Chammaanthu’rai Tamils, Muslims oppose land appropriation causing tension
Tamils and Muslims at the Koarakkar village of Chammaanthu’rai in Ampaa’rai district of the Eastern province, oppose an appropriation of Tamil land for the construction of a mosque that causes tension between communities. 250 Tamil families of the village were displaced in 1990s after communal disturbances between Tamils and Muslims. When the families returned recently, they have found some of their lands appropriated for the construction of a police station. In addition, a land that had been earlier allotted for the construction of a cooperative society by the family of K. Tharmalingam, has been now appropriated for the construction of a mosque, despite the presence of two more mosques within 500 meters.
Both the Tamils and Muslims of the village in the pre-dominantly Muslim division of Chammaanthu’rai are worried about such activities causing disharmony.
Lack of a genuine arbitrating agency from the point of nation-building of the Tamil speaking people is the problem, the people said.
The late Mr. Tharmalingam allotted his private land when there was a need to build a cooperative society for the village.
The Tamil families of the village largely come from the washermen community.
The appropriation of lands for the police station has also affected many Tamil families from resettling.