Seeman vs Pazha Nedumaran: How 'LTTE Chief Prabhakaran is alive' remarks have stirred a row?

Tamil Nationalist Movement leader Pazha Nedumaran's remarks that Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was still alive had stirred a political row in the state. Several political leaders including Seeman, who has been claiming that he had a close proximity with Prabhakaran, have been rebutting Nedumaran's not-new claim. 

While Prabhakaran was declared dead by the Sri Lankan Army during the final phase of the Sri Lankan civil war in 2009, Nedumaran has for yet another time come up with his claim that Prabhakaran is still alive and living with his wife. Speaking at a press conference in Thanjavur on Monday - February 13, Nedumaran said, "The current global situation and following the protest by the Sinhala people (in Sri Lanka) that brought down the Rajapaksa regime, this is the time to make this announcement, Prabhakaran is alive and well." 

"I am happy to announce this to the Tamils living across the world. This news will put a full stop to all the rumours and fears spread about him so far", he added. He went on to say that Prabhakaran will announce the plans soon for the Tamil Eelam people. "We ask that Eelam Tamils and Tamil across the world offer their support to him", Nedumaran further added. He also issued a statement pressing his assertion. His remarks that came from nowhere had sparked political storm in Tamil Nadu with a debate between the political leaders.  

Naam Tamilar Katchi's chief Seeman, who has been claiming that he had a close proximity with Prabhakaran and that he had a tortoise meat with him, had given a strong rebuttal to Nedumaran over his remarks that Prabhakaran is alive. Seeman said that Prabhakaran is not a coward who runs away for his own life. By citing that how Prabhakaran can still be running for his life after his son was shot dead, Seeman said that Prabhakaran stood and fought bravely saying that he will not leave this country under any situation. 

"Prabhakaran is not a coward who runs away for his own life. Do you think that Prabhakaran will stay safe and sound somewhere for 15 years after the war and the disaster we face? Our brother Prabhakaran is not the one who will come and tell. Those who know him well are aware that this is his habit. Leader Prabhakaran taught us that action precedes words. So, there is no need to get confused", Seeman added. 

The Sri Lankan Army had also denied that Prabhakaran is alive. On Monday, Sri Lankan Army Spokesman Brigadier Ravi Herath on Monday said that Sri Lanka has all the records, including DNA certificates to prove that Prabhakaran is dead. He said, "We have evidence that LTTE chief Velupillai Prabhakaran was killed in the final battle." 

On the other hand, by claiming that Prabhakaran is still alive for yet another time, Nedumaran has displayed that he will stick with his notion despite the rebuttals and with such repeated claims, he has been courting controversies. Looking back at the history, this is not the first time that Nedumaran made such claim. In February 2016, Nedumaran said in Coimbatore that Prabhakaran was alive and that the Indian government has never declared that he had died. 

In 2010, a year after the end of Sri Lankan civil war, Nedumaran claimed that the war would happen again in Eelam and Prabhakaran would lead the war. Several political leaders in Tamil Nadu have been reacting and rebutting to Nedumaran's claim. Tamil Nadu Congress Committee chief KS Alagiri said that he would go and meet Prabhakaran if Nedumaran shows him. Speaking to ANI, Alagiri said, "I am very happy. If Pazha Nedumaran shows me Prabhakaran, I will go and see him. No problem."