The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) said yesterday the crisis in the party was yet another conspiracy it had to face but assured the party would re-emerge stronger and would never waver from its objective of creating a socialist and democratic Sri Lanka.
General Secretary Tilvin Silva said there were similar attempts to weaken the JVP under previous regimes but none of them were successful.
“We will come out of this crisis stronger than ever and will commit ourselves to fulfill the aspirations of our party cadres to serve the country,” Mr. Silva said and added that a detailed statement would be issued on the crisis.
However, party leader Somawansa Amarasinghe maintained there was no crisis in the party.
“The JVP is functioning like before and there is no crisis to talk about. I won’t respond to rumours and at present we are focused on the local government polls,” Mr. Amarasinghe stressed.
The Daily Mirror in its front page lead story yesterday highlighted a major split within the party with the Colombo, Kalutara and Gampaha organisers having joined politburo member Premakumar Gunaratnam’s group which is opposing JVP leader Somawansa Amarasinghe and those supporting him.
After the exiled JVPer Premkumar Gunaratnam, returned to the country a few months ago, had with party cadres in 14 districts had acted to dissolve dozens of JVP-affiliated organisations including the National Bhikku Front.
Premkumar -- the brother of JVP senior Ranjitham (who was killed during the 1988/89 insurgency) -- had been in self-exile in Australia till recently and is said to have been of the opinion that the JVP should support the Tamil cause while the Amarasinghe group is opposed to communalising the party. It is also learnt that the Gunaratnam group had planned to go underground and pave the way for an armed struggle. (Sandun A Jayasekera)