The Lanka Academic

VOL. 5, NO. 168

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Controversy over Pongu Tamil in Toronto
Special Correspondent, September 20. “Pongu Thamil” rally scheduled for next Saturday in Toronto has run into some controversy and legal troubles, according reports from Toronto. A hitherto unknown organization “Canadian Thamil Students Association” has been announced as the organizers of this public rally. However, it is widely known in Toronto that LTTE front organizations are organizing this rally. Banners of LTTE leader are displayed in Tamil-owned store-fronts, and LTTE affiliated groups have declared that the 25th of September as a “Tamil National holiday” in Canada, and demanded that Tamil shops should be closed on this day, and Tamils should take a leave from work and attend the rally.

Alarmed by the growing influence of the LTTE on Tamils in Canada, and their interference with Canadian norms, it is learnt that several community organizations and groups have called upon the Queens Park authorities in Toronto questioning the legitimacy of allowing this rally in a public place. In fact due to the volume of calls from irate Tamil Canadians received by the Queens Park authorities a separate voice mail system has been established to register such complaints. Over the week-end, some Tamil media reported that the Queens Park officials have revoked the permission given for Pongu Thamil. It is now learnt that the LTTE front organizations are lobbying hard to re-instate the permission for the public rally, saying that the rally is organized by ‘Tamil Students’ and the purpose of the rally is to ‘promote peace in Sri Lanka’.

However, people familiar with the organizers and the event say this is hardly the case. Several Tamils also expressed their frustration over the LTTE groups spending hundreds of thousands of dollars for this rally, while the public has to shell out their hard-earned money for the LTTE.
Published: Mon Sep 20 19:17:34 EDT 2004

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Marxists vow to campaign for reforms
Gulf News, september 21. Colombo : The Marxist coalition partner in the ruling United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) has vowed to campaign for reforms while remaining within the government and set new standards including a simple lifestyle for politicians. The Marxists JVP (People's Liberation Front) which has returned 39 of the 106 UPFA members in parliament has declared that despite being partners in the government it would campaign against privatisation of state ventures, call for the reduction of wastage and get the government to work towards reduction of the cost of living. The party, which is about to complete its sixth month in the UPFA government in an unprecedented move has already submitted its own budget proposals based on public and its own party views and believe that majority of the proposals would be accepted. More...
Published: Mon Sep 20 23:12:19 EDT 2004 Back to the top

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Protesters block Norwegian Embassy's entrance with coffin to protest Tamil Tiger killings
Associated Press, Mon September 20, 2004 02:07 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) About 150 supporters of a political party opposed to Sri Lanka - 's Tamil rebels placed the coffin of a slain party leader in front of the Norwegian Embassy to protest alleged assassinations by the guerrillas since the European nation brokered a cease-fire.

Supporters of Eelam People's Democratic Party marched to the embassy with the coffin of Thambithurai Sivakumar, a regional party leader who was killed on Saturday in Puttalam, north of the capital Colombo.

The EPDP accuses the Tamil Tiger rebels of committing some 115 murders including 35 political assassinations since signing of a cease-fire negotiated by Norway between the rebels and the government.

Sivakumar was out cycling with his 8-year-old daughter when the killing took place, his party said on its Web site.

The EPDP is bitterly opposed to the Tamil Tigers, claiming they prevent parties that disagree with rebel policies from functioning in the Tamil-dominated northeast and accusing them of human rights violations.

The Tigers have been fighting since 1983 to create a separate homeland for ethnic minority Tamils who accuse the majority Sinhalese of discrimination.

More than 65,000 people were killed before Norway brokered the truce in February 2002.

Peace talks broke down in April last year when the rebels withdrew accusing the government of reneging on its promise to rehabilitate and resettle the Tamils worst affected by the conflict.

On the Net:
Published: Mon Sep 20 07:23:49 EDT 2004 Back to the top

Related News Stories
Anti-Norway protest in Sri Lanka  -
Sri Lanka: Demonstrations outside Norwegian Embassy  -

Sri Lanka, India defence agreement next month, September 20, 2004, 07:30 EDT. Sri Lanka and India will next month finalise a defence cooperation agreement that includes training Sri Lankan military officials and sharing military intelligence, reports Xinhua quoting the state radio on Monday... Back to the top

Sri Lanka killings escalate, September 19, 2004, 22:10 EDT. COLOMBO: Suspected Tamil Tiger rebels gunned down another rival after Norway failed in its latest bid to end a prolonged deadlock in Sri Lanka’s peace process, officials and diplomats said on Sunday... Back to the top

President has failed to do anything for the peace process except for mouthing her intentions - LTTE statement
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, September 19, 2004, 11.58 p.m.. LTTE In a response to President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s recent statement to Norwegian Special Envoy Erik Solheim that the LTTE is inflexible and indecisive, the LTTE today declared that it is President Kumaratunga who has failed to do anything constructive in trying to take the peace process forward except for continuously mouthing her intentions to restart peace talks... Back to the top

Sri Lanka begins to attract Indian tourists, investors, September 20, 2004, 16:15 EDT. For over two decades, to an average Indian, Sri Lanka was nothing but a land of war, bomb blasts and assassinations... Back to the top

Heavy rains lead to flooding in Sri Lanka, situation expected to worsen
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, September 19, 2004, 11.55 p.m.. Low line areas in the Kalutara, Ratnapura and Galle districts are currently under water, owing to the heavy rains experienced in these three districts over the past two days... Back to the top

LTTE replaces Batticaloa Commander in shake-up, September 20, 2004. In a move significant in both military and political terms, the LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran last week removed Col Ramesh from the post of Special Commander of Batticaloa and Amparai and appointed the veteran warrior Col Banu in his place... Back to the top

Sri Lanka , India defense agreement to be finalized next month: report, XINHUA
Associated Press, Mon September 20, 2004 12:17 EDT . - - xfdws SRI-LANKA - -INDIA sked Sri Lanka - , India defense agreement to be finalized next month: report, XINHUA ASIA WorldSources, Inc... Back to the top

LTTE expects Mahanayake s intervention for lasting peace, Monday, 20 September 2004. LTTE's Political Wing leader S. P. Tamilchelvam has said the LTTE expects the intervention of the Mahanayake of the Malwatte Chapter to obtain a dignified and lasting peace to Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Dharmasiri Gamage dies at 65
Daily News, Monday, 20 September 2004. Dharmasiri Gamage, former Lake House mediaman, a veteran journalist, poet, lyric writer, author and film director died yesterday after a brief illness at the Dambulla Hospital... Back to the top

German group shelves aid to overseas teams after Sri Lankan ``handballers'' vanish
Associated Press, Mon September 20, 2004 11:52 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A German sports group announced Monday it's canceled overseas trips for Sri Lankan teams that it sponsors, after 23 ``players'' of the ``Sri Lanka - handball team'' vanished following a tournament in southern Germany... Back to the top

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