Headwork construction to begin by month’s end | Daily News


Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir Project:

Headwork construction to begin by month’s end

Irrigation Minister P. Harrison said that the headwork construction of the Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir Project would begin by the end of this month. He was speaking at the Thanthirimale Project Director's Office, recently.

The lack of adequate funds has delayed the construction work of the project. The lower Malwathu Oya reservoir has a capacity of 169,000 acre-feet, with a dam 3.5 kilometres in length. The estimated cost of the project is Rs.14 billion. A forest landscape of 14,000 acres would be submerged for the project.

The proposed reservoir is to be built by having the main dam constructed across the Malwathu Oya at the Bogoda village. It is expected to provide irrigation water to around 40,000 acres of land in Anuradhapura and Mannar, apart from making adequate drinking water available to a population of about 200,000 in the region.According to a Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir Project land officer, resettlement of 204 evacuated families would be completed parallel to the reservoir's construction work. He said that suitable 700-acre lands have been earmarked in the Kaluwila, Naranwewa, and Inguruthenna areas for resettlement and infrastructural facilities.

"We have also found 1,600 acres of forest lands outside the boundaries of the Wilpattu National Park to provide alternative muddy lands along the left bank of the oya. With regard to the alternative muddy lands to be provided along the south bank, the Irrigation Ministry is discussing with Forest Conservation authorities to acquire 1,500 acres of land for the purpose.

The compensation for those being evacuated is yet to be decided and the government would bear the expenditure for the permanent housing to be provided to the 204 families evacuated. One housing unit would cost the government around Rs.2.5 million, he said.

Meanwhile, a spokesman of the ministry told the

Daily News that a Cabinet paper was being submitted by the Irrigation Minister to obtain approval for a Chinese long grant to complete the project.

It was also learnt that the Chinese CAMCE company, which is the contractor for the Yan Oya Reservoir's headwork and the ongoing left bank canal construction, would be the investor for lower the Malwathu Oya Reservoir Project.


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