SL Judiciary drags on lawsuits for years when Buddhist monks grabbing lands are respondents

[TamilNet, Friday, 27 April 2018, 19:13 GMT]
Four Tamils, whose lands were encroached by the former soldiers of the occupying Sinhala military with the backing of two extremist Buddhist monks in Batticaloa district, approached the SL courts four years ago in 2014 seeking the SL judiciary to free their lands. The Tamil landowners chose the legal option as the police of the occupying unitary State genocidal Sri Lanka was reluctant to even file a case against the encroachers for more than two years at that time. So far, the legal suit has seen nine hearings over four years. Still, the simple case is not resolved by the District Court, legal sources in Batticaloa said. The judiciary of genocidal Sri Lanka is long known for dragging essential cases over many years, especially when those seeking justice are Tamils and those committing injustices are the occupiers.

Even the simplest kind of land grab cases get ‘complicated’ once a Buddhist monk gets involved with the claim that the lands come under the domain of his temple management.

Since the SL Constitution accords ‘foremost place’ to Buddhism, almost all the judges serving the SL Judiciary are reluctant to act against the culprits. They also avoid issuing interim orders against the encroachers, Tamil legal sources further said.

Chinna-vaththai, located 55 km southwest of Batticaloa city, is an interior village of Batticaloa district. Chinna-vaththai is also situated along the border to the Sinhala division of Uhana, which is in the Ampaa'rai district.

A Sinhala Theravada Buddhist monk, known as Devalayagama Gurulayanandagimi, is fully engaged with Sinhala colonisation. He has strong backing from the well-known extremist Ampitiye Sumanarathana thero, who is based in Batticaloa city. Gurulayanandagimi is stationed at the Buddhist temple at Chinna-vaththai.

There are 195 Sinhala settlers belonging to 45 families in Chinna-vaththai GS division, which is home to 1,185 Tamils of 347 Tamil families.

Both the monks have been attempting to bring in more settlers with ex-military background into Chinna-vaththai and Maalaiyar-kaddu, another GS area located to the south of Chinna-vatthai. Currently, there are 22 Sinhalese belonging to 9 families in the GS division of Maalaiyar-kaddu, which is home to 620 Tamils of 173 families.

The Sinhala settlers receive housing schemes from the SL State as well as infrastructural facilities.

The four Tamil landowners who went to the courts own 4 acres of 25 acres in an area known as MC 28 Ka'ndam (an agricultural section) that have been seized by the monk. While the monk claims the lands as belonging to the Buddhist temple, Sinhala colonists with the military background are engaged in agriculture in the seized property.

The four Tamil landowners are Luxmanan Nagamuthu, Kamalaluxmy Nagamuthu, Rasamany Kathamuthu and Rajaluxmy Kathamuthu. They hail from the 7th ward of nearby Thu'rai-neelaava'nai village.

On Friday, the lawyer representing the landowners was reminding the Acting Judge K. Kanesarasa that justice should be served regardless of those encroaching were Buddhist monks and their claim that the lands were being deployed under the domain of the Buddhist temple.


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