The people of Tamil Nadu have a duty to help Tamils in Sri Lanka like a mother caring for her children or a brother extending a helping hand to his siblings, DMK president and chairman of Tamil Eelam Supporters’ Organisation (TESO) M. Karunanidhi said on Sunday.
While addressing the ‘Eelam Tamils’ Rights Protection Conference’ here, he said no resolution could be more effective than the one adopted at the conference, asking India to bring forth a resolution in the United Nations for bestowing right on the Sri Lanakan Tamils to decide their own political course.
He said everybody expected him to shoulder the entire burden of finding a solution to the Tamils issue, but his position was similar to that of a strongman who was ready to shoulder a heavy burden, but could do so only if others gave a helping hand.
DMK treasurer M.K. Stalin vowed to fight through democratic means to get justice for the Sri Lankan Tamils. He said the Madras High Court had put paid to the hopes of those who tried their best to stop the conference.
“The State government and the police department even planned to approach the Supreme Court to get a stay of the High Court direction. But they could not succeed,” Mr Stalin said. The DMK had filed a caveat in the Supreme Court to stall a possible ex parte order, as soon as a Division Bench gave the green signal to the conference on Sunday afternoon.
Former Union Minister and Lok Jana Sakthi party leader Ram Vilas Paswan wanted Mr. Karunanidhi to organise TESO conference in the northern States to draw the attention of the people there to the problems of the Sri Lankan Tamils.
“We have to change the perception that Sri Lankan Tamil means ‘LTTE’ and that ‘LTTE’ means terrorists,” he said.
Describing the war in the Sri Lanka as a “genocide of Tamils”, Wickramabahu Karunaratne, leader of the Nava Sama Samaja Party of Sri Lanka, alleged that the military rule was continuing in Tamil areas even now. He said he found it extremely difficult to reach India to attend the conference and many of the Tamil leaders faced similar problems and could not attend the conference.
Dravidar Kazhagam president K. Veeramani said if Tamil MPs of Sri Lanka themselves could not attend the TESO conference because of the political situation in the country, one could guess the conditions of the Tamils living there.