Tsunami third anniversary memorial events held in Vanni
[TamilNet, Thursday, 27 December 2007, 00:22 GMT]
Memorial functions to mark the third anniversary of the civilians killed by 2004 December Tsunami disaster were held in various parts of Vanni including Mullaiththeevu, Vadamaraadchi East and Puthukudiyiruppu, with thousands of civilians taking part in the events.
K.Parthipan, Additional Government Agent (AGA) Mullaiththeevu, speaking at the memorial event held at Katpoorapulve’li area in Mu'l'liyava'laii Wednesday noon said, "It is the first time a natural disaster of such magnitude occurred in Mullaiththeevu. We should take preventive steps to face when ever any such disasters occur in future."
Thousands including women, children elderly people and men perished during the disaster and properties worth millions of rupees were destroyed by the gigantic waves that hit these areas on the morning of December 26th.
Thousands of grieving relatives stood silently near the graves of the victims.
The day’s first event presided by Rev.Fr.James Pathinathar, Parish priest of Mullaiththeevu, commenced at 8:30 in the morning at the memorial building constructed near Mullaiththeevu beach. The common flame was lit by LTTE political head of Mullaiththeevu.
Rev.Fr.James Pathinathar in his memorial day speech said, "Even though three years has elapsed since Tsunami sea disaster hit Mullaiththeevu , the people in this area continue to undergo great difficulties. The residents who were self employed have lost all their belongings and are helpless. They have lost their homes and in addition they are unable to continue their means of living.
"The reconstruction work in the area is still not complete only with only a few houses constructed so far. As a result many are continuing to live in temporary settlements undergoing much hardship. The Tsunami affected fishing community is facing greater loss due to intensifying war. This has created great havoc in their lives since they are unable to go out to the sea to earn their means of livelihood," Rev. Pathinathar said.
The event ended at 11:00 a.m.
A second memorial event was held at 12:00 noon Wednesday in cemetery in Mu’l’liyava’laii, Katpoorapulve’li area where the tsunami victims remain buried.
The event was presided by N.Paran, political head of Mulliyawalai Zone. The common flame was lit by Rev.Fr.James Pathinathar and S.Kanagaratnam, Vanni district Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Member of Parliament, K.Parthipan, Additional Government Agent (AGA) Mullaiththeevu, garlanded a common photo in memory of those who perished during Tsunami.
Lighting of common flame to pay homage to Tsunami victims by their relatives followed.
K.Parthipan, AGA, Mano, President of Mullaitheevu Traders Association, S.Mugunthan, Special assignment co-coordinator of LTTE, Ilamparithy, LTTE political Head of Puthukudiyruppu Zone, and, Fr.James Pathinathar spoke at the event.
K.Parthipan, elaborated the problems being faced by the residents in the area.
"Our people have not yet recovered from the massive disaster that wreaked havoc in our district three years ago. A total of 3354 people including children women and elderly lost their lives and many of the bodies were unable to be identified. To bury this huge number of dead, we decided to allocate land in Katpoorapulve'li area, Parthipan said.
“It is the first time a natural disaster of such magnitude occurred in Mullaiththeevu. We should take preventive steps to face when ever any such disasters occur in future. The people in our district lost all their properties. The houses they lost have not been reconstructed and the people continue to undergo great sufferings," Parthipan added.