Political sources said that the government had caused an explosive situation in the East by supporting Minister Karuna Amman against his former colleague Pilleyan, now Chief Minister of the Eastern Province.
Sources said that though Karuna had publicly denied campaigning against Pilleyan, the former LTTE leader turned SLFP politician was making a bid to stall expansion of the TMVP. Sources said that a spate of recent protests directed at offices run by the TMVP in various parts of the Ampara-Batticaloa region could trigger attacks.
Well informed sources said that the ruling coalition was keen to weaken Pilleyan ahead of the forthcoming parliamentary elections. Although, the TMVP contested the Batticaloa Municipal Council on the UPFA ticket over a year ago, their relationship had rapidly deteriorated after Karuna switched allegiance to President Mahinda Rajapaksa. The President appointed him a Vice President of the SLFP with wide powers to engage in politics in the North and East.
Some of the persons who blocked roads and caused trouble last Week (September 17) demanding immediate closure of TMVP office at Tirukkovil had carried photographs of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, sources said, warning that ongoing efforts to promote Karuna in the East would end in bloodshed. Sources added that India, too, could be seriously concerned over the developments in the East.
Sources said that unless the government called off its strategy, the East could erupt against with Pilleyan and Karuna supporters fighting for supremacy.