Organizers of an international conference at Manonmaniam Sundaranar University in Thirunelvely, Tamil Nadu, decided to escort out Ms Jeeva Niriella of the Colombo University law faculty through the side door, when barging in protestors accusing Sri Lanka of genocide demanded Jeeva to leave India. The afternoon session of the 3-day conference on Thursday was disrupted to the disbelief and shock of the organisers, reported Times of India on Friday. During the morning session, Ms. Niriella was eulogising ‘women empowerment’ in Sri Lanka, citing Srimao Bandaranayake, world’s first woman prime minister and the current chief justice who is a woman. She was silent to a question about large-scale crimes committed on women in the island.
Members of Naam Tamizhar Iyakkam, May 17 Movement, Sri Lankan Tamils Protection Federation, as well as MDMK cadres, participated in the protest.
"Jeeva Niriella was visibly shocked by the sudden development. We were also taken aback. Since we thought that the safety and security of the delegate was important, we took her out of the venue through another exit. We then told the protesters that she was sent and that she would not participate in any of the sessions for the rest of the conference," Times of India cited a faculty member from the MS University.
In an orchestrated way Sri Lanka sends abroad its academics, politicians, artists and agents of other walks for an image-building exercise, and some foreign institutions and individuals interested in making inroads into Sri Lanka provide space for these exercises, activists in Tamil Nadu said.
Tamil Nadu chief minister Ms. Jeyalalithaa recently wrote to the prime minister in New Delhi to discourage the frequent visits of Sri Lankan delegations to Tamil Nadu.
The diplomatic missions and immigration desks of New Delhi Establishment stringently vet Eezham Tamil academics visiting India.