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Buddhist clergy invites LTTE for joint program to build 10,000 houses

by Chamikara Weerasinghe, Lanka Daily News, Dec 30, 2004

Colombo, Sri Lanka -- Members of the Buddhist clergy yesterday invited the LTTE to join in a programme launched by them to build 10,000 houses destroyed in Sunday's tidal wave.

The members of Sangha made this invitation at a press conference held at the Asapuwa at Sulaiman Terrace, where they announced the launching of a program to build 10,000 houses for tsunami victims. They called upon the LTTE to rally with them in this effort.

Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda Thera said that a natural disaster in the form of killer waves had punished a nation for long being divided among themselves.

Explaining the program, Ven. Gnanananda Thera said they had established the Maha Karuna Foundation with a view to build houses for the affected.

Ven. Pitiduwe Siridhamma and Kolonnawe Sumangala Theras were also present at the press conference. He also pleaded with religious missions not to use this disaster an opportunity to spread their religion.

"Instead, I request members of all religious faiths to extend their loving kindness to the affected at this hour," he said.

People can help us build 10,000 houses for the affected victims by making their contributions to Account Number 107 060 000 017 at Sampath Bank. Relief aid may also be given to Polgahawela Mahemevuna Asapuwa, Pittugala Amawatura Asapuwa, Maharagama Dharmayatanaya, Bellantara, Pannipitiya Devram Vehera, Sulaiman Terrace and Sambodhi Viharaya at Wijerama Mawatha.

Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thera speaking on this occasion said that they decided to build houses for the victims as it will deem to become one of the most important aspect of relief once the immediate relief measures have done its part.

"We are ready to go with the alms bowl from house to house to collect what may be needed to carry out our project to help the affected," he said.

"We expect the support of the LTTE since we plan to build houses for victims not only in the southern regions, but also in Jaffna and other areas in the north-east," he said.

Ven. Dhammaloka Thera asked the public skip one meal and spend it to help the Tsunami victims.

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