A legislator in Sri Lanka has reportedly expressed a preference for feared Tamil Tiger leader Vellupillai Pirabharan who ruled a part of northern Sri Lanka by the gun, shortly after a southern monk called for rule by Hitler, in the latest twist in a country where authoritarianism is worshipped by sections of society.
Vijayakala Maheswaran, a legislator from the Northern Jaffna province had told a public ceremony that the Tamil Tiger leader was needed to make sure that children returned safely from school, after a 6-year old child was found brutally raped and killed, media reports said.
Her husband, T Maheswaran who also a one-time legislator from the United National Party, was believed to have been assassinated by a paramilitary organization that was working with the military during the 30-year war, where thousands of SriLankans in an out of uniform were killed.
Her comments came shortly after a leading monk in the South called for a ‘Hitler’ to return, and re-establish authoritarian military rule, and protect Buddhism in a reference to Gothabaya Rajapaksa, brother of ex-president Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Political analysts say sections of Sri Lankan society have long been mired in a deep confusion between ‘law and order’ with ‘rule of law’ which is responsible for the lack of justice to the common man.
“Very irresponsible statement that all of us should condemn as we did to the Hitler comment,” fellow legislator Ranjan Ramanayake said in a twitter.com message.
“we saw how the terrorist LTTE established rule of law by killing civilians and even recruiting children as soldiers, we don’t need neither (sic) Prabakaran or Hitler.
Most politicians and even the media in Sri Lanka routinely call for ‘harsh punishment’ (dedi danduwam), showing a preference for law and order over rule of law, while the requirement is to fix the police and the judiciary so the justice prevails.
The independence of Sri Lanka’s police, judiciary and public prosecutor’s office had been steadily eroded after constitutions of 1971 and 1979 broke a once-independence civil service.