A UPFA Pradeshiya Sabha member and his cronies have grabbed around 100 acres by force from an estate belonging to Elpitiya Plantations at Habarakada, Thawalama.
The PS member and his supporters having encroached the land during the last couple of days were now occupying it, according to a complaint lodged with the Hiniduma police by the firm.
The PS member is a former Deputy Chairman of the Thawalama Pradeshiya Sabha.
The land first belonged to the State Plantations Corporation and was later handed over to the Elpitiya Plantations Ltd in 2004. The estate had been called the Habarakada Plantations since then and has about 654 acres. In this estate there are about 300 uncultivated acres. The politicians and his goons have occupied about 100 acres from the uncultivated acreage.The complaint made by Superintendent of the estate Anuruddha Ranasinghe also said that the politico and his cronies had felled some important and valuable trees in the estate for timber.
When contacted for comment, Thawalama Divisional Secretary W. S. Satyananda said: “I was told that the PS member and his companions have forcefully occupied a section the estate. Then I informed the relevant officials to make a complaint to the police. Forcible occupation of state land could not be permitted. The government will take legal action against those who grabbed the land.”
By Lalith Chaminda and SK Kaluarachchi