Former Mayor of Jaffna passes away

[TamilNet, Friday, 09 May 2008, 11:27 GMT]
Mr. Sinnathamby Nagarajah, who served as Mayor of Jaffna twice in the late 60’s, passed away in New Jersey, USA, on Thursday May 8h at the age of 77. Mr. Nagarajah was a Tamil nationalist, and an active member of the Tamil diaspora in lobbying in the United States for political support for Tamil struggle of self determination.

Mr. Nagarajah, born on 28 February 1931, was an old boy of Jaffna Hindu College. Later he attended Madras Christian College, Chennai to complete Bachelor's degree and Masters degree in English Literature. Upon returning to Sri Lanka, he became an Attorney-at-Law and practiced law in the North and East of Sri Lanka.

In 1982, Mr. Nagarajah resigned from his position as Vice Chairman of the then proposed District Development Council, realizing that the body was not empowered to help Tamil people. He continued to be active in the politics, and remained as a resident of Jaffna until late 90s.

In 1989, when Indian Army was occupying north-East of Sri Lanka, he traveled to Vanni, stayed at the LTTE political head quarters, and participated in political activities and constitutional matters.

Later, he taught at the Tamil Eelam Judiciary Department, which was newly inaugurated by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the early 90‘s. He gave lectures at the Law School of the Tamil Eelam Judiciary Department to the judges and attorneys.

In the late 90s, he moved permanently to New Jersey, USA to live with his children. In New Jersey, he mobilized and took part in all Tamil activities. He frequently met several congressmen and officials to convey the plight of Tamils living in Sri Lanka.

“We are neither terrorists nor separatists, we are only fighting back to regain our lost freedom," he said in the welcoming speech. "Tamils have the right to reclaim freedom for their traditional homeland and restore the sovereignty to Tamil people," he said during his address at the Tamil Memorial day of USA, held in November 2007.

Mr. Nagarajah is survived by his wife and five children.

The cremation ceremony will be held in New Jersey, USA at 9:00 a.m. on May 10th, 2008.


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