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Anti-terror police probe characters in novel penned by Tamil writer

 

Sri Lanka’s Counter-Terrorism Investigation Division (CTID) has interrogated the President of the Tamil Literary Forum over a novel that he has written. The fiction tells the story of a boy who lost his parents during the war and became a university student leader amidst multiple obstacles, only to be killed in the war.

Journalist and writer Piratheepan Deepachelvan had been summoned to the CTID’s Paranthan unit in Killinochchi on 16 June, and questioned for over two hours of any intention to revive the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in writing the novel titled ‘The Terrorist’ (பயங்கரவாதி).

Deepachelvan has attracted the attention of fans and critics as the author of the novel titled Nadugal (நடுகல்), which is considered the first novel written in the north following the end of the war and was translated into Sinhala by G.G. Sarath Ananda as Smaraka Shilavatha (ස්මාරක ශිලාවත).

In addition to questioning as to whether the novel was intended to revive the LTTE, the CTID had further asked who is represented through the character ‘Maran’ and where he lives now. The CTID had further questioned about the military characters mentioned in the novel.
In response, Deepachelvan had told the CTID that all characters in his novel are fictional.

The writer had emphasized that there was no intention to revive the LTTE by writing the book as alleged, and the novel discusses incidents that occurred in the past.

Responding to the police’s questions, he had further explained that the character named ‘Maran’ was fictional and was cast in a context where certain student leaders and students of the University of Jaffna had been killed. Moreover, the writer had said that the novel discusses how Maran, who lost his parents during the war and became a university student leader overcoming all obstacles, die due to the war.

“I explained that in my novel, a boy who loses his mother and father due to the war enters the university despite his loss and becomes a student leader, and that later he dies due to the war,” the author had told his media colleagues.

Explaining to the police that he wanted to discuss education through the character named Maran, who does not give up on his studies under no circumstance, the writer had further stressed that the novel was penned to inform that war, death, and destruction must not occur in the future.

With regard to the explanation provided to the CTID about the novel’s contents, Deepachelvan told his media colleagues:

“I pointed out that the novel ‘The Terrorist’ talks about good soldiers among those who did bad deeds as well as soldiers who saved LTTE members, and that this novel would pave the way to the Sinhala reader to understand Tamils people and would not in any way cause ethnic rifts.”

Earlier, Deepachelvan was summoned to and questioned at the CTID’s Paranthan unit in Killinochchi on 11 April for organizing a book launch for a novel, authored by veteran Tamil writer N. Yogendran ‘Crossing the River of Fire in 34 Days (34 நாட்களில் நீந்திக்கடந்த நெருப்பாறு)’. The book was based on a successful attack carried out by the LTTE on the Elephant Pass military camp, which lasted for around a month.

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