SL authorities dilly-dally over covering costs of excavating mass grave in Mannaar

[TamilNet, Monday, 25 June 2018, 07:27 GMT]
The excavation of the mass grave, discovered last month at the premises of the Cooperative Wholesale Establishment (CWE) in Mannaar, face the danger of cancellation or postponement as the SL authorities have started to dilly-dally over the coverage of the expenses associated with the process, legal sources in Mannaar said. In the meantime, the social activists and the relatives of the people subjected to enforced disappearance in Mannaar believe that the occupying military of genocidal Sri Lanka, which was stationed at the locality during the times of war, had dumped the abducted Tamils at the site. The representatives of the enforced families believe that the victims were killed sometime between 1982 and 1992.

The human skulls and bones are found in collapsed and mixed state, indicating that the victims had been dumped into small pits. One skeleton is in full shape.

Mannaar Magistrate T.J. Prabaharan has called the officials, including S. Gunabalan, who is the acting Government Agent, Divisional Secretary, Urban Council representatives, the GS and Archaeology department officials along with other concerned parties to attend a consultation meeting on Monday evening to find a solution to cover the expenses.

The representatives of enforced disappeared people in Mannaar have demanded that the institutions associated with the SL Judiciary are obliged to bear the expenses.

The CWE was covering the expenses for the first two weeks, and the Scene of Crime Officers (SOCO) continued the work for one more week in the absence of an authority to cover the expenses, the sources said.

Many experts from outer districts have to attend the tedious process of excavation. Their travel and food expenses must be covered. Similarly, the costs for the ground workers of Mannaar Urban Council also need to be included, the sources further said.

So far, the excavators have located skeletal remains of more than ten persons.

The inspections have also revealed that the label of a biscuit package recovered near the human remains was found to date from a stock sold between the years of 1989 and 1990.

The SL military was using the CWE facility as its high-security zone until 2009.

The CWE premises, where the building was dismantled in March, is located on Bazar Street at the entrance to the city of Mannaar.

The State-owned property was to be reconstructed with a five storey building for CWE Sathosa.

First traces of human skeletons were spotted on 27 March when a Tamil resident from Emil Nakar discovered skeletal remains in the sands he had bought from the premises on 25 March.


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