Sinhalese continue to encroach paddy fields of Tamils, Muslims in Moothoor

[TamilNet, Sunday, 08 May 2011, 23:53 GMT]
Sinhala villagers backed by Sri Lankan military operated ‘home guards’ have forcibly encroached one thousand acres of paddy fields that belong to Tamils and Muslims in Puthukkaadu, Oottu and Muthu-kaayamadu in Moothoor DS division in Trincomalee district.

Tamil and Muslim farmers chased out by Sinhala encroachers say that they had been cultivating the paddy fields since 1956 in their agricultural lands. The Tamil and Muslim farmers had been issued with deeds by the land authority in 1970s. They were forced to leave their paddy fields following the state-sponsored anti-Tamil riots in 1980s.

The farmers again returned to their lands following the Norwegian facilitated ceasefire agreement between Colombo and Ki'linochchi in 2002.

However, the owners were forced out of their lands following the breakdown of the ceasefire.

By the time of the end of the battles in Trincomalee, Batticaloa and in Vanni, the farmlands in Moothoor had again fallen into the hands of the Sinhalese encroachers.

Despite several requests and representations made by the Tamil and Muslim farmers to the Sri Lankan authorities in Colombo, the encroachers continue to occupy their lands.


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