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Saturday, September 14, 2013 - 8.10 GMT
A New Dawn for Kilinochchi 

 

After nearly three decades of oppression due to LTTE terrorism, Kilinochchi was liberated through the Humanitarian Operation, bringing new hope for lasting peace and prosperity to the town. Since the liberation, the people of Kilinochchi have seen positive changes. The government took immediate steps to clear landmines, resettle the displaced and establish democracy in the province.  

For the first time in nearly three decades, the people of the Kilinochchi District will be able to fully exercise their right to participate in the democratic process, a right which was denied to them by the LTTE. According to the Election Commissioner the election for the Kilinochchi District will be held September 21. This will be the second time the polls will be held for the Northern Provincial Council since the provincial council system was established under the 13th Amendment to the Constitution introduced by the 1987 Indo-Lanka Accord as a measure for power devolution.

Kilinochchi is the main town of Kilinochchi District, Northern Province of Sri Lanka. Kilinochchi is situated at the A9 road some 100 km south-east of Jaffna. It was the administrative center and de facto capital of the LTTE until 2 January 2009, when troops of the Sri Lankan Army recaptured the city.

Kilinochchi District

Area

Total 1,279 km2 (494 sq mi)

Population (2012 census)

Total    112,875

Number of DS Divisions 04

Number of GN Divisions 95

Pradeshiya Sabhas  03

 

The LTTE first took hold of the town in 1990 when the Army withdrew its garrisons from Kilinochchi. Then the area was retaken by the Army during operations Sathjaya I, II, and III in September 1996. The town again fell into the LTTE's hand in September 1998 who held their administrative hub there until evacuating during the Battle of Kilinochchi on 2 January 2009.

Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman, a former commander of the LTTE, claimed that the town of Kilinochchi was important for the LTTE because it was the showcase of the organization.

The Kilinochchi town was established in 1936 as part of a colonization project that sought to ease overpopulation and unemployment in Jaffna.  

This district has several Government Colleges such as Klinochchi Central college, Hindu College, Uruthirapuram Maha vidiyalayam, Vaddakachchi Maha vidiyalayam, etc. 

Kilinochchi is one of the major agrarian cultivation destinations in the island from the pre-historic times. Iranamadu (Ranamaduva) Tank, Kanakampikai Kulam (Pond), and Kilinochchi Kulam are the major irrigation source for paddy and various other cultivations.

Four years since the end of the conflict, the Northern Province has seen massive development in all sectors. There is significant improvement in the civil administration, livelihoods of people, education sector, economy and infrastructure restoration as well as security in the region. 

Economic & Infrastructure Facilities Development

Roads and Bridges

Rs. 94.77 Mn has been allocated to repair 300 Km of roads and 31 projects have been completed. The total expenditure is Rs. 58.78 Mn.

Water Supply

Two activities of four projects have been completed at a cost of Rs.0.58 Mn Rs. 2 Mn has been reserved to build three large wells.

Agriculture

Renovation of Agricultural Services Centre in Urithirapuram, Agriculture Regional Conservation Institutes, Construction of two official residences and the guardroom have been granted Rs. 15.48 Mn. Twenty five projects have been completed at a cost of Rs.5.04 Mn Rs. 17.3 Mn has been reserved to reconstruct the Karachchi Regional Agriculture Research Institute, provide infrastructure and to construct two seed farms and six fertilizer store.

Animal husbandry

Rs. 7.5 Mn has been invested to build Veterinary Offices in Poonakarai, Kandawela and Karachchi.

Fisheries

Rs. 1.7 Mn has been reserved to renovate the office of Fisheries Assistant Director in Karachchi and to build the Fisheries Supervisorís Office in Poonakarai.

Irrigation

Akkarayankulam tank was renovated with Rs.100 Mn facilitating 1,383 ha of paddy lands. In addition , 40 small scale tanks will be renovated at a cost of Rs. 83.8 Mn.

Skills Development

Training was provided to 126 on masonry and carpentry at a cost of Rs. 11.52 Mn.

Institutional Development

Rs. 27 Mn has been allocated to construct and renovate building of four Divisional Secretariat offices.

De- mining

De-mining has been completed in 88 Grama Niladhari Divisions and de-mining is in progress in seven GN divisions. In addition, de-mining has commenced in 58 identified areas.

Resettlement

A total of 35,457 families in four DS divisions have been resettled. An allowance of Rs. 25,000 each was paid to 4,770 families. The resettled families were provided 71,352 cement bags, 184,380 roofing sheets and 32,533 dry food parcels. Jungles were cleared in 56 GN divisions benefiting 8,258 families.

Housing

Reconstruction of 3,484 houses is in progress. Under the Indian assistance , 17,000 houses will be rebuilt.

Education For construction of buildings of three schools in Poonakarai and the reconstruction of the Karachchi Zonal Education Office, Rs 21.69 Mn has been allocated . Roofs of 13 schools will be renovated at a cost of Rs.16.18 Mn. 

Community Development

Under this, 14 buildings will be constructed at Rs. 22 Mn and 22 social and sports development activities will be carried out at a cost of Rs.7.08 Mn . Up to now, 21 tasks have completed.

Source: Ministry of Economic Development

 

After more than 23 years, direct train services between Colombo and Kilinochchi will begin with the opening of the newly completed 63-kilometre track between Omanthai and Kilinochchi.

Railway transport occupies a significant role in the transport system of a country because the development of trade, industry and commerce of a country largely depend on the development of railways.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa will launch the train service to Kilinochchi on September 14 and he will also declare open the newly built Kilinochchi Railway Station. Minister of Transport Kumar Welgama and other Ministers as well as the senior officials of Ministry and Sri Lanka Railway are to participate in the ceremony. 

The reconstructed railway track is designed with a speed potential of 120kmph.

The last passenger train on this line ran on January 19, 1985. LTTE terrorists bombed the Yal Devi train at Kokavil on that day killing 34 people and destroying the train tracks. The attack effectively ended the north-south rail transport.

The Northern Line from Vavuniya to Kankasanthurai was completely destroyed by the Tamil Tiger terrorists during the three-decade long conflict. The terrorists uprooted the rail tracks to build reinforced underground bunkers.

The train line is now being reconstructed by the India Railway Construction International Ltd. (IRCON) with the assistance of the Indian government.

Currently the trains operate only to Omanthai. The construction of the whole Northern Line up to Kankasanthurai would be completed by the end of 2014 and all the previous railway stations which were destroyed during the conflict are to be reestablished.

The re-construction of the northern railway line and the return of the Yal Devi express train to Kilinochchi will not only see the resumption of the normal train services to the North after 20 years, but, will also symbolize the liberation of the northern people from LTTE terrorism and return of democracy to the North.

The end to three decades of terrorism has brought new hope to Sri Lanka with development activities speedily underway. Sri Lanka is now on an ambitious path not thought possible a few years ago when terrorism was at its heights. Soon all Sri Lankans will have equal benefit from the many development activities that the government has now committed itself to.

 


 

 
 
   
   
     
   
   

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Last modified: September 17, 2013.

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