6:21 AM

Paris Hindus chose Ganesh pooja over LTTE diktat

Hindu devotees in their hundreds participated in the Ganesha pooja at the Hindu temple in Paris and broke thousands of coconuts as a part of ritual defying the orders issued by the Tamil Tigers 'not to waste money to break coconuts when the people in the north and east are displaced'.

The trustees of Sri Manika Vinayakar Alayam denounced the Tamil Tigers for their attempts to interfere with Ganesha pooja from October 31 to September 3. Immediately after the temple authorities announced the schedule of Ganesha pooja, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) pasted posters in Tamil dominated La Chappelle area in Paris urging Hindu population to boycott the coconut pooja, which is an integral part of the Ganesha pooja.

"Instead of breaking coconuts for Ganesha pooja, donate the amount you spend for coconuts and for cleaning the Paris roads after the pooja for the special fund for displaced Tamils in the north and east," the LTTE poster urged. The poster carried photographs of previous year's Ganesha pooja and a crying child allegedly starving at a refugee camp. In this poster, the Ganesha pooja picture was cut across with an 'X' and it called on the Hindus to contribute funds to the Tamil Refugee Organisation (TRO). The poster urged the Hindus to see first about the current situation before thinking of salvation in future reincarnations.

"The LTTE poster is nothing but religious sacrilege," Vijayan Arumugan, a Hindu devote said. "The LTTE can raise funds at any other place, but not at the cost of a sacred Hindu ritual". He added that the Tamils have serious doubts in any case whether the funds collected by the TRO would go to the welfare of the displaced people.In the Kovil - breaking coconuts to fulfill vowsIn the Kovil - breaking coconuts to fulfill vows

The TRO (ORT France) is under investigation currently as the documents seized from 17 arrested LTTE cadres in France have revealed the close links between the LTTE and ORT France. The Sri Lanka Embassy in Paris urged the European Union to ban the TRO as it is a front organization of the LTTE.