President Mahinda Rajapaksa stated the Government is rendering immense work for the religious reconciliation in the country and it is the present peaceful era which promotes brotherhood between all ethnic groups.
The President expressed these views after receiving the ‘Sannasa’ on conclusion of Esala Perahera at a function held at the Presidents House in Kandy yesterday (Aug 11). President handed over awards to those who participated in the Esala perahera at this function.
The President said that everyone has got the opportunity now to live in peace and harmony after passing over a horrendous period. He said it is the objective of the Government is to actively propagate Buddhism in the international arena. With the dawn of peace, the religious activities of all religions can be conducted in any part of the country without fear for life. Therefore, this religious freedom is a symbol of religious coexistence, the President added.
The President also stated that the members of the Maha Sangha are providing the background for directing the people towards the virtuous path. Places of worship pave the way for the spiritual development of the people. A religious environment creates valuable people who are an asset to the country.
The annual Esala festival of historic Sri Dalada Maligawa, the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy concluded successfully with the “water cutting” ceremony held in the Mahaweli River at Getambe at the auspicious time in the early hours of yesterday.
According to traditions, the ‘Perahera Sandeshaya’ was presented to the President Rajapaksa as the Head of State to mark the successful conclusion of the Perahera, by the Diyawadana Nilame of the Sri Dalada Maligawa, Pradeep Nilanga Dela accompanied by the Basnayaka Nilames of the four main Devalayas in the President’s House in Kandy last evening.
At this customary ceremony the President presented certificates of appreciation to the outstanding Kandyan artistes, who participated in the Perahera.
The President also distributed financial assistance to the heads of the temples from the Perahera Trust, to recover part of the costs of the procession met with the respective heads of temples.
Two baby Elephants “Abhaya Raja” and “Mihin Raja” was treated with fruits by the President and the First Lady Madam Shiranthi Rajapaksa. Many other distinguishing guest were also present at this ceremony.