By Tenzin Monlam
image of Irida Lankadeepa with the section of Dalai Lama
DHARAMSHALA, January 9: A leading Sri Lankan daily, Irida Lankadeepa
, has stopped the weekly publication of Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s autobiography ‘My Land and My People’ following pressure from Chinese Embassy in Colombo.
Prasanna Sanjeewa Thennakoon, Editor of the section told Tibet.net that the management instructed him to hold the article ‘due to pressure from the Chinese Embassy’.
So far the newspaper has published the Sinhalese translation of the autobiography thrice from November 19 to December 3, 2017. Owing to the pressure, the weekly section has been halted since December 10, which was celebrated as the Nobel Peace Prize Day by Tibetans worldwide.
“They published three articles on three consecutive Sundays and members of our Society were also greatly inspired by this because we have been working to promote Buddhist brotherhood between Sri Lankans and Tibetans for nearly three years in spite of difficult circumstances,” Dr. Damenda Porage, President of Sri Lankan Tibetan Buddhist Brotherhood Society told Tibet.net.
Dr. Porage along with Ruwan Harischandra, the chief Sinhalese translator of the Dalai Lama’s autobiography, have urged the daily to continue the publication, which was earlier planned as a weekly series of fifty chapters.
“We have had experience of this disturbing nature to our Buddhist activities which aim to promote Buddhist brotherhood of these two age old Buddhist nations, Sinhalese and Tibetans. When we organized the photo exhibitions ‘Dalai Lama in Frames’ in Kandy and Matale, they had complained to the Criminal Investigations Department and they held an inquiry into our activities,” Dr. Porage explains the expected pressure from the Chinese Embassy.
He also rued Beijing’s interference over the launch of the Sinhala translation of ‘Nature of All Things’ by former Tibetan minister Chope Paljor Tsering at the University of Sri Jayawardenepura. Following the launch of the book on December 6, 2017, the embassy approached the Ministry of Defense and had a team sent for an investigation.
“These are really ridiculous and shameless acts because we are a law abiding peace loving society and we always serve for the sake of protecting and promoting Buddha Sasana. Sri Lanka is a Buddhist country like Tibet,” Dr. Porage said.