Tamil Nadu political parties, including the main opposition DMK Saturday termed the dissolution of the Sri Lankan Parliament as “murder of democracy”. They also sought the Central government’s intervention to ensure that the security of India and the welfare of the Tamil people in the island nation are protected.
DMK chief M K Stalin said the dissolution of parliament was “trampling of the Constitution” and “atrocious” since the Sri Lankan constitution says that only a resolution by two thirds of its members can pave the way to dissolve the House within four and a half years of its convening. The leader of the opposition in the Tamil Nadu assembly, dubbed the move as a political emergency that threatened stability and jeopardised the welfare of Tamils.
Urging the Centre to condemn the “murder of democracy”, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader said the Union government must take steps to ensure a dignified life for Tamils with peace and security. Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) leader Anbumani Ramadoss said although it was Sri Lanka’s internal issue, the Centre cannot overlook the developments as the security of India and the welfare of the Tamil population of the island nation was at stake.
“It is a brutal murder of democracy since Parliament’s tenure ends only in August 2020,” Anbumani, who is also the party’s Dharmapuri Lok Sabha MP, said. He alleged that the Maithripala Sirisena-Rajapaksa combine would try to win the January 5 polls through intimidatory tactics and by indulging in poll irregularities. If they succeeded, it would lead to “both anti-Tamil” and “anti-India measures” in Sri Lanka, Anbumani claimed. “Strategic locations in Sri Lanka may be given on a platter to China, jeopardising India’s security interests,” he alleged.
Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) general secretary Vaiko accused Sirisena of executing a “treacherous drama” to hand over full powers to Rajapaksa, who was allegedly responsible for the killings of Tamil people during the civil war in 2009. T T V Dhinakaran of Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam too condemned the dissolution of parliament and demanded that the United Nations and the Indian government monitor the situation to ensure that Tamils were not affected in any way.
Accusing Rajapaksa of being responsible for the killings of Tamils in 2009, he said the House was dissolved at a time when Tamils all over the world were expecting annulment of his appointment as the prime minister by parliament, an “atrocious act that would root out democracy”.
Sri Lanka is facing a major constitutional crisis after President Maithripala Sirisena ousted Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and replaced him with Rajapaksa and suspended Parliament.
Days ahead of the floor test in the house, his spokesman Friday acknowledged that Rajapaksa remains short of the ‘magic number’ 113 required to prove his majority in Parliament. The sudden constitutional crisis came amid growing tensions between Sirisena and Wickremesinghe on several policy matters and the President has been critical of the prime minister and his policies, especially on the economy and security.