25 May, 2017

Minority As Nation: The Politics Of Collective Delusion – Rejoinder To Mahendran Thiruvarangan

By Dayan Jayatilleka –  

Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

Mr Thiruvarangan’s views in his article “Should Minorities Remain Minority Forever? A Response To Dayan Jayatilleka’s Response” in Colombo Telegraph, represents the subjectivism and emotionalism that has dominated (but not monopolised) Tamil politics in Sri Lanka from the outset. He seems to think that a minority need not remain one and can redefine itself as a nation if it so wishes.

He completely ignores the fact that even in those few countries in which nations are recognised within a state/country — and these belonged or belong to the socialist tradition— the status of nation was accorded to those compact ethnic groups which were roughly comparable in size to the main ethnic group. Indeed many of these societies were composed of several ethnic blocs of roughly equivalent or comparable size. Such nations were recognised as enjoying the right of self-determination and were accorded the structural status of autonomous republics.

However, this was only one of the types of categories for ethnic groups and one of the several structural arrangements. For ethnic groups that were significant large but not of comparable size as the main one, the classification was of (minority) nationalities, and the structural space was of autonomous regions, not republics.

For still smaller ethnic groups, the designation was of national minorities who were accorded the structural space of autonomous areas.

If one were to go by this paradigm, the Tamils of Sri Lanka would fall into the third category or at best, the second.

If one were to avoid this neo-Leninist paradigm and use a paradigm of liberal universalism, then the Sri Lankan Tamils would be regarded (as did Asbjorn Eide) as an ethnic group or a community which constituted an ethnic minority. Indeed the initial international focus on the predicament of the Tamils was in the report by Walter Schwartz for the Minority Rights Group (London) in 1972 entitled ‘The Tamils of Sri Lanka’.

The Indo-Lanka accord of 1987, the authors of which were secularists of a left-liberal persuasion, adopted a mix of the paradigms of multiethnic pluralism and left-of-centre progressivism. Hence the Accord’s synthesis or eclectic-syncretic character: the assertion of the pluralist, multiethnic, multi-religious, multi cultural nature of the Sri Lankan formation and the policy prescription of devolution of power to the regions, with their sub-formations. The Accord evidently regarded the Tamil issue as one, not of nationalism, but at best, of sub-nationalism.

The submission of Mr. Thiruvanarangan borders on the farcical because it insists on the right of the Tamils of Sri Lanka, or indeed any ethnic community, to escalate in self-definition from minority to nation, while diminishing in numbers and as a percentage of the country concerned! Thus the assertion of nationhood has no correlation and need not have any correlation with objective demographic reality whatsoever. It is, in short, a pure fantasy; a delusion.

The most serious implication of Chief Minister Wigneswaran’s assertion of the Tamils as ‘a nation without a state’ is that it implicitly rejects not only the 13th amendment but much more importantly, the very framework of the Indo-Lanka Accord itself. Going outside and beyond the Accord brings the Chief Minister’s discourse into overlap with that of the Tamil Eelamists or secessionists whose case rests on the same conceptual basis of a nation without a state. This confirms the late Prof Urmila Phadnis’ concluding observation in her last book, to the effect that alone among the sub-nationalisms of South Asia, the politics and discourse of the Tamils of Sri Lanka reveal an “autonomist-secessionist continuum”.

There is another path, though. The Tamils of Sri Lanka would do well to heed the sage counsel of Lord Soulbury, who empathised with their predicament but disagreed with the political slogans of Tamil politics. He wrote:

“…I now wish that that I had recommended a human rights clause as in the constitution of India – and elsewhere. But I do not believe that other federation or an autonomous Tamil State will work. Federation is cumbersome and difficult to operate – and an autonomous Tamil State would not be viable.

I am afraid that I can only counsel patience – and vigorous participation in the work of the House of Representatives. You might imitate the Irish party in our House of Commons before Ireland was separated from us.  Incidentally the Tamil Members of Parliament were, in my opinion, very unwise not support Dudley Senanayake. They could, I believe, have kept him in power.

…Were I in your shoes I would do all I could to support the U.N.P. and secure the defeat of the present Government.”

If Lord Soulbury’s important 1964 reply to C Suntheralingam had been adhered to, the Tamils, Sinhalese and Sri Lanka as a whole would have been in a much better place today. Exactly half a century later, it is still not too late. More than in 1964 when Lord Soulbury made his recommendation to the Tamils, of alliances and mainstream democratic participation, proportional representation enables them to punch their full weight in the Sri Lankan polity. They should pursue a policy of alliances with the Southern democrats especially of the opposition, and strive for a progressive change. They must however, opt for a UNP leader who can carry the Sinhalese with him. They would also do well to abandon those slogans that would sink their Southern partners even if the UNP were elected to office.

My political-programmatic suggestion is the broadest possible bloc of forces who are in agreement with the definition of the character of Sri Lanka as contained in the Preamble of the Accord (even though they may disagree with the provenance of that definition).

Related posts;

Brother Bernard And The National Question by C.V. Wigneswaran

Wigneswaran’s ‘Two Nations’ & The State’s Two Blunders by Dayan Jayatilleka

Reading Against The Grain: Notes On Wigneswaran’s Speech On The National Question by Mahendran Thiruvarangan

Response To Mahendran Thiruvarangan On The CM’s Chinthana by Dayan Jayatilleka

Should Minorities Remain Minority Forever? A Response To Dayan Jayatilleka’s Response by Mahendran Thiruvarangan

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Latest comments

  • 9
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    Dayan, It has been a long road of failed negotiations/promises,agreements,Constitutional changes and non fulfillment of all of the above by the Sinhala majority political parties and personalities that lead to the thinking of battered wife phenomenon from Tamils. Even after the LTTE Was decimated MR continues to advocate Sinhala Hegemony in a Multiethnic/Multicultural SriLanka, Promises made as late as 2009 by President of SL to go beyond 13 th amendment of the constitution, to India and UN secretary General Ban Ki Moon were not fulfilled. Even what is available under 13 th amendment of the constitution was not fully implemented. See the You tube video Shekar Gupta’s Interview with MR . Dayan was chastised for advocating for implementation of the 13 th amendment when he was the UN ambassador.Was Unceremoniously removed from Office. GOSL’s own so called inquiry report the LLRC recommendation were not fully Implemented. Hence even the most moderate Tamil retired Chief Justice of SL The Chief Minister of Northern province Mr.C Wigneswaran Started talking of the Two Nation principle. If marital dispute cann’t be resolved amicably only option left for both parties is amicable divorce. Read the comments even the most reluctant tamils like Dr.Rajasingam Narendran is getting frustrated with Govt and SL in general. Soon DD ,Karuna, Pilliyan and KP will start advocating for divorce if given the chance and space. That is the reality. An educated articulate person like you should be more introspective and honest to yourself first before advising a battered community.
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      Views are aplenty. Every one of us has a different – ‘naturally’ better – view. No good is achieved by debating views. We should engage ourselves in a healthy discussion solely aimed at finding common ground. Every Writer hastens to aggrandize his/her viewpoint. Those who choose to comment on those writings get distracted by the opinionated views of the Writers. The subject is not as complicated as the debate seems to suggest. Agreeing on an arrangement for the Peoples to enjoy the fruits of democracy should be the objective. If we have not ‘seen’ an acceptable arrangement yet, sorry, no amount of further debate is going to take us there.
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      Justice,compared to your well analysed and articulated comment,Dayan’s sounds like a load of gibberish.You should be the one who is writing articles in the CT while we have to read a deluge from dayan everyday like a man panicked during the wedding ceremony when he has to kiss the bride and having to run to the bathroom too very urgently. When the noose tightens,oh when the noose tightens,nothing concentrates a mans mind like his imminent execution.I saw saddams face just before he left the world,that is what is happening here now,panic and fear.
    • 0
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      1. Tamils are not a battered community any more than Sinhalese. 2. If the most moderate tamil is a LTTE supporter calling the terrorist who killed thousands of ppl in this country a hero, there is a lot to question. 3. And why couldnt gov go beyond 13? because foreign states while talking about reconciliation in SL is giving sanctuary to separatist forces. 4. Were there ever a tamil nation? The root of this problem in SL is a historical claim. Have we solved it? Are majority of tamils in North and east labour brought by dutch to grow tobacco? Arent they an immigrant population?
  • 3
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    “and were accorded the structural status of autonomous republics.” and Kashmir Brahman Nehru was given the divided portion by Roosevelt with an Aye from a poorly Churchill. So Sonia wants to hand over the land Kashmir belonging to the late Hindu maharajah Knight Hari Singh to the Muslims because they populated it like the sihala. Go find a job as a book maker/turf accountant cause your politics stinks.
    • 1
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      Kasmir was the gift for the Rajput Sings for betraying their Sikh Sings (for allowing peasant farmers in to their ranks) in their fight against the Brits….. Ranjit Sing would otherwise chase the English colonizers and their Madras seapoys out of (north) India… However, now,,, a Sikh is the PM, a Muslim, a Dalit and a brahmin urine drinker have also been Presidents… so far away, so primitive are we…… including dung shudras wanting liberation like above…then supressing others through a swoleen headed & bogus concept; PRIMITIVE.
    • 0
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      who has the right to populate sihala land other than sihala?
  • 3
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    oh my my ..this is his second response to Mahendran Thiruvarangan’s article. I have not read either of them. is Part 3 on the way Dayan?
  • 5
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    I don’t know why we need to talk about political solution when there is no solution is possible in this island. We should focus on genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity by Sri Lanka state. We talked about the political solutions for nearly six decades and still we are taking while Sinhala state continue its planned operational activities of genocide. If Tamil say 13 is ok then they will say it is too much, If you say 14 is ok then they will say it is too much that will lead to separation. The democracy is about numbers and they have 95+ (according to DJ). They are not bothered about killing Tamils to reduce numbers because they make the law and it is not surprise they will write in law books that killing Tamils is a right of a Sinhala. It is well established that Negotiation will not lead to a solution. We lost the war but we don’t need to be in the loosing side always. Though we lost the war, we proved to the world that we lost to a nasty, cruel and mostly uncivilized criminals and the civilised world understands the Truth about those criminals. It is well proven that it is a genocide. Miracles happen and we should believe that we can win as well and civilized people will join us to defeat the genocidal state.
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      Is that why even your puppet CM didnt like to include the word genocide? Of course 60 years has gone by. And most importantly because for 30 years you and LTTE supporters had held this country to ransom by thuggery, bloodbath and terrorism.
  • 4
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    There are over 1.5 million Tamils in Singapore and Malaysia. They call themselves Singapore Tamils and Malaysian Tamils respectively and are considered minorities. They do not theorize themselves as nations. Leave out 13A type of devolution for them, Singapore Tamils cannot form the majority in a housing estate or even in a cul de sac. In Malaysia, Malay Muslims breed much faster than Tamils and in Singapore, Lee started importing Chinese to make up for less fertile Singaporean Chinese women. Needless to say, Tamils in those countries have to remain minority forever. By all accounts, Tamils are a single nation. Close upon 95% of that Tamil nation or 75 million Tamils live in Tamil Nad. Hence, that’s where the ‘Tamil nation’ should anchor. The question then is; can there be sub nations within that Tamil nation in countries where Tamils happen to live today. I say, this ‘Sri Lanka Tamil nation’ is an Eelamist creation to pave the way for Eelam not worth discussing.
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      Banda, There is a HUGE difference between the Tamils in Singapore/Malaysia and the Tamils in Sri Lanka/India. Tamils in Singapore/Malaysia are immigrants from Sri Lanka and india where as the Tamils in Sri Lanka/India had their own separate independent kingdoms, have a separate Tamil speaking territory. Tamils in Singapore/Malaysia are minorities but Tamils in Sri Lanka/India are majorities in their separate homelands (Tamil Eelam and Tamil Nadu).
      • 2
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        Before the British colonised Malaysia, Tamil Cholas have ruled the archipelago much earlier. Today they’re assimilated with the majority Malays. Malacca Chittys are remnants of them. Those Tamils wo zation, Tamils had been conspicuous in the especially since the period of the powerful South India kingdom of the Cholas in the 11th century. By that time, Tamils were among the important trading peoples of maritime Asia. Although bulk of these immigrants to South East Asia had assimilated with the majority Malay ethnic group, some communities such as the Tamil Muslims and the these earlier migration history.
      • 2
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        James, Long before British colonised Malaysia, Tamil Chola kings have ruled the archipelago. That means there must have been a lot of Tamils in Malaysia at the time. With the end of Chola rule however, most Tamils must have gone back to India and the rest were assimilated with the majority Malays like Tamils who invaded Sri Lanka time and again since Elara. Malacca Chittys are believed to be remnants of them. I agree that today’s Malaysian Tamils are not those Cholas but the recent immigrants brought by the British just like the Sri Lankan Tamils who were brought by the Dutch.
        • 1
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          Banda, Let me say what Ravi has written in other thread. In the 9th century AD, under Rajaraja Chola and his son Rajendra Chola, Sri Lanka became one of the nine provinces of the Chola Empire and was called Eelam Mandalam. This Chola rule was the longest and the most far-reaching in terms of surface area by the Tamil power. Sri Lanka remained a South Indian (Chola) colony under the rule of Rajaraja Chola and his son Rajendra Chola. After the Chola rule of Anuradhapura and then Polonawara (kingdom created by Rajendra Chola) kingdoms ended, the people who spoke Sinhala and practiced Buddhism moved to the South and created their Kingdoms in Kandy, Kotte, and many other places. On the other hand, the people who spoke Tamil and practiced Hinduism moved to the North & East and created their Kingdom in Jaffna. A separate Jaffna kingdom (1215-1624 CE) was established for the Tamils. Unfortunately, the Jaffna kingdom came under Portuguese domination in 1624 after the last Tamil king of Jaffna Cankli Kumaran was defeated in the battle. This was how the ‘Sri Lankan’ Tamils lost their sovereignty, independence and their traditional homeland. Those brought by the Portuguse and the Dutch were settled in down South. Today they are the low country Sinhalese.
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          The reality is Tamils cannot live with Sinhalese together because they are murderer’s. In Singapore or Malaysia, the state, law and justice system are not biased as in Sinhala Sri Lanka. In Sri Lanka, if you kill a Tamil you are a hero. Not only Tamils, none other than Sinhalese cannot live with them.
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            Then why did tamils (and also muslims)come to sinhala dominated areas to live? even after the war?
      • 0
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        James, I felt annoyed about your usage of “HUGE difference”. As an example, I born in a country and, according to you, my identity is Hugely based on whether my father/grand father being a migrant , ancestor, or a thief, priest,etc.. I can’t deny effects or influences of one’s father/grand farther/mother… But that doesn’t completely define me or you. Rights and ownership of any SL Hindu/Tamil person lives in central SL is not greater or less than so called ancestral Hindu/Tamils in north or ancestral Buddhist/Sinhalese in South. This is a truth…
    • 5
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      Banda It appears your cows have come home. “There are over 1.5 million Tamils in Singapore and Malaysia. They call themselves Singapore Tamils and Malaysian Tamils respectively” In Singapore the state treat all people with respect. When Singapore was founded Lee made sure all languages have the same status as each other. Here in this country instead of giving language parity to all people your Western educated SWRD (another) Banda (a descendant of Kallathoni Nayaka Tamil) pandering to bigoted people like you, made Tamil a non language in this land until the Hindians forced the stupid Sinhala/Buddhist leadership to reverse the Sinhala only language policy in 1988. Even now Tamils have to find a Sinhala speaking person to deal with most of the state institutions. Why don’t you stupid people do the right thing at the right time rather than letting the foreigners tell you what to do. You ought to be ashamed of yourself. Please stop using reverse gear all the time if you want to move forward.
      • 2
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        Vedda, Do you not know our last king was a Tamil speaking man. And his wives worshipped Sivalinga. Also, its an acknowledge fact that many a Kandyian Kings before the last king like Rajasinghe and Senerath and others have saved Muslims from Portuguese persecution. If so, how can I be a bigot or a racist? I only oppose unjust demand by jingoistic Tamils. Without talking nonsense, Kallathoni Vedda should type ‘first tamil-sinhala riot 1939’ and google and find out what and who nursed racism in Sri Lanka.
    • 2
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      “They call themselves Singapore Tamils and Malaysian Tamils respectively and are considered minorities. They do not theorize themselves as nations.” banda that is because they never had a nation unlike the tamils in srilanka who had the jaffna kingdom and before that the chola kingdom. The history of the tamils in the two countries are completely different from srilanka history.That is the fact that you have to acknowledge if you want to solve this problem.By trivialising the tamil influence on srilanka’s history you are only going to make history repeat itself one day on your future sinhalese generations and this time the pandyas won’t come to your aid as usual and save your arse because the chola/pandya divide is no more for you to take advantage of.Let us face it,if this problem continues it will be only a matter of time before tamilnadu secedes and the chola invasions will start again sometime this century. To stop history from repeating itself with with different ethniciies fighting each other again,the astute nehru acknowledged the fact that india consisted of different nations and using the thread of devolution wove together one country with many nations in it.Your arrogant leaders like banda who was himself of tamil stock refused to acknowledge the 2 nation concept and arrogantly tore up the banda chelva pact.So after that history started to repeat itself and and will continue to do so until you acknowledge the fact that 2 nations existed and have to be bound together with the thread of devolution.It is a race against time because the separatist have been aided and abetted by the sinhala chauvinists albeit without their realising it,the modayas that they are. In this race to the finishing line,if the devolutionists are to beat the separatists the sinhalese have to do the following quickly without wasting anymore time because time is of essence here 1.Full implementation of the 13th,16th and 17th amendments. 2.full implementation of the LLRC recommendations. 3.Winning of the hearts and minds of the tamils in the north.At the next provincial council election,do much better and show the world that tamils are voting for unity and devolution more and more.
      • 1
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        shankar, No one deny Tamil influence on Sri Lanka in general and Sinhala in particular through various Tamil invasions of our kingdoms. Why so many invasions by India based kings if Tamils were a 5,000 years old race in Sri Lanka Eelam Tamils have never explained. To tell them the truth, we Sinhalas take the new Chola threat very seriously. Pity you guys haven’t noticed how we gained new [true & powerful] friends at the world stage to nullify that threat. You have mentioned of a coming up ‘Tamilnadu secession’ and coming up ‘Chola invasions [of Sri Lanka]’. Whether Sinhalas are chauvinists or modayas, for one thing, Sinhalas realize Hindians do not trust Tamils. And we take that as our starting point. Also we know that Indian 16A prevents Tamils even talking about secession. And Hindians know very well that most Tamils are counting days for an opportunity to back the secession of Tamil Nadu from India. And we’re in the process of turning Hindians to be our new Pandyas. Strategy of your Tamil nation Tamils are no secret: Consolidate on bantuland concept in the North of Sri Lanka first, then add the East to it and expel Sinhalas and Muslims from there, and declare it mono racial Tamil Eelam, then with the help of neo-cons overcome Indian restrictions and form a Tamil dynasty like that of the Raja Raja Chola in a foreseeable future. Pirapakaran chasing Sinhalas and Muslims from areas he ruled during the 33 year war is the best proof for aims of the Tamil nation. One could have easily felt that is the general Tamil aspiration if he/she subscribed to http://www.tamilnation.org before it was closed in 2010.
        • 1
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          banda “Why so many invasions by India based kings if Tamils were a 5,000 years old race in Sri Lanka Eelam Tamils have never explained.” It has been explained several times banda,but the sinhalese won’t listen because suddenly they find that they are numerically superior and want to claim the whole island as theirs.This was a well inhabited island as the balangoda man proves long before indians came here.The nagas were in the eastern and northern and western coasts while the yakshas were in the forests.As for your silly question why so many invasions,why don’t you read history of other parts of the world and realise that invasions are a part and parcel of the human DNA,mainly to become more wealthy through taxes and tributes.Greed for wealth is part and parcel of human DNA.When the saivaites invaded their areas of influence in the north and eastern coastal areas of nagas became hindus and tamils. DNA will prove that tamils and sinhalese are more closely related to each other than with indians.This is remarkable even after two thousand years of ethnic admixture through foreign genes. Tamils and sinhalese fighting is like two cousins fighting who have adopted different languages and religions due to the influence of foreigners who have never left the island in peace. Dutu was a naga.He was not sinhalese. He fought against an invador elara who was a tamil.Dutus descendents became sinhalese while the nagas in the north and east would have been just nagas but not sinhalese bhuddhists.It was the invasions of the cholas in the 9th century that made them into saivaites and tamils because unlike elara’s easygoing nature,raja raja chola and rajendra chola were terrible fellows and you had to be either with them or buckeroff to the south. Some more admixture occurred when magha from kalingha brought an army of 28000 consisting of kalingha and tamil soldiers and established the aryachakaravarti dynasty.That is why the ruling tamil class would have had close ties to kalinga just like the sinhalese and that is why the kandyans intermarried with tamils. So this is a very complicated 2000 year history,a real pol sambol.Trying to unravel it is quite frustrating when the people are all so mixed up.Nobody would have bothered to anyway if not for the ethnic problem that erupted after independence with the politicians trying to take advantage of the numbers game to get power.In ancient times the people would not have bothered whether they were tamils or sinhalese and would have just gone about their business while the kings fought with each other for power,because they knew they were of the same stock living in different regions. If you look at other countries history you will see that people have been killing each other in large numbers,but if you look at our 2000 year history nothing like that.Only kings fighting with each other.Ever wondered why?People are the same and they knew it. Only after the independence due to the political machinations that the people started to massacre each other. To stop this full stop and chart a new course we have to reduce the politicians power and interference in the daily lives of the people and manipulating them for their own ends.For that we must have a system where governance is closer to the people.Devolution is the only solution though it may not be one hundred percent perfect it is the best available so far.Future generations may find something better i suppose but at the moment this is what has been used by countries to calm the people and keep the peace.
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          “Pity you guys haven’t noticed how we gained new [true & powerful] friends at the world stage to nullify that threat.’ banda,China and russia are too far away.Not much they can do with one or two aircraft carriers.Pity you have not noticed how the tamils diaspora that you chased away and thought you are rid of has got friends in the countries they have settled in including the main one with 12 aircraft carriers,enough to keep out china and russia out of the indian ocean. “You have mentioned of a coming up ‘Tamilnadu secession’ and coming up ‘Chola invasions [of Sri Lanka]’. Whether Sinhalas are chauvinists or modayas, for one thing, Sinhalas realize Hindians do not trust Tamils. And we take that as our starting point.’ banda,read properly what i have written.I have said “if this problem continues” tamilnadu will secede.So it is the problems that you are creating for the tamils in srilanka that could make the tamils in india want to secede,if india does not do anything about it as the congress government did.Now the tamils will see what the BJP is going to do.Will it be like the congress and side with the rajapakshes?If they do that only the tamils in tamilnadu will lose confidence in the rest of india and want to secede to take on the sinhalese in a fair fight like in our history country against country.Today their hands are bound by india and they can’t fight the sinhalese,so they will tell india if you don’t want to do anything unshackle us and free us so that we will teach the sinhalese a lesson of their life,but this time there will not be anyone left to write a new mahawamsa among them. As for the hindians and the tamilnadu they are quite at ease with each other and no mistrust as you try to falsely claim.Go and live in New delhi for a couple of years and see how many non hindians are there and how they all think of themselves an indian not hindian or non hindian. Hindians will know that the tamils had to secede in order to fight the sinhalese and will bear no ill will towards them.Also the tamilnadu will tell the hindians that they will come back and join them in the form of an Indian union like the EU after attending to some pressing matters in srilanka. “Also we know that Indian 16A prevents Tamils even talking about secession.’ So are you saying they are going to jail 75 million tamils when it starts to snowball beyond control.rely on the 16A and have a peaceful sleep. “And we’re in the process of turning Hindians to be our new Pandyas.’ ha ha ha.While you are turned into new race chingalese by the chinese.I wonder how the future generation sinhalese will look with chinky eyes and porcupine hair.Cute i think. In otherwords to become pandyas you think hindians are modayas. “Strategy of your Tamil nation Tamils are no secret: Consolidate on bantuland concept in the North of Sri Lanka first, then add the East to it and expel Sinhalas and Muslims from there, and declare it mono racial Tamil Eelam,” I can see from your forthright comments there is a terrible distrust among the sinhalese.Same for the tamils too,they must be thinking that gradually sinhalese want to wipe them out.This element of mistrust i think is going to be the main impediment for a political solution.So i don’t think you can get one comprehensive one overnight.Instead i think better to go step by step in the right direction building up trust on the way so that the paranoia starts to dissipate gradually and people start to realise that they are not each others enemy but the real enemy may be lurking somewhere else ready to gobble up the country.
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          http://www.tamilnation.org is closed But http://www.tamilnation.co is open – almost the same content
      • 1
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        shankar Watch this clip how one praises oneself in front of a stupid, uninformed, audience, he compares himself to Buddha, Jesus and Che. Dayan has raised name dropping to an con-art form. Thinking and being: Dayan Jayatilleka at TEDxColombo https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utQ0DWwGqWA
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          veddha,come,come,don’t be harsh on him.he was not directly comparing himself to jesus or Bhuddha.he gave them as examples because they are so well known and people can understand the discovery,endurance and testing concepts he was talking about. As for Che,i am not so sure.He maybe wants to follow his path.I can see that the cycle is already there.After this event he can just like che go cycling and discovering many things.Hope his wife sees that he takes all his pills in a pouche because he didn’t look very healthy to me. The ladder is also there.He has deliberately put things on the steps so that he is discouraged from trying to climb it gain.After the nasty experiences he has had with the gota ,mahinda mob who even killed a LTTE guy in france while he was the high commissioner,he must have thought enough is enough,not only will these buggers use me for their ends,they will even use my corpse.Hence even at the top of the ladder he has kept something. Never to be the president.Like che handing that to Fidel,he will hand it to mahinda or gota, while he has the freedom to cycle and discover more and more and test his endurance to the hilt.
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          and veddha,i forgot to mention while cycling, his latest discovery was that tamils never had a nation in srilanka,and to test this he has to write in CT and endure all the insults by buggers like you.
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            shankar “his latest discovery was that tamils never had a nation in srilanka” Did the Tamils have nation in the past? “come,come,don’t be harsh on him.he was not directly comparing himself to jesus or Bhuddha.he gave them as examples because they are so well known and people can understand the iscovery,endurance and testing concepts he was talking about.” Listen to him carefully, you will see how worked around the idea, me is as important as Buddha, Jesus and Che.
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              “Did the Tamils have nation in the past?” yet to be assimilated veddha,do you want to go cycling too?
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                shankar “yet to be assimilated veddha,do you want to go cycling too?” You have not answered my question. I repeat here: Did the Tamils have nation in the past?
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    These are a few definitions of a nation from different dictionaries. A nation is rooted in kinship and grows through a process of differentiation and opposition. A nation exists with other nations – and because other nations exist. A nation is a togetherness cemented by struggle and suffering. A nation is a political togetherness directed to secure the aspirations of a people for equality and freedom – and to secure the institutions necessary for that purpose. In June 1879, the British Colonial Secretary Sir Hugh Cleghorn said, ‘Two different nations, from a very ancient period, have divided between them the possession of the Island: the Sinhalese inhabiting the interior in its Southern and western parts from the river Wallouwe to Chilaw, and the Malabars (Tamils) who possess the Northern and Eastern Districts. These two nations differ entirely in their religion, language and manners.’ Dayan’s argument is a minority in a country cannot claim themselves to be a nation. Tamils have lived for many centuries in a clearly demarcated land area as a majority within their land. Tamils have a distinct identity, land area, language, religion and culture to call themselves a nation. Does not a group of people living in a well demarcated land area, and a majority within that area call themselves a nation? What is the standard and who holds the yard stick? The funniest part is, it is the Sinhala chauvinists like Dayan who has created a standard or rather having the yard stick to measure who is a nation in SL.
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      As I said before, none deny that there is a ‘Tamil nation’. But only racist Tamils say there is a Tamil sub-nation in Sri Lanka. Therefore, Sri Lanka Tamil nation is a myth.
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        Banda, What do you smoke by the way?
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    According to DJs current calculation Tamil population is 4% In 1946 according to Lord Soulbury calculation Sinhala speaking majority accounted for 69.2% of the population and all Tamil speaking minorities put together accounted for only 30.1% ….
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    The real problem is that we the Tamils do not have even an autonomous region! When we ask for one, it is looked upon as a step towards secession! What a tragedy! Sengodan. M
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    “After the 1958 communal violence the author of the constitution Lord soulbury regretted that he had failed to give sufficient safe guard to the minorities in Ceylon as he did for Malaysian and Nigerian in theirs constitutions. The present British High Commissioner for Srilanka Mr. Dominic John Chilcott in July 2006 gave an interview to the media; I quote “Britain considered the Soulbury Constitution as having the necessary arrangements to provide safeguards for minorities. Britain thought that the rights of the Tamils in particular would be safeguarded by these arrangements. However history has proved otherwise that these safeguards were inadequate and not robust enough. I regret that Britain’s policies have to such an extent been the cause for the problems.” http://www.tamilwritersguild.com/open_letter_040207.htm
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    Dear Dayan, I think it is time you made the transition from a political strategist to a political philosopher. I use the term political strategist deliberately, because you have lost the objectivity required of a scientist over time. If you could for a moment think of yourself as a political philosopher and take a panoramic view of the situation in Sri Lanka, what would you advocate as a fair, equitable and durable solution to the so-called national problem, considering our past and your vision for the future? Thiruvarangan Mahendran is a bright spark in our academic horizon and has displayed a capacity to rise above the rough and tumble of emotive Tamil politics to advocate a position that is logical, cerebral, unbiased, attuned to times we live in and much needed. It is also right, because of these very reasons, Dr.Rajasingham Narendran
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    DJ, “The most serious implication of Chief Minister Wigneswaran’s assertion of the Tamils as ‘a nation without a state’” You have guts to analyse and make public statement of Tamil CM’s assertion of themselves as a nation without a state. How many statements and actions you have heard from three ruling Rajapkase ascertaining and conforming the same, simply Tamils are outsiders as Hindu Tamils…. Do you have guts to analyse statements made by MR/GR on similar grounds. I have noticed that you have criticized Ghota occasionally but you have been careful to use kind of words to make it obscure.. But no such thing when you talk about Wigneshwarren.. typical ……
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    Dayan Jayatilleke has as usual misread the article, teh rejoinder by Thiruvarangan. My only query would be: is it careless reading or wilful misreading? Or, is it that in the rush to prove his point and defend himself, he misses the sophistication of the writer’s argument? Or is it, and that would be sad indeed, for him, any person who is seemingly Tamil, writing on the nation with a critical attitude toward Sinhala Buddhism, and the Sri Lankan state, has to be advocating a Tamil nation? Thiruvarangan’s original article and the response were explorations of what makes a people a nation. Much of what makes a people a nation, has to do with,state making and nation making. It is a process of occupying positions that become validated or invalidated by other processes. It is a critique of the nation itself, if one took both his original article and the respnse together. In my response to him, I said that that critique would have to be extended to the state itself. Whenever, Dayan Jayatilleke writes, many people in public and private attribute ulterior motives to his points of view, that they are directed by his own personal ambitions, currying favour with the powers that be etc. While their validity, whether such allegations are true or not, is not my concern here,I hope that in this instance, he is sincere in whatever he says, in his pronouncements, and requests him to read, Thiruvarangan’s article again. Thiruvarangan’s article could be criticised or but it has to be taken seriously and read carefully first and criticised on its own terms and not on the terms of some one else’s position that falls within another framework of thought; what I call the international relations paradigm of definitions, conflicts etc. etc.
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    Dr.Dayan, There’s no point crying now for spilled milk…..or crying for the bird that was cought after 30 year struggle, and let it go from hand. After 30 years of arduous struggle by every citizen, everybody thought that there will be Peace and harmony after the war ended in 2009. But to everybody’s frustration, there’s no peace in the country and the country is more divided now than during the war. Why…..why….why….. If you look at President Rajapakse’s poltical life, you will note that his whole political life is built on Duplicity, fraught, dis-honoust, lies and deceit. For instant first, he dumped CBK soon after he became President where it was she who appointed him as SLFP Presidential candidate. He also dumped Anura. Second, MR bribed VP to win Presidential election. Third, MR gave shelter to Tiger terrorists KP, Karuna and Daya Master. Fourth, MR Impeached CJ Shirani Bandaranayake for no apparent reason. Fifth, MR Jailed Gen.Sarath Fonseka who won the LTTE war……and many more. My question is Why didn’t President Rajapakse who had all the powers under the sun, Did not take any initiative to implement LLRC or to resolve Tamil issue during the last five years. Other than celebrating War victory and eating Kiribath, Pres.MR did not take any action to solve tamil problem for five years, after end of the war. Had he implemented LLRC earlier, we would not have had to face UNHRC resolutions today. President Rajapakse should bare responsibility for UNHRC Blundar, and he should answer to People in Sri Lanka in this regard. Hambanthota Comedy tricks won’t work with International community. Only the cuntry and the people suffer.
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    James, “amils in Singapore/Malaysia are immigrants from Sri Lanka and india where as the Tamils in Sri Lanka/India had their own separate independent kingdoms, have a separate Tamil speaking territory.” Your kingdom in Sri Lanka never extended to present day Eastern province. North, yes for about 300 yrs in our 2500 yr history.
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    Anpu, “According to DJs current calculation Tamil population is 4% In 1946 according to Lord Soulbury calculation Sinhala speaking majority accounted for 69.2% of the population and all Tamil speaking minorities put together accounted for only 30.1% ” Tamil Speaking and Tamil are completely two different things man. Muslims have a clear separate leadership and will throw in their lot with the Sinhalese. You are unfortunately trying to swell your numbers here
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      According to 1881 population census: Sri Lankan Tamils: 25% Sinhalese:67% Moors:7% 1911: Sri Lankan Tamils: 13% Ind. Tamils:12% Sinhalese:66% Moors:6% 1946: Sri Lankan Tamils: 11% Ind. Tamils:12% Sinhalese:69% Moors:6%
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      In sri Lanka, Sinhalese never lived in the North East. According to 1881 census: East Sri. Tamils:59% Moors:36% Sinhalese:5% North Sri. Tamils:96% Moors:4% Sinhalese:0.4%
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    Let’s say the secessionists do succeed in creating Ealam. how will they establish a functioning country? – bureaucracy – productive economic activity (agriculture, service and manufacture) – diplomatic core – defense forces – education While the Tamil diaspora are more than capable of international diplomacy for their agenda and I am sure has plenty of highly capable bureaucrats, do they have the will and the finances to develop the economy? Will they be willing to leave behind lucrative white-collar jobs, inter-racial families behind in western countries to slave under the hot sun of the North to build a viable economy? The Jewish Europeans did it in Israel, but only because they were forced to flee Europe or perish under Hitler. And they succeeded only because Britain and the US provided the money, weapons, training and military support. Will India or Tamil Nadu provide such to Eelam? Will the US? Things to ponder….
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    These types of articles that talk about reforming the state seem so quaint and irrelevant now. They belong to a different time in history when the Sri Lankan parliament had the power to control the destiny of the Island. Today, neither the Sri Lankan parliament nor its constituent political parties have any power or capacity to defend against the existential issue that the state faces. Can you pass an act in parliament to cancel the international investigation? Can you pass an act that will prevent the peacekeepers from being sent? My recommendation to Dayan is to start writing a book titled “The mistakes that led to the birth of Eelam”. He can release the book to coincide with the inaugural independence day of Tamil Eelam. I’m sure that the “Victory” of 2009 will feature prominently!
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    Dayan: Since that Lord Soulbury written advice, much water has flown under the bridge. The fact that a British PM had walked into SL and chided the regime points to the changed landscape while you were heartily sleeping, having ignored and missed the enmity that had widened the cracks between the Sinhalese and Tamils. When CVW told that audience of a “nation”, it was not merely uttered to placate the Tamils, it demostrated his frustration and that is understandable. He had extended a hand of “friendship” to MR and had hoped that there could still be the hope of settling down without the antagonistic environment that had preceded his election to that office. Once a thief, always a thief aptly fits the Rajapakses. For them, the sinister character that holds them could not allow anything else save a demeaning dimension that his “lordship” can impose his will at will. Forget about all the commissions and reports that became the butt of jokes before MR became president. The many commissions and reports that MR commissioned to divert the world to hide his sinister intent is already well known to the world. Five years have passed since the war ended and his promises and commissions have been heading nowhere. It is not that a little more patience should not be observed. That sense would have prevailed if there is a genuine belief that there may be some hope in the future but what is happening today is unmistakably clear. The regime is not going to keep any of its promises. It has decided that the end of the war is also the end of the problem and that it can muscle its way into forcing the Tamils to accept what it wants to push down the throats of the Tamils. The gripping sense of Tamils is that the regime is a cheat and it’s hope was to lie its way through with its dishonest attitude led by another perpetual liar, GL Peiris. Of course, the problem is not of the magnitude that evades the protagonists but having led Sampanthan and the TNA on a charade that smacks of a character of unspeakable nature, the ill nature of such a person cannot emancipate to that of a honourable leader who has the brains and the character to steer a torn and worn nation. To the Tamils, the SL leaders have become inconsequential, and that includes “lecturers” like you. For those who have mortgaged their conscience to the highest bidder has no right to pretend to be “Jesus”.

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