Facing displacement since 1977, Tamils of up-country origin fight for Mannaar village

[TamilNet, Sunday, 06 August 2017, 22:50 GMT]
Around 30 Tamil families, who were living at a locality called A’naik-kaddu in Thampanaik-kulam GS division in Madu division of Mannaar district, have witnessed several displacements. They were initially uprooted from Kurunegala district in the North Western Province after SL State-sponsored anti-Tami pogroms in 1977 before the times of Tamil militancy. Vanni and Madu region was their choice for ensuring their security in the country of Eezham Tamils. However, twenty years later, they were again forced to displace from their village in Madu division to a ‘refugee camp’ at Neluk-ku’lam in Vavuniyaa district following a military operation code named ‘Edi Bala’ that targeted their village, which was under the administrative control of the Liberation Tigers in 1997. Still, they are refused entry to A’naik-kaddu, which they regard as their native village.

After their displacement to Nelukku’lam in Vavuniyaa, they were sent to a welfare camp at Jeevoathayam Farm at Murungkan, Mannaar in 2000.

The SL military has grabbed the lands at A’naik-kaddu after the genocidal onslaught of 2009. The families who wanted to resettle there were refused entry.

In 2010, a housing scheme was provided to them along with several other Tamil families at Thampanaik-ku’lam GS division, but away from the agricultural village of A’naik-kaddu.

The housing scheme was part of the so-called North-East Community Restoration and Development (NECORD) project, which was externally funded, but executed by Colombo’s Ministry of Local Government liaising with other SL ministries.

The location for resettlement was chosen at a low-lying land despite objections from people who were experiencing seasonal floods in the area.

Now, the SL authorities have decided to abandon the housing scheme as the displacement during floods incurs extra costs.

The uprooted families from A’naik-kaddu still long for their fertile village. They demand resettlement there as they can sustain their livelihood without expecting any State, NGO or foreign solutions provided through the occupying Sinhala State that has repeatedly sidelined the uprooted Tamils.

 

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