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About College

Maliyadeva College (Sinhala: මලියදේව විද්‍යාලය) is a national school under the control of the Sri Lankan central government. Located in Kurunegala, Sri Lanka, it was established in 1888 by the Buddhist Theosophical Society, led by Colonel Henry Steel Olcott. As one of Sri Lanka's oldest schools, it currently accommodates 5,000 students. The term "Devans" is used to refer to both former and current pupils of Maliyadeva College.

College name

The school is referred to as Maliyadeva College or simply as Maliyadeva. Local newspapers also refer to it as Maliyadeva Boys' College. The school was named Maliyadeva College after Arhat Maliyadeva, the last Maha Arhat Thero in Buddhist history, known for his great psychic powers (Abhijnanalabhi: Sinhala: අභිඥ්ඥාලාභී). Although there are several schools in this part of the island that have adopted the name Maliyadeva, none have links to Maliyadeva College except Maliyadeva Balika Vidyalaya. This institution for girls was separated from the previously coeducational Maliyadeva College in 1946.

Religious background

The school Buddhist Association was established in 1961. Before that, an association called Buddhist Kathakodhaya Association was commenced with the leadership of Ibbagala Rajamaha Viharadhipathi Nakaththe Anandha Thera and U. B. Wanninayake. After that, the school became the headquarters of Buddhists in this area. Therefore, Regional Buddhist Association was commenced with the leadership of Maliyadeva College Buddhist Association. The first shrine was built in 1939.

Today, Buddhist Association is the base of ethics and religious activities in school. All students are members of the association. It organizes religious activities throughout the year, such as annual Katina Pinkama(කඨින චීවර පූජාව), annual Parithrana Dharmadeshanawa, annual Sangagatha Dakshinawa, Pirith Pinkam and Buddhist Pageants.


Facilities include playgrounds, auditorium, swimming pool, basketball court, Indoor stadium, children's parks, computer labs, medical and dental centers, two-storied shrine for Buddhist monks, gymnasium, library, botanical, zoological, physical and chemical labs, hostel, canteens, co-operative shops, milk bar and transport services.