TamilNadu leaders protest against Indian PM's participation in SL Independence Day
[TamilNet, Saturday, 29 December 2007, 17:37 GMT]
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's reported intention to participate as the Chief Guest in the Sri Lankan Government's Independence Day Celebrations on February 4, 2008 has sparked large-scale dissent from political leaders in Tamilnadu. K. Veeramani, President of the Dravidar Kazhagam (DK), on Friday announced his organization's decision to demonstrate against the proposed visit and called upon the Tamilnadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi to intervene in this regard. Meanwhile, Thol.Thirumavalavan, President, Viduthalaich Chi'ruththaika'l Kadchi and Suba. Veerapandiyan of Dravidar Iyakka Thamizhar Pearavai have pledged their organizational support and participation to the demonstration.
The demonstration will be held opposite the Memorial Hall, Chennai on December 31, 2007 at 11 a.m.
Dr. K Veeramani said that the Indian Prime Minister's proposed participation was "unjustifiable" and a shock not only to Tamils around the world but to everybody who respected the notions of human rights and humanism.
He said that the Sri Lankan independence had ensured that Tamils were made second-class citizens and the citizenship rights of the (upcountry) Tamils had been snatched away immediately. He added that once Mahinda Rajapaksa assumed power in November 2005, he threw away the Ceasefire agreement that was in operation and he insulted the Norwegian Government which mediated the peace talks. He singled out the GoSL for its state terrorism and said "in no other nation in the world does a government bomb its own citizens."
He also quoted Chandrika Kumaratunga's statement that to have a political alliance with Mahinda Rajapaksa was akin to having one with Hitler. In his press release, he drew attention to the suffering undergone by Tamils under Rajapaksa's genocidal government: nearly half a million Tamils had become internally displaced, more than 4000 Tamil civilians have been killed, and even in Colombo, Tamils are subjected to mass detention and arbitary arrests.
He said that since 1983, more than 300 Indian fishermen have been killed by the Sri Lanka Navy, and he sought to know if Sri Lanka's behaviour towards India has ever been friendly. Sri Lanka had not supported India during the Indo-China war in 1964, or during the Indo-Pakistan war in 1971. The GoSL had not implemented the Rajiv Gandhi-J.R.Jayawardene pact, nor had it merged the Northern and Eastern provinces. He regretted that India's approach was not justifiable in this regard, a sad fact that pained not only the Tamil Diaspora, but neutral observers everywhere. "The relationship between the Tamils of India, and the Tamils of Eelam is one of a mother and child--bond by the umblical cord. The Indian Government is not unaware of this, so why this malice?" he added. He also blamed the Indian Government for supplying warships and radar equipment to the SLA.
Meanwhile, the Viduthalai Chi'ruththaika'l Kadchi (VCK, the Liberation Panthers Party), one of the allies of the ruling Dravida Munneatta Kazhakam (DMK), has extended its support to the demonstration scheduled for December 31. VCK President Thol.Thirumavalavan said that he will participate in it along with a large number of his cadres. Likewise, the Dravidar Iyakka Tamilar Peravai General Secretary Supa. Veerapandiyan has also said that his organization will take part in the demonstration.