Delhi protest proclaims Eezham Tamil Right to Self-Determination

[TamilNet, Saturday, 27 August 2011, 18:00 GMT]
Rajya Sabha MP Baishnab Charan Parida of Biju Janta Dal, the ruling political party of the State of Orissa, on Friday expressed his party's strong support to Tamil Right to Self-Determination at a rally organized by leftist youths of the Communist Party of India in front of the Indian Parliament. Meanwhile, R. Thirumalai, from Tamil Nadu, state secretary of the All India Students’ Federation (AISF), declared that no one has the moral right to dictate the form of political solution, and that the victims of genocide, the Tamils in the island, should alone decide their political destiny by exercising the absolute right to Self-Determination without any pre-conditions.

Biju Janta Dal (BJD) Rajya Sabha MP Baishnab Charan Parida
Biju Janta Dal (BJD) Rajya Sabha MP Baishnab Charan Parida
Hundreds of leftist youths belonging to All India Youth Federation (AIYF) attending the march demanded that Government of India not cooperate with the Sri Lankan State, which the AIYF claimed, continues the genocidal program against the Tamils in the island.

The AIYF also urged the Center to immediately stop supply of arms, ammunition and money to the government of Sri Lanka.

Demanding that India as a regional power should assert itself in calling for open international investigations on war crimes and crimes against humanity, the protesters also demanded to dismantle the internment camps and immediately release the political prisoners and others illegally detained in the island.

The march began from the CPI Headquarters, Indrajeet Gupta Marg, around 11:00 a.m. and reached Ranjit Flyover, Jantar Mantar and it was converted into a mass meeting near Parliament Police Station.

Throughout the long route from Ajay Bhavan to Parliament Street, the AIYF activists raised slogans against Rajapaksa siblings, DMK chief M Karunanidhi, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and the Indian PM Manmohan Singh. Protesters shouted slogans in Tamil and many of the placards were written in Hindi.

The AIYF Parliament March was in response to the call by the National Council of the Communist Party of India. The youth activists had come from different parts of India, particularly from Tamil Nadu.

"CPI MP D. Raja raised the Eelam issue, supported by other Left and democratic parties, in the Indian Parliament on Wednesday, forcing the Indian External Affairs Minister to respond. But, the response didn't satisfy the parliamentarians, so the MPs belonging to these parties staged a walkout protest. The Parliament March by the AIYF has taken up the burning issue of the Tamils throughout India," said C. Mahendran, a senior CPI leader from Tamil Nadu.

Leaders of various political parties including CPI general secretary A B Bardhan, CPI national council secretary and parliamentarian D. Raja, T. Lingam CPI MP, Amarjeet Kaur, Atul Kumar Anjaan, T K Rangarajan of CPI(M), a central committee member and TDP MP Mysura Reddy also addressed the protesters.

The national general secretary of AIYF, Sandosh Kumar, addressing the gathering, deplored and condemned the Indian government and Sri Lankan government for killing more than 200,000 Tamils in Sri Lanka. Genu Zakaria Ooman, the AISF national president also spoke on other issues concerning the Tamils.

Speaking on the occasion Mr. Bardhan said that Tamils in Sri Lanka have been denied equal rights. In a diversified culture, democratic rights and principles should have helped in forging unity with cultural diversity among the various ethnic groups, he said.

Citing the photos and pictures carried by the demonstrators, the CPI general secretary said, "They were most horrific. India should not have allowed this to happen. The government of India has been supplying arms and ammunition to the Sri Lankan government, the senseless government forgot to think that the arms were being used to kill the Tamils in the name of killing terrorists, and eliminate the Tamil people. Can this be allowed," Bardhan asked.

Bardhan demanded that Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse be tried for war crimes in the International Criminal Court. Why the government of India is silent over the in human treatment to the Tamils? Why even after the end of the so-called war on terror, the Indian government is continuing to supply arms and funds, he questioned.

The CPI Rajya Sabha parliamentarian, D Raja in his speech in Tamil and English urged the youth to come forward and take the struggle to the people. Going back to history, Mr. Raja said that the bloodshed in Sri Lanka is not new. There is half-a-century of history, he said. From 1948 onwards the Tamils in Sri Lanka have been treated as second-class citizens.

Should India have supported this genocide? Forty thousand Tamil people were killed in the last days of the brutal war, not in any history such a genocide had ever occurred.

Our struggle is not because the people in Sri Lanka were Tamils, but it is the question of violation of human rights. More than 89,000 women have become widows, children have been orphaned, Raja said. We are not raising this issue just because they were Tamils. It is an issue of preserving and safeguarding the democratic norms and human principles.

T. Ramachandaran, MLA and state president of AIYF, R Thirumalai, state secretary, D Lenin, the former state secretary K Raja, B M Balamurugan, state vice presidents, V Balamurugan and M David Kumar, assistant secretaries and other district level AIYF leaders addressed the gathering.


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