14 May, 2021

" We did not kill Rajiv Gandhi"

" We did not kill Rajiv Gandhi"

SRI Lanka is split into two countries. One controlled by the Sri Lankan Government and the other where the LTTE’s writ runs. Travel between Colombo and Jaffna, the LTTE stronghold, is virtually impossible. For journalists, it is even tougher due to the ban imposed by the Sri Lankan Government . Outlook’s Chief of Bureau in Madras, A . S . Paneerselvan, recently made this daunting journey from Colombo.

He started out on September 28 on a wobbly train to reach Vavuniya— the legal as well as psychological boundary dividing the country. Being a Tamilian helped him merge into a crowd that was inching its way  towards a check-point at Thandikulam. After being frisked by Sri Lankan soldiers, he boarded a bus till the last barricade . T here after, he crossed an iron bridge which read: "Beyond this at your own risk."

What followed was an arduous cycle ride through no man’s land to where the Tiger territory began. At the LTTE checkpost he was told he required a clearance from Jaffna to enter. His arrival was radioed to the...

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