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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2614

Tamils in the East converge to protest against Tamil Tigers

Colombo, 11 December, (Asiantribune.com): Tamil people in the East, especially from Batticaloa town, and from adjacent towns and villages of Vakarai, Kathiraveli, Paduvanakarai , Chenkaladi, Kokkadichcholai, Karadiyanaru and from other villages in the Batticaloa district converged to protest and march under the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal banner yesterday morning to show their dissent and resent against the Tamil Tigers. Thousands of Tamil people from Batticaloa district, more than 10,000 of them, according to an independent estimate, marched shouting slogans against the Tamil Tigers as well as against TNA parliamentarians representing the region. Protest march in BatticaloaProtest march in Batticaloa

In the meantime, LTTE Peace Secretariat in a press release alleged that TMVP rounded up and abducted more than 300 young men and women including children. Tigers press released alleged that the paramilitary group abducted them in Batticaloa town and its suburbs on Sunday night.

The LTTE press release further added that having abducted the young people, the paramilitary group ordered their parents to attend a march against the LTTE. The parents were warned to be present at the Batticaloa Weber Stadium today (on Monday) morning at 10.00am or else their children will be shot dead.

But TMVP however, strongly denied the allegation of having forced civilians to participate in a demonstration in Batticaloa yesterday, where thousands turned for the first time, turned up to protest against the atrocities committed by the LTTE and to demand the elected TNA parliamentarians from the East to withdraw their support to the LTTE.

Azad Moulana the TMVP spokesperson strongly denied LTTE’s allegations and told Asian Tribune that it was the reflection of LTTE’s usual practice to force the people by threat and intimidation to participate in their protest marches. He said this was the first time the Tamil speaking people in the East were able to express their strong opposition to the LTTE. People who attended the meeting in thousands, shouted slogans against the LTTE and its Leader Velupillai Prabakaran and expressed their support to TMVP and the Government led by President Mahinda Rajapakse.

The protest march concluded at the Weber stadium followed by a public meeting presided over by Pradeeb Master, the Head of TMVP’s Political Wing.

A memorandum was also handed over to the Batticaloa AGA K. Mahesan to be forwarded to Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse.

The full text of the Memorandum address (in verbatim) to President Mahinda Rajapakse is given below:

Through:

Government Agent,
Batticaloa.

Hon Mahinda Rajapaksha,
His Excellency the President of the Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka,
Presidential secretariat,
Colombo.

HE President,

Re: Fulfilling the Essential needs and the Basic facilities of those replaced and resettled.

It is indeed your Excellency deserves our sincere thanks, and we are delighted to express thanks on behalf of the people and the soil for the redemption of our land, which had been, for decades, in the cruel hands of ruthless terrorists. Our thanks are also due for emancipating our people from the tyrannical suppression of the terrorists by liberating the Eastern province from them and giving our people an opportunity to enjoy the real democratic reality and freedom.

Thousands hundreds of people who lived in the terrorist held areas were compelled to be displaced internally leaving everything behind such as their residence, livelihood, properties, relatives etc due to the humanitarian mission launched by the government troops. Your Excellency are aware that the our innocent people were used as human shields by the terrorists and several brothers and sisters of ours were also killed due to humanitarian mission launched by the government troops since they were used as human shields by the terrorists.

The war, which commenced from Sampur to Paduwankarai has left our people in the lurch with their schools, hospitals, houses, streets drinking water sources, Fundamental infrastructure facilities. Livelihoods, livestock, paddy lands being reduced to ashes. To our dismay, despite all of our losses we have still been at the temporary refugee camps with our eyes filled with tears with incomplete basic facilities and several shortcomings.

The government had informed that it would take prompt measures to resettle the IDPs in their own soil soon after the liberation of the eastern Province from the terrorists. The interest your Excellency showed towards that end have clearly told on your responsibility of your office and our hope was also the same.

We wish to bring to your kind attention that our basic needs and facilities, which were destroyed by the war, had not been restored in our area where we have been resettled. We met our ends with the meager income that we get and there were several who were unable to meet their day-to-day needs. War had turned the situation bad to worse. Our farming activities and the fishing industry had come to a standstill. Our houses, hospitals and co-operative shops have not completely been restored. Drinking water and health issues are the most burning issues that face nowadays. Though we have been resettled in our own soil we are still suffering as we are unable to go ahead with our livelihood. Our kids who have several dreams in the field of education are also suffering due to this uncertainty. Our days are passing with doubts whether we can earn the next diet. Our life, which is presently full of aspirations and longings, should change with our basic needs and facilities be fully restored.

We too are the citizens of this country. Your Excellency as the leader and public survivor of this country are bound to look into our needs at your level best. We know that your Excellency can realize that there is no wrong in our cherishing to enjoy a normal life equally with the people in the south and in the capital city with equal rights.

The terrorism which tries to manifest can be nipped in the bud if your Excellency is fully committed to resettlement and rehabilitation of the people batted by terrorism as your Excellency are bent on eradicating terrorism from the nation. The constructive and committed measures of your Excellency to wipe out terrorism are really laudable and commendable. Your Excellency will hold a place of importance in the minds of the Tamils if you take tangible measures to wipe the tears in the eyes of the Tamils by providing redress to the them who are batted and thrashed by terrorism. Our aspiration is also the same.

This war has claimed several lives of the breadwinners of the families and made those families stranded. Several children have lost their parents whom they depended on for their livelihood and education. Several sisters and parents have lost their brothers and sons whom they depended on for their future. What the future holds in stock for them. Lives are prices less. However, the stranded should be provided with redress and relief to carry on their life. Compensation should be paid to the disable and those dependants.

The service rendered by the government and the NGOs to the refugees are commendable. However, the service is incomplete and it should be expanded. The people who are displaced should be given priority when providing development assistance, financial donations and economic assistance. Our people should develop an attitude in their minds that they are not meted out with a step motherly treatment. Terrorism will see its last breath when the Sinhala rulers win the hearts of the Tamils so that the Tamils never allow any chance for the manifestation of terrorism which is all out to sprout again in the nation.

We who have been suffering as refugees with the bitter experiences of war regret the recent continuous missing of people and the suspicious viewing angel of the state troops. Who is to hold responsibility for such incidences after terrorism being wiped out? Your Excellency should guarantee that Normal life is restored to our soil to ensure a life sans fear.

Our representatives, the parliamentarians who are to voice our shortcomings in parliament act only as the agents of the terrorists without fulfilling their duties and responsibilities by the public. They are only there to obtain your privileges and rewards. When the situation stands so, our confidence in them to settle our issues has become only a mirage. Hence, we are compelled to voice our needs and to remedy for them. It is a really an appalling situation they who should act in a responsible manner to assist in your practical and constructive plans hamper the development and economic assistance that come to us. We are constrained to face such terrible and atrocious situations. All these should end. That is why we hope directly to submit our problems to your Excellency.

The Eastern Resurgence Drive launched by your government to develop the Eastern Province is really constructive and viable. Such development drives should not cease. In such activities, priority should be given to the organizations, which really work for us facing all sorts of trails and tribulations. We have no doubt that their constructive instructions and the assistance provided via them will surely reach us in full.

- Asian Tribune -

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