- When the opportunity came for aggrandizement of his self, G G Ponnambalam never hesitated for a moment and promptly became a minister in the Senanayake cabinet whom he castigated in his election campaign. And among his first acts was to help disfranchise the Tamil people of the hill country. This also brought forth the Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Federal Party of S J V Chelvanayagam, federal for the outside world and “Arasu” for the Tamils. – [Image: GG Ponnambalam, SJV Chelvanayagam & M Tiruchelvam ]
by Satchi Sithanandan in Frankfurt
(October 04, Frankfurt, Sri Lanka Guardian) The feature “How ‘First Class’ Tamils promoted the genocide of the less fortunate Tamils of Sri Lanka” (Read) can be rated as one of the best observations on the current nightmare facing the Tamils. Hardly ever has someone had the courage to express so clearly the cancer that affected the Tamil community from the time the arrogant G G Ponnambalam began to take the Tamils for a ride to cater to his insatiable hunger for political opportunism.
Along with him there was that caste-inebriated C Suntharalingam, a brilliant mathematician but a smashed-up caste intoxicated maverick who wanted the historic Maviddapuram Temple to remain “unpolluted” by people of the so-called lowly births and who too advocated the dominance of the “First Class Tamils” in the politics of the day.
When the opportunity came for aggrandizement of his self, G G Ponnambalam never hesitated for a moment and promptly became a minister in the Senanayake cabinet whom he castigated in his election campaign. And among his first acts was to help disfranchise the Tamil people of the hill country. This also brought forth the Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Federal Party of S J V Chelvanayagam, federal for the outside world and “Arasu” for the Tamils.
They even talked about “Satyagraha” without understanding what satyagraha really meant and the discipline and training needed to be a satyagrahi. The basis of “Satyagraha” is truth and what it demands is an extreme spirit of sacrifice. How can the arrogant and the untruthful be a satyagrahi? They never understood Gandhi’s non-violence struggle and insulted the great Indian by calling S J V Chelvanayagam as the Gandhi of Eelam.
As a matter of fact, the Federal Party alias the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi took the Tamil community from their inception on the wrong path.
The All Ceylon Tamil Congress and the Federal Party gave the impression to the Tamil Community that the leadership should come from High Caste Colombo-based Tamils as if that was their birthright. The Lanka Sama Samaja Party and the Communist Party were interpreted as catering to the people of the lower castes and their leaders were considered dangerous to the community. Both the LSSP and CP were known as the NPPs – Nalavar Pallar Parties. It is a tragedy of our times that they were discarded lock, stock and barrel by the Tamils who preferred the Ponnambalams and the Chelvanayagams as their leaders.
The consequence has been a monumental disaster and gave birth to the monstrous terrorism considered as the most brutal in the world today. It is most unfortunate that this form of terrorism bears the “Tamil” label or identity where in fact, most Tamils are as much victims of it as others. This is also a group that celebrates as its key event “Death” and already the many areas in the north and east in Sri Lanka are covered by graveyards of Tamil youth sacrificed at the altar of terrorism. This is portent with the death of a community and not the resurgence of it or the hope.
The situation today is certainly grave for the Tamils.
The Tamils have never had a proper political party which demands working on policies, training of volunteers, involved with the grass roots reflecting real needs and political action for common good. The LSSP and the CP have followed these principles in the north and east but the support only came from those who suffered under the yoke of high caste people.
Today this high caste and high class arrogance has been taken over by the Tamil Diaspora living in mansions in Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, the USA and some European countries. As their predecessors were, they do not understand the real needs of the people but only want to show off that they matter and not others. Earlier they were 260 miles away from Jaffna but now they are thousands of miles away, but more well placed and with modern technology, a lot more able to control and urge their contacts in Sri Lanka to have their way even more than before.
It is heart-rending to note that the people who suffer Sinhala racism are also the ones who suffer from the faulty leadership of Tamil parties and groups and this plague continues. Mr Sebastian Rasalingam’s feature is very much to be commented and timely too. - Sri Lanka Guardian