|Government to commence massive development in North|
|Thursday, 22 January 2009|
Aim of facilitating IDPs
By Sandun A Jayasekera
The government is launching a massive development and resettlement drive in the North aiming at facilitating IDPs, especially a 35,000 exodus in the next couple of weeks following the intensifying of military operations in Mullaitivu, Media Minister Laksman Yapa Abeywardana said.
The objective is to accelerate the industrial, agricultural, infrastructure, health and educational facilities in a targeted period as these sectors had been neglected for about three decades in the North, Minister Abeywardana told the media at his Ministry.
The development programme will be spearheaded by senior Presidential Adviser Basil Rajapaksa. He had already discussed the blueprint of the programme with relevant ministers and officials, he said.
However, Minister Abeywardana, responding to a query, rejected that the initiative was the result of the discussion Indian Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon had with Sri Lankan authorities during his recent visit.
“The government had drawn up the blueprint before Mr. Menon’s visit. We want to bring normalcy and establish civil administration in the North in the shortest possible time after the liberation of the entire north from the LTTE in order to launch the accelerated development programme,” he emphasized.
Under the programme a range of model villages will be set up covering the North to provide employment. The people in these model villages are expected to promote a specific trade with the aim to develop the village in that line.
The people in tourist villages will promote tourism, construct facilities for local and foreign tourists and make a living out of it. This will be the same for export development, Dairy, Agriculture, Indigenous and Green villages, Minister Abeywardana said.
Relevant state institutions such as ministries, departments and semi-government institutions and special projects like ‘Maga Neguma’ and ‘Gama Neguma’ will play their respective parts in the programme.
The villages coming under the accelerated development programme will be re-named. The government has already selected three villages in Vuvuniya to develop and rename as Ramanathan Sudandiranpuram, Arunachalam Wedithlaithevupuram and Kadirgamar Eluchchinagar.
“The government has allocated Rs. 5 billion for the purpose. We want to show the world that the main concern of Sri Lanka is to liberate Tamils from the jackboot of the LTTE and give them a new life which they can lead with dignity in a peaceful society,” Minister Abeywardana stressed.
|Last Updated ( Friday, 14 August 2009 )|
|< Prev||Next >|