Monthly Archives: January 2021

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.15 JR Visits China and the US

by T. Sabaratnam, September 10, 2004 Chapter 14 Original index to series Original Chapter 15 The Chunnakam Massacre Trade and Shipping Minister Lalith Athulathmudali was appointed Minister of National Security and Deputy Defence Minister on 23 March 1984. An Oxford educated lawyer-politician with an unbridled ambition to succeed Jayewardene as the president of Sri Lanka,… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.14 JR’s Three Track Policy

by T. Sabaratnam, September 3, 2004 Chapter 13 Original index to series Original Chapter 14 Building a Military Machine President Jayewardene, his fans and critics readily admit, was a grandmaster in political chess. He schemed three moves ahead when his opponent planned only two. He played the same game with Indira Gandhi. He countered her double… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.13 The Love Story

by T. Sabaratnam, August 28, 2004 Chapter 12 Original index to series Original Chapter 13 Adele’s Influence The third and fourth matters on which Pirapaharan’s attention was focused during the closing months of 1983 were interestingly intertwined.  They involved the theoretical issue of the role of women in the freedom struggle and Pirapaharan’s personal life…. Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.12 Conflicting Objectives

by T. Sabaratnam, August 20, 2004 Chapter 11 Original index to series Original Chapter 12 The Training In September, 1983 Chennai was full of Sri Lankan Tamil boys.  They were taken to Delhi in batches in luxury buses by RAW officers. “It was a tiring, long journey,” Nirupan (not his real name), a youth from… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.11 Indira Gandhi’s Covert Track

by T. Sabaratnam, August 2004 Chapter 10 Original index to series Original Chapter 11 Training Militants  Indira Gandhi always called President Jayewardene ‘the old fox.’  Her assessment of him was that he could not be trusted.  Her opinion of Jayewardene was based on the information given to her by her friend Sirimavo Bandaranaike, the lady… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.10 Indira’s Double Track Policy

By T. Sabaratnam Chapter 9 Original index to series Original Chapter 10 The Overt Track The second fortnight of August 1983 is as important to the Tamil freedom struggle and the history of Sri Lanka as the last ten days of July and the first 17 days of August.  Indira Gandhi put into action during these… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.9 The Indira Doctrine

by T. Sabaratnam, June 2004 Chapter 8 Original index to series Original Chapter 9 India’s Solution The Sixth Amendment produced two immediate results. Firstly, Indira Gandhi made her second telephone call within 12 hours of its passage. Secondly, the TULF decided the next day, 6 August, to quit parliament and take refuge in India. These… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.8 The Cover Up

by T. Sabaratnam, June 2004 Chapter 7 Original index to series Original Chapter 8 Finding Scapegoats  Jayewardene was disturbed by the criticism of the attacks on Tamils by many Western countries and international human rights watchers. Indira Gandhi’s telephone call on Thursday, 28 July evening upset him more. As mentioned earlier he, asked Ranil Wickremesinghe… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.7 JR Seeks Arms

by T. Sabaratnam, June 2004 Chapter 6 Original index to series Original Chapter 7 Indian Factor President Jayewardene realized on Wednesday evening, after answering Indira Gandhi’s telephone call, that the riots had spawned unintended results. Firstly, it had, while weakening the Tamils, also weakened him and the Sinhala people, mainly by damaging their international image…. Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.6 Indira’s Telephone Call

By: T. Sabaratnam, June 2004 Chapter 5 Original index to series Tamil Nadu Erupts Tamil Nadu erupted in anger on Tuesday, 26 July 1983, when news spread that atrocities had been committed on Tamils in Sri Lanka. Thousands of Tamils poured onto the streets in Chennai, Madurai and other cities denouncing the Jayewardene government and… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.5 The Second Massacre

by T. Sabaratnam Chapter 4 Original index to series Original Chapter 5 5. The Second Massacre The prison massacre on Monday, July 25, 1983 that killed 35 of their colleagues made the 28 prisoners in C3 feel insecure. They felt that they would be the next target. Three of them – Panagoda Maheswaran, Paranthan Rajan and… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap.4 Massacre of Prisoners

by T. Sabaratnam, May 31, 2004 Chapter 3 Original index to series The Talk In the last chapter, I referred to the information that my friend in the Jathika Seva Sangamaya (JSS) gave me about the final solution. I also said that at that time I did not realize the actual meaning of that phrase…. Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol. 2, Chap.3 The Final Solution

by T. Sabaratnam, May 20, 2004 Chapter 2 Original index to series I was upset when I saw flames leap up in the direction of Borella. I was deeply troubled when more tongues of flame rose threateningly in that vicinity. Was the information Piyadasa had given me coming true? Telephone calls further disturbed me. Tamils were… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Chap. 2 The Jaffna Massacre

by T. Sabaratnam, May 7, 2004 Chapter 1 Original index to series Must Put an End Shell-shocked Balthazzaar and his top men held a conference at Gurungar Camp on their return. The radio room had by this time informed Colombo about the blast and the death of 13 soldiers. Balthazaar got a call from Palaly and… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol 2, Chap. 1 Thirunelveli Attack

by T. Sabaratnam; published April 30, 2004 Introduction to Volume 2 Original index to series The Ambush Pirapaharan and his men alighted from the minibus which Sellakili parked along the crossroad that connected Point Pedro Road with Palaly Road. They walked up to the junction, in small groups of two or three, turned towards Jaffna and… Read more »

Pirapaharan: Vol.2, Introduction

by T. Sabaratnam, April 21, 2004 Volume One Index Original index to series Introduction In the first volume, I chronicled the birth, childhood, growth and the political environment which conditioned the thinking of Pirapaharan. His was a conservative family. His father, Velupillai, was a land development officer in the Sri Lankan government whose ambition was to… Read more »

‘Pirapaharan, Volume 1 by T. Sabaratnam Reposted

From the Editor T. Sabaratnam Mr. T. Sabaratnam wrote a two-volume historical biography of Velupillai Pirapaharan and his time from 2002-2005 that was posted on the Sangam website.  This history is of the period before the war began and the early stages of the war.  It dwells on the root causes and the background of… Read more »

MGR Remembered – Part 59

The Risk Taker by Sachi Sri Kantha, January 4, 2021 Part 58 I provide fellow MGR biographer R. Kannan’s comments on the previous chapter Part 58, which I received by email of Nov.15, 2020. “I think the story of MGR’s angst on the insinuations is well brought out in the way the story is told… Read more »

Sri Lanka: A Nation Disintegrates

by Steven R. Weisman, The New York Times, December 13, 1987 IN AN ISLAND in a pristine lake near Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, gunmen guard the sleek new Parliament building, which a terrorist bomb ripped through last August, wounding the Prime Minister and barely missing the President. Downtown, the scattered vacant lots and… Read more »