Tigers’ Eelam: Nothing ‘Hindu’ or ‘Tamil’ about it – II
by B R Haran on 02 Jul 2009 6 Comments

Dubious Tamil organisations
The LTTE has many organizations in the name of Tamil, which act as fronts, indulging clandestinely in fund-raising and arms purchasing. When the FBI arrested some pro-LTTE activists in New York and New Jersey areas two years ago, the US authorities identified and cited the various proxy organizations of the LTTE in their criminal complaint in the district court in Brooklyn.

Ilankai Thamil Sangam, New Jersey; World Tamil Coordinating Committee (WTCC), New York; Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), and Tamil Welfare and Human Rights Committee (TWHRC), Maryland were some of the organizations which helped the LTTE in fund-raising and arms purchasing activities. All these organizations have been cited in various chargesheets filed by US authorities in courts of law. These organizations are also part of “The Federation of Tamil Sangams,” founded in 1986, and comprising more than 30 Sangams (Associations) in the United States.

As “serving” the cause of “human rights” has always been a modus operandi of Christian missionaries, such human rights organizations based in the US have taken up the cause of the above-said Pro-LTTE Tamil organizations. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is believed to have fought against the American Judiciary and US Congress in support of these Tamil organizations which help LTTE achieve the hidden agenda. Similarly the California based Humanitarian Law Project and the Centre for Constitutional Rights (CCR) also supported these Tamil organizations. Nancy Chang, Senior Attorney at CCR, is an open LTTE supporter. Likewise, Professor David Cole of the George Town University Law School has been a spokesman for LTTE on American soil.

The above said ‘Tamil’ organizations have also been active in countries such as UK, Canada, France, Italy, Denmark and Australia, etc. The FBI has also accused the Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora in Australia of helping the LTTE.
http://www.dnaindia.com/world/report_fbi-accuses-tamils-in-australia-of-helping-ltte_1050734 and http://www.priu.gov.lk/ltte_report/chapter7.html).
The Norway branch of the Tamil Coordinating Committee (TCC) admitted at a press conference on 13 June 2009 that it had been raising funds for LTTE to purchase arms and weapons (

The International Tamil Centre, another front organization of the LTTE, was started by one Dr. Winston Panchacharam of New York; it celebrated its third anniversary in Chennai on 8 June 2009. Dr. Winston Panchacharam brought two Americans with him, Bruce Fein, US lawyer and specialist in international law, counsel for Tamils against genocide; and Francis Boyle, American expert on international law, to ‘lecture’ on the occasion.

Sudha Ragunathan, a leading Carnatic singer and ‘local head’ of the ITC, organized the event along with her colleague and local secretary Manimekalai Kannan. The main speakers at the inaugural function were known ‘Dravidian’ ideologues Dr. Ramachandran, Vice Chancellor of Madras University and R.M. Veerappan, former minister and President of MGR Kazhagam. Though both speakers spoke about the glory and antiquity of Tamil language and Tamil culture, they refrained from talking about the Sri Lankan Tamil issue. As the theme of the conference was “Rehabilitation of Sri Lankan Tamils,” a seminar on the subject was held wherein Prof. V. Suryanarayan, South Asia and Southeast Asia specialist, and Bhagwan Singh, Consulting Editor, Deccan Chronicle, participated apart from the two Americans, Francis Boyle and Bruce Fein. 

At the inauguration, both Dr. Ramachandran and R.M. Veerappan refrained from using the ‘H’ word (Hindu) despite waxing eloquent on the glory of Tamil language and culture. Similarly, in the seminar, none of the speakers mentioned the ‘Hinduness’ of Sri Lankan Tamils. They openly voiced concern for the cause of the LTTE, that is, a separate “Tamil Eelam.” They termed the Sri Lankan military operation against the LTTE as “genocide,” but preferred to remain silent on LTTE’s atrocities, particularly its use of innocent civilians as a ‘shield’ and forced recruitment of children as frontline soldiers and suicide bombers.

Both American speakers expressed ‘concern’ about the post-war scenario and power struggle and called for ‘unity’ among Tamils (read LTTE and Diaspora). They asked India to support the cause of separate Tamil Eelam. The ‘Liberation Song for Tamil Eelam’ was also sung by the organizers.
http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/1624605, http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/1624968,
http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/1624952, http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/1624911,

The International Tamil Centre has been classified as a charitable organisation (cultural and ethnic awareness) and has enjoyed tax exemption as of May 2002.
http://www.taxexemptworld.com/organizations/nanuet-ny-new-york.asp). It is a wonder then that it celebrated its ‘third anniversary’ this year! The organisation’s website could not be accessed, as its security certificate is either invalid or expired. So it is not clear when this organization came into being and interestingly ‘Tamil Maiyyam’ was started in July 2002. The non-participation of ‘Tamil Maiyyam’ and the absence of Father Jagath Gaspar Raj were noticeable in the Chennai event marking the third anniversary of ITC.

Dubious organizations like International Tamil Centre and Tamil Maiyyam use a devious strategy of roping in famous personalities from the field of fine arts to participate in their events by pressurizing them using their political power, so that their events get some sort of genuineness and credibility. And if those personalities happen to be ‘faithful Hindus,’ it adds more value to the events. Such personalities become party to these events without knowing the hidden motives behind them.

Also, if such events are organized with the full support of the government of the day, these personalities participate out of fear as well! Tamil Maiyam has been organizing such events on a regular scale with the advent of the DMK government. It may be recalled that Tamil Maiyam’s Jagath Gaspar Raj was alleged to be an associate of Nachimuthu Socrates, who was arrested by FBI on charges of fund-raising for LTTE and bribing a US State Official to remove LTTE from the list of blacklisted organisations way back in 2006. The website
http://socratesdefensefund.org/ is still alive to raise funds for his legal defense. 

Towards the end of May 2009, The Times, London, reported that 20,000 civilians were killed during the final offensive by the Sri Lankan Army against the Tamil Tigers. This report came as a blessing in disguise for the ‘Tamil’ organizations which were sulking after the defeat of the LTTE, rejuvenating their blood and making them to conduct protest demonstrations in the respective host countries, demanding a thorough probe and necessary action against Sri Lanka for its ‘war crimes.’ In countries like UK and Canada, many parliamentarians came out in support of the demonstrators, who were obviously pro-LTTE.  

To be continued…)
The author is a senior journalist; he lives in Chennai 

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