C. Vanniasingam

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C. Vanniasingam
கு. வன்னியசிங்கம்
C. Vanniasingam.jpg
Member of the Ceylonese Parliament
for Kopay
In office
Succeeded by M. Balasundaram
President of the
Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi
Preceded by S. J. V. Chelvanayakam
Succeeded by N. R. Rajavarothiam
Personal details
Born (1911-10-12)12 October 1911
Died 17 September 1959(1959-09-17) (aged 47)
Political party Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi
Alma mater Ceylon University College
Profession Lawyer
Ethnicity Ceylon Tamil

Coomaraswamy Vanniasingam (Tamil: குமாரசாமி வன்னியசிங்கம்; 12 October 1911 – 17 September 1959) was a Ceylon Tamil lawyer, politician and Member of Parliament.

Early life and family[edit]

Vanniasingam was born on 12 October 1911.[1] He was the son of V. Coomaraswamy, a proctor and Tamil scholar from Tellippalai in northern Ceylon.[2] Vanniasingam's brother was C. Balasingam, the Deputy Secretary to the Treasury.[2] Vanniasingam was educated at Mahajana College, Tellippalai and Jaffna Hindu College.[2] After school Vanniasingam joined the Ceylon University College, graduating in 1933 with a B.A. degree.[2][3]

Vanniasingam married Komathy, a daughter of physician Srinivasan.[2] They had five daughters - Hemavathi, Sathiyavathi, Renukathevi, Bahirathy and Ranjini.[2]

Political Career[edit]

Vanniasingam joined the legal profession as an advocate and practised law in Jaffna.[2]

P. G. Thambyappah, the All Ceylon Tamil Congress's (ACTC) candidate in Kopay at the 1947 parliamentary election, died during the election campaign.[2] Vanniasingam was chosen to replace Thambyappah.[2] He won the election and entered Parliament.[4]

In 1948 division arose amongst ACTC members over the party leadership's decision to join the United National Party (UNP) led government. Vanniasingam was one of those who opposed joining the UNP government. The dissidents, led by S. J. V. Chelvanayakam, E. M. V. Naganathan and Vanniasingam, eventually left the ACTC and formed the Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (Federal Party) in 1949.[5] Vanniasingam served as president of ITAK.[6]

Vanniasingam stood as the ITAK candidate in Kopay at the 1952 parliamentary election and was re-elected.[7] Vanniasingam was one of only two ITAK MPs and with ITAK leader Chelvanayakam out of Parliament Vanniasingam functioned as the parliamentary leader of the party.[2] He was re-elected at the 1956 parliamentary election.[8] Following the 1958 riots ITAK and the Jathika Vimukthi Peramuna (National Liberation Front) were banned.[9] ITAK's leaders, including Vanniasingam, were arrested on 4 June 1958 as they left Parliament and imprisoned .[10]

Vanniasingam died on 17 September 1959.[1][2]