Right to Reclaim – Part Four

Right of the Sri Lanka government to reclaim its historical sovereignty over North of Sri Lanka

Read Part Three

What happened after Independence in 1948

by. PBS. Hemachandra

(October 31, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Unfortunately after independence the natural effect of the spread of education and the effects by governments to bring other portions of the island up to the intellectual level of the north where Ceylon Tamils enjoyed first-rate secondary schools founded and endowed by missionary effort of various denominations were quoted by racist extremist Tamils as discrimination against Tamils.

Then Mr SWRD Bandaranayake, who was a descendant of a Tamil named Nilaperumal (http://www.lankalibrary.com/cul.html#15) became Buddhist and broke away from the United National Party. He became the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka in 1956. His government introduced Sinhalese as the official language of Sri Lanka. Had not the government done that and improved education facilities in the south, thousands of poor Sinhalese like me would not have ever gone to university and may be still in the jungle, while 12% of the population (Tamils) enjoyed first-rate secondary schools. However, Mr Bandaranayake’s action made Tamil political parties king makers in Sri Lanka. The way Sri Lankans voted made it impossible for one party to form a government. All parties had to go behind Tamil parties to form a government. Every time Tamil parties joined the government their demand for a separate state grew little by little. Sinhalese leaders made use of this to hoodwink Sinhalese people in order to come to power, and Tamil leaders use this to mislead Tamil youth for their political advantage.

Another bad practice started by the successive government was to appoint friends, supporters and relatives to government positions and jobs. I can remember early days when there were competitive exams to select people for the clerical and other public services jobs. Suddenly the government started a chit system, which continues even today. Sinhalese Ministers and Members of Parliament started giving jobs to their supporters and Tamil and Muslim ministers follow the same practice. This created a real unrest especially among university graduates and other educated youth of all nationalities. Youths including myself were taken for a ride by the socialists in the country who taught us more destruction through revolution than the development of Sri Lanka. For example, had Sri Lanka started many private medical, engineering and other universities and technical colleges, probably there would be no requirement of standardisation of university admissions, which Tamil leaders alleged affected Tamil youths very badly. Further, today Sri Lanka could save millions of dollars our children spend to go to study even in so called socialist countries like USSR and CHINA. Our socialist leaders still object to start private universities. It was only when I migrated to Australia that I realised that better socialism exists in capitalist countries.

Mr Bandaranayake, Mr JR Jayawardena, the last king of Sri Lanka and many Tamil politicians elected in Sinhalese dominated areas are good examples that Sinhalese people have no problem in selecting descendants of other nationalities who integrated with Sinhalese as their leaders. I have no doubt that had the LTTE spared Mr Kadirgamar’s life, Sinhalese people would have selected him as their leader. He surely won my heart and vote.

Evan though Tamil extremists go around the world singing the discrimination song today and try to justify their terrorism, Tamils who comprise 12% of the population of Sri Lanka still enjoy a disproportionate percentage of educational, employment, and business advantage. If any one can give me statistics of another country in the world where a minority has more privileges than the majority, as Tamils do in Sri Lanka, I shall be grateful to them. I do not think the majority of Sinhalese people have a problem with that, as long as Tamil people join hands with the other nationalities and develop Sri Lanka.

Towards the late 1970s, Tamil nationalist extremist leaders were misleading Tamil youth to take up arms against the government. During 1976, by the Vadugoda resolution (Vadugoda became Vadukkodai in the same way Weligama became Welikamam) racist extremist Tamils decided to make their claim for an independent homeland. Tamils used unauthenticated Cleghorn notes, which say Tamils occupied the land from Walawe river in the south east to Chilaw, to support this claim.

TULF went to the 1977 general election asking for a mandate for a separate Tamil state but they polled only 47% (Source: Election Department) of the votes, although TULF won 18 seats. That means in the north of Sri Lanka TULF did not get a simple majority to ask for a separate state.

After the 1977 election there were no fair elections in the North. In 1977 there was a UNP government under Mr JR Jayawardena, and he became the President of Sri Lanka. Mr Jayawardena and his UNP party started antagonising the Indian ruling party on many occasions.

Indian Connection

In the late 1970s Mrs Indira Gandhi was the Prime Minister of India and India was becoming a regional power in the Indian Ocean with the USSR. India also started building a big Submarine base in Vaisakpatnam from where USSR nuclear submarines could operate in the Indian Ocean.
On the other hand the only way to stop any country becoming a regional power is to break that country into pieces. India had a lot of breakaway struggles in the north, allegedly supported by Pakistan with the knowledge and assistance of US intelligence. But there was no breakaway struggle in the South India.

The 1977 government of Mr JR Jayawardena in Sri Lanka allowed a Voice of America transmission station in Puttalam, and was negotiating with the US 7th fleet contractor to hand over Trincomalee oil tank farm which would have increased US navy traffic to the east coast of Sri Lanka. This would allow the US Navy to monitor very closely movements of nuclear submarines other naval ships belonging to USSR operating in the Indian Ocean.
Therefore Mrs Indira Gandhi approved RAW to fund training in India and supply arms to small Tamil nationalist extremist groups like PLOTE, LTTE, TELO, EPRLF, EROSE etc to wage war by proxy against the government of Sri Lanka purely to de-stabilise the JR Jayawardnae’s government.

Indian intelligence RAW (Research and Analysis Wing) suspected that the US was trying to establish a high tech spy station in the guise of Voice of America transmitting station in Sri Lanka. Later there was a suspicion that the US was also funding LTTE leader Prabhakaran to start a Tamil nationalist struggle to establish a Tamil homeland, originally in Sri Lanka, with the ultimate goal of breaking South India from India to weaken India, on the pretext of making an Independent Tamil homeland for 50 million South Indian Tamils who do not have a country of their own. Then the RAW modified its objectives of proxy war with an additional objective to destroy LTTE leader Prabhakaran who was trying to establish a Tamil homeland in South India.
Unfortunately ill-equipped Sri Lanka Army and Navy were fighting with terrorists trained, armed and financed by the two superpowers. Sikh extremists assassinated Mrs Indira Gandhi. When her son Rajiv Gandhi came to power he agreed to send Indian troops to Sri Lanka to end terrorism in Sri Lanka but he wanted Trincomalee oil tank farm to be given to an Indian company and RAW to be allowed to examine all equipment that will be installed in Voice of America transmitting station. Unfortunately LTTE members infiltrated as TELO, PLOTE, EROSE members and made it very difficult for the Indian Army to eradicate terrorism in Sri Lanka, instead they got the Indian Army to chase out a lot of Sinhalese who lived in the north and east.

Then it is alleged that US Intelligence, once again with the assistance of President Premadasa, provided the LTTE with massive stocks of arms and ammunition to hit back at the Indian Army. The LTTE uses this supply still to hit at Sri Lankan armed forces and civilians using suicide bombers. Although I do not have any evidence of US involvement, this is my analysis from information I gathered mostly from my Tamil informants. We know for a fact that RAW of Indian defence trained and armed Tamil terrorist groups in Sri Lanka though they deny it. We know now that Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had given orders to IPKF to kill Prabhakaran and destroy the LTTE. We now know that Trincomalee oil tank farm was given to an Indian company. We know now that Premadasa provided arms and ammo to LTTE to fight IPKF. We also know that LTTE assassinated Rajeeve Gandhi and Premadasa. I leave the rest to US intelligence to deny.

There is no communal problem initiated by the Sinhalese. All communal problems were initiated by extremist Tamils starting from 1939. Unfortunately, there were very bad reactions by hooligans to these communal problems initiated by extremist Tamils. Some Sinhalese leaders misled Sinhalese people to react in a bad way to innocent Tamil people. In 1983, LTTE murdered 13 Army personnel in Jaffna. When their bodies were brought to the homes of the soldiers a lot of gossip spread that Tamils are attacking Sinhalese people in the north.

Unfortunately hooligans in the south started attacking innocent Tamils and looting from businesses belonging to Tamils and also other nationalities. In the north and east Sinhalese were attacked by Tamils and their businesses were looted. This is what Mr Thondaman said about the 1983 communal problem in the Parliament:

“There are many people who claim that these disturbances are a further manifestation of the Sinhala uprising against the Tamil people. But I do not share that view. The vast majority of the Sinhala people condemn these atrocities on these innocent Tamil people and have shown sympathy and understanding. Many have been brave and given shelter in their own homes in spite of intimidation and threats. In those circumstances, to say this is an uprising against the Tamils is absurd.”

On the other hand I was present myself in Jaffna during communal problems. I have not met any Tamil leader in Jaffna who came to help poor Sinhalese who were attacked and chased out of Jaffna. Sinhalese helped all the Tamils to return back to the Sinhalese areas and live happily. Some made use of this opportunity for economic migration to developing countries. No Tamil or Tamil leader wanted to help the Sinhalese or Muslims who were chased from the North to come back and start their businesses again in the north. Historically I have proved that it was their homeland long before Tamils arrived.

To Be Continued...

(PBS. Hemachandra, M. Com, Post Grad Dip in Bus, MCP, MACS, is a retired. Lt. Commander of Sri Lanka Navy)
- Sri Lanka Guardian