United Nations Organisation appears to have come out with a report on the role of Sri Lankan government during the recent anti insurgency action, which is not flattering. Naturally, Sri Lankan Government is upset and does not approve the content of this investigative report of UN.
But, where is the need for the Sri Lankan Government to ask the Sri Lankan citizens to come out on to the streets to protest ? What would be the benefit of such agitations and protests by the citizens, which would only lead to loss of man hours and energy ? Obviously, the most appropriate step for the Sri Lankan Government would be to react with dignity and wait for the report to be officially released and then deny any adverse comments with suitable counter points, if the Sri Lankan government would feel strongly about it.
It is known around the world that there was a divisive movement in Sri Lanka and the separatist forces were brutal , ruthless and indulged in variety of warfare methods , killing hundreds of Sri Lankan soldiers and innocent people. Any Government in the world would have reacted to such problems with military means to put down the rebels even as it would try to find out an amicable solution for the problem. Sri Lankan Government has nothing to feel apologetic about it’s actions, some of which could have been undesirable.
At the same time, there has to be a genuine regret amongst the President and other leaders of Sri Lankan Government that all such violent acts have taken place, which resulted in grave sufferings to several innocent Sri Lankan Tamils who were as much citizens of Sri Lanka as other citizens like Sinhalese and Muslims.
Now, that such unfortunate incidents have inevitably taken place, Sri Lankan Government should conduct itself with grace and feelings of compassion and do all that is possible to mitigate the sufferings of the Sri Lankan Tamils in the war torn area. It should certainly find imaginative and quick solutions for their problems and widely publicise such steps taken.
Today, no country in the world can afford to allow divisive forces who indulge in violent methods to strip the country apart. There are such problems in several countries including India and all of them use the force to put down the militants. Even United States of America or Britain or France would not have acted differently , if they were to face the problems similar to what Sri Lanka faced.
The United Nations Report should certainly qualify its adverse comments by describing the particular conditions in which the Sri Lankan Government had to take such steps. Isolated accusations without reference to the then scenario would amount to criticism in vacuum.
The dignified reaction of Sri Lankan Government would be to admit that some unfortunate incidents could have taken place beyond its control in the heat of the war . It should take the United Nations and the world community into confidence about the rehabilitations steps that it is now taking to undo the sufferings of the victims. It can even ask for support from UNO for such proactive steps initiated.
Unfortunately, there is valid criticism against the Sri Lankan Government today about the press freedom in Sri Lanka and the way that the opposite Presidential candidate has been treated and continue to be treated.
An image building exercise of Sri Lankan Government should involve all round measures including creating a positive climate of good will in the country and having an approach of malice towards none.
N S Venkataraman