By Colombo Telegraph –
(Second Update ) – The same people who defaced the mural on Kynsey Terrace last night came tonight (Saturday August 4th) as well and continued the job, finishing erasing of the remaining part of the mural as well which they could not finish on Friday August 3rd as they had run out of tar.
Following the assassination of Dr. Neelan Tiruchelvam by the LTTE on 29 July 1999, in a spontaneous outpouring of grief and loss, the people with whom he worked and the staff of the institutions he founded, remembered and honoured Dr. Tiruchelvam by painting a mural with peace motifs and the quote ‘Secure the Sanctity of Life’ in Tamil, Sinhala and English on Kynsey Road where he was assassinated. This initiative called for the celebration of life and sought to re-affirm values which counter violence and disregard for humanity. Over the last 13 years since his assassination, along with staff members, and friends and supporters of the institutions and of Dr. Tiruchelvam, students and artists have also participated in touching up the painting at the Kynsey Road-Kynsey Terrace junction; an activity that takes place twice a year on his birth and death anniversaries. Clearance to undertake the activity is obtained from the Cinnamon Gardens Police. Furthermore, two police officers from the Traffic Division provide assistance to manage traffic while the road painting exercise was conducted.
On 27 July staff members and artists met again to touchup the painting on the Kynsey Road- Kynsey Terrace junction to mark Dr. Tiruchelvam’s death anniversary on 29 July 2012. On 2 August 2012, at around 10.45 pm a truck was seen driving up Kynsey Road from which around 15 men alighted. One man was witnessed pouring what appeared to be a black oil-like liquid on the mural while another poured sand on it. The men completed the operation in a few minutes and drove off. Despite, their efforts the mural could still be clearly seen the following morning although the colours of the mural were now muted. A police complaint was lodged with the Borella Police on 3 August.
On 3 August at around 8.30 pm a second attempt was made by around fifteen individuals, all dressed in civilian attire, including some in track suit trousers and t-shirts, who placed orange traffic cones around the area and poured tar on sections of the mural; they waited until the tar had dried before leaving the site within an hour. There were two vehicles parked nearby, a white truck that had the sign ‘Road Markings’ across its windscreen, and a military white jeep with two military personnel in uniform seated inside, both of which left with the men all dressed in civilian attire. Most of the mural has now been obscured, what has been left untouched is the Sinhala section of the mural while the Tamil and English sections have been obliterated/painted over. (See the picture below – Photo courtesy Vikalpa )
Lalindra J. / August 4, 2012
“A nation reveals itself not only by the men it produces, but also by the men it honors, the men it remembers.“
– President John F. Kennedy
Ranjith / August 4, 2012
Neelan was not a saint but this takes the bloody cake! Must have been Gota’s white van goons – but really have they not anything better to do? This is so pathetic!
Activists and Artists should throw tomatoes and rotton eggs at all the Rajapakse posters around Colombo and other parts of the country and artists should paint graffiti and spray paint out the Rajapakse posters. We need beautify the city and cleanse it of the Rajapakse visual pollution!
Anti-Boru / August 5, 2012
Right on, Ranjith.
This is one of those occasions when fire must be met with fire.
What has happened to the President of this country who should be condemning stuff like this? Is he dumb in more ways than one would care to recall?
Dodo / August 6, 2012
BTW why did not the security guard take down the number of the vehicles and report them! Strange indeed!
Dodo / August 6, 2012
Quite right Neelan was one smart operator! Today his memory is kept burnished by people who benefiting from doing so – particularly, as in all cases with politicians, the Widow, who has set up a trust and get gullible donors to fund her! The sad fact is that the widow is systematically ruining and profiting from the institutions set up at Kynsey Road, by acting as if she is running a family business – poking her nose into things that she knows nothing about like for instance research while appointing stooges who are quite unqualified to run ICES $ the board. The institutions @ Kynsey Rod are in decay today because of interference from the family and due to nepotism– as are most institutions in the Govt. sector and ironically in the NGO sector in the country which in many ways mirrors the govt. – rather than challenge it!
nelanka / August 4, 2012
What a legendary human he is,and its unfortunate to all sri lankans this man was killed.
Today we live among animals worst than buffaloes,this is nothing new.
l feel so sad for our mother land,we lost all our leaders,today we are with a bunch of donkeys.
Senguttuvan / August 4, 2012
White Van abductions, murder and terror; Grease Yaka menace; Drug-runners and gang-lords openly promoted to high Govt positions; More than a single political prisoner in State custody brutally savaged to death; girls from 10 upwards chosen for rape – and now this. Has the State taken leave of its senses? Does the Govt at its highest levels
think any good is done to the country or the regime by this madness?
gamini / August 6, 2012
Senguttuvan, your duplicity will not earn you any respect nor one to take you seriously. I saw you praising Chandrahassan, SJVC’s sons stand and your suggestion to support MR for durable solution. Now when you see the mockery perpetrated by MR regime defacing A Mural in memory of Neelan Thrichelvam you seem to have reservation. What Reconcilliation can you expect from a Corrupt Dubious character as MR? You few Tamils playing opportunistic games will never help the majority Tamils in their endeavour of seeking recognition as equal citizens of this country. It is sad indeed that not only the Sinhalese who played ball with the Tamil issue but you Tamils as well.
ranbanda / August 6, 2012
Have you seen or rember the years 88 and 89?White vans,”PRA” field bykes carrying gunmen and bodies with their gaping mouths arms and legs broken and amputated burning on tyres at every corner of the country except North?Tht is real terror man!You wait for the bus and police surround you carrying you to a nearby park and you have to go infront of a hooded man and if you are unfortunate and the guy nod his head and the day after you will be burning on a tyre! Man 50,000 went to the other world!Do we see things like that now?.
Piranha / August 6, 2012
It is the regime and its collaborators who are responsible for these kinds of activities. It should be the opposition politicians and the prominent members of civil society who should speak up. The political opposition is a waste of space and the civic leaders are frightened for their lives from this dastardly regime. No hope for Sri Lanka unless regime change is effected without delay by outside powers.
Desilva / August 4, 2012
THE DEFENCE SECRETARY “GOTA BAYA” GULLA’S MURAL IS TO BE ESTABLISHED IN THIS PLACE BY THE IDIOTS WHO DEFACED THIS MURAL. NICE WAY TO IMPLEMENT THE SO CALLED “LLRC”. LONG LIVE THE GOTA-BAYAGULLA’S. ONLY IF THEIR HELICOPTERS DON’T STALL IN MID AIR WITH ENGINE SEIZURE, RUNNING WITH THE USELESS FUEL IMPORTED BY THE CPC.
ranbanda / August 6, 2012
Bayagulla was the one who master minded of eliminating your pukaharan and his LTTE gang!Your Ranil was oissing in his pants with other politicians when Gota challenged Pukaharan alias Prabhakaran.And he captuared PK too where USA failed and PK was less than 3 hours in Colombo.These are the acts man,not even Scotlandyard could not do it.!!
Desilva / August 4, 2012
IT IS PROOVEN THAT THE MILITARY MURDERED DR NEELAN THIRUCHELVAM.
Chandra Goonewardene / August 4, 2012
Don’t talk rot, Desilva.
This ation should be condemned. Do these goons even know that the LLTE killed Tiruchelvam?
Lalindra J. / August 4, 2012
That is the most absurd and stupidest statement I’ve seen here. Dr. Thiruchelvam was closely working with the CBK’s government on a devolution package for the Tamils and a peaceful solution to the conflict. Yet the LTTE considered him a traitor to the Tamil community because he was working closely with a Sinhalese government and he had to pay the supreme price.
Dinidu de Alwis / August 4, 2012
When an entity (elected administrative or otherwise) attempts to deface a memorial for a dead man, that is the last resort – and the lowest levels – of someone who has clearly lost their sanity.
Gamarala / August 5, 2012
White van coming for you.
DAS / August 6, 2012
Earlier, many LTTE cemeteries with thousands of headstones were bulldozed and erased in the north and east.
Even though,Duttugemunu respected Elara’s tomb.
During the JVP insurrections, bodies were burned by the roadside on tyre pyres or simply left to rot,and,coffins of civilians were forced to be carried to the cemetery below knee level.
Hundreds of of bodies were found buried at Chemmani and at Batalanda.
108 schoolchildren were kidnapped by the army from a school in Embilipitiya,and the bodies have not yet been located.
Dead bodies in Mullivaikkal,have not yet been recovered and buried properly.
Are we becoming a nation of,or are we ruled by, barbarians?
Panda / August 4, 2012
They are so insecure, that they stoop to defacing posters or mural of admired leaders long gone.
This sounds like a well organized group of criminals, so we don’t have to guess for too long where the dirty fingerprints lead us to. It is well known that in Sri Lanka one can get away with murder, kidnapping, intimidation, corruption, and thuggery. So defacing a mural is child’s play.
If this was done to a mural (we are plagued with so many) of one of the Raja’s there would be severe punishment for the culprits (quickly found too).
SERUVILA SENARATH / August 4, 2012
THERE SHOULD BE COMMISSION TO INQUIRE ABOUT THE DEFACING OF MURALS,
AND COMMISSION CHAIRMAN MUST BE kUDU MERVIN SILVA.
Merril / August 4, 2012
It is a hate crime. How did they come back second time to finish it? It is a police responsibilty to catch them and bring them to justice. Perhaps the mayor has to get involve with the police work.
Rohitha / August 4, 2012
This is why everybody is talking about the MARA family gone insane. They should be immediately sent to Mulleriyava hospital for treatment. Some psychiatry doctor should immediately attend to them before they make more dangerous acts to society and people. Someone should encourage them to consult a psychiatry as soon as possible, as these type of acts are instigated by lunatics. It’s a serious decision for the safety of all the people and property in the nation. They need a break from politics.
sirisena / August 5, 2012
To the other hospital in Maharagama.KARMA WILL CATCH UP. sADHU SADHU.
Dr. Maverick / August 4, 2012
It is Rajapaksa’s Apartheid law
Maryam / August 4, 2012
This is a very clear example of the ruling mindset. Educated versus the deaf and dumb GR/MR clan. Meeting their own waterloo shouldn’t be too long. Poor mother Lanka going from bad to worse.
Donald J Gnanakone / August 4, 2012
Defacing should be condemned.
Next would be Laxshman Kadirgamar statue etc.
3 years after the defeat of the LTTE, hardly any Tamils or the TNA are mourning the deaths of the two Tamil Parliamentarians. Neelan’s father was a well respected Tamil politician and attorney.
Neelan lived all his life on Rosmead Place and was too close to the Jayawardenes and Bandaranayake’s for decades. As far as the Tamils were concerned he did nothing noteworthy, spoke up for the Tamils, and just compare what Sumanthiran’s performance is in just 2 years as a MP….
Neelan also very close to the US embassy and USA, but could not use his connections to assist the Tamils, but only harm them in general.He was also close to the late TNA leader Amirthalingam..
sirisena / August 4, 2012
This is all to do with religious intolerance racial intolerance and the list goes on. You all can bark up the wrong tree and nothing happens. Whose fault is this? Fault of all you people shedding crocodile tears on this web site. You all are the same as the perpetrators. So shut up and sit tight and say yes sir no sir three bags full sir. When you have created a devil you dance with it or else shut up experience the consequences.Too late now .
vivian de alwis / August 5, 2012
He must have sanity to loose it
Pandukabaya de Silva / August 6, 2012
all too true Vivian!
Saman / August 6, 2012
If the govt. does not allow these graffiti in Sri Lanka, someone should take it to internet and you tube. Could have graffiti exposure on Raja family also.
ranbanda / August 6, 2012
These mural things you can see only in undeveloped countries.Anyway Neelan’s wife make money and I dont think murals are a suitable idea.What if we all do that on behalf of our heroes and all the streets of Sri Lanka will be with lot of murals.A stupid way of wasting money.Idicrasy in action.
gamini / August 6, 2012
Ranbanda, just a word of caution. You seem to be concerned about the waste of money spent on these murals. For your information it is Private money and not govt. coffers. Tell us honestly when Public Funds are wasted on Foreign Trips for plane loads of psychophants, on projects which has no immediate returns to society but which only helps to boost the ego of one man MR, what do you honestly feel then?
anonymous / August 6, 2012
It is noteworthy that Gothahbaya, MR, and all sorts of people have been implicated.
But who killed Neelan T?
Is it not likely that THEY are still interested in obliterating Neelan’s memory?
Or it could be Sinhala-Extrimist groups outside the pale of Govt?
Or it could be people setting up to discredit the GR-MR administration by doing them and allowing CT and GV to claim that this is thee work of MR.
Point is, there can be no justice in a country where accusations are made without evidence, or clear authorship. When Kadirgamar was assassinated, leading NGOS refrained from blaming the LTTE saying that `we have to wait till a police investigation’ establishes who did it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Kanda / August 7, 2012
If you are trying to hint that this defacing is the work of LTTE,
how come that the pepetrators here succeeded in the city witn all
military & Police do their checks?
paulraj / August 6, 2012
Premadsa’s time the bishanaya at its worse ,with the help of kesel watte gang ,& mujttakkuliye C.T.B thugs.& he got it in return, what u see now is naathing,,,, Mr 4 ever,,,
TropicalStorm / August 7, 2012
When a work of Art is feared enough to be vandalized, it is a clear indication that the perpetrators are afraid of others’ right of self-expression.
Neelan T stood for non-violent, intellectual resolution of conflict. Even though conflict of ideas is inevitable, physical confrontation is avoidable and is the preferred way of doing business for civilized people. Neelan was an example of this model.
Irrespective of what those who inherited his name and attendant benefits now do, destroying the work of those who admired Neelan’s way of conflict resolution is self defeating. It diminishes the perpetrators to the level of savages, who would never accept intelectual discourse as the way to resolution.
Senguttuvan / August 7, 2012
Gamini – I am afraid you read me wrong and therefore the abuse you heap on me is misplaced. From where, dear Sir, did you get this delusional conclusion of “my sggestion to SCC to support the Rajapakses?” SCC is a senior lawyer and a man who has politics way up in his veins from the time he was knee high to a grass-hopper. He needs no advise from me as to whom he should join.
My political philosophy is different from that of my friend MR – and the latter knows it only too well. But if SCC, KP or anyone wants to join even the Devil and bring peace, security, development and prosperity to the Tamil Nation my best wishes to them. I am prepared to be proven wrong if Lankan Tamils get their long denied dues. But,
rationally, do you honestly believe a man, his siblings and his family who have brought such misery to the Sinhalese and destroyed society and the economy in just 6 years can help their avowed enemies – the Tamils? This talk in the UN, here and elsewhere “Tamils are my people” – as far as I can see – is only for the konde bandapu chinonta (to put it in my rather sketchy Sinhala)
But if Sarath Fonseka, the JVP and Wimal Weerawansa can now claim- tongue in cheek – they are for justice to the Tamils pigs sure will fly one of these days from this Wonder of Asia.
Senguttuvan / August 7, 2012
I endorse what Tropical Storm writes here. Neelan was a national treasure who could have brought us the peace we yearn for so that all
Lankans in the four corners of the land might enjoy that Celebration of Life that he sacrificed his life for.
After Neelan died many conspired to destroy the ICES. Crudely having Rama Mani expelled – with her little son’s education torn to pieces – was one such dasatardly act of these “learned gentlemen” The names and identifies of the main actors to this plot is known. The attacks continue targetting Sithy and others. But ICES appears to be well run, professionally and to expected standards of intellectual honesty. Destroying the murals in such low fashion only exposes the psychiatric condition of some who go as leaders of the regime today.
May the fragrant memory of dear Neelan – that great Sri Lankan – live long.
GhostLanka / August 7, 2012
I Cant understand why on earth in the 1st instance do u need to paint a mural to pay tribute to some fallen distinguished ON THE ROAD, when there are other respectable ways of paying tribute.
Who have poured tar on it, I dont mind it, because nobody has the right to paint some stupid art on the road except road markings legallised by traffic laws!!!!!
For heavens sake keep some flowers, light a candle beside the road where the sad incident took place. If somebody upsets that too, then I can post a comment in defiance towards that thuggish act and curse in silence to those persons. AYU BO WEWA!!!!
Bruno Umbato / August 7, 2012
Well said, GhostLanka … All these b.s.’ers talking big and finding even very tiniest incident to a ‘well planned crime’ has an agenda to destroy Srilankan image aboard … There are of course, excesses and wrongs are done by all governments in the world and there should definitely be a very very opposition around to try to rectify those … But, these b.s. remarks here are a disgrace to read … Look at above comments by well educated simple Simons extending probably a simple ‘road maintainance’ exercise to a BIG BIG WELL PLANNED CRIME … What a shame!