Colombo's militarization of Pa'n'na-vedduvaan deprives Tamil villagers of livelihood

[TamilNet, Monday, 14 November 2016, 22:43 GMT]
The occupying Sinhala military, stationed at Pa地地a-vedduvaan sandwiched between Mannaar - Mathavaachchi Road and Aruvi-Aa'ru (Malwathu Oya) in Madu division of Mannaar district, has seized several acres of agricultural lands. In addition, a cable ferry which was put up by the Dutch relief organisation ZOA for the villagers to cross Aruvi Aa'ru and access their agricultural lands has been dismantled by the SL military in 2008. Today, the villagers are unable to engage in agriculture in more than 200 acres of lands during the rainy season. Clean water is a big problem and some children have been admitted to hospital after drinking tap water in recent times, the villagers complain. On top of this, the SL military has been exploiting the resources by scooping the soil and running a business making red-bricks and doing agriculture in the occupied village.



Apart from 54 houses that were constructed through the Indian housing scheme, but the village has not seen any reconstruction of basic facilities.

During the genocidal war, the people of Pa地地a-vedduvaan initially displaced to Madu. Later, they went through several displacements to Mu値値i-vaaykkaal till May 2009 and were incarcerated in the barbed-wire camps by the Sinhala military after the war before they were allowed to resettle in their village. All their properties, cattle and the basic infrastructure facilities including the bridge were completely gone when they resettled in their village four years ago.

The villagers have also experienced similar losses earlier during the regime of Chandrika Kumaratunga Bandaranaike in 1997 when Colombo痴 military launched a major military operation named 薦dibala capturing Murungkan and Uyilangku'lam towns on the Vavuniyaa - Mannaar Road. The people of Pa'n'na-vedduvaan were displaced in Madu till they resettled back in 2004.

Today, the bridge put up by ZOA is in destroyed state. The villagers have been urging the Tamil politicians to do the needful to construct a bridge and arrange for potable water.

Before the villagers were uprooted in late 1990s, they were engaged in large-scale agriculture as well as cultivating sesame, peanuts. Women were also engaged in farming. They were also having large flocks of cattle, particularly cows. These cows were seized by the SL military and sold to Sinhalese in South.

Today, people are unable to sustain their livelihood due to continued occupation and exploitation of resources by the occupying Sinhala military as well as due to the lack of infrastructure. The SL military is also engaged in agriculture in the lands seized from the people. Divisional Secretary Mr Sathiyasothy has declined to take up the issue of military landgrab stating that SL military was 鼠egally stationed at Pa'n'navedduvaan.

275 people of 67 families are struggling without proper reconstruction. The SL military has been blocking access to the lands continuously for 4 years now, the villagers say.

Pa'n'na-vedduvaan
Pa'n'na-vedduvaan
Pa'n'na-vedduvaan

 

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