Feature Article

Sinhala colonists harass Tamil GS officer threatened by extremist monk

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 30 November 2016, 23:20 GMT]
No action has been taken to ensure the security of the Village Officer S. Jeevithan who has been subjected to a systematic hate-campaign by Sumarathana thero the extremist Sinhala-Buddhist monk of Batticaloa Mangalaramaya vihara, informed Divisional Secretariat sources at Paddippazhai told TamilNet on Wednesday. Almost three weeks have elapsed. Except a symbolic temporary court order against monk, no action has materialised despite the exposure of the event through traditional and social media around the globe. On the ground, the GS officer was still being harassed by Sinhala colonists at Kevu'liyaa-madu, the civil sources said.

In June 2016, another GS officer in Batticaloa district, Shanmugam Guru, who is responsible for Kudumpi-malai area, was taken to a military base and subjected to brutal assault by military men after the GS questioned the men in civil clothes on the exploitation of illegal logging of trees. There has been no follow-up action to ensure the security and the rightful duty of the concerned village officer.

Likewise, there has been no action following the assassination of Social Service Officer (SSO) S. Mathisayan, who was shot and killed in May 2015. The slain SSO was attached to Naavithan-ve'li DS office situated in the nearby Ampaa'rai district, the civil official at Paddippazhai DS division said.

All these injustices are taking place in the regime of Sirisena Maithiripala and Ranil Wickramasinghe.

On Wednesday, 6 Sinhala families who have illegally encroached into the pasturelands in Kevu'liyaa-madu and put up houses there with the backing of the extremist monk, were harassing the GS officer. They were demanding electricity supplies to their illegally constructed houses, the civil sources said. All the 6 families have encroached in 2016, the sources further said. These settlers have come from Ratnapura district and from Uhana and Maha-oya in Ampaa'rai district.

Kachchatkodi Swami-malai GS division in Paddippazhai DS Division of Batticaloa district

The previous GS officer was also under pressure from the colonists and the Buddhist monk. The DS officer narrowly escaped from an attack by the violent monk.

At the end, even the Land Commissioner came to suggest a compromise solution. Mr Jeevithan is also now seeking transfer from the area, the Divisional Secretariat officials further said.

The officials said SL Police at Kokkaddich-choalai where the GS officer lodged a case against the monk, have forwarded the case to Maha-Oya police. Assistant Superintend of Police from Maha-oya was the one who didn't act against the monk while the latter went amok on the GS officer on 11 November.

The Government Agent and the Governor of the Eastern Province have failed to act. Police has failed to act and now the Sinhala colonists are further emboldened to harass the Tamil officials.

The monk was questioning who the GS and DS officers were to lodge complaints about illegal encroachment. “Is this your fathers’ and mothers’ place,” Sumanarathna Thera asked. He went verbally abusive against Tamils stating that they deserved attacks and death.

The Sinhala colonists have seized Kathirak-kal-malai pastureland at Kevu'liyaa-madu and have converted it to their agricultural lands. Tamil cattle farmers have been traditionally using the pasturelands, especially during the season of three months each year. It has been the practice for several decades.

The monk has been personally involved in putting up houses for 20 to 25 Sinhala colonists at Kevu'liyaa-madu while more than 60 Sinhalese colonists have settled with the backing of SL military, Sinhala officials from Ampaa'rai district receiving funds from Colombo government and other groups from South.

The Forest Department operating under the instructions from Mahaweli Ministry of SL President Maithiripala Sirisena is also trying to impose ‘pass’ restrictions to farmers in Batticaloa to access pasturelands, which are being systematically targeted by Colombo for demographic genocide against Tamils in the Batticaloa district.

Kachchatkodi Swami-malai GS division is one of the 24 GS divisions of Ma’nmunai South West (Paddippazhai) DS Division, situated southwest of Batticaloa lagoon and is located 13 km away from Batticaloa city.

The GS area with the extent of 14.8 sq. km, comprises of three villages – Kachchat-kodi, Swami-malai and Kevu'liyaa-madu.

There are 448 families of a total population of 1,533 individuals in Kachchatkodi GS division.

901 of these individuals are Sinhalese, according to the statistics obtained in 2015.

The entire GS division has been heavily Sinhalicised by the Sinhala encroachers from Ampaa'rai district with the active backing from the genocidal unitary State.

365 Sinhalese families are living at present in Kevu’liyaa-madu village. Most of them are illegal encroachers.

Only a few Sinhalese (between 6 and 15 families) were living at this village before 1980s.

The occupying Sinhala military expelled Tamil families from Kevu’liya-madu village on October 16, 1985. More than 96 families were uprooted from the area at that time.

Around 60 of the uprooted Tamil families have been resettled in Kevu’liyaa-madu, but they are not provided with facilities matching that of the Sinhala colonists as most of the infrastructure support to the Sinhalese settlers come through different institutions and organisations that are not answerable to the DS or GS administrative officials in the district.

Many of the resettled Tamil families are now afraid of raising their children at an ethnic hostile environment.

The Sinhalese encroachers also want to change the administrative system of the entire GS division, which has been demographically transformed into a numerically Sinhala-majority GS division.

The extremist monk and the Sinhala colonists want to annex the GS division with Sinhala-majority Uhana DS Division of bordering Ampaa’rai District.



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