Mahinda in Malaysia
Posted on September 12th, 2016

By Rohana R. Wasala

A group of Tamils initially identified as members of the so-called Tamil Diaspora in Malaysia held rowdy protests against former Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa who was visiting Malaysia to attend the 9th General Assembly of the International Conference of Asian Political Parties (ICAPP) held at the Putra World Centre in capital Kuala Lumpur from September 1 to 4, 2016. It has now been found that the protesters were mostly Eelamist Indian Tamils. But there were some Sri Lankan Tamils as well. (The anti-Sri Lanka Tamil diaspora does not comprise voluntarily dispersed Sri Lankan Tamils alone; their ranks are surreptitiously augmented by Tamil economic refugees from other countries. Sri Lanka has no way to counter this circumstantial anomaly.)

Mahinda Rajapaksa addressed the ICAPP assembly as its past president (Some Malaysian and Sri Lankan media tried to underplay his role as well as his high profile image as the war winning former Sri Lankan president). On his return he told reporters that he cancelled only one scheduled visit at a temple on his itinerary because he didn’t want to put the chief monk of that temple in trouble as he (the monk) had been warned by some Tamil persons of serious consequences if he allowed Rajapaksa to enter that temple. This must be the temple known as the Sri Lanka Buddhist Temple at Sentul in Kuala Lumpur. The Tamil intruders assaulted Ven. Saranankara Thera, the head monk of the temple and some novice monks, allegedly as a warning to monks in other Buddhist places of worship that the former Sri Lankan president was to visit. As far as we know, Malaysia, unlike present day Sri Lanka, is a democratic country run by a government that is not subservient to unreasonable pressure from minorities or to Western dictates. But these unruly individuals were violating the democratic right of Malaysian Buddhists of Sri Lankan origin of meeting and greeting former president Rajapaksa who is himself known to be a devout Buddhist. (Buddhists form 20% of that country’s Muslim majority population, whereas Hindus only about 6%.)   In another place, protesters were shouting  slogans calling on the Malaysian authorities to expel ‘war criminal’ Rajapaksa immediately, and others holding placards demanding ‘killer’ Rajapaksa to be hanged. Then, after many insulting rituals such as slapping his picture with slippers, and trampling on his picture underfoot, he was burnt in effigy. It was very painful to see the most popular, and the single most acceptable,  Sri Lankan national leader alive today, conspiratorially ousted from power in January 2015,  who has not done anything wrong other than rescue all Sri Lankans from the scourge of thirty long years of mindless terrorism insulted in that manner by  a few rootless ruffians.

The worst outrage in this rash of riotous displays of hatred on foreign soil against Mahinda Rajapaksa was committed when the Sri Lankan High Commissioner in Malaysia, Ibrahim Anwar, was mercilessly assaulted; he was kicked and punched for no reason by a gang of five or six cowardly attackers. It has been reported that even the Second Secretary, a female, (Mrs) L.R. Sandanayake, was similarly physically attacked. They had just escorted to the Kuala Lumpur airport some Sri Lankan MPs including Minister Daya Gamage and Deputy Minister Mrs Gamage, his wife, of the ruling UNP, and former minister Dinesh Gunawardane of the UPFA, a prominent member of the Joint Opposition, leaving Malaysia for Sri Lanka after the conclusion of the ICAPP meeting.

A High Commissioner (in  the Commonwealth organization consisting of countries of the former British empire like Malaysia and Sri Lanka) ranks the same as an ambassador. An ambassador is the highest diplomatic official appointed by one sovereign state to be its resident representative in another sovereign state. Sri Lankan High Commissioner in Malaysia, Ibrahim Anwar, is not an ordinary Sri Lankan visiting or working and residing there. He is entitled to all the honour and recognition that is due to the representative of the Sri Lankan head of state the president within Malaysia to which he has been accredited. By attacking HC Ibrahim Anwar the Tamil terror sympathizers have knowingly created a potential threat to diplomatic relations between the two countries. The long standing mutual trust and friendship between them is a different matter. The Sri Lankan government has already asked HC Anwar to come back to Colombo apparently in protest against the incident, as reported in Lankan papers today (September 7, 2016); he is secure in his job, a foreign ministry source was quoted as saying; he has only been called back until the Malaysian authorities finish investigating the matter. Obviously, the assault on the diplomat will have international implications involving not only Sri Lanka, but India as well, besides Malaysia’s own internal security (vis-à-vis suspected international terror sympathizers  active against a friendly neighbouring country while enjoying economic refugee status among Malaysians).

The Sri Lankan government’s response has been strangely low-key  because the incident centred on the former president’s visit in Malaysia; it has been a rather sheepish protest for fear that it might be risking an arousal of Tamil diaspora misgivings about its vaunted reconciliation process (My foot!). A certain deputy minister has suggested that Mahinda himself had engineered these demonstrations and attacks against him! That is his way of insulting the real national leader Sri Lanka now needs whom he is not even worthy of speaking about.

The fact that Indian Tamil Eelamists are mainly involved in the protests suggests that once virtual separation is achieved in the form of a federal state in the north and east of Sri Lanka, its annexation to Tamil Nadu, the original homeland of the Tamils, will be the next stage; Tamil separatism will first destroy the unitary status of Sri Lanka, and then begin to plague India. India which is now opportunistically conspiring with the so-called international community (the West) to destabilize Sri Lanka will eventually find that chickens come home to roost. India knows this, but does not seem to be so concerned, because it is confident that the powerful centre can easily deal with it. The present Indian attitude to the problem appears to be: ‘Let us cross that bridge when we come to it. Meanwhile, in collaboration with the West, we will (virtually, for the time being)separate the north and east provinces from the rest of Sri Lanka through fake constitutional reforms, and allow the new unit to assume statehood as a federal state to satisfy the Eelam objective that Prabhakaran fought for and that the TNA is committed to. But that new ‘autonomous state’, whether it is called Eelam or something else, will be a part of Tamil Nadu for ever, or it will be made the 30th state of the Republic of India. Then the mineral oil resources being discovered in the region will be ours. The fish in the sea north of Sri Lanka will be ours too, without Tamil Nadu Tamils having to steal it from their Sri Lankans co-ethnics (as they are doing now) ’.

But, in the event of their current goal of a federal solution being realized, the Lankan Eelamists are not likely to agree to such a finale willingly. With their co-ethnics across the Palk Strait they will lead the struggle for the greater Tamil state of their dreams, which will be a permanent pain in the neck for India. Prabhakaran did not dream of being under Indian hegemony in that way after the ‘liberation’ he wanted to achieve. That is why he rejected the 1987 Indian intervention in Sri Lanka, and fought the IPKF, and slaughtered some 1500 Indian jawans.  India’s current policy is to try to offer the small unitary state of Sri Lanka (one fiftieth of its size in area)to the lurking Tamil separatist demon astride the Palk Strait as a sop to Cerberus.

India will not create another Prabhakaran under the current circumstances as it did the one that died in Nandikadal in 2009. It didn’t mind the elimination of Prabhakaran then because he was not the sort of puppet it wanted him to be. Had there been no independent minded leader like Mahinda Rajapaksa, Prabhakaran would still be alivetoday and our agony would have continued. By balking the West’s wish to keep the terror leader alive and his ability to create trouble intact for its own purposes in the region, Rajapaksa earned their wrath, and is now paying the price. UN chief Ban Ki Moon’s baseless disgraceful  remark comparing the Vanni war to the genocidal conflicts in Rwanda and Bosnia in the mid-90s is a cynical lie nonchalantly uttered to add cogency to the necessity of Sri Lanka implementing the Geneva resolution. This is in pursuance of big power geopolitical ends in the region. Geography is destiny for Sri Lanka in a very negative sense.

A strong national leadership that is acceptable to all Sri Lankans across the country, like the one provided by president Rajapaksa, is urgently needed to save the unitary status of Sri Lanka. Who else is there to do that at the moment except Mahinda himself?

3 Responses to “Mahinda in Malaysia”

  1. SA Kumar Says:

    It didn’t mind the elimination of Prabhakaran then because he was not the sort of puppet it wanted him to be.- Correct
    but India have now their puppet ( CM Viggie).

  2. Christie Says:

    The protestors were Indian colonial parasites and Indian vermin of Malaysia. Whether they are in UK, USA, Canada, Europe, Fiji, Mauritius, Guyana, Africa or for that matter the Indian Union they want Sinhalese to disappear from the Earth. Who blew up Upali Wijayawardhana?

    The Sinhalese have to understand we are not different to other subjects of the Indian Empire.

    These Eelamists, Tamil Diaspora, etc etc are part of the Indian Empire.

    We have to Unite and stand up to the Indian Empire.

  3. charithsls Says:

    Long Live MR! ‘Who else is there to do that at the moment except Mahinda himself?’ why GR?
    It was reported some goons were arrested for the assault of the Ambassador but nothing on the assault on the monks in the temple. Have they gone scot free & has not our government any obligation to protest as a Buddhist country? What pathetic Sinhalese leaders are at the helm but our own Sinhalese ‘elected’ them, if do not believe the votes rigging allegation.

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