What are the native foods of the Tamils

■ For the first time, the government of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu secured support for the Tamil guerrilla groups in Sri Lanka / Slap in the face for Colombo's efforts to prove that Tamil organizations were involved in the last bomb attacks / Who distributes the dough is still unclear

From Madras Biggi Wolff

“In Ramachandran's vocabulary, food means weapons. The events in Tamil Nadu are a clear sign that India is promoting an independent Tamil state. What would the Indian government think if Pakistan were to send so-called food, clothing and medication to the Indian Punjab to support the liberation struggle for Khalistan? ”With such armful words, the Sri Lankan President Jayewardene castigated a hitherto unique on Tuesday last week Gesture of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. In the middle of the offensive of Sinhalese soldiers against the Tamil guerrillas on the northern Jaffna Peninsula was the state's prime minister, M.G. Ramachandran, known as MGR, fell through with the announcement that Tamil Nadu would provide the Tamils ​​in Sri Lanka with around seven million DM for “clothing, food, medicine and other items”. With this gesture, the government wanted to show that the people of Tamil Nadu are "ready to do anything to help the Tamil brothers in the neighboring country who are subject to genocide by the fascist Lankan regime". A spokesman later stated that the funds should be given to "various groups and aid organizations", with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam LTTE and the Eelam Revolutionary Organization EROS being named as leaders in the resistance and "the only ones in the field." To Colombo's allegations that the “terrorists could move freely on Indian soil”, MGR replied undeterred: “After all, we cannot throw everyone in jail. Otherwise we obey the law, while in Sri Lanka the law of the jungle prevails. ”The conflict between Tamils ​​and Sinhalese in Sri Lanka is of great geopolitical importance and affects Indian security interests. Tamil Nadu, where several hundred thousand refugees from Sri Lanka now live alongside the local Tamils, has become a front-line state. What does New Delhi want? With these statements, the government of an Indian state has for the first time publicly identified with the Tamil guerrillas, and more importantly, probably in coordination with the central government in Delhi. Although Rajiv Gandhi publicly denies any support for the guerrilla groups and presents himself as a moderate mediator, the Tamil regional party AIADMK ruling in Tamil Nadu is a close ally of the Congress party ruling in Delhi and observers conclude from the diplomatic activities of the last few days that Gandhi was informed in advance by Ramachandran. Last Saturday, the Foreign Ministry officially declared that the relief operations were “a logical response” to the conflict in the neighboring country. All parties represented in parliament in Madras demonstratively welcomed the measures and the opposition even called for the breakdown of economic and political relations with the neighboring country. Skepticism in Madras In contrast to the expressions of solidarity at the highest level, the aid pledges were viewed with great skepticism by the population in Madras. The decision hardly ever met with fundamental reservations, but the politicians' deep pockets are distrusted. “Who can check this?” Asked a government official, for example. “If the award is not monitored by an international aid organization, it's completely pointless.” The owner of my pension also groaned when I asked him about the topic of the day in the Indian press: “The story has two sides. We are supposed to believe that the government is doing something for the brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka, but it is also a good opportunity for the politicians to make some nice pennies. Thank God they only approved seven million and not a hundred times as much. So the fraud is still limited. ”A young madrasi has nothing against buying weapons for the guerrillas, but the conflict, he says,“ cannot be solved with it any more than the one with the Sikhs in north-west Indian Punjab ”. Diplomatic success for the guerrillas For the Tamil guerrilla organizations, however, the aid commitment is “a turning point in the history of our struggle” (according to the press release of the LTTE leadership). It is true that EROS emphasizes the political importance of the decision and squirms when it comes to questions about the use of the funds, although the EPRLF, which has been attacked several times by the LTTE in eastern Sri Lanka, is sniffed that the group is not on the list of aid recipients stands, but the seven million are always a diplomatic success. It is a slap in the face for the claims of the Lankan government that the LTTE and EROS are responsible for the bloody bomb attacks on civilian targets in recent weeks. In fact, Colombo has remained guilty of evidence for this version to this day, and in the meantime even the opposition party SLFP, which is not suspected of any pro-Tamil tendencies, suspects Israeli military advisers (around 200 of whom are active in Sri Lanka) rather than Tamil guerrillas behind the attack. Last week, 600 Buddhist monks disregarded the Colombo curfew and demonstrated in front of the president's residence. Both clergy and SLFP called for the government to resign because it was unable to "protect the lives of the people and put an end to terrorism". There is also talk of the radical Sinhala party JVP in the attacks. The JVP has made a name for itself in recent weeks with attacks on army camps in the south. 2,000 of its supporters are said to have infiltrated the armed forces to stock up on weapons. Extensive bombing in the north But whoever was behind the bombings, they have given the government a welcome opportunity to bomb the Jaffna Peninsula, which is almost exclusively inhabited by Tamils. According to reports from the state media center, the armed forces killed 400 Tamil fighters. Tamil organizations speak of fewer deaths, but most of them should come from the civilian population. Contrary to the official version, reports in Jaffna say that the bombings are still going on and the Lankan Minister for Agricultural Development and Right-wing Winger Dissanayake has officially justified them by stating that “in Jaffna, all those who have ties to terrorists are not arrested, but taken out should be excluded from society ”. The remark takes on its full significance in view of the fact that the Tigers endeavor to recruit at least one person from every Tamil family for the fight.