21 March 2021
SHRINKING DEMOCRATIC SPACE FOR BRITISH TAMILS
Ms Dawn Butler, Labour MP is reported to have declared as follows in the British Parliament, on 18 March 2021:
[Ambihai Selvakumar, also known lovingly as Ambi, is a director of the International Centre for the Prevention of Genocide. Ambi was on hunger strike recently in Kenton in Brent, in order to highlight the current injustices in Sri Lanka. In her own words, Ambi’s campaign is a demand for
Ms Butler is NOT a Tamil and there is no evidence that that Ms Butler facilitated collection of ‘evidence’ – including Affidavit evidence from British Tamils whether they believe that Genocide has happened in Sri Lanka. As an Australian & Sri Lankan Tamil who continues to live and operate in Northern Sri Lanka I find the above insulting. I operate as an independent Tamil in Sri Lanka and thus far I have NOT encountered any block in Sri Lanka, to expressing myself as a Tamil. Likewise all Tamils and Muslims known to me. Hence I reject that what happened as Genocide.
At policy level – it may be different. Given that the official system in Sri Lanka is Democracy, if a Tamil claims there has been Genocide, I have the duty to oppose it on the basis of my own belief.
Recently a Tamil and fellow devotee of Sathya Sai Baba referred to LTTE leader as ‘Thalaivar’ / Leader. I said ‘they referred to Swami (Sathya Sai Baba) as a fraudster ; how can you call your self a devotee while accepting such leadership? The young parent said that she ignored such negatives. In her own way she explained that even within family – she ignores the negatives if she is not able to ‘correct’ them. I said – that I was different and pointed to members of my family by marriage – from whom I have openly moved away, because they refused to account for the wealth of a relative. The Courts in Northern Sri Lanka failed to uphold the principles of Thesawalamai and upheld common law. This young lady continues to include them by ‘ignoring’ that experience that I have had. This would naturally dilute her own investment in the group where I am a leader and this includes elders in her own immediate family.
Accepting such claims would empower LTTE supporters like Mrs Ambihai Selvakumar who interestingly was rejected by this young parent also. The intuitive measure was seniority in terms of life in Sri Lanka’s Northern area. By her own admission, Mrs Ambihai Selvakumar’s left Sri Lanka as a child. Hence one is entitled to dismiss Ms Dawn Butler’s as hearsay.
Ms Siobhain Mcdonah, who is in my regular email list, made the following declaration:
[But first, the history. In 2009, in the final few months of Sri Lanka’s civil war, tens of thousands of civilians lost their lives. We all remember the horror of the Mullivaikkal massacre, the most recent peak of genocidal killings against the Tamil people committed by the Sri Lankan state. The current Prime Minister, Mahinda Rajapaksa, was President and his brother Gotabaya, the current President, was Defence Secretary. They are the present-day link to the atrocities of the past. The bombing of the Government-designated no-fire zone, where Tamil civilians took refuge, is as utterly horrifying today as it was 12 years ago, as are the findings of experts that Government forces even systematically shelled hospitals…….
The intimidation is perhaps best demonstrated by the demolition of the Mullivaikkal memorial at Jaffna University in January. That same month, the damning report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights warned that Sri Lanka was on an
“alarming path towards recurrence of grave human rights violations”,
and called on the UN Human Rights Council to take strong action to promote accountability and reconciliation.]
As a person who values my Jaffna education, I find the above claim about the Mullivaikkal memorial, most offensive. The above mentioned young parent expressed it differently. The young lady stated that rape and sexual misconduct was rampant in Jaffna University and that that was not the case when LTTE were active. This claim came also from a former Tamil member of Sri Lankan Parliament – Mrs Vijayakala Maheswaran. I do not know Mrs Maheswaran in person. But I know the above lady who is driven by hearsay because she lacks the work and focus needed at policy level. They are examples of women who fill the gap between duty and real contribution with position power of their husbands. They are the Tamil parallels of Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa, and his brother Gotabaya, the current President, included in the following:
Ms Siobhain Mcdonah, goes on to claim:
[A UN panel of experts reported in April 2011 that there were credible allegations of those crimes by both Government and Tamil Tiger forces. It remains my opinion that both sides were at fault. However, I regret the Government of Sri Lanka’s decision to withdraw support for UNHRC resolution 30/1 and note that previous domestic initiatives have failed to deliver meaningful accountability. I therefore urge the Sri Lankan Government to engage in a process that has the confidence of all on the island.]
The game back then was played differently by both sides – the LTTE and the Government of Sri Lanka. It was competitive blood sport and NOT ownership preserving defence. Now the British also seek to play the game. They have to play that game at the elevated level between themselves and do so without cheating. Unless the heirs of Tamil Tigers are also disciplined on Equal footing – any move against the Sri Lankan government would go against law abiding Tamils who continue to accept the official government as the legitimate government of the People of Sri Lanka. That structure is our common governance structure . Back then the role played by Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksa was different to the role he is currently playing. Back then he was a queen and his brother Mahinda was king. Now he is the king and his brother Mahinda is the queen. In the new game at British level - TGTE is the king and Mrs Ambihai Selvakumar is the queen? Or is the game being played against a ghost?
We, the law abiding Tamils of Sri Lanka are entitled to take our positions as current opposition of the current government. Those who are unable to play the current game must withdraw or be dismissed. That needs to be the essential purpose of the UN Resolution. That is the only purpose for which the UN has the mandate in this issue.
As per my review - the Hon Matthew Offord of the Conservative party made the best contribution to support all law abiding Sri Lankans and those of Sri Lankan origin living all over the world respecting the lawful structures of their respective home nations.