Northern Provincial Council has become a “no action - talk only” scenario depriving the legitimate basic needs of the Tamil Community which elected the provincial political authoritiesto address the pressing requirement, Minister of of Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs D. M Swaminathan said in a statement.
Responding to Northern Province Chief Minister C. V Vigneswaran’s letter informing him of the Provincial Councils decision to reject a project to construct 65,000 houses, the Minister wrote that funds provided by the Central Government for the development of the Northern Province was not being spent despite the fact that there was a serious need for development in the Province for housing, livelihood, infrastructure, agriculture, fisheries and industrial economic activities.
Hon.C.V. Vigneswaran , Chief Minister of Northern Provincial Council has sent a letter to Hon. D.M. Swaminathan, Minister of Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs informing that the Northern Provincial Council unanimously decided to totally reject the 65,000 housing programe. In his letter he further emphasized that the Government’s agenda for moving this project is to show Geneva and not for the Tamil community.Hon.C.V.Vigneswaran, Chief Minister presenting the a resolution to the constitutional reforms to the Northern Provincial Council has proposed to set up two states in the country, one by merging the Northern and Eastern provincial councils and other by merging the seven provinces.
With regard to the 65,000 housing programme, the Leader of the opposition of the Northern Provincial Council said that it is not a unanimous decision to stop the project but to include modifications wherever necessary. This is being done at present through model houses and the modifications are already been incorporated.
Hon. D.M. Swaminathan , Minister of Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs responding to the allegation said that the northern Provincial has not done anything substantially since the end of conflict in 2009. It is reported the money provided by the Central Government for the development of the Northern Province is not being spent despite the fact that there is a serious need for development in the Northern Province for housing, livelihood, infrastructure, agriculture, fisheries and industrial economic activities.
It has become a “no action - talk only” scenario depriving the legitimate basic needs of the Tamil Community which elected the provincial political authoritiesto address the pressing requirement. Further, whatever Government does, the Northern Provincial Council opposing and bringing an end for all resettlement and development activities. It looks to me that this approach is purely to keep them in their positions without an interest to “heal the wound”. It is time for the people to recognize the political ends and personal interest of these politicians. If people fail to express their strong views on this type of personalized agenda, in the long term it can have disastrous consequences.
When the Government has decided to give a fully furnished house with water supply, tube well, electricity, furniture with beds, fans, television, wi-fi facilities, gas cooker with cylinder at a substantial value, the Chief Minister opposes this project and wants to build partially completed house without any facilities to the people who underwent sufferings for over 30 years.
I would request the people who are opposing this housing development programmeto go and see the plight of the people who are in the welfare camps, temporary huts and living with the mercy of friends and relatives. Those who are in the air conditioned houses wants only good houses with all facilities for their family members and children but when it’s come to those who elected them – their constituencies – they want to bulldoze them to be in a partially completed house without any basic facilities so that the importance of politicians will be felt indefinitely. The Member of Parliament Mr. Sumanthiran has been criticizing this project one month ago without knowing the basic facts. By his letter he has now only asked the very basis questions for which information will be given.
Every development brought by successive Governments to uplift the economic and social conditions of the Tamil community have been opposed, causing serious damage to the community. These politicians will also not do anything to their own constituencies but will also oppose others who do some good development work. Earlier, the Chief Minister put up his arguments on the cost, acceptability, durability, post construction maintenance and under groundwater. These weak arguments were technically explained and now he is coming with a new agenda that this initiative is Geneva based.
When His Excellency the President and the Prime Minister are keen and taken a lot of interest to resolve these problems and uplift the social conditions of the conflict affected families, the relevant political authorities should make best use of this opportunities. One cannot fool every one every day.
Minister of Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement
and Hindu Religious Affairs