A (13-A) dilemma: How can you unite by dividing? Part 1
Posted on January 4th, 2021

C. Wijeyawickrema, LL.B., Ph.D.

Tamil-speaking people, after the defeat of the LTTE, see the Provincial Councils as an adequate sharing of power, given some minor modifications that were acceptable to them at the APRC, within a single unitary state.” LSSP communique issued by Tissa Vitharana, Island January 3, 2021

I delivered Sri Lankan Tamils more rights than what Tamils in Tamilnad enjoy; That Island is now like Bhutan.” Rajiv Gandhi, boasting at the Chennai airport, returning from Colombo.

We need King Pandukabhaya (437 BC-367 BC) in 2021 AD!

After, the retired geography professor Dr. G. H. Peiris penned an essay, discrediting the use of province as the spatial unit under the 13-A, three other essays appeared, not about the size of a PC unit, but about why the PC death-trap should be exhumed. Austin Fernando, Nirmala Chandrahassan and to some extent Rajan Philips, all wanted the new Romesh de Silva committee to take the path proposed by Chandrika-GL-Neelan-Jayampathy Package Deals in 1995-2000, reinforced by the APRC majority report and further refined (strengthened) by the Orumittanadu one of Ranil-Sumanthiran-Jayampathy, during 2015-19. Encouraged by an unexpected boost, ex-APRC boss, Tissa Vitharana, issued a press release, under the title, PC polls should be held ASAP.

The lady and the three gentlemen know, this is the last chance to achieve what Prabhakaran could not deliver by the bomb. They are taking the balkanization path. For those who elected a non-politician as President and gave him a two-thirds majority demolishing the myth of king-making role of the minority parties under the JRJ-R.Premadasa PR system, the Romesh de Silva Committee is the last chance to correct the mistake made on May 19, 2009 by MahindaR, in failing to abolish 13-A by a war proclamation, implementing the recommendations of the Report of the Commission of Inquiry on Local Government Reforms, 1999 (the Abhayawardhana Report).

Yes, Tamil hostages freed by MahindaR called him, Our King,” weeping in front of video cameras. But, as PM he is still holding the tiger’s tail, despite the sacrifices of those like the Hasalaka Hero, and Gotabhaya’s destiny now as the President is to slain the tiger for a second time, because, last time, according to the tiger agent Erick Solheim, he (Gota) was the only high-level official in government who said, that this war IS winnable.” The country and its people, Tamils, Muslims, Sinhalayas and all others, could be saved if he plays the role of Arjuna, in the Bhagwat Geetha, overcoming the buttering attempts by a so-called list of Tamil Moderates. After all, it was the Sri Lankan-born Michael Roberts, the owner of the Thuppahi’s blog in Australia, who uncovered, after prodding by Jane Russell in London, that a moderate Tamil can also be a Tamil Eelamist [when the time is right and ripe]!

Mismanagement and the Tragedy of the Commons

Jack London, the research author of the detective book, The people of the Abyss,” (1903, 14 years before the Russian Revolution), was puzzled when he saw slums amidst the mansions in the East End of London, the center of the British Empire that the sun never sat. His diagnosis was it was due to sheer mismanagement, same disease that Ceylon/SL had been afflicted since the 1930s. It is double-jeopardy, when the black-white politicians treated the island as a common pasture to exploit for personal gain today, leading to the inevitable public ruin tomorrow. Everything and anything they touched, abuse and destruction of physical resources, to central bank robbery, to selling harbours, to bribes and commissions from projects, ended up, thus, as more burden on the shoulders of the people.   The whole island has become a huge nine pieces of pasture for exploitation after the nefarious 13-A.

Mythical Tamil Homeland

With the Bhoomi Puthra Movement growing, Chelvanayagam had to leave Malaya (like those who had to leave East Africa in the 1960s), and, according to his son-in-law, A. J. Wison created a myth of a homeland in the Eastern Province, because NP was not big enough to be a Kosovo-type Tamil Country. Despite, that the true Tamil Homeland is Tamilnad, Ceylon has become the easy target, a prime real estate for a Tamil country with a UN seat and an Eelam flag, due to the favorable climate of Sinhala black-whites’ partisan politics. From the minutes of a confused Hugh Cleghorn (June 1, 1799), to Vigneswaran’s claim recently, that the Island had been blessed with five SHIVA LINGAMs brought during pre-historic times (Colombo Telegraph, October 1, 2020), the homeland myth has grown now to an Eelam Lebensraum, engulfing the entire Sinhale nation.

This kind of lunacy is different from the delusional behavior that SWRD attributed to SJVC in a Parliamentary debate (Hansard vol 31, June 3, 1958 cols. 244-5). Finally, SJVC passed it on to the boy Prabhakaran, by garlanding a statute of Sivakumaran in 1975, who committed suicide after a failed assassination attempt on a superintendent of police. Vignesh is now lecturing to clueless MPs that the Ides of March is around the corner, his hope for a reverse Nandikadal in Geneva in March (Colombo Telegraph, December 9, 2020). American administration (not American people) facing humiliation from Gotabhaya for a second time with the rejection of the MCC- trap (first humiliation was when American agents, British and French foreign ministers, made an attempt in April 2019, to rescue Prabhakaran to an American ship waiting outside Trinco harbour), must be lurking in the dark for an incident like a Sharia-based Muslim uprising so that the UN forces have an excuse to land in the island with the newly designed R2P weapon. Silence so far on what has happened to the cellphones (digital data) of the April 21 Easter Sunday bombers, that the FBI agents took with them worries everybody.

The Sinhale nation is facing two threats, the Thesawalamai-homeland-Orumittanadu- Eelam threat, and the Sharia Muslim villages located all over the country in systematic fashion, using Arab dollars and the womb as a weapon. Purposely isolated these villages also have one or more mosques, equipped perhaps with swords to cut grass on the adjoining cemetery ground. For example, Kattankudy town has mind-boggling number of mosques.

Rajiv Gandhi was able to get constitutional recognition to the homeland myth, and 13-A was the legal manifestation of it. Therefore, as long as, 13-A remains as the law of the land, and with the Supreme Court deciding  that 13-A has converted Sri Lanka into a federal state, Sinhalayas are living with the danger of the country succumb to balkanization sooner or later. Hence, the black-white Sinhala politicians are like the proverbial crabs playing inside pot of water warming slowly on low flame. While teaching children Sinhala and Tamil, so that Tamil separatist politicians cannot fool Tamil masses with genocide tales, the homeland myth must be eliminated by removing the opportunity to talk about it as a propaganda base. This was what the APRC minority report said, and it was what Prof. Tissa Vitharana himself said then in 2006 to news reporters: that political divisions should not be based on language or religion.

What is then the rational, reasonable, scientific, equitable, just and the Buddhist solution? Just like the eye cannot see the eye (unless before a mirror?), all kinds of stories about 13-A, miss a basic solution available, a kind of panacea for all ethnic ailments. Apparently, the King Pandukabhaya, knew this according to the great chronicle, Mahavamsa. Like the Baseline Rd., the straight line used by the British to survey the entire island, King P, surveyed the island (populated areas?) and marked the boundaries of all villages and local chiefdoms to bring them under one unifying flag. The Gamsabhava became the vehicle of governance, with the socio-economic-political Trinity, the village-water reservoir- and the temple.

Solution:

Re demarcate the 14,000+ GSN units, the lowest civil administration agency, using natural boundaries. Like in New Zealand, where the use of river basins as boundaries for its lowest administrative units is constitutionally mandated, we have 103 river basins as a base for this exercise.  In USA and Canada, river basin and groundwater management districts cover the entire landscape, with strict sets of regulations.

Province or District?

R. Premadasa increased the number of 4,000 GSNs to 14,000, and a natural boundary demarcation will reduce this arbitrary number significantly. Once this is done, they could be combined to decide what should be the spatial extent (size) of political unit desirable, and acceptable to all.

Empowerment of people at the village level

13-A PCs failed to empower people. It only created a new tier of resource-robbing local political crooks. Therefore, to decentralize governmental power, meaningfully, to people, new GSNs with Natural Boundaries should be used as the third- level or second-level political unit (If the existing 340+ local government units (pradesheeya sabha, p.s.) are rearranged combining new natural GSN units, each such GSN unit could function as a ward of a p.s.)

Tamil Aspirations

The private needs and wants of Tamil, Muslim and all other communities could be realized at ward level (or as Jana sabha) or at p.s. level. But a public aspiration for an Eelam balkanizing the Sinhale is out of the question. See the map printed in 1986 by the International Alert above, to understand the ultimate dream of the Eelamists (note that the map did not even care to name the Sinhala portion allowed). Wigneswaran’s dream published in 2020, has a target of covering the entire island with his lunatic theory based on the five Siva lingams.

But by creating language-blind and religion-blind GSN units, the mindset of a Tamil homeland in the island is blocked, and the Sinhale fear of a larger Tamil spatial unit trying hide and seek games with them is erased. For example, if a crazy p.s. decides that it does not want a new Buddha statue within its jurisdiction as part of promoting its Arumuga Navalar type of Hindu culture, it is not like an aspiration to stop southern fishermen migrating seasonally to the east coast or Wigneswaran’s slogan, we do not want coconut toddy in Jaffna” (the latter issues will come under the national economic policy). The balancing act will happen when a southern p.s. decides to ‘retaliate’ with request to build new Hindu kovils. In a truly democratic climate, the conflict will

end when anti-Buddhist elements realize that 15-20% of the sacred space of a Temple is devoted to Hindu gods and goddesses (do you remember the Gurukanda Vihara case?)

How can you unite by dividing?

The title of this essay comes from an actual incident. A friend of mine had to explain his white American friend the Tamil problem in Sri Lanka. Due to mismanagement of the foreign service system in Sri Lanka, people outside think that Tamils are discriminatorily treated by a Sinhala government. While listening to my friend’s long explanation, when the 13-A arrangement was disclosed, his American friend stopped him and asked point blank, the question above.

Federalism is a political marriage. If husband or wife has a paramour, and to save the marriage one with the lover wants to leave the bedroom and move to the annex which has separate entrance etc. would that marriage survive?  This is exactly what the federal option means in the Sri Lankan context. Federalism is a friend if it is based on friendly circumstances and a friendly environment. The past since 1921/4, recent past from the 1980s to 2009, and the present from the Wignesvaran days beginning 2013 had been a sore tale of misery, betrayal, and distrust. Any attempt to take the 13-A federal path is just a vain effort like feeding a cancer to cure it. This why I say SLPP ministers and MPs badmouthing about the virtues of 13-A are idiots.

Because of the statement by Tissa Vitharana promoting his APRC majority formula, another essay is needed to set the record straight.

One Response to “A (13-A) dilemma: How can you unite by dividing? Part 1”

  1. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    13, 13A are to please tamils, mussies and india and break up the country. Traitor alugosuwa (to Sinhalese
    Buddhists only) thambi mudiyanselage jr@ introduced them under pressure from india. Traitor jr@ and GooandPee
    aka UNPatriotic_rats made our country a colony of india.

    Only thing jr@ had to was make a call to Russia or China at the time. Because it was so principled deshapaluwa, it
    didn’t bother. The reason for that was Sirima aligned us with the Russians so the thambi mudiyanselage jr@ had
    to toe the american/indian line. We have to understand indians have Sri Lankan tamils welfare at their hearts in
    order to secure tn support back home. Sinhalese? Who cares? That’s the simple truth. For being out and out
    traitor, just like its equally treacherous nephew, traitor alugosuwa (to Sinhalese Buddhists only) die hard catholic token Buddhist Batalande wa(n)dakaya Pol Pot r@ni_leech wickrama Sinhala killer, jr nana didn’t have to think
    twice and implemented whatever india asked.

    Our deshapaluwas (patriotic only of course) should take a leaf out of Taiwan. Taiwan under constant pressure
    from China to accept their will on them. But they are sticking with america for protection. That’s what Sri Lanka
    has to do. Stick with China. Close to home and these days nobody messes up with China including india. Even
    recent skirmishes in india/China borders, india kept secret even though they were the losers since getting into
    a fight with China not going to end up with a win. That’s all we have to do. Get the Chinese involved more!
    India will fade quietly into background.

    Chinese have no obligations to never happy, never enough, never Sri Lankan, ever south indian, never grateful, never a good word tamils and we all can live happily ever after. By the way, why so unhappy traitors still here.
    Mr Modi asked all indians to come home. Without getting ready to kill the Sinhalese and have their drealam, why
    not pack up and go! We didn’t bring a single tamil or mussie to our country. All the parties will realise it’s the best solution to head for where they came from, and where their hearts and minds are to avoid eternal bloodbaths
    in our country in the long run!

    Or Sinhalese should petition the Government to send these ungrateful, undesirables who are getting ready kill
    us all to have their drealam and mussisthan! Do it now!

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