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Last updated: 09 November, 2010 - Published 17:46 GMT
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Polonnaruwa 'govi raja' bids farewell
GG Haramanis (photo: Thakshila Dilrukshi Jayasena)
Mr Haramanis led many struggles for framers' rights

A leading farmer-activist Godawelagedara (GG) Haramanis has bid farewell in Polonnaruwa amidst tears from younger activists and relatives.

The victorious fast-unto-death struggle in 2000 for farmers' rights in Hingurakgoda is among many struggles Mr Haramanis, widely known as “govi raja”, led throughout his life that span over eight decades.

He nearly died in that fast. He also led and took part in many other struggles around the island.

Polonnaruwa District Secretary Nimal Abeysiri led the tributes on behalf of the authorities.

“The farmers in this district are grateful to Haramanis mama for being victorious in their farming industry,” he said.

RG Dharmathilake, who considers himself as a “fourth generation farmer” said the farmers in Sri Lanka should pray for thousands more Haramanis.

“There will be no more farmers’ leaders as the way the country is currently heading,” he said, as he wept.

MK Jayathissa, a farmers’ leader in the district said late “govi raja” did not wish to be reincarnated as a farmer in Sri Lanka as he had a “clear understanding of the prevailing capitalist system.”

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