15 Questions to a Presidential Candidate seeking Sinhala Buddhist votes
When Sinhala Buddhists speak of existential fears, there are justifiable and valid reasons for doing so. Historically, all of Buddhist territory in Central Asia such as e.g. Afghanistan, Gandhara, Kashmir, Bactria, Samarkand, Bukhara, Tukharistan, Bamiyan, Kabul, Sindh, Balkh, Swat Valley, and South Asia such as Bangladesh, Buddhist India, Maldives, and South East Asia such as Indonesia, Malaya during the last one thousand three hundred years have been lost to the sword and Buddhists either killed or converted. Theravada Buddhist nations, for example, Myanmar (formerly Burma), Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and even Sri Lanka, today are fighting to survive under creeping incursions shrouded by liberal, deceptive slogans such as multi – culturalism and reconciliation, to mislead the Sinhala people. Ethnic and Religious harmony prevailed in the country under tolerant Buddhist Kings right through our history, until European colonial rulers beginning with the Portuguese commenced their ‘Divide and Rule’ policies in 1505.
The historic events that lost Buddhist territory find eerie similarities to the current wave of incursions that are claiming Buddhist heritage sites e.g. Sri Pada, turning Buddhist historic places e.g. Buddha Gaya in India, Maha Nuwara (Kandy), Anuradhapura, Dambulla to multicultural sites and towns with Mosques proliferating by the day using screaming loudspeakers disturbing the serene atmosphere in the citadels of Buddhism, confiscating Buddhist temple lands and incrementally achieving a globalist objective using terrorism like their ancestors did in other Asian countries.
This strategy has been made very clear by those that carried out Easter Sunday mass murders. Therefore, any national leader expecting to come to power on the strength of the Buddhist Sinhala votes must first agree to protect the majority group that built the country’s historic and unique Buddhist civilization that has lasted for over 2000 years.
The Sinhalese have only this country to call their own and identify themselves with. They lack the luxury and privilege to link their ethnic and religious identity to territories (aka traditional homelands) in the Middle East, South India or Europe.
Given these realities, we ask 15 simple questions for a future Presidential candidate to answer.
If you want to be President of Sri Lanka ….
- Will you recognize Sri Lanka as one indivisible unitary country?
- Will you ensure that no ethno-religious ghetto areas exist & take steps to ensure all such areas are open for all citizens to live in, to ensure ethnic harmony?
- Will you give pride of place to Sinhala Buddhists (the Bhumiputras) who built this nation and who have to be recognized and acknowledged for that singular service, by establishing a Buddhist Social Order based on Ahimsa (non – violence), Metta (loving kindness) and Karuna (compassion)for all living beings?
- Will you take steps to ensure that one Law applies to all citizens in line with Article 12 of the National Constitution where every individual is equal before the law? This means that all special laws granting separate privileges to members of an ethno-religious community are repealed. There can be no parallel laws and certainly NO shariah laws (full or part)
- Will you ensure that there is only one criminal law for all citizens/no parallel criminal laws? The existing provisions in the Penal Code against the offense of Bigamy must apply across the board, without excepting one individual, creed or adherents of a religion? In other words, there must be Zero tolerance of the shameful medieval practice of Polygamy.
- Will you take steps to stop use of the name of a religion for trade purposes, banking, food, commercial activities, clothing, political parties, etc. that contributes to further division of the society?
- Will you embark on developing a Population policy to ensure that no ethnic or religious group use the freedom to procreate in a competitive manner to steal a march over other communities and increase their numbers by stealth with a medium to long term strategy to take hold of the political power of the country? Limit the number of spouses to one and number of children to three children maximum.
- Will you ensure that mechanisms are in place to stop external funds going direct to any ethno-religious group? Any bilateral ties mean countries that fund programs do so for Sri Lankan citizens and the govt has to allocate funds proportionately.
- Will you place mechanisms to monitor & take actions against any community disproportionately promoting their faith across Sri Lanka? In other words, 10% of the country’s population belonging to a particular faith should be entitled to only 10% of the total number of the places of worship in the country. No group should be allowed to change the cultural and religious landscape of the country which is quint essentially Buddhist since historic times. Historic Buddhist centres and towns such as Anuradhapura, Kandy, Polonnaruwa, Dambulla, Mihintale, Mahiyangana, and the like must be protected such that the historic Buddhist character of these sites is not allowed to be rapidly changed with constructions of another religion to envelope and mask the pre – existing Buddhist sites and cultural atmosphere. There must be a moratorium on Mosque proliferation.
- Will you ensure all public servants and Ministers promulgate strict regulations on public building architecture, residential architecture, new places of worship registrations, monitoring new religious cultures etc.?
- Will you take steps to revive the Animal Friendly Cultural Heritage we had in the pre-colonial era and enact the Animal Welfare Bill prepared by the Law Commission without any further delay? And put a stop to the barbaric practice of Animal Sacrifice which has soiled the Buddhist image of the country.
- Will you appoint a Presidential Commission of Inquiry into the conduct of the Mass Media ( Press, TV etc.) along the lines of the K.D. De Silva Press Commission (1964)– covering its role in creating disharmony, hate speech against Buddhism, and Buddhist leaders and Maha sangha, column coverage by ethnic ratio, employment policies, media ethics?
- Will you appoint a Presidential Commission to evaluate the issues that have affected disharmony in order to devise a national policy commencing from Education to all other areas so that peaceful coexistence will not be subject to only words and Buddhist ethical values are upheld and applied in all areas of administration and education?
- Will you take steps to ensure that the National Anthem be in one language, National Flag retains the imprint of the flag that flew at the time of the handing over of the Kingdom of Kandy to the British in 1815? And History is made a compulsory subject in all schools and Patriotic values are imbibed in children from the time of pre- school?
- Will you ensure that any denigration of Buddhism, Buddhist practices, National Flag, Sinhala culture in the mainstream and social media is subject to strict curtailment?
If you assure above, you have won our vote & probably will become the NEXT PRESIDENT OF SRI LANKA.
Shenali D. Waduge