Madras High Court orders to destroy pro-LTTE book

MDMK leader Vaiko on Thursday opposed the Madras High Court order directing the destruction of over 1,700 copies of a pro-Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) book Tamil Eelam Sivakkirathu — a compilation of speeches delivered by Tamil Nationalist Movement leader Pazha Nedumaran. He said that the judgment cannot destroy the idea of Eelam in the minds of Tamils.

The copies of the book were confiscated by the Q Branch when Mr. Nedumaran tried to send them to Tamils in Germany in 1994. Since then, the State government had announced the withdrawal of certain sections. The case against him was dismissed but the copies of the book were never returned.

The author had moved the court seeking the return of the books, which too was dismissed and hence an appeal was filed in the Madras High Court in 2007. After a gap of 11 years, a division bench on Wednesday ordered the destruction of the copies holding that the LTTE was still a banned organisation in India.

“The comments made by Justice V. Muralidharan in his judgment dismissing the appeal are quite strong. They also shake the very base of the freedom of expression,” Mr. Vaiko said in a statement in Chennai.

Recalling the judgment of the Supreme Court in his case, which said that delivering a speech supporting a banned organisation was not a crime, Mr. Vaiko said, “Has the High Court judge ignored the judgment of the Supreme Court? There is no danger to the integration of the country by supporting Tamil Eelam.”

Hoping for an appeal

Contending that the book merely listed out the hardships faced by Tamils in Sri Lanka, Mr. Vaiko pointed out that a book Intervention in Sri Lanka: The IPKF Experience Retold penned by retired Major General Harkirat Singh (which supported the LTTE) has not been banned. Arguing that such judgments would not control the sentiments of the Tamils towards Eelam, he hoped that Mr. Nedumaran would appeal against the High Court judgment. (The Hindu)

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