Indian Red Cross

India Sheds Crocodile Tears for Palestinians but Shows No Concern for Sri Lankan Tamils

Thanjai Nalankilli

TAMIL TRIBUNE, July 2008 (ID. 2008-07-02)
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ABBREVIATIONS

LTTE - Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam

UN - United Nations


On February 11, 2008, India condemned Israel for using force against Palestinians in Gaza. It said that the misery and hardship faced by Palestinians in Gaza is deplorable. It further added that it would provide relief supplies to Gaza civilians blockaded and denied basic amenities.

Closer to home, Tamil civilians in northeastern Sri Lanka are suffering untold hardships because of the use of force by Sri Lankan Government (in spite of LTTE's willingness for ceasefire and talks). While almost all democracies have criticized the gross human rights violations perpetrated by Sri Lankan military, para-military and police against minority Tamils, India is yet to condemn Sri Lanka as it did with Israel. Tamil people in northern Sri Lanka suffer from malnutrition and lack of medical supplies as reported repeatedly by independent relief agencies. Yet India has not sent an ounce food or medicine to them. Since the Indian government was not doing anything, people from Tamilnadu donated monies and purchased food and medicine to send to fellow Tamils in northern Sri Lanka through the Red Cross. India refuses to give permission to Red Cross to take the food and medicine to Sri Lanka; it is well over a year since the request for permission was made. India was going to send relief supplies to Gaza thousands of miles away but refuses permission for Red Cross to send food and medicine to Sri Lankan Tamils just a few miles away. Do the sufferings of Tamil people amuse Indian rulers? 

[Who are these Indian rulers who show utter disregard for Tamil sufferings? Hindi politicians dominate the Indian parliament because of their numbers and they essentially control Indian government policies and actions towards Sri Lanka.]


UPDATE:

TAMIL TRIBUNE, March 2009 (ID. 2009-03-u1-a-x)

In December 2008, the principal partner of the Indian ruling coalition, the Congress Party, condemned Israeli attacks on Gaza strip. It said, "The disproportionate use of brute force by Israel, resulting in colossal loss of civilian lives, including women and children, has caused deep shock and anguish throughout the world. This action, therefore, deserves strongest condemnation. Congress called for the United Nations (UN) and all countries to intervene for an immediate ceasefire and resumption of dialogue. (This statement was made in the context of the fighting between Israeli army and Palestinian fighters, the Hamas, stationed in Gaza.)

At the very same moment fighting was raging in neighboring Sri Lanka between the Sri Lankan army and the Tamil freedom fighters, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Congress Party made vague statements like we are concerned about Tamil civilians but never made a strong statement such as the one it had made in the previous paragraph about the Gaza fighting. There was no condemnation of Sri Lankan military action that was killing hundreds of civilians. Also it never asked the Indian government to bring the matter before the United Nations. Instead the India was providing training to Sri Lankan Air Force that was bombing and creating heavy casualties among Tamil civilians.

It is also interesting that the Congress Party called for dialogue between Israel and Hamas. India's position on Sri Lanka was that LTTE should lay down arms; no such requirement was made on Hamas.

Thanjai Nalankilli - Thanjai Nalangkilli

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