B. Muralidhar Reddy
Proposals with “unitary label” will strengthen LTTE’s call for separation
Eastern Province reflected richness of diversity of Sri Lanka
Indian model an ideal solution for ethnic crisis
COLOMBO: Making a strong plea for an urgent ‘fair and just political solution within a United Sri Lanka’ to the ethnic conflict, preferably on the Indian model, Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) chief V. Anandasangaree said here on Wednesday that such a solution would ensure the political defeat of the LTTE and its bankrupt politics.
In a press statement here Mr. Anandasangaree expressed concern over media reports about the possibility of the All-Parties Representative Conference (APRC) coming forward with a package of proposals with a ‘unitary label.’ He warned that such a course would only strengthen the LTTE’s call for separation and give oxygen to a dying organisation and kill the hopes of those who have placed their faith in the APRC.
The TULF leader said a political solution with the “unitary” label, where the State is not willing to recognise the other communities as those with legitimate grounds of power sharing, is a defeat for people like him who have been challenging the Tamil community to forget separatism and come into the path of a united Sri Lanka.
“A unitary solution will shatter the confidence of the Tamil people and the sense of fairness they expect from the Sri Lankan State. Any solution under a ‘unitary’ constitution will be a half-baked one. It will give room for further agitation in the future fuelled by the remnants of the LTTE. The result would be a disruption of the hard-earned peace and take the country back to square one, into another cycle of violence,” the statement said.
Mr. Anandsangaree said during his travels within and outside the island nation he had consistently held the view and confidence that the people of Sri Lanka could find a political solution within a united Sri Lanka. He said the clergy of all religions, leaders of all communities and political parties barring a negligible few actors had shared his confidence.
“The LTTE today is weak, militarily and politically. What they fear most is their complete political defeat, when they cannot feed their political poison to the Tamils in the Diaspora and inside Sri Lanka. No political solution will be acceptable to the LTTE, other than a kingdom for Prabakaran….A fair and just political solution will convince the Tamil people not only in this country but around the world that there is no need for the tyranny and terror of the LTTE,” he said.
The TULF leader said during his recent tour of the east he was saddened by the suffering of the people affected by the war and said it would take years before normality returned. He said the Eastern Province reflected the richness of diversity of Sri Lanka, where the Muslim, Sinhalese and Tamil people are living side by side.
“The people of the East no doubt, need economic reconstruction in their Province. However, they need a political solution that is fair to the Muslims, Sinhalese and Tamils, where all people will feel equal and not feel like a minority or majority in order to be successful in reconstructing the East”, the statement said.
Elaborating on his advocacy of the Indian model as an ideal solution for the ethnic crisis, Mr. Anandasangaree said the Indian Constitution does not say federal or unitary, but has managed to hold the country together for 60 years, and indeed India is prospering.