Let rationality reign!
The statement by the
External Affairs Ministry which we front-paged yesterday,
clarifies many a contentious issue which has surfaced over the
temporary disappearance of political activists Gunaratnam and
Dimuthu Attygalle from public life. While there is a clear
tendency in some quarters to react with excessive emotion to
some of the points at issue, the External Affairs Ministry
statement puts the record straight on these questions with the
utmost clarity and coherence.
The law and order authorities are continuing their
investigations on the incidents in question and it would be
inappropriate, from a legal point of view, for any responsible
quarter to hazard any explanations on the matters raised by
these temporary disappearances.
The investigations and the attendant legal process have to
take their course and one would be clearly in the wrong to make
utterances which would smack of prejudgments. Accordingly, it is
best that all concerned are guided by reason and the
consideration that the best interests of the public must be
attached top priority.
However, some salient issues need to be kept in mind lest
feelings are permitted by the more volatile to rule their heads.
As pointed out by the authorities, the raising of the sensitive
and explosive issue of disappearances could have as its end the
embarrassment of the state at this juncture when human rights
violation allegations are being leveled against it in some
international quarters. On the other hand, it would be clearly
counter-productive for the state to allow itself to be embroiled
in an issue of this nature.
The quarters who stand to gain by scares and scandals of this
kind are the enemies of the state who would go to any extreme to
denigrate the state for cheap political gain.
Therefore, the possibility which the more reflective quarters
of the citizenry need to raise is whether sections of the
Opposition have not orchestrated these ‘disappearances’ in view
of the gains which would accrue to them, whereas it would be
clearly foolhardy for the state to allow itself to be inveigled
into developments of this nature. We call for the exercise of
reason and not emotion on the part of all concerned.
In fact, rationality and logical thinking ought to be our
predominant characteristics in the days ahead. It is quite
obvious that the enemies of the state are on what could be
called an all out bid to embarrass it. It would go to any
extreme apparently to undo what is being achieved by the state.
Such approaches to politics should not surprise anyone because
this is the stuff of opportunistic politics.
But the well-meaning and reasonable among us need to keep our
heads. It is the general populace who would suffer most by this
destructive brand of politics and the unsettling consequences
which could derive from it. If the state is isolated
internationally, for instance, it is the ordinary citizenry
which could face the worst consequences from such a policy
stance. For example, they could be deprived of some of their
But we believe it is the duty of every straight- thinking
citizen to remain calm and detached and to the best of their
ability to help the state in its efforts to put things right in
this country. The country is on a swift course to normalcy and
it is clearly in the national interest for things to remain this
way. Let every right thinking person stand up and be counted.