“I warmly greet all Sri Lankan Hindus on the occasion of Maha Shiva Rathri, the festival in honour of Lord Shiva,” President Mahinda Rajapaksa said in a message to mark Maha Shiva Rathri.
The message: “Hindus the world over celebrate this holy day by fasting and keeping a night-long vigil at temples, lighting lamps, making offerings to Lord Shiva and chanting hymns in his praise. Maha Shiva Rathri symbolizes the constant efforts by humans to dispel the darkness of ignorance with the light of knowledge, as well as achieve unity and harmony, both in their lives and in society at large.
“Sri Lankan Hindus have been co-existing with followers of other religions in brotherhood and harmony for centuries.
With the peace that now prevails throughout the land they are free to celebrate this important religious event in a true spirit of brotherhood and solemnity.
“May their prayers this Maha Shiva Rathri strengthen their well-being as well as the unity and cohesion of all communities in the country.
“I wish all Sri Lankan Hindus the joyous blessings of Maha Shiva Rathri. May their aspirations for a better tomorrow come true.”