The Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) has settled the electricity bill of the Mihintale Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, after the government disconnected the power supply due to unpaid arrears.
The SJB, led by Leader of the Opposition Sajith Premadasa, raised funds from party members and donors to pay off the bill, which amounted to Rs. 4.1 million.
Premadasa said that the government had “put a huge burden” on the temple, which is one of Sri Lanka’s most important religious sites. He accused the government of “harassing” places of worship for political gain.
“It has been proven that the government is only using religion for opportunism,” Premadasa said. “We request the government not to harass places of worship.”
The SJB’s intervention has been welcomed by the monks and devotees of the Mihintale Temple. They expressed their gratitude to the party for its timely assistance.
The incident has highlighted the financial difficulties that many religious institutions in Sri Lanka are facing. The government has been urged to provide more financial assistance to these institutions in order to ensure that they can continue to function properly.