The Indian government’s support for Tamil Eelam died with Indira Gandhi. While the IPKF disaster and Rajiv Gandhi assassination killed any shattered remnants of sympathy the Indian government may have had with Eelam Tamils. The Indian government was just as big of an enemy to the LTTE as the Sri Lankan government, the difference is India is incredibly influential worldwide unlike Sri Lanka which has very little influence. If India had supported the LTTE from start to finish, Tamil Eelam would be an independent state.
India’s two primary fears of Tamil Eelam were: 1. Tamil Eelam independence may lead to Tamil Nadu independence, if that happens, it would hurt India economically and geopolitically 2. Tamil Eelam, as a de-facto state, proved to be incredibly militarily and technologically advanced compared to other separatists groups and de-facto states worldwide. Prabhakaran made it clear he would not work for India’s best interests, as such, Tamil Eelam, given its advancement, may have become as military structured as Israel and architectural prosperous as Singapore. The success of the state, exemplified through its brief success during the ceasefire(2001–2006), may have lead to Eelam being allied with other foreign powers, possibly enemies with India, engulfing their influence in the region, hence, alienating India’s. (Note*: China’s grip on Sri Lanka was India’s fear with LTTE) India, post-1991, had begun consistently aiding Sri Lanka economically and militarily.
During Eelam war 3, as the LTTE saw a series of victories, India became Sri Lanka’s biggest military trading partner and economic subsidizer. As former SL PM Ranil Wickremisghe states: “When I was the prime minister of Sri Lanka previously, the LTTE was in a very strong position. Our economy was weak. Mr. Vajpayee(Indian PM 1998–2004) helped us develop the economy and extended military training. We were able to stop the sea Tigers (LTTE’s sea wing) because of him Gotabhaya Rajapksa, current SL president “We had a very good understanding with the Congress government in India, especially its bureaucrats. We were able to get their fullest support in defeating the LTTE. During the final stages of the war, where mass human rights violations were taking place, India was governed by the INC, led by Rajiv Gandhi’s widow, Sonia Gandhi, who controlled Congress at the time It was Sonia Gandhi who decided and convinced Indian PM Manmohan Singh(2004–2014) that defeating the LTTE and killing Prabhakaran was more important in safeguarding India’s interests than allowing China and Pakistan to lay their grips on the island. Sonia Gandhi, during the ceasefire, made it adamant that the only solution to the conflict was a military one. The notion to “maintain peace was” far from that of reality as she routinely advised the Sri Lankan government on possible military strategies, civilian population control, media suppression and IC negligence to a full-scale offensive.
Her influence, alongside Ranil’s, played a significant role in dividing the LTTE leadership, ex. Karuna and KP’s betrayals. Sam Rajappa, The Statesman journalist states : It was after this group’s successful initiative(The Tamil Nadu civil society group) that India changed track and gave the green signal to the Sri Lankan government to go all out to decimate the LTTE without insisting on a political solution to resolve the ethnic crisis. According to sources in Colombo, Sonia Gandhi wanted LTTE leader Velupillai Pirapaharan and its intelligence chief Pottu Amman decapitated and pledged all military support to Sri Lanka to achieve her goal. The then-national security adviser MK Narayanan, foreign secretary Shivshankar Menon and the clique controlling the Prime Minister’s Office put Sonia Gandhi’s interest above national interest and actively assisted the brutal Sri Lankan genocide that could be seen in the Channel 4 documentary thus creating the quagmire Sri Lanka finds itself in. This is evident from the fact that while the whole world is seething at what they saw in the documentary, the government of India is deafeningly silent. There is every possibility of Rajapaksa and the company being hauled up before the International Court of Justice at The Hague to stand trial for war crimes and genocide. In the event, New Delhi cannot escape responsibility for this horrendous brutality.
The bell is tolling…In a sense, the Mullivaaikkal debacle was an Italian vendetta where the assassination at Sreeperumbhudoor was perceived as being the reason for the carnage on the sands of Karaithuraipattru AGA division. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Karunanidhi, loyal to Indira Gandhi adamantly aided the government in the war against the LTTE. Karunanidhi wasn’t responsible for the chaos like Gandhi, however, his silence and support for Congress proved detrimental. Karunanidhi ignored Prabhakaran’s request for assistance, allowed TN police to arrest LTTE assets, refused to denounce support for Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government, etc. RAW’s task force dubbed, Tamil Nadu Coastal Security Group, supported by Karunanidhi, allowed New Dehli to limit LTTE activity in Tamil Nadu, prevent LTTE leaders from escaping to Tamil Nadu, and destroyed the LTTE’s TN weapons smuggling network in 2007. Former CM Jayalalitha stated: Karunanidhi did not press the Centre for the implementation of a resolution adopted by the State Assembly in 2011 which demanded the imposition of the economic embargo on Sri Lanka and that those engaged in war crimes be brought to justice through a resolution in United Nations. Last year, when the Union government watered down a “fairly strong” US-sponsored resolution in the United Nations Human Rights Council, he should have condemned it. He remained silent even when it became obvious, though Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s letter, that it was at the instance of the Union government that the resolution was weakened Politically, India had pressured the international community, alongside the US, to label the LTTE as a terrorist organization while defending the GOSL at UNHRC hearings.
It was Indian caucus members of the Canadian conservative party that convinced its leadership to ban the LTTE. They also played a vital role in preventing Seeman from getting Canadian citizenship. Militarily, India had given the SLA a loan of $100 million US and had supplied them with fighter jets, attack helicopters, and arms. During the ceasefire, India had provided the SLA with JY 11 3D radars for $5 million, two Indra IN-PC-2D radars free, 13 MiG 29 squadrons, hundreds of flak jackets, 5 attack helicopters, and etc. RAW gave the SLA access to Indian satellites and drones to observe LTTE operations in the jungles while the Indian Air Force conducted routine airstrikes on Sea Tiger vessels and cargo-ships full of weapons while the Indian Navy created a blockade on the outskirts of the Indian Ocean to prevent the importation of LTTE arms and the escape of high-level LTTE commanders. The Indian Navy, alone, destroyed 10 of the LTTE’s “floating warehouses”, which considerably weakened the Sea Tigers. The Indian Navy was involved in reconnaissance missions and the provision of intelligence to the Sri Lankan Navy, which, as mentioned previously, subsequently carried airstrikes on Sea Tiger vessels. Sri Lanka became the single largest recipient of Indian military training, and in 2008, India further extended the annual training slots for the Sri Lankan armed forces. Moreover, an informal exchange mechanism between high‐level Indian and Sri Lankan delegations (two of Rajapaksa’s brothers and his secretary, on the Sri Lankan side, and the national security advisor, the foreign secretary, and the defense secretary, on the Indian side) was reportedly established, and the two delegations met frequently in this capacity in the years 2007‐2009. Sri Lankan Navy Admiral, Wasantha Karannagoda, states: LTTE supply ships were eliminated, one by one, with input from Indian naval intelligence, cutting off all supplies to the rebel-held areas…That, in turn, allowed us to make rapid advances and unravel the de facto state the Tigers had established in the north and east. India, as of today, adamantly rejects the UNHRC proposal of an international war crimes inquiry against the GOSL