Diyawadana Nilame questioned by FCID
May 12, 2015 10:47 am
Diyawadana Nilame Pradeep Nilanga Dela is currently being questioned by the Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) over alleged financial fraud that took place in the Dalada Maligawa.
Police spokesman ASP Ruwan Gunasekara said that he was summoned to record a statement regarding financial irregularities in the funds of the Sri Dalada Maligawa, also known as the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic.
The Anti-Corruption Front recently filed a complaint with the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption against the Diyawadana Nilame, accusing him of funneling funds and property of the Dalada Maligawa.
The complaint claims that Nilanga Dela had obtained money from 25 companies without approval from the Chief Custodian and Board of Trustee, in violation of the Mahanuwara Esala Perahera Trust Act, and that he also exceeded his authority as the Diyawadana Nilame in dividing into lots and selling the Udagedara Watta property, belonging to the Dalada Maligawa.
He has also been charged with using the gold received by the Dalada Maligawa to accessorize his ‘Mini Cooper’ car.
The complaint was filed by Venerable Ulapane Sumangala Thero, JHU Media Secretary Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe and Attorney-at-Law Shiral Lakthilaka, on behalf of the Anti-Corruption Front, on January 29.
Dela Bandara was elected as the 19th Diyawadana Nilame of the Sri Dalada Maligawa on July 1st 2005.
He acted as the Basnayake Nilame of Ruhunu Maha Kataragama devalaya and Sabaragamu Maha Saman devalaya before being elected to the post.