( June 19, 2017, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Twice, last month, Bodu Bala Chieftain Gnanasara did not appear before the Court of Appeal to answer charges of contempt and state why he should not be punished for raising a ruckus in the Homagama Magistrates Courts last year as complained by its magistrate. On both occasions, the excuse given by his lawyers for his absence was that he was not well.
Neither did he show up this Monday when the case was called, with his lawyers citing that he was unable to do so because he feared for his life. Not surprising, is it, when one goes around the countryside hurling filthy abuse against Allah, the Almighty God of Islam, to inflame Muslim ire? It only reaffirms the validity of the Buddha’s karmic doctrine that every action has a similar reaction and that hate begets hate. Or as Christ said, “sow the wind and reap the whirlwind.”
The damage he has caused to Buddhism cannot be overestimated. The damage he has caused to the Sinhala people whose proudest boast for over two thousand years had been to trumpet that they were the custodians of Buddhism in its pristine form cannot be quantified. In the eyes of the world, the question arises: Is this the result of 2000 years of Buddhism in Lanka?
The Court of Appeal did not however deem it fit to issue an arrest warrant but instead fixed the contempt matter for trial on July 17 and stated that if the ‘no show’ monk did not turn up that day, then a warrant will be issued for his arrest.
But on Thursday, the Colombo Fort Magistrate Lanka Jayaratne issued a warrant for his arrest for failing to appear in courts to face two charges. The charges related to allegations of obstructing the police from exercising their duties in addition to making hate speeches in several places. And forcefully entering and sabotaging a press conference held at a hotel in Slave Island in April 2014.