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Incident at Lingaraja Temple-- Can’t understand why I was refused entry: Minister

2 April 2018 04:05 am - 14     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Minister of Buddha Sasana Gamini Jayawickrama Perera referring to the incident where he was not allowed to enter the Lingaraja Temple in Odisha, said yesterday that he does not understand why this happened to him.

Speaking to the Daily Mirror, the minister said he was forced to face this embarrassment during a tour organised by the Kalinga International Foundation at Bhubaneswar on March 16.

Minister Perera explained that the temple authorities had not allowed him to enter the temple stating that he was not a Hindu.

“Lingaraja is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva and is one of the oldest temples in Bhubaneswar, the capital of the East Indian state of Odisha. I wanted to visit the place as a devout Buddhist as the place is also historically important to Buddhists.

“The temple is linked to the time of King Ashoka, the great Indian emperor who spread the Dhamma around the world. Arahath Mahinda, who is depicted in Buddhist sources as being responsible for bringing Buddhism to Sri Lanka was also from Odisha. Therefore, the temple is historically important to Buddhists,” he said.

Minister Perera explained that he was surprised by the incident as hundreds of Lankan devotees including Buddhists visit Hindu temples in Tirupati and Kerala.

Minister Perera said that it was an embarrassing situation as the Sri Lanka High Commissioner to India was also among the delegation that visited the temple with him.

The minister said that when he brought up the embarrassment faced by him at the famous temple in the course of the conference in Bhubaneswar former Indian foreign secretary and the Chairman of the Kalinga International Foundation Lalit Mansingh had apologised for what had taken place and assured that incidents such as this would not occur again.

The Lingaraja temple is maintained by the Temple Trust Board and the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and while the temple compound is not open to non-Hindus there is a viewing platform beside the wall offering a good view of the main exteriors. (Thilanka Kanakarathna)

  Comments - 14

  • Peter van Dyke Monday, 02 April 2018 08:33 AM

    Probably they did not want politicians to pray for power and may be pleaded for help to win no-confidence motions, within their holy place.

    Scooby Doo Monday, 02 April 2018 09:46 AM

    You were refused it because you are a BUDDHIST. come on its high time for you to worship one GOD. There cannot be many presidents for a country or many principals for a school, there can be only one. Same like that if you believe in God you have to admit that there's only one God. food for thought.

    Ka Monday, 02 April 2018 10:21 AM

    Your name (Scooby-Doo) gives a very good picture of you! Ha ha!!

    Scooby Doo Monday, 02 April 2018 10:32 AM

    Ka kaa kaaa yours too hah ha. Tit for Tat

    Unchikun Monday, 02 April 2018 12:21 PM

    Yes, there is only one God, and that is ones self.

    kingsley Wijesinhe Monday, 02 April 2018 10:14 AM

    Embarrassment could have been avoided if the High Commissioner had taken the trouble to find out beforehand whether non-Hindus are allowed to enter the temple. He could then have advised the Minister not to go.

    Aruni Monday, 02 April 2018 10:15 AM

    We can not understand why you tried to prevent us who live in the biggest Therawada Buddhist State celebrating the Wesak Day with Pandals whereas your government sponsored for worlds tallest Christmas Tree!-

    Umeesha Monday, 02 April 2018 10:31 AM

    May be they saw you eating beef and consuming alcohol.

    BuffaloaCitizen Monday, 02 April 2018 10:46 AM

    Majority of Sinhalese Buddhists consume alcohol and meat.

    Sunil Monday, 02 April 2018 11:47 AM

    It’s good that our arrogant useless politicians are knocked of their high horse just like another Minister that was refused a US visa recently.

    Unchikun Monday, 02 April 2018 11:58 AM

    You reap what you sow! As a Buddhist why do you need to visit Kovils. I do not consider you as a man following the Buddhist philosophy.

    Summa Monday, 02 April 2018 08:59 PM

    Hats off to Kovil's administration. Well done. Likewise in Sri Lanka too, all politicians should be banned from all religious places.

    Athacolla Monday, 02 April 2018 11:59 AM

    Should the Budhasassna minister be a lay budhist should the person instead be a senior Budhist priest. Scooby Doo please keep off the forum the single God concept ????look at the world now.

    Bhagvaan Monday, 02 April 2018 08:58 PM

    Anbe Sivam!

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