Over 193,607 IDPs resettled
The government has resettled 193,607 Internally Displaced Persons of
the North and only 76,205 IDPs remain to be resettled. These people are
housed in six welfare villages in the Menik Farm area of Vavuniya,
Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services Ministry Secretary U.L.M.
Haldeen told the Daily News yesterday.
These remaining people are original settlers of Kilinochchi,
Mullaitivu and Madhu regions where the de-mining operations were
continuing. They would be resettled in their original villages and lands
when they are cleared of mines. These three regions were heavily mined
by the LTTE terrorists when they were fleeing. These IDPs would be
resettled stage by stage when their original villages are made safe for
human habitation, he said.
Among the IDPs are more than 23,000 who leave the welfare villages
daily for work or to visit their friends or relations and they are given
transport facilities. However they return to the welfare villages every
evening, he said.
The Special Presidential Task Force for Rehabilitation and
Resettlement headed by Senior Presidential Advisor Basil Rajapaksa is
taking steps to expedite the de-mining process. The Northern Province
Governorís Office has allocated Rs. 750 million for restarting the
livelihood of resettled IDPs. Under this assistance scheme 23,519
families have already received the Rs 25,000 grant. Northern Province
Governor G.A. Chandrasiri handed over these funds to some families
recently. A total of 30,000 families will benefit from the program, the
Governorís Office spokesman said.