Velupillai Prabhakaran: The elusive Tiger

Last Updated: Sun, May 17, 2009 09:49 hrs

The cub years

Velupillai Prabhakaran was born in the northern coastal town of Velvettithurai. A Hindu by birth, he joined the student group TIP, during the standardization debates.

In 1972 Prabhakaran founded an organization named Tamil New Tigers (TNT) which was a successor to many initial organizations that protested against the post colonial political direction of the country that pitted the minority Sri Lankan Tamils against the majority Sinhalese people.

The Tiger roars

In 1975, after becoming heavily involved in the Tamil movement, he carried out his first political murder against the mayor of Jaffna, Alfred Duraiappah, by shooting him at point blank range while he was about to enter the Hindu temple at Ponnaalai. The assassination was in response to the 1974 Tamil conference incident, and the Tamil radicals had blamed Alfred Duraiappah, because he backed the then Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) implicated in the violence as well as for allegedly betraying the Tamil nationalist sentiments in the Jaffna peninsula.

On May 5, 1976, the TNT was renamed the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), commonly known as the Tamil Tigers.

The Tiger`s life

Little is known of Prabhakaran's personal life, either from his interviews or from cited media sources, although it is widely known that he is married to Mathivathani Erambu. Their marriage was held in Tirupporur, near Madras (now Chennai) on 1 October 1984. They have a daughter (Duwaraka) and two sons, Charles Anthony and Balachandran. Their whereabouts are not known, but it is widely believed that they are not in Sri Lanka.

Criminal indictments

Velupillai Prabhakaran has been wanted by Interpol and many other organizations since 1991 for terrorism, murder, organized crime and terrorism conspiracy. He has been issued a death warrant by the Madras High Court in India for plotting the assassination of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in May, 1991 and in 2002 Judge Ambepitiya issued an open warrant to arrest him in connection with the 1996 Central Bank Bombing. The judge found him guilty on 51 counts and sentenced him to 200 years in prison. 

Source: Wikipedia






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