By Franklin R.Satyapalan
Members of Tamil Diaspora for Dialogue (TDD ) yesterday, made a fervent appeal to members of the Tamil community especially those members of the Tamil Diaspora to contribute whatever they could towards rehabilitating the remaining 8083 ex-combatants in government custody so that they could enter civil society without delay.
Coordinator of the Tamil Diaspora for Dialogue Dr. Noel Nadesan said That many affluent persons who claim to be Tamils should be ashamed for being silent onlookers whilst philanthropist a good Sinhalese Buddhist the CEO of Tri-Star Apparels Kumar Devapura came forward voluntarily to train ex-combatants and provide 550 with employment our Tamil teachers from Jaffna demand Rs 320 per hour to give tuition to 300 ex- combatants who are sitting for their O levels.
Dr Noel Nadesan said yesterday that he had the opportunity of meeting with the Minister of Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms Dew Gunasekera and the Commissioner General of Rehabilitation Brig Sudantha Ranasinghe and having a lengthy discussion on the Rehabilitation process of ex-combatants by the government.
The Minister told me that from among the 11,698 ex- combatants who had surrendered to the members of the Security Forces, 3000 or more had been rehabilitated and released, the majority of them being females.
The minister in briefing me said that action was being taken to file legal action against 1300 hard core Ex- combatants ,the balance 8083 were being counseled ,educated and rehabilitated so that they could enter the mainstream of society but this was some thing that could be shouldered by the government alone.
"We members of the Tamil Diaspora for dialogue are of the strong opinion ,That the noble task of assisting the government in educating and rehabilitating these somewhat misguided Tamil youth who claimed to fight for the rights and well being of the community lay with the Tamil community which has the obligation and responsibility of caring for them " ,said Dr Noel Nadesan.
"I was able to pay a visit to the centers where the ex-combatants were being rehabilitated and see for myself at first hand how they were being cared for and rehabilitated ".
The Commissioner General of Rehabilitation said that there was to be a graduation ceremony where 400 youth rehabilitees were passing out after following a course in vocational skills at Dambadeniya on June 25th Poson Poya day.
I was told for whatever reasons unknown to me 30 ex- combatants were refusing to meet any friends ,relatives or any members from the community.
Commissioner General of Rehabilitation Brig Sudantha Ranasinghe told me during the briefing that all names of all the 8083 who were being rehabilitated were available with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and that parent or relative could visit these ex- combatants and speak to them during the day.
Anyone wishing to be of any assistance to these ex- combatants could make arrangements by contacting Commissioner General of Rehabilitation Brig Sudantha Ranasinghe brig.sudantha.r@Yahoo .com
- courtesy: The Island -