22 September, 2020

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Justice For Matale Victims? Never!

By Helasingha Bandara

The secret

One hundred and fifty people had been buried in one mass grave, some of them after having been severely tortured, in a hospital ground, without the knowledge of anyone for almost 25 years. It is almost impossible to imagine how anyone could dig such a large grave and bury 150 in it without the outside world learning about it, particularly in a public place like a hospital. There could have been four parties who knew about this: the murderers, supporters of the murderers, the murdered, and another few who witnessed the brutal act. The murderers and the supporters would not speak about it, the murdered could not speak about it even though they might have wanted to cry out for the whole world to hear and the few who unfortunately witnessed the atrocity could have been denied the opportunity to reveal the secret being pushed into the same grave with others.  Thus a secret was buried together with brutally murdered humans for 25 years until an accidental unearthing of some bones .

What does this say

Estimates say 60,000 youth were killed during the JVP insurrection by the armed forces including the police and the civil defense force. They all could not have been burnt by the roadside though some were. This means that there are other similar mass graves around the country. Thousands of people are waiting six feet under for them to be unearthed to tell their untold stories. There must be people who know those sites. In the name of humanity they should come out and show those sites.

Why justice cannot be delivered

The most prominent reason is that Gotabaya Rajapaksha is implicated together with other army Generals. Gotabaya is the President’s brother. Plenty of people can be influenced to protest against any legal action against him.   At the time of the murders took place the murderers were heroes for at least one section of Sri Lanka society. Coincidentally many years after, the very same Generals became heroes at least for one community in Sri Lanka. Heroes could not be tried at the time, nor can they be tried now because in the eyes of some they were heroes at that time and in the eyes of others they are heroes now.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa

The next reason is that the country is full of fools and undignified people. They can be persuaded to do anything for a bun and a bottle of Coke. When Duminda Silva was released from hospital how many people were there to welcome an alleged murderer? There is no doubt in anybody’s mind that Bharatha was shot on Duminda’s orders even if it is proved that he himself did not pull the trigger.  The people gathered there to welcome an alleged murderer who in fact announced that he was going straight to the Head of this country to be blessed. Where else can we hear a public announcement by an alleged murderer that he was going to meet the President of the country to be blessed, except in a country full of fools?   There will be more than enough people who can be influenced to agitate against any action against Gotabaya or the implicated Generals.

Why not SLFP

The murders took place during the regime of the UNP.  The rationale should be that the SLFP should investigate all complaints of disappearances, murders, extrajudicial killings etc to bury the UNP forever in a political grave, but it did not. The reason was that the killers belong to one set of families. At a close review it may be revealed that the higher ranking positions of the armed forces including the police were mostly held by the people who have village names such as Daramitipola, Libbokka, Gomagoda, notwithstanding some Silvas, Pereras and Fernandos came into rank and file too. This new class that the British created to do their admin, clerical and interpreting work assumed high social status being closer to the rulers.  Betrayals, back-stabbing, selfishness, cunning and opportunism are evils that are not alien to that clan. The foolish sons of such families who could not even pass their OL had no option other than to join the forces upon the influence their parents had in the governance. The members of such families intermarried and exclusive relationships  were created. Whether they belong to the UNP or the SLFP it is the same people who hold those positions and they cannot act against each other.

In summary, because the implicated perpetrators are still high and mighty with close connections to the ruling elite, because the country is full of extraordinarily  ignorant people and because  murderers are protected by the rulers,  justice can never be done for the victims of the Matale grave and  many other undisclosed graves in the cursed land. Despite the claim of Wimal Weerawansa that most of those victims have been active members of the JVP, a case study that this writer will bring forward in the near future would prove that it is not the case and that the majority of the murdered was the innocent members of other political parties who perhaps jeered at the peril of the UNP at the time, the only crime to be punished with unimaginably painful deaths.

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Latest comments

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    Sri Lanka is full of graveyards,(of civilians who died unnatural deaths by summary executions)some known and many unknown.
    Sri Lanka also is the only country which bulldozed flat many graveyards/cemeteries – of the LTTE.
    Mullivaykkal’s massive graveyard is for future foresic scientists & grave diggers.
    Matale graves were dug and filled during 1987/88/89 insurrection, it is presumed.
    During the previous 1971 insurrection,most corpses were burned by the roadside or left to rot.
    Some of the perpetraters – police & army’s rank and file – are now holding high positions by virtue of seniority.
    As the writer says,they are/maybe socially & politically powerful and may never be prosecuted.
    The Trinco 5 and Muthur 17 are still to be investigated.

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      justice

      Please watch the clip below in which Sri Lanka’s high commissioner to the UK, Dr Chris Nonis is being interviewed by the BBC:

      Sri Lanka ‘has learned lessons from reconciliation’

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-22754678

      Sri Lanka’s high commissioner to the UK, Dr Chris Nonis says that the LLRC is modeled on the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

      Is it true?

  • 0
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    The man in the picture ,what will be he in the next life?
    I doubt he will be a hyaena.

  • 0
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    Helasingha Bandara!Try something elseyou c___

    • 0
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      Hey dude, why you get so offended with Helasingha Bandara ! it looks like you are on some one’s pay role .

      by the way , your pseudonym suits you very well ! are you distantly relate to Hollywood actor Michael Douglass?

    • 0
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      Dont worry Mr. C…
      American mama aka Leela aka Jimsofty aka Asanka aka Lester aka Sivanandan aka Ruber vanderkoon aka Dr. Ruwan aka Dr. Lapatiya aka Nanabist aka Indi aka Ryan aka Pam aka Kris etc will justify any regime killings.
      Besides he is on a regime payrole to sit in front of his computer to slide mud at anyone oppose the regime.
      He will soon end up where he belongs – a mental asylum!

    • 0
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      Hey Cunniling- you seem to enjoy sea food while Goata likes pigshit (his own admission)!!

  • 0
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    BBS and Sinhala Ravaya, where are you?

    • 0
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      I have not got to read anything from Viktor Ivan for such a long time. Is he at all in the country today ? Why the bugger stays further silence, could anyone please add anything about IVAN?

  • 0
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    ” The next reason is that the country is full of fools and undignified people. They can be persuaded to do anything for a bun and a bottle of Coke.”

    Absolutely, approximately 60% of the population belongs to this category and overwhelming majority of them can’t think rationally before carrying out any orders from their masters.sad but that is the truth.

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    These works done by j.v.p..not government party in year 1888/1989 .every one knows what happened in that time..j.v.p killed thousand of people in that terrible season..now its revealed..these are the evidences found by the government

  • 0
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    if some where this type of mass murder it can be j.v.p s work.because they were famous to those things.we never forget their activities before.

  • 0
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    I agree with Samith.J.V.P. must responsible for that brutally criminal case.

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      shirantha

      Could we have a credible independent investigation into all war crimes and crime against humanity covering the period from 5th April 1971 to date.

      • 0
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        If it can be done it has be only that way,no pacthworks to satisfy certain sections.
        But,what will we achive after such investigation other than a fat report with the names of those who died and may be who killed them but now most of them are dead and gone too.
        May be there are some left who could face jutice but will it be worth to open up old wounds.
        This world is full of injustices and some fight and win and some lose and some learn to let go and live with them as fighting them continues your suffering and delays healing.
        I think that is what the native veddhas do.

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          NAK

          “a fat report with the names of those who died and may be who killed them but now most of them are dead and gone too.”

          That would be the beginning of a process which in my view would bring closure to many unanswered questions. It is not for the dead and gone but for the future generations.

          “But,what will we achive after such investigation”

          Sit down have a glass of water if possible think about it.

          I am too bored with repeatedly writing the same old stuff because your inability to relate yourself to those victims, their relatives, loved ones and their friends.

          A Truth and Reconciliation Commission would be a way out for those who perpetrated war crimes and crimes against humanity.

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            NV,
            What is truth and reconcilliation commission.One come in open and admit yes, I killed your brother and the victim wailing and crying say I forgive you!and they are supposedly reconciled. Take look at South Africa and see if they have really reconciled. Time is a great healer and only healing can bring about lasting reconcilliation,not punitive/avenging justice or Truth and reconcilliation commissions which let the murderer go scot free.

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              NAK

              Would you like to hang the murderer for war crimes and crimes against humanity?

              How many more killing would heal the scars?

              It seem you haven’t studied the South African Truth and Reconciliation commissions process and its outcome.

              I recommend you spend some time learning about its principles, process and the outcome which brought people to accept what they did in the name of Apartheid or opposing it.

              It is the best healing process money can’t buy.

              I also recommend that you speak to the relatives and friends of the victims importantly their mothers, you can feel the bottled up grief engulfing you, even 3 or 4 decades after the butchery.

  • 0
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    Justice for Sarath Fonseka ? Never

    Justice for Baratha Murder ? Never

    Justice for Eknaligoda Missing ? Never

    Justice for BBS vandalists ? Never

    Justice for Kelaniya MP murder by Mervin ? Never

    Justice for Hikkaduwa women that struggle to live being harrassed by regional police and provincial Council Member – Mendis ? Never

    Justice for army officer assulted by Mervin drug addict son? Never

    Justice for assulted hundreds of journalists ? Never

    Justice for white van abducted innocent ones ? Never

    Justice for any one who make entries against any crime doing ? Never

    Who is behind all these ? GOTABAYA THE MOST DISASTROUS AND MEGALOMANIAC SRILANKEN – shame on SRILANKA

  • 0
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    …..and Justice for Gotabhaya? Never!

    • 0
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      Justice for Gotabaya ?

      Or Justice for victims of Gotabaya

      (Gotabaya`s interference has now been comparable to metastatic cancer stage – no hope at all).

      IF GOTA REALLY FEELS THE PULSE OF GRIEVED NATION; HE HAS TO ESTABLISH LAW AND ORDER IN THE COUNTRY. THAT WILL ALONE PAVE THE WAY TO REEMERGE CIVILIZED PEOPLE ´S SECURED ATMOSPHERE.

    • 0
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      I dont think that Germans or other europeans would NOT dare to ask

      JUSTICE FOR HITLER – but twisted ones in SL (perhaps the guillible majorities) would do so.

      • 0
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        You misunderstand. ‘Justice for Gotabhaya’ could mean ‘justice where he is acclaimed as a hero’ or ‘justice where he is punished as a criminal’. Take you pick! :)

      • 0
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        IT SHOULD BE ANY OTHER EUROPEANS DARE TO ASK :::::: sorry for errors.

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          Sofia

          You cannot pick and chose who is eligible for justice and who is not.

          Justice for all, which include victims and perpetrators.

          If you plan to hang Gota then there would be no one left to hang the last person.

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            Native: )

            Please explain it bit more clearly

            quoting from yours:

            “If you plan to hang Gota then there would be no one left to hang the last person “

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              Sofia

              Once you start hanging people for appalling crimes, hanging will not stop there. Hanging will be justified on flimsy trumped up charges. Look at Pakistan, blasphemy is used and abused to hang and punish innocent people.

              If it goes on every single one of this country will be found guilty and hung until they are dead. There will one person left in the country who is also guilty. Who is going to hang this last person?

              This is what my elders told me.

  • 0
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    Click on Sri Lanka and then the Province (eg Sabaragamuwa) and then the town (eg Kegalle). A list of some of the disappeared is shown. There are very few for the Northern Province because these lists are mostly JVP and JVP suspects who were mainly Sinhala.

    http://www.disappearances.org/graveyard

  • 0
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    What a sad place Sri Lanka has become. Helasinghe you hit the nail right on the head. “SRI LANKAN ARE FOOLS” or else in which country do you see the prices of essential goods reduce just before an election and the existing government wins with a landslide victory even though the prices go up as soon as they win. This has happened over and over again but we Sri Lankans never learn.

    • 0
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      Ruwani this is very true. It happens because Sri Lankans do not value or appreciate democracy. When they vote, they do so as if they were electing a king not a PM. After he is enthroned, they expect him to provide for them. When he fails they get fed up and replace him at the next election, usually with the previously de-throned king whose crimes they have forgotten. Pathetic! Voting with their hearts and not their heads. Voting based on loyalty, family, race, bribes, rather than on policies and track record.

  • 0
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    It is mind boggling to see this iDIOT’s picture. He should have been Hanged longtime ago. This is disgusting ! Inhumane ! Real Nazzi! Drug Dealer ! Man Killer ! Thug ! who serves this regime.

    • 0
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      Yeah, this was what I ALSO felt instantly seeing his. We are unfortunatley, forced to do so whenever arrive in BIA airport, why the authorities would not deny to whatever the rulers want to do is the question. Why to go into knees of a man whose madness have taken lives of innocent tamils at the end of war against terror and now the many of the poor sinhalese that have no other choice than stay deaf and dumb under his rule. He is just a stupid actor with sinahal rhetorics – which are extremely cunning tactics to abuse the ignorant village masses which are the vote base for his survival. So long those masses would nt rise, this way of life will stay – no change is thinkable.

  • 0
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    The only responsibility of this incident is only on UNP.Not the government.

  • 0
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    The 60,000 death toll is for people killed by both sides; not just by the GoSL, as the article claims.

    • 0
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      David Blacker,

      it is high time you to reveal any truth of the untold stories in terms of those who went missing at that time. You as a one who served lanken defence forces – not sure, whether you were in there to the mentioned period, but from those you got to know the details, u can still provide the meida with. Then that will be an example for others to rise and react.

  • 0
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    Matale has become important for some including the JVP. They seem to think they have got an oppotunity to corner the government due to the alleged involvement of Def.Sec.
    We who went through those dreaded days know verywell the services they performed were not second to what they did against the LTTE terror.
    In a way isnt it funny how those who terrorised the country then and later clamour for justice together and that too only for them!

  • 0
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    UNP,SLFP,JVP all conducted kidnapping, torture, murder.

    Savage rulers. Blind citizens.

    This is one of the better known victims

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_de_Zoysa

  • 0
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    At that time it was a do or die battle. No quarter was given on either side. There were a lot of innocent people involved to do the dirty work. The core members now sit in the govt or opposition. The ordinary youth were the cannon fodder and now lie in graves around the country. Being part of the mob did not work out for them.

    Whatever said a legitimate Govt cannot stoop to the level of terrorist or insurgents. There can be no excuse for torture and extrajudicial killings. In a civilized society we must uphold the law and rights of the individual. Justice must be done and it will be done if there is an impartial and independent investigation. We will see if the Govt will allow an investigation by Interpol, otherwise it will be a cover-up. However the deed has been done and evidence and witnesses are available. It will not be easy to suppress this case.

  • 0
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    Ditto your comments about the 60%. The rest are just plain lazy and selfish. They wants someone else to die for them, work for them and sweat for them! The drivers, laborers and housemaids in the middle east are the best example I can give you. They are keeping the SL economy afloat with their remittances that are squandered by the high and mighty on racing cars and Commonwealth conferences. And, they do not even have the luxury of a decent duty free allowance when they return. Thats reserved for the jet-set, who vacation in Bangkok and Singapore on a long weekend with their ill-earned money.

  • 0
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    It is very depressing to notice how this country has become graveyard and lawlessness. It reminds our independence, political development, political leadership, statesmanship, democracy, and most importantly nation loving citizens. Most of the time, we and the HEADLESS leaders as Sri Lankans never thought these wonderful ideologies and never wanted to achieve these goals for future peace, sustainability, development and harmony of this country. Instead of building these wonderful ideas, we as Sri Lankans developed something else with “for a ban and coca cola; may be 100 rupees; or a quarter bottle of arrack. Things we are so interested and invested as follows and we still like to develop more and more. Political Corruption, Cronyism, Dishonesty, Defraud, Barbarianism, Dishonesty, Untruth, Un-Trust, Bribery, Crookedness, Demoralization, Exploitation, Extortion, Fiddling, Misrepresentation, Nepotism, Abuse, Racketeers, Shadiness, Shady Deal, Shuffle, Ruthlessness, Humiliation, Delinquency, Vandalism, Misuse, Injustice, Misapplication, Misconduct, Misdeed, Mishandling, Mismanage, Offense, Twisting, Prostitution, Wrongdoing, Discrimination.

    I wonder from independence was there any single government(s) or leader(s) have worked for Sri Lanka with honest and sincere for its people. If so, we won’t have issues from Sinhala Only Bill, (1956) to Matale Grave Yard to Baratha Killing to Sabaragamuwa University Student Riots to FUTA’s 6% demonstration, to BBS Vs Halal. Do you think we will stop at some point and realize our mistakes and learn from the past? NEVER!! As long as our leaders do not use brain, critical thinking, and most importantly with the peace loving mindset…. they will continue to make general citizens as “FOOLS to let down their mother land for ¼ bottle of arrack or for a ban and coca cola. Unless general public wakeup from this political mess, there is no mercy to this country.

    NOTE: make no mistake, when I say government(s) or leader(s) it implies every political governments regardless of ethnicity, religions, and language(s).

    • 0
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      I think one of our illustrious ministers mentioned recently that politics was just another business. A successful business is profitable. On that basis he will use any means possible to stay in power to make money. It doesn’t mean that he is unfriendly towards his opponents in parliament, why they might be business partners in future ventures as there are so many cross-overs. If one of our politicians was voted businessman of the year, who would it be?

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      @Concern,

      The problem I see is – there is no people´s reaction among the general public in SL even if their own ones are murdered. People are just changed today unfortunately not towards good. Today I listened to balumgala sender broadcasting about a girl being raped in Akuressa area, but police cant do anything in that regard. The victimised family being poor of the poor dont know how to react either. Rapists are on a rise in sl today. Most of them are army deserters or ones worked for army then. There should be a hotline for them to contact if those criminals harm innociet people brutally again. MR the leader of the country just enjoy his presidency, just keeping a dead silent minister of justice for nothing but to protect the coalition. Has anybody heard a word from the minister of justice at any alarming situation. The country is today asif we dont have suitable minister in suitable position.

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    Has a Rajapakses got malay blood. They are from Hamba ntota , with malay ancestors. Their nose will tell the Hamba routes.

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      Is this at all important than their ill administrative skills ?

      For me, bottomline is whether their political administration is favourable to our future. No matter even donkey blood in their blood vessels. Right at the moment, there is no foreign policy under them. Nor have they policies towards the improvement of Education in the country, except the fact that they are trying to privatize degree awarding institution.

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    No one has the authority to challenge this killing spree in this regime. No sooner the Judiciary is squeezed, the rule of law has disappeared. Had there been a SAARC Parliament, atleast somebody can raise this issue. One day they will have to answer for all these karmas.

  • 0
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    the main reason to the Matale incident is BLACK JULY not the other.now all things are turning to the side of government.Yes there want the justice the real responsibility parties of this not the government.these want the fair investigation deeply.

    • 0
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      One packet of rice and a bottle of Arrack, Nimali ?

  • 0
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    If humanitarian operation were the Test the captain won for his country, Matale was just the net practice ?

  • 0
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    What need for a large-sized picture of Gothabaya? He had nothing to do with these disappearances. On the other hand, the adventures of Batalanda Ranil are well-known. Put his picture instread.

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