Compensation sought for plantations destroyed by SLA

[TamilNet, Friday, 08 August 2003, 20:54 GMT]
The Sri Lanka Army Friday said they would permit displaced persons to enter their lands in a section of Nagarkovil and Eluthumadduval forward defence position for the explicit purpose of inspecting the damage caused to their Palmyra and coconut plantations by the Sri Lankan security forces, but placed stringent conditions on their entry, sources said.

The displaced people plan to assess their losses in a bid to seek compensation from the Plantations Department of Sri Lanka, which has called for such assessments before the department could provide compensation.

Civil groups say that hundreds of thousands of coconut and Palmyra trees in Thenmaradchi division and other areas had been cut down by the Sri Lankan security forces and used for constructing checkpoints and bunkers, including, sources say, those on a road from the Point Pedro-Maruthankerni road up to a place where an LTTE military camp called "Gajan" was located in Kilali.

The displaced people who sought compensation for their losses have been informed by the Plantations Department to send in their assessment reports regarding their losses, and the required forms have been sent to them through respective village level officials (Grama Sevaka), sources said.

However, the SLA has informed the owners of the plantations that they could visit to inspect and assess the damage to their lands within the period from August 12 to August 18, and only in the areas of Kilali, Muhamalai, Eluthumadduval North and South, Mirusuvil and a section of Nagarkovil.

In addition, the SLA has said that they should be accompanied by Coconut Development Authority Officials and they should produce a letter of authorization from the Chavakachcheri assistant government agent to the Mirusuvil SLA officer-in-charge, civil sources said.


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