ITAK’s separatist demands & pro-LTTE statements

ITAK is the main constituent party of the TNA & a key party promoting a new constitution & attempting to abolish the Executive Presidency. ITAK though formed in 1949 has a history of demands made for a separate state though shrouding its objectives by calling itself the Federal Party. ITAK has also openly endorsed either directly or through its alliance the TNA pro-LTTE sentiments. We quote these to showcase the dangers of allowing parties that have not relinquished their separatist notions or hide them in nicely camouflaged democratic terminology are being allowed to separate Sri Lanka.


What readers need to understand is that the Tamil Only Nation that the Tamil political leadership was politically trying to achieve & that which LTTE tried to achieve militarily is one & the same.


ITAK’s claim that it was formed because of Sinhala discrimination is nullified because

  1. ITAK was formed in 1949 months after independence via dominion status to then Ceylon
  2. Head of State in Ceylon remained the Queen till 1972.
  3. Final judicial verdicts were also given by the Supreme Court in UK until 1972.
  4. Any grievance Tamils claim was caused by British & not Sinhalese as administration of the island was in foreign hands from 1505 to 1948 (443 years) and then from 1948 to 1972 (as a dominion where Queen still remained Head of State)
  5. Direct Sinhala majority rule can be claimed ONLY from 1972 onwards (just 46 years)
  6. The creation of Tamil New Tigers by Prabakaran in 1972 & rechristening it LTTE in 1976 also nullifies false notion that LTTE was created in response to July1983 riots.


1951 – ITAK defined for the first time at its 1st annual convention what constituted a Tamil Nation declaring it to be the Tamil speaking people in Ceylon constitute a ‘nation distinct from that of the Sinhalese by every fundamental test of nationhood”


1956 August 19 –  ITAK summoned national convention in Trincomalee on passing resolution:

  • the replacement of the present pernicious constitution by a rational and democratic constitution based on the federal principle and the establishment of one or more Tamil linguistic state or states incorporating all geographically contiguous areas in which the Tamil speaking people are numerically in a majority as federating unit or units enjoying the widest autonomous and residuary powers consistent with the unity and external security of Ceylon”


  • The restoration of the Tamil language to its rightful place enjoying the absolute parity of status with Sinhalese as an official language of the country”


  • The repeal of the present citizenship laws and the enactment in their place of laws recognizing the right to full citizenship on the basis of a simple test of residence for all persons who have made this country their home” 


  • The immediate cessation of colonization of the traditional Tamil speaking areas with Sinhalese people


1957 January 19 – ITAK carries out anti-Sri campaign tarring cars that bore vehicle number plate SRI” – what is important to note is that the counter campaigns started ONLY AFTER ITAK action.  


1957 – ITAK calls for action against Ministers from South visiting North & East. Ministers Dahanayake & Marikkar were attacked in Batticoloa. MP Siriwardena on a mail train to Jaffna blocked.


1972 – ACTC and ITAK combined to make TUF which became TULF in 1976.


1975 February – ITAK leader Chelvanayagam winning the by-election for Kankasanthurai declared I will to announce to my people and to the country that I consider the verdict at this election as a mandate that the Tamil Eelam Nation should exercise the sovereignty already vested in the Tamil people and become free”.


1976 May 14th – TULF’s Vaddukoddai Resolution had 5 objectives


  • State of Tamil Eelam to consist of North & Eastern provinces to all Tamil speaking people
  • Constitution of Tamil Eelam based on principles of decentralization. No foremost place to any religion or territorial community.
  • Tamil Eelam will assure equal status to all
  • Tamil Eelam will be a secular state with equal protection to all religions
  • Tamil will be language of the State but Sinhala speaking minority can educate and transact in Sinhala subject to reciprocity of Tamil speaking minority in Sinhala state.


If demand was for equal language rights –why make Tamil the official language of the State of Tamil Eelam?



Pro-LTTE statements


ITAK remembers the ‘Tamil youth who sacrificed their lives in armed struggle’ (Sampanthan’s speech at the 14th Annual ITAK convention in 2012 Batticoloa) – the only Tamil youth who sacrificed their lives in armed struggle were the LTTE!


Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi, which has become the political symbol of the Tamil Nation” – Sambanthan Speech at ITAK 14th Convention 2012


‘Tamil United Liberation Front, of which our party was a member took the historical decision to establish the separate government of Tamil Eelam in 1976’ – Sambanthan at ITAK convention 2014



Pro-LTTE Election Manifestos 


TNA manifesto 2001


recognition of the inalienable right of self-determination of the Tamil nation.”


The immediate commencement of the process of negotiations with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) with international third party involvement.”


Tamil organizations got together and resolved on May 14, 1976 to establish a sovereign independent Tamil Eelam based on our inalienable right to self-determination.” 


TNA manifesto 2004


Independent Thamil Eelam received its mandate as a result of the overwhelming support given to the TULF by the Tamil speaking people of NorthEast in the general elections of July 1977”


Sinhala nation should accept ISGA document put forward by the LTTE which contains excellent proposals”


The LTTE has for the past two years put up with the violent, surly behaviour of the armed forces without impairing the conditions for peace and observing the cease-fire and acting steadfastly and firmly towards the path of peace. Hence, the international community should create the environment by removing the restrictions put in place by certain countries on the LTTE, the authentic sole representatives of the Tamil people, so that they could, with authority, dignity and with equal status conduct talks with the government of Sri Lanka.”


Accepting LTTE’s leadership as the national leadership of the Tamil Eelam Tamils and the Liberation Tigers as the sole and authentic representatives of the Tamil peoplelet us devote our full cooperation for the ideals of the Liberation Tigers’ struggle with honesty and steadfastness. Let us endeavour determinedly, collectively as one group, one nation, one country, transcending race and religious differencesunder the leadership of the LTTE for a life of liberty, honor and justice for the Tamil people. Let us work side by side with the LTTE, who are fighting for the protection and autonomous life of the Tamil speaking people, for the political initiatives under their leadership.”


TNA manifesto 2010

ITAK and the other Tamil parties came together under a banner called Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), and in 1976 passed a resolution calling for a restoration of our lost sovereignty in the background of the continued denial of the right of the Tamil People to self -determination” 


Tamil People are entitled to the right of self-determination


Devolution of powers should be over land, law and order, socioeconomic development including health and education, resources and fiscal powers”


Direct foreign investment in the North and East will be facilitated”


legitimate and inalienable right of the Tamil Speaking Peoples to charter their own destiny in the areas historically inhabited by them within a united country.”


TNA manifesto for 2013 NPC elections


Tamil People are entitled to the right to self-determination


Power sharing arrangements must be established in a unit of a merged Northern and Eastern Provinces based on a Federal structure, in a manner also acceptable to the Tamil Speaking Muslim people”

TNA manifesto for 2013 NPC elections’s explanation of what the plan is should make people open their eyes better)


Devolution of power on the basis of shared sovereignty shall necessarily be over land, law and order, socio-economic development including health and education, resources and fiscal powers”


TNA 2015 manifesto


our right to determine our destiny to ensure self-government in the Tamil Speaking North-East of the country within a united and undivided Sri Lanka.”


Tamil Speaking Northern and Eastern provinces is the historical habitation of the Tamil People and the Tamil Speaking Peoples”


Tamil People are entitled to the right to self-determination in keeping with United Nations International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, both of which Sri Lanka has accepted and acceded to”



Devolution of power on the basis of shared sovereignty shall be over land, law and order, enforcement of the law so as to ensure the safety and security of the Tamil People, socio-economic development including inter-alia health, education, higher and vocational education, agriculture, fisheries, industries, livestock development, cultural affairs, mustering of resources, both domestic and foreign and fiscal powers.” (basically means running a separate state)


meaningful de-militarization resulting in the return to the pre-war situation as it existed in 1983 before the commencement of hostilities by the removal of armed forces, military apparatuses and High Security/Restricted Zones from the Northern and Eastern Provinces.”    



And what are LTTE demands


Thimpu Principles – demands made by LTTE delegation in 1985

  1. recognition of the Tamils of Ceylon as a nation
  2. recognition of the existence of an identified homeland for the Tamils of Ceylon
  3. recognition of the right of self-determination of the Tamil nation
  4. recognition of the right to citizenship and the fundamental rights of all Tamils of Ceylon


Note: Term Ceylon Tamils came to be used only after 1911 prior Tamils were known and referred to as Malabars by Portuguese, Dutch and British. Malabars are from India and have no right to seek self-determination in Sri Lanka while Ceylon Tamils earlier known as Malabars cannot seek self-determination either!


TNA leader Sambanthan’s 2012 speech made in Batticoloa to the Tamil people is crucial to understand the psyche.


Although the issue at hand is the same, the prevailing conditions are different. The struggle is the same, but the approaches we employ are different. Our aim is the same, but our strategies are different. The players are the same, but the alliances are different. That is the nature of the Tamil people. Although we still have the same aim, the methods we use are now different.”

Sambanthan says the issue (self-determination for Tamils) is the same.

Sambanthan says the struggle (self-determination for Tamils) is the same

Sambanthan says their aims are the same (but strategies are different)

Sambanthan says the players are the same (but alliances are different

Sambanthan ends by saying

That is the nature of the Tamil people. Although we still have the same aim, the methods we use are now different”


Readers should now understand the dangers of abolishing the constitution primarily because it prevents the realization of the aims & objectives of political parties that have been asking for little, expecting more, buying time & people and waiting patiently and propped by international vested parties who see that aim as the perfect means to realize their geopolitical objectives and so promise them their support. But we know from history’s experience that we are likely to not only loose our island, these separatists are likely to be in worse conditions then they claim to be separating from. However, these are experiments or risks we cannot & should not take just to say at the end ‘didn’t we tell you so’ because there will be no means to reverse once the damage is done.


What the Tamil political leadership has been striving for is the same as that which Tamil militant groups took up arms for. 

Tamil leaders wanted to rule as kings over their own where caste would prevail, LTTE wanted to do the exact same with the gun but where low castes ruled. 

International community are using this as separate state that hold the riches they want to acquire would be easier for them to grasp & control. 


Are we then insane to allow these politicians to draft a new constitution, privatize land & abolish the Executive Presidency which are an obstacle for their objectives. Look imagine the damage that these 3 items will result in?


Why are external parties helping this? Certainly not for any love for the minorities. They know a weakened centre, privatizing of land, removal of national army from these new autonomous provinces will make it easier for them to get their dirty hands on the resources (land, ports, harbours, airports, natural resources etc)


Can’t people foresee the lurking dangers?






Shenali D Waduge


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