Slain LTTE chief Vellupillai Prabhakaran's fortified underground bunker in Mullaitivu has been blown up by the Sri Lankan army, four years after the military defeat of the Tamil Tigers.
Prabhakaran's bunker in Puthukuduirrippu in Mullaitivu, a popular tourist destination for visitors to the former conflict zones, has been destroyed, military sources confirmed as the army has officially denied knowledge of the demolition. Residents claimed they heard a loud explosion around 6:40 p.m. last night following which the bunker was demolished, the Colombo Telegraph reported today.
Prabhakaran, 54, under whose leadership Tamil Tigers led a ruthless three decade long campaign against Sri Lanka for a separate Tamil Eelam state, was killed along with his top aides on May 18, 2009, by Sri Lankan Army. "Security forces personnel had asked residents in surrounding areas to take cover at schools and temples nearby, because they had discovered explosives inside the bunker," the paper said. Before demolishing the bunker, police from the area evacuated the residents to safe places.
Prabhakaran's bunker was maintained as a showcase of the Tiger leader's opulent lifestyle after the war ended in 2009. It was a highly popular attraction on the so-called Tiger trail on the war-tourism circuit in the North, the paper said. Tamil politicians said the demolition was aimed at preventing the bunker from becoming a shrine to the slain LTTE leader since the area was now controlled by a Tamil provincial government.