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Rathna thero's fast ... political?   Uproar at 'Pohottuwa' meeting -- Rathana thero leaves!


Rathna thero's fast ... political? 
Uproar at 'Pohottuwa' meeting -- Rathana thero leaves!

Sometime ago member of parliament, Athuraliye Rathana thero engaged in a fast in front of Dalada Maligawa insinuating that minister Badiudeen should tender his resignation on behalf of the country and religion and that he would not hesitate to engage in a risky move. 

In order to render support in this connection, Sinhala Buddhist shops etcetera were closed voluntarily in the city of Kandy and a number of other towns and people had rocked to the centre of the cities in protest. Finally as an outcome of the protest, not only Badiudeen but other Muslim ministers tendered
their resignation and this incident created criticisms which sprang up that it connoted signs of religious discrimination in the country. 

Rathana thero in fact was motivated for this course of action at a moment a no-confidence motion was prepared against minister Badiudeen in parliament. Because of this allround procedure of action, an image that Rathana thero was someone who took responsibility over Sinhala Buddhists was observed. Whatever it is, though its objectives were at first glance successful, because of the fact that all Muslim ministers moved out from their portfolios as a strategic move, critics are of the view that Badiudeen alone being subjected to stigma actually was prevented. This political phenomenon came out once again in the United People's Front Alliance meeting under opposition leader, Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa. 

It is reported that a heated argument has flared up between Athuraliye Rathana thero and Kandy district MP Mr. Ananda Aluthgamage. MP Mr. Ananda Aluthgamage has stated that in order to throw the no-confidence motion brought against minister Rishad Badiudeen by the opposition was thrown under the carpet by the action of fasting to death by Athuraliye Rathana thero and thus a congenial environment was created under such circumstances. The minister has further said that because of the government taking advantage of the situation had missed the no-confidence motion and that an attempt was made accordingly to prove that MP Mr. Rishad Badiudeen was free of guilt. 

On that instant Athuraliye Rathana thero has responded saying that according to the prevailing situation in the country time was ripe and action was taken by himself and that it was taken on good faith when just at that moment when the thero was making his response, MP Mr. Aluthgamage had risen to the occasion saying that because of the fast unto death opportunities available to defeat the government were missed and other MPs too joined in by bringing in points against the thero's fast, ultimately resulting in an uproar. 

For the purpose of putting a stop to this argument, opposition leader Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa too had to mediate. The opposition leader then has said that it was of no importance to talk about past episodes and what has to be done for the future should be discussed instead. Simultaneously Athuraliye Rathana thero has gone into a temper and has left the hall protesting and has even dismissed the request made by opposition leader. In the context of this incident, a talk has once more come to the open as to whether the fast by Rathana thero was something launched for the country and religion or is political.


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