Youth of India voice for Eezham Tamils
[TamilNet, Friday, 14 November 2008, 14:37 GMT]
More than 10,000 students, coming from all the states of India marched to the Indian parliament on Friday in New Delhi, pressing educational demands including a 10 percent allotment of state expenditure on education. Political observers find great significance in the highlight of Eezham Tamil issue as a demand in this all India student rally. This is their only demand outside of the purview of education. The agitation took place against a backdrop of Sri Lankan president ruling out the possibility of stopping the war in the island, while on a visit to New Delhi on Wednesday. Even the Indian Prime Minister who received him hasn’t said anything on stopping the war, according to news reports.
End of attacks on Eezham Tamils, stoppage of military aid to Sri Lanka and initiation of peaceful political solution to the crisis, were the demands included in the students’ agitation organized by the All India Students Federation (AISF).
The thousands of students arrived from all over India camped at the Ramlila grounds in New Delhi in the cold of the winter and marched to the Indian Parliament for a distance of five km., on Friday forenoon. Senior leaders who accompanied the students narrowly avoided a clash between the students and the police as the protesting students thronged across the barricades in front of the parliament.
Around 2000 students have traveled from Tamil Nadu in a special train to participate the rally.
Highlighting their feelings and their demand to end the sufferings of Eezham Tamils they have named the train as ‘Messenger of Tears’.
“70 million Tamils have wished for an immediate end of war and peaceful solution to the crisis through a unanimous resolution in the Tamil Nadu state assembly the day Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa arrived in India last Wednesday”.
“Coming from a Buddhist country Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa has only shown his arrogance in the land of Buddha by his belligerent talk of continuing war”, said C. Mahendran, a senior leader of the Communist Party of India who has come to Delhi for the rally, guiding the students of Tamil Nadu.
Several trade union leaders associated with the CPI addressed the students. In their addresses they said the demands of Tamil Nadu people brought to New Delhi by the student community have now transcended across all the states of India as the students community converged in New Delhi. They said the protest marked that pressure would mount on New Delhi from several corners to stop providing military assistance to the Sri Lankan government and to seek an immediate end to the genocidal war being waged by Colombo.
Women activists spoke of the violence on Tamil women by the Sri Lankan forces.
Student leaders from Tamil Nadu spoke on the plight of thousands of students in Vanni. More than 35,000 students were unable to continue their studies amid bombardments, displacement and a blockade on humanitarian and essential supplies in Vanni, they said.