Respect your National Anthem, respect your Nation. It is the responsibility of every Sri Lankan to respect nation's symbols, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said.
Participating at the birth centenary celebrations of National Anthem composer Ananda Samarakoon at Temple Trees yesterday, President said nation's symbols such as the national flag should invoke feelings of pride, patriotism and belonging to a great nation.
President Rajapaksa also emphasized that patriotism should not be confined to mere words.
Paying tribute to Samarakoon, President Rajapaksa said that he is an immortal musician who would live in the hearts of all Sri Lankans for eternity.
"His music brought freshness and sweetness to our weary lives. His lyrics were an adornment to our language. Whilst taking Sinhala music towards a new vista, he gave his fans joy and happiness," the President added. President Rajapaksa said that in addition to his skills in music, he was also an exceptionally gifted painter. President Rajapaksa said that Samarakoon was instrumental in introducing a musical tradition of our own by creating melodies in line with the traditions of the land.