Dudley Senanayake Chelvanayakam Pact

On 24 March 1965, another Sinhala Prime Minister Dudley Senanayake signed a pact with the Tamil leader S J V Chelvanayakam, promising to redress Tamil grievances, in return for Tamil support for the PM's party to form the government.
Most provisions in the pact were not implemented, and four years later, on 9 April 1969, the Tamil leadership withdrew their support for the government.

The following is the full text of the pact


Mr. Dudley Senanayake and Mr. S. J. V. Chelvanayakam met on the 24-3-1965 and discussed matters relating to some problems over which the Tamil-speaking people were concerned, and Mr. Senanayake agreed that action on the following lines would be taken by him to ensure a stable government:

(1) Action will be taken early under the Tamil Language Special Provisions Act to make provision of the Tamil Language of Administration and of Record in the Northern and Eastern Provinces.

Mr. Senanayake explained that it was the policy of his party that a Tamil-speaking person should be entitled to transact business in Tamil throughout the island.

(2) Mr. Senanayake stated that it was the policy of his party to amend the Languages of Courts Act to provide for legal proceedings in the Northern and Eastern Provinces to be conducted and recorded in Tamil.

(3) Action will be taken to establish District Councils in Ceylon vested with powers over subjects to be mutually agreed upon between two leaders. It was agreed, however, that the government should have power under the law to give directions to such councils under the national interest.

(4) The Land Development Ordinance will be amended to provide that citizens of Ceylon be entitled to the allotment of land under the Ordinance.

Mr. Senanayake further agreed that in the granting of land under colonization schemes the following priorities be observed in the Northern and Eastern provinces.

(a) Land in the Northern and Eastern provinces should in the first instance be granted to landless persons in the district.

(b) Secondly, to Tamil-speaking persons resident in the northern and eastern provinces.

(c) Thirdly, to other citizens in Ceylon, preference being given to Tamil citizens in the rest of the island.

signed, Dudley Senanayake 24.3.65

signed, S.J.V. Chelvanayakam 24.3.65