We have previously revealed information on several occasions regarding the heavy environmental issues occurred in whole to Wiluka village of 606 Manathiv GM Division belongs to the Puttalam Divisional Secretariat caused by illegal larger-scale Gravel trafficking relentlessly continued by some people.
Despite the precautions being made by the authorities to stop the trafficking with our disclosure, it seems that the fault is being again continued at the blessings of political involvement. Therefore we hereby disclose the scenario once more.
Once again, false documents have been made for the lands owned by the Government, thus the GN Officer, Land Development Officer and the organizing team of the Geological Survey and Mining Bureau made a field trip in secrecy to hand over the Gravel deposits owned by the Government to a Private Owner.
Protesting the action, the Political Member in charge of the division Mr. S. Ravi Kumar, along with the other residents of the village, confronted them to not to inspect the area. But the crew consistent with GN Officer responsible for the Land Development Division of the Puttalam District Secretariat, along with the organized group of Gravel dealers, have made their way into the inspection of the area.
Wiluka village, located in between the District Secretariats of Puttalam and Wanathawilluwa, consists of nearly 100 families, and their main livelihood is through Agriculture and Fishing. Apart from it, some hang in into their lives through hired labouring, and by working in estates and multiple working places.
The significance of the land of this area located in Puttalam district, which is estimated to be highly valued in price, is that it contains many Gravel deposits over the area. The politicians’ involvement in drilling these Gravel deposits in the area had been at its peak since the time of 1971. It is regrettable that even the authorities stay silent until a voice is raised through media to stop this environmental destruction continuously happening, using false licences to these lands.
Anyone who visits the place can easily witness how the trafficking is taking place, without giving the slightest consideration to protecting the environment.
This Gravel trafficking is being carried out in the face of developing the lands under the permits of the Ninety Nine Years Tax Permit and the Annual Tax Permit. The excavation of Gravel in large-scale, using efficient Backhoe machines, is carried out after obtaining written or oral permission through Puttalam Divisional Secretariat. The illegal Gravel trafficking has been carried out even obtaining the clearances issued by the Geological Survey and Mining Bureau.
Nearly 50 Tipper trucks are driven around the area per day, and according to the residents one would travel around 10 trips.
The continuity of this large-scale Gravel trafficking is against the Environmental Ordinance, and by now the drilling has been reached around twenty-to-thirty feet from the ground level. Due to these drillings massive holes on the ground throughout the area are occurred, and the residents claim that three lives had been lost so far due to their hazardous nature.
Even the conditions issued by the Geological Survey and Mining Bureau state that any portion of the land drilling is taking place shall be refilled by soil, nevertheless it is quite apparent that these dealers did not seem to consider whatsoever about these words.
Even though these Gravel excavations have been carried out on a large scale of nearly 100 acres of the land already, it is a serious problem that law has not been implemented against it.
Translated By - Isuru Parakrama