Fund Raiser and Aarms Smuggler KP Missing

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COLOMBO: Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP, who was the principal fund raiser and arms smuggler for the now defunct Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) for many years, and who was pardoned and allowed to live in Sri Lanka by the Mahinda Rajapaksa government, has escaped from the country, Dr.Rajitha Senaratne, a close associate of Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, said here on Saturday.

Senaratne said that KP had left the country from the Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo before the announcement of Presidential election results.He was seen in the airport’s VIP lounge.

“Government is investigating the matter,” the former Fisheries Minister in the Rajapaksa government said.

After the end of Eelam War IV in 2009, KP was abducted by Sri Lankan military intelligence from a hotel in Kuala Lumpur with the help of Malaysian police and flown to Colombo.After debriefing, he had a meeting with the then powerful Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa where apparently a deal was struck.KP would spill the beans on the financial and arms networks of the LTTE, and in turn, he will be allowed to live in Kilinochchi, run an orphanage called “Sencholai” and try and get the Tamil Diaspora to cooperate with the Rajapaksa government.

It is not clear as to how useful KP was. He had ceased to be  incharge of the the LTTE’s international finances and gun running a few years before the 2006-2009 Eelam War IV.But a few months before its end, he was appointed Head of the International Wing and roving ambassador, to get international support to avert a total capitulation. After LTTE chief Prabhakaran’ s death in May 2009, KP declared that he had taken over the organization.But this was challenged by other LTTE remnants.

While the search for him was on, it was widely reported that he was wanted in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. But the chief investigator in that case, D.R.Karthikeyan, said that he was not a suspect.At any rate, there has, for long, been an INTERPOL Red Notice against him and India’s CBI had been wanting to question him.

The informal pardon given to him by the Rajapaksa regime has been very controversial in Sri Lanka.Opposition politicians  charged that the regime had something to gain from the soft approach they were taking towards him.

“Government is accusing its opponents of having links with the LTTE, but it is the government which is hobnobbing with the likes of KP whose bombs had killed thousands of innocent Sri Lankans,”    was the common refrain.

 

 

 

 

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