The District Organiser of the United National Party (UNP) in Batticaloa Mr Arasaretnam Sasitharan said that a resolution has been passed at the UNP Batticaloa District Executive Committee to the effect that anti-people elements and former paramilitary operatives, who were deployed under the Mahinda Rajapaksa regime, should not be absorbed into the UNP or the polity associated with the UNP in the new regime in Colombo. The resolution has named four persons who should be kept away from the politics of Maithiripala Sirisena and Ranil Wickramaisnge if UNP needs to win credibility among the Tamil public in Batticaloa district, Mr Sasitharan further said.
The decision by the UNP Batticaloa Branch comes as the people of Ampaa’rai launched protests against B.H. Piyasena, who was elected on TNA ticket and crossed over to Rajapaksa’s UPFA. There were also spontaneous protests against the UPFA-associated paramilitary operatives such as Iniyabarathy in the Ampaa’rai district. More than 3,000 people rounded up the house of the paramilitary operative Iniyabarathy on 10 January at Thirukkoayil and the UPFA councillor in the Eastern Provincial Council had to escape with the help of the Sri Lankan Police.
The Batticaloa Branch UNP resolution states that former deputy minister and paramilitary operative Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan, former chief minister and paramilitary operative Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, former UNP politician Seyed Ali Zahir Moulana, who joined Rajpaksa’s UPFA after resigning from the UNP and Kanapathipillai Mohan, who was formerly associated with Chandrakanthan.
Mr Mohan competes with Mr Sasitharan to claim the post of District Organiser of the UNP in Batticaloa.
Ali Zahir Mouland is currently the chair of Ea’raavor Urban Council representing the Rajapaksa’s UPFA, which has now come under the control of Sirisena-led UPFA. He was a key person in assisting the renegade LTTE commander Karuna to collaborate with Colombo’s intelligence and UNP government during the times of the Norway-brokered Ceasefire Agreement. Mr Moulana has also worked at the Sri Lankan Embassy in USA.
Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan is a UPFA councillor in the Eastern Provincial Council. He has sought ‘security’ from the new regime in Colombo.
In the meantime, paramilitary operative Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan, who is yet to officially hand over his ministerial responsibilities to the newly appointed minister in Colombo, has said that he is supporting the newly elected SL president Maithiripala Sirisena.
Ranil Wickramasinghe and other UNP politicians in the South have been claiming ‘credit’ for causing dissension within the LTTE in the Eastern Province by causing Karuna defection and transforming the renegade Tiger commanders into paramilitary operatives in order to weaken the LTTE.
Mr Wickrasinghe has also claimed that it was the UNP that brought the so-called international safety net, spearheaded by the USA, which enabled Colombo to crush the armed struggle of the Eezham Tamils under Mahinda Rajapaksa.