This refers to the report that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has suspended an officer of the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai for allowing Sri Lankan football players to play a friendly match with the Customs Department team. When will the political leaders of Tamil Nadu, sitting safely in their motherland, stop doing things that antagonise the Sri Lankan government and the Sinhalese for serving their narrow political ends? History has taught us that hatred and violence can never solve problems.
On reading the headline, I wondered how the Sri Lankan football team could have entered India so quietly. In the end, it turned out to be a friendly match. Do we have no sense of proportion? Should we sow the seeds of hatred at all levels? Only recently, artists from India performed and conducted workshops in Sri Lanka much to the delight of the Tamils there. Didn’t President Mahinda Rajapaksa allow the show? How can a football match hurt the sentiments of Tamils? Peace is better than permanent enmity.
The competitive protest of the political parties in Tamil Nadu against everything Sri Lankan is surely getting irrational. Against the background of widely reported violent oppression and suppression of Tamils in Sri Lanka, one can understand the State government disapproving the training being imparted to the Sri Lankan Army. But it is outrageous to make an issue of a friendly football match.
Judah S.G. Vincent,