Colombo deploys discrimination in housing assistance to Peasaalai war-affected families

[TamilNet, Sunday, 18 September 2016, 19:42 GMT]
Fishing families from Peasaalai in Mannaar with widows, war-dead family members and those who displaced several times to Tamil Nadu and resettled back without any assistance so far, continue to be discriminated based on their past association with the Tamil struggle, informed civil sources in Mannaar said. Colombo's ministries and its local agent Divisional Secretary Mr Subramaniam Vasanthakumar have been blamed of being selective and practicing discrimination, according to the complaints coming from the affected people themselves.



34-year-old Thileepa Mariyanesan, whose husband was held in custody and was subjected to the so-called ‘military rehabilitation’ by the occupying SL military and Fatinathan M Peiries whose family sacrificed a family member in the Tamil struggle in 1996, said they have been neglected in housing assistance that has been promised to war-affected families by the SL Ministry of Prison Reforms,Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs, which is being led by Mr M.A. Swaminathan.

51-year-old mother of three, Mrs Hippolyte Violet Catherine Croose, who lost her husband 20 years ago while her husband was fleeing the island by boat with more than 20 others, said she was promised assistance but was discriminated during the implementation.

Another mother of three, 57-year-old Sagayam Mariarose said she was forced to flee to India three times in 1985, 1990 and 2006 said her family was also discriminated in the housing assistance.

Mr Fatinathan said the Divisional Secretary was washing his hands of selecting the beneficiaries. When they complained directly to the SL Ministry in Colombo, the ministry forwarded their cases to Divsional Secretary Mr Vasanthakumar. But, again there was no action. “What we continuously witness is discrimination,” he said.

In the meantime, informed civil sources in the division pointed out certain discriminatory patterns being adopted by the SL officials in selecting beneficiaries and said there was a hidden protocol operating against those who have been affiliated with the Tamil struggle in the past.


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