Nations divided at the grassroot in the island despite machinations of global powers, reflected in an episode this week in which visiting students from leading schools of Jaffna were attacked by fellow Sinhala students in a cadet camp at Randamba in the Southern Province. The Sinhala military officials in the camp, rather than attending to complaints, chose to send the Jaffna school students back, with a warning not to tell anyone what had happened to them in the camp. During the decades of war, Colombo had stopped cadet programmes in the schools of Jaffna. Now as a part of its militarisation and structural genocide programme Colombo has conceived the idea of obligatory military training to all university entrants and reintroduction of cadet programme in the leading schools of Jaffna.
Accompanied by teachers, school cadets (or rather children as they are under 18) from St. John’s College, Jaffna Hindu College, Kokkuvil Hindu College and Central College of Jaffna were among those who were taken for the cadet training camp of both Sinhala and Tamil students at the Randamba SL military facility in the Southern Province.
During the camping, verbal exchanges between the two sections snowballed into an attack on visiting Tamil students by the Sinhala students, on Tuesday.
The accompanying Tamil teachers brought the matter to the notice of the military officials conducting the cadet camp. But no disciplinary action was initiated against the attackers.
Again on Wednesday, when the students of Jaffna Central College went to collect their food, they were attacked by the same group of Sinhala students in the locality of their hostel.
Jaffna Central College students returned on Thursday and principals of the other schools have asked for the safe return of their students.
Colombo restarted the cadet programme in the Jaffna schools with great fun-fare last year. The occupying Sinhala military has allocated a school building near Kaakkai-theevu in Jaffna for this purpose.
For advanced training the Jaffna students were taken to Randamba military facility.
School administrations and education officers in Jaffna are highly concerned of the indifferent attitude of the SL military towards the attack on Tamil students. In future they would resist sending their students for any training programme in the South, education circles in Jaffna said.
All the Jaffna institutions mentioned above became degraded into high schools long back, despite their ‘college’ nametags and more than a hundred years old history.
But as high schools they are monumental institutions of Jaffna society and all of them have alumni associations all over the world.
Genocidal Colombo nowadays has a particular sinister eye on the educational institutions of Eezham Tamils and their alumni associations in the diaspora.
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As all school students in the island are under 18, they are children according to international reckoning.
The world establishments and international human rights organisations that are worried about child soldiers among non-state combatants never raise a finger to the cadet programme to the school children that is conducted all over the world by the Establishments to prepare and recruit soldiers.
Schools usually take in children for cadet training from 14 –15 years onwards.
The very idea of cadet programme that originates from British imperial and colonial schooling system, and that is now found pampered in the schools of India and the USA, has the motive of orientating the school children into militaristic thinking, exposing them to the military of the Establishment and luring them for recruitment.