Waging struggle with self-respect amidst Delhi-Colombo engineering
Earlier this month, re-inaugurating Colombo’s railway line to the occupied North, Mahinda Rajapaksa and the genocide line’s mastermind New Delhi, staged a ‘development’ show in Jaffna. On the same occasion, Rajapaksa also unveiled Colombo’s plans on converting the Nedun-theevu (Delft) Island off Jaffna and close to Tamil Nadu in the Palk Bay, into a Sinhala-Buddhist colony and military-commercial centre. While a leaked letter of the NPC chief minister Wigneswaran was harping on the functional unworkability of the NPC and the question of funds as well as the right over land in the province, more importance should be given to directly addressing and openly denouncing the fundamental policy line and master strategies of New Delhi, commented Tamil activists for alternative politics.
Further observations by Tamil activists for alternative politics in Eezham:
While the railway line was put to operation, Colombo came out with two major announcements: one was prohibiting ‘foreigners’ entering the former war zone without getting permission from the occupying Sinhala military and the other was restricting or prohibiting ‘foreign’ individuals from owning property in the island.
The use of the word ‘foreigner’ to sound ‘national’ is ironic to ‘Sri Lanka’, which otherwise had pawned every resources of the island to various foreign States, to sustain its genocidal agenda and existence.
But, anyone could see what is meant by the word ‘foreigner’ in the above announcements. It primarily means the Eezham Tamils in the diaspora, who in their minds still live in their home country, want to visit and invest for the real development of their people, but have ‘foreign’ passports.
New Delhi on the other hand selectively restricts the entry of diaspora Eezham Tamils into India, mostly on the ‘advice’ of Colombo, and the hundreds of thousands of Eezham Tamils living as refugees in India have no internationally recognized refugee rights or travel rights.
While the historical communication routes of Eezham Tamils with Tamil Nadu are sealed off, the direct internal communication of Eezham Tamils between the North and East is severed or underdeveloped and the diaspora is restricted in interactions, New Delhi facilitates Colombo’s railway to Jaffna and soon would help another railway to Trincomalee via Anuradhapura district.
There are clear indications that as a continuation of the Vanni War, New Delhi and Colombo now wage an undeclared joint war against both the Eezham Tamils and Tamils of Tamil Nadu. The strategy is to silence and if needed intimidate Tamil Nadu and to seal off the country of Eezham Tamils for exclusive handling between New Delhi and Colombo. Looking at the unfolding developments one need not doubt who actually engineers the structural genocide on the ground.
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Colombo’s Sinhala military colonisation project on Nedun-theevu (Delft) islet was conceived ever since New Delhi became serious on the Sethu (Adam’s Bridge) canal through the Palk Bay.
To genocidal Sri Lanka, Sinhalicisation of Delft is as important as the Sinhalicisation of KKS/ Palaali and Trincomalee. What practically happens testifies that New Delhi has agreed to all the three.
A small example of a ‘survey’ conducted in Delft by a Colombo-based institution after the Vanni War would reveal the colonial mind-set with which Colombo approaches the islet.
The ‘survey’ published in 2013 as “Sustainable Development of Delft Island: An ecological, socio-economic and archaeological assessment,” was conducted with the funds of International Union for Conservation of Nature in Colombo, with the backing of Colombo’s politicians and officials, including presidential sibling Basil Rajapaksa and with the logistical facilitation of the occupying Sinhala Navy in the islet.
None of the people conducted the ‘survey’ was a local person or not even a Tamil. The long list of fauna and flora recorded in the islet comes with Sinhala names.
The simple message to Eezham Tamils is that the islet, even its environmental heritage, doesn’t belong to them and either the people living there should be prepared to become Sinhalicised subordinates or quit.
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Against the backdrop of railway and Delft, comes Gotabhaya Rajapaksa visiting New Delhi and getting two naval offshore patrol vessels and other military equipment.
India has recently provided 24 L-70 guns, 24 battle-field surveillance radars, 11 USFM radars, four Indra-II radars and 10 mine-protected vehicles, among other things, in addition to training 800 to 900 Sinhala military personnel annually, media reports said.
Against whom all these supplies come unless New Delhi and Colombo are embarked on the project of a sealed genocidal experiment in the country of unarmed Eezham Tamils, is the question.
The fundamental problem actually comes neither from Colombo nor from New Delhi. It stems from the unpreparedness of Eezham Tamil politicians and activists in declaring ‘no-confidence’ in New Delhi.
Telling openly to New Delhi is a more pragmatic move in the struggle than continuing debate on the functional unworkability of 13A.
By doing so, we would at least democratically and internationally orientate our struggle to get self-respect, if a solution of self-respect is only another deception coming from New Delhi. Also by doing so, Tamils are not going to lose anything, which they may otherwise achieve by going behind New Delhi, if its agenda is all set for the annihilation of the nation of Eezham Tamils.
Tamils also need not worry about China or about India’s security concerns, other than worrying about their own existence, as the Naval Chief of genocidal Sri Lanka having decades of ‘time-tested true friendship’ with China, has now declared in New Delhi that “We will never compromise on national security of India. India’s security is our security.”
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Meanwhile, another section of Tamil politicians in the island and activists in the diaspora seem to be worried about Tamils ‘losing audience’ in the so-called international community, if they claim independence, if they are not prepared to prolong debate on alternative models until the genocide is complete and according to some, even if they utter the word genocide.
The line of thinking that Tamils should ‘reconcile’ to the genocide originated in abstract in the White House statement in April 2009. This found brief explanations in the utterings of Robert Blake and elucidations in the discourses of Alan Keenan of the ICG.
The US resolution in Geneva, not recognising the genocide, not relieving the concerned people from the genocidal military, not recognising any of the fundamentals related to the self-determination of Eezham Tamils and not even recognising the identity of Tamils, but buying time for engagements in ‘debate’ and completion of genocide, was just a manifestation of the original agenda.
If the so-called international community is skilful enough in giving magical touch to congenitally genocidal ‘Sri Lanka’, in making it to come out with alternative models to save such a deer and must for humanity State, then let it be proved on the ground for the nation of Eezham Tamils to consider.
It is not lack of sophistication or lack of diplomacy but guarding against folly and long deceit, if Eezham Tamils stand firmly in their demand for international investigation on genocide and demand for independence.
In fact, the precise task of Tamil politicians and activists today is to first get the rights for Tamils to talk about the genocide they experience and about the independence they need – not running away or detracting even the task of democratically fighting for the most fundamental right to speech, just because New Delhi gags or audience will be lost in the USA.