This is an Open Letter to President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremasinghe
Posted on January 27th, 2015

By Malin

Before appointing Arjun Mahendran as Governor of Central Bank, were you both aware of the his connection with Raj Rajratnam?

 

  • Current CB Governor Arjun Mahendran is a childhood friend of Raj Rajaratnam as admitted by him.

 

Here is evidence.

http://archives.dailymirror.lk/2005/07/12/ft/15.asp

 

Arjun Mahendran as a top banker (now CB Governor) while commenting about Sri Lanka Stock Exchange in the year 2005 has mentioned about his childhood friend Raj Rajratnam.

 

Quote The basic problem with Sri Lanka is it’s an illiquid market and it’s far too small for a typical international portfolio,” said Arjuna Mahendran, an economist at Credit Suisse Private Banking in Singapore and a childhood friend of Rajaratnam. Raj doesn’t want to get his clients into Sri Lanka because it’s not an easy place to buy and sell stocks quickly.”Ünquote

 

  • Raj Rajaratnam currently is in Jail in America for insider trading.

 

  • Current Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake alleged to have received $3 million dollars (Rs. 390 million) from Raj Rajaratnam contravening exchange control regulations. The case is being heard in the Courts.

 

A Veteran Journalist HLD Mahindapala has recently raised three salient questions in one of his articles in Colombo Telegraph;

 

Q6: Will there be attempts to cover-up the case?

Q7: As some of the key departments handling this case (example: Exchange Control) come under the Finance Ministry will there be pressure brought to manipulate/cook the evidence in courts? Remember, some of the files related to the administration of the CWE under Karunanayake went up in smoke?

Q8: Is this going to be the first of many cases that are likely to recur in due course to undermine the independence of the judiciary?

My question is Can the new Governor of Central Bank withdraw the case?

Connection Arjun Mahendran> Raj Rajaratnam>Ravi Karunanayake.

Over to you Mr. President and Prime Minister.

21 Responses to “This is an Open Letter to President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremasinghe”

  1. helaya Says:

    Goddy,
    Rajaratnam sponsored terrorist and now he is sposoring Yahapath Palanaya. How can you do this Mr. Sirisena.

  2. SA Kumar Says:

    Current CB Governor Arjun Mahendran is a childhood friend of Raj Rajaratnam as admitted by him.-what can I say !!!
    kiyala veddak ne.

  3. Dilrook Says:

    President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremasinghe are fully aware of this crook. That is the very reason why he was appointed the governor of the central Bank. He and Ravi Karunanayaka are fully conversant with international money transfer in large volumes as indicated by the US$3 million illegal deal. That is the most important thing politicians are looking for. It is getting increasingly difficult as international laws have become strict and Sri Lanka’s forex situation has worsened.

    The main criteria to become a governor of Sri Lanka’s central bank is to know how to help politicians transfer their ill gotten wealth to foreign investment banks. This has been the case for the past 10 years and the trend continues.

    Now there is no hope of good governance.

  4. Ananda-USA Says:

    Therefore, if “Tamil Nationalism” does not accept FULL IMPLEMENTATION of the 13th Amendment as a Lasting Solution, what would satisfy “Tamil Nationalism”?

    The ANSWER TODAY is the SAME AS THE ANSWER I GAVE 30 years ago in my article “Devolution .. A Recipe for National Suicide”: What the EElamists want is FULL SOVEREIGNTY as a separate country followed by UNION with Tamil Nadu of India!

    In other words, the REALIZATION of the Greater Tamil Nadu Dream of Karunanidhi as shown in the MAPS he has already published!

    Therefore, whisper to me softly Effendi Aiyoooo Sirisenaaa if my lips do not UTTER THE TRUTH when I SAY you are ENABLING Karunanidhi’s Greater Tamil Nadu Dream with your promise to FULLY IMPLEMENT 13A INSTEAD of FULLY REPEALING IT?

    Aiyoooo Sirisenaaaa …. What are you DOING to our Motherland???

    ………………
    Tamil Nationalism has Never Accepted that a Lasting Solution Could be Arrived at Through Full Devolution Within a Unitary State.

    BY DR DAYAN JAYATILLEKA

    DBSJeyaray.com
    January 27, 2015

    PRE-INDEPENDENCE DAY THOUGHTS 2015: THE FUTURE STATE OF THE NATION

    In the run-up to Independence Day 2015, we must thank God for Mr. Sumanthiran. He is indubitably a moderate and an intellectual. Let us give thanks also for the Sunday Observer, which is a state-run newspaper not given to running stories or distorting them in a manner inimical or embarrassing to the government of the day. Therefore, when Mr. Sumanthiran says something to the Sunday Observer, I take it seriously because I know I am on safe ground. Mr. Sumanthiran tells the newspaper that the TNA doesn’t expect much movement on addressing the Tamil political question during the Hundred Day program. That is realistic –and anyway, who’d want to affect the UNP’s chances at the General election by pressing home Tamil political demands? He also says that the full implementation of the 13th amendment would be a good first step. Then comes the bottom-line: “The PM said that devolution will now be given under the 13th Amendment which the previous government was blocking. But we have clearly said that the full implementation of the 13th Amendment is no lasting solution.” (‘Current political trend signals harmony among communities’ – M.A.Sumanthiran MP, by P.Krishnaswamy, Sunday Observer, January 25th 2015)
    MA Sumanthiran MP

    MA Sumanthiran MP

    There’s always that ‘but’ isn’t there? There’s always that ‘but’ even for a moderate Tamil nationalist intellectual. The truth as disclosed or rather, reiterated by the cosmopolitan, Colombo based Mr. Sumanthiran is that the proposed removal of the roadblocks to the full implementation of the 13th amendment just isn’t enough. This is because “full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution”.

    Some readers may think I am making something of a mountain out of a molehill, but interestingly and appropriately the caption of the interview when reproduced on the website of veteran (expatriate) journalist DBS Jeyaraj reflected what was most newsworthy about the story: “Full Implementation of the 13th Amendment is No Lasting Solution- MA Sumanthiran, MP”.

    Now this also goes some way in explaining why the 13th amendment was never fully implemented. That’s because successive Southern leaders understood that if it was fully implemented, matters would not stop there. That would not put a cap on it. The full implementation of the 13th amendment would be but a stepping stone for more. Why? Because “we have clearly said that the full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution” and therefore “we” would strive to push beyond it. Worse still, that “we” would not try our very best to make the 13th amendment work because if it did, “we” would not be able to prove “our” dogmatic, politically fundamentalist point that “the full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution”.

    This shows that even on the morning after a democratic renovation, the most moderate of Tamil nationalists isn’t willing to settle for what the most moderate Sinhalese political leader is willing to implement. The deficit or gap still exists as far as the desirable goal; the final status agreement goes. Why so? What is at the root of this?

    To answer this we have to ask ourselves what Sri Lanka would be if the 13th amendment were fully implemented under the existing system. To my mind it would be a unitary system with full devolution or, to put it slightly differently, it would amount to the maximum devolution possible within a unitary system at full stretch. Why then does the moderate Mr. Sumanthiran reiterate the consistent stand of democratic Tamil nationalism, namely that even “the full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution?”

    This is simply because Tamil nationalism has never accepted that a lasting solution could be arrived at through full devolution within a unitary state. It has always held that a lasting solution is not possible within a state that remains basically unitary. Even moderate Tamil nationalism holds the view that a lasting solution lies somewhere beyond the unitary state; even one endowed with the most generous devolution.

    Mr. Sumanthiran’s answer may be that Mahinda Rajapaksa agreed to consider going beyond the 13th amendment. He did, but the distance he was willing to go even in theory was a quantitative, not a qualitative one; it was for a Second Chamber and another look at the concurrent list for the purpose of redistribution of powers between center and periphery. It would not have entailed a referendum. In any event, going quantitatively and incrementally beyond the 13th amendment within a strong Presidential system and explicitly unitary framework is drastically different from going qualitatively beyond the 13th amendment within a system divested of a strong executive Presidency.

    Quite apart from the debate on desirability, there is one of feasibility. Any such “lasting solution”, indeed anything beyond the 13th amendment, would require an island-wide referendum. How does the TNA propose to win a referendum for a qualitative shift beyond the 13th amendment? Not even the help of its current political partners in the South would be able to secure such an outcome.

    So far, so bad– but it is about to get worse. There is a brand new element in the mix. While the old element remains, namely that the TNA envisages the full implementation of the 13th amendment only as a first step which it intends to push beyond in its striving for a lasting settlement, the new element that arises is the proposed downsizing and downshifting of the executive Presidency. So, while the Tamil nationalists hope to stretch the relationship between center and periphery by means of a settlement beyond the full implementation of 13A, the center itself is about to diminish.

    The TNA is not unaware of this. Indeed the TNA presented this as the main reason for its support for the common candidate of the Opposition. Now we have the hitherto un-contradicted Tamilnet report that the abolition of the executive Presidency and its replacement by a parliamentary system of government was agreed upon in 2013 at a meeting in Singapore, organized by a South African peace NGO and attended by, among others, Messrs. Mangala Samaraweera and MA Sumanthiran. The abolition of the executive Presidency was, according to the report, point 4 of the agreement. (‘Singapore Principles of 2013’, TamilNet, January 22, 2015).

    The story is prefaced in DBS Jeyaraj.com in the following manner:

    ‘The “Tamilnet” website long regarded as the mouthpiece of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) organization has in a news report revealed details of an alleged “understanding” involving among others the current Foreign Affairs minister Mangala Samaraweera and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) national list parliamentarian MA Sumanthiran that was arrived at in Singapore in the year 2013. The “Tamilnet” website claims that the understanding reached in 2013 formulated a conceptual framework on abolishing the executive presidency based on ten basic principles described as the “Singapore principles”.

    The news report further states that current Presidential adviser Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne, Colombo University Law professor VT Thamilmaran and unnamed representatives of the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) along with a lawyer from the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress also participated in the conclave. The conference was organized by South Africa and funded by two European countries alleges the “Tamilnet”. Quoting an unnamed participant in the meeting the “TamilNet” says “Mangala Samaraweera came as a ‘beggar’ urging Tamil support for regime change and abolition of the executive presidency. It was 2013.

    The Tamilnet report also outlines the ten ‘Singapore principles’ described as “hitherto unrevealed Singapore Principles of 2013” ’. (“Tamilnet Reveals Ten Point Accord for Regime Change and Executive Presidency abolition reached in 2013 at Meeting in Singapore Involving Mangala Samaraweera”, http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/37635)

    Mr. Sumanthiran is fully conscious of the relationship between the Executive Presidency and the issue of devolution. In his Sunday Observer interview he states as follows:

    “…the Governor is a chief executive officer possessing executive powers. This means that there is no power devolution. The governor is appointed by the President and holds powers during his tenure. The President in the centre nominates him and gives powers and says I have devolved powers. That is no devolution. Practically it is the President who is exercising power through the governor. We want that radically changed so that power is actually given to a body or people who have been elected by the people. So that is the arrangement that we will seek to go beyond the 13 th Amendment and make it meaningful.” (Ibid.)

    This brings us to the question–what is the TNA’s real problem with the 13th amendment? Is it the less than full implementation? No, because if that were the case, it would not take the view that full implementation is not a lasting solution. Is it perhaps that the concurrent list is too thick and that the provincial unit should have some of the powers listed therein? Not really because that is not mentioned. The real problem the TNA has is elsewhere—with the role and powers of the Governor, and inter alia, those of the executive president.

    What does the existing arrangement as critically described by TNA moderate Sumanthiran mean? It means that the executive Presidency, as that office which rests on the elected consent of a majority of voters on the island taken as a single unit, is the repository of the sovereign power of the citizenry and is the fount from which from which power is devolved to the periphery.

    Thus the TNA’s objection is to the fundamental principle that power is devolved to the periphery from a strong center resting upon the broadest possible basis; a presidency that represents the nation as a whole. The TNA’s problem is with the mediatory role of the Governor, who acts as the elevator between the devolved peripheral unit and the presidential apex of the system. The TNA objects to a strong presidency representing the totality of the nation, which is raised above the peripheral unit. The Tamil moderate, Mr. Sumanthiran’s underlying objection is to the very principle that the institution that represents the totality, the whole, should be raised above the part; that the center should be above the periphery and that power should be devolved, i.e. flow downward.

    In the TNA’s vision, power should flow from a center outward to the periphery, but not from an apex, downward to the unit. No wonder then that the TNA wants the Executive Presidency abolished. This means that the system is transformed—I would say debauched—from a pyramid to a flat circle, with the parliament at its center. This means the minority parties are able to influence government formation at the center, through coalitions in parliament, as well as push beyond the unitary framework which would have been weakened by the decapitation of the executive presidency and the severance of the “neck” that links the executive head with the devolved peripheral unit, i.e. the Governor.

    Who will appoint the Governor under the arrangement the TNA seeks: the Parliament, the Cabinet, the PM, or the enfeebled essentially non-executive President? Or will there be no Governor at all? Or will there only be a ceremonial Governor, representing a largely nominal presidency?

    With the TNA intent on moving beyond the full implementation of the 13th amendment, and pushing together with its Southern allies (now in power) for the abolition or radical weakening of the Executive Presidency, what will be the future power relations within Sri Lanka be like, especially between the weaker center and a stronger periphery historically and currently subject to the ideological and politico-strategic pulls and emotional-psychological osmosis from their 70 million co-ethnics across a narrow strip of water, in neighboring Tamil Nadu?

    The TNA is strategically very lucid about what it is about. It is pushing for something beyond even the full implementation of the 13th amendment while it has simultaneously advocated and agreed upon the abolition of the Executive Presidency and thereby the radical diminution of the strong center.

    The division of labor is clear: the governing Sinhala elite (fronted by a non-elite political leader) weakens the center by dismantling or eroding the centripetal executive Presidency, thereby loosening the systemic ties between center and periphery, while the Tamil elite for its part, presses on far beyond the parameters of the unitary state.

  5. Ananda-USA Says:

    BREAKING NEWS! ANOTHER CAMPAIGN PROMISE VIOLATED; Executive Presidency to CONTINUE together with an EXECUTIVE Prime Minister!!!

    When he CONFLICT arises between these two EXECUTIVES, who will have PRIORITY??

    If the President will have OVERRIDING AUTHORITY, how is this SUBSTANTIALLY DIFFERENT from the previous system??

    In ANY CASE, Eliminating the Executive Presidency has gone the way of SMALL CABINET LIMITED to 25 Ministers. Also, don;t forget the much balleyhooed “Maithripalanaya” DITCHED in favor of the “VairaPalanaya”!!!

    However, we have to be somewhat reassured that the EXECUTIVE PRESIDENCY will CONTINUE, as Aiyoooo Sirisenaaa moves ahead to EMPOWER the SEPARATISTS with Land and Police Powers under the 13A.

    Aiyoooo Sirisenaaaa …. DO YOU KNOW you are ENDANGERING OUR Motherland??

    …………………
    Sri Lanka’s government coalition reaches agreement on constitutional proposals

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    Jan 28, Colombo: The National Executive Council of Sri Lanka has reached an agreement on proposed constitutional amendments to be introduced during the 100 day programme.

    The proposed amendment will look at introducing a dual executive system of governance and re-establishment of the independent commissions.

    The proposals have been prepared by a special committee appointed by the National Executive Committee comprising President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and representatives of other parties including the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP).

    The proposals are expected to be presented in Parliament early next month.

    According to reports, the proposed reforms state that President Sirisena will remain as the Head of State with reduced powers while retaining the defence portfolio and the power to appointment provincial governors and on several other subjects including that of appointing the heads of Sri Lanka’s diplomatic missions abroad.

    The Prime Minister according to the latest proposals will be the Head of the Cabinet. Therefore the proposed system will be a dual executive system of governance.

  6. Ananda-USA Says:

    Therefore, if “Tamil Nationalism” does not accept FULL IMPLEMENTATION of the 13th Amendment as a Lasting Solution, what would satisfy “Tamil Nationalism”?

    The ANSWER TODAY is the SAME AS THE ANSWER I GAVE 30 years ago in my article “Devolution .. A Recipe for National Suicide”: What the EElamists want is FULL SOVEREIGNTY as a separate country followed by UNION with Tamil Nadu of India!

    In other words, the REALIZATION of the Greater Tamil Nadu Dream of Karunanidhi as shown in the MAPS he has already published!

    Therefore, whisper to me softly Effendi Aiyoooo Sirisenaaa if my lips do not UTTER THE TRUTH when I SAY you are ENABLING Karunanidhi’s

    Greater Tamil Nadu Dream with your promise to FULLY IMPLEMENT 13A INSTEAD of FULLY REPEALING IT?

    Aiyoooo Sirisenaaaa …. What are you DOING to our Motherland???

    ………………
    Tamil Nationalism has Never Accepted that a Lasting Solution Could be Arrived at Through Full Devolution Within a Unitary State.

    BY DR DAYAN JAYATILLEKA

    DBSJeyaray.com
    January 27, 2015

    PRE-INDEPENDENCE DAY THOUGHTS 2015: THE FUTURE STATE OF THE NATION

    In the run-up to Independence Day 2015, we must thank God for Mr. Sumanthiran. He is indubitably a moderate and an intellectual. Let us give thanks also for the Sunday Observer, which is a state-run newspaper not given to running stories or distorting them in a manner inimical or embarrassing to the government of the day. Therefore, when Mr. Sumanthiran says something to the Sunday Observer, I take it seriously because I know I am on safe ground. Mr. Sumanthiran tells the newspaper that the TNA doesn’t expect much movement on addressing the Tamil political question during the Hundred Day program. That is realistic –and anyway, who’d want to affect the UNP’s chances at the General election by pressing home Tamil political demands? He also says that the full implementation of the 13th amendment would be a good first step. Then comes the bottom-line: “The PM said that devolution will now be given under the 13th Amendment which the previous government was blocking. But we have clearly said that the full implementation of the 13th Amendment is no lasting solution.” (‘Current political trend signals harmony among communities’ – M.A.Sumanthiran MP, by P.Krishnaswamy, Sunday Observer, January 25th 2015)
    MA Sumanthiran MP

    MA Sumanthiran MP

    There’s always that ‘but’ isn’t there? There’s always that ‘but’ even for a moderate Tamil nationalist intellectual. The truth as disclosed or rather, reiterated by the cosmopolitan, Colombo based Mr. Sumanthiran is that the proposed removal of the roadblocks to the full implementation of the 13th amendment just isn’t enough. This is because “full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution”.

    Some readers may think I am making something of a mountain out of a molehill, but interestingly and appropriately the caption of the interview when reproduced on the website of veteran (expatriate) journalist DBS Jeyaraj reflected what was most newsworthy about the story: “Full Implementation of the 13th Amendment is No Lasting Solution- MA Sumanthiran, MP”.

    Now this also goes some way in explaining why the 13th amendment was never fully implemented. That’s because successive Southern leaders understood that if it was fully implemented, matters would not stop there. That would not put a cap on it. The full implementation of the 13th amendment would be but a stepping stone for more. Why? Because “we have clearly said that the full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution” and therefore “we” would strive to push beyond it. Worse still, that “we” would not try our very best to make the 13th amendment work because if it did, “we” would not be able to prove “our” dogmatic, politically fundamentalist point that “the full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution”.

    This shows that even on the morning after a democratic renovation, the most moderate of Tamil nationalists isn’t willing to settle for what the most moderate Sinhalese political leader is willing to implement. The deficit or gap still exists as far as the desirable goal; the final status agreement goes. Why so? What is at the root of this?

    To answer this we have to ask ourselves what Sri Lanka would be if the 13th amendment were fully implemented under the existing system. To my mind it would be a unitary system with full devolution or, to put it slightly differently, it would amount to the maximum devolution possible within a unitary system at full stretch. Why then does the moderate Mr. Sumanthiran reiterate the consistent stand of democratic Tamil nationalism, namely that even “the full implementation of the 13th amendment is no lasting solution?”

    This is simply because Tamil nationalism has never accepted that a lasting solution could be arrived at through full devolution within a unitary state. It has always held that a lasting solution is not possible within a state that remains basically unitary. Even moderate Tamil nationalism holds the view that a lasting solution lies somewhere beyond the unitary state; even one endowed with the most generous devolution.

    Mr. Sumanthiran’s answer may be that Mahinda Rajapaksa agreed to consider going beyond the 13th amendment. He did, but the distance he was willing to go even in theory was a quantitative, not a qualitative one; it was for a Second Chamber and another look at the concurrent list for the purpose of redistribution of powers between center and periphery. It would not have entailed a referendum. In any event, going quantitatively and incrementally beyond the 13th amendment within a strong Presidential system and explicitly unitary framework is drastically different from going qualitatively beyond the 13th amendment within a system divested of a strong executive Presidency.

    Quite apart from the debate on desirability, there is one of feasibility. Any such “lasting solution”, indeed anything beyond the 13th amendment, would require an island-wide referendum. How does the TNA propose to win a referendum for a qualitative shift beyond the 13th amendment? Not even the help of its current political partners in the South would be able to secure such an outcome.

    So far, so bad– but it is about to get worse. There is a brand new element in the mix. While the old element remains, namely that the TNA envisages the full implementation of the 13th amendment only as a first step which it intends to push beyond in its striving for a lasting settlement, the new element that arises is the proposed downsizing and downshifting of the executive Presidency. So, while the Tamil nationalists hope to stretch the relationship between center and periphery by means of a settlement beyond the full implementation of 13A, the center itself is about to diminish.

    The TNA is not unaware of this. Indeed the TNA presented this as the main reason for its support for the common candidate of the Opposition. Now we have the hitherto un-contradicted Tamilnet report that the abolition of the executive Presidency and its replacement by a parliamentary system of government was agreed upon in 2013 at a meeting in Singapore, organized by a South African peace NGO and attended by, among others, Messrs. Mangala Samaraweera and MA Sumanthiran. The abolition of the executive Presidency was, according to the report, point 4 of the agreement. (‘Singapore Principles of 2013’, TamilNet, January 22, 2015).

    The story is prefaced in DBS Jeyaraj.com in the following manner:

    ‘The “Tamilnet” website long regarded as the mouthpiece of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) organization has in a news report revealed details of an alleged “understanding” involving among others the current Foreign Affairs minister Mangala Samaraweera and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) national list parliamentarian MA Sumanthiran that was arrived at in Singapore in the year 2013. The “Tamilnet” website claims that the understanding reached in 2013 formulated a conceptual framework on abolishing the executive presidency based on ten basic principles described as the “Singapore principles”.

    The news report further states that current Presidential adviser Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne, Colombo University Law professor VT Thamilmaran and unnamed representatives of the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) along with a lawyer from the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress also participated in the conclave. The conference was organized by South Africa and funded by two European countries alleges the “Tamilnet”. Quoting an unnamed participant in the meeting the “TamilNet” says “Mangala Samaraweera came as a ‘beggar’ urging Tamil support for regime change and abolition of the executive presidency. It was 2013.

    The Tamilnet report also outlines the ten ‘Singapore principles’ described as “hitherto unrevealed Singapore Principles of 2013” ’. (“Tamilnet Reveals Ten Point Accord for Regime Change and Executive Presidency abolition reached in 2013 at Meeting in Singapore Involving Mangala Samaraweera”)

    Mr. Sumanthiran is fully conscious of the relationship between the Executive Presidency and the issue of devolution. In his Sunday Observer interview he states as follows:

    “…the Governor is a chief executive officer possessing executive powers. This means that there is no power devolution. The governor is appointed by the President and holds powers during his tenure. The President in the centre nominates him and gives powers and says I have devolved powers.

    That is no devolution. Practically it is the President who is exercising power through the governor. We want that radically changed so that power is actually given to a body or people who have been elected by the people. So that is the arrangement that we will seek to go beyond the 13th Amendment and make it meaningful.” (Ibid.)

    This brings us to the question–what is the TNA’s real problem with the 13th amendment? Is it the less than full implementation? No, because if that were the case, it would not take the view that full implementation is not a lasting solution. Is it perhaps that the concurrent list is too thick and that the provincial unit should have some of the powers listed therein? Not really because that is not mentioned. The real problem the TNA has is elsewhere—with the role and powers of the Governor, and inter alia, those of the executive president.

    What does the existing arrangement as critically described by TNA moderate Sumanthiran mean? It means that the executive Presidency, as that office which rests on the elected consent of a majority of voters on the island taken as a single unit, is the repository of the sovereign power of the citizenry and is the fount from which from which power is devolved to the periphery.

    Thus the TNA’s objection is to the fundamental principle that power is devolved to the periphery from a strong center resting upon the broadest possible basis; a presidency that represents the nation as a whole. The TNA’s problem is with the mediatory role of the Governor, who acts as the elevator between the devolved peripheral unit and the presidential apex of the system. The TNA objects to a strong presidency representing the totality of the nation, which is raised above the peripheral unit. The Tamil moderate, Mr. Sumanthiran’s underlying objection is to the very principle that the institution that represents the totality, the whole, should be raised above the part; that the center should be above the periphery and that power should be devolved, i.e. flow downward.

    In the TNA’s vision, power should flow from a center outward to the periphery, but not from an apex, downward to the unit. No wonder then that the TNA wants the Executive Presidency abolished. This means that the system is transformed—I would say debauched—from a pyramid to a flat circle, with the parliament at its center. This means the minority parties are able to influence government formation at the center, through coalitions in parliament, as well as push beyond the unitary framework which would have been weakened by the decapitation of the executive presidency and the severance of the “neck” that links the executive head with the devolved peripheral unit, i.e. the Governor.

    Who will appoint the Governor under the arrangement the TNA seeks: the Parliament, the Cabinet, the PM, or the enfeebled essentially non-executive President? Or will there be no Governor at all? Or will there only be a ceremonial Governor, representing a largely nominal presidency?

    With the TNA intent on moving beyond the full implementation of the 13th amendment, and pushing together with its Southern allies (now in power) for the abolition or radical weakening of the Executive Presidency, what will be the future power relations within Sri Lanka be like, especially between the weaker center and a stronger periphery historically and currently subject to the ideological and politico-strategic pulls and emotional-psychological osmosis from their 70 million co-ethnics across a narrow strip of water, in neighboring Tamil Nadu?

    The TNA is strategically very lucid about what it is about. It is pushing for something beyond even the full implementation of the 13th amendment while it has simultaneously advocated and agreed upon the abolition of the Executive Presidency and thereby the radical diminution of the strong center.

    The division of labor is clear: the governing Sinhala elite (fronted by a non-elite political leader) weakens the center by dismantling or eroding the centripetal executive Presidency, thereby loosening the systemic ties between center and periphery, while the Tamil elite for its part, presses on far beyond the parameters of the unitary state.

  7. ranjit Says:

    We have told about these Yahapalana thieves from the beginning. From Chandrika to bottom all were thieves in the past. They were all involved in big deals during their time in power. Ravi is a known crook even children knows about this Dirty Harry. So what will JVP shit rascals will do now? Why don’t they go and complain about these Ali Babas to the commission? Why treat differently? Corrupt means corrupt who ever does, so first try them if you are talking about Yahapalanaya then only people will say “Yes” this is what we asked for.

    Aiyo Sirisena will be in big trouble for getting involved with these Dirty UNPer’s whom he knew very well in the past. They will make pol sambol out of him. He do not have charisma or guts or knowledge to Govern our country. Ranil and Chandrika ( BONNY & CLYDE) both will squeeze and drink his blood before this Yahaplana drama is over. Just wait and see.These two will not allow him to Govern as he pleased and he will be a lame duck with no power.

  8. Nanda Says:

    ranjit,
    DO NOT LISTEN to distracting mosquitos. There is nothing wrong with constitutional reforms. Appears exactly what is in My3’s program. What we can do demand removal of 13A again, even though not mentioned, It is imperative for Yahapalanaya

    Jan 28, Colombo: The National Executive Council of Sri Lanka has reached an agreement on proposed constitutional amendments to be introduced during the 100 day programme.

    The proposed amendment will look at introducing a dual executive system of governance and re-establishment of the independent commissions.

    The proposals have been prepared by a special committee appointed by the National Executive Committee comprising President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and representatives of other parties including the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP).

    The proposals are expected to be presented in Parliament early next month.

    According to reports, the proposed reforms state that President Sirisena will remain as the Head of State with reduced powers while retaining the defence portfolio and the power to appointment provincial governors and on several other subjects including that of appointing the heads of Sri Lanka’s diplomatic missions abroad.

    The Prime Minister according to the latest proposals will be the Head of the Cabinet. Therefore the proposed system will be a dual executive system of governance.

  9. ranjit Says:

    Nanda,You and me have different views on Yahpalanaya so you can go along with them but I won’t because I do not like any single person in Yahapalanaya team. They came to power by rigging votes and from the money which was spent by their International friends including western Embassies and Tamil Diaspora to their election machine. They were all corrupt more than MR’s team. Instead of investigating corruptions in MR Govt they should first investigate Ranil and the clan in UNP for their crimes during their time before 2005. This is not the time to kill each other instead they must show Maitriya than Vairiya. When we fight each other those ungrateful Tamils and Muslims plan their next move to become the Lords of the jungle. So we must not allow to happen that. We should be together to fight these separatists. If we are not together they will succeed in their quest for power.

  10. Hiranthe Says:

    Now what are you telling Patali Champika??

    You were criticizing Ajith Navard Cabraal… but he was only a local cheat. (based on your allegations)

    Now you have an international cheat in the good friend of Raj Rajaratnam..

    Good Job Patali. This is what we were lacking, Jara Palanaya

  11. Nanda Says:

    OK. But don’t care of a team, just agree that “Yahapalanaya” is a good thing. I agree 100% with you that there are big thieves in the “team” , everyone will agree, but there are very good people who love the country unlike your beloved hero who cheated you.

    Our disagreement is not with anything else but your unconditional love of a biggest thief, because of ignorance. Please understand that.

  12. NAK Says:

    But Nanda, so far no one has come up with any evidence or at least details of those so called mega deals. Even today they are making all kinds of allegations some so silly even they themselves don’t seem to beleive them.

  13. Christie Says:

    Where did Raj Rajaratnam get his seed money? He has been one of the global investors for Indian merchants of the island.

  14. SA Kumar Says:

    You Sinhala bros Raj Rajaratnam in USA Jail not in our Weligada jail where one can carry out usual kanja kuddu business.

    Yahpalanaya what is the meaning ???

    We can do demand removal of 13A – untouchable until Congress ( their baby) or BNJ ( Hindhu Nationalist) in power !!!
    Christie – why Indian flag is flaying in Japanaya
    Give us guns we will kick them out like last time to IPKF but once they out you know what we will do to you (remember R Premedasa).

  15. Marco Says:

    Rather mischievous article to tarnish the image of Arjun Mahendran all because he was a childhood friend of Raj Rajaratnam.
    If that was the case myself and my whole family together with a whole host of well known Sri Lankan business magnates like N U Jayawardne, Upali Wijewardne, then CEO of Ceylon Tobacco (still alive), then CEO of Lever Brothers (still alive), to name a few, were family friends of old man J M Rajaratnam (Raj’s Father)who was then the CEO of Singer. We all used to troop over to Nuwara Eliya in April each year and holiday at the Corporate bungalows of CT, Lever Brothers, BCC.

    Nowhere does the article make reference to the new Governor being involved with the business affairs of Raj Rajaratnam other than being a childhood friend.
    Shows the crass mentality of some people which comes as no surprise.

    Thankfully, the other candidate Indrajit Coomaraswamy who I thought was an excellent choice was not picked. Indrajit was a consultant to the Galleon Group. There is no evidence of Indrajit being involved in any illegal activities.
    Imagine the hue and cry if he was appointed by the crass?

    For the misinformed, the $3m was an inflow of forex funds, the technical breach was not obtaining clearance prior to the transfer.

  16. Ananda-USA Says:

    HERE WE GO AGAIN as the NGO Jackals are UNLEASHED to dance the “NGO Kolama” AGAIN in Sri Lanka!

    “Bandagaththu Yahapalanaya Berey Dan Gahapan Srisenaaaa”

    I have NO DOUBT that as the drums of the “NGO Kolama” increases in VOLUME, and his GOSL is STEADILY UNDERMINED by them, Aiyoooo Sirisenaaa will come to RUE HIS STUPID “Yahapalanaya” promises inmical to the Stability and Safety of Sri Lanka!

    The NGOs will not leave him ANY PEACE OF MIND to Govern!

    ………………………………..
    Sri Lanka’s NGOs test limits of new freedoms

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    Jan 28 2015 (IRIN) MANNAR- Less than three weeks since Sri Lanka voted in a new president, rights activists and other NGOs say there are already encouraging signs that they may have more freedom to work under the new administration, including in the former conflict zone in the north.

    Six days after the 8 January election, around 300 families of those still missing as a result of Sri Lanka’s two and half decade long civil war attended a prayer service led by Pope Francis at the Madhu Shrine in the northwestern district of Mannar. Some held pictures of missing relatives; others held small signs calling for justice. But in a marked departure from the pattern of recent years, security forces prevented no one from protesting or entering the shrine compound.

    Uthayachandra Manuel, a community activist in Mannar who heads the Association of Families Searching for their Disappeared Relatives, recalls quite a different reaction from the authorities during visits by former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay and British Prime Minister David Cameron in August and November 2013.

    “There was a lot of harassment then. People were stopped from coming out; police would interview them and ask them to come to the station; one or two have been detained as well,” Manuel told IRIN. Her own activism began in 2008 when her eldest son was arrested. He has not been heard of since.

    “The Criminal Investigation Department kept close tabs on me to find out what I was doing. They will visit families after each protest. That has been usual in the last five years,” she said.

    When Pope Francis visited Sri Lanka earlier this month, Manuel and others in her group were able to hand him a letter containing the details of more than 3,300 missing persons and asking for his assistance in investigating their disappearance.

    “This time no one came to look for me; no one blocked us from getting into the church compound, or holding up pictures of the missing family members,” she said.

    Change in the air?

    NGOs faced extreme scrutiny under the previous long-term President Mahinda Rajapaksa, particularly those working on human rights or issues related to the legacy of the conflict in the north. But optimists within the humanitarian community in Sri Lanka believe the early signs auger well for improvements under the new government of Maithripala Sirisena, who promised during the election campaign to arrest the nation’s drift towards dictatorship.

    “There has been a marked change since the elections. Activists are more free to express themselves and talk in public,” Keerthi Teenakoon, the executive director of the national advocacy body Centre for Human Rights and Research (CHR), said.

    CHR felt sufficiently confident in the apparent easing of restrictions to launch a public campaign to reopen an investigation into a 2012 prison riot in the capital Colombo that left 27 people dead. In the past, lawyers who spoke out in public about the incident received death threats.

    But others remain cautious. Ruki Fernando, a prominent human rights activist who works in the north, believes it is too early to judge the intentions of the new political leadership.

    “There are signs that the changes visible in the capital are yet to manifest themselves in the north,” he told IRIN. Fernando said he knew of two activists in the north who were still in hiding for fear of state sponsored reprisals. Another young man, released in November after seven years in detention, was questioned by police soon after the recent election for no discernable reason.

    But Fernando acknowledged that, in time, restrictions on advocacy work in the north could be eased if activists engage the new administration early. “I think we should push the boundaries of what we have been doing and seek answers to issues like the missing.”

    Thorny issues remain

    The issue of those still missing after the end of the war in 2009 has been vexed. A presidential commission set up under the previous government has so far received details of more than 20,000 cases, including at least 5,000 members of the Sri Lankan defence forces.

    The International Committee of the Red Cross has more than 16,000 cases reported by relatives of people missing since 1990. Meanwhile a report by the UN Secretary-General’s Advisory Panel on Sri Lanka said the figure could be as high as 40,000.

  17. Ananda-USA Says:

    Will the NEW Chief Justice #45 RUBBER STAMP ANY & ALL Constitutional Amendments to PERMANENTLY EMPOWER the SEPARATISTS?

    YOU be the JUDGE!

    The FOX has been HANDED the KEYS to the HENHOUSE!

    Aiyoooo Sirisenaaaa ….. What are you DOING to our Motherland??

    ……………………….
    Sri Lanka’s impeached Chief Justice returns to Supreme Court to resume duties

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    Jan 28, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s former Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake returned to the Supreme Court complex today two years after she was unjustly impeached by the previous government.

    The 43rd Chief Justice arrived at the court complex in Hultsdorf this morning amid a grand welcome from the President of Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) Upul Jayasuriya.

    Dr. Bandaranayke who was unceremoniously removed from the Supreme Court in 2013 says she was still the “legal” Chief Justice of the country.

    The President and the Cabinet have reportedly acknowledged that her removal was “illegal” and “flawed.”

    Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and the Prime Minister meanwhile have informed the 44th Chief Justice Mohan Peiris as the top judge to the apex court by the previous government was illegal and asked him to resign gracefully to pave the way for an independent judiciary, Convener of the Lawyers’ Collective attorney-at-law J.C. Weliamuna said.

    The Bar Association of Sri Lanka maintains that Dr. Bandaranayake does not need to take oaths before President Maithripala Sirisena as she was removed from office through a flawed impeachment process.

    It has been reported that Peiris has agreed to step down. However, he has still not handed over his resignation from the post of Chief Justice as yet.

    Highly placed legal sources said that Dr. Bandaranayke will sit in courts tomorrow and resign paving the way for the appointment of a new Chief Justice. Senior Supreme Court Justice K. Sripavan is expected to be appointed as the next Chief Justice.

  18. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    in a fascinating article in Asia Times today (1/28/15) titled “India v China:Border Games” it covers New Delhi’s various ugly actions in the region. Within the article are other articles (highlighted in blue so one can go into those articles and read them) which cover the various actions of New Delhi in the subcontinent region:

    I strongly suggest one takes the time to read the article and to copy and paste it within your e-mail for further reference. it is that important. I will copy and paste the (sub) article on Sri Lanka, the Indian factor and how Rajapakse lost the elections:

    Indian spy expelled, accused of helping oust Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa

    Colombo/New Delhi: Sri Lanka expelled the Colombo station chief of India’s spy agency in the run-up to this month’s presidential election, political and intelligence sources said, accusing him of helping the opposition oust Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa.
    An Indian foreign ministry spokesman denied any expulsion and said transfers were routine decisions. Mr Rajapaksa, voted out of office in the January 8 election, said he did not know all the facts, and the new government in Colombo has said it is aware of the reports but cannot confirm them.

    But several sources in both Colombo and Delhi said India was asked to recall the agent in December for helping gather support for joint opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena after persuading him to ditch Mr Rajapaksa’s cabinet.

    A sketchy report in Sri Lanka’s Sunday Times newspaper on December 28 said “links with the common opposition” had cost India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) station chief his job in Colombo.

    India has often been involved in the internal politics of the small island nation off its southern coast – it sent troops there in 1987 in a botched effort to broker peace between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels.

    Mr Rajapaksa’s unexpected defeat after two terms in office coincided with growing concern in India that it was losing influence in Sri Lanka because of the former president’s tilt toward regional rival China.

    The concern turned to alarm late last year when Mr Rajapaksa allowed two Chinese submarines to dock in Sri Lanka without warning New Delhi as he should have under a standing agreement, the sources said.

    Mr Sirisena, the new president, has said he will visit Delhi on his first foreign trip next month and has said India is the “first, main concern” of his foreign policy.

    An Indian official said the RAW agent was recalled after complaints he had worked with Sri Lanka’s usually fractious opposition parties to agree on a joint contender for the election. Then, he was accused of facilitating meetings to encourage several lawmakers, among them Mr Sirisena, to defect from Mr Rajapaksa’s party, the official said.

    The agent was accused of playing a role in convincing the main leader of the opposition and former prime minister Ranil Wickremasinghe not to contest against Mr Rajapaksa in the election, and stand aside for someone who could be sure of winning, said the officer and a Sri Lankan lawmaker who also maintains close contacts with India.

    The agent was also in touch with former president Chandrika Kumaratunga, who was a key player in convincing Mr Sirisena to stand, said the officer and the lawmaker, who also confirmed the agent had been asked to leave.

    “They actively were involved, talking to Ranil, getting those things organised, talking to Chandrika,” the lawmaker said.

    Mr Wickremasinghe, who is now Prime Minister again in Mr Sirisena’s government, met “two or three times” with the man identified as the agent in the months before the vote, as well as with the Indian high commissioner, or ambassador, the prime minister’s spokesman said.

    “They discussed the current political situation,” Mr Wickremasinghe’s spokesman said, but he denied that the Indians had advised him. “He does not know if he advised other politicians.”

    It was not clear if Mr Wickremasinghe was aware at the time that he was meeting with an intelligence official. India’s RAW officers are usually given diplomatic posts when assigned to foreign missions.

    Former president Mr Kumaratunga did not respond to requests for comment. Mr Rajapaksa declined to confirm the involvement of India in the campaign against him.

    “I don’t know, I won’t suspect anybody until I get my real facts,” he said at his party headquarters.

    “There are certain things you don’t talk about,” a close associate of the Rajapaksa family said, but added that “there were clear signs of a deep campaign by foreign elements.”

    Sri Lanka’s then defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa – a brother of the former president – complained about the agent’s activities to Indian National Security Adviser Ajit Doval in November when Doval was visiting the island nation for a defence seminar, the Indian official said.

    Another Indian official, who monitors the region for security threats, said Delhi had been watching Beijing’s growing influence and heavy investments in Sri Lanka under Rajapaksa, who visited China seven times since becoming president in 2005.

    But India was stunned and angry last year when the Chinese submarines docked in Sri Lanka on two separate occasions, a step Delhi saw as part of Beijing’s “string of pearls” strategy to secure a foothold in South Asia and maritime access through the Indian Ocean.

    “The turning point in the relationship was the submarines. There was real anger,” the Indian security official said.

    Indian military officials said Delhi reminded Sri Lanka it was obliged to inform its neighbours about such port calls under a maritime pact, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi raised the issue with Mr Rajapaksa at a meeting in New York.

    In a possible sign of shifting allegiances, India’s top envoy in Colombo, High Commissioner Y.K. Sinha, presented Mr Sirisena with a large bouquet of flowers just hours after the results were announced on January 9. China’s ambassador was only able to meet the new president six days later.

    THEN THERE IS AN OLDER ARTICLE MANY MAY HAVE READ BUT IS IMPORTANT TO “RESURRECT IT”. IT TOO WAS IN THAT ARTICLE IN ASIA TIMES TITLED “India v China:Border Games”:

    — Clouds on the Sri Lankan horizon for China
    By Peter Lee

    China’s relationship with the regime of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa is rock solid. Chinese arms were instrumental in the defeat of the Tamil Tigers in 2009 that brought their insurgency to an end after 27 bloody years. China is the largest provider of foreign aid and investment to the island.

    And on March 22, when the United Nations’ Human Rights Council (UNHRC) considered a resolution censuring Sri Lanka for shortcomings in its investigation of possible violations of international law during the war, and a deficit of credible post-conflict reconciliation initiatives, Beijing voted “no” – while India voted “yes”.

    Thanks in significant part to India’s vote and example, the resolution – which the Sri Lankan government was extremely

    anxious to see fail, and had dispatched a 72-person team to Geneva to lobby against – passed.

    Sifting through the wreckage, Sri Lankan media noted that, if abstentions were counted with the “no” votes, the resolution had carried by only one vote – India’s.

    As for China, as the Ceylon Daily News put it – albeit reporting on remarks of the less than influential “Listeners Association of China Radio International in Sri Lanka” – “China’s support at UNHRC highly appreciated”. [1]

    By a calculus that was made with considerable frequency in the Indian media, the UNHRC vote was an own goal by India, needlessly antagonizing Sri Lanka and pushing it even more closely into the arms of China.

    Some characterized the vote as little more than rather ignoble truckling to the Congress Party’s coalition partner, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), whose power base is the ethnically Tamil state of Tamil Nadu – the motherland of Sri Lanka’s Hindu Tamils, who have often been at loggerheads with the indigenous, Buddhist Sinhalese who make up 74% of Sri Lanka’s population. [2]

    Supporting the narrative of Indian dithering was a letter from Prime Minister Singh to Rajapaksa stating that India had insisted that the resolution had been watered down, or as an Indian briefer told the media:
    “We have always had a problem with the Western approach of telling countries that they ‘must accept’ or ‘must do’ something.” That is why India insisted that the language of the resolution be changed to remove that element,” he added. “Once we got that, we voted for it.” [3]
    However, this picture of apparent Indian fecklessness is belied by the fact that the UNHRC resolution was tabled by the United States, which is eager to promote Indian interests in South Asia. The United States insistently lobbied India to vote for the resolution. The Tamil factor is virtually non-existent in American politics, so it can safely be said that the United States was not heedlessly hoisting India on a cleft stick in the service of some other American agenda.

    The US initiative appears to have been a calculated effort to wean India away from fear of its neighbors playing “the China card” to extort diplomatic and economic concessions from New Delhi. What we seem to be seeing is New Delhi, under American tutelage, employing the Barack Obama administration’s preferred tactic for dealing with problematic regimes: identifying weak points to exploit, ratcheting up international and multilateral pressure on those points, and then balancing the pressure with occasional concessions and positive initiatives.

    In other words, the old carrot and stick, with the stick coming first.
    It means that, in a rather risky move, the United States and India are threatening to put Sri Lankan government’s intensely fraught relationship with its restive Tamil minority into play if Colombo does not direct its politics and diplomacy into channels that Washington and New Delhi deem appropriate – and Beijing regards with utter dismay.

    Rajapaksa – and China – are to a large extent victims of their own success in utterly crushing the Tamil Tigers insurgency.

    In 2009, the Sri Lankan army did not pursue an objective of defeat of the Tamil Tigers. Its goal was absolute annihilation.

    In the end-game of the war, the Tigers – and hundreds of thousands of ethnic Tamil civilians – were cornered on a tiny spit of land on the northeast coast in the region of Vanni. Military targets, civilians and hospitals were pounded with artillery; then the army moved in from three sides and, according to credible reports and evidence, fought their way in with little if any regard for civilian casualties, resulting in perhaps as many as 40,000 deaths.

    Vellupillai Prabhakaran, the leader of the Liberation Tigers of Talim Eelam, or LTTE, and most of the top cadres died in battle or shortly afterward. For some, surrender does not appear to have been an option. Captured Tamil fighters and members of the Tiger political and bureaucratic apparatus – because the Tigers had exercised de facto control over a significant swath of territory at one time – were summarily liquidated. Victims included Prabhakaran’s 12-year-old son, who was apparently executed by the Sri Lankan army, together with five escorts who were trying to deliver him to safety or surrender.

    The Western world and India were willing to turn a blind eye toward the bloody excesses of the Sri Lankan army in 2009 because the Tigers were a truly nasty bunch that had worn out its geopolitical welcome.

    In the early years of the movement, Tamil self-determination had developed a significant international cachet along the lines of the Palestinian Liberation Organization. In 1987, India parachuted food parcels into the Tamil stronghold of Jaffna in order to help rebels withstand a Sri Lankan army siege.

    India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) trained Tamil fighters – including the Tigers and five other groups that RAW, in its wisdom, decided it could play off against each other – in camps in southern India as part of a strategy to project Indian power into Sri Lanka.

    Instead, the Tigers assassinated the leadership of the pro-Indian Tamil militants and absorbed their fighters into the LTTE. In 1987, India – with Sri Lankan consent – sent a peacekeeping force into northern Sri Lanka that quickly came into conflict with its erstwhile clients, the unrepentantly militant Tamil Tigers.

    India fought a bloody and unsatisfying campaign against the Tigers before withdrawing in 1990. Subsequently, Prabhakaran ordered the assassination of premier Rajiv Gandhi. The killing – ironically carried out by a militant trained in a RAW camp – guaranteed the hostility of the Indian government toward the Tigers.

    The LTTE allegedly pioneered the use of the suicide vest, engaging in almost 400 attacks over 20 years, including attacks that killed Gandhi and, in 1993, the president of Sri Lanka, Ranasinghe Premadasa. The LTTE ethnically cleansed the Muslim population of the areas it controlled, expelling an estimated 72,000 people.

    In a notorious incident, LTTE cadres bound, blindfolded and executed 600 Sri Lankan police officers who had surrendered to them on the instructions of the Colombo government in a confrontation in 1990 during a ceasefire period. The LTTE’s sympathizers explained these incidents as matters of military and revolutionary necessity, but the fact remains that the LTTE, a militant organization organized along Leninist principles, were not loathe to take the bloodiest path out of their challenges.

    European powers, especially Norway, still tried to broker a peace deal. However, after 9/11 armed struggles of national liberation were passe and the Tamil Tigers were slotted squarely in the terrorist category, classified as a terrorist organization by 32 nations including India, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the European Union. Their sources of funding and arms were attacked and, when the end came, the UN and the Western powers made only the most ineffectual efforts to broker a settlement that would forestall the utter destruction of the LTTE.

    However, it was China and not the West that played the crucial role in supporting the final Sri Lankan army campaign against the Tigers.

    Major Neil Smith, Operations Officer of the US Army and Marine Corps Counter-insurgency Center from 2007 through 2009, rather enviously described the no-holds-barred “Rajapaksa Model” and the Chinese support that it relied on:
    Beginning in 2005, China stepped in to provide an additional $1 billion of military and financial aid annually, allowing the LTTE to sever the strings attached to Western aid regarding the conduct of anti-LTTE operations. In exchange for the aid, China received development rights for port facilities and other investments …

    China’s aid enabled the Sri Lankan government to attain the military superiority needed to defeat the LTTE. The Sri Lankan military budget rose by 40 percent between 2005 and 2008, and the army’s size increased by 70 percent, an addition of nearly 3,000 troops per month.

    China provided more than simple financial support. It and several other states furnished the government with crucial political cover in the United Nations. Western countries long demanded that Sri Lanka respect human rights and avoid civilian casualties as a condition of continued aid. The government viewed these conditions as a hindrance to its ability to defeat the LTTE. The substitution of Western military aid with that from China enabled the government to disregard Western concerns about human rights and pursue its campaign of attrition unimpeded. China prevented introduction of resolutions at the United Nations critical of Sri Lanka’s renewed offensive, giving it a free hand in the conduct of its operations despite the protests of human rights groups and Western governments. [4]
    Cornered in Vanni in early 2009, the LTTE used the over 200,000 civilian refugees on the peninsula as human shields, stationing cadres to shoot those who tried to escape and forcibly impressing children as young as 14 into the Tigers for use as front-line cannon fodder.

    The last weeks were a nightmare as the Sri Lankan army advanced behind barrages of artillery fire that, among other locations, apparently targeted the makeshift hospitals that, at the beginning, may have had wards for Tiger fighters but at the end were scenes of total chaos and undifferentiated horror as doctors, without antibiotics, anesthetics, or transfusion supplies, and no other means to treat many wounds other than amputation, hacked off limbs of shrapnel victims with butcher knives and stacked the arms and legs in piles.

    Rajapaksa made the ludicrous claim that the final battle against the Tiger stronghold was “the biggest hostage rescue operation in the world”.

    The Red Cross, whose attempts to deliver aid were largely frustrated by the Sri Lankan government, described the final days at Vanni as “an unimaginable humanitarian catastrophe”. [5]

    Post-war, the dominant picture has been of Sinhalese dominance and Tamil subjugation.

    After the fall of Vanni, 250,000 traumatized Tamil internally displaced people (IDPs) were herded into a gigantic camp called Menik Farm under miserable conditions for detention, screening, and, for the particularly unlucky, designation by balaclava-clad Tamil turncoats for harsh interrogation.

    The International Crisis Group recently described the situation in the defeated Tamil territories:
    The slow but steady movement of Sinhala settlers along the southern edges of the province, often with military and central government support and sometimes onto land previously farmed or occupied by Tamils, is particularly worrying. These developments are consistent with a strategy – known to be supported by important officials and advisers to the president – to change “the facts on the ground”, as has already happened in the east, and make it impossible to claim the north as a Tamil-majority area deserving of self-governance.

    Deepening militarization of the province presents a threat to long-term peace and stability. Far in

    excess of any legitimate need to protect against an LTTE revival, the militarization of the north is generating widespread fear and anger among Tamils: indeed, the strategy being executed runs the risk of inadvertently resurrecting what it seeks to crush once and for all – the possibility of violent Tamil insurrection. The construction of large and permanent military cantonments, the growing involvement of the military in agricultural and commercial activities, the seizure of large amounts of private and state land, and the army’s role in determining reconstruction priorities are all serious concerns. [6]
    Today, Rajapaksa presides over a triumphalist Sinhalese state that is largely defined by its near-total victory over the Tamil Tigers, a heavy handed occupation of Tamil regions in northern and eastern Sri Lanka, a reputation for dispatching unmarked white vans to disappear critics, and a commitment to manipulating and intimidating the press that places it in the unenviable position of 163rd on the Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index. [7]

    Its primary public relations preoccupation is deflecting attention from the civilian victims at Vanni, since acknowledgment of their victimhood and the circumstances behind it would quite possibility implicate the Sri Lankan Army and its entire command structure up to the president in complicity in war crimes.

    In March of 2011, the United Nations made a powerful effort to breach the political and legal defenses of the Rajapaksa government with its “Report of the Secretary General’s Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka”.

    In addition to persuasively documenting the suffering at Vanni, the report made the explosive assertion that, because of the inadequacies of the government’s quaintly named Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission in particular (deficient in “best practices of truth seeking”; “deeply flawed … does not meet international standards for an effective accountability mechanism” sniffed the report) and the Sri Lankan legal system in general in getting to the bottom of the war crimes issue:
    The Secretary General should immediately proceed to establish an independent investigative mechanism … to monitor and access the extent to which the Government of Sri Lanka is carrying out an effective accountability process … conduct investigations independently into the alleged violations … collect and safeguard for appropriate future use provided to it that is relevant to accountability for the final stages of the war … [8]
    In other words, the recommendation is that the UN conduct an independent investigation that undermines the claims of the Rajapaksa administration as the savior of Sri Lanka, openly discredits the military and threatens its personnel with prosecution … and preserves the dossier for “appropriate future use” ie criminal prosecution against Rajapaksa and his associates for war crimes if and when they leave office, no longer enjoy immunity, and are vulnerable to the judicial attentions of an unfriendly, opportunistic, or righteous successor government.

    No wonder the Rajapaksa government fought the March 22 UN Human Rights Council resolution that uses the expert’s report as its foundation: if implemented, it is not only a gun to the head of Sri Lanka’s government and military elite; it is an attack on Sinhalese chauvinism that would provide desperately needed political oxygen to the Tamil opposition.

    International pressure on the Sri Lankan government was intensified by the release and extensive international circulation of two documentaries in 2011 and 2012 by Britain’s Channel 4 on the theme of “Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields.” Non-Governmental Organizations arranged screenings of the original program for US, British, and EU parliament politicians. [9]

    The programs appeared to be the result of close synergy between Channel 4 and sources in the UN, with the documentaries replicating the narrative of the expert’s report and intensifying it through the presentation of horrific videos, including trophy footage of summary executions and the apparent aftermath of rape-murders taken by Sri Lankan army soldiers.

    Chinese support in the Security Council should protect the Rajapaksa government from international war crimes prosecution. However, the main threat of the human rights campaign is political, not legal.

    With the Tigers and the moral and political conundrum of their enthusiastic commitment to terrorism out of the way and the focus lasered on the brutality of the Sinhalese regime, Sri Lanka’s embattled Tamils – and the vociferous Tamil diaspora – are once again advancing their claims to improved treatment, greater political autonomy … and meaningful support from the international community.

    It is a call that New Delhi, now that Sri Lanka’s Tamil community has shed the hateful incubus of the anti-India LTTE, is prepared, however cautiously, to heed.

    It is a call that the United States, for its usual complicated reasons, appears ready to echo.

    As the Sri Lankan situation evolved, the US State Department gently prodded the Sri Lankan government on the issue of reconciliation and kept a wary distance from Tamil politicians. As late as November 2011, the State Department snubbed a delegation from the Tamil National Alliance, which has disavowed Tamil independence and represents Tamil interests in the Sri Lankan parliament. UN chief Ban Ki-moon did not meet with the delegation, either.

    This was apparently a demonstration, sincere or not, of US and UN willingness to let Sri Lanka put its own house in order before tabling the UNHRC resolution.

    However, by late February 2012 the Obama administration’s key point man for Sri Lanka, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Robert Blake met with the “Tamils for Obama”, a rather marginal and misnamed political grouping whose primary enthusiasm is for Tamil independence rather than President Obama’s policies:
    “We also handed him a copy of our Referendum in Sri Lanka to Gain Self-determination for Tamils,” said a press spokesman for Tamils for Obama, “It is modeled on the one that was recently voted on in southern Sudan, and which led to the creation of the new country of South Sudan. We hope for a similar referendum and result in northeastern Sri Lanka.

    “We also gave him a second copy which we asked him to pass along to Secretary of State Clinton. He promised it would be done, and immediately passed the copy along to a subordinate official to take to Secretary Clinton.” [10]
    As to where all this combination of domestic oppression and righteous international finger-wagging might lead, maybe it is “Springtime in Colombo”, as the Lanka Standard speculated on February 20:
    There is also a growing apprehension within the government that they are at the receiving end of a possible strategy of “Regime Change” propelled by external intervention. Government members have been seeing a foreign hand not only in the issue of war crimes but also behind the economic unrest that is growing amongst the general population …

    In his Independence Day speech, President Rajapaksa warned against those who aspired for an “Arab Spring” type of uprising… [11]
    An Arab Spring-style eruption against Rajapaksa is unlikely in the short term. Despite his government’s excesses, he still basks in the aura of the victory over the Tigers and strong support from a Sinhalese majority that has limited sympathy for the Tamils. At the same time, he is headed into a political cul-de-sac.

    His government lacks the credibility, will, and resources to achieve reconciliation with the Tamils. If the Sri Lankan government’s callous policy of oppression of the Tamils and military occupation and creeping Sinhalization of the Tamil homelands backfires and a new political crisis erupts, any attempt to repeat the military solution of 2009 will be met with a united chorus of international condemnation and Chinese arms and support will avail him little.

    It will be India that possesses the ability to act as an honest broker and offer a measure of protection, support, and a future to the embattled Tamils of Sri Lanka.

    This Indian role – and displacement, at least in part, of Chinese influence in Sri Lanka – is something the United States will be keen to promote, using its ability to orchestrate pressure on the Sri Lankan regime.

    One gets a picture of the levers available to the United States when one considers that Sri Lanka purchases over 90% of its oil from Iran and currently relies on a waiver graciously granted by the United States in order to continue its imports without suffering sanctions to its banking system.

    America’s benevolence has its limits, however.

    Assuming that Rajapaksa continues with his current policies of Sinhalese chauvinism and political repression, whatever he tries to do in the area of reconciliation will probably be judged inadequate by the United States – until he is enticed into a process of reconciliation that place India’s good offices, and its ability to manage the Tamil brief more effectively than the Sri Lankan government itself – at the center of Sri Lanka’s ethnic politics.

    Ironically, it may be China’s contribution to the destruction of the Tamil Tigers that opens the door to New Delhi’s return to a position of significant influence in Sri Lanka and a decline in Beijing’s clout

    PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO READ THE ABOVE AND TO GO TO ASIA TIMES (1/28/15). THE ARTICLE TITLED “iNDIA V CHINA: BORDER GAMES” IS AN EASY TO READ ROLE INDIA HAS PLAYED WITH HER NEIGHBORS.

  19. Lorenzo Says:

    Whining, moping and mourning!

    What use now! Go jump in the lake. SL people don’t give a fart. At the next election the blue camp will not get more than 35% of the vote.

  20. SA Kumar Says:

    next election the blue camp will not get more than 35% of the vote.- so 13A will be fully implement soon .

    Adida sakka …. Velu you done it after you dead. If we knew this we would have killed (help to kill)you long time age.

    what happened to your old mate DD? is he lost his MP job (ok ,no more minister of Edappan) as well.

  21. ranjit Says:

    All the stupids who are worried about their stomach are very happy with this budget and they care damn about the country. MR Govt would have reduced all these before if they thought of the votes. All their plans were for the future not to gain cheap popularity by reducing few items here and there. This won’t last long. From where they will get money to run the Govt? IMF already refused and they have to rely on America or those western mafia lot England and others. They are the people who are behind all these changes occurring in Sri Lanka today. UNPer’s always relied on these western stooges who did most of the damage to our country before 2009. They are haunting us again because of their Tie Coat Gentleman is in place where they wanted him to be. What is going to happen to our country only God knows with these traitors.

    UNP thugs everywhere and harass people in broad daylight. They stormed Govt offices and threatened Opposition supporters. Diaspora is taking over all the important Govt posts not to mention Chief Justice post and Central bank head to name few. We will see more concessions to Tamils in the future as per the instructions from the financiers of this Tie coat Govt. Stupid Sinhalese be aware of the danger ahead. What we gain in ten years will go waste if we do not open our eyes.

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