Open Letter to Canadian Government
A veteran Sri Lankan Canadian, Mahinda Gunasekara has written to Canadian government highlighting its double stand on terrorism in particularly in favor on LTTE Tamil terrorism in order to gain political advantage from pro-LTTE Tamil terrorists diaspora in Canada which number over 300,000. Most of these so called Tamil diaspora had been migrated to Canada illegally or to seek bogus political asylum.
The full text of the letter is as follows;
Victim Impact Statement in relation to Bill 104 presented to the Ontario Legislative Assembly
I am a citizen of Canada having immigrated to this country from Sri Lanka in the year 1975 and been a resident of the Province of Ontario up to the present time. Having roots in Sri Lanka, I have been struck by the lies and bogus propaganda carried out by members of the Tamil Canadian community to advance their cause of establishing a mono-ethnic separate state comprising the northern and eastern provinces which encompasses approximately 1/3 rd of the land area surrounded by the Indian ocean and extending to almost 2/3rd of the island’s coastline.
The Tamil community of Sri Lanka numbering roughly 12.8 percent of the total population benefited during the 433 years of western colonial rule from 1505 under the Portuguese, Dutch and especially under British rule under the divide and rule policies of the colonial masters. There was no category called Tamil till the census of 1911, as they were classified as Malabars or persons coming from the Malabar coast of South India and regarded as foreigners. They were brought in from Southern India in the 17th and 18th centuries by the Portuguese and Dutch colonial powers to grow tobacco, while the British brought over a million Tamils to work on lands confiscated from the indigenous Sinhala people without a penny in compensation to grow commercial crops such as coffee, cocoa and tea. The British who discontinued the recognition of the local language of Sinhala and in its place made English the only official language even though there were not enough teachers to implement same throughout the island. They went ahead and invited Christian missionaries to set up English language schools who were encouraged to establish the schools mainly in areas inhabited by the minority Tamils who were agreeable to convert to the new faith. Within a short time, the Tamils were able to work in the colonial masters language and became eligible to be hired into the public service and newly established commercial division thus becoming the newly educated class dominating the economic life of the country.
On Sri Lanka (Ceylon) gaining independence from the British in 1948 and the switch back to the national languages (mother tongue) with Sinhala being given its rightful place as the official language, the dominant position held by the minority Tamils declined with their claiming to be discriminated making them form political movements seeking a separate state in areas of the north and east mainly inhabited by members of the Tamil community. While Sinhalese was made the official language in post-independent Sri Lanka, Tamils were given the right to be educated in their mother tongue with the requirement that they acquire a working knowledge of Sinhala which was deemed as being the Grade VIII level to qualify for employment in the public sector. The leading Tamil political party called the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kachchi (Tamil State Party) joined with other Tamil groups to form the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) which passed a resolution called the Vadukkodai Resolution where they sought the establishment of a separate state for the Tamils in the north and east of Sri Lanka which they falsely claimed as the traditional homeland of Tamils from the dawn of history without any historical evidence to support it. They further went on to state that in the event of such a separate state being denied to them, that the bombs in the hands of the Tamil youth would explode. The call to violence on the part of Tamil youth fell within the scope of the legal basis adopted at the Nuremberg Trials where the Nazis were charged with ‘Crimes against peace and Crimes against humanity’. This call led to various Tamil youth groups forming violent militant organizations to pursue their separate state called ‘Tamil Eelam’, with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) soon coming to dominate the scene after having crushed the other groups and taking on the mantle of ‘Sole Representative of the Tamil People’. Even the senior politicians of the TULF which had changed into the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) also came to recognize the LTTE as the sole representative of the Tamils.
i) The Tamils who had arrived in Canada as refugees with the help of Church groups had formed 27 organizations such as the World Tamil Movement, etc. which continued to denigrate Sri Lanka and demonize the non-Tamil Sri Lankans by playing the victim card to win the sympathy of Canadians. We were compelled to form an association of ours in 1983 called the Sri Lanka United National Association of Canada (SLUNA) to counter the false propaganda and educate the media and the Canadian public. Soon we became the target of threats and harassment by persons belonging to these Tamil organizations. We had to give up the use of answering machines and voice mail as these Tamils would make anonymous phone calls and leave obscene messages. In one of the messages, there were threats to my family members which included my wife and son aged about 6 years.
ii) As I held office in our association (SLUNA) as the Executive Vice President for about 14 years and later the President for nearly 16 years, I was often interviewed by OMNI TV, division of Rogers TV, which covered the South Asian scene. I would receive obscene calls at night time beginning around 12 midnight. These nasty calls caused much distress to me and my family. We got over it by turning off the ringer on the phone. I brought this matter to the attention of the Toronto Police with records of the callers numbers, dates and times, but they were unable to help as they said they had to deal with more serious crimes in the area.
iii) My son attended Lamoureux Collegiate Institute in Scarborough in the early 1990’s where nearly 100 Tamil students were enrolled. They regularly held political rallies supportive of the LTTE in their school under the guise of conducting Tamil cultural events. They would normally show a great deal of hostility towards Sinhalese students who were few in number. They were in the habit of threatening my son who was about 14 years of age, and on one occasion a Tamil student had brought a knife to school and in the playground warned my son stating that the Tamils will settle their score with the Sinhalese. My son had reported the matter to the Principal of the school who wanted me to see him. The principal said that he had spoken to the other boy and that nothing untoward would happen as the teachers are watching the students even on the playing field.
iv) With the Sri Lanka situation getting worse from the end of 2005 till May 19, 2009 after the LTTE started hostilities to launch their final war of liberation, an anonymous caller whom I recognized as a Tamil from his accent warned me to stay clear saying that I was one of 200 persons on their hit list.
v) In 1993, a group of Tamils launched the Tamil Vision Inc. (TVI), a 24 hour all Tamil television station which a leading newspaper in Sri Lanka called ‘The Island’ mentioned that its directors were linked to the LTTE, a terrorist organization banned by Sri Lanka. The CRTC called for views of the public prior to issue of the Broadcasting Licence. Several of us, based on the Sri Lanka newspaper report wrote to the CRTC objecting to grant of the licence citing the links to the Tamil Tiger terrorist organization. All nine of us were sued by the TVI directors claiming damages in a total sum of $7.75 million. We had to retain a reputed law firm (Stikeman, Elliot) to handle our defence, where they found after researching case law, that we had a right to raise objections in the public interest. The law suit prevented us from pursuing the matter further with the CRTC who went ahead and granted TVI the requested broadcasting licence. No sooner our lawyers filed answer to the TVI petition, the TVI withdrew their case.
vi) On yet another occasion, the LTTE organization arranged their annual Heroes Day when they commemorate their suicide cadres and other killers who have sacrificed their life for their separatist cause. The organizers were supposed to be the Tamil Students Association which had just been registered just one day before the event, whereas the real organizers were the senior LTTE activists already banned by Canada’s Anti-Terrorism Laws. I wrote to the Canadian authorities about the event and asked them to withhold release of the premises. This letter also drew a similar response from the LTTE activists compelling me to obtain legal assistance of Stikeman Elliot who filed answer which signalled the withdrawal of the case against me.
vii) Once again, merely forwarding an article published in the Sunday Leader newspaper of Sri Lanka in 2014 to the main political party leaders of Canada where mention was made of Mr. Gary Anandasangaree who was at the time seeking the Liberal Party’s nomination to contest a riding in Scarborough. He was the Legal Adviser to the Canadian Tamil Congress which came into the limelight soon after the World Tamil Movement was banned by Canada along with the LTTE with a new set of faces to continue the same work of the LTTE to act as its spokesperson and propaganda arm in Canada. I was immediately sent a Letter of Demand by Gary Anandasangaree’s law firm along with the intent of bringing a suit for Libel and Slander, asking me to issue a letter of apology and have the newspaper in Sri Lanka withdraw their article within 24 hours. This occasion, I had to consult a senior lawyer at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP who was an authority on Defamation issues, and his answer resulted in the immediate withdrawal of the Demand Letter as they probably do not wish to expose themselves to the court about their links to a terrorist movement. In the above three matters, I have only carried out my civic duty to bring issues relating to terrorist links to the attention of the Canadian authorities and been sued for damages leaving me to avail of legal advice at a very high cost which suits never proceeded beyond the filing of an answer on my part with the other litigant dropping the matter thereby avoiding exposure in a court of law. This again could be interpreted as harassment, as they never proceeded with their lawsuits that they initiated.
viii) During the period 2006 to 2009, the pro-LTTE groups in Canada organized several demonstrations in Toronto and Ottawa to seek international intervention after their forces which commenced hostilities were forced to retreat and use the civilians who were compelled to move with their retreating forces as a hunan shield in the final battleground at Mullivaikkal on the northeast coast of Sri Lanka. They formed a Ring Around Downtown Toronto which went on for months and even ran on to the Gardiner Expressway stopping the traffic on the expressway on Mother’s Day in 2009. It is during this period that they set fire to a popular Sri Lankan restaurant in Brampton, and also attempted to set fire to the Toronto Mahavihara’s (Buddhist Monastery and Meditation Centre) main building on two occasions, with damages exceeding $100,000.00 on the first occasion. The second time was in 2009, when they attempted to firebomb the wooden structure which served as the assembly hall and shrine room of the temple, where a passing TTC bus driver had noticed flames leaping from the building around 2.00 a.m. and had called 911 and got the Fire Brigade to arrive soon after and douse the flames. The Toronto Police Force, which had a special unit called the Tamil Task Force at the time to deal with violence within the Tamil community have not been able to catch a single person involved in the arson attempts on the Buddhist temple.
The threats made to me could be verified from officers in the CSIS, RCMP and the Toronto Police.
CANADA /ON M1W 3L9