The Sunday Leader

Wigneswaran Faces Diplomatic Pressure On TPC

by Easwaran Rutnam

Northern Province Chief Minister C. V. Wigneswaran

Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran is facing diplomatic pressure as he pushes ahead with the newly formed Tamil People’s Council (TPC) which consists of Tamil politicians taking a more hardline position on the Tamil issue than the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).

Diplomatic sources told The Sunday Leader that the diplomatic corps in Sri Lanka is not very happy with the TPC and the position it is taking on the Tamil issue.

Some diplomats are expected to meet Wigneswaran over the next few weeks in an attempt to urge him to back the current efforts of the new government to address the concerns of the Tamils.

Among those scheduled to meet Wigneswaran is British Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Hugo Swire.

Sources told The Sunday Leader that Swire will this week have talks with the TNA and then head to Jaffna for talks with Wigneswaran.

Swire is  expected  to convey to Wigneswaran concerns of the UK Government on the TPC and the threat of it taking an extreme line on issues in the North.

The United States and Britain are fairly satisfied with the efforts of the new government on the Tamil issue and prefer the TNA taking the lead role in discussing any concerns or shortcomings with the government since the TNA takes a moderate view on the issue.

“The diplomatic corps in Colombo would not like to see the smooth way things are now proceeding being scuttled by the TPC,” a diplomatic source told The Sunday Leader.

The TPC consists of Tamil politicians and civil society members and was formed as a non-political organisation to put forward solutions to the issues faced by the Tamils.

Among the politicians in the TPC are TNA members Suresh Premachandran and Dharmalingham Sidharthan and Tamil National People’s Front leader Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam.

The TPC has already begun drafting proposals for a political solution to the Tamil issue and had sought the assistance of former Sri Lankan Attorney General and constitutional expert, Shiva Pasupathy.

However, the New Indian Express had reported last week that Pasupathy had rejected outright Wigneswaran’s invitation to join the TPC as his personal representative on the sub-committee on constitutional reform.

Australia-based Pasupathy, who had gone to Jaffna on a private visit, was contacted by Wigneswaran over the phone and requested to be his representative on the sub-committee.

But Pasupathy told him bluntly that he did not think that forming a separate outfit like the TPC was “appropriate” at a time when serious attempts were being made to find a solution to the Tamil question within Sri Lanka and Tamil unity was the need of the hour. Wigneswaran doggedly persisted, but Pasupathy was unyielding. Finally, Wigneswaran hung up in a huff, the New Indian Express quoted sources as saying.

Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) Secretary General V Anandasangaree meanwhile said he was ready to give his full support to the Tamil People’s Council if it converts into a political party.

Anandasangaree says that after realising the urgent situation he got himself engaged in organising a new alliance under the leadership of the Chief Minister of the Northern Provincial Council and offered him his chairmanship of the TULF.

“In the most decent way the Chief Minister expressed the view that this matter can be considered later after all parties get united.  I am repeatedly stressing this due to the disturbing developments taking place in the country and that I could not find any other way to deal with it other than forming a new alliance. I have many reasons for thinking so,” Anandasangaree said.

He says, eventually, without any notice, a few persons had got together to form the Tamil People’s Council by co-ordinating with Wigneswaran.

“I didn’t bother much about it because it is the urgent need at this time,” he said.

Anandasangaree says if the intended alliance led by Wigneswaran had turned out to be a new political party he would have welcomed it as an ideal achievement.

“But even today a satisfactory situation did not develop. An opportunity is given to various people to say that the new organisation will work in coordination with the TNA. Some say that it will not oppose it but will only function in support of it. Such statements appearing in various media has caused a lot of confusion in the minds of the common people. If this is true it will not only prove useless and will not give any benefit but only prevent anyone from finding alternate means,” he said.

Anandasangaree also noted that the Tamil People’s Council has said it will frame a good constitution for Sri Lanka. But he says it is doubtful whether it will be acceptable to the Government.

“In the past various proposals had been placed before the Constitutional Councils many times. Most of them had been rejected by the respective councils,” he said.

Wigneswaran’s TPC has been able to gather the support of Tamils in the North who are seeking immediate solutions to their issues.

Families of Tamil political prisoners yet to be freed had met him last week and urged him to assist them to secure the release of the prisoners.

Wigneswaran had in October written to the President and proposed that all detainees suspected to come under the provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act, but against whom no cases have so far been filed, be released on adequate bail.

He also urged the President to give urgent directions to the Attorney General’s Department and the police to file indictments within a specified period of time. He said that given that several years have already passed it would be reasonable to suggest a short period such as one or two months to file indictments.

A few were subsequently released but others still remain in custody. The issue had over the past few weeks threatened to create a deep rift between the TNA and the government.

However, with the TNA openly welcoming the moves taken by the government on the release of land held by the military the political prisoner issue seemed to take a back seat giving the TPC the chance to take-up the issue and gain publicity.

 

13 Comments for “Wigneswaran Faces Diplomatic Pressure On TPC”

  1. raj

    TNA leadership should not blame Wigneswaran. they should blame themselves for creating political vaccum. Sampanthan along with Sumanthiran and Mavai are running secrect agenda. If trios believe in democracy, they should be transparent to the TNA members and the people who elected them. Tamil people generally suspects TNA leadership since they are out of touch with people since the last election. Tansparency is the important one for democracy. Without transparency, there can be no democracy.

    Brition or US or other countries has not yet condemned war crimes committed against innocent Tamils in Sri Lanka. They can still do that. Just http://www.channel4.com is enough to condemn the war crime. Condemning war is not equal to supporting terrorism.

    • sudarshan

      What about the war crimes commited by Tamils? all LTTE memebers were Tamils and they killed thousands of men, women and children brutally. they they should be brought to justice as well. however at the moment,, most of the sinhalese people are ready to forget about the past and move forward, that is the only thing required by Tamils to have a lasting peace in SL.

      also worth to mention that channel 4 is lying

  2. raj

    Wigneswaran is an honest leader among Tamils. He is honest to the people and the council. Sampanthan and Sumanthiran are running secret agenda. Instead of defending Wigneswaran, Sumanthiran is defending the government members who determined any soldiers even if they committed war crimes. None of the government members ever said that they will punish those who committed war crimes. As Wigneswaran believe, without looking at genocide in Sri Lanka, there can be no real solutions. It is the leaders of the Singhalese leaders to convince Singhalese people to have solution to the ethnic problem. Likewise, it is the Tamils leaders responsibility to convince the Tamil people. If neither cannot convince their people, it will be impossible to find lasting solutions. Wihout justice to war crimes, a solution will not be a solution to Tamil people.

  3. Lanka Watch

    Mr. Wigneswaran CM, NPC was pre warned by the people and eminent Tamils abroad,familiar with the problems confronted by the Tamils, not to form TPC as Tamils need to talk to the govt. with one voice at this time and most importantly
    not to antagonize the International community, mainly India, USA and UK , who
    are actively involved with the govt. seriously to solve the problem for good but
    just as we suspected, UK came out with their objection to forming TPC. and the
    rest will follow. IC is convinced that there is progress towards an amicable
    settlement, though the process is slow and Mr. Wigneswaran’s hue and cry will
    not convince the IC that there is no progress as they are armed with all details. Although Tamils voted this govt. to power, they are more concerned with IC’s pressure as re emergence of Sri Lanka as a democratic country on the political map of the world,depends on the IC, who could make or break up Sri Lanka as what happened during the last regime.

    TNA leadership should be blamed for letting it to go to this level instead of nib
    it in the bud, when attempts were being made to divide TNA as Mr. Wigneswaran himself is a junior member of TNA and disciplinary committee could have done
    the needful.
    Her should realise that only God knows which govt. will come into power at the
    next election and a new constitution embodying basic rights of the minorities
    mainly Tamils is a dire necessity and Tamils should cooperate and support the current moderate govt.to make it a reality. After the new constitution is in place, it
    is doubtful that any party will get a 2/3 majority to make the constitution, null & void.
    and it will safe guard the rights of Tamils, as constitution is supreme.

  4. exey

    Why should the diplomats have a acute hissy fit??
    What have these diplomats ever achieved after 9/11 in this world??
    More wars and even more deaths of 3rd world folk.
    Plus so many US/UK vets committing suicide- Fact.
    Suma and BTF/GTF led the northern voter up the garden path by asking them to vote for BodhiSira who simply ignored the northern voter for JHU Sinha Le!

    They could have vote `no confidence` and by now there would have been an embargo plus hurried negotiations on an equal platform than the stupidity of `deepan pukka lokkata.

    They have the very best weapon to make the stupid lankans listen be they tamils or sinhales or muslim- economic embargo So why not use it??

    NO diplomat/ politician is EVER…EVER well-meaning.

    Its Suman’s bootlegging in his new found glory of having army guards from being a initial thunphai kolla.- make his billions in foreign exchange via the ltte businesses in the uk.

  5. Anandasangaree is a discarded shameless opportunist senile desperate old joker.please do not humilate the Tamils by giving prominence to his utterances. CM Wigneswaran is exceeding his brief. The TNA is and ought to be legitimate representative of the Tamil People of SL.

  6. Peace

    Life on earth is too short and people should live in peace and harmony without hatred towards each other. People have the right to live happily , exercise the freedom , practise their religion , and do what they want as long as it does not compromise the law of the Land. People should never be judged by the language spoken or religion they practise or their sexual orientation. we have to move forward not backwards. there were so many many people among tamils, Sinhala and Muslims suffered so much in the last 60 years. the riots in 1956, 1977, 1983 were horrible for tamils.it was unaccetable what happened. How a human being can hurt another human being. these riots were organized by bad people and they were not punished . In the other hand, hundredes of Sinahala police officers were killed on cold blood by Ltte. Budhists were killed in sinhala areas by Ltte. so many tamil , sinhala leaders were killed by ltte. many many thousands of innocent muslims were ethnically cleansed from North by Ltte .all these were inhuman , unimaginable acts. All our religions teach love and compassion. It is sad what happened for the last 60 years.It is time to move forward not backwards. if tamils think what sinhala feel and expect them to be and sinhala think what tamils want them to be and expect them to be we may be able to find a permanant solution which should come from heart and soul. a) I believe tamils feel they were discriminated so badly for so many many years and require a pemanant solution under united Sri lanka. b)Sinhala want the tamils to be patriotic to sri lanka, there is no compromise on that from them on that. sinhala also want to make sure tamils can not put one leg in sri lanka and another leg in India. i find there is a mistrust here. IF BOTH A AND B CAN BE RESOLVED WE WILL NOT HAVE PROBLEMS. IT NEED TO BE ADDRESED. I REST MY CASE . PEACE TO YOU ALL .I LOVE U ALL.

  7. daggy

    Alright… Wigneswaran is an honest Serpernt among Tamils following in the foot steps of Pasupathy…….
    Sampanthan/Sumanthiral/Mahavi Trio are running behind Emmanuel agenda & the Diaspora. Whay was the discussion and agreements the Trio & backers had with Mongol/Jayanpathy in Singapore prior to Yahapalanaya coming to power????

    The huffed Diplomats were DIPLOMUTS during the 30+ years of war was taking place.
    All the Intl Politicians/Journalists/Diplomuts did was make money and fatten their bank balances at the expense of the Sri Lanka conflict.

    Let us be at peace with ourselves sans provocative statements and action.
    Tamils need to move on the same manner most of them did during the war with the majority community.

    Let bygones be bygones. Lets move on and reach out to one another. War was fought to the bitter end Neither the Diplomuts nor the Catholic Church Or the Politicians wanted it halted.

    There is a thing call the Majority, be it the Population, National Language, National religion practiced in every country.
    Lets follow on those lines and recognise the fact.

    We need to keep those bone suckers of South India away from Sri Lanka’s internal matters and get them to focus on their own issues.
    Yahapalanaya declared its Non Aligned. Then let it be that way. There is much catch up to do with the rest of the World.

  8. punchiname

    The tamils trait of quarrelling is very evident even under such dire times. The more
    they are educated the more they quarrel. Let the TPC keep its goals, BUT they
    must voluntarily compromise with the elected Representatives to reach that
    goal in the quickest possible way.

  9. Esan

    It’s so sad we Tamils still not realised the importance of unity even after paying very his price in terms of lives and property. Ego and personality clashes are given priority over well being of the people. Those who visit vanni and East understand the economic hardship the people there are going through. Hardly anything done by NPC and even by TNA MPs to uplift the living standard of these people. What ever the little things done are by NGOs, INGOs, some group of expatriate Tamils, government and Southern based private companies. While they are working towards a lasting political solution in the medium term, the up lifting the north and east economies should be focused upon. The expatriate tamil community”s interest seen in funding the war was not visible in developing the economy. If they are really interested they should shown the same interest in developing these regions.

    If this trend continues tamil people will turn to the major political parties soon and the Tamils will be isolated again from the international community.

  10. Sangaralingham

    One must be prepared to face all responsibilities with peace love harmony and with happiness

  11. Velu Balendran

    When events like genocide or gross HR violation occur, intervention by foreign govts (like US and UK) in local affairs is considered an expression of humanitarian spirit. (Though we all know that when such things did happen, these very same govts. watched over and gave their blessings in cash and kind). But when they interfere in the local governance, especially in a coercive way, there is no question that it is for their own geopolitical or national interest. Wigneshwaran needs no advice.

  12. daggy

    UK did not willingly come out with an objection to the formation of TPC but they were forced by that rogue priest & the diaspora with him.
    UK is being puppetered by the GTF. To this level UK has sunk & poloiticians for the greed of money and votes.

    What genocide are we talking here? War was fought and one party lost. thereafter, their sympathysers yelling blue murder with genocide rhetorics.
    As long as LTTE was holding sway, there were no genocide when the Muslims & Sinhalese were kicked out of the north.
    NO TAMILS WERE KICKED OUT OF THE SOUTH DURING THE ENTIRE PERIOD OF THE WAR WHETHER THERE WAS ANYTHING ENSHRINED IN THE CONSTITUTION.
    tERRORISTS AND THE PEOPLE WERE PROVIDED, EDUCATION & HEALTH SUPPLIED DURING THE ENTIRE DURATION OF THE WAR..
    What kind of genocide are we referring to here ?

    TNA ought to be the legitimative reps of the Tamils in Sri Lanka. There again I was wondering whether the TNA was not the legitimative Reps of the LTTE whose leader was like Jesus Christ according to that rogue priest Emmanuel.

    Sinhalese squabble all the time and remain dis-united in their entirerity and the Tamils are not aware how much is enough but try to accumilate more and more.
    THE MEDIAN IS BLURRED RIGHT NOW.
    EVERYONE IS GROPING. NOBODY KNOWS HOW TO MAKE USE OF THE PEACE IN A PEACEFUL AND AN EFFECTIVE WAY.
    WE ARE LIKE BLINKERED HORSES..

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