Madhu road to be opened for public

[TamilNet, Saturday, 06 September 2003, 14:02 GMT]
After a high level meeting with the Mannar district Government Agent (GA) V.Visvalingam and Sri Lanka Army (SLA) officials Friday at the SLA camp located at Madhu road junction it was announced that the Madhu road leading to the famous Madhu shrine from Vavuniya-Mannar highway will be opened for public use, security sources said.

Madhu Road Opening
Mannar GA and SLMM officials at the meeting
Commander in charge of the SLA 214th Brigade in Paraiyanalankulam, Col. Rajapakse, Vavuniya district Police Commissioner Miskin, International members of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), representatives of the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) of the SLMM participated in the meeting.

The meeting convened at the direction of the Ministry of Defense focused on procedures and preparations necessary to open the Madhu road and a detailed report on these matters will be sent to the Ministry of Defense soon, Col. Rajapakse said according to sources.

Madhu Road Opening
View of Madhu road inside LTTE territory as seen from no-man's land
After the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the LTTE and GoSL, public were able to cross between LTTE held territory and GoSL territory via Omanthai and Muhamalai on A9 highway, and via Uyilankulam in Mannar district. However, although permission was granted by the SLA for the Madhu pilgrims to use the Madhu road to go to the Madhu shrine, residents of 11 villages located around the Madhu shrine were not allowed permission to use the Madhu road.

Residents of these affected villages complained that they have made repeated requests to the GoSL in the past to open the Madhu road and no action was taken.

The decision to open the road was taken after a two week long protest campaign by the villagers who blocked the road within the LTTE territory for outside using the Madhu road.



Madhu Road Opening
Army officials and GA at the meeting



Madhu Road Opening
Pilgrims at SLA checkpoint in Madhu



Madhu Road Opening




Madhu Road Opening
Army officials and GA



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