TNA readies to face poll with ‘house’ or 'lighthouse'

[TamilNet, Friday, 13 February 2004, 09:42 GMT]
General secretary of the Federal Party (FP), Mr. Mavai Senathirajah and general secretary of the TELO, Mr. Indrakumar Prasanna, informed Sri Lanka's Commissioner of Elections their party’s intent to contest following uncertainty over the TULF's legal wrangle, a spokesman for the Tamil National Alliance said Wednesday. If the stand off between the TULF's President and executive central committee is not resolved next week the TNA will have to contest either under the TELO's 'lighthouse' symbol or the FP's 'house' symbol, he said.

The Federal Party was the main Tamil political force among the Tamils in the northeast until 1976 when it formed the TULF with the All Ceylon Tamil Congress.

The ‘rising sun’ is the most popular party symbol among the Tamils not only because of the TULF but also because it was popularised by the Dravidian Movement in South India. It is the well-known symbol of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in Tamil Nadu.

The symbol was popularised among the Tamil masses in South India and Sri Lanka through movies, poems, cinema songs etc., since the early sixties.

Therefore the TNA is keen to have it as its symbol for the elections in April.

A lawyer close to the TULF dismissed speculation that the TNA would be able to secure the coveted ‘rising sun’ because secretary general of the party, Mr. Rajavarothayam Sampanthan, has the power to determine the matter.

The lawyer said that the TULF constitution stipulates the secretary general of the party should act in consultation with the party President. “The Colombo court stay order stipulates that TULF officials cannot convene meeting of the part without the written consent of it President. Therefore, Mr. Ananandasanaree can block the TNA from using the ‘rising sun’ symbol on the basis that the decision to do should have been approved at a meeting of the party convened with his written consent”, the lawyer explained.

“We think that the TULF should not delay any further over securing the ‘rising sun’ symbol. The TNA should go ahead with our light house symbol if there is any problem with the ‘house’ symbol”, Mr. Prasanna told TamilNet.

However, Mr. Joseph Pararajasingham said that the ‘house’ symbol is ready for the TNA.

“What’s in a symbol? It is our policy and popularity that counts,” he said.

 

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