Three Saiva temples have been vandalized in Mannaar following the civic elections and a day before the Saiva religious day of Maha Shivaratri. One of the places of worship, Lingkeasvarar temple, is located on the left side of Mannaar – Thalai-mannaar Road and is situated near the St.Xavier’s Boys’ College. The Lingkam statue at the temple was fully destroyed Tuesday night. The other two temples are located very close to two Sinhala military bases in the district. Although various suspicions are being raised, the residents are of opinion that the vandalization would not have been possible without the culprits having a close rapport with the occupying military establishment.
Some sources also suspect that the SL military intelligence was engineering conflicts among the Tamil-speaking communities in Mannaar.
The Lingkeasvarar temple was initially put up by the Indian military (IPKF) in 1988 as a temple for Hanuman. This was later transformed into a Siva temple as Lingkeasvarar temple by the local Saivites.
On the same night, a Ganesha (Vinyaakar) statue was destroyed inside a temple on Keeri junction which is situated very close to the so-called Sunny Village naval base of the occupying Sinhala Navy in the Mannaar island.
The third temple subjected to vandalization is situated in the mainland near Thirukkeatheesvaram temple on Mannaar – Jaffna Highway.
A Vinaayakar statue has been removed from the temple, which is located close to the military base of the SL Air Force.
The latest destruction, vandalization and desecration of Saiva temples also come at a time when religious tourism by Sinhala Buddhists from South is being systematically promoted by the occupying SL military and various ministries of the unitary State of genocidal Sri Lanka, Tamil residents of Mannaar said.