Muslims, Tamils protest against Colombo’s land grab in Musali, Mannaar

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 28 March 2017, 07:02 GMT]
Around 150 Tamils are staging a continuous protest demanding Colombo to release the lands seized by the occupying Navy at Mu’l’lik-ku’lam in the Musali division. In the meantime, more than 50 Muslims from Ma’richchuk-kaddi staged a protest condemning the Colombo government, SL President Maithiripala Sirisena and the SL Forest Department for having annexed their residential areas as part of the Vil-pattu reserved forest. Extremist Buddhist monks have been exerting pressure on SL State to Sinhalicise the reserved forest of Tamil-speaking peoples into Wilpatha. Despite repeated protests by Tamil-speaking Muslims, the Colombo Establishment, both during the times of Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithiripala Sirisena, has been trying to seize the lands of Muslim residents.

SL President on Monday signed a Gazette notification to seize the lands of Muslim residents declaring that the land was coming under Wilpattu ‘National’ Park.

The protesters from Ma'richchuk-kaddi said they would not allow SL Survey Department officials to survey their lands.

Apostolic Administrator of Mannar Diocese Msgr. Joseph Kingsley Swamipillai visited the protesting Catholic Tamil villagers on Wednesday.

Former TNA Parliamentarian and EPRLF Leader Suresh Premachandran and ITAK Youth Wing Leader V.S. SIvakaran have also expressed solidarity with the protesting villagers.

Talking to TamilNet, Mr Sivarakaran, said both the protests of Tamil-speaking people in Musali originate from the grassroots without the involvement of any political party or actors. Many Tamil politicians have lost their credibility among the people who have been demanding the whereabouts of enforced disappeared kith and kin.

The continuous protests to liberate the lands and villages of uprooted people will further intensify in the Tamil homeland and it will not be easy for Colombo to contain these protests, Mr Sivakaran said.



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