Work together to strengthen peace, harmony – President
I am extremely happy to join with the Sri Lankan Tamil brethren to celebrate the Thai Pongal festival that is being observed with festivities by all Tamils across the world. On the day of Thai Pongal all the people who are engaged in the agricultural sector, worship the sun to express gratitude to the nature and seek blessings, states President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in a Thai Pongal message.
The message: “The new relationship built within the family unit with the dawn of the Thai Pongal, gradually expands to the entire society strengthening harmony. I earnestly believe, through this festival, the social bond filled with the spirit of humanity will further spread between the parents and children, teachers and students, friends and relations, rulers and citizens with strength.
“To achieve the objectives of the Thai Pongal festival, all Sri Lankan citizens must have a mutual understanding amongst them. It is important to commit with determination on this auspicious day to firstly implement this decision as an attitude change and secondly to make it a reality.
“In a similar manner as light dispels darkness, the disharmony among people could be eliminated through the harmony amongst them. As Sri Lankan citizens we must move forward towards prosperity, based on this principle. All of us must unite to accomplish national goals and I invite all of our Sri Lanka Tamil brothers and sisters living in various countries in the world to perceive Sri Lanka as their Motherland to achieve those objectives.
Thai Pongal signifies a new and prosperous beginning – PM
Sri Lanka is a nation of diverse nationalities coexisting peacefully. Each of those nationalities have their own, unique cultural celebrations that add colour and vibrancy to the Sri Lankan cultural fabric, states Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa in a Thai Pongal message.“The Thai Pongal festival is one such important cultural event celebrated by the Tamil community throughout the world, the Prime Minister said”.
The message: “From time immemorial the Tamil community were a people that were mostly depended on an agricultural based economy. Their lives were bonded closely with nature. To them the terminology ‘Thai’ meant a new and prosperous beginning. They believed that the dawn of Thai Pongal signifies venturing into new beginnings, taking new paths and stepping into a fresh year.
“In a nation that has such cultural diversity, festivals and cultural celebrations such as the Thai Pongal festival should be an opportunity utilized to bridge gaps between communities and strengthen reconciliation. It gives an opportunity to educate and create awareness of the beauty and life patterns of fellow Sri Lankan’s, to join in the celebrations and share with them the joy and happiness.
“The Thai Pongal festival is a festival centered around the farming community and it is important to remember the toiling and hard working agricultural community of our nation that continues what they do despite the insurmountable odds against them. I take this as an opportunity to say thank you and appreciate them. Our Government is committed to the upkeep of the farming community and will continue to provide them with the best available opportunities and protect their rights so that Sri Lanka can prosper into a self sufficient agricultural nation.
“Today as our country is getting back on track with development, it faces many challenges. As the month of ‘Thai’ signifies new beginnings, there could be no better opening to step into this new journey of development and new ventures, than the Thai Pongal festival.
“My heartfelt greetings to the Tamil community celebrating in Sri Lanka and the world over and would like to urge all Sri Lankan’s to join in the festivities. I wish everyone a prosperous and peaceful Thai Pongal festival.
Happy Thai Pongal.”