Livestock farmers face grazing land issues in Batticaloa
By Naalir Jamaldeen
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Batticaloa District Parliamentarian Shanakiyan Rajaputhiran Rasamanickam yesterday (21) claimed that persons from other Districts were trying to capture grazing lands on the borders of the Batticaloa District.
While speaking to Ceylon Today, Rasamanickam said, there are some grazing lands in the Mailatthamadu and Mathavanai areas in the Chenkalady Divisional Secretariat Division, in the Mahaweli B Zone of the Batticaloa District that are being used by livestock breeders to graze cattle.
He said, nearly 200,000 milking cows are feeding on a small stretch of land and 17,000 litres of milk are produced daily.
“We spoke to the Divisional Secretary and the District Secretary to find a sustainable solution to the grazing land issue prevailing in the region and due to that, they have been transferred to other regions,” Rasamanickam said.
He added, they had brought this issue to the attention of Minister Chamal Rajapaksa.
He said a delegation of MPs, including himself, who represent Batticaloa had met the Eastern Province Governor Anuradha Yahampath on 14 October in Trincomalee to discuss the issues prevailing in connection with the grazing lands in the Batticaloa District.
He claimed that Yahampath was indifferent to their request and alleged that after the meeting, she had given statements to the Media that the delegation behaved in the manner unbecoming of MPs by demanding land based on ethnic proportion.
Rasamanickam further said, he had brought to the attention in Parliament that the statements issued by Yahampath to the press had violated his privileges as an MP and demanded that disciplinary action be taken against her.