A steady stream of people from all parts of Sri Lanka gathered at Independence Square in Colombo to pay their final respects to the late Dr Pandit W'D' Amaradeva as he lay in state on Friday ^Nov 4&'
The public can pay their final respects until 3'30pm tomorrow ^5&" Minister Vajira Abeywardena said'
The remains were brought to Independence Square from a private funeral parlor in Colombo at around 10'00am this morning'
The government of Sri Lanka yesterday announced a week of national mourning in honour of the late maestro'
According to the Minster of Home Affairs Wajira Abeywardhane" the final rites will take place tomorrow ^Nov 5& at 6'00pm under full state honors' All the necessary facilities for the public coming to the funeral have been prepared with the assistance of tri forces" Police" public and private sector" and the civil society organizations'
The government has requested that the national flag be raised at half mast and white flags displayed at homes and other establishments'
In a message of condolence" President Maithripala Sirisena said that the nation is stricken by the news of the demise of great maestro W'D' Amaradeva and that he was an unparalleled genius in music that the country ever witnessed'
The message said• “Maestro Amaradeva belonged to the generation of pioneers" whose quest was the Sri Lankan identity and the indigenous character' The country is indebted to him for the exceptional service he rendered to us by exploring the roots of local music to enrich it to an unprecedented high'”
“Maestro Amandeva reached pinnacle of Sinhala music and brought our nation to fame' He was a true genius" blessed with innate wisdom reﬁned in the school of life" and perfected by the association of scholars of language the arts and philosophy' Above all" his was the voice of the deep)seated Sinhala cultural self'
“Though he has left us today after his magniﬁcent contribution to the nation" the aura of his oeuvre will kindle and inspire us forever'
“He was also the embodiment of simplicity and contentment in life' Although the voice that awakened a nation has been silenced today" it will continue to echo in the ears and infuse life into the beans of the future generations too'”