by Palitha Senanayake.
The Christian Church of Sri Lanka has traditionally served as the
propaganda arm of the Tamil grievances in the Sri Lankan 'ethnic
conflict'. It was the Vatican through is communication network
disseminated to the world the event of July 83 painting the Sinhalese
Buddhist as 'uncivilized barbarians'. From that point onwards the
western funded and the Church guided National Peace Council unleashed
its propaganda machine to justify all the heinous crimes committed by
the LTTE justifying those as 'retaliatory activities' prompted by the
July 83 incidents. In actual fact by July 83 the Tamil guerillas had
broken in to 15 banks and 18 police stations making it impossible for
the civil administration to maintain law and order and in the North
and hence July 83 was the effect of those activities. But the NPC
propaganda made July 83 a 'cause' to justify the killings and maiming
of thousands of innocent civilians, in their homes, in their sleep, in
places of worship, places of work and just on the road. Ironically
even though LTTE has come to be known as the 'world's most ruthless
terror organization' none of its activities received the same
publicity that July 83 received in the Vatican.
It should also be borne in mind that it was the World Council of
Churches that sponsored the LTTE office in London which commenced its
operation from 1984 denigrating the SL Government in general and the
Sinhalese Buddhist in particular.
It was just the other day that Father Tissa Balasuriya wrote to the
Island in the form of an open letter to Mahinda and Ranil, presumably
to bring everybody's attention in general on the need to redress
unspecified 'Tamil grievances as a result of the Sinhalese Buddhist
taking over the country's administration, post independence'.
It appears that the good father is even blaming the Sinhalese for the
deaths of indentured labour brought to the country from India, while
in transit. True they were brought to this country under inhuman
conditions and made to work also in the plantation under sub-human
conditions. But all that was done by the British Raj before
independence and their lot has tremendously improved after
independence. Although the Church is making a noise now the Church
which was very influential at the time with regard to the country's
administration had not made even an appeal to those who brought that
labour and made them to work in near slavery conditions with their
dwelling huts no better than cattle sheds.
Father Balasuriya's main argument is that it was the de-franchising of
this immigrant labour that made it possible for the two main Sinhala
dominated parties to pass legislation and the constitutions in 1972
and 1978 that were not friendly to Tamils.
The Citizens bill of 1947 defined what a citizen of Sri Lanka should
be, and according to that definition the migrant labour who had not
completed five years stay in the country were not entitled to the
citizenship of the country. Father Balasuriya should check his records
and see how many Indian workers fell in to this category and enlighten
himself of the effect it may have had on the electorate. It was Mr.
Chelvanayagam with his separatist ambitions and anti Buddhist
attitudes that made an issue of this because he knew that the number
or votes, from wherever they came, was important. It is the right of
every independent nation in this world to define who should be a
citizen of that nation and by those standards the Citizens bill of
1947 was not inconsistent with international norms. If that bill was
all that unfair why did Mr. Ponnambalam voted in favour of that bill?
In any case the number that could not obtain citizenship was not big
enough to make the type of impact Father Balasuriya is claiming it
did. It is propaganda of this nature based on half truths that the
Tamil Diaspora and the Church has consistently used to denigrate the
post independent administration.
In father Balasuriya's own logic his grouse appears to be that the
introduction of indentured labour by the British has not made the
Sinhalese Buddhist in to the insignificant political factor that it
should have been. Hence his sentiments appears to be more concerned
about the position of the Sinhala Buddhist than about the Tamils, be
they Indian or Sri lankan. Father Balasuriya should also be aware that
when the universal franchise was introduced to the colonial Ceylon in
1935, the Tamil leaders opposed it tooth and nail, because they wanted
to keep the majority Sinhalese de-franchised. Up to that time the
Tamils were over represented in the legislature and they wanted to
preserve that status quo.
The Tamil grievances did not commence with the 56 reforms as the likes
of father B would attempt to make out but from the time the 'Donomore'
legislature was introduced under 'one man one vote'. Soon after this,
the office of the Secretary to the Colonies was inundate with
petitions by the Tamils with alleged discriminations. Lord Soulbury
was first sent to Sri lanka to look in to these complains of
discrimination by the Tamils and then to draft a suitable
constitution. Lord Soulbury was not impressed with the Tamil
grievances as most of them were rectifications of years of injustice
to the majority Sinhalese rather than injustices to the minority. He
rejected the crucial recommendations made by the Tamil leaders such as
the 50; 50 power sharing and went ahead with constitution making.
Father Balasuriya would like us to believe that the Tamils accepted
the Soulbury constitution and it is only after 56 reforms that the
trouble started. This is hardly the reality because the Tamils started
the Elankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi or the 'Party for the Tamil State' in
1949 and fraudulently called it the 'Federal Party' in English. It was
also in 1951 that Chelvanayagam started protesting against the farmer
settlements in Ampara stating that only Tamils should be settled
there. Hence the attempt by Father Balasuriya to project the
Sinhalese as the aggressor in this conflict is based on falsehoods.
Yet it is these falsehoods that have been propagated to the world by
the Tamil Diaspora and the Church for years.
Father Balasuriya then list out a list of instances which according to
him are attempts made by the Governing party of the time to solve this
problem but as the other Sinhala party at the opposition opposed it,
no consensus could be reached. This list includes
Bandaranaike- Chelvanayagam pact of 1957,The reasonable use of Tamil
language act of 1957,The Dudley -Chelvanayagam pact of 1965,TheTamil
Language special provisions act of 1966, The District councils bill of
1982. The Provincial Councils bill0f 1987,The proposed constitution in
Of these nobody opposed the Reasonable use of Tamil in the North and
the East and the provincial councils bill. They are law, even today,
but not active as the Tamils themselves have not taken any interest to
see their implementation. The other instances mentioned here such as
the Bandaranaike- Chelvanayagam pact are all involving land rights of
the provinces. JR Jayawardene in his biography says that he opposed
the B-C pact of 1957 because Chevanayagam was trying to obtain
exclusive land rights for the North and the East under the cover of
the 56 Swabasha act. That was not acceptable to him as the Swabasha
act of 1956 had only to do with the language and nothing to do with
Since the advent of the SLFP in to the political firmament of this
country, we have had an alternate party system of Government. In that
scenario of political divisiveness, a single party often found it
difficult to form a Government, after an election, without the help of
the small communal parties. Hence the country was governed by a
coalition with communal parties becoming decisive factor. When that
happens the communal party would always try to translate its influence
in to a situation of advantage to its community. Federal Party always
tried this when it was in coalition. The Governing party is compelled
to give an ear due to the political indispensability of it's ally but
in the larger interest of the country even the Governing party would
not concede to a situation where special rights are offered to one
community. Therefore, the demise of these agreements mentioned above
are mainly due to their one sidedness and the possibility of such
legislation leading the country to bifurcation. For instance if the B-
C pact was in existence, the closing down of Mavilaru anicut by LTTE,
as the de-facto ruler of the North -East, would have been legitimate.
One Mr perera, in a rejoinder to Father Tissa Balasuriya, again in the
Island, claimed that there were three kingdoms in Sri Lanka at the
time Portuguese arrived in this country and that included the Tamil
Kingdom to the North. This is to support the Church's theory that
SriLanka was never a single state. He unfortunately does not name the
Tamil Kingdom nor does he quote the Portuguese source from where he
obtained the information. The most acceptable historian we have had in
this country is KM De Silva and according to him and even according to
Dr. Indrpala Karthegesu, a Tamil historian, the Tamils, migrated to
Sri lanka in the 10 th century AD as a result of the Mogul invasion in
India. Their settlements were by and large confined to the Jaffna
peninsular and there was no independent suzerainty as a separate
Kingdom. It was considered a part of the Hela kingdom and at times
were under Chola and Pandya kingdoms depending on who was more
powerful at the time. When the Portugeuse arrived they found Sankily
in the Jaffna peninsular. Sankily was not a king but only a tribal
leader and according to Iben Batuta he was a sea pirate more in the
straits of Malaka. Is the Church now inventing historical events to
support the 'Tamil cause'?
At the last Presidential election Rev. Oswald Gomis came out with that
infamous paper advertisement asking 'Christians to rise up' in support
of the candidature of Ranil Wickremasinghe, the anti Sinhala Buddhist
candidate. After the liberation of the Eastern province when the
Government was trying to build up the country's morale against
terrorism the Bishop of Colombo Rev Dilip De Chickera issued a press
statement insinuating that such attempts tantamount to 'war euphoria'.
According to Rev. Chickera, an attempt by the legitimate Government
forces to contain terrorism is a 'war' that should be abhorred. The
church has always been advocating putative peace to benefit the LTTE
and contributing to the propagation of falsehoods abroad.
The western countries in Europe are steadfastly behind Tamils of Sri
lanka inspite of the fact that Prabhakaran is a totalitarian killer.
Often the westerners are so ill informed that they sometimes are not
aware that there is a place called Tamil Nadu in India to the north of
Sri lanka and that it is the Homeland for the 50 million Tamils. There
are 700,000 Sri Lankan Tamils making up for the Tamil Diaspora
scattered over Europe and other western countries like Canada and
Australia. How come that the predominantly Hindu Tamils were able to
make such an impact in the Christian west? It is because this conflict
is more religious than communal starting from SJV Chelvanayagam, the
son of a Christian clergyman, who was Tamil only by name.
Why is the Church using the Tamil cause as a 'cats paw' to destabilize
Sri Lanka? Because the Christian community has watched its fortunes
fall, during the post independent era, from the position of the 'most
privileged class in the colonial Ceylon' to that of an 'insignificant
religious minority' in the current state of the republic of Sri Lanka.
The Swabasha act of 1958 was a bigger blow to the English speaking
elite than it was for the Tamils. Even after centuries of colonial
domination, at the point of independence only 6% of the Sri Lankan
population were conversant in English with the result that 94 % of
the country's population was governed by that English speaking elite.
The Church controlled the education through a well developed but
exclusive network of Christian schools. With the advent of Swabasha
education schools like Ananda and Nalanda broke the Christian monopoly
on education and even the Maha Vidyalayas came to the fore with
academic achievements surpassing the Christian schools. The Christian
education suffered another body blow when they were taken over by the
Government with progressive legislation in the 1960.s. Up to that time
these Christian schools with their suave and 'international' standards
were catering to the exclusive sections of the society producing even
the leaders of the post independent Sri Lanka. Even today the English
language media in this country is made up of 'old boys' of these
Christian schools and what the Church could not accomplish in the form
religious conversions had been compensated for in the form of
conversions in culture and in thinking.
The propaganda of the Church is very subtle. In spite of the 'peace
follies' committed by the successive SL Governments that made LTTE the
'justified killing machine' even today the Church will advocate
'negotiations'. They wish that the legitimate Government keep talking
till Prabhakaran muster enough military muscle and enough diplomacy to
attack and over through the Sri Lankan regime. They will express
concern about 'Human rights' violations oblivious to the fact that the
reason for these violations is the presence of a brutal terror outfit
in our midst. They will loud the army excesses and provide a platform
for the LTTE to have their reign. A Tamil or Christian journalist who
wish to expose national defense to may seek refuge in the Church under
the guise of 'freedom of expression'. What is worst is that the Church
has been marshaling international opinion against the SL Government
thereby making Sri Lanka, a pariah state in the eyes of the
On the face of it, there appears nothing wrong with the activities of
the Church, because their modus operandi is 'peace', 'human rights'
and 'press freedom'. However, if the Government tries to muscle the
Church for their subtle strategies, it will invariably stand accused
of another basic violation to this list and that will be the
'violation of the rights of the religious minorities'.
Ostensibly, the conflict in Sri Lanka is between the predominantly
Buddhist Singhalese and the predominantly Hindu Tamils. Yet the
Christian Church is sitting pretty on the
cog mire, talking peace and promoting the war.
In the ancient times, many kingdoms existed. In the North there was a
Tamil Kingdom. In the south always more than TWO.
Further Tamils live in the island even during the time of Dutugemunu.
Further many KINGS of S/India came and ruled Sri Lanka.
Current Sinhala historians are worse than the church in hiding the
TAMIL CONNECTION of Sri Lanka.
Paranavitana was one of the Sinhalese who destroyed the the ELLARA
TOMB story in Anuradhapura and Sinhalese trusted his foolish story
with out question.
Dutugemenu asked his citizens to respect his fallen foe and it was a
tradition of the people of Anuradhapura for more than 2500 years. But
this Paranavitana and his racist followers destroyed that tradition in
Further CHURCH always do its crimes against the Hindus and Buddhists
with the support of the SINHALESE.
Ranil is a CHRISTIAN and of Malayalee origin. How did this CHRISTIAN
family take the control of of the historical KEALANI RAJA MAHA VIHARA?
Why did these Sinhalese silent even today.
This Vihara was used by the CHRISTIANS to plan and kill
S.W.R.D.Banadaranayake. Killers of Banada became Christians before
die. Catholic Church has a strong base among Sinhalese than Tamil.
Sinhalese are shamelessly silent on the Catholic Connection and the
Most of the Sinhalese leaders who bark of BUDDHISM and SINHALESE
always have a CATHOLIC/CHRISTIAN name with them. Why?
Banadaranayke did good things but he went against the BRITISH
interests and killed by BRITISH AGENTS of Sri Lankan origin. They are
none other than the J.R.Jayawardene's family. But the Sinhalese
shamelessly support a criminal like J.R.Jayawardene and his family for
generations. This J.R family has no Sinhala roots at all.
So, the current problems are not created by the TAMILS alone. Dirty
Sinhala hand is more powerful than the Tamil.