The election of the Basnayake Nilame of the Ruhunu Maha Kataragama Devala is scheduled to be held soon after the general election. A senior official of the Buddhist Affairs Department said the election of the Basnayake Nilame would be held most probably in mid August.
Actg. Basnayake Nilame Dilruwan Rajapakse has been holding the office for three years since 2018.
The 17 electors include the eleven Divisional Secretaries in the Monaragala District and the Chief Incumbents of Kirivehera Rajamaha Vihara, Sri Abhinawarama Temple, Wedihitikanda Temple, Kataragama Mahasen Rajamaha Vihara, Actg.Basnayake Nilame of the Kataragama Devala, and Basnayake Nilame of the Kotabowa Kuda Kataragama Devala in Bibile. In 1920 the British rulers had abolished the tradition of holding the office of Basnayake Nilame by heritage and introduced the election by vote of Divisional Revenue Officers (DROs) which post is held at present by Divisional Secretaries.