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 Post subject: King Vijayabahu I & Panakaduwa Thamba Sannasa
 Post Posted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 1:30 am 
King Vijayabahu I & Panakaduwa Thamba Sannasa

King Vijayabahu I was one of the greatest kings who recaptured and ruled the whole of Sri Lanka during 1055-1110 AD. He was the grandson of King Mahinda V the last king of Anuradhapura, and the son of Prince Moggallana who had not ruled according to history. Also he was related to King Manawamma’s family.

After the Cholas captured Anuradhapura, Prince Mugalan took refuge in Ruhuna for some time, but was later taken into custody in Ruhuna by the Cholas. But patriotic villagers of Ruhuna protected Prince Kitti, the son of Prince Mogallana, from the Cholas in various places of the jungles of Ruhuna with great difficulty. During that time the Prince Kitti was only 12 years old.

Within three years Budal Samy recaptured the whole of Ruhuna from the Cholas, recruited forces and handed over to Prince Kitti to recapture the rest of the country helping him in his great invasions.

According to history he stepped into the battlefield with Budal Samy at the age of fifteen and recaptured the whole country when he was 38 years in 1055 AD. He established his first kingdom at Kataragama and subsequently shifted to various places in the country and finally made Polonnaruwa the capital of the country.

Apart from the defeating the Cholas, he completed a number of irrigation works including the Elahera Canal which feeds the Minneriya tank. Also he re-established Buddhism in the country with the help of the Burmese king. Also he launched various projects to educate the public and to uplift the living condition of the people without considering caste, creed or nationality.

His restoring of the Kanthalai Hindu temple is the best example of his democratic acts. Also his greatest virtue was that he never considered his own comforts. He built a very small palace for him at Polonnaruwa. But placed Buddha’s tooth relic close to his palace at Polonnaruwa during this period.

Panakaduwa Thamba Sannasa

The Panakaduwa Thamba Sannasa was found in the Panakaduwa village at Morawakkorale by a farmer named Suravirage Carolis Appuhamy in 1948. After it lay neglected in various places, for about an year it was brought to the officials of the department of Archaeology by Ven. Pandith Vanarathana Thera. Due to the efforts of Mr. Sarath Vattala the value of the document was revealed to the general public of the country. Finally Carolis Appuhamy was rewarded by Prime Minister D. S. Senanayake himself at Kamburupitiya in 1950.

The Sannasa was of three copper plates and was about 2.5 lbs in weight. It was made like an Ola book with two holes on the side of each copper plate.

The purpose of this document is to record the privileges granted by King Vijayabahu I to a high ranking military officer of Ruhuna named Budal Samy or Buddaraja of Ruhuna, who brought him up in his childhood and helped restore Sinhala sovereignty to the King after the Island was subjected to the Cholas for over a half century. The document records the very words of the King in which he makes reference to his early days of adversity and privations, briefly by expressive phrases of great human interest, very touching to the emotions.

According to the Thamba Sannasa, this is the first time in which we hear of a king of Ceylon speaking about himself in this manner in the first person, in a document issued under his own authority in his own life time. The document would therefore be of great importance, even if the king who so speaks was one above the ordinary. King Vijayabahu I had empowered Budal Samy’s sons and grandsons and the generations coming down from him with tremendous powers and sanctions due to his patriotic and faithful acts towards the country and the nation. The Thamba Sannasa inscripts that no punishments be given including even the death penalty for three times. Also the estates or whatever property they posses cannot be confiscated. Therefore it's our prime duty to respect this great family and their descendants according to the writ granted by the Great King Vijayabahu I.

Descendants of Budal Samy

Budal Samy lived in Panakaduwa village at Moravak Korale. He acquired many villages and privileges from King Vijayabahu I due to his patriotism. Lord Budal had a son named Kumara Bandara Maha Lekem Mudiyanse Ralahamy also known as Rohana Appuhamy. Rohana Appuhamy had three sons and a daughter, Weerabahu Appuhamy, Mohottala Appuhamy, Amarakoon Appuhamy and the daughter (name not known). Amarakoon Appuhamy and the daughter went to Kegalle and settled down. They were also related to the historic Mawalathenna family.

Weerabahu Appuhamy had two sons. One lived at Rotumba and was named Ratnayake Korala. Ratnayake Korala had two sons and lived in the Bengamuwa area. One was named Don Chandiris Sepala Ratnayake Vidana Arachchi. Don Chandiris Sepala Ratnayake had a son by the name Charles William Sepala Ratnayake who had two daughters named Georgea and Clara. Georgea Ratnayake had a son and a daughter. The son was Rev. Kamburupitiya Bodhi Guptha who later became the Sanganayaka for the Southern Province. The daughter married a person from the Wanigasekara family at Walgama in Matara District and was later renamed as Leelawathi Wijesinghe Wanigasekera.

Leelawathie Wanigasekera had five sons and six daughters. Some are still living. But the person who had certain items which were used by King Vijayabahu died recently. He was Deputy Minister for Rural Development, Mr. Harshanath Wanigasekera. Mr. Harshanath Wanigasekera’s family still possesses some valuable items used by the king when he was hiding inside the jungle with Budal Samy. To name a few: king’s swords, beetle tray, arecanut cutter and chunam box, etc. at his residence at Nugegoda.

Among others, Chandra Wanigasekara is living in England. Sepala Wanigasekara (deceased), Sathyajith Wanigasekara (deceased), Mr. Harshanath Wanigasekera (deceased), Gajendranath Wanigasekara (deceased), Chitra Wanigasekara living at Kotte, Indra Wanigasekara living in France, Badra Wanigasekara living at Matara, Mrinalini Wanigasekara living at Mirigama, Priyani Wanigasekara living in Austria and Jithendra Wanigasekara living at Kollupitiya, to name a few. But there are many other descendants living in various parts of the country and the world to whom we should pay our respect.

Conclusion

The people had not forgotten the brave and patriotic people who helped to regain the country’s sovereignty. I can remember President Jayewardene in Hakmana addressing the people about the situation in the North and the East. He stated that if not for the people of Ruhuna there wouldn’t be the Sinhalese in Sri Lanka. He also mentioned about Budal Samy’s bravery and he wanted to find the descendants of Budal Samy who should be respected by all the nationals. It is the time we think about King Vijayabahu I’s national policies and how he secured the country’s sovereignty within his 25 years reign.


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