The Arya Cakravarti Dynasty
The Protocol of the Royal House of Jaffna
The custom of inheritance of the throne is passed on according to primogeniture in the Kingdom of Jaffna. Failing this, if there are no sons, the throne passes to the Brother or a Nephew, the son of a Brother or a Sister.
The first twelve monarchs, who succeeded their fathers, were independent monarchs of the Kingdom of Jaffna. The rest of the Kings of Jaffna ruled under the suzerainty of the Portuguese and the Throne of Jaffna was usurped twice by relatives.
Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Ethirmanna Cinkam Pararacacekaran reigned from 1591-1615. In the course of the year 1615, Ethirmanna Cinkam Pararacacekaran fell seriously ill. The King had a son who had not yet reached the age of three years and he remained heir to the throne of Jaffna. The Ilavarasan Arasakesari Pandaram was the elder brother of Ethirmanna Cinkam Pararacacekaran. The King entrusted his only son to the care of Ilavarasan Arasakesari Pandaram. He authorised him to administer the Kingdom of Jaffna as "Paddilarasan", up to the time the Ilavarasan Dom Constantino became old enough to assume the reign. Ilavarasan Arasakesari Pandaram promised to do everything faithfully and on the brother's death he was acclaimed Paddilarasan of Jaffna and was obeyed by all and he reigned from 1615-1616. But this prosperity lasted only for a short time.
Ilavarasan Cankili (II) was the nephew of Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Ethirmanna Cinkam Pararacacekaran. In 1616, an assassination took place in the Palace. Ilavarasan Cankili (II) who was dissatisfied with the arrangements soon began to conspire and a conspiracy was set on foot. When this news was reported to the Paddilarasan Arasakesari Pandaram, he discredited it. On the third day after this warning Ilavarasan Cankili (II) ordered his confederates to enter the Palace at the hour of the siesta and to kill the Paddilarasan, his uncle and those who were with him. It was midday, they were both killed and the doors being opened, Ilavarasan Cankili (II) entered to take possession of them. He forthwith ordered the house to be set fire and the Prince to be killed. Ilavarasan Cankili (II) usurped the throne of Jaffna, after his uncle Paddilarasan Arasakesari Pandaram was assassinated at the Royal Palace in Nallur. Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Cankili (II) reigned from 1616-1619 under the throne name of Cekaracacekaran and he was the last King of Jaffna. In June 1619, the Portuguese captured Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Cankili (II) Cekaracacekaran who sought to cross over to India with the Queens, Princes, Princesses and along with other members of the royal family. The Portuguese took control of the Kingdom of Jaffna and Captain-Major Filipe de Oliveira ordered Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Cankili (II) Cekaracacekaran to be imprisoned in Nallur and later from there, he was sent to Goa.
Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Cankili (II) Cekaracacekaran was sent to Goa by Captain General Dom Constantino de Sa de Noronha and he was imprisoned in Goa. He was tried by a court and sentenced to be beheaded. During the time of his imprisonment, he was constantly visited by the Religious of St. Francis of Goa who proposed to him, that as he had lost the temporal life he should not lose the eternal, but accept the Faith of Christ and Baptism the only means of salvation. Cankili (II) Cekaracacekaran was converted to Christianity along with his wife. He was baptized and given the name of Dom Philip and his wife was also baptized and given the name of Dona Margarida of Austria. Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Cankili (II) Cekaracacekaran was executed circa 1623.
On 11 February 1621, the Kingdom of Jaffna fell into the hands of the Portuguese and Captain-Major Filipe de Oliveira appointed himself as the Governor of the Kingdom of Jaffna. Thus ended the sovereignty of the Arya Cakravarti Dynasty. Cinkai Arya Cakravarti Ethirmanna Cinkam Pararacacekaran's two Queens, his children and other members of the royal family were converted to Christianity. The two Queens were baptized and given the name of Dona Clara da Silva and Dona Antonia Rapoza. The three daughters and the son were baptized and given the name of Dona Catherina de Sa de Rebelo, Dona Izabel, Dona Maria da Visitacao and the Ilavarasan was given the name of Dom Constantino de Sa. Later the children were sent to Goa and the younger members of the Royal Family of Jaffna were encouraged to enter Roman Catholic Religious Orders to become monks or nuns. Since they choose the life of celibacy, they died without descendants.
After a long interlude, action was taken in 2003, by Raja Remigius Kanagarajah to restore the traditions of the Arya Cakravarti Dynasty with the explicit approval of the family. On 15 June 2005, by the majority acclaim of representative members of the Royal Family of Jaffna, H.R.H. Raja Remigius Kanagarajah took over the responsibility as the Head of the Royal House of Jaffna.
The Royal Titles are not inherited in perpetuity but lapse gradually over generations. The Head of the Royal House of Jaffna is the source of all Titles, Styles and Honours. The Head of the Royal House has the right to grant Styles and Titles and no Style or Title is valid unless granted or confirmed by the Head of the Royal House.
All members of the Royal House hold the Title of "Ilavarasan" (Prince) or "Ilavarasi" (Princess) and the Royal Style includes the qualification of "Royal Highness" (HRH) or "Highness" (HH), according to the hereditary customs of Jaffna.
The Head of the Royal House of Jaffna, his wife, his heirs, and his family members bear the Title of Ilavarasan or Ilavarasi with the Style of His Royal Highness or Her Royal Highness (HRH) within the dynasty.
Other members of the Royal House bear the Title of Ilavarasan or Ilavarasi with the Style of His Highness or Her Highness (HH).
Some of the members of the Royal House bear the Title of Ilavarasan or Ilavarasi without any Styles.
The female members of the Royal House can use the Style and Title after their marriage, but they are not entitled to transmit their Royal Style or Title to their spouses or children. The spouses of members of the Royal House will not be entitled to use their Royal Style and Title in case of divorce. If a member of the Royal House should marry a commoner they will not be entitled to use their Royal Style of "Royal Highness" (HRH) or "Highness" (HH) and they will hold the Title of Ilavarasan (Personal name) or Ilavarasi (Personal name).
The following Members of the Royal House of Jaffna and the Extended Family Members of the Royal House hold the Royal Styles and Titles as follows:
The Head of the Royal House of Jaffna
H.R.H. Raja Remigius Kanagarajah of Jaffna
The late Ilavarasi Maheswary Marina Antoinette Kanagarajah
The late Ilavarasan Thambirajah Mervin Anthony Kanagarajah
The Family Members of the Royal House of Jaffna
The late Ilavarasan Rajendra Sylvester Kanagarajah (died as infant)
H.H. Ilavarasi Vanaja Maria Queenie Sivathasan
Ilavarasan Suppiah Sivathasan
Ilavarasan Angelo Thomas Rajiendhar Sivathasan
Ilavarasan Anthony Gabbriel Laxman Naveen Sivathasan
Ilavarasan Joseph Rafaell Pravin Sivathasan
H.H. Ilavarasan Meryll Venatious Kanagarajah
Ilavarasi Chandramathy Meryll
Ilavarasi Akkila Clementine Meryll
Ilavarasi Achela Meloni Meryll
H.H. Ilavarasi Jeraldine Jerom
Ilavarasan Jerom Prithiviraj Balachandran
Ilavarasi Maha Antoinette Jerom
The Extended Family Members of the Royal House of Jaffna
Ilavarasi Seetha Devi Selvarajah
Ilavarasan Col. Soman Selvarajah
Ilavarasi Leena Soman
Ilavarasi Bahma Sara George
K. C. George, Esquire
Ilavarasi Thavamani Devi Thirunavukarasu
Ilavarasan Thambirajah Jeyakumar
Ilavarasi Kamala Jeyakumar
Ilavarasan Thambirajah Vijayakumar
Ilavarasi Rajeswary Vijayakumar
Ilavarasi Jeevanayagi Subramaniam
Ilavarasi Selvanayagi Vaikunthavasan
Ilavarasi Rajanayagi Rajeswaran
Ilavarasi Rajeswary Miriam Therasita Anthonipillai
Ilavarasan Anthonipillai Gerard Joseph Pius
Ilavarasi Ratheena Felicia Pius
Ilavarasan Anthonipillai Reginold Michael
Ilavarasi Indrani Michael
Ilavarasan Anthonipillai Eugene Mazanold Venesious
Ilavarasi Sasikala Venesious
Ilavarasan Kadiravel Mohanraj
Ilavarasan Arasaratnam Mahendran Rabindran