2ND LEAD (Update/Adds video)

Civil disobedience against occupying SL military's land grab gains momentum

[TamilNet, Monday, 18 June 2012, 15:14 GMT]
The Sri Lankan Police in Jaffna on Monday blocked a protest that gained momentum receiving wider participation against the occupying SL military's land grab in the peninsula. As hundreds of activists gathered in front of the Jaffna Bus Stand, the SL Police appealed to the Judge of the District Court stating that the Police had information that 'destructive elements' were about to use the protest to disturb normalcy in the city and blocked the protest at last minute. The protest, initiated by the Tamil National Peoples Front (TNPF) and attended by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Mano Ganesan's Democratic Peoples Front (DPF) and the leftist parties from the South as well the support it received from the Jaffna University Students Union (JUSU) and the trade unions including the teachers trade union, marked the protest as first of its kind in the post-war scenario in the peninsula.

Protest against land grab in Jaffna

Following the 'sabotage' move by the SL Police, using the legal system of the unitary Sri Lanka, a court order was issued banning the specific protest.

The SL police obtained ‘legal’ permission to cancel the protest and disperse the crowd at the last minute, based on its own report submitted to Jaffna District Judge M. Ganesarajah.

Protest against land grab in Jaffna
Protest against land grab in Jaffna
While the public was pushing for the protest to be carried on as planned, the organisers cancelled it, saying that their next move would expose the legal system as they would seek to secure permission from the same court before staging the next protest.

The protest had been announced in front of the Jaffna Central Bus Stand.

Mr Selvaraja Kajendren, the general secretary of the TNPF, said that the ‘legal move’ by the SL Police to curb the protestors against the land grab, only indicated that the forces behind land grab in the peninsula have been severely disturbed by the emerging trend to stage protest against the illegal appropriations of land.

The leading participants addressed the media and the public at a press conference held in front of the TNPF office situated on 3rd Cross Street.

Mr Kajendren came with three key messages, specifically addressed to the global community, to the TNA and to the diaspora of the Eezham Tamils.

The concepts of Tamil Nation, its own sovereignty and the Right to Self-Determination, were not just political slogans, he said. The Sri Lankan State aiming at a demographic change, depriving the Tamil Nation of its own territory.

Tamil Sovereignty, nationhood and the Right to Self-Determination are all connected to the territory. It is by giving the recognition to these core principles, one could address the burning issues of Sinhalicisation, Buddhisisation, Colonisation and a political solution founded on equality of the historic nations in the island, he said.

Kajendren further said it is the responsibility of the TNA, which had sent letters to 43 foreign missions and canvassed support to the US tabled resolution at the UNHRC that had failed to recognise the fundamentals, to clarify the above reality to the same missions on the core principles.

He also urged the diaspora to enlighten the IC on how these core principles are coupled to the Sinhalicisation, colonisation and the land grab taking place in the North and East.

Reiterating unity across parties opposing the land grab by the SL State, the organisers urged the masses to take part in the protest announced by the TNA in Valikaamam demanding Colombo to demilitarise the so-called High Security Zone.

The mobilisation against land grab, initiated in the form of civil protest, has become a success as it had threatened the Colombo establishment and as it had created a trend in bringing all the actors to stand united against the land grab, independent observers in Jaffna told TamilNet.

In the meantime, protests are being planned against land grab in Thirumu'rika'ndi in Ki'linochchi and in Mullaiththeevu in the coming days.

Protest against land grab in Jaffna



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