TESO meet: Karunanidhi charge against Lankan Army
>After getting court clearance, the TESO meet organized by DMK chief M. Karunanidhi had a smooth start at Chennai YMCA grounds on Sunday evening.
Seeking to inject life into the defunct Tamil Eelam Supporters’ Organisation, Karunanidhi on Sunday charged the Sri Lankan army with running a “state of Emergency” in Tamil areas. He also said a long-term solution to the Tamils issue has to be a political one. The plight of Sri Lankan Tamils was linked with human rights and dignity, which required short-term, medium-term and long-term solutions, Mr. Karunanidhi told a conclave ahead of the pro-Eelam international TESO meet called by him.
Eelam signifies the separate nationhood concept from Sri Lanka, the core of armed struggle by the now decimated LTTE, which is not in line with India’s stand on the issue. “The nations of the world are very much worried over the pre- and post-war developments in Sri Lanka. The problem with Eelam Tamils is a problem linked with humanitarianism, human rights and dignity of human beings,” he told a conclave of the ‘Eelam Tamil Livelihood Rights Protection Conference.’
“It may be painful to note that the Sri Lankan military runs a state of Emergency in Tamil areas. It is also distressing that intimidation in the routine life of Tamils has increased after the recent (US-backed) resolution in Geneva (in the UN Human Rights Council) asking Colombo to promote post-war reconciliation,” he said.
Despite condemnation and strictures passed against Sri Lankan rulers, problems for Tamils had not ceased, Mr. Karunanidhi claimed. The 88-year-old veteran leader called for short-term, medium-term and long-term solutions including re-settlement and rehabilitation of internally displaced Tamils, reconstruction of infrastructural and civic facilities and restoration of Right to Property, Education and Employment.
“Long-term solution is a political solution which has been discussed and debated for a very long time,” he said without elaborating.
Union Ministers Sharad Pawar (NCP) and Farooq Abdullah (National Conference) besides JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav were scheduled to participate but did not come. Instead, they had sent their party representatives. The meet was addressed among others by M.K. Stalin who highlighted the plight of Sri Lankan Tamils.
The Ministry of External Affairs asked the organisers to ensure the meet does not issue any declaration or outcome calling into question the sovereignty, territorial integrity and unity of any foreign country with whom India has diplomatic relations.
- Asian Tribune -