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Parliamentary Elections, April 2010: An opportunity for voters in the North and East

I remember visiting Jaffna in 1997. Local government elections were due. Several leading political figures had been assassinated in the preceding years, some by the LTTE, others by anti-LTTE groups.  In the prevailing climate of fear, the Federal Party had reluctantly submitted nominations for elections for the Jaffna Municipal Council and one or two other […]

Did the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) hand over the North to LTTE?

To one Mr. N. Ethirveerasingam, on a comment he made on an article I wrote (The Commissioner of Elections: A close friend’s critique) and appeared in Groundviews, I responded: “Quite recently I read a paper at an international conference held in Colombo which I wish to summarize having read your comment to understand the political […]

A Reply to Tissa Devendra on Rebuilding Sri Lanka

[Editor’s note: Devanesan Nesiah provides a rejoinder to Tissa Devendra’s vehement response to his article ‘Rebuilding Sri Lanka‘ that was published first on Groundviews and then later in the Island.] The venomous response of Devendra in the Island of 16th March does not merit a reply but I need to set the record straight. As I said […]

The Muslim question and resettlement of Muslim IDPs in post-war Sri Lanka: Two comprehensive interviews

The question of Muslim identity, displacement and forcible evictions during war and their enduring socio-political impact in post-war Sri Lanka is often underplayed in the media and mainstream politics. Muslim IDPs in the East are amongst those who have been in IDP camps the longest, often in conditions no better than Tamils interned in Manik […]

The TNA manifesto and Tamil self-determination in Sri Lanka

Here we go again, or should I say here they come again, or is it here they go again? In an opening scene in the movie 300, based on Frank Miller’s freely rendered comic book version of the battle of Thermopylae in Herodotus’ Histories, Spartan king Leonidas boots an arrogant  emissary of Persian king Xerxes […]

Post-war Sri Lanka: A conversation with Shanthi Sachithananthan

Shanthi Sachithananthan, the Chairperson of Viluthu has been featured on Groundviews during the war. This interview, conducted late 2009 after war’s end, considers significant developments over the course of the year including the demise of the LTTE. Shanthi talks about the need to change the timbre of political interactions between the South and the tamil […]

Rebuilding Sri Lanka

A perceptive and sensitive Sri Lankan has noted; “It is reported that the people of the North, especially in the Jaffna district, have developed a feeling of dissatisfaction, disaffection and contempt towards the people of the South, who post the end of the war are now engaging in pilgrimage and sightseeing related visits to the […]

Interview with Prof. Kumar David

Prof. Kumar David, an electrical engineer by training, regular columnist in traditional print media and a frequent commentator on Groundviews, talks about what’s left of leftist politics in Sri Lanka, the end of war and its impact on Tamil diaspora juxtaposed against th autocratic and essentially one-party rule in Sri Lanka. I also asked him […]

Citizen’s Commission: Expulsion of the Northern Muslims by the LTTE in October 1990

Sri Lanka has been increasingly the scene of much ethnic violence. The Northern Muslims are the victims of the earliest large scale act of ethnic cleansing in our history. Close to 80,000 persons, constituting the entire Muslim population of the five Northern Districts of Jaffna, Mannar, Vavuniya, Mullaithivu and Kilinochchi were summarily expelled from the […]

PRABAKARAN MUST BE LAUGHING

Mahinda Rajapaksa seems to be turning into his one-time enemies. During the reign of terror (bheeshanaya) in the late 1980s, which was started by J.R.Jayawardene and continued by R.Premadasa, around 60,000 Sinhalese were tortured, disappeared and killed by the state. At that time, Rajapaksa collected evidence of these crimes and took them to the international […]

VALEDICTORY FOR A SEASON

The Sri Lankan crisis continues, sourced in and stemming from two major flaws/factors: (i) There is no comprehension that “justice must not only be done, but be seen to be done” and that what is legal in the narrowest sense may not be perceived as legitimate or ethical in the broader sense. The consequences for […]

TNA and the New Era of Tamil Politics: Are They Living Up to the Challenge?

The TNA, the remnant of old politics in the Tamil community has entered a new era. The post LTTE politics has made it possible to create conditions for a democratic culture in the North and East. But the defeat of the LTTE alone will not make it possible to create a genuine democratic culture. The […]

Yes, I am Tamil!

When Weerasena (1) was interdicted And the sun was on fire Above the textile factory Shouting slogans Screaming hoarsely Brother Nadesan(2) At the flaming pickets I was a Tamil When Weere(3) got the job back Riding on the shoulders “Long live brother Nade(4)….!” The victorious king In the victory parade I was a Tamil When Siripala(1) was shot […]

The loud and clear message from the voter turnout and the voters in the North and East

Aachcharya writing from Jaffna I wrote on the 30th of December in a post to Groundviews (and republished in the Daily Mirror) that the assertion that the Tamil people would be deciders in the Presidential election would be a myth. There was nothing brilliant or extraordinary about what I said at that time, but it […]