I was returning home
from grade 5 scholarship exam on 1983 July 23rd. The day was horrible.
Everywhere it looked clouded with smoke. I rushed to home around
12:30 p.m. and found everyone looking tense. Around 3:00 P.M,
a mob of 50 people came to my home and start beating my brothers.
My mother tried getting in front of them to protect them but still
two of my elder brothers were beaten with wooden sticks. All the
neighbors simply looked on and enjoyed the scene. Only one person
named Kakka who was Sinhalese, came forward and talked for us.
He asked the thugs to leave the place immediately.
I think we are all
alive today because of that single person. Later, we were taken
to his house and we were there for 3 days. Then, we decided to
move to a refugee camp set up within the St. Lucia Church in Kotehena
and then we went to Jaffna by a cargo ship called Lanka Kalyani.
It took 3 days to reach KKS and we all were starving inside the
ship without any food or water.
On the day of the
riots, I saw so many people killed in Wattala Hunupitiya. The
thug group was run by a person called Kasla and he was supported
by a Parliament Minister Cyril Matthew.
I feel happy to say that today only two of those thugs are alive
and others all were killed by various incidents. Kasla, the group
leader was shot by LTTE in Hunupitiya 5 years back and most of
his group members were killed during President Premadasa's regime.
After these riots,
our lives completely changed. My two brothers and I continued
our studies in Jaffna. We lost every single thing in that riots
except the clothes we were wearing.
My mom alone with
7 children went through so many terrible problems after riots.
In my family no one will forget this horrible racial and cruel