Sinhalese are told that we don’t understand the demands of the Tamils, can someone please explain
Posted on October 11th, 2017

Shenali D Waduge

We are being repeatedly told by some ‘smart patriots’ that we don’t understand the demands of the Tamils. Who are these Tamils that ‘smart patriots’ are referring to – Tamil politicians, Tamil political parties, Tamil terrorists, Tamil Terrorist Diaspora groups, Tamil Nadu politicians, Tamil Nadu political parties, Tamil high castes, Tamil low castes or just ordinary Tamils. At the other end, who are the ‘smart Sinhalese’ who do understand the concern of the Tamils – are they dollar earning NGO heads, foreign government moles, politicians, academics & political analysts, businessmen thinking only of profit or the ordinary Sinhalese? While all Tamils cannot be lumped together, all Sinhalese cannot be done so too.

Let’s first take what we do understand

We do understand that the core problem is rooted in the divide and rule policies and germination of ideologies injected into the minds of a handful of people who have used them to stir trouble and make themselves socially and politically relevant and elevate themselves to champion this ‘cause’ they created.

To this scenario we can place all of the unjustified demands that have come ever since biased education system, privileges were afforded to the minorities purposely neglecting the majority since 1505. However, even while 10% of Sinhalese, Tamils & Muslims were privy to these special benefits 90% of others were not. Why does no one talk about this 90% rather than speak of what the 10% became denied after independence?

Another factor that we understand and continues to work on our mind is that there is a sequence of racist demands by Tamil political leaders covering unfair demands like 50-50 representation, the formation of ethno-racial political parties and the formation of ITAK in 1949 with the aim & objective of creating a Tamil state. We are also aware that across the Palk Strait in India, the Tamil Nadu leaders were also demanding a separate Tamil state. These factors cannot be ignored against any discussion on Tamil demands or Tamil concerns. At no time have we even questioned whether the bulk of the populace in Tamil Nadu, or Tamils in Sri Lanka wanted the demands made by these Tamil leaders except that they voted for them simply because they were Tamil.

What we cannot also remove from discussion is that armed militancy using Tamils began under patronage of India and South India and included a plethora of armed Tamil groups in which some of these ‘smart patriots’ served as Minister for whatever ‘adverturerism’ they may now claim!

What we also understand is that the Indian intervention in the form of the 13th amendment & provincial council system came as a solution to the supposed ‘ethnic’ problem. We are now into the 30th year and the 13a or the PC system has not solved but created more problems than we can now solve. Of course the smart patriots will jump to say that the entire 13a was not implemented and this is the reason for its failure. Had such been implemented we would not be having an island called Sri Lanka today and that is the reality that these smart patriots will have to wake up to whether they like it or not.

What we cannot also omit or neglect is to take stock of all the demands placed over the years by Tamil political parties like ITAK, TULF, armed militant groups including LTTE, EPRLF, LTTE diaspora groups, their resolutions in particular the Vaddukoddai Resolution, ITAK Resolutions as recent as 2013, demands placed by Tamil groups during the peace talks /cease fires like Thimpu Talks, demands for self-autonomy, Tamil Homeland, Internal Self-Determination, CFA, ISGA, PTOMs, etc and whatever new proposals are being made we need to first have official statements that all of these are null & void and are no longer being demanded. These demands have no basis for living in peaceful coexistence and have no basis for any claims of reconciliation.

What we also understand very well is that the present Tamil politicians in particular the TNA remain uninvestigated for LTTE links. Their present chants for re-merger are all aligned to the demands made by racist Tamil politicians and LTTE to carve out a separate autonomous state. The modus operandi has been to play the discrimination card and use well-oiled propaganda from LTTE’s illegal and legal international network to promote it. None of the validity of these discrimination claims have been challenged properly by Governments in power, the Opposition political parties, diplomats, academia, historians or even the media except a handful of patriotic people who have been challenging these claims over the years using the minimal communication modes at their disposal.

Another aspect that we understand very well that smart patriots tend to conveniently overlook by trying to plug events and solutions happening in foreign climes is the caste divisions among Tamils. Sir Ponnambalam Ramachandran considered the leader of Tamil elite objected to Tamil low castes being given voting rights in 1931 and even cobbled 79 village headman to plead against the decision with the British Governor. He even demanded separate carriages to low castes when the railway service started from Colombo to Jaffna. Let us also remind that when SWRD brought the Social Disabilities Act in 1957 the Tamil elite leaders went to the UK to object to low caste Tamils getting education. They were so petty that these Tamil children were forced to sit on the floor and study! Has that changed? Not at all recently even in the UK a group of people were working on institutionalizing caste once more! Even in Tamil Nadu (translated as State of Tamils) where official language is Tamil, culture is Tamil, 99% people are Tamil – 21% of its 72m are Dalit low caste untouchables. So what is this looking after our own talk! The Chief Minister of the Northern Province bragging about his people is reminded that the budget his PC demands is never spent and returns to the treasury while he’s doing tours speaking of discrimination the money allotted for development is not even used!

What we don’t understand is what is this discrimination singalong that is being chanted repeated and given oxygen even by smart patriots.

The Prime Minister recently declared that the new constitution is going to be the answer to the ethnic problem. What is the ethnic problem? We militarily defeated an internationally banned terrorist movement. Who says we suffer an ethic problem and if so what is it? Can we be given in plain language what this ethnic problem is?

The proposals to give autonomy to the North in the form of delegating or decentralizing or call it what you will cannot ignore that the North is just 1 province out of 9 provinces. What is going to be given to the North has to be given to the rest of the provinces which are not even asking for autonomy. Who in the North are asking – its only a group of people who have just over 500,000 votes and who are yet to be investigated for LTTE links. Should we accept their demands given these realities? Moreover, when over 50% of the Tamils are living outside of the North, how can giving ethno-religious autonomy to the North solve an ethnic problem when Tamils are living with the Sinhalese? What is this working around the 13a mumbo-jumbo? To whose whims and fancies or ideologies must the country commit to… numerically? Many Tamils are now coming out to say they don’t want a re-merger of the north and east, they don’t want or understand federalism or confederalism but they do want asbestos sheets to make homes, they do want their children to get education and earn a living, they do want to visit other parts of the country. How many among the Tamils share these sentiments? Well certainly more than the handful of TNA politicians and the smart patriots trying to throw fancy notions.

Yes, we Sinhalese cannot understand what is it that minorities claim to not have. A tour of Colombo will reveal how many Tamils own land, property, residential homes, flats/apartments, shops. Take a list of companies and see the many Tamils in senior roles. Take the Parliament and see the number of minorities being represented. Take the Government holidays to see how minorities enjoy their festivals and even stamps have been issued for their leaders. Go to Marine Drive and see the many luxury buses that go every day to the North from Colombo. Look at the number of kovils, mosques and churches that are coming up regularly and being developed. So what is it they don’t have. Are all Sinhalese rich, are all Sinhalese living affluent lives? Are all Sinhalese being treated specially by law? Count the number of Sinhalese in prison, go and see the poverty scales of Sinhalese … how unfair it is to be projecting a wrong version by even the smart patriots?

Where we are going wrong and we will continue to go wrong is by not identifying what the problem is and who are the problem causers. By giving rule to a bunch of people who have no concern for their own people, we are creating more troubles than we can fathom. All of the solutions being put on the table are to secure the political careers of a handful of politicians and power changing hands among them and the political pundits that promote these solutions.

We gained nominal independence in 1948 and became a republic in 1972 and since then throughout 45 years what have we really achieved? Where have we developed? Who has benefitted, how many have become rich, elevated from poor to middle class etc?

We don’t need solutions that empower politicians to further trample and dilute our freedoms and rights. The present proposals come in not identifying what the problem is – we can’t be creating constitutions only to satisfy a small number of a minority who are controversial figures and not investigated for their separatist intent. We cannot be plugging solutions that are being offered in other countries just because some smart patriots are quoting them to become champions of these initiatives in Sri Lanka.

If anyone says Sinhalese do not understand what the concerns of the Tamils are, we want to have these concerns placed in simple language first. We see no reason to be applying this that and the other when we don’t seem to know what is the problem, who is having the problem, why it is a problem to them and who says it is a big problem when in reality what they claim to be the problem or what people claim to be the solution maybe both wrong!

Reality is – ask a Sinhalese and he will have 101 problems, ask a Tamil or Muslim he will give the same …. can we give solutions to all of these 101 problems?

Therefore, we would like to have very clearly placed answers before we proceed any further with mumbo jumbo talk.

We are not smart patriots – we are practical patriots who will accept Facts & Evidence, therefore place the facts on the table.

Shenali D Waduge

 

10 Responses to “Sinhalese are told that we don’t understand the demands of the Tamils, can someone please explain”

  1. Senerath Says:

    Tamil Man Says,
    Dear Shenali,
    You don’t understand our problems.

    1. Until 1972 our children were able to enter Medical Colleges, Engineering Factulties very easily as Sinhalese were stupid. From 1973 only 1/4th those students could enter those course. How come ?

    2. Until 1965 all our uncles and aunties occupied government jobs and only few Sinhalese managed to get those jobs. After 1965 only 30% of those uncles and aunties could get jobs. How come ?

    3. Sinhalse officials are so corrupt. We cannot get any work done without giving santhosams.

    4. Sinhalese politicians are corrupt and live in luxary. Out Sambandan uncle living like a poor man in Colombo. Why ?
    5. We have to travel so far to Colombo see tall building. why ?

    So many problems , don’t you understand.

  2. Kumari Says:

    Not only Sinhalese even the Tamils don’t understand the demands for them. These are understood only by the Western and Indian Political leaders. Our TNA and Yahapalanaya are helping in the distruction of the country for all communities.

  3. Ananda-USA Says:

    BUNKUM! We Sinhalese understand ONLY TOO WELL what the Tamils WANT!

    That is why we will NEVER GIVE THEM what they ask for for that would spell SUICIDE for us!

  4. Fran Diaz Says:

    Our thanks to Shenali for writing many timely and useful aricles.

    ———-

    We all know by now that it is the 3,000 yr old Tamil CASTE system that is insurmountable for Tamil masses of Sri Lanka. They are trying to solve their CASTE issues by getting Eelam in Lanka. Even a hundred Eelams all over the world will not stop the Tamil Nadu CASTE system, will they ?

    There is NOTHING Sri Lanka can do about any of the LAWS made OUTSIDE of Lanka.
    IN TAMIL SOCIETY, IT IS ALWAYS THAT THE HIGHER CASTES LEAD THE LOWER CASTE PEOPLE.

    All the other problems Tamil folk of Sri Lanka have are same as the problems of the Others of Lanka.

    It would help everyone in Lanka if the call for Seperatism is dropped and the Tamil folk in Lanka become PATRIOTS & NATIONALISTS of Lanka.

    ** Tamil Leaders must call for the removal of the ILLEGAL 13-A **
    Then events will unfold naturally and positively for Tamils and for Others in Lanka.
    Long rejected TRUST will then manifest and inter-communal harmony will result.

    We hope Tamil Leaders everywhere are listening and will pay heed.
    It is up to them to lead the Tamil masses in the right direction.
    We await wisdom from Tamil leaders to manifest, especially the higher CASTE Tamils.

  5. Cerberus Says:

    The whole world was told by the Tamils that they are a minority in Sri Lanka and the majority are suppressing, killing and ill-treating the Tamils. On the contrary, they have more rights in Sri Lanka than in Tamil Nadu as they have Free Education and Health Care in Lanka only. None of the States adjoining Tamil Nadu allows Tamil as a National language. However even though there are only about 9% Tamils in Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka has adopted Tamil as a National/Official language. They get free education, free medical care and are free to live in the South among the Sinhalese.

    Most of these Tamils were Dalits or Untouchables from South India. In India ‘Untouchability’ is an institutionalized form of slavery. If someone is born to the Untouchable caste (now known as Dalits), they have little hope. Their station in life is fixed. In their birth certificates, they have to state their father’s caste. To escape caste many of them have migrated to other countries – a move which is most likely encouraged by India. They are in Malaysia, Fiji, Mauritius, Madagascar, Australia, Canada, Europe, Sri Lanka, South Africa, etc. Sri Lanka is particularly vulnerable to illegal migration since Tamil Nadu is only 12 miles away across the Palk Straits. So by encouraging the emigration of the Dalits from India, the upper caste people have reduced the Dalits the way U.K. got rid of their convicts by sending them to Australia.

    Those in India and the West must look at the Tamil issue in Sri Lanka objectively and realize that there is no real issue. Between Tamil Nadu and Tamils in Sri Lanka they have hyped up between them so-called grievances” in order to create a separate state called Eelam. Creating a separate state for Tamils will be suicide for Sinhalese due to a large number of Tamil Dalits in Tamil Nadu (about 15 Million) dying to get out of that caste-ridden hellhole in Tamil Nadu.

    This is the main reason as to why the Tamils have created issues in Sri Lanka while in all the other countries they migrated to they have been lying low. They are hoping that by creating an issue where there is none, they can justify the creation of a separate state in Sri Lanka for Tamils, which will empower them to import the millions of Tamil Dalits from India and take over Sri Lanka. This method of exporting their unwanted to other countries is also a way by which India has been slowly invading all the countries mentioned above. In case of Fiji, which is another small Island, the current percentage of Indians is 51%. They have banned Indians from migrating to the country anymore.

    These Indians who migrate to other countries also set up shops to sell Indian groceries and the Indian culture. Especially in countries such as Africa where there is no strong culture established the people take to the Indian culture easily and adopt the Indian eating habits etc. As you can see in the world today anywhere you go there are Indian restaurants. Therefore by exporting their Dalits they have also created an avenue for export of their culture and the groceries, which are made in India.

    The question is, do the Tamils have a unique culture in Sri Lanka different from Tamils of Tamil Nadu in India, which is only 12 miles away. We think not. All their books come from South India, most of them import movies from Tamil Nadu, even travel to South India to watch movies, and speak and write the same language as Tamil Nadu, namely Tamil, follow the same religion, food and culture of Tamil Nadu. In view of this what is distinct about their culture and language from that of Tamil Nadu? Nothing.

    During the thirty-year war with the LTTE terrorists, many South Indians came as illegal immigrants to Sri Lanka. It was estimated that about 1 million Tamils left for foreign countries during the period of the war. However, when the Census was done in 2011 it was found that the number of Tamils in the North and East was about the same as in 1981 even though a large number had migrated to the South to Colombo. In fact, the LTTE leader Prabhakaran had stated that about 35% of his fighters were from Tamil Nadu. As you can see illegal migration has been a very real problem from Tamil Nadu as there are about 15 million Dalits who prefer to leave Tamil Nadu.

    Tamil leaders in South India have hyped up hatred against the Sinhalese in Sri Lanka by using the rhetoric that the Buddhists are against the Hindus. Another one – they use is the Ramayana (an Epic poem from Hinduism where Rama is supposed to have invaded Sri Lanka and killed Ravana who was considered to have been evil). They have spread mythology to make the uneducated Dalits believe that their sins are forgiven if they read the Ramayana and if they cross the sea go to Lanka, land of Ravana. The people are so stupid that at one time when M.G. Ramachandran, who was an actor of the Bhagavad Gita characters, used to ride in a cart they would throw themselves under the wheels to commit suicide since they believed Ramachandran was God himself so that if they died under his cart, they go to heaven. Ramachandran was only a poor actor who came from the tea estates of Sri Lanka. The current Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu is Jayalalitha who was a consort of his for a long time. One can therefore imagine the level of ignorance of the people of Tamil Nadu.

    Most of the present day Sri Lankan Tamils migrated from Tamil Nadu during the 19th Century. It was the British who imported indentured labor (virtual slaves) from Tamil Nadu to work the tea and coffee plantations. Since many of them were from the Dalit or Untouchables caste they were grateful to the British for bringing them across the sea waters of the Palk Straits. The Tamil people believe that by going across seawater they lose caste and also gained better social status among their own people. (This is another myth propagated by the upper caste to encourage Dalits to leave India). Many Tamils of Lanka who were earlier servants of the upper castes in Tamil Nadu called themselves Vellala and put themselves as high caste above the low caste that came later to Lanka. All these points show that they do not have a case to show that they have a unique Tamil culture in Lanka. If the culture is really important then they must migrate back to Tamil Nadu where they will be completely at home. The Tamil caste factor is something we do not want in Sri Lanka.

    Possible solutions for Sri Lanka:

    Set up an international independent group consisting of people from the Eastern countries as well as the West to look into the so-called grievances” of Tamils to see they are real and if their request for a separate state is justifiable in a small country like Sri Lanka.
    Set up defense agreements with China and other countries friendly to Sri Lanka to act as a counter against India’s bullying.
    Sign territorial agreements with India and also on repatriation of all the illegal migrants who came in during the last 30 years during LTTE rule of North and East.
    Set up a National Military Service for all men and women between the ages of 18-40 years so that they receive training at least for a year and are then on call in case of need. This is what Switzerland, which is adjacent to Germany, France, and Italy, have done to preserve their security. Our security is now very fragile. If India decides to invade as they did with the IPKF army there is little we can do.
    Strengthen the Navy and patrol the shores to prevent illegal migration from India and other countries.
    Repeal Tamil as a National Language and Official language. It was absurd for SWRD Bandaranaiyake to have given this since Tamils were only about 9%. In all countries where there is a minority, they have to adapt to the majority, not the other way around.
    Repeal 13A and use Districts as the administrative unit instead of the Province.
    Request reparations from India for the damage done by them to the country by their actions to date.
    Request reparations from Britain for the damage they did to Sinhalese and the Buddha Sasana during the period they colonized the country and for the abrogation of the treaty they signed with the Sinhala Chieftains.
    Request reparations from Portugal for the damage done to Sri Lanka and the Buddha Sasana and the conversion of so many at the point of the sword.
    Ban all forced conversions by use of inducements to prevent divide and rule happening in Sri Lanka.
    Set minimum standards or education for all those who run for political office in Sri Lanka.

  6. SA Kumar Says:

    Senerath So many problems , don’t you understand- but We-Tamil have only one problem that is We want TE !!!.

  7. Dilrook Says:

    So what is the solution and who is the solution?

    Certainly not the SLPP which only has devolutionists (Basil and GL)!
    Joint Opposition is also pulled by devolutionists (Dayan, Vasu and communists) towards more federalism.
    UNP and SLFP are also directed by devolutionists.

    A new leadership is needed.

    Sinhalese must made a tough decision not to vote for any of these parties (particularly the ones that boast patriotism) if they cannot shed devolution.

    What happens at every election is a weighing of the two options and vote for the lesser evil. This has failed. What must happen is put down conditions to the lesser evil party and vote only if they agree.

  8. SA Kumar Says:

    Cerberus
    Repeal Tamil as a National Language and Official language – No wonder , We-ALL Tamil thing one day We will get TE in Sinhela Island.

  9. SA Kumar Says:

    Sinhalese are told that we don’t understand the demands of the Tamils, can someone please explain- Please ask Sinhalese .

    The current Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu is Jayalalitha – Man….. she passed away last year .

    walk up, RW is selling piece by piece mother Lanka to India & Western country

  10. Fran Diaz Says:

    Agree that offering ‘DEVOLUTION’ as a cure all has to go from Lanka political party manifestos.

    Also, “We will REMOVE the 13-A” slogan will win votes and winners !

    We have an educated voting public now in Lanka.

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