This refers to the article “The dangers of Tamil chauvinism” by Malini Parthasarathy (Oct. 14). While endorsing her views with admiration, I would also like to make some complementary observations. If the political parties of Tamil Nadu are really interested in the welfare of the Sri Lankan Tamils, they should strive to liberate them from the LTTE, a fascist organisation that ruthlessly kills people who express dissenting views, whether they are Tamils or non-Tamils.
It would be good for Tamil Nadu if the politicians saw through the myth, created by Tamil chauvinists, that all the people in the State are worried about the happenings in Sri Lanka. After the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi and other brutal murders committed by the LTTE on their soil, the people of Tamil Nadu, barring a few linguistic chauvinists, are not at all worried about the happenings in Sri Lanka. They are, in fact, too busy with the problems caused by price rise and power cuts to worry about the affairs of other countries.
Thanks to The Hindu for publishing Ms Parthasarathy’s article, an excellent exposition of truth on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue. It is unfortunate that the political parties of Tamil Nadu are vying with one another to condemn the Sri Lankan government in its fight against the LTTE — which is not only a terrorist organisation but also an outfit that does not believe in democratic values — little realising that support to it is not only different from but opposed to support for the Tamils. It is hoped that the article, pregnant with facts and logical arguments, will help the Prime Minister to deal with the politicians of Tamil Nadu when they approach him for his intervention.
The people of Tamil Nadu had a soft corner for the LTTE but adopted a u-turn when it assassinated Rajiv Gandhi. Many political leaders even distanced themselves from the Tigers. As Ms Parthasarathy has rightly pointed out, it was the LTTE that pioneered terrorism in South Asia and produced two generations of suicide bombers.
Until the LTTE chief Prabakaran, who has consistently sabotaged all attempts to find a political solution to the ethnic conflict, changes his mind, the problems of Sri Lankan Tamils will not end.
In her brilliant analysis, Ms Parthasarathy has rightly applauded New Delhi’s Sri Lankan policy since 1991. Considering that the LTTE is not fully representative of the Tamils in Sri Lanka, it would be prudent for the political parties in Tamil Nadu to follow a policy of non-interference in the internal affairs of a neighbouring country.
Ms Parthasarathy’s article is balanced and reflects the sentiments of the people of India, particularly Tamil Nadu. The Hindu has all along held the view that the terrorist tactics followed by Prabakaran are not only condemnable but deserve to be put down with an iron hand. He has upset the chances of peace descending on the unfortunate island country, consistently waging a war he can never hope to win. With his fall appearing imminent, the vested interests in Tamil Nadu are raising a hue and cry over the sufferings of Tamils in Sri Lanka. They can instead appeal to Prabakaran to lay down arms and subject himself to the course of law. Only then can India demand a fair and honourable deal for the Tamils in Sri Lanka.
The article is a timely warning to the Centre to recognise the true nature of support to the ‘Tamil cause’ being extended by some political parties of Tamil Nadu. The LTTE is facing a military defeat and, therefore, buying time with the help of some politicians in the State. By pressuring Colombo to stop the war, it wants to rebuild its forces. India should stick to its policy of non-interference. The world has branded the LTTE a terrorist group that has links with similar groups elsewhere. The question of the rights of Sri Lankan Tamils can be easily addressed once the LTTE is removed from the scene.
R. Ramachandra Ayyar,
Terrorism should be condemned regardless of the motive or the people behind it. It is ironical that our leaders, hailing from a nation known for non-violence, are supporting an outfit that has been described as terrorist by various international watchdogs.
M.M. Krishna Prasad,
Ms Parthasarathy has rightly brought out the double standards adopted by the political parties in Tamil Nadu. The LTTE is a dreaded terrorist organisation which masterminded the assassination of our former Prime Minister on our own soil. Those who are favouring the LTTE today should not forget that it was the same organisation that once said the strife in Sri Lanka was a fight between two brothers and no third country need to interfere in its affairs.
The leaders of various parties in the State should stop goading the Centre to bring pressure on Sri Lanka over its internal matter. The LTTE is an internationally proscribed terrorist organisation and crushing it by any means is the sovereign right of Sri Lanka. We have already paid a heavy price trying to rescue the Tamils there.
We do not brook any interference in what we do to crush terrorism within our country. We must respect the sovereign rights of our neighbour too. It is unfortunate that an entire community is suffering because of its skewed leadership. Unless the LTTE is crushed, there is no way the Tamils in Sri Lanka can evolve a new leadership.
Col. Ram Gulrajani (retd.),