மிக விரைவில் சித்தன் கொட்டில் புதிய வடிவில்!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

From Lionel Bopage, Australia

From Lionel Bopage,Australia

Dear Friends,

Great sadness filled me when I heard the news about the death of Comrade Pararajasingham . On the several occasions when I had the pleasure to meet him, he was always a very simple, hospitable and socially active and engaged person. I met him first in November 1977 after my release from prison. Comrade Rohana Wijeweera and I visited him and Comrade Bala Tampoe and other supporters at the Ceylon Mercantile Union (CMU) to express our thanks for their help during our seven years of imprisonment. At this stage Comrade Para was an active leader of the CMU.

In Sri Lanka , his life was dedicated to protecting and upholding the democratic rights of working people, particularly trade union members. In tandem with Comrades Bala, Rajanayagam and Seneviratne of the CMU they pioneered the protection of human and democratic rights of cadres in the JVP who were being held in detention at the time.

The last time I met him was in Stuttgart Germany when I attended a meeting of the International Network of the Sri Lankan Diaspora which was being held in Berlin , he was still carrying on the struggle. He did not strike me as a politician in the base sense of the word, but one who worked with a deep and abiding interest towards the betterment and advancement of all Sri Lankans wherever they resided. Comrade Para with his genuine and never fading smile on his face carried on his life long commitment to helping his fellow human beings.

Comrade Para’s knowledge of the trade union movement and the Tamil Liberation struggle in Sri Lanka was extensive and exemplary.

I cannot realistically point to everything Comrade Para had contributed to and accomplished during his life time in Sri Lanka and as an expatriate, but I can say that he was an incredibly inspiring political character. From what I have heard from other sources, his talents and interests extended beyond the arenas of politics and human rights.

Comrade Para’s passing will leave an enormous gap that no one will be able to fill single handedly. His political legacy for progressive Sri Lankans both at home and abroad was meaningful, truthful and alive.

As a fellow traveller, I take this opportunity to pay tribute to and politically honour him. My deepest sympathies extend to his wife Malika and their children.

Lionel Bopage

18 December 2007

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