Remembering our Maveerar !
Every year, in the month of November, Remembrance Day is commemorated to remember the fallen soldiers who defended liberty, equality and humanity of their homeland with their life – this is observed in North America and in many parts of the world. Many of those wars were fought outside their homeland to prevent the invasion of their homeland and a dictatorship state.
As the people of Tamileelam, we commemorate our Remembrance Day, Maveerar Naal on the 27th of November. In Tamileelam before 2009, there was the Maaveerar Week that had incorporated many festivities in different cities were people showcased their love for our heoroes of Tamileelam. Themes such as sacrifice, determination, dedication were very dominant. Almost every family had a Maaveerar who sacrificed their life for Tamileelam. Thuyilum Illam was filled with not just graves, but legacies of the past that our resistance movement was built on. I was told how even vehicles passing by Thuyilum Illam slowed down to show their respect to our fallen.
I can only imagine how much our people held this month dear to their hearts in Tamileelam because I never had the chance to go back to my homeland. I didn’t even get the opportunity to be born in my own homeland because of the genocidal Sri-Lankan onslaught against our people, which forced my parents to flee the country.
Today in our homeland, everything has been wiped out to erase our identity, history and pride. Will this stop us from remembering our heroes of Tamileelam in our homeland and the diaspora? Will this shake our morale to such an extent to forget the 30+ years of legacy that paused in Mulivaaiykal?
During the early stages of our resistance movement, the honourable national leader of Tamileelam, V. Pirapaharan, showed the outmost importance to our heroes starting from Shankar Anna. They are the heart and soul of our struggle, without them there will be no progressive resistance movement for the people of Tamileelam. The goal of the resistance movement was not to bolster the armed struggle but to develop and build on the concept of self determination, nation and homeland which led to the formation of the defacto state of Tamileelam.
Almost many recognized nation state during their independence movement, never had the idea of having a rememberance event during their struggle but were commemorated after. We have a proud history were we remembered our heoroes who sacrificed their lives from the early stages of our resistance movement against the Sri-Lankan genocidal opression. Moreover, when most wars were fought outside the borders, ours has to do with resisting the genocidal opression of the Sri-Lankan state in our homeland. The Sri-Lankan state can try to convulute the history of the Tamils of Tamileelam but our heroes made sure our history and identity stayed intact by sacrificing themselves.
Many heroes took a bullet in their chest so we could escape the genocide, many heroes gave up on their everyday life for a life of war so people in Tamileelam would be able to have an everyday life. If the commonwealth cannot forget their heroes so cannot the citizens and diaspora of Tamileelam. You can destroy the Thuyilum Illam physically present in Tamileelam but not the Thuyilum Illam we built for the thousands of Maaveerar in our hearts. What the resistance movement did in 2009 was temporarily silence the arms in their hands and accelerated the feeling of Tamil nationalism thereby strengthening the movement for free Tamileelam worldwide as one powerful force to reckon with. We will only rest when we see our homeland of the Eelam Nation with right to self determination.
Written By: Prynth N.