LTTE event: Tamil stars face the music
A bevy of South Indian film personalities might be heading for
controversy after their names were included in a fund-raiser in London
that Sri Lankan reports allege is in aid of the Liberation Tigers of
Tamil Eelam (LTTE). An article carried by the Sri Lankan Defence
Ministry website has alleged that the organiser of the event, White
Pigeon, is an LTTE front organisation.
In an interview earlier this year to the Washington Post Radio, the
Sri Lankan Ambassador in Washington Bernard Goonetilleke had alleged
that White Pigeon was another avatar of a psuedo Tamil charity called
Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), which has since been closed.
The article also points out that White Pigeon’s founder and present
chairman is Dr. N. Sathiyamoorthy, who was chairman of TRO at the time
Charity Commission’s regulatory arm ordered its closure. White Pigeon,
however, describes itself as a charity focusing on landmine victims in
Tamil-dominated north and east Sri Lanka.
The event is scheduled to take place at Alexandra Palace in London in
January. The star line-up, going by the advance publicity to the event,
includes Sathyaraj, Sibi Sathyaraj, Bhavana, national-award winning
singer Chitra, Jeeva, Madhumita and singer Karthick.
“Sri Lankan expatriates in the UK, as usual, have already briefed the
British authorities again about the proposed event in January 2008. But
how long do the British authorities expect to be spoon-fed in this
manner?” asks the article. When contacted, singer Karthik said he gave
his consent through an event coordinator Vishu but added: “I am
surprised and apprehensive of the whole thing.”
Madhumita said she received queries if she could perform for a show
to collect funds for a temple in London.
“Preparing for my final year BBA exams in February, I was not too
keen. This is news to me.”
Sibiraj said he was surprised to find his name on the list. “Possibly
they took it for granted as my father figured in the numbers.” Bhavana
clarified she was in the dark on the whole thing.