30 September, 2020

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Hindutva India & The Ethnic Problem

By Izeth Hussain

Izeth Hussain

Izeth Hussain

This article is really in continuation of my two previous articles (Colombo Telegraph of March 21 and March 28) in which I covered the implications of what transpired during Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Sri Lanka. A third article covering the same ground might seem redundant, or at least excessive considering that no one else is now writing on that subject. Actually I am writing this article because I have come to a novel conclusion that had not occurred to me earlier. It is that there has been a paradigm shift in our ethnic problem in relation to India, a shift that can lead to the most fateful consequences. The shift is this: hitherto India has had a legitimate concern with securing a political solution for the Tamil ethnic problem through devolution in the North and East; now it is concerned about the welfare of the hill-country Tamils as well. I believe that the explanation for this shift is to be found in the politics implicit in the ideology of Hindutva.

According to a detailed comment on my last article by my former erudite colleague Bandu de Silva, Prime Minister Modi had declared that the issues of the hill-country Tamils had not been properly addressed and he had invited their representatives to visit him in Delhi. That apparently was more or less the gist of what he had reportedly said. If that is correct, It signifies a new departure in India’s thinking about Sri Lanka, which in my view has sinister implications and therefore requires scrupulous analysis. In this situation, we must first of all be absolutely clear in our minds about how far India can legitimately go in intervening over the Sri Lankan Tamils. On this matter we must be prepared to jettison widespread Sri Lankan preconceptions and prejudices and accept the standards of the international community.

Modi - Naguleswaram Temple Jaffna 2015

*Modi at Naguleswaram Temple Jaffna – 2015

We have to abide – whether we like it or not, and in terms of international norms – by commitments made under the Peace Accords of 1987. That certainly means that we are committed to working out a political solution on the basis of 13A. Equally certainly it means that we are not committed to going beyond that to something vaguely known as 13A+. If India insists on that, it would be tantamount to inadmissible interference in our internal affairs. According to the feedbacks I have been getting it appears that some Tamils, perhaps most, hold that we are indeed committed to 13A+ because President Rajapaksa kept on speaking about it and even made a pledge to the UN Secretary General about it. But he did not have the backing of the Parliament and Government for doing that, and besides he was tantalizingly obscure about what he meant by 13+. A convenient amnesia has overtaken the Tamils I have cited about the fact that when President MR eventually did explain what he had in mind to Tamil leaders it turned out to be devolution into small units, which the Tamil leaders quite rightly regarded as risibly nonsensical. The plain truth is that Prime Minister Modi had no warrant at all for recommending that we go beyond 13A.

Before dealing with Modi’s reference to the hill country Tamils I must make my position clear about India’s intervention over our ethnic problem. I hold that India meant to help us, not to dominate us, though it committed some gigantic blunders just as the rest of the international community did. The guiding principle behind Indian intervention was this: what is done to the Tamils here inevitably causes a fall-out in Tamil Nadu, which can even lead to a separatist drive there. JR began his State terrorism against the Tamils in 1977 and allowed it to go to a genocidal extreme in 1983. But even before 1983 India gave training to Tamil rebels, but that was of a token order and was clearly meant to appease Tamil Nadu in terms of the principle I have just set out. The real civil war began around April 1984, which was the consequence not of anything done by India but of JR’s genocidal State terrorism. Later India did everything possible to help end the war. The IPKF troops were not imposed on us but sent here at the request of JR, and they were withdrawn without demur when Premadasa requested it. By then India had lost over a thousand of the IPKF troops. We must bear in mind that India denied the use of South India as a hinterland for the LTTE, which was a crucial factor behind the LTTE’s defeat. I strongly suspect that at the final stage of the war India cleverly contrived the wiping out of the entire LTTE leadership – just punishment for having dared to assassinate an Indian Prime Minister.

I am aware that much more can be said against Indian intervention but that does not cancel out the fact that we owe recompense to India for what it did for us. If we don’t acknowledge that fact we will be regarded by the international community as ingrates of a low order. By way of recompense all that is required is a final political solution through the implementation of 13A so that India could be rid of an irritant that could prove to be dangerous sometime in the future. Sri Lanka has misgivings about land and police powers, but it should be quite feasible to work out a compromise on that. Now Prime Minister Modi has compounded the problem by recommending going beyond 13A and even federalism, though he must be quite well aware that it is an F word both in Sri Lanka and in India. And now comes the report about his concern over the hill-country Tamils. It certainly amounts to interference in the internal affairs of Sri Lanka.

The important point is that the hill country Tamils, also referred to as Indian Tamils of recent origin and estate Tamils, have never been a component in Sri Lanka’s Tamil ethnic problem. The reason is that because of caste taboos they have been treated as a people apart who have had little or no interaction with the fully indigenous Sri Lankan Tamils. They have never asked for Eelam or even devolution as a solution for their problems. The elder Thondaman, among the ablest of Sri Lankan politicians, followed pragmatic policies that paid rich dividends for his people. Doubtless ills remain and may be they have not been properly addressed, but that surely was a matter for private discussion, not public declaration.

Was it no more than a faux pas? Significantly it was believed that RAW had persuaded the hill country Tamils to vote against Rajapaksa despite the contrary preference of their political leaders. It seems reasonable to suppose that a paradigm shift is taking place because of the present Indian Government’s Hindutva ideology. I leave it to the interested reader to turn to the internet for plenty of information about that ideology. It is Fascist, racist, retrogressive, atavistic, maniacally anti-Muslim and anti-Christian, and in relation to modernity it is certainly a bizarre ideology. In several places in India there are projects to build temples in honor of Godse, the assassin of Gandhi. How bizarre the ideology is is shown by its policy on conversions: it is forbidden for Hindus to convert to other religions but it is alright for Muslims and others to convert to Hinduism because that is seen as reconversion to their original religion and the recovery of their birthright. Low-caste Hindus who converted to Islam because as Hindus they were spat on every day of their lives are asked to believe that in reconverting to Hinduism they will be regaining their birthright. That’s hard to beat for its sheer idiocy. I won’t be surprised if Modi’s sudden concern for the hill-country Tamils has arisen out of a fear that they might convert to Islam.

Anyway the important point for Sri Lanka is this: what happens to our Tamils has up to now been a matter of concern to Tamil Nadu, but if they are seen as Hindus it becomes a matter of concern for the whole of India. It is a paradigm shift that makes me feel uneasy. Did our Tamils inspire that shift? It is quite possible that when Modi came to power with the reputation of being an extraordinarily tough character our Tamils sensed an opportunity to persuade the Indian Government to adopt a tough policy towards Sri Lanka. I won’t blame the Tamils for that considering that our Governments have had a horrible record of reneging on commitments on the ethnic problem. I am now wondering whether a political solution will ever be possible through an agreement between the Government and the Tamil parties. On the other hand a grass roots strategy might succeed. If we fully implement 13A minus, that is minus land and police powers, and combine it with the plus factor of a fully functioning democracy, we might see the end of the ethnic problem. In fact, quite frankly, I feel sure of it.

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Latest comments

  • 9
    19

    Izeth, as you observe Sri Lanka’s genocidal governments have a history of reneging on deals. In sum, that is the reason for India’s continuing involvement – this is their back yard and being a likely future security council permanent representative, they need to be able to sort out the petty despots on their beat. This has nothing to do with Hindutva or anything else – Sri Lanka is a state that is unable to make fair deals and implement them without a little help from its friends.

    • 7
      23

      Well said alex,

      Izeth Hussain merely vomits out his imaginations, opinions, prejudices, and wishes.

      In the mean time he remains loyal to the Sinhala-Buddhist state that employed him and provided a means of living, and perhaps provides him in his retirement.

      The so-called analysis of his is lacking in any seminal truths.

    • 5
      19

      Izeth Hussain –

      “It is that there has been a paradigm shift in our ethnic problem in relation to India, a shift that can lead to the most fateful consequences. The shift is this: hitherto India has had a legitimate concern with securing a political solution for the Tamil ethnic problem through devolution in the North and East; now it is concerned about the welfare of the hill-country Tamils as well. I believe that the explanation for this shift is to be found in the politics implicit in the ideology of Hindutva.”

      “According to a detailed comment on my last article by my former erudite colleague Bandu de Silva, Prime Minister Modi had declared that the issues of the hill-country Tamils had not been properly addressed and he had invited their representatives to visit him in Delhi.”

      “The important point is that the hill country Tamils, also referred to as Indian Tamils of recent origin and estate Tamils, have never been a component in Sri Lanka’s Tamil ethnic problem.:

      Thank you. What about the other citizens?

      Even the High case Sri Lankan Tamils did not want to address the up country tamils. LTTE tried to use them.

      Remember, India was a hindu country before the rise of Buddhism and fall of Buddhism,

      Lanka, the Land of Native Veddah Aethho, was a Hindu Country, before the rise of Buddhism. Buddhism has nit declined yet, unlike in India, and would it go back yo Hinduism?

      Is that Hindutva? Is Buddhism an opponent of Hindutva? Historically, it was the case.

    • 7
      16

      Hindutva India under Modi is vital to protect South Asia from rising Islamic aggression and violence.

      Whether Sri Lankan Islamists like it or not, Modi will be the balancing power under US and Japanese stewardship of his mission.

      Viva Modi!

  • 16
    16

    See the problems in the USA. there are so many poor people. some people are on social welfare for generations. If these problems considered because of their ethnicity, then no one goes finds a solution.

    See How China developed a new version of Social Capitalism. Chinese people are earning very low wages. Just recently, in a factory where Apple products are manufactured, Workers began to commit suicide.

    So, the bottom line problem is consider problem as a whole and not as ethnic.

    Make the conditions the best for estate Tamils and with that the cost of Tea goes down and Estate Tamils will be unemployed.

    that will eventually, make the Tamils move out.

    that is a very good idea.

    • 0
      0

      Jim, your economic theory is a little flawed.

  • 3
    19

    “Anyway the important point for Sri Lanka is this: what happens to our Tamils has up to now been a matter of concern to Tamil Nadu, but if they are seen as Hindus it becomes a matter of concern for the whole of India. It is a paradigm shift that makes me feel uneasy.”
    Hasn’t this already come to pass ?
    In all his speeches in India, Modi addresses his audiences in Hindi
    During Modi’s visit to Sri Lanka, all his speeches were delivered in English.
    But he chose to address the meeting in Jaffna only in Hindi
    Does this not signal a paradigm shift in India’s perception of Sri Lankan Tamils ?

    • 3
      14

      ekelbroom – the detail pointed out by you speaks volumes.Modi speaks in Hindi in India. Quite normal.He spoke in English in Colombo. Quite normal because most of his audience would have understood English.But he spoke in Hindi in Jaffna where no one, or hardly anyone would have understood Hindi. He was certainly affirming a common Hindu identity. The paradigm shift has indeed already taken place. Thanks very much for your brilliantly perceptive observation. IH

  • 3
    20

    On 22/3/2015, in response to his piece then, I referred to Izeth Hussain as “a man who has chosen to release, almost week after week, huge and regular doses of verbal diarrhea of (your) assumed wisdom on public affairs on the helpless reading public,” He confirms this and, from the angle of the reader, inflicts many repeats on the helpless reader. All for what? Look at the umbrage from readers he produces.

    And now (28/3/2015) he gives vent to his known prejudices and adds two more – Hindutva and the People of recent Indian Origin (PORIO) On 28th ultimo I note “It is perfectly clear this Izeth Hussain cannot sleep a wink unless he has an unwarranted dig at Lankan Tamils, Wiggie, Narendra Mody and India – for starters…” This week he gives vent to his known prejudices and adds two more – Hindutva and the People of recent Indian Origin (PORIO) Once again I have good reason to believe Hussain’s hidden agenda is to inflame his community with the Hindutva prejudice. As to the Sinhala electorate, his writing appears more for the ruffians amongst them to sharpen their knives against Tamils in line with the Gypsies song Singnore “labana sarey api dennawa weddey” (Next time we will give you the works)

    Dear Mr. Hussain, surely you fool yourself by stating your so-called “novel” idea “now it is concerned about the welfare of the hill-country Tamils as well…” Even an 8th standard student of politics in the country knows India has been concerned about the PORIO even before Independence. You surely cannot be ignorant of the fact when the Stateless issue was arbitrarily imposed and nearly a million de-franchised by the stroke of a pen, Indian PM Nehru, then and until his demise, refused to recognise this “Statelessness” formula. His position was “they are all nationals of Ceylon” However, the passage of history and politics in today’s world issues do not remain steadfastly rigid. The much respected PM Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri came into an arrangement with the Ceylon PM Mrs. B and they agreed (1964) on a 625,000/375,000 arrangement. That has now been settled.

    As to PORIO leaders, of different parties, visiting New Delhi there is nothing new and sinister here as you sheepishly try to suggest. Regular pilgrimages to the South Bloc in New Delhi in the post-war period is the practise of all parties – Sinhala, Tamil, PORIO and Muslims. I am aware New Delhi was not keen to accommodate a Muslim delegation because the trouble in Sri Lanka was not religious. But Rauf Hakeem has pleaded with Delhi his leadership is in trouble if he does not get an appointment – and there you are. Why not ask Hakeem, if you have a line to him before he his ousted by one of these regular tussle for leadership in the SLMC. You will have to, therefore, Sir, get a different stick to beat around next time.

    Your mischievous falsehood Modi had declared “the issues of the hill-country Tamils had not been properly addressed” can get you into much legal trouble if the laws the State isnow considering to prosecute
    Race-religious haters-inciters comes into effect. Modi is not going to make such a idiotic remark as “not properly addressed” as he has the benefit of advise of able and experienced diplomats in his team. Not the variety that gets into Ambassadorial positions by olding “pandang” to those close to PM’s/Presidents.

    Referring to 13A+ you say “… because President Rajapaksa kept on speaking about it and even made a pledge to the UN Secretary General about it. But he did not have the backing of the Parliament and Government for doing that…” The more astute in the country know that, India knows that, the UN knows that and the global community knows that. But who is responsible for placing a liar and double-tongued fool as the head of the country, who, to date, does not understand the damage he has done. The fact today is Tamils do not want it as it is far too inadequate since it was refused in the early 1990s (thanks to that political maverick of a CJ Sarath Silva)

    You are in line with history when you note “…The IPKF troops were not imposed on us but sent here at the request of JR…” but I am afraid you are in error when you write “they were withdrawn without demur when Premadasa requested it..” You try to mislead again. Former Indian HC Shri Lakhan Lal Mehrotra, in his recent book, informs India was not prepared to face the humiliation of an arbitrary withdrawal simply because the JVP then were threatening to throw out Premadasa. India insisted and got their own dates of phased withdrawal – only because VP Singh had taken over and undid all what the Congress did in Indo-Lankan diplomacy of the time. The naive Premadasa, the Kehelwatta
    chandiya, had even threatened “to go to war with India” on the issue to which the experienced Mehrortra had calmly replied that Premadasa can go ahead and India will take the necessary measures to protect herself. That cannot be accepting “without demur” as you said, good Sir.

    You are in your customary irresponsible and mischievous self when you insist “RAW had persuaded the hill country Tamils to vote against Rajapaksa despite the contrary preference of their political leaders.”
    Apparently, you are out of touch with Malainadu political affairs. The days when the elder Thondaman totally controlled matters and had nearly 10 MPs is over. The once mighty CWC now splintered and has only 2 MPs. There is no one single acceptable leader. Arumugam Thondaman is busy in his lecherous nocturnal ways, both in Colombo and Chennai, even his own supporters have lost faith in him. He cares little for the Estate worker. Digambaram is no more than a one-night stand. Mano Ganesan is making an effort to fill in the void but does not have the organisational machinery in the hills. Therefore, stop wasting time on referring to the men and women in RAW, who are far more serious sophisticated and intelligent than you can ever imagine.

    Why do you unnecessarily bring in Hindutva here except to signal to your Muslim fans you have had one more hit at India. I think the reference to India here is irrelevant. In India the BJP is winning more friends and candidates to the extent the Congress is worried. Don’t forget when Hakeem and friends seek an audience with Mody they are exchanging pleasantries with a Party whom you are trying to trash, unprovoked as anti-Muslim.

    Your outrageous and hideous comment “it is forbidden for Hindus to convert to other religions” is only matched by the subterfuge of your other comment “Modi’s sudden concern for the hill-country Tamils has arisen out of a fear that they might convert to Islam…” Have you become hallucinatory after your recent illness? Mr. Hussain, Hinduism is so tolerant they have a history of giving hardly a penny if a Hindu anywhere converts to any other faith. Unlike Muslims, there is no violence or force here. That has been one of the underlying strengths of the Hindu faith. Those Hindus who convert into Islam in India are not troubled or bothered in mainstream India is a factor that needs no corraborator.

    You refer to our former senior Ambassador Bandu de Silva, probably as a safety valve now that you attract so much of strongly worded criticism to your “articles” Let me give you my take. Mr. De Silva has served in many cities for our Foreign Office and he has done well by the country. He is not a one-Post Ambassador. When he writes in the public interest, he does not unnecessarily annoy others or incur their revulsion like you did on that occasion you called for starving the Tamils. He does not write to advance the causes of one race-religion against the other – like you, sadly, do. It is for the latter, in case you do not know, you attract so much of public revulsion and opprobrium.

    Kettikaran

    • 2
      14

      Kettikaran

      “All for what?”

      Have you ever thought of the relationship between scare mongers and arm merchants? Profits go to merchants of death and commissions are paid as consultancy fees. They both work in hand in glove.

      There is another reason as to why expert analysts continue to press for imagined security breaches. They desperately want to be part of the gung ho establishment, being part of it gives them extra manly libido.

      Not to be confused with gungo, acronym that stands for:
      girl u never got over.

      • 8
        1

        “Not to be confused with gungo, acronym that stands for: girl u never got over.”

        Like the tobacco leaf pickers mosquito repellent.

        moron veddha.- Margosa the ever green in the high lands keeps mosquitoes away

        • 2
          6

          Highlander

          “moron veddha.- Margosa the ever green in the high lands keeps mosquitoes away “

          Thanks for the tips.

          Exorcists (poosari) use margosa leaves to cast out the devil or other demons. If you are possessed (I am sure you are)you should use it by beating your head on margosa twigs hung from a wall (not other way around).

          If you are constipated drink its oil.

          • 1
            1

            demala veddha and his bintanne harem in thier best ambude- daily show without fail – salli salli – boru hora native veddha vedha dr white caliber!!

          • 0
            0

            [Edited out]

    • 1
      13

      Writing weekly articles on Sri Lankan politics as I do means that I have to spend time on observing human activity at its lowest level. It can be depressing.I thought some weeks ago that as an antidote I should start my day by reading great literature. I began with Maurice Barres on El Greco. It was great prose and invigorating to read. Then I reread the poems of George Herbert, a great poet together with the superb critical essay on him by L.C.Knigts,one of the best of the Scrutiny critics. I am now rereading Powys’Mr. Weston’s Good Wine, which for me is one of the greatest novels of the last century.
      Alas, after spending time on the spiritual and intellectual heights, I have to prepare my own breakfast and read the newspapers. I have to spend time on the regime of the quotidian.But nothing enjoins me to spend any of my time on garbage.Therefore I will not deal with the arguments of Kettikaran and other Tamils. The reader will readily see that their contributions, here and earlier,are in a class apart for their hysterical hatred and hydrophobic rage. And their arguments are, for the most part, garbage.I will deal with the complex problem they present in an article on the Tamil Lunatic Fringe anti-Muslim Racists.
      In the meanwhile I want to make some clarifications. Some of them want the Island to stop publishing me. But yesterday’s Island not only published my article, it was highlighted on the front page along with two others.They allege that I am anti-Tamil. How is it that i have many encomiums from Fr. S.J. Emmanuel and other Tamils? How is it that a Tamil expatriate paper in Canada published two of my articles in translation? Some keep on alleging that I advocated starvation as a weapon against the Tamils. I advocated the very opposite as I will show by resurrecting the article in question.It has to take lunatic racist hatred to make that allegation. They affect to believe that my writings are of the poorest quality. How is it that a leading institute wants to publish my series of articles on the SL Muslims in book form?
      The truth really is that I, a Muslim, have a wide reputation as an intellectual, writer, and political analyst of the highest quality.That drives the Tamil racists mad with hatred. If they challenge me on that reputation – I will quote! – Izeth Hussain

      • 2
        0

        Mr Hussein is delusional as to the intellectual heights he has reached. He is an old simpleton spewing hatred. Why does he call what others write garbage when he writes a lot of it himself and congratulates himself on his achievements. Let him tell us about Wahabism which affects his own people rather than talk about Hindutva. India is about to become the largest Muslim nation in the world and let us hope that they find a secular system in which they are able to ensure that all religions live in harmony and that there are no senile hate spewers about Hindutva to detract them from that course. It would be gook if Mr Hussein spends more time on spiritual pursuits than pollute the minds of people with his garbage which he proclaims he writes from “intellectual heights”.

        • 0
          0

          It looks like this Ponkoh has a peculiar genius for spouting garbage. He uses the word “delusional” about my claim that I “have a wide reputation as an intellectual, writer, and political analyst of the highest quality”. It could be “delusional” if only I held that opinion.But my use of the word “reputation” made it abundantly clear that I was referring to opinions held by others, Besides I gave fair warning that if challenged I would quote. I do so now.
          Palihakkara, my former junior colleague, and member of the LLRC conveyed to me that the one member of the public from whom they would have liked to have a representation was myself.It was a collective opinion, but he mentioned one name in particular, a Tamil who was a very distinguished former member of the Civil Service. The time for making representations by members of the public was long past, but Palihakkara said that an exception would be made in my case.
          Ponkoh, I really can’t waste my time on your garbage. I have told you already how I begin my day by reading great literature. I usually spend my evenings also on the heights. A couple of evenings ago it was Pasolini’s great film on the St Matthew Passion,famous for its music by Bach.It also had music by Prokoffiev and Webern. I could identify the music of all three without difficulty. I give this detail to show that I, a Muslim,am also an ultra-Westernised intellectual. I know it’s that that makes you and other lunatic fringe racists mad with hatred, bestial hatred . – Izeth Hussain.

          • 0
            0

            Ponkoh Sivakumaran,

            The poker-faced Izeth Hussain (I have rarely seen him smile) gives us a clue what parts of his problems may be. Note in his boast of his exquisite bourgeoisie tastes he admits “I also spend my evenings on the heights” So there you are. The guy is regularly gets high in the evenings – perhaps with the sticky stuff a portion of our Muslim immigrants brought from Battavia. When you reach those heights everything is Tchaikovsy, Brahms, Bach, Verdi and even the contemporary Richard Claydermann. No wonder, after his fix and a good sleep he does his breakfast and then goes on to produce garbage, to use a pet phrase of his. He thus gives vent to his racial prejudices that characterises much of his writings.

            Kettikaran

      • 0
        0

        Mr Hussein, I have commented on your articles and broadly understand your perspective, and as a liberal whole-heartedly agree with your rights to air them. That said, many of your ideas are based on the same limiting paradigms and restricted parameters defined by outwardly Chauvinistic authors like Mr Jayatilike. The primary limiting parameter I have observed is that a deal which the current majority of Sri Lanka is satisfied with is the only deal on the table for Sri Lankas Tamils, Muslims or other non-majority demographic group. If you start with that presumption, then you will inevitably end with some unitary solution, that can be torn up by the next JR Jayawardene or any majoritarian Chauvinist, and by reaching such agreement you destroy the sovereign rights of non-majority groups on the island.
        I believe that the presumption that any deal can only be reached with the current majoritarian mind-set is wrong. The world is intensely focused on the Sri Lanka problem, and its leaders have been told in no uncertain terms that Sri Lanka will need to deliver accountability and reconciliation. This means that Sri Lanka’s SInhala leaders will have the task of explaining to the majority that in the new world order Sri Lanka needs to be a liberal democracy not just a democracy. That means other indigenous groups have inalienable rights (and I include the Muslims in that group). My only real divergence from Mr Hussein is his presumption, for he does not recognise the unique opportunity that presently exists to sort out Sri Lanka’s political structure once and for all and set it on a path to peace, wealth and prosperity for all its peoples.

        • 0
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          Alex – Dayan J is capable of brilliant insights, and I share some of his views, not all of them.
          I am not sure of the grounds of your disagreement with me. I believe that we are fundamentally in agreement. We need a Government that will show the West that we are really in earnest about solving the Tamil ethnic problem. That can be done by implementing 13A as thoroughly as possible though without police ans land powers, together with a fully functioning democracy. Please see my next article. I look forward to your further comments. It is a relief to engage in civilized dialogue. Izeth

    • 0
      0

      Kettikaran, hiding behind a cowardly anonymity, writes of me as “a man who has chosen to release, almost week after week,huge and regular doses of verbal diarrhea ,,,”. If the quality of what I write amounts to excreta, how is it that I have received encomiums from Fr S.J.Emmanuel and many others including Tamils,how is it that a Tamil expatriate magazine in Canada published two of my articles in Tamil translation, how is it that a leading NGO has offered to publish my series of articles on the Muslims in book form, how is it that a paper of the high intellectual quality of the Island has been publishing my weekly articles for over a year, how is it that Colombo Telegraph which has a very wide readership has been publishing them? How many articles written over the last year and more have been published in translation, and how many have had offers of book publication? But for Ketti they are all excreta.The truth Ketti is that excreta is your natural element. You stink. Go away. – Izeth Hussain

  • 5
    22

    India has generally been concerned about the welfare of citizens of Indian origin living overseas both near and far. What is wrong with that? India is not the only country in the world that does so! In any event, the Tamils of Indian origin living in Sri Lanka as citizens of that country should now consider themselves as Sri Lankan Tamils as they have been here for three generations or more and the cultural differences between them and the more indigenous Sri Lankan Tamils are very minor. That will solve all the problems. There is no connection between Hindutwa and this issue. The author being a Muslim sees this ghost in every bit of darkness!

    Sengodan. M

  • 4
    16

    [Edited out] They want a war so they can dance in the middle and do business. Now talking about Modi and Hindu…Forgotten Al Kaida Boko Hram Hamas Islamic Jihad………

  • 3
    13

    Tamils working in the Hill country were always the concern of India. There were two treaties-Nehru-Kotelawela and Sirima-Shastri Pact relating to their citizenship. It is a bit strange that dementia prevents Hussein from recognising that these people were always the concern of India. Now he wants to give an Hindutva twist to the Tamil problems. It is a jaundiced view of a mind in decay. Better for Hussein to talk about Kuragala and Alutgama than pontificate on the problems of Tamils. Let us know what the role of Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are in politicising the Muslims and whether they have taken any measures to protect the Musltims of Sri Lanka. Mr Hussein has the old mentality of singing for his supper while his people suffer at the same hands at which the Tamils suffer. Mr Hussein must keep writing to keep senility at bay even at the cost of others having to read utter rubbish but to vent hatreds may not be a good idea at a stage when one has to consider one’s afterlife.

  • 1
    0

    This author is best suited to write on topics like Boko Haram, jihadism, Wahhabism, Al Queda,Salafism, chopping off heads of people, depriving women of education rather than on matters related to the national question in Sri Lanka. It would be best if he enlightens his tribe on the dangers of the above mentioned terrors.

    Sengodan. M

    • 0
      0

      Sengodan wants me to write on Islam and Muslim affairs, and so does Ponkoh Sivakumaran. Why? I have written many articles and seminar papers over the decades, and been published widely and appreciated widely. Why do the Tamil racists want me to limit myself to Islamic matters? When I write on other matters, including literature, I show myself to be a thoroughly westernized intellectual, not just a Muslim. The Tamil racists find that unbearable.
      I must say that I did write on Islamophobia in my series of articles on the SL Muslims. In the responses published in the Colombo Telegraph, the ones from Tamils were in a class apart.Their keynote was a bestial hatred of Islam and Muslims. – Izeth Hussain

      • 0
        0

        It is time this Izeth Hussain stops calling names – racists and other – all those who have views different to his. After all, in his own estimate he is “an ultra westernised intellectual…. political analyst of the highest quality..” and what else. We are entitled to expect a more cultured response from IH to those who
        rationally disagree with his views.

        Nettabomman

  • 0
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    Dear Kettikaran,

    I saw your remarks a little late. Nevertheless, I thank you for your very complimentary remarks about me but it hurts me to see that used as a tool to downgrade my former senior diplomatic colleague. It is not in my grain to accept such a situation. Hussain may have had only one posting as Ambassador.There is a long story behind it which happened in the Hameed era at the Foreign Ministry when many of us seniors were not given our due. Hussain had a wide exposure in the Foreign Service appointments.What was always significant was the quality of his political reporting from his posts which were highly appreciated and recommended for juniors to read and emulate. I really enjoyed reading his erudite reports and was inspired by them.
    I must take this opportunity to acknowledge the contribution of another of my former senior colleagues, Techchana (AT) Moorthy who took me under his wing to impart all what he had learnt in diplomacy, way of arguing a point.We became inseparable as brothers from the same family.His in laws, the Sri Skanadarajahs attended my wedding in full force.I had become the regular walking partner of his father-in-law, Sri Skanadarajah, former Supreme Court Judge.

    Bandu

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      Dear Mr. de Silva,

      I looked at my comments again and am convinced it is not “a tool to downgrade my former senior diplomatic colleague” Hussain is doing that very well by himself. I note in the 1990 period his anti-Tamil prejudice was consistently challenged by distinguished Tamils like Dr. Satchi Sri Kantha (UK) where the latter exposed Hussain’s venom quite convincingly. A quarter century later Hussain continues to display his anti-Tamil attitudes much more stridently. Naturally, he is being resisted by Tamils writers peeved by the discourtesy, as you may have noticed. Not just Tamil but experienced journalists like HLD Mahindapala appear to have a poor opinion of the man.

      I have not responded to his reply here because I do not think his acerbic retorts deserve the dignity of one. You will notice what I have done is contradict him in all those instances he has demonstrated
      his racial prejudice. Predictably, he responds in crude expletives. I have nothing personal against Mr. Hussain and concede he writes good prose expected of officials of his calibre in those years when our quality of English was as good as any.

      Thank you for your dignified intervention on behalf of a colleague who appears to have a penchant to shoot himself in the foot far too often.

      Kettikaran

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      Thanks for the comment, Bandu. But I don’t think it will help with Tamils who are mad with racist hatred. I am going to write an article on what I call Tamil Lunatic Fringe anti-Muslim Racistm. The problem really goes back to Ponnambalam Ramanathan. That article might interest you because of your background of scholarship in the field of history.
      The following is for the Tamil racists. In addition to being scholarly Bandu was among the best of our diplomats. I value his comment particularly for that reason. – Izeth Hussain

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    Hi Izeth Hussain
    I have been reading your drivels regularly and this is the conclusion i can reach on your mindset. Even at your old age you seem not to have understood the political problems in Sri Lanka. You Muslims [Edited out]

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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

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      Will be interesting to read these two postings, believed to be by Izeth Hussain, disallowed by the Editor. I believe it will be published if some changes are made allowing the substance to remain substantially unaltered. In fairness, usually Hussain does not write stuff that is struck down by the Editor.

      Backlash

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        I wonder what’s happening. I have not written anything so far that has been kept out by the moderator – IH

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