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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2523

Sri Lanka Army denies any part in damaging "MGR" statutes in Jaffna

Colombo, 02 September, (Asiantribune.com):Sri Lanka Army denies that its troops stationed in Jaffna were not responsible for any acts of defilement, defacing and damaging statutes of M.G.Ramachandran, former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, erected in Jaffna, Valvetiturai, Passaiyoor and Kurunagar. Army not only condemned the defilement of the statutes, it also described it as an "uncivilized act of disgrace."One of MGR statute that has been damaged by applying bitumen  in JaffnaOne of MGR statute that has been damaged by applying bitumen in Jaffna

"The Sri Lanka Army vehemently denies having anything to do with this uncivilized act of disgrace and extends its sincere regret to all those concerned."

Sri Lanka Army released a statement in its official website denying any role - "The Army Flatly Refuses Stories On Statute Defilement."

The statement said, "No defilement on the statue of the late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Mr M. G Ramachandran has whatsoever been done by troops, stationed in Jaffna, as alleged in a section of Tamil Nadu media in the past three days."

Sri Lanka Army while unreservedly condemning this defilement on statues erected in various places within Jaffna Peninsula, but also called upon the Jaffna public to come forward and inform either to the local troops or the Police of any information that could lead to the apprehension of those responsible for such mean acts that serve no purpose.

The statement went on to reiterate "The Sri Lanka Army, as a professional outfit with a wealth of ground experience, which has also closely liaised and worked with the Indian troops at one point of time, has no mania whatsoever to defile those statues as alleged for that matter, having remained in the Jaffna peninsula for over 20-25 years for duties."

Earlier two Tamil Nadu based media reports, with no sources quoted or attributed to the origin of the reports, stated that the Sri Lankan military deliberately defaced the statue of Mr Ramachandran, popularly known as "MGR" in Velvettiturai, Jaffna.

Army website pointed out, that one such report subsequently carried condemnations from AIADMK General Secretary Ms J. Jayalalitha and MDMK Chief Mr Vaiko, who was quoted in the same report saying that MGR was greatly respected by Eelam Tamils, as he played a major role in laying the foundation and providing support to the Eelam struggle of the Tamil Tiger (LTTE).

It further added, that Mr Vaiko, an ardent supporter of the LTTE has further gone to the extent of telling the "New Indian Express" that the Sri Lanka Army after desecrating the MGR statue, also went on defiling the statutes of most respected Mahatma Gandhi and a few others in the peninsula. Also in the statement Mr Vaiko going beyond demanded the withdrawal of troops from Jaffna to resolve the problem.

The statement by the Sri Lanka Army pointed out, "Judged by contents of those TN reports, it is clear that an interested party, particularly with ulterior motives to discredit the Army’s image, stands behind this shameless defilement and dishonor on statues of those great leaders, who are also well-respected by many a Sri Lankan."

- Asian Tribune -

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