Sinnathamby Sivamaharajah, former MP, media person and a senior leader of the pro-LTTE Tamil National Alliance (TNA), was shot dead by unidentified men at his house in Tellippalai in Jaffna on Sunday, the Sri Lankan Army said.
Sivamaharajah (68) was a leading light of the Jaffna press, having been the Managing Director of the daily Namadhu Eelanadu.
According to Tamilnet, his house was in the Sri Lankan Army`s High Security Zone (HSZ).
Sivamaharajah had been a champion of the rights of those Tamils displaced by the Army when the HSZs were established in the Jaffna peninsula.
SL Navy arrests Indian trawler with 85 refugees
The Sri Lankan Navy arrested an Indian trawler with three Indian crew as it was ferrying 85 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees from Talaimannar to Rameswaran in India on Sunday.
Navy spokesman Com DKP Dassanayake said that the men and the vessel were handed over to the Mannar police.
The number of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees in India, as result of the recent fighting in the island, has gone beyond 6,500, UN agencies here say.
SL Army on offensive to capture Elephant Pass
According to the LTTE`s military spokesman, Rasaiah Ilanthirayan, the Sri Lankan Army is mounting pressure on the LTTE in Kilaly in Thenmarachchi, with a plan to re-capture Elephant Pass, which it lost to the LTTE in 2000.
Heavy fighting was reported in Kilaly last weekend, with both the Army and the LTTE claiming heavy casualties running into hundreds of dead and wounded.
Sarkaria commission report not given to SL
The Sri Lankan government has received no documents from India relating devolution of power, according to the Secretary of the Ministry of Constitutional Affairs here.
Denying an Indian agency`s story that the government of India had given Sri Lanka the report of the Sarkaria Commission on state autonomy, the official said that no documents had been received.
`All that India had said was that they would be able to send constitutional experts,` the official told Hindustan Times.
The chairman of the Expert Committee on devolution, HL de Silva, said that the committee had not received any Indian document on devolution.
The Justice RS Sarkaria Commission was appointed by the DMK government in the 1970s to go into the question of state autonomy and suggest constitutional amendments.
But its recommendations were not implemented.
In course of time, there were practical changes for the better in Centre-State relations in India, which obviated the need for urgent constitutional amendments in regard to Centre-State relations.
In the late 1980s, single party rule had ended at the Centre, and regional parties like the DMK, which were for separation or more autonomy for the states, began to be part of coalition governments at the Centre. Centre-State relations also changed suitably.
However, the Sarakaria commission report and the report on autonomy for Jammu and Ladakh could be guiding lights for a solution to the ethnic problem in Sri Lanka, some Indian experts feel.
But it is not certain if the Central government wants the Sarkaria report to be used in Sri Lanka because it is associated with the DMK and not the Centre.
If, indeed, it has been recommended, as the agency report suggests, then it shows the influence of the present DMK government on the Centre`s Sri Lanka policy.