"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."
 
- Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Selected Writings by Nadesan Satyendra
- நடேசன் சத்தியேந்திரா

The Parliamentary Select Committee Farce

November 1993

[see also Mangala Moonesinghe Parliamentary Select Committee - Interim Report 1992]


The Sri Lanka Parliamentary Select Committee after labouring for more than two years, has not simply produced a mouse. It has also produced a structure to further Sinhala chauvinism's long held desire to divide the Tamil homeland.

The Select Committee proposals contained in a report published during the second week of November, (with a dissent by the Speaker and without the participation of even the Tamil Quisling Groups) denies the existence of the Tamil homeland in the NorthEast of the island.

It seeks to impose a nine province pseudo 'federal' structure on the island - 'pseudo' because according to the Chairman of the Select Committee, the report envisages 'devolution of power' without using the term 'federal in any manifest sense'!

The seven Sinhala provinces in the South will be treated in the same way as the two Tamil provinces in the NorthEast. That in itself is proof enough of the meagre nature of the powers that may be exercised by each province. Furthermore, the dominant Sinhala majority will continue to rule at the centre.

The Select Committee proposals do not address the issues raised by the armed conflict and by the national struggle of the Tamil people.

The Select Committee proposals do not address the underlying causes of the armed conflict and ignores the call of 15 non governmental organisations at the UN Commission on Human Rights in February 1993 that there is an urgent need for the international community to recognise that the Tamil population in the North - East of the island of Sri Lanka are a 'people' with the right to freely choose their political status."

It appears that the Select Committee proposals are in accordance with the oft repeated statement of President D.B.Wijetunga that there is no 'ethnic problem'. It seems that because there is no 'ethnic problem', the Select Committee has addressed some other question, namely the decentralisation of the administration through out the island. Sinhala chauvinism is preparing the ground to legitimise a further genocidal onslaught on the Tamil people.

But it would do well to remember the words of Thamil Chelven, the LTTE political wing leader: ''If the government launches an all out war, it may win Sinhala votes and the Army Commander could safeguard his post for another year. But remember there is the LTTE and there is always an ethnic problem to resolve.''

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