29 November 2018
Sue them Dr Guruparan Sue them!
Yesterday’s mail reminded me of University of Jaffna Academic Dr Rajani Thiranagama who was reported to have been killed by the LTTE. The question then arises whether an institution of higher education ought to be remembering and honoring armed militants and forgetting Academics whose lives were taken by those very armed militants.
We are all part of various families, institutions and nations. We naturally represent them and to that extent we have rights that the whole is entitled to. Recently, when counselling a couple in Northern Sri Lanka, in regards to their close relative who was separated from her husband, allegedly due to abusive language used by the husband, after a point – they started ‘telling’ me in terms of structuring my work. They indicated that ‘I was interfering’. The real reason I saw through my insight was - that I advised them against ‘finding fault’ with the above husband. I said they had every right to find fault with their relative through common principles but not the husband directly. That was when they started ‘telling me’ through majority power. I then had to bring about ‘closure’ as a mark of respect for Education that they were rejecting. But there also – they showed that ‘they’ were bringing about the closure. That is the way with those driven by ‘outcomes’. Finally they shared with me the news that the son who was Skype-tutored by me for less than a term had achieved 82% relative to 58% last term. But they did not take the offer to continue with that service which extended to counselling service to the parents. The mother said her son was clever but careless! I said that the 24% (82-58) was mine and that of the student who was open to being disciplined by me. I said both parents had been selfish in terms of getting involved in their son’s education. They could take credit for providing the facility – which was part of the 58%. But the ‘24%’ which stands above average – was mine and my disciplined student’s.
The parallel of that in University of Jaffna is the Academic work by Academics who have researched and found the Truth about Tamil militancy. If University students overwhelmingly honor armed militants – then they automatically downgrade academic achievements. Dr Rajan Hoole honours Academics of the University of Jaffna as follows:
[Rains and early gloom harbinger the dying year. Fields are ploughed and sown in readiness for the earth’s renewal and the yield of her bounty. It was at such a time that Rajani Thiranagama was killed by the LTTE twenty-nine years ago. Her questions and aphorisms often challenged our assumptions at their core. The following Appeal authored by her in October 1988 appeared in Laying Aside Illusions signed by 50 academics in the common room of the University of Jaffna:
“We have to examine not only our relations with the Indian and Sri Lankan States, but also ourselves. Our obeisance to terror within the community, our opportunism and lack of principles in the face of many internal killings, have made it easy for external forces to use the same weapons to control us. In the face of our acquiescence to anti-democratic tendencies within the community, our plea for democracy becomes a meaningless exercise. Many individuals and young persons who voiced criticism of the political forces have been victimised, driven away, or killed while we looked on.”]
The level at which we stop listening to others is the level at which we take leadership status.
In his article of 05 November 2018, headed ‘Sri Lanka’s political crisis explained, and what it means for the island nation’s Tamil community’ Dr Kumaravadivel Guruparan head of Law at the University of Jaffna, states about the Sri Lankan president in relation to the national level political crisis:
[He undid that “revolution” on October 26 this year when he sacked Ranil Wickremesinghe as prime minister and appointed Rajapaksa in his place. He did so ignoring the constitutional amendment he had helped pass after coming to power in 2015, which had done away with the president’s power to remove the prime minister. He thus triggered what is being called Sri Lanka’s first unconstitutional transfer of power – a coup
Why did Sirisena take this extraordinary step?
First, Sirisena won the 2015 presidential election on the strength of the votes of the minorities – Tamils, Muslims and Malayaha (up country) Tamils. He lost the Sinhala vote to Rajapaksa. It was clear from the very beginning that Sirisena suffered from a sense of inferiority at the fact that despite being head of state, he was not recognised as leader of the Sinhala Buddhists, the country’s majority community.]
Dr Rajan Hoole in contrast presents the following:
[Tamil Nationalism: Loss of Direction and the Fatal Betrayal
We need not waste time today trying to separate Tamil Nationalist politics from the LTTE’s legacy and the glorification of Prabhakaran. After all, politicians of the TNA (Federal Party), TNPF (Tamil Congress), Chief Minister Wigneswaran, miscellaneous academics and the mainstream Tamil media compete for ownership of this legacy. A pseudo-logical argument currently in vogue is that Chelvanayakam who had lost faith in the Sinhalese leadership, blessed the incipient militancy by garlanding Sivakumaran’s statue in Urumpirai, and therefore Prabhakaran as saviour. Rajani trashed the basis of such claims in the Broken Palmyra.]
Dr Guruparan lacks the inner experience to support his presentation. In contrast Dr Rajan Hoole stays within his own experience in presenting the above picture. The reason for Dr Guruparan’s presentation lacking ‘insight’ is the same as why Mr Sirisena dismissed Mr Wickremesinghe – due to lack of insight into UNP and its leader but claiming to be ‘Common’ to get the ‘votes’. Majority Tamil voters did vote as per Tamil National Alliance’s leadership message. More to the point – Sinhalese Parliamentarians divided enough to facilitate TNA becoming the Equal Opposition in National Parliament.
Does Dr Guruparan as an academic who is highly vocal on this subject matter know the ‘forces’ that caused this Natural elevation?
Nationalism / Sovereignty has to be ‘Experienced’ if one were to naturally represent her/himself as the representative of the whole. In the case of Sri Lankan National Politics – the reasons ‘why’ could be known only by someone who is ‘common’ to all cultures in one’s ‘home area’. Those like Dr Guruparan who demonstrates strong contribution to Tamil Nationalism – have the DUTY to refrain from ‘speculating’ about why ‘Buddhists / Sinhalese’ did what they did. It is speculation because Dr Guruparan did not claim to be Sri Lankan Nationalist nor has he demonstrated the experience of living and feeling as Sri Lankan. One who has the experience would have the ‘insight’ at the depth that s/he feels. This is what I had in University of NSW and in Australian Public Administration. It’s through that insight that I identified with my contribution to the dismissal of the Vice Chancellor and later Mr John Howard who was then Prime Minister and against whom I took Legal Action.
I identify with my contribution due to my genuine participation through Due Processes. Due Processes to my mind are the essence of the work by ancestors in that issue/institution. By respecting Due Processes we respect those ancestors. Thus we invoke their Energy to guide and support us in areas of our need. I knew I would lose in Courts due to the other side being high profile. But I earned that higher level status by following Due Processes step by step despite the ‘defeats’ and ‘dismissals’ on the way. To me those Due Processes are Ancestral Energies and are divine.
In Northern Sri Lanka do lawyers like Dr Guruparan have experience in Thesawalamai Customary Law – as it was developed by our ancestors? If yes, why is the Judiciary in North so very weak in their judgments using Customary law that most Northerners practice regularly? If the militant lifestyle is a heritage then participation in Sri Lankan politics as Equals is stronger heritage. As Ms Shantha Abimannasingham, said to me during paid consultation, in relation to our testamentary case – current earnings of a bachelor have to pass through parents – to qualify as Muthusum (heritage). So, which heritage do we pass our current actions through – Militancy or Politics/ Administration based on Global standards or De facto practices as per militant leaders?
One needs courage to take Equal position as minority. When SBS News sent me the article headed ‘Teenager comes out as gay in Sydney Catholic school assembly’ I watched the video and stood up with tears in my eyes. This experience was not because I am gay but because I am a minority who had the courage to declare my Equal status – not worrying about what others would think – including that I was crazy. Not one Tamil outside my immediate family supported me in public. But I supported myself through my contribution to Tamil self-governance also.
Has Dr Guruparan sued anyone in Sri Lankan Courts over the crimes committed in the 2009 battle? If not he lacks the authority of experience to make subjective statements about other people’s experiences. Sue them Dr Guruparan – if you have the courage. Don’t sue for outcomes – sue to defend ownership - so your work goes directly to natural policy – especially if you lose in your own territory and feel the pain of demotion – as I did in Sydney as well as in Jaffna. My returns happened at the highest level – through my book Naan Australian taking its place in National Library of Australia – due to the blessings of all those who had courage to take their Natural positions. Finn Stannard is the youngest prince of minorities to receive my blessings.