Troops poised to capture Periyamadu
last hope of the LTTE to sabotage the process of establishing true
democracy in the Eastern province diminished on Thursday when M.L.A.M.
Hisbullah was sworn in before President Mahinda Rajapaksa as the Eastern
Province Minister of Health and Indigenous Medicine, Social Welfare,
Probation and Child Care Services, Women’s Affairs, Youth Affairs,
Sports, Information Technology, Education, Co-op Development and Food
Supply and Distribution.
The Muslim factions who expressed their dissatisfaction over the
appointment of Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan as the Chief Minister of
the Eastern Provincial Council finally could brush aside the differences
and agreed to join hands with other constituent parties of the UPFA to
run the Eastern Provincial Council.
M.L.A.M. Hisbulla’s decision to swear in as a Minister came at a time
the LTTE was trying to take advantage of the uncertain situation in the
Batticaloa district arousing communalism in the Eastern province. At
least five people were reportedly killed amidst this uncertain
Two Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal (TMVP) members were gunned down
by unidentified gunmen in Kaththankudi town on Thursday who had been
identified as Shanthan, the party’s chief organiser of Kaththankudi and
Parasuraman, a party member.
The victims were riding a motorbike when they were shot by gunmen in
front of the Kaththankudi bus stand around 11.55 a.m. on Thursday.
Two more civilians who were injured in this shooting incident were
also admitted to the Batticaloa hospital. Following the incident, Police
imposed a curfew in the area. Three more killings were later reported on
However, the tense situation that prevailed in Batticaloa has
returned to normalcy with M.L.A.M. Hisbulla expressing his solidarity
with the appointment of Pillayan as the Chief Minister and with his
decision to swear in as a Minister of the Provincial Council.
At last the Government has displayed its ability to bring warring
parties together and form the Provincial Council that can set an example
to the whole world about ethnic coexistence in Sri Lanka instead of the
bad picture the international community is having about the ethnic
conflict in the country.
Yet, it can set example to the whole world by continuing the
administration in the Eastern province effectively enabling all ethnic
groups living in the Eastern province to feel that the authorities
running the Provincial administration are equally treating them.
Despite the LTTE losing its last chance of sabotaging the process of
establishing full democracy in the East, it had not given up the efforts
According to intelligence reports Keerthi, the former intelligence
leader in the Batticaloa-Ampara sector, had sent messages to the Tiger
cadres clandestinely operating in Batticaloa to create a favourable
environment in the Batticaloa district for his arrival.
It was after this message the many killings were reported in the
Batticaloa district including the assassination of several Police
officers in Batticaloa. The authorities in charge of the Batticaloa
district has also been baffled by this situation, as they believe the
incidents that are taking place in Batticaloa had been a result due to
the political uncertainty in the district.
However, intelligence sources had confirmed, that the situation in
the district has been created due to the activities of the Tiger cadres
clandestinely operating in the district, capitalising on the political
uncertainty in the district.
Therefore, the Security Forces and the Police - especially the Police
Special Task Force in charge of security in the Batticaloa district -
will have to make an extra effort to get rid of these Tiger elements
from the Batticaloa district without allowing them to increase their
presence in the district and establish a proper network for their
LTTE base cracked
However the strong message that is springing on the part of the LTTE
from all these failed attempts to sabotage the establishment of full
democracy in the Eastern province. That is that the very basement of the
LTTE has been cracked after the Government’s decision to appoint
Pillayan as the Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council.
It was a severe blow on the LTTE. That has been proved beyond any
doubt by the number of telephone calls received by Pillayan after he was
sworn in as the Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council.
Sources told this correspondent that a large number of LTTE cadres
including Tiger leaders had phoned him with two intentions. Both love
and hatred included in those calls that were received from the one time
fellow members of Pillayan.
A section of Tiger cadres had wished him well for his appointment as
the Chief Minister. At the same time he has also received threatening
calls warning Pillayan that he will soon be assassinated.
However many senior Tiger cadres had called him out of jealousy, as
it was a sore in their eyes to see such a junior LTTE cadre becoming
Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council.
The brief sketch of Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillayan
given elsewhere on this page will give a brief idea as to how he climbed
to this position after joining the LTTE as a young Tiger cadre.
It was true that these senior Tiger cadres had been deeply upset to
see Pillayan in his western attire taking oaths before President Mahinda
Rajapaksa, but many of the Tiger cadres have expressed their willingness
to join hands with the TMVP after observing the position that Pillayan
is now having.
However it has now become a very difficult task for the TMVP to
identify those who are genuine about joining with the TMVP and the Wanni
cadres who are with the ulterior motive of assassinating Pilleyan.
Therefore, the TMVP leader will also have to follow strict security
measures, like Social Services Minister Douglas Devananda, to protect
from the threats from the Wanni LTTE cadres who are coming to him as
Therefore, extreme vigilance has to be maintained in the process of
handling personal security of the Eastern Province Chief Minister as he
is the key figure who can throw a challenge to the LTTE at present in a
bid to convey a positive message to the Tamil population entrapped under
the iron boot of the LTTE that they too can enjoy the same rights once
they are liberated from the Tiger grip.
As the process is on full swing to establish full democracy in the
Eastern province to give the true feeling of liberation to the people in
the East, the Security Forces are now turning their military strategies
into action to further paralyse the LTTE outfit now entrapped in
Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi districts.
The sudden death of Balraj, the Military Wing leader of the LTTE, on
Tuesday came as another severe blow on the LTTE, which had suffered
enough with the lost of their leaders due to offensive operations by the
Balraj who was born on 27 November, 1965 was a member of the 9th
batch of the LTTE along with Theepan, the present LTTE Military leader
in Jaffna. Balraj had heart surgery in Singapore in 2003. The present
Army Commander Lt. General Sarath Fonseka and Balraj fought during the
Yaldevi operation in early 1990s and both sustained injuries.
Destiny was that the Army Commander even survived a deadly suicide
attack but Balaraj could not even survive from a heart attack after
having best treatment in Singapore.
According to the LTTE the funeral of Balraj was held on Friday
evening in Mullaitivu with the participation of several Tiger leaders.
It was amidst people preparing for the funeral of one of their top
leaders that the LTTE announced the killing of 16 civilians in
Mullankavil in Kilinochchi. Though the Sri Lanka Army’s Deep Penetration
Units were blamed for this claymore attack on the van, the Army denied
any involvement in the attack.
The LTTE media machinery is in full swing to capitalise on this
incident highlighting the deaths of these civilians to tarnish the image
of the Security Forces and justify their brutal attack on civilian
targets in the South.
With this background chances are very high for the LTTE to take
another civilian target in the South in retaliation. The LTTE is engaged
in this false propaganda highlighting the civilian victims even due to
air raids as their movements are highly restricted with effective
targets taken by the Security Forces.
At this point the Security Forces have been able to restrict the LTTE
supplies to the Mannar and Vavuniya battlefronts cutting off many of the
supply routes from Kilinochchi.
Troops operating in the Vavuniya front had shifted their operations
to the Mullaititvu district close to the Mannar-Vavuniya border. The
troops of the 57 Division are now poised to capture Periyamadu as they
have cut off all supply routes to Periyamadhu.
However, troops are expecting a severe resistance from the LTTE due
to the importance of this strategic location, which they used to locate
their long-range heavy caliber guns to pose a major threat on the
Security Forces operating in the Vavuniya and Mannar fronts.
With the expansion of the area coming under the 57 Division, the Sri
Lanka Army is now in the process of forming the 61 Division to back up
the task of the 57 Division, which is functioning as an offensive
division in the West of the A-9 road.
The basic idea of the formation of the 61 Division is to hold the
ground captured by the 57 Division enabling them to further advance into
the Tiger territory.
Therefore the 61 Division is expected to form as a defensive
Division, most probably under the command of Major General Davulugala,
who acted as the Acting General Officer Commanding of the 57 Division
and 58 Division in the absence of the 57 GOC Major General Jagath Dias
and 58 GOC Brigadier Shavendra Silva.
The formation of this new Division will be another step forward by
the Sri Lanka Army to achieve its objective of bringing the ongoing
battle in the Wanni to a turning point. As claimed by the Army Commander
Lt. General Sarath Fonseka to bring the North East war into a turning
point where the LTTE is pushed into the jungles of Wanni by August this
year, is becoming a realistic one as Security Forces are achieving this
task in a step by step process.
So far the Security Forces has not faced with a human resource
problem as it got the highest number of army recruits to all its
Regiments within the last year and within this year. Therefore, the
formation of new Divisions will not be a problem for the Army.
According to latest statistics 9,000 Tiger cadres so far have been
killed after the break out of the fourth Eelam War with 1,700 Security
Forces personnel sacrificing their lives.
The current progress of the war predicts that the LTTE will soon have
to face a decisive phase of the battle in the Weli Oya battlefront as
troops have already advanced nearly seven Kilometres into the Tiger
territory from the Weli Oya front.
They are now reaching towards the famously known 1-4 Base of the LTTE
located in the Mullaitivu jungle close to the Nityakulam tank. Heavy
fighting are expected in this region with the troops reaching this
strategic LTTE bases in the Mullaitivu district.
With the fall of key LTTE locations after a long and arduous task by
the Security Forces in the Mannar and Vavuniya front, the task of
bringing the war into a turning point is becoming more and more
From terror outfit to mainstream politics
Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillayan had his own way to
politics and to become the Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial
Council. The very roots of Pillayan lie in the Batticaloa district to
which they wanted a separate leadership, distancing from the Northern
Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan was born in August 18, 1975 in a small
village called Pethalai, in Kalkuda, Batticaloa. His father
Sivanesathurai Arumugan (62) and his mother Sivanesan Kamala (52) are
still living to see his son’s achievement.
Chandrakanthan was the second among the seven children his parents
had. Suresh Kumar (35), Sugandhi (32), Chandrakanthi (29), Meena Lakshmi
(27), Sugandan (30) and Kumar (28) were the other members of his family.
Chandrakanthan had his education at Pethalai Vipulananda Vidyalaya
and Valachchenai Hindu College. At the age of 15, as a young boy
enjoying his days in the beaches in Kalkuda, Chandrakanthan joined
Karuna Amman who was the Eastern LTTE leader in Batticaloa.
Having undergone military training under the LTTE, he joined Karuna
Amman for the Pooneryn Battle in 1993. Since then he had participated in
all the major battles along with Karuna Amman.
When Karuna Amman defected from the LTTE on April 3, 2004 Pillayan
was also with him. The Tiger leader Prabhakaran declared war against
Karuna cadres with the political backing from the South.
As the cadres under Karuna Amman were entrapped in the Verugal Aru
bordering Trincomalee and Batticaloa district, Karuna Amman summoned all
the Tiger cadres under his command to Meenam Base in Thoppigala and
allowed them to leave the organisation.
But Pillayan did not leave the organisation and continued to work
along with Karuna Amman. He became the leader of the Karuna faction’s
military wing after Regie was assassinated. In May 2007, Pillayan
distanced from Karuna Amman and shifted to the Trincomalee district.
On November 2, 2007 a group led by him captured the Batticaloa office
of the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal and became its leader. Since then
he is following the foot steps of democracy with the backing of the
present Government and contested the Eastern Provincial Council election
held for the first time after 1987 to become the Chief Minister.