,uhkd; NtW! ,uhtzd; NtW! 

ghUf;Fs;Ns ey;y ehL ghuj ehL vd;W kfhftp ghujpahH ghbapUf;fpwhH. mtH ,d;W capNuhL ,Ue;jhy; ghUf;Fs;Ns nfl;l ehL ghuj ehL vd;W ghbapUg;ghH! 

jkpoPo tpLjiy Kd;dzpapd; nghJr; nrayhsH kh.f. <oNte;jid ,uNthL ,uthf ,y;yhJ gfNyhL gfyhf ,e;jpa muR  ehL flj;jpaij xNu thHj;ijapy; nrhy;tjhdhy; "rpd;dj;jdk"" vd;W nrhy;y Ntz;Lk;. my;yJ ""NfL nfl;l nray;"" vd;W miof;f Ntz;Lk;.

,e;jpah jd;id xU kf;fshl;rp ehL vd;W nrhd;dhYk; ,e;j ehLflj;jypd; %yk; mJ jd;id xU fhl;Lkpuhz;b ehL vd;gij vz;gpj;Js;sJ.

gLj;j ghapy; ,Ue;J jl;b vOg;gp cLj;j cLg;NghL xU vOgJ taJf; fpotid ehL flj;JtJ> mfjpahf milf;fyk; Nfhupa xUtiu ehL flj;JtJ> mtiu mtuJ kidtpaplk; ,Ue;J gpupj;jJ kpf kpf mehfupfkhd nray;. midj;Jyf rl;ljpl;lq;fSf;Fk; rk;gpujhaq;fSf;Fk; KuzhdJ!

vy;yhtw;wpw;Fk; Nkyhf mtiu ehL flj;jpajw;Fr; nrhy;yg;gl;l fhuzk; eifg;Gf;F cupaJ. mJ njw;fhrpahtpd; ty;yuR vd;W jd;idf; $wpf; nfhs;Sk; ,e;jpahtpw;Fg; ngupa mtkhdk;.

<oNte;jdpd; tprh Kbe;J tpl;lJ. mjdhy;jhd; mtH ehL flj;jg;gl;lhH vd;gJ file;njLj;j ngha;.

jpuhtplf; fofj; jiytH fp. tPukzp Nfl;lJ Nghy mfjpahf te;j mtuplk; flitr; rPl;Nl ,y;iy. gpd; tprh vq;fpUe;J tUk;?

rup flitr; rPl;L ,Ue;jJ> tprh Kbe;J tpl;lJ vd;Nw thjj;jpw;F itj;Jf; nfhs;Nthk;. me;j tprhit GJg;gpj;Jf; nfhs;SkhW mtiuf; Nfl;bUf;fyhk; my;yth? mjw;fhd fhy mtfhrk; nfhLj;jpUf;fyhk; my;yth?

,uz;L khjq;fSf;F Kd;dH <oNte;jd;> kwtd;GyT rr;rpjhde;jk; ,UtUf;Fk; ehl;il tpl;L ntspNaWkhW ,e;jpa  FbtuT mjpfhupfshy; mwptpj;jy; nfhLf;fg;gl;lJ. me;j cj;juT kjpKf nghJr; nrayhsH itNfhtpd; Neubj; jiyaPl;lhy; ,y;yj;Jr; nra;ag; gl;lJ.

cs;Jiw mikr;rH vy;.Nf. mj;thdpiaf; fz;L Ngrpa itNfhtplk; <oNte;jd;gw;wpa nkhj;j Nfhg;G xd;W fhl;lg;gl;lJ. <oNte;jd;gw;wp ,e;jpa csT mikg;ghd Nwh jahupj;j Nfhg;G mJ. <oNte;jid xU jPtpu gaq;futhjpahfr; Nwh rpj;jupj;jpUe;jJ. <oNte;jDf;F taJ 70> mtH xU jhtpugl;rzp> fhe;jPathjp  vd;W nrhd;dij mj;thdp ek;g kWj;jhH.

,e;j csTj;Jiw ,Uf;fpwNj mJ fdlh cl;gl> vy;yh ehLfspYk; xNu khjpupj;jhd; nray;gLfpwJ. jhq;fs; vLf;fpw rk;gsj;Jf;Fk;> gjtp gwpNghfhJ ,Ug;gjw;Fk;> jq;fSf;Fupa mjpfhuj;ij fhl;Ltjw;Fk;  ahiuahtJ khl;l Ntz;Lk;. ,Jjhd; mtw;wpd; Fwpf;Nfhs;.  

<oNte;jdJ  ehL flj;jYf;F ,e;jpf;fhuid kl;Lk; Fiw nrhy;ypg; gadpy;iy. jkpo;ehl;L Kjyikr;rH ehw;fhypia myq;fupf;Fk; Kj;JNtyH fUzhepjpAk; me;j ehL flj;jYf;F jiyairj;jpUf;fpwhH. mtuJ jiyairg;gpy;yhky; ,e;j ehL flj;jy; ele;jpUf;fKbahJ.

fy;yy;Fb vd;w nre;jkpo;g; ngaiu vLj;Jtpl;L  lhy;kpah vd;w tlehl;L Kjyhspapd; ngaiu itj;jjw;F jz;lthsj;jpy; jiyitj;Jg; gLj;J vjpHg;Gg; Nghuhl;lk; elhj;jpa fiyQH fUzhepjp fhykhfp xU khkhq;fkhfp tpl;lJ.

,;g;NghJs;s  fUzhepjp Kjypy; ehd; ,e;jpad; mg;Gwe;jhd; jkpod; vd;W ele;J nfhs;gtH. Nkilapy; ,e;jpf; ftpijiag; gbj;J ghuhl;LgtH. rpq;fhur; nrd;idj; njUnthd;Wf;F xU tlehl;L Nrl;bd; ngaH itf;Fk; msTf;F mtuJ ,e;jpaj; Njrpak; tsHe;Js;sJ.  

tp.GypfNshlhd cwit gj;kehg nfhiyf;Fg; gpwF iffOtp tpl;Nld;. ,g;NghJ mtHfNshL xl;Lk; ,y;iy cwTk; ,y;iy vd;fpwhH. gj;jhz;LfSf;F Kd;dH ,we;j gj;kehghTf;F cs;s fz;zPiu vy;yhk; nfhl;b tpl;ljhy; gz;lhutis gpe;JDth jLg;G Kfhkpy; gLnfhiy nra;ag;gl;l 30f;Fk; mjpfkhd murpay; ifjpfSf;Ff;; fz;zPH tpl xU nrhl;Lk; mtuplk; kpQ;rp ,Uf;ftpy;iy. me;jg; gaq;fug; gLnfhiyia ,l;L mtH thNa jpwf;ftpy;iy. 

gpe;JDthit tpl;L tpLNthk;. mtHfs; <oj; jkpoHfs;. jkpo;ehl;L kPdtHfis eha;fs;Nghy; rpq;fsf; flw;gil Rl;Lf; nfhy;fpwNj? mtHfSf;Ff;$l fUzhepjpaplk;  xU nrhl;Lf; fz;zPH ,y;iyNa! 

mz;ikapy; $l rpq;fsf; flw;gilapd; rukhupahd Jg;ghf;fpr; #l;by; fr;rjPTf;F mUfpy; kPd;gpbj;Jf; nfhz;bUe;j Kdprhkp (taJ 26) gLnfhiy nra;ag;gl;lhH. ik%dh vd;w K];ypk; ngz;iz fhjy; jpUkzk; nra;J nfhz;l Kdprhkpf;F xU ngz; Foe;ij gpwe;J 3 ehl;fs;jhd; MfpapUe;jJ. 

Kjyikr;rH fUzhepjp tof;fk;Nghy jpy;ypf;F fbjk; vOjpdhH. mNjhL fij Kbe;J tpl;lJ. 

cUrpah xU Kd;dhs; ty;yuR. Nghg; vd;w mnkupf;f njhopyjpgH cUrpahtpy; csT ghHj;jhH vd;w Fw;w rhl;by; ifJ nra;ag;gl;L rpiwf;Fs; js;sg;gl;L ,Uf;fpwhH. ,g;NghJ mnkupf;fh mtiu tpLjiy nra;AkhW cUrpah kPJ mOj;jk; gpuNahfpj;jd; fhuzkhf cUrpa mjpgH Gl;bd; ""ghHf;fyhk;. mnkupf;fhtpd; cwit cjwptpl cUrpah tpUk;gtpy;iy"" vd;w Njhuizapy; NgrpapUf;fpwhH. Gl;bdpd; Ngr;ir mnkupf;f rdhjpgjp tuNtw;wpUf;fpwhH. mnkupf;fh jdJ ehl;Lf; Fbkfd; xUtd; csT ghHj;j Fw;wj;Jf;F ifJ nra;ag;gl;L rpiwpapy; milf;fg; gl;lhYk; mtid tpLtpf;fg; ghLgLfpwJ. 

,NjNghy; ehd;F cUrpa tpkhdpfs; MAjq;fis tpkhd %yk; nfhz;L te;J ,e;jpa ,uhZtj;ij vjpHj;Jg; NghuhLk; Gul;rpf; FOf;fSf;F Nghl;lhHfs; vd;w Fw;wr;rhl;by; ifJ nra;ag;gl;L gj;J Mz;Lfs; rpiwj; jz;lid nfhLf;fg;gl;lJ. gpd;dH mtHfis tpLtpj;jhy; kl;LNk ,e;jpah tUNtd; vd;W Gl;bd; kpul;bdhH. muz;LNghd ,e;jpah gzpe;JNgha; rpiw ifjpfis tpLtpj;J tpkhdj;jpy; Vw;wp cUrpahtpw;F mDg;gp itj;jJ. mg;Gwe;jhd; Gl;bd; ,e;jpah te;jhH.   

,g;gb mnkupf;fhTk; cUrpahTk; jq;fs; ehl;L Fbkf;fs;> mtHfs; csthspahf ,Ue;jhYk; rup> MAjf; flj;jy;fhuuhf ,Ue;jhYk; rup  tpLtpf;f Kaw;rp nra;J mjpy; ntw;wpAk; fhz;fpd;wd.  

Mdhy; jkpof kPdtHfs; Mapuf; fzf;fpy; ,Jtiu rpq;fsf; flw;gilapduhy; Rl;Lf; nfhiy nra;ag; gl;Ls;shHfs;. mijapl;L ,e;jpah ftiyg; glTk; ,y;iy. fz;zPH tplTk; ,y;iy. nfhOk;gpYs;s ,e;jpaj; JhJtUf;Fk; fpQ;rpj;Jj; jd;dpYk; mf;fiw ,y;iy. mij vd;dhy; Gupe;J nfhs;s KbfpwJ. mtHfs; ,e;jpf;fhuHfs;. jkpo;ehl;Lj; jkpod;> mJTk; Kftup ,y;yhj kPdtHfs; nrj;jhy; mtHfSf;F vd;d? ,e;jpahtpd; kf;fs; njhif Fiwe;jJ vd;W kfpo;r;rp milthHfs;! 

Mdhy; jkpopdj; jiytH> jQ;rhT+H Nrhod; mtUky;yth ftiyg; gltpy;iy. fz;zPH tplTk; ,y;iy. xU &gh Kj;jpiu xl;b kly; vOjpaNjhL vy;yhk; rup. ehis ,d;ndhU khlhrhkp kPdtd; rpq;fsf; flw;gilahy;  Rl;Lf; nfhy;yg;gl;lhy; jpy;ypr; rf;futHj;jp th[;gha;f;F FWepy kd;dH fUzhepjp ,d;ndhU Xiy vOJthH. mt;tsTjhd;. 

<oNte;jdJ ehL flj;jy; jpy;yp muR jkpopdg; giftHfshd nry;tp n[ayypjh> Iah %g;gdhH iffisj;jhd; gyg;gLj;jpAs;sJ. fhuzk; ,tHfs;jhd; jkpo;ehl;by; tp.Gypfs; CLUtp tpl;lhHfs;> tPug;gDf;Fk; tp.GypfSf;Fk; cwT ,Uf;fpwJ> MfNt jkpo;ehL muir "b];kp];" nra;Aq;fs;  vd;W ehSk; nghOJk; XahJ xopahJ CioapLfpwtHfs;.  

,e;j xU fhuzj;Jf;fhtJ fiyQH fUzhepjp <oNte;jid jpy;ypapy; cs;;s  ,e;jp thyhf;fs; ehL flj;j tplhJ jLj;J ,Uf;f Ntz;Lk;. Mdhy; mtH ey;ygps;is gl;lk;ngw>  tp.Gypfis vjpHg;gjpy; n[ayypjhtpw;Fk; %g;gdhUf;Fk; jhd; nfhQ;rKk; risj;jtd; my;y vd;W fhl;bf; nfhs;s>  ehL flj;jYf;F gr;irf; nfhb fhl;btpl;lhH.  

,Nj fhuzj;Jf;fhfj;jhd; tPug;gidg; gpbg;gjw;Fk; ,e;jpa ,uhZtj;ij tutioj;Js;shH! 

tof;fk; Nghy jkpo;j; Njrpa ,af;fj; jiytH neLkhwd;jhd; <oNte;jdJ ehL flj;jiyf; fz;bj;J mwpf;if tpl;Ls;shH. ntWk; mwpf;ifNahL epy;yhky; vjpHtUk; 15k; ehs; Eq;fk;ghf;fj;jpYs;s rh];jpup gtDf;F Kd;ghf MHg;ghl;lk; nra;aTk; Vw;ghLfs; nra;Js;shH. 

tlehl;L ,e;jp thyhf;fs; rpq;fstHfisg; Nghy jhq;fs;jhd; ,e;jpahit MSgtHfs; vd epidf;fpwhHfs;. ,e;jpjhd; Ml;rpnkhop vd;W khHjl;LfpwhHfs;. nrj;jnkhop rk];fpUjj;ij 1999k; Mz;bd; nkhopnadg; gpufldk; nra;jhHfs;. RkhH Ik;gjpdhapuk; NgH kl;Lk; NgRk; rk];fpUj nkhopapy; Nfhbf;fzf;fhd gzj;ij nrytopj;J ,e;jpa murpay; rl;lj;ij nkhopngaHj;J itj;jpUf;fpwhHfs;. Mdgbahy;jhd; fhq;fpu]; Ml;rpf;Fg; gjpy;  ghujpah [djh Ml;rp ele;jhYk; nfhs;ifapy;> mZF Kiwapy; ve;j khw;wKk; ,y;iy. 

=yq;fhtpw;F ve;jtpj MAj tpw;gidAk; ,y;iy vd;W Njrpa rdehaf Kd;dzp KbntLj;jJ. cjtp VjhtJ nra;jhy; mJ kdpjhgpkhd cjtp kl;LNk vd;Wk; KbntLf;fg;gl;lJ. Mdhy; cz;ikapy; ele;jnjd;d? 

nfhOk;Gf;F nrd;w ntspAwT mikr;rH a];te; rpq; 100 kpy;ypad; nlhyiu ,e;jpah =yq;fhtpw;F fldhff; nfhLj;jpUf;fpwJ vd;W mwptpj;jhH. ,ijapl;L itNfh Nfs;tp vOg;gpaNghJ fhR nfhLf;fg;gltpy;iy> ,e;jpahtplk; ,Ue;J kh> rPdp> gUg;G thq;f fld; kl;Lk; toq;fg; gl;lJ ( Creditline) vd;W rkhjhdk; nrhd;dhHfs;. =yq;fhtpw;F ,e;jpah 100 kpy;ypad; nlhyH fld; toq;fpdhy;> =yq;fh kh> rPdp> gUg;G Nghd;wtw;iwf; nfhs;tdT nra;a  itj;jpUe;j gzj;ij MAjq;fs; thq;fg; gad;gLj;Jk; vd;gJ xU gs;sp khztDf;Nf tpsq;Fk;. 

rup mJjhd; Nghfl;Lk;. ,g;NghJ 20 kpy;ypad; nlhyUf;F Rfd;ah uf etPd Aj;jf; fg;giyNa ,e;jpah =yq;fhtpw;F tpw;Ws;sJ. ,Nj Nghd;w ,d;ndhU fg;gYk; kpf tpiutpy; tpw;fg;gl ,Uf;fpwJ. =yq;fhtpd; rpq;fs khYkpfSf;F ,e;jpaf; flw;gilapdhy; gapw;rpAk; Kk;kukhff; nfhLf;fg;gLfpwJ. 

Ntbf;if vd;dntd;why; ,ijapl;L ahUNk jkpo;ehl;by; thNa jpwf;ftpy;iy! jkpopdj; jiytH fiyQH fUzhepjp tha; jpwf;f khl;lhH. mtH jpuhtpl Njrpaj;ij ,e;jpa Njrpaj;jplk; mlkhdk; itj;J Kg;gJ Mz;Lfshfpd;wd.  Mdhy; go. neLkhwd;> itNfh> ,uhkjh];> jkpoH jiytH tPukzp?   

,uz;L jpq;fSf;F Kd;dH ,e;jr; nra;jp nra;jpj;jhs;fspy; te;jNghJ jpU. neLkhwNdhL NgrpNdd;. ",J ntWk; tje;jp. gj;jpupiffs; fapW jpupf;fpd;wd. ePq;fs; tje;jpfis nra;jpfshf ek;gp tPzhfg; gjl;lg; gLfpwPHfs;"" vd;whH. 

,g;NghJ Rfd;ah ,e;jpa flw;gilj; jsgjpahy; =yq;fh flw;gilj; jsgjpaplk; ifaspf;fg;Lk; fhl;rp nra;jpj;jhs;fspy; glkhf te;Js;sd. me;jf; fg;giyg; gw;wpa tptuq;fSk; tpyhthupahf ntspaplg;gl;Ls;sd. 

Njrpa rdehaf Kd;dzpapy; jpKf> kjpKf> ghkf cWg;Gupik tfpf;fpd;wd. ,e;jf; fl;rpfsJ MjuT ,y;iynad;why; th[;ghap jiyikapyhd Ml;rpNa ftpo;e;J tpLk;. epyik mg;gb ,Ue;Jk; ,e;jpa muR jkpoUf;F vjpuhfTk; =yq;fhtpw;F rhHghfTk; gfpuq;fkhfr; nray;gLfpwJ.  

,jd; nghUs; tlehl;L ,e;jpf;fhuHfs; Njit Vw;gbd; jpuhtplj; jiytHfisg; gad;gLj;JthHfs;. Mdhy; kjpf;f khl;lhHfs;. mtHfs;jhd; nrhf;fl;lhd; nfhSj;jp ,uhtzyPiy nfhz;lhLgtHfshapw;Nw! 

,e;jpahtpy; jkpod; vd;whNy xU ,sf;fhuk; rfy kl;lq;fspYk; epyTfpwJ.  kjwhrp vd;W jkpod; jho;thfg; Ngrg; gLfpwhd;. gopf;fg;gLfpwhd;. fzpf;fg;gLfpwhd;. 

tlehl;lhd; jkpoHfis kjpg;gjpy;iy. ,uh[pt; fhe;jpaplk; me;j jpkpH ,Ue;jJ. ,g;NghJ mj;thdpaplk; me;jj; jpkpH ,Uf;fpwJ. mjdhy;jhd; gpughfuidg; gpbj;J tUtjw;F Ntz;ba Vw;ghLfisr; nra;a ,e;jpa mjpfhupfs; nfhOk;G nrd;Ws;shHfs; vd;W ehlhSkd;wj;jpy; mj;thdp vd;w ,e;jpag; ghhHg;ghd; jpkpuhfg; NgRfpwhd;. ,e;jpahtpd; jkpo;tpNuhjg; Nghf;fpw;F ,ijtpl NtW fhuzk; ,Uf;f KbahJ.  

ghujpah [djhtpd; ",e;Jj;Jth"tpy; ,e;Jj; jkpoHfs; NrHf;fg;gltpy;iy. ,uhkd; NtW. ,uhtzd; NtW. ehq;fs; mij kwe;jhYk; tlehl;lhd; mjid kwf;fj; jahuhapy;iy. fk;gthupfs; ,jidf; ftdpf;f Ntz;Lk;.  

ngupahH gpwe;jehs; tpohtpw;F itf;Nfh mikr;rHfs; mj;thdpiaAk; th[;ghiaAk; mioj;J te;J kjpKf Nkilapy; Ngr itj;jhH. Mdhy; ,e;j ,Utupy; xUtuhtJ ngupahHgw;wp xU thHj;ij me;j Nkilapy; Ngrtpy;iy!   

<oNte;jdpd; ehL flj;jy;> Rfd;ah fg;gy; tpw;gid ,e;jpahtpd; jkpopd tpNuhjg; Nghf;if cWjpg; gLj;JfpwJ.  itNfh> ,uhkjh]; Nghd;wtHfs; mt;tg;NghJ Jzp;e;J <oj;jkpoHfSf;fhff; Fuy; nfhLf;fpwhHfs;(fiyQH fUzhepjp mjw;Fk; jahuhapy;iy). Mdhy; ,yl;Rkzd; Nfhl;ilj;  jhz;l mtHfs; jahuhapy;iy. ehq;fSk; vjpHghHf;ff; $lhJ. jkpoPo tpLjiyia ehq;fs; nrhe;jf; fhypy; epd;Nw ntd;nwLf;f Ntz;Lk; vd;w jiytH gpughfudpd; thHj;ij mKjkhFk;.


Nedumaran hits out at deportation

Chennai, Dec 12: Tamil Nationalist Movement leader P Nedumaran today condemned the deportation of Eelavendan, general secretary of Tamil Eelam Liberation Front, to Sri Lanka.

Nedumaran issued the statement as coordinator, Tamil Eelam Liberation Supporters Co-ordination Committee. He said the deportation was against the spirit of the Geneva Convention, according to which a person who has sought political asylum should not be sent back to his motherland if there was any danger to his life.

Nedumaran said a demonstration would be held in front of Shastri Bhavan in Nungambakkam at 1100 hrs on December 15, protesting against the Eelavendan’s deportation. (Our Correspondent)

 


 

Vaiko wants Prabhakaran extradition notice withdrawn

Sukumar Nair in New Delhi

The National Democratic Alliance's (NDA) Tamil partners - MDMK and PMK - are exerting pressure on the government to withdraw a notice sent to the Sri Lanka Government for extradition of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam supremo Prabhakaran for investigations in the conspiracy that led to the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991.

The notice is of little value, like a similar notice in 1995, since the Sri Lanka Government is in no position to nab Prabhakaran, hiding in the northern forests of the country.

The MDMK and PMK took offence to the Multi-Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) asking the Lankan authorities to extradite him.

MDMK chief Vaiko is believed to have lodged a protest with Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Tuesday, over Union Home Minister Lal Krishna Advani's remarks in the Rajya Sabha that the MDMA, inquiring into the assassination conspiracy, had sought the extradition of Prabhakaran. An MDMA team had gone to Sri Lanka last month, in the course of investigations to unearth a conspiracy that remains a mystery to date.

Vaiko also reportedly protested against the deportation of M K Elavendhan, a close associate of Prabhakaran, from Madras to Colombo two days back for not having a valid visa. He expressed fear that Elavendhan would be killed either by the Lankan forces or anti-LTTE groups. He secured an assurance from Vajpayee that Elavendhan's family will not be deported from Madras.

The prime minister is believed to have spoken to Union External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh over the telephone, in the presence of Vaiko, asking him to direct the Foreign Office to tell the Sri Lankan high commissioner to provide protection to Elavendhan. Vajpayee also wanted the Indian high commissioner in Colombo to urge the Sri Lanka foreign office to protect his life.


 

July 24, 2004

Toronto

Deportation of M.K.Eelaventhan, MP undemocratic

We condemn Indian government refusal to allow entry at Chennai International Airport to M.K.Eelaventhan, MP who was on his way to attend the 2nd Thamil National Conference held in Bangalore.

The refusal is ill-advised, undemocratic, uncivilized and an infringement of protocols governing free movement of Members of Parliament within SAARC countries.

It is a known fact Eelaventhan is a high-profile Thamil nationalist who has devoted the best part of his life in articulating the aspirations of Thamil people.

In December 2000, he was deported to Sri Lanka accused of pro-LTTE sympathy by the then Home Minister L.K.Advani.

It was Advani who remained unrepentant and unsympathetic when POTA was used by Ms Jayalalithaa to jail Vaiko. The pledge that the Centre will not allow the mis-use of POTA to wreck vengeance against political opponents was observed largely on the breach.

We are convinced that those bureaucrats who dictate foreign policy in Delhi are known enemies of Thamil people’s aspirations. Irrespective of which party comes to power, these bureaucrats shape Delhi’s politics.

Both the BJP and the Indian Congress seek the help of Dravidian parties like the DMK, PMK and MDMK to form coalition governments at the centre. They do so by dangling a few portfolios, but once installed in power they pursue policies that undermine Thamil nationalism.

The appointment of JN Dixit who once bragged that the Indian army would disarm LTTE cadres before he could finish smoking his pipe, to the powerful bureaucratic post of defence advisor to the Prime Minister is not a good omen. Dixit is the architect of the myth that 'The LTTE's insistence on the creation of a separate Tamil state would have far-reaching negative implications for India's unity.' (Assignment Colombo)

Even recently as April 2002, he was pedalling the bogey that “The return of normalcy and stability in Sri Lanka is of deep interest to India, in terms of both India’s security and internal unity (in the context of the emotional links between Tamil citizens of India in Tamil Nadu and the Tamils in Sri Lanka). He has also warned “ the process should not legitimize terrorism and leaders of terrorist groups.” (The Indian Express- April 14, 2002)

The urge to sign a Defence Coorporation Agreement with the Sri Lankan government is another pointer which way the wind is blowing in Delhi.

Under this agreement that will be inked very soon, India will supply the Sri Lankan armed forces off-shore patrol vessels, Chetak helicopters, air defence guns, rocket launchers, artillery shells, 7.62 mm ammunition, Tata trucks, buses and jeeps. It is small wonder that UPFA ministers are already crowing over the goodies offered under the proposed defence agreement and covering themselves with glory.

The Indian government cannot feign ignorance against whom the lethal military hardware will be used. Since the island state has no known external enemies, it goes without saying that like in the past it will be used against the Thamil people.

Eelaventhan is not an enemy of India. Bound by language, cultural and religious ties, he considers himself a friend of India. His two daughters are married to Indian nationals.

The humiliation suffered by Eelaventhan is not something personal to him. It a supreme affront to the entire Thamil people around the globe. This political and diplomatic fiasco shows a lack of appreciation of ground realities by the Congress government.


 261 6745

M.K.Eelaventhan - a Tribute to a Mentor

12 April 2004

It is gladdening to read in the TamilNet news of April 9th that Mr.M.K.Eelaventhan has been officially nominated by the Tamil National Alliance as one of the two national list parliamentarians, through the Thamil Arasu Katchchi (ITAK). What a turn of events for a bona fide Tamil activist who was an Eelam refugee in Tamil Nadu from 1983 until the end of 2000, when Indian Poo-Bahs deported him unceremoniously to Sri Lanka. I have not met Eelaventhan personally for the past 23 years, but he remains a mentor for me, since I saw him for the first time as a school boy in the early 1960s. While he is about to begin his role as a Tamil legislator now, I reproduce below a tribute I penned for him following his deportation from India. [This originally appeared in the Tamil Nation website of December 13, 2000]

A Man With a Mission

When it comes to painting the peculiarities of the minds of Indian Poo-Bahs, none can do better than R.K.Narayan. In one of his essays entitled, ‘When India was a Colony’, written to the New York Times magazine, Narayan reminisced as follows:

‘I had a close relative in the I.C.S.[i.e., Indian Civil Service] who could not be seen or spoken to even by members of his family living under the same roof, except by appointment…

The I.C.S.manual was his Bible that warned him against beeing too familiar with anyone. He was advised how many mangoes he could accept out of a basket that a favor-seeker proffered; how far away he should hold himself when a garland was brought to be slipped over his neck. It was a matter of propriety for an average visitor to leave his vehicle at the gate and walk down the drive; only men of certain status could come in their cars and alight at the portico…it dehumanized the man, especially during the national struggle for independence. These men proved ruthless in dealing with agitators, and may well be said to have out-Heroded Herod. Under such circumstances, they were viewed as a monstrous creation of the British. An elder statesman once defined the I.C.S. as being neither Indian nor civil nor service…

The British managed to create a solid core of Anglophiles who were so brainwashed that they would harangue and argue that India would be in chaos if the British left, and called Mahatma Gandhi a demagogue and mischief maker, and would congratulate Churchill on his calling Mahatma Gandhi ‘half-naked fakir’…’[in, A Writer’s Nightmare – Selected Essays 1958-1988, Penguin Books, 1988, pp.222-232]

Well, Gandhi and Churchill have passed into eternity. But the I.C.S.mentality portrayed by Narayan still lingers on in the successors who followed the steps of Narayan’s I.C.S. kin. This is how I reconciled myself to the recent news of M.K.Eelaventhan’s deportation from India.

Eelaventhan became a recognizable personality for me around 1963, when I was a 10-year old at the Colombo Hindu College. Since then, until mid 1970s, he was a familiar face to me and to other Tamil school children and university undergrads in Colombo, since he frequently delivered lectures and actively participated in the annual Saraswathi Pooja celebrations and other art and dance festivals held in school premises and in public event halls like Saraswathi Hall, Saiva Mangaiyar Kazhagam Hall, Ramakrishna Hall, Vivekananda Hall and New Kathiresan Hall.

What impressed me most about him was his diminutive physical feature, penetrating and enthusiastic eyes, infective smile and quick strides. He was always a man in a hurry, like Mahatma Gandhi. Even in the 1960s, long before the Eelam campaign began in earnest, he became an active one-man propagandist for Eelam – by adopting the name ‘Eelaventhan’ [literally, the King of Eelam], by which he came to be known to Tamils. His given name was Kanakendran. He was born on September 14, 1932.

Like a sponge, by watching his activities, I also imbibed his passion for Tamil culture and his bilingual (Tamil and English) talent in expressing his views to an audience – even to those who openly disagreed with him stridently. He could quote extemporaneously verses from Saint Manickavasagar and Saint Karaikkal Ammai, and also speeches from Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, S.J.V.Chelvanayakam and S.W.R.D.Bandaranaike to buttress his point. It is not an exaggeration to state that he was in fact a walking encyclopedia on Tamil history. A couple of his oft-repeated favorite kitchen-related Tamil proverbs and idioms still ring in my ear. He used to say, ‘Aar kutthianaalum arisiyaanaal sari’ [Whoever mills, what we need is the rice.], and ‘Engallukku silusiluppu vendaam, palahaaram thaan thevai’ [What we need is the sweets and not the rattling noise in the pan.]

In the mid 1970s (especially between 1975 and 1979), I was in close orbit with Eelaventhan in Colombo. While serving as the President of the Colombo branch of Tamil United Liberation Front, Eelaventhan canvassed actively among the Tamils and non-Tamils on the cause of Eelam liberation. I was one of the nearly 30-odd regulars to the weekly study sessions he organized and conducted at a location near Colombo 4 junction, prior to the 1977 general election. He held court at the front porch of a house belonging to the businessman T.Thirunavukarasu (who became the MP for Vaddukoddai in 1977). For his weekly study sessions, Eelaventhan invited a number of public figures regularly to exchange information and convey the ideas of Tamil youth. Some of these personalities whom I listened to in these meetings include the noted journalist Mervyn de Silva (editor of Lanka Guardian), Dr.Neelan Tiruchelvam, and a then budding Muslim politician, M.M.Ashraff.

Because of such propaganda activities related to the Eelam campaign, Eelaventhan became a marked person in Colombo, and suffered during the August 1977 anti-Tamil riots, which followed the general election. He was physically assaulted and his valuable collection of Tamiliana library kept at his rented apartment in Nugegoda was destroyed by Sinhala thugs. It pained us (those lucky ones who narrowly escaped from such savagery) much to see Eelaventhan suffering like Mahatma Gandhi at the hands of arrogant, unruly elements. But, the Gandhian ‘never give up’ spirit in him gave Eelaventhan the strength to continue his mission.

In August 1978, a year after the 1977 riots, when I organized a cultural event to celebrate the release of my first book, Thamil Isai Theepam (a text book on the theory of Carnatic Music, which subsequently received the Sri Lanka Sahitya Award for research literature in Tamil for 1977) at the New Kathiresan Hall, Colombo, I honored Eelaventhan by inviting him to preside that function, which he graciously accepted. M.Sivasithamparam, the then TULF President was the chief guest of that cultural function. Memories of those days are still fresh in my mind. I have grown now and I have no doubt that Eelaventhan’s words of nurture played a significant role in my intellectual growth and I’ll ever be thankful for his mentoring.

In 1960s and 1970s, I was one youngster who gained much from Eelaventhan’s self-sacrificing Tamil activism. His role as an unconventional teacher (and mentor) to hundreds of young Tamils in Eelam and Tamil Nadu for the past 40 years is worthy of emulation.

End Note in 2004

Though Eelaventhan now enters a new career as a nominated Tamil legislator, at the age of 71, it need not be emphasized that the difference between his status as a ‘national list’ legislator and that of Lakshman Kadirgamar (another same-aged ‘national list’ legislator) is as different from that of a mountain and valley. While ‘Johnny-come lately’ Kadirgamar serves a constituency of one megalomaniac politician and his contribution to Tamil rights during the past 10 years borders on zero, no sensible Eelam Tamil can doubt the sincerity and passion of Eelaventhan’s five decades-old record in the political arena for Tamil rights.

It would not be a bad idea to propose, that in the future peace negotiations with LTTE [God only knows when!] when Kadirgamar will be tasked in the token Tamil role of President Chandrika’s team, Eelaventhan will be the ideal counter-weight for him on the LTTE’s team. In polished bilingual oratory, debate and negotiation, Kadirgamar cannot hold a candle to Eelaventhan. He is also the man who knows the history and struggles of Eelam Tamils in his finger-tips; and more significantly – he cannot be ‘manipulated’ by India’s Poo Bahs and stinking skunks, though he had lived in India as a refugee for nearly 17 years. And Eelaventhan has the prime distinction of being evicted from India for indulging in non-violent Gandhian-style protests in Indian soil! He will be a good asset to Anton Balasingham, who had shouldered the heavy burden until now as the leading negotiator for the LTTE.
 

Nadesan Satyendra, 12 December 2000

In the early hours of the morning of Monday, 4 December 2000, at about 5 a.m. Indian Immigration and Police officials, dressed in civilian clothes, arrived at the humble home of 68 year old M.K.Eelaventhan, at Arumbakkam in Chennai, in Tamil Nadu.

They informed him that he was to be escorted to the Immigration Office at Shastri Bavan in Nungambakkam. He was taken instead to the Meenambakkam Airport.

Eelaventhan's wife was not informed that her husband was to be deported. At the airport, Eelaventhan protested, sat on the floor and refused to leave voluntarily. The Indian officials bodily carried the 68 year old and somewhat frail Eelaventhan to the Colombo bound, Air Lanka plane. Two Indian officials escorted Eelaventhan on the flight to Colombo and handed him over to the Sri Lanka Immigration Authorities. He was given fifty Sri Lankan rupees and asked 'to go home'.

The stated reason for the deportation was that Eelaventhan had overstayed his 'visa'. But, there was no court order which authorised the officials to deport Eelaventhan. Indeed, the officials conceded as much, when they adopted the subterfuge of informing Eelaventhan that he was being taken to the Immigration Office at Nungambakkam.

If the deportation was lawful, why was it that Eelaventhan was not informed of the deportation at the time that he was taken from his home? Why was no deportation order served on Eelaventhan? Why was no opportunity given to Eelaventhan to contest the legality of the 'deportation order', if there was one?

Why was no opportunity afforded to Eelaventhan to take leave of his wife and family and take his personal effects and belongings with him? Why was Eelaventhan denied his fundamental right to protest against a removal which separated him from his family?

In any case, why was Eelaventhan denied an adjudication by a court of the lawfulness of a deportation to Sri Lanka - the very country from which he escaped in 1983, fearing persecution for the political views that he held.

Again, thousands of other Eelam Tamils continue to reside in Tamil Nadu without proper 'visa' documents. Why was Eelaventhan alone selected for deportation? Why was Eelaventhan denied his fundamental right to equality before the law?

New Delhi did not allege that Eelaventhan was a 'terrorist'. New Delhi did not allege that Eelaventhan belonged to an armed militant group. New Delhi did not allege that Eelaventhan belonged to a banned organisation. New Delhi did not allege that Eelaventhan was a member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. New Delhi did not allege any of this, because it was fully aware that there was not an iota of evidence to support any such allegation.

Yes, Eelaventhan was an indefatigable advocate for an independent Tamil Eelam. Yes, he supported the struggle for Tamil Eelam - but he did not agree with all the actions of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Yes, he was an unswerving supporter of the Vaddukodai Resolution of the Tamil United Liberation Front. Yes, he worked openly and with passion to secure the democratic mandate that the Tamil people had given for the establishment of an independent Tamil Eelam. Yes, he was a committed supporter of the Gandhian S.J.V.Chelvanayagam. Yes, he agreed without reservation with S.J.V. Chelvanayagam's announcement in 1975:

"...I wish to announce to my people and to the country that I consider the verdict at this election as a mandate that the Tamil Eelam nation should exercise the sovereignty already vested in the Tamil people and become free."

Eelaventhan was a political activist who spoke with eloquence, and wrote fearlessly. Tamil Eelam was very much part of his being. Unsurprisingly, in the 1977 pogrom against the Tamils, Eelaventhan's home in Nugegoda, in Colombo was targeted and destroyed by Sinhala mobs and Eelaventhan sought refuge in the Saraswathy Hall camp in Bambalapitiya. He himself narrowly escaped with his life after an attack by Sinhala workers at his place of employment, the Central Bank in Colombo.

After the genocidal attacks launched on Tamils in Eelam in 1983, Eelaventhan sought refuge in Tamil Nadu, where he continued his political campaign in support of the struggle for Tamil Eelam. He was a committed Tamil nationalist.

And, yes, it appears that recently, he also issued statements which welcomed Veerappan's stand on Tamil nationalism.

There are those who would dismiss Veerappan as a smuggler and a 'brigand'. Kuttimuni and Thangathurai were also reviled as smugglers. Often it is in the adventurous and in the outlaw, that the spirit of resistance to alien rule first begins to manifest. Today, some Tamil Nadu politicians may be content to play the same role that Appapillai Amirthalingam played in Sri Lanka in the period subsequent to 1977 - engaging in the rhetoric of Tamil nationalism on public platforms and buying space for their Parliamentary activity by being quick to condemn, out of hand, all extra parliamentary actions. It is not necessary to agree with everything that Veerappan may have done to recognise the force of the comment of the Karnataka writer Guna on 'What Caused Veerappan":

"The social environment that drove Veerappan into the forests as a sandalwood smuggler or poacher had lit in him the fiery fire of Tamil nationalism, as he had witnessed the (Karnataka) State sponsored anti -Tamil violence for ethnic cleansing. So, Veerappan has don a new role..."

It is against this backdrop that the true reason for Eelaventhan's deportation emerges. The true reason was not that Eelaventhan had overstayed his residence 'visa' (which had, in any case, expired more than two years ago). Not to put too fine a point on the matter, the stated 'overstay' reason was simply a convenient cover up for a politically motivated act by the executive branch of the Indian government.

The timing of the removal, the selection of Eelaventhan from thousands of other similar Tamil asylum seekers, the way the removal was carried out, and the subterfuge that was adopted, prove that the deportation, was directed to stifle the growth of Tamil nationalism - and to send appropriate signals to others who may be inclined to follow the path that Eelaventhan had had the courage and conviction to tread.

But, here, New Delhi is wrong. Not because Tamil nationalism has not taken root in the Indian sub continent. It has. But because patently unjust and inhumane actions, which separate a man from his wife and his loved ones, which punish a man for no lawful cause, which deny a man his freedom of speech, which deny him equality before the law, which deny him judicial review of arbitrary executive action, and which make a mockery of the rule of law, will not stifle but will fertilise the growing togetherness of a people. New Delhi may want to pay more than passing attention to the words of Leonard W.Doob in 1964:

".. if people feel that someone with whom they identify themselves has been killed, tortured, or otherwise deprived of some value, their indignation is likely to be great and perhaps long enduring...the emergence of a martyr... facilitates patriotism and nationalism... " (Leonard W.Doob: Patriotism and Nationalism, Yale University Press, 1964 - see also - What is a nation?)

Additionally, New Delhi may want to revisit the words of the Bengali writer, Pramatha Chaudhuri in 1920:

"...It is not a bad thing to try and weld many into one but to jumble them all up is dangerous, because the only way we can do that is by force...To be united due to outside pressure and to unite through mutual regard are not the same.."

Unity will not come by attempting to suppress the growth of the separate national identities of the peoples of the Indian subcontinent. The unity of India will not be secured by actions such as those taken, in relation to Eelaventhan.

At the direction of the Indian authorities, Eelaventhan was unlawfully and agonisingly separated from his wife and family, denied recourse to the Courts and arbitrarily handed over to the tender mercies of Sri Lanka - a Sri Lanka which is notorious for its human rights record, where torture of Tamil detainees is 'widespread and standard procedure' and where murder of Tamil prisoners in custody is a recurrent phenomenon.

And here, it has to be said that the efforts of some Tamil Nadu political leaders to persuade New Delhi to obtain assurances from Sri Lanka for the safety of Eelaventhan, will be seen by many Tamils as attempts to secure that the fox will look after the chicken in the chicken pen - with care and affection. These Tamil Nadu political leaders (who are anxious to retain their 'influence' with New Delhi) cannot be unaware of the fate that befell Kumar Ponnambalam in January 2000. The price that Eelaventhan will be called upon to pay for his safety, will be to maintain a discreet silence on the Tamil national question - and that, after all, was what the deportation was about, and presumably both New Delhi and Colombo will be satisfied if that particular end result is achieved.

The truth is that New Delhi and Colombo have connived in the violation of the rule of law, so that each may advance its perceived short term political ends.

The truth is that Eelaventhan had sought asylum in Tamil Nadu. He had committed no crime - and that was why no charge was laid against him in a court of law. He was punished by an executive fiat. He was punished because he was a Tamil and because he voiced the pain, the anguish and the aspirations of his people. It is a privilege to include M.K.Eelaventhan as one of the Hundred Tamils of the 20th Century.

l Sachi Sri Kantha on Eelaventhan - a Man with a Mission 13 December 2000

"When it comes to painting the peculiarities of the minds of Indian Poo-Bahs, none can do better than R.K.Narayan. In one of his essays entitled, 'When India was a Colony', written to the New York Times magazine, Narayan reminisced as follows:

"I had a close relative in the I.C.S.[Indian Civil Service] who could not be seen or spoken to even by members of his family living under the same roof, except by appointment.....

The I.C.S. manual was his Bible that warned him against being twoo familiar with anyone. He was advised how many mangoes he could accept out of a basket that a favor-seeker proffered; how far away he should hold himself when a garland was brought to be slipped over his neck. It was a matter of propriety for an average visitor to leave his vehicle at the gate and walk down the drive; only men of certain status could come in their cars and alight at the portico.... it dehumanized the man, especially during the national struggle for independence. These men proved ruthless in dealing with agitators, and may well be said to have out-Heroded Herod. Under such circumstances, they were viewed as a monstrous creation of the British. An elder statesman once defined the I.C.S. as being neither Indian nor civil nor service....

The British managed to create a solid core of Anglophiles who were so brainwashed that they would harangue and argue that India would be in chaos if the British left, and called Mahatma Gandhi a demagogue and mischief maker, and would congratulate Churchill on his calling Mahatma Gandhi 'half-naked fakir'...." (A Writer's Nightmare - Selected Essays 1958-1988, Penguin Books, 1988, p.222-232)

Well, Gandhi and Churchill have passed into eternity. But the I.C.S. mentality portrayed by Narayan still lingers on in the successors who followed the steps of Narayan's I.C.S. relative. This is how I reconciled myself to the recent news of M.K.Eelaventhan's deportation from India.

Eelaventhan became a recognizable personality for me around 1963, when I was a 10-year old kid at the Colombo Hindu College. Since then, until mid 1970s, he was a familiar face for me and to other Tamil school children and university undergrads in Colombo, since he frequently delivered lectures and actively participated in the Saraswathi Poosai celebrations and annual art and dance programs held in school premises and in public halls like Saraswathi Hall, Saiva Mangaiyar Kazhagam Hall, Ramakrishna Hall, Vivekananda Hall and New Kathiresan Hall.

What impressed me most about him was his dimunitive physical stature, penetrating and enthusiastic eyes, infective smile and quick strides. He was always a man in a hurry, like Mahatma Gandhi. Even in the 1960s, long before the Eelam campaign began in earnest, he became an active one-man propagandist for Eelam - by adopting the name 'Eelaventhan', by which he became well known.

Like a sponge, by watching his activities, I also imbibed his passion for Tamil culture and his bi-lingual (Tamil and English) talent in expressing his views to an audience - even to those who disagreed with him stridently. He could quote extemporaneously verses from Saint Manickavasagar and speeches from Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Muhamad Ali Jinnah, Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, S.J.V.Chelvanayakam and S.W.R.D.Bandaranaike to buttress his point.

A couple of his oft-quoted proverbs still ring in my ear. He used to say, 'Aar kutthianaalum arisiyaanaal sari' [Whoever mills, what we need is the rice], and 'Engallukku Silusiluppu Vendaam, Palahaaram thaan thevai'[What we need is the sweets and not the rattling noise].

In the mid 1970s (between 1975 and 1979), I was in close orbit with Eelaventhan in Colombo. While serving as the President of the Colombo branch of TULF, Eelaventhan canvassed actively among the Tamils and non-Tamils for the cause of Eelam liberation.

I was one of the nearly 30-odd regulars to the weekly discussion sessions he organized and conducted at a location near Bambalapitiya (Colombo 4) junction. He held court at the front porch of a house belonging to the businessman S.Thirunavukarasu (who became the M.P. for Vaddukoddai in 1977). For his weekly sessions, Eelaventhan invited a number of public figures regularly to exchange information and convey the ideas of Tamil youth. Some of these personalities whom I listened to in these meetings include, the noted journalist Mervyn de Silva (editor of Lanka Guardian), Dr. Neelan Tiruchelvam and Muslim leader M. Ashraff (who was then a neophyte to the Sri Lankan politics).

Because of his propaganda activities related to Eelam campaign, Eelaventhan became a marked person in Colombo, and suffered during the 1977 ethnic riots. He was physically assaulted and his valuable collection of Tamiliana literature kept in Nugegoda was destroyed by the Sinhala thugs. It pained us (those lucky ones who narrowly escaped from such savagery) much to see Eelaventhan suffering like Gandhi at the hands of arrogant, unruly elements. But, the Gandhian 'never-give-up' spirit in him gave Eelaventhan the strength to continue his mission.

In August 1978, an year after the 1977 ethnic riots, when I organized a cultural event to celebrate the release of my first Tamil book, Thamil Isai Theepam (a text book on theory of Carnatic Music, which subsequently received the Sri Lanka Sahitya Award for research literature in Tamil for 1977) at the New Kathiresan Hall, Colombo, I honored Eelaventhan by inviting him to preside that function, which he graciously accepted. Memories of those days are still fresh in my mind. The last I met Eelaventhan personally was in January 1981, at the 5th International Tamil Research Conference held in Madurai. It will be twenty years next month. I have grown now and I have no doubt that Eelaventhan's words of nurture played a significant role in my intellectual growth and I'll ever be thankful for his mentoring.

I'm sure that, being a honest Gandhian, Eelaventhan possesses the courage and conviction to overcome the current intimidation and insult perpetrated on him by the Indian Poo-Bahs. I pray for his health and safety. His worthy mission deserves due recognition. Thus, for his role as an unconventional teacher (and mentor) to hundreds of young Tamils in Eelam and Tamil Nadu for the past 40 years, I nominate Eelavanthan's name for inclusion in the list of 100 Tamils of the 20th century.

A leading Tamil MP from Sri Lanka has arrived in South Africa to highlight the issues of the community and campaign for a permanent peace settlement in his strife-torn country.

M K Eelaventhan, a member of the Tamil National Alliance, has been invited by the Tamil Co-Ordinating Committee of South Africa to hold talks with South Africa's Tamil community, political and social leaders and the South African Government.

Eelaventhan, 74, would be in South Africa for a month to highlight the situation of the Tamil people in his country.

"Our struggle is one of justice and one of self governance," he said.

"There seems to be no chance of a peace settlement because the Sinhalese Government wants to dominate us completely. If we don't enjoy self-government then I don't think there will ever be peace in my country," he said.

"The world must understand that we have been oppressed for far too long," he said.

Asked whether the TNA had any association with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, Eelaventhan said they promoted the cause of the Tamil people in parliament while the LTTE conducted their "own struggle".

"We speak the same language in so far as our ultimate goal is concerned", he said.
_________________
Live responsibly today and tomorrow will take care of itself!

Arumuka Navalar ஆறுமுக நாவலர் the pre eminent Hindu reformer of Sri Lanka was a product of period of intense religious transformation amongst Sri Lankan Tamils.

/wiki/Image:Navalar2.JPGArumuka Navalar"/wiki/Image:Navalar2.JPG

/wiki/Image:Navalar2.JPGArumuka Navalar

Contents

[hide]

·       1 Social Conditions

·       2 Early life

·       3 Influence in Literature

·       4 Religious Reforms

·       5 Limitations of his reforms

·       6 External links

[edit] Social Conditions

The demise of Jaffna Kingdom that had provided official sanction to Hindu religion was a social disaster to the Sri Lankan Tamil people. Incessant missionary activities by both Catholic and Protestant missionaries had converted a significant minority of the people. In this milieu Arumukan was born.

[edit] Early life

He was born in Nallur, the capital of ancient Jaffna Kingdom, in December 1822, and died at the age of 56 on December 5th, 1879. His father Kandhar and mother Sivekamy were deeply religious and devout and Navalar imbibed those qualities. Even as a teenager he mastered Tamil, Sanskrit and English, and made an in-depth study of Tamil grammar, language, literature and religious works. It is on record that at a very young age he completed a drama script begun by his father, who died without completing it. Scholars who had gone through this work were full of praise for the originality he showed as a playwright.

[edit] Influence in Literature

Arumuga Navalar was a prolific writer and a 'silver tongued' orator. He was a pioneer in the field of prose-writing. In the 19th century the Tamil prose style was in its infancy. Navalar appeared on the Tamil literacy firmament and brought out prose works which are cherished by Tamil scholars as outstanding achievements. Parithima Kalagnar later described Navalar as 'Vasana Nadai Kaivantha Vallalar' (the best exponent of Tamil prose).

Today the writings and pronouncements of public men have little or nothing to do with their private life. But the life of Arumuga Navalar was in total conformity with everything he said and wrote. He maintained a high moral standard in both private and public life.

In his short life covering 57 years he published around 75 books. They covered his original writings and his commentaries on ancient classics.

[edit] Religious Reforms

By his time Hinduism in Sri Lanka had become moribund without state support and most people did not have a clear understanding of the philosophical background that needed to complement the spiritual aspects of worship. To increase public awareness of the religion, he translated many ancient religious works and published them along with many original titles explaining the finer philosophical aspects of the elite Saiva Siddhanta school of Hinduism. He would travel from temple to temple to lecture the local congregations regarding the finer points of religion and rituals. Where ever he saw what he considreded to be "incorrect" obsevances or rituals, he would change them. His ability for public speech and his vast knowledge of the subject made him a very popular figure indeed.

In this context it must be emphasised that though Arumuga Navalar fought against the conversion of the Tamils to Christianity, he was not a religious fanatic. He was a good friend of Rev. Percival who was a Wesleyan missionary teacher at Jaffna Central College. When Rev. Percival requested Navalar to translate the Bible into Tamil, Navalar happily undertook the task. Even the Tamil scholars of Madras of the 19th century acclaimed his effort as the best translation. This aspect of his life revealed not only his command of English and Tamil but also proclaimed to the world his broad thinking and religious tolerance.

[edit] Limitations of his reforms

His reforms were limited with the ‘’upper’’ caste Vellalar. Further his reforms tended to follow the standard Sanskritisation process thus eliminating many native traditions and even deities (such as Kannaki Amman) of the Jaffna Tamils and leading to the eventual social distance between the upper caste Jaffna Tamils and all other Tamils who did not go through this transformation especially in the Eastern Province. He did not champion the rights of ‘’lower’’ caste (akin to Indian Dalits) Jaffna Tamils in an inclusive ideology such as Narayana Guru and other reformers had attempted in South India. Thus the missionaries were able to win even more adherent to their faith from this group. Nevertheless he and others like him stemmed the tide of conversations.

[edit] External links: athangav@sympatico.ca

 

COURTESY: NAKKHEERAN M.K. Eelaventhan, general secretary of the Tamil Eelam
Liberation Front.

A refugee from Sri Lanka, Eelaventhan was overstaying on his visa. And,
according to top police officials, he was meddling with the country's
internal affairs. Eelaventhan was often seen at press conferences addressed
by P. Nedumaran in October and Novem ber at the time that Tamil nationalist
leader and firm supporter of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)
undertook two missions to the forests to meet Veerappan to negotiate the
release of Kannada film actor Rajkumar whom the forest brigand had ab ducted
on July 30. Eelaventhan reportedly issued press statements supporting the
brand of Tamil nationalism professed by Veerappan and Nedumaran. He had also
been provocatively flaunting his sympathies for a banned organisation, the
LTTE, and its fight f or the formation of a Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka. The
LTTE assassinated former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on May 21, 1991 near
Chennai.

The Union Home Ministry has been worried about the emerging nexus involving
extremist Tamil nationalist organisations, the Tamil Nadu Liberation Army
(TNLA) and the Tamil National Retrieval Force (TNRF) and Veerappan. The TNLA
wants Tamil Nadu to secede from the Union of India, and some TNRF cadres
were trained by the LTTE in the Tamil areas of Sri Lanka. With Eelaventhan
increasingly seen in the company of Nedumaran, the Centre felt that he was
abusing India's hospitality. According to a top police off icer, the
directive to deport Eelaventhan came from the Government of India. The
Immigra-tion Department comes under the Union Home Ministry.

There were advance indications about the Centre's moves. Home Minister L.K.
Advani, in a statement in the Rajya Sabha on November 30, said that despite
the LTTE having been declared an unlawful organisation in May 1992, its
activists and sympathisers we re indulging in activities in India. The Tamil
Nadu government had detained some such activists. Advani said there were
reports that some pro-LTTE groups were indulging in smuggling along the
Tamil Nadu coast. Central and State government agencies were w atching the
LTTE's activities, and the Centre shared its intelligence information with
all concerned, Advani added. (The Home Minister had also been advocating
tough action against Veerap-pan, the TNLA and the TNRF.)

Again, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi told reporters in Chennai on
December 4 that the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) had stopped supporting
the LTTE after its cadres killed Eelam People's Revolutionary Libera-tion
Front (EPRLF) secretary-gene ral K. Padmanabha and its top leaders in
Chennai in 1990. He said that his government, if necessary, would recommend
to the Centre a ban on organisations such as the TNLA and the TNRF. These
organisations had only a few members now, Karunanidhi said.

MAINSTREAM political parties in Tamil Nadu have ignored the deportation
issue. Neither Vaiko, general secretary of the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra
Kazhagam (MDMK), nor Dr. S. Ramadoss, founder, Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK),
reacted. Both support the LTT E and the Eelam cause. When the Union
government served deportation orders on Eelaventhan and another Sri Lankan
Tamil living in Chennai, K. Satchidanandam, earlier this year, Vaiko
reportedly took up the matter with the Union Home Ministry.

However, general secretary of the Dravidar Kazhagam K. Veeramani termed the
deportation "inhuman". Eelaventhan had came to Tamil Nadu as a refugee along
with tens of thousands of other Sri Lankan Tamil refugees. "How will
refugees have visas?" Veeramani asked.

Veeramani added that although Eela-venthan had been staying in Tamil Nadu
for years, he had not taken part in any extremist or unlawful activitity.

Members of the Tamil Sanror Peravai (Tamil Intellectuals' Federation), at a
meeting in Salem on December 7, condemned the deportation. Tamil Annal said
that Telugus and Kannadigas would not have allowed such a deportation from
among them to take place. Na. Arunachalam wondered how Eelaventhan's
deportation could have taken place without the knowledge of the Tamil Nadu
government. He regretted that no mainstream party had protested against the
deportation.

Nedumaran said the deportation was "a merciless and cruel act". Eelaventhan
had come to Tamil Nadu as a refugee and was living in the State for 20
years. His being sent back to Colombo pained Tamilians, Nedumaran said.

The police declined to give permission to Nedumaran to hold a protest
demonstration on December 15 outside Sastri Bhavan in Chennai, which houses
Central government offices.

EELAVENTHAN was a high-profile Eelam activist. He had been an employee of
the Sri Lankan Central Bank and one of the leaders of the moderate Tamil
United Liberation Front (TULF) but he left that party in the late 1970s to
found the TELF (along with Kovai Maheswaran). He reached Tamil Nadu in 1981
after anti-Tamil violence broke out in Sri Lanka.

Although many Eelam activists lay low after Rajiv Gandhi's assassination,
Eelaventhan carried on merrily, at times supporting the LTTE but always
espousing the Eelam cause. On February 8, 1997, the Q-branch police in
Chennai arrested Eelaventhan, K. Satc hidanandam, Dr. Malini Rasanayagam,
Dr. R.S. Sridhar and an LTTE cadre Pandian alias Muralitharan on charges of
conspiring to procure and supply medicines to the LTTE in Sri Lanka. But a
court in Chennai acquitted all the five in August 1999.

India had deported some Sri Lankan Tamils in August 1985, after the collapse
of peace talks between a Sri Lankan government delegation and leaders of
various Tamil organisations at Thimphu, Bhutan. S.C. Chandrahasan, Natesan
Satyendra of Tamil Eelam Libe ration Organisation (TELO) and Anton S.
Balasingham of the LTTE were those who were deported then.

Informed sources said that the current move against Eelaventhan was "a
warning" to other Sri Lankan Tamils not to take for granted the hospitality
extended to them by India.


 

India deports 'King of Eelam'

By D. B. S. Jeyaraj

The Sunday Leader - 10th December 2000 

"Can one seeking refuge be abandoned - Can a mother push away her Child." ("Thanjam Adainthapin Kaividalaamo Thaayunthan Kulanthaiyaith Thallidap Pomo").- Subramaniya Bharathiyaar.

Eelaventhan, a wellknown Tamil activist of the Gandhian mould and a household word in Tamil nationalist circles has been deported from India.

The simple and transparent reason as stated by Indian authorities is that the former Translator residing in India for nearly two decades did not have a valid visa.Since he was legally an "overstay" Indian immigration officials had to deport him to Colombo is the official Indian version. Technically this position may be correct but the real and underlying reasons for this deportation seem to be different.

King of Eelam

Eelaventhan whose real name is M. Kanakenthiran hails from Colombothurai in Jaffna. A well known writer and orator in Tamil, Kanakenthiran assumed the pseudonym of Eelaventhan meaning King of Eelam at a very young age. This was long before the separatist demand had entered the Tamil political discourse in a big way. Eelam was after all an ancient Tamil name for the entire Island. It is only Tamil Eelam that denotes the Northern and Eastern Provinces now. Eelaventhan's life is a saga reflecting the various ups and downs encountered over the past decades by Sri Lankan Tamils in general and non - violent political activists in particular.

Eelaventhan now in his late sixties became a Tamil radical in the early years of his youth. Married to the then Man- daitheevu Village Council chairman's daughter, Eelaventhan worked as Tamil- English translator at the Central Bank. He was an ardent follower of Federal Party Leader S.J.V. Chelvanayagam and a firm believer in the credo of non - violent politics. In the mid sixties Eelaventhan was one of those FP firebrand youths who was alienated by the party joining the Dudley Senanayake led national government of 1965 - 70. Eelaventhan together with people like Kasi Anandan, Karikalan, Annathasan etc formed the Thamil Thaai Mandram and engaged in legitimate non- violent political activity that fanned the flames of Tamil nationalism.

Extremist stance

When V. Navaratnam the former FP Kayts MP was expelled in 1968 and formed the Tamilar Suyatchy Kazgagham or Tamil Self - Rule Movement, Eelaventhan quit FP ranks and supported it. A prolific writer in Tamil, Eelaventhan contributed to the party organ "Viduthalai" (Liberation). Although attracted by the more extremist stance of V. Navaratnam described earlier as the " FP Brain" Eelaventhan returned to FP ranks in 1970 and participated actively in the FP campaign.The seventies saw Eelaventhan being politically active in Colombo. He functioned for years as the FP and later the TULF Colombo branch head.He also wrote a number of articles in the TULF organ "Suthanthiran" (Freedom). Some of his articles were published as a booklet titled "Thamil Man Kaappom, Thayagam Meetpom"( Let us protect Tamil soil and free our motherland". This booklet focussed on how the Traditional Tamil homelands were being colonised and annexed by Government sponsored activity.

This booklet played a crucial part in informing and encouraging tamil nationalism in the seventies. It provided vital statistics of this "Sinhalaisation" process and was frequently quoted by speakers and writers espousing the Tamil cause then. Eelaventhan himself was an impressive orator with a monumental memory. He would reel off a series of historical anecdotes, quotations and statistical tables from memory. Although not possessing tertiary educational qualifications Eelaventhan equipped himself well in later years through diligent reading and an unadulterated devotion to "Mother" Tamil.

Tamil nationalism

He would commence his speeches with a brief quote of the Saivaite Saint Thirunaavukkarasar " Ennai Nandraai Iraivan padaithanan, Thannai Nandraai Thamil Seyyumaare" (God created me perfectly to praise him well in Tamil). Eelaventhan belonged to that group of Tamil activists who were genuinely and emotionally enamoured of tamil nationalism and the tamil cause. This quotation was Eelaventhan's motto in life. It was his mission statement. By pursuing this vision Eelaventhan changed his political camp several times and underwent difficulties as at present. Notwithstanding the changes in his political positions, Eelaventhan remains steadfast in his commitment to the Tamil cause.

In 1977 Eelaventhan was urged to contest the Colombo West Electorate by some Colombo tamils, but the TULF hierarchy vetoed it not wanting to offend JR Jayewardene. Eelaventhan played a prominent part in campaigning for the Tamil Eelam demand as enshrined in the TULF manifesto. The overwhelming victory of the TULF in 1977 was interpreted by Eelaventhan and those of his ilk as a convincing mandate for Tamil Eelam. Many TULF leaders who contested the polls then on the Eelam mandate and won have "reconsidered" that mandate. But to those fierce followers of the cause, the Tamil Eelam mandate is permanent and irrevocable.

The 1977 anti-Tamil violence saw Eelaventhan's house at Nugegoda looted and destroyed by Sinhala mobs. Eelaventhan and his family were forced to become refugees at the Saraswathy Hall camp. Eelaventhan also had a harrowing experience at his work place, Central Bank, then.A gang of Sinhala co-workers mainly of the minor staff cadre manhandled Eelaventhan and tried to throw him down from an upper storey. They had for long been irritated by this Tamil nationalist with an "eelamist" name who made no attempt to hide his political opinion.The intervention of senior Sinhala colleagues saved Eelaventhan then.

In 1979 Eelaventhan attended the Hindu Conference at Alahabhad in India and tried to enlighten the "hindu" delegates that the bulk of the Tamils being oppressed in Sri Lanka were Hindus. He was interdicted upon his return for the offence of indulging in ant-state propaganda. Eelaventhan challenged this action and after a prolonged inquiry was absolved of charges. Former TULF secretary-general and opposition leader Appapillai Amirthalingam who backed Eelaventhan in this issue persuaded the latter to "retire" from service and draw a pension. Eelaventhan reluctantly agreed and became a "free bird" in 1981. Eelaventhan was also taken in for questioning in 1979 by Brigadier "Bull" Weeratunga in Jaffna who had been ordered by his uncle JR to "wipe out all forms of terrorism in Jaffna before 1979 Dec 31st. Eelaventhan was later allowed to go free as it became clear that in spite of his Eelamist rhetoric, the man was a man of peace and believer in non - violence.After shuttling between India and Sri Lanka for two years , He relocated permanently to India with his family, like thousands of Sri Lankan Tamils, in 1983.

Indira Gandhi

In 1981 January Eelaventhan attended the fifth World Tamil Conference at Madurai in Tamil Nadu, India. M.G. Ramachandran was the chief minister, Indira Gandhi had just been relected as Prime Minister. MGR who had backed the Janatha Party in the elections was anxious to get back into Indira's good books.Amirthalingam along with ministers Thondaman and Rajadurai were also on the platform where Indira Gandhi was scheduled to address a mass meeting. The incorrigible Eelaventhan as usual began distributing pro-Tamil eelam literature. He was arrested then and there. A furious MGR thought mistakenly that Eelaventhan was acting under the directive of Amirthalingam and launched a tirade against the TULF leader in public.

Amirthalingam responded hotly. MGR was mollified later by the sight of Indira and Amirthalingam conferring amiably. Eelaventhan was later released at the insistence of Amirthalingam.

"Dissident" group

Eelaventhan's relationship with the TULF in general and Amirthalingam in particular began to sour.The TULF from Eelaventhan's perspective opted to compromise on the Eelam demand and accept the District Development Councils offered by Jayewardene. Eelaventhan along with former "suthanthiran" editor Kovai Mahesan, DR. S.A. Tharmalingam and several youth wing members opposed this. This "dissident" group had the tacit backing of S.J.V. Chelvanayagam's son SC Chandrahasan and former TULF Kopay Mp C.

Kathiravetpillai. Chandrahasan was viewed by the anti - Amirthalingam faction as the future chief of the TULF. After protracted wrangling the dissident group was outvoted by the pro - Amirthalingam sections at the General Council meeting at Vavuniya.. Eelaventhan then made his final exit from the TULF after a typically emotionally scene by prostrating himself at Mrs. Mankaiyarkarasi Amirthalingam's feet and weeping profusely.

The breakaway group formed themselves into the Tamil Eelam Liberation Front and adopted a hard line position asserting an Eelam or nothing stance and opposing all compromises. Dr Tharmalingam an uncle of former TULF Jaffna MP Vettrivelu Yogeswaran was the TULF president and Eelaventhan its secretary. Eelaventhan tried in 1982 to make a unilateral declaration of Independence for "Tamil Eelam" on Thai Pongal day (Jan 14th). The move fizzled out as a damp squib. The TULF however made an impact on Tamil society by its activity. It succeeded in portraying the TULF old guard as a set of turncoats who bartered away the inalienable birthright of Tamil Eelam for a mess of DDC pottage.The younger generation became disillusioned over the TULF.

Plote

In India, Eelaventhan worked for sometime with Chandrahasan in the OFERR an organization founded by the latter to work for the upliftment of Tamil refugees in the Country. Eelaventhan was also somewhat sympathetic towards the People Liberation Organization of Tamil Eelam though he was never an advocate of violence. This was because of the personal relationship Eelaventhan had with Umamaheswaran the PLOTE founder-leader.

Umamaheswaran was at one time the TULF Colombo branch secretary when Eelaventhan was President. With the passage of time Eelaventhan became disillusioned of both and began to plough a lone furrow.

Promoted the Tamil cause

He continued with his Tamil Eelam Liberation Front politics in Madras now Chennai. Eelaventhan personified the TELF literally and metaphorically as he was perhaps its sole member. Yet his indefatigable energy and fervour helped project a larger than life image of the TELF. The sight of a verti clad Eelaventhan with a cloth bag slung over his shoulder was a familiar sight to most Tamil Nadu politicians and journalists. Travelling generally by bus and on foot, Eelaventhan would bombard newspaper offices with press releases on Tamil affairs in Sri Lanka. Many newspapers would give the TULF a lot of publicity . When this writer asked a prominent Indian editor why this was so he replied smilingly "Eelaventhan will come to my office and park himself with his releases. To get rid of him I promise to publish extracts". Eelaventhan maintained close rapport with several influential journalists and promoted the Tamil cause.

Many Indian journalists and politicians also found in Eelaventhan a walking encyclo- paedia of Sri Lankan Tamil political history. He was an ever ready resource person. Eelaventhan would also attend almost every political meeting in Chennai and distribute copies of his statements on various political developments concerning Sri Lankan Tamils. He would also address meetings and public receptions whenever possible and put forward the Tamil point of view. He would also seek out individual Tamil Nadu political leaders and lobby them until the situation in the state transformed to a point where such activity became non-productive.

The significant aspect about Eelaventhan was that he received no funds from any organization to do this type of political work. He was living with his family on money remitted by some of his siblings living abroad. His lifestyle was spartanly simple. It was the easily recognizable sight of a man without adequate resources struggling to advocate the Tamil cause as well as he could that endeared Eelaventhan to many a Tamil Nadu resident though many of them may not have subscribed to it.

In recent years however Eelaventhan like many other ardent Tamil nationalists began to veer around to becoming supportive of the LTTE. Many of these persons abhor violence and are not happy about many of the LTTE's acts.Yet they found some congruence if not an identity of interests with the LTTE. The Tamil nationalist perspective of Eelaventhan and the LTTE's basic Eelamist ideology found a meeting point. This in turn led to Eelaventhan being viewed by Tamil Nadu authorities as an LTTE activist.

LTTE men

This assessment however was flawed as Eelaventhan was now pro - LTTE but not of the LTTE. Yet official circles struggling to catch some "Tigers" chose to pinpoint the fellow travellers as real LTTE men.

Three years ago in 1997 Eelaventhan was arrested by the Tamil Nadu "Q" branch (State Intelligence) police along with some others as agents of the LTTE. He was accused of procuring and supplying medicine and medical equipment from Tamil Nadu to the LTTE in N - E Lanka. After several months of incarceration all those arrested including Eelaventhan were cleared of charges. They were released one by one. Nevertheless Eelaventhan was now "blackmarked" as a suspected LTTE agent.

Some months ago Eelaven- than and another Sri Lankan Tamil national K. Satchithanandan were earmarked deportation by officials of the Indian Home Ministry. The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazgagham leader Vaiko intervened personally and got Home Minister Advani to call off this move.

This was due to the actions of some Indian Bureaucratic officials who are suspected of being hostile to Tamil national interests for certain reasons.

Another instance of this was the detention of an Indian Tamil national from the USA Dr. Thanikaisekeran at New Delhi for two days when he tried to enter the land of his birth. His alleged "offence" was supporting the Tamil Eelam cause in the US. Again Vaiko intervened and secured his release.

The fact that an eminent non - resident Indian Tamil could be treated in this manner is indicative of the hostile climate towards the Tamil cause amidst Indian officialdom. Satchithanandam a former Fisheries Department and UN official now running a printing establishment "Kaanthalagam" in Chennai got the "message". After the arrest, release and revocation of his deportation order Satchi as he is generally known adopted a very low profile and virtually ceased all political activity.

He was also fortunate in enjoying a personal relationship with Tamil Nadu chief minister Muthuvel Karunanidhi and also several other BJP bigwigs.This however was not the case with Eelaventhan who had neither "influence" nor financial clout. In what could be termed only as Quixotic, Eelaventhan continued with his politics issuing statements on almost everything connected to Sri Lankan Tamils.

Tamil ultra-nationalist

The current problem arose when the notorious forest brigand Veerappan abducted Kannadiga cine idol Rajkumar and placed some Tamil "nationalist" demands. Veerappan was perceived as having been transformed now into a Tamil ultra - nationalist.

He was now involved with the Tamil Nadu National Liberation Army and the Tamil Nadu Retrieval Force both of which are suspected of having links with the LTTE. The TNLA website refers to the brigand as Brigadier Veerappan now. Rajkumar's release was finally secured by the efforts of Pala. Nedumaran the leader of the Tamil nationalist movement and a well known supporter of the LTTE. The team led by Nedumaran comprised several known LTTE sympathisers including Kolathoor Mani of Mettur, Salem.

Downfall of Karunanidhi

The LTTE factor has come to be viewed with suspicion by opposition parties in Tamil Nadu after Rajkumar's release. The credibility and stature of the pro - LTTE elements has increased considerably. This is also resented by the opposition parties. So these sections have now started a propaganda barrage accusing Chief Minister Karunanidhi of striking a deal with the LTTE through Nedumaran to bring about Rajkumar's release. Accusations are rampant about the LTTE presence in the state.

Both the state as well as Central governments are charged with aiding and abetting the tigers in Tamil Nadu. It is clear that the charge will echo and re - echo during the State Elections scheduled next year.It may be recalled that the accusation of a DMK - LTTE Nexus has caused the political downfall of Karunanidhi on more than one occasion.

Under these circumstances the Karunanidhi regime felt beleaguered and felt some action had to be taken to demonstrate that it was not soft on the LTTE. The BJP led Central government of which the Dravida Munnetra Kazgagham is a component, also had the same compulsions. Poor Eelaventhan was deemed an appropriate example.

The TULF leader had also "blundered" by issuing a statement appreciative of Verrappan's "nationalist" demands. One occasion where Eelaventhan distributed copies of this press statement was the wedding of DMK leader Vaiko's daughter Kannaki on Nov 15th this year.Among the guests were Home Minister L.K. Advani and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Karunanidhi. The LTTE leader Velupillai Prabakharan's parents were also guests along with Eelaventhan.

The latter was observed paying his respects to the elderly couple and conversing for a long time. In addition he was also seen distributing a statement that embarrassed the State and Central Governments. More importantly it related to what was purely an Indian domestic issue.This irritated the powers that be who felt Eelaventhan had overstepped his boundaries. Deporting him would convey a signal to several circles.

A lone wolf

According to Indian sources, Eelavendhan, was a suitable sacrifice to be slaughtered on the altar of anti - tigerism.He was a lone wolf without much backing or clout and therefore politically expendable.There was little chance of a political backlash.The go ahead signal given to the officials came from both the Central and State Government upper echelons.The fact that Eelaventhan had no valid visa or passport was a convenient pretext.

The idea was to portray the deportation as a simple procedural action sans political connotations. It was just a deportation of an overstay. The callously cruel dimension in the exercise was deporting him back to Sri Lanka, a land which he fled for political reasons alleging fear of persecution. There was no room for concern over the plight of Eelaventhan in the Indian scheme of things.

The operation was undertaken with an element of duplicity that does not become of "Mother" India.Immigration and Police officials in civvies went to Eelaventhan's residence at Arumbakkam in Chennai at about 5 am on Monday December 4th.

They informed him that he was to be escorted to the immigration office at "Shastri Bhavan" in Nungambakkam. Instead, the team changed track to Meenambakkam where the Air Port is situated. Realising that he was about to be sent to Colombo, a terrified Eelaventhan sat on the floor protesting non-violently. The officials grabbed the frail , old man and bodily carried him to the Colombo bound plane. Two Indian officials accompanied him to Katunayake. After a brief "interview" officials in Colombo requested Eelaventhan to call over at a convenient time for further interrogation. They gave him fifty Sri Lankan rupees and asked him to "Go" home. A dazed Eelaventhan then made his exit from the Air Port.

Eelaventhan is now reportedly staying with a sister and brother in law in the Colombo suburbs by day. At night he sleeps at the residence of a Tamil Parliamentarian. Since he has been wrongly depicted in the Indian media as an associate of LTTE leader Prabakharan, Eelaventhan fears action by officials of the state, non - LTTE Tamil groups and possibly Sinhala hardline factions. His future in Colombo is uncertain. Moreover his wife and two daughters are in Chennai. The eldest daughter is married to a lecturer at Madras Christian College.

Meanwhile some political forces in India began to act on Eelaventhan's behalf. Dravida Kazgagham leader K. Veeramani was the first to condemn the deportation. Ironically the deportation was in reality a sop to Jayalalitha jayaram the AIADMK leader whose line Veeramani toes now. Nedumaran and another Tamil activist Subha.

Veerapandian also issued statements criticing the deportation of a non - violent Tamil activist who was in every sense a refugee. Veeramani queried as to how a Tamil refugee would have proper immigration documents.

Jaswanth Singh

MDMK leader Vaiko contacted Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee directly in New Delhi. Vajpayee is reported to have telephoned Indian Foreign Minister Jaswanth Singh in Vaiko's presence and given two directives. One was to inform the Sri Lankan High Commissioner Senaka Bandaranaike of this development and to emphasise the safety of Eelaventhan in Colombo. The second was to instruct the Indian envoy in Colombo Gopalakrishna Gandhi to interact with Sri Lankan authorities and ensure the protection of Eelaventhan.Vaiko also obtained an assurance that Eelaventhan's family would not be deported.

As sections of the Indian media have stated Eelaventhan is a "Non - militant". He is also a refugee fearing persecution. If harm befalls him in Sri Lanka as a result of the deportation, New Delhi and Chennai would be placed in an embarrassing position.The fact that Eelaventhan was given an emergency travel document in Chennai and the "light" nature of his preliminary inquiry suggests that the deportation was no surprise to Sri Lanka .Officials of both countries have cooperated in the exercise as in the earlier case of Soundaranayagam who was arrested and deported clandestinely on a flight from Trichy last year. It is also in the interests of Colombo to protect Eelaventhan. In spite of the best intentions, Eelaventhan's safety cannot be guaranteed in Sri Lanka particularly in the context of the Bindunuwewa massacre where the "fence devoured the crops it was supposed to protect".

It is also apparent that some Tamil politicians in Tamil Nadu would pressurise the Central Government to review the situation and revoke the deportation order. It may be recalled that the deportation of Anton Balasingham and SC Chandrahasan in 1985 also boomeranged on India. Both were allowed to return. The difference of course is that both were sent to Britain and the USA respectively. In Eeleventhan's case he has been sent to Sri Lanka. If saner counsel prevails in the Indian corridors of power then Eelaventhan may be allowed at some future stage to slip back to Chennai via a safe third country.

For this to occur , Eelaventhan himself must adopt an uncharacteristically low profile without criticing India. It is also in his own interest to keep mum to avoid unwelcome attention. Steps should also be taken to safeguard the man during his stay in Sri Lanka. The answer is not protective custody or forcible relocation to Jaffna. It is humanely imperative that the man be allowed to unite with his family. Eelaventhan is in evey sense a political refugee with reasonable grounds to fear persecution in Sri Lanka. Will India appreciate this and permit him to return?  

 


 

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