Justice and accountability cannot be bartered for Reconstruction and Rehabilitationadmin | Sunday, August 14th, 2011 | Comments Off
British Tamils Forum (BTF), on behalf of the Tamils of the Diaspora wish to express our gratitude to the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for her principled stance with regards to the rights and welfare of the Tamil people in the island of Sri Lanka.
We also wish to thank the “Headlines Today TV” for exposing the game of deception by the Sri Lankan regime headed by the President Mahinda Rajapakse and controlled by his brother and Defence Secretary Gotobaya Rajapakse both of whom stand accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity.
In a recent interview to the Headlines today TV, Gotabaya Rajapakse has hit out at Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Ms J. Jayalalithaa for her recent comments seeking international war crimes investigations and economic sanctions on Sri Lanka.
Talking to “Headlines Today” exclusively in Colombo, Rajapakse said. “This (the resolutions in the assembly and statements by Ms J. Jayalalithaa) must be for her to gain political advantage…It is not reasonable, because in Sri Lanka regardless of being Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim, we are Sri Lankans. We are more worried about our citizens than anyone else. This (the resolution and statements by Jaya) is without knowing facts.”
A documentary filmed in the North and East of Sri Lanka, by “Headlines Today TV ” has exposed the lie perpetuated by the war criminal Gotabaya Rajapakse. The documentary has shown how a 300,000 strong Sinhala only military has permeated the civilian life and controls the day-to-day lives of the Tamils living in the north and the East.
It is the military, which controls the civil administration. The local people have no say in matters concerned with their local services, justice system or law enforcement, let alone development. Only visible development seen by the TV crew is of building of Buddhist temples, in areas where no practising Buddhists exist, building of military infrastructure, building of roads which sustain the military occupation.
The so-called development agenda is geared towards establishing the infrastructure necessary to sustain the long-term occupation of the Tamil land by the Sinhala only colonial military.
The chief minister of Tamil Nadu Ms Jayalalithaa has spoken on behalf of the Tamils in Sri Lanka and has shown to the world the reality of life for Tamils in Sri Lanka.
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA), which represents Tamils in Sri Lanka, has also released a report describing the current state of the Tamils as second-class citizens in the island. TNA has also catalogued the “land grab” by the Sinhala state in which Tamil people’s land is taken away by the Sinhala state for building Buddhist temples, military camps and colonising the Tamil people’s homeland with Sinhalese.
The Sinhala regime has been projecting the expenditure on these projects as development and rehabilitation. The Tamils in Sri Lanka have rejected the government propaganda of development and have endorsed the view that what is needed is granting of political rights to the Tamil people in their own homeland, to look after their own affairs and to protect their own land.
In a recent interview to the Daily mirror newspaper in Sri Lanka, Mr.K.Pathamanathan (KP); former procurer of the LTTE and now a captive in the hands of the Sri Lankan military intelligence chief Mr.Kapila Hendawitharana and the defence secretary Mr.Gothabaya Rajapakse had claimed that, the Tamil Diaspora is only interested in revenge and not interested in the welfare of the Tamil people in the North and the East.
This statement is again a blatant lie orchestrated by the Sri Lankan state in their failed attempt to hoodwink the international community. Sri Lanka’s own Central Bank has reported an increase in foreign remittance of 27 % in the last quarter alone.
When the TNA parliamentarians raised the issue of lack of rehabilitation of the war affected, the Sri Lankan president Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse replied that enough money is being remitted by the Diaspora into the personal bank accounts of the war affected Tamil people in the North and East.
By this callous response he has unwittingly admitted that it is the Tamil Diaspora that is sustaining the battered people and that the Sri Lankan State was not taking responsibility for the rehabilitation of the Tamil people.
The international aid that had been given by donor countries specifically for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Tamil people’s region is being used to build Buddhist temples, military bases and monuments of conquest.
With no accountability for the funds donated, a substantial sum is suspected to be siphoned off for projects in the South as well as into personal accounts of government cronies.
The Tamil people in Sri Lanka know that it is the Diaspora, which has looked after the war orphans and the disabled. The Sri Lankan state has banned the operation of foreign NGO’s and has severely curtailed the operation of local NGO’s in the North and the East.
In order to plunder the funds remitted by the Diaspora, the Sri Lankan military intelligence has formed NEDRO, an outfit using KP as the front man. The Tamil Diaspora will only remit funds through channels which ensure that their remittances are not financing the decimation of their own land, heritage and culture.
The Sri Lankan government which clearly has the responsibility to look after the Tamils under their absolute military control, has deliberately blocked the internationally reputed humanitarian organisations as well as Tamil Diaspora organisations through its “Presidential Task Force” and Ministry of Defence.
The Tamil Diaspora is not going to send its money to an outfit run by the Sri Lankan military intelligence, which would use this money to sustain and develop its own military intelligence infrastructure in the Tamil region, further subjugating the Tamils.
The Diaspora will continue to work with international and local agencies to reach their kith and kin, despite the obstacles thrown at them by the Sinhala state.
Gotabaya Rajapakse in his interview said that if the Tamil Nadu government is interested in the welfare of these people, it is useless calling for international investigation and questions, what this would bring to the people.
This exposes the mindset of a war criminal who is holding the Tamil Nation to ransom. By amassing the Sinhala military in the Tamil people’s Homeland, and threatening the Tamil people with “consequences”, he is trying to barter their freedom and welfare in exchange for his own exoneration.
BTF firmly believes that accountability and justice are prerequisites for a permanent peace in Sri Lanka. The objective of any justice system is to punish the perpetrators of a crime, so that no one else would do the same again as well as to bring appropriate redress to the affected party, in this case, the persecuted Tamils in Sri Lanka.
By denying them justice, the world should not set a precedence of impunity, for other war criminals around the world to replicate what the Sri Lankan regime has done to the Tamil people.
The World needs to end the misery of the Tamils and reinforce its order of justice and freedom for all. Despots like Gotabaya Rajapakse needs to face the international justice system, as this is will not happen within Sri Lanka.
An international independent investigation into the conduct of the war as well as an international humanitarian intervention to protect the Tamil people is imperative to deliver justice and to prevent Genocide of Tamils.