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Sri lanka

Sri Lanka is a republic and a unitary state which is governed by a semi-presidential system with its official seat of government in Sri Jayawardenapura - Kotte, the capital.

The country is famous for the production and export of tea, coffee, coconuts, rubber and  cinnamon, the last of which is native to the country.

The natural beauty of Sri Lanka has led to the title The Pearl of the Indian Ocean. The island is laden with lush tropical forests, white beaches and diverse landscapes with rich biodiversity.

Sri Lanka's rich culture can be attributed to the many different communities on the island

Sri Lanka is a founding member state of SAARC and a member United Nations,  Commonwealth of Nations, G77 and Non-Aligned Movement. As of 2010, Sri Lanka was one of the fastest growing economies of the world. Its stock exchange was Asia's best performing stock market during 2009 and 2010

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Sri lanka

  1. 1. A land like no other My
  2. 2. Sri Lanka Flag Emblem : Sri Jayawardanapura - Kotte : Colombo : Sinhala, Tamil : Sri Lankan :Democratic Socialist Republic, Semi-presidential system : Mahinda Rajapaksa : D.M.Jayaratne : Chamal Rajapaksa : Dr.Shirani , Bandaranayke : from the United Kingdom : February 4, 1948 : May 22, 1972 Capital Largest city Official language(s) Demonym Government - President - Prime Minister - Speaker of the House - Chief Justice Independence - Dominion (Self rule) - Republic Area -Total - Water Population - 2010 estimate - Mid 2010 census - Density Gross Domestic Product - Total - Per capita Gini Coefficient Human Development Index Currency Time zone Date formats Drives on the ISO 3166 code Internet TLD Calling code : 65,610 km2 : 4.4 : 20,238,000 : 20,653,000 : 308.4/km2 : 2010 estimate : $106.5 billion : $5,220 : 36 (medium) : 0.658 (medium) : Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR) : Sri Lanka Standard Time Zone (UTC+5:30) : yyyy/mm/dd : left : LK : .lk, .ලංකා, .இலங்கை : 94
  3. 3. Location of Sri Lanka Sri Lanka is situated between the latitudes of 5°55' and 9°51' North and the longitudes of 79°41' and 81°54' East
  4. 4. Sri Lanka Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka s a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Known until 1972 as Ceylon.It is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, and lies in the vicinity of India and the Maldives. It is part of South Asia. As a result of its location in the path of major sea routes, Sri Lanka is a strategic naval link between West Asia and South East Asia. Sri Lanka has also been a center of the Buddhist religion and culture from ancient times and is one of the few remaining abodes of Buddhism in South Asia along with Ladak, Bhutan and the Chittagong hill tracts. The Sinhalese community forms the majority of the population; Tamils, who are concentrated in the north and east of the island, form the largest ethnic minority. Other communities include Moors, Burghers, Kaffirs, Malays and the aboriginal Vedda people.
  5. 5. Sri Lanka Sri Lanka is a republic and a unitary state which is governed by a semi-presidential system with its official seat of government in Sri Jayawardenapura - Kotte, the capital. The country is famous for the production and export of tea, coffee, coconuts, rubber and cinnamon, the last of which is native to the country. The natural beauty of Sri Lanka has led to the title The Pearl of the Indian Ocean. The island is laden with lush tropical forests, white beaches and diverse landscapes with rich biodiversity. Sri Lanka's rich culture can be attributed to the many different communities on the island Sri Lanka is a founding member state of SAARC and a member United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, G77 and Non-Aligned Movement. As of 2010, Sri Lanka was one of the fastest growing economies of the world. Its stock exchange was Asia's best performing stock market during 2009 and 2010
  6. 6. Names of Sri Lanka In ancient times, Sri Lanka was known by a variety of names: Known in India as Lanka or Singhala, ancient Greek geographers called it Taprobane and Arabs referred to it as Serendib (the origin of the word "serendipity").Ceilão was the name given to Sri Lanka by the Portuguese when they arrived in 1505, which was transliterated into English as Ceylon. As a British crown colony, the island was known as Ceylon, and achieved independence under the name Dominion of Ceylon in 1948. In Sinhala the country is known as Sri Lanka, In Tamil they are both Ilankai. The name derives from the Sanskrit Sri and lanka (island), the name of the island in the ancient Indian epics Mahabharata and the Ramayana. In 1972, the official name of the country was changed to "Free, Sovereign and Independent Republic of Sri Lanka". In 1978 it was changed to the "Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka".The name Ceylon is still in use in the names of a number of organizations; in 2011, the Sri Lankan government announced a plan to rename all of those for which it is responsible.
  7. 7. Geography of Sri Lanka The island of Sri Lanka lies atop the Indian tectonic plate, a minor plate within the Indo-Australian Plate. It is positioned in the Indian Ocean, to the southwest of the Bay of Bengal, between latitudes 5°and 10°N, and longitudes 79° and 82°E.Sri Lanka is separated from the Indian subcontinent by the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait. According to the Hindu mythology, a land bridge existed between the Indian mainland and Sri Lanka. It now amounts to only a chain of limestone shoals remaining above sea level. It was reportedly passable on foot up to 1480 AD, until cyclones deepened the channel vary by 14 °C to 18 °C. Palk Strait Thalaimannar (Sri Lanka) Dhanushkodi (India)
  8. 8. Geography of Sri Lanka The island consists mostly of flat-to-rolling coastal plains, with mountains rising only in the south-central part. Amongst these is the highest point Pidurutalagala, reaching 2,524 metres above sea level. The climate of Sri Lanka can be described as tropical and warm. Its position endows the country with a warm climate moderated by ocean winds and considerable moisture A view of Sripada from Maskeliya The mean temperature ranges from about 17 °C in the central highlands, where frost may occur for several days in the winter, to a maximum of approximately 33 °C in other low-altitude areas. The average yearly temperature ranges from 28 °C to nearly 31 °C. Day and night temperatures may vary by 14 °C to 18 °C. Climates
  9. 9. Geography of Sri Lanka Mountains Piduruthalagala Mountain (2524m) Rathnagiri Mountain (2392m) Hakgala mountain (2170m) Kirigalpattha Mountain (2395m)
  10. 10. Geography of Sri Lanka Rainfall pattern of the country is influenced by Monsoon winds from the Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal. The "wet zone" and some of the windward slopes of the central highlands receive up to 2,500 millimetres of rain each month, but the leeward slopes in the east and northeast receive little rain. Most of the east, southeast, and northern parts of the country comprise the "dry zone", which receives between 1,200 mm and 1,900 mm of rain annually. The arid northwest and southeast coasts receive the least amount of rain at 800 mm to 1,200 mm per year. Periodic squalls occur and sometimes tropical cyclones bring overcast skies and rains to the southwest, northeast, and eastern parts of the island. Humidity is typically higher in the southwest and mountainous areas and depends on the seasonal patterns of rainfall. Sinharaja Rain Forest Rainfall
  11. 11. Geography of Sri Lanka Longest of the 103 rivers in the country is Mahaweli River, covering a distance of 335 kilometres. Mahaweli River (335 km) Aruvi Aru (164 km) Kala Oya (148 km) Kelani Ganga (145 km) Rivers
  12. 12. Geography of Sri Lanka These waterways give rise to 51 natural waterfalls, having a height of 10 meters or more. The highest one is Bambarakanda Falls, with a height of 263 meters. Water falls Uduwara falls Ambarakanda falls Elgin Falls St.ClairsFalls
  13. 13. Geography of Sri Lanka Sri Lanka's coastline is 1,585 km long. It claims to an Exclusive Economic Zone extending 200 nautical miles. This is approximately 6.7 times the country‟s land area Stick fisherman south of Galle Bentota beach Colombo Coastline area
  14. 14. Geography of Sri Lanka The coastline and adjacent waters support highly productive marine ecosystems such as fringing coral reefs, shallow beds of coastal and estuarine sea grass. Coastline area Coral reef at Kalpity Coral reef at Kalpity Sea turtle in the gulf of Mannar Sea turtle in the gulf of Mannar
  15. 15. Geography of Sri Lanka Sri Lanka inherits 45 estuaries and 40 lagoons too Coastline area Hikkaduwa estuary Batticaloa Lagoon Tangalle LagoonMuthurajawela Lagoon
  16. 16. Geography of Sri Lanka Country's mangrove ecosystem which spans over 7,000 hectares. Coastline area The island is rich with minerals such as Limonite, Feldspar, Graphite, Silica, Kaolin, Mica and Thorium. Mangroves in kalpity Kokkilai Tangalle Lagoon
  17. 17. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Lying within the Indomalaya echozone, Sri Lanka is one of the 25 biodiversity hotspots in the world. Although the country is relatively small in size, it has the highest biodiversity per 10,000 square km in Asia.Remarkably high proportion of the species among its flora and fauna, 27% of the 3,210 flowering plants and 22% of the mammals, are endemic. Sri Lanka has declared 24 wildlife reserves, which are home to a wide range of native species such as Asian elephants, leopards, sloth bears, the unique small loris, a variety of deer, the purple-faced langur, the endangered wild boar, porcupines and anteaters. Varieties of flowering acacias are well adapted to the arid conditions and flourish on the Jaffna Peninsula. Among the trees of the dry-land forests, are some valuable species such as satinwood, ebony, ironwood, mahogany and teak. In the wet zone, the dominant vegetation of the lowlands is a tropical evergreen forest, with tall trees, broad foliage, and a dense undergrowth of vines and creepers. Subtropical evergreen forests resembling those of temperate climates flourish in the higher altitudes
  18. 18. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Biodiversity of Srilanka The Yala National Park in the southeast protects herds of elephant, deer, and peacocks, and the Wilpattu National Park, the largest national park in Sri Lanka, in the northwest preserves the habitats of many water birds, such as storks, pelicans, ibis, and spoonbills. The island has four biosphere reserves, Bundala, Hurulu Forest Reserve, the Kanneliya - Dediyagala - Nakiyadeniya, and Sinharaja. Out of these, Sinharaja forest reserve is home to 26 endemic birds and 20 rainforest species, including the elusive Red- faced Malkoha, Green-billed Coucal and Sri Lanka Blue Magpie. The untapped genetic potential of Sinharaja flora is enormous. Out of the 211 woody trees and lianas so far identified within the reserve, 139 (66%) are endemic. The Total vegetation density, including trees, shrubs, herbs and seedlings has been estimated to be around 240,000 individuals per hectare.`
  19. 19. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Biodiversity of Srilanka Owl - Sinharaja Bird Waves Leopard - Yaela national park Elephants - Uda Walawe Birds in Sri Lanka : In comparison with countries of its size , Sri Lanka has a high density of species of birds. More than 40 bird species have been recorded including migrants. Around three quarter of these species of birds are endemic, simply can not find anywhere else in the world. The mixed species feeding flocks in Sinharaja (the „Sinharaja Bird Waves‟) are the largest in the world. These birds can be seen easily as they are relatively tamed. Leopard in Sri lanka: Sri Lanka is a popular destination in Asia to see and photograph leopards. In Yala national park it is high as one per square kilometer according to the research statistics supported by tourism industry records. Since only few number of large carnivores available, the leopard has become the top predator. Further the adults and cubs are remarkably relaxed during the day, offering great opportunities for viewing and photography. Sri Lanak Elephant: In August and September, one can see the highest concentration of Elephants occur during „The Gathering‟ a seasonal event which takes place at Minneriya National Park. In other parks, elephants can be watched throughout the year. In Uda Walawe, elephants are guaranteed, a promise which no other park in Asia can make..
  20. 20. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Biodiversity of Srilanka Monkey - Singaraja Primates in Sri Lanka : Sri Lanka has three species of diurnal primates (two are endemic) and two species of nocturnal primates (two lorises with one endemic). It is probably one of the best places in the world to observe the social dynamics of diurnal primates. The endemic Toque Monkeys have been studied in one of the longest running field studies in the world Butterflies of Sri Lanka : Sri Lanka is a country which can provide amazing range of butterflies, statistically nearing 250 species of butterflies and skippers. Simply to say how easy to find butterflies in Sri Lanka, even the wetland reserves close to commercial capital Colombo holds as many as 50 different species. large scale migrations are taking place amongst the white and yellow colored habitats. A breathtaking array of species can be seen at any time of the year Reptiles in Sri Lanka : Sri Lanka currently contains 171 species of reptiles, of which 56 are threatened and 101 are endemic. Most of the reptiles are snakes and the largest are two species of Crocodile, the Mugger crocodile and Saltwater Crocodile Butterfly One species of reptiles
  21. 21. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Biodiversity of Srilanka Amphibians in Sri Lanka: Sri Lanka has one of the most rich diversity of Amphibians, containing over 106 species of amphibians and has been claimed to have the highest amphibian species density in the world though that has been challenged. 52 species of amphibians in Sri Lanka are threatened, all but one of which are endemic. Dragonflies in Sri Lanka: Around 120 species of dragonflies have been identified with more of them still to be described by science. Sri Lanka which is famous for thousands of manmade lakes, enormous areas of paddy fields and irrigation channels resembles a giant wetland complex. This has significantly influenced the origination of abundance of habitat make the island very good for dragonfly watchers. Sri Lanka Rainforests: Rainforest which covers sizable area of south-west of the island is amongst the best for its bio diversity not only in south asia but throughout the globe. For this reason Sri Lanka is placed amongst the world‟s bio diversity hyper hot spots. The country‟s relative small size and location as an island makes it one of the most diverse geography and climate conditions. It is possible to be in a rainforest and a beach shore within a few hours distance. Frog Dragonfly Rainforests
  22. 22. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka National Parks in Sri Lanka • Yala • Wilpattu • Sinharaja • Gal Oya • Kumana • Udawalawe • Lahugala Kitulana • Maduru Oya • Wasgamuwa • Flood Plains • Somawathiya • Horton Plains • Bundala • Lunugamvehera • Minneriya • Kaudulla • Hikkaduwa • Pigeon Island • Horagolla • Galway's Land • Angammedilla • Ussangoda • Kokkilai The following are national parks in Sri Lanka administered by the Department of Wildlife Conservation.
  23. 23. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Yala National Park Yala is undoubtedly Sri Lanka‟s most visited national park and the best in Sri lanka for viewing a wide diversity of animals. It is a wonderful place with spectrum of habitats from scrub jungle, lakes, brackish lagoon to riverine habitat. Wildlife The park is good for dry zone specialists like Indian and Great Thick- knees, Sirkeer and blue-faced Malkohas and Malabar Pied Hornbill. The park is probably the best place to see the rare Black-neeked strok. A day‟s birding in the park, during the northern winter, can yield a 100 speices..
  24. 24. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Wilpattu National Park Wilpattu National park comprises of a complex of lakes called villus surrounded by grassy plains, within scrub jungle. The biggest draw here are Leopards. Wildlife Endemic bids include the Ceylon Junglefowl, Brown-capped Babbler, Ceylon Woodshrike and Black-capped Bulbul in riverine habitats. Muntjac or Barking Deer are More easily seen in Wilpattu than other national park. Butterflies recorded include the Great Eggfly, Great Orange Tip, Glad-eye Bush brown, Blue Mormon, Common Mormon, Common rose and Crimson Rose.
  25. 25. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Sinharaja National Park The Sinharaja Man and Biosphere Reserve was declared a World Heritage Site in1988. It is arguably the important biodiversity site in Sri Lanka and is also internationally important tropical biodiversity. Wildlife Sinharaja comprises of low and sub-montane wet evergreen forest with sub-montane pantana grassland in the east. A staggering 64% of the tree spices are endemic to Sri Lanka. Endemic Birds, half of Sril ankan‟s endemic mammals and butterflies and found here.
  26. 26. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Kithugala National Park Kithulgala (Kelani Valley Forest Reserve) was established to protect the watershed of the kalani river. It is home to many of Sri Lanka‟s endemic fauna and flora. Wildlife A good number of endemic birds including the Spot –winged Thrush, Green-billed Coucal, Ceylon gray Hornbill, Yellow-fronted Barbet and Ceylon Frogmouth. Mammals include Grizzled Indian Squirrel and Layard‟s Striped Squirrel. The streams hold endemic fish and amphibians and the Earless lizard is frequently seen.
  27. 27. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Bundala National Park Bundala National park is a mix of scrub jungle and sand duns bordering the sea. Its beaches are important nesting sites for turtles. The lagoons hold good numbers of birds and crocodiles. Wildlife Endemic birds and during the northern winter large number of migrants birds arrive such as Golden and kentish Plover, Large and Lesser Sandplovers, march and Curlew Sandipper, Curlew and Greenshank. Mammals are Elepahant, Spotted Deer, Hanuman langur, Jackal and wild pig.
  28. 28. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Mannar National Park Mannar Island and the strip on the mainland from around Gaint‟s Tank has become a magnet for birders, in search of species who are not found regularly in the southern half of the island. These include Deccan avi-faunal species such as the Long-tailed Shrike, Black Drongo, Crab Plover, Indian Courser etc.
  29. 29. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka Minneriya National Park The “Gathering” takes place every year between August and September. The largest concentration of Elephants in Asia, happens when over 300 gather on the grassland that sprouts on the receding shores of Minneriya Lake. It in one of the greatest wildlife spectacles in the world. Wildlife In the scrub jungle around the lake, endemic birds found. The open areas around the lake are good for raptors including Brahiminy Kite, Grey-headed fish Eagle and the majestic White-bellied Sea Eagle. Mammals include the endemic Toque Monkey, Hanuman Langur and Spotted Deer.
  30. 30. Environment and Wildlife of Sri Lanka The South Coast The sea of the south coast from Dondra Head is one of the best places in the world to see Blue Whales and Sperm Whales. The continental shelf is at its narrowest near Dondra Head, the southernmost point of Sri Lanka. Wildlife In April, sighting of Blue Whales are almost certain, for those setting out from Mirissa. Other marine mammals to be seen including Long –snouted Dolphins with the advent of the south-west Monsoon large number of sea birds can be observed.
  31. 31. Economy of Sri Lanka Economy According to the International Monetary Fund, Sri Lanka claims to a US$50 billion economy as of 2010. It has a GDP of US$106.5 billion in terms of purchasing power parity. Sri Lanka is next only to Maldives in the South Asian region in terms of per capita income, with a nominal value of US$2,435 and PPP value of US$5,220. It recorded a GDP growth of 8.2% in 2010 and it is estimated that GDP will grow by 9.5% in 2011, becoming one of the fastest growing economies of the world. Colombo Stock Exchange was the best performing stock exchange in Asia in 2009 and 2010, by almost tripling in value during that time. In the 19th and 20th centuries, Sri Lanka became a plantation economy, famous for its production and export of cinnamon, rubber and Ceylon tea, which remains a trademark national export.
  32. 32. Economy of Sri Lanka Economy While the production and export of tea, rubber, coffee, sugar and other agricultural commodities remains important, the nation has moved steadily towards an industrialized economy with the development of food processing, textiles, telecommunications and finance. Main economic sectors of the country are tourism, tea export, clothing, rice production and other agricultural products. The development of modern ports under British rule raised the strategic importance of the island as a centre of trade From 1948 to 1977 socialism strongly influenced the government's economic policies. Colonial plantations were dismantled, industries were nationalized and a welfare state established. In 1977 the Free market economy was introduced to the country, incorporating privatization, deregulation and the promotion of private enterprise.
  33. 33. Economy of Sri Lanka Economy In addition to these economic sectors, overseas employment contributes highly in foreign exchange, most of them from the Middle East. As of 2010, service sector makes up 60% of GDP, industrial sector 28% and agriculture sector 12%. Private sector accounts for 85% of the economy. India is the largest trading partner of Sri Lanka. Economic dispraise exist between the provinces, with Western province contributing to 45.1% of the GDP, Southern province and Central province, 10.7% and 10% respectively. With the end of the war, Northern province reported a record 22.9% GDP growth in 2010. The per capita income of Sri Lanka has doubled since 2005. During the same period, poverty has dropped from 15.2% to 7.6%, unemployment has dropped from 7.2% to 4.9%, market capitalization of Colombo Stock Exchange has quadrupled and budget deficit has doubled.
  34. 34. Economy of Sri Lanka Economy The Global Competitiveness Report published by the World Economic Forum has listed Sri Lanka as a transitive economy, from factor-driven stage to efficiency-driven stage, ranking 52nd in the global competitiveness. 90% of the households in Sri Lanka are electrified, 87.3% of the population have access to safe drinking water and 39% have access to pipe-borne water. Income inequality has also dropped in recent years, indicated by a gini coefficient of 0.36 in 2010.Sri Lanka's cellular subscriber base has shown a staggering 550% growth, from 2005 to 2010. Sri Lanka was the first country in the South Asian region to introduce 3G (Third Generation), 3.5G HSDPA, 3.75G HSUPA and 4G LTE mobile broadband Internet technologies.
  35. 35. Economy of Sri Lanka Economy It also ranked 45th in health and primary education, 32nd in business sophistication, 42nd in innovation and 41st in goods market efficiency out of the 142 countries surveyed. Sri Lanka ranks 8th in the World Giving Index, registering high levels of contentment and charitable behaviour in its society. In 2010, The New York Times placed Sri Lanka at number 1 position in 31 places to visit. Dow Jones classified Sri Lanka as an emerging market in 2010, and Citigroup classified it as a 3G country in February 2011. Sri Lanka ranks well above other South Asian countries in Human Development Index (HDI) with 0.658 points.
  36. 36. Economy of Sri Lanka Economy Sri Lanka has a A and B class road network exceeding 12,000 kilometers . It consists of 35 A grade highways connecting major cities. In addition, several expressways are being built. The railway network, operated by the state-run national railway operator, Sri Lanka Railways, spans 1,447 kilometers. Sri Lanka also has three deep-water ports, at Colombo, Galle, and Trincomalee, in addition to the newest port being built at Hambantota. Its flag carrier airline is the Sri Lankan Airlines.
  37. 37. Demographics of Sri Lanka Demographic Sri Lanka is the 53rd most populated nation in the world, with an annual population growth rate of 0.73%. Sri Lanka has a birth rate of 17.6 births per 1,000 people and a death rate of 6.2 deaths per 1,000 people. Population density is highest in western Sri Lanka, especially in and around the capital. Sinhalese constitute the largest ethnic group in the country, with 74% of the total population.Sri Lankan Tamils are the second major ethnic group in the island, with a percentage of 12.6. Sri Lankan Moors comprise 7.4%. Tamils of Indian origin were brought into the country as indentured labourers by British colonists to work on estate plantations. Nearly 50% of them were repatriated following independence in 1948. They are distinguished from the native Tamil population that has resided in Sri Lanka since ancient times. There are also small ethnic groups such as the Burghers (of mixed European descent) and Austronesia peoples from Southeast Asia. Moreover, there is a small population of Vedda people whom are believed to be the original indigenous group to inhabit the island.
  38. 38. Demographics of Sri Lanka Demographic Sinhalese and Tamil are the two official languages of Sri Lanka. Constitution defines English as the link language. English is widely used for education, scientific and commercial purposes. Members of the Burgher community speak variant forms of Portuguese Creole and Dutch with varying proficiency, while members of the Malay community speak a form of Creole Malay that is unique to the island. Sri Lanka is also a multi-religious country. Buddhism constitutes the religious faith of about 70% of the population of the island, most of whom follow the Theravada school of Buddhism. Buddhism was introduced to Sri Lanka in the 2nd century BCE by Venerable Mahinda. A sapling of the Bodhi Tree under which the Buddha attained enlightenment was brought to Sri Lanka during the same time. The Pali Canon (Thripitakaya), having previously been preserved as an oral tradition, was first committed to writing in Sri Lanka around 30 BCE. Sri Lanka has the longest continuous history of Buddhism of any predominately Buddhist nation, with the Sangha having existed in a largely unbroken lineage since its introduction in the 2nd century BCE. During periods of decline, the Sri Lankan monastic lineage was revived through contact with Thailand and Burma.
  39. 39. Demographics of Sri Lanka Demographic Hinduism is the second most prevalent religion in Sri Lanka which also arrived from India. Hinduism is dominant in Northern, Eastern and Central Sri Lanka. It was primarily established in Sri Lanka by migrants and often invaders from southern India. Islam is the third most dominant religion in the country, having been brought to the island by Arab traders over the course of many centuries, most are Sunni who follow the Shafi’s school. Christianity was also brought into the country by Western colonists in the early 16th century. Around 8% of the Sri Lankan population are Christians. Out of them, 88% are Roman Catholics. Rest of the Christians are evenly split between the Anglican Church of Ceylon and other Protestant faiths. There is also a small population of Zoroastrian immigrants from India. Religion plays a prominent role in the life and culture of Sri Lankans. The Buddhist majority observe Poya Days, once per month according to the Lunar calendar. The Hindus and Muslims also observe their own holidays. Sri Lanka was ranked the 3rd most religious country in the world by a 2008 Gallup poll, with 99% of Sri Lankans saying religion is an important part of their daily life