The Students’ Union of the Eastern University of Sri Lanka has expressed its vehement condemnation of the demolition of the Mullivaikal memorial monument in Jaffna University, calling for the reconstruction of the demolished structure and demanded that symbols of Tamil identity be protected at universities.
“In addition to emphasizing that the memorial monument be reconstructed in the same area, we demand that protection of symbols of Tamil identity be ensured at universities,” read a statement released this morning.
It further noted that the destruction of the monument would plunge Tamils, who are still reeling from scars caused by the war, to greater agony.
“The demolition of a monument that commemorates the thousands of lost lives in the war subjects Tamils, who are still recovering from the consequences of the war, to greater agony,” it added. “The Eastern University and the people of the Eastern parts vehemently condemn this act”.
The statement added that protection of memorial structures belonging to each community in the country is imperative to social harmony. “Destruction of memorial structures or historical symbols in the country, belonging to any community, in such a way that it disregards the sentiment of the people is unacceptable and protection of such monuments is the duty of every citizen who seeks harmony in the society,” it said.
The statement also expressed its support for the hartal that is scheduled to take place on January 11, Monday, as a mark of protest against the destruction of the memorial.
“We extend our complete support for the North-East wide hartal about to take place tomorrow and request that people who live in the North and East also do so.”
The demolition of the Mullivaikal memorial has caused widespread protest and anger against the Sri Lankan government.
Read the full statement in Tamil below.