Tamil Heroes Day (for Sri Lankan Freedom Fighters)

Art work (c) Mani Navasothy
(first published in a Tamil newspaper worldwide on 27 June 1996)

Some 40-50 years ago, the Tamil people in Sri Lanka started to rebel against injustices, unfair treatments and ever growing prejudicial treatment against the Tamil minority. These began to escalate, as the Government with its control on army began to escalate its own campaigns! There is plenty of time for history lessons another time, but today – 27th November – has been a day marked by the surviving Tamil speaking people of Sri Lanka as the `Mahaveerar Thinam’ – meaning `Great Heroes (Warriors) Day’.

Few years ago, the Sri Lankan army made a concerted effort – resulting in the destruction of so many towns and villages, and the unjustified deaths of thousands of Tamil people in the northern part of Sri Lanka. Countries around the world, and indeed the United Nations itself has made many efforts to intervene or mediate political, and humanitarian resolutions to these decades long conflicts. None have worked!

It is claimed that several `leaders’ of the Tamil Freedom fighters were killed – in a major military campaign few years ago. The government has always justified its actions as only targeting guerilla fighters, but does not accept the fact that thousands of innocents were also killed.

So on this day, the Tamils of the World unite to remember their fallen heroes – who gave their lives for freedom and for their people.

I am a survivor of at least 2 racial wars and atrocities – after which I fled to the UK to seek asylum in 1985. Unless you have been chased by armies with guns, or violent mobs stopping a train at midnight and start killing the people on board, you can not imagine the true horrors, plights, despairs and ultimately the burning fire within those who survived!

And I remember the Heroes who fell – no matter what the others call them!

-Mani Navasothy

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2 thoughts on “Tamil Heroes Day (for Sri Lankan Freedom Fighters)”

  1. However unplanned for me, it was all very apt, remembering those fallen brave brothers and sisters …marking it with prayers, moment of silence , devotion with gratitude and the godly blessings, armed with tiny lit lamp at the temple today with You brother !

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