The Embassy of Sri Lanka in the United Arab Emirates celebrated Vesak on 26 May 2021 at the Embassy premises. This year, the Embassy celebrated the Vesak in low-key manner due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the participation of a limited number of devotees. 

The programme commenced with the Bodhi Pooja held in front of the ‘Bo Tree’ which has been planted inside the Embassy premises. The lighting of Vesak lanterns and the oil lamps were done together with the Embassy Staff and the community. The colourful decorations with lanterns, Buddhist flags and buntings at the Embassy premises depicted the exact atmosphere of Vesak day in Sri Lanka.

Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the United Arab Emirates Malraj De Silva, giving his opening remarks, elaborated the importance of Vesak, the birth of Prince Siddartha, the enlightenment of and the passing away (Parinibbana) of the Lord Buddha. The Ambassador took the opportunity to transfer merits to those who died due to the COVID-19 virus, and invoked blessings on the people suffering due to the disease. He also wished that our motherland would overcome the COVID pandemic with the blessings of the triple gem. Furthermore, the Ambassador emphasized the fact that this is the most crucial time that our motherland needs our support and requested all participants to join with the Embassy to help the country.

Following the ‘Sambuddha Pooja’ conducted by the Sri Lanka community, enlightening the event, a dhamma deshana was held by the chief incumbent of Athurugiriya Sri Dhammavijithashrama Temple Ven. Massanne Vijitha Thero through online and it was aired through social media, for giving access to those who were not able to attend the event. 

Signifying the dansala, Sri Lankan vegetarian dinner was served to the devotees at the end of the programme.

The event was organized by the Embassy adhering to all regulations imposed by the UAE government to contain the COVID-19 virus.- Embassy of Sri Lanka / Abu Dhabi