Thiriyai prepares for resettlement amid navy harassment
[TamilNet, Thursday, 06 March 2003, 00:30 GMT]
As the first paddy harvest after nearly twenty years is nearing completion at Thiriyai, the displaced Tamil families who returned from Vanni and residing currently in welfare camps at Nilaveli pleaded Tuesday at a mobile service held in Thiriyai, that authorities should make immediate arrangements to resettle them in their own lands, sources in Trincomalee said.
Thiriyai is a traditional Tamil village 42 km north of Trincomalee town. About five hundred displaced families are now ready for resettlement in
the village, which was devastated by military operation of the government
troops in the twenty-year-old war, a senior village leader said at the
mobile service. About five hundred acres of paddy land were cultivated in
the last Maha season, a villager said.
Displaced Thiriyai residents talking to officials.
Local Members of Parliament Mr.Sampanthan and Mr.Thurairatnesingham, LTTE
district political leader Mr.S.Tilak and government and NECORD officials
the mobile service at Thiriyai village to assist the displaced families to
obtain their birth certificates, death certificates and land permits.
The MPs and the LTTE district political leader assured assembled Thiriyai residents that they
making necessary arrangements to resettle the displaced families in their
lands in Thiriyai very soon.
Most of the houses in Thiriyai village were destroyed in the
war. Small number of houses that escaped damage are being occupied by the government troops.
About one thousand and five hundred families lived in Thiriyai when the war broke out war. The village was under the SLN till middle of last year, the villager said.
The SLN has now relocated its detachment about one km away from the Thiriyai village proper. The SLN has established the new camp in more than
seventy-five acres, which included the only civilian cemetery and lands
that belonged to Tamil families, villagers said at the mobile service.
Several villagers complained that the harassment of the navy is on the
increase. Another villager said some SLN personnel one day had removed
several wooden poles he cut and kept in his land to construct a small
cadjan in preparation to resettlement. In some other areas, the navy
personnel removed tin sheets used as fence, villagers complained.
"I am a permanent resident of Thiriyai and am now displaced and staying at
Nilaveli welfare centre. One day when I was going to Thiriyai, navy
personnel stopped me and wanted me to produce title deed and other documents
related to my land to prove the ownership of the land. The Navy is trying to block the displaced from resettling," another villager
LTTE Trincomalee district political leader Thilak speaking at the conclusion of the mobile service (L-R) Parliamentarian Mr.Sampanthan, NE Assistant Registrar General Mr.L.Rasiah, National list MP Mr.Thurairetnasingham|
The Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) representative has undertaken a
project to construct houses for fifty displaced families. Work on about ten
houses would commence immediately. Furthermore they would be taking steps
to provide water facilities by restoring abandoned wells, a TRO official
NECORD official Mr. R.Umakanthan said his organization has undertaken to
repair the Thiriyai school buildings enabling it to function from the
beginning of second term. He added the NECORD had allocated funds for the
construction of the central dispensary at Thiriyai village.
Heads of displaced families cultivated their paddy lands during Maha season
at Thiriyai while their wives and children stayed at welfare centres and
refugee camps at Nilaveli village. Bus services were conducted daily
between Trincomalee and Thiriyai during the cultivation season, sources
The North East Assistant Registrar General Mr.L.Rasiah advised the
displaced and distributed necessary forms to register unregistered births and
to obtain death certificates.
Provincial Commissioner of Lands Ms. Thanuja Murugesan addressed
complaints made by the displaced regarding their lands abandoned several
years ago due to violence.
Displaced villagers attend mobile service and their paddy produce is being loaded in lorry.