A dialogue has commenced regarding the directives the Human Rights Council would impose on Sri Lanka at its summit to be held in March this year. We see an environment being created for such a state. The masses who struggled for the independence of the judiciary are told by the government that Hulftsdorp paved the way for separatism. However, even before the commotion was over the government sends G.L Peiris to India, falls on all four limbs and says a package beyond 13 could be given. Beyond 13 is separatism. What G.L. Peiris carried out was an official diplomatic deal. Accordingly, the government has given India an undertaking. Earlier Basil Rajapaksa too had made the same promise. It is the policy of the person who said he is not the owner of the country but the caretaker that is uttered through the minister. Separatism has raised its ugly head even before the victory achieved by war heroes at the military front could be savoured.
This is the era of imperialists. When there are more crises imperialism goes looking for new ‘hunting’ grounds. They adopt new strategies to achieve their goals. Imperialists come looking for resources and cheap labour. Libya and Iraq were invaded for oil resources. Their target to invade Iran is oil resources there. Sudan was partitioned aiming at its oil and gas resources. Imperialists created Kosovo within Serbia targeting valuable zinc deposits.
Mahinda Rajapaksa does not oppose imperialism at all. The door has been widely open for imperialism. He hands over lands, the most valuable resource in the world, to multi-national companies. 5000 acres from Somawathiya in Polonnaruwa District were handed over to a black-listed US company. This dole company has been chased out from soma countries due to its role of destroying the environment. President Mahinda Rajapaksa handed over 2,000 acres at Pelawatte to multi-national companies.
The government took measures to sell 20 acres of very valuable and fertile land from the Colombo city to company owners. Twelve acres were sold to a Hong Kong company while 8 acres were sold to CATIC in China. The Army Hospital that was nearby too was removed from there. The land was sold for Rs.20,000 million while President Mahinda Rajapaksa proposed to parliament to allocate Rs.20,000 million to relocate the Army Hospital. Is this Rajapaksas’ patriotism? The ‘Strategic Development Project’ (Amendment) act was passed in Parliament in 2011. According to the Act the Minister of Economic Development can give tax relief for any project. The bill gives Minister Basil Rajapaksa authority to decide on any project. Five acres from Kompannaveediya were handed over to ‘Welcome’ company to build a hotel. According to the authority he has been given, Basil Rajapaksa has released the company from paying any taxes.
The government took measures to auction 21 islands at Kalpitiya. Already, 14 of these islands have been sold. Seven are to be auctioned. The oil reserves found in Cauvery and the Mannar basins can be identified as a very valuable resource for our country. Tests have proved there is 14,000 million barrels in these deposits. This oil is a resource that belongs to the future generations of our country. Without any consideration for this the oil fields have been partitioned into seven blocks and already one block has been sold to India. It is understood that an agreement has been signed to give it without any taxes. According to this agreement the government of Sri Lanka gets only 10% of the profits. President Rajapaksa has sold the oil resources that would have stabilised our foreign exchange earnings. There is no doubt that imperialists have got no ruler better than Rajapaksa.
Power and energy can be considered a very important sector in our country. As such, the state should have the monopoly of the power and energy sector in the island. A bill brought by the Rajapaksa regime in 2007 did away with the monopoly the Ceylon Electricity Board had in the electricity sector. After 2015 the monopoly the government has for electricity will be abolished. India and China would begin generating, transmission and distribution of electricity in the island. Mahinda Rajapaksa has given this opportunity to foreign companies. Indian companies would begin selling electricity at cheap rates. Then the government will lose its authority on electricity to India. The authority for fuel too is now with the Indian Oil Company. This would seriously affect national security.
A country could have a national economy only if it has exchange control. During J.R. Jayewardene’s period imperialists pressurised him to relax exchange laws. The laws were relaxed to a certain extent. There was more pressure during Chandrika’s time. The exchange laws were relaxed by the 2012/2013 budget of this regime. Exchange laws were relaxed and the way was paved for free circulation of currency. This is a very critical state. This is a regime that allowed imperialists’ capital to come into the country and allowed them to exploit labour and our resources. The only target of imperialists is the cheap labour and resources in the country. If Mahinda Rajapaksa behaves according to the wishes of imperialists what issue does he have with them? Gadaffi and Sadam Hussain took decisions regarding oil resources against the USA. As a result they were pressurised by the USA. There is no such clash in our country as what imperialists need is being carried out without any hindrance. However, Mahinda Rajapaksa creates certain issues in the country. The judiciary is manipulated; the peaceful atmosphere is broken and masses rally against such moves. The imperialists are denied the peaceful atmosphere needed to plunder the resources and cheap labour. Then imperialists try to control Mahinda Rajapaksa through various conditions. During Ranil Wickremesinghe’s period a white paper on education was brought but it had to be withdrawn due to pressure from the people.
However, Mahinda Rajapaksa has got the bills passed and private universities are constructed. The IMF need is fulfilled to the letter.
A very serious situation exists with regard to the security of the country. Trincomalee Harbour was known as the military centre of Asia. However, the government set apart an economic area to India near Trincomalee Harbour. Now India is constructing ‘Gandhi’ road from its economic zone to Trincomlee Harbour, a new jetty is being constructed in the harbour. The ownership of the high security zone around Trincomalee Harbour is with India. This was a target when the Indo – Sri Lanka pact was signed. All constructions in our country are being carried out by foreign companies. Railway lines, stadiums, power stations, the highway projects have been given to foreign companies. As such, this government has no conflict with imperialism.
The latest strategy is to create hatred among communities. Despite three years having gone by since the end of the war, this regime never attempts to promote harmony between the Sinhalese and the Tamils. Now there is an attempt to disrupt peace between the Sinhalese and the Muslims. The rulers are following a policy of looking the other way. Imperialism is attempting to get a referendum held to demerge the North and the East. Sudan and East Timor were partitioned by imperialists. They are attempting to try out the same strategy in Sri Lanka. Imperialists pressurise the government to go for a referendum regarding the national question. It could be a blessing for certain sections. Imperialists’ intentions would be lost if Muslims support us at a referendum. As such, modern John Doyles are using various cats’ paws to achieve their agendas. This is why various kinds of ‘bala senas’ surface now. They knowingly or unknowingly serve imperialism.
The destruction being carried out in political, economic, social and cultural sectors could be compared with incidents in our history. The best example that finds a parallel with the present situation is the reign of Sri Wickrema Rajasinghe in 1815. That administration is very similar to the destruction taking place now. Sri Wickrema Rajasinghe who was able to fight the British in 1803 and save the country made a complete reversal in 1815. He mistrusted all those who fought against the British. He did not have any regard for those who fought for the country. He dragged all his family members into the administration and carried on a family rule. He did not listen to the elite and ignored people’s wishes. He made revenge the only process of his administration. The story of Ehelepola is a good example. The masses were levied high taxes. The people didn’t have enough to eat. The Maha Sangha, the elite and the general public despised King Rajasinghe. The king was a womaniser and he did everything other than rule the country. This was a good opportunity for imperialists.
The British decided to capture the upcountry under such an environment. The slogan of the British was to ‘liberate the common man from the clutches of the cruel king.’ It was the people who captured the king for the British. It was because his rule was against the people.
We can learn a lesson from this story from our history. One is the ruler should have confidence in people’s power. The people who were against the king did not oppose imperialists. The country was handed over to the British. However, the people who realised their error launched an anti-imperialist struggle in 1818. Then they were too late.
The people in the Kandyan kingdom should have launched a struggle if the vicious rule of the king paved the way for imperialists. The people in the country had to suffer from 1815 to 1948 due to the mistake of not carrying out this struggle. We should oppose not only the king who carries out a family rule but imperialism as well. We should oppose the economic, political and undemocratic acts carried out by the modern day ‘king’. Also, we should struggle to destroy the imperialist enemy that enters the country through the path paved by the rulers. We have to strike the enemy that paves the way and the enemy that treads along that path.
Sixty-five years have gone by since our country has gained the so-called independence. Throughout these 65-years our country has been ruled by four ‘walawwas’ and imperialist forces that cohabitated with them. The Medemulana walawwa is ruling the country now. After 65-years we are left with a broken down economy, a society full of animosity, a country where the ownership of resources has been denied to its people and students are denied university education. A country where the farmer, the employee of the state, private and estate sector is unable to make ends meet.
The economy, education and health sectors have broken down in the country that is directed by imperialism. This country should be liberated from the family rule that drags the country along imperialist policies. The ‘Anti-imperialist People’s Movement’ will play a major role in rallying Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslim masses to topple the pro-imperialist family rule and build a new society.