Pillai caricatured Sri Lanka’s greatest humanitarian rescue of civilians trapped by Prabhakaran
Posted on August 31st, 2013

By Philip Fernando in Los Angeles

Commissioner Navi Pillai’s brief visit to Sri Lanka could only garner a piecemeal assessment of waning recollections of highly biased acquaintances assembled to frame Sri Lanka’s culpability en masse.ƒ”š‚  Pillai thus caricatured the largest humanitarian operation in recent times rescuing trapped civilians running away from Prabhakaran’s human shield. UN is mandated to find verifiable facts and not rely on hearsay, the plain and simple tittle-tattle.ƒ”š‚  The glaring and derisory attempt to be prosecutor, judge and the jury would never pass muster. ƒ”š‚ Recalling 26-year-old war’s collateral damage with all its quirks as a prosecutorial exercise is pitiful.

Pillai should know that the kidnappings began with the JVP insurrection of the seventies. Then Prabhakaran took over robbing banks and kidnapping people as part of the LTTE illegal fund raising apparatus. These activities could be traced as far as the regimes of JR Jayewardene, through R Premadasa, Chandrika Kumaratunga to the current time. ƒ”š‚ To lump all these together as an incisive analysis of reconciliation or lack of it in Sri Lanka is an incongruity unworthy of any fact finding mission. ƒ”š‚ Culpability or blame-worthiness is a much higher norm compared to hearsay.

Prabhakaran’s self-immolating human shield

Those with an axe to grind wasted no time rounding up folks with protracted connections and long tales of war-time activities, but ignored Prabhakaran deceit, treacherously surrounding himself with a human shield. ƒ”š‚ The logistics of the human shield should have been Pillai’s focal point.ƒ”š‚  The LTTE propaganda machine had perpetrated the myth that self-immolation by the civilians (suicide bombers etc.) was due to the belief that Prabhakaran was an avatar of the popular deity Lord Murugan venerated at the famous Kanthaswamy temple at Maavittapuram, close to Prabhakaran’s birth place.
Brutal dispossession of private land

Pillai should not forget Prabhakaran’s brutal dispossession of private land for distribution to so called Mahaveer families, by destroying title deeds. Sri Lankan government has started the identification of rightful owners in view of the competing claims and ventilating the grievances of the dispossessed.ƒ”š‚  It is a fact that Land Commissioner General has initiated action to resolve land disputes of the peopleƒ¢¢”š¬-it is being done as I write.

Those who fled the North under the threat of persecution by Prabhakaran are a legend. ƒ”š‚ Some were chased away as far as Sweden. ƒ”š‚ There were also a large number of army deserters adding an unruly element to the long war scene.ƒ”š‚  It requires detailed fact-finding and separation of facts from fiction for a sound coherent assessment and not a week’s stay of injudicious sight-seeing of a few places in the North and East. ƒ”š‚ Among those missing-in-in action are a substantial number of those domiciled in places like Canada.ƒ”š‚  So the 40,000 number bandied is just a figment of imagination.

Unfair treatment meted out to Sri Lanka

Pillai’s perfunctory foray into a serious subject received ample expose in the Indian press which reported Sri Lanka’s complaint of unfair treatment from the United Nations Human Rights Council as the head of the group neared the end of a weeklong official visit to the country. They quoted what External Affairs Minister G L Peiris thus: ƒ”š‚ ƒ¢¢”š¬…”There is a perception in the country about the lack of objectivity and fairness in the treatment meted out to Sri Lanka.ƒ¢¢”š¬‚ ƒ¢¢”š¬…”The minister added that ƒ¢¢”š¬…”Sri Lanka accepts constructive and justified criticism but resents vicious and baseless positions which are incessantly repeated,ƒ¢¢”š¬‚ the statement said.

Human Rights Council carried on regardless threatening Sri Lanka about allegations of human rights violations by government forces during its civil war. The U.S. and India were among the 25 countries to vote in favor of the resolution, while 13 countries, including Pakistan, voted against it. There were eight abstentions. The 2011 UN panel’s fabricated charge that more than 40,000 people, mainly civilians were killed in the final stages of the war in 2009 had been waved unceasingly without showing any proof.


The counterfeit allegations that civilians were starved in the North were sheer cock-and-bull. ƒ¢¢”š¬…”With regard to High Commissioner Pillay’s reference to the last days of the armed conflict, Prof. Peiris stated that the Sri Lanka military was involved in the largest hostage rescue operation in contemporary history,ƒ¢¢”š¬‚ the statement said. ƒ¢¢”š¬…”It is factually known that the LTTE ruthlessly annihilated people trying to escape from their clutches,ƒ¢¢”š¬‚ it added.

The robust post-conflict development, including steps taken to channel resources to the north seemed undeniable and easily verifiable.ƒ”š‚  Economists have projected the growth rate in the North at 27%, compared with the national growth of 7% during the years 2010 to 2012.

Dismantling high security zones

Sri Lankan government had shown Pillai that ƒ¢¢”š¬…”High Security Zones,ƒ¢¢”š¬‚ apart from one in the northern town of Palaly, have been dismantled and troops relocated to military cantonments and bases, while a program has been launched on private land disputes with the aim of resolving them within two years.

Referring to the process of reconciliation, Prof. Peiris opined that ƒ¢¢”š¬…”the magnitude of the challenges Sri Lanka faces and the brief period of time since the end of the conflict must be given due consideration. While the economic dimension, such as developing infrastructure and livelihoods remain important, other issues are also being addressed by the Government.ƒ¢¢”š¬‚ ƒ”š‚ The Minister stressed the importance of the economic contentment of the people in order for the reconciliation process to be viable and sustainable.

The Minister added ƒ¢¢”š¬…”In order for other related aspects to be addressed enormous amount of resources are being channeled to the North. He added ƒ¢¢”š¬…”there are 225 bank branches and 76 finance and leasing companies that have been established in the Northern Province since 2009.

4 Responses to “Pillai caricatured Sri Lanka’s greatest humanitarian rescue of civilians trapped by Prabhakaran”

  1. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    What I do not understand why Colombo is not engaged with the UN on a sustained campaign to clear Sri Lanka’s name? Colombo should be making this the primary issue to the UN and demand what is being stated in the Lankaweb. Any nation that accuses Sri Lanka of human rights violations must provide ample evidence or be charged if they can be charged of defaming the reputation of a nation, including closing their embassy in Colombo

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    “What I do not understand why Colombo is not engaged with the UN on a sustained campaign to clear Sri Lanka’s name?”

    Colombo has.

    But the UN is PREOCCUPIED with their version and will NOT CHANGE IT.

    Their version is what suits them and their bosses.

    Evidence? Where is evidence of WMDs in Iraq, where is evidence of ASSAD’s forces using sarin gas?

    NO evidence. UN does NOT need evidence to blame a country. They just blame whoever they WANT TO BLAME.

  3. NAK Says:

    Sri Lanka should not be defensive anymore and adopt a more offensive attitude towards those who attack Sri Lanka. For that we need a more robust FM who can ask questions forcefully from those accusers instead of reading a lecture.

  4. Christie Says:

    Christie Says:
    September 7th, 2013 at 3:49 am
    I just got some news from a friend in the island nation. He tried to put a paid advertisement in the Daily News and the Island news papers. The DN Advertising manager refused to publish it even it was a paid advertisement. The Island took it and the money but later refused to publish it and offered to refund the money.

    The ad was a 2 columns by 5 cm:

    ” Navi Pillai; Hon UNHRC You are an Indian colonial parasite from Africa Hence you should keep out of the affairs of the subjects of the Indian Empire”

    The DN is a government run news paper and the Island’s owner Upali Wijeyawardana was blown off by the Indian colonial parasites of Malaysia, agents of the Indian Empire.

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