Indian delegation impressed with N-E development
*‘Saw the real situation for
*Govt invites European countries to
visit North, East
Minister Lakshman Yapa
The Indian Parliamentary delegation in Sri Lanka is highly impressed
with the rehabilitation and development work carried out by the
government in the North and East, within a period of only two years and
11 months, after the completion of the humanitarian operation, Acting
Media Minister and Acting Cabinet Spokesman Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena
Addressing the weekly Cabinet press briefing at the Government
Information Department auditorium yesterday, he said the government
wishes to thank the Indian Parliamentary delegation for visiting Sri
Lanka, especially the North and East and seeing the real situation for
The delegation consulted the people themselves and obtained their
independent views without any mediation on the part of the government.
The visit will also help to correct the wrong picture that led to
adverse Tamil Nadu opinion on the North and East which had an impact on
the Geneva resolution, he said.
Acting Minister Yapa said the government has also invited European
goverments to visit the North and East and witness the massive
development taking place.
Acting Minister Yapa said within a very short period, the government
provided all benefits to the Northern people which are enjoyed by people
living in other parts of the country.The delegation saw how 250,000 IDPs
have been resettled in their original homes, he said.
“Only 200 had been resettled in other places due to landmines and
they will also be relocated to their original homes once the landmines
are removed,” he said.
The delegation inquired of the people whether the Sri Lankan
government has restricted their movements and the people said there are
no such restrictions and they do not have money and time to travel
because they are busy with their work. The Indian delegation handed over
250 houses built for IDPs with Indian aid. One family living in such a
house told the delegates that their two children were kidnapped by the
Acting Minister Yapa pointed out that the construction of another 635
houses built with Indian aid have already been completed. A project has
been launched to build 41,000 new houses in the North and 9,000 houses
in the East. The delegation visited IDP camps and there were only 1,800
IDPs in the Manik Farm welfare centre and only 1,600 in Sampur welfare
centre. The actual number of IDPS living in those two camps is lower
than the number declared by the government. They will be resettled by
June 30th as stated to the Indian delegation. The government spent Rs.
4.6 million to construct one tank in the North and also provided
agricultural and fishing equipment to the people.
‘India is a friend of Sri Lanka and it will not do anything harmful
to Sri Lanka. The opinion of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister is not the
opinion of the Indian central government. During elections several
things can be said and done but those things change after the
election. India has its own problems,such as, Kashmir.The Sri Lankan
Environment Ministry will deal with the issue of the Indian Nuclear
power project, Acting Minister Yapa added.