Should the government agree to this arrangement, Hisbullah would extend support to Chief Minister Pillaiyan, M. S. Suhair, a councilor who sided with him told The Island.
The majority of the people in the Eastern Province, he said, were Tamil speaking and the subject of education should be assigned to a minister who was conversant with their problems and needs.
Suhair said the Hisbullah group had consulted its supporters in the areas like Valachchnai, Eravur and Kathankudy and the people had asked them to reconsider their decision as their protest could be misconstrued as an attempt to undermine the aspirations of the Tamil people. They had said the rebels must not be seen to be spoiling efforts being made to solve the problems the minorities were faced with.
A large number of elderly supporters of Hisbulla, sources said, had pleaded with him to return to the UPFA fold and work for the Eastern Province, which, they told him, had a lot of unsolved problems.
All Ceylon Muslim Congress Leader and Minister Rischard Bathiudeen said the rebels had contacted him and he would take up the matter with President Mahinda Rajapaksa after yesterday’s Cabinet meeting.