Sunday Observer Online
Ad Space Available HERE  


Sunday, 11 January 2009





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Kilinochchi - LTTE’s ‘Waterloo’

An interview with TULF President V. Anandasangaree:

Tamil United Liberation Front leader Veerasingam Anandasangaree represented Kilinochchi for more than a decade in Parliament since 1970. It was during his period in 1977 Kilinochchi was established as a separate district. He described that LTTE’s `jungle law’ prevailed since 1995 in Kilinochchi with its police and courts until the region was liberated by the Security Forces with the dawn of 2009.

The TULF leader while praising the gallant soldiers liberating Kilinochchi, recollects his days in the region which he calls the `region of reservoirs’. Here the excerpts of the interview with V. Anandasangaree:

Q: How did you feel when you first heard the news that the Security Forces had regained your former constituency Kilinochchi from the clutches of the LTTE?

A: I was extremely happy. I represented Kilinochchi for more than a decade in Parliament since 1970. Prior to that I served as the Chairman of the Town Council of the region. So I played an important role in developing Kilinochchi.

Therefore, now I am very happy to see that my electorate is now liberated from the barbarians-the LTTE. I believe the Security Forces will soon rescue my people from the areas where they have been virtually imprisoned and used by the LTTE as human shields.

Q: Having represented Kilinochchi in Parliament for a lengthy period how do you describe the region?

A: In the year 1960 Kilinochchi was established as a separate electorate. Until then the area was part of the Chavakachcheri electorate. I was elected for the first time as Member of Parliament for Kilinochchi in 1970. The late K.P. Ratnam and the late V. Kumaraswamy were my predecessors the Parliamentarians for Kilinochchi.

In 1977 Kilinochchi became a separate district.

Q: How do you describe the development activities that were carried out in Kilinochchi?

A: There was hardly any human settlement prior to the early sixties. Affluent people from Jaffna had their paddy lands in Kilinochchi. Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan had 100 acres of paddy land in Kilinochchi and it was from the income gained from those paddy lands that he managed his educational institutions Parameswara College (Now the University of Jaffna) and the Ramanathan Ladies College in Jaffna.

It was during the British period that the giant Iranamadu tank was built and several other reservoirs were renovated for cultivation. The British also initiated the colonisation schemes by bringing people from outside Kilinochchi.

Industrial activities were launched with the chemical factory in Paranthan. This factory which was setup in the mid fifties provided job opportunities for hundreds of youth.

Salterns in Elephant Pass and Paranthan were also functioning effectively. As sugarcane was cultivated in the region there was a factory which produced jaggery.

Q: How did education fare in the area?

A: There was nothing significant as far as education was concerned. Teachers from the outstations were reluctant to serve in the area as it was considered a difficult area. There were around 70 schools. There was also a Sinhala school.

However with the initiatives taken during my period as Parliamentarian vigorous efforts were made in restructuring the educational setup in Kilinochchi. For the first time in 1983 a girl from my electorate entered the university for the arts stream. Thereafter, there were students entering universities for other streams as well from Kilinochchi.

Q: How were the links between Kilinochchi and the South during your period?

A: It was enormous. The `Kilinochchi Pola’ (market) was very popular among people from the South. Even from Galle, Matara and various other parts from the south people came to the Kilinochchi Pola in lorries.

The Kilinochchi market remained a hub linking the North and the South. The Southerners purchased chillies and onions along with other agricultural products such as grapes and mangoes from Kilinochchi.

Even I had a vineyard of 20 acres in Kilinochchi. On the other hand the southerners brought pepper, pineapples and other agricultural items produced in the south.

Furniture and handicraft made in the South were also brought to the Kilinochchi market. People came from South to the Kilinochchi pola, went deep into the hamlets in Kilinochchi and there was good rapport.

There were bakeries and shops run by the Sinhalese in Kilinochchi. A significant number of Sinhalese was serving in the Government offices in Kilinochchi, Paranthan chemical factory and the salterns in Elephant Pass. There was a Sinhala school and a Buddhist temple in Kilinochchi.

Q: What could you say about Elephant Pass and Pooneryn the areas, part of Kilinochchi electorate?

A: Army camps were put up in the late fifties in Elephant Pass and Pooneryn to stop illegal immigrants entering the Jaffna Peninsula and Kilinochchi areas from South India.

Therefore, the Pooneryn and Elephant Pass army camps had a very few men and they were on the look out for illegal immigrants and smuggling. However, after militant activities began in the north, the strength of the Elephant Pass and Pooneryn camps were increased with more men and machinery.

Q: How do you see the fall of the LTTE in Kilinochchi?

A: The law of the jungle prevailed in Kilinochchi for almost fifteen years with the outfit establishing its own administration with its police and courts. The LTTE took Lankans and the international community for a ride for more than a decade from Kilinochchi. Ultimately Kilinochchi became their `Waterloo’.

Q: You visited Kilinochchi when you were in the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) and met LTTE leaders. How do you describe the meetings you had with them when the Ceasefire Agreement was in place?

A: In fact as the head of the TNA then I thought I could play an important role pushing them more towards the political mainstream and go for a political settlement.

However, with my early meetings with the LTTE leadership I realised that they were trying to use the TNA to carry out their own agenda. I did not find anything healthy with regard to their political stance and made a timely decision to keep away from the outfit.

Q: What do you think about the ban on the outfit by the Government?

A: The LTTE dug its own grave. They had enormous opportunities to do constructive things politically. But they lost all the opportunities which came to their doorsteps. Now they pay for the sins they committed.


Gamin Gamata - Presidential Community & Welfare Service
ANCL TENDER for CT Machines with Online Processors
Donate Now |
LANKAPUVATH - National News Agency of Sri Lanka

| News | Editorial | Business | Features | Political | Security | Spirit | Focus | Sports | World | Junior | Letters | Obituaries |


Produced by Lake House Copyright © 2009 The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd.

Comments and suggestions to : Web Editor