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Identifying legitimate concerns of Tamils

New Delhi, Thu, 29 Jan 2009 NI Wire

In an instant visit to Colombo, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee has put forth India’s priority to address the political aspect of the Tamils while restoring normalcy in the war-ravaged northern areas of the island nation. India has posed a right approach by declaring that New Delhi has ‘no sympathy’ for the LTTE. Government of Sri Lanka, too, has understood the same and been agreed to address the legitimate concern of the Tamil minority with a better political package.

The present stand of both Indian and Sri Lankan government is heading towards a rightful conclusion of the battle against the armed separatist group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has told the visiting Indian minister that military victory has offered a political opportunity for normalcy in north.

India has expressed its readiness to play a major part in the reconstruction of the war-affected areas; however, it is the Lankan government who has to take the lead to win the confidence of Tamil community who has so far bore the burnt of Lankan military strike. LTTE, founded in the 1970s to put forth the grievances of Tamil minority, is now only a terror outfit. Their conflict which was earlier dubbed as an ‘ethnic conflict’ or a ‘liberation struggle’ is now branded as a ‘humanitarian war’ by the Lankan authority. It is quite evident from the present tactic of deflated LTTE forces using innocent civilians as human shields in the war-prone region.

The Lankan authority has also recognised the importance to minimize casualty arising out of a humanitarian crisis prior to any political solution. Mahinda Rajapaksa regime has assured India to implement the 13th amendment to the Lankan Constitution with devolution of power to Tamil region, which is considered as a step forward to end the conflict in the island.

In another positive and interesting development, President Rajapaksa has also extended an open invitation to leaders of various Tamil political parties in India to visit Lanka and see the plight of Tamils borne out of LTTE’s armed conflict. Inviting a political delegation led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and AIADMK leader Jayalalitha, he asked the Indian leaders to persuade the LTTE to lay down arms and join the political mainstream.

Time has come for Tamil Nadu politicians to identify the only political objective of LTTE i.e. the notion of a separate nation, which is at present a distant dream. No doubt, LTTE’s defeat in most of its strongholds put our Tamil politicians on the back foot to recognise the reality in the fundamental and political rights of Tamil community in Sri Lanka and work accordingly to a peaceful resolution of all ethnic issues in a democratic way. There is no rational behind India’s intervention in the right of a sovereign nation to tackle terror.

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