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TPA leader demands Princess Anne ‘accept historical responsibility’ for plight of Malaiyaha Tamil community

Democratic People's Front (DPF) and Tamil Progressive Alliance (TPA) leader Mano Ganesan charged Princess Anne “to accept historical responsibility” over the plight of the Malaiyaha Tamil community, as the royal landed in Sri Lanka earlier today.

In a statement released as the British official embarked on her tour of the island, the parliamentarian said “I find no better time to raise this issue”.

“Marginalization of our community is the dark segment of this 75 year history,” he said. “We don’t want to submit a list of blames. But I submit a reminder on the dark history to Anne.”

Ganesan went on to state,

“The Malaiyaha Tamil community as they are ethnically called, were brought to Sri Lanka, then Ceylon, from India since 1823 by the companies under the British crown. They were controversially deprived of citizenship immediately after independence in 1948, though plantation workers provided second highest foreign reserve in Asia, to the treasury of Ceylon. This ungrateful activity happened over-riding the protection for minorities found in article 29(2) of the then British given constitution. There after many were subjected to involuntary repatriation to India from 1964. All these occurred while Ceylon was very much under dominion status headed by British Crown.”

“Our worker people are tied to and dependent on their plantation employers and not full-fledged citizens of Sri Lanka even today after British left us high and dry in the hands of local brown Raj that replaced the British white Raj. Her majesty’s government failed to do what French rulers did to the people of Pondicherry in India.”

The princess is visiting the country at the request of the UK Foreign Office and is set to tour Colombo, Kandy, and Jaffna, as well as meet with Sri Lanka’s president Ranil Wickremesinghe.

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