23 July 2020
African Americans and Indian Tamils of Lanka
The path of self-purification is hard and steep. One has to become absolutely passion-free in thought, speech and action to rise above the opposing currents of love and hatred, attachment and repulsion. I know that I have not in me as yet that triple purity in spite of constant ceaseless striving for it. That is why the world's praise fails to move me, indeed it very often stings me. To conquer the subtle passions seems to me to be harder far than the physical conquest of the world by the force of arms. – Mahatma Gandhi
To my mind – the above message is about losing duality and if one does have duality - one side needs to be blocked by an Equal and Opposite power at that level. That is a fundamental value in Democracy. One may be clever intellectually and/or through armed power. But to be eligible to govern one has to include the less clever person as part of oneself in Autocracy or come down to that person’s level in Democracy. Gandhi did the latter. By demoting his status without any return benefits including in thought, Gandhi automatically converted his contribution (work and sacrifice) to pure Energy. The rest was delivered through the system of truth.
Dual citizenship bans us from representing the People of a country at national level – because we want the best of both worlds. To my mind, the reason for such ban is that we do not know which country structure binds our mind. When making policy for one we need to be in that structure as virtual reality.
If we believe in both – then one opposes the other when we make equal contribution to both. Equal Opposition in Parliament is based on this fundamental that when we believe in a power through a different form – we are Equal. Belief being exponential in power does not need large numbers. Even One believer will ultimately achieve.
Today is the anniversary of the beginning of Black July in 1983, which resulted in India’s indirect involvement in Sri Lanka through training of Tamil youth whose emotions were challenged due to the helplessness of Tamils in Colombo who became the targets of unruly civilians. Truth being Truth – the ultimate outcome of this is written in the Sri Lankan constitution as the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. The commonness we have with the 13th Amendment to the American constitution is this slave labour. The Tamil in this instance is the ‘Indian Tamil’ who was brought to Lanka as labourer in tea estates. The Sinhalese took-over the Master positions after the departure of the British. To think of other Tamils – especially those of the Jaffna kingdom would be unpleasant to these Sinhalese. Even in politics – Tamils of North and East are common but those of Hill country are different.
Interestingly – they join the mainstream Sinhalese parties in preference to those parties dominated by Northern politicians – who rely heavily on Jaffna Kingdom founded by Indian Tamil Royalty.
As per the ‘logic’ of the Sinhalese individual who has very little knowledge of North-Eastern heritage, all Tamils are the parallels of African American labour class. They are different to the Indigenous American who is the parallel of North-Eastern Tamil of Lanka.
In both countries law enforced Equality frees itself during Election time. Hence the ‘Black Lives Matter’ protests in USA and Sinhalese / Tamil Only claim in Sri Lanka. In USA they put them in prison to work them. In Sri Lanka they ask them to ‘go back to India’. Black Americans and Tamil Labour class respectively, accept that due to lack of sense of ‘belonging’ in their current ‘homelands’. This happens to many Muslim migrants in countries of European culture.
I myself ‘reacted’ to this in 1998 when Australian politician Ms Pauline Hanson asked migrants who could not assimilate to ‘go back home’. I myself went into my Sri Lankan professional life where my apparent status was much higher than the one I was allocated at the University of NSW. Going into that virtual reality was made easier by Ms Pauline Hanson’s push factor – due to my existing condition – disappointment at the University of NSW where this kind of political play within academics was very active due to them living in their past. This risk prevails not only the Tamil community that mentally lives off the past but also other migrant communities strongly attached to the corpus of their culture.
By taking legal action against my seniors – including the Prime Minister – I declared my belief as per my mind and this resulted in my book ‘Naan Australian’. The pain I experienced cured me of that ‘attachment to past’ which with time makes us bi-polar. Thus desire becomes fear if it is not opposed and buried by different belief.
The need of Lankan Tamils is this ‘different belief’ which will naturally oppose the government. This requires also ‘self-isolation’ when there is risk of infection of war thoughts. Government’s move to disregard the 13th Amendment is the parallel of Appeal in a Court of Law.
The reason for this is explained as follows by his honour Janak De Silva as follows in the Prescriptive Title case in relation to our Colombo land:
The above structure to my mind led to upholding Justice – which is the main purpose of the Judiciary. As stated previously, it is not good enough to believe in ‘facts’. One who presents the ‘facts’ in a particular environment needs to believe also in the structure that that environment is regulated by. If Gandhi had shared his facts in the language of the Court he would have failed with the folks he was representing through politics.
I believed in my ownership as well as the law of Prescription. I was open also to the claim of Mr Piyadasa that he occupied the land for 30 years. I was however not open to the current respondent who could afford Mr Faiza Musthapha PC who is presented as follows by Tobacco Unmasked:
[Faisz Musthapha (sometimes referred to as Faiz Musthapha), is a “President’s Counsel Learned in Law”, commonly known as President’s Counsel (PC). It is a high-rank appointment for Attorneys-at-Law in Sri Lanka coinciding the British ‘Queen’s Counsel’ appointments. PC appointments are made by the President of Sri Lanka based on professional eminence and conduct. Musthapha is the son of S. M. Musthapha, a lawyer from Kandy. In the media Musthapha family is referred to as a family with “four generations of lawyers”.]
I have learnt through my Court cases including Sri Lankan cases that to the extent a litigant believes in the law and makes the effort to present the truth in the structure of the law, the matter gets exponential power which opens up opportunities to participate at that level – at least mentally. This however was NOT the case with the Respondents whom I never saw in Courts. One who purchased from a Prescriptive title holder needs to inherit that belief also.
The parallel of the purchase is the election by votes in democracy and the parallel of Prescriptive rights is occupation by ‘belief’ in the case of rebels. When Tamil politicians declared political independence through Vaddukoddai Resolution – it confirmed their belief through the political pathway. When armed rebels took-over leadership – it was a different pathway and hence Rebels gradually became the Opposition of politicians which led to assassination of the very holders of that Prescriptive title. In the language of armed rebels killing the opposition / enemy is victory. This was also the case with JVP in South. Likewise in the current government where the PM is politician and the President is leader of Armed forces. With executive powers of the Presidency restored they would more actively oppose each other due to different pathways of belief. One way to prevent this is to stay away from each other – each leading only through his pathway of belief.
Duality such as Desire & Fear ; Gain & Pain is a fact of life at the physical level. If we ‘avoid’ the unpleasant side – by abuse of current power – we delay the manifestation of the ‘other’ side. But it does not go away. The longer it is passive the stronger the return. The intellectual pathway helps us to ‘see’ both at the same time. This is easier when we are independent of our desires and gains.
Mr Jehan Perera of the National Peace Council presents his assessment through his Colombo Telegraph article ‘Responsibility Of Majority To Minority Cannot Be Shed '
[One of the noteworthy and less positive features of the forthcoming elections is that none of the major political parties has had much to say about how they propose to address the protracted ethnic conflict. This is the main national question that has dogged post-independence Sri Lanka for the past seven decades and led to war and destruction and to human rights violations that continue to take a prominent place in the international human rights discourse. In the face of elections, the national political parties appear unwilling to address the challenge of community rights posed by the TNA. In the alternative, they should at least address the issue of equal citizenship posed by the people of the North…….
In all the meetings we had in Jaffna, the issue of equal citizenship came up. The community groups we met with spoke of the problems they faced due to shortage and ramshackle state of the ferries and buses that served them, of the lack of fresh water due to the problem of over extraction of water resources by outside parties, of Indian and southern fishermen who had privileged access to fisheries resources and sand mining by vested interests. They wanted the law and the government to give them what they believed it gave people in the rest of the country, and to protect them equally. It behooves the national political parties contesting the elections to guarantee equal citizenship to all as the basic and fundamental commitment in the government they hope to form ]
Equal citizenship exists not only by law due to the 13th Amendment but also in a less visible way prior to that after the Vaddukoddai Resolution 1976. If Tamils seek Equal goods and services as they think Sinhalese have and it is delivered as part of the election promise – it is likely to make us dependent on the Sinhalese government and that undoes the structure that politicians developed through their sacrifices and armed soldiers risked lives for. The more dependent we are of others for our resources the more we would seek to ‘show’ outcomes. This is the greatest weakness in armed activity – especially one that does not follow the common law through which merit is to be calculated.
The way I see it – Tamil civilians in Northern Sri Lanka are heavily dependent on the Diaspora which is in effectively the parallel of Indian Tamils who remained in Sri Lanka due to financial independence/affluence. Not many members of the Tamil Diaspora are truly independent at government level, in their new homelands. They are effectively developing dependents so they could play politics on behalf of the locals. That is what China does to South. Sri Lanka is caught between the ethnic devil and the South China Sea.
I pay my respects to the victims of the 1983 riots invoked by the LTTE who acted without the blessings of their Political leaders and executed by cowardly Sinhalese to whom all Tamils were Indian coolies.