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Post-war Northern Province: Some facts and fallacies

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By Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

I have been concerned by the claims of some politicians, journalists, NGOs and INGOs about post-war developments of an adverse nature relating to purported settlement of Sinhalese in the Northern Province, contrary to what I could see and gather from the people living within the province.

Table 1 : Population Statistics for the Northern Province (1881-2011)-(Source: Department of Census & Statistics, Sri Lanka)

Northern Province: Includes the districts of Jaffna, Mannar, Vavuniya, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi)- Please note: The census figures for 2011, do not include the armed forces and police.

The special survey of the Northern Province conducted by the Department of Census and Statistics in the Northern Province in 2011 and the results of previous census carried out since 1881, were a valuable statistical base to find the facts and disprove the fallacies.

The following tables were compiled to highlight facts on a historical and current basis:
Area information: From Wikipedia

Table 1, clearly shows the Tamil (Sri Lankan + Indian origin) population has marginally declined by 169,000- 15.2 %, in the Northern Province in 2011, from the maximum number ever recorded in 1981 (1,112,425). This decrease is much less than I expected considering the war toll and the extensive migration from the Northern Province. In contrast the Muslim population has declined by 39.7% and Sinhalese population by 44.7% from the maximum figure recorded at previous census.

The expulsion of Muslims from the north by the LTTE would explain the decline in the Muslim population. The decline in the Sinhala population is understandable, but is complicated by doubts whether in previous census, the armed force and police numbers were counted. In the 2011 special census, they were not counted. It is also interesting that the overall population of the Northern Province has declined by only 205,355 (17%) from its maximum. This is much less than I had expected. A greater population decline due to the war has been probably masked by the natural increase (births).

Table 2: Detailed population statistics for the different districts in the Northern Province (2011 Census) – (Source: Department of Census & Statistics, Sri Lanka)

Table 2, shows the Jaffna district yet holds the largest share of the Tamil population among the five districts. The Sinhala population is largely concentrated in Vavuniya (16,655). Due to the creation of Weli Oya from Manal Aru in the 1980-1990 periods, the second large population of Sinhalese are in the Mullaitivu district (3966). This is a very small, but concentrated presence in South Mullaitivu.

Table 2, also shows the heaviest concentration of Muslims in the Northern Province are in Mannar and Vavuniya. In other areas, their presence is marginal yet.

Table 3: Northern Province districts by area and population density – (based on 2011 census)

Table 3, shows that the Jaffna district has the highest population density (Persons/ Sq. Km). The other four districts are yet very sparsely populated. The population figures for some districts in the South (2001 census), are as follows: Colombo-3330, Gampaha – 1539, Kalutara -677, Kandy -667, Anuradhapura – 112 and Badulla -276. The lowest population density in the south is in the Moneragala district-72. The 2011 special census reveals that the Mullaitivu district holds the record now with only 25.24, with Mannar having a slightly higher density of 47.8. The Jaffna district is closer to Kalutara and Kandy.

These figures show that there is no concerted effort yet discernible about attempts at demographic changes in the post-war circumstances in the Northern Province by the GOSL. Further, it shows the Mannar, Vavuniya, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi districts are severely under populated and lack the human resource base, though having the land and other resources to develop a thriving agro-industry.

Jaffna district is yet densely populated in relation to its land and water resources . A part of the Jaffna district population should move into the Vanni and should be encouraged to do so. Jaffna district should become the light to medium industry hub of the north and develop centres of excellence in the educational, vocational training and cultural fields. Jaffna has to be more cosmopolitan in its composition and outlook, to meet the needs, attitudes and skills of the 21st century. This would imply that demographic changes are necessary and be welcome.

To conclude, the politicians, journalists, NGOS, INGOS and the international community should study facts before jumping to conclusions. Canards will not take us anywhere. The presence of the army- which is of course largely Sinhala at present- should not be confused with deliberate attempts at demographic manipulations and used to confound an environment yet prone to unwarranted suspicions and fears.

The wars and their aftermath have not caused an extensive decline in the population of the north, despite the deaths and internal and external migrations. I wonder whether most of the LTTE- related deaths were of cadres from the east and the so-called Indian Tamils secreted into the Vanni by the LTTE. There has been also a migration from the Vanni districts into the Jaffna district.

I felt there were a higher percentage of Tamils of Indian origin in the Chettikulam IDP camps- at least 20% +. This perception is not matched by the census. Where are these people now? The on-going national census may reveal further facts and the post-war demographic realities in the whole country.

The TNA and other Tamil politicians should be careful in what they utter to the Tamils and proclaim to the outside world. They should be extremely responsible in what they say and do. They owe it to their war-affected constituency and to Sri Lanka. To spite the face, we should not cut our nose! Our –Tamil- recovery should be built on facts, not fallacy.



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  1. your concern is very serious and bit too late.
    you should have written this before the UN resolution and gone to Geneva with Douglas and Imelda and submitted there.
    The votes may have tilted in favour of the government.
    if you have not penned your name this could well be coming from an Sinhala nationalist

  2. @ Author

    Unfortunately many are not interested in accepting the facts including GoSL and TNA. Hope and pray the truth shall prevail. Thanks for the report. Good one.

  3. We can come to some conclusion only if we get the statistics of the Eastern Province, Colombo and the Southern Provinces.

    These statistics should be compared with the statistics available from 1881 to the current day or from 1948 to till date.

    Number of widows is said to be 89,000 by many rough estimates. But the statistics doesn’t reveal that figure. But this figure is that of the whole period. This statistics pertains to the 2005 to 2009.

    The other deaths is also low. If it is true then it is a welcome sign. But all these things have to be seen only in the broader picture.

    We have to get the whole picture and only then come to some conclusion.

    The families that have lost its members in the conflict has been collected. But it would have been better if the number like number of households that has lost its male/female members is also given.

    The other death is conspicuous. The other death could be the numbers killed due to the LTTE or by the govt aerial bombing and shelling.

  4. It is rather sad that for the last 60 plus years since independance from the British, mostly the tamils have migrated to various parts of the West. They may blame the GoSL for this but these are mainly economic migrants. Those who migrated after 1983 too were for this reason.

    They obviously caused the population of the North and East to dwindle. It is logical therefore that the GoSL develops the North and the East economically to induce the Sri Lankans as a whole to migrate settle in these areas that are less populated. May they be Sinhalese, Moslems, Tamils, Burghers, Moors or whatever as long as they are Sri Lankans. In Sri Lanka as a whole, this will create a balance of population density which is important for sustaining growth in these areas.

    This separatist war that ended in May 2009 is a milestone and a blessing. All of us should think and plan for an integrated Sri Lanka. Taking Colombo for an example where the population is almost majority tamils as of 2011 with no restriction as to land ownership, people from all sectors as long as they are willing should be allowed to settle down in any part of Sri Lanka.

    Integration is the only solution to this racial hatred and wasted bloodshed that we have seen during the past 30 plus years. There is no need to a special reconciliation. Being able to live together is a big part of reconciliation

    It is bad luck for those who ran away for selfish reasons and we should not tolerate those who preach dividing this tiny island republic.

    JP / USA – Sri Lanka

  5. This Wikepedia census says it is for 2011. But when it was carried out. Leave aside the authenticity, The gap between the time it was carried out and now may be more than 9 months and anything could have happened after that for people concerned about post war development of adverse nature people or some politicians, journalists, NGOs and INGOs calim now.

    The best thing is to allow not on a selected basis, but openly so that independnet journalists, UN officials and others to have access to these areas under armed forces control to verify.

    Afterall the IC who fully supported GOSL during the war went for the resolution mainly because of the “Trust ” or “”Intergrity ” factor. Why the Govt of India and or Sonia & Rahul changed their minds at the last moment, I believe somethings were happeneing in the North East against the promises they made to India and others.

  6. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran, you are going to be accused of lying, being mislead by a census department run by Sinhalese, or being a paid agent of Mahinda and Gota, or all of the above.

    Some people simply can not deal with the truth.

  7. We wish this is true, but I doubt it. This data would have been handy for GoSL to propel their credibility and win over many. But that is not the case. Do GoSL uncomfortable in using this data?

    I also believe that NGOs, INGOs, TNA and others must have a rational for their claims. It would be unwise to believe that all of them are bribed by LTTE and pro LTTE diaspora. Furthermore, if everything is alright Sampanthan wouldn’t have written lengthy letters to UNHRC members .

    As mentioned earlier, we are far from the conflict zone and arrive at conclusions after analysing the available information.

  8. I recommend those who have reseervations/ doubts about the 2011 special census in the Northern Province, check the detailed report, for which I have provided the link. The persons who conducted the census and the methodolgy are described in the report.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  9. Ranjan Toronto, well said. Just like the zero civilian casualities!
    Some people simply can not deal with the truth!!

  10. Dr. R. Narendran
    Dr. Narendran points out that “the overall population of the Northern Province has declined by only 205,355 (17%), from it’s maximum”. That was 1,203,109 in 1981. Neither in Sri Lanka nor in the Northern Province did the population remain static from 1981 – 2011. The mid 2011 population of Sri Lanka was estimated at 21.293 million against the census figure of 14.846 million in 1981. This denotes an increase of 43.3%. When the NP figure is extrapolated for 2011 by this percentage, a notional 1.724 million is derived. When the current 997,754 is deducted, the decline in population would be seen as 727,000 which is 42%. The decline is high enough to knock the bottom out of the author’s assertion that “The wars and their aftermath have not caused an extensive decline in the population of the North”.

    A clarification from the author can enlighten “The politicians, journalists, NGOs, INGOs and the international community” that they “should study facts before jumping to conclusions”. It is likely that hereafter they will not arrive at abrupt interpretations even as they stumble across some statistics.

  11. Your census is totally wrong .total number of sinhalae in north is more than 100000 .because all govt forces are almost always Sinhalese .

  12. Interesting stats.

    Nett loss of the Tamil population is 166,000.

    The total Diaspora population is 500,000 plus.

    Wonder whether the Western Leaders understand Statistics?.

    Then again they were convinced that Saddam Hussein had WMDs to destroy the whole world.

  13. Can you please get similar statistics for the employment of Tamils in government service because it is said that in recent decades employment of Tamils in the government service is nearly nil?

  14. A government that has been refusing to let aid agents help the war-ravaged, that has been hiding reports of seven commissions and seven committees from the public, that has been refusing to hold elections in the Northern Province, that has been refusing to let in journalists, that has been refusing to hold inquiries into crimes, …. can be believed to have a reliable department to produce the results it wants to show the world???

  15. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

    Your table (Population Statistics for the Northern Province (1881-2011)-(Source: Department of Census & Statistics, Sri Lanka)does not contain population estimates for 1871, the first British Comprehensive Census in Ceylon.

    Please look at the 1871 census, you will unearth interesting “facts”, for example there were approximately 12,000 Tamils registered as Buddhist who lived all over Sri Lanka.

    If I remember correctly there were 575 Sinhalese registered as Hindus. This was after 400 years of colonialism.

    Where are the descendants of those Sinhala Hindus and Tamil Buddhists?

    There was ethnic cleansing perhaps.

    Somewhat unrelated useful information; VP’s date of birth 26 November 1954

  16. Without judging Dr. RN’s allegiance, attitude and the skills as an analyst of population in the political context, I believe its rather constructive to provide the following information.

    1. The decline in Tamil population from 1981 to 2011 is 169,000, which you claim is much less than expected. In the previous census (71 to 81) the Tamil population rose by 313,019. At least expecting the the same rise to linearly extrapolate the equivalent rise in the next three decades, the effective decline in population is nearly 1,100, 000 (=313,019 X 3 + 169,000). In percentage terms that is an effective decline of WHOPPING 99% of the population in 1981. Is this what you expected??? This too is based on the linear extrapolation for the population increase from 1981 to 2011. But we all know that due to the advancement of the technology and medicine, the population increase is not linear but rather exponential in other parts of the world. If I were to consider this the predicament of the Tamil population would be very very alarming. Dr, RN has not considered this factor for some reason 😀

    2. We all know that there were no Sinhalese in the North apart from Vavunia until May 2009. Hence within a matter of nearly 3 years the Sinhalese population has rose by nearly 6000 outside of Vavuniya. This figure may seem small but factors like the locations where they were ‘planted’, the comparative population increase against the other communities & the reason for the urgency of their deployment will have to be considered to politically analyze if the TNA should have concerns about it. One serious thing to note here is that in Mullaitivu Sinhalese population is 18.1% and this increase is within 3 years!! One can remember that these settlements were along the coastal belt on Mullaitivu where fishing is the main source of income and this would inevitably create tensions within the communities out of competition. As an analyst of census Dr. RN may not need to consider this but TNA as the representatives of the poor Tamils need to take these factors seriously and should make a cry out of it especially considering the history of the SL governments.

    3. Though one has to agree that anyone should be able to live anywhere in a united country, it is the whole approach of this government that is alarming. If those Sinhalese and Muslim families relocated themselves willingly in to the North then it is understandable and can not be a cause for concern, but the state’s sponsorship of this relocation along with the military presence in the civil administration that makes it look like a deliberate demographic alteration and that should cause serious concerns. How can the TNA as the reps. of the Tamils keep quiet about it??????

    Over to you Dr. RN……….

  17. The truth is that the population of the Mullaitivu, Mannar and Vavuniya districts were 0.5% of the national total even in the 1981 census. Most of it was jungl. Historically everything south of the Jaffna peninsula and the narrow strip of coastal land that linked it to Mannar belonged to the Sinhalese kingdom in the south at the time the Portugese arrived. To later claim everything within the British defined Northern and Eastern provinces including the vast jungles as the “Tamil homeland from time immemorial” and to call every Sinhalese there an illegal colonist, disregarding the fact that they were claiming four times as much land per-capita as they were prepared to cede to the Sinhalese, lies at the root of Sinhala insecurity and the consequent project to stamp their claim to these lands by settling people in them. If the Tamils were only claiming a proportionate share of the country around their historical centres of Jaffna and Battiacloa there may not have been a conflict in Sri Lanka.

  18. Dear Dr Narendran

    Many many thanks for this. I have a simple question. Does the 2011 census show that more than 65% of tamils live outside north and east?

  19. since then the boundaries has been manipulated and changed , hence all your statistics become null and void.

  20. Dr. Rajasingam Narendran

    Good work, When the power handed over from British to Sinhalese with a constitutional provision of minority protection intellectuals and champions of Independence like Sir Pon Ramanathan and Arunachalam didn’t realize how the Sinhala Buddhism will evolve in Sri lanka and latter admitted in later stages they have mis read the whole picture if we go back in history until the period of King Cangili relatively small minority group of Buddhists were living with us in north and Hindus in south as well.

    Fact 1
    Execution of the concept Sinhala Colonisation starts after independence, Indian Tamils movement to Vanni is the by product of this process.

    Fact 2
    Emergence of Tamil militant groups and IPKF operations in Sri Lanka halts temporarily the project of Sinhala Buddhist Sri Lanka.

    Fact 3
    North and East need human resources for development however Sri Lankan education system is mainly an Academic one and we lacked the trade skills because of 3 decades of civil war even the south doesn’t have kind of resource for development of today’s intensive, and very little attention is paid on-job training in North and East. Our wrong policies have precluded in attaining an egalitarian society.

    Fact 4
    We have the fortune of having the best human resources in Diaspora, vacuum in North and East should be filled by them in parallel to Dr. Rajasingam Narendran’s suggestion, many of them are ready to serve if the conditions are created However the incidents led Dr.Hoole to leave Sri lanka when he was working in Jaffna campus sends wrong signal to Diaspora and I appreciate those who still working in Sri lanka.

    Fact 5
    We need to see the census of colonization or re settlement of Sinhalese in post war period. And also the census of internal migration of Tamil, and other minority groups specially Burghers, Malays, Bharathas (Paravar) these are related indicator in minority preservation in Sri Lanka.

    Fact 6
    Heavy presence of Sri Lankan forces and their support services in North and east.

    Due to recent constitutional amendment that adversely affected re independency of institutions or commissions in Sri Lanka, users of data must be careful in interpreting it and always better to support with a comparative source but I understand it may be difficult to get such information in Sri Lanka..

    We need to have Macro and micro view of this statistics before get into conclusion. Land reserved for agriculture, Industries, service sectors, ecological conservation, future expansion, baron areas, Sacred and Archeological sites, etc plays vital role in interpretation

    Summarizing all facts a reader can only understand what went and what is going on, that is, what they started described in fact 1 is re activated, However my conclusion is reflective of article with reservation social decision can’t be made vertically where historical, cultural, economical and political variables plays vital role.

    I hope soon the writer will produce demographic statistics supported with topographical data of Eastern province covering all period pre independence post independence that will enlighten a reader and give a comprehensive view.

    The argument that some section of majority population to be re located due to population expansion and lack of resources in the traditional land of minority inhabitation and if that amount to or intentioned to an ethnic dilution in terms of demography, culture and other socio economic factors then it is very serious however it should be noted no ethnic can claim exclusive rights over the land or a slice of Sri Lanka.

    BTW What are the fallacies?

  21. Ziggy
    Dumb remark made by one who has forgotten to attend his ESL classes.
    Whoever said “zero civilian casualties” ???? It was a Policy., not a claim
    Read before you write
    .. or go back to your free ESL classes and pickup where you left off

  22. 1.This should have been done first with Eastern Province where Sinhalisation has been much more than in the Northern Province. Will Dr Narendran do that?

    2. Why was census taken in `Northern Province only and not in other provincesin 2011?

    How can you make any sense of such a census? We can compare the census of all provinces taken at the same time in the same way
    There were lot of complaints during the census time. Northern province census in 2011 was done with a large number of officers from the South camping in the army camps in Jaffna. This is comparable to the staggered elections around the country so that government resources are tapped most effectively by the Rajapakses in each segment of the elections.

    Remember the photographs of people filling their postal votes in front of the army officers in Jaffna?

    Everything has been done with the omnipresent and omnipotent army who follow visitors from the South of the country or from outside the shores of the country when they are visiting the North.

    Dr Narendran is not a baby.
    Let us wait for the results of the 2012 census taken recently.

  23. Your statistics are misleading since you ignore the presence of the military who are almost exclusively Sinhalese.
    Its like saying, Sri Lanka is predominantly Muslim not taking into account the Buddhists and Hindu’s, so while the “residents” in the north may continue to be mainly Tamil the presence (and my all account permanent) of military men (and families) needs to be considered, this I suspect will be seen in future census counts.

  24. Tamil population has marginally declined by 15.2 %, in the Northern Province in 2011, This decrease is much less than I expected considering…Dr RN.

    Sir, you can slice the numbers any way you want and calculate the population decline in Northern Province…

    1946 449958
    1963 689470
    1971 799406
    1981 1112425
    2011 (942824)

    But if you consider the population growth rate ratio in the Northern Province from 1946-1971 (25 years) to 1971-2011 (30 years), we would expect the Tamil population in 2011 in the Northern Province to reach closer to 2M.

    So due to the war, the Northern Province lost almost 50% of its expected Tamil population for what ever reasons (some moved to other Provinces,some left the country and the rest were laid to rest!).

    But your statement “Tamil population has marginally declined by 15.2 % in NP” is way off the estimate.

    We know you are trying to cool off some of the people from NP. But as you said “Our –Tamil- recovery should be built on facts, not fallacy.”

  25. Ranjan Toronto and Dr. Narendran

    From the past 63 years of experience in dealing with various Srilankan governments on Thamil’s issues, that any info coming from the govt sources is not reliable until it is proven by an independent third party.
    Added to Ziggy’s comment:

    Initial claim by Srilankan government immediately after the conclusion of the war in May 2009 of zero civilian casualties later became 9,000 civilian casualties confirmed by Srilankan government due to immense pressure from the International Community.
    Now you all know the reason why thamils are asking for third party mediation in any issues dealing with Srilankan Government.

  26. Peacelover
    I agree , I am not sure what is the motive/objective of this article is other than some spurious statistics of Table A and Table B etc

  27. Is author a statistician by profession? If he was he would look at the whole picture rather than pick out those which agree with his view of the world. And he wouldn’t wrongly jump to the conclusion that the decrease was much less than he expected considering the war toll and the extensive migration. Rather than relying on the author’s narrow manipulation of the census data I’d suggest readers look the all the historic data which is available on Wikipedia.

    Between 1971 and 1981 the population of the NP increased by 26%. Had this growth rate continued to 2011, the population of NP would now be 2.2 million. This census shows the population to be 1 million. That’s a shortfall of 1.2 million. Who on earth wouldn’t consider this to be an extensive decline? Who on earth would consider this to be marginal? Not a statistician.

    This census was carried out in July 2011, barley two years after the end of the war. It took the post-independence government two decades to alter the demography of the Eastern Province. Come back in 2030 and see what the demography of the NP looks like.

    Besides, the demographic change being practiced in the NP is strategic rather than numeric. The fact that south-eastern Mullaitivu District has been chosen to “resettle” Sinhalese is no accident. This is lies on the border between NP and EP. The government is determined to break the geographic link between Tamils living in the NP with those in the EP. This area, known as Weli Oya/Manal Aru, already comes under a local authority based in North Central Province as this census shows. This means the local authority in Mullaitivu has no power over the area. The area is also to become Division on its own so that the Assistant Government Agent in Mullaitivu has no power over the area. It is only a matter of time before this area is formally annexed to North Central Province and a permanent wedge is driven between NP and EP. And the notion of a contiguous Tamil homeland destroyed.

    Based in this census 70% of SL Tamils still live in the NE. This is roughly the same percentage as 1981. I can’t wait until the results of the 2012 nationwide census come out. It will finally kill of the myth that most Tamils live outside the NE. Just as this census has killed off the “zero civilian casualties” myth.

  28. Thats right Ma-rout-ti, stick to your lie about the “zero casualty policy”. The day anyone believes the Rajapaksa regime is the day they need to get a brain transplant!!

  29. Stop lies, if you can beleive srilankas census. You can beleive the world is flat, eaven according to IC they are bunch of liars.

    Only you are trusting them, good luck and well done.

    Listen to Dayan’s latest advice in BBC sinhala service, for you and your masters.

  30. Dr NR conducts like (unofficial)a GOSL spokeman, on various issues raised by SL Tamils in general and TNA in particular.

    One may (positively)assume that, it could be in the interest of peace among the people and also considering the safety of Tamils living in South.

  31. Dr RN,

    Good Analysis but waste of your time.

    The Head of the state was saying that there was no or Zero civilian causalities. We now know it was a pure lie as the state itself now says…..about 8,000 causalities.

    And his statistical department has taken extra efforts to prove he was right by inflating the population figures in the North specially when the intentional attention was on the war crime.

    If this was correct then why the number of MPs from the Jaffna Electoral district are to be reduced by 4?

    Statistical Department has done a good job to help the politicians to justify their damn lies.

    We know there are 250,000 (to 300,000) in North America and 300,000 (to 400,000) in Europe and 100,000 in Middle East, NZ and Australia. Another 150,000 in India. These conservative figures are only migrants and not their off springs. So we are talking about 800,000 (or to 1m) to be nearly perfect.

    Where did they originated from?

    We might argue that many fled from the South but still it did not tally.

    My concerns are that we are analysing a report that do not give us the real picture.

  32. echo says:
    But if you consider the population growth rate ratio in the Northern Province from 1946-1971 (25 years) to 1971-2011 (30 years), we would expect the Tamil population in 2011 in the Northern Province to reach closer to 2M.

    Andy says:
    Between 1971 and 1981 the population of the NP increased by 26%. Had this growth rate continued to 2011, the population of NP would now be 2.2 million.


    The pundits of population growth statistics ! Please consider the world had changes since 1940s – 1970s. There is some thing introduced called ‘contraception’. The population growth in SL came down drastically since late 1970s after introducing national family planning programme.

    If you search for population growth rate in SL you will understand that all your calculations are wrong.

  33. “I have heard that statistics don’t lie but liars do statistics”

    I Like this “gem” of a comment from Simhi!!! Very appropriate for Sri Lanka, the “miracle of Asia” which is being managed by by liars from Top to bottom!!!

  34. To those concerned:

    1. I am not a professional statistician, but statistics was an essential element in my post-graduate studies and subsequent research. Further, the statistics required to do an exercise such as this is within the capacity of even an ordinary level student.
    2. Estimates and projections will be reasonably accurate only in a stable situation, where certain assumptions such as normal birth and death rates hold and there are no extensive movements of people. With an on-going war, internal and external migrations and extensive population displacements (such as the forced evacuation in the Jaffna district and war-related displacements in the Vanni), estimates and projections will be completely off the mark. Previous estimates and projections should be ignored. After analysing and studying the results I am convinced that we aremuch better off than I had expected.

    3. There were extensive migration to the West (Canada, Australia and Europe) of Tamil middle classes and upper classes, principaly from the north- principally Jaffna. What is seen in Jaffna today is a decline in the upper and middle classes and an increase in the number of the poorer and less educated category. There was also a similar migration to the south of Sri Lanka

    4. The special survey was conducted in Jaffna to ascertain the real poulation situation as at mid 2011, in answer to the war-related accusations and as a planning tool. A special survey was not conducted in the east. A national survey is on-going at present.

    5. To believe the special survey or not, is up to the readers. However, I know for sure that every home in Jaffna was surveyed and special stickers pasted. There is no need to suspect everything. If we travel on this trajectory, we will not make any progress. It takes two hands to clap. Those who do not live any longer in the north or in Sri Lanka, should not be spoil sports and expose their bias and pre-conceptions.

    6. Native Veddah- your information is very interesting.

    7. To attribute motives to me, on a presentation made on the basis of published and available numbers, is a pointless exercise. I am a Tamil Sri Lankan who is living here and wants other Tamil Sri Lankans to continue living here and prosper. I am also very proud of my Tamil heritage and treasure it. I am also proud to be a Sri Lankan, because I have found that we have some of the most decent and cultured people in the world and inhabit a beautiful country. I am also thankful to Sri Lanka for all the opportunities it provided, including free education up to the doctoral level. I am also a Tamil Sri Lankan, who has experienced and seen the tragic effects of what happened in Sri Lanka. I am first and foremost a human being. I have forgiven the past, inorder to build a better future for us in Sri lanka. I will also not knowingly tell a lie or distort facts, because I am a Tamil. I also believe that we -Tamils- need reconciliation and the help of the ‘Óthers’ now, more than the others in Sri Lanka and have to concienciously and wisely work towards it. I also know that Sri lanka has many problems that need to be sorted out. I also can discern that the process has begun and should be given the time to take root and grow. I also believe external interference in our affairs should be minimal, although assistance is welcome. I am also against a Tamil Eelam. I hope these words will end the speculation about my mtives and possible incentives. Everyone has the freedom and right however with disagree with my approach.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  35. It is necessary to recognize that the natural compound growth of population that would have been due to the compound growth during long period of 30 years in the last survey interval. Actual decline of the population should be more appropriately, from that would have been to present, may very well be on the order of 50 percent of people including additional emigration due to war.

    Therefore, the conclusion drawn by the author “The wars and their aftermath have not caused an extensive decline in the population of the north, despite the deaths and internal and external migrations.” is not quiet correct and it is not based on the actual understanding of terminologies and common usage.

    The author often claims that he knows the quantitative distribution of desires and opinions of the population on numerous issues based apparently only on anecdotal sample interactions rather than based on an objective scientific survey. This may adversely affect the credibility of his claims and representations.

  36. Dr. Narendran – In my comment I showed that the decline is 727,000 which is 42%. If you stand by 17%, can you elucidate for the benefit of the Forum? This is necessary because a whole range of people whom you said jump to conclusions without studying facts, should know whether they can exclude you. Precisely for this reason I said that a clarification from the author can enlighten. I ASK YOU POINTEDLY IS IT CORRECT TO DEDUCT 2011 FIGURE FROM 1981 STATISTICS WITHOUT RECKONING THE NATIONAL LEVEL INCREASE OF 43.3%? WHEN FIGURES ARE CONTESTED REBUTTAL SHOULD BE IN NUMBERS AND NOT IN WORDS.

  37. I am also not an expert like Dr Narendran. Two points
    (1) The census figures for 2011, do not include the armed forces and police.
    (2) If you start with the wrong figures – then the statistics derived from these figures are meaning less.

    Based on the above two points – are we talking about fallacies or facts?
    How much area these armed forces occupy in the NP?

  38. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran says:

    “Native Veddah- your information is very interesting.”

    Have I said something controversial hence interesting?

  39. Chanakyan and others,

    Please analyse the numbers presented and those available in the web, any way you want and reach conclusions.. I analysed numbers as they are and did not project anything. As pointed out in other comments, the birth rates have declined and the population growth in the island has stabilized. The same has happened in the north and was compounded by the heavy migrations and war-related deaths. To assume the population in Jaffna would have grown as it had previously is wrong. Further, the 1977 and 1983 riots forced many Tamils from the south to move north. The 1981,census figure is the highest authenticated figure we have. I am sure the northern population increased further in the 1983-84 period and then started declining. We do not have a confirmed figure for this increase.

    Regardless of hypothetical figures, which may or may not have been realized , what we have on the ground and in reality is good number to take us forward. As I said that this is more than I expected. However, what is important to remember is that these people NEED HELP. Despite all the big talk, half-truths, outright exaggerations, false alarms, bombast and name calling, from Tamils who are very likely living outside Sri Lanka, the most needed commodity has not reached the Tamils hre, who need it- tangible HELP. This forfiets the right of many abroad to talk on our behalf.

    Further, on the question of lies and believing, how many of us have checked our paternity through DNA testing? We believe that a particular person is our father, because our mother brought us upto believe so and he provided for us. Some of us resemble our fathers and hence there is some sort of proof once we reach adulthood. I am sure many fathers have been fooled over the millennia. But ultimately it is belief and faith in our mother that matters, unless proved otherwise. Many of those commenting here do not use their real names and choose to comment under a different label. This itself is a lie. However, I pay attention to your comments, because I know there is a person, behind the false label. This does not however tell me anything about your intentions. I have to believe that they are honest, even if I disagree with them. We continue living because we think we will live into ripe old age. This is a belief that sustains life. Belief underscores the Maya or illusion that is our life.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  40. Dr Narendran,

    I want to point on your point 7.

    I am too a proud Sri Lankan and I love my motherland and I am sure we all are.

    Among Sri Lankans, I am a Tamil but for a foreigner the fact is I am a Sri Lankan. Period.

    But we are not for this bloody criminals ruling us. Let that be LTTE or the rouges who runs the government at present.

    As we can see, they bent the law for their betterment.

    Duminda, the killer who was unhurt but advised to rest on the hospital bed so that he can be sent out for ‘Medical Reason’.

    Thanks to corruptions and mismanagement that the Mihin Air, Sri Lankan air all collapsed long before but still alive artificially on tax payers money and state guaranteed loans from Foreign banks.

    To promote Matara airport our president who is also the Finance minister allows one year fee free landing.

    I heard he and his sons became lawyers not with academic qualifications but with privileges allowed to MPs. But it seems the nation who produces highest number of the UK qualified accountants for its size, has produced the best of the best: Mahinda Rajapakse.

    The financial mess he is going to leave behind is going to be real headache for generations to come. Banda, Kantha and Addul of the future will have to pay it off.

    And for the same reason I don’t give a damn to this figures.

  41. Native Veddah,

    Some figures I did not come across, hence interesting. Confirm what I surmised was the situation in the past and hence intersting.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  42. Ranga,

    Criminals of all sorts have been ruling us in one capacity or other for a very long time. It has been an exponential graph and is not limited to politicials, but also the public services. Even a citizen who wants a tenant to vacate his rented house, seeks the help of criminals to achieve his end fast. Criminality, in various shades, has pervaded many sectors of society. Language spoken or being in the opposition does not make a difference.

    This is why I have been emphasizing the many problems, including the issue of pervasive criminality, are common to all the people in Sri Lanka.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  43. Dr.N’s facts and figures make many people unhappy. Political slogans or anti-Lanka politics on the basis of TAMIL have no base. Many cried “leave the North, where is the DATA on East”. Now the diaspora is 97% Jaffna and Northern people. They must know the facts about their area first.

    Many LTTE supporters are now shouting “Human Rights” but they are still not prepared to tell the numbers of LTTE killed in the war. Many of the diaspora lost their regular collections and now only they have learned to work and earn. Demonizing Sri lanka for the destruction of the LTTE criminals never help the remaining Tamils in Jaffna.

    Diaspora Tamil papers and radios cry for the Indian Tamil Fishermen but they never talk about the plights of the Tamil fishermen of the North. They have started an “INTIFADA” against the Indian fishermen by throwing stones. Tamil News papers never report how ICE Factories are established with the help of the Government in the North to help the fishermen. Low cost protien providing fishermen always approach Douglas Devananda for any issue and not the TNA.

    Truths create many stupid statements null and void.

    Thanks Dr.N.

  44. Observer,

    “The author often claims that he knows the quantitative distribution of desires and opinions of the population on numerous issues based apparently only on anecdotal sample interactions rather than based on an objective scientific survey. This may adversely affect the credibility of his claims and representations.”

    This presentation is based on numbers and interpretation of numbers in terms of events. Hence, the accusation of being hypothetical does not apply.

    Yes, my previous articles and comments can be termed hypothetical. However, a hypothesis is formulated on the basis of what one observes or surmises and thereafter confirmed through research. Research can also mean further inquiries and confirmation, and not necessarilly a structured study. What I say may be hypothetical, but based on what I see, hear,percieve and confirm through interactions with people and visits to various areas, although not subject to rigorous scientific study. There is a sampling of sorts involved here. Remember the Tamil proverb, “Oru Paanai soetritkku oru soeru patham” (Only one grain of rice is tested to check whether the whole pot is cooked!) ? In a societal or social context,especially in circumstances as in the north and east, such an hypothetical approach to percieve ground realities is not only unavoidable but essential.

    Further, my approach of understanding the ground situation and trends (from the ground), is far in advance of the situation where imagination and vested interests dictate, what is disseminated as real and then believed by those who want to believe it, because it suits a political agenda. How many TNA and other Tamil politicians have travelled through the Vanni in the post-war period? The only elected member of parliament from the Vanni who spends time in his electorate is Sri Tharan! Even the UNP leader-Ranil Wickremasinghe, and his coterie, visited Mullaitivu only very recently, nearly three years after the war ended!

    I have found many stories officially peddled by the TNA and sections of the diaspora are outright lies and very rarely have even a grain of truth. We have heard stories about the hoardings in Sinhala in the north, the Sangiliyan statue being removed and many more, which have been later- though not admitted by those disseminating them- found to be outright lies. To not believe the 2011 special census figures, which have been compiled extremely carefully to forestall accusations of fiddling, will be also a lie, if anyone takes the pains to read the methodology reported in the link provided in this article.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  45. mr.narendran ,one serious accusation that has been leveled against sl gov is that it commited genocide against tamils in the last phase of war.this accusation has been made in the LLRC: Submission by the Catholic Diocese of Mannar quotation- “Based on information from the Kacheris[1] of Mullativu and Killinochi about the population in Vanni in early October 2008 and number of people who came to government controlled areas after that, 146,679 people seem to be unaccound for.
    sir,what is your view regarding this accusation.thank u

  46. Infant,

    My view: October 2008, cannot be the basis for reliable figures. The war was quite intense and people, including officials had serious concerns for their personal safety. The war had come to the Akkaraiyan Kulam area- west of the A9- and people had started to move into Kilinochchi. The LTTE itself would have also clamped on the movement of people, in areas yet under their control, unless it desired so, for security reasons. I do not think anyone, including the priests of the catholic church, ventured out to get accurate figures. To rely on such numbers will be misleading. Father James Pathinathar had a different story to tell about his church, but there are no takers, because his version goes against the case being made. I had similar versions about other churches that had given refuge to children from catholics in the IDP camps.

    When a war is portrayed as between two linguistic groups and is fought ferociously, it is easy to level the genocide charge against the victor. The situation is further complicated by the fact that the ‘Tamil army’fought the ‘Sinhala army”from amongst the civilians and as part of its tactics entered the ‘No fire zones’ and the used the Tamils as sand bags. The LTTE also used its propaganda wing very effectively until the very end. The LTTE rump continues to do so even now. The LTTE also deliberately drew fire towards the civilians. When bullets and shells are flying around, they do not discriminate between targets- Sinhalese vs Tamils, Men vs Women, Adult vs Child , Old vs Young and Tigers vs Civilians. Of course when civilians are deliberately set up, they are in a death trap.

    Believing is part of a mind set for many now and has nothing to do with facts or realities. Truth is a major casualty in these circumstances.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  47. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran says:
    March 30, 2012 at 10:56 pm

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran,

    The comment did not refer to accuracy of the figures in the census data but rather on the interpretation.

    The reference I made is not really about hypothetical situation but rather about potential misrepresentation of the situation by drawing arbitrary and perhaps biased conclusions about important public opinions based only on unscientific or anecdotal sampling speculations.

    The proverb “Only one grain of rice is tested to check whether the whole pot is cooked” is applicable only for uniform conditions. Grains are relatively uniform in characteristics but the people’s opinions are not uniform to start with and the effects of experience and environment for the period considered are not uniform either. How can the comparison be proper? It is rather crude. This is not an applicable analogy.

    The scientific polling using statistical methods that employ proper sampling methods and considering the entire spectrum is needed to reliably assert the result as a public opinion. In the absence of such a poll, an elected leader is entrusted to express public opinions on behalf of the constituents. A responsible person should refrain from claiming something on his/her mind or wishful thoughts or result of an unscientific poll as the public opinion. Why it is essential to make a comment that could be misrepresentation of public opinion, inadvertently or deliberately? In this case, perhaps, it is better to do nothing rather than doing bad!

    Elected leaders are supposed to be in suitable position to gauge public opinions as the leaders are representing the opinions of their constituents and they are entrusted to function for this purpose. I agree that elected members should visit the constituents. However, it is not the only method nowadays as they also use their staff and other communication techniques for these purposes. If public feels that the members are not representing their opinions and interests well, they will throw them out of the office. Do you have difficulty accepting the will of the people who elect their representatives?

    Other readers may be able to comment on your accusations of politicians. But note that they may respond by accusing you of writing misleading opinions that perhaps suits your interests or agenda too.

    Finally, the important point is that if one wants to claim something as a public opinion, it should be based on an objective scientific poll that covers the entire spectrum of population concerned and using proper sampling methods with an exception for elected leaders who are entrusted by the public to express such opinions on their behalf where no reliable scientific poll is not available. Why leave room for accusation of even inadvertent misrepresentation of public opinion?

  48. Observer,

    Please read the contents of the cable sent by Ambassador patricia Butenis to the State Department in 2010, which was reproduced in the Sunay times today. I have made it part of my comment on the article titled ‘Post Geneva chalenge —‘
    by Westminster Insider.

    Would you also consider her conclusions hypothetical too? I have been saying the same for a long time based on my interactions with people in the Vanni and Jaffna.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  49. Dr. Rajasingham Narendran

    Ambassador Patricia Butenis spoke in favor of the Geneva resolution. Did your opinion resonated with hers?

  50. .
    Dr. RN says, “To spite the face, we should not cut our nose! Our –Tamil- recovery should be built on facts, not fallacy”.

    …..And I hope the facts should not be limited to 2011 census.


  51. Sukumar,

    Definitely not. But it does with the content of her cable. My position on the Geneva resolution is a logical extension of my thoughts on accountability.


    The facts definitely should not be limited to the 2011 census. However, it is the only concrete fact available now. When the true circumstances that prevailed during the war and the role the LTTE played in creating those conditions are ignored in the manufacture of facts, they are unacceptable to me. A one sided narrative and propaganda do not contribute to the search for facts.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  52. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran says:
    April 1, 2012 at 3:35 am

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran,
    I already read the reportedly Ambassador’s cable. Good for you. Your speculation seems to be conceptually representative of the local public opinion at least at that time. However, they probably would not want to postpone by long period (40 years) as your personal opinion stated as acceptable elsewhere in the forum. The view expressed in my comment is that we have to use reliable methods that will deliver correct results always, not some of the times or not by chance. Yes, the local opinion at that time reportedly said to postpone it to deal with later in the future.

    Not really as she could have and would have employed suitable and reliable methods to obtain the local public opinion though we are not privy to all the methods and efforts the ambassador. However, in general, the ambassador was reportedly in constant touch with the elected leaders and representatives who would have also expressed their opinions on behalf of the public to the ambassador privately. In addition, the embassy has tremendous resources of the U.S. government and contacts at various levels and it constantly interacts with various diverse parties including civil societies to gather lot of information, analyses and form opinions too as it is well equipped for these purposes.

    However, the Ambassador Butenis is obviously very supportive of the UN resolution last month and she was critical about the lack of accountability in LLRC report last month. She reportedly said that “on accountability we find that it is disappointing and really fell short of things we think and some people in this country think need to be addressed.” So we do not know whether she believes that there is a change in the local public opinion now or she is working on the principles of accountability, which happens to be the opinion of most Diaspora, irrespective of the reportedly local public opinion.

    This is a very sensitive issue. Can others deny or postpone seeking justice for the unlawfully killed victims who are family, relatives or friends? Can others feel the pain and sufferings? How do we reconcile with the notion that “justice delayed is considered as justice denied”? These are rights issues that may not be governed by simple political decisions by the majority. We all should be cognizant about this aspect.

    Could the opinions of the Diaspora be totally ignored? There is an argument made that some of the Diaspora’s relatives were unlawfully killed during the war for whom they make representations regarding accountability. So, it is not fair to totally ignore the concerns and opinions of diaspora. There needs to be proportionally smaller weight for the Diaspora’s opinions according to the number of such victims represented would be reasonable and fair.

    The view I was expressing is about the fundamental approach to achieve conclusions that should be very systematic and reliable, fail-safe all the times. One can get it right even by luck of probability some times. But we need to strive for a reliable systematic method that produces right results always.

    You may be preaching to the choir in this regard of postponing accountability as I have commented on this issue a few days back. Conceptually conclusions have the same effect but perhaps drawn for some mutually inclusive as well as some mutually exclusive reasons. Here is the link for my previous comment:

    Govt must present road map for implementing recommendations in LLRC Report
    28 March 2012, 8:56 pm
    by Jayantha Dhanapala and Prof. Savitri Goonesekere

    Observer says:
    March 29, 2012 at 4:56 am

  53. Observer:

    I yet infer from my interactions with the people in the north, particularly the affected persons in the Vanni that accountabilty is the furthest in their minds.

    Their concerns relate to recovery, livelihood, war widows, fatherless families, the orphans, the disabled , the elderly and the otherwise vulnerable. There are a multitude of related concerns. What transpired in Geneva do not reflect these concerns. The Tamil politicians and political formations have not given the importance they deserve to these concerns.

    Further, Ambassador Patricia, I am sure has her sources and contacts. I too have my sources and contacts, in addition to having had the misfortune to see things first hand, several times over. Please grant me the benefit of your doubts.

    Further, the document signed by the Friday forum is laudable, but is far away from the concerns of the inhabitants of the former war zone. I too prepared a road map at the end of the war and submitted it to the government (Was published in transcurrents). If it was followed even partially, the government will not be in the spot it is in now. However, this does not in anyway diminish the fact that the government has done much for the war-affected people, laying the foundations for economic recovery and laying the foundations for national reconciliation.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  54. According to the 1911 Ceylon census there were no Sinhala villages in Mulaitivu district.

    The total Sinhala population in Maritime pattu was only 55, living amongst a Tamil population of over 6000. In fact there were more Burghers than Sinhalese in Mulaitivu town (69 as opposed to 15) and Kokkilai only had 14 Sinhalas as opposed to over 204 Tamils.

    In a space of a century and following the ethnic cleansing of Manal Aru, the Sinhala population has now exploded to 3905 (Mainly in the Weli Oya settlements – Census 2011).

    I will be posting up more details of demographic change once I analyse the 1981 census.

    Dr. KM

  55. If we check the Tamil population of Colombo, Negombo and Chilaw, we can see how the Tamil population exploded in those districts. Sri Lanka is not divided on the basis of Tamil and Sinhala. Tamils or Sinhalese have no exclusive rights to claim a particular area is belong to them in Sri Lanka!

  56. Dr.Rajasingham Narendran says:
    April 2, 2012 at 3:18 am

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran:

    There seems to be mixed opinions in this issue though more people may still want to postpone accountability than those are against it. It is natural for the people to prioritize and focus on the immediate needs to alleviate the sufferings and survive now than long term future issues.

    The International Community (IC) expects the government to fulfill its obligations with regards to the basic needs of its citizens in this situation. UNHRC is not really empowered to address these kinds of issues. But it is very important that UNHRC addressed the issues within its purview. We all can walk and chew gum at the same time. Tamil politicians should advocate and do as much as possible to help to improve the situation but you realize that most of them are from TNA that have very limited ability without financial resources as they are not in power.

    It is important to pay attention to the immediate living conditions and problems while we all can’t lose sight of the more important bigger picture that involves solving the national question once and for all in the best interest of long-term future of the country. This is a golden opportunity to press hard and work hard on solving the national question while the entire world is watching and the major powers are keen on helping to find a solution acceptable for all parties concerned. There will be inevitably many discussions and disagreements with regard to fair and reasonable power devolution concepts, provincial, 13th, 13th minus, 13th plus, regional, federal, constitutional & other issues and the help of IC would be very valuable to persuade the parties and help to advance negotiations.

    Ambassador Butenis has significantly higher financial and human resources and the power and prestige of her U.S. government behind to interact with the elected leaders would be invariably in much advantageous position compared to any individual, right? Your personal observations of unfortunate events are helpful in understanding the situation.

    It should be greatly appreciated that U.S. has taken genuine interest in the Sri Lanka issues on principles of justice, equity, accountability and reconciliation for all Sri Lankans even though Sri Lanka is not really comes under the historical U.S. national or strategic interests. Who else is going to lead to address the issues? U.S. appears to be concerned about recurrence of these kinds of massive serious rights violations and deaths of civilians anywhere in the world with impunity if the accountability is not addressed properly for deterrent purpose in addition to serving justice.

    Furthermore, U.S. and allies might be wondering whether they could have done more to prevent the massive civilian deaths in the first place and they are trying to learn to prevent such disasters taking place rather than seeking accountability later that is of no use for the dead and seriously injured victims.

    The earlier U.S. stance appeared to be that if Sri Lanka government had moved quickly and genuinely to address the solution to the national question then the accountability issues would go to the back burner (postponement) and even the IC would have cut some slack on this matter. It appears that U.S. recently came to the realization that SLG won’t do anything on its own will and it needs some external pressure. That is why the U.S. started with the UNHRC resolution. It is also to send a signal that the approach of the IC is changing because of the unacceptable behavior of the SLG.

    The original ethnic problems were referred as the national question. Then the war killed, displaced, injured and people were fighting for survival. The government partially initiated the creation of the horrible situation and now helping to mitigate, trying to bring back to somewhat normal tolerable living conditions, but it is too bad it can’t bring back the tens of thousands of civilians got killed and seriously injured by the military. There was no attempt to solve the national question and the situation is much worse than prior to the war. The net resulting effect is negative for the people. The government created a crises for the people and now it seems to be satisfied if they can bring back to somewhere close to the previous conditions. All these time the original national question is forgotten by the government and no steps are taken to solve it.

    It’s somewhat contradicting that you say on one hand “There are a multitude of related concerns. The Tamil politicians and political formations have not given the importance they deserve to these concerns”. On the other hand you also say “However, this does not in any way diminish the fact that the government has done much for the war-affected people, laying the foundations for economic recovery and laying the foundations for national reconciliation.” You realize that the financial resources are with the government and it is duty bound to help and it has to help. NGO’s and INGO’s are helping to some extend as much as possible. Are you saying government has done much but it is still significantly less than that is required? If so, it is failure of the government. Why is the need to spin?

    I don’t know whether you realized or not in a timely manner that government used, rather abused, gullible people for its propaganda purpose to the IC for which you all fell for it but the government probably never had the desire or will to modify or tweak and implement even a small part of the plan you submitted.

    The president reportedly said recently that “Sri Lanka’s human rights protection was inspired by the influence of Buddhism over a period of over 2,500 years. LLRC was Sri Lanka’s own probe and no one had the right to force its implementation. He did not want lessons on protecting human rights from outside.”

    The horrific stories, pictures and videos describe or depict serious human rights violations that were committed by whom? Is the president in denial? Is he behaving like an ostrich burying the head in the sand? Did he forget that he was not willing to do anything at the start and he finally appointed the LLRC in the last days when the IC was about to call for international investigations? If he had protected human rights, there is no rational for IC to question, get involve, or bring UNHRC resolution against the country. Then there is the expression of defiance attitude that not to accept or abide by the UN resolution, at least for now. Even Russia that voted against the resolution said that Sri Lanka should implement LLRC recommendations.

    In view of the above stubborn and irrational behaviors exhibited, it will be a herculean task to find a suitable solution to the national question that is acceptable to all parties concerned and implementing it.

    The Friday Forum statement is a good step in the right direction. We got to address both the smaller picture and the bigger picture. We can walk and chew gum at the same time. In fact the bigger picture about the solution is more important for the long term permanent stability and future for all. Any responsible government should have anticipated and planned for the adequate rehabilitation and provide satisfactory living conditions prior to embarking on this war. If it is inadequate, the government should take steps to rectify. The government should encourage NGO’s and INGO’s to help rather than giving them hard time and on some instances preventing their involvement.

    There was virtually nothing meaningful done to find a suitable solution for the national question yet. Overall, it does not appear that anything significant is done by the government towards national reconciliation yet either. Let’s hope for paradigm shift in the thinking and approach with the increased international pressure. Keep Hope Alive!

  57. I am a Tamil who live in Colombo. We enjoying the facilities and freedom in Colombo while facing minor issues.

    Diaspora, please allow us to live in Colombo. There are lot of Tamils from North are live in Colombo. 30% of the Colombo City population are Tamils. Is Diaspora asking us or making us deported from Colombo to less developed North while you enjoying facilities in West ? Please stop these non sense and don’t be selfish. If you worrying about Tamil concentration in North come and live in Kilinochchi. Colombo Tamils don’t want to go there.
    We are live in Sinhala Areas. Our parents experienced very bad experience in Black July in 83. But now we live in Colombo without troubles (still there are problems. but those are not big issues). We do enjoy facilities in Colombo like you dooo in West. We don’t want a ethnic concentration and go back to Kilinochchi. Before blaming me come and visit Colombo. It is not a restricted area and 1 hour from the Air port. Finally, don’t make what happened in 83. Sinhalese people are short tempered and still we are happy how we live in Colombo. Don’t worry about us Western Diaspora.

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