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* Sri Lanka's extremist Buddhist organization threatens to reveal names of persons holding elephants illegally
Wed, May 7, 2014, 12:08 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

May 07, Colombo: The extremist Sinhala Buddhist organization in Sri Lanka, the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) has threatened to reveal names of persons who are illegally keeping elephants.

General Secretary of the BBS, Ven. Galagodaththe Gnanasara Thero told the media that the organization would reveal the names if measures are not taken to stop the illegal capture of elephants from the wild.

The Thero has explained that rich and influential people, elephant thieves and mudalalis (businessmen) were illegally capturing elephants from the wild and taking them home.

According to controversial monk, the list of names even included names of Buddhist monks, who are illegally keeping elephants.

He has further claimed that the BBS knew how many monks were involved in this racket and the ministry secretaries using monks to get hold of illegal elephants.

"Environmentalists are constantly talking about this issue. The Wildlife and Resources Conservation Minister, Vijith Vijayamuni Soysa, has addressed this problem. But those who can take action against theses elephant thieves are saying they cannot intervene due to pressure from influential people," Ven. Gnanasara Thero told a news conference.

The Thero \ added that the BBS was concerned that Buddhism and the cultural and religious aspects were being used by elephant thieves to illegally capture baby elephants from the wild.

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