2 June, 2023


Wigneswaran: A Judicial Politician With A Mission On His Own

By Thambu Kanagasabai

Thambu Kanagasabai

Thambu Kanagasabai

After retirement from the Supreme Court Bench, Justice C.V. Wigneswaran was hesitant to enter the political field which was once said to be an asylum of scoundrels. However his deep dedication to the causes of which culminated in a genocidal war propelled him to plunge into politics. There was a fresh breathing with his entry which was welcomed by the Tamils, as he would live up as an honest and bold politician quite differently from many others. When I met him at his residence in Colombo in October 2013 after he won the elections and became the Chief Minister, I posed the question of his political conduct would be in the further? he said “Do not consider me like other politicians and I will be different from others”

To be frank he has lived up to his words and his actions after becoming the chief Minister have confirmed his stand Mahinda Rajapaksa promised many steps regarding the Northern Provincial Council. He believed Rajapaksa, as the promises were made by the President. As expected Rajapaksa doled out the promises as a cheap politician which were to please C.V. who served as a Supreme Court Judge upholding justice and truth while meeting out punishment to cheaters etc rightly felt his let down by a president.

Wigneswaran MahindaC.V. in his battle with a military governor fought to assert his authority and rights but political power used against him did not bring the desired results until Maithiripala Srisena became the new President who is now trying to win the hearts and minds of Tamil people with some cooling measures but so far avoiding the sixty years …. malignant Tamils’ problems. Maithiri is morally and duty bound to solve his problem while in office and without delay, as he owes this responsibility as the President, as his victory was mostly achieved due to the backing of the Tamils. This recent statement as to Sri Lanka belonging to Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslim shows a shift from the “Mahawamsa mentality” of past Sinhala political leaders. Maithiripala Srisena as a believer in democracy should pursue and enforce the “Rule of law” Accountability for crime and punishment for perpetrators and “Good Governance”. Failing in any one of these cherished principles will only consign him as another political opportunistic having missed the chance to behave like a statesman C.V. Wigneswaran’s genocide resolution, though over due is bold forthright and deserving. A process of genocide, overt and covert has been set, in motion from 1948, the year of independence. The failings and opportunistic politics of past Tamil political leaders coupled with the ruthless state suppression encouraged Sri Lankan state terrorism which emaciated the political power and strength of Tamils.

The hands of Tamils are now full with various issues glaring at their faces, most important are the militarization and land grabs by the Security Forces leaving the civilians, landless occupation less, livelihood less and at the mercy of Security Forces. The protests of civilians spearheaded by C.V. do not appear to be making any impact on the Govt.

To compound the problems and make matters worse, Maithiri’s partners like Ranil and Champika are coming out with conflicting and contradictory stands and statements which only cast doubt on the sincerity of Maithiri’s Govt.

While Maithiri is praising C.V. as a good man with whom it is easier to solve North and East problems, Ranil blurts out saying ‘C.V. is a liar and is not worth talking to him’. While Maithri understands the judicial honesty of C.V, Ranil finds it difficult to stomach C.V.’s honesty in politics which is nothing but anathema for Ranil .

As far as Tamils are concerned, TNA the sole representatives are pursuing a path of wavering and indecisiveness while some are ‘advocating don’t displease Maithri by protests and opposition and trust Maithiri Mantram’ with some concentrating on ‘genocide’ and ‘International Investigation’. Mannar Bishop had fervently pleaded for a united Tamil national alliance and without doubt his plea reflects the plea of all Tamils. TNA is better advised to become a ‘Tamil United front’ accommodating all the Tamil groups while removing the alliance’ one and for all.

The TNA leadership must be revamped to allow for highly motivated, fear less and truthful individuals fixed on a determined path to salvage the battered Tamils. The plain and stark truth is Tamil politicians have always been outmaneuvered in the past despite the world wide sympathy and support of Diaspora.

The current Maithiri’s Govt. is now on a diplomatic track to weaken and finally dismantling the international communities’ support to the Tamils and their determined efforts to haul up Sri Lanka. Maithiri’s soft comments on Wigneswaran appear and aim at breaking his defiant and realistic postures concerning the militarization and genocide issue, which is now in the records of Tamil’s history, awaiting proper justice. It is hoped that Wigneswaran, a past dispenser of justice and believer in truth will hold on to his principles to open a way for Tamils to live with dignity and self respect. However, with no unanimity of support from the other TNA members, he is facing a tough task which, it is hoped will become easier due to the growing support of Tamils world wide.

Wigneswaran’s out bursts at the Tamil Nadu politicians and Tamil people criticizing their emotional support, though tinged with some truth, is untimely and unnecessary. Tamils particularly, Tamil Nadu people have not forgotten the sufferings of Tamils and the state terrorism of Sinhala Govts. Their feelings for Tamils lie dormant and any expression of their feelings is simply their democratic right which cannot be condemned but only be used to support the causes of Eelam Tamils.

However it is opportune time to extend full support to Wigneswaran’s pragmatic and unbending approach to stop the political debilitation of TNA which is now in dire need of many Wigneswarans to resurrect the dying Tamil race in Sri Lanka.

Maithiri’s latest act of conferring the highest military honour of Field Marshal to Sarath Fonseka who conducted the genocidal war and qualified as a war criminal shows the true colours of Maithiri and his determination to protect the war criminals. No wonder many diplomats boycotted the function of Maithiri and Sarath Fonseka voicing their disapproval.

Modi, the Indian Prime Minister who visited Sri Lanka including Jaffna promised many things to TNA even requesting TNA to trust him to solve the Tamils problems. Only time will tell whether his words will be translated into action which appear to be nil as Sri Lankan Govt. has already declared their stand by stating their rejection of any foreign Leaders or Govt’s interference with proposals to settle 60 year old problem.

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  • 0

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

  • 4



  • 4

    This member of the LTTE rump wants Modi’s assurance and Maithri’s help to demilitarize the mono ethnic Tamil eelam and to settle all landless Tamils, kallathonis and estate Tamils in that hypothetical Tamil -EElam.

    • 4

      Jim softy

      “This member of the LTTE rump wants Modi’s assurance and Maithri’s help to demilitarize the mono ethnic Tamil eelam “

      If it could prevent this island becoming a Sinhala/Buddhists ghetto then every Sinhala/Tamil speaking person must support it.

  • 4

    For Tamil political theorists reconciliation is the greatest stumbling block on the road to separatism so they constantly maintain a confrontational level with the Sinhalese. Remember Wingeshwararam started off with the statement Prabakaran was a hero? His recent “genocide” move is a master stroke to poison the Tamil minds of generations to come thereby creating a permanent fissure of geological propotions between the Tamils and Sinhalese. The other objective of creating an opening for international intervention is equally deadly. A backlash on the 50+% of Tamil speaking people living outside North/East as was desired by the “sole representativs” of yesteryear is the short term ulterior motive.

  • 3

    The author of this piece is a lawyer himself and belongs to the black coated fraternity. This fraternity always go for the defence a fellow lawyer with alacrity. The bad blood between Chief Minister CV Wigneswaran and Prime Minister is all about a statement made by Ruwan Wijewardene, nephew of Ranil Wickremesinghe, when he visited the North. He said the government will not reduce the military presence in the North or will close any of the army camps. Rubbing salt into the would Ranil himself told CVW with a mischievous grin (according to the speech delivered following the tabling of the genocide resolution on 11th Febraury,2015 at NPC) that he is going to give an assurance to the Mahanayaka Theros that the army in the North will not be withdrawn or reduced. Naturally this statement by RW infuriated the Chief Minister who expected the new government to reduce the military presence as well as reduce the number of camps in the North. Reacting CM siad that in the old days the UNP was called the uncle nephew party and it remains the same even today. In the first place it was unnecessary for CM to get upset over a political statement made for the consumption of people of south by a State Minister. But the remark by Ranil was tactless to say the least. He should not have told that to the CM which was and is a sensitive subject as far as Thamils are concerned. What CM should have done is to leave the matter to the TNA leaders because that subject is a concern at the national level. CM should not forget the fact as Chief Minister of NPC his duty is to first tackle subjects like housing, schools, hospitals, jobs, drinking water, agriculture etc. and leave national politics to the TNA. This he is refusing to comply despite partyh directive. Two days ago he opened the wound again by claiming that Ranil Wickremesinghe is functioning as a Prime Minister with only 45 members. This was an undiplomatic and unwarranted statement made by the CM which does nobody any good. He should remember the fact that Thamil people voted for Sirisena on the basis of his election manifesto which said that if he wins the election he will appoint Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Prime Minister. In trying to demean RW, CM was demeaning himself. CM a novice in politics and he was a reluctant suitor. The CM post is not like that of a Supreme Court judge who is addressed as You Honour every two minutes! His primary concern as CM should be to uplift the shattered lives of the war affected people. He should exercise restrain in what he says and what he does. He also appear to have ruffled the feathers of Nisha Biswal the Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Affairs after she met him. If CM does not agree with what the Asst. Secretary said he should agree to disagree. Going public is very very undiplomatic. There are criticisms that the NPC has not spent monies allocated for capital expenditure resulting same to be returned to Treasury. That NPC has so far failed to pass a statute that will help to receive millions of rupees as stamp fees. Opened a Bank Account in the name of the CM to receive overseas funds. There are few other criticisms as well. Finally, before January 8th CM could have made use of former governor as a scapegoat for his failures. But no more when you have a civilian as governor.

    • 4

      He is tackling peoples problem. Peoples problem state terrorists and war criminals have rob their land and he is trying hard to get it back while Sampanthan and Suminthiran are pursuing their own personal benefits not worried about people land robbed by state terrorists

  • 7

    Mr. Thambu
    When the present Government is doing much to narrow the ethnic divide it was poor taste in an extreme for Chief Minister Wigneswaran to pass the genocide resolution as anyone interested in a reasonable resolution to the issues in this country would appreciate.

    Field Marshall Sarath Fonseka lead the military in a war against the LTTE terrorist with political leadership and support of the public at large including most Tamils. For you to judge him as a war criminal and comment that the war against LTTE was genocide is far from the truth – in fact false.

    The comments in your closing para about PM MODI being held to deliver on many promises he made to resolve the problems of the Tamils is most unacceptable, given that Sri Lanka is a sovereign country – PM Modhi was completely out of line to make political promises to any community in Sri Lanka including the suggestions to go beyond the 13A + and for cooperative Federalism. Having created, fed and fostered the LTTE and ‘parripu drop’ forcing us to the IndoLanka agreement, and now suggesting to allow Indian fishermen to fish in SRI LANKAN waters on alternate days, India is the last country that has a moral or any other right to be involved in Sri Lanka to mediate – that is putting it mildly!

    • 2

      The NPC genocide resolution, I would agree as an unneccessary impulsive gesture done in haste as a retaliation to the uncalled insensitive jibe by the PM who should know better,following his nephew Ruwan Wijewardena’s remark for the consumption of Southern Sinhala hardline critics of the new administration.
      But to deny that the creation of the fascist LTTE was an inevitable response of Sinhala only fascism and the excesses of that consequent to the post 1956 era culminating in the necessity and inevitability for the Indian paripu drop in1987 is futile like trying to hide the ‘meeharak’, under Lokku menike’s ‘reddha’!
      In that regard PM Modhi’s reminder o those concerned, to honour an international accord between two sovereign countries is not out of tune, and to say that the Indian government has suggested to allow it’s fisherman to fish in Srlankan waters is another down right lie when the fact that it is some thing coming from an unauthorised source in Tamil Nadu.

    • 2

      Sovereignty is lost once commit genocide for 60 years.By international law, other countries can intervene and they are. That is why dropped parippu. Murderers like Authulathmudali took innocent school children and put them boosa camp killed many. There was no haste only late in bringing the genocide resolution. can you give a line by line defence what CV said, nobody can.

  • 6

    My personal view is more than 80% of people in the legal profession are dishonest and corrupt. C.V claim that he was plunged into politics which I very much doubt. I am sure, he found a way to make more money than when when he was a legal officer and what a bonus for a retired person.

  • 4

    We must understand that Maithri did not win and couldn’t have won the election as President single handed. As much as he needed the support of Tamils and Muslims, he needed the support of Ranil and Chandrika as well. So, changes cannot happen overnight. So long as we are vigilant and we do not fall back we should seek redemption in due course. We as how you say Wigneswaran is most of the time, have to be pragmatic. It is easy to express high expectations from overseas. But one has to have a look at the total picture,, especially the ground reality.

    Sengodan. M

  • 2

    The NPC genocide resolution was not an unnecessary impulsive gesture done in haste as a retaliation to the uncalled insensitive jibe by the PM. The genocide resolution was passed on 11th January,2015 long before the war of words between TM and CVW. That was a resolution introduced by a hothead and discussion got postponed 5 times. The original resolution contained about 250 words, but the resolution introduced CM ran into 19 pages and that must surely be a Guinness record. It narrated the post independence violence and discrimination against the Thamil people by Sinhalese governments. More than the contents of the resolution it is the timing that has created unnecessary bickering between RM and CVW. Both are having a slanging match fit for kindergarten children.

  • 0

    The previous head treated some one at the lowest level.The new head in the same chair after few years placed him at the top. We have to learn inter national Drama or comedy tounderstand these.Since one of my wires is out I think these nonsense,

  • 1

    Kumar W
    Do you know hw many people died in final battle?
    and If Srilanka is a sovereign country why it dint solve the problem of their capacity for sixty years. They have no capacity and future planning of the country. only shouting about other ethnic groups and remain in power they have a habit.. They have to please allow tamils to secede from them as a result they have a chance that the north and East will become a New singapore within two decades where sinhales and muslims too can live peacefully. I hope Modi will be tough on srilanka like Rajiv

  • 1

    I had great expectations when Wiggy became CM and thought finally the Tamils got a reasonable man with temperate judicial judgement,but alas this guy is way out of his depth and should be despised and shunned as a paraiah.There seems to be a lack of undestanding of the word genocide and only one has to refer to a good dictionary to get the right one I think genocide is such a explosive word that it gets most everybodys attention.Guys like Wiggy only delay whatever the Tamils deserve making the way for a another Prabakaran.

  • 0

    Mr. Thambu, author of this article praised Justice C.V. Maheswaran,CM,
    NPC to the hilt and no doubt that he is a bold and straight forward
    gentleman, and a politician who came from the Supreme court bench but the writer failed to realise that justices and leading advocates like G,G, Pon,QC SJV.Chelva,QC, M. Thiruchelvam , QC, Vanniasingham,QC and many from the judiciary did not succeed in getting a political solution
    for the Tamils for the last 60 years as the problem was,they all argued
    the Tamil case with the successive govts., based on the laws of the land and not used shrewd diplomacy,& cunningness,in solving the problem
    At one stage TULF, under SJV had 10 QCs and no tangible results were achieved on the Tamil question.
    One question, you may probably would like to answer on behalf of the
    CM, as to why he brought the genocide resolution, undoubtedly a good
    piece of legislation,at the wrong time when the govt.in power is doing
    all it can do to bring the communities together and aiming for a total
    peace in the country and mind you with the support of the International
    community including USA & India and why did CM jump the gun, just to
    please fellow members in the NPC Ms. Sasitharan & Sivalingam, who are a pain to him, and not realising that the international community and UN got upset re timing of the presentation of the resolution. With his legal brain, he may have thought that if he brought this resolution
    during the former regime, the NPC would have got dissolved but chose the right time when the govt. is not in stable position and that was not a sportive move, more over Mr. Thambu should answer whether CM has overshadowed TNA in this issue as he never represented the people of the East and not his business to bring national issues of the Tamils as TNA is the sole rep. of the Tamils of N/E and not him . Did he not usurp the authority of TNA in this case. CVW is a leant justice and why could not he have used his knowledge and experience to subdue the former Governor and the chief Secretary by being diplomatic. He became a controversial figure rather a protector of the people of Northern province. TNA’s silence on this matter is suspicious as there could be
    infighting among the ranks as to who the leader or leaders are.

  • 1

    Mr.Thambu tells the truth about the ground situation not anything other than the truth.Most of our Sinhalese friends do not want the reconciliation or the accountability. The Sinhalese invaders for more than 2500 years denying the fundamental rights of the Eelam Native Tamils(Ceylon) is not justifiable.Let the native of the Eelam live free in their Tamil Nation with freedom and dignity.Tamils have their own home land, Nationalty and rights for the self determination.

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