Vision of Hope Part II - Freedom
In these columns, we previously updated the readers with the events that followed the Presidential elections. Now we intend setting out a framework for the solution of the Tamil question.
Tamils must not be fearful of negotiating with anybody and especially, the current new government that is showing some willingness to resolve the Tamil question. In order to accomplish the Tamil nationhood, Tamils must accept the leadership of Mr I Sampanthan who has shown remarkable political skills in the past and more recently with the new government. They also could benefit from the guidance of the much respected Retired Judge and Northern Province Minister Wigneswaran.
The Tamil question must be resolved within the framework of a federal system that is free of interference from Colombo, with Tamils able to exercise their desire to control their own lives, to rule their own destinies, and to govern themselves in their traditional home land. This can be achieved with the implementation of 13A as a starting point, swiftly followed up by a constitutional guarantee that amendments or changes to permanent solution can only be done by a referendum in the North East. Thus, ensuring Tamils cannot be disenfranchised by a future Sri Lankan parliament.
The solution can also be found by enacting the last three kingdoms of Ceylon i.e. Vanni /Jaffna, Kotte and Kandy which were amalgamated into one by the British for administrative convenience. This can supersede the provincial councils with Police and land powers as the current laws that govern the land of Sri Lanka are from the old kingdoms.
This system of governance must be underwritten by both India and the Western world to reassure both the Tamil community that they will not be disenfranchised again and the Sinhala community that the Tamil federal state will not secede to break up Sri Lanka.
It is worth recalling here the promise made to the British in February 1946 by the first prime minister that Tamils would be protected by the majority government. But within six months, Indian Tamils in the up country were made stateless. This was the first salvo of the numerous body blows that followed.
Unless a two nation one state solution is implemented, as Scotland and the UK, it will not be long before the problem can restart again, giving the extreme ideas a renewed chance on both sides.
Furthermore, Tamils must be guaranteed minimum proportional representation, both in the Foreign and Home Affairs services, as well as in the central government.
Foreign countries must be able to make direct investment and development in the North East and the Diaspora encouraged to return to redevelop their homeland without any hindrance by central government.
Meanwhile, an international standard war crimes inquiry must be carried out and perpetrators must be identified. However, Tamils must be prepared to forgive those in return for their nationhood, similar to the process that happened in Northern Ireland, UK. The recent historic handshake between Prince Charles and the Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams this month is a good example to follow.
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Tamil Writers Guild Editorial Board
Source: Tamil Writers Guild, UK
Date: 12 August 2015