, by Z. SHABBIR AHMED
Chennai: Tamil Nadu State, well known for its umbilical cord relationship with Srilankan Tamils, especially the Dravidian parties and other pro-LTTE political outfits extend their support to the formation of separate “Tamil Eelam” in the Island Nation. They opine that separate “Tamil Eelam” is the only solution to the ethnic conflict in Srilanka.
As the Island Nation passing through its critical phase and approaching fast towards outbreak of a “Major War”, political parties in Tamil Nadu like Marumalarchi Drivadar Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK), Dalit Panthers of India (DPI) and other groups are intensifying sentiments among people by openly making statements in support of the banned outfit LTTE in India, which are left unnoticed by the government and the mainstream media in Tamil Nadu.
Who cares more for Srilankan Tamils – Chief Minister M. Karunanadhi or the MDMK chief Vaiko, who is well-known as a staunch supporter of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)? This question has led political parties in Tamil Nadu to act on the Srilankan Tamil issue which is now becoming the game of one-upmanship in the rescue of Srilankan Tamils.
The Chief Minister M. Karunanadhi told the State Assembly on August 19, that his initiative to find a solution to Srilankan Tamil issue as requested by the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, was pre-empted by his then party colleague Vaiko’s secret visit to the Island Nation. He also recalled the incident which happened in 1989 during his visit to New Delhi to pay a courtesy visit to the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi close to the heels of DMK victory in Assembly Elections.
Refuting the charges made by Chief Minister M. Karunanadhi, the MDMK chief Vaiko said at a public meeting in Chennai, “We have contacts with the LTTE, we have acknowledged this yesterday, are saying it today and will repeat that even tomorrow.”
He went to the extent of warning that “A Kashmir will be created down south if the Eelam Tamils suffer.” This speech of Vaiko erupted political disturbances in the State. A day before his party colleague and MDMK South Chennai District secretary Manimaran participated in the meeting organised to condemn the killing of 61 children by Srilankan Armed Forces, he said, “We are prepared to take AK 47 for the cause of Eelam Tamil” for which he was arrested.
Hence it is not the first time that the MDMK chief Vaiko has declared openly about his party relationship with the LTTE, he was also jailed for two years under POTA (Prevention of Terrorism Act) by the then AIADMK Government for his speech in support of LTTE.
Parties like Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), MDMK, DPI and other groups pushing the cause of Srilankan Tamil have been demanding India’s intervention to stop the genocide of Tamils in Srilanka and not to extend any military assistance to the Island Nation, whereas the ruling DMK Government is very cautious and soft in dealing with the Srilankan Tamils issue.
The issue of Vaiko’s speech was raised by the Congress Legislators in the Tamil Nadu State Assembly, demanding from the Government to put an end to such secessionist and divisive speeches, which could influence the youth. The Congress legislators also demanded explanation from the government. Dissatisfied by the Chief Minister’s explanation, they staged an undeclared walkout from the house for the very first time.
Speaking to Radiance, Sathiq Basha, a media professional and Human Rights activist, who was closely watching the extraordinary developments on the Srilankan Tamils issue, said, after the Mullaitheveu incident on August 14 killing 61 children in the aerial bombings by Srilankan armed forces each and every political party in state has lined up to condemn the gruesome tragedy and some to the extent of warning of creation of Kashmir down the south for the cause of Srilankan Tamil. But at the same time all of them failed to condemn the Israel aggression on Lebanon killing innocent people. Except the Communist parties in the State not even a single political party other than Muslim organisations came forward to condemn the Israel violence on Lebanese homeland killing women and children, nor was it ready to bother about the Srilankan Muslims who are oppressed by LTTE and Sinhalese hegemony.
Why didn’t they urge the Central Government to abort all India-Israel trade activities? This attitude of political parties in Tamil Nadu have exposed their double standards on humanitarian concern. They hardly think that the atrocities perpetrated by American imperialism and its illegal child Israel on Muslim countries are regular phenomena, he added.
A political party coming out openly in support of a banned outfit in India that was behind the assassination of the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 is spared due to some political reasons and on the other hand Muslim organisations and other groups operating in the State are put under the close watch of intelligence wing before and after the Mumbai blasts.
A classic example of this is when the Tamil Nadu Police dragged MNP, a human rights organisation to its alleged trap of so-called planned attack on Coimbatore Medical Hospital, and regular raids carried out in Ramanad, Rameswaram and other districts of Tamil Nadu in search of former members and sympathisers of SIMI.
One must not forget that India has witnessed two incidents of well-planned and well-executed assassinations carried by LTTE in Tamil Nadu. LTTE assassinated K. Padmanabha, leader of Eelam Peoples Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) and others in Chennai in June 1990, and assassinated former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on May 21,1991 which India will always remember.