South Asia and Beyond

‘None Of The Three Inquiries I Faced Proved Me Guilty’

COLOMBO: The United States has banned Sri Lanka’s Army Commander Shavendra Silva and his immediate family members from entering the country over what it calls ‘credible’ war crime charges—mainly gross violations of human rights, especially extrajudicial killings by the army during the final phase of the Eelam War in 2009. But in an interview in December last year to Nitin A. Gokhale, founder of, who now also heads StratNews Global, Gen. Silva questioned the motive of the allegations against him. I have faced three enquiries in Sri Lanka under the law but no court has declared me guilty, he said. Shouldn’t the basic principle of natural justice—presumed innocent till proven guilty—apply to me, the General asked. “And why was there no fuss when I was Sri Lanka’s envoy to the United Nations for four years and a half?”

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Nitin A. Gokhale

Author, thought leader and one of South Asia's leading strategic analysts, Nitin A. Gokhale has forty years of rich and varied experience behind him as a conflict reporter, Editor, author and now a media entrepreneur who owns and curates two important digital platforms, and focusing on national security, strategic affairs and foreign policy matters. At the beginning of his long and distinguished career, Gokhale has lived and reported from India’s North-east for 23 years, writing and analysing various insurgencies in the region, been on the ground at Kargil in the summer of 1999 during the India-Pakistan war, and also brought live reports from Sri Lanka’s Eelam War IV between 2006-2009. Author of over a dozen books on wars, insurgencies and conflicts, Gokhale relocated to Delhi in 2006, was Security and Strategic Affairs Editor at NDTV, a leading Indian broadcaster for nine years, before launching in 2015 his own digital properties. An alumni of the Asia-Pacific Centre for Security Studies in Hawaii, Gokhale now writes, lectures and analyses security and strategic matters in Indo-Pacific and travels regularly to US, Europe, South and South-East Asia to speak at various international seminars and conferences. Gokhale also teaches at India’s Defence Services Staff College (DSSC), the three war colleges, India's National Defence College, College of Defence Management and the intelligence schools of both the R&AW and Intelligence Bureau. He tweets at @nitingokhale


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