Lanka’s Buddhist clergy opposes Sharia-based banking

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A hardline group representing Sri Lanka’s Buddhist clergy has kicked up a storm over the central bank’s decision to allow private banks to offer financial services based on Islamic principles.

The BBS, which had a few years ago spearheaded a campaign against Halal food, alleged in a statement on Tuesday that “Muslim extremists” were now attempting to sow divisions by using the banking process. “We blame the previous government for not taking action on the spread of Sharia law. A (BBS) delegation called on the governor of the central bank to discuss the issue as it is a threat to Sri Lankan society,” BBS General Secretary Galagodaatte Gnanasara said.

The BBS contended that there was no legal basis to introduce Sharia-based banking in the country.

The BBS expressed fears that the ‘Sharia-based banking system’ would alter the present banking system, accounting system and financial fundamentals.