Thampalakamam market reopens after thirteen years
[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 January 2004, 13:39 GMT]
The public market in the traditional Tamil village Thampalakamam, which is located 27 km southwest of Trincomalee town, was re-opened Thursday after about thirteen years. Thampalakamam divisional head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) Mr.Thirumalai declared open the public market.
The Officer-in-Charge of the Tampalakamam police post lit the traditional oil lamp, sources said.
The market was closed following the displacement of the entire village in 1990 when the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) stepped up its military operations, Tamil sources said.
Most of the displaced Tamil families have now returned to Thampalakamam and have begun their cultivating their lands. Schools have been re-opened.
The building of the Rural Development Society, however, is still being occupied by the Sri Lanka Police.
Majority of people of the village are Tamils and mostly Hindus. But during the occupation of the Sri Lanka Army, soldiers built a small Buddhist shrine under a Bo- tree, which is located in front of the Aathi Koneswaram Temple and installed a statue of Lord Buddha. The newly built Buddhist shrine is still being seen in the village close to the reopened market, sources said.
The history of Thampalakamam and historic Koneswaram Temple in Trincomalee has been interlinked. The Portuguese destroyed Trincomalee Koneswaram temple in the year 1624. Priests who fled from the temple took most of valuable main statues of Hindu gods for safe custody to Swami Malai in Thampalakamam village. Later the place where the statues were kept was called Thampalakamam Aathi Koneswarar Temple, residents of the village said.