The United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) May Day rally held at the Town Hall premises yesterday was described by its leaders and analysts alike as a historic show of unity and strength. Prime Minister D M Jayaratne speaking to the Daily News while the rally was proceeding said that the participation of such a large number of people was a clear message that the people were united against attempts aimed at disrupting Sri Lanka s progress and peace.
While describing it as one of the largest crowds he had ever witnessed in his political career, the Premier said that this was a clear indication that the people stood united against any attempts at creating divisions and conspiracies to destabilize the country from both within and outside.
He said that this was a clear indication that the country s working class was fully behind President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the government in its efforts to develop the country. Yesterday s mammoth rally was attended by all UPFA constituent partners and a number of other organizations and trade unions.
One of the salient features during this year s UPFA May Day rally was the support shown by the masses irrespective of political or other differences. A large number of people from the North and East representing various political groups and organizations too joined the rally. The theme of the UPFA May Day Rally was People s power to protect the country Upan Bimata Daha Binduwak - Rata Surakina Jana Pavurak.
A number of processions organized by the UPFA constituent parties started from various locations in the city and converged at the Town Hall in the afternoon.
The main procession led by the Sri Lanka Freedom Party commenced from Campbell Park.
The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd. employees led by Chairman Bandula Padmakumara and the organization hierarchy too joined the main procession at Campbell Park after starting their procession from Lake House.
As the processions converged at the Town Hall premises for the main meeting under the patronage of President Mahinda Rajapaksa the Town Hall grounds and surrounding areas became a sea of heads. Meanwhile, the United National Party (UNP) May Day meeting had been organized at Bandarawela.
The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) had organized its May Day meeting at the BRC grounds, Colombo. In addition several trade unions and organizations had also organized numerous May Day events at various locations.