Government officials visit Paduvankarai
[TamilNet, Saturday, 28 April 2007, 18:58 GMT]
A team of government officials visited Paduvankarai region in Batticaloa district Friday, for the first time after residents had fled the region due to the offensive by the Sri Lankan armed forces in March, sources in Batticaloa said. The team consisting of officials from the Departments of Education, Health, Electricity, Highways, Irrigation, Cooperatives and Agrarian Services were joined by Sri Lanka Army (SLA) commanders and Senior Superintendent of Police, Batticaloa.
The team visited the villages of Palayadiveddai, Vellavely and Palukamam in the Porathivu Pattu (Vellavely) division and inspected the damages inflicted to the public buildings and civilian properties.
The team found out that all the doors and windows of the Porathivu Pattu Divisional secretariat, Head Office of the Porathivu- Palukamam Multi Purpose Cooperative society, Palukamam government hospital and number of schools were broken and removed and all the valuable articles inside stolen.
Porathivu School was destroyed completely and a number of computers were stolen from the Divisional Secretariat.
Palukamam Samurththy Bank was also destroyed in shell attack.
The houses in several areas have been pried open, and offiicals fear that the valuable articles might have been stolen. In the meantime, the fate of the cattle stayed behind is not clear.
Meanwhile, all monuments built by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam have been destroyed.
The SLA stationed in the area told the team that only 27 old men are presently staying in the area.
Though the motive of the team's visit was to find ways to resettle the IDPs, no specific date for resettlement was announced by the SLA.
However, the government officials expressed concern over the remaining properties of the civilians and advised that only the early resettlement would save the rest of their properties. They viewed that the move also would solve the number of problems faced by around 150,000 IDPs in the IDP camps.
Meanwhile, Special Task Force personnel are preparing to erect three new camps at Kaddurampoochchi Maraththady in Porathivu, Palaiyadiveddai and Vellavely.