Northerners should not fall prey to
There was a time when almost the
entire Northern Province was held by LTTE terrorists and not a single
politician or official dared to visit the area. The LTTE not only held
those areas forcibly but ran a virtual de facto state with its jungle
law. The LTTE had its own Tiger courts, police force, administrative set
up, currency and even an air wing with small fixed-wing aircraft under
the direction of LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran, which even bombed
strategic locations in the South.
None of the extremist Tamil politicians who now weep buckets of
crocodile tears over the fate of people in the North uttered a word of
consolation when the Northerners were forcibly held by the LTTE as a
human shield, subjecting them to untold misery.
Those horrendous days are now a thing of the past after the entire
country was liberated from the clutches of LTTE terror following the
2006-2009 battle against terrorism, during which over half a million
people in the North and the East had been liberated during the world's
largest human rescue operation.
No sooner the entire country was liberated, the Government embarked
on numerous mega development projects in the North and the East to
develop infrastructure facilities in the two provinces. Simultaneously,
LTTE landmines were cleared and displaced persons were resettled in
their original homes.
Thanks to the Government's untiring efforts and the contribution of
the Security Forces, displaced persons were resettled much earlier than
anticipated, thereby setting new world standards.
The Government has given preferential treatment to the Northern and
the Eastern Provinces - more than the other seven provinces in a
determined bid to re-establish all what the LTTE had destroyed during
its three decades of terror. The Government has achieved significant
milestones during the past four years as President Mahinda Rajapaksa was
determined to provide people in the North almost everything what they
had lost due to barbaric LTTE terrorism.
Moreover, the Government also held Local Government elections in
those areas. Now that the demining and resettlement of displaced persons
have been successfully completed, the Government is keen to set up the
Northern Provincial Council, for which elections would be held next
Those who point an accusing finger at the Government, including those
international nosey parkers, must first and foremost see for themselves
the incredible transformation that had taken place since May, 2009.
An area which was at one time under the complete control of a bunch
of barbaric terrorists has now been liberated. Thousands of hapless
civilians who had been subjected to untold hardships have not only
breathed a sigh of relief but also given a new lease of life. People who
spent many a sleepless night and sought refuge in the jungles to protect
themselves from the Tiger terrorists, are now living in peace and
harmony with enhanced facilities. Their purchasing power too had gone up
considerably, making a tangible contribution to the national coffers.
On the other hand, over 21 million people who lived in mortal fear
not knowing when the next LTTE bomb would explode are now enjoying the
dividends of peace. These are indeed landmark achievements which no
other country could be proud of.
President Rajapaksa has gone that extra mile by offering the people
in the North an opportunity to elect representatives of their choice to
run the provincial administration. Though many had expressed
reservations that the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) elections would
not see the light of day, the President is confident that it would be an
important milestone in national reconciliation.
There are fears in certain quarters that the NPC power may go into
the wrong hands. But this is purely a matter for the people in the North
to decide on. They have a bounden duty to ensure that the hard-earned
peace is not disrupted under any circumstances.
Certain sinister elements, remote-controlled by some extraneous
international forces, are making a subtle attempt to capture power in
the NPC through LTTE cohorts. They are perhaps under a delusion that
they could democratically achieve what Prabhakaran had failed through
his armed struggle.
In the event these LTTE cohorts, with the blessings of the former
Tiger-proxy party TNA, feel that they could turn the ballots into
bullets, they are sadly mistaken. The Government would never leave any
room whatsoever for any force on earth to derail the country's
hard-earned peace. The peace people enjoy today did not come on a
platter, but rather through the immense sacrifices by the true sons of
our soil. The Security Forces sacrificed their life and limb to liberate
over half a million Tamils from the jaws of LTTE terror and unite the
country. The Government would by no means let those sacrifices be in
vain by exposing the North to a group of LTTE cohorts.
The biggest responsibility devolves on the people in the North as
they have been given the freedom to exercise their franchise. Hence,
they have to weigh the pros and cons before casting their vote at the
forthcoming NPC elections.
The people alone should take a firm decision regarding their future,
a decision that would not boomerang on them and relegate them to that
dark era again. They should not be carried away by radical racists of
the LTTE and dig their own graves.
The manner in which some TNA leaders are conducting themselves is
highly questionable, to say the least. The NPC elections could well be
treated as a referendum, at which Northerners would have to decide
whether they wish to revert to those dark days again. Hence, the
forthcoming NPC election is not merely an opportunity to elect
representatives of one's choice but a landmark decision that determines
their fate in the future.
The TNA's sinister moves are already evident by its leader R.
Sampanthan's statement that the selection of T. Vigneshwaran was due to
pressure by two foreign countries. It is anybody's guess who these
interested parties are.
As the President has said time and again, foreigners and other
countries could not have a greater concern for the people in Sri Lanka
than its own leaders. Hence, the hidden agenda of those, which coerced
the TNA to field Vigneshwaran as the Tiger-proxy's chief ministerial
candidate for the NPC, is crystal clear. People in the North should take
into consideration these factors before they cast their precious votes
at the NPC elections.
People in the North should give a better meaning to the efforts of
the Security Forces who had rescued them in their time of need.
The Government has afforded the people in the North an opportunity to
exercise their democratic right and it's their supreme duty to take a
wise decision in this regard.