Tamil News Manager abducted in Colombo

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 29 August 2006, 02:50 GMT]
Nadarajah Kuruparan, News Manager of Sooriyan FM Radio broadcast from Colombo and the programme leader of popular weekly programme, Viluthukal, in Sooriyan FM, is reported missing since Tuesday morning around 4:30 a.m., Dehiwale Police said. Mr. Nadarajah Kuruparan, a senior Tamil news editor, was on his way to work in his car, when he was reported missing 300 meters away from his house, on Pinthali Road. Journalist associations and Free Media Movement in Colombo held an urgent protest calling for the release of Kuruparan in front of Colombo Fort Tuesday from 12:30 p.m. till 13:30 p.m.

Nadarajah Kuruparan
Mr. Kuruparan, 39, from Innuvil, Jaffna, earlier worked with Sarinigar, an alternative fortnightly newspaper, that was published by Movement for Inter-Racial Justice and Equality (MIRJE).

He later joined the Sooriyan FM, run by Asian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), the parent company of five popular radio stations. He has been working as news editor and later news manager in Sooriyan FM.

His Viluthukal programme, aired in Sooriyan FM last Saturday, was about human rights violations and abductions in Colombo.

Kuruparan, popularly known as "Sooriyan Kuru," has interviewed the parents of missing persons, parliamentarians and human rights activists in his radio programme Viluthukal.

Talking to a friendly journalist Monday night, Kuruparan said: "...I am indeed very careful. Tamil journalists in Colombo face the most challenging time these days. If I go missing or am slain like Sivaram, you will say, Kuruparan was a good editor. But nothing will happen afterwards, nothing will be changed."

Kuruparan, who joined the PLOTE movement in his early days, left the movement, like the slain TamilNet editor Dharmeratnam Sivaram, and later became an independent journalist.

He is one of the most careful Tamil journalists to operate in Colombo.

Kuruparan has maintained contacts at all levels, except the Sinhala extreme nationalist Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP).

He was highly critiical of the JVP in his analytical programmes aired in the radio.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse, who invited the top leadership of the ABC Management, during the recent Maavilaru military offensive, passed a warning to the network and asked to censor details from the Tigers and not give equal coverage to LTTE statements with the the statements issued by the military officieals of the Government in ABC's broadcasts.

A few days ago, a Special Unit of the Sri Lankan military was given the duty of ensuring overall security in Colombo, under the leadership of Major General Lawrence Fernando.

Concerned human rights activists have expressed fear that military personnel, earlier involved in covert operations in Colombo including the white-van abudctions, have been assigned duties in the new unit which has threatened Tamil journalists by monitoring their activities.

T. Maheswaran, a Tamil parliamentarian of the main opposition UNP in Colombo, last week, in his address to the assembly, said several Tamil youths, including seven Tamil traders, have been abducted in Colombo during the recent weeks.

Only a few incidents of missing persons are reported in the media as details necessary for reporting and verification are not available for many cases due to the current situation where communication with different areas of NorthEast remains cut.


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