The Defence Secretary Karunasena Hettiarachchi has directed that all agricultural lands in Mannar Musaly Divisional secretary’s area currently used by the Navy, be returned to the owners.
The people who were living in Palaikkuly and Marichchukaddi areas coming under the Musaly DS division were displaced in 1990, and settled in other areas and subsequently they were unable to undertake cultivation activities in their lands. In a context where the above lands have been occupied by the Navy, these farmers found that they in no situation to cultivate their lands.
Following Minister Rshad Baudi ud deen complaining the predicament of the farmers of these areas to the Defence Secretary , the Defence Secretary has issued directive to release these lands in Palaikuli and Marichchukaddy.
Further he has handed over the activities required for the removal of the Navy Camp at the midst of Silavathurai village, where people are living in concentration, to the Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and has called for a report regarding this.
Meanwhile Minister Rishad also requested in this meeting to remove the Army Camp operating in the Cooperative building near Mannar Entry point. The secretary to Ministry of Defence also acceded to this request and directed the Additional Secretary to submit a report on this also.
The Additional Secretary, Assistant secretaries of the Defence Ministry, Deputy Director of Forest Department, Mahjintha Seneviratne,Musali DS, Ketheeswaran and Army officers also attended this meeting.