Govt will strive to protect Buddha Sasana – President | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

Govt will strive to protect Buddha Sasana – President

President Maithripala Sirisena handing over a request to UN Resident Coordinator Ms.Hanaa Singer seeking World Heritage recognition to the ‘Tripitaka’ - the sacred canon of Theravada Buddhism, written in  Pali, at the Dalada Maligawa premises yesterday.
President Maithripala Sirisena handing over a request to UN Resident Coordinator Ms.Hanaa Singer seeking World Heritage recognition to the ‘Tripitaka’ - the sacred canon of Theravada Buddhism, written in Pali, at the Dalada Maligawa premises yesterday.

President Maithripala Sirisena has ensured that the Government will strive to nurture and protect the Buddha Sasana in keeping with the Constitution of the country. The President was speaking at the Tripitakabhivandana national event to submit a request letter to UNESCO representatives seeking World Heritage recognition to the Tripitaka, at the Dalada Maligawa premises yesterday.

“We declared a Tripitakabhivandana special week and in January the Tripitaka was declared a national heritage,” the President said adding that the Government is launching a program and embarking on a noble deed to make the Tripitaka, a world heritage.

According to President Sirisena, Sri Lanka should be proud that it has protected the Tripitaka from time immemorial thereby safeguarding this national heritage. “We have now initiated the process to list the Tripitaka as a UNESCO world heritage,” he said. The President said that even world-renowned scholars have identified the Tripitaka as an outstanding volume of religious tomes.

“There were negative views expressed when the Government took steps to declare the Tripitaka as a national heritage,” he said adding that, however, instead we as a nation should push forward to highlight the exceptional value of Buddhism and the Buddha Sasana. He also said that some have argued that the Tripitaka does not deserve to be declared as a world heritage, but that various countries from time to time have taken steps to preserve the value of Tripitaka, and that in this context he referred to the speech by Burmese President in 1994.

“Despite Germany not being a Buddhist country, the religious tome has even been translated to German” the President said adding that Sri Lanka has been offered a copy of the translated version of the Tripitaka by the German Embassy. According to the President, he believes that the move to declare the Tripitaka a world heritage should be done with great dedication. “Many countries including India have offered their backing in the endeavour,” Sirisena said. The event was also attended by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and other ministers and officials.

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