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President pledges support for Madhu pilgrims and development in Mannar District

June 17, Colombo (LNW): President Ranil Wickremesinghe announced yesterday (16) during a meeting of the Mannar District Development Committee that pilgrims visiting Madhu will receive full support to undertake their pilgrimage without obstruction.

At the Mannar District Secretariat, he expressed concern over the unfair treatment of pilgrims on their way to revered sites such as Madhu Church and Sri Pada, stressing that arrests and fines are unwarranted.

He instructed that any future arrests of pilgrims be promptly reported to the President’s Office.

During the session, the President directed the Sri Lanka Army to enhance both sides of the existing Madhu Road for the convenience of pilgrims visiting Madhu Church.

He coordinated efforts with representatives from the Bishop of Mannar, the Department of Forest Conservation, the Road Development Authority, and the Sri Lanka Police to ensure these improvements are completed before the forthcoming annual festival of Our Lady of Madhu Church.

The meeting, attended by political representatives and government officials, focused on future development plans for Mannar district, covering key sectors such as health, education, and irrigation. The President addressed several pressing issues directly and committed to immediate solutions.

In response to an urgent request from the hospital director, President Wickremesinghe pledged prompt provision of a CT scan machine for Mannar Hospital.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe affirmed his commitment to restoring developmental momentum in Mannar district, with initiatives set to commence this year.

He underscored the need for Sri Lanka to adapt to evolving weather patterns over the next five decades, anticipating increased rainfall in wet regions and decreased rainfall in dry areas.

Highlighting the district’s potential, especially post-war recovery, President Wickremesinghe outlined opportunities in tourism, fishing, and renewable energy sectors, including discussions with the Indian government on energy production and export.

He proposed leveraging Mannar’s capacity for wind and solar power generation to boost Sri Lanka’s economy through green energy initiatives.

Plans were also outlined for funding a new court complex in Mannar and exploring future road connectivity projects.

The President encouraged the development committee to convene and recommend facilities for a modern agriculture programme.

Measures to safeguard local lakes and secure water resources through the Malwatu Oya project were also prioritised.

President Wickremesinghe concluded by urging collaborative efforts towards making Mannar a significant contributor to the national economy through comprehensive development.

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