Gotabhaya's presidency would dash Musali people's hopes on incremental resettlement

[TamilNet, Saturday, 26 October 2019, 22:27 GMT]
The uprooted Tamils in Musali division of Mannaar district fear permanently losing the militarised villages at the hands of Gotabhaya Rajapaksa if he becomes the next SL President. The Tamil Catholics of Mu'l'lik-ku'lam have been waiting for the SL Navy to honour its pledges on returning some of the occupied properties since 2017. It was Mr Rajapaksa who declared their village as a high-security naval area in December 2012. Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, a Cardinal of Vatican, personally accompanied his friend, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to silence the then Bishop of Mannaar Rayappu Joseph and the Tamil Catholics of Mu'l'lik-ku'lam in 2012.

Mr Gotabhaya promised to build a ‘state of the art’ model village for the uprooted Tamil villagers at the presence of the Sinhala Archbishop and the Tamil Bishop.

However, the SL Defence Secretary didn't honour his promise.

The deceived people started to stage continuous protests during the regime of Maithiripala Sirisena, and they entered the village in 2017 as the SL Navy was pledging to release some of the occupied properties.

In the meantime, the supporters of Rishad Bathiudeen, a controversial politician in Mannaar, continue to grab crown lands in Musali Divisional Secretariat (DS) area of the district, the uprooted people complain.

Divisional Secretary S. Vasanthakumar is under constant pressure to alienate plots of crown lands to politically influential persons while the uprooted Tamils and Muslims who have lost their properties due to the militarisation by the SL Navy are languishing without original or alternative lands.


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