The district of Kegalle is organized into four primary divisions known as Koralas, namely Beligal Korala, Paranakuru Korala, Kinigoda Korala, and Galbada Korala. Paranakuru Korala spans from Siambalapitiya in Kegalle to Aranayake Rahala.
One of the villages within the Paranakuru Korala is Kehelpannala, also known as Keselpannala. According to historical accounts, a Brahmin named Divakara from India, accompanied by two disciples, settled in this village and made it their home. It is said that the village derived its name, Kehelpannala, from the practice of using banana leaves for constructing dwellings.
Situated at the foothills of Ambuluawa and Dolosba, Kehelpannala benefits from year-round streams, resulting in a fertile area. The vibrant paddy fields of Kehelpannala village, nestled at the base of Ambuluawa mountain, stand out among other locations.
Legends abound in this region, attesting to the remarkable fertility of Kehelpannala. In the past, certain Nilames in the royal court expressed a desire to establish a royal storage facility at Kehelpanna. To convince the king, they cleverly brought him to the summit of Mount Ambuluawa, showcasing the village’s prosperity. Subsequently, they proposed designating Kehelpannala as a royal storehouse.
However, the residents of Kehelpannala were reluctant to convert their village into a royal storage site since the bulk of their produce had to be given to the king’s storage or the storage at Pallewahala, the queen’s storage. To undermine this proposal, Dhanasekara Mudiyanse, a diviner working in the palace and a resident of Kehelpannala, learned about the planned visit of the king and informed the villagers in advance. Acting swiftly, the villagers planted trees and built watch huts to strategically conceal their fields’ fertility.
When the king, accompanied by the officials, reached the mountaintop the following day, they identified Kehelpannala as the most fertile village within Paranakuru Korale. However, due to the villagers’ actions, the king failed to discern its prosperity. Despite the officials’ attempts, the endeavor to make Kehelpannala a royal storage village proved unsuccessful.
Undeterred, the officials discovered that a massive cluster of bananas had grown in the garden of a prominent chief in Kehelpannala after some time. They arranged for seven men to transport these large bunches of bananas to the palace, hoping to persuade the king of the village’s prosperity and thereby transform it into a storage hub.
However, a villager who got wind of this plan hurriedly approached the king before the bananas reached the palace. He humbly bowed before the king and explained that some boys from his village were unknowingly carrying bananas from a tree planted in a lavatory pit. He sought the king’s forgiveness, unaware that it constituted an act of treason. Consequently, the attempt to establish a royal storage hub in Kehelpannala failed once again. Furthermore, it is said that a royal decree was issued stipulating that Kehelpannala would not be designated as a storage village as long as the conflict persisted.
These events likely took place during either the Gampola or Kandy kingdom. To reach Kehelpannala school and Sri Pabbatharama Purana Vihara, one can take the path located 9 km from Gampola towards Hemmathagama or 17 km from Mawanella via Hemmathagama towards Gampola. Following a stroll of approximately 700 meters along this route, you will encounter Kehelpannala Sri Pabbatharama temple, featuring a Tampita temple. Recently, the temple has undergone renovation.
- අදිකාරි, ඒ. වෛද්ය, 2019. කෑගල්ලේ සුන්දර කෙහෙල්පන්නල. [online] Lankadeepa.lk. Available at: http://www.lankadeepa.lk/Rasawitha/කගලල-සනදර-කහලපනනල/57-562550 [Accessed 21 November 2020].
- යටවර, එම්. ඩී. එම්. ඇස්., 2009. කෑගලු කෝරළ පවත : පරණකුරු, කිණිගොඩ සහ ගල්බඩ කෝරළයන්හි ඓතිහාසික, සංස්කෘතික සහ පුරාවිද්යාත්මක ගවේෂණය. 1st ed. වරකාපොළ: ආරිය ප්රකාශකයෝ.
- Tampita Vihara of Sri Lanka Index
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Map of Kehelpannala Sri Pabbatharama Purana Tampita Viharaya
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Traveling Directions of Kehelpannala Sri Pabbatharama Purana Tampita Viharaya
|From Mawanella to Kehelpannala Sri Pabbatharama Purana Vihara|
|Via : Hemmathagama |
Total Distance : 17.5 KM
Time taken : 45 minutes
Time taken : Around 15-30 minutes
Driving Directions : View on Google Map