Home » News

Prabhakaran had sidelined KP: Lankan sleuths

[Express Buzz, Sunday, 8 August 2010 08:10 No Comment]

Sri Lankan sleuths interrogating former LTTE arms smuggler Kumaran Pathmanathan, alias KP, have found that he was a back-number with little or no knowledge of the working of the LTTE’s weapons smuggling and financial dealings overseas during the critical, final phase of Eelam War IV.

This was because KP was sidelined by LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran in 2003 and kept out in the cold till the end of 2008. Even after he was reinducted,  KP was not given back the responsibility for arms smuggling and international finance. Instead, he was made the group’s “international plenipotentiary” or ambassador to lobby with western governments to halt the advance of the Sri Lankan military juggernaut.

In an interview to Daily Mirror on Saturday, KP recalled that at one stage, the interrogators laughed at him and said, “You don’t know anything about the LTTE now!”

CASTRO GAVE EVERYTHING AWAY: KP said Lankan intelligence had received loads of material on the LTTE’s international operations from the abandoned office of Manivannan alias Castro in Viswamadu. Castro, who managed arms smuggling and international financing from 2003 till the defeat of the LTTE in May 2009, had failed to destroy the material in his possession, including those stored in computers, before he fled Viswamadu. “The reality is that the Lankan intelligence know more about overseas Tigers than I know,” KP said.

HOW KP IS BEING USED: Nevertheless, Colombo finds KP very useful. Having been an ace arms smuggler and an international finance manager for years, he knows the Tamil diaspora and its leading members very well. The Lankan authorities, who took him into custody in August 2009 from a hotel in Kulala Lumpur, have been using him to persuade the diaspora to contribute to the development of the Tamil-speaking north-east either through direct investment or through his North-East Rehabilitation and Development Organisation (NERDO) based in Vavuniya.

In June this year, KP had persuaded nine “country heads” of the LTTE to visit Sri Lanka, meet high officials and tour the war-devastated north. They went back converted to the idea of peace and development. NERDO has got other members of the diaspora to also work for development in the island. It enables them to get the Lankan Defence Ministry’s persmission to visit the north. It has a website too. Indeed, KP is now the sole link between the Tamil diaspora and the Lankan establishment. Other Tamil parties and leaders have now been put in the shade.

WHY PRABHAKARAN SIDELINED HIM: When asked why Prabhakaran had sidelined him, KP said that post-9/11, he was a particularly marked man in several countries, and so, could not visit Prabhakaran at his hideout in north Sri Lanka when the latter called him over for a discussion in 2002.

[Full Coverage]

(For updates you can share with your friends, follow TNN on Facebook, Twitter and Google+)

Comments are closed.