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UNP answerable for 1983 genocidal pogrom: Batticaloa UNP Organiser

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 27 July 2016, 23:14 GMT]
“Although I am involved in UNP politics for 46 years, I am first a Tamil in my heart. There is no denying that UNP is responsible on the accountability for 1983 pogrom and other governments in Colombo for the crimes committed during their regime,” said Batticaloa District UNP organiser, Aloysius Thambimuthu Masilamani, responding to a question on UNP's reaction to the issue raised this week by Northern Provincial Councillor M.K. Shivajilingam that how could Tamils expect Justice for 2009 genocidal crimes from the UNP regime, which has failed to deliver accountability for 1983 pogrom against Tamils for 33 years. “What happened on 23 July 1983 was nothing else than a genocide. “Even my political mentor Devanayagam described it as a barbaric act at that time and Cyril Mathew demanded him to withdraw that description. But, Denavayagam stood by it,” Mr Aloysius Masilamani told TamilNet.

K.W. Devanayagam from Batticaloa was the SL Minister of Home affairs during the UNP regime in 1983 and Cyril Mathew was a well-known Sinhala racist minister in the UNP cabinet during that time.

However, the prime responsibility of bringing the issue to the SL Parliament for a public debate rests with the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), which is having the democratic mandate of the Tamil people, the UNP organiser from Batticaloa told TamilNet in an interview this week.

The interview comes at a time when some former TNA politicians, still claiming as Tamil nationalists, are being blamed of sidelining with the UNP for their survivalist electoral politics and the UNP District Organiser was confronted with the question whether the UNP in Batticaloa was trying to divide the TNA in the district.

Mr Aloysius Masilamani, who is also a retired Deputy Director of Education from the district and a former Councillor of the EPC, exposed the nexus between the TNA and the UNP by saying that there was a clear instruction from the UNP leadership not to antagonise the TNA, especially during the times of the elections.

However, facing repeated questions on his views regarding the structural annihilation threatening the nation of Eezham Tamils in the district, the UNP politician, who claims to stand closer to the grassroots and proudly states that he never left the people of Batticaloa during the times of war or during the regime of Rajapaksa, said the land grab being taken forward by Sinhala Buddhist monk from Batticaloa was a structural crime against the Tamils. The people are much concerned about it, but not the Tamil politicians, he said.

As far as a resolution to the ethnic conflict, those who claim to have defeated the Tigers have failed to address the root causes to the conflict, he said.

“Even though the current regime is being referred as good governance, that is not the case when it comes to Batticaloa district. What is still continuing in Batticaloa district is Rajapaksa regime. There is the same GA, the same ministers and the ruling group remains the same. The land grab is continuing as before,” he said.

Mr Aloysius has come up with strong criticism against Mrs P.S.M. Charles, the SL government agent in the district.

Even the money (90 million rupees) allocated to the flood relief was channelled to Rajapaksa regime's electoral campaign by the GA, he said. Mrs Charles transferred the officials who demanded accounts and transparency. Instead of subjecting her to investigations, the new regime is also keeping her in the same position. The TNA is also backing it, he said. “If this was the fate for flood relief, imagine the fate for humanitarian assistance to war-affected victims,” he said.

The UNP district organiser has raised a number of serious questions on TNA betraying Tamil interests in the East and in the Batticaloa district.

As a retired Deputy Director of Education, he directed his criticism on the TNA Education Minister in the Eastern Provincial Council, Mr Thandayuthapani. When 18 educational institutions were to receive reconstruction funds, 17 of the selected schools were Muslim schools according to the wish of the Chief Minister in the EPC. The TNA collaborating with Colombo has failed to even deliver what Pillayan delivered during the Rajapaksa regime, he said.

The TNA parliamentarians have now joined hands with SL Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera in deceiving Tamil diaspora to channel its resources through the TNA politicians, he said adding that Tamil diaspora was not fully aware of the real situation prevailing in Batticaloa district.

Giving a number of examples, the Tamil UNP politician concluded that the TNA politicians were only engaged in average electoral politics and blamed them for betraying the trust bestowed on them by the Tamil people of the district with democratic mandate.

Those engaged in politics think that there are no permanent enemies or friends in politics. But, TNA should not deceive the people with its dramas, he said.

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