India extends ban on LTTE by two more years
India has issued a notification extending formally the ban on the
Tamil Tigers for another two years, until May 14, 2010, and directed its
Navy, Coast Guard and intelligence agencies to step up vigil along the
Tamil Nadu and Kerala coasts.
The ban on LTTE first imposed in 1992, is periodically extended every
two years as provided under the provisions of the Indian law that seeks
to check unlawful activities. The Interior Ministry said in a
notification that the decision to continue the ban on LTTE has been
taken after taking into several factors.
The turbulence in Sri Lanka is being exploited by the pro-LTTE
forces, in spite of the ban, causing disquiet and threat to the security
of Tamil Nadu. In view of the hostilities between Sri Lankan Security
Forces and the LTTE, vigil has also been stepped up in the 21 islands in
the Palk Straits.
Delhi is of the opinion that LTTE is an unlawful association and
there is a continuing strong need to control all such separatist
activities by all possible means.
The notification said though the LTTE was based in Sri Lanka, it had
sympathisers, supporters and agents on the Indian soil. It said LTTE’s
free functioning in India as an association, if allowed, would be highly
detrimental to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India.
“The LTTE continues to be extremely potent, most lethal and well
organized terrorist force in Sri Lanka and has strong connections in
Tamil Nadu and certain other pockets of southern India”, the Interior
Ministry, the nodal agency under the Prevention of Unlawful Activities
It said the LTTE continues to use Tamil Nadu as the base for carrying
out smuggling of essential items like petrol and diesel, besides drugs
to Sri Lanka.
And noted that LTTE’s objective for a separate homeland for all
Tamils threatened the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India and
amounted to cession and secession of a part of India and thus falls
within the ambit of an unlawful activity.
Delhi believes that LTTE will continue to remain a strong terrorist
movement and stimulate the secessionist sentiment to enhance its support
base in Tamil Nadu as long as Sri Lanka continues to remain in a state
of ethnic strife torn by the demand for Tamil Eelam.
The demand finds a strong echo in Tamil Nadu due to the linguistic,
cultural, ethnic and historical affinity between the Sri Lankan Tamils
and the Indian Tamils in Sri Lanka.
The Indian Interior Ministry has information that LTTE sympathizers
in Tamil Nadu would be ultimately utilised by the Tamil Tigers for
The activities of pro-LTTE outfits and individuals have also come to
notice in India, despite the ban in force and attempts have been made by
these forces to extend their support to the group.
The LTTE leaders have been cynical of India’s policy on their
organisation and action of the State machinery in curbing their
activities. This is also the reason why security establishment opines
that the activities of the LTTE would continue to pose a threat to
At a security review meeting chaired by Home Minister Shivraj Patil
here on Monday, Intelligence Bureau and Central Industrial Security
Force gave a detailed presentation on the threats from militant groups,
especially through sea-route.
The sea route is considered most vulnerable, especially after India
successfully managed to block infiltration through land route and the
focus of the security establishment now is to have more coastal police
stations which can guard ports and vital installations in the
Security agencies have launched round-the-clock monitoring of the
small and uninhabited islands located between the Tamil Nadu coast and
Sri Lanka as they have reportedly become a base for militants.