Monday, August 15, 2005
Assassination of Lakshman Kadhirgammar
The assassination of the Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadhirgammar has shattered the peace in Srilanka yet again. Hope this doesn't drag the country back to civil war. Nevertheless its a terrible loss to Srilanka particularly to the Tamils. It further pushes them to accept the LTTE as their sole voice. Indeed one of the greatest tragedies of the Lankan Tamils has been the lack of alternate leadership. LTTE has seen to it that any Tamil leader worth a standing is eliminated. Its not official as yet whether LTTE killed kadhirgammar but that hardly makes a difference. Kadhirgammar joins the list of Amirthalingam, Neelan Thiruselvam, Sivasithambaram etc who were eliminated simply because they didn't toe the LTTE line. Not to mention the scores of other armed groups like TULF, EPRLF, PLOT and TELO that were eliminated by the LTTE. Incidently the leader of TULF, Padmanaba was assassinated only a few streets away from my home in Chennai! Looking at the broader picture, even if the present truce survives and there is a peace accord between the LTTE and the Srilankan government, will that be acceptable to all concerned? Certainly India won't be so cool to the idea of having the LTTE run a semi-autonomous government in Ealam. But with a disastrous IPKF history and the ghosts of Rajiv Gandhi assassination behind, India is hardly in a position to dictate terms of the peace accord. But alteast it doesn't prevent me from daydreaming! I believe India should push the Srilankan government to share power with the Tamils and then join hands with it to crush the LTTE. I believe its indeed possible to wipe out the LTTE if the two governments come together. I'm sure the Tamil people will also be willing to do away with the LTTE in return for peace and a just settlement. The power sharing could be on the lines of 15-25% reservation for Tamils in Federal Military/judiciary/Legislature. Besides two states can be created one comprising the North and the east and the other comprising the rest. These states should have separate governments similar to the state governments we have in India. This will ensure that the Tamils get to run their affairs in this "Tamil-Ealam" state but also have a fair representation at the national level. The southern Muslims should also be accommodated appropriately. But as I said I'm only day-dreaming!