By Premalal Wijeratne
A group of over 300 persons including Buddhist monks protested opposite the Piliyandala Police Station, for around three hours yesterday. The protest was staged in disapproval of the arrest of a set of parents,who had abducted a group of persons allegedly involved in unethical conversion of Buddhists.
There was tension in the entire Piliyandala area due to the protest.
The General Secretary of the Bodubala Sena Organization, Galagodaatte Gnanasara Thera, stated that the protest was called off subsequent to the assurance given to them by DIG Sumith Edirisinghe, that he would find a solution to the issue after submitting the details of the incident to the Kesbewa Magistrate’s Court.
The parents who were arrested had apprehended the pastor and seven others who they claim had instigated a young girl to influence their son into leaving the Buddhist faith and joining another religion, and even causing damage to Buddhist statues. The parents had handed over the pastor and seven others to the Dehiwala Police.
According to a senior police officer, the pastor and group had been later released, and the parents had been arrested and produced before the Kesbawa Magistrate’s Court and remanded.
Galagodaatte Gnanasara Thera, also stated that there are several organizations around the country engaged in attempts to disgrace the Buddhist faith. He further stated that they will be monitoring the action taken by the police in this regard.
When asked about the incident, DIG Sumith Edirisinghe, stated that Senior DIG Anura Senanayake, had also intervened in this matter in order to resolve it amicably and impartially.
The police media unit stated that the 119 emergency service had received a complaint that seven persons including a pastor had been abducted. The complaint lodged stated that a young couple who had married recently had been engaged in a prayer meeting at their residence, and the groom’s parents who disapproved of their son’s involvement had barged in and hauled the pastor and seven others who were conducting the prayer meeting, over to the Dehiwala Police.
The Police Media Unit stated that the young couple concerned had expressed willingness to drop charges and come to an amicable settlement with the parents who were involved in the abduction.
They had withdrawn the complaint against the parents, by filing a motion in the Kesbawa Magistrate’s Court yesterday.
Therefore, DIG Sumith Edirisinghe stated, measures will be taken to release the remanded parents.