OUR MOTHER LAND: SRILANKA – Contributions of Muslim people for the socio-political and economic development of Srilanka:
Posted on March 30th, 2013

by Dr Rifai Naleemi. London

   Srilanka Muslims have been living in peace and harmoeny in the Island for more than 1000 years.  They have been cooperating and supporting the majority Singhalese communities throughout Srilankan history since pre-independence period.  Since pre-colonial times, Muslim people in Srilanka have been contributing for the unity and integrity of Srilanka: Muslims have greatly contributed to Srilanka in many fields and yet, their contributions are sometimes not rightly recognized, highlighted or made to be known to non-Muslim people in Srilanka. It is a duty and responsibility of Muslim community to record all these contributions and made to be known to other communities in Srilanka. In pre-colonial times Muslim people in Srilanka introduced Srilankan spices, diamonds and gems to Arab world and they acted as mediators between local people of Srilanka and Arab traders of Middle East.  During the time of colonialism Muslims of Srilanka defended the Island against all colonial powers and indeed, they stood with Srilankan Kings all times in history and they never been traitors of Island at any point in Srilanka history. Muslim leaders fought along Singhalese leaders to liberate the Island from English Rule.

Unfortunately, Economic contributions of   Srilankan Muslim have not been recognized. They did greater contributions for the economy of this country. Unlike other colonial people Muslim people did not run away with wealth of Srilanka to any other Muslim countries rather they worked hard in Srilanka and they earned money and contributed for Srilankan economy. Yet, Muslim contribution to Srilankan economy is not yet, well documented either historical contribution of Muslim to Srilankan economy or economic contributions of Muslims today. It is high time for Muslim people to document all these contributions so that people in Srilanka could appreciate Muslim people’s contribution to Srilanka. Muslims people have some natural skills and talents in ruing business. Muslim people are greatly interested in business for some religious, cultural and historical reasons in Srilanka. That talents, skills and experience should be recognized, encourage and rewarded for the greater interests of Srilanka. So that Srilanka become economically strong nation in Asia.

Politically Muslim people have been actively engaging in all political affairs of the country during the colonial and post colonial times: Muslim politicians stood with Singhalese people in time of difficulties and hardship. During the 30 years wars Muslim politicians helped as much as possible to find peaceful solution for the ethnic conflict and indeed, they supported the successive governments to protect the sovereignty of the Island. They never call for the partition of Srilanka at all.

In recent times Muslim people made many sacrifices to defend the country from the LTTE attacks:  Thousands of Muslim people died during the thirty years of war with LLTE. Many Muslim army officers lost their lives in fighting with LTTE.  More than 600 Muslim police officers were killed in Eastern province in LTTE attack in defense of Island in 1990 alone.   Many Muslim traders and business people lost their trade and business in the war with LTTE. The entire northern Muslim people from Jaffna and Mannar are chased out from the north part of Srilanka. 100 thousands Muslims people lost all their belongings and properties in a single day. Without any human remorse or humanism LTTE chased out all Muslim people from Jaffna without any reason. Still today these Muslims are victimized and all successive Srilankan government failed in their moral and political duty to look after these innocent Muslims and still resettlement has not been made officially.

Some reckon that Muslims are greedy economic exploiters who want to accumulate wealth and lead a luxury style of life and sometimes they too point their fingers at some rich Muslim villages to support their arguments: Even one leading Non-Muslim Srilankan professor once said to me that Srilankan Muslim communities are people of traders and businessmen. As if we do not have any other missions/ contributions in Srilanka? This is a glimpse of other community people’s perception of Muslim community in Srilanka.  I do not deny the fact that millions of Srilankan Non- Muslim people have good perception of Muslim community as well. Indeed, more than 95% Srilankan Non-Muslim people are getting own well with Muslim people.  I do not need tell this Srilankan history itself witness this except a few isolated incidents in history Muslim people have been living in peace with Singhalese people more than 1000 years.  This is an historical fact and we one deny and all historical studies support such claim.

It is wrong to believe that Muslims people have not made any contribution to Srilanka or the nation building process in Srilanka. Indeed, they have made many contribution and sacrifices. It is a duty of Srilankan governments to recognize these contributions and help Muslim people to integrate fully in Srilanka and like all other community Muslim people too greatly contribute to the Srilankan economy locally and internationally and unlike in the past today each nation depend on other nations for its development and progress:  it is believed that more than 80%  Srilankan Tea is  exported to Middle Eastern countries or Muslim countries and it is believed that more 70% oil is imported from Muslim countries into Srilanka.  Some of the major development projects are supported with help of Muslim nations in Srilanka and yet, why this hatred against Muslims people today in Srilanka?  Some people assumed that some international conspirators are trying to do some dirty work behind to destabilize peace and harmony in Srilanka?

Muslims have greatly contributed to Srilanka in all fields of development: They have contributed for the safety and security of the country since ancient times. They have contributed economically since the Muslim landed in this Island. They have contributed educationally and culturally since the time of Muslim settlement in Srilanka. Yet, recent time some extreme elements have been trying tarnish good name of Muslim people for no reasons. These people recently started to make some false accusations on innocent peace loving Muslim community in Srilanka:  it is generally believed that only a handful of people from the majority community have been engaging in this anti-Muslim campaign: It is believed that they are creating troubles in expectation that Muslim people should react to them:  recent events for the last few years indicate that these people are making some deliberate attempt to destabilize Muslim community in Srilanka: Yet, Muslim contributions are not systematically documented in Srilanka. Even Muslim history in Srilanka is not really documented in Srilanka.  We have only a few books on Srilankan Muslim history and  Muslim people  have been living in Srilanka for more than 1000 years and only a handful of books have been written on Muslim history, some of them have been written by Non-Muslim people. It is high time that Muslim academics write on this subject

Unfounded and unsubstantiated accusations of innocent Muslim people in Srilanka

Now abruptly Muslims have been accused of many things for no reasons. They have been alleged by some Buddhist extremist groups for no crimes they have  committed; some Mass media, News papers, some radio stations, some TV stations and some websites have been tirelessly campaigning against innocent Muslim community in Srilankan: The most of accusations are unfounded ,  unrealistic and unwanted: some of them are mere deliberation. It is appropriate to record some of the accusations and reply to them here in this short article so that diligent people will know the truth and do justice for the innocent Muslim community in Srilanka.             It is also often said that some international conspirators are acting behind the scene to destabilise the Muslim and Singhalese relationship in Srilanka. It is a historical fact that the Muslim people have been living in peace and harmony with all other communities in Srialnka. Whoever are the conspirators behind the scene (Only God Knows) it is a fact Muslim people are facing some problems and challenges in Srilanka these days:  it is a fact that concerns each and every Srilankan Muslim today.  I shall highlight some of contributions that Muslim people made in Srialnka here to remind our Singhalese friends and also I will repulse some of these unfounded accusations.

A Muslim theological organization (non-Political and Non profitable) organization has been accused of many things:  It has been accused of accumulating money by issuing Halal certificates to Singhalese business enterprises,  Muslim people are being accused of increasing their population growth to over come Singhalese population. It is alleged that Srilanka will be a Muslim country in 2050. It is alleged that Muslim people are marrying more than one wife. It is alleged that Muslim boys are marrying Singhalese .girls to increase Muslim population. Moreover, Muslim people are accused of building more mosques.  Muslim people are accused of slaughtering cows and they are accused of converting Singhalese people into Islam:

The sacred places of Muslim people have been destroyed in many places, Muslim people shops and business places have been removed in some places, demonstrations are being carried out in many parts of Srilankan against very basic teaching of Islam. Islamic organizations are being of falsely accused of collocating with international terrorist organization: All Ceylon Muslim theological (Non- political and non-profitable organization that aim to provide services for humanity beyond all racial limitations. It has been providing service for Srilankan communities over 60 years in Srilankan.

Responses to these unfounded accusations and fabrication

Accusations against all Ceylon theological organization:

          It is a registered organization and it does not engage in any political or violence at all. It does not have any connection or affiliation with any intentional organization at all. It is a grave mistake to accuse any organization without substantiated evidence and proof; Muslim people in Srilanka do not subscribe or belong to any international groups or any international networks: Muslim people in Srilanka are against all international extreme organisations. Indeed, Islam rejects all forms of violence and extremism and suicide killing of innocent people.  This organization is a mere theological and spiritual organization that aims to uplift the moral, spiritual, religious needs of Muslim people. This is fundamental religious rights of each community in Srilanka.

           The Issue of issuing Halal certificates:

The allegation against this certificate has been debated recently in many Srilankan News papers and TV stations: It is alleged that Muslim people are forcing Singhalese people to eat Halal food items. Halal food items are made only for Muslim customers locally and internationally and no one force any one to buy or consume Halal food items. It is entirely at people discretionary choice if they want they could buy it or they could buy some thing else.  It is primarily made for international demands because of increasing tourists’ arrival and international markets.  It is wrongly perceived that this organization has made this halal food certificate to make profits and spread Islam among Singhalese people.  It is non-Muslim companies that approach All Ceylon Muslim theological organization to ask for this certificate and not other way around. In this competitive international marketing all companies will make every effort to increase profits and market their products in the best way to attract more customers.  It would be a disaster for any business to think in any communal line: it does not work like that in this global and multicultural world and particularly in a country like Srilanka with four major religious groups.

In western countries all major supper markets have halal food products and they do not think in any religious or communal line and in cosmopolitan cities like London/ New York it is impossible to think in this line: Sooner or later in a few years time Srilankan capital will become one of cosmopolitan cities with people living from  different nations.  Alternatively, Muslim people have no objection if our Singhalese people have their own brand of food in the religious name:  It is their freedom to eat what they want and Muslim people have no objection and this halal food certificate is made for business purpose and no one is under any duress to buy them:

It is alleged that this organization is a profit making organization: if it is so why can not these people check the accounts of this organization to examine all its financial transaction and expenditures:  These are all fabrications and lies to tarnish the good name of this organization:

Muslim marrying Singhalese girls:

It is alleged that Muslims boys are marrying Singhalese girls: It is reported that this take place in Srilanka and on could argue that other way around as well. If Muslim boys are marrying it is not the fault of Muslim boys rather why Singhalese girls become friends of Muslim boys:  Marriages can not take place without the contents of both parties: Why do Singhalese girls like Muslim boys? What are the reasons for that? Why attract them to go with Muslim boys? This is a sociological question that has to be asked by Singhalese medical, religious and academic people:  It is not a fault of Muslim community or Muslim boys and they never force them to marry them? Why do they blame us for this social phenomenon?  Today, we live in an age of information technology and people have all communication facilities and moreover, a large proportion of Singhalese girls go abroad and interact with Muslim boys in abroad. These give them freedom to marry Muslims and it is not our fault. Srilanka should ban sending all girls abroad.

Population growth of Muslim people in Srilanka:

  According to the latest census of Srilankan population Muslim population has slightly increased and Singhalese population too has increased marginally.  Rather than analyzing some socio-religious and economic factors behind this population increase no point in accusing Muslim community for population increase: Not only in Srilanka globally Muslim population increases dramatically:  Islam as a principle does not permit excessive birth control/abortion for no reason. This is faith issue and that may be one of the reason that global Muslim population dramatically increases. Srilanka Muslims are not exceptional for this rule: Rather complaining about growth of Muslim people Singhalese people do some thing increase their population: today in our modern world healthy and skilled population of a nation is the great assert and wealth of that nation: So what if Muslim population increase it is good for the country as does Singhalese population growth?   It is pity every aspect of social life has been seen in light of communal line and communal dichotomy. It is not good at all for the country that just comes out of the long wars.

Muslim Business   

         It can be said that most of Muslim people are doing some sort of business in Srilanka for some historical, political social, economical and religious reasons. Yet, to say that Muslims in Srilanka are a community of business people is a myth today and not a reality? Unlike in the past most of Muslim people are doing some retails business or some sort of small business. Or exchanging goods from one party to another for a small profit? In reality Muslim community today in Srilanka is not a community of business and industries rather they are a community of deprived and unemployed compared to any other community. Today we see most of Muslim youth are unemployed or are doing petty jobs in the Middle Eastern countries?  Compare the employments rate of Muslim community people in Srilanka in public and private sectors: more than 60% Muslims are today unemployed and more than 60% Muslim people live below poverty line and Less than 4% of Muslim students get admission to the local universities in Srilanka annually or less than 1% of Muslim women are employed in Srilanka. Yet, we have been seen a community of business even today for some historical perceptions.

It is said that Muslim people are under represented in all types of government sectors and public administration jobs: How many percentages of Muslim graduates are recruited to SLAS service? How many percentages of Muslim graduates are recruited to SLES service? How many percentages of Muslim graduates are recruited for SLOS service? What are other public examinations?  Muslim graduate do not are being selected in all these examination. This is despite the fact that Muslims graduates are fluent in three major national languages with some excellent qualifications.  Despite all discriminations, prejudice and injustice Muslim people have been living in peace and harmony and yet, now these extreme elements want to further marginalize Muslim people? What an injustice is this?  Do we get equal representation in all employments, and job market?  It is in the interest of country that all communities are treated equally and fairly in all aspects of job opportunities.  of course, Srilanka has a long tradition of protecting minority right and minority groups and yet, it is concerned of all communities that protection seems to be in jeopardy in these days.

Law college entrance:

Skills, knowledge, talents and qualification should be given preference over other criteria in selections of process for high education and employment. This is in a greater interest of nation. What is the point in giving admission for less talented persons to become lawyers at the expense of more qualified student? This is waste of national talent and national skills: A more qualified law/medical student of Srilankan origin could become internationally recognized legal/medical professional on the other hand if we give admission to a less qualified person at the expense of the qualified students he or she may kill more people though his medical negligence or  unprofessional attitudes. In each and every field Srilanka should have some strict criterion to select and elect highly qualified people in all posts and careers. Otherwise, we will be wasting our talents and skills. Whoever has got skills and talents in Srilanka such skills and talents should be recognized and reward for the greater interest of the country?  People should not be discriminated in line of colour, race and religions in a country like Srilanka:

The reconciliation is timely needed:  

Peace and harmony is imperative for any progress and development. The safety and security of country and its people is paramount important for economic development; any social disturbance in Srilanka will greatly cost the country: any violence and communal tension will put the country back for more another two decades: It could be a huge blow on national economy and international reputation of Srilanka. Already some countries are still trying find fault in some internal affairs of Srilanka and any communal tension at this juncture will give them one more opportunity to put all blame on Srilankan government and it is duty of this government to act quickly against all these communal hatred activities.  It will tarnish the good name of entire Srilankan community internationally. A handful of people today could give bad name for the 14 million good Singhalese people. It is in the greater interest of country and Singhalese people to act swiftly against this racist anti-social behavior of a few hundred people.  Srilankan can not afford to loose a good reputation that is being built up after the way:  it is high time now to fully engage in nation building process and attract more investment from international community and attract more tourists to Srilanka. Any social disturbance will put the country off from international tourism and investment and the country may go back to the dark age once again as it was for more than 30 years:  Years of fear, uncertainty and  desperation. I hope that Singhalese people are today cleaver enough to know the consequence of the 30 years wars and hence, the majority would not endorse these anti-social behaviors of a handful people.

What could be done?

In a recent meeting with Bdu Bala Sena the President reiterated that Singhalese people live in peace with all communities and there is no room for violence in Srilanka: all priests who met the President assured that they do not endorse violence: Priests form the Bodu Bala Sena added that they too do not condone such behavior. Referring to the protest in front of the Nolimit store in Maharagama, one of the Buddhists priests said, “We said don’t do it. It’s not good for Buddhism or the country. Let’s fix problems within our own religion. Let’s learn from the Muslim community and their discipline.”. For several questions that arose pertaining to the Halal certification, President Rajapaksa and Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa outlined in detail the Halal certification process and the reasons for its use by businesses.Before the discussion ended, President Rajapaksa once again repeated his request for Buddhist priests to help maintain ethnic and religious harmony in the country. “It is OK to work to strengthen the Buddhist religion, but it should be done without creating conflicts with other religions,”

               President Rajapaksa said. Thus assurance is very good to ease the tension and we all should welcome such move and yet, there must of concrete actions against those who violate law and order in the country: there can not one law for Muslims and another for Singhalese: Police and security forces should act swiftly to maintain peace and order in the country.

It is responsibility of Buddhist religious and academic leadership to calm the situation by talking these extreme elements in their society: BBS group not only going to tarnish good name of the country but also good name of majority of Buddhists rtelgious leadership as well.   BBS should know that they are trying to destroy the country by this type of extreme action against Muslims: it national asserts of Srilanka that they are trying to destroy. It will be huge blow to economy as the chairman of Colombo chambers of commerce has already warned: I think that all religious leaders should set together and talk about these issues and solve the problems once and forever rather than talking about these in press and media: We need to move on in a right direct sooner rather later:

8 Responses to “OUR MOTHER LAND: SRILANKA – Contributions of Muslim people for the socio-political and economic development of Srilanka:”

  1. rohanana Says:

    Refai, I am afraid to say that you are trying again to con people of Sri Lanka and support the wrong doers by putting the blame on one party. Most important thing about any situation or even illness is to find out the cause of the problem, and not try to blame on the response to a problem. If Muslims including yourself believes there is no problem has caused by the Muslims in Sri Lanka, you all are delusional or blinded by the religion either by its misleading directions or misleading leaders of the religion. Why do you think organizations such as BBS have come up? Can you imagine in countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Indonesia and leaving all the extreme Muslim countries like Saudi, what happens if Buddhists in those countries do what Muslims are doing in Sri Lanka did? Would the majority Muslims keep quite? No definitely not, the Buddhists Hindus or Christians will be massacred, butchered irrespective of if they are women, children, elderly or babies. We Sinhalese have not done those in the past or present. We are trying to bring the attention of all the Sinhalese and others to the illegal activities of these Muslims to protect OUR MOTHER LAND: SRILANKA as you call it. Tamils have never ever done anything to destroy the Sinhala race or Buddhism other than the LTTE. I challenge you to go to Gampola and see for yourself how Muslims have and are illegally destroying all the “paddy fields” knowing very well that it is illegal to fill paddy fields. Then compare how many Sinhalese or Tamils have done that. Zero, Zilch. Worse is the so called Religion of peace representatives have built a Mosque yes a Mosque over the public road Bibile Road. The Sinhala people who have lived in the villages on the side of the Mosque and also the Buddhist monks have to walk under the feet of these so called “innocent peace loving Muslims” whose praying for Allah. Is this what do you call innocent Muslims and then Sinhalese have to tolerate and wait it to be destroyed by the Muslims as in countries like Malaysia, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq to name few? If you are such a peace loving person as you say, please go to Bibile road and get them to demolish this illegal building, stop filling of paddy fields illegally, cheating houses from Sinhalese, selling drugs etc etc. I am saying this with great responsibility as I have evidence for all these accusations. If you can do this then you will be helping to protect OUR MOTHER LAND: SRILANKA. Then you will see organizations like BBS will automatically vanish. Sinhalese irrespective of their religion will rise against Muslims or anyone who are trying to destroy them. We have shown that in our history and we will do it again believe me.

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    First learn to write the name of “your country” CORRECTLY (IF it is really yours).

    There is no country by the name Srilanka. The correct name is Sri Lanka (Holy Lanka) – Holier than all including Christian, Hindu, Buddhist and Islam teachings. Accept it or leave it.

  3. Lorenzo Says:

    Most Muslims are PEACEFUL.

    If other Muslims want peace, they should

    1 REDUCE their population growth
    2 ENCOURAGE Muslim girls to marry Sinhalese soldiers
    3 STOP the halal label
    4 STOP building anymore mosques
    5 DENOUNCE Sharia law and uphold SL law

    Then there will be NO PROBLEM. Everyone will live like brothers and sisters. Everyone will be able practice their religion in peace. No more war. No need for war.

    (Please don’t threaten or warn Sinhalese about war. As they have PROVEN many times they WIN wars. IF another war starts, this time against Arabic extremists, SL’s biggest weapons supplier Israel will be more than happy to provide weapons and soldiers for free.)

    May the Merciful G~d bless us all.

  4. Senevirath Says:

    Refai
    we know the history more than u and how muslims were settled by sinhala kings when they were chased away by other invaders. That was the most foolish thing we did . we ignored what muslims did in other countries and helped them.

    No country should allow any man to come to that country who believes that he can go to the paradise and have 72 virgins by killing infidels and who believe in the most barbaric sharia law.

    We know how muslims betrayed sinhala freedom fighters in 1818.

    there may be one in hundred thousand among muslims who accept this country as a sinhala buddhist country

  5. dayahewapathi Says:

    We hope the Muslims and other minority communities who consider Sri Lanka as their motherland, become more informed and respectful of the national cultural norms, especially the Buddhist principles which form the basis of the national culture of our Motherland – Sri Lanka, or Hela Diva, Helabima or Sinhalay as it was referred to in the past.
    The foundation of our nation, its societal norms and values originates from the Sinhala Buddhist heritage. Whether we choose to live as Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim, Malay or Burger, or as Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Christians or atheists, our right to do so is derived from this heritage and associated way of life where religious pluralism has been an essential element. In spite of attempts by European colonial powers for over four hundred years, to undermine the nation’s indigenous culture, and other challenges faced during the decades of Tamil terrorism in the country, the fundamental elements of our national culture prevailed. That gave our nation its distinct identity and character. In recent years, it is clearly noticeable from their attitude and actions, that the Muslim community in our country has posed a threat to our national culture and way of life.

    Fundamentals of Islam

    There is clear evidence of disregard and disrespect on the part of most Muslims, for the Buddhist cultural heritage of our country. There is evidence of destruction of archeological and historic cultural monuments and remains, especially in areas inhabited by Muslims. The fundamentals of ‘Islam’ that are being widely propagated by the Muslims have serious negative implications as far as the national culture is concerned. The younger generation of Muslims are being brainwashed with these extremist Islamic beliefs and practices in the so called ‘Madrasas or exclusively Muslim schools that have sprung up in the country. Their attire has changed and reflects their inclination to be exclusive and separate from the nation’s mainstream. This separation of the Islamic community is self-imposed and is not because they feel marginalized but because Islam’s teachings say that non-Muslims are inferior to Muslims. To closely associate non-Muslims is forbidden or ‘haram’ according to the Koran. Islam has dualistic ethics with one rule for Muslims and one rule for non-believers who form the majority of Sri Lankans. There is no exception to this rule. It is ironical that although Muslims do not donate blood as, according to them, it is forbidden in Islam, they freely use the blood of non-Muslims when in need for medical purposes. The rules of Islam govern politics, marriage and the day-to-day lives of its followers.

    The “Halal” Practice and Animal Welfare in Sri Lanka

    How many of us, especially those living in Sri Lanka are aware of the fact that Halal is a most repulsive and horrendous practice that involves extreme form of abuse and cruelty towards animals? Halal is a gruesome method where the animals are tied down and their throats slashed, letting their blood ooze out slowly from the animal’s body and making animals die on their blood, a slow, lingering and agonizing death. What is most horrendous is that this torturous practice takes place while the animals are desperately struggling for their lives. It is a well evident fact that these animals are conscious of what is happening to them. This is a most sickening and inhuman way of killing animals. It is a practice that should not be tolerated in any civilized society.

    In a society such as ours where Buddhists predominate, and where non-violence towards all living beings is a fundamental tenet, practices of this nature cannot and should not be tolerated under any circumstances. Animal welfare has been a tenet of the rulers of our nation from very early times, from the 3rd century BCE, when King Devanampiyatissa ruled the country. This was in-keeping with the declaration of the Buddha in the Cakkavatti Sihanada Sutta (Digha Nikaya of the Sutta Pitaka) that an ideal or virtuous ruler of a nation or ‘Cakkavatti King” will give protection and shelter not only to human beings, but also to birds and beasts. It was this king, over 2200 years ago, who established the world’s first Bird and animal sanctuary in Sri Lanka. Since this time, the principle of animal welfare prevailed in our country until the arrival of European colonial powers, starting with the ruthless Catholic Portuguese invaders, about at the beginning of the 16trh century. Besides hunting animals as a sport, the slaughtering of animals as a vocation started with the entry of Christianity and Islam to Sri Lanka.

    The resurgence of Buddhism is a well evident development in the country in recent years. It is an opportune time to take action, on the part of the nation’s leadership to develop a well-conceived policy against cruelty to animals, to save our animals from ‘terrorism’ meted out to them by some quarters of people in our country. The proper implementation of the pledge made in the Mahinda Chintanaya to “amend, without delay, the outdated laws on prevention of cruelty to animals” is long overdue. The Buddha Sasana Ministry in particular, should be in the forefront in making this happen.
    Special Privileges
    In fact, Islam is a political ideology where the church and state are not separate. Under the circumstances, one cannot expect Muslims to develop a sense of patriotism and national pride in a predominantly non-Muslim country such as ours. This may be cited as an explanation for Muslims of Sri Lanka cheering Pakistan at the cricket match held some time ago between Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
    Islamic community in Sri Lanka is a small non-indigenous minority amounting to about 9% of the total population. Despite their small numbers they enjoy many special privileges. They are represented as a part of the nation by means of the green stripe in the National Flag of the country. All important Muslim religious days have been declared as National holidays. There are National Schools assigned to Muslims. Muslims are permitted to have schools exclusively for Muslim children in several towns across the country. In recent years, Muslims have established exclusive schools popularly known as Madrasas where the teaching of the Koran and related subjects such as Muslim Shariah law are the focuses. They have also established International Schools in several towns, where the student population is almost exclusively Muslim.

    Most Muslims do not appear to be interested in integrating with other communities, perhaps because assimilation is not permitted under Islamic Shariah law. They rarely if at all participate in national events. They do not participate in the singing of the National Anthem in public events. They do not observe the traditional national way of greeting by placing both hands together in the form of worship. Muslim children are taught not to worship their teachers in schools like other non Muslim children who form the majority. In recent years Muslims have imported the black outfit for Muslim women and the white cloak-like outfit for men. This makes them look totally different to others in the country. Why they want to look different is a big question, but this type of actions has a divisive effect on society and undermines national unity, harmony and assimilation.

    It is a well evident fact that Muslim leaders and most Muslim professionals are focused on furthering the interests of their Muslim community rather than society as a whole. It is time that Muslims invested more on hospitals, schools and other national social welfare activities and contributed tangibly for infrastructure development activities that benefit everyone and not necessarily the Muslim community.

    It is time that Muslim establishments refrain from exclusively hiring Muslims, especially for responsible positions in their establishments. There have been many instances of Muslim encroachment of places that are of Buddhist historic value, and the destruction of Buddhist monuments and items of archeological value in the Eastern Province in particular. This definitely has to stop. If Muslims are involved in the illicit drug trade as often reported in the media, this is national crime and has to stop.

    Being an Active Part of the Nation

    Muslims should consider it their duty to participate more actively in national events such as the National day festivities and other important national events and international events as Sri Lankans and cheer Sri Lanka and rejoice in their international attainments in all fields including cricket and sports in general. The indigenous cultural norms and values upon which this nation is founded should be well understood and respected by all citizens of this country, irrespective of their religious or other affiliations.

    Although forming a mere 9% of the total population of the country, Muslims are accorded religious holidays as public holidays in our country. They are represented in the national flag of Sri Lanka with a green belt. Most importantly, there are no restrictions in Sri Lanka for the construction of mosques in predominantly Sinhala areas. It is a well known fact that Muslim countries do not permit even the display of a Buddha image, let alone building Vihares. In activities connected with Muslim mosques, especially in early morning prayers using load speakers, Muslims are in fact harassing non-Muslims, disregarding the impact this has on the health and wellbeing of non-Muslim neighbors.

    Gratitude for the Opportunities Afforded

    A good part of buildings and land in most urban areas in the country, especially in predominantly Sinhala areas are owned today by Muslims. No comparable minority in any major country in the world have been given such preposterous benefits, which are not rights but ridiculously high privileges enjoyed by the Muslims and Tamil settler minorities in our motherland. Since the privileges of one person can only be had at the expense of the rights of another, this shows that, in fact, it is the indigenous Sinhalas, who account for more than 70% of the population, who are discriminated against in Sri Lanka.

    After securing so much from the country, and from the majority Sinhala community who had all along provided them with hospitality and generosity, it is disappointing to see many Muslim leaders and Muslim people of today, especially those living in the Eastern province having the audacity and ingratitude to claim autonomy for the lands that they are occupying in predominantly Muslim areas. Do they realize that some of these lands were given to them by Sinhala kings and governments led by Sinhala leaders.

    Inciting Violence Against Buddhists

    It was not long ago that Islamic fundamentalists and armed Muslim extremists were inciting violence against legitimate Buddhist activities in the East – Pottuvil region. Muslims were forcibly encroaching upon land that rightfully belongs to Buddhist temples on the southeast coast. They were demolishing some archeological sites of Buddhist significance in the East. Also, the Sri Lanka Muslims Congress and several Islamic groups of our country had the audacity to oppose the construction of Buddha’s statues on the island’s southeastern coastal areas which contain Buddhist historic monuments and important archeological remains which are part of the cultural wealth of the nation.

    There were protests by Sinhala Buddhists urging the Government to crack down on Islamic groups that are opposing the construction of Buddha’s statues. Hundreds of Buddhist monks and their lay supporters demonstrated against “anti Buddhist activities of Muslim extremists.In a memorandum submitted to the Buddha Sasana Ministry the protesters cited how the Islamic fundamentalists and armed Muslim extremists were inciting violence against legitimate Buddhist activities in the Pottuvil region. According to the Memorandum, the Muslims are forcibly taking land that rightfully belongs to Buddhist temples on the southeast coast.

    The Kurugala Muhudu Maha viharaya and Deegavapi are among other highly venerated historic Buddhist sites and monuments subject to demolition owing to Muslim encroachment . In more recent times, as recent as last year 2012, that the historic Buddhist stupa in Mottayagala foothills in Akkarapattu Aliyadiwembu Divisional Secretary Division was completely demolished by Muslim vandals.Several ancient Buddhist monuments and sites in the coastal areas of Digamadulla district have been
    Destroyed by Muslim vandals.

    Need to Protect Cultural Traditions of the Nation

    As a nation with a historic cultural tradition that extends to over 2200 years, where freedom, compassion, tolerance and accommodation of people of all faiths and ethnicities have been the founding principles, it is necessary that we as a nation take necessary steps to protect and preserve these noble and wholesome cultural traditions. We cannot allow them to be undermined under any circumstances.

    There has to be an open dialogue with leaders of the Muslim community on the need for all communities to develop respect towards the social values and norms of other communities inhabiting this land and to join the mainstream of the nation and not pursue policies and activities that would jeopardize the quality of life and stability of our nation.

    Today there is increased interest in general, in the country, for the consolidation of national unity. Under the circumstances, divisive tendencies of any nature should not be encouraged or tolerated for that matter. With our massive success in containing Tamil terrorism and our determined efforts to bring the various communities together as One Nation, it is important that divisive tendencies in our society be eliminated. This is especially necessary in the light of a national resurgence that is clearly noticeable in the country at the present time and increased interest in fully restoring democratic principles of social organization. It is important that we try to prevent polarization tendencies in communities living in Sri Lanka. This has to be done by all means available and all communities are duty bound to see that this happens for the benefit of everyone that calls Sri Lanka their motherland.
    Daya Hewapathirane

  6. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    Lorenzo was spot on. Motherland! whose motherland. These ‘patriots’ don’t even like to write our country’s name correctly and still call themselves patriots. It starts with a T not a P. Traitors.

    Contribution? what contribution? Only contribution to Sri Lanka is multiplying and putting up eyesore mosques every street corner of our motherland, taking over every town. Mutliplying and getting into the government of the day and islamisation of our country by traitors ashroffs, bada uddin, hakeems, fowzies, sallys etc, etc. That’s all your contribution. Stop writing this bs, which makes our blood boil. There is only one thing we have to say! we’d had enough of you and your actions! Don’t try to cleanse what you are doing and what you’ve done! Have you ever heard when in Rome do as Romans do? You only read that terrror book, so you won’t hear these things. Even if you do, you will never act upon on it. Because you lot are the biggest hypocrites on this planet.

    Some of them if you would like us to remind:
    kill all non-believers and still live in their country; any human with an iota of concsceince would leave or convert
    slit animals throat and say it does not hurt to the animal; because it is not your throat
    do any sin and fast all the sins are cleansed; how absurd
    A Buddha or Christ statue is not allowed past a airport desk in a muslim country; but in non-believers countries they want halal, separate schools (so they can multiply enough and hide the ‘output’), sharia, burka, holidays for their religious days etc, etc

    There is another thing I’d like to point out to this ‘saints’. Have you noticed the Chinese community living in every major town in our country. They have been living in our country for 100s of years. Probably longer than this menace. But no body notices their presence. They have integrated to the society; haven’t grown up in numbers. Simply exceptional guests. No wonder the saying live like the Chinese when living in somebody elses’ country. But this menace want to multiply like rabbits, they simply want to make our country islamic. Like afganisthan, pakisthan, iraq, syria. Simply living hells, pre-historic countries. You all should contemplate converting to a real, true religion or leave. You and your politicians have made it impossible to co-exist in the Island.

    men are allowed to have more women; but for women it is only one man, women are not equal even in this 21st century.
    These are only some of this ‘peaceful religion’s’ principles. How absurd, how disrepectful to women, to non-believers. Especially when they are living in a non-believers country.

  7. Lorenzo Says:

    Excuse me Bon Marley.

    No, malsI, no war;
    No, malsI, no war;
    No, malsI, no war;
    No, malsI, no war.

    ‘Cause – ’cause – ’cause I remember when a we used to sit
    In a government yard in Beruwala,
    Oba – observing the ‘hypocrites – yeah! –
    Mingle with the good people we meet, yeah!
    Good friends we have, oh, good friends we have lost
    Along the way, yeah!
    In this great future, you can’t forget your past;
    So dry your tears, I seh. Yeah!

    No, malsI, no war;
    No, malsI, no war. Eh, yeah!
    A little darlin’, don’t shed no tears:
    No, malsI, no war. Eh!

    Said – said – said I remember when we used to sit
    In the government yard in Beruwala, yeah!
    And then Georgie would make the tasty ham,
    I seh, logwood burnin’ through the nights, yeah!
    Then we would have some ecstatic arrak, say,
    Of which I’ll share with you, yeah!
    My feet is my only carriage
    And so I’ve got to push on through.
    Oh, while I’m gone,
    Everything’s gonna be all right!
    Everything’s gonna be all right!
    Everything’s gonna be all right, yeah!
    Everything’s gonna be all right!
    Everything’s gonna be all right-a!
    Everything’s gonna be all right!
    Everything’s gonna be all right, yeah!
    Everything’s gonna be all right!

    So no, malsI, no war;
    No, malsI, no war.
    I seh, O little – O little darlin’, don’t shed no tears;
    No, malsI, no war, eh.

    No, malsI – no, malsI – no, malsI, no war;
    No, malsI, no war.
    One more time I got to say:
    O little – little darlin’, please don’t shed no tears;
    No, malsI, no war.

  8. Lorenzo Says:

    Bob not Bon.

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