Maha Bodhi attack: Sri Lanka asks India for security of monks

Source : IANS
Last Updated: Tue, Jan 25, 2011 18:45 hrs

Colombo: Sri Lanka on Tuesday urged India to provide security to all its pilgrims visiting Chennai, a day after an attack on the Maha Bodhi Society Temple there in which two Lankan Buddhist monks were injured.

Sri Lankan High Commissioner to India Prasad Kariyawasam met Tamil Nadu's Chief Secretary S. Malathi in Chennai and discussed the the welfare of Buddhist monks who were injured in the attack, an official statement said.

'The relevant Tamil Nadu state government authorities were immediately contacted and were requested to take necessary action to ensure security to the Maha Bodhi Centre and other Sri Lankan institutions and establishments in Chennai,' Sri Lanka's foreign office said in a statement.

Sri Lanka's external affairs ministry has also taken up the matter with the Indian government through the Indian High Commission in Colombo.

The Indian High Commission has assured Colombo that a full investigation will be carried out into the incident and said that two suspects have already been taken into custody.

The high commission also assured the ministry that necessary action would be taken to ensure the safety and welfare of the Maha Bodhi Centre and other Sri Lankan institutions and establishments in Tamil Nadu, said Sri Lanka's foreign office.

An unidentified group, consisting of 10-15 people, attacked the Sri Lanka Maha Bodhi Centre in Egmore, Chennai around 9 p.m. on Monday.

Three Buddhist monks, namely Kumburugamuwe Vajira Nayaka Thero, the Chancellor of Sabaragamuwa University, Samitha Thero of the Maha Bodhi Centre in Chennai and Nepalaye Maithree Thero, a Nepali national residing at the Maha Bodhi Centre at that time, sustained minor injuries.

The injured were immediately rushed to the Mercury Hospital in Egmore where they were treated and subsequently discharged.