While oppositional forces are getting ready to fight back, there is a sense of frustration among those who are eager to see the Mahinda Regime being superseded by a more responsive, responsible and democratic governance. They insist that both the impeachment and sacking of the Chief Justice and her ‘replacement’ by Mr. Mohan Peries are against the law of the country.
They declare that this violation of the law of the country makes Mohan, a rogue and a cheat. Also he has been a government spokesman and a legal advisor to the Cabinet.
In addition while functioning as the Attorney General he was accused of withdrawing a murder case and a rape case against two favoured members of the government. Mrs. Prageeth Ekneligoda claims that Mr. Mohan Peries had lied to the Committee Against Torture when he claimed he had reliable knowledge that this journalist disappeared now for three years, was quite safe and living in self-exile in some foreign country. Later, appearing in court in Colombo he had claimed he had no knowledge of the matter and that only God knows where he may be.
All this has affected these people badly. In this scenario the sense of frustration could turn into a feeling of helplessness and despair and in turn they direct their anger towards the Opposition too. They ask how the regime could unleash naked state terror upon the legal fraternity and against all democratic opposition. It is felt that the passage of the Divi neguma Bill and the Amendment to the Criminal Procedure Act, combined with the intention to introduce a 19th Amendment to the Constitution has spelt the death knell of freedom and democracy in Lanka.
Unless the Opposition arrests these tendencies with a mass struggle, these critiques say, the regime shall freely defy the Rule of Law and perpetuate its chauvinist dictatorship. It can now freely rig up elections without any legal complications. It has cleared all obstacles towards monopolisation of all sources of wealth, power and the dispensation of privileges through the passage of several Bills in the recent past. Now, will it try to nullify the 13th Amendment and rob the Tamil Nation of all the national-democratic rights won through decades of struggle and sacrifice?
It has the freedom to unleash its Sinhala-Buddhist chauvinist political base to entrench a centralised unitary State under its hegemony and command. The Bodu Bala Sena is a part of this political crusade of the regime and it is the latest of such Brigades operated by various centres and agencies of state power.
Some of these frustrated people, who are impatient with the Opposition, believe that the so-called “International Community” could rescue them. However whether it be the US, EU, India, China or Russia or any other Global Power, they will advance and execute their own respective Geostrategic political agendas, with the least regard for any principle of democracy. Hence this hope is illusory and will play into the hands of the Mahinda regime who rides on the platform of ‘anti-imperialism and patriotism’.
The Beloved adjutant of Mahinda, Minister Weerawansa, time to time screams about the threat of a foreign conspiracy, aided by pro- LTTE forces bent on dislodging this patriotic regime! Mahinda’s populist training is, to some extent, useful in manipulating and exploiting general anti-imperialist sentiments and aspirations of the rural Sinhala masses. But that will not last long. This is the calculated profit gained by the chauvinist military victory and the ideology of supremacy persistently drummed through all media apparatuses of the State, into the masses by the repressive regime.
Cearly, this is a time for the genuine left forces to unite in struggle for democracy with rational, secular bourgeoisie opposition. Of course such radical bourgeoisie forces can at any moment abandon the struggle and compromise with the ruling chauvinist elites. But that is no excuse to abandon the common struggle against an enemy that is challenging civilised existence. It is through a mass struggle of Protest by the Opposition that masses can go forward. Such a struggle could precisely create the condition for a genuine revolutionary alternative.
The heroic struggles waged by FUTA, the Inter-University Students Federation, the workers and peasants etc, have been forced to capitulate and stagnate due to the lack of understanding of the tactic Protest of the Opposition. It is true that Protest of the Opposition is not a powerful Centre of Mass Resistance with a vision of a social organisation sans exploitation.
Yet the path to the future lies in the unyielding and persistent struggle of ‘Protest by the Opposition’, which could in the course of the struggle forge such a Mass Resistance Centre with clearly defined goals and objectives.