The 37th anniversary of the Seruvila-Echchalampattu (Verugal) Massacre observed on 12th June 2023 at Punagar Village in Echchalampattu division of Trincomalee district by the advocacy group, representatives of civil organizations, relatives of the survivors, human rights activists and well-wishers in the Echchalampattu (Verugal) area of Trincomalee District of Sri Lanka. A memorial service was held at the memorial hall in Punagar.
On 12th June 1986, human massacres were reported in Mahindapura area of Seruvila region inhabited by Sinhalese people, where 21 people including 03 government officials lost their precious lives while taking food supplies to Echchalampattu welfare Centre.
Despite the completion of 37 years since the massacre of the above 21 people, in the absence of justice for the victims, a memorial service and public prayer for their repose were held today.
Due to the war situation prevailing in the country in the past, the people of Echchalampattu Divisional Secretariat had taken shelter in the welfare centers located at Echchalampattu, Poomaratchenai and Mavadichenai. Dry food for them was provided weekly by the government through Seruvila Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society.
In that way, on June 12, 1986, the affected people were kept in welfare centers; Mr. Warnasuriya, who was the District Secretary at that time, instructed the officials to carry the necessary relief items in the bullock carts of the people of Echchalampattu in the absence of public transport, and 21 people including three government officials who were in charge of the welfare camps went to Seruvila to carry the goods in bullock carts.
21 people carrying relief goods from Seruvila to Echchalampattu were intercepted by armed men in Mahindapura, taken 50 meters from the main road and hacked to death. The report added that 21 people including 3 government officials were assassinated and 3 survived with serious injuries. Out of which 19 are Tamils and 02 are Muslims.
The survivors and the relatives of the victims claimed that the massacre took place under the leadership of the head of the village police man named Ram Banda and that the Sri Lankan army was also indulged in this gruesome incident.
Relatives of the victims said that the victims and the injured survivors were kept on their knees/ kneeled down in two rows and were shot with a zip gun and attacked with sharp weapons while they were asked to show their identity cards. People who went to the scene of the massacre said that more than 20 local policemen and security forces were encompassed in the massacre and all the dead had their identity cards in their hands. Relatives of the victims confirmed that the incident took place on 12th June 1986 at 1.00 pm.
The following persons were massacred in the worst manner. They are as follows:
- Thangarasa -Grama Niladhari(Poomarathadichenai)-Echilampattu Welfare Centre
- Alif khan – Grama Niladhari(Thoppur)- Poomarathadichenai Welfare Center
- AMA Latheef (Palaththoppur)-Resettlement Officer Poonagar Welfare Centre
- Komaamalai Velautham- Poomarathadichenai
- Kathirkamathampi Vinayakamoorthy -Poomarathadichenai
- Theiventheiram Navarednam –Poomarathadichenai
- Thampirasa Navarednam – Poonagar
- Kanagasapai kanagasuntharam- Poonagar
- Kathirkamathampi Sellathampi- Poonagar
- Muthathampi Kasippilllai- Poonagar
- Kathirkamaththampi Nagarasa- Poonagar
- Virapathiran Nadesapillai- Poonagar
- Muthaiya Kaalirasa- Poonagar
- Muthukkumar Veluppillai- Poonagar
- Veluppillai Chithiravel –Vinayakapuram-Echilampattu
- Chithiravel Sivalimgam–Vinayakapuram-Echilampattu
- Veerapathiran Somasundharam–Vinayakapuram-Echilampattu
- Chithiravel Thampapillai–Vinayakapuram-Echilampattu
- Nallaiyah parameshwaran-Lanka Pattinam
- Thamotharam Tharmalingam-Echilampattu
- Punniyam mathivathanan- Poomarathadichenai
Relatives of victims
Echilampattu Recommendation Committee
12TH June 2023.