DPI stages protest in Chennai over Lankan Tamil issue

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Chennai, Nov 18 : Dalit Panther of India (DPI), a regional political party of Tamil Nadu, took out a massive rally in Chennai on Tuesday to protest against the military offensive in northern Sri Lanka.

The protesters were demanding that the Indian government should intervene and ask the Sri Lankan government to order ceasefire and put an end to the war that's going on in Tamil dominated areas of Sri Lanka.

"An all party meeting, headed by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, had informed the central government of a resolution passed by the state government, asking the center to intervene and urge Sri Lanka to agree to ceasefire and put an end to the war that's going on in the country. We have been putting this demand for so long, and today also we are putting forth the same request," said Thirumavalavan, president of DPI.

The political parties in Tamil Nadu have been reiterating their demand for ceasefire between the Sri Lankan forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

Sri Lanakan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on November 13 in New Delhi ruled out any possibility of ceasefire till the rebels laid down their arms.

The LTTE says that its cadres are fighting to establish a separate homeland for Sri Lanka's Tamil minority, which it alleges has been marginalized by successive governments in Colombo led by the Sinhalese majority since independence from Britain in 1948.

But the Sri Lankan government says the LTTE rebels must be destroyed, because they are on a host of terrorism lists including those from the United States, India and Europe, and adds that it is increasingly confident of defeating them soon.

Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee has ruled out any direct Indian involvement in solving the conflict, which New Delhi says must be solved through dialogue.

ANI

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