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An Open Letter Keith Vaz MP

(March 28, London, Sri Lanka Guardian) We have been treated in this way because we fearlessly raise issues relating to the UK proscribed LTTE in this country. We faced some difficulties to meet you few months ago. As the Chairman of Parliamentary Group for Tamils, you are very well aware of our work and our political views and sadly, you have taken a position to disregard us from any engagements for reasons best known and widely spoken about in the Sri Lankan community.
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by R. Jayadevan
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Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP
Chairman
Parliamentary Committee for Tamils
House of Commons
London SW1A OAA

Dear Mr Vaz

I and my colleagues Mr S M M Bazeer and Mrs R Balasubramaniam (K/a Mrs Rajes Bala) were perturbed by the indifference shown to us today when we came to meet you at the Portcullis House as agreed. We were told that you were too busy to meet us and that your parliamentary secretary was asked to accomplish the meeting to prepare an agenda for a meeting with you later which she proposed for April 1 (Tuesday), 2008. The date suggested and the approach taken reflects cynicism and we are utterly dismayed and insulted by your conduct. This is very unbecoming for a parliamentarian.

I sent you an email on 29 February 2008 (Annexure 1) clearly setting out the agenda for the meeting. The email stated: ‘A nine member delegation representing Tamil and Muslim organisations visited Sri Lanka and returned only yesterday. We wish to share our experience with the parliamentary committee for the Tamils. This will give valuable insight. We wonder whether you will be able to facilitate a public meeting at the Portcullis House or in the House of Parliament in this regard. I have spoken to your secretary regarding this.’

Following my email, I made several calls to your office to arrange an appointment to meet you. You have an unusual procedure where persons calling have to leave their message with the House of Commons main switchboard telephonist. These calls were then screened by your staff before contacts were made. I had responses from your staff initially. I responded to the first call by formally writing to you as suggested. During other calls, your staff said they will call back after speaking to you but they never get back. The last three calls to follow up my letter were not responded by your staff.

Following my frustrating experience with your office, I contacted the office of the Vice Chairman of the Parliamentary Group Hon Simon Hughes MP and explained the situation. Mr Simon Hughes’s staff intervention resulted in your staff phoning me and a meeting was formally booked for today (27/3).

We have been treated in this way because we fearlessly raise issues relating to the UK proscribed LTTE in this country. We faced some difficulties to meet you few months ago. As the Chairman of Parliamentary Group for Tamils, you are very well aware of our work and our political views and sadly, you have taken a position to disregard us from any engagements for reasons best known and widely spoken about in the Sri Lankan community.

If the meeting had taken place today, we would have personally handover a letter (Annexure 2) to you requesting you to give due consideration for wider participation of the Tamil organisations without limiting the parliamentary group’s activities to the LTTE and its fronts British Tamil Forum and the Tamil Youth Organisation. Our letter goes into detail about our concerns that the Parliamentary Group for the Tamils is not fair in its dealings. Unfortunately, the functioning of the Parliamentary Group for Tamils has come in to disrepute and it must now seriously think of changing its name to Parliamentary Group for the Tamil Tigers because of its exclusive working relationship with the LTTE activists and for its lack of far-sight, transparency and hidden motives to play a limited role with the activists of the proscribed group.

We will be taking up this matter at the group meeting of the Tamil organisations to be held on 29 March 2008 and will be asking the members to make a collective decision to sever any contacts with the Parliamentary Group or alternatively use the good offices of our friendly parliamentarians to bring in changes to the parliamentary group to be accommodative and respectful.

We regret to inform you that we will not attend the meeting proposed on 1 April 2008.

Yours sincerely

R Jayadevan
- Sri Lanka Guardian

4 comments

Anonymous said...

you don't know about? he is the one of L.T.T.E pay roll man.

Anonymous said...

Keith Vaz was almost banned from the House of Commons once for his dealings as the then Immigration Minister. His wife was an immigration lawyer. He was asked to resign by Tony Blair. But saved his seat after trying very hard by his own people. He resigned as the minister.

Anonymous said...

A terrorist who is allowed to sit in the "mother of all Parliaments"

British diplomacy or hipocrisy ?

Anonymous said...

The above 3 comments are Utter Rubbish, and should be consigned to the Dustbin

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