Toronto Tamil man held in Sri Lanka

Asoka Weerasinghe King Grove Crescent . Gloucester. Ontario . Canada

June 14, 2008

Editor (Letters)

Having landed in Ottawa just two hours ago after a two week holiday in Sri Lanka, I was amused to read David Poopalapillai’s comment *“Arresting Tamils, it’s a daily occurrence and sometimes they twist the
story”,* in your report *‘Toronto man held in Sri Lanka after electronics, chemicals seized*.” How naïve can Poopalapillai be?

What is ingenuous about Poopalapillai’s comment was that he did not tell Canadians that after the Tamils who have been arrested satisfy the police that they are not part of the serial killers, the Tamil Tigers, they are let go. It is the Tamil Tigers, who are unfortunately from the Tamil ethnic group who got caught in planting the bombs in buses and trains that killed several innocent people and injuring hundreds others near the capital Colombo while I was visiting Sri Lanka.

What Poopalapillai forgets to acknowledge is that the government of Sri Lanka has a right to quell the human rights violations by the Tamil Tigers who have been taking away the right to life of the Sinhalese community with impunity, by catching them before they succeed in exploding another claymore mine or a bomb to kill more vulnerable innocent civilians. So what is wrong with that?

I was stopped five times during my two week stay in Sri Lanka by the army and police at road check points in Colombo; may be that I also looked like a Tamil. But I thanked them every time they let me go as they were doing the job to save the lives of innocent civilians including me who was visiting Sri Lanka.

The bottom line is that these road checks and arrests would not have been necessary if only the Tamil Tigers from the Tamil ethnic community would stop being blood thirsty barbarians in this civilized multi-ethnic Sri Lankan community. The Government is responsible for ensuring the safety of ordinary people from terror, and that is why we Canadians are in Afghanistan fighting the Taliban terrorists to help the Afghanis live a normal life and not being terrorized.

What was also interesting is what I heard from a Colombo-Tamil cabdriver who drove me to the air-port. The conversation went like this - “There are a lot of Tamil people in Canada, isn’t it Sir?” “Yes there are about 250-thousand living there”, I said. “They are no good people Sir. They are the people who send money to the Tamil Tigers to buy weapons to kill, and they don’t understand that we are suffering because of that in Colombo. I am born and bred in Colombo, and all of us in the South do not want Eelam”, was his comment. “Why, have the army and police come to check your house because you are a Tamil?” I asked. “Yes, Sir, they have. But I don’t mind because all what they are doing is to safe guard my two children, one eight and the other three years old.” These comments told me a lot about the Tamil Tigers and their mythical dream of a separate state, Eelam, which the Tamil Diaspora is supporting, while living in safety in Canada. A bunch of cowards, I call them!.

Asoka Weerasinghe


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