(In Toronto while Sampanthan set aflame hatred of expatriate Tamils against Government, Vasudeva Nanayakkara pleaded for peace and reconciliation .)
Did you see Sampanthan and his cronies since their visit to USA and Canada ? They are dressed up like Englishmen, in coats and ties.
Sampanthan went to Toronto in Canada, and on the 30 October,2011 made a long speech to a gathering of expatriate Tamils at the Sri Iyappan Temple Auditorium. It was a speech to the expatriate Tamils in Canada to inflame their anger and hatred against the Government of Sri Lanka and the Majority he does not mention by name.
What was strange reading that speech (appearing in Transcurrent) is that he has mentioned the word “Sinhalese” only once in his speech, referring to “them” as the Majority. In that one occasion he says, “We consider Sinhalese as our brothers and sisters. Many are ready for a just solution. A just, implementable and lasting solution should be found. But, I would like to make it clear that if such a solution was not put forwarded, we will not accept any other mirage of a solution »
In contrast to the speech of Samapanthan to the Expatriate Tamils in Canada was a public Meeting hosted by the Canadian Sri Lankan Community mainly expatriate Sinhala and attended by Mr.Sam Rajendran of the Canadian Tamil Cultural Association, at which the Minister of National Languages and Social Integration Vasudeva Nanayakkara, pleaded for peace and reconciliation to heal the wounds of past conflicts.However, in Canada Sampanthan mixed up the histories. Sri Lanka is a country with a longer history and a richer culture than Canada. Even the name Canada came to be used some where in 1545.
The name Canada is derived from Kanata the name of a small Indian village, which Jacque Cartier borrowed and vulgarised to Canada, using it as the name of the areas occupied by the French and later when the French ceded their conquests to the English, the whole of the area occupied by the French and the English was called Canada.
The British expelled the French settlers as and when they occupied the respective areas. However, some of the pioneer French settlers remained, most of them in Quebec and others in Manitoba, Ontario etc. Canada became Independent only in 1982.
The land they call “Canada “ was occupied by the aborigine Indians who were massacred by the invading British and the French, and now not even mentioned making the Canadians of today made to be the owners of the land .
Sampanthan’s mixing up was in trying to draw parallels to Sri Lanka saying « In Canada, two major ethnic groups, who speak different languages have been living in different parts of the country. These are people who speak English and French languages. They have self- rule in their respective areas where they live. »
[ Sampanthan forgets the aborigines. If things had been left for invaders to decide Sinhala would also have suffered the same fate of the Canadian aborigines]
The Canadian Languages act of 1974 extended as a Charter did not give self rule, though the later Quebec Act gave the French in the Province of Quebec the right to preserve their language, the Religion and the French System of Civil law. But no self rule has been given to any of the Canadian states.
This man Sampanthan still speaks with his master terrorist Prabhakaran’s voice. He is not a patriotic Sri Lankan despite his having got the votes of the poor Tamil people duping them, playing into their sentimental attachment to their birth right of being Tamil.
In Sri Lanka, the Tamils came in as marauders, plunderers, and invaders. Elara came at a time Sri Lanka was politically unstable and militarily weak, and settled down to build a kingdom. None of them came with any love to Sri Lanka. Thereafter it was the English colonialist who brought in Tamils from Madras to work in the coffee plantations and thereafter the tea plantations. There were no Tamil settlements in ancient Sri Lanka .
Despite the way they intruded in to Sri Lanka the Sinhala people had accepted and adopted those Tamils that settled down in Sri Lanka as the people of the country.
Therefore, they cannot claim parity with the Sinhala as of right. It is up to the Sinhala, the Muslim and other communities to accept them as a Community among others..
If Sampanthan pretends to be a Sri Lankan, he would not go to Canada to say « we cannot trust the Sri Lanka Government. » . He is more a patriot of TamilNadu, roped in by Prabhakaran to spy for him.
Sadly Sampanthan and his clique of TNA MPs are today posing as the representatives of the poor Tamil people in the North and East of Sri Lanka , having fooled them to place their trust in him and his cohorts. If he has a problem with the Government of Sri Lanka it is with the people of Sri Lanka he has to start a dialogue to get the government to settle differences, not by going to USA, Canada or Delhi.
I would not like to reply to Sampanthan as I did to Anandasangaree who is at least free from blood stains of terrorism. But Sampanthan has the blood stains of terrorism all over him. That is why he was received by the expatriate terrorist front organisations in Canada. For them he is acceptable with the blood smell of terrorism coming from him, and his poison imbibed language reminding them of the terrorism they aided and abetted in Sri Lanka.
Sampanthan says, « ..We have been struggling for this right for a long period of time. No one can deny this. However, so far, the Sri Lankan government has not come forward or agreed to grant these rights to us. » The point is these terrorist proxi Sambanthan thinks Sri Lanka is Canada and the Tamils and Sinhala have conquered Sri Lanka like the French and the English conquered Canada. Therefore, they should share the language rights .
Sampanthan and the TNA MPs have to wake up to reality and think of other ways to solve the “ethnic problem” they have created in their minds, it is not so easy as it had been in Canada.
As far as the ordinary Tamil people are concerned, they have been given all the rights and priviledges the people of other Communities have been given. They can now even correspond with the government in their language and receive replies in their language. The children can go to any school or University. They can apply for government jobs, for service in the Police Force, the Armed Forces or the Navy. They have the political right to vote for any one they want, or refuse to vote if they so wish.
But Sampanthan and his TNA goons are not satisfied with that. They want a separate provinces for Tamils. They want police and land powers given to the Provincial Councils in the North and East.
But they are neglecting the people who had voted for them to represent them in the Parliament. Some of these people in distant villages in Baticaloa still have no modern facilities. They have no one to appeal to get better living conditions. But Sampanthan and the TNA have no time to dabble in small matters concerning the ordinary people. They are more interested in political power for themselves, and work for that end by discrediting the Government of Sri Lanka in foreign countries.
Sampanthan had spoken in Toronto, about the Bandaranaike-Chelvanayakam agreement of 1957, and the 1965 Dudley-Chelvanayakam agreement, and argued that these agreements were signed especially to protect and to preserve the northeastern parts, as the Tamils’ traditional land.
Sampanthan and TNA are still living in the past. These Pacts and Agreements are now the past history, those things have no more value since Sri Lanka came through the worst period of 30 years of suffering under the most vicious terrorism, where not only the Tamils but the Sinhala, Muslim and the rest of the Communities equally went through untold fear and suffering.
Now we have to look at Sri Lanka and its different Communities in a new light, and the future of Sri Lanka should be moulded differently from what it had been in the past, so that future will not once again end up being what it had been during the past thirty years.
This new phase of development is the renaissance of Sri Lanka. After terrorism the people of different Communities cannot claim special rights and priviledges, as none of the Communities could now live isolated from one another.
There should be a renunciation of special priviledges in the interest of the country as a whole with out differentiating the people communally. There should instead be a willingness for a communal integration to form a multicultural Nation, where all rights, priviledges, wealth and amenities are shared by all as a Nation , but not as separate Communities.
Sampanthan says, « … They agreed that Tamils in the Northeast have been living as a majority in these areas for a long period of time and this fact must be respected. However, the present leaders of the country think other wise. They think that there is only one solution to overcome this issue. That is that Tamil’s identity should not be accepted…. »
He had chosen these words to inflame anger and hatred against the Government and the Sinhala people in the minds of the expatriate Tamils in Canada, who unfortunately knows nothing of the suffering the Tamil civilians underwent , and the heroic part played by the Sri Lanka Armed Forces to rescue them from the hardship they were made to suffer by the terrorists.
Sampanthan of course would not praise the humanitarian services rendered to the Tamil civilians by the Soldiers of the Sri Lanka Armed Forces during the military operations against terrorism, but he was instead using “ poison coated ” words to disparage the Armed Forces, to get the sympathy of his Toronto Tamil listeners for himself and his TNA as the legitimate heirs of the Sri Lanka terrorism.
He was trying to promote himself and the TNA as the saviours of the Tamil people and become the natural heirs to the generous largess of the expatriate Tamil Community in Canada, USA and UK extended to the terrorists. So that he and his TNA cronies could continue their « war » against the Government and the Sinhala and to set up a Tamil Homeland which the expatriate Tamils love to have, with their questionable yearning to Sri Lanka.
Having thus prepared the ground Sampanthan now appeals to the expatriate Tamils, “ We firmly believe that our people, specially the Diaspora Tamils will offer their support to our efforts. Your large gathering here shows one thing, that although you are living abroad, you haven’t forgotten your land of origin and your villages. You haven’t forgotten your brethren. You should never forget them. You should come back. You should help the people living there at the right time. You should try to uplift them.”
Sampanthan has now a new theory which he puts to the expatriate Tamils to win them on to his side and keep their hatred focused on the Sri Lanka Government and the Sinhala people. He says that there are one million Tamils living in foreign countries, and the thinking of the government of Sri Lanka is that, if it denies the Tamil people a peaceful coexistence the rest of the Tamil people will also leave the country thus removing the ethnic problem.
What a naive way of putting things to bring in the expatriate Tamils who he has taken for fools to accept his loony theory ?
He had said, « Now, almost one million Tamils are living out side of Sri Lanka. They live in India, Europe, North America, Australia and various other countries. Same way, they think, if the rest of the Tamils in Sri Lanka can be sent out or if the peaceful co-existence in Sri Lanka can be denied, then their demands will disappear. That’s why Sri Lankan government is accelerating its efforts to change the demography in Tamil’s traditional lands. »
Sampanthan Defended the LTTE terrorism when he said , “….We talk broadly about the recently ended war in May 19, 2009. In fact, the violence against the Tamils started in the year of 1956. It continued in the years of 1958, 1961, 1977, 1981 and 1983. After that only the war was (waged) continuously. There was no organization called Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam when the violence against the Tamils started. It was only formed at the latter part of the 1970’s or early 1980s. …. ».
The blame for the riots in Sri Lanka could not be put only to the Sinhala because they happened to be of the majority. The riots started from incidents involving the death of Sinhala people or Police Officers in the North, which resulted in a backlash in the South.
The organisation of the LTTE terrorism on the other hand did not result from the riots, but it was a calculated move taking advantage of the riots for the Indian RAW to unleash a group of Tamil youth from Jaffna trained in guerilla warfare to start a campaign of terror. That is the truth, and this group of terrorist youth became a Frankenstein monster which even India could not control , and resulted in the assassination of a promising Young Indian Political leader the late Rajiv Gandhi.
Sampanthan then tells a lie, without even a word of appreciation to the Government and the Sri Lanka Government Armed forces for the rescue operations , settling the IDPs in camps and demining the Tamil villages which the terrorists had made inaccessible by burying millions of personal mines, and finally settling the people, providing them with necessities for an initial home setup. Sampanthan says despite these commendable accomplishments of the Government and the Armed Forces., that, “ …After the war, they are not allowing the Tamils to resettle in their own lands…. »
Sampanthan laying bare his separatist ideology tells the expatriate Tamil gathering in Toronto, « .. We are a people with a separate language, culture and heritage. We could claim that we have been living in Sri Lanka even before the arrival of others. We are not saying that Northeast belongs to us. However, we have concerns in preserving and protecting the language based heritage in that land. We are saying that the Sri Lankan government should not alter that situation. »
Yes they may have now and then come to Sri Lanka as marauders, raiders, or treasure hunters. But ancient Tamils settlements had never been found in Sri Lanka. And this language based heritage has not been affected by the new moves of the Government of Sri Lanka which has allowed use of language without discrimination.
He says , that , « ….The majority community is being settled in the Tamils’ lands through direct and indirect way. Military camps are being built. Military’s strength is being increased in the North-east areas. Lands are being given to the majority community under the guise of development. Religious and cultural centers are being destroyed… »
Sampanthan goes on to say, “…The government not only refuses to give the political rights, but also denies help to our people. They did not do much for these people. They did not build houses the people needed, neither they created any job opportunities for them. They did not allow our people to live in peace. ”
It was the terrorists that did not allow the Tamil people in the North and East of Sri Lanka to live in peace, destroyed their houses, and buried personal mines in their villages. But the Government after eliminating the terrorists, have looked after the Tamils in the North and East sometimes even better than those Communities in the South.
The Government has resettled nearly 95 percent of the IDPs. And if the Sinhala people are allowed to settle in the North and East it will be a guarantee against a possible regrouping of « sleeping » terrorists for another period of terrorism in the North and East of Sri Lanka, with its repercussions in the South.
If the previous governments had been more perspicacious they should have encouraged more Sinhala , Muslim and other Communities to settle down in the North and East of Sri Lanka which would have avoided the thirty years of terrorism. It is time that is done at least now so that there will be a mixture of the Communities in every part of the country as it is now in the South.
While Sampanthan was meeting the US Officials,
« ….. During our visit, we met many at the U.S. State Department. We met the members of congress, senators and people in Charge of Human Rights. We have explained these facts to them clearly. If our rights are not protected, definitely the Tamil ethnicity will be wiped out. There is no doubt about that… », and inflaming the hatred of Tamil Expatriates in Canada against the Government and the Sinhala people, there was another public meeting held in Toronto hosted by the Canadian Sri Lankan Community, which had invited the Minister of National Languages and Social Integration Mr.Vasudeva Nanayakkara.
The President of the Canadian Sri Lankan Community explained the humanitarian work that is being carried out by the Canadian Sri Lanka Community for the welfare, and well being of the Tamil people of the North and East.
This Canadian Sri Lankan Community had sent Canadian $ 70,000 worth of medical supplies in 2009 for the use of the IDPs in the Refugee Camps. They had sent mosquito nets to the people in the villages around Omanthai, provided School Books to Children in newly Constructed schools in the East.
In 2008 they had organised a « Brotherhood Train » which left Matara Railway Station to Vavunia with 12 carriages with merchandise for the use of the IDPs in the refugee Camps. The train had stopped at all stations allowing the Sinhala people in the areas to make contributions. The Sinhala people rich and poor contributed, some even by giving a measure of rice. When the train reached Colombo all the 12 carriages had been full of merchandise contributed by the people. They added more carriages in Colombo and finally when they reached Vavunia they had 40 million Rupees worth of merchandise to be distributed among the Tamil IDPs in the Camps.
They also organised a marathon walk from Dondra in the South to Point Pedro in the North to collect funds to construct a Children’s cancer Ward in Jaffna. They had collected 1500 Million Rupees .
In that meeting the Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara explained how many of the difficulties the Tamil people had encountered previously with the Government administration is being eliminated ; first by training all government officers to have proficiency in both the Sinhala and Tamil languages in addition to English. Sri Lanka is also looking forward to making Sri Lanka tri-lingual and has declared 1912 as the tri-lingual year.
In addition he said that records in the Tamil Speaking areas will be kept in Tamil and that they will establish bilingual areas where the records will be kept both in Sinhala and Tamil. There is in fact a bilingual area even in the Galle District.
The Minister says his Ministry has established 700 Cultural Centres where there would be language teaching classes and organization of awareness programs to make people of different communities understand different cultures and religions and learn to respect each other without discriminating a Community for customs, cultures or religious beliefs which are different from theirs.
The Canadian government is providing aid to establish these Centres, and more Centres will be established later on. The Government is even prepared to make constitutional changes to facilitate reconciliation of the communities. He said the reconciliation is an ongoing process, and every thing will be done with a view to unite people. But every change should take its own pace without precipitating into action which may later have negative effect.
The terrorism in Sri Lanka lasted 30 years . The wounds inflicted as a result on the whole of the people are immense . The healing process will be long. Terrorism was eliminated only two years ago and we cannot expect to have normal conditions restored within a short period of time. We have to go step by step in the reconciliation process and eventually we will be able to enjoy peace, and the happiness of being a Nation. The process could be short only if every one of us understand the situation and get together to make things work faster, by stopping to promote our selfish personal or individual Communal interests.
It is time to ask the Tamil diaspora what action they have taken to unite the Communities in Sri Lanka and develop Sri Lanka to make it a country of which we can all be proud.
TNA are merely a group of Parliamentarians who are still in the darkness of the passage out of the womb of terrorism. They still have to learn what is a democratic political system. What they are doing now in the name of politics is only distancing Communities from each other.
Sampanthan and the TNA have to be made to understand there mistakes, which in itself is a difficult task because of their limited understanding of a viable political system. They have to learn the way to interact with people, with different cultures and speaking different languages, as they have still not been weaned from their terrorist beginning.