October 01, 2020
Raising concerns into the widespread illegal forest resources degradation in Vanni, Defence Secretary Maj. Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne said it was saddened to say that its effects largely impact not only to the Vanni area, but to the entire country in general.
He said that a mechanism should be prepared with the participation of the Defence Secretary, Divisional Secretaries (DSs), Grama Niladhari, Armed Forces and Police to protect the forest resources.
Maj. Gen. Gunaratne expressed these views while addressing state officials during an Auditorium Opening Ceremony held at the Vavuniya District Secretariat today (Oct 01).
Referring to his tenure as the Security Force Commander Vanni a decade before, he said “297,000 war affected displaced people were looked after while housing them in the Manik Farm camp which was dedicated for them”.
“I was then the Competent Authority for the people displaced and I was given a great support by the District Secretary then and the present Northern Province Governor Mrs. P.S.M. Charles”, he also recalled.
My task was to restore the normalcy for regional populace while removing land mines, constructing houses for the displaced and resettling them while preparing lands for their cultivation as well as rehabilitation of youth who shadowed the wrong path, Defence Secretary said.
We all together were able to deliver our services cooperatively for the betterment of the innocent needy people in these areas, he said.
The Defence Secretary stated that he was able to accomplish all those with the support of the troops and the state officials for the Vanni District people and they were able to reap the benefits.