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Esala Perahera 10
31 July 2004 David Astley

Esala Perahera 10

Kandy, Sri Lanka

I didn't know who the large man under the parasol was when I posted this picture (but I knew he must be someone important) so I am grateful to Nilaksha Rathnayake for advising that he is in fact the Diyawadana Nilame - the caretaker of the tooth relic. Please see Nilaksha's note below for more information.

Nikon D100 , AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm 1:3.5-5.6 G
All images, except last two, shot at ISO3200 or 6400 full exif

other sizes: small medium original
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Nilaksha Rathnayake 23-Feb-2006 05:16
yes david, the big man here is the caretaker of the tooth relic. his post is named as "Diyawadana Nilame", a post comming from kings ages. in kings age, the official caretaker was the King. In return the King was eligible to hold the crown as he owns the tooth relic. but after colonial ages, a new position established to represent the King and to serve the relic. this is current owner. he is the most respected lay person among buddhists in Sri lanka.

also there are two other caretaker as well. both of them are the head monks from 2 buddhist chapters. (malwathu & asgiri). they too have equivalent responsible on relic. there are 3 keys of the doors of the room the relic is kept, with these 3 persons. if the relic is need to be shown, these 3 keys are needed to open the doors. if any of them refuses, nobody could reach the tooth relic.
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