Tamil diaspora still against Lankan stability: Peiris, Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS), 6 August 2012
DHAKA, Aug 6 (BSS) – Visiting Sri Lankan External Affairs Minister Professor G L Peiris today claimed that Tamil Diasporas are still ‘rigid’ against present stability of Sri Lanka even after end of 26 years of military conflict in the South Asian nation.
“During the conflict, there were also fear on Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) among the Tamils living inside Sri Lanka,” he said while presenting a paper titled ‘Equity, Opportunity and Empowerment, A South Asian Perspective’ in the capital.
Professor Peiris claimed that more Tamil political leaders have been killed than the Sinhalese leaders by LTTE during the conflicts.
From 1983, there was an intermittent insurgency against the Sri Lankan government by the LTTE (also known as the Tamil Tigers), a separatist militant organisation which fought to create an independent Tamil state called Tamil Eelam in the north and the east of the island. After a 26-year military campaign, the Sri Lankan military defeated the Tamil Tigers in May 2009, bringing the civil war to an end.
The Sri Lankan minister said the main reason behind the conflict between Tamil and Sinhalese was cultural gap between the two races, not the economic disparity.
Professor Peiris said Sri Lanka has been able to maintain eight percent of its economic growth after the conflict. “Our army is still involved in rehabilitation works like construction of houses and markets at the conflict torn areas,” he said.
Presently the major income generating source of Sri Lankan economy is tourism as the sector has been flourished tremendously after establishment of peace, he said.
Bangladesh Institution of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) and Bangladesh Enterprises Institute (BEI) jointly organized the discussion at BIISS auditorium here.
Prime Minister’s Advisor Professor Dr Gowher Rizvi moderated the discussion that was also addressed by BIISS Director General Major General Muhammad Imrul Quayes and BEI President Farooq Sobhan.
Professor Rizvi said a level playing field must be created in the society for ensuring equity among its inhabitants.
“Society should be merit based and we believe in merit, but unfortunately we are failing to provide opportunity of equity to our people,” he said.