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NewsHonour the promises! No justification for not returning the Lands to the Civilians – Samapanthan

Honour the promises! No justification for not returning the Lands to the Civilians – Samapanthan

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Image: Women led peaceful agitations calling for releasing their land has intensified in recent times. (photo @garrikaalan)

Sending a open letter to the president Sirisena, R Sampanthan leader of the TNA and leader of the Opposition Sri Lankan Parliament has asked him to take steps to release the the land at Valikamam North in Jaffna District that has been occupied by the Army for over 25 years and land in Kepapulavu in Mullaitivu District that has been re-occupied by the armed forces, for around 8 years . These Lands were owned and used by Civilians for generations both for residential and farming purposes, according to the TNA leader.

“There can be no justification for not returning the Lands to the Civilians entitled to same. The Civilian population claim that the Government promised to release the Lands but that the said promise has not been honoured.” the letter further says.

Full text of the letter:

3rd March 2017
His Excellency President Maithripala Sirisena
President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
Presidential Secretariat
Colombo-01.

LAND ISSUES.
Your Excellency,
I wish to draw your kind attention to two instances of occupation of private lands by the Armed Forces in the Northern Province, which Lands I submit should be released to the Civilians entitled to same at the earliest.

1. Land in Valikamam North in Jaffna District
2. Land in Kepapulavu in Mullaitivu District.

These lands are occupied by the Sri Lankan Armed Forces. The Civilian population entitled to those lands are now staging demonstrations in front of the Lands for the release of same.

The Land at (1) above at Valikamam North in Jaffna District has been occupied by the Army for over 25 years. These lands were first occupied by the Armed Forces when the LTTE was active, was in possession of heavy artillery and posed a threat to installations of the Armed Forces. This position ceased to exist several years ago.

These Lands were owned and used by Civilians for generations both for residential and farming purposes.

There can be no justification for not returning the Lands to the Civilians entitled to same. The Civilian population claim that the Government promised to release the Lands but that the said promise has not been honoured.

May I kindly request that very early action be taken to release these Lands in Kepapulavu, in Kilinochchi districts to the Civilian population entitled to same.

The Land at (2) above at Kepapulavu in Mullaitivu District is also re-occupied by the armed forces, for around 8 years .The land was owned and used by the civilian population for residence and farming. There can be no justification for not returning the lands to civilians entitled to same.

May I kindly request that very early action be taken to release these lands at Kepapulavu, in Mullaitivu District to the Civilian population entitled to same.

It would appear that the continued occupation by the Armed Forces of these Lands owned by the Civilian population in violation of the Law of the Land. I submit that this situation should not continue.

May I earnestly request that Your Excellency direct the relevant authorities to release these lands to the Civilian population at the earliest.
With my regards

Yours Sincerely,
R Sampanthan
Member of Parliament.
Leader of the Opposition Sri Lankan Parliament.

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