Feature Article

Colombo builds Sinhala cantonment in Maathakal

[TamilNet, Monday, 09 April 2012, 05:15 GMT]
Genocidal Sri Lanka, which poses Thiruvadi-nilai area of Maathakal, the north-western tip of the Jaffna Peninsula as a ‘Sacred Zone’ of the Sinhala-Buddhists, is now engaged in constructing permanent quarters for the occupying Sri Lanka Navy in the lands of uprooted Tamils who are denied access to their land that had gone under SL military declared High Security Zone 20 years back, news sources in Jaffna said. The families of SL Navy personnel will be provided these quarters, establishing a permanent Sinhala military colony 200 meters from Thiruvadi-nilai in the close vicinity of the Buddhist Stupa erected in 2009. The way the structural genocide is escalating, especially after the Geneva resolution, has made many Eezham Tamils to lose faith in the intentions of the USA and India that have never done anything to check the post-war crimes of the Sri Lankan state.

The state oppression has become heavier and Colombo is in a hurry to achieve irreversible results of structural genocide in recent weeks.

The public anger more and more turns towards the failing powers, political observers in Jaffna said.

[Satellite Image Courtesy: NASA, Visible Earth. Details & Legend: TamilNet]

SL Military Cantonment, Mathakal
SL Military Cantonment, Mathakal
Some of the permanent buildings of the Sinhala cantonment in Maathakal
Buddhist Stupa at Thiruvadinilai
Thiruvadinilai, Buddhist Stupa
Thiruvadinilai, Sangamitha statue
The construction of Sinhala cantonment at Maathakal has been going on for 8 months without the knowledge of the public. Last year, a new naval base was established in the area.

This year, on 06th February, the SL President Mahinda Rajapaksa secretly inaugurated a controversial solar-panel and windmills farm in the lands appropriated from the uprooted Tamils of the coastal stretch between Thiruvadi-nilai and KKS, leasing the lands for 20 years to a Malaysian corporate of Chinese connections.

The entire coastal stretch, between Punnaalai and Maathakal, is kept occupied by the Sri Lankan military for the establishment of the ‘Sacred Zone’.

Thiruvadi-nilai Kengkaatheavi Cooperative Society of fishermen, has complained that the fishermen who were earlier fishing in the area using the local method of ‘ka'langkaddi’ fishing, are now barred from fishing in the waters close to the ‘Sacred Zone’. The families of the fishermen are now deprived of livelihood, the fishermen society further said.

The SL military has earlier attempted to convince the owners of the lands to sell their land deeds to southerners. But, the uprooted Tamil people had refused to sell their lands and were insisting on resettlement.

The cantonment comprises a large coastal area including Thiruvadi-nilai, Kaaddup-pulam, Nelliyaan and Chuzhipuram East. SL Navy personnel deployed in Punnaalai have been promised quarters to settle there, bringing their families from South, informed sources said.

Thiruvadi-nilai is one of the two closest spots of communication between the island of Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu. While Thalai Mannaar in Mannaar district is the closest to Rameasvaram, Maathakal in Jaffna Peninsula is the closest to Koadikkarai (Point Calimere) in Tamil Nadu.

Colombo’s archaeologists claim Thiruvadinilai as the landing place of Sinhala-Buddhism to the island in 3rd century BC, and are building modern Buddhist establishments there, while the very name of the place "Ko'la-patuna" (Kozhu-paddinam: the harbour at the tip) mentioned in the Pali chronicles themselves is of Tamil etymology.

Shiranthi Rajapaksa, the wife of Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa and her son Namal Rajapaksa brought a statue of Sanghamita, Emperor Aoska’s daughter and the first woman Buddhist missionary to the island, to be enshrined in the newly built Buddhist Stupa in Maathakal in October 2009.

Following the opening of the Buddhist Stupa, Colombo establishment encouraged Sinhala ‘pilgrims’ to visit the place in large numbers.

In June 2011, the Rajapaksa regime in Colombo started to proclaim that Thiruvadi-nilai in Maathakal was to become a ‘sacred’ zone.

Since 1992, the SL military has occupied many parts of the Maathakal village and private lands of Tamils. After the end of war in Vanni, there was an announcement that people would be permitted to resettle in Maathakal. But, when the people wanted to resettle, the SL military came with excuses saying de-mining was yet to be completed.

In December 2011, the uprooted Tamil people of Maathakal protested against Sri Lanka Navy building an extensive naval base confiscating private lands of Eezham Tamils.

Maathakal is just one of the military-Buddhist enclaves the state in Sri Lanka is building in the country of Eezham Tamils it occupies.

In the process of building a Sinhala cantonment at Thiruvadinilai in Maathakal, the local people are never permitted to even see their lands and houses.

The fishermen community of the village is discouraged from carrying out fishing

In the meantime, the SL military has begun to hurriedly construct a Buddhist Stupa at Jaffna harbour, between Jaffna Fort and Kurunakar, last week. This new Stupa will be the new ‘cultural landmark’ of Jaffna city for vessels coming towards its harbour.

SL Military Cantonment, Mathakal
Permanent buildings being constructed along the coastal stretch for the occupying SL military forces. Tamil fishermen are barred from fishing in the seas along the coast and the entire stretch is separated by a fence from the land, stealing and sealing off the coast from the people of the Tamil country.

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