Feature Article

Poet Kasi Anandan speaks to Palaka'ni

[TamilNet, Saturday, 27 November 2010, 05:03 GMT]
Mu'l'livaaykkaal is only a turning point in the Tamil Eelam struggle, says veteran national poet of Eezham Tamils Kasi Anandan to the audience of Palaka'ni, the TamilNet window for cross-views that features its inaugural programme on Saturday. “The Tigers have silenced their guns. To what extent the chauvinism of the Sinhala state could go, the international community has yet another opportunity to understand now. But, has it ever accepted that what is being committed is a genocide," he questioned. Any struggle that is based on righteous principles will win. Eelam Tamils should understand this and proceed, said the 72-year-old Batticaloa-born poet, who has been associated with Periyar E.V.Ramasamy Nayakkar, S.J.V Chelvanayakam and Velupillai Pirapaharan.

Born in 1938, as Kathamuthu Sivanandan in Batticaloa, poet Kasi Anandan had his collegiate education at Pachchaiyappa's College in Chennai and was working as a government translator in Ceylon in the 1960s. He resigned his job in 1972 protesting against the treatment of Tamil language in the constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka. He was a Federal Party stalwart in the 1960s and 70s and was imprisoned for 5 years. A brother of him became a hero laying down his life fighting for the liberation cause.

Mr. Kasi Anandan has published five collections of poetry and two collections of short stories. He is very much appreciated and respected for his prowess in poetry and is addressed as U'narchchik-kavignar (Spirited Poet). Recognising his life-time contribution to the cause of Eezham Tamils, the LTTE leader Mr. V. Pirapaharan awarded him with the title Maamanithar.

Excerpts of his address follow:

Tamil Eelam struggle has started long ago based on a righteous principle of humanity. Any struggle based on a righteous principle will win. Those who started the liberation struggle did it with the full awareness of this fact. The positive goal should never be forgotten and Eezham Tamils have to proceed unflinching.

There is an awakening today among professionals and academics towards the national struggle of Eezham Tamils. They have started contributing now. Earlier, having expectations in Pirapaharan's LTTE, they were silent without contribution.

Mu'l'livaaykkaal is only a turning point in the Tamil Eelam struggle.

Today's world wouldn't have cared the non-violent struggle of Tamils.

When hundreds and hundreds of Tamils were massacred in the initial years of the struggle then also the world did not care. It is unfortunate that even a token interest of the UN today has come only after the killing of 50,000 people in the last stage of Mu'l'livaaykkaal.

But, what happened has now, for the first time, raised very serious questions to the international community.

All this time the IC was saying that the Tigers were ‘terrorists’ and unless they are destroyed there cannot be a solution. If the Tigers go, Sinhala people and Tamil people would talk and resolve the problem; the world would facilitate that, they said.

One and a half years have gone since Mu'l'livaaykkaal. What is happening today? The world is witnessing the barbarianism of the Sinhala rulers. The world is getting yet another chance to understand the crisis.

If the Tigers go, the Sinhala rulers would give Tamils their rights, they said. But today, one third of the Jaffna peninsula is being occupied by the Sinhala Army. 40,000 military personnel are to be settled in housing schemes in Ki'linochchi. Similar things happen in the Eastern province. The entire coast of North and East is being settled with Sinhala fishermen. Sexual abuse by military and drug abuse intentionally introduced have become common.

A genocide in full force is taking place.

But the world has twisted the facts. A war that took place between an oppressing nation and an oppressed nation was interpreted as a war between a state and terrorists and was justified. The abuses were seen only as war crimes.

There were countries, which were bragging that they would take care of Tamils once the ‘terrorism’ is removed. Whether, India or the West, where have they gone now? Every day, the genocide is being committed. The land of Tamils, which is the very basis of their nation, is grabbed.

Have you ever accepted what takes place is a genocide? You say war crimes for what had happened during the war. What do you say for the crimes that take place now?

The world doesn't want to see it a genocide. It is a big mistake they are making.

The war is over, Colombo says. But, hundreds and hundreds go away as refugees. The military camps in Tamil land have increased. The defence expenditure in the country has gone up. More soldiers are seen in the roads of Tamil land. Journalists, human rights groups and UN representatives are not allowed. Politicians from the neighbouring Tamil Nadu are not allowed to even peep into the land of Eezham Tamils. How do you say the war is over?

The Tigers have silenced their guns. To what extent the chauvinism of the Sinhala state could go, the world has an opportunity now to understand.


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