Sri Lanka's Coordinating Secretary to the Prime Minister, Geethanath Kassilingham, has denied the accusation by Tamil National Alliance (TNA) MP Sivagnanam Sritharan that land in Jaffna is being sold to China.
Sritharan maintained that 40 acres on the Delft Island and the Jaffna Kachcheri building, which falls under the purview of the Department of Archaeology was being sold to China and that was why Namal Rajapaksa’s visited Jaffna.
Geethanath Kassilingham denounced Sritharan statement as being “absolutely FALSE”.
After inquiring into the allegations made by @TNAmediaoffice MP. Hon. Sritharan, I was informed by authorities that these allegations are absolutely FALSE and there are no moves to sell any land on the Delft Island or the old Jaffna Kachcheri building to any foreign company. #lka https://t.co/ny8R2pEC9U
— G. Cassilingham (@CassilingamG) July 6, 2021
The Jaffna Kachcheri building, also known as Pazhaiya Poonka and the Dutch Kachcheri building, was used as the LTTE’s Police Headquarters before it was partially destroyed during the armed struggle which ended in May 2009. It is situated along the Kandy Road in Jaffna and is believed to have been constructed during the Dutch rule of Sri Lanka.
Earlier this year, the Sri Lankan state granted permission to China for building energy projects in Neduntheevu (Delft Island), Analativu and Nainativu, as Sri Lanka continues to award China with large scale projects. These projects are worth an estimated US $12 million and have been granted to MS/Sinosar-Etechwin Joint Venture in China. Whilst the agreement and the growing influence of China angered India, the Jaffna Fishermen Association expressed its deep concerns over the Chinese intervention on their lands. A spokesperson warned that the projects will push its fishermen below the poverty line, at a press conference in February 2021.