Websites attacked after exposure of Lyca news manipulation
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 05 November 2014, 23:14 GMT]
Two UK-based websites have been subjected to DDoS attacks and vulnerability exploitation attempts on Tuesday, following their news stories exposing the Rajapaksa connections of a Diaspora Tamil-owned multinational business establishment, Lyca Mobiles group, and a recent media twist on an incident that took place in Colombo airport involving the group, said the editors of Inioru.com and Lankanewsweb.com to TamilNet on Wednesday.
Earlier, a Lyca-owned Tamil media gave an image-manipulation twist stating that the owner of the multinational group, Subaskaran Allirajah, was arrested in Colombo. The intention behind the news was to influence the people of Tamil Nadu with a story telling that the Lyca owner was subjected to investigation by the Rajapaksa establishment in Colombo and thus there was no nexus between the owner and the Rajapaksa establishment as the protesters in Tamil Nadu had alleged. The Lyca twist was also disseminated by a number of Tamil-language websites either having sponsorship influence from the business group or that suffer from copy-paste reporting syndrome.
The current controversy started with Lyca producing a Tamil movie called “Kaththi” in Tamil Nadu and students in Tamil Nadu protesting the release of the movie produced by Lyca having Rajapaksa connections.
After successful protests by the Tamil Nadu students amidst arrests and harassments, the film was released in Tamil Nadu only after deleting the name of the producer and the tag Lyca Productions.
Later, the news came that the Lyca chief was arrested and investigated in Colombo, while transiting on his way to London from the Maldives.
However, within a few days, the real story broke out and Inioru.com and Lankanewsweb.com were writing investigative pieces on what seemed to have transpired at the Colombo airport, when the Lyca group was returning after having a party in the Maldives with a group of people involved in the production of the box office hit film.
The group of more than 80 persons had their festivities at an Indian hotel-chain run tourist resort in the Maldives. A part of the group returned to India. But the other part of the partying group, including the owner of Lyca, got into a controversy with the pilot and the crew, and the group was ordered to leave the aircraft at Colombo.
“We have been following the political involvement of the multinational corporate since 2008 when Sunday Leader, then edited by the late Lasantha Wickramatunga, exposed a scandal involving the nexus between the mobile business group and Rajapaksa family,” said UK-based Saba Navalan, the editor of Tamil-language website Inioru.com.
Especially, when Tamil activists found out that the Lyca Mobile group was a significant sponsor of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo, the scrutiny became a necessity, Mr Navalan added.
Lyca’s conspicuously emphasized usage of ‘Sri Lanka’ in its post-war media advertisements has also raised eyebrows among Tamils, when the term introduced in 1972 and the genocidal State concept behind the term were long rejected by them.
Inioru was targeted with DDoS attacks and virus attacks that attempted to exploit the vulnerabilities of the word press publishing system.
The editor of Lankanewsweb.com, Chandima Withana, an exiled Sinhalese based in UK, also gave a similar account.
Chandima Withana had published a piece on 02 November with the title ‘Secret of Lyca Mobile owner suddenly becoming anti-Rajapaksa!’ The piece was also translated to Tamil and published by Lankanewsweb. The site is now having its stories in its Facebook page.
In the meantime, Inioru editor Navalan said he was deploying the site with DDoS protection to resume the operation.
Meanwhile, on 23 October, the Police in Tamil Nadu, under ‘influence’ to suppress the student protests, had detained three student leaders in Tamil Nadu, Chempiyan, Prabhakaran and Piratheep. Several other students and Periayar Dravidar Kazhakaam activists also faced the harassment by the police.
The protests by the students caused an impact, despite the stand taken by Tamil activists coming from the cinema industry in favour of their influential sponsor from London.
The New Delhi Establishment adopting the ‘genocidal route’ and Rajapaksa-supporting route for its entry into the island and the Establishment’s arrogant disregard for public opinion have intensified sensitivity in Tamil Nadu for anything coming with Rajapaksa connections. The students in Tamil Nadu admiringly show vigilance necessary for a righteous struggle, commented Tamil activists for alternative politics in Eezham.