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    Wigneswaran-Sampanthan talks fail to end crisis in TNA

    The three-hour one-to-one meeting between the Northern Province Chief  Minister C.V.Wigneswaran, and the leader of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), R.Sampanthan, held here on Friday, had failed to resolve the crisis in the TNA.

    Speaking to the media at its conclusion, Wigneswaran only said that the talks were inclusive and that it was agreed to meet again.

    Top sources inside the TNA told Express that both sides stuck to their guns, not budging an inch. Sampanthan accused Wigneswaran of stabbing the TNA in the back and backing a rival outfit, and not running the Northern Administration with any sense of purpose. Wigneswaran accused the TNA leaders of developing a cozy relationship with the Colombo regime sacrificing the interests of the Tamils and running the TNA as a personal fiefdom.  According to some sources, Sampanthan was the more aggressive of the two.

    Asked to comment on the decision to meet again, a top leader of the TNA said: “They must be playing for time.”

    For the moment, both sides are publicly saying that there is no intention to split the TNA.

    The controversial Tamil Makkal Peravai (TMP), which Wigneswaran formed recently, is to have its first working session in Jaffna on Sunday. It is expected to form some “subject” committees.

    It will be interesting to see who all attend the Sunday meeting. There were many notable absentees at the inaugural meeting held at the Jaffna Public Library. No Minister of the Northern Administration, except the Chief Minister, was present. No Northern Provincial Council (NPC) member other than one, attended. No TNA Member of Parliament was present.

    Sources in Jaffna said that this was because the Chief Minister had alienated his ministers, NPC members and party MPs. He had disregarded the advice of some his ministers, considered to be close to him, not to get identified with the TMP. Wigneswaran not only attended the inaugural session, but presided over it.

    Political circles do see a move towards a split in the TNA. But how soon the split will occur will depend on Sri Lanka’s electoral timetable. With the postponement of the Local Bodies’ elections from March-April to June or July 2016, there is no immediate need to break away.

    Courtesy – The New Indian Express

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