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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

New Delhi conference aims at forging unified political stance among Sri Lankan Tamil parties

D.B.S. Jeyaraj
 Ten Sri Lankan Tamil political parties may seek solace from agony for two days on August 23rd & 24th in the Indian capital of New Delhi.10 Tamil parties are invited to attend a conference named “Agony & Solace” to be held at New Delhi’s prestigious Constitutional club of India

Although titled”Agony and Solace” in English the conference is called “Thuyarum theervum”(sorrow and solution) in the Tamil language

The conference organised by India’s Parliamentarian Forum on Human Rights for Global Development (PFHRGD)will be held from 11am -5pm each day

The president of PFHRGD & convenor of the conference is Dr. EM Sudarsana Nachiyappan a Rajya Sabha MP from India’s southern Tamil Nadu state

The PFHRGD comprises 150 MP’s from both houses of the Indian parliament cutting across state,party,religion,caste & ethnic affiliations

The PFHRGD sponsored conference aims at evolving a unified political stance by the Lankan Tamil parties on problems facing Sri Lankan Tamils

The PFHRGD conclave intends to formulate a framework for resolving the problems &obtain a consensus from participating Lankan Tamil parties

If a Sri Lankan Tamil party consensus is reached at the forum the PFHRGD will follow that up by mobilising support for it among Indian MP’s

This move is expected to influence Indian policy makers leading to a possible shift in New Delhi’s approach towards the Lankan Tamil issue

2 representatives from each Tamil party at leadership level (President&secretary or their nominees) have been invited by PFHRGD to New Delhi

Though ten Tamil parties have been invited it is not clear as to whether all those invited will participate in the New Delhi conference

New Delhi conference aims at forging unified political stance among Sri Lankan Tamil parties
The Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) led by Douglas Devananda the only Sri Lankan Tamil cabinet minister has NOT been invited by PFHRGD

The Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Puligal(TMVP)led by Eastern chief minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillaiyan has also been invited

Instead of inviting the Tamil National Alliance as a single entity the four constituent parties of the TNA have been invited individually

TNA party invitees are-Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) All Ceylon Tamil Congress (ACTC) TamilEelam Liberation Organization (TELO) & the EPRLF

Jaffna district MP & party genl secy Somasundaram “Mavai” Senathirajah & national list parliamentarian MA Sumanthiran will represent the ITAK

The Eelam Peoples Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) faction led by Kandiah Premachandran(Suresh) a member of the TNA has been invited

Likewise the Padmanabha EPRLF faction led by former North-Eastern chief minister Annamalai Varadharajapperumal has also been invited

Tamil United Liberation Front(TULF)led by V.Aanandasangaree&All Ceylon Tamil United Front(ACTUF)led by Dr. K. Vickneswaran are both invited

The Peoples Liberation Organization of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE) & its break away Eelam National Democratic Liberation Front (ENDLF) are both invited

ENDLF led by Gnanasekaram aka Paranthan Rajan is based in Bengalooru in India&is assisting the PFHRGD in facilitating the Delhi Conference

No party representing Up Country Tamils and Muslims or Tamil & Muslim MP’s from “national”parties like UNP, UPFA or JVP have been invited

It seems very probable that the “Agony&solace” conference though organized ostensibly by the PFHRGD has the tacit support of the Indian govt

Sonia Gandhi loyalist Dr.Nachiyappan being the convener & involvement of the ENDLF linked to Indian intelligence indicate high level backing

Currently the ruling Congress is targeted by ultra-nationalists in Tamil Nadu who accuse the Indian govt of being pro-Colombo&anti-Tamil

Given the inter & intra-Tamil party differences the chances of the PFHRGD sponsored conference arriving at a Tamil consensus seems doubtful

It remains to be seen as to whether the New Delhi conference will help to find a solution to Tamil sorrow or provide solace to Tamil agony

This is a bundle of tweets posted on Twitter by DBS Jeyaraj


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