Carabram July 2013- Pavilion allotted to a country called “Eelam”?
Posted on July 9th, 2013

Mahinda Gunasekera Sri Lanka United National Association of Canada

July 9, 2013

Ms. Angela Johnson, President Carabram 2013
Mr. David Elich, Director Carabram 2013
Ms. Gloria Rousseau, Director Carabram 2013
Mr. David Elich, Director Carabram 2013
Mr. Tom Gabrowski, Director Carabram 2013
Carabram Brampton’s Multicultural Festival
150 Clark Boulevard, Suite 125
Brampton, Ontario L6T 4Y8

Dear President and Members of the Board of Directors Carabram 2013,

Pavilion allotted to a country called “Eelam”?

I refer to my letter of June 15, 2013 a copy of which is annexed hereto, and regret
to note the lack of a response from you up to now.  I had pointed out an important
principle that you had overlooked in allocating a pavilion to a new group styling
themselves as representatives of “Eelam”, which is neither a country, nation, race,
ethnicity or culture which is known or recognized by the international community.
I suggested a way out for the Board of Directors of the Carabram Festival to avoid
creating a bad precedent in accepting a non-existent country, nation, race, ethnicity
or culture, by merely recognizing the true position relating to the actual ethnicity
of the group, i.e. naming it as the Sri Lankan Tamil pavilion.

The word Eelam” (also spelt as ILAM) according to the Tamil Lexicon published under
the authority of the highest seat of Tamil learning, namely, the University of Madras
in the State of Tamilnadu in Southern India, attributes it as having been derived from
the ancient PALI word SIHALA  which means SINHALA.  Page 328 of the Tamil Lexicon
has the following entry:  ILAM (Eelam) , n< Pali, SIHALA (Sinhala).  The Pali word
SIHALA had been Tamilized as SIHALAM and subsequently shortened to ILAM (Eelam).
What it says is that the Tamil word ILAM (Eelam) means the land of the Sinhala people.

In fact, Prof. S.Krisnaswamy Aiyangar , Head of the Dept. of Indian History and
Archaeology of the University of Madras, writing the Foreword in September 1926 to
the book titled ‘Ancient Jaffna’ by Father S. Gnanaprakasar, pointed out that it was a
mistaken belief that the word “Eelam” also spelt as “Ilam” was a reference to a Tamil
homeland, and according to the Tamil lexicon, this word had been derived from the
Pali word Sihala, and meant the ‘Land of the Sinhalese’.  The homeland of the Tamil
people is in the State of Tamilnadu in South India where 72 million Tamils live, and not
in Sri Lanka which was founded by the indigenous Sinhala people, with a written
history extending to over 2500 years, also known as as Heladiva or Sinhale during
the early history of the island.

The minority Tamil community of Sri Lanka numbering roughly 11 percent of the total
population, the bulk of whom were brought in by the Portuguese and Dutch colonial
powers that held the coastal regions of the island from the 16th to the 19th centuries
for tobacco cultivation, and the British to whom the local Sinhala chieftains ceded power
over the island from 1815 to 1948 in terms of a treaty called the ‘Kandyan Convention’, for
work on cocoa, coffee and tea plantations were referred to as Malabars as they came from
the Malabar coast of South India.  The Tamil community attempted to establish a
mono-ethnic separate state called “Eelam” in the north and east by carving out territory
by force of arms including suicide terrorism, following a motion adopted by them
in 1976 called the Vadukkodai Resolution.  Failing to reach a negotiated peaceful
settlement through both direct and internationally mediated talks, the Tamil separatist
armed forces led by the internationally designated terrorist group known as the Liberation
Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was militarily defeated by Sri Lanka’s security forces on
May 19, 2009
, restoring peace and the right to life of all her citizens from the multi-ethnic
constituent communities comprising of the Sinhalese, Tamils, Moors (Muslims), Malays.
Burghers (descendants of Portuguese and Dutch), etc.

There is no country, nation, race, ethnicity or culture called “Eelam”.  The militant Tamils
who sought a mono-ethnic separate state for Tamils in Sri Lanka led by the LTTE propagated
a terrorist culture referred to as the “Eelam” movement, which was funded by expatriate
Tamils living in Canada, USA, UK, EU, Australia, NZ and elsewhere.  You would have read of
the sentencing of two Tamils from Canada by the US Courts in the Toronto Star of Thursday,
the 4th of July,, 2013, for having provided material assistance to the banned terrorist group
called the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in their attempts to provide missiles,
automatic weapons, submarine designs, etc. to be procured from the USA.

I do hope that you would even at this late stage realize the bad precedent that you would
be creating by recognizing the name “Eelam” for a pavilion to be allocated to a group of
Canadian Tamils of Sri Lankan origin who may be wanting to pursue their quest of breaking
up the unitary and sovereign nation state of Sri Lanka, which is a tiny island having a land
area which is about 1/16th that of the Province of Ontario.  I shall be glad to know of your
decision in this regard.

Yours sincerely,

Mahinda Gunasekera
(Address & Tel. No. given below)

Encl.  My letter of June 15, 2013

——– Original Message ——–

Subject: Carabram July 2013- Pavilion allotted to a country called “Eelam”?
Date: Sat, 15 Jun 2013 15:52:17 -0400
From: M. Gunasekera <[email protected]>
To: Carabram Director Angela Johnson, President <[email protected]>, Carabram Director David Elich <[email protected]>, Carabram Director Gloria Rousseau <[email protected]>, Carabram Director Paula Fanni <[email protected]>, Carabram Director Tom Gabrowski <[email protected]>, Sri Lanka High Commission, Ott <[email protected]>, Consul General of Sri Lanka, Toronto <[email protected]>, ‘Prathap Perera’ <[email protected]>

By E-mail                                                                                                 84 Tambrook Drive
Agincourt, Ontario
M1W 3L9
Telephone: (416) 498-0783

Ms. Angela Johnson, President Carabram 2013
Mr. David Elich, Director Carabram 2013
Ms. Gloria Rousseau, Director Carabram 2013
Mr. David Elich, Director Carabram 2013
Mr. Tom Gabrowski, Director Carabram 2013
Carabram Brampton’s Multicultural Festival
150 Clark Boulevard, Suite 125
Brampton, Ontario L6T 4Y8

Dear President and Members of the Board of Directors Carabram 2013,

Pavilion allotted to a country called “Eelam”?

I am in receipt of the link to your website announcing the celebration of cultures on July 12, 13,
and 14, 2013 to showcase the multicultural diversity of the residents of the City of Brampton.
I would like to wholeheartedly congratulate you on your efforts to dedicate a special occasion for the
residents to share their respective cultures and come together in a spirit of harmony and friendship.

I noticed that a new pavilion has been allotted to a group identifying themselves as “Eelam”, which I
am afraid is not a country which is internationally recognized nor marked in the published maps of the
world.  You have no doubt accepted their application in good faith not realizing that you were entering
an area of controversy by giving recognition to a non-existent country.

I would like to point out that “Eelam” is the name of the mythical state which a group of militant Tamils
attempted to create by carving out territory through violent means tantamount to unbridled terrorism
including suicide bombings, from the sovereign terrain of the Democratic – Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.
The long drawn out insurgency was led by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, aka Tamil Tigers (LTTE), a
group proscribed by Canada, the USA, UK, India and the EU, over a period of three decades which caused
nearly 100,000 deaths, maiming of thousands and an inestimable amount of damage to valuable property.
The armed attempt which was thrust on Sri Lanka was finally put down by her security forces in May 2009
bringing peace and a continuing reconciliation process through both state and civilian sponsored initiatives.

Your giving recognition to this group identifying themselves as “Eelam” would only provide fresh oxygen
to those supporters of the Eelam cause amongst the expatriate Tamils in Canada who funded the armed
warfare in Sri Lanka to continue their attempts to break up Sri Lanka and disturb the evolving peace and
peaceful co-existence in the island nation.

I would suggest that you re-consider the naming of the pavilion from “Eelam” (a non-existent country), to
Sri Lankan Tamils in keeping with the ethnic identity of the applicants.  I am taking the liberty to bring this
to the attention of Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner in Ottawa and the Consul General in Toronto, so that
they may further clarify matters to you.

Yours sincerely,

Mahinda Gunasekera
Immediate Past President
Sri Lanka United National Association of Canada

Dated:  June 15, 2013

Copy to:  Her Excellency Chitranganee Wagiswara, High Commissioner for Sri Lanka, Ottawa
”      ”    Mr. Karu Paranawitharana, Consul General for Sri Lanka, Toronto
”      ”    Mr. Prathap Perera, President, Sri Lanka United National Association of Canada

2 Responses to “Carabram July 2013- Pavilion allotted to a country called “Eelam”?”

  1. Vijendra Says:

    This only shows that these Canadians are not only irresponsible but also stupid and arrogant. Shame on them for acting into the hands of a proscribed terrorist group, which they apparently are not aware of or care to be aware of!

  2. LankaLover Says:

    One of my friends Sujee from Brampton wrote to this organisation too, but they have not replied to him either. Brampton Mayor also was educated about this plot as she was a participant of the event.

    Most of the Canadians are ignorant about the LTTE campaigns around the world, and they open their doors without much thought. However, these ignorant people promote themselves as the saviours or cultural identities, and human rights while supporting the blood thirsty terrorists.

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