Bloodshed Within Sacred Walls | Daily News

Bloodshed Within Sacred Walls

32nd Anniversary of Kattankudy Mosque massacre
One of the mosques attacked by the LTTE in Kattankudy.
One of the mosques attacked by the LTTE in Kattankudy.

The blood of our Muslim brothers had been shed in this precious land 32 years ago. Unfortunately, even after 32 years, some evil politicians are still trying to deceive the Muslim community because they have their hidden private hidden agendas which they try hard to achieve using the Muslim community. But by now it is very hard for them to deceive the Muslim community. It is good to remember the history in order to make better choices in the future.

The Kattankudy Mosque Massacre was the killing of around 150 Muslim men and boys on August 3, 1990. Around 30 armed LTTE Terrorists raided four mosques in Kattankudy where over 300 people were prostrating in Isha Prayers. It was not Sinhalese or anyone else who killed them. It was the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

Kattankudy Mosque killings.

On August 3, around 30 heavily armed LTTE terrorists crossed a lagoon and entered the town of Kattankudy. An LTTE tax collector, Ranjith Appah, had visited the house of Jinnah Hadjiaar, where LTTE gunmen shot his son-in-law dead. At around 8.10 p.m., the rebels entered the Meer Jumma Masjid, Hussainiya, Masjid-Jul-Noor and Fowzie Mosques, where hundreds of devotees were attending Friday Isha Prayers. The persons were disguised as Muslims to avoid suspicion.

As the civilians knelt in prayer when the LTTE terrorists attacked them, spraying automatic fire and hurling hand grenades at the worshipers. Most of the victims were shot in the back or side. The LTTE terrorists fled as Sri Lankan soldiers, notified of the ongoing massacre, arrived at the scene. Initial report put the death toll at around 140, but as many of the injured who were rushed to hospital succumbed to their injuries, the final death toll rose to over 150.

Harrowing eyewitness accounts appeared in the international press over the next few days. Speaking to foreign media a 40-year-old Muslim businessman said "I was kneeling down and praying when the LTTE terrorists started shooting. The firing went on for 15 minutes. I escaped without being hit and found myself among bodies all over the place." Another eye witness, a 17-year-old Muslim student who also survived the massacre told the foreign media "Before I escaped from a side door and scaled a wall, I saw a LTTE terrorist put a gun into the mouth of a small Muslim boy and pull the trigger."

Sri Lanka Air Force helicopters rushed the injured to hospitals for urgent treatment. They continued to ferry the injured to hospitals throughout the next morning. Soon after the massacre, Government troops launched an operation in the area to capture the killers. One of the helicopters involved in the search shot at two boat loads of LTTE terrorists off the sea at Kattankudi. They were believed to be fleeing to India following the massacre.

The incident was the worst massacre of civilians since the resumption the conflict. All the victims were buried in a cemetery at the Meera Jumma Mosque, where mourners dug a long common grave for a row of coffins. The LTTE denied the responsibility and alleged that it was done by then (1990) Government to get arms from the Islamic countries. The common graves dugged by people of some foreign countries during this COVID-19 period remind us our bitter past where no one had courage to speak even a word against the LTTE or then Government.

The LTTE hacked to death a large number of civilians belonging to all ethnicities and religions who lived in the North and East. The villages located adjoining to the areas held by the LTTE. Those villages were called ‘Border Villages’. The people lived in those border villages left their homes at night and spent the night in thick jungles and tree tops in order to protect their lives from the LTTE. But some such as elderly, sick, disabled, infants, pregnant mothers etc. could not do it.

The LTTE cadres came at night and hacked them to death. They died in a very painful way after suffering for hours without being able to get help from outside. Buddhist Bhikkus who lived in those border villages did not leave their temples because of the innocent poor people. They stayed back and faced the brutality of the LTTE while protecting people belonging to all ethnicities and priceless historical archeological sites which provided concrete proof to the real Sri Lankan history. The LTTE tried its best to fabricate a new Sri Lankan history in order to help their claim for the lands but the ancient historical archeological sites stood against providing evidence for the true Sri Lankan history.

The brutal terrorism of the LTTE ended on May 18 in 2009 by the heroic Armed Forces of Mother Lanka after sacrificing over 26,000 precious young lives. Several war heroes became permanently disabled.

The bloodshed by them in order to protect innocent poor Sri Lankan people and motherland was underestimated time to time after 2015. Some of them were imprisoned for saving the Motherland and people’s lives. Sri Lankan people will remember Kattankudy forever with the year of 1990.

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