it is a criminal offense for him to use it.

Gammanpila said he welcomed a select committee. He said Ranil Wickremesinghe is using the vehicle without any prior permission from the Registrar of Motor Vehicles without a license plate and that is the second offense he is committing. And Gammanpila charged that the affidavit he was producing is a fraudulent one which becomes the third criminal offense committed by the UNP leader.

Minister Patalee Champika Ranawaka charged that Ranil Wickremesinghe started his anti-Buddhist tirade when he became the leader of the party by removing the Buddha statue at Siri Kotha and continues to the day by insulting the Buddhist monks.

- Asian Tribune -

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