Another external intervention won’t help Tamils’ cause - Opp. NPC member


by Shamindra Ferdinando

The TNA-controlled Northern Provincial Council (NPC) has been warned that even if external powers intervened in Sri Lanka as demanded by the political grouping, that wouldn’t help realise its aspirations.

Opposition member of the NPC and Jaffna District SLFP Chief Organiser, Angajan Ramanathan has cautioned his colleagues against pursuing an agenda detrimental to the country.

Ramanathan was addressing NPC session on March 18 in the wake of a resolution passed by the TNA consisting of the ITAK, EPRLF, TELO, PLOTE and TULF calling for an international probe into alleged atrocities committed by the government and the LTTE.

The Jaffna-based SLFPer said that another external intervention would only aggravate the situation. Such intervention could cause a debilitating setback to the post-war national reconciliation process at a time the country was struggling to recover from a bloody conflict.

Stressing that foreign intervention wouldn’t bring any tangible benefits to any particular community, Ramanathan said that the youth didn’t expect them to play politics with the issue.

The TNA secured 30 out of 38 seats in the NPC with the ruling SLFP-led coalition winning seven seats and the SLMC one.

Ramanathan urged the TNA to review its position on contentious issues and take decisions not inimical to the national interest. The young politician emphasised that they couldn’t afford to push Sri Lanka towards destruction.

Responding to Ramanathan, C.V. K. Sivagnanam, Chairman of the NPC declared the TNA was ready for unconditional talks to pave the way for a political settlement. He ruled out the possibility of joining the proposed Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC).

Ramanathan told The Island that the TNA was making contradictory statements on the contentious issues of political settlement and post-war national reconciliation process. Ramanathan said: "On one hand, the TNA is campaigning for international intervention here by way of UN investigation into accountability issues. On the other hand, it is indicating its readiness to return to the negotiating table. The multi-party alliance must review its position and reach an understanding among them on a future course of action."

The SLFP organiser warned that people with vested interests were working overtime to destabilize the country. The NPC shouldn’t adopt a strategy which would worsen the situation, Ramanathan said.

The SLFPer recalled an example given by NPC Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran to discourage outside intervention. Justice Wigneswaran pointed out that when brothers quarreled it wasn’t right to run to neighbours and to tell to beat up their own family members. Ramanathan quoted Justice Wigneswaran as having said that there was a way to handle family issues and no one cared about family than the family members.

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