Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi

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Lanka Tamil State Party
(Federal Party)
Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi
Tamil name இலங்கைத் தமிழரசுக் கட்சி
Sinhala name ඉලංගෙයි තමිළ් අරසු කච්චි
Leader R. Sampanthan MP
President R. Sampanthan MP
Founder S. J. V. Chelvanayakam,
C. Vanniasingam,
E. M. V. Naganathan
General Secretary Mavai Senathirajah MP
Senior Vice Presidents P. Selvarasa MP,
Prof. S. Sittampalam
Deputy General Secretary K. Thurairetnasingam
Treasurer S. Thiyagarajah
Founded December 18, 1949 (1949-12-18)
Split from All Ceylon Tamil Congress
Headquarters 30 Martin Road, Jaffna
Ideology Tamil nationalism
National affiliation Tamil National Alliance
Parliament
8 / 225
Election symbol
House
Party flag
Flag of the Federal Party of Sri Lanka.svg
Politics of Sri Lanka
Political parties
Elections

Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK) (Tamil: இலங்கைத் தமிழரசுக் கட்சி, Sinhala: ඉලංගෙයි තමිළ් අරසු කච්චි) is a Sri Lankan political party which represents the Sri Lankan Tamil ethnic minority in the country. It was originally formed in 1949 as breakaway faction of the All Ceylon Tamil Congress (ACTC). In 1972 ITAK merged with the ACTC and Ceylon Workers' Congress (CWC) to form the Tamil United Front, which later changed its name to Tamil United Liberation Front. ITAK remained dormant until 2004 when a split in the TULF resulted in ITAK being re-established as an active political party.[1] ITAK is constituent party of the Tamil National Alliance.

Federal Party[edit]

ITAK was founded in late 1949 by a group of three Ceylon Tamil parliamentarians, S. J. V. Chelvanayakam, C. Vanniasingam and Senator E. M. V. Naganathan, who had withdrawn from G. G. Ponnambalam's ACTC over the latter's decision to enter the UNP government of D. S. Senanayke.[2] ITAK called itself the Federal Party (FP) in English.

Policies adopted by successive Sri Lankan governments, and the 1956 success of the Sinhala nationalist government under Solomon Bandaranaike, made the FP the main voice of Sri Lankan Tamil politics.[3] Increased racial and political tension between the country's ethnic groups led three political parties representing the ethnic minorities (FP, ACTC and the CWC) to form the Tamil United Front (TUF) in 1972. The TUF became increasingly nationalistic and by 1976 it had renamed itself as the Tamil United Liberation Front and was advocating an independent Tamil state. The CWC subsequently left the TULF.

The TULF became the first Tamil nationalist party to run on a separatist platform in the 1977 election. It gained a majority of the votes in the north and east, won 18 seats, and became the largest opposition party in parliament.[4] As Tamil nationalism turned violent and civil war broke out, the TULF remained the moderate face of Tamil politics. It became the target of nationalists on both sides and many of its leaders were assassinated.

Tamil National Alliance[edit]

In 2001 the TULF formed a political alliance, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), with other moderate Tamil parties as well as number of former militant groups. The TNA contested the 2001 parliamentary election under the TULF name and won 15 seats.[5] Subsequently the TNA began to make a more pro-Tamil Tiger stance, recognising the Tigers as the sole representative of the Sri Lankan Tamils. This caused a split within the TULF. Some members of the TULF, led by its President V. Anandasangaree, were opposed to the Tigers. Anandasangaree refused to allow the TNA to use the TULF name during the 2004 parliamentary election.[6] This caused the members of TULF who wished to remain with the TNA to resurrect the Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi name. ITAK is a registered political party and the TNA has contested all elections since the 2004 parliamentary election under the ITAK name.

Election results[edit]

1952 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the first general election contested by ITAK, the 1952 election in which the UNP increased its stranglehold on power, ITAK won 1.9% of the popular vote and 2 out of 95 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament. The ACTC won four seats.

1956 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 1956 election in which the SLFP led leftist coalition swept to power, ITAK won 5.39% of the popular vote and 10 out of 95 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament. The ACTC won just one seat. ITAK became the dominant party in the Tamil districts and remained so for two decades.

Votes and seats won by ITAK by electoral district

Electoral District Votes % Seats Turnout ITAK MP
Batticaloa 9,300 52.05% 1 61.57% Chelliah Rajadurai
Chavakachcheri 15,952 64.77% 1 69.14% V. N. Navaratnam
Jaffna 7,173 32.56% 0 63.72%
Kalkudah 4,555 28.31% 0 60.80%
Kalmunai 9,464 47.80% 1 71.78% M. S. Kariapper
Kankesanthurai 14,855 54.30% 1 67.55% S. J. V. Chelvanayakam
Kayts 16,308 71.19% 1 71.26% V. A. Kandiah
Kopay 12,804 53.83% 1 69.90% C. Vanniasingam
Mannar 6,726 53.12% 1 80.70% V. A. Alegacone
Paddirippu 9,422 49.72% 0 74.17%
Point Pedro 5,859 20.70% 0 64.17%
Pottuvil 8,355 52.46% 1 63.81% M. M. Mustapha
Trincomalee 7,048 56.88% 1 77.36% N. R. Rajavarothiam
Vaddukoddai 14,937 57.92% 1 72.78% A. Amirthalingam
Total 142,758 5.39% 10
Source: Department of Elections

ITAK's uncompromising stand on Tamil rights earned it the enmity of nationalist Sinhalese. In response to the Sinhala Only Act of 1956, ITAK MPs staged a satyagraha protest, but it was violently broken up by a Sinhalese mob. ITAK was blamed for the 1958 riots and banned briefly.

Unlike the Left parties, which opposed anything but full parity for the Tamil language, ITAK agreed to compromise and accepted the 1958 the Tamil Language (Special Provisions) Act in accordance with the Bandaranaike–Chelvanayakam Pact.

1960 (March) Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the March 1960 election in which the UNP became the largest party, ITAK won 5.80% of the popular vote and 15 out of 151 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by ITAK by electoral district

Electoral District Votes % Seats Turnout ITAK MP
Batticaloa 28,309 47.62% 1 159.67% Chelliah Rajadurai
Chavakachcheri 13,907 65.26% 1 83.20% V. N. Navaratnam
Jaffna 5,101 29.35% 0 71.91%
Kalkudah 7,318 48.51% 1 83.46% P. Manicavasagam
Kalmunai 5,520 39.67% 0 79.41%
Kankesanthurai 13,545 67.61% 1 71.22% S. J. V. Chelvanayakam
Kayts 10,820 56.61% 1 75.34% V. A. Kandiah
Kilinochchi 3,741 41.76% 1 64.89% A. Sivasunderam
Kopay 10,279 48.63% 1 77.13% M. Balasundaram
Mannar 6,463 47.37% 1 81.31% V. A. Alegacone
Mutur 10,685 26.73% 1 144.20% T. Ahambaram
Nallur 9,651 49.36% 1 73.12% E. M. V. Naganathan
Paddirippu 10,799 62.36% 1 89.91% S. M. Rasamanickam
Point Pedro 5,679 40.34% 1 73.33% K. Thurairatnam
Trincomalee 8,872 71.43% 1 65.96% N. R. Rajavarothiam
Udupiddy 3,860 18.19% 0 74.84%
Uduvil 9,033 44.07% 1 75.92% V. Dharmalingam
Vaddukoddai 11,524 53.52% 1 75.37% A. Amirthalingam
Vavuniya 1,338 10.78% 0 67.76%
Total 176,444 5.80% 15
Source: Department of Elections

1960 (July) Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the July 1960 election in which the SLFP became the largest party, ITAK won 7.0% of the popular vote and 16 out of 151 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

1965 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 1965 election in which the UNP became the largest party, ITAK won 5.38% of the popular vote and 14 out of 151 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by ITAK by electoral district

Electoral District Votes % Seats Turnout ITAK MP
Batticaloa 29,023 43.47% 1 150.59% Chelliah Rajadurai
Chavakachcheri 16,316 69.41% 1 77.92% V. N. Navaratnam
Jaffna 6,800 30.81% 0 77.76%
Kalkudah 6,096 35.22% 0 72.70%
Kalmunai 6,235 32.69% 0 86.07%
Kankesanthurai 14,735 58.24% 1 72.42% S. J. V. Chelvanayakam
Kayts 13,558 69.98% 1 61.49% V. Navaratnam
Kilinochchi 5,922 44.69% 1 71.33% K. P. Ratnam
Kopay 12,339 51.93% 1 72.90% S. Kathiravelupillai
Mannar 6,896 39.52% 1 82.04% V. A. Alegacone
Mutur 20,237 35.64% 1 150.92% M. E. H. Mohamed Ali
Nallur 10,301 45.05% 1 72.03% E. M. V. Naganathan
Paddirippu 11,270 51.50% 1 85.23% S. M. Rasamanickam
Point Pedro 7,564 46.24% 1 71.62% K. Thurairatnam
Pottuvil 871 4.53% 0 82.26%
Trincomalee 9,651 48.48% 1 73.00% S. M. Manickarajah
Udupiddy 8,452 32.85% 0 75.47%
Uduvil 11,638 48.61% 1 72.80% V. Dharmalingam
Vaddukoddai 15,498 60.78% 1 69.83% A. Amirthalingam
Vavuniya 4,512 25.05% 0 73.45%
Total 217,914 5.38% 14
Source: Department of Elections

1970 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 1970 election in which the SLFP led United Front coalition won a landslide, ITAK won 4.92% of the popular vote and 13 out of 151 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by ITAK by electoral district

Electoral District Votes % Seats Turnout ITAK MP
Batticaloa 27,661 33.17% 1 164.35% Chelliah Rajadurai
Chavakachcheri 15,473 54.49% 1 86.11% V. N. Navaratnam
Jaffna 8,848 35.59% 1 79.89% C. X. Martyn
Kalkudah 8,420 37.97% 0 83.59%
Kalmunai 4,960 23.00% 0 87.77%
Kankesanthurai 13,520 44.29% 1 81.03% S. J. V. Chelvanayakam
Kayts 13,079 53.35% 1 76.88% K. P. Ratnam
Kilinochchi 8,392 46.55% 0 76.03%
Kopay 16,428 43.92% 1 79.01% S. Kathiravelupillai
Mannar 10,697 48.98% 1 86.34% V. A. Alegacone
Mutur 19,787 25.87% 1 174.73% A. Thangathurai
Nallur 12,508 44.61% 0 78.69%
Paddirippu 12,723 48.76% 0 90.45%
Point Pedro 9,217 48.50% 1 79.52% K. Thurairatnam
Trincomalee 12,395 45.83% 1 76.61% B. Neminathan
Udupiddy 12,918 46.54% 1 80.41% Kandappa Jeyakody
Uduvil 14,120 49.27% 1 78.43% V. Dharmalingam
Vaddukoddai 13,634 48.71% 0 78.67%
Vavuniya 10,947 42.99% 1 80.82% X. M. Sellathambu
Total 245,727 4.92% 13
Source: Department of Elections

1977 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the first general election contested by the TULF, the 21 July 1977 election in which the UNP won by a landslide, the TULF won 6.40% of the popular vote and 18 out of 168 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament, including all 14 seats in the Northern Province.

Votes and seats won by TULF by electoral district

Electoral District Votes % Seats Turnout TULF MP
Batticaloa 26,648 24.70% 1 171.15% Chelliah Rajadurai
Chavakachcheri 20,028 63.27% 1 85.65% V. N. Navaratnam
Jaffna 16,251 56.62% 1 82.32% V. Yogeswaran
Kalkudah 12,595 43.07% 0 86.02%
Kalmunai 7,093 27.38% 0 89.86%
Kankesanthurai 31,155 85.41% 1 83.08% A. Amirthalingam
Kayts 17,640 64.05% 1 75.72% K. P. Ratnam
Kilinochchi 15,607 73.42% 1 79.71% V. Anandasangaree
Kopay 25,840 77.20% 1 80.03% S. Kathiravelupillai
Manipay 27,550 83.99% 1 79.28% V. Dharmalingam
Mannar 15,141 51.58% 1 92.40% P. S. Soosaithasan
Mullaitivu 10,261 52.36% 1 79.34% X. M. Sellathambu
Mutur 7,520 27.00% 0 91.65%
Nallur 29,858 89.42% 1 83.05% M. Sivasithamparam
Paddirippu 15,877 49.17% 1 89.92% P. Ganeshalingam
Point Pedro 12,989 55.91% 1 81.66% K. Thurairatnam
Pottuvil 23,990 26.97% 1 179.02% M. Kanagaratnam
Puttalam 3,268 10.52% 0 83.58%
Sammanthurai 8,615 34.65% 0 91.04%
Trincomalee 15,144 51.76% 1 81.78% R. Sampanthan
Udupiddy 18,768 63.44% 1 80.05% T. Rasalingam
Vaddukoddai 23,384 70.18% 1 81.90% T. Thirunavukarasu
Vavuniya 13,821 59.02% 1 82.31% T. Sivasithamparam
Total 399,043 6.40% 18
Source:[7]

The TULF became the official opposition as result of the rout of the SLFP. The TULF's success would lead to riots in which hundreds of Tamils were murdered by Sinhala mobs.

Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, the TULF was frequently blamed by nationalist Sinhalese politicians for acts of violence committed by militant groups such as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). In fact, the TULF represented an older, more conservative generation of Tamils that felt independence could be achieved without violence, more rival than ally to youth groups like the LTTE who believed in armed conflict.

In October 1983, all the TULF legislators, numbering sixteen at the time, forfeited their seats in Parliament for refusing to swear an oath unconditionally renouncing support for a separate state in accordance with the Sixth Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka.

During the 1980s, the LTTE began to see the TULF as a rival in its desire to be considered the sole representatives of the Tamils of the north and east. Over the next two decades, the LTTE has assassinated several TULF leaders, including A. Amirthalingam and Neelan Thiruchelvam.

1989 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

The TULF formed an alliance with the three Indian backed paramilitary groups, Eelam National Democratic Liberation Front (ENDLF), Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) and Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO), to contest the 15 February 1989 election. The alliance won 3.40% of the popular vote and 10 out of 225 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by TULF / ENDLF / EPRLF / TULF alliance by electoral district

Electoral
District
Votes % Seats Turnout TULF / ENDLF / EPRLF / TELO MPs
Batticaloa 55,131 35.49% 3 71.74% Prince Gunarasa Casinader (EPRLF)
Govinthan Karunakaram (TELO)
Samuel Pennington Thavarasa Tambimuttu (EPRLF), murdered 11 May 1990
Joseph Pararajasingham (TULF), from 1990 (replaces Sam Tambimuttu (EPRLF))
Digamadulla 43,424 20.32% 1 80.41% Jeyaratnam Thiviya Nadan (EPRLF)
Jaffna 60,013 25.02% 3 40.50% Kandiah Navaratnam (EPRLF)
Suresh Premachandran (EPRLF)
Ganeshankari Yogasangari (EPRLF), murdered 19 June 1990
Vanni 17,271 39.99% 2 30.53% Raja Kuhaneswaran (TELO)
Anthony Emmanuel Silva (EPRLF)
National List 1 A. Amirthalingam (TULF), murdered 13 July 1989
Mavai Senathirajah (replaces A. Amirthalingam)
Total 188,593 3.40% 10 63.6%
Sources:[8][9]

1994 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 16 August 1994 election in which the People's Alliance alliance led by Chandrika Kumaratunga came to power after 17 years of UNP rule, the TULF won 1.60% of the popular vote and 5 out of 225 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by TULF by electoral district

Electoral
District
Votes % Seats Turnout TULF MPs
Batticaloa 76,516 43.95% 3 66.47% Joseph Pararajasingham
P. Selvarasa
K. Thurairasasingham
Trincomalee 28,380 23.66% 1 65.15% Thangathurai Arunasalam
National List 1 Neelan Tiruchelvam, murdered 29 July 1999
Mavai Senathirajah, from August 1999 (replaces Neelan Tiruchelvam)
Total 132,461 1.60% 5 76.23%
Sources:[10][11]

2000 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 10 October 2000 election in which the People's Alliance alliance led by Ratnasiri Wickremanayake retained to power, the TULF won 1.23% of the popular vote and 5 out of 225 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament. Votes and seats won by TULF by electoral district

Electoral
District
Votes % Seats Turnout TULF MPs
Batticaloa 54,448 29.20% 2 71.74% Joseph Pararajasingham
Nimalan Soundaranayagam
Jaffna 32,852 27.59% 3 21.32% V. Anandasangaree
Mavai Senathirajah
Sinnathamby Sivamaharajah
Trincomalee 14,090 10.58% 0 68.52%
Vanni 4,643 5.58% 0 42.13%
National List 0
Total 106,033 1.23% 5 75.62%
Sources:[12][13][14]

2001 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the first parliamentary election contested by the Tamil National Alliance, the 5 December 2001 election, the TNA led by Rajavarothiam Sampanthan won 3.88% of the popular vote and 15 out of 225 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by TNA by electoral district

Electoral
District
Votes % Seats Turnout TNA MPs
Ampara 48,789 17.41% 1 82.51% Ariyanayagam Chandra Nehru (TULF)
Batticaloa 86,284 48.17% 3 68.20% G. Krishnapillai (ACTC)
Joseph Pararajasingham (TULF)
Thambiraja Thangavadivel (TELO)
Colombo 12,696 1.20% 0 76.31%
Jaffna 102,324 54.84% 6 31.14% V. Anandasangaree (TULF)
Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam (ACTC)
Nadarajah Raviraj (TULF)
Mavai Senathirajah (TULF)
M. K. Shivajilingam (TELO)
A. Vinayagamoorthy (ACTC)
Trincomalee 56,121 34.83% 1 79.88% R. Sampanthan (TULF)
Vanni 41,950 44.39% 3 46.77% Selvam Adaikalanathan (TELO)
Sivasakthy Ananthan (EPRLF)
Irasa Kuhaneswaran (TELO)
National List 1 M. Sivasithamparam (TULF), died 5 June 2002
K. Thurairetnasingam (TULF) (replaces M. Sivasithamparam)
Total 348,164 3.88% 15 76.03%
Source:"Parliamentary General Election 2001, Final District Results". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 

2004 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 2 April 2004 parliamentary election in which the United People's Freedom Alliance alliance led by President Kumaratunga came to power, the Tamil National Alliance led by Rajavarothiam Sampanthan won 6.84% of the popular vote and 22 out of 225 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by TNA by electoral district

Electoral
District
Votes % Seats Turnout TNA MPs
Ampara 55,533 19.13% 1 81.42% K. Pathmanathan, died 21 May 2009
Thomas Thangathurai William, from 12 June 2009 (replaces K. Pathmanathan)
Batticaloa 161,011 66.71% 4 83.58% Senathirajah Jeyanandamoorthy
Thanmanpillai Kanagasabai
Thangeswary Kathiraman
Kingsley Rasanayagam, resigned April 2004
P. Ariyanethiran, from 18 May 2004 (replaces Kingsley Rasanayagam)
Jaffna 257,320 90.60% 8 47.38% Selvarajah Kajendren
Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam (ACTC)
Suresh Premachandran (EPRLF)
Nadarajah Raviraj (ITAK), murdered 10 November 2006
Mavai Senathirajah (ITAK)
M. K. Shivajilingam (TELO)
K. Sivanesan, murdered 6 March 2008
Pathmini Sithamparanathan
Nallathamby Srikantha (TELO), from 30 November 2006 (replaces Nadarajah Raviraj)
Solomon Cyril, from 9 April 2008 (replaces Kidnan Sivanesan)
Trincomalee 68,955 37.72% 2 85.44% R. Sampanthan (ITAK)
K. Thurairetnasingam (ITAK)
Vanni 90,835 64.71% 5 66.64% Selvam Adaikalanathan (TELO)
Sivasakthy Ananthan (EPRLF)
Sathasivam Kanagaratnam
Sivanathan Kisshor
Vino Noharathalingam (TELO)
National List 2 M. K. Eelaventhan, expelled from Parliament 14 December 2007 for non-attendance
Joseph Pararajasingham (ITAK), murdered 24 December 2005
Chandra Nehru Chandrakanthan, from 27 September 2006 (replaces Joseph Pararajasingham)
Raseen Mohammed Imam, from 5 February 2008 (replaces M. K. Eelaventhan)
Total 633,654 6.84% 22 75.96%
Source:"Parliamentary General Election 2004, Final District Results". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 

2010 Parliamentary General Election[edit]

In the 8 April 2010 parliamentary election in which the United People's Freedom Alliance alliance led by President Rajapaksa retained power, the Tamil National Alliance led by Rajavarothiam Sampanthan won 2.9% of the popular vote and 14 out of 225 seats in the Sri Lankan parliament.

Votes and seats won by TNA by electoral district

Electoral
District
Votes % Seats Turnout TNA MPs
Ampara 26,895 10.47% 1 64.74% Podiappuhamy Piyasena
Batticaloa 66,235 36.67% 3 58.56% P. Ariyanethiran (ITAK)
P. Selvarasa (ITAK)
S. Yogeswaran (ITAK)
Jaffna 65,119 43.85% 5 23.33% Suresh Premachandran (EPRLF)
E. Saravanapavan (ITAK)
Mavai Senathirajah (ITAK)
S. Sritharan (ITAK)
A. Vinayagamoorthy
Trincomalee 33,268 23.81% 1 62.20% R. Sampanthan (ITAK)
Vanni 41,673 38.96% 3 43.89% Selvam Adaikalanathan (TELO)
Sivasakthy Ananthan (EPRLF)
Vino Noharathalingam (TELO)
National List 1 M. A. Sumanthiran (ITAK)
Total 233,190 2.90% 14 61.26%
Source:"Parliamentary General Election – 2010". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 

References[edit]

  1. ^ "TNA submits nomination lists for NE electoral districts". TamilNet. 23 February 2004. Retrieved 28 February 2010. 
  2. ^ Sri Lankan Tamil Nationalism by A. Jeyaratnam Wilson. Published by C. Hurst & Co. Publishers, 2000
  3. ^ Wilson, A.J. (1994). S. J. V. Chelvanayagam and the Crisis of Sri Lankan Nationalism 1947-1977. London: Hurst & Co. pp. 140 ff. ISBN 0-8248-1608-0. 
  4. ^ DBS Jeyaraj. "TULF leader passes away". Hindu News. Retrieved 2008-05-04. 
  5. ^ "PARLIAMENTARY GENERAL ELECTION - 2001 ALL ISLAND RESULT Composition of Parliament". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. Retrieved 28 February 2010. 
  6. ^ "Objection against TNA using HOUSE symbol rejected". TamilNet. 28 February 2004. Retrieved 28 February 2010. 
  7. ^ "Result of Parliamentary General Election 1977". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 
  8. ^ "Result of Parliamentary General Election 1989". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 
  9. ^ D. B. S. Jeyaraj (1 January 2006). "The benign parliamentarian from Batticaloa". TransCurrents. 
  10. ^ "Result of Parliamentary General Election 1994". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 
  11. ^ "Senathirajah - new TULF MP". The Island, Sri Lanka. 15 August 1999. 
  12. ^ "Parliamentary General Election 10.10.2000, Final District Results". Department of Elections, Sri Lanka. 
  13. ^ "EPDP gets four seats in Jaffna". TamilNet. 11 October 2000. 
  14. ^ "Pararajasingham elected on final count". TamilNet. 11 October 2000.