I was amused to read in the national dailies that the UNP is to hold
a May Day rally in Jaffna with the Tamil National Alliance.
May Day is observed in Sri Lanka as a "Political Parties Day" to
project the strength of various political parties, exhibiting the
disunity of the workers and their knave in going after political
patronage, sacrificing the day dedicated to the working class at the
feet of political sycophancy.
On the other hand, what is despicable is the UNP aligning with the
Tamil National Alliance, which is a racial political party, to observe
May Day, when the working people transcends racialism and communalism.
The UNP by doing so has gone against the very principle of observing May
Day, a day dedicated to the working people.
Apart from that, what is significant is the UNP's ability to spread
the desease of disunity it is suffering from to the TNA too, perhaps
another feather in the UNP leader's hat.
It is a matter for concern that conductors of the SLTB are not in
uniform whilst on duty, when even most of the conductors in private
buses are clad in uniforms.
According to Section 185 of the Motor Traffic Act where a conductor
is carried on an omnibus used on any highway that conductor shall have
the word 'conductor' legibly marked on some conspicuous part of his
clothing or wear in a conspicuous position, a metal badge bearing the
word 'conductor' in legible letters. This requirement is not being
enforced in respect of conductors of the SLTB even though they may not
wear a uniform.
In the interest of the passengers, I wish to request the Chairman of
the SLTB and other relevant authorities concerned to ensure that all
conductors are issued with uniforms and the provisions of the said Act
is enforced preferably with a number assigned to each conductor so that
errant conductors who do not issue tickets after collecting fares and
those who involve in various acts of misconduct can be easily identified
for suitable action.
The following should be noted with regard to the recent alleged human
rights violations made against Sri Lanka by the US. If investigations
for alleged violations of human rights of civilians in the North by the
security forces are to be made, then investigations should also be
carried out on the killings by the LTTE of government soldiers held as
prisoners by them.
It should be noted that Prabhakaran called for a dialog with the
government to solve the ethnic issue only when the war turned against
him. When he was able to muster his forces again he promptly abandoned
all discussions and resumed fighting. This shows that he did not have
any real belief in discussions.
Further this human rights concept was mostly brought up by the West
as a tool with which they could fight communism. For instance there was
no talk about human rights during the Vietnam war. During this war US
forces killed two million Vietnamese most of whom were civilians, and
they also put many Vietnamese women in difficulty. There were 40
Vietnamese killed for every US soldier who died in that war. The Sri
Lankan government should not take a defensive stance in this regard any
more. Allegations against the US too for violations of human rights
should be brought at the Human Rights Council of the UN. In fact this
was also pointed out recently by a human rights organization with regard
to human rights violations by the US forces in Iraq during the Bush