Bureaucracy hampers rehabilitation

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 18 February 1998, 23:59 GMT]
People of Waligamam North are facing difficulties in receiving rehabilitation funds in the areas where they are resettled, said sources in Jaffna. Each family is entitled to 5000 rupees (US$ 80.65) as rehabilitation funds. Refugees are told by grama sevekas (GS) in the areas where they are resettled to obtain a letter from the GS of the village from where they came, endorsing the fact they were displaced from that village.

But of the 45 Grama Seveka of Waligamam North only 15 are still working.

North Waligamam Divisional Secretary Mrs. Thiyaganayagam, issued a letter to Secretaries of other Divisions requesting that they pay the rehabilitation funds to the refugees both from the 15 villages where Grama Sevakas are functioning, as well as to those from the other areas in North Waligamam which have no functioning GSs now.

However, despite the letter the problem continues, said the sources.

Meanwhile, S. Sri Baskaran, the TULF's chairman designate for the Valigamam North Pradeshiya Sabah, has, in a letter addressed to Jaffna Security Forces Commander Major General Lional Balagalle, requested permission for the displaced from areas around the Maviddapuram Kandaswamy temple to be resettled in their original homes, said sources in Jaffna.

Mr. Sri Baskaran has requested that Major General Balagalle grant him an interview to discuss the resettlement of these refugees, who were rendered homeless in 1990, and are living under a lot of hardship in various parts of Jaffna.

The NGO Consortium of Jaffna is planning to send a fact finding mission to some parts of Valigamam where the army is not present to find out the state of the schools, nutrition levels of the resettled persons and whether they are in a position to satisfy their essential wants and eke out a living there.

Meanwhile, The Waligamam North Rehabilitation Society, an NGO in Jaffna, has requested the Ministry of Health to facilitate the return of equipment belonging to the Tellipalai Cancer Hospital which had been sent to Maharagama Cancer Hospital for safety during military operations in the area after Operation Riverisa was launched in October 1995, said sources in Jaffna.


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