| by Pearl Thevanayagam
(August 11, 2014, Bradford UK, Sri Lanka Guardian) The former procurer of LTTE weapons Kumaran Pathmanathan is now a benevolent custodian of an orphanage in Wanni and is succoured by none other than Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. Hearts bleed at the thought of this terrorist turned humanitarian.
Interpol is after him and he is a much wanted man internationally for his many nefarious activities but defense secretary and brother of the president Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is shielding him like a clucking hen for reasons which beg belief and rationale.
KP did not have much time to enjoy his stay in Visumpaya, formerly known as Acklands House which is a posh mansion opposite Cargills Food City in Union Place Colombo. It was once the official residence of Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike and Prof G. L. Peiris and his secretary Manikdewela while the former was minister for constitutional affairs under President Kumaratunga. Cabinet media press briefings too were held weekly at this mansion during Kumaratunga administration.
Gotabhaya thought it was too much to keep KP in such comfort since it would be pretty costly even for a man who he thought might direct LTTE funds stashed abroad including in Swiss Bank into government coffers. Whether KP did this is a moot point.
KP admits he came from a humble fisher-folk background and that his rise to stardom as LTTE procurer of weapons catapulted him into prominence. Psychologically he would resent his humble beginnings and the benevolence shown by the government would boost his ego but at what cost. Once Gotabhaya realises he is a spent force he would become a dish rag and dispensed with post-haste.
KP has the morals of an alley cat and he underwent plastic surgery adding to which he has a Thai wife stashed away somewhere. The most despicable interview a few days ago is that of D.B.S. Jeyaraj who exhorted KP and genuflected before him while hailing Gotabhaya as a saviour of Tamil orphans bequeathed under KP.
Karuna and Pillayan, defectors of LTTE, are now prominent politicians in the Rajapaksa Government. At least Douglas Devananda never claimed to be an LTTE supporter but has won the confidence of successive governments and is making practical strides in developing North which the incumbent NPC (Northern Provincial Council) has failed citing lack of funds and over-riding authority of governor and his interference in administration.
However, his complicity in white van abductions which is a serious crime would make people jittery how his demeanour and allegiance would serve the Tamils. Although he shows sympathy with the Tamils and dances to the tune of the government to win rights for Tamils, he has yet to prove himself that he does not take advantage of his power in the government to mete out projects such sand mining contracts to his supporters, interfering in University administration aka the Rajapaksas. This is when he would lose his support among the Tamil polity.
Devananda needs to wipe the slate clean and with his experience in politics he should and must make peace with NPC thereby deriving wisdom and knowledge from CM Wigneswaran and R.Sambanthan and the rest of TNA stalwarts such as Mavai Senathiraja should he genuinely wish to serve the Tamils.
Despite his militant past he is a man who gets to the nitty-gritty of ground reality and gets on with the job of rebuilding and renovating the war-ravaged peninsula. And he has the support of the government.
That KP was instrumental in the carnage which killed almost a hundred civilians who died in the Central Bank bomb attack in 1995 and other suicide bombings in LTTE orchestrated attacks in the South not to mention the cumulative retaliation by government security forces against innocent civilians in the North is conveniently shielded and masked by Gotabhaya whose only aim is to get the LTTE stash of funds secreted abroad through KP.
Even Pirabakaran kept the media at arm’s length and he never for once took DBS into his confidence. He shunned him since he had a premonition this maverick would betray Tamils one day and he would not hesitate to feather his own nest at any cost as we are witnessing today.
That LTTE funds are now in the hands of the many foreign agents Pirabakaran entrusted with and are now enjoying the spoils is lost on the government. Gotabhaya has a hope in hell of getting even a fraction of LTTE funds.
How low can DBS stoop to and how much he is being paid by the Rajapaksas begs the question whether Tamils needs enemies when you have media pimps such as DBS who would sell their souls for a mess of pottage in their doting age who do not earn a living wage in their second homes but scrounge on fellow Tamils. Rumours are abound DBS is being courted by the government and his journey to Sri Lanka was facilitated and funded by Gotabhaya.
Even Dushyanthi Kanagasabapathipillai who DBS claims is a friend has stopped contributing to DBS website realising the charlatan he is.
The bottom line for the Tamils is they need to shed their differences and unite so as not to allow the central government to pit one political party against another and have its own way of creating rifts and not granting their rights such as 13 A and beyond which would address Tamil grievances.
The government is badly in need of mustering support among Buddhist hardliners such as the mad monk Gnanasara and it is up to the minorities to join forces and meet these racist elements head-on.
United we stand; divided we fall.
(The writer has been a journalist for 25 years and worked in national newspapers as sub-editor, news reporter and news editor. She was Colombo Correspondent for Times of India and has contributed to Wall Street Journal where she was on work experience from The Graduate School of Journalism, UC Berkeley, California. Currently residing in UK she is also co-founder of EJN (Exiled Journalists Network) UK in 2005 the membership of which is 200 from 40 countries. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)