22 October, 2017

The Way Of A Tamil Formation – EPRLF And It’s Suresh Premachandran

By S. Sivathasan

S.Sivathasan

Even as all Tamils approach the hour of destiny and look forward to the moment of awakening, comes a discordant note from the head of a constituent group of TNA, the EPRLF. The statement in TamilWin is now in the public domain from 10th evening, SL time. Little does Suresh realize that the attention of the world is upon us when the Council assumes its full form with the Ministers and the members taking their oath of office. At issue is not any principle, but crass advancement of self. Suresh taking umbrage at the Chief Minister and the TNA, saying they have ruffled the feathers of his younger brother. Why? Because the latter wanted to be the minister of agriculture and that wish was not met.

Was it to meet his personal ambition that an election was held? For what purpose did the people struggle? Why did they make all those sacrifices? Is it not the task of leadership to symbolize their aspirations, to burn the dross in their own selves and to lead them to the promised land? This was precisely the path of idealism that Chief Minister Wigneswaran was seeking to chalk out in the last few weeks. It is now for everyone to stand steadfastly by him and the TNA.

The Atman insignificant by itself, merging with Paramatman is held out to be the ultimate and the ideal of many Hindus. In like manner a nondescript EPRLF, ventured to add respectability to itself by first rubbing shoulders with the TULF. Then it aligned itself with the TNA. But never did it merge in it. It wanted to maintain its separateness to cash in on a situation by presenting its IOU at the appropriate time. The way Kaikaeyi in Ramayana turned villainess to spoil Rama’s coronation on the very eve. Not losing its identity for the Tamil cause, but bolstering  its electoral fortunes for its own sectarian interests was its clear priority. It stands proven now.

Knowing full well the magnitude of the coming TNA wave, it tried to piggy back on it. The leader promoted his brother for a seat in the Council and he came 15th in preference out of 16 in Jaffna District. However he failed to wrench a Ministry for him, which was the target of Council entry. The denial of it by a no-nonsense Chief Minister, is the way principled governance moves across, clearing any debris on its way. This was too much of an abrasion to the two siblings. The elder one, the head of that paltry caucus wants to jeopardise the future of a whole community to self-serve the petty ambition of his little brother. With the imagined might of a label, he now lashes out on its benefactor, the TNA.

What used to be confined to a kusu kusu kooddam (in a cabal) in earlier times, is now known to the whole world in no time. Electronic media does this. From day one of nomination, Tamils were aware that Suresh had a personal agenda in the election. To make his brother a Minister in the NPC. The Chief Minister had important principles which he enunciated into criteria of selection to abide by. Has he deviated from them? No. He applied them meticulously. If Suresh thinks that his brother is too big for his shoes, let him go to a new boot emporium EPDP, the off shoot of EPRLF, buy a pair, sport them and seek people’s endorsement. The people in their rage know what size to cut the siblings to and where to consign them. If this is not the preferred course, resignation is the other respectable one. Remaining a thorn in the flesh is not honourable.

This is the political predicament in which we Tamils have placed ourselves. The Tamil parties sought to fuse together in a show of unity to wade through turbulent water. The shore is redemption for the Tamils. Eschew all happiness, personal pleasures and make endless sacrifices. People accommodated difficulties saying with fatalistic resignation, sufferance is the badge of our tribe and hoped for a glimmer in the darkness that had gathered. They helped win 80% of the seats to a seemingly single formation –TNA– led by Justice Wigneswaran, Sampanthan and Sumanthiran.

What does the world see in Suresh’s peevish outburst at the TNA? This person narrow and family centred in his thinking and seeking to promote his own particularist purposes, throws the interests of the Tamils to the winds. His party EPRLF, decimated in 1985 – 86, saved itself from extinction with the reprieve of the Accord of 1987. Its life philosophy was merely to lead self centred lives of ease and self- promotion, as is well established now. To secure a future of some consequence they backed the best horse – TNA. Having come into some prominence on the reputation of the traditional leaders, the upstarts now demand their remorseless pound of flesh.  Where is the loss of identity in their quest for merging into one entity –TNA? Now the label is used as a bargaining chip. It will continue to be so.

The leadership of the TNA which includes the CM, is made of sterner stuff. They are now of tempered steel and will become weightier by the day. People will winnow the chaff away. It is such men who will grow in numbers and gain in leadership positions. They will remain unfazed amidst detractors. About one such in the thirties in Europe, Nehru wrote that he was like “The iron image of an inevitable fate going ahead to its pre destined goal”. The little dot on the world map will strike a path of its own.

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Latest comments

  • 1
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    It is high time Suresh behaves like a mature politician, which I have thought all these years, he was one. It is a shame that he wants to strike a bargain for his sibling! All Tamils are watching these developments. Is Suresh trying to cover up his petty anguish by blaming the CM for having taken his oath before the President? I wonder where he wants to lead the community?

    Sengodan. M

  • 1
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    Nepotism is a scourge that is destroying South Asia. There are a few attention seeking individuals and extremist within the Tamil Polity the quicker they are flushed out the better.

    Much more bold decisions need to be made to deliver peace and prosperity to all in Sri Lanka.

    Dr. N. Satchi UK

  • 1
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    Is it this Prema who said before the election, that there is no room for any expressways to Jaffna and no Chinese will be allowed in the NP.

    Didn’t see any communiques from the CM or the TNA Chief refuting Prema’s statement.

    Perhaps Prema wanted the Bro there to make sure his wishes are taken care of.

  • 0
    1

    Dear Editor,

    This article seems to be a personal attacked on Mr.Suresh, EPRLF and the writer tried to become as tail of ITAK. The CT should be promote balance views and criticism, not like this. You can publish this if you have favor on natural media ethics.

    • 1
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      Rajan,

      What Suresh Premachandran is up to now, is worse than the ‘ Shit Bombs’ Lalith Athulathmudali dropped on Jaffna at one time. He was a nasty militant at one time and has now become a nasty politician. Mr. Sivathasan is voicing the opinion of many on Suresh Premachandran.

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

      • 0
        1

        I remember the bombs that Lalith A dumped on us !

        Now we have Suresh and the likes of you dropping a different kind of bomb on us hapless Tamils !

      • 0
        1

        The Tamils have made a wise choice are trying to move forward, I doubt the Tamils want to hear from bootlickers like EPRLF and Rajasingham Narendran

      • 0
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        Hi Dr.Rajasinham!
        Is itn’t time for the abolition of all Tamil party names and form one party with a different name for all the Tamils. If there is going to be an oppostion there can be one. I suggested this long ago to the TNA. Some people when they achieve power, they try to abuse it.

        • 1
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          Sellam,

          Politically we are at this stage like a baby learning to crawl. We have had a rebirth of sorts, having through the babtism of fire. Whether we will stand up , walk and then run is yet a hope.

          My hope is that the TNA will learn to be progressive, provide the Tamils a new vision and will be an example to other political formations in Sri Lanka. Once this stage is reached, it may have the opportunity to be a ‘ National ‘ party. At this point, even the word ‘ Tamil’ in the party name will become superfluous. The name ‘ Tamil National Alliance’ should continue to be the name of the party until such time, as this is much better than ‘ Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi ( ITAK)- which has been much misunderstood and maligned. However, the political formations like the PLOTE, EPRLF, TELO, EPDP, TMVO, etc, should disappear from our political vocabulary. There belong to a epoch in our history that has caused us much grief and are no longer relevant.

          What I had hoped would start happening after the war , has a chance of starting to happen now. It is a spark yet. I hope elements among the Tamils, Sinhalese and Muslims do not join hands to smother this tiny spark .

          The Tamils will be the poorer.

          Dr.RN.

    • 1
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      Ranjan,
      I have lived in Mandayan kulu era and we all know who Suresh is. He was a coordinator of Mahinda’s fisheries ministry one time and now against of taking oath front of Mahinda? Section of Diaspora who supports him should read his articles in his newspaper (I don’t remember the name-it was 1995 period), how he against the Tamil struggle. TNA should sideline those and move forward. I am sure people in NE will support genuine politicians.

    • 0
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      There is nothing personal in this article. If Suresh Premachandran cannot accept TNA as a group and Wigneswaran as the Chief minister then he should have gone out of TNA. Wigneswaran has and other members including those in EPRLF must take oath before some one accepting the constitution. We all know Rajapakse is a war criminal, the whole world know Rajapakse is war criminal, Sinhalese know Rajapakse is war criminal but what is the difference it is going to make taking oath in front of some one else. At least by taking oath in front of Rajapakse in Tamil Vigneswaran showed the Tamil leaders are much cultured than Rajapakse.

    • 0
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      It is pretty sure, Suresh Premachandran is trying to become Another dynasty of Tamilnadu politicians such as Karunanidhi.

      It is playing the Tamil -nationality game and promoting the family.

  • 0
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    Suresh
    1.This article should be your saviour – please be sensible.
    2.One can do much better things than being a minister to serve the people who could benefit by you in so many other ways.
    3.If you don’t change your attitude people may vote you both out with their feet. Who knows?

  • 0
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    This was expected by the NPC Tamils. The TNA must dominate, not the former armed gangs, who ruined the Tamil community.

  • 0
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    Suresh is no longer the revolutionary he once was. He has grown to be an extremely arrogant man. I have personally watched this change in him.

  • 0
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    Suresh has been a thorn in the set-up as his earlier statements will
    reveal. Your article is timely and to the point. Lets hope that
    these small distractions will not harm the movement, and such are
    expected within Tamil politics.

  • 0
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    Suresh who. It is time for him to go. Next challenge for the Tamil people is to get rid of these EPs out. Tamils elected good caliber of people before. It is time they get rid of these EPs and get back to the FP days.

  • 0
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    I think the Tamils are watching his arrogant developments which are a concern for the Tamils. He will be ignore very soon. He has a poor record as some countries had refused VISA to him. I have my doubt whether he will be elected at the next election.

  • 0
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    Give litle thought and inportance to Suresh and his brother.
    Move foward with the work NPC has ahead of them.
    Bu–watch your back all ministers and supporters.

  • 0
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    Suresh has been a troublesome politician for the TNA. He belongs to the extremist part of the democratic political scene and has shown his displeasure with the TNA leadership’s endeavour to work with the government.

    I am sure the tamil people are livid at Suresh’s antics. The TNA leadership should be firm and forthright with him at this point and give him an ultimatum to either work as a team and abide by the collective decisions of the TNA or leave the grouping. I am sure being a selfish politician he is he will eventually decide to stay. As a group the best course of action left to the elected EPRLF councillors is to resign their party membership and stay with the TNA. In this way Suresh will lose a lot of clout and will tone down his opposition to the Council and the CM’s activities.

  • 0
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    Hasn’t this been the trouble with the Tamil Leadership since Independence?
    I thought the Tamils had outgrown their immaturity.Have they forgotten the recent past?

  • 0
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    Mr. Sivathasan spoke for me when he castigated the cronyism and nepotism that had ruined the state administration in SL and fell far short of peoples’ expectation. The militant leaders who suck up to power and position did the same with IPKF and SL forces at the time of despair and national calamity. These militants cannot get away with the murders, ransom & kidnappings, torture, summary executions…carried out in the name of Eelam struggle. They unleashed all forms of terror on the very same people they were set to protect. However, they emulated the inherent violence of state repression and their adversaries. Now all what the non-LTTE Tamil militants needed were rehabilitation, probation and trauma treatment for their role. They had enough of freebie bestowed on them by Tamils and others by hook or crook since 1987. It is time they stop being parasites and find new ways to survive. These illiterate-arrogant demagogues either learn to be part of new administration or leave it to the people to exercise their democratic rights.

    • 0
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      Exactly.I am fully in accord with most of the comments in this column about this chap Premachandran because I have met him and happen to know him for what he is.
      That apart, as for another comment about the author of this article,what come to my mind is that the common Tamil saying .. ” entha pambu entha puthil irukiratho”, translated in English it means ‘one cannot be sure of what type of snake is in which hole”.

  • 0
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    who is this writer of the article?
    Isn’t he one of the Tamils who worked in the background with previous
    governments to sideline the common tamil man of the north?
    now does he want to join the C.V. bandwagon?
    what does he want to convey by saying that the people voted for Wigneswaran,Sampanthan and Sumanthiran?

    • 1
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      Mr Siva
      The discussion is about merits and inadeaquacies of Mr Suresh Premachandran. It is not ethical to criticise Mr Sivathasan, which he is doing as a common Srilankan. I do not need to stay that some one is in pubic life such Mr Premachandran, should face personal criticisms.

  • 1
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    It is time Suresh P is removed from the TNA before he causes further trouble. He shamed the Tamils when Canada refused him a Visa while he
    was part of the TNA delegation to North America over an year ago.
    His serious HR violations are well recorded in the books of international intelligence agencies. He is not the only Tamil Nationalist politician accused of crass nepotism. In my visit to Europe and North America I noticed close relatives of former LTTE
    leaders in key positions to the dismay of ordinary diaspora Tamils
    – some still in extortionist roles. Suresh is far too dangerous and
    devious to be ignored. The climate appears to be right to show him the door although one cannot remove him as an MP. He must resign and regain the confidence of the Tamil people again.

    R. Varathan

  • 0
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    All what is said about Suresh’s selfishness is true. But who is Sivathasan to say these things? When the TULF declined to contest the North-East Provincial Council election in 1988 out of fear of the LTTE, EPRLF came forward and contested. When the EPRLF formed the NEP government, didn’t Sivathasan go crouching to Varatharajaperumal to get a post of Secretary? Later when the NEPC was dissolved he went crouching to Thondaman for a post. Then he used Thondaman’s influence to get into Chnadrika’s good books. He never had any principles. He only had a big mouth. He had been telling people that he knows every subject on earth. He knows planning with his mouth. He says that everything is in his head. His head is swollen with administration, accountancy, engineering, agriculture, medicine and what not.

    He is such a master sychopant who went to the extent of calling Ananthi of the LTTE a modern day Kannagi. People won’t tolerate this kind of sychophancy for too long. I have been reading his writings in the Colombo Telegraph and figuring out what his motives were. If he has so much love for his birthplace what is he doing in the US?

    The time has come to tell Sivathasan to stop shooting his big mouth. No one is impressed by him. The day he becomes silent that day will bring peace to Tamils.

    • 0
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      It is said, when you judge others, you judge YOURSELF.

  • 1
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    Well done CVW,

    A leader who is willing to compromise (oath taking in front of the President) as well as be principled (not buckling to Suresh Premachandran’s pressure). Suresh has to realise that this is not about privileges and posts. It is not about personal gain or even party gains; this is about the future of the Tamils in Sri Lanka, and all Sri Lankans for that matter. To play petty politics with this cherished goal is simply not acceptable.

    Having failed to win a ministerial birth for his brother, Suresh now wants that slot to go to someone from Mullaittivu. We can see through this ploy, Suresh. Mullaitivu has its fair share. The Only bonus seat went to Mullai (other went to Ameen).The Deputy Chairmanship also went to Mullai, and the statement announcing the posts promised more for the district in the near future. So to say a minister post must be given to Mullai is nonsensical and bares the real intention of Suresh and co, which is personal ambitions.

    Sivajilingam tried this before and was reduced to be the laughing stock of Tamil politics. It appears Sivaji wants to try this again; now in cohort with Suresh, his brother Sarweswaran and Siddarthan. What these four fail to realise is, it is ITAK, their non violent past, CVW, his accommodating stance on various issues and the promise to do clean politics, that won TNA its landslide. If they go back on these pledges people will punish them and send them to political wilderness, exactly in the same manner they did to that octogenarian, Anandasangari.

    If they want to go down this line, the honourable thing to do will be for all of them, including Suresh, to part ways with TNA, resign their posts and put themselves in front of the people once more. But that will be the honourable thing to do.

    • 0
      0

      Well said, Goshan!

      Sengodan. M

  • 0
    0

    I congratulate Mr Wigneswaran for taking a bold stand and bringing in a new breed of people into the NPC administration. We need to move forwards. It is the right step to isolate people tainted by the past – one way or the other. Thank you Mr Sivathasan for your writings. The silent majority amongst the tamils have already done enough harm to our people by remaining silent for far too long….we cannot repeat these mistakes again. The actions of people like SP reveal and their true motivations – now as in the past. Lets leave them behind and move forwards…..there are far more I portent things to worry about in life.
    Dr. M. Nirmalan, University of Manchester

    • 0
      0

      Dr. Nirmalan

      “The silent majority among the Tamils have done enough harm” Absolutely correct. Others are,

      “Embracing teachings of humility”

      “Getting entangled in ideas of fatalism”

      “Being immersed in cynicism”

      I think you are educated enough to be free of all four. With well researched writing, you can set the pace for the younger generation. Hope to see your debut soon.

  • 0
    0

    Oh,Suresh, let the Tamils lift their heads out of the muddy water of oppression.
    Please, let Sinhalese change their heads and hearts towards Tamils.

  • 0
    0

    Editor, there are some obvious spelling/grammatical mistakes in my previous comment….please be kind enough to correct them before posting the message. Mahesan Nirmalan

  • 0
    0

    Two good things the new CM for NP did was tokeep the loud mouth persons and family bandit ism out .Our good wishes

  • 0
    0

    As expected internal cracks in TNA.

    Hopefully it will turn violent.

    • 0
      0

      Fat “Mama ” Fuk U Shima

      Once it turns violent we can slit the throat drain the blood and cut Halal meat.

  • 0
    0

    For all those who are praising Wigneswaran as the Moses who will lead us to to the promised land, beware very soon a day will come probably in March you will denounce him as a Traitor. Mahinda will use him as a condom, as he has done with numerous others and throw him out. Wigneswaran is the best tool Mahinda can use to bail him out of the tightening noose in Geneva. Unfortunately Wigneswaren is the willing tool.

  • 0
    0

    This is not the time to fight over positions.The entire world is watching the NPC and how it functions.All parties should support the Chief Minister Wigneswaran and strengthen his hands to deliver and run this council as a model free of corruption etc. We are dissappointed to hear the statement of some and the greed for positions. They should learn to make sacrifices and move forward.Chief Minister Wigneswaran shoul be congratulated for his bold decisions. I hope others will realize their immaturity and move forward and work as a team.

  • 0
    0

    thamila’s downfall is every one wants to be the king specially the northen kind

  • 0
    0

    Having read the Article and the Comments I take the view that the whole thing is being blown out of proportion like a storm in a Tea Cup.

    1)Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Spokesperson and Jaffna District Parliamentarian, Suresh K. Premachandran, severely criticized the Illankai Tamil Arasu Katchchi (ITAK) hierarchy, saying it had selected ministers to the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) in an authoritarian manner as the constituent parties in the TNA had been sidelined.

    ***The above is a personal opinion of Mr.Premachandran and he is entitled to his views. But what he actually said may have some merit. But that doesnt mean that I agree with everthing he said.

    The Folowing is what he said.

    “He also said , as Mullaitivu remains the worst-affected due to the war and the tsunami, the EPRLF had emphasized the need to appoint a minister from the areasee .”

    THE APPOINTMENT OF MINISTERS IS THE PREROGATIVE OF THE CM and I am sure as a politician Mr.Premachnadran understands this.

    But let us analyse the grievance of Mr.Premachandran and whether he is right.

    1) TNA is made up of different parties but this is not a Coalition Government following a hung Parliament. The crucial aspect is that TNA was formed before the election and every Contituent Parties contributed to the Policies and the Manifesto was arrived at before the Election.

    So there was no need for the CM to allocate Ministerial posts on a propotional basis and on the contrary the right tghing to do would be to select the best for the job.

    Therefore in my view Mr.Premachandran was not justified in his criticism of the selection of ministers.

    “The ITAK has even appointed an NPC Councillor from my Party (EPRLF) without consulting me. Former parliamentarian and the PLOTE Leader, Tharmalingam Sidharthan obtained 39,000 votes at the NPC polls, and he has not been given a portfolio. The ITAK strongmen in the TNA are acting according to their whims and fancies,” he said.

    **** I dont agree with the above for the simple reason that if Mr.Premachnadran is right then Ananthi who polled 89,000 votes should have been considerd ahead of Sidharthan.

    But the biggest criticism I have regarding the Judgement of Mr.Wigneswaran is his decision to take the Oath before MR a War Criminal.
    How is the CM having taken the Oath before MR going to argue a case for MR to be taken to the Hague.
    He has made it difficult and it is a very poor judgement.

    The argument that was put forward in favour of the CM taking the Oath before MR was that if you wanted to get anything from MR you have to work with him.
    That is frankly balmy as MR will not give you anything whether you work with him or against him without outside pressure.

    • 0
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      Kali,

      “as MR will not give you anything whether you work with him or against him…”

      You are absolutely right, Kali. We remember that both approaches were tried by Prabhakaran — working with MR by helping him to win the elections in 2005, and then working against him by fighting him. VP got nothing from MR by either method!

  • 0
    0

    How does Tamil community attack Suresh is unprecedented. How does Sinhalese should think about Wickramasinghe, Fonseka, Samaraweera, Ravi and alike who are making unfounded allegations and making the system work more difficult. Some Tamils do like this behaviour of Sinhalese politicians and in fact promote. We have to be mindful that these different people does not count. Ultimately it is the creation of a prosperous Jaffna for all its inhabitants upholding laws of the land. The so called rebels should know that people derive power by adhering to law. The Tamils of yester year enjoyed all the prestige and power of colonial rule by obeying the laws of the land how much ever they were discriminatory and unfair to the majority. As a minority Tamils had had a glorious past at the expense of the majority. Without destroying it for everyone it is better they join the democratic frame work even it is late.

    • 0
      0

      Raju you Sinkalam,

      First of all go and learn how to write English ( or should I say englis).
      The so called rebels shold know that people derive power by adhering to Law & Order. Yes mate you are right tell that to the State Terrorists headed by MR and his cronies.
      You shold be given credit for identifying this Law Breakers.
      As Monority Tamils had a Glorious past and which past are you referring to ( the 64 years you slaughtered us ) you are a bloody fool. Which planet are you living on. Is it the Planet of the Sinhalese Apes.

  • 0
    0

    The trio leaders of EPRLF, TELO and PLOTE seems to help a vested interest parties to install a Provincial Government that supports those vested interests. They are not real hardliners but of Pretenders as has been described by face book Rajayogan Muthathanthiry.

  • 0
    0

    Suresh can make his brother join Douglus ‘s party & make enough money by manyways, Douglus will help him to be a millionaire in no time.

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