Feature Article

Genocidal port ‘development’ targets Point Pedro, KKS for Sinhalicisation of Jaffna

[TamilNet, Thursday, 19 January 2017, 10:03 GMT]
As Trincomalee Harbour, the fifth largest natural harbour in the world, was targeted by genocidal Colombo through decades of militarization, foreign meddling and so-called development in the Eastern Province paving way for the entire Trincomalee district to be subjected to large-scale Sinhala colonisation in the past, genocidal Sri Lanka has targeted two harbours in the Jaffna district of Northern Province for future Sinhalicisation of Jaffna through militarization, ‘development’ and Sinhalicisation. Colombo’s Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development is embarked on a multi-million project through so-called ‘development‘ of the two already militarized Kankeasan-thu’rai (KKS) and Point Pedro harbours through Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) and Ceylon Fishery Harbours Corporation (CFHC).

7 ports coming under SLPA
7 ports coming under SLPA (Image courtesy: slpa.lk)
Four of the seven ports in the entire island, brought under the SLPA’s mandate are situated in the North-East.

Trincomalee and Oluvil in the East are already ‘developed’ by genocidal Sri Lanka.

On Wednesday, Mr N.S. Subramaniyam, the chairman of Maathakal West Rural Fisheries Society was accompanied by the leaders from the fisheries societies from Oo'raath-thu'rai (Kayts), Vea'la'nai, Ezhuvai-theevu, Analai-theevu, Nedun-theevu, Cha'ndilippaaay, Chinna-madu and Thampaaddi met reporters in Jaffna explaining what they were concerned as major Sinhalicisation in the future. They have formulated a four-point demand and said the Tamil fishermen were firm in resisting the plans that are detrimental to the interests of the local fishermen.

An Assistant Director of SL Fisheries Department, in a recent visit to Jaffna, was trying to convince Mr Subramaniyam that the fishermen of Mayiliddi could enter the sea from Point Pedro or KKS and that these two harbours were to be expanded and ‘developed’ with multi million euro grants. The Assistant Director was trying to convince the local fishermen saying that Mayiliddi would become insignificant.

Point Pedro Jetty
The jetty at Point Pedro is largely used by Multi Day Boat operators from South.

“We have also heard different explanations from different actors. Some say there is a big arms and ammunition cache at Mayiliddi. But, we know that there are military-run businesses, resorts, hotels, yoghurt industry and even our cattle are being used by them. Recently, there was a propaganda that a fishing jetty was being released at Oo’ra’ni. While more than 300 fishermen have been allowed into Oo’ra’ni and Thaiyiddi, they were not provided access to their jetty. The place demarcated for them to enter the sea was Ampaththai. It was not a jetty,” Mr Subramaniyam said.

Subramaniyam and the accompanying fisheries society leaders were highly critical to the genocidal ‘development’ of fisheries harbours at KKS and at Point Pedro.

“The Point Pedro harbour is only being used by southern fishermen who operate multi day boats and engage in detrimental trawling. There are only a few local multi day boat operators and these too engage in destructive methods of fishing,” he said.

The SL regime is only attempting to facilitate the need of multi day vessel operators from South. By constructing large scale fisheries harbours with ice plants, cold storage facilities, net mending facilities, and other administrative facilities, the entire multi-million euro ‘development’ projects only attempt to compete with Indian trawler operators in destroying the eco system going against the interests of local fishermen, they said.

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

The Northern Provincial Council is completely sidelined in the harbour ‘development’ project while TNA MP Sumanthiran was able to accompany SL Fisheries Minister to Jaffna.

A minor fisheries port is to be ‘developed’ at Kurunakar by Ceylon Fishery Harbours Corporation, which comes under the Fisheries Ministry.

The four-point demand put forward by the fisheries societies consists of 1) Bottom-trawling should be scrapped as it is detrimental to the ecosystem. Necessary laws should be passed so that fishermen can demand action from the authorities; 2) SL Fisheries Department should stop forthwith providing permits to trawler operators from South to engage in fishing in North; 3) local fishing trawler operators should also be punished and their vessels should be seized if they engage in illegal methods of fishing; 4) All destructive methods of fishing should be clearly defined and informed so that no one involved in fishing could escape with illegal forms of fishing.



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