JAFFNA : The police used water cannons to disperse protesters attempting to march towards Nallur during a visit by President Ranil Wickremesinghe to Jaffna in connection with the Thai Pongal celebrations on Sunday,Jan 15 .
The agitation was reportedly held in protest over President Ranil Wickremesinghe arriving in Jaffna to attend the Thai Pongal ceremony being held in the Nallur Kovil.
According to sources, the protest march was organized by a group of students of Jaffna University together with a group of relatives of missing persons.
The protestors had reportedly started the protest march from near the Jaffna University, and tried to reach Nallur Kovil, where the Thai Pongal ceremony was held, according.
However, the Police had blocked the road near Arasady Junction ahead of the protestors arriving and proceeded to disperse them by using water canons.
President Ranil Wickremesinghe, who was in Jaffna to participate in the Thai Pongal State Festival, visited the Sri Naga Viharaya in Jaffna this morning (Jan. 15), and received blessings while engaging in religious ceremonies, the President’s Media Division (PMD) said on Sunday .
The President has also visited the head of the Jaffna Sri Naga Viharaya, Ven. Meegahajandure Sirivimala Nayaka Thera, and inquired about his health, the PMD mentioned, adding that the Thera congratulated and chanted Seth Pirith in order to invoke blessings on the President.
Dr. M. Morgan, the Chairman of the “Buddhist Hindu Religious Forum,” welcomed the President, it added.
Meanwhile, President Ranil Wickremesinghe has met Rev. Sri Somasundaram, the Nallai Adeena Ashramadipati and received his blessings.
The President has also visited the Jaffna Bishop Most Reverend Dr. Justin Gnanapragasam and had engaged in brief discussion, the PMD said.
The event has been attended by Fisheries Minister Douglas Devananda, State Minister Dr. Suren Raghavan, President’s Secretary SamanEkanayake, Army Commander Lt. Gen. Vikum Liyanage and several other officials, according to the PMD.