Having fled his homeland in Mullaitivu due to ongoing war, a Sri Lankan Tamil engineer, who landed in Kakinada after being rescued from mid-sea, says he prefers to stay in India as he is “scared” of going back to the island nation as the Sinhala-Tamil divide “still persists”.
Inder, a 25-year-old hardware engineer from Trincomalle in the island’s north-east, is among the 11 refugees who landed on the shores in Uppada village in the Bay of Bengal near here on Wednesday after their ship drifted in the seas far away from Rameswaram.
“Even if we return to Sri Lanka we will not be happy as the divide between Tamils and Sinhalese still persists. I may be suspected as a LTTE cadre and arrested,” he said, when asked whether he would return to his homeland.
He said he will not return to Trincomalle till a permanent solution to the decades-old ethnic strife is found.
The refugees also said they expected India to play a role in stopping the war and bringing about a ceasefire in the island nation.
“We thought India will help the Tamils by bringing a ceasefire.... But it did not.. We wanted India to help in achieving our dream of a Tamil Eelam,” he told a TV channel.
Already 10,000 people have lost their lives, he said. Jagadeeswaran, who lost his wife Mary and a 4-year-old son, said they would not return to Mullaitivu until permanent peace returns to the island nation. They left their homeland not wanting to be caught in the crossfire of the war between the forces and the LTTE.