Declare Poson Poya Day as our National Day.
Posted on June 13th, 2022

Dr Sudath Gunasekara Mahanuwara

Every nation, some founded only a few decades ago have a national day in their calendar, celebrated with pomp and glory to mark their nationhood and inspire their people, particularly the younger generation for nation building even if they don’t have any longstanding heritage to commemorate.

But isn’t it a pity and a tragedy too, that we, in spite of the fact   of having an unusually a long and illustrious history of more than 2500 years of a glorious past as a great nation don’t have any national day celebrations as if we are a nation without any history or civilization? The effect of this lethargy has a tremendous impact on nation building as it inhibits all inspirations that should be injected for the younger generation for nation building as a future robust and a vibrant nation in the world.

Talking about national days generally, it may be founding date of the nation or the date of independence, of becoming a republic, of becoming a federation. The national day for every country is often a public holiday. Denmark and the United Kingdom are said to be the only two countries without a national day.

We in this country, while still maintaining blind allegiance to the British Empire that has robbed our national wealth and destroyed the age old heritage, continues to celebrates it on the 4th of February, calling it the day on which we are supposed to have got independence, from British rule although we are still tied down to the colonial clutches of British rule.

In 1972 May 22nd after 24 years of so-called independence from the British yoke, under Sirimavo Bandaranayake’s Government, we declared ourself as an Independent Republic.  Since then we celebrated the Republic Day as the national day ( although it was not called so) on the 22nd  of May  each year up to 1977.  The unpatriotic government that was elected in 1977 again reverted this to Feb 4th the next year. Even the SLFP government that came to power under Mrs Bandaranaike’s own daughter in 1994 not only continued to celebrate feb 4th as the national day but  also invited the aging Crown Prince Charles as the chief guest of the occasion displaying the mental servility inbuilt in her head as the leader of the nation, that is a common trait that has infested the heads of all our political leaders. Her successor Mahinda Rajapaksa who owes his entire political achievements to Mrs B, also continued with the same servility and had the national Day celebration on the 4th pf February. The pro-western UNP Government that followed continued the same slavish mentality and celebrated the national Day on the 4th of feb, calling it the Independence Day, an independence we never got up to date. Nevertheless if our politicians wanted to celebrate independence say as the National day they should have done it more appropriately AT LEAST on the 22nd of May, the day we got real political independence by becoming a fully Independent Republic

Pas for me personally I don’t agree for having the national Day, even on that day as it was only a transitory event of minor importance when we look in retrospect at the line of great events in the annals of this once glorious nation for over a period of over 2500 years.  Of all historical events in nation making including the founding day of the Sinhala Nation in 543 BC I rate the Poson Poya Day dawned on 307 BC as the most important and culturally significant Day in the entire annals of history of this Island nation as, that was the day on which Buddhism was introduced to this nation.  It was the advent of this Great religion on the Poson Poya Day in 307 BC that revolutionized the nationhood of this Island by laying the firm foundation of the Sinhala Buddhist Nation in this world. Thus. a new Nation called the Sinhala Buddhist Nation was born on this Day on this soil under the reign of King Devaanampiyatissa under the noble missionary and blessings of Arahath Mahinda Mahaa Thera.  That pristine nation hood was jealously guarded and effectively protected by our ancestors up to 1505.

There after it was destroyed and vandalized by three colonial powers up to 1948 and by local lackeys of the former colonial masters since then up to date

I have been agitating for years demanding the governments to declare Poson Poya Day as the National Day of this Nation for the past so many years. But it has fallen on deaf years of all Governments. Nobody took any notice of that solitary call. It is no wonder that the governments and the general public takes no interest in such patriotic calls as we have ceased to be a patriotic nation long time ago thanks to the nefarious anti national activities of three successive Western colonial invaders. Portuguese, Dutch and finally, the British as from 1815 onwards up to 1948.

Isn’t it a big tragedy that none of our political leaders who were supposed to have ruled this country since the so-called independence in 1948 appears to have known that this country had a well- developed nationhood millennia before most of the present- day nations were even found?

 I wish that the government that will be there next year at least will declare the Poson Poya Day as the National Day of this Island Nation.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.



Copyright © 2023 All Rights Reserved. Powered by Wordpress