Past Radical Moves by JHU and How They Helped the Nation
Posted on November 19th, 2014

Dilrook Kannangara

The circumstances of JHU’s past conduct must be considered before passing judgement. Had the JHU selected the easy path in 2004, 2005 and 2006, things would have turned much worse for the nation. It is also worthwhile to question why ruling coalition MPs from SLMC, CWC, EPDP and UNP don’t resign as JHU members do. Is it because of their patriotism? Their desire to see continuing political stability? Unlikely.

In 2004 February when JHU decided to field Buddhist monks for the General Election, I was bitterly disappointed. It was surely an attempt to spoil a definite progressive victory of UPFA (PA+JVP). Their conduct after election was even worse. JHU sided with the TNA in the battle for the Speaker. UNP, TNA and JHU elected WJM Lokubandara as the speaker against Anura who was proposed by the UPFA. However, time proved this to be a very good choice.

UPFA had only 105 seats and JHU had 9. A very ugly physical battle erupted in parliament and mostly it was SLFP and JVP MPs who caused mayhem and violence against monks. The current Energy Minister sat on the ballot box while the current Sports Minister misplaced parliamentary property in an attempt to disrupt proceedings.

JHU also disagreed with CBK’s original choice of PM and preferred Mahinda to Lakshman. Mahinda (months after winning accolades from the Maha Sangha) maintained a very good understanding with the JHU despite its hostility towards the SLFP. Again, this proved a very good choice.

JHU also played a key role in disrupting CBK’s PTOMS move to give foreign aid to the LTTE. Mahinda closely worked with the JHU and its supporters.

In 2005 JHU petitioned the Supreme Court to declare a presidential election. Mahinda approached the JHU and he was given conditional support. He was asked to promise to win the war at the holiest Sri Dalada Maligawa to which he agreed. Mathematically, Mahinda could not win the election without JHU support. All except Uduwe Dhammaloka supported Mahinda. For personal reasons he joined Ranil.

However, after winning the election by less than 0.2% additional votes, Mahinda continued with the CFA. Even restarted peace talks with the LTTE. As usual LTTE continued its terror campaign. He had no intention of restarting the war. Although Norway is blamed now, his government allowed the Norwegian Sri Lankan Monitoring Mission to continue knowingly its bias and Norwegian support for Tamil terrorists.

Army’s most senior General Parami Kulatunga was killed. Scores of Navy personnel were killed in frequent claymore attacks. Lakshman Kadirgamar was killed in the lead up to the election. Over 50 Sinhala civilians were killed in Kabithigollewa. Army commander Sarath Fonseka was bombed which killed many soldiers. Sinhala people were evicted from parts of Trincomalee, Mannar and Vavuniya districts. Regular attacks around Padaviya killed scores. Navy ships were sunk. Absolutely no decisive action came from the Rajapaksa government! It even held a round of peace talks with LTTE with senior minister Nimal Siripala de Silva leading the delegation. Calls for war were ridiculed and blamed those who called for war as racists and war mongers.

In July 2006 LTTE cut water flow to Muslim and Sinhala villages in Trincomalee. Government housed them in schools and provided sustenance. Government promised to resettle them elsewhere. The minister in charge and his wife were later found to have robbed the aid granted to them. JHU launched a fast unto death campaign. Venerable Rathana led the campaign which demanded war or death. Many ministers appealed to the JHU to stop it. Many visited them and persuaded them to give up.

It is no exaggeration to say Sinhalese were threatened with extinction by Tamil Chelvam who threatened an ocean of blood throughout the nation.

A number of government seniors said war cannot be recommenced as it would destroy the entirety of Colombo (as LTTE sleepers were everywhere) and show Sri Lanka in a bad light to the world. ‘Militant monks’ were blamed for ‘chauvinism’ and ‘inciting violence’. But the protestors persisted. Health condition of them deteriorated badly. Potential for violent ethnic riots loomed large and the weak government (of just 105 seats) was on the threshold of collapse forcing fresh general elections. With no other option, the government reluctantly agreed to go to full scale war. Another brilliant outcome. Unfortunately the sacrificial lambs were forgotten by the reluctant leaders who now conduct as if their foresight won the war. Today everyone hails the war effort but then there were very few who demanded it.

Therefore, the JHU made the right choice at crucial times. They were extremely unpopular at that time, but proved excellent choices.

There is a difference today. In 2004, 2005 and 2006, Mahinda was powerless with a minority government (less than 113 seats) and faced death from UNP-LTTE-CFA terror attacks. The fate of Gamini, Lalith, Premadasa, CBK, Algama, Lakshman, Loganathan, etc. awaited him. That made JHU’s task easy as Mahinda gave into their demands. Today there is no such threat to him and he disregards JHU demands. However, today the threat faced by the nation is frightening. 13A is in full force (sans police powers) and disintegration of the unitary nation through peaceful extortion tactics is imminent. If the ruling clan loses the presidential election, a number of them will face war crimes charges (not mere allegations) as diplomatic immunity ends.

If a candidate endorsed by the Maha Sangha contests, a considerable Buddhist vote will go to him. With almost the entirety of the minority vote in his kitty, it is a mathematical certainty he would win. People have been grateful enough to give Mahinda many landslide victories. He can’t ask for more for winning the war.

In this context, I request nationalists to take an insightful view of things unbiased by political affiliations. National Freedom Front led by Wimal Weerawansa and Dinesh Gunawardana of the Boralugoda lion dynasty must join hands with the JHU. The government didn’t accept all NFF proposals. Unless they stand by the nation, not by their minister posts, at this hour of need, they don’t have the right to call themselves nationalists. Bodu Bala Sena, despite having its godfathers in the government, if serious about protecting the heritage, must join in too.

Mahinda must use his executive powers to save the nation from the 13A death trap or lose them. The choice is not with the JHU.

17 Responses to “Past Radical Moves by JHU and How They Helped the Nation”

  1. Independent Says:

    What a reminder to patriots by Mr. Kannangara !

    I appeal all patriots to stop mud slinging at JHU and think what is best for the country. If anything can be challenged to Mr. Kannangar’s article, they must do so politely. One commentator even said Jayalalitha Paid money to JHU. Such deliberate lies are surely unpatriotic.

    This is actually the 2nd time a senior minister gave up the post since late Gamini Jayasuriya.

    To me the following para brings tears.

    “In July 2006 LTTE cut water flow to Muslim and Sinhala villages in Trincomalee. Government housed them in schools and provided sustenance. Government promised to resettle them elsewhere. The minister in charge and his wife were later found to have robbed the aid granted to them. JHU launched a fast unto death campaign. Venerable Rathana led the campaign which demanded war or death. Many ministers appealed to the JHU to stop it. Many visited them and persuaded them to give up. ”

    It could have been easier if that minister was named, but can be found. While patriots fasting to death this mister robbed the grant. He could still be with the President – we don’t know for sure.

    It appears like a lot of people have forgotten the past and the real unsung heroes.

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    All this is TRUE.

    But is the JHU asking to SCRAP 13 amendment? NO!

  3. Ananda-USA Says:

    I echo Lorenzo’s sentiments.

    Why is the JHU not DEMANDING the REPEAL of the 13th Amendment instead of DEMANDING the Executive Presidency be REMOVED, a new 19th Amendment be ENACTED, and the 17th Amendment be RESTORED, all designed to clip the Executive Presidency?

    The Presidential form of government with an Executive Presidency has been adopted on a PERMANENT BASIS in many powerful Western Nations, for example USA and FRANCE, as more stable than British-style Parliaments, and better able to respond to threats against their nations? Why is that unsuitable for Sri Lanka that emerged only 5 years ago from a 30 years of separatist conflict? When the nation continues to be STILL threatened by Neocolonialist Western Powers and internal and external Separatists, why do these ASININE “PATRIOTS” demand that the EXECUTIVE PRESIDENCY be REPEALED? Why? As RATIONAL people, we MUST QUESTION their MOTIVES.

    I think the JHU has changed to a different mindset since Victory was achieved in 2009, enjoying the perks and profits of Ministerial power in the UPFA government, and the Provincial Council positions they have held for 5 years. When their people were demoted recently to lesser positions with smaller budgets they could use for political patronage, for lack of PERFORMANCE in their duties, they decided that it was NO LONGER WORTH IT for them to support the President. Ergo … the resignations just-in-time on the eve of an election …. to exert MAXIMUM LEVERAGE! If that is not putting one’s personal greed for power, prestige and wealth before the security and progress of one’s own Motherland, what is? Clearly, the JHU has changed in character.

    Now, the JHU considers that it is MORE IMPORTANT to retain and exercise those powers, and enrich themselves, than to fight in the National Interest of the Sinhala Buddists by demanding that the 13th Amendment be REPEALED! If the 13A is REPEALED, they like many other Provincial Council Ministers will LOSE THEIR CUSHY POSITIONS in the PC System. Therefore, 13A is NO LONGER AN ISSUE, and instead has become something to be PRESERVED, for these FIERY PATRIOTS of FIVE YEARS AGO!

    Dilrook, take a moment away from your defense of the JHU, and PLEASE EXPLAIN TO US WHY the JHU has forgotten the 13th Amendment, that threatens to destroy the nation pitting its communities against one another, and does not demand it be REPEALED NOW? Pray tell me … WHY?

  4. Lorenzo Says:

    Ananda,

    There is a news MR has released TAMIL DRUG DEALERS (some of the BIGGEST) sentenced to death for SO MUCH drug traffiking.

    ANY sensible person would know DRUG DEALERS are the WORST criminals. That is why they were given the DEATH penalty. Releasing them is an INSULT to law and order. MR is digging his own grave. Shame!

    Not the first time. PM’s son’s Muslim friends were also released after caught with 200kg of heroin.

    This type of action now CONVINCE me it is GOOD after all to SCRAP executive presidency altogether!!! MR is abusing it to release DRUG DEALERS.

    Just days ago he said he NEVER misused it powers to harm the country. Now what? I’m UTTERLY DISGUSTED.

    (Of course JHU – now HUJ – is no better. But MR is digging his own grave. VERY SAD.)

  5. Ananda-USA Says:

    Lorenzo,

    As much as I would like those Indian drug peddlers to be hanged, or given a life sentence, do you know that Narendra Modi himself interceded on their behalf and promised to punish them in India?

    As President of Sri Lanka, MR has to judge what is in the best benefit of all Sri Lankans. Is it in taking the lives of these drug dealers and upholding SL law, or retaining the support of Narendra Modi, who is confronting the Racist Leaders of Tamil Nadu and defending SL as NO OTHER Indian Leader has done before?

    I think the choice is obvious, for releasing them to Modi’s custody is of MUCH GREATER BENEFIT to SL than not upholding the sentence of court or commuting the sentence. If the sentence had been carried out, it would have long therm repercussions on India-Sri Lanka relations. If it was commuted, there would be CONTINUOUS AGITATION for their release and the cost of maintaining them in prison till the end of their days.

    I think MR did the right thing RELEASING THEM to Indian custody at Modi’s request. Now, SL has done a favour for Modi, and he is that much in debt to SL. Governance in the best interest of SL is not as SIMPLE as you paint it, my friend.

  6. Ananda-USA Says:

    Video: NFF tells JHU to reconsider decision

    DailyMirror.lk
    November 18, 2014

    The National Freedom Front (NFF) today requested the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) members to reconsider their decision to resign from government portfolios and requested them to stay within the Government.

    “We request Ven. Athuraliye Rathana Thera, Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka and the entire JHU members to reconsider the decision to withdraw from the portfolios in the name of the nation. National forces like JHU and Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) are the parties that built the nation together during the hard times,” NFF National Organiser Jayantha Samaraweera told a news conference.

    He said if the country is to go forward, national forces should unite and added western factions and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) were attempting to destroy national forces in the country today.

    “We request the JHU not to fall prey of the NGOs,” he said.

  7. AnuD Says:

    It is the JHU that initiated the fight against the closed Anicut in the Eastern province paving the way for the war leading to the elimination of the LTTE.

    It is JHU that promoted Mahinda Rajapakse instead of CBK in order to Mahinda Rajapakse becomes the president.

    JHU had apologised to agreeing to the 18th amendment.

    Even in the present 19th amendment, they don’t ask Executive presidency to be abolished. they ask only to restructure it. Because, Executive presidency had been abused by every president and Mahinda Rajapakse’s abuse of the executive presidency in unprecedent in any scale. He has used it to his benefit every time when it was needed. It is Champika Ranawaka who said in the parliament that 23/rd parliamentary power was not used at all and the propaganda about high economic growth are all lies.

    It is JVP and JHU who helped Mahinda Rajapakse to succeed in the war (Mahinda Rajapakse thanked JVP just after the war). Well, it not Sarath Fonseka who led the war. It is all by Rajapakses.

    With respect to the 13th amendment some JHU monk has suggested that a agreement to be signed with MODI instead of the 13th amendment. I think, the Indian govt does not allow 13th amendment to be abolished. That is why Mahinda Rajapakse says some thing to the Sri Lankan public, another thing to the Ban Ki Moon and some thing else to the Indian govt.

    Besides, Everybody knows how Mahinda Rajapakse has allowed thugs, criminals and thieves to reign in his govt and in his time. Everybody knows how Mahinda Rajapakse’s confidential financial advisor – Sagin vass amasssed hgh wealth both locally and internationally and does any one say all those investments are owned only by Sajin vass and rajapakses don’t have any shares.

    I think, invitation to Pope is to screw further up Buddhism in Sri Lanka. Wait and see.

    There are how many MPs who jumped from UNP and there are how many from UPFA itself who have amassed hugh wealth, or are criminals escaping prosecution etc ?

    Why people are talking something else.

    Who are they supporting ? Is it the Sri Lankan public or they themselves ?

  8. AnuD Says:

    People are criticizing CFA. that is all BS.

    It is the CFA that made LTTE sodleris become LAZY, FAT and UNFIT and UNWILLING to fight a war. That went well for the govt side.

    CFA was good that is why NEPAL used the same strategy to discourage the people fought against the Nepalese govt.

  9. Nimal Says:

    MR had to release them to give some consideration and support to Modi who may be under much pressure from the politicians of the Tamil Nadu.
    I think we have to tread carefully with the Indian big brother. We mustn’t forget their intervention and that parippu drop where our country was friendless. In fact they had the blessing of likes of US where we may be victims of geopolitics.

  10. Dilrook Says:

    Ananda:

    That puzzles me too. I have repeatedly questioned JHU leaders on this and didn’t get an acceptable answer, particularly from Venerable Rathana Thero.

    However, 13A was imposed on Sri Lanka following on from the 1987 Indo-Lanka Peace Accord which was signed by the President of the country without consulting the parliament. In 2010 the president gave the assurance to the UN GS for the full implementation of 13A. Now the president uses the PSC (which he appointed unlike the Consitution Council as per 17A) to further make concessions for the separatist, NGO and western lobby. And the president has not taken any action against separatism displayed by the Northern Provincial Council (unlike President Premadasa in 1989) and removed vital High Security Zones (unlike President Kumaratunga in 2003).

    Therefore, if the JHU action bears fruit, it will remove the biggest obstacle to abrogating 13A.

    The parliament, if supreme and not answerable to the President, can initiate a vote against 13A anytime. However, I don’t wish such drastic action. Hopefully the president will agree with the JHU position (as he did in 2004, 2005 and 2006) and use his powers to do so. In that case most Sri Lankans would not demand any constitutional change now.

    Mahinda Rajapaksa is the best president available. I have hope he will yield to JHU pressure because it is good for the country, especially when (not if) someone else becomes the president. Despite his shortcomings and misuse of power against national interests, I have more trust in him than any other and hate to think what would happen when someone else takes those powers.

    With my personal experience I can say JHU has not fallen prey to NGOs or any other influence. JHU came to this decision after extensive consultations with mostly Sri Lanka based patriots.

    I thank LankaWeb and commentators for the decent and productive discussion on an extremely crucial matter that affects the nation we all love, a nation that was defended with no less than 27,000 lives and the sacrifices of millions of people.

  11. Independent Says:

    I too strongly believe JHU is not the type to fall to NGOs.

    There is no single instance in the history, a Minster resigned to work for NGO. Minister would almost certainly hang on to the post and do a lot of sabotage. Even that did not happen in Sri Lanka’s history.
    I think a lot of commentators started bashing Ratana Thero not knowing what he has done for the country. So far he borrowed expertise from Silva on drafting the amendment, he has got UNP to agree on it. No one is opposing to the proposed amendment, but lot of people bashing him just because UNP agreed to him and Ven Sobhitha Thera agreed to it.

    Even Ven. Sobhitha is not a betrayer. Knowing him some time ago I know personally.

    All these tricks are political mud slinging to win elections. This is how elections are fraught. Similarly alomost every one in the country is saying our President is corrupt. But this too cannot be true.

  12. callistus Says:

    Where is Nandawathie these days I wonder. Can someone show any extraordinarily good thing Champika and Rathana has done in their capacities when holding high positions. These guys are loud mouthed humbugs.

  13. callistus Says:

    This is what an astrologer says about Saturn transit which started on 2nd November, ‘He (Saturn)teaches us lessons, trains us for increased responsibility and points out where we come up short. During his transit you often tend to experience what is considered the more ‘negative’ of his manifestations as he points out what area or areas you need to rework’. This is what happens to Rathana, Champika and Udaya.

  14. Ananda-USA Says:

    If Maitripala Sirisena and 20 MPs defect from the SLFP, it could create a HUGE PROBLEM for the Governing UPFA!

    Is this true, or merely a wishful rumor spread by Sri Lanka’s enemies?

    If so, the PATRIOTIC ALLIANCE is truly fractured, and FUTURE National Integrity and Economic Progress of our Motherland is SERIOUSLY at RISK!

    Et tu, Brute’!

    I hope those “PATRIOTIC IDIOTS” and “ASININE CONCERNED CITIZENS” who are undermining the UPFA Government and the President will ENJOY the return of Anarchy and Chaos to the nation after 5 years of peace, tranquility, security and progress. Forget the Vision of becoming the New Wonder of Asia and prepare to usher in another Age of Destruction and Death!

    When bombs start exploding again killing your loved ones, and the nation screeches to a halt. and becomes a basket case AGAIN, PLEASE BLAME YOURSELVES and NOT OTHERS! You have sown the seeds of your own destruction!

    ………………….
    Major split in Sri Lanka’s ruling party is anticipated ahead of presidential election

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    Nov 20, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s political circles anticipate a major split in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), the main constituent party of ruling United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) ahead of the filing of nominations for the presidential elections.

    Media reports quoting United National Party (UNP) parliamentarian Ajith P. Perera said that General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Maithripala Sirisena would quit the party with about 20 leaders of the party.

    MP Perera has said that the UNP will support a common candidate. The common candidate would be either UNP leader Ranil Wickremasinghe or SLFP secretary Maithripala Sirisena, media reports speculated.

    It has also been reported that the government had failed to compel former UPFA Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera to cross over from UNP to join the government.

    Websites handled by Samaraweera have restarted to criticize the government vehemently after a lapse of several weeks.

  15. Ratanapala Says:

    I am confident that whatever decisions JHU have taken are subsequent to much long term thinking. I agree that in the current political scene there aren’t any contenders to President Rajapakse. His weakness is that too much power and Maha Raja has got into his head and his family’s.

    The bigger picture is what is best for the nation. If people in Iraq, Libya and now Syria are given a choice in deciding what is good for their countries they will elect Saddam Hussein, Gaddafi and Azad as their Presidents respectively. What needs to be done is to rein in Rajapakse and get him to understand the forces at play for the good of the nation. So far he has made the wrong choice in selecting his bedfellows. He must know who he is going to sleep with. If he sleeps with the dogs he must know that surely he will wake up with fleas. The unsavoury characters and the Christian Church are not the choice he should be making.

    He must use his dictatorial powers for the good of the nation, while not forgetting the Buddhist majority. Paying lip service to the Mahanayakes who are only good at tying Pirith Nool is not serving Buddhists and the Buddhist establishment.

    We have to thank Ranil for making UNP a born again Christian party. Now the Buddhist UNPers have a good reason not to vote for the Christian UNP. This is all that is necessary to win the elections. Going to sleep with the Christians and inviting the Dictator of the pedophile church is not what the majority of the Sinhala Buddhist want.

    The patriotic forces must persuade the President to see the light and mend his ways. He was made a patriot by the JHU and JVP once. He can be once again. He should not try to cling to power only for the sake of his family and the fleas he is sleeping with!

    note: Do I see Christian moles ganging up against the JHU, Bodu Bala Sena and anything Buddhist?

  16. Nandawathie Says:

    callistus,

    I am here watching only.
    I have Saturn on the 7th ( Thula). Even though Saturn is at highest strength ( Uchcha) ,I feel I am also going through bad period similar to other Buddhist Extremists. I lost the job.

    Please give me some predictions. ( I am serious).
    Dear Moderator please allow this I want to get his advice urgently.

  17. Independent Says:

    Ratnapala,

    It is not easy for the Buddhists in Sri Lanka.

    1. If Buddhist eat meat it is highlighted when one Buddhist complain cattle slaughter.
    2. If a Monk smoke, it is highlighted and video posted by Media.
    3. If one man wearing a robe touches a woman, it is highlighted but Muslims Lebbes can have multiple women and Christian priests can marry.
    4. If one monk shouts and uses rough words it is highlighted as samma vaaca of Buddhists.

    Power base in non-Buddhist. But Buddhists have voting power, even that is overpowered by politicians.

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