The Lanka Academic

 
OCTOBER 10, 2000 EST, USA
 
A NEWSPAPER PUBLISHED BY LACNET
 
VOL. 1, NO. 188
 

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ASK KARU!
The Lanka Academic is delighted to introduce the second guest for our online "Question and Answer" session: Dr. Karunasena Kodituwakku, the spokesperson of the United National Party. Send in your questions and receive answers! ANSWERS TO THE FIRST BATCH OF QUESTIONS HAVE BEEN POSTED. "Answers"
ASK MANGALA!
The Lanka Academic carried an online "Question and Answer" sessions with the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Mr. Mangala Moonesinghe from September 1, 2000 through September 24, 2000. You can view the questions from visitors like you and the answers by Mr. Moonesinghe here.
A BILL
The Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka
[PDF Version]

(The proposed new constitution)
 
WEATHER CENTRAL
Current Colombo weather
CNN Colombo forcast
Satellite pix (visible)
Satellite pix (infrared)
Where is MIR today?
 
"WE ARE NOT A COMMUNAL PARTY" - SIHALA URUMAYA DEPUTY SECRETARY
Bandula Jayasekera, in Colombo. Anuradha Yahampath, a 37 yearold mother of three children, (her youngest child is only two weeks old) is the deputy secretary of Sihala Urumaya. She is also in charge of the party's publicity campaign. Yahmapath was educated at Visakha Vidyalaya in Colombo and graduated from the University of Leeds with a B. A. (Hon) degree in textile design. She is a company director and is involved with her family business. Yahampath is contesting from the Colombo district as a candidate from Sihala Urumaya. `Lacnet' met up with Anuradha Yahampath who seems to be making an attempt to breath fresh air to the election campaign in the island. More...
US GREEN CARD LOTTERY
DV-2002
US State Department. Colombo, 4 August 2000 - The U.S. State Department announced on July 31 that the mail-in period for the next U.S. Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program (DV-2002) will run from noon, October 2, through noon, November 1, 2000. There is no application fee and no special application form is required. The application with the necessary information can simply be typed on a blank sheet of paper. More...
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T  O  P      H  E  A  D  L  I  N  E
Post-poll curfew eased in Sri Lanka
123India.com, Oct 11 2000 07:33 IST. COLOMBO, Oct 11 (AFP) - Sri Lanka eased a curfew early Wednesday imposed overnight after parliamentary elections marred by at least seven poll-related deaths, intra-party violence and allegations of rigging. The seven-hour curfew was eased at 6:00 am (2400 GMT) Wednesday. But even after it was lifted, police at security checkpoints dotted all over the Sri Lankan capital Colombo, were checking vehicles and identity cards of passengers. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 23:20:13 EDT 2000

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Kumaratunga's party takes small lead in early counting in crucial elections
MSNBC, October 11. As Sri Lankans waited for the results of an election that could stop the 17-year civil war, they also grieved Tuesday for Sirimavo Bandaranaike, or ''Mrs. B,'' the matriarch of the nation's politics. Tens of thousands of people, including women in white saris and hundreds of saffron-robed Buddhist monks, grieved for Bandaranaike, 84, who died after casting her vote Tuesday. Of the counted ballots, the People's Alliance received around 47 percent of the votes, followed by former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's United National Party with 36 percent. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 23:23:52 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
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Early results in Sri Lanka poll  - BBC South Asia
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Sri Lanka parties in neck and neck battle  - 123India.com
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Kumaratunga's party leads in Lankan polls  - Times of India (Breaking News)
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Sri Lanka's Rulers Win in First Poll Results  - Yahoo
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Votes counted in Sri Lanka election  - BBC South Asia
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UPDDATE-Sri Lanka ruling coalition takes early poll lead  - MSNBC
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Results amidst arrangements for state funeral  - The Hindu (International)
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Sri Lanka ruling party takes early lead in postal vote count  - 123India.com

Sirimavo Bandaranaike
The Times, UK, Colombo, Oct 10. Political widow who came out of obscurity after her husband's assassination and became the world's first woman Prime Minister . ON JULY 21, 1960, Sirimavo Bandaranaike made history when she was sworn in as Prime Minister of Ceylon, thus becoming the world's first woman head of government. Until the previous year, she had seemed a retiring figure, content to support her husband, Solomon Bandaranaike, as Prime Minister, without apparently having any political ambitions of her own. His assassination at the hands of a Buddhist monk in September transformed her outlook. Associating herself with the ideals of the Sri Lanka freedom Party he had founded, she was elected its president in May 1960 and led it to triumph in the general election of July that year to begin the first of her three terms as Prime Minister. For the next 17 years she wielded great influence in the country's political life, whether in government or in opposition. Abroad, she was one of the founders of the Non-Aligned movement of nations. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 18:59:57 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
Sirimavo: A lifetime of selfless service to the nation  - CDN

Election Results should be declared null & void, says PA general secretary.
Saroj Pathirana in London, Tuesday 10 October, 1600 GMT.. As there were widespread violence reported from Kandy district, the election results should be declared null & void, said PA general secretary, D.M. Jayaratne,minister for Land and Agriculture.In an exclusive interview with "Sandesaya"- BBC's Sinhala service, the minister accused another PA minister of perpertrating violence against his own PA party members. According to sources close to minister Jayaratne, a minister in the Central Provicial Council, and a leader of the SLMC are the other main culprits.
Published: Tue Oct 10 12:26:14 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
Curfew in Sri Lanka after blood-marred poll  - 123India.com
·
Groups condemn violence at Sri Lankan polls  - Yahoo
·
Sri Lanka poll marred by killings, rigging: monitors  - 123India.com
·
Lankan polls end amid charges of rigging  - India Abroad
·
Violence mars Sri Lanka poll  - BBC South Asia

Peaceful campaigner retains his seat
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 8.00 a.m 11 October. Dallas Alahapperuma of the People's Alliance, the only candidate who campaigned without any posters ,banners and decorations retained his seat Kamburupitiya by a majority of 9199 votes.

Alahapperuma an environmentalist led the most peaceful election campaign in the country. He even persuaded his opponents who contested from Kamburupitiya to get on one stage. Alahapperuma spoke only on issues concerning his people and did not sling mud at his opponents.

Allahapperuma's victory has been hailed by many as a victory for peaceful politics in the country.
Published: Tue Oct 10 22:06:00 EDT 2000


Sri Lanka president says she intervened to contain poll violence
123India.com, Oct 10 2000 20:23 IST. COLOMBO, Oct 10 (AFP) - Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga said she had personally intervened to contain violence and fraud during Tuesday's parliamentary polls. Kumaratunga pledged in a communique to back the election commissioner on any post-poll action he decided to take, including the annulment of elections in areas where there were irregularities.The president said she had received complaints from two senior members of her ruling coalition -- Agriculture Minister and People's Alliance (PA) general secretary D.M. Jayaratne and a Muslim key ally -- about widespread violence in the central district of Kandy.She said the elections chief had ordered a probe into electoral malpractices in the district and vowed to back him, saying: "We shall support the Commissioner of Elections in whatever action he takes with relation to the reports."Rauf Hakeem, joint leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress, said: "We will not have anything to do with the PA after the election. This is the worst violence and rigging we have ever seen in Kandy." More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 11:38:36 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
TULF, PLOTE claim massive election fraud  - TamilNet
·
75 p.c. turnout in Sri Lanka  - The Hindu
·
Sri Lankan polls attract condemnation for violence, vote-rigging  - 123India.com
·
Murders, bombings. rigging mar Sri Lanka polls  - MSNBC

Violence hits Sri Lanka polls, vote count delayed
MSNBC, Wednesday,October11,2000. First results emerged on Wednesday from Sri Lanka's acrimonious parliamentary poll, seen as a key test of support for President Chandrika Kumaratunga's plan to end the 17-year Tamil separatist war. Officials said the ruling coalition won the first two areas for which results were declared in an election marred by murder, bombing and rigging, and tinged with sadness after the death of the world's first woman prime minister, Sirimavo Bandaranaike. Kumaratunga's People's Alliance (PA) narrowly won the southern Balapitiya electorate and the northern Wanni district's Mullaitivu electorate. Mullaitivu is controlled by Tamil Tiger rebels and voting was held in the northern government-held town of Vavuniya. Only 652 of the 53,000 voters ast their votes, and PA received 439 of them, officials said. The PA also led strongly in the postal vote count, winning six of the eight districts for which results were declared early on Wednesday. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 18:26:48 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
7 killed in poll violence in Sri Lanka, curfew clamped  - Virtual New York
·
Sri Lankan Polls Hit by Violence; Vote Count Starts  - ABC News
·
Curfew in Sri Lanka after blood-marred poll  - 123India.com
·
Sri Lankan polls hit by violence, vote count starts  - MSNBC
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Sri Lanka imposes night-time curfew after violent vote  - 123India.com

Your tributes to Sirimavo Bandaranaike
BBC South Asia, Tuesday, 10 October, 2000, 14:10 GMT 15:10 UK. Please go to the BBC site to pay tribute to the late Hon.Sirimavo Bandaranaike 3 time P.M. of Sri Lanka.

Ed. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 12:50:51 EDT 2000


Heavy clashes erupt between PA - UNP - Violence on the increase
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 11.10 a.m. SLT Tuesday October 10. Election violence is on the increase since yesterday. Five persons have died as a result over the last twenty four hours. At least two murders were reported yesterday at Talawa and Dambulla.

Heavy clashes erupted early this morning between supporters of the ruling Peoples Alliance and the United National Party in the Hiththetiya area at Matara. Eight persons were injured in the incident as a result of hand grenades being lobbed. The persons wounded are supporters of the PA. The incident took place when supporters of both parties were putting up posters at around 1.30 a.m. this morning. Matara police are conducting investigations.

Meanwhile, in a separate incident at Anamaduwa in the Wayamba Province, intra-party fighting broke out when grenades were lobbed into the home of a PA candidate allegedly by another PA strongman of the area.
Published: Tue Oct 10 04:22:34 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
·
Sirima Bandaranaike passes away, State funeral on Saturday  - Yahoo
·
Brisk polling amid violence in Sri Lanka  - Virtual New York
·
Election related violence continues  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo
·
Sri Lankan Politician's 6-Yr-Old Daughter,2 Others Killed  - Yahoo

Sri Lankan polls close
BBC South Asia, Tuesday, 10 October, 2000, 11:10 GMT 12:10 UK. An opposition supporter has been killed and the rebel Tamil Tigers are reported to have shelled a government building in the Jaffna peninsula. The poll - widely seen as a referendum on ending the war with Tamil separatists - was overshadowed by the death of the country's former prime minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike who has died of a heart attack at the age of 84.She died shortly after casting her vote. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 09:00:30 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
Battles, Death Taint Sri Lanka Vote  - Yahoo
·
Peaceful Lanka polls record 70 p.c. turnout  - The Hindustan Times
·
Shadow over Sri Lankan poll  - BBC South Asia
·
Sri Lanka vote ends amid rigging charges, death of political matriarch  - 123India.com
·
Bandaranaike, world's first woman premier, dies  - MSNBC
·
Sri Lankan polls begin with shock death of political matriarch  - 123India.com

Sirima Bandaranaike: from kitchen to prime minister
India Abroad, Oct 10, 2000 16:15 Hrs (IST) . Colombo: Sirima Bandaranaike, the world's first elected woman prime minister, who died Tuesday after casting her vote in the parliamentary poll, rode Sri Lanka's political scene as a colossus for over four decades but left behind a divided dynasty. Bandaranaike, 84, was returning to her Rosmead Place residence in the capital after casting her vote in a booth at Attnagalle, 36 km from here, when she died of a heart attack. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 11:41:31 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
World's first woman PM dies after casting her last vote  - 123India.com
·
Former Prime Minister Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike expires  - Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo
·
World's first PM dies at 84  - 123India.com
·
Former Lanka PM Sirimavo Bandaranaike dead  - Times of India (Breaking News)
·
Sirimavo Bandaranaike: First woman premier  - BBC South Asia
·
Sirimavo Bandaranaike passes away, aged 84  - The Hindustan Times
·
Sri Lanka's former prime minister Bandaranaike dies  - 123India.com
·
URGENT Sri Lanka's former prime minister dies  - 123India.com
·
Sirimavo Bandaranaike dead  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo
·
Mrs.. B dies of a heart attack  - Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo
·
Sri Lanka's Former PM Death Unlikely To Impact Polls  - Yahoo

Narayanan, PM condole Bandaranaike's death
The Hindu NUS, 22.30 hrs (IST) on October 10, 2000. New Delhi, Oct. 10. (PTI): President K R Narayanan and Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee today condoled the death of world's first elected woman Prime Minister and Sri Lanka's octogenarian leader Sirimavo Bandaranaike, saying she would be remembered as a ``towering political personality of our times.'' Conveying the heartfelt sympathies of his family and the people of India to Sri Lankan President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, Narayanan said the demise represents the passing of a pioneering figure. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 15:38:31 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
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Sonia condoles Bandaranaike's death  - The Hindu NUS
·
Pakistani leaders condole death of Bandaranaike  - 123India.com
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India mourns passing of Bandaranaike: "a pioneering figure"  - 123India.com
·
Former Lankan PM passes away  - India Abroad
·
World's first woman PM dies as millions vote in Sri Lanka polls  - 123India.com
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Britain expresses sorrow over Bandaranaike's death  - 123India.com

War-torn Jaffna sees dramatically higher voter turnout compared to last election
NDTV/MSNBC, October 10. The war-torn region of Jaffna saw a dramatically higher voter-turn out in these elections. Twenty-eight per cent of the people in Jaffna voted today compared to just 3 per cent last time. But the political space in Jaffna seems to be clearly divided between moderate parties and the parties opposed to any dialogue with the government.There has been no meaningful campaign for the general election because the Tamil parties have confined themselves indoors in view of the LTTE's threats. Jaffna's bigest cinema hall houses the Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP), which won the elections last time with 98 seats and campaigned for a quick end to the war. Mr. Douglas Devananda, Secretary General, EPDP, said, "There are two ways to the Tamil-speaking community. LTTE says only through war can they get food or rights. We say there is an alternative path." More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 12:54:29 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
Tamil Tiger Rebels Fire Shells As Sri Lanka Votes  - ABC News
·
Heavy shelling mars polling in Jaffna  - India Abroad

Elections Commissioner determined to ensure fair poll
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 1.50 p.m. SLT Tuesday October 10 . The Elections Commissioner has issued confidential instructions to counter poll malpractices and a document containing these instructions has been forwarded to the Court of Appeal  and returned to the Commissioner in order to safeguard it’s secrecy. He has also stated that the Department is equipped to detect fraudulently introduced ballots. The Commissioner has agreed to several of the requests made by the political parties such as the sealing of the ballot box on all sides as well as allowing one counting agent from each party, to cross the security barrier and go along with the ballot box, to the counting center. The Agent is allowed to remain with the ballot box from the close of the poll till the counting begins.
Published: Tue Oct 10 04:22:43 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
Lankan voters to decide on change or continuity  - India Abroad
·
Despair, apathy and anger cast shadow over Sri Lankan polls  - 123India.com

Election to be conducted under tough Emergency laws - minus liquor
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 9.45 a.m. SLT Monday October 9. For the first time in Sri Lanka since Independence, the country will hold a General Election observing tough emergency laws re-enforced last week by a Special Gazette notification by President Chandrika Kumaratunge. The laws lend sweeping powers to the police and armed forces to arrest and detain persons under the Prevention of Terrorism Act. Colombo DIG Bodhi Liyanage said today that the police have taken maximum precaution to guard against suicide bomb attacks expected to be carried out by the LTTE this week.

The blood soaked campaign this time has been marred by hundreds of incidents of election related violences including two suicide bomb attacks at Eastern Muttur and Medawachchiya. Apart from those killed in the LTTE attacks at least 15 other persons were murdered in pre election violence as a result of political rivalry. The incidents of violence has lent speculation that election violations are expected to rise, targeting both voters and candidates over the next two days.

The Government meanwhile has ordered all liquor stores to be closed for a week after election results are announced and banned any victory celebrations for a period of seven days.
Published: Mon Oct 9 01:13:23 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
·
HRC and IHR come forward to safeguard rights of voters and public officers  - Frederica Jansz in Colombo

Eighty per cent Lankans cast votes even as LTTE continues offensive
The Hindustan Times, Colombo, Oct 10. An estimated 75 to 80 per cent of the 12.07 million voters cast their votes in Sri Lanka's eleventh parliamentary elections for which polling ended at 4.00 pm today even as a large number of serious poll violations were reported from eleven electoral divisions. In northern Jaffna, polling began amid heavy shelling by the LTTE but defence authorities and political parties said people in large numbers turned out to cast their votes. Voting in eastern districts of Batticaloa and Trincomalee went off peacefully with no major incidents reported. More...
Published: Tue Oct 10 14:11:19 EDT 2000
Related News Stories
·
Heavy turnout in Sri Lankan polls  - India Abroad
·
Brisk polling in Sri Lanka  - India Abroad
·
Sri Lankans begin voting in crucial election  - Times of India (Breaking News)
·
Brisk voting in Sri Lanka parliamentary polls  - MSNBC
·
Sri Lanka votes in key parliamentary polls  - MSNBC
·
Polls begin in Sri Lanka, peace the main issue  - Virtual New York
·
Sri Lanka holds key poll  - BBC South Asia
·
Brisk polling underway in Sri Lanka amid tension  - 123India.com
·
Voting begins in Sri Lanka amid tension  - 123India.com
·
Sri Lanka begins voting in key parliamentary polls  - MSNBC

People in Jaffna express their views
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 5.30 a.m. 10 October. By Bandula Jayasekara in Jaffna- ‘The Lanka Academic’ spoke to number of people in Jaffna and asked them for their views on the eve of the general elections. However it was difficult to get the views of the women folk in Jaffna. They all refused. But, the agony of war was written all over their faces. Here is what our people living in the land of the broken palmyrah had to say.

P. Baskaran, Returning Officer-“ it is difficult for me to say if the elections will be free and fair” R. Rasiah -Public servant. ( Name changed on request) “ People in Jaffna don ’t like people carrying arms. But, the EPDP has done a lot. TULF is a decent party but, they have done nothing”

N. Pathmaseelan, Associate Editor of ‘Uthayan’ newspaper- People are not interested in elections. Our problems are not solved. We have no trust in any of the candidates. Many still believe that the LTTE could do something for the Tamil people. TULF and the LTTE may compete hand in hand. But, we expect some sort of rigging”

K. Maheshwaran- Accountant, Cement Corporation- “We don’t feel like voting. All candidates tried to give us hope but we have no hope. People in Jaffna hate violence and we are innocent people. We need to lead a normal life. TULF have done nothing. Look what Thondaman and Ashraff did for their people. EPDP is doing something but, they carry guns and we don’t like that. I live in Jaffna with many problems because I have no where else to go”

Anandanayagam- Shop keeper- “We will vote for the TULF because they are the only unarmed party in Jaffna. But, we also know that they cannot solve our problems. We may have a free and a fair election only in the town area but I have my doubts about the islands.

R. Francis- Salesman- “All candidates are out of date. No one is interested about our aspirations. We ask only for one thing which is peace.”
Published: Mon Oct 9 19:42:19 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
·
Tamil shelling rocks crucial Sri Lanka election  - MSNBC

Foreign Election monitors of PAFFREL report pre election incidents
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 1.30 p.m. SLT Tuesday October 10 . The foreign Election Monitors of Peoples Action for Free & Fair Elections (PAFFREL) have sent in the following Pre-Election Situation  Reports which notes that the situation in the  Southern Province - Galle, Matara and Hambantota  is reported as normal.

In the  Ampara District  the rivalry  between the two parties in the PA coalition - the SLMC and the NUA  was  responsible for most of the violence and conflict in the District. The same observations are made for Trincomalee . the conflicts are more pronounced here.

The intra-party rivalry in this campaign and the competition for the preference votes has resulted in a large number of violent incidents. All these complaints have been made within the PA which had 73 complaints directed against their own party supporters. This amounted to one fifth of all the complaints made by the PA.

The international monitors who visited the Eastern Province as well as District co-ordinators for PAFFREL have continued to receive  complaints of difficulty in campaigning, security issues and lack of   transport for the voters who have to travel to long distances to cluster-polling stations .

PAFFREL asserts that it is clear from these reports that the LTTE killings as well as the continued threat of LTTE  violence has severely inhibited a free and fair election campaign and that prevailing conditions in many areas will tend to discourage voters from polling .

PAFFREL has yet to receive the latest situation reports from the Northern Province the conditions  vary widely from the war zone in Jaffna peninsula to the uncleared areas in the Vanni region .  From the reports that are available it would appear that the LTTE efforts at disrupting the election are directed at areas where they feel they may not be able to influence the voting . Both the security arrangements for polling and the monitoring of elections would have to give special attention to the Northern and Eastern Provinces . While  PAFFREL has been able to make arrangements  for the Eastern Province it has not yet been bale to make adequate arrangements to  transport its international monitors to the Northern province .

PAFFREL monitors have recorded that in the Wattegam Kelebokke area in Kandy, the polling cards of estate workers have been forcibly taken away by supporters of  two political parties. In Thanamalwila, in the Moneragala District, one of the Candidates was shot at by unidentified gunmen. Later in another place his vehicle was attacked and his party office damaged.

PAFFREL welcomes the various initiatives that are being taken to ensure a free and fair election. The Police Department has issued various directives recently on a number of matters which had been causing serious concern to voters, the contesting parties and candidates. Police Officers have been instructed to adhere strictly to instructions which require them to record all election-related complaints. Police officers have been directed to provide protection to voters and polling agents to- and from the polling stations on polling day.- An area which had not received adequate attention in the past.
Published: Tue Oct 10 04:22:40 EDT 2000


We need a multi-voice in Jaffna. Not multi-barrels –Douglas Devananda
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 4.45 a. m 10 October. By Bandula Jayasekara in Jaffna- “Jaffna is not like Colombo. At least 500 people come to see us everyday. We don’t campaign, we only help people” said Douglas Devananda leader of EPDP when ‘The Lanka Academic’ met him at his fortress like office at Sridhar cinema in Jaffna on the eve of the general elections. Douglas Devananda has been in Jaffna for the past three months trying to reach out to his people and win the elections in Jaffna. People come to see him and he does not move around much. The EPDP leader is guarded by security men carrying Israeli made Uzi machine guns. He still fears for his life. The bearded ex- militant has not forgotten the Kalutara prison incident, where the LTTE suspects tried to kill him. Devananda remains as one of LTTE’s prime targets.

Devananda said, “Main message of my campaign is that we are working on a programme within a united Sri Lanka and we are asking for a honourable solution to the Tamil problem. Our party support the government and there is no doubt about that.” Douglas is busy, his five telephones rings at the same time. While on the phone he opens his drawer and hands me an EPDP key tag and a pocket calendar.

Devananda expects today’s election to be free and fair and for the EPDP to win. He said, “ We have to start some where in a war torn area. This may be the best start.” Stroking his beard Deva strikes a defiant note “People in Jaffna does not want the LTTE to come back. We need a multi-voice instead of the multi-barrel.”

The day has dawned, and it is time again for people of Jaffna to decide. But, one thing I am sure. They are just fed up.
Published: Mon Oct 9 18:59:30 EDT 2000


LTTE can be defeated militarily –Jaffna Commander
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 10.50 p.m. 9 October. By Bandula Jayasekara in Jaffna- Security forces commander in the North, Major General Anton Wijendra said today that the LTTE can be defeated militarily and it is only a matter of time. Speaking to ‘The Lanka Academic’ in Jaffna this morning the General said, “We can win. But, it is difficult to put a time frame. We need to recruit more soldiers and get more weapons. We are also getting support and we don’t feel isolated. India is helping us with naval operations” The General admitted that LTTE is a heavily armed group and the delaying factor has been their guerilla tactics and the army’s concern for the safety of the civilians in the area where fighting take place. Wijendra also said the LTTE is not strong enough to take on the Jaffna peninsula and accused the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam of using child soldiers in front lines. “They are used as cannon fodder and they don’ t use cyanide like others when they are captured” Major General Wijendra added.

The Northern Commander said that the LTTE will have to come to the negotiating table when they realize, they cannot hold on any more. He is of the opinion that military action must go on while discussions take place. When ‘The Lanka Academic’ questioned Major General Wijendra about the statement made by Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayke that Elephant Passwould be captured before the general elections, he replied “The statements published in the newspapers does not affect me at all. My orders come to me directly and I am not under any pressure. I have not given any time frame to re-capture Elephant Pass”
Published: Mon Oct 9 13:03:16 EDT 2000

Related News Stories
·
Rebels launch offensive ahead of elections in Sri Lanka  - Virtual New York

Free & fair elections unlikely say polls monitors
Frederica Jansz in Colombo, 12.30 p.m. SLT Tuesday October 10. At the close of the campaign, the Centre for Monitoring Election Violence has recorded 1726 incidents of violence, of which 940 (54.5%) are Major incidents and 786 (45.5%) are Minor ones. The run-up to the General Election became increasingly violent during the last week, totaling 664 incidents of which October 7th and 8th accounted for 134 and 119 respectively. The 33-day election campaign resulted in an average of 52.3, while the last week averaged 94.9 incidents per day.

CMEV notes that it is clear that the level of violence has increased both qualitatively and quantitatively in the past two weeks, resulting in 62.1% of all incidents recorded so far, for 80.3% of the Murders and 65.4% of Attempted Murders reported in the entire campaign.

Based on monitors’ reports, international observer assessments, police complaints and follow-up, CMEV has determined that the level and intensity of violence in the following electorates has been so high during the campaign as to render a free and fair election in these areas unlikely. These 19 electorates have been so flawed during the campaign, the voters so intimidated that the final outcome of voting may be significantly distorted.

This assessment does not, however, CMEV states, include those areas in which the poll is non-viable due to the current war. The entire election is a sham and a fraud in the Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu electorates, as well as in the “uncleared” areas and regions of current conflict and civilian displacement in the Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Mannar and Jaffna districts. It is estimated that approximately 200 polling centres which should cater to 250,000 registered voters will be relocated in areas utterly inaccessible to the legitimate voters in these areas.
Published: Tue Oct 10 04:22:38 EDT 2000


Election Eve - Photo Gallery
Yahoo/AP PHOTO, 10 October 2000. Election staff transport ballot boxes under heavy police protection as preparations for Tuesday's parliamentary elections get underway in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Monday, Oct. 9 2000. About 40,000 police officers,around half the force, are being deployed to maintain security at the polls. More...
Published: Mon Oct 9 23:59:46 EDT 2000

Preferential votes hold the key
The Hindu (International), Tuesday, October 10, 2000. Sri Lanka will vote on Tuesday to elect the 11th Parliament after a month-long election campaign which showed no discernible trend in favour of any political party.On the eve of the elections, the focus is on the electoral system which has pitted candidates of the same party against one another. Over the weekend, wide publicity was given to a letter from the People's Alliance secretary and Agriculture Minister, Mr. D. M. Jayaratne, to Ms. Kumaratunga, complaining that a Cabinet colleague was planning to rig the polls. Both Ministers are candidates in the 13-member Kandy district. Mr. Jayaratne fears he might poll fewer votes than his colleague, and may either not make it to Parliament at all, or even if he does, lose his position as the leader of the district. More...
Published: Mon Oct 9 16:55:24 EDT 2000
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Q&A: Sri Lanka's election  - BBC South Asia
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Sri Lanka goes to polls tomorrow  - The Hindu NUS
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Record number of parties, candidates in Lankan poll fray  - India Abroad
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Lanka goes to polls Tuesday  - ChennaiOnline
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Sri Lanka gears for horse trading ahead of parliamentary elections  - 123India.com

Close finish predicted in today’s election
Island, 10 October 2000. The eleventh parliamentary election since independence to be held today, sees a record 5048 candidates from 29 political parties and 99 independent groups in the fray. The leading contenders the ruling Peoples Alliance(PA) and and the United National Party (UNP) are both confident of victory, but independent analysts and opinion polls predict a close finish in a free and fair election. More...
Published: Mon Oct 9 21:46:01 EDT 2000
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Spectre of hung House looms as Lankans go to polls today  - The Hindustan Times
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Lankans hope polls will end their nightmare  - India Abroad
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Poll surveys point to hung parliament in Sri Lanka  - Yahoo
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Sri Lanka braces for power struggle after polls  - MSNBC

War-Weary Sri Lanka Prepares for Polls
Yahoo, october 9. Thousands of armed police and paramilitary forces fanned out across Sri Lanka Monday as a tight security blanket was thrown over the war-torn country to ward off further violence ahead of parliamentary elections.In the northern Jaffna peninsula the rebels of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) launched a vicious ground attack on government troops in a bid to capture fresh territory, but military officials said they beat them back. More...
Published: Mon Oct 9 18:26:54 EDT 2000
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Colombo residents stock up ahead of elections  - ABC News

Ranil Wickramasinghe: The opposition's hope
BBC South Asia, Monday, 9 October, 2000, 14:45 GMT 15:45 UK . Fifty-one-year old Ranil Wickramasinghe is perhaps better known as the nephew of Sri Lanka's first executive president, Junius Jayewardene. A lawyer by profession, Mr Wickramasinghe comes from an affluent family. More...
Published: Mon Oct 9 11:34:34 EDT 2000
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UNP pledges to uphold high morals  - ChennaiOnline

Tigers mount fresh offensive on eve of Sri Lanka election
123India.com, Oct 09 2000 20:04 IST. COLOMBO, Oct 9 (AFP) - Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger guerrillas mounted a fresh offensive against security forces in the northern peninsula of Jaffna on the eve of national elections, the government said Monday. The rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) captured three army bunkers at Kilali after launching an assault using artillery and mortar guns, the government's Special Media Information Centre (SMIC) said. More...
Published: Mon Oct 9 11:30:45 EDT 2000
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Sri Lankan rebels launch pre-poll attack in north  - MSNBC
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Lanka air force attacks LTTE position on poll eve  - Times of India (Breaking News)

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