Keappaa-pulavu struggle continues, only one tenth of lands released
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 01 March 2017, 23:40 GMT] Lands belonging 54 families were released in Pulak-kudiyiruppu of Keappaa-pulavu GS area after 29 days of continuous struggle on Wednesday. The families of Pulak-kudiyiruppu entered their lands in a mood of victory. However, the happiness lasted only a few minutes till they arrived premises of their lands to witness their houses and trees, which were standing there in full shape as late as on 30 January this year, had been completely erased to the grounds by the occupying Sinhala military that had a different plan of permanently seizing their lands. Many of the families were caught in pain and trauma caused by the memories of the loss of their loved ones in the genocidal onslaught. In the meantime, more than 128 families of Keappaa-pulavu and the remaining 30 of 84 families from Pulak-kudiyiruppu vowed to continue to the struggle until their lands completely released.
The resolve of Keappaa-pulavu people since 2012 has resulted in securing the release of three of four residential villages in Keappaa-pulavu GS area so far. Apart from the released villages of Sooriyaa-moaddai, Sooriya-puram and Pulak-kudiyiruppu now released, there are still families numbering around 145 who are deprived of their private lands in Keappaa-pulavu village.
At least 450 acres of lands belonging to the people are yet to be freed.
84 families were living in Pulak-kudiyiruppu. Only 54 of them were in possession of ownership to their lands. The remaining families should also be given lands, the representatives waging the struggle said.
37 of 54 families from Pulak-kudiyiruppu were satisfied with the extent of the lands released. 17 families were complaining that their lands were not fully returned.
Ms Akilandeswary Muthusamy and Ms Aswiny Ketheeswaran talked to TamilNet stating that their houses had been destroyed within the last one month.
Mrs Inthirany Vivekananthan who is from Keappaa-pulavu said her ancestors were living in the village for 6 generations and that there were 128 uprooted families who are fully prepared to continue their struggle.
Mrs Saraswathy Thanabalaisngam from Keappaa-pulavu was worried that SL military was going to destroy her house, which she had seen 6 months ago.
In the meantime, TNPF Leader and former parliamentarian Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam, who has been actively involved in the struggle of de-militarising Keappaa-pulavu since 2012 said it was important to remind those expressing solidarity with the struggle of Keappaa-pulavu people that only around 48 acres of 500 acres have been released and that more than 145 families were still continuing the struggle to release their lands.
Women’s Rural Development Society leader Mrs Simidkadsan Chandraleela from Keappaa-pulavu also reiterated that the struggle of Keappaa-pulavu families would continue.
The families waging the struggle for the past 29 days say they are now increasingly concerned of their security, particularly the security of their children, as they have to go to school walking a long distance through the military zone.