Wednesday 10 October 2018

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

10 October 2018

Land Power

[A 70-year-old fisherman from Myliddy said his family had moved 24 times in 27 years until the military released his property in July 2017.] Human Rights Watch article - Sri Lanka: Government Slow to Return Land

 Myliddy is an area where my father, as representative of Fisheries Dept., visited often to recover loans. The culture of fisher-folks was thus integrated with our home culture through my father’s work. Recently I was approached for advice in relation to development of  educational facility for a  fisher-folk community  in Arali – my father’s village. My intellectual contribution centred around my own experience in the village of Thunaivi (toddy tapper village) where investment in secular education is not attractive to majority in current generation. But the minority who are,  merge at the roots through their personal positive experience. I said to the leader of that minority group that our family has invested through our temple facilities, in law and order and security to preserve and treasure our Energy in Education, and therefore knowledge based approach to external world. Feeling ownership in that land where the temple is – is crucial towards treasuring our Energies for future generations.

I explained further that the above communities were more or less self-sufficient due to following their traditional pathways. But the minority who seek to go beyond local borders would need that facility. The main way to preserve that heritage is through the land which is common home to both cultures. Whoever believes in that land would also invoke the Energy needed to invest in wider society through the pathway of education. I therefore discouraged investment in buildings but rather in tools of education – such as computers used in distance learning.

The heritage that majority in Myliddy get is self-employment through fishing related activities. Due to the war and the self-sacrifice from many in that area – that land is now empowered by Defence skills also.  In a way the heritage structures of that area have now been rearranged.
The above report presents the following picture:

[The Sri Lankan government has yet to fully restore civilian ownership of land and property nearly a decade since the end of the civil war in 2009, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Progress, particularly since the election of a new government in 2015, has been hindered by broad military claims of national security and the lack of a transparent process.]
If the Government believed on behalf of majority people, then the continued presence of the Armed Forces is a calculated activity which is likely to include jobs for the Armed forces who would otherwise be idle. But given the sacrifices by Tamils as a community to preserve their homeland, Defence activities have also become a traditional vocation for Northerners – especially from coastal areas. The LTTE leader is an outstanding example of this.

Sinhalese to whom  that area is not home – do not have this support. They have to therefore display stronger following of Law and Order relative to  the civilians in that area – to qualify to intellectually lead Defence activities in that area.

I no longer reside in our Thunaivi cottage due to identifying with this weakness in Vaddukoddai Police team which is led by Sinhalese officers. They are average in their jobs and do attend when we complain strongly. But the power of the locals is stronger and unless I hire my own security in that area – I am open to emotional attacks – especially from those who are intoxicated. The brain that has deteriorated due to intoxication – including emotional excitements – has great difficulty in receiving new knowledge. Sinhalese from South working as groups in Tamil areas need external knowledge to manage Tamil folks in their traditional homeland.

Tradition confirms automatic Energy. The Government seems to fear this and it would if it has been burying its own Truth through use of what we Tamils of my generation call ‘punch dialogues’ – to show progress and get the right ticks. Truth has its own way to balance the Sovereignty of any group. To the extent Tamils protest on the basis of their belief – their investment in Sovereignty and self-determination would be strengthened. Those who block this including through ‘punch dialogues’  would in turn weaken their own power to self-determination – as the last war has confirmed.

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