' Sampanthan Had Tears In His Eyes When National Anthem Was Sung In Tamil'

Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan had tears in his eyes when the Tamil translation of the Sri Lankan national anthem was sung during the state independence day ceremony, a Cabinet Minister who attended the event this morning told Asian Mirror. 

This was the second time the Tamil translation of the national anthem was sung during a state independence day ceremony. The first occasion was the first independence clay cementation in Colombo, held under the auspices of former Prime Minister D.S. Senanayake.

All military officers, including  Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka,  stood still and saluted the Tamil translation of the national anthem. 

Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister Dr.Harsha de Silva, who was also present at the event, tweeted,  "it was a historic occasion."

The President and the Prime Minister made the decision to sing the national anthem in Tamil at the state independence day ceremony at the Galle Face. It was widely hailed as a bold political and a major step in the direction of ethnic reconciliation in the country.  

Sampanthan, a veteran politician, attended the ceremony not only as the opposition leader but also as the leader of the Tamil National Alliance which boycotted state independence day celebrations for nearly five decades. 

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