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TNA pledges to file lawsuit against Sinhala land grabbers in Batticaloa

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians said they would file a lawsuit concerning Sinhala land grabs in Mylanthanaimadu and Periya Maadhavanai grazing and agricultural area in Batticaloa, after meeting with Tamil farmers in the area earlier this month.

The case will be filed on behalf of TNA Batticaloa District MPs Shanakiyan Rasamanickam and Govinthan Karunakaran, said parliamentarian M A Sumanthiran.

At the meeting, the Tamil farmers raised concerns that the Sinhala settlers in Batticaloa are threatening the farmers to leave their grazing land, and that they are trying to cultivate corn on their cattle areas on which they have been raising livestock for over three generations. The farmers have demanded justice for themselves in the matter.

The meeting was also attended by TNA MPs Selvam Adaikalanathan and Ampara District TNA MP Kalaiyarasan.

As of last week, five thousand acres of land had been confiscated and Tamil livestock farmers of the area have been evicted and displaced by the support of the Sri Lankan state government.

According to TNPF MP Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam, the grazing land was allocated by the Sri Lankan government in a cabinet decision in 2011 to 991 Tamil families. Last month, he wrote a letter to the Sri Lankan prime minister, Mahinda Rajapaksa on behalf of the Tamil farmers urging the prime minister to intervene to ensure the safety of the livestock farmers who are “facing grave economic problems as they have been losing their livelihoods” as a result of the land grabs. 

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