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The Gandhi – Faleiro Bond: The Secrets of Jaffna

GoaChronicle investigation into the relationship between the Gandhi and Faleiro families raises a shocking yet pertinent question: Is the Directorship in Backops Limited, Optimal Armour Limited and Composite Resin Development Limited a quid-pro-quo from the Gandhis to the Faleiro family for the secret meeting with LTTE representatives in Killinochchi near Jaffna in 2004…

Eduardo Faleiro shared a close relationship with the Gandhi family and continues to share a close relationship with the Gandhi family. He held the ministerial position at the Centre as Minister of State for External Affairs twice in his political career and Minister of State for Economic Affairs (Finance).

Eduardo Faleiro’s son-in-law married to his daughter Sonia Faleiro is Ulrik McKnight.

The Ulrik McKnight Alliances

Ulrik McKnight is the business partner of current Congress president Rahul Gandhi in Backops Services Private Limited which was incorporated on 28 May 2002 in India and Backops Limited which was incorporated on August 23 2003 with the Registrar of Companies England and Wales.

Ulrik McKnight is also linked to the Scorpene submarine deal.

The Direction des Constructions Navales Services (DCNS) France – one of Europe’s leading shipbuilders who is the manufacturer of the Scorpene submarines announced a deal with Flash Forge India Private Limited in June 2011 to supply critical parts as part of a Rs 20,000 crore (USD 4.5 billion) deal to supply six submarines in India.

Ulrik McKnight is appointed as a Director of Optimal Armour Limited (OAL) on June 6, 2012. In his company form, he states that his nationality is US citizen and that he resides there.

Ulrik McKnight is as appointed Director in Composite Resin Development (CRDL) Limited on February 19, 2013. In the company form, he states that he resides in US but is a citizen of Sweden.

Interestingly and intriguingly around the same time, Indian national Gautam Makker and Sunil Menon who are Directors of Flash Forge India Private Limited are also appointed as Directors in Optimal Armour and Composite Resin Development Limited.
On March 23, 2012, Flash Forge India Private Limited acquires OAL, McKnight comes on board as Director on June 6, 2012.

In December 20, 2013, Flash Forge India Private Limited acquires CRDL, McKnight is already a Director, as Feb 19, 2013.

The question GoaChronicle is asking is whether favour was shown to the relative of Eduardo Faleiro for the close relationship that both the Gandhi and the Faleiro family share or for the secrets of the meeting with LTTE representatives.

The Congress – DMK Collaboration

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and the Congress on February 3, 2004 concluded a seat-sharing arrangement for the Lok Sabha Elections 2004.

Media reported that the DMK president, M. Karunanidhi, spoke to the Congress president, Sonia Gandhi, over telephone from Chennai, in the presence of the All-India Congress Committee emissaries, Kamal Nath and Daljit Singh, and the Tamil Nadu Congress Committee president, G.K. Vasan, marking the culmination of the long-winding negotiations.

The Jaffna Visit

In the last week of February 2004, Eduardo Faleiro who was then a Member of Parliament in the Rajya Sabha landed in Sri Lanka. The official reason for his arrival as reported by a local media in Sri Lanka was to attend a seminar in Colombo.

Faleiro reportedly met with senior officials of the Sri Lankan government.

Interestingly Faleiro meet with the Bishop of Jaffna Thomas Savundaranayagam. And reportedly also met with the Vice Chancellor of the Jaffna University.

He then took timeout to visit the – Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil temple, visit a Buddhist temple and also finds time to visit a Mosque.

However, it has also been learned through sources in Sri Lanka that kept on eye on this visit as observers, that he also meet with LTTE representatives.

The reason for the piquing of curiosity amongst those in the intelligence circuit in both India and Sri Lanka to Faleiro’s visit was because the Congress MP was an Opposition Leader at that point of time.

Second the Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka was not aware of the official purpose of his visit as he was not accompanied by a representative of the High Commission in Jaffna.

Thirdly, in two months, India was entering into Lok Sabha elections with its first phase starting in April 2004, what would be the reason for a senior MP of the Congress party to visit Jaffna – LTTE’s epicentre.

GoaChronicle learned that the Sri Lankan government ensured that Sri Lankan Army officials make special arrangements for Faleiro to travel to Killinochchi to meet Vellupillai Prabhakaran– leader of the LTTE; whether Faleiro met with Prabhakaran directly could not be confirmed but what is confirmed is that Tyronne Fernandes – the then Sri Lankan Foreign Minister reportedly set up the meeting with LTTE representatives for Faleiro.

The details of what transpired at the meeting with LTTE representatives is not known to GoaChronicle. The fact however is that Faleiro was in Jaffna and that it has been reported even in Sri Lankan media – The Island – that a meeting with LTTE representatives did happen.

It would be interesting if the Indian government can investigate the nature of the visit of the Congress MP Faleiro entry visa stamp into Sri Lanka, was it on business or tourist, as it was not official.

The question is what was Eduardo Faleiro doing in Jaffna and what was his assignment with LTTE representatives.

The DMK-LTTE Connection

Tamil Nadu Special Investigation Team (TANSIT) set up by the former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Late Jayalalitha’s government made some startling revelation that were revealed to media about LTTE’s A Tagore alias Sankar recorded conversations and a diary in which it mentions the meeting of DMK leader Late Karunanidhi, his nephew and Murasoli Maran meet with Anton Balasingham and political adviser Yogi in Chennai on February 16, 1990.

The Late Karunanidhi never denied the meetings instead he defended his role in the meeting to following orders of VP Singh, who was the then Prime Minister of India in order to find a peaceful solution to the Sri Lanka conflict.

That DMK leader Late Karunanidhi is a known sympathiser is no secret in the political or intelligence circles in both India and RI Lanka.

In fact in 2009 prior to the death of Veluppillai Prabhakaran, Late Karunanidhi openly stated to media that the LTTE leader was his friend and that he was not a terrorist.

Here are the contents of the letter from LTTE leader Prabhakaran to DMK leader Late Karunanidhi in 1989 which was released by MDMK Chief Avi Gopalswamy (Vaiko) after 28-years:

“My highly respected and lovable elder brother,

Mr. Vai Gopalsamy met with me here and is returning to meet with you, so I am sending this letter through him. I thought you had been informed and gave permission for this meeting, but after meeting with him I learned he has come here without your knowledge. It was his love for Tamil that motivated him to make this journey.

I also understand this meeting will create some difficulties for you. However, the absurd position of the parliament leadership, which we trusted until now, has forsaken our people.

Mr. Vai Gopalsamy was elected as a member of Parliament from Tamil Nadu, and Parliament’s position of forsaking the people of Tamil Nadu has prompted him to take this risk of holding this meeting without regard for his own well-being.

I understand his passion about the Tamil language and I may die a thousand times for the love of my Tamil language and for the Tamil Eelam country.

As always, I respect your leadership for having these kinds of true party members. When he came here by sea, the Indian Army fired on him at Kandi. It was his passion for Tamil that led him to make this dangerous voyage and speak freely with me and my other commanders.

We are very pleased with your government in Tamil Nadu. Hereafter, Tamil feelings will be positive everywhere.

It is our aim to fight the killing of our people by the aggressive Indian Army, which is making our country a cemetery. We will win or we will happily die to accomplish this. It is time to bring this issue to the attention of Tamil Nadu and the Indian opposition parties.

You and your political organization are able to help us. You can bring to the attention of Tamil Nadu, information about the Indian occupiers and their betrayal of our people. Here we are preparing for the next big attack. I send back Brother Gopalsamy to Tamil Nadu with sadness to handle this dangerous situation and escape from this blockade. He will share with you the true situation here.”

The GoaChronicle Questions:

1. Besides the cordial relationship shared between Gandhi and Faleiro family, are the secrets of what transpired at the Jaffna meeting with LTTE representatives the reason behind the alliances with Eduardo Faleiro’s son-in-law Ulrik McKnight; a sort of quid-pro-quo.

2. DMK and Congress stitched a strong alliance to form the government in 2004 at the Centre under the UPA post this LTTE meeting. What transpired in this meeting that led to Congress and DMK forging a formidable alliance, Sonia Gandhi slowly backing off on LTTE’s role in Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination after coming to power at the Centre?

3. Sonia Gandhi rejected the Action Taken Report of the Jain Commission. The Vajpayee government set up the Multi-Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) under the supervision of CBI. Why till today there has been no headway in the investigations into the larger conspiracy behind the killing of Rajiv Gandhi.?

4. Sonia Gandhi and the children of Rajiv Gandhi – Rahul and Priyanka – have decided to forgive the people behind the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. Why this stance of the Gandhi family and open alliance with DMK even after evidence of DMK-LTTE connect?

5. DMK in its election manifesto in 2019 is to release all the seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. Why is DMK keen to release the killers of one of India’s former Prime Ministers?

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