Soon after the government withdrew its draft constitution from Parliament on 8 August, the gaunt face of Hedigalle Vimalasara Thero appeared in a rash of posters. He staged a fast-unto-death during the mass protest campaign, which derailed the government´s ambitious 17th amendment. The Bill sought to end a costly civil war and guarantee the rights of minority Tamils through a package of devolution.

Printed in Sinhala, the poster hailed the monk as a hero of the Sinhala Buddhist race who prevented the great tragedy that would, have befallen on the Sinhala nation had the government pursued the reforms, which also needed two-thirds majority in Parliament to become law.

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Himal Southasian