«Operation KP «: Extraordinary rendition of New Tiger Chief…

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Indian Chief Bomber Limited Edition
Indian Chief Bomber Limited Edition


“Operation KP”: rendition of New Tiger Chief

7 2009, 1:02 pm

By D.B.S.

S elvarasa Pathmanathan alias a.k.a. Kumaran Pathmanathan is in the custody of Sri Lankan officials at a location. A team of terrorism is interrogating the man who was designated last as head of the re-structured Liberation of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

Foreign secretary Palitha confirmed KP’s arrest to the Mirror”.Cabinet minister Keheliya did the same to “Rupavahini”. Presidential Gotabhaya the defence secretary and Rajapakse the presidential adviser confirmed the arrest to BBC and “Hindustan respectively.

Controversy surrounds the of KP’s arrest. While news reports state KP was arrested in Thailand other say he was apprehended first in Malaysia and brought to Colombo via Bangkok. report says he was arrested in

Pathmanathan or KP as he is generally known a Thai national in 2003. He was in suburban Bangkok. In recent KP was traveling between Malaysia and frequently.

Apparently KP found Lumpur (KL) a convenient to meet with people in with his new role as Global chief.

The new LTTE chief, Pathmanathan, also known as KP, is seated in the foreground with left) Velupillai Prabakaran, Balasingham and ‘Col.’ Sankar him.

The former chief procurer of the tigers was appointed by Prabhakaran as head of the LTTE’s created International relations in January this year.

Prabhakaran’s demise in May this KP donned the mantle of LTTE as he was the senior most tiger This move was opposed by sections of the tigers overseas led by Sivaparan alias Nediyavan.

protracted intra-tiger discussions an was reached last July.KP was to be Seyalar” (Chief secretary/secretary and head the organization. Nediyavan was in of administering overseas LTTE as chief of the Diaspora affairs An executive committee was also

KP’s leadership was recognized in an official press release by the LTTE which stated as

“We, the Executive Committee of the Tigers of Tamil Eelam, to officially let our beloved Tamil and the international communityknow that Mr Pathmanathan, who had been appointed as International Relations by our National will lead us into the steps of our freedom struggle to the vision of our esteemed leader.”

this agreement there was an cabal within the Diasporic that refused to accept leadership. This cabal to oppose and obstruct KP within the It was suspected that Nediyavan was this cabal in a conspiratorial bid to KP.

It was against this backdrop of an hostile environment that KP set consolidating his leadership. Since KP was proclaimed as wanted by the Interpol and due to health reasons KP had begun international travel.

As a result members of the Tamil Dispora had to Malaysia to inter-act with the tiger chief. Even a TV from “Channel Four” in went to KL to interview the new tiger KP himself shuttled between and Kuala Lumpur.

On Wednesday August 5th KP who was in KL went noon to the “First Tune at 316 Jalan Tuanku Abdul road in the heart of KL city. His was to meet with two visitors London, England.

Apparently KP has a few with him who function as aides, and bodyguards. But when he goes out to people he trusts, KP travels only the driver of his vehicle.

On the day in KP had gone to the Tune Hotel his driver a man called “Appu”. KP up to the hotel room with his who were waiting for KP outside the building. Appu parked the and stayed inside it.

One of the British was Balasingham Balendran, the younger of former tiger political Balasingham Mahendran alias The other was Nadesan’s own son who had gone to some years ago and was staying his paternal uncle.

The trio was in amiable conversation when a called KP on his cellular phone at 2 pm. KP removed his glasses and laid it on a and began chatting. At one point KP had to Balendran and nephew that he was out to the corridor to talk and went out the telephone.

The British visitors inside the room for about minutes. Nadesan’s son then out but could not see KP anywhere. Uncle and then began searching for KP but the tiger leader had vanished.

was no sign of KP’s vehicle or either. A much worried began calling his Tamil to relate the tale of KP going suddenly.

Meanwhile the friend who had KP was also perturbed. This confidante had been engaged in with KP when he heard a “thud” sound and a noisy

Then KP’s phone …. The agitated friend on ringing KP but there was no answer and the mobile was switched off.

friend too began alerting contacts and aides in KL about the They went to the place KP was in thinking that KP may have back suddenly for some

But there was no KP. But KP’s insulin, and other medical items in his room. KP being a diabetic travelled around without his

Now KP’s aides were as they knew the boss have gone anywhere far his insulin. When the British informed KP’s aides of they knew it was possible to what had happened by comparing

KP’s friends and aides that the new LTTE leader had seized or abducted by some Naturally they suspected the authorities of having a hand in But the finger of suspicion also to Sri Lanka and India also.

As the of the missing KP went buzzing on the Tamil grapevine there was a lot of and speculation about what had happened.

The news began out “semi-officially”. Newspapers and news began reporting that the new chief KP had been arrested in spokesperson Brig. Udaya told Reuters that KP had arrested in Bangkok and that was all “we at the moment”.But things were not so as that.

There were two conflicting about what had happened.According to one KP and Appu were transported to from Kuala Lumpur by his An impression was then created KP was arrested in Thailand. A Police from the terrorism investigation in Sri Lanka went to Thailand and KP to Colombo by a special flight rom

The second version however that the Sri Lankan team had to Malaysia. They had taken of KP in Kulala Lumpur and brought him to by air. The special flight had in Bangkok briefly.

But according to a News Agency report, Prime Minister Abhisit had said on Friday (7th) he has ordered the country’s security to provide details following a report that the head of Sri recently defeated Tamil separatists was captured in Thailand.

The news agency Agence-France-Presse earlier reported that Pathmanathan, a foreign-based leader of the Tigers of Tamil Eelam was returned to Sri Lanka on Thursday for after being arrested in

The Thai premier said he was informed of the matter late (6th) night and that he had the security agencies to seek details.

Acting Government Panitan Wattanayakorn said an initial report said Pathmanathan had travelled in and out of Thailand but it was not where he was arrested.

Mr Panitan, noted that Mr Pathmanathan was married to a Thai and lived in the part of the country.

Meanwhile, Special Branch police Theeradej Rodphothong said the LTTE head was captured in not in Thailand.

Lt-Gen Theeradej that Thailand was mentioned in the report becuase the LTTE formerly had a Thai wife and he moved among three Asian countries-Thailand, Malaysia and

From this news it was possible to figure out that officials were concerned reports that KP was arrested in Reading between the lines it that Thailand was uncomfortable the publicity regarding KP’s arrest in Bangkok. Apparently he was not in Thailand and the story about KP arrested in Bangkok amounted to propagated by Colombo to shift away from the Kuala connection.

Though information the mode and manner in which KP was or was brought to Colombo is yet hazy is confirmation from informed at Katunayake that two persons seen being whisked in vehicles with tinted officials in plains clothes. The and heads of both handcuffed men covered with masks. was after nightfall.

The two men in official were presumed to be KP and Appu. had been taken to a secret for interrogation.Subsequently Basil Rajapakse “Hindustan Times” that KP was questioned in Colombo. There was no of Appu.

Two years ago in September there was much excitement in Sri when KP was detained by authorities in It was expected that KP would be to Sri Lanka or India.But nothing materialised and KP was soon “free”. But time there seems to been a difference

Two developments are to be noted in the “capture” of KP in

Firstly the request made by Sri Foreign Minister Rohitha on May 29 to Malaysian Defence Minister Dr Zahid bin Hamidi YB Dato to hand over ‘KP’to ongoing investigations into operations overseas.The appeal was on the sidelines of the 8th Shangri-La Dialogue in A Foreign Ministry press on Bogollagama’s meet with his counterpart didn’t refer to Sri call for KP’s extradition it said Sri Lanka had urged to proscribe the LTTE.

Secondly, Sri a had recently appointed Brigadier Perera as Deputy High to Malaysia to meet the new threat by the LTTE. Subsequently promoted as G.V. D. U. A .Perera is the first army officer to receive a appointment. The appointment followed Perera impressed foreign mandarins at a special meeting to brief top envoys of several in the run up to the final battle.It was also that Gen.

Udaya prime yet unpublicised assignment was KP”.

It had become obvious KP was using Malaysia for key LTTE s for quite some time. In times KP’s presence in KL noted after the Norwegian in Colombo went up to Malaysia to him. Another person who to meeting KP in Malaysia was the “disgraced” Lt.

from the Sri Lankan army in for alleged LTTE links. UN officials had also contacted KP in

Though details are scanty is reason to believe that Sri with the aid of “intelligence officials” other countries had accomplished the of seizing and transporting KP from Lumpur to Colombo. It is also that the exercise amounted to an rendition” on the lines of what the US Intelligence Agency (CIA) had doing in the aftermath of the twin assault on September 11th More details about KP” are likely to be revealed in the near

Another factor in the KP capture is the that the overseas LTTE is divided. The venomous attacks on KP in of the tiger media abroad a very high level of towards KP. Given the familiar trait of betraying their own to the for selfish purposes there is suspicion that valuable information about KP’s was leaked out.

Another aspect is KP’s reckless for his safety. He had two warrants issued him by Interpol yet KP was brazenly going He met with people openly, print, TV and Radio interviews, regularly in his own blog and engaged in conversations on a global scale. made him highly vulnerable as far as officials were concerned.But he did not safe and adopt a low –key .

According to circles close to KP the for his confidence was due to the “protection” he enjoyed a very powerful “Agency”. It was “agency” that had rescued KP he was arrested in 2007. It was this that had extended its protective over him.

But what had now? Had KP outlived his usefulness to the or had “operation KP” outsmarted even powerful entity? The answers may be in the days to come.

There is jubilation in many that the last of the great has been caught. But in another KP’s arrest could be a setback to the cause of peace. KP had not abandoned the Tamil Eelam he wanted to do away with the struggle. KP’s stated was to transform the LTTE into a non-violent organization.

It was this caused resentment among the surrounding nediyavan. With KP the chances of the LTTE making much-needed transition seem

The man known as KP was born on April 1955 in the northern coastal of Kankesanthurai (KKS). His name was and his father’s name was Selvarasa. he was known by a number of names and in his later life, KP’s name was Selvarasa Pathmanathan.

KP, born in KKS, was a native of also a coastal area in the north region. Myliddy was an agriculture cum fisheries area but had a proud tradition of rearing the racing bulls. Myliddy used to win almost all ‘vandil (cart races) held in during more peaceful and times.

Pathmanathan was one of eight His father was a fisherman from in Myliddy. The traditional occupation of the here was fishing but they not originally of a fishing caste.

The derives its name from a Chieftain named Veeramanickathevan Ramanathapuram in Tamil Nadu, who in Myliddy with his clan ago. The Maravars are of the Mukkulathor caste and the people of Veeramanickthevanthurai trace their lineage as Kshatriya.

Pathmanathan had his education at College, KKS and Mahajana College, He was involved in the politics of the Federal (FP) and later the Tamil Liberation Front (TULF). radicalisation was mainly through native of Myliddy, Pushparajan, who to … some years

Pushparajan was one of those who pioneered the Ilaingar Peravai or Youth in the ’70s and was detained without for many years then.

pet name at home was Kutty or cub). This was the name Myliddy people called him as During his childhood he was very and as a result, he was nicknamed ‘oosi’ in school.

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Pathmanathan was not a very student and required more one attempt to qualify for his O/L and A/L examinations. He the Jaffna University in his 20s but did not complete his

It was during his campus days the letters ‘KP’ attached on to Apparently there were two in the same batch and in order to among them, he became KP. he was also known as Kutty, the K in and the P in Pathmanathan became KP.

The tall, handsome KP was a big hit with the girls.

at the Jaffna campus, KP was attracted to militancy. Initially he joined the Eelam Liberation Organisation led by the legendary Thangathurai and Kuttimani. KP up as a TELO militant while an undergrad.

His nom de guerre in the TELO was Kumaran participated as a lookout in the Bank robbery where Rs. million was robbed.

There was a major split in the LTTE in 1980. Kandiah broke away with a number and formed the People’s Organisation of Tamil Eelam The residual cadres under Prabhakaran were a dejected

For about two years the LTTE Prabhakaran tied up with the under Thangathurai-Kuttimani. It was then KP began interacting with

The Neervely robbery on March 25, was a watershed in the history of the Tamil movement. The People’s Bank van was hard cash from the in the Vadamaratchy sector and returning to along the Jaffna-Point Pedro It was waylaid at Neervely and a massive sum of Rs.

8. 1 rupees was robbed.

This was a TELO-LTTE operation. KP’s in this was to ride a motorcycle the People’s Bank van and its escort vehicle. There were no or cellular phones then. At one KP had to speed up ahead of the vehicles and the militants lying in wait the target was approaching.

KP did his part and away. He did not participate in the robbery

But suspicious officials had noted the motorcycle number, which did not belong to KP but to a fellow undergrad, who had no idea that KP had borrowed it to use in a The motorcycle was traced and the innocent arrested. This led to a massive demonstration demanding his release, but KP had

In what was perhaps the first of his escapes from the law, KP abandoned everything and fled to He was then staying at 180, KKS in Jaffna. KP was then in his final but was compelled to give up his studies.

He completed his degree.

After to India, KP dropped out of Tamil for a while. He teamed up with cum racketeers in Bombay (now on the fringes of the Tamil militant Some other militants Sellakkili also joined group.

One motivating reason was as they had no funds. This came to an end after the July pogrom.

Sellakkili had returned to LTTE folds and was … in the … on July 23 that off the island-wide anti-Tamil violence. KP down to Madras, now Chennai, and himself in militant ranks This time he joined the and not his former outfit, TELO.

Thangathurai and Kuttimani were no and the TELO was under Sree KP preferred to join the LTTE as he had up good rapport with KP had come down to Madurai in 1982 with Sellakkili and for some days with during which period the Leader had invited him to join the whenever he wanted.

After KP into the LTTE, Prabhakaran did not him take up formal arms Prabhakaran recognised that talents lay elsewhere. KP was asked to use the and experience he had gained to raise and buy arms for the LTTE.

Together helpers from the LTTE as as the Indian underworld, KP began arms and equipment for the LTTE. of these clandestine acts done without even authorities knowing about Some of KP’s original in India were Vakeel, Thavam, Eesan, Kumar, and Shankar.

As time progressed KP’s began expanding. He was required to to many countries in the Middle Africa, Europe, Australia, America and South East and meet Tamil expatriate to mobilise funds. This was a when several Tamil groups were active and for expatriate funds so it was indeed a task to generate funds.

The fund raising also the setting up of LTTE branches and the of Tiger representatives abroad. too became KP’s responsibility. In the and ’90s it was KP who controlled and coordinated the overseas branches.

His objective was to as much funds as possible and it for purchase of arms.

In addition to funds and administering the overseas KP also had the daunting task of the international illicit arms and shops. He travelled to many of the world and bought up arms and He also had to make arrangements to them clandestinely to India and later directly to north Sri Lanka.

There was no beaten or set procedures. It was a case of playing it by KP was a pioneering pathfinder as he had to improvise and on the job.

Much of the early were through trial and

[KP-pic: puthinam.com]

It was astounding Pathmanathan, a man of humble origins Myliddy, had metamorphosed into KP, the purchaser and transporter of arms. It is to think that this ex- was now dealing successfully with arms merchants in many of the globe.


Selvarasa is now widely known as KP. But within the echelons of the LTTE there is name for him. It is ‘Kazhuthai,’ or This was a name bestowed on KP by Prabhakaran himself.

The donkey is an that carries loads on its KP is a man whose efforts resulted in of arms being supplied to the Hence, the name Donkey.

As procurer of arms for the LTTE KP had himself almost indispensable for the then. He, like Prabhakaran, was in a large way for the growth of the LTTE.

It was his after becoming the new LTTE to transform the LTTE and take the in a new direction.But that is not to be and he is now detained in Sri

KP is a man whose knowledge and information be of great value not only to Sri authorities but also to intelligence of several countries.

Indian Chief Bomber Limited Edition
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