Prabhakaran’s getaway plane?

Those planes can take passengers too

Sandeep Unnithan reports that the Sri Lankan troops who captured airfields and landing strips used by the LTTE didn’t find the two Zlin Z-143 planes that made up its air wing. Some analysts think that the light aircraft could have been dismantled and stowed away in the jungle. (via R Hariharan’s MI blog)

There is also another possibility. The four-seater planes with a normal range of over 1000km (according to the manufacturer’s specifications) could be used as getaway vehicles for LTTE’s top leadership. Given that these aircraft have successfully evaded radars and air-defence in the past, there is a good chance that the escape has gone (or will go) undetected. Indeed, an organisation as astute as the LTTE might well have set-up a contingency plan, with a camouflaged landing strip on a remote beach far away but within range of the planes; next to a jetty with a high-speed boat with an even longer range.

So Velupillai Prabhakaran & Co could be very much anywhere by now.

9 thoughts on “Prabhakaran’s getaway plane?”

  1. They only need a catamaran to get to their safest haven — coastal Tamil Nadu villages with strong Dalit populations. So, an aircraft is quite unnecessary. And in case you did not notice — three buses were burnt and several stoned yesterday in Tamil Nadu to protest the Lankan offensive. By members of Dalit Panthers.

    The Rajiv Gandhi assassination made the LTTE an untouchable in TN for 10 years. Another high profile assassination by them will get rid of them for another 10. Sad part is, terror is no longer about assassinations.

  2. @Nilu,

    The Sri Lankan navy is watching the seas rather closely. But this time Pirabhakaran might reach for his necklace.

  3. That greedy demagogue will never use the cyanide capsule that he boastfully displays around his neck. Despite having fooled so many others into dying for him, he himself would never give up his life for the cause. Indeed, his only reason for wanting Eelam was to make himself a king. Noo, beloved thalaivar Prabhakaran loves his own life too much to sacrifice it for any cause. If he is captured by Lankan forces, they will pressure him into recanting and renouncing the movement. He will gladly do this to save his own life.

  4. @Nilu,
    How many Dalit villages in TN do you think are on the sea coast near Srilanka? Only the fishermen community resides extensively along the coast with Srilanka. Don’t mislead.
    The Viduthalai Chirutthai Katchi (Liberation Panthers Party) is led by Thirumaavalavan, a staunch supporter of the Tigers. His party has only a section of dalit support, not all. Support to Eelam Tamils is present in TN cutting across caste and even religious lines. During Thirumaavalavan’s fast in support of Eelam Tamils, leaders of the BJP and Muslim Munnetra Kazhagam occupied the same dais and pledged their support to him. P.Nedumaran, another die heart supporter of the Tigers belongs to a higher caste and even Prabhakaran himself belongs to a higher caste.

    The Rajiv Gandhi assassination of course alienated the Tigers from the TN people but the recent indiscriminate killing of civilians in Srilanka is slowly increasing the ground support to Tigers due to the fact that they are the only representatives for Tamils with some teeth in the island today. So India cannot just sit over whatever is happening in Srilanka and say it is the internal affairs of another country. At some point or another we would have to interfere.

    There is another angle that would require Indian intervention – the increasing security and intelligence co-operation between Srilanka, Pakistan and China. Only today the Srilankan External Affairs Minister signed an agreement with Pakistan for security and intelligence co-operation. Security is ok since Pakistan provides arms to Srilanka free or at lower cost, but how can Pakistan help with Srilanka with intelligence? This means it is the other way round, in exchange for security assistance Srilanka will provide intelligence assistance to Pakistan. Obviously the intelligence assistance means spying on India. The Srilankans have already penetrated TN in a big way, reports say they bribed journalists to not cover the war news in a big way. Add to this the fact that China is building the Triconamalee port. China today has naval facilities in Myanmar (Cocos island & some other base) and Pakistan (Gwadar). With the port in Triconamalee, India is encircled and Triconamalee is nearest to critical infrastructure along TN and AP coast. To add to this mess, the US and Iran are also involved to a lesser extent.

    Srilanka is the backyard of India and India has traditionally opposed any outside influence in the island. Even the IPKF was sent partly to dissuade the Americans from building radar installations in Srilanka. But today due to the senseless policy followed by the present central govt, our influence is fading while our enemies are gaining ground. We can only hope that at least the next govt will take corrective actions urgently. Otherwise the day when Srilanka becomes a serious threat to South India will not be too far.

  5. Sri Lanka would never support any breakup of India, because it knows that Tamil Nadu would then seek to absorb northern Sri Lanka.

    India will push for a political solution rather than a separate state, since the latter would pose a threat to India’s own territorial integrity. It’s only Prabhakaran and his ruthless assassination of anyone remotely interested in political compromise that have prolonged the Eelam movement. The end of Prabhakaran will mean the end of the road for the Eelam hardliners, whom the people are tired of.

  6. @ Sanjay
    The indian govt. does not take seriously the strategic depth like pakistan. It should prevent the chinese and pakis from doing a complete encirclement of india. So the depth is having tamils (LTTE) as the driver because they can be controlled by using the tamil connection. Also there is no thinking let alone a strategy for south india as india is obsessed with the threat from china and pakistan (north land based threat) and does not have a clue about its peninsular portion.Hence the reason for the slow training of our so-called blue navy devoid of a modern aircraft carrier, nuclear subs etc. I am not saying they are not important( north based threat) but all I am saying is that they do not do much here. When RAW created LTTE it had the control and was dictating the rules of the game but now we are reduced to issue calls for restraint to the SL govt. which by the way has shown its true face by the incendiary statements of its general reiterating that SL belongs to sinhalese which exactly is the root cause for the war.
    The problem with indian govt and babus is that they approach foreign policy similar to the individual hindu dharma of karma etc. We have to do certain things to achieve policy objectives – ends justify the means. LTTE had to resort to killing of RG because he made a U-turn of Indian policy.
    What options does India have other than expecting SL not to support any breakup?So is India fine with SL committing a genocide of the tamils there and place it under chinese and paki control? Because after the defeat of LTTE it can go under the pretext of cleaning anti national elements to justify its naked aggression and still lease out the land to pakis like what pakis did to china(aksai chin).
    My point here is instead of India adopting a moral posture of condemning terrorism in all forms and be a reactive force ( for chrissakes it is our own backyard and involves a major polity) it can play an active part and support Tamils (in this case LTTE) because the sinhala community is and always will be against India ( Imagine RG being hit by a SL armed forces soldier- We r now helping SL army set up radars). So there is no permanent friends or foes in diplomacy.India has to come down from its moral posturing.
    On the other hand TN after having tasted so much success within India after the new economic policies will have no incentive to go out of the union. Even LTTE does not want that as it knows only a strong TN in a strong India will ensure the tamil community survival.

  7. Attack on Sri Lankan cricket in Pakistan its really sad news, according to Kamran Khan Geo news, this attack is recap of Mumbai Attacks; this is big loss of cricket in Pakistan,

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