Last Updated : 22-08-2014 03:12

 

 
 

Tourists who took mocking pics given suspended sentence

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Three French nationals - two women and a man were today sentenced to six months rigorous imprisonment suspended for five years and fined Rs.1,500 each for taking photographs by possing in an unbecoming manner beside the Buddha statues at the Embekka Devale.  

Galle Chief Magistrate U.S. Kalansooriya sentenced the three suspects Christina Margarita, George and Emile when they were produced in courts by the Galle police.
The three tourists had visited the Embekka Devale in Kandy and posed for photographs while embracing and kissing a Buddha statue. Thereafter they had gone to Galle and had given the photographs to be printed to a studio in Galle. On seeing the photographs the studio manager had informed the Galle police.

The tourists had been arrested by police personnel led by SSP Vaas Gunawardena.
Considering an appeal submitted by the lawyer appearing for the three French nationals, their cameras and their passports were returned but the offensive photographs were destroyed. (D.G. Sugathapala and Krishan J. Jayaruk)

 
 

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Comments 

 
-160+104 # Varuna 2012-08-21 21:11
Very good. These people think only their religion should exist.
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-102+64 # Sapumal Bandara 2012-08-22 06:23
Because we Buddhists practice tolerance, people who practice other religions take us for granted.
Try this type of vulgar behaviour in the Vatican. or in Mecca?
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-3+1 # Dilendra Fernando 2012-08-24 06:50
Buddhists do practice tolerance, but there arent any Buddhists in SL. Do we at least know the meaning of the word 'tolerance?'
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-0+1 # Yo Yo 2012-08-21 21:27
Thaliban Buddhist state in the making :-(
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-19+63 # Jack in the Box 2012-08-22 01:50
I guess they wont be EVER coming back to our Miracle of Asia.... We should clearly instruct foreign nationals not to take photo's that are improper , rather than putting them through our great judicial system...
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-8+11 # Managala 2012-08-22 19:39
Do ppl need to tell how to behave in religious places ? that is common sense i believe
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-25+32 # if thesangaralingham 2012-08-22 02:13
disgrace to you all. learn etiqutte manners before leaving. arrogance deceitful conduct.
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-1+0 # Nodrog 2012-08-22 06:02
More 'unbecoming' things are happening to disgrace Buddhism like monks caught drunk or scolding people in filth. But we still try to show the world how holy we are by over-reacting for these minor incidents.
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-1+0 # Lobo 2012-08-22 06:02
So whats wrong with embracing and kissing a holy statue? Christians and Hindus also embrace and kiss their holy statues. Time our Buddhist population grew up and stopped being so insecure about. It's what in you and how you lead your life that matters and nothing can take that away from you.
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-27+98 # Kalu Sooriya 2012-08-22 06:21
There is no real point in giving them a harsh punishment like imprisonment. We all make silly mistakes. They should be repair minded and fined or make them to give donation to charitable organisation.
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-0+0 # Sumanadasa 2012-08-22 07:00
I see some pathetic comments. The gist which is missing here is ...

- didn't any single one notice when these photos were captured in Embekke Kandy
- we need to ensure proper guidelines are displayed at cultural sites while security staff present to avoid similar acts
- what IF these tourists never walked in to the studio in "Galle". In this digital era, it is possible to upload these pics and geo-tag straight from Embekke itself

Its time we get our acts together and processes ironed out ...
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-58+37 # ravi seneviratne 2012-08-22 08:34
they should have been deported immediatly.
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-8+78 # Sri Lankan 2012-08-22 09:31
Punishing these people is not solution.. We should take measures to educate foreign nationals who is visiting sri lanka. their don't have understanding in our religions, believes, culture...
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-55+26 # Sri Radharakshitha 2012-08-22 09:38
This understanding is already given to them via tourist handbook and guides. It is only through strict punishment that these incidents can be prevented in the future
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-15+48 # Clifford David 2012-08-22 10:24
More worst things happening in the country today, open your eyes and see whats going around and what's the punishment of those who were involved
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-14+16 # Another Mervin Silva 2012-08-22 14:06
Fine of 1,500/- is a joke - it should be 150,000/-

But why destroying the photos by the Police??? - highly suspicious. Things could be reversed due to unavailability of the evidence.
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-20+28 # lankalion 2012-08-22 14:47
This is ridiculous! There is nothing wrong in hugging and kissing a Buddha statute. Lord Buddha, Buddha statues and the Buddhist religion are not exlusive to any country, group or person and to say or determine so is an insult and denigration of this great philosophy! It's ridiculous how in Sri Lanka, the great, tolerant teacher has been turned into a dictatorial, megalomanic god! Lord Buddha is increasingly looking like Prabakharan! Clearly people at the devale where these pictures were being taken did not find any particular offence with what the tourists were doing. It is of absolutely no business of the photo developer to have done so. I can also see nothing in Sri Lanka's law books to punish or criminalise behaviour like kissing and hugging a Buddha statute! Shame on us Buddhists and Sri Lankans to sit and idly watch our teacher being turned into a Prabhakaran!
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-20+15 # Paul 2012-08-22 15:29
Very well said Lankalion!
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-10+9 # Managala 2012-08-22 19:47
Better you dont comment on thing you dont know about
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-16+21 # Sri Radharakshitha 2012-08-22 15:53
"There is nothing wrong in hugging and kissing a Buddha statute" These definitely not the words of a Buddhist!
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-8+6 # Joshua 2012-08-22 20:20
Whats the problem in hugging and kissing the statue of a human being???
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-2+6 # Managala 2012-08-23 09:07
It is a offence mocking lord buddha that is buddhist respect and faith.
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-14+19 # Kamal 2012-08-22 16:02
Mocking any religious beliefs is bad. Everyone should respect each other's religions. I found out that the galle studio manager was a MUSLIM. Thank you brother for respecting Buddhism.
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-7+16 # Max 2012-08-22 16:44
first of all, Rs 1500 fine would be nothing for them. Secondly, they will never come to so called Miracle or Asia ever again. Thirdly, cant expect a tourist to know a country's cultural stuff. So there should be boards & signs stating not to take pics or dont take offensive pics!
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-21+15 # Jesus 2012-08-22 17:18
Obivoiously the tourist will make fun..because god cannot be in brick form
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-8+7 # ishi 2012-08-22 20:14
Exactly, how come the god needs protection and justice from the human being???
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