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Several Buddhist religious events at tsunami welfare centres

Lanka Daily News, Jan 26, 2005

Colombo, Sri Lanka -- On the instructions of the President various religious programs are being conducted at welfare centres housing displaced persons to provide mental peace and solace to them.

Under this program several Buddhist religious events have been organised within the next few days with the active participation of reputed dhamma preachers, said the office of the President in a press release issued yesterday.

A Sadaham Yatra Daham Charika (tour) program consisting Seth Pirith chanting and Dhamma discussions will be held from Kalutara to Tissamaharama from January 26 to 29 covering all welfare centres and viharayas and dagobas on the way.

The leading Bhikkhus participating in the Sadaham Yatra will be Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda Thera, Ven. Uduwe Dhammaloka Thera, Ven. Kolonnawe Sumangala Thera, Ven. Pitiduwe Siri Dhamma Thera and Ven. Harispattuwe Ariyawansalankara Thera.

The office of the President, Prime Minister's office, District and Divisional Secretaries and NGOs will organise these programs while police led by DIG Southern Province will assist them.

Under this program 70 Muslims of both sexes have been trained to visit the affected areas on a voluntary basis and provide welfare and counselling service to displaced Muslims. The training was given by a group of intellectuals.

These trainees conducted counselling services at welfare centres in Kalmunai, Hambantota, Muttur, Kinniya and Trincomalee from January 21 to 25.

The Sadaham Yathra programme from January 26 to 29 will be conducted according to the following agenda:

The Kalutara District programme coordinated by District Secretary Ravi Dissanayake and SSP Gunasekera begins at 8 a.m. on 26th from opposite the Kalutara Bodhiya for religious observances at Pushparamaya Viharaya, Malegoda from 10 am to 11 am.

Galle District programme organised by DIG D. W. Prathapasinghe and coordinated by District Secretary P. Hevavitharana will begin at Diviyagala Aranya Senasana on 27th at 8 a.m. and will reach Revatha Maha Vidyalaya, Balapitiya at 10 a.m.

Another programme begins at 8 a.m. on the same day at Gamini Vidyalaya, Ambalangoda to reach Nindana Maha Vidyalaya, Mitiyagoda at 10 a.m.

The 3rd programme will begin on the same day at 8 a.m. at Telwatta Raja Maha Viharaya, Meetiyagoda to reach Jananandaramaya, Hikkaduwa at 10 a.m.

A fourth programme will be conducted on the same day at 8 a.m. at Sri Buddhasinharamaya, Makuluwa, Galle, to reach Irugaldevalaya, Habaraduwa at 10 a.m.

At 4 p.m., a special pinkama will be held at the Galle Town Hall grounds with the participation of all bhikkhus.

Matara district - Co-ordination Ven. Kegalle Ratanasara Thera, DIG (Southern Province), D. W. Prathapasinghe and Matara GA Gamini Jayasekera.

January 28 - Matara district: 8 a.m.: Agrabodhi Purana Raja Maha Viharaya, Weligama, Weeratungaramaya, Madihe, Jayabodhi Viharaya Gandara, and Sri Saugatharamaya Kottegoda; 10 a.m.: Badugoda Raja Maha Viharaya Mirissa, Kitulewela Raja Maha Viharaya Matara, Belawatta Ashrama Viharaya and Minikirula Raja Maha Viharaya Nilwella; 4 p.m.: Special pinkama with the participation of all bhikkhus at the Matara Bodhi.

January 29 - Hambantota district: 8 a.m.: Walukaramaya, Kudawella; 10 a.m.: Vajiragiri Viharaya, Tangalle; 8 a.m. Hungama Vijayaba National School; 10 a.m.: Hathagala Raja Maha Viharaya; 8 a.m. Girihanduwa Raja Maha Viharaya; 10 a.m.: Godawaya Raja Maha Viharaya;

8 a.m.: Bimbarama Viharaya; 10 a.m.: Mirijjavila Samudraramaya; 8 a.m.: Tissa Kirinda Raja Maha Viharaya.

A special pinkama will be held at 4 p.m. at the Tiss Raja Maha Viharaya with the participation of all Bhikkus of Hambantota.

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