06.01.1985 Massacre of Bengali co-father Vanapita civilians.

Massacre of Bengali co-mother Vanapita Mary Basrian and civilians 06.01.1985.

Bengali village is located along the coast in Nanatan Divisional Secretariat Division of Mannar District. St. Annal Church is the place of worship of the people here.

In 1985, on the sixth day of the month of Thai, Purana Day, B.P. Around 12:30 PM, the army surrounded the village of Bengali. Explosions were heard from midnight till 10.00 am the next morning.

The army shot towards the residence of Mary Basrian Guru. When the Guru came out wearing his robe and rosary and raised his hands and begged 'Please' in English, the soldiers fired at him and the two youths who were standing with their father were killed. A few people who ran away from the blast were also killed. Some climbed the upper floor of the temple and hid. The soldiers dragged the body of the father-in-law and laid it at the gate of Kanniermata and took photographs. These were seen by the people hiding on the top floor of the temple.

After this incident, the soldiers were united. The soldiers then carried away the dead. After this, when people gathered and visited, Mary Basrian's residence was found covered in blood.

Apart from the dead body of Mary Basrian, the bodies of eight other people were given to the Mannar Hospital and the body of Mary Basrian was dragged to the army camp. Locals believe that his body was cremated by the unusual smoke billowing from the camp.

Several more youths were later found with blast injuries in the incident and treated in secret. The bodies of the deceased were cremated at the Bengal Mortuary.

06.01.1985 details of those who were killed in the massacre of Vanapita Mary Basrian and civilians in Bengali:

  1. Mariathalmaida Dasan (Age 26 – Labourer)
  2. Susaiyappu Manpiris (Age 20 – Student)
  3. Gnanasekaram Rubankurui (age 24 – Meenpeedi)
  4. Savirian Anthony (Age 23 – Meenpeedi)
  5. Muniappan Nilamegam (age 28 – Seafarer)
  6. Sandhya Alexander Murawili (Age 33 – Seafarer)
  7. Grandmother Mary Basrian (Stepfather)
  8. Louisamma Branda (age 60)

Note:- The name details of all those affected in this incident could not be obtained.

By: Tamil Genocide 1956 – 2001 Book.