SLA bans cultivation in lands outside Palaly HSZ
[TamilNet, Friday, 07 May 2004, 18:09 GMT]
Inspite of repeated assurances by the Jaffna command of the Sri Lanka Army that internally displaced families will be allowed to resettle and do their cultivation in their lands located six hundred meters away from
the forward defence line of the Palaly high security zone, soldiers manning checkpoints are putting obstacles for the resettled farmers to prepare their lands for cultivation, resettled families complained to TamilNet Friday.
Soldiers located in the sentry points in these areas demand that the resettled IDP families should produce documentary proof that they were permanent residents and the said agricultural lands belonged to them before being displaced.
Several acres of agricultural lands in Punnalaikadduvan, Vasavilan and Pannalai remain uncultivated as a result of those SLA demands since the displaced families who lost all their belongings during the war cannot obtain all the documents needed to prove permanent ownership.
Meanwhile, a farmer has made a complaint to the Jaffna regional office of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka that he has been refused permission by the SLA to do cultivation in his land in Achchuveli-Pathmini
area, which is located on the other side of the Palaly HSZ, sources said.
The complainant has said that he has been ordered by the SLA to leave his agricultural land after he prepared it for cultivation, sources said.
Several welfare organizations in the area have pointed out that the SLA has not clearly defined the 600 meter border from the forward defence line of the HSZ and thereby occupy agricultural lands which fall outside the HSZ,