Second annual Ki'liththaddu tournament attracts hundreds in Canada
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 29 August 2012, 06:10 GMT]
Tamil youth teams from across Canada assembled in Toronto on Sunday to play in the second annual Ki'liththaddu tournament organized by TYO-Canada. Over 20 teams competed for a chance to win the Tamil Eelam Heritage Trophy. Originating from the agricultural roots of Eezham Tamils, the game has gained popularity and was organized to promote and preserve Eezham Tamil identity, tournament organizers said. Community organizers concluded the event highlighting the importance of upholding Eezham Tamil identity and national symbols in resisting the genocidal scheme against Eezham Tamils.
“Ki'liththaddu is a game that is part of our rich heritage and through initiatives like this one we prove that the younger generation has the power to keep our identity from being erased,” Thushitha Kobikrishna, a member of TYO-Canada, told TamilNet.
This year the tournament saw the return of many teams as well as the creation of several new ones. The teams, ranging from universities, colleges, and high schools, had organized practice sessions well before the date of the competition to build strategic tactics to strengthen themselves.
Teams selected their names from the previous years and new teams followed suit with the naming of their teams to reflect Eezham Tamil identity.
The Eelam 89ers took home the Tamileelam Heritage Trophy for a second year in a row for the beginners group. Team Vaanavil claimed the Tamileelam Heritage Trophy for the competitive group.
“This tournament is a really great way of bringing together different age groups for something as positive as preserving our identity. It’s really important for us to keep holding events like Ki'liththaddu because it’s an avenue where youth can participate and have fun at the same time,” said Jonathan Nagesh, captain of the winning team Eelam 89ers.
The closing awards ceremony included speeches from community organizers praising the ability of Tamil youth to infuse Tamil national identity into the event.
"The Sri Lankan state continues to perpetrate genocide against the Tamil nation in the NorthEast of the island. Today's Ki'liththaddu event is a part of the resistance against the genocide of our national consciousness," said Krisna Saravanamuttu, spokesperson of the National Council of Canadian Tamils.
Speaking on the significance of national symbols Saravanamuttu added that, "Every time we gather together on Canadian soil and raise our national flag it is resistance against Sri Lanka's genocide. Any politician or Tamil leader that asks you to lower your flag, by default, accepts the legitimacy of the Sri Lankan flag and its genocidal agenda."
Event organizers indicated that next year the venue will be larger to accommodate for the increased popularity of the game.