Calling Sri Lanka the ‘teardrop of the Indian Ocean’ instead of the pearl would be more befitting as its history is laden with pain and horror. Everyday the people in this country are pushed to the brink of tears.
This land is wet with the blood of thousands of courageous people who fought for rights and justice for all. Some ‘disappeared’. Others were attacked in public, forced to silence the voices they raised for justice. The blanket term ‘national security’ can deprive someone of every hard-earned asset in their lifetime. In the blink of an eye, it has deprived people of familial love, community and even the homes they have lived in for generations.
At times visible, at times intangible, what shapes everything that happens in Sri Lanka is the ever-present spectre that is the military. Along with this force are the numerous development projects, each of which hide injustice under a blanket of attractive promises.
One point is clear; if one were to look at the island’s history on a continuum, the messengers of justice and equality have been threatened, killed or psychologically broken. Should we turn our backs on their message?