Two weeks before large angry mobs attacked the warehouse of the
Fashion Bug clothing store in Pepiliyana on Thursday (28) night, the
Bodu Bala Sena group launched atirade of verbal abuse against the
Muslim owned textile chain at a massive rally in Kandy.
Bodu Bala Sena General Secretary and vociferous hardline monk,
Galabodaaththe Gnanasara accused the clothing chains Fashion Bug and
No Limit of forcibly converting Sinhalese women working at their
stories into Islam.
"We have all the proof and information about the Fashion Bug and No
Limit outlets andwhat they are doing to your girl children! What harm
have we done to the Muslims?" Gnanasara Thero said.
Reading from a list of names the BBS General Secretary said they were
Sinhalese men and women who had gone to work at Fashion Bug and No
Limit in Kandy and been converted to Islam.
"We ask the big bosses at Fashion Bug and No Limit, is this true or
not? They claim it's not true. Oh the poor little pussycats. We are
not asking anyone to go and stone these places and attack them. Come
and have discussions with us – let's solve this through discussion,"
the monk said angrily.
He charged that nine Sinhalese girls were recently sacked from the
Fashion Bug outlet inKandy because a Manager at the store had begun
having a relationship one of them.
"Harems are being created. Are we to sit back and allow this to
happen? This is not extremism. We have to discuss these issues," he
The monk urged the crowd to refrain from permitting their daughters
from going to work at these shops.
"Hereafter we will only send our boys to work in these shops. They
will no longer get our women!" the monk raged.
Gnanasara Thero accused the store owners of mistreatment of the
Sinhalese men and women who are employed there.
"On Fridays to go to the mosque, they close their shops for two hours.
They switch offthe lights and the air conditioning. Like broiler
chickens in a coop, our boys and girls areleft inside while they go to
pray – they will go for hell for this," he said.
The monk called for these stores to be shut down on Poya Days to allow
Buddhists working there to go to the temple too.
"This is not racism," he said.
A mob numbering in the hundreds attacked the Fashion Bug warehouse on
Thursday, causing extensive damage to property and personnel. The
manager of the warehouse was hospitalized and journalists were
attacked by the mob for filming the attack. Several monks were among
the mob.


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