COLOMBO: Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, who commanded the Sri Lanka Army during the 2006-2009 Eelam War IV, has refuted the contention of former Tamil Tiger commander “Col” Karuna Amman, that Tiger Supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran had shot himself dead and was not killed by Lankan troops as claimed.
“He had a head injury in which a part of the skull had come off. If he had shot himself, the bullet would have come out from the other side of the head. But this had not happened. He might have been hit by shrapnel from a mortar bomb or a shell,” Fonseka told Express here on Monday.
Asked if a post mortem was done on Prabhakaran’s body, Fonseka said that the police did a post mortem as per law, and a DNA test was also conducted to establish his identity.
Asked to comment on Karuna’s claim that Prabhakaran’s wife Mathivathani and daughter Thurka were killed in shelling, Fonseka said that he had no information. He has no clue as to what happened to Prabhakaran’s second son, 12 year old Balachandran either, though some TV channels showed the boy in captivity.
“Armies do not identify all bodies after a battle. We were looking for Prabhakaran’s elder son, Charles Anthony, and his body was found and identified,” Fonseka said.
Kumaran Pathmanathan, alias KP, formerly the LTTE’s International Wing chief, who was in touch with Prabhakaran over satellite phone from abroad in the last days of the war, said: “It is impossible to say how a person had died in the thick of battle when no witness is alive. All those around Prabhakaran at that time had died in the last ditch battle in the Nandikadal lagoon.”
Ranil Wijayapala, reporter for Colombo-based Sunday Observer, who was present at the time the body was identified, said that there was only one injury in the body and that was in the head.
Karuna Amman had told a Tamil Nadu TV channel that Prabhakaran had committed suicide by shooting himself when capture seemed imminent. He denied that his former leader was captured, tortured and killed by Lankan troops.
Karuna claims Prabhakaran shot himself
LTTE leader Vellupillai Prabhakaran committed suicide by shooting himself while his wife and daughter were killed in a shell attack revealed former Deputy Minister Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan aka Karuna Amman to an Indian television network.
Speaking at an interview he revealed:
- Even though he had left the LTTE outfit several years ago he still admires Prabhakran as a respectable Tamil leader and said he was a very close associate of his.
- When the LTTE was in its full glory, I was one of its Commanding Officers. I had highlighted on a Federal State during the Norway peace talks and even Anton Balasingham had supported it but Prabahakaren refused and wanted a separate state for the minority.
- During the final years of the war, India helped Sri Lanka in a large scale with military intelligence, Military men and weapons.
- I never betrayed the outfit. The warfare strategy they used resulted in their ultimate loss. Other than using all the troops in one location they should have used smaller troops to initiate guerrilla attacks. That would have gained them victory, as well as saved the people.
- Leaders of the outfit like Pulithevan and Nadessan were shot and killed in cold blood (after they surrendered with White Flag as directed by UN officials)
- Prabhakaran’s 12 year old son Balachandran was arrested by the Sri Lanklan Army when he was fleeing (and after giving biscuits was killed by the Srl Lankan Army as ordered by top politician).
- That is when Prabhakaran committed suicide. He didn’t want to get caught by the army. I respected him as a leader and I associated with him closely.
- The rumours that say he was caught by the Army and was tortured to death are lies and are a disgrace on his repute