Prime Minister Dr. D.M. Jayaratne says that the title “Indian Tamil” should be removed from the estate Tamil workers and they should be given the opportunity to live as Sri Lankans. Those workers who migrated to Sri Lanka to serve in the estates of the colonial era live in the country for number of decades and as they have spent many generations in our country, it is not fair to use the term Indian Tamil for them.
The Prime Minister was speaking at a Special Service conducted in Sri Muttumari Amman Pattini Kovil, Little Valley in Deltota. The Prime Minister also stated that the government hopes to create an environment in which the estate workers could live on equal grounds. Under this, we intend to name them as Sri Lankans instead of These estate workers who live in our country for number of decades should be considered as Sri Lankan citizens. From the past, Sinhala and Tamil people have had close relationships. There is no considerable difference between the lifestyle of Sinhala people and the culture of the Tamil people.
” During my term as the Minister of Plantation Industries, I launched a new programme for estate workers to have a good standard of life. I helped to give them a new proper name, building a good house, generating extra income through the self employment programmes etc. In most of the cases, these programmes were successful! However, I expect to continue to work in creating a better social status for the estate workers in the upcountry areas. Many politicians who said to be the representatives of the estate workers do not make any voice for them. ” the premire said. “However, as politicians, we have raised our voice on number of occasions in favour of them regarding the construction of houses, roads and schools etc for them.
We strive to teach Tamil for Sinhala children and Sinhala for Tamil children to create a close relationship between two nations. We hope to recruit educated youth in estate areas as Sinhala medium teachers. When around 1.5 million Tamil people live in North and East areas, only around 1.5 million Tamil people live in the South. Under this scenario, it is not fair to ask for a separate state for the Tamils living in the North & East only. The majority of Tamils live with Sinhala and Muslims people harmoniously. Around 78,000,000 of Tamil people live in India but they do not ask for a separate state.
Under the leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksha, we never do any injustice on any of the nations. He has created the environment to live for all the nations peacefully and harmoniously. We will not be able to rise as a country as long as we divided on the basis races, languages and religions etc.
Therefore, we should disregard all our differences and create the environment to live peacefully. He also said that he was able to financially assist kovils in the Northern area under the provisions of the Ministry of Buddhasasana & Religious Affairs. Ninety percent of the kovils in the estates and all the kovils in the Gampola electorate have been assisted. He further added that he had formulated a programme to help all the religious places including temples in the whole island. The Chairmen of the Little Valley Muttu Amman Pattini Kovil Ravi Kanna and K. Ramasami, the chief Priest of the kovil J. Jeganathan and many Hindu devotees participated in this event.