By Indika Sri Aravinda
The Sri Lankan government says it is open for dialogue with Sri Lanka’s gay community, who had this week urged equal rights, but will not take any decision which could hurt the culture of the country.
Prime Minister D.M Jayaratna, when contacted by Daily Mirror online, over the demands made by the Sri Lankan gay community at a public function this week, said the government must first identify what sort of “equal rights” the gay community in Sri Lanka want.
He noted that while matters concerning gay people including gay marriage is acceptable in some western countries the gay community in Sri Lanka will have to define the rights they seek in order for it to be even given consideration.
“It is not wrong for them to seek rights. But we must know what exactly they want. They should communicate that to us and then we will see if it hurts our culture and take a decision accordingly,” the Premier told Daily Mirror online.
Sri Lanka’s gay community on Sunday demanded equal rights and urged the authorities to emulate India which had last year lifted restrictions on the gay community in New Delhi.
Executive Director of Equal Grounds, Rozanne Flemar Caldera, speaking at a fashion show in Colombo on Sunday evening organized by Sri Lanka’s gay community said that people must be treated equally be they gay or straight.
Equal Grounds represents the gay community in Sri Lanka and the fashion show held at the Galadari hotel saw both gay and straight people taking to the stage to portray equality. Several prominent personalities, diplomats and others attended the event. (Daily Mirror online)
malkanthi Friday, 25 June 2010 05:32
Hon Prime Minister, in this issue you have spoken loud and clear with clarity. Bravo!! You are very correct in asking what sort of “equal rights” they want, also it "should not hurt our culture".
Reply : 40 117
citizen1 Friday, 25 June 2010 05:36
Our 'culture' has already been through the wringer. Giving equal rights to the gay community is not going to even make a dent.
Reply : 45 71
SriLankan Friday, 25 June 2010 06:23
By 'Our Culture' I think people refer to Buddhist Culture. It is a known fact that in Buddhism Homosexuality is not considered as a sin or anything. There a lot of other things that do put our culture at stake which are not taken care of.
Reply : 15 101
Thomas Friday, 25 June 2010 05:51
All Gays in Sri Lanka are equal before the Law. What is there to claim equal rights. Do you want the Registrar of Marriages to give a License????????
Reply : 55 48
nz Friday, 25 June 2010 05:56
Aren't they already EQUAL?
Reply : 38 42
nuwan Friday, 25 June 2010 06:09
there are important matters than gay rights ...
Reply : 57 41
chami Friday, 25 June 2010 06:12
Before talking about 'equal' rights, it would be nice to see homosexuality de-criminalized and the offense removed from the penal code as a starting point. I think the equal rights debate is premature.
Reply : 10 74
Aan Balan Friday, 25 June 2010 06:18
WE CAN TAKE UP THIS MATTER WHEN WE ARE SELF SUFFICENT IN FOOD AND CLOTHING.
Reply : 56 27
liveless Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:00
that will be NEVER! lets deal with issues as and when they come up without postponing!
Reply : 3 11
Yas Friday, 25 June 2010 06:32
I think the community just wants the old Victorian Laws which are not practiced anyway, removed. Thats what India did - they decriminalized homosexuality.
Reply : 3 58
Sammy Friday, 25 June 2010 06:33
Let's see what these "equal rights" are, that they are talking about & take the matter thereon. Of course we should not be aping the west or any other country but have to take decisions based on Sri Lankan perspectives.
Reply : 20 12
Sena2 Friday, 25 June 2010 06:35
What are the rights that have been denied to the gay people?If they are thinking of legal sanctity for gay marriages, let them be specific about it without beating about the bush.
Reply : 20 16
SriLankan Friday, 25 June 2010 08:05
The basic right, Being Gay, has been denied, or in other words, is a criminal offense here. I think its very clear what gays need, the equal rights as every other human being.
Reply : 5 53
subash Friday, 25 June 2010 07:15
The need of the day is to do away with any pontential persecution of being gay. So let's decriminalise the offence of being homosexual by scrapping the section 365 of the penal code.
Reply : 6 57
tharanga Friday, 25 June 2010 07:18
no way!! no gay community in sri lanka!!!
Reply : 92 21
Lamaya Friday, 25 June 2010 07:51
It already exists Tharanga.. so we need to accept that and respect how they are.
Reply : 13 66
anura keppetipola Friday, 25 June 2010 07:18
rights of all communities are needed to be addressed and provide satisfactory solutions. I agree de-criminalisation of being gay is a good start.
Reply : 6 53
Hiran Friday, 25 June 2010 07:40
Giving approval for gay marriages will bring loads of gay tourists coming into Sri Lanka to tie the knots. Why dont we consider this option, as it is not going to harm anybody?
Reply : 18 45
agar Friday, 25 June 2010 08:32
hey guys....im a gay....plese give us equal rights ...
Reply : 17 52
senthil Friday, 25 June 2010 09:01
From my point of view, what I feel as equal rights are like in India, they want to respect them as equal citizens in education, jobs and so on. Generally in India, Sri Lanka we name them differently and the way we look at them is with a different point of view. I do agree that we generally say disgusting.
It is difficult for a country like Sri Lanka which is bound to the culture and religion in all three communities.
Lets see the practical implementation on their request.
Reply : 12 21
Mohamed Shafraz Friday, 25 June 2010 16:16
Should not de-criminalize homosexuality!
Reply : 44 7
Sanka-green alliance Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:16
Thinking politically with religious opinions can have series consequences. .
Reply : 1 8
Palitha Heenthotuwa Friday, 25 June 2010 16:21
Homosexuality is a 'mental disease' that should be treated!
Reply : 52 14
liveless Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:04
no palitha - homosexuality is not a mental disorder nor is it a disease.- read the diagnostics manual on mental health and please meet some gay people and talk to them!
Reply : 4 29
Janaka Friday, 25 June 2010 18:34
There are provisions in SL, which outlaw homosexuality.
Reply : 1 12
Nimal Saturday, 26 June 2010 04:38
May be the gays think Sri Lanka has no other problems to think of before this.
Reply : 21 7
bash Saturday, 26 June 2010 06:25
OK OK we can take the mind off the rising cost of living and loss of employment due to the GSP plus and fully focus on the Gay rights issue
Reply : 10 5
Pathirana Saturday, 26 June 2010 06:51
The main root cause for AIDS is Homosexuall. We have enough AIDS victim in Sri Lanka Please. We don't want to spread the this evil culture to this cuntry.
Reply : 28 6
Lanka Atapattu Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:25
No need Any Gay to Sri Lanka .................
Reply : 26 8
Lal Hannadige Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:26
where we heading. are we ruining ourselves
Reply : 19 5
ela Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:40
hey mr.minister is this a big problem in our country? are you going crazy? do some good work benefit for the country
Reply : 8 4
MaPer Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:41
Before we grant equal rights, we need to understand what makes a person a lesbian or homosexual? Is it genetic? If it is not, then they cannot be granted human rights as most religions do not advocate homosexuality. If it were granted, propagation of the human race will be wiped out.
Reply : 20 2
hashan Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:39
propagation of the human race is way too much anyway, maybe this is the genetic control thats needed! Selfish Humans are taking over the entire world and pushing other living animals into small pockets called ''wilderness parks'', whats worse, we think its our right to do that!
Reply : 1 6
Ariya Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:54
Have homosexuals in Sri Lanka kept their activities under check because of the presence of old Victorian laws? Or, have we heard of cases where they were prosecuted in courts of law? The fact of the matter is they have always engaged in their endeavours to the heartful without any impediment or running the risk of being taken to courts. Thus, there is no question of them being harassed or being denied of any rights, as such.
Reply : 16 2
Victim Woman Saturday, 26 June 2010 08:29
I can speak from personal experience about what hhappens when society continues to criminalize gays. The gays conceal their identity and pretend to be heterosexual. Gay men marry women as part of this charade, and the women become unsuspecting victims. I am one. The man I married turned out to be a closet gay and that ruined my marriage and both of us suffered for several years. I know other women who have been thru this experience.
Reply : 0 31
xlntgsob Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:05
Promoting gay culture is outrageous!
Reply : 30 3
Niroshan Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:30
Towards Dharma Rajya.........
Reply : 8 5
SriLankan Sunday, 27 June 2010 04:41
In a perfect Dharma Rajya, There will be equal rights for every being. That is what Lord Buddha preached us.
Reply : 1 20
prasan Saturday, 26 June 2010 10:03
Give them all the rights they ask, the day one gay could deliver a baby from his womb gifted by his partner gay,similar to union between a man & woman.
Reply : 19 4
Dimuthu de Silva Sunday, 27 June 2010 02:53
How ignorant could people be? Root cause of AIDS= Homosexuality. AIDS could be caused by unprotected sex between men and women too. This shows the literacy rate in the country.
Reply : 3 19
queenkuweni Sunday, 27 June 2010 04:27
homosexuality is a "mind set".One doesn't need equality nor rights to hang on to a perverted life style.There are many more pressing issues facing Lankans which is priority.Wouldn't the people of Lanka be more interested in a permanent or temporary solution to the rising cost of living?,a solution to the increased crime rate?the integration of the Tamil community into society in the north?
Reply : 26 1
Nishada perera Sunday, 4 July 2010 13:45
equal rights to all human beings despite their differences are indispensable. we have had all the problems you have mentioned since the day we can hardly remember. societies are prone to change. so we have to give it a go. homosexuality is not a crime or a sin. if so GOD would have never created us. before you put your anger in to words please think twice.
Reply : 0 6
Freewill Saturday, 11 September 2010 12:45
If you know what it is like to be gay, or if you were gay, you will feel what it is like to be prosecuted for something you have no control over and the illogical disgust that's cast on homosexuality fuelled (not entirely) by the criminalisation of it!
Reply : 0 4
Nish Saturday, 25 February 2012 05:01
Most people think being gay is a choice, but its not a choice, thats how you born. Its not an illness. We are still 100s of years behind compare to lots of other countries who accept gay people as normal human beings. I feel sorry for all these men and women who are gay but married just to cover up and suffer the rest of their lives. How many unlucky women are there married to gay men and how many unlucky children out there with a gay father. Give them a chance to be themselves. Life is too short to worry.
Reply : 0 2
Kushantha Sunday, 18 March 2012 08:56
Nish i agree 100% with you.. Being gay is not a bad thing to the culture.. Ape culture eka oya kiyana tharam hondanam oya minimarum ui kudu scene ui wenne naa ne. I see these acts as a western habbit. If people cant accept gays in Sri Lanka can they accept murder and illegal things which are happening in the country? Sri Lankans talk about their proud culture when their own children is doing un lawful things.. Even the people who talk here sons and daughters must be gay or lesbian. They will never say "mom dad i am gay or lesbian" coz of there parents think alot about the culture.. So i think its better let our future generation come out of the box and live free.. It will be hard for them if we give them freedom but with the time being gay will be normal.
Reply : 0 2
San Saturday, 24 October 2015 23:00
I am a pshycology counselor. I come across many school student in the age of 13 to 16 getting addicted to homosexul activities. My analyze is that it had become normalizeed among them and they do it for fun. But they are not borne gays. Find excuses to get some kind of sexual satisfaction. Due to this they loos interest in education. Mentally disterbed and get addicted to drugs smoking and loose respect from the society. They are the future of our country. How can we depend on them. Make sure when you fight for your righats to remember this to change your policies. If you love our mother lanka.I dont judge you. But think vice.
Reply : 0 0
Add commentComments will be edited (grammar, spelling and slang) and authorized at the discretion of Daily Mirror online. The website also has the right not to publish selected comments.