INTRODUCTION

The newspaper “Island’ carried an article by me under the title *The Fiction Of Traditional Homelands and Land Use- in three installments on 3rd, 4th and 6th August 1984. It contained excerpts from an 88 page memorandum given to the late Mrs. Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India and to Mr. J. R. Jayewardene, President of Sri Lanka at New Delhi on the eve of their talks on 30th June 1984 on the “ethnic” problems of Sri Lanka. Some points were amplified for the benefit of readers of the newspapers. After the publication of the article, several individuals and groups suggested that it be reprinted, so that the complex issues relating to the concept Of, and claims to, separate traditional homelands for the different communities in the island of Sri Lanka might be better understood by more people. This is a responw to these suggestions. I have changed the title, added notes and made essential corrections to the article.

Most non-Tamil people in Sri Lanka are still not aware of the basis Of the claim of Tamil extremists for a separate state. The claim is not founded, as many believe, on allegations of harassment and discrimination by the Sinhalese majority, but on an audacious falsification of ancient and modern Sri Lanka history. It may be briefly summarized as follows :

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