Feature Article

Extremists among Sinhalese burnt Tiger flags in South, racism says Fr Sakthivel

[TamilNet, Thursday, 24 May 2018, 12:32 GMT]
A section of Sinhala extremists in the South has burnt Tiger flags after an organised campaign in the social media by certain elements that are believed to be from the SL military intelligence wing operating in the North. Propaganda has been waged through the social media, intentionally spreading false information to the South that the Northern Provincial Council had lowered the Lion flags to half-staff on Mu'l'livaaykkaal Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day.

When TamilNet contacted Fr. S. Shaktivel, who marked Mu'l'livaaykkaal Remembrance Day in Negombo for the first time this year, he characterised the burning of Tiger flag in the South as an act of racial hatred against Tamils.

Sinhalese burning Tiger flag


The NPC didn't lower the Sri Lankan‚ 'national' flag at half-staff. The NPC, which declared the day as Tamil Genocide Day and urged the people of Northern Province to mark the day as Mu'l'livaaykkaal Tamil Genocide Day, only lowered its provincial flag, he said.

In the meantime, SL President and the commander-in-chief of the SL forces Maithiripala Sirisena was taking part in what genocidal Sri Lanka calls "National War Heroes' Day" on May 19. Mr Sirisena was taking part at the event at Battaramulla as chief guest along with his partner in the regime, Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, who was the commander of the SLA during the genocidal onslaught on Eezham Tamils in 2009. Sirisena was acting defence minister at that time.

Maithiripala and Fonseka at Battaramulla
Tamil Genocide Remembrance in the North-East is National War Heroes' Day to the Sinhala State Establishment in South
Maithiripala and Fonseka at Battaramulla


* * *


The Tamil protest to the Lion Flag is not a recent one after seeing it as a flag of genocide in 2009.

More than 60 years ago, finding the flag as a “gratuitous insult” to the Tamil-speaking people, the Tamil mainstream polity in the island had openly rejected it.

The flag symbolically discriminates Tamils and Muslims as ‘outsiders’ as opposed to the sword-wielding Sinhalese Lion.

The following is the relevant resolution passed by the most popular Tamil political party at that time, Ilankai Tamil Arasuk Katchi (ITAK) or the Federal Party, in its First National Convention convened at Trincomalee in 1951:

Resolution No. 6 passed at the First National Convention of the Ilankai Tamil Arasuk Katchi held on the 13th, 14th and 15th of April 1951 at Trincomalee

The convention rejects the official flag of Ceylon as an insult to the Tamil-speaking people.

The First National Convention of the ITAK rejects the official flag of Ceylon as constituting a gratuitous insult to the Tamil speaking people in this Island, inasmuch as, they are assigned two narrow stripes which are placed as extraneous accretions outside the inner vertical border of the Sinhalese Lion Flag which is sacrosanctly preserved in its entirety as the all important part of the flag. This convention points out that this official flag of Ceylon correctly symbolises the present humiliating status of the Tamil speaking people in Ceylon, who are placed in the position of out castes in the body-politic.

This convention reiterates its resolve to win freedom and redeem the self-respect of the Tamil-speaking people; and declares that the union flag of Federal Ceylon will be framed on non-communal principles and designed on the highest ideals of the present age.


After turning the symbolic contents of the flag into realties through a genocidal war, the Sri Lankan state, which is virtually a Sinhala State, is now using the flag and the Sinhala ‘national’ anthem as tools for psychological subjugation of even little school children.

After complicity with genocide, regional and global agenda-setters nowadays take an orchestrated interest in popularising the flag and phrases like ‘Sri Lankan Tamil’, ‘Sri Lankan diaspora’ etc.

* * *


The national flag of genocidal Sri Lanka features a golden lion brandishing a sword.

The flag is adopted from the Kandyan kingdom, one of the three kingdoms in the island before and during the times of European colonialism.

The Kingdom of Kotte was the first to succumb to Portugues influence, effectively surrendering its sovereignty in 1597. The Jaffna Kingdom was conquered by the Portuguese in 1621 and the Kandyan Kingdom by the British in 1815.

On 04th February 1948, when Ceylon gained ‘independence’ as a single ‘State’, it’s first Prime Minister D.S. Senanayake hoisted the Lion flag, which had been adopted from the Kandyan flag.

The sovereignty of Jaffna Kingdom, which passed to the colonial rulers through capture, was never reverted to the Tamil people in the post-colonial era. Tamil demand for federalism as it was popularly known as 50:50 was intentionally ignored by the British who were pre-occupied with introducing their Westminster model of ‘democracy’ in the island.

Eezham Tamils protested vehemently when Sinhala parties in South adopted the lion flag as the ‘national’ flag soon after the British relinquished their suzerainty over the island in 1948.

Opposition to the flag, since then, has been part of the Tamil movement.

The practice of hoisting the lion flag was secretly and openly shunned in most Tamil areas as the Tamil movement became militant in character in late 1970s.

The Lion flag was amended in early 50's with two stripes to represent Tamil and Muslim ‘minorities’.

In 1972, the finials that represented Buddhism were replaced with Bo leaves to indicate that ‘Sri Lanka’ is a Buddhist country as the government of the time changed the country’s name from Ceylon and introduced a majoritarian constitution, dumping the safeguards for the island’s ‘minorities’ in the Ceylonese constitution, that had been introduced by the British.

The transitions and constitutions were implemented without the democratic mandate of Eezham Tamils and amidst open boycott by Tamils in the North and East.

The Lion Flag of the Sri Lankan state is seen as a symbol of oppression by the Eezham Tamils.

Tamileelam National Flag
They rejected it long back for the explicit communal symbolism in it, pointing out that the lion in the flag, taken as a symbol of the Sinhala people according to their myths, holding a sword against 'minorities' represented by the colour stripes in the flag, was a deliberately designed insult to Tamils and Muslims.

Eezham Tamils eventually came up with their own Tamil Eelam national flag with a Tiger emblem when Tamil militancy evolved into a full-fledged independence struggle with its own de-facto state administration in the 1990s.

The Tiger emblem has its origins from the ancient Chola Dynasty from Tamil Nadu.

* * *


The eponymous progenitor of the Sinhala people, according to their mythological history, is a lion.

Sinhala Buddhists believe that their nation is descended from a union between a North Indian princess and a lion that had carried her away to his lair in the forest.

The princess had a son and a daughter by the lion. The son was called Sinhabahu and the daughter Sinhasivali.

Sinhabahu killed his father, the lion, when he grew up. Then he married his sister Sinhasivali and begat a son called Vijaya.

According to Sinhala Buddhist legends upheld by modern Sinhala historians, Viajaya was banished by his father from his kingdom for being a miscreant.

He and his accomplices came to the island, married Tamil princesses from the South Indian Pandya Kingdom and founded the ‘Sinhala race’, according to the mythology of Sinhala Buddhists.


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