Students on hunger strike demand India should vote against Sri Lanka at UN meet

Students on hunger strike demand India should vote against Sri Lanka at UN meet
Chennai Students in Tamil Nadu have launched hunger strikes, protests and signature campaigns to mount pressure on India to vote against Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council meet in Geneva later this month. Several political parties, including the Congress, have already asked the Centre to support the US-sponsored resolution against Sri Lanka for its alleged war crimes during the final phase of war against the LTTE in 2009.

"India kept quiet and allowed Sri Lanka to massacre thousands of Tamils there. Now at least after watching British media Channel 4's revelations India should raise its voice against Lanka," Sathish, a student protester told NDTV.

Another woman student Malarvizhi said, "New evidences show LTTE leader Prabhakaran's 12-year-old son was shot dead in custody. What wrong did he do? How can we keep quite? We share umbilical relations with them."

These students also endorse demands by political parties for an independent international probe against Sri Lanka. Around 100 student activists, who had gathered outside the Income Tax office in Chennai today, were "secured", police said.

Most of these protesters are law students.

Congress-led UPA government had voted against Sri Lanka last year following pressure from the DMK, which threatened to pull out of the coalition at the Centre. However, India in a bid to tacitly help Lanka for strategic and diplomatic reasons managed to dilute the text of the resolution. This time, the Centre has not yet made its stand public.

College managements are a worried lot. "We sympathise with their cause and extend moral support but we would have no option but to indefinitely close the college if this appears to become a movement," said Principal of a renowned college, who did not want to be named.

Sri Lanka, however, denies allegations of large scale human rights violations during the final phase of war against the LTTE. The government claims the pictures released by the British Media are fake and morphed.

Story First Published: March 13, 2013 18:32 IST

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