Fourteen-year-old Kavindu Nadishan, a participant at the marathon said he wanted to relieve himself and went to the cemetery close by when he saw a man throwing a parcel towards the road. He said the blast occurred just then. One of Nadishan s hands was fractured from the impact of the blast.
Another eyewitness, 19-year-old L.B. Nadira, of No. 196, Ullalapola, Weliweriya explained the harrowing experience to the Daily Mirror from the emergency ward bed at the Colombo National Hospital: I was one of the participants of the marathon. There were around 70 runners and were waiting for the Minister to start the race. The time was around 7.40 a.m. in the morning. The Minister got down from the stage and came to the starting point of the race on the Weliweriya-Kandy Road.
An organiser gave him a flag and just before the Minister flag start the race, there was a huge explosion within the line of the runners and I fell over bleeding profusely .
Thusitha Neranjan, 22, No. 416/203, Weliweriya recalling his experience from his hospital bed said he was among the crowd watching the marathon organised by one of his tuition masters in collaboration with the Adishta Sports Club of Weliweriya.
The marathon was to take the route of Weliweriya to Siyambalape junction, Sapugaskanda to Makola across Maturawa and back to Weliweriya. I was several metres away from where Minister Fernandopulle was. Just before the Minister flagged the race there was a huge explosion and we all fell, he said.
Ten-year-old Sashishan, a grade five student of the Christ King College, Weliweriya was two metres away from the explosion but in the midst of the crowd. I felt I was hit with something on my chest and ran away for my dear life, he said. A doctor at the emergency ward, CNH told Daily Mirror that Sashishan had been probably hit with a piece of a limb of an injured person as he was not in pain and without bleeding.
R. M. Suranga Bandara who was participating in the race said the organisers set the stop watches and asked the Minister to wave the flag when the explosion occurred. Marathon champ K. A. Karunaratne was also standing near the Minister I don t know what became of him, he said.