Ethnic cleansing in the estates

[TamilNet, Monday, 14 September 1998, 21:41 GMT]
Tamil areas in the estate sector of the Ratnapura district were tense again today following the murder of a Tamil labourer from the Horamulla estate in the Rakkuwana division. The labourer, identified as Nehru, 38 was burnt to death this afternoon.

Trade union leaders in the area dismissed the Police's claim that the man was drunk and had accidentally caught fire.

Security in the Maathambai No.3 estate, Obadagama and storekada estates has been stepped up following the developments this afternoon.

Meanwhile Sinhala owned lorries and other vehicles which had gone for business purposes to Bogawantalawa in the Nuwara Eliya district were turned back by angry Tamil estate workers said a Ceylon Workers' Congress (CWC) spokesman this evening.

The CWC MP for Ratnapura Mr. A.M.D Rajan gave the following assessment this evening of the carnage in the Tamil settlements in the estates of hiselectorate.

1. Alupola estate, Wewelwatta division: all the line rooms (workers' family quarters), 80 huts and 12 Tamil shops set on fire and completely burnt out. 200 hundred families are currently sheltered in the estate factory.

2. Galaboda estate Galkandura division: 2 official residences and 6 line rooms completely destroyed by fire. Five persons were rescued with burns. The condition of three others is serious.

3. Wellawala division: 13 line rooms smashed up. 124 families rendered homeless.

4. Balangoda, Egaslanda estate: all line rooms smashed and belongings of workers set on fire. 72 families rendered destitute.

5. Raasagala estate, all line rooms wrecked by Sinhala mobs which set all the belongings of workers on fire. 36 families are homeless here.

6. Thikkumukkalana estate: 75 families rendered destitute.

7. Panagoda estate: all line rooms set on fire and destroyed. 96 families are refugees.

Meanwhile, informed Tamil trade union leaders said that 1500 families who had sought refuge in the Egaslanda (Wewelwatta) have not been supplied so far with any rations since the pogrom began.

A Non Governmental Organisation that took food for them was turned back by Sinhala thugs today they said.

Related Articles:
12.09.98   Tamil labour settlement attacked
10.09.98   Line rooms torched


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