Govt. of good governance pays for past sins of ‘curse of the shawl’ Rajapakses – Bandarawela residents protest against Uma Oya project !

(Lanka-e-News- 29.June.2017, 11.50PM) Most unfortunately it is   the present government which has to pay for all the past sins , crimes , and perfidies committed by the corrupt murderous deposed Rajapakse regime which indulged in all the sinister and traitorous activities with gay abandon  during its reign while not  caring for   the country and the people  , as long as those activities served their  corrupt and crooked  aims and agendas. 

 Hambantota port , Mattala Airport , the white elephants and SAITM a festering  sore are legacies of  the deposed discarded Rajapakse regime , and the present government is only an unfortunate inheritor of those ,  and  not the creator . 

Yet when the present government is taking meaningful and tangible measures to resolve those issues , the evil villainous Rajapakses are mounting opposition and seeking to  force the government  to withdraw those salutary  efforts. While SAITM is one example , yesterday (28), another protest was staged in Bandarawela. That was  the protest staged  in Bandarawela Town by   the JVP with the Rajapakses  taking advantage of the various hardships faced by the victims of  the Uma oya scheme disaster  that was initiated for  diversion  of water to Hambantota-  the Rajapakses’ fiefdom  . It is significant to note the disastrous  Uma Oya scheme was  inaugurated by the Rajapakses themselves without obtaining an appropriate environmental report .

Yesterday’s  protest was organized against  ‘Uma Oya multiple disaster scheme’ . This protest was held with the participation of Bandarawela traders association , wholesale trade association and private bus owners association  . The groups that fell victims due to the  scheme  from Bandarawela, Welimada, Ella, HaliEla, and Wellawaya district secretarial  divisions also attended this protest. In addition, shops and schools were closed and black flags were hoisted. The protestors also held a rally in Hambantota town (photos depict the demonstrations) .

These protests were aimed at mounting  opposition against the government and popular UNP leader Harin Fernando , but the irony of it is  , this destructive and disastrous Uma oya scheme was launched by the Rajapakses  and none other ,who did not obtain the environmental report duly at that time.  During that period it was Harin Fernando who led the protests against the odious Uma oya scheme of the Rajapakses when UNP  was in the opposition. Many of the rascals  who are today masquerading as heroes were never there to oppose the Rajapakses who  originated that disastrous scheme at that time. 

The fake environmental report was prepared by Champika , and the foundation stone for the disastrous scheme  was laid by Nimal and Chamal.

In fact when the foundation stone was laid in 2008 for this Uma oya scheme , among those who participated were Nimal Siripala De Silva , Chamal Rajapakse and  DilanPerera , but now they have vanished from the scene   and are  pretending  they are innocent.
  
It was none other than Champika  Ranawake the then environment minister who  prepared an absolutely bogus environment report amidst  pressures  brought to bear on him by the Rajapakses.  The other culprit who was associated with this spurious environment  report was Charitha Herath who pompously and boastfully calls himself as a scientist (so called) , who was the then environment ministry secretary.

What the selfish self seeking Rajapakses who knew next to nothing about environmental science wanted to achieve by this scheme was , somehow divert the  water to Hambantota even if that scheme was environmentally  detrimental and dangerous to the residents  ,  and thereby show off to the country they are great heroes to  hide  all their villainy  .Towards this scheme  , funds as large as  US dollars 578 million were raised from Iran the country that was  boycotted by the whole world. This expenditure in respect of this useless  purposeless  scheme exceeded that spent for the construction of the Hambantota Port. It is to be noted this Uma Oya scheme was launched  depending on Iran’s  outdated technologies.

It was rejected in 1991

The plan to divert the water of Uma Oya to Lunugamwhera reservoir was first conceived in 1991, and that proposal was formulated by the Central engineering advisory bureau . When the report of the  proposal was presented to the Asian development bank to obtain financial grants ,  the scheme was rejected on the grounds that the rights of the people to free water are being violated  when  water is being diverted  from one  water basin to another.

Yet the murderous  Medamulana morons who had not even heard of such ethical  customs and  practices , commenced the project out of funds from the Iranian development bank .The contribution by Sri Lanka was US dollars 400 million . The Rajapakses during their tenure of office itself released that sum . Out of the funds collected  from Iran , and after the illicit commissions were pocketed , about half the project was completed by the time the government of good governance captured power.
 
What is hard to believe and baffling is ,  is the transport of water arrangement  via  a 15 kilometer long tunnel . 10.2 kilometers of it was completed, but unfortunately for the good governance government which took over in 2015, when digging the tunnel with the use of the outdated equipment of Iran  , the water bed boundary layer got   split due to the vibrations owing to which  there followed a ground water leakage . The leakage  was so enormous  , 978 gallons of water leaked per second  , that is 58000 gallons of water for a minute . At the same time , the water meant for consumption of residents in the vicinity of Bandarawela  began to disappear  from the ground, and wells dried up , consequent upon which the water necessary for cultivation became scarce. In the  end , Rajapakses by trying to enrich Hambantota with nefarious aims and agendas impoverished Bandarawela , and plunged its  residents into dire problems and predicament, including potential deaths.

The use of outdated equipment of  Iran which caused huge vibrations and quakes , while  the earth below cracked and disintegrated   on a massive scale .  Not only the quakes even the water leakage mentioned earlier , led to the soil above to crumble . The houses that were on top  of the soil also began to show  cracks  , and collapsed.

Prior to  this  Rajapakse  debacle , under  the upper Kotmale irrigation  scheme too  the tunnels were built but those were under the Tea estates . The brutal  Rajapakses  on the contrary who never ever cared for the lives of the masses  and least respected the value of human life all along  , decided to dig the tunnel under the  most populous  districts .That was why damage to houses was monumental  when the  buildings cracked and collapsed  . Already 3800 houses have suffered damage.

Is the 70 % completed project to be abandoned ?

Soon after the good governance  government was installed in power , with the intervention of Harin Fernando , the Uma Oya project was halted , but by that time 50 % of the project was complete . Halting a project which has been 50 % completed is not in the best interests of the nation. Now , about 70 % of this project is complete.
 
When the good governance government did a survey  , it was found   the number of people affected by the disaster is about 10,000. The government has taken steps to provide relief to these people.  It has also set aside Rs. 500 million to pay compensation for the houses that were damaged.

Over 70 % of those occupying the government official houses in Bandarawela are  occupants who were displaced and were   given free houses. To another group of residents rents were paid by the government to find temporary shelters elsewhere. But, those officers who went to make an evaluation  of the damage could not finish their assignment  because the number of damaged houses is rising daily .  With the number  of damaged houses  on the rise daily , the funds allocated are  also fast becoming inadequate. 

The present government however has initiated another  project to provide drinking water to the 2800  families who have fallen victims . Towards that a sum of Rs . 378 million has been allocated and every two days a Bowser is supplying drinking water . Since the number of families that are without  drinking water is on the increase , the water supplied to the people  is fast becoming insufficient.

The government has also taken steps to grant compensation to the cultivators who are adversely affected due to scarcity of water . But the fact of the matter is many of them have done their cultivation on lands illegally, with the result the evaluation officers are in a quandary. Much worse ,   the people who lived without any problems hitherto , are now in distress and in   dire plight  - even to keep their life intact is a struggle for them . Owing to this dire situation , thousands of people arrived in Bandarawela yesterday to join in the protest casting aside their  party   differences. 

You ask , I shall give you whatever you want

At the cabinet meeting held day before yesterday (27)  this was the hot topic of discussion. The president told Harin Fernando  the M.P. of the  province , ‘ ask whatever you need , I shall grant them .‘ Now the Uma Oya scheme cannot be stopped. Neither can it be carried on. 

In any event a cabinet sub committee was appointed to resolve the issue. By a cruel twist of fate , Champika Ranawake who gave a deceptive environmental report to Rajapakses then under pressures exerted by the Rajapakses has also been included in this sub committee.The other members of the committee are Vijith Vijithamuni Soysa and Mahinda Amaraweera. 

An engineer answering queries raised by Lanka e news in this connection revealed, after the  ground water leak  at the bed  ceases and the sub way  gets filled with water , the situation will return to normal as before,   in  about  two years.  No matter what,  the government of good governance should do everything possible to provide relief to  the suffering victims from their present distress and despair. The masses must be extricated  from the spell of  the Rajapakses’   ‘curse of the shawl’ cast on them  ! 

By  a special Lanka e news reporter. 

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by     (2017-06-29 18:44:00)

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