A point of view by a peace loving Sri Lankan Tamil
Apr 24, 2009
A point of view by a peace loving Sri Lankan Tamil having spent 30 years in Sri Lanka and the later 30 years in the U.K.
This is my personal view of Sri Lankan Tamils: Karunanidhi, Jayalalitha, Vaico, Nadumaran all are dancers to the changing tunes of the Tamil Nadu Politics poor Sri Lankan Tamils are used as Pawns for their political board game.
The truth is as follows as I was a Sri Lankan Tamil born and brought up in Sri Lanka grown with the Sinhalese, Muslims and Jaffna Tamils.
I am a Colombo born Tamil; I know my father came from Tamil Nadu in 1912. My mother also Colombo Tamil, born in Gampaha and her grand parents may have come from Tamil Nadu. My mother's side all were Ceylon Government Railway (CGR) workers, under British administration and my father had a Government service with the CGR for 40 years in Colombo.
After my father’s retirement from Railways we lived in Kandy, I was a Trinitian went to Trinity College in Kandy. I had very good Sinhala and Muslim schoolmates and friends. We had good Teachers from Batticaloa, Jaffna and a very strict Sinhalese Principal. Sri Lankan Government services not oppressed me.
At this time of Sinhala and Tamil New year, I can remember the good old days, my mother used to give me a tray full of home made sweets to my Sinhala and Muslim neighbours to distribute and in turn we received sweets from them. I had great times with my Sinhalese and Muslim friends in harmony.
There were some problems in University places, jobs, land and political freedom not fairly distributed among people. These are basic problems in any developing country has to go through after independence from British Empire. The majority of Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslims were poor. When SWRD and Mrs. Srimao Bandaranaykes’ came to power, there was severe oppression. However, there were good mediators on Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim sides. There were democratic processes, if one correctly utilise the political processes, all problems can be resolved by negotiations and not by taking Arms and Bombs. I can remember those days when Dudley Senanayake and J.R. Jeyawardena, Premedasa were PMs. There were good politicians like Budduhideen Mohamed, Dr. N. M. Perera, Selvanayagam, Kadhrkamar and Ananda Cumara Swamy. There were bad forces within Jaffna people never followed the main line Politics with good leaders like Selvanayagam. There was a cancer growing within the Tamil groups to Separate Sri Lanka and rule, unfortunately who joined these groups are all separatists.
Even at that time, Jaffna Tamil people say that ‘I am not belonging to Jaffna’. Therefore, ‘I am a Northerner’ origin from Tamil Nadu, as I speak different Tamil.
Jaffna Tamil people say they speak pure Tamil and Tamil Nadu Tamils speak bad Tamil this is generally showing the superiority in their behaviour. The Tea estate Tamils were frowned upon as they were migrant workers brought by the British administrators to work in the Tea plantation. The Tea estate Tamils were very poor, ‘hand to mouth’ situation, there is nothing to look forward to, Thondaman lead these poor people in a union called ‘worker’s congress’.
Contrast to this, Jaffna Tamils (now a major LTTE group) from North and East of Sri Lanka, had good education by hard work. Their productive fertile land and coastal area for fishing were naturally giving advantages over rest of Sri Lanka. They were secularised and isolated and they tend to organise themselves in a self governing manner away from Colombo administration. They always try and find differences in communities and tend to secularise and isolate themselves perhaps this is how they wanted.
Jaffna Tamil’s secular idea of differentiating themselves from others is an ideology they practiced. LTTE not going to support for a unified Sri Lanka to include Indian Tamils and Muslims in it.
LTTE want a land of their own to practice what they believe is separatism and segregation. Their thinking formed the present armed group of LTTE.
LTTE’s are tactical people; whenever they need help they seek help from Tamil Nadu, yet they treat themselves a superior race than Indian Tamils. I am not going in to the roots of Jaffna Tamils. There are significant numbers of Jaffna Tamil sympathisers in Tamil Nadu causing political leadership problems in the Indian electoral system. This is dirty politics between parties to gain votes the voice of every party leader changes according to the nation’s tune of the Tamils. The party politics of Tamils in Tamil Nadu has a say in the Indian administration. Sri Lankan Tamil problem is a Political game for India.
LTTE paid the heaviest price in the history of Tamils through this unwanted civil war. They are now reaping the harvest sown by their ideological LTTE leaders. Isolation and secularisation made their suicidal type mental make up is very strong in a hypnotised manner, even as young as 5 years old waging the tiger flag and marching to the Hyde Park of London, for a cause further destroying the humanity and infuriating the host community and the peace loving people of the world. Especially the demonstrations in London to stop the war are not going to help LTTE unless there is sincere political hand shake to work with the government. If LTTE gets what they want, the Indian Tamils and Muslim settlers also have to flee from North and East of Sri Lanka.
LTTE group were armed to full fill their ideology and to reach their political ambition through civil war. World Tamils have no nation of their own therefore; well to do LTTE foreign settlers are supporting to divide a nation in to two sovereignties at any cost.
The time has come for these North and East people to live in harmony with other members of the communities, dismantling their tiger shields away. Some Tamils show their colonisation in the host communities too. They are not alone, there are Indian Tamils ands Muslims too, along with the Sinhalese in Sri Lanka. We need a common platform to solve our problems. It is our responsibility to build our Nation strong and economically healthy and to provide opportunity for all to prosper.
I have well observed LTTE’s mentality for years and my family’s personal experience as I have grown and lived in Sri Lanka for 30 years and living in U.K for the past 30 years. There should be one government and people should learn to live together respecting each other. Tolerance is the key, look for the common factors of humanity and don't look for the differences.
I have seen how Scotland went for separate Political platform in 1987 after a referendum and devolution of powers still keeping and respecting the main administration of the United Kingdom. The Sri Lankan Tamils should have followed a similar path and negotiated a referendum for their internal affairs and legal matters in their own political platform under the administration of Sri Lanka. These possibilities not explored, now completely wiped out by the LTTE’s terror wing and blindly following an offensive campaign to destroy humanity.
Those culprits, who supported LTTE for arming, should be responsible for driving these poor Northern and Eastern people in to this vast human disaster. Those LTTE political wing leaders are hiding under ground after causing maximum damage to the Tamil race untold in the history of Tamils. Where are these political leaders after Anton Balasigham no one coming out to face the world? Are they hiding in the bunkers with Gin and Tonic and flashing their pre recorded message on the Tamil satellite TVs, while their own race going through immense suffering.
LTTE paid a heavy price in this avoidable civil war. Those intellectual young men and women were wasted for a wrong cause. If Jaffna Tamils had good leaders, North and East of Sri Lanka would be thriving with trade with other countries due to its natural harbours and coastline. Abundance natural resources for manufacturing Cement and Chemicals, fisheries and harbours above all Jaffna Tamil’s intellectual mind. It is a shame that they got in to this mass hatred for Sinhalese people and the bad propaganda and the TV medias used by the LTTE for propaganda, to hate their own countrymen. There were no Tamil leaders, who had broad minded vision to form a prosperous country within the legal frame work of Sri Lanka; yet holding a prime negotiated position, within that Tamils can practice their culture and religion without hatred, contributing to the democracy and the economy of Sri Lanka and gaining the support of the Sri Lankan Government.
In this war, those Northern and Eastern Tamil elders not practiced tolerance; instead they resorted for terror and segregation this is because they were forced to believe in the armed struggle by some Tamil mobs. This only made the Jaffna people to believe in hatred. There are no diplomatic efforts made by the negotiators in the LTTE group to gain world sympathy. They have a task to prove the world that they are not the banned LTTE terrorist group. There are peace loving Tamils also in Sri Lanka want to live in harmony with the Sinhalese and Muslims.
Dismantling the US endorsed LTTE terror symbol is a tough one, as LTTE have well rooted international terror campaign. LTTE supporters, while having a lavishing life style in Europe, Americas, Australia, they sponsored Prabhakaran and his allies to absorb and convert the poor people of North and East of Sri Lanka. Morally wrong move, pure selfishness to divide the nation. If that happens no one can live in Sri Lanka. The LTTE symbol is a symbol of terror and any peace loving community will not sympathise with this terror symbol and the organisation with its past records.
In the recent LTTE mob attacks to the Sri Lankan High Commission in Norway and throwing Nehru’s statue from Indian High Commission at London are not going to help LTTE’s peace process. Pure madness and indecency in a civilised Society and mobs out cry without a peaceful leadership within LTTE group.
My talk with many ordinary Europeans reflects consolidation of their understanding of LTTE and making no sympathy for LTTE. What is left is to sincerely join hands with Sinhalese and make peace efforts wholeheartedly to make a new beginning by the help of the world.
Now the matter is humbly left to the Secretary of state for foreign and Commonwealth affairs David Milliband M.P, Rt. Hon. Des Brown MP appointed by the Prime Minister of U.K., to solve this Tamil issue and all those members of U.N to make a sincere effort to save the Tamils at this last minute. We do not need poor Sri Lankan Tamils suffering owing to the wrong doings of the LTTE.
LTTE in its present form should not be given the power for a new beginning in Sri Lanka; it is the Tamil people of Sri Lanka who decide their destiny in a referendum and possible devolution of powers to live in their native soil. I pray Her Majesty the Queen and the British Government to take this good cause forward to the U.N and mediate with Honourable Rajapakse for a new beginning for Sri Lankan citizens. I am sure Honorable Rajapakse will do the best for his citizens. God help him.