Macro-level approach needed to confront genocidal land grab in Mullaiththeevu

[TamilNet, Monday, 02 July 2018, 22:55 GMT]
The occupying military of genocidal Sri Lanka is deploying the ethnic chauvinist Archaeology Department of the unitary State with a motive to permanently Sinhalicise a private property, which is of religious significance to the native Tamils at Oddu-chuddaan in Mullaiththeevu, after being repeatedly confronted by the family of the 62-year-old landowner, V. Kanagasundaram. The SL military invited the family at the presence of the Divisional Secretary on 25 June to a meeting in which their 5-acre land was supposed to be handed back to the rightful owner. J. Indrakumar, an official at the Divisional Secretariat also confirmed that the SL military had invited the family to release the lands. However, the meeting turned out to be a different one, the family told TamilNet.

The latest move is not an isolated case. It is part of a large-scale genocidal land grab, the officials at Mullaiththeevu District Secretariat told TamilNet on condition of anonymity.

They also urged the grassroots activists to exert pressure on Northern Provincial Council and other Tamil civil society groups to address the issue at a collective level. “One should not look at these incidents as isolated ones, but at a macro-level. A concerted approach is needed on the part of the NPC to confront the genocidal land grab being schemed by the Sinhala military, civil institutions under the unitary state and the Buddhist Establishment, they said.

The occupying SL military, which has seized thousands of acres in the Mullaiththeevu district is now using various departments that are under the direct control of the unitary state in Colombo to permanently maintain the level of militarisation, they said.

The departments of Mahaweli ‘Development’, Forest Conservation, Wild Life Conservation and Archaeology function as the proxies of the occupying SL military, which is scheming a long-term Sinhala colonisation programme of its own, the Tamil sources at Mullaiththeevu District Secretariat said.

The SL State is also planning to declare a large tract of land, up to 21,500 acres in extent as the natural sanctuary. It could extend to Oddu-chuddaan from Naayaa'ru of Karai-thu'raip-pattu division, they said.

The recent episode involving the SL Archaeology Department at Odduchuddaan is part of this agenda, they said.

Odduchuddaan map
The location of Oddu-chuddan. Note the stretch of the quarry mound close to the junction. [Image courtesy: One Inch Sheet, Survey Department, Sri Lanka]

Oddu-chuddaan land grab
Oddu-chuddaan land grab
Oddu-chuddaan land grab
The temple and the property of Mr Kanagasundaram at Oddu-chuddaan
The occupying SL military told the family of Mr Kanagasundaram they would be handing over the lands back to them in a meeting. However, at the meeting, two officials claiming to have come from the SL Archeology Department intervened showed up with a claim that they had located archaeological artefacts at the property after being notified by the SL military.

The residents in the area complain that the SL military was conniving with the SL Archaeology Department with the intent of continuing their access to the property.

The 641 Brigade of the Army of genocidal Sri Lanka has been occupying the 5 acres of the lands that belong to Mr Kanagasundaram for almost ten years since 2008.

The people of the area have not been able to worship their village deity, a Sivan temple, which is located in the private lands.

The land-owner and his family have repeatedly been demanding the SL military to vacate the property.

However, the Sinhala military, which has put up a Buddha statue under a Bo tree found in the lands, also continued with cultivating the occupied lands located on Odduchuddaan - Puthukkudiyiruppu Road.

The 64 Division of the occupying Sinhala Army entered Kanagasundaram's property from the Sinhalicised Weli-oya (Ma'nal-aa'ru) during the genocidal war in December 2008.

Oddu-chuddaan, even today, is a known place for quarrying stone. There is a mound of rocky outcrop stretching up to roughly two kilometres. Ancient ruins, including Lingams (aniconic representation of the Saiva deity of Siva), were also found in the area.



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