& Tamil Eelam freedom struggle
Chennai Based Hindu on Tamil Nadu & 'LTTE Menace'
Editorial - 22 February 2007
Vaiko: "Sri Lankan Tamils
want a Separate Nation", 27 November 2006
2. Vaiko on Tamil Eelam
Struggle at Periyar Thidal, Chennai, 29 December 2005 - in
Vaiko Speaks-: Part 9
"தமிழ் ஈழம் மலரும் - அது காலத்தின் கட்டாயம்"] and
3. Ram! O Ram!
"Eelam is a pipe dream" or a "Menace"
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, a designated
banned in India.
Nevertheless, a deeply worrying mix of political collusion, official
complacency, mercenary considerations, and corruption has enabled it to exploit
Tamil Nadu both as a source of supply and a base of operations.
The chain of seizures by the Indian Navy, Coast Guard, and the State police over
the past three months points strongly to the LTTE's use of Tamil Nadu coastal
locations, especially landing points in the Rameswaram-Tuticorin-Cuddalore
stretch, for a two-way terrorist traffic across the Palk Strait.
The Coast Guard's February 13 seizure in Indian waters, off Point Calimere, of a
boat bearing an AK 56, five grenades, chemicals, and most sensationally a
suicide jacket with belt, sent shock waves through India's security
establishment. It was quickly established that the boat belonged to the LTTE's
`naval' arm, the Sea Tigers, and its five-member crew included a `Black Tiger'
operative and an Indian decoy to mislead security personnel.
But the big shock came with the delayed discovery that the boat was lined with a
huge quantity of TNT explosives - enough to blow up a harbour or warships - and
also carried detonators and a charger to trigger a gigantic explosion.
Indian intelligence officials apprehend that the LTTE boat, which according to
the crew sailed from an islet off the Jaffna coast and came into Indian waters
to avoid interception by the Sri Lankan Navy, could be one of several suicide
As though this were not enough, the police have just unearthed an aluminium unit
in Madurai that supplied the Tigers ingots for improvised explosive devices
(IEDs); and arrested some members of the supply and smuggling network.
The discovery of the LTTE's reactivated network in south India was fortuitous,
the chance outcome of a vehicle transporting boosters getting involved in a road
accident near Madurai in November 2006.
With earlier developments in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh pointing to links
with the Maoist groups, the surge in the smuggling and other clandestine
activities of the Tigers and their supporters in Tamil Nadu is cause for major
In an earlier era, the
assassination of Rajiv Gandhi led to a swift crackdown that proved
remarkably successful in ridding the State of the LTTE's network and presence.
In the present context, with
Sri Lanka on the boil, there must be zero tolerance of a
weakened terrorist outfit's exploitation of Tamil Nadu as a supply and
It is a matter of concern that, instead of facing realities, the State's
Director General of Police sought to downplay the significance of the Coast
Guard's major catch by asserting (even before the investigation got under way)
that the vessel was not heading for the Tamil Nadu coast and pleaded virtual
helplessness in dealing with a porous coast.
The Central and Tamil Nadu governments need to shake themselves out of their
complacency and respond urgently to the