Britain Tamil diaspora participated confab with British MP - a non-starter as he switches to defensive mode
London, 28 June, (Asiantribune.com): The London Tamil diaspora meeting with Keith Vaz MP, Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils in Britain ‘ended in a fiasco,’ described a participant and the Labor MP was right throughout on the defensive.
The meeting was held at Portcullis House instead of a room in British Parliament. According to an insider, Keith Vaz actually was present in the meeting for a total of about 20 to 25 minutes. While the meeting was on, he excused himself on more than two occasions and left the meeting to attend to some thing else. While he excused himself from the meeting, his political secretary Vernon Hunte was left to hear harangues of the British Tamil diaspora.
Furthermore, Asian Tribune learnt that many Tamil groups which earlier participated in the preparatory meeting held at the house Dr. Nicholas Pillai disassociated them and boycotted the meeting. According to a headcount only eight persons claiming to represent the Tamil diaspora in Britain participated.
It is learnt that following Tamil representatives participated in the meeting:
1. R.Jayadevan 2. A.K.Vivekanandan - Tamil Democratic Congress, 3. Suppaiah Krishnapillai alias N.S.Krishnar – Karuna Group, 4. S. Theepan – Tamil Broadcasting Corporation, 5. Nesan Shankar Raji -EROS, 6. Dr. Nicholas Pillai, 7. Sassi Tharmarajah of the Tamil United Liberation Front and 8. Seyed Basheer – Solicitor also director of Sri Lankan Muslim Information Centre UK. He is also a member of the Sri Lanka Democratic Forum.
‘Asian Tribune’ learnt that Keith Vaz expressed shock when Krishnar of the Karuna Group was introduced. Mentions of security breach were made by the presence of some one representing an armed group.
Majority of the participants who claimed to represent the British Tamil Diaspora was highly critical of Keith Vaz, who as the Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils in Britain is only in league with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, a ban organization in Britain.
They questioned the logic behind Keith Vaz taking along with him Sethilkumar of the British Tamil Association – which is the other name for the LTTE in Britain, to the lunch hosted by the Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner in Britain. They further asked why he did not introduce Senthilkumar initially to the High Commissioner which is alleged to be a breach of protocol and also about when the High Commissioner questioned Keith Vaz about his companion, why he introduce him only as Kumar and as his advisor.
They also questioned Keith Vaz the reason why he took along with him N.Seevaratnam, his son Nirmalan Seevaratnam and Senthilkumar who are said to be the LTTE stalwarts in Britain when he met Dr. John Reid, Secretary for Home Affairs in his capacity as Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils in Britain.
Sources pointed out that Keith Vaz was on the defensive right throughout and his explanation, one of the participant told ‘Asian Tribune,’ was not convincing enough.
In the meantime when the participants representing the anti-LTTE groups solicited for representation their groups in the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils in Britain, it is learnt that Keith Vaz has reluctantly agreed to consider favorably their appeal
Keith Vaz also has informed the participants that he is waiting for the authorization from the British Government to take an All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils delegation to Sri Lanka.
- Asian Tribune -