31 years ago, the public library in Jaffna was burnt. As noted online, at the time of its destruction, the library was one of the biggest in Asia, containing over 97,000 books and manuscripts. Nothing survived the flames. Anchored to an event in Colombo, an article commemorating the burning of the library published on Groundviews last year noted,
Some one quite rightly pointed out that it was a crime against humanity. No doubt, it is a crime which struck at the very heart of Tamil culture and civilization- a crime which is tantamount to rape, as described by the speaker – a rape not of the body but of the hearts and minds – for this repository of knowledge, culture and history represented the pride and dignity of the Tamil people.