Thiruvekkadam Velupillai, the father of slain LTTE supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran, died last night following a brief illness, over seven months after the guerrilla leader was killed in a military offensive in northern Sri Lanka.
The 86-year-old Velupillai, along with his wife, has been living in military protection in the Tamil-dominated Wanni region ever since the defeat of the rebel LTTE in May last year. The government has maintained that they had been kept in good conditions.
Velupillai died after a brief illness, army said today without giving further details. Though his son led a violent 25-year campaign for creating a separate homeland for minority Tamils in the north and east, Prabhakaran's father served in the Sri Lankan government for 39 years, beginning his career as a clerk at the Ceylon Government Railways in 1943.
He received several promotions, retiring as Land Officer of the Land Settlement Department in 1982.
The LTTE supremo's parents, who were reportedly living in a welfare camp in Vavuniya with the relatives of other LTTE leaders, were found by the security forces after the annihilation of the rebel outfit in the military operation.
Prabhakaran was killed by the military in Nanthikadal lagoon in Mullaitivu on May 18 last year.