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

Left to himself, Nitin A. Gokhale would rather watch films and sports matches but his day job as a media entrepreneur, communications specialist, analyst and author, leaves him little time to indulge in his primary interests. Gokhale in fact started his career in journalism in 1983 as a sports reporter. Since then he has, in the past 41 years, traversed the entire spectrum across print, broadcast and digital space. One of South Asia's leading strategic analysts, Gokhale has moved on from conventional media to become an independent media entrepreneur running three niche digital platforms—BharatShakti, StratNewsGlobal and Interstellar—besides undertaking consultancy and training workshops in communications for military institutions, corporates and individuals. Now better known for his conflict coverage and strategic analyses, Gokhale has lived and reported from India’s North-east for 23 years between 1983 and 2006, been on the ground at Kargil in the summer of 1999 and also brought us live coverage from Sri Lanka’s Eelam War IV between 2006-2009.    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, Australia, South and South-East Asia to take part in various seminars and conferences. Gokhale is also a popular visiting faculty at India’s Defence Services Staff College, the three war colleges, India's National Defence College, College of Defence Management and the IB’s intelligence school.