28 November, 2020

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Cricketer Murali Is On A Sticky Wicket – On Tamil Nadu Turf

By Karikalan Navaratnam

Karikalan S. Navaratnam

“Muralitharan” is yet another name for Lord Krishna, an avatar of Lord Vishnu. There are two muckety-mucks in Sri Lanka, putatively ethnic Tamils, who are named after the good Lord. They have hogged the limelight for different “feats”.

However, Muttiah Muralitharan ( Murali), the  cricket star, and Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan (Karuna Amman), the LTTE rebel-turned-renegade, share a common trait – propensity to betray.  It  is  a lethal congenital abnormality ! Both Muralitharans have grievously hurt the Tamil people by their separate acts of betrayal. They remain the blue-eyed boys of the Rajapaksas.

Karuna Amman

Before discussing cricketer Murali’s politics, let me briefly reflect on the other Murali (Karuna) – how the Sinhala-Buddhist (SB) political class reacted to his betrayal: Karuna’s  original patron was Ranil Wickremesinghe, who had duly claimed credit for engineering the  major LTTE split in early 2004. Naturally, SB nationalists were quite gleeful about the LTTE schism and the ensuing fratricidal war between the rebel factions of the North and the East. They savoured the moment with obvious relish. SB media moguls and columnists, in an effort to exacerbate the rift and rancour, sought to embrace the Eastern Tamils like long lost families and to rationalize Karuna’s rebellion. “Divide et impera” (Divide and conquer) was an imperial strategy of yore which remains handy to the SB racists even today. Further, even Karuna’s crimes including the brutal massacre of 600 surrendered policemen in June 1990 in eastern Sri Lanka were either conveniently forgotten, forgiven or papered over.

Cricketer Murali

Let’s shift the focus onto Muralitharan, the cricketer. It appears that Bollywood’s original attempts at producing a cinematic biopic on the lives of Indian cricketers, Dhoni, Sachin Tendulkar, Azharuddin and others, if any, have been enticing investments. Murali’s family in Chennai may have mused over the prospects:

Why not replicate in Kollywood  (the word being a portmanteau of Kodambakkam and Hollywood, refers to the heartland of South Indian film industry in Chennai), the rewarding experience of Bollywood? “Make hay while the sun shines, dance  all night in the moonlight…..”

Murali, as Governor ?

Evidently, the blueprint  for the biopic has been in the making for quite a while, at least, from the time Murali declined  Rajapaksas’ offer of a gubernatorial position. The offer made in the wake of Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s election victory on 17th Nov. 2019  was obviously in recognition of Murali’s services as a star campaigner for Gotabaya’s Presidential Election. Murali promptly denied that Governor job of the Tamil Northern Province was ever offered to him. Mainstream media outlets in India/Sri Lanka had reported on the impending posting. Some reports had given hints of opposition to his posting,  which may have compelled Murali to beat a hasty retreat :

“…..(T)he northern province Tamils are already expressing their opposition to his nomination. Murali’s stand on alleged war crimes against the Tamils committed during the tenure of Gotabaya as Defence secretary under the presidency of his elder brother Mahinda Rajapaksa between 2005 and 2015 has angered the Tamils – both Sri Lankan and Indian Tamils …Murali has always maintained that there were no war crimes….”. (NEWS18  Channel, Hyderabad,  INDIA, 21 Nov.2019 –“Speculation over Muralitharan’s New Role as Governor Upsets Tamils ….” )

Padma Rao Sundarji , a veteran foreign correspondent based in New Delhi, had broached the subject with Murali in a telephone interview:

Q. Can you confirm media reports that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has offered you – and you have accepted – the vacant post of Governor of Sri Lanka’s Northern Province (NP) ? ”

“A. No, it is a rumour that was first floated on Facebook. I was not offered that post and in any case have made it clear that I am not interested in politics. I am a sportsman, a cricket player, not a politician…..”(Hindustan Times, 06 Dec. 2019)

Contradicted himself

Was Murali forthright in his response? Certainly not. Within a few months of his denial he had contradicted himself and admitted that Gotabaya  offered  him the governorship . : “….. Even before he became President, Gotabaya Rajapaksa  invited me to join the Viyathmaga platform. So I gladly accepted this offer,” Muralitharan said.   He went on to say ……that ‘After the presidential election, he wanted me to accept a post as the Governor of the Northern Province. But I convinced him that I was only a sportsman, who didn’t know anything about politics……’ Muralitharan recalled.” (Daily Mirror, 03 July 2020 – “I fielded my brother as I’m reluctant to engage in politics: Murali” )

Biopic ‘800’

In any event, Murali’s governor appointment had since been shelved. However, extensive media coverage on the subject has perhaps enhanced Murali’s profile and improved his marketability. Social media reports suggest that Murali’s family is involved in the biopic project, although Dar Motion Pictures headquartered out of Mumbai is bankrolling the movie which is titled 800.  The title signifies the number of international Test wickets taken by the spinner. Sripathy  Rangasamy will be the Director.. Shehan Karunatilaka, a Sri Lankan writer has co-written the film script with director Sripathy. The crunch came when popular Kollywood artiste Vijay Sethupathi  agreed to play the lead role. Vijay is an accomplished artiste. He has been in the field, playing minor roles since 2005, when he got a break in 2010 in “Thenmerku  Paruvakaatru” (“Southwest Monsoon Breeze”).The film opened up new vistas for him and a portfolio of successive films had progressively propelled him to stardom.

Actor Vijay Sethupathi 

Murali appeared to be comfortable with Vijay  playing the role. To a question on what his initial thoughts were when he learned that Vijay was going to play him on screen, Muralitharan replies, “Right, it should be him. The facial features are similar to mine. He is also a good actor, and everyone knows that…… so he would only suit this.” And, how did Vijay react?.  The actor says, “I do not know cricket at all, so I did not know how to present this in a new way. During my  childhood, the boys would take me to play mainly to fetch the ball. I told this ( to Murali) in our first meeting and he said that is the right qualification. I liked this way of approach.” (Times of India, 12 Oct.2020- “This is what Vijay Sethupathi told Muralitharan in their first meeting!”)

Tamil nationalists

Tamil nationalists living across the Palk-strait keep their ear to the ground in regard to ongoing acts of aggression and villainy by the island’s SB fascist ruling class, targeting the Eelam Tamils – and keep an eye on collaborators and the running dogs of the racist regime. Veteran Movie directors Bharathirajah, Ameer, Cheran, Gowthaman, Kalanchiam, lyricist Ms.Thamarai et al were among the leading lights from the film industry besides Tamil Nadu Political leaders Vaiko (MP), Thirumavalavan (MP), Dr. Ramadoss (PMK leader) and Seeman (Naam Thamilar leader) who have voiced their opposition to glorifying Muralitharan.

They believe that actor Vijay Sethupathi, a rising star of Tamil cinema, should not become a vehicle to glorify Murali, whose politics, they allege, is abhorrent to Eelam Tamils’ cause. They have urged Vijay  to withdraw from the film project. Speaking to the media, Director Ameer has quipped:  “How will Modi react if (Bollywood’s) Salman Khan offers to play the role of cricketer Imran Khan(currently, Pakistan PM)?”

Defending Vijay/Murali 

Two veteran movie stars of Tamil Nadu – Radhika Sarathkumar and  Khushpoo Sundhar – have, in their twitter postings, zealously defended the project and the actor Vijay. Incidentally, Radhika was born in Sri Lanka to a Sinhala mother Geetha. Her father was a veteran Tamil actor M.R. Radha, a Periyar sentinel and Dravidian flag-bearer ! Khushpoo, the actor/politician, originally from a Bombay Muslim family is married to a Tamilian, movie director. She is a bundle of contradictions – the Periyarist/feminist has recently crossed over from the Congress party to the Hindutva BJP. Sri Lankan media used the occasion as a fig leaf to cover up their naked racism.

The majority Sri Lankans loved him (Murali) so much because he represented the Minority Tamils (Is that so ? My foot !) and also because he blended beautifully with the rest of the players who were mostly Sinhalese. ….. (Daily Mirror, 23 Oct. 2020 – Editorial)

Rajapaksas’ Patronage

According to Hindu mythology, Lord Shiva wears a cobra snake around his neck. Snakes are part of eagles’ staple diet and are mortally afraid of eagles. A theme song scripted by renowned Tamil poet/ lyricist Kannadasan for a film Suryagandhi (Sunflower) depicted a paradoxical situation – perched around Shiva’s neck, the cobra asked (the eagle), “how are you doing?” The underlying message? While enjoying the protective care and patronage of powerful person(s), even a parvenu exhibits arrogance, thumbs his nose at others and talks impudently. That is what Murali has been doing vis-à-vis fellow Tamils convulsed in the throes of  majoritarian  politics in Sri Lanka. Some of Murali’s perfidious acts/comments have deeply hurt the Tamils.

Illustration 

* “Mr. Muralitharan’s comment in 2019 that ‘2009 was the happiest day in my life’, has been cited as proof of his support to the final war against the Tamil rebel group, the LTTE, in 2009, in which thousands of innocent civilians were killed, and his support to Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’s regime, which continues to face serious allegations of war crimes.

Responding to criticism, the Sri Lankan cricketing legend on Friday said his comments about the end of war in 2009 had been taken out of context.” (The Hindu, 17 Oct. 2020 – “Muttiah Muralitharan: ‘I did not support the killing of innocent civilians’) That is a hackneyed response!

* Hundreds of young Tamil men and women who surrendered to the security forces during the final stage of the war had ‘disappeared ’. Victims’ families had organized campaigns demanding to know the whereabouts of their loved ones. During  British PM David Cameron’s 2013 visit to Jaffna, in an an attempt to draw his attention to the issue, the families had held public demonstrations. Reportedly, Murali had derisively called their emotional reaction a fake.

The rancour towards Muralitharan dates back to 2013 when he said then British Prime Minister David Cameron that he may have been “misled” about the situation of Tamils in the north after Cameron visited the area and was met by tens of mothers, wives and sisters who were still searching for their loved ones who had disappeared during the war.” (Al Jazeera, 20 Oct.2020 )

* Wimal Weerawansa epitomises the baser instincts ingrained in the psyche of retarded rabid Sinhala-Buddhist bigots. He has always been baying for Tamil blood. Without any compunction, Murali found comfort in organizing Wimal’s election campaign among the Tamils in Colombo.

Cricketing legend Muttiah Muralitharan is backing Minister Wimal Weerawansa’s campaign for the Parliamentary election. Weerawansa’s media unit said that Muralitharan had organised a meeting between Weerawansa and Tamil businessmen in Colombo over the weekend. The meeting took place at the Kingsbury Hotel in Colombo……. (Colombo Gazette, 13 July 2020- “Murali throws his weight behind Wimal’s polls campaign.”)

In a Facebook post, Mano Ganesan MP said:  “In cricket, he (Muralitharan) is a hero, but politically a zero,” referring to a meeting that the star cricketer participated in ……sharing the dais with a hard-line Sinhala nationalist politician Wimal Weerawansa, a long-time ally of  Rajapaksas ….”  (The Hindu, 17 Oct.2020)

* During Padma Rao Sundarji’s interview with Murali (Supra – The Hindustan Times, 6th Dec. 2019) he did not mince his words about his loyalty to the Rajapaksas  and had also indicated that he did not care two hoots for the opinions of Tamil Nadu leaders. In effect, he had warned Tamil Nadu leaders, ‘Hands off Sri Lanka’ (EXCERPTS) :

“Q: ……… your support for President Rajapaksa during his election campaign has raised hackles in those parts of Sri Lanka (i.e., North and East). The Tamil majority there voted against Rajapaksa at the presidential election last month. They hold him responsible for alleged human rights violations at the end of the civil war in 2009. ……What do you say to them?

A:  …. I am a Tamil myself. Sure, I live in Colombo… When I play cricket for Sri Lanka, each and every Sri Lankan – including the Sinhalese majority supports me. …..There were riots in the seventies and again in the eighties, hundreds of Sinhalese and Tamils were killed. But surely that doesn’t mean every Tamil or Sinhalese is a bad person or that the majority of any one community is bad ?……”

( My Q.: On what planet was Murali living when these riots took place? Doesn’t he know that the victims of these anti-Tamil riots were exclusively Tamils and the perpetrators were Sinhala mob?  It’s a travesty to seek to equate the victims with the perpetrators).

Q: Most Tamil Nadu politicians are against President Rajapaksa too. The Indian state is your second home through marriage. How do you explain your allegiance to Mr. Rajapaksa to people there?

A: Tell me, if there is a problem within your family, do your neighbours interfere? Tamil Nadu politicians do not understand the problems of Sri Lankans. They should allow our government to get on with governance. I support President Rajapaksa because he is the right person to lead our country. ……. President Rajapaksa is an administrator, a former defence secretary and army man. He is a clever person who will carry out reforms, strike a different path, improve lives and do the right thing.”

It is alleged that Murali had, in an interview with “Kalki” (Tamil weekly, Chennai), claimed that he did not know Tamil. And further, he had often signed his autographs in Sinhala. Also, Murali had denigrated Tamils saying that they suffered from an inferiority complex.

Mr. Muralitharan also denied reports that he did not know Tamil and addressed the accusation against him that he had said that Tamils have an inferiority complex.” “It is natural to have an inferiority complex when you are a minority amid the Sinhala people…… However, my interest in cricket pushed me to join the cricket team in my school and my talent made it impossible for others to ignore me. Which is why I said that our inferiority complex should be thrown away and we should trust our talent,” he said. (ibid: The Hindu, 17Oct.2020)

* Muralitharan fielded his brother Muttiah Prabakaran to contest the recent Parliamentary election (held 5th Aug. 2020) as Rajapaksas’  SLPP party nominee from Nuwara-Eliya district. (He got defeated).   “…..Muralitharan said that …, he directed his brother towards politics following a request from the President. Muralitharan made these comment during an election rally in Maskeliya held in support of his brother” (Daily Mirror, 03 July 2020 “I fielded my brother as I’m reluctant to engage in politics: Murali”)

Conciliation Note

In the wake of backlash against the biopic ‘800’,  Murali had issued a lengthy statement in Tamil couched in conciliatory language. He has said “he was saddened by those who are portraying him as someone against the Tamils.”

It is a far cry from the dismissive tone which marked his earlier response to ‘Hindustan Times’ (Supra) Why this change? Now  he needs the Tamil constituency to market his product. He sounded cocky earlier because he thought that Rajapaksas’ patronage would suffice for him to advance his career.

Curtain down 

In the face of mounting pressure, Vijay Sethupathi has now withdrawn from the biopic project. In the meantime Murali also has requested Vijay to back out: “In the statement, Muralitharan wrote, ‘I am making this request as I don’t want one of the greatest Tamil actors to be affected because of me. In addition, I also don’t want him to face any hurdles in the future because of this film.’” (Cinema Express, 19 Oct. 2020 )

In his statement, Muralitharan expressed confidence that the project will go on to be finished, despite this casting change. However, it is unclear who will be replacing Vijay Sethupathi in the film. Good luck Mr. Muralitharan!

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Latest comments

  • 14
    12

    It is a shame this movie is supposed to be made in India. Why is it not made in Sri Lanka? Murali did not represent India or Tamil Nadu. He represented Sri Lanka. I get it that it may not get the Bollywood viewership but this movie should be made in Sri Lanka.

    • 7
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      a14455

      “Why is it not made in Sri Lanka?”

      Perhaps Murali does not want dumasses to portray him as 100% authentic Sinhala/Buddhist in the film. By the way Murali has a duel citizenship of both Sri Lanka and India. He also has relations and business connections in India.

  • 9
    12

    ‘Muttiah Muralitharan (Murali), the cricket star, and Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan (Karuna Amman), the LTTE rebel-turned-renegade, share a common trait – propensity to betray. It is a lethal congenital abnormality’ – Navaratnam
    .
    ‘I am making this request as I don’t want one of the greatest Tamil actors to be affected because of me. In addition, I also don’t want him to face any hurdles in the future because of this film.’ – Murali
    .
    From these two statements we can see how one man is upright, and another deals in belittling and defamation.

    • 5
      5

      By Karikalan Navaratnam –

      “However, Muttiah Muralitharan ( Murali), the cricket star, and Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan (Karuna Amman), the LTTE rebel-turned-renegade, share a common trait – propensity to betray.”

      I am sorry you are still living in Appapillai Amirthalingam’s era. Whom did Murali betray?
      What did he betray?
      Did he betray any of your politicians, LTTE or other members of Tamil militants?
      They are themselves capable of betraying fellow Tamils.
      They don’t need Murali.

      If Murali wants to be a Sinhala/Buddhist like Wimal Weerawansa, Udhaya Gamanpillai, Sarath Fonseka, …… and their 15 million fellow converts why are you bothering him? Leave him alone, let him be whom he wants to be, an Englishman, a Japanese, …… Hindian, …. it is up to him to choose his own identity.

      Please stop treating or assuming him being a Sri Lankan Tamil, drag him down and beat him with typical Tamil arrogance and stupidity. He does owe nothing to Jaffna Tamils.

      • 8
        3

        Difference between both of them is, one threw hand grenade while other threw cricket ball.

        • 3
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          Dr. Gnana Sankaralingam,
          Now both of them are throwing hand grenades at LTTE and racist separatist Tamil politicians.

          • 4
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            Mahindapala, do you mean to say that both of them are CHUCKER-A-DEIYOS who are the present guardians of your banana republic full of racist murderous Sinhalese.

      • 0
        1

        Dear NV

        Jaffna Tamils also do not owe anything to the “FP/TULF the Ratha Pottu Mafia” who killed all the Tamil dreams through thuggery by selling Tamils children to foreign sponsored terrorism.

        The GOSL may owe them something is how they were not put at the front line in the last battle in 2009 as a human shield for the Soldiers??

        That is because Sri Lanka owe something to the Indians for saving them from the JVP in 1971….this given the green lights to the TULF and the Indians to do whatever they want in Sri Lanka…free for all….then that let to the Indian training the Tamil children to serve different purposes until the Indians got what they wanted….TNA got what they wanted is to live off the blood of the mother Lankan children as JVP come back again in 80’s to contribute to the “multi directional killing fields” more interesting and make Indians feel at home with their boots on the ground once again……Now Murali and his Doosra a boy born and brought up in Kandy somehow owe something to the war lords…..and that includes Tamil Nadu being upset too apparently.

        We SL tamils are used to the FP Doosra all our life’s….we would not bat for anything else.

  • 18
    4

    Cheats of a feather flock together!

    Cricketers who entered politics or supported politicians lost all their respect and finally their politics too.

  • 28
    7

    Muralitharan by nature a SHY person, who TOSSED the ball to gain glory in cricket, has now THROWN himself in politics making silly statements and has ended up being CHUCKED out.

    • 4
      2

      Throwing chuckers is against Cricket. Throwing brickbats (the Cricket Council has cleared him of that) is even worse.

  • 18
    16

    This guy muralitharan should change his name as MULAIELLATHARAN(brainless tharan)he always open his mouth without thinking about his past.when he came from his school from kandy to colombo he only managed to join TAMIL UNION CRICKET CLUB not the clubs like SINGALESE SPORTS CULB OR COLOMBO CRICKET CLUB.if i remember correct the tamil union president at that time MR.MURUGESER and cricketers of tamil union SRITHARAN JEGANTHAN,AMERESH RAJARATNAM,MUTTIAH DEVARAJAN,INDRJITH KUMARASAMY who are all tamils helped him in many ways for him to play fore tamil union and come up in his early days of cricketing carrier.this guy at that stage was not even speak few words in english.he lost his head when he was elected to play for srilanaka.ALL LEADING CLUBS LIKE SSC,CCC,AND NCC started to invite him only because he played well in tamil union.there are days i used to see LATE KUMAR PONNAMPALAM who is also an executive member of tamil union having words with this THODAKATTAN who later started behaving like he was born and bred in cinamon garden colombo-07.what a great betrayal as he is behaving like a kalu suttha.-HE WILL VERY SOON MEET HIS WATERLOO IN TAMIL NADU.

    • 24
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      paragon,
      Whoever you may be, don’t let our entire community down.
      With the demeaning adjective, -THODAKATTAN, you are only revealing your inner self. Your language is beneath that of a cultured person.

    • 5
      11

      Paragon,

      After his successful stint with St Anthonys he had offers from SSC as well, but he opted to join Tamil Union. Most of the cricketers from Galle join Tamil Union. Though the name of the club is Tamil union most of the cricketers are Sinhalese. Anyway as far as we are concerned we helped him in his hour of need and he has and will continue to help us. There are many other Tamils who are on our camp and do support the sinhalese from behind closed doors . (Former Tamil Union Cricketer and Sri lankan high commissioner to Australia S Skandakumar is an example).

      Late Kumar Ponnambalam met his waterloo by going against us, Murali Knows this…

      • 5
        5

        What racist BS!

      • 6
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        Ravi Perera, I was a member of Tamil Union till I left Sri Lanka in 1990. I was a frequent visitor to the club as I lived within walking distance. It was Skandakumar who was instrumental in getting cricketers from Galle to join Tamil Union. These down south lads who wanted to continue playing cricket at the top level could not get places in big clubs like SSC, NCC, CCC etc. The first person from Galle to play for Tamil union was wicket keeper Kaggodachchi, who got Upul Sumathipala of Mahinda college to join somewhere around 1977. Then the train began with others enrolling. Skandakumar and other Tamil mercantile sector bigwigs organized jobs for them and found accommodation for some. Two Sinhalese cricketers who went on to play for Sri Lanka were Champaka Ramanayake and Chandika Hathurusinghe. Tamil Union touted Sanath Jayasuriya who was from St, Servatius’ Matara but he preferred to join CCC as he thought he had a better chance to play for Sri Lanka from there, rather than from a club controlled by Tamils. (CONTD)

        • 9
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          (CONTD) Though Muralidharan did well for St. Anthony’s, he was not considered fit to play for Sri Lanka as a school boy, while school boys like Weerasinghe and Jurangpathy were given a chance, but both of them failed and had a one test career. Tamil Union touted him as they felt that he was a promising bowler, and he obliged. Your statement that SSC too offered him a place may not be true, because at that time there was discrimination against Tamils in cricket and no Tamil in sane mind would have refused the offer from SSC. Good case is that of Sridharan Jeganathan who despite his ability could not get a break while he represented Tamil Union. He must have been advised about it by some Sinhala friends and he left Tamil Union to join NCC. True to this, very soon after joining NCC, he was selected to play for Sri Lanka on the New Zealand tour.

          • 3
            3

            Murali played for Sri lanka exactly 1 yr after he left school. People like Murali was never going to be discriminated against since he moved easily with the sinhalese from his early years, It would have been a different case had he been from Jaffna. As for Jega, one must remember that there was a better bowler at the time -Ajith De Silva. This was the main reason why Jega did not play at the time. Jega played for Sri Lanka in 1982 after Ajith De Silva went on the rebel tour. (Though he joined NCC way before and captained NCC in 1980)There was another good left arm bowler at the time Sahabandu (Bowled pace and spin) who was discarded for Ajith. There were many tamil who played for Sri lanka , Vinodhan Jhon, Russel Arnold. Both of them are on our camp. Discrimination against the tamils will happen if you have more than 3 or 4 players of tamils from Jaffna (This may not happen if they are colombo born Tamils who move around with the sinhalese )

        • 2
          0

          I agree with most things you say here.

          Skandakumar is held in very high esteem by many sinhalese. Skanda is single handedly responsible for where Chandika is in life today.

          Not only the downsouth lands even poor boys like Chandika (who was from Colombo) was looked down upon by the Colombo elite (Royal and S Thomas). These poor boys generally join Bloomfield . After the rebel tour in 1982, there was a lot of discrimination against Bloomfield , so guys like Sanath joined other clubs. As to why he did not join Tamil Union and joined CCC is a matter for a debate. Sanath was very close to Roshan at the time and my understanding was his decision to join CCC was influenced by Roshan. Most cricketers who play for Tamil Union are sinhalese, so though the name is Tamil Union in everyway it is a just another sinhala club. People like Skanda are very much on our camp. So Sanath would have stood a chance of playing for SRI Lanka even from Tamil Union. After the 1996 world cup (and also after Bloomfield was given back the ground) guys like Sanath joined Bloomfield. Even Roshan went back to Bloomfield.

          • 1
            1

            Ravi Perera, could you let me know why Skandakumar is not being appointed president of Sri Lanka Cricket, unless his ethnicity is the reason. He has played cricket at high level and had been secretary of cricket board hence has knowledge of the organisation, he was chairman of George Stuarts which gives him adequate leadership and organisational skills and above of all is a person of unquestionable integrity. He is the most suited person for the job to bring corruption ridden Sri Lanka cricket out of the mess. By the way why was Muralidharan not given captaincy of Sri Lanka at least as a token gesture for one test, when jokers who are no patch to him have been.

            • 0
              0

              “could you let me know why Skandakumar is not being appointed president of Sri Lanka Cricket, unless his ethnicity is the reason.”

              There is no doubt about the fact that Skanda is a man with impeccable intergrity.
              People like Skanda, Michael Tissera will never contest elections. Unfortunately the present system is such that you have to win elections to get this position. There was/is a powerful Tamil buinessman from Jaffna by the name Mathivathanan. He was able to contest, then buy votes and become the secretary.

              That bookie man Sumathipala will always win an election under the present system. No Sinhalese person will oppose Skanda as president.

              As for Murali, he openly said he was not interested in captaincy and his bowling was far more valuable to the team than burdening him with the captaincy. After Arjuna (and the time till Murali retired) the people who captained are Sanath, Mahela, Marvan, Hashan, Sanga and Dilshan.
              Except Dilshan all have captained either the school or the club teams and had shown leadership skills. Dilshan’s appointment had a huge impact on his batting and he did not last long in the job.

      • 4
        1

        “There are many other Tamils who are on our camp and do support the sinhalese from behind closed doors . “
        This goes without saying. I am sure that you know more names than I do . Three names that come to my mind are Karuna Amman, Pilayan, Dogclass Devananda.

    • 7
      8

      Murali is a great cricketer. but the Tamil nation is greater than any individual including Prabakaran.
      Murali has made some grave mistakes. in his perspective it might be right but most Tamils on both sides of the strait find it as a betrayal. he could have just kept his comments limited to the sports.there will be consequences.
      but to use a term like this to try to diminish him is totally an insult to all the Tamils. it defeats the purpose. please apologize and take it back.

    • 4
      1

      Hello Paragon,
      Where are we headed?
      Sinhalese play for Tamil Union and Tamils play for SSC.
      This article will trigger hundreds of comments exploring the origins of tribes and their languages along with the National Question. It is time to move on!

  • 14
    25

    Murali was not supported by Tamils as these Vellala ba sterds looked down upon his family or caste. He was supported by the College and the coaches of St Anthonys College katugastota. and for a few years, he laid waste to my alma mater.

    He may have played for Tamil Union but Tamil union needed him more than he needed the club. He would have as well played for SSC it Bloomfield any day. The Sinhalese players stood by him including Arjuna all the others. I remember that stand in Adelaide. It made me proud that they took that stand for a Tamil.

    He has done more for average Tamils than the lot on these half bred clowns on CT .

    And I dare say he has the right to his opinion. He is definitely a hero of the New Srilanka not like the traitorous nas terds who are on this site and run thesite.

    • 13
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      a14455,
      You have a right to your opinion. Tell me, a little of what he has done for average Tamils. I wouldn’t bother you after that!

      • 3
        8

        Just do a google search. I don’t need to copy and paste stuff that you are too lazy to find out.

        I never said murali came from a poor family. His background was well known in Kandy. His father owned s Biscuit business in the Digana area.

        He does not live in the dream world you ethnocentric racists live in. He speaks his mind. I know in tamil society that is a death warrant. but he would always be protected by the Sinhalese.and true Sri Lankans.

        • 6
          2

          Is that so? If so, say nothing that Google carried already!

        • 6
          1

          a14455

          “but he would always be protected by the Sinhalese.and true Sri Lankans.”

          Would you?
          Is it because he speaks his mind out like like stupid racist Wimal Sangili Karuppan? Don’t be silly he holds dual citizenship, if anything happens to him, Hindian Sukhoi Su-30 shaft you from behind in no time.

          Is Murali your relative?

        • 4
          1

          Chingkalla Kurangu who constantly posts anti Thamizh comments. You did not state this but were implying this . However Murali himself was going around stating that he came from a very poor underprivileged estate Thamizh background and against all odds rose up. This is a blatant lie. Lots of Malyaka Thamizh were very upset with these lies , as he was from a very privileged well to do background . Now opportunistically trying to use the largely poor, poverty stricken conditions of most Malyaka Thamizh for his advantage , especially when he has not done anything to the betterment of his own Indian origin Thamizh community. Like I stated before he belongs to the 10% rich privileged section of the Indian origin or Malyaka Thamizh community. These people did not migrate here to work in the tea estates but came here as businessmen , traders and white collar workers. They are the owners of large businesses, trading establishments, jewelers and shops, that you see around Fort, Pettah and Kandy and other areas. They mostly belong to the Chetti or Chettiar community , just like the Sea Street Chettiars. Some are Nadars , Vellalar or Brahmin. Their position , the wealth they enjoy and their living conditions are completely different to the poverty stricken conditions of the estate Thamizh population , who make up 90% of the Indian origin or Malayaka Thamizh.

          • 1
            2

            you are a blatant disgusting liar. I lived in Kandy and going to school while Murali was growing up and going to school at SACK.

            Every one in Kandy knew his dad was the owner of the luckyland biscuit factory. So how could he have said that he was a poor estate Tamil?

            I have nothing against any particular race but I hate ba sterd terror supporters. which is what all you pigs here are.

    • 10
      4

      Even his own Malayaka Thamizh community do not support him not the Thamizh from Thamizh Nadu, as he is a traitor and has nothing to do with caste . Oh by the way he is not low caste or poor like he pretended to be . He belongs to rich/upper middle class trading family , to which around 10% of the Indian origin Thamizh belong to and most of these people are far more richer and have a better life style than most Eezham Thamizh. Yes he has done far more for Chingkalla racists like you and the to racist Chingkalla state, with his foolish idiotic comments and lies and has done great harm to all Thamizh in the island , especially to the Eezham Thamizh. He is just an opportunist . Chingkallams love him but all Thamizh , Eezham , Indian origin , Thamiz Nadu , low. high caste, rich poor all do not like him , Speaks a lot . If a well Chingkalla racist like you praise him , it even speaks more volumes

  • 6
    0

    Now the problem is to find an “Actor” who could be most close, in facial semblance to “Murali” – the cricketer. I have a suggestion. There is an ex-Minister from the “Yahapalanaya” Government. He is Prof. Asu Marasinghe. In the film industry, there are experts who could make any person look alike. Just look at a picture of this “Politician”. I saw this very well presented in one of a FB presentation by an “Artist”. No politics in this comment.

    • 2
      2

      Go down south you should be able to find a guy as dark as he is with crooked teeth .

  • 7
    5

    Aiyo Karikalan Aiya – Murali will do pretty well on any turf – what are you talking?

  • 8
    1

    “Politics should not interfere with sports. And sports should impact politics” so goes the saying. Whenever sports personalities mixed up with politics they will get what they asked for. So this fits very well to our cricketer Muralidharan who is the beholder many records and instrumental in winning many matches for Sri Lanka. Fairness to him he held in high esteem of Arjuna Ranatunge as his mentor which is indeed understandable. Former captain Arjuna Ranatunge who supported and stood by with Murali when the umpires no-balled him which made the Sri Lankan team walked off the field. This is a landmark incident that happened in a test cricket history. Naturally Murali became faithful to the entire nation. The only blunder he made was that he unnecessarily got entangled in politics by making statements angered the Tamil people.

    • 3
      0

      PK
      Tell me what in life is not touched by politics.

    • 10
      3

      Arjuna Ranatunga supported Muralidharan because he knew that Sri Lanka cannot win test matches without him. If he was a marginal cricketer, he would have been dropped from the side. When Champaka Ramanayake and Chandika Hathurusinghe who were representing Tamil Union went for practices on being selected to the Sri Lanka test pool, Arjuna Ranatunga called them Ramanayagam and Hathurusingham, which demonstrated his racist mentality.

      • 2
        1

        “Arjuna Ranatunga supported Muralidharan because he knew that Sri Lanka cannot win test matches without him. If he was a marginal cricketer, he would have been dropped from the side.”

        Of course this is correct. It would have been the same even if he was a sinhalese. As for winning test matches without Muali, Herath proved we could. (Beat Australia 3-0 for the first time). More recently won a test series in South Africa . (Even without Herath)

        “Arjuna Ranatunga called them Ramanayagam and Hathurusingham, which demonstrated his racist mentality.”

        If he actually said this, it would have been done in a joking manner. During a club game he called Nagulesawaren “ado kotiya”. Nagula was completely off line that day and Arjuna went onto get a few runs. Few years ago there was an article about Nagula and cricket playing days . In this he went onto say how Arjuna looked after him during his cricket playing days. Arjuna is in many ways like an Aussie, crude and plays the game hard but generally has a good heart.
        Arjuna should be given credit for opening up SSC for village boys. After we won the world cup in 1996. Ian Peries

        • 1
          0

          after we won the world cup in 1996, Ian Peries called Arjuna home to dinner. Arjuna shot back – mariyakade kollo do not eat dinner. He stood upto the elistist in the cricket establishment. But Arjuna the politician is a different man

  • 6
    1

    It was not an issue when another prominent cricketer joined the Rajapaksa camp well over a decade ago.
    There are so many Tamils who for reasons good or bad support any political party. There are Tamil MPS from the SLPP. One cannot deny anyone the right to choose.
    *
    Had MM declared support for the LTTE, what would have been the response on these pages?
    MM has answered charges against him in the Tamil media. Whether the answers were acceptable or not is another matter.
    Most, as the Queen would say, ‘are not amused’. Let us leave matter at that.
    It is unfair to conduct a media trial in absentia for MM.

    • 5
      1

      SJ

      What has MM done for the betterment of upcountry Tamils. I haven’t read anything about this in Tamil media. Would you identify a few. MM hails from upcountry and is rich and mingle with powerful politicians in power, hence I am asking this question.

      Why did he identify himself with the upper class racist Sinhalese and canvassed for politicians likeWimal W ? Had he remained solely as a cricketer no one would have bothered him and his film.

      In spite is severe protests, actor Vije sethupathy did not want to break his contract with the film producer as it would force him to return the millions of rupees he had taken as advance. He did wait until MM breaks the contract. What a horrible greedy actor he is.

      • 5
        1

        RMN
        My concern is not about what MM has done for anything or anybody; nor am I his spokesperson.
        My concern is an individual’s right to his/her political preferences.
        *
        Several comments on this page suggest a serious weakness in understanding this democratic principle.
        *
        Have you come across the quote: “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”.
        (Questionably attributed to Voltaire)

        • 2
          1

          Yes I agree with your quote, enjoying a fundamental right, freedom of expression. No one should deny it. But when you enjoy the said right or any other rights there is a duty that follows. That is you should face the consequences of your actions. This is what happened in MM’s case.

          • 1
            0

            The issue that you raised was what I contested.
            *
            All of use face the consequences of our actions.
            You, me and MM. He did not plead for protection.

  • 2
    6

    Dear KSN

    Thank you sharing your thoughts based on your politics.

    Not knowing your believe since 1970 onwards regards to telling Tamils first and then the Sinhalese from 80’s onwards at gunpoint what your “wish list” has come to pass??

    It has come to pass the way it did (the entire Nation destroyed/few hundred thousand Mother Lankan children have lost life/arms and limbs) because of the 1977 mandate for separation and the “River of Blood” speeches by your leader (not the Tamil leader) and the party FP/TULF?

    We have known all along the how the FP has deployed mass “mis communication” to the masses as required…local/National/International level to get us where we are?? Very many of us have died trying to fend off this crime but the Indian connivance have overwhelmed us for the past 40 years….how ever the masterminded way in which creating victims systematically to elevate the stakes to achieve what you and your party wanted has nothing to do with the rest of the Nation period….spin can not go further as there is no more children (victimes) left to fight your dirty battles anymore???

    • 2
      8

      Sorry you feel Murali has done a Doosra on your belives is an understatement now you feel he had done a double Doosra on the Indians as well??

      It is a fact it is the Indians (Indians from India proper/mMalaysian Indians/Singaporean Indians/Sri Lankan Indians) who done the Doosra on your politics may be a hard pill for you to swallow? In the process you both parties took us all down to the gutters??

      So when Murali says how riots turned out is collective event that let to all Sri Lankans dying but not the way you like to separate it for your own spins? it is a fact.

      When he tells Hon Cameron what he said Murali speaks for the Nation (not to deny unfortunate events) but to ensure we will not be taken to gutters further by the global managers who apply one law for them and another for the third world morons like ourselves????

      • 1
        7

        Can you imagine a man who delivered Brexit to us coming to the Nation as a guest and in front of all the common wealth guests have a go at the President of our Nation??

        Can you imagine a head of state doing that in theUK or US??

        try to learn something foremothers is a better way forward rather than beating a deda snake may well serve our next generation better?? specially a personality like Murali who sets a lot of example to many children should be seen with a Head of State so we can move forward irrespective of your politics??

        Whom we support is given not taken from anyone?? The only way FP/TULF/JVP did this human aspiration was at gun point?? NONE OF US SHOULD EVER REVISIT SUCH A THOUGHT AS Truth and Reconciliation is not equate Retribution — is between the perpetrators and the victims?? so please tell us where you fit in this equation??

      • 5
        2

        Whatever MM has bowled, many of his critics here including the author have got out by hitting (democracy) wicket.

  • 9
    1

    Paragon
    I just noticed your ‘Thodakattan’ reference. It is is atrocious. Please don’t ever use it . It severely hurts the entire Tamil fraternity.

    • 4
      4

      KSN
      What about the undying reference to caste in private conversation, at times even public?

  • 6
    4

    Karikalan S. Navaratnam

    I am wondering which one of the following expression is better than the other, Thodakattan or Throhi (Traitor).

  • 1
    2

    In today’s,”Personal” and “Public” affairs everyone is involved in some sort, and to a higher or lesser degree in “Politics”. That is unavoidable and has become a fact of life from which no one can run away. So why go to hair-splitting arguments over these high profiled personalities? The worst part of it is when such facts of life are “Wrapped” with “Tribal Emblems” (Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim) to “Upgrade” and “Downgrade” persons. We have seen and even speak very high of sports personalities who have entered the political, business, and social activities in countries they live in. In such instances do we take a “Dirty” path of criticizing them on their “Tribal/Religious” leanings? No. Then why we want to do that in the case of this “Sports Star” Murali who is highly acclaimed in the sports world. Please don’t resort to that “Dirty” habit of categorizing them into “Tribal/Religious/Political” camps and ruined their lives and careers. Why outsiders want to ruin them (sportsmen and women, politicians, religious leaders, tribal leaders) categorizing on to camps. Let them do it for themselves if they choose to. Having said that, I would say, the general public should keep an eye and watch for what they do to harm society at which point in time a check could be made.

  • 6
    3

    It is a pity that Murali has crumpled like the Lucky Land biscuits due to his adventure into political arena.

  • 6
    8

    “Murali has always maintained that there were no war crimes….”.”

    Muttiah Muralitharan is a gentleman who speak the truth unlike racist separatist bigots who cooked up the story on war crimes to tarnish the image of Armed Forces who gave a humiliating defeat to Tamil terrorists. War crimes were committed by IPKF and LTTE.

    “Tamil nationalists living across the Palk-strait keep their ear to the ground in regard to ongoing acts of aggression and villainy by the island’s SB fascist ruling class, targeting the Eelam Tamils – and keep an eye on collaborators and the running dogs of the racist regime.”

    Who cares!

  • 2
    4

    Moda Vedda :
    Murali is a wise and pragmatic person he has done the right thing.
    Karuna came to his senses when Prahakaran was out to KILL him.
    So we can say Karuna is also wise in a way. . He is still living and acceped by his community while VP Modaya is no more.

    • 4
      1

      Whimpy Kid aged 13 3/4

      What’s the problem?

  • 4
    4

    Our beloved Murali will do much better WITHOUT the Tamil Jokers on both sides of the Palk Straight…..

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palk_Strait

  • 1
    0

    MV,
    .
    Haven’t you actually written this about voting for the 20th Amendment?
    .
    ” barely a year of a five year term”
    .
    “A year?” Elections on the 5th of August. Betryal was much less than three months later.
    .
    “Freedom of conscience” is a concept with some validity if it was in the “first past the post system”. Not as here.
    .
    And not at all for Diana Gamage who was unknown to almost all, since her name was not on the list of any District for her to get prefernces. The SJB also must take a lot of the blame.
    .
    The NPP list had this name on it: “Kumar David”. Now, who was that? Dr A. Kumar David, the author of this article, without a doubt.
    “Politics should not interfere with sports. And sports should not impact politics” so goes the saying.

    Muralitharan is entitled to engage in politics. He has the right to back Wimal Weerawansa the rabid rabble-rouser who vomits anti-Tamil tirades even inside parliament.

    No one questioned his right to campaign for Weerawansa or the Rajapaksas.

    But there is a PRICE to pay when you mix cricket with politics.

    To claim that the day the war ended is the happiest day in his life and he slept peacefully may be right. 1/2

  • 3
    1

    But this was a black day for the Tamils, a day hundreds of top-ranking LTTE cadres who surrendered to the army on May 18, 2009 after laying down their arms went missing. That included the batch of surrenderers carrying white-flags at the behest of Mahinda and Basil Rajapaksa.
    Muralitharan told mothers of missing persons that they are exaggerating their claims. He perfunctorily dismissed the claim with a wave of a hand.

    Human Rights Watch in a statement said “All UN reports found credible allegations of enforced disappearances by government forces of captured LTTE fighters and Tamil civilians during the final months of the war in 2009.

    Among the army units, the UN implicated in the worst atrocities at the war’s end were those commanded by the current army chief, Gen. Shavendra Silva, and the defense secretary, Gen. Kamal Gunaratne. On February 14, 2020, the United States State Department designated Silva and his immediate family members ineligible for entry into the US “due to credible information of his involvement, through command responsibility, in gross violations of human rights, namely extrajudicial killings.”
    The new Rajapaksa administration has halted legal proceedings initiated by the previous government against navy officers accused of the enforced disappearance and alleged killing of 11 young men in Colombo and its suburbs in 2008 and 2009.

    • 1
      4

      Nathan,
      All the LTTE cadres who surrendered (about 14,000) were rehabilitated and guided to self-employment by Rajapakshe regime. Telling that they went missing is a blatant lie. Some LTTE cadres who claim as missing are hiding in western countries under new identities.
      Demala people do not feel ashamed to keep on repeating lies in order to tarnish the image of Rajapakshes and Sri Lanka Armed Forces who gave a humiliating defeat to Tamil terrorists.

      “credible allegations”
      “credible information”
      BS!! All these so called ‘CREDIBLE’ things are fabricated stories of Tamil Diaspora and NGOs thriving on $$$$s.

      • 1
        0

        Eagle Eye,
        Dote me, but not so much!

  • 0
    0

    Eagle Eye is a pathological and psychopath suffering from Vellala phobia. He is an ardent supporter of the Rajapaksas sun or rain. Can he ask Gotabaya Rajapaksa to settle the bill for Rs 47.3 million owed to LLRDC?

    Gotabaya along with six others were charged for alleged misappropriation of Rs.47.9 million being amount due to the Treasury in respect of the construction of the D.A Rajapaksa Memorial at Medamulana, Weerapitiya. This was the balance amount due out of the total expenditure of a thumping Rs. 81.3 million. The original estimate was Rs.33.9 million. The cost estimates escalated when Gotabaya wanted costly materials for the original plan. For example, the walkway was paved with granite stones compared to the original plan to use ordinary stones.

    The Memorial was opened on November 5, 2014. Rajapaksa’s family is now back in power. This case against Gotabaya has been withdrawn because of the immunity enjoyed by him as a President. But morally he still owes this amount to the government. How can a President sermonizing about virtues of simplicity, honesty and probity when he himself is guilty of defrauding the government? When this construction took place using/misusing state resources, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa was the Secretary to the Ministry of Urban Development.

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