Mannar is Trincomalee in the western coast! Such is its strategic significance. After decades of very strong LTTE influence and control of some parts of the region, security forces cleared the entire area and the coastline. However, in doing so they disturbed a geopolitical master plan of outsiders colluding with willing locals. In a disturbing development, Mannar Bishop Rayappu Joseph has once again displayed his naked Tamil racism. Various theories have been suggested as plaster solutions. None of these can resolve the underlying problems. Sadly most observers only see the superficial problem and miss the real problems underneath. Blaming the entire Church for his actions is not justified but Church’s inaction will only worsen its problems. What are the real reasons for the conduct of the Mannar Bishop?
Mannar is strategically important to both
and Sri Lanka . It is the closest place to India . The proposed India would run across the Sethu Canal . Mannar Sea would be the closest land area to the Mannar Island ! Given its commercial and defence importance to Sethu Canal , it gets plenty of attention. And that means interested parties trying to maintain a pro-Indian or Indian subjugated presence around Mannar. At the same time it means anti-Indian elements also trying to have their presence to use it as a bargaining tool. India
Being the closest place to
makes it a prime location for illegal immigrants from Tamil Nadu. With the nation falling into British hands, it completely lost control of its boundaries. Tamil Nadu illegal immigrants arrived by boat to Mannar. Train tickets were issues in India to any railway station in Madras . This was the gravity of the illegal immigration problem. Fishing and pearl fishing were other reasons Tamil Nadu illegal immigrants were attracted to Mannar. Ceylon
army and navy do a good job in deterring illegal immigrants, a lot needs to be done to overcome this threat. Prosecution of all illegal immigrants is a must to stop them. During the war LTTE extensively used the western coast around Mannar to transport weapons. There were a number of large LTTE bases including Sea Tiger bases in this region. These bases were so effectively fortified that even security forces backed by air power were bogged down for long periods of time to take them. A good example is Adampan. LTTE’s plan was to control the Mannar district coastline which is of huge strategic importance. Whatever the external plan to dominate Mannar, some Tamil Elamists are big time fans of this plan. Sri Lanka
Knowing the significance of the north-western coast very well, USA set up a VOA transmit centre in the early 1990s in Iranawila (http://wikimapia.org/2967479/Voice-of-America-Iranawila). Due to war and associated violence, they could not set it up anywhere further north than that. Interestingly the Mannar region completely fell into the control of Tigers in 1991 including the Mannar “rice bowl”.
Mannar has oil fields that are currently being explored. Given the huge economic and strategic importance of these oil fields, many more external forces will soon start interfering in the region. Further economic resources include large fishing resources and other oceanic resources.
lies between the Mannar island and Kachchativu Island . Its ownership and use have been in dispute and the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister has repeatedly vowed to take it back. He sure has agents on this side of the India Palk Strait.
When the Mannar Tamil Catholic Bishop Rayappu Joseph starts acting up, it is due to these reasons, not due to his Tamil racist views alone. He has a twin challenge. Mannar is the only Christian majority district in the country. And today it is virtually Tamil only. Retaining these two characteristics is the challenge faced by a number of anti-Sri Lankan elements including the Mannar Catholic bishop.
The defence establishment must identify this link, the threat and put in place foolproof mechanisms to frustrate this external-internal collaboration to rob the island nation its valuable resources.
Mannar was a Sinhala majority area and subsequently turned to a Tamil majority area due to illegal migration from Tamil Nadu. Mannarama (Mannar) District had over 8% Sinhalese in 1981 but it fell to zero thereafter. War and hostilities by Tamil racist politicians who always managed to win in Mannar of Vanni district resulted in this disaster.
Prince Vijaya and his associates landed in the island in 543BC at a location close to Mannar. There he met a Yaksha princess by the name Kuveni. Subsequent rulers ensured Mannar is under their complete control. For instance King Dutugemunu’s forces ambushed and decimated an army of 60,000 from Tamil Nadu in Mannar following the defeat of Elara.
Even the Madhu Catholic Shrine was built there following the Sinhala king from
– Wimaladharmasuriya – 1 granting permission. He considered the plight of northern Catholics as the Dutch persecuted them. Area under the modern Mannar District excluding the island was under the Kandy until 1815. However, this act of unparalleled kindness has been exploited by the likes of Rayappu Joseph who know nothing about history and refuses to acknowledge historical facts. Kandyan Kingdom
Ethnic composition of the region must be changed by a sustained process of colonization supported by security forces and state sponsorship. Only such a move can bring lasting peace and pro-Sri Lankan geopolitical control of the region. Sadly both Trincomalee and Mannar areas are politically dominated by pro-Tamil Elamist, anti-Sri Lankan political groups with very strong links with Tamil Nadu and the Tamil Diaspora. These are telltale signs of an impending disaster. What comes of Rayappu Joseph’s loose lips must be interpreted in this context.