The Tamil Youth Organization (TYO-Canada) organized sports and cultural events on June 11 and 12 in honour of Pon. Sivakumar, a Jaffna Tamil student activist in the early seventies who committed suicide on June 5 1974 to escape torture in police custody.
To mark the 37th anniversary of Sivakumar’s death, TYO organized its annual soccer tournament in partnership with the Canadian Tamil Sports Association (CTSA) on Saturday June 11, and on June 12 held a memorial event with cultural performances, dramas, speeches, and poems performed by Canadian university and high school students.
“Pon Sivakumaran is considered to be a pioneer in the fight for Tamil self-determination. His commitment, resolve, courage and firm determination sets examples for all youth around the world,” said TYO spokesperson Priyanth Nallaratnam.
“We are proud to host a successful tournament in his name to further engrave his name and his contributions to the Tamil freedom struggle in the hearts and minds of Tamil youth growing up.”
L Baskanthan, a student from the University of Toronto, said “As youth being a part of events to remember our fallen heroes help strengthen Tamil identity.”
“We firmly believe that remembering Sivakumaran anna, we too can learn from his unwavering passion and commitment to freedom for the Tamil people.”
“Students Uprising Day gives us motivation and allows us to recommit ourselves to work towards the freedom of our people,” she said.