President Maithripala Sirisena inaugurated the Lake House Mihintale Aloka Pooja organised by the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Limited (ANCL) on Poson Poya Day in Mihintale yesterday.

The event held for the 54th year is co sponsored by the Ceylon Electricity Board, Dialog Axiata, Bank of Ceylon and Abans. Thousands of devotees gathered at Mihintale to witness the switching on of the Aloka Pooja which continues for the fourth day.

ANCL Chairman and Managing Director Kavan Ratnayaka in his welcome speech expressed his sincere thanks to President Maithripala Sirisena and other dignitaries for attending the event.

Chief Incumbent of Mihinthalaya Maha Vihara Ven.Walawahangunawewa Dhammarathana Thera in his Anusasana appreciated the services rendered by ANCL, the sponsors and the government for their involvement in the Aloka Pooja.

Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Y.K. Sinha who attended the event as the Guest of Honour mentioned India’s strong bilateral bonds since the ancient history with Sri Lanka has always been influenced by Buddhism.

Power and Renewable Energy Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya, Agriculture Minister Duminda Dissanayake also made speeches highliting the state patronage for the Aloka Pooja.

Women’s and Child Affairs Minister Chandrani Bandara, Parliament Reforms and Mass Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilaka, North Central Province Governor P.B.Dissanayake, Anuradhapura District Secretary D.P.G.Kumarasiri, Mihintale Divisional Secretary Ruwan Ekanayake, ANCL Director Editorial Saman Wagaarachchi and ANCL General Manager Abhaya Amaradasa.