- Title: SRI LANKA: Vesak festival brings light and colour to Sri Lankan Buddhists
- Date: 7th May 2012
- Summary: TRAFFIC AND PEOPLE ON THE STREETS OF COLOMBO VIEWING THE DECORATIONS ON DISPLAY
- Embargoed: 22nd May 2012 13:00
- Location: Sri Lanka
- Country: Sri Lanka
- Topics: Religion,Religion
- Reuters ID: LVA2SP58IEQPJLJJ86CFY8ZOQI6U
- Aspect Ratio:
- Story Text: Tens of thousands of people flocked to Sri Lanka's capital Colombo to celebrate in week-long festivities to mark the birth, enlightenment and death of Lord Buddha on Saturday (May 5).
Although it's celebrated through out the island, Colombo is the center of activities, with pandols lanterns, coloured lights and Buddhist flags decorating the city.
"Despite this being the first day, we can see much bigger crowds than previous years. What I feel is the enthusiasm of both Buddhists and non-Buddhists have increased this year. Since there is no war anymore every year the number of people who come to Colombo for Vesak is increasing," says Jagath Sumathipala, the President of the All Island Buddhist Federation.
Vijay Kumar, a festival goer, who was out viewing the Vesak decorations with his wife agrees: " Vesak this time is great. It is very beautiful. There are pandols, lanterns. It is better than ever" he said.
The increased footfall from the tourists and residents causes congestion throughout the city but participants are seemingly obvious to it.
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