The occupying Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) in Trincomalee city has seized more than 4,000 acres of coastal land in Ve’l’lai-ma’nal, located between Marble Beach and Karumalai-yoottu within the administrative DS division of Trincomalee Town and Gravets. The SL military has completed surveying the public lands and has fenced off the coastal stretch barring the people from accessing the coast, civil sources told TamilNet. After the end of war in the East, the SL military has put up two major camps, one for SLAF and another for Sri Lanka Army (SLA), in the division. The SLAF has also transformed Marble beach into a military-run corporate outfit by launching a tourist resort.
Colombo is scheming a Sinhala military colony in the lands being appropriated now, the civil sources in Trincomalee said.
Muslim villagers of Ve’l’lai-ma’nal have been using the lands for cattle herding, and cultivation.
Eastern Provincial Chief Minister Najeeb Abdul Majeed has earlier gone on record stating that the Sri Lankan Defence Secretary and SL presidential sibling Gotabhaya Rajapaksa would discuss any take over of public lands for military purpose with the provincial council in advance.
But, the chief minister of the EPC, belonging to Rajapaksa’s ruling UPFA, is avoiding responding to questions from the Tamil-speaking Muslim leaders in Trincomalee on how the lands are being fenced off with a notice that the area belongs to the SLAF.