Student Voices on the Sri Lankan Bombings


Taken by Govind Ruby from Flickr.

Before the storm hit. St. Sebastian’s church, a Roman Catholic church, was one of the 3 that were affected by the bombing on Easter Sunday. Nearly 104 people were killed in this church, and at least 250 were killed throughout all 6 six locations. According to a source from the New Yorker, a man named Jude stated, ”The hospital, it was a cemetery.” Easter will never be the same in Sri Lanka.

Minakshi Shivananda, News Editor

April 21st, 2019. The gleaming, but warm, rays of the golden sun gave its blessings to begin another wonderful day in Colombo, Sri Lanka. However, this wasn’t just a regular day; this was a day to celebrate. Millions of Christians around the world were celebrating the day Jesus Christ was resurrected. Unknown to the majority, things would take a fatal and grief-stricken turn. At approximately 8:30 a.m., the first of the six bombs was detonated in St. Anthony’s Shrine, a historical part of Colombo. According to, a whopping 350 people were killed throughout the 6 bombings that took place in both churches and hotels. After the national crisis, there was some controversy that surrounded the basis of the matter.

Here are some of the responses where students shared their thoughts and opinions about the mournful incident.

Q: What is your stance about the Sri Lankan bombings?

Ian King: It was a very horrible incident that should’ve never happened.

Jenny Morales: It’s very upsetting because the bombings affected children, mothers, and families.

Ayesha Raparla: It probably inspired a lot of fear in the country, but it was definitely not a good thing that occurred. It killed a lot of innocent people.

Q: Do you believe the top defense official did the right thing for resigning because of the information they knew?

Ian King: Yes, because he [Defense Official] knew the amount of trouble they had gotten in. I think he knew that he was going to get laid off either way for the mishap he did.

Jenny Morales: I think if he had said something about the information that he knew, he could’ve prevented the attacks from occurring. The country would’ve at least been able to evacuate people which could’ve saved a lot of people. But he chose not to talk and this crisis was the consequence of it all.

Ayesha Raparla: Yes, they should’ve taken more precautions. It is better to have a leader that does take precautions than someone who doesn’t.

The suicide bombers took advantage of the money they had and used it towards an immoral cause.

— Jenny Morales

Q: How do you think this event will change the way political officials take care of suspicious activity?

Ian King: Hopefully they’ll take care of a future situation with more seriousness and caution. They cannot repeat the same mistakes they did with the tragic bombings this year.

Jenny Morales: Maybe the political officials will take into account the information they receive and use that information to prevent further attacks like this from happening. This was kind of like a learning experience for the Sri Lankan government to not disregard suspicious activity so they do not have to experience another one of these attacks again. The government will definitely have a better defense system after this incident.

Ayesha Raparla: During big events, they [political officials and law enforcement] can add more security. Political officials will probably keep an eye out for more warnings in the future.

Q: Since the attack, it was found that the suicide bombers were sons and family of a famous spice tycoon in Sri Lanka. What are your thoughts about this?

Ian King: These guys probably thought they could get away with it because they were from a rich family. They had a huge support system which made it easier for them to commit such horrible crimes. That’s really bad.

Jenny Morales: The suicide bombers took advantage of the money they had and used it towards an immoral cause. They thought that they could do whatever they wanted to and not suffer the repercussions.

Ayesha Raparla: It’s predictable that the rich people were the ones who were able to plan and execute a plan like this. They abused their wealth and power, and now they are the ones who have to pay for their actions.

It probably inspired a lot of fear in the country, but it was definitely not a good thing that occurred. It killed a lot of innocent people.

— Ayesha Raparla

Shortly after the attack, Sri Lanka’s president, Maithripala Sirisena, asked for the resignations of the defense secretary and national police chief because they were aware of warnings of possible attacks before the Easter bombings. Both have resigned and were replaced by the president himself within 24 hours. Additionally, the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, claimed responsibility for the attacks 2 days after the bombings. Their reason behind their actions was that they had been planning attacks on churches, particularly after the New Zealand bombings. This country, in particular, has a background of wars and riots and has just recovered over the past 2 decades. Sri Lanka has reached a point where they must choose to end years of constant terror and work towards a brighter future for its citizens.