The Buddhist monk set himself on fire outside the Dalada Maligawa Temple demanding an end to cattle slaughter.
The monk is a member of the Sihala Ravaya. Identified as the venerable Bohowatte Indararatna thero, the monk was also a one-time member of the JHU.
He had earlier staged a walk from Kattaragama to Colombo to protest against cattle slaughter.
He set himself on fire outside the Kandy temple to protest against cattle slaughter in Sri Lanka. People in the area used water to douse the flames and he was then admitted to hospital in serious condition.
Leading Buddhist monks condemned his actions saying it set a bad example.
A private television station which ran a mini documentary on him soon after he set himself on fire and seemed to have known in advance of his attempt also came under harsh criticism