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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2731

EPDP on North East meager: It is the will of the people that matters

Colombo, 20 October, ( North and East should remain merged or not is a decision that must left to the will of the people and not to the will of a law imposed from above.

The region of North and East of Sri Lanka is the land of the homeland of the Tamil-speaking people. Beginning from the days of our forefathers up to today, north and east continues to be our traditionally historical place of residence. Our firm political conviction is that it is the people who will have to make the final decision as to whether it should remain demerged or merged.

The EPDP is a democratic political party based on the philosophy that any formula framed within narrow legal parameters will not be an answer to this issue.

We aspire for a political arrangement based on the ethnic, religious and social equality. We continuously insist on a firm, secure administrative framework. The EPDP is committed to work within a merged north and east political structure that provides a special administrative unit for our Muslim brethren.

The North-East merged administrative framework was put before the Thimpu Talks in 1985 by the Tamils’ multi-party groups. It was later introduced into the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord with slight changes. Even in the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord, it was clearly stated that the merger of the North and East has to be determined finally by a referendum.

It should be noted that due to prevailing war conditions which have led to mass migrations, internally displaced persons, abandonment of their usual places of residence in the North and the East it is not possible to conduct a free and fair referendum. The absence of normalcy in the North and the East is a great hindrance to the free expression of the people’s will.

We wish emphasize that we always bow our heads to law. But a decision to determine the future of the Tamil-speaking people must be based on their free will. Even our stance is subjected to the will of the people.

- ASian Tribune -

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