By Norman Palihawadana
President of the Methodist Church of Sri Lanka, Rev. Asiri P. Perera, yesterday, criticized the police for their inaction as regards an attack on a Methodist Centre in Koombichchankulam, Anuradhapura, on Palm Sunday.
Rev. Perera said that Palm Sunday was an important religious ceremony and that he was present when the incident took place.
“There were people gathered near the centre armed with sticks and stones. I got out of my car and wished them a happy New Year.’ But they threatened me and obstructed me. Instead of confronting them, I entered the centre and prayed with the devotees. Then the troublemakers pelted stones and for about 45 minutes and harassed us. They then locked the gates and we were stuck in the centre, I called the Police who came and released us and got us out. However although those who harassed us were there, the police did not arrest them. The perpetrators were not even questioned.”Perera said that they had lodged a complaint with the police and expected the police to take the necessary action against the culprits. “Our devotees can no longer use the site.”
A senior officer, attached to Anuradhapura police, said that a complaint has been lodged that an unidentified group of people had pelted the Methodist Centre with stones when around 12 devotees were reciting the hosanna. He said there had been complaints that a lot of noise emanated from the place.”