By C. Wijeyawickrema –
I know two Sinhala women who married Tamils, both without the approval of their Sinhala parents that one could perhaps describe as love is blind kind of eloping. In one case the Tamil side decided to have a Hindu marriage ceremony. It began with a private Hindu custom of bathing the naked body of the bride by the groom’s close relatives. I am not sure if this was done because the bride was a Sinhala Buddhist. This Hindu marriage, however, did not prevent her from functioning as a Buddhist, if she so wished, unlike a marriage performed at a Christian church. This one example that I knew gave me unnecessary concern when I saw a news report of a declaration made by NPC CM Wigneswaran ( W) at an AG meeting of Sarvodaya at Moratuwa. He allegedly said that “he likes Sinhala people but not Sinhalization.”
Politicians make all kinds of false statements or half-truth to fool people. For example, Karunasena Kodituwakku, a former UNP education minister said recently (Divayina, December 31), that it was the UNP which created the free education in Sri Lanka. In the first place there was no UNP in 1945, when CWW Kannangara as minister of education under the Donoughmore System got the law passed by the State Council. The second thing was that DS Senanayake was dead against “free education.” He and all those who later became the UNP opposed granting the voting right to people in 1931. The rumor was that CWWK had to wait until DSS was out of the country to present the education bill (Ref. De Silva, K. M. 1981. A history of Sri Lanka. London: C. Hurst. p.472-474).
Wigneswaran marriages-Sinhalization as genocide
W had two Sinhala-Tamil marriages under his watch, by his two sons. Were they performed according to Hindu customs with bathing brides or were they according to Sinhala or Marxist methods? In any case did they make his sons Sinhalized? The poor Tamil in Jaffna does not know these and W is poisoning their minds. W who grew up in Colombo as a boy can do better to get rid of Tamil separatism and erase Tamil suspicions from those Tamils who still think Sinhalaya as their enemies. But instead, W is doing exactly what SJV Chelvanayagam did. SJVC forbade Tamils to learn Sinhala but gave private tuition so that his children could learn Sinhala!
In Tibet there was/is a fear of Chinese marrying Tibetan women and thus converting Tibet into a Chinese region. Similar fears were there in Viet Nam about Chinese marrying Viet Nam women. Such government-promoted policies are considered as genocide of a race. Sri Lankan has no policy of promoting Sinhala soldiers to marry Tamil girls. Instead, what we see is some love-struck soldiers marrying similarly love-struck Tamil girls. With W becoming a grandfather of mixed Tamil-Sinhala products, as a politician he has to explain if genocide is working with his W descendants either on the Tamil path or the Sinhala path; because, Sinhalization or Tamilization can take place only by way of such genocidal means. Since W has used the term genocide publicly he should make a public statement disapproving Tamil girls marrying Sinhala boys. This is the only way he is morally right in using the term Sinhalization.
But if he is thinking that only he and his Tamils can live in any part of Sri Lanka with equal rights but Sinhalyas cannot live in any part of the country he will end up as a failed and miserable Colombo Tamil. Most probably he thinks this is possible because RanilW, under his infamous CFA 2002, allowed exactly that: Prabakaran black cats and suicide bombers could roam any part of the island but the army was restricted to the South. There is no way that a Tamil self-determined unit coming up in Sri Lanka because 55% Tamils live outside NP and EP.
If Tamils world over want a separate country for them with a UNO seat they should try it in Tamil Nad. W should not become entangled with this idea and instead, he should try to help poor Tamils to overcome their day to day problems, a result of 30 years of suffering under the dictatorship and murder by Prabakaran. The more W uses platforms like the Sarvodaya’s and make stupid statements, the more he make it difficult even for the UNP to lend him support.
EP is an artificial demarcation and therefore, it cannot be used as a boundary for an organic entity that can be called a homeland. Think of Kurdish people. What is their homeland? Kurdish people are now under so many states: Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Syria etc. A Kurdistan is a dream, but it can be identified as an organic unit, despite the large extent of the land area coming within it. If, for the sake of argument one wants to try to demarcate a Tamil homeland are in the EP, it will be limited to a coastal strip and to a few towns. Even the Muslims are claiming the Potuvil area as their homeland! If this is upheld then Beruwala and Akurana will also be Muslim homelands!
The systematic destruction of ancient Buddhist ruins in NP and EP will not help in trying to convert EP and NP as exclusive Tamil areas. Sinhala people are angrily aware of how impotent Sinhala black-white leaders operating in Colombo allowed the robbery of sacred ruins of EP. An example is the Muhudu Maha Viharaya near Potuvil. See the loss of land area (acres) belonging to the ancient temple: 1951 = 264 à 1965 = 30 à 1980 = 20à 1990 = 15 à 2005 = 7 à 2013 = 0 .25 of an acre. Thus now it is only a quarter of an acre!
As the Burger CJ Sansoni once said, Tamils FP/TNA leaders should give up their separatist plan and live amicably with their Sinhala –in-laws (as in the case of Wigneswaran). Sooner or later Sri Lanka has to come out of the black-white control in Colombo and replace the 9 province division by a 7 river basin face. Each of the seven units will have a see front. It can be seven river basins or 20 since Sri Lanka has 103 river basins. If the present Rpremdas created 14,000 GSN units are re-demarcated according to ecology-based boundaries, they can be amalgamated under river-basin based districts or provinces. The GSN-level local governing must be given to non-political party, elected 10 people committee. Imagine how many such committees will be in the present EP and NP area with Tamils, Muslims and Sinhala people working together in harmony handling their day-to-day affairs, whether it is garbage, water, sanitation, Dengue, Kidney disease, education, cultivation etc.
The problem is that the 20,000-30,000 black-whites that the Anagarika Dharmapala mentioned in the 1940s are doing everything to prevent such people empowerment. This is what people must be informed, so that they could not be cheated by green, blue or red fake Buddhists or other saviors such as Sarath Fonseka. We must thank the Bodu Bala Sena for bringing this truth to our attention.