The Head of the Sri Mangalaramaya Buddhist vihara in Batticaloa city, Ven. Ampitiye Sumanarathana thero, is refusing to release the lands seized from Tamil villagers in Maalaiyar-kaddu village (GS) division in Vellaa-ve'li administrative division of the district. The SL police under the so-called good-governance of Maithiripala Sirisena are refusing to accept complaints from Tamil villagers against the Buddhist monk, civil sources in Vellaa-ve'li told TamilNet. The occupying Sinhala policemen are deployed to do the farming in the lands seized by the Buddhist monk, the Tamil owners of the lands said.
The violent monk obtained 300,000 rupees from Tamil villagers Rasaratnam Kathamuthu, Ladchmanan Nagamuthu, Kamalaledchumy Nagamuthu and Rasamany Nagamuthu claiming that he had resolved the ‘conflict’ that prevailed regarding the ownership of 25 acres.
Tamil farmers from Thu'rai-neelava'nai had bought 25 acres of agricultural lands, which are located at Maalaiyar-kaddu in 2003.
The Divisional Secretary of Vellaa-ve'li was attesting the legal transfer of lands, the owners say showing the documents.
In 2011, nine years after the purchase of the lands, the Sinhala Buddhist monk from Batticaloa city intervened to pass a message to the Tamil owners that the Sinhalese who initially sold them these lands were claiming the lands back stating that they sold the lands due to ‘LTTE threat’ at that time.
Sumanarathana thero exerted pressure on administrative officers with the help of military governor and the Sinhala police during the Rajapaksa regime and managed to allocate 25 acres of alternative lands to the Sinhalese.
In return for having ‘resolved’ the conflict, the monk received 300,000 rupees from the Tamil landowners. He also wanted them to allow him to do cultivation for one-season in 2011 in 4 acres of lands in 2011.
However, the monk is now claiming these lands as permanently belonging to his Buddhist vihara.
Deploying Sinhala policemen, the monk has continued cultivation at these lands for more than 2 seasons now.
In the meantime, when the Tamil owners attempted to lodge a compliant with the SL police station at Ma'ndoor, the polie has refused to accept it citing an instruction from the Deputy Inspector General of the Sinhala police in the district.
Sumanarathana thero has also seized another 4 acres of agricultural lands at Chinna-vaththai in Vellaa-ve'li from Tamil owners, the sources further said.