Page 1 TRINCOMALEE HIGH SECU ZONE AND OTHER LAND I IN TRINCOMALEE DISTR A BRIEF PROFILE OF T Bhavani Fonseka and Mirak Ra May 2008 RIEF PROFILE OF THE OMALEE HIGH SECURITY ND OTHER LAND ISSUES INCOMALEE DISTRICT i Fonseka and Mirak Raheem May 2008
Page 2 The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) is an independen focuses primarily on issues of governance and conflict r firm belief that the vital contribution of civil society to the strengthening, CPA is committed to programmes of resea public policy is critiqued, alternatives identified and dissem Address: 24/2 28th Lane, off Flower Road, Colombo Telephone: +94 (11) 2565304/5/6 Fax: +94 (11) 4714460 Web www.cpalanka.org Email firstname.lastname@example.org 2 | P a g e (CPA) is an independent, non-partisan organization that ernance and conflict resolution. Formed in 1996 in the on of civil society to the public policy debate is in need of o programmes of research and advocacy through which es identified and disseminated. Flower Road, Colombo 7, Sri Lanka 5/6
Page 3 CONTENTS CONTENTS PURPOSE KEY RECOMMENDATIONS IN BRIEF FOR REDUCING THE HSZ FOR RESETTLEMENT AND RELOCATION FOR ADDRESSING RELATED LEGAL ISSUES FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRINCOMALEE 1. BACKGROUND TO THE TRINCOMALEE HIGH SECUR 1.1 THE IMPORTANCE OF LAND ISSUES 1.2 BACKGROUND TO HIGH SECURITY ZONES 1.3 THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE TRINCOMALEE HSZ 1.4 LEGAL RIGHTS AND LEGAL CHALLENGES 2. SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONE AND OTHER DEVELOPM 2.1 SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONE 2.2 NEGENAHIRA NAVODAYA 2.3 COAL POWER STATION 2.4 THE OUTER CIRCULAR ROAD AND THE RELATED BUFFER Z 3. THE ‘REDUCED’ TRINCOMALEE HSZ: OPPORTUNIT 3.1 REDUCTION OF THE HSZ? 3.2 CHALLENGES TO RESETTLEMENT 3.3 THE SITUATION OF COMMUNITIES WHO WILL NOT BE R 4. CRITICAL LEGAL ISSUES 4.1 LAND ACQUISITION AND REQUISITION 4.2 ALIENATION OF STATE LAND 4.3 THE THIRTEENTH AMENDMENT, PROVINCIAL COUNC 5. RECOMMENDATIONS FOR REDUCING THE HSZ FOR RESETTLEMENT AND RELOCATION FOR ADDRESSING RELATED LEGAL ISSUES FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRINCOMALEE 4. MAP OF TRINCOMALEE HIGH SECURITY ZONE 3 | P a g e 3 4 EF 5 5 5 S 5 EE 6 COMALEE HIGH SECURITY ZONE 7 7 ZONES 8 OMALEE HSZ 9 GES 10 ND OTHER DEVELOPMENT PLANS 12 12 13 14 HE RELATED BUFFER ZONE 15 EE HSZ: OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES 16 16 16 ES WHO WILL NOT BE RESETTLED IN THE ‘NEW’ HSZ 19 21 SITION 21 21 , PROVINCIAL COUNCILS AND LAND 22 24 24 24 S 25 EE 25 SECURITY ZONE 26
Page 4 PURPOSE The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) undertook a visit newly resettled areas in May 2008 to examine the questio and other related land issues. The findings in this report a people resettled, agencies working in the area and gov follow up to the fact-finding report on Trincomalee in Apr and visits carried out by CPA from 2006-2008.1 1 Reports of the fact-finding visits are available online, www.cpalanka.org 4 | P a g e (CPA) undertook a visit to areas in Trincomalee including to examine the question of the High Security Zone (HSZ) findings in this report are based on interviews with IDPs, g in the area and government actors. This report is a t on Trincomalee in April 2007, other fact-finding reports 2006-2008.1 e, www.cpalanka.org
Page 5 KEY RECOMMENDATIONS IN BRIEF For the recommendations in full, please go to Page 23. FOR REDUCING THE HSZ • The territorial limits of the HSZ needs to be re-examine • Gazette exact areas covered by the HSZ and make sur available. • Ensure that as many people as possible can return to th • Land acquisition should follow established process Acquisition Act and other laws. FOR RESETTLEMENT AND RELOCATION • The security forces must turn over civilian buildings have been opened up for resettlement. • Resettlement and relocation should be carried out rec dignity of affected persons. • Provide alternative land and compensation to those wh • Provide comprehensive assistance to persons who h including food assistance, assistance with reconstruct assistance. FOR ADDRESSING RELATED LEGAL ISSUES • The provision of state land and permits should b formalities and done by authorized actors. • There should be mobile clinics that address the documents including birth certificates, National ID’s an • In accordance with the Thirteenth Amendment, all p need to be devolved including land powers. • The National Land Commission should be established i 5 | P a g e ONS IN BRIEF , please go to Page 23. needs to be re-examined. the HSZ and make sure that the information is publicly possible can return to their original lands and property. w established processes in accordance with the Land . RELOCATION over civilian buildings that they occupy in villages that lement. ould be carried out recognizing the basic rights and the mpensation to those whose lands are being acquired. ance to persons who have been resettled and relocated stance with reconstruction and rebuilding and livelihood LEGAL ISSUES and permits should be in accordance with the legal ized actors. ics that address the documentation issue, replacing ificates, National ID’s and land documents. enth Amendment, all powers of the Provincial Councils and powers. should be established immediately.
Page 6 FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRINCOMALEE • Make public the development plans for the Trincom public awareness and information sharing. • Development programmes in the East need to tak concerns, with regional actors taking the lead in the fo projects. 6 | P a g e F TRINCOMALEE plans for the Trincomalee district and ensure there is ion sharing. the East need to take on board regional needs and taking the lead in the formulation and implementation of
Page 7 1. BACKGROUND TO THE TRINCOMALE ZONE 1.1 THE IMPORTANCE OF LAND ISSUES Land has and continues to be intrinsically linked to the e such as occupation of private land by actors including the and other armed groups or by displaced persons, the crea and other restrictive zones, land colonisation schemes s schemes, arbitrary seizure of land and the eviction of resi LTTE in the North and East in the 1990s, have all impacte well the displacement of entire communities from their land and property play a fundamental role in conflict re development, economic growth and poverty reduction. The land issue has remained a pivotal one on the develo the peace talks, the importance on resolving disputes re raised, with all actors agreeing to examine ways of addressing land and property issues. The laws relating to the access and ownership of land and the HSZ issue were taken up, but no firm commitments in respect of them were made. With the resumption of hostilities in 2006 and the abrogation of the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) in January 2008, these issues remain unresolved. Sustainable solutions are required to reduce tension, discrimination and deprivation of communities. Unfortunately, the various policies adopted by the authorities have had the opposite effect. For many people, land and property are a means of ge accumulating wealth which can be transferred to the nex and property a person owns is a key indicator and deter status, and of access to economic opportunities. The mean ownership trends and the means and modalities of disput 2 CPA has produced a number of reports on land and property issues includ Ethnic Conflict and the Tsunami Disaster, March 2005; Women’s Access to Jaffna and the Vanni, April 2005. 7 | P a g e The lan pivotal peace a talks, th dispute propert actors a address issues. THE TRINCOMALEE HIGH SECURITY AND ISSUES insically linked to the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka. Issues by actors including the security forces, police, the LTTE laced persons, the creation of High Security Zones (HSZ) colonisation schemes such as the Galoya and Maheweli and the eviction of residents such as the Muslims by the 1990s, have all impacted access and ownership of land as mmunities from their homes. Access and ownership of ental role in conflict resolution, governance, sustainable d poverty reduction.2 otal one on the development and peace agenda. During n resolving disputes related to land and property were to examine perty issues. d ownership ken up, but f them were ostilities in e Ceasefire these issues olutions are ination and tunately, the authorities rty are a means of generating a livelihood, as well as transferred to the next generation. The amount of land key indicator and determinant of a person’s wealth and pportunities. The means of acquiring land and property, nd modalities of dispute resolution by way of informal or property issues including Memorandum on Land Issues arising out of the 05; Women’s Access to and Ownership of Land and Property in Batticaloa, The land issue has remained a pivotal one on the development and peace agenda. During the peace talks, the importance on resolving disputes related to land and property were raised, with all actors agreeing to examine ways of addressing land and property issues.
Page 8 formal mechanisms, have far reaching social and econom bearing on development and poverty reduction. It also is of persons, families and communities. Government policies, regulations and structures impact on acquired and regulated by the state. In many cases, princ subsidiarity, participation, transparency, and accountab mismanagement, duplication, delays and corruption. Constitution provides that land be devolved to the Provi land policy remains centralised. Trincomalee has many of the problems highlighted above few decades, including contested land ownership, problem the loss of documentation and communal tensions over l fair share of ‘normal’ land disputes in addition to problem ethnic conflict and the Tsunami of December 26 2004. The hostilities in 2006 between the government forces a displacement of all ethnic communities in the Trincomale there have been several efforts by the Government to rese Trincomalee district there have been several development creation of the HSZ in Sampur and the Special Economic district, relocation plans and the lack of clear and coheren compensation. These are briefly discussed in this paper. 1.2 BACKGROUND TO HIGH SECURITY ZONES High Security Zones are a significant challenge to the rese the East. Jaffna has the largest extent of land covered by H roughly 190 sq kms in Jaffna or 18% of the land area. This lived. With the creation of HSZ, especially from the mid Jaffna have lost access to their homes and lands. A large currently live in welfare centres in the Jaffna Peninsula Northern Province. Further, an 81.5 sq km sea area is o 12,259 acres of land cannot be used for agriculture due t resulted in a serious loss of livelihood. Most of the HSZs camps and key locations such as the harbours and airstr bordering LTTE-controlled areas.3 HSZs have also been cre such as Mannar, Kandy and Colombo, but there are signif include those of a legal nature, as some HSZs such as those Further, there is a distinction with access. Most HSZs in J let alone residence rights. Those in Kandy, Colombo and 3 CPA, INFORM “Fact finding visit to Jaffna” March 2008, www.c 8 | P a g e hing social and economic effects. Land, therefore, has a rty reduction. It also is intrinsically linked to the identity ies. nd structures impact on how land is controlled, allocated, te. In many cases, principles of good governance such as arency, and accountability are lacking. This leads to lays and corruption. The 13th Amendment to the devolved to the Provincial Councils, but state land and lems highlighted above. A number of them date back a and ownership, problems in accessing land and property, munal tensions over land. The district therefore has its s in addition to problems created and accentuated by the December 26 2004. he government forces and the LTTE resulted in massive ities in the Trincomalee district. Since September 2006, the Government to resettle IDPs back on their land. In the en several developments in relation to land including the d the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in some parts of the ck of clear and coherent policies on land acquisition and scussed in this paper. SECURITY ZONES nt challenge to the resettlement of IDPs in the North and ent of land covered by HSZs. There are 18 HSZs covering % of the land area. This is an area where 30,388 families specially from the mid1990s onwards, many people in es and lands. A large number of these affected families n the Jaffna Peninsula and other welfare centres in the 1.5 sq km sea area is out of bounds for fishermen and ed for agriculture due to the security situation. This has hood. Most of the HSZs are located in and around army he harbours and airstrips in the peninsula, and in areas HSZs have also been created in other parts of the country bo, but there are significant differences. The differences ome HSZs such as those in Jaffna have not been gazetted. access. Most HSZs in Jaffna do not allow civilians entry, n Kandy, Colombo and surrounding areas, allow civilians na” March 2008, www.cpalanka.org
Page 9 access and even residential rights. 4 It is reported that the and hence resettlement of Muslims in particular, was rest peace process. The HSZs are established for security purposes and ess primary use of the areas in question. Permission is requ developments in the area. In the case of the more seve Trincomalee the lack of access allows the security forces LTTE. The continuation of the HSZs however creates p grievances and intensifies tensions between the affected their land and property and the Government/Security Fo and restricting access. It also violates the basic righ communities to access their lands and properties, and thei 1.3 THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE TRINCOMALE Following the capture of the Sampur, President Mahinda stated that “ Sampur for people livin months, how areas in an allowed to claims inclu mining. In May 2007, a HSZ was established by the Government i Trincomalee district. The HSZ zone was established by President under Emergency Regulations (Section 5 of published in Gazette Extraordinary No.1499/25 of 30 M May 2007 covered 11 Grama Sevaka (G.S.) divisions in the ‘Muttur East/Sampur’ as it was referred to in the Gaz boundaries established by lines between specific location Gazette specifies that no person shall enter or remain in th obtained by the Competent Authority. The return of IDPs w 4 The Jaffna HSZ issue is presently before the Supreme Court and is discusse 5 Speech delivered by the President at the SLFP 55th anniversary convention 6 “All that area of land and water bounded as follows:- East: From a line d the villages of Foul Point, Illankanthai, Kalladichanai and Uppural; South: Selvanagar, Thoppur and Pachchanoor; West : From a line drawn along the the villages of Pachchanoor, Kaddaparichchan South, Muttur and the Ka drawn along the Southern Beach of Koddiyar Bay, Joining Kaddaparichcha Bay and Foul Point;” (Gazette Extraordinary No.1499/25 of May 30 2007) 9 | P a g e The main reason behind the establishment of the HSZ in Eastern Trincomalee is due to the strategic importance of the area – at the mouth of the Trincomalee Harbour. It is reported that the LTTE too has HSZs in Mullaitivu s in particular, was restricted in certain areas during the rity purposes and essentially allow the security forces on. Permission is required from the forces for any new case of the more severely enforced HSZs in Jaffna and ws the security forces to minimize the infiltration of the SZs however creates political problems as it nurtures s between the affected communities who cannot access overnment/Security Forces who are occupying the land iolates the basic rights of the affected families and and properties, and their freedom of movement. F THE TRINCOMALEE HSZ ur, President Mahinda Rajapakse, on September 4 2006 stated that “Our armed forces have captured Sampur for the welfare and benefit of the astern tegic people living there.”5 Over the successive months, however, the displaced people from areas in and bordering Sampur were not e allowed to resettle on account of security rbour. claims including that the land needed de- mining. ed by the Government in Muttur East and Sampur in the ne was established by regulations issued by H.E. the ulations (Section 5 of the Public Security Ordinance) y No.1499/25 of 30th May 2007. The HSZ as created in ka (G.S.) divisions in their entirety. The delineation of the referred to in the Gazette was unclear as it spoke of etween specific locations, rather than in G.S. terms.6 The all enter or remain in the area unless written authority is ity. The return of IDPs was reportedly halted e Court and is discussed later in the report. anniversary convention on 4th September 2006 s:- East: From a line drawn along the Eastern Coast of Sri Lanka joining i and Uppural; South: From a line drawn joining the villages of Uppural, a line drawn along the Western Bank of the Kaddaparichchan Aru, joining uth, Muttur and the Kaddaparichchan Aru Estuary; North: From a line Joining Kaddaparichchan Aru Estuary with the villages of Sampoor, shell 9/25 of May 30 2007)
Page 10 According to Mr. R. Sampanthan, TNA MP for Trinco amounting to 15648 individuals who fall within the HSZ are 19 schools with approximately 5000-6000 students w 18 Hindu temples and one Methodist Church. Many of the are Tamil. The main reason behind the establishment of the HSZ in E strategic importance of the area – at the mouth of the Trin Trincomalee Harbour continues to be of economic sig cement and flour are brought into the country and proces serving as the Eastern base for the Sri Lankan navy, Trin providing a supply route for goods, military personnel and also served as a base for the LTTE from which it could lau against the navy and strategic resources. Preventing civilia the armed forces to secure the area at the cost of its origin 1.4 LEGAL RIGHTS AND LEGAL CHALLENGES CPA filed a fundamental rights petition on 29 June 2007 the HSZ in parts of Trincomalee district and the subsequ residing in lands in the HSZ by residents of the area. Ano was filed on the same issue by four IDPs who own land in the HSZ. The HSZ as it presently stands threatens two fundamental rights that are specified in the Constitution: • Article 12 states that all citizens are equal before the law and ensures that no citizen shall be discriminated against on grounds specified in the Constitution; • Article 14 provides for the freedom of movement and the right to choose one’s residence within Sri Lanka. In its petition, CPA stated that Article 12 and Article 14 h that although commercial activity is allowed within the S 7 Speech delivered by Hon.R.Sampanthan, Member of Parliament, Trincom Tamil Arasu Kadchi (I.T.A.K) , ( TNA ) on the Adjournment Motion relating t Security Zone, 20th June 2007. 10 | P a g e The HS interna Interna have th to their Interna that no arbitra with hi , TNA MP for Trincomalee, there are 4249 families ho fall within the HSZ as gazetted.7 He states that there 5000-6000 students who were educated in the area and ist Church. Many of the civilians owning land in the HSZ lishment of the HSZ in Eastern Trincomalee is due to the t the mouth of the Trincomalee Harbour. Despite the war to be of economic significance as vital goods such as the country and processed in Trincomalee. In addition to e Sri Lankan navy, Trincomalee serves as a vital role in , military personnel and civilians to access Jaffna. Sampur from which it could launch artillery or Sea Tiger attacks urces. Preventing civilian access would make it easier for at the cost of its original residents. AL CHALLENGES tition on 29 June 2007 challenging the establishment of istrict and the subsequent prohibition on entering and sidents of the area. Another fundamental rights petition ur IDPs who reatens two ified in the ns are equal at no citizen on grounds freedom of hoose one’s icle 12 and Article 14 have been violated, and also noted is allowed within the SEZ, thereby enabling commercial of Parliament, Trincomalee District, Parliamentary Group Leader,Illankai ment Motion relating to the declaration of Muttur East – Sampur as a High The HSZ is also a violation of international humanitarian law. Internally displaced persons (IDPs) have the right to voluntary return to their land in safety and dignity. International law further provides that no person be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with his privacy, family and home.
Page 11 enterprises to enter and remain in the area, the HSZ pro residing in their lands, leading to discrimination. The HSZ is also a violation of international humanitarian (IDPs) have the right to voluntary return to their land in law further provides that no person be subjected to arbitr his privacy, family and home. While noting this, the pe international humanitarian law prohibits the displacem purpose of their own security or military necessity. A key that there is no military necessity or security concern p hampering civilians access to their land and property. The two petitions were taken up before the Supreme Co Justice Sarath Silva in July 2007. The Deputy Solicitor Gene stated that steps were taken for the resettlement of IDPs law and that any person wanting to return can correspo through the Attorney General’s department. The Supreme both cases by stating that “it is in the national interest th should be carried out on a planned basis.” According to media reports the JVP is to take legal action in displaced from Sampur which they insist is due to the lan develop a coal power station.8 It should be noted that the HSZs in Jaffna have also been no gazette notification or law passed establishing the H created HSZs in Sampur, Kandy and Katunayake), thereb legal basis for the continued displacement of civilians du fundamental rights applications were filed in the Supreme Jaffna area Parliamentarian and a farmer of the Tellipal Government had violated their fundamental rights by pre own lands and houses, which are located within the HSZ. T GA Jaffna to look for alternate land for the IDPs who ow Consortium of Welfare Centres for Internally Displaced stated that alternate land is not acceptable because the land to cultivate and to reside. The Supreme Court ruled resettle the families in this HSZ should be establishe comprising officials from the Defence Ministry, the Govern Court Judge of Jaffna. The case is ongoing before the Supre 8 Propaganda Secretary to the JVP, Vijitha Herath had spoke to the media reg to fight for rights of displaced Sampur people,” June 8 2008; Lanka Dissent, June 8 2008, www.lankadissent.com) 11 | P a g e the area, the HSZ prohibits civilians from entering and iscrimination. national humanitarian law. Internally displaced persons return to their land in safety and dignity. International n be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with ile noting this, the petition also stated that customary rohibits the displacement of civilians except for the ilitary necessity. A key point raised in the petition was y or security concern provided to justify preventing or land and property. before the Supreme Court by a bench headed by Chief e Deputy Solicitor General representing the Government e resettlement of IDPs in accordance with international to return can correspond with the Competent Authority artment. The Supreme Court refused leave to proceed in the national interest that resettlement and development basis.” is to take legal action in order to restore the rights of the insist is due to the land being given over to the India to Jaffna have also been legally contested. There has been ssed establishing the HSZs in Jaffna (unlike the newly d Katunayake), thereby raising questions regarding the acement of civilians due to security considerations. Two ere filed in the Supreme Court by Mr. Mavai Senathirajah, farmer of the Tellipalai division who claimed that the damental rights by preventing them from entering their ocated within the HSZ. The Supreme Court had asked the d for the IDPs who own land within the HSZ area. The r Internally Displaced Persons in the Jaffna area have cceptable because the IDPs wish to return to their own e Supreme Court ruled on May 28 that a committee to should be established by the Secretary for Defence ce Ministry, the Government Agent of Jaffna and the High going before the Supreme Court. d spoke to the media regarding the proposed case (The Sunday Times, “JVP 8 2008; Lanka Dissent, “JVP to challenge Sampur land handover to India,”
Page 12 2. SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONE AND OTH PLANS Trincomalee is a key area targeted for development by Navodaya or Eastern Revival Program which aims to deve establishment of Trincomalee as a Special Economic development plans relevant for Trincomalee. 2.1 SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONE Certain areas within the Trincomalee district were declare a Licensed Zone under Section 22A of the BOI Act No. 4 o 2006 by an extraordinary gazette notification No. 1467/0 the Trincomalee Bay from Nilaveli in North through Trin Kinniya and Muttur into Sampur and with an extension idea behind a SEZ is to demarcate an area for commercia seems to be part of a more ambitious program and is clo Programme discussed below. The Urban Development Authority proposal dated Janu Urban Development Plan for 2030 which would establish Trincomalee as a Metro Urban Development Area. While the map suggests that a number of essential requirements of the district including basic infrastructure, water and sewerage systems and new sources of employment would be met, the plans as laid out in the map also raise a number of issues such as people’s rights to land and property and people- oriented development. Unlike the HSZ, there are no restrictions placed on movement to and within and SEZ, unless additional legislation is passed which would result in land being acquired by the State. A reading of the two gazettes together clearly indicates that the HSZ would fall within proposal, a significant area which is currently within established as a ‘Special Zone.’ An area which currently also been demarcated as a utilities zone for a Coal Power P 12 | P a g e ...a n of th infra syste emp laid of is and deve IC ZONE AND OTHER DEVELOPMENT d for development by the Government. The Negenahira ram which aims to develop the Eastern Province and the a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), are the two main ncomalee. NE lee district were declared a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), of the BOI Act No. 4 of 1978 published on 16th October notification No. 1467/03. The SEZ covers an area around i in North through Trincomalee Town and Gravets, past and with an extension towards Kantale. While the basic an area for commercial enterprise, the Trincomalee SEZ ous program and is closely linked to the Eastern Revival ty proposal dated January 2007 set out an Integrated 0 which would Metro Urban suggests that a of the district water and sources of ans as laid out issues such as ty and people- HSZ, there are ement to and l legislation is being acquired two gazettes HSZ would fall within the SEZ. According to the UDA h is currently within the demarcated HSZ would be area which currently falls within the gazetted HSZ has zone for a Coal Power Project. ...a number of essential requirements of the district including basic infrastructure, water and sewerage systems and new sources of employment would be met, the plans as laid out in the map also raise a number of issues such as people’s rights to land and property and people-oriented development.
Page 13 2.2 NEGENAHIRA NAVODAYA The Eastern Revival Programme that was unveiled in programme for three years. The strategy for the Eastern resettlement of IDPs, issues related to regional econom and social services and rebuilding the capacity of public in The programme has a budget of Rs. 197,219 million (US$ this amount, 52% is meant to be foreign funded. The re Government, private sector and other volunteer organi down as to how much each funder has committed to the also unclear whether existing programs and projects h Eastern Revival Program. For instance the North East H (NEHRP) which began providing housing assistance from number of factors is disbursing funds to identified benefic and other on-going projects been included as a part of th these additional funds which will help develop the Eastern Under the Eastern Revival Programme, investors will enjo lands under special concessionary schemes, and a wide ra information available regarding what is meant by ‘special but there is concern that prohibition and restriction subsequent acquisition, legally or otherwise, may contrib the election a number of projects were declared open whi the election, there has been little movement in some o concerned that the projects will not be going ahead. Apart from being beneficiaries, it is unclear how local people will be consulted and involved in the Eastern Revival Programme. The improvement in infrastructure that is a key component of the Negenahira Navodaya not only offers better services for the people of Trincomalee but the project also provides some employment during the construction phase. It construction projects or commercial enterprises in Trinco that a large number of local people are provided employm a large Sri Lankan company setting up a new retail stor staff employed are local, but we were unable to verify thi the fears of local businesses and people that apart from th developments, the existing local economy will be sidelined have to compete with well-established national companie significant losses over the past years and continues to fac security restrictions that hinder the movement of good 9 Official web portal of The Eastern Revival Programme, http://www.newea 13 | P a g e Special to assis has pro conflict margin Govern A that was unveiled in 2007, is a massive development trategy for the Eastern Revival Programme includes the ed to regional economy, improvement of infrastructure the capacity of public institutions in the Eastern Province. s. 197,219 million (US$ 1840 million) for that period.9 Of foreign funded. The remainder is to be financed by the other volunteer organizations. There is no clear break r has committed to the Eastern Revival Programme. It is ograms and projects have been incorporated into the tance the North East Housing Reconstruction Program ousing assistance from 2005 and was delayed due to a ds to identified beneficiaries. Has the funding for NEHRP included as a part of the Eastern Revival Program or are elp develop the Eastern Province? me, investors will enjoy up to 20 years of TAX holidays, schemes, and a wide range of other benefits. There is no hat is meant by ‘special concessionary schemes’ for land, ibition and restriction regarding access to land and otherwise, may contribute to such programmes. Prior to ere declared open while others were inaugurated. Since movement in some of the projects, hence people are ot be going t is unclear sulted and Programme. re that is a a Navodaya he people of so provides onstruction phase. It needs to be noted that new al enterprises in Trincomalee does not necessarily mean are provided employment. For instance CPA was told of g up a new retail store in Trincomalee but none of the ere unable to verify this. This anecdote however reveals eople that apart from the services provided by these new onomy will be sidelined and may even suffer as they will hed national companies. The local economy has suffered rs and continues to face a number of obstacles including the movement of goods and services, and extortion by me, http://www.neweast.lk Special attention needs to be paid to assist the local economy which has proved resilient through the conflict but risks being marginalized through the Central Government’s development plans.
Page 14 armed groups. Special attention needs to be paid to ass proved resilient through the conflict but risks being m Government’s development plans. The ethnic dimension be acknowledged as the Tamils in particular have been at and restrictions, hence are unsure of whether they will h communities. It is yet to be seen as to what role the Eastern Pro development of the East or whether the “revival” will be Eastern Revival Programme provides for the Eastern Pro clear that the dominant actor will be the Central go Secretariat, Ministry of Nation Building and Estate Infr Ministry of Finance and Planning steering the project.1 2.3 COAL POWER STATION That a coal plant will be established in Sampur has becom location of the plant is under dispute. An Indian compan Corporation (NTPC) and the Ceylon Electricity Board December 2006 to establish a 500 MW coal-based therm commence operations by 2011. With an investment of US$ implemented through a joint venture company.11 It was a 500 million would be covered by foreign aid and the rem site was to be picked within three months but there was a the Sri Lankan Government proposing Sampur and the N near the Indian Oil Corporation complex close to the Trinc There are a number of concerns regarding the power pla land and property for mainly Tamil civilians. The choic controversy as there were fears that the power plant com by Tamil civilians. The TNA alleged that the project had a not take into consideration the rights of the Tamil civilian been consulted.14 Veloor, between Uppuveli and Nilavell 10 Official web portal of The Eastern Revival Programme, http://www.newe 11 The Hindu, R. Muralidhar Reddy, “NTPC power plant in Trincomalee,” Dec 12 Daily Mirror, Kassapa Ellepola, “Construction of Sampur coal power plant 13 ibid 14 ibid 14 | P a g e eeds to be paid to assist the local economy which has flict but risks being marginalized through the Central The ethnic dimension of the development also needs to particular have been at the receiving end of the violence of whether they will have equal opportunities as other role the Eastern Provincial Council will play in the er the “revival” will be entirely centralised. Although the des for the Eastern Provincial Council to play a role, it is ill be the Central government with the Presidential ilding and Estate Infrastructure Development and the teering the project.10 d in Sampur has become increasingly clear, although the ute. An Indian company - the National Thermal Power ylon Electricity Board (CEB) signed an agreement in 0 MW coal-based thermal plant which was expected to th an investment of US$ 500 million the project was to be re company.11 It was also reported that 70% of the US $ oreign aid and the remainder by the NTPC and CEB.12 A onths but there was a lack of consensus on the site, with sing Sampur and the NTPC looking at an alternate site plex close to the Trincomalee Harbour.13 egarding the power plant including the potential loss of mil civilians. The choice of Sampur ran into significant at the power plant complex would occupy lands owned that the project had a “hidden political agenda” and did hts of the Tamil civilians whose representatives had not Uppuveli and Nilavelli was put forward as a potential me, http://www.neweast.lk nt in Trincomalee,” December 30 2006 mpur coal power plant to begin in three months time,” March 27 2008
Page 15 site15 but protests particularly from the tourism sector in the focus switching back to Sampur. Newspaper reports i the Power and Energy Ministry which stated that 700 ac project in Sampur, following the site being surveyed in Ap built to unload coal in Sampur. The statement also adde 99.2% eco-friendly and that it would provide 4000 job opp of concerns regarding the power plant including the poten mainly Tamil civilians. 2.4 THE OUTER CIRCULAR ROAD AND THE RELA Under the development plans for the district there are sev have been reported. The Outer Circular Road that would co major road development that is currently underway. It is Town area near Sardhapura at the six mile post and Somapura and Muttur Road. A major concern with the ring road centres on the land t and the process that has been followed. We were informed area now covered by the ring road, have been displaced a land, as it has been acquired for the road construction. N land acquisition had taken place in accordance with esta were not allowed to reside on their land. We were also in meters on either side of the ring road has been created. Re 500m, but was shrunk to a 300m buffer zone and could zone is reportedly in existence not just within the HSZ but zone of 50 meters on either side of the road in Eechchalam None of the people we spoke to in Trincomalee, including residents, were aware of any documentation providing th None of them knew of the process of acquiring the land paid to the displaced communities. Reportedly no civilian road nor has there been any information circulated as to w have been taken over. No one seems to have been compensation. 15 The Official Government News Portal of Sri Lanka, “Coal fired power plan The Daily News, Wasantha Ramanayake, “Coal power projects to begin in J “$ 250-m NTPC project in Sri Lanka to kick off next year,” February 13 2008 16 Daily Mirror, Kassapa Ellepola, “Construction of Sampur coal power plant 15 | P a g e the tourism sector in early 2008 reportedly resulted in r. Newspaper reports in March quoted a statement from hich stated that 700 acres would be taken over for the te being surveyed in April 2008 and that a jetty would be he statement also added that the coal for the project is ld provide 4000 job opportunities.16 There are a number lant including the potential loss of land and property for ROAD AND THE RELATED BUFFER ZONE he district there are several road development plans that ular Road that would connect Sampur to Kuchchaveli is a rrently underway. It is visible as one enters Trincomalee the six mile post and near Kiranthimunai, along the d centres on the land that was acquired for the exercise wed. We were informed that residents owning land in the , have been displaced and/or not allowed to access their e road construction. No one we spoke to knew whether n accordance with established laws, but stated that they ir land. We were also informed that a buffer zone of 300 ad has been created. Reportedly, the buffer zone stood at buffer zone and could be reduced to 100m. This buffer just within the HSZ but outside it as well. A similar buffer the road in Eechchalampattu seems to be in existence. Trincomalee, including agencies working in the area or mentation providing the legal basis for the buffer zone. s of acquiring the land or if any compensation would be . Reportedly no civilians have been allowed to access the ation circulated as to which private lands and properties seems to have been offered alternative land and/or , “Coal fired power plant construction to be expected,” February 16 2008; er projects to begin in Jne,” March 28 2008, page 1; The Financial Express, ear,” February 13 2008 mpur coal power plant to begin in three months time,” March 27 2008
Page 16 3. THE ‘REDUCED’ TRINCOMALEE HSZ: OP CHALLENGES 3.1 REDUCTION OF THE HSZ? Recent developments on the ground, suggest that the HSZ gazette notifications or circulars to that effect. In recent m the G.S. divisions which were included in the HSZ have bee follow in some other G.S divisions. Resettlement in this pa IDPs to their place of origin. The remaining G.S divisions entry, at least for the time being. Information regardin gathered from newspaper reports, Government offic representatives. As of May 2008, developments on the ground suggest tha within the HSZ in their entirety, three divisions will be others partially resettled. The three G.S divisions which Pallikudiyiruppu, Nalloor and Paddalipuram. Some areas and Kattaparichchan South G.S division will also be resettl which will be off limit have not yet been made clear. The information gathered suggests that five G.S. divisions HSZ where no civilians will be allowed to reside in ad divisions that will be partially covered by the HSZ. The five Sampur East, Kadarkaraichenai and Kadarkaraichenai Nor our visit to Trincomalee was that the new HSZ would b including a c off limits for Therefore, al in some G.S reduction of been carried G.S. division therefore the the gazette continue which creates significant confusion s the question of as to who authorised the resettlemen Competent Authority was obtained prior to resettling peo written permission from the Competent Authority, no on falling within the HSZ. According to the gazette, any perso written permission is in contravention of the HSZ and ther 3.2 CHALLENGES TO RESETTLEMENT 16 | P a g e ... although resettlement is underway in some G.S. divisions within the HSZ, the reduction of the HSZ through a gazette has not been carried out. INCOMALEE HSZ: OPPORTUNITIES AND HSZ? d, suggest that the HSZ is being reduced, but there are no that effect. In recent months, the displaced from some of ded in the HSZ have been resettled and resettlement is to Resettlement in this paper is taken to mean the return of emaining G.S divisions will not be opened up for civilian . Information regarding the shrinking of the HSZ was rts, Government officials and humanitarian agency the ground suggest that of the 11 G.S divisions that fall three divisions will be completely resettled and three ee G.S divisions which will be completely resettled are dalipuram. Some areas in Nawaratnapuram, Cheniyoor ision will also be resettled but the villages and land areas been made clear. s that five G.S. divisions in total will be treated as a strict llowed to reside in addition to portions of three G.S. red by the HSZ. The five include Koonitivu, Sampur West, d Kadarkaraichenai North. One story CPA was told during the new HSZ would be declared a Development Zone, including a coal power station which would be off limits for civilians. ns of the t been Therefore, although resettlement is underway in some G.S. divisions within the HSZ, the reduction of the HSZ through a gazette has not been carried out. Hence, legally speaking these G.S. divisions remain within the HSZ and therefore the relevant restrictions provided in s significant confusion so needs to be clarified. This begs orised the resettlement and whether approval of the prior to resettling people. As stated previously, without petent Authority, no one can enter and remain in areas o the gazette, any person entering and remaining without tion of the HSZ and therefore guilty of an offence. TLEMENT
Page 17 The need for a more people friendly approach: The m just in the land opened up within the HSZ area, has been March 2007, a large number of IDPs from Eastern Trincom Government from welfare camps in Batticaloa to a transit homes in Trincomalee. The families received no prior inf were separated in the forced resettlement and were put Security Forces, TMVP cadres and Government officials movement to ensure that most of the IDPs did move. The number of reports including the Inter Agency Standing Related Internal Displacement in Sri Lanka”.17 There seem to how long this transitional period will last - there are fa for over a year. Issues such as shelters have been addresse are mainly tin sheet shelters in Padithedal Camp. Bo transitional camps originally conceived as a temporary m period before they were resettled. Overall, there appears to be a trend to hastily resettling number of documented cases the returns were done witho they had a choice if they wished to resettle or live in improved, without adequate information and displaced p in the camps faced the risk of having their rations cut even World Food Programme and supplemented by internat Batticaloa in February 2008 CPA witnessed a resettlement reactions of residents from villagers that were identified that they would be leaving the welfare camp for their hom immediately return. While at a policy level IDPs are give displacement camp on the ground the IDPs are not told they have this option and instead face the prospect of b person without access to any rations. In more recent re steps to ensure that the affected people have more infor see’ visits have become the norm. This approach needs to be given the option whether they wish to move or stay in People need to be treated with dignity and respect, and the Occupation by the Security Forces: Although resettleme G.S. divisions and partially in three, even in these areas various restrictions. A village may be open for resettlem buildings may be off limits due to the presence of the which borders the HSZ, 42 families have reportedly ret returned have been provided assistance with temporar whose houses need to be repaired are currently staying in further 15 families have not been allowed to go to their ho a number of public buildings and houses are currently 17 Inter Agency Standing Committee, “Conflict-Related Internal Displaceme Freedom of Movement, Return and Relocation,” April 2006- April 2007. 17 | P a g e ndly approach: The manner in which resettlement, not the HSZ area, has been treated needs to be addressed. In s from Eastern Trincomalee were forced to move by the n Batticaloa to a transitional site in Killivetti and to their es received no prior information, in some cases families ttlement and were put under significant pressure as the Government officials visited the camps preceding the the IDPs did move. The latter have been highlighted in a Inter Agency Standing Committee’s report on “Conflict ri Lanka”.17 There seemed to be clear lack of planning as d will last - there are families who have been in Killivetti ters have been addressed, but there are concerns as these Padithedal Camp. Both Killivetti and Padithedal are eived as a temporary measure to house IDPs for a brief nd to hastily resettling people by the Government. In a eturns were done without the people being informed that to resettle or live in displacement until the situation mation and displaced persons who attempted to remain g their rations cut even though these are provided by the plemented by international agencies. During a visit to itnessed a resettlement drive from Manpower Camp. The rs that were identified for movement ranged from relief fare camp for their homes to fear and an unwillingness to licy level IDPs are given the option of staying back in a the IDPs are not told by the Government officials that face the prospect of being deregistered as a displaced ons. In more recent returns the Government has taken eople have more information and increasingly ‘Go-and- This approach needs to be strengthened. People need to wish to move or stay in displacement for the time being. ity and respect, and their basic rights recognized. es: Although resettlement is to take place in full, in three ee, even in these areas that have opened up there are be open for resettlement but houses, property, public o the presence of the security forces. In Thangapuram, ies have reportedly returned. Some of those who have istance with temporary shelters by the NRC. Families are currently staying in the school in Pallikudiyiruppu. A llowed to go to their houses. It was reported to CPA that houses are currently occupied by the Security Forces. ted Internal Displacement in Sri Lanka: A study on Forced Displacement, il 2006- April 2007.
Page 18 Furthermore, the Buffer Zone of the Outer Circular Road some of the residents will not be able to resettle unles removed and the security forces shift to a camp. A numb are currently residing in welfare camps in Batticaloa. Army occupation of areas within civilian settlements considerations alone, but also for convenience, in that th structures instead of constructing new buildings. For the poses significant problems. In some of the resettlement months, people were brought back to their original villa unable to return to their homes. No ‘go and see’ visits w affected families therefore find themselves in public buil stay with friends. In effect, they have moved from one s Subsequent to such instances being highlighted to the au been organized by the Government and UNHCR. In mos representative from the main welfare camps in Trincoma that village, are taken to visit the site and they in turn pas and relatives living in their particular camp. CPA was told have been informed that their house is occupied, they return. Areas in Paddalipuram such as Veera Nagar, had informed that resettlement will soon take place . Other obstacles to resettlement: Families and commu areas which fall within the gazetted HSZ, face similar prob confront. A number of the houses and infrastructure wit need immediate repairing. We met with a few residen returned to their homes on the 25th of March. There we village and life was slowly returning to what it was prior the village were mostly displaced to Batticaloa. They had r in Batticaloa if they could not return to their own homes a they returned, many of the houses were destroyed and possessions they had left in their housing compounds. from UNHCR and NRC to rebuild their houses. In the inte little or no mention of assistance provided by the go assistance on the whole has been poor and that many ar due to lack of livelihood options available. In Pallikudiyi were provided for some of the farmers, they did not ha canals were not fully functional. Security restrictions imposed by the Security Forces cr resettlement process. Some of these security restrictions being resettled while in other instances it impacts the di CPA visited Trincomalee there was a complete ban on an following the elections for the Eastern Provincial Council. fishermen were unable to earn a living. In communitie significant number of families who are dependent on the this meant that the community had to provide food for th 18 | P a g e he Outer Circular Road runs through the village, hence e able to resettle unless the buffer zone is reduced or hift to a camp. A number of families from Thangapuram mps in Batticaloa. in civilian settlements may not be due to security convenience, in that the security forces can use existing new buildings. For the resettled villagers this occupation me of the resettlement that took place in the previous k to their original villages unaware that they might be o ‘go and see’ visits were organized in such cases. The emselves in public buildings where available, or have to ave moved from one state of displacement to another. g highlighted to the authorities, ‘go-and–see’ visits have nt and UNHCR. In most of these ‘go-and-see’ visits, one are camps in Trincomalee and Batticaloa originally from ite and they in turn pass on the news to their neighbours lar camp. CPA was told that in these cases where people ouse is occupied, they are generally more reluctant to ch as Veera Nagar, had ‘go and see’ visits and we were n take place . t: Families and communities who are being resettled in d HSZ, face similar problems that other resettled villages and infrastructure within the village are destroyed and et with a few residents in Pallikudiyiruppu who had 5 of March. There were presently 140 residents in the ng to what it was prior to displacement. The residents in o Batticaloa. They had refused to leave the welfare camps rn to their own homes and land. People stated that when es were destroyed and that they had lost many of the housing compounds. They received limited assistance their houses. In the interviews we conducted, there was e provided by the government. They stated that the poor and that many are facing hardships. This is largely vailable. In Pallikudiyiruppu, although farming utensils rmers, they did not have paddy seed and the irrigation the Security Forces create additional obstacles for the se security restrictions are specific to the areas currently ances it impacts the district at large. For instance when s a complete ban on any fishing imposed in Trincomalee tern Provincial Council. For almost two and a half weeks living. In communities such as Muttur which have a o are dependent on their daily catch to feed themselves d to provide food for those most directly affected. In the
Page 19 last week of May, the ban was reduced to a fishing restrict alleviated rather than resolved the problem of liveliho security fears. We were informed that the SLA and CID residents and that residents feared such visits. In Poona not fall within the gazetted HSZ, for instance, farmers mak they are afraid for their security. De-mining is another cr sometimes delayed until areas have been cleared and issued. 3.3 THE SITUATION OF COMMUNITIES WHO W IN THE ‘NEW’ HSZ Communities who lived in areas that fall within the G.S. not take place, face the prospect of being relocated. R movement of people from one location to another not of th displacement means that IDPs will not be resettled but that at the very least 7,388 individuals from 1,998 families to incorporate the five G.S divisions. Currently the major camps or with friends and relatives in Batticaloa (3,154 p persons). In January 2008 families from Sampur East, Sampur Wes Kadakarachenai and Kattaiparichchan North were asked wished to resettle in Ralkulli or Pallikudiyiruppu. T additional information. It stated that the relocated familie shelter, livelihood assistance and that permanent shelters When CPA interviewed families who had filled the forms in Padithedal Camp, Trincomalee they all stated that they had wrote that they wanted to go back to their original home with the displaced confirmed that most of the displaced d homes. On April 25 2008 a commemoration was held in a number year of displacement from Sampur. As a part of the c addressing the President of Sri Lanka appealing for the fam to return. During our visit to Trincomalee in May 2008, C are now irrelevant and people will not be given a choice b their professions – fishing families to Ralkulli and other fa a site that has been proposed for resettlement where 8 while 199 houses will be built in Ralkulli. The location of t unclear. Critical issues which need to be take up: It needs t demand by most families to return, a serious review nee 19 | P a g e ced to a fishing restriction from 6 am to 6 pm which has he problem of livelihoods. In addition there are also that the SLA and CID visits regularly to question the d such visits. In Poonagar, Eechalampattum which does r instance, farmers make their way home before sunset as e-mining is another critical concern and resettlement is ave been cleared and a Low-Risk Certificate has been OMMUNITIES WHO WILL NOT BE RESETTLED hat fall within the G.S. divisions where resettlement will t of being relocated. Relocation is taken to mean the tion to another not of their origin which in the context of ll not be resettled but settled elsewhere. It is estimated als from 1,998 families will lose their homes if the HSZ is s. Currently the majority of these people are in welfare s in Batticaloa (3,154 persons) or in Trincomalee (1,340 pur East, Sampur West, Koonitheevu, Navaratnapuram, han North were asked to fill a form as to whether they r Pallikudiyiruppu. The form provided very limited at the relocated families would be given land, temporary hat permanent shelters would be provided after one year. o had filled the forms in Manpower Camp, Batticaloa and y all stated that they had not agreed to either, and instead k to their original homes. A number of actors who work most of the displaced do want to return to their original n was held in a number of IDP camps to mark the second ur. As a part of the ceremony a letter was read out ka appealing for the families from the HSZ to be allowed comalee in May 2008, CPA was informed that the forms l not be given a choice but will be relocated according to to Ralkulli and other families to another site. Ithikulam is resettlement where 850 houses are to be constructed, alkulli. The location of the other 1,500 required houses is e take up: It needs to be emphasized that given the n, a serious review needs to be taken of the necessity of
Page 20 incorporating such a large extent of land into the HSZ. Effo such a review is carried out in order to examine the secur of the issue and the committee involved would include r Forces, the relevant ministries including the Reset representatives from the affected areas. Dialogue with the critical step in this regard. The proposed relocation creates a number of issues. The i such relocation are clearly in question. People’s right movement are in danger of being violated. Related t compensation if the relocation is to proceed. If families ar their loss of property, the compensation should be decide which they held earlier, instead of providing a set amo suitability of the relocation sites is an issue that needs to for instance already suffers from a water shortage wh effectively doubled if the relocation goes ahead. There families will be unable to carry out sustainable livelih competing for existing resources such as irrigation water relocation is being carried out without considering critica and community ties. The political implications of the relocation cannot be ignored. The overwhelming majority of those who will be displaced by the HSZ/SEZ are Tamils. If their right of return, even at the end of the conflict is not guaranteed then it will feed the perception that the Sri Lankan Government will sideline the rights of the Tamil community. If a coal power station is established and the workers are largely Sinhalese this will feed Tamil fears that the HSZ, SEZ and other development programs are also aimed at altering the demography of the East. The po has to be addressed by the Government and the politic order to avoid further polarizing communities in the East. 20 | P a g e The ove those w HSZ/SE return, conflict will fee Lankan the righ f land into the HSZ. Efforts should be made to ensure that er to examine the security and humanitarian dimensions volved would include representatives from the Security including the Resettlement Ministry, and elected reas. Dialogue with the affected families would also be a number of issues. The issue of consent and the legality of uestion. People’s rights of ownership and freedom of ng violated. Related to this is the issue of adequate o proceed. If families are to be granted land in return for sation should be decided according to the extent of land of providing a set amount of land for all families. The an issue that needs to be addressed, as Pallikudiyiruppu a water shortage while Ralkulli’s population will be on goes ahead. There are also concerns that relocated out sustainable livelihoods, and will find themselves uch as irrigation water and fishing rights. In addition, the hout considering critical social aspects including familial e relocation ing majority the HSZ/SEZ , even at the d then it will Sri Lankan ghts of the er station is are largely ars that the rograms are aphy of the East. The political dimension of the HSZ/SEZ rnment and the political representatives of the area in mmunities in the East. The overwhelming majority of those who will be displaced by the HSZ/SEZ are Tamils. If their right of return, even at the end of the conflict is not guaranteed then it will feed the perception that the Sri Lankan Government will sideline the rights of the Tamil community.
Page 21 4. CRITICAL LEGAL ISSUES 4.1 LAND ACQUISITION AND REQUISITION The above sections have dealt with various examples of without any legal authority or prior notice. Beyond the ga to which laws, if any, have been used to acquire the land w The powers for land acquisition and requisition are prov Act, the Land Resumption Ordinance, the Requisitionin (Recovery of Possession) Act and the State Lands Encro acquired for a ‘public purpose’ as provided in the Land A process in which land can be legally acquired.18 Under competent authority can, with the approval of the Preside certain specified purposes including maintenance of es communities and use or occupation by the armed forces. force to secure such land. 4.2 ALIENATION OF STATE LAND As to whether persons are to be taken to state or privat another issue of concern. As discussed above, private purposes’. Private land can also be purchased. State Land can be alienated through permits and grants Ordinance (LDO), certain families may be granted st Commissioner for the purpose of developing the land. S persons who settled on the land before 15 June 1995, exce or resettlement programmes. The new development pro classified as special relocation or resettlement programme issued in accordance with the law. The procedure for gr first obtaining a permit to occupy state land. In order to 18 Accordingly, once the Minister decides that a piece of land or a servitude purpose, s/he may order the acquiring officer of the area to give notificatio the Minister gazettes the declaration of his/her decision to acquire a piece that interested parties have an opportunity to express any objections. 19 For more information please refer to CPA’s report on Women’s Access to Jaffna and the Vanni, April 2005 21 | P a g e SUES ND REQUISITION th various examples of the acquisition of peoples’ land r notice. Beyond the gazette, there has been no clarity as d to acquire the land within the HSZ. nd requisition are provided under the Land Acquisition ance, the Requisitioning of Land Act, the State Lands the State Lands Encroachment Ordinance. Land can be provided in the Land Acquisition Act which sets out the ally acquired.18 Under the Requisitioning of Land Act, a approval of the President, take possession of any land for ing maintenance of essential supplies and services to n by the armed forces. The police are authorised to use TE LAND aken to state or private land in the relocation drives, is cussed above, private land can be acquired for ‘public purchased. gh permits and grants.19 Under the Land Development s may be granted state land vested with the Land developing the land. State land can only be granted to fore 15 June 1995, except in the case of special relocation new development programmes in Trincomalee may be esettlement programmes, thereby enabling permits to be . The procedure for granting land begins with a person state land. In order to obtain a permit, a person must e of land or a servitude over a piece of land should be acquired for a public area to give notification of such acquisition to the owner of the land. Once ision to acquire a piece of land or a servitude, notice must be provided so ss any objections. on Women’s Access to and Ownership of Land and Property in Batticaloa,
Page 22 apply to the Divisional Secretary.20 The vast majority of pe male in the family as “head of the household”. This issue reports.21 The LDO provides that no person may acquire p is an offence to encroach on permit/grant land, and anyon pay a fine or be subjected to imprisonment or both. Further, agricultural or estate land may be granted by t Lanka in accordance with the Land Grants (Special Pr transferred only after being surveyed, and the instrument with the GA and with written consent from the Land Comm The State Lands Ordinance provides for grants, leases, and as well as management and control of such lands. The Pre the country, to make absolute or provisional grants of st state land in any other fit manner. Under the provision occupation of state land can also be issued. Where land is state, the local authorities have the powers of granting lan 4.3 THE THIRTEENTH AMENDMENT, PROVIN LAND The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the De Lanka was introduced with the objective of devolving and central government to Provincial Councils. The Thirteenth assigned to the central government and the Provincia Provincial Council List which describes the subjects assign the Reserved List which describes the subjects assigned to the Concurrent List which describes the subjects that a government and the Provincial Councils. It is generally perceived that the Thirteenth Amendmen with powers over land as it is included within the Provinci the Provincial Council List and the Appendix II which set o under the Thirteenth Amendment suggests there is hard regards to this subject. There are limitations in the pow Council including state land continues to vest in the Repub 20 Persons who have lost their permits may apply for certified copies at Secretariats are required to keep copies of all permits, grants and leases. T East where many documents have been destroyed due to the conflict. P certified copies at the Land Registries and the Divisional Secretariats. Only Ordinance is recorded centrally at the Land Commissioner’s Office in Colom 21 CPA’s report on Women’s Access to and Ownership of Land and Property 22 The extent of devolution is subject to debate and there are varying views 22 | P a g e The vast majority of permits and grants are given to the household”. This issue has been raised by CPA in other o person may acquire prescriptive title to permit land. It t/grant land, and anyone who does so may be required to onment or both. d may be granted by the President to any citizen of Sri nd Grants (Special Provisions) Act. This land will be ed, and the instrument of disposition must be registered nt from the Land Commissioner. s for grants, leases, and other dispositions of state lands, l of such lands. The President has the power, on behalf of provisional grants of state land, sell, lease or dispose of er. Under the provisions of the Ordinance, permits for e issued. Where land is vested in local authorities by the powers of granting land or leases. ENDMENT, PROVINCIAL COUNCILS AND Constitution of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri jective of devolving and delegating certain powers of the ouncils. The Thirteenth Amendment sets out the subjects ent and the Provincial Councils in three lists: (i) the ribes the subjects assigned to the Provincial Councils; (ii) the subjects assigned to the central government; and (iii) bes the subjects that are assigned to both the central ncils. Thirteenth Amendment provides the Provincial Council ded within the Provincial Council List. 22 A fine reading of Appendix II which set out the details with respect to land suggests there is hardly any devolution of power with limitations in the powers vested within the Provincial ues to vest in the Republic and may be disposed of by the for certified copies at the Divisional Secretariats. Since 1990, Divisional its, grants and leases. This has been problematic in areas in the North and due to the conflict. Persons who have lost their grants may apply for ional Secretariats. Only state land granted or leased under the State Land sioner’s Office in Colombo. p of Land and Property in Batticaloa, Jaffna and the Vanni, April 2005 here are varying views on the topic.
Page 23 central government. This means that any alienation of st seal of the President. The Thirteenth Amendment provides that where the distr occurs, it should be undertaken on the basis of national et land should avoid disturbing demographic patterns of a P that ensures community cohesiveness in settlements. The when state land is distributed under various projects, prio displaced by the project, then to the landless of the implemented, and finally to the landless of the Province. Even though the Provincial Councils have the power to make final decisions on matters that fall within the Provincial Council List, the central government has overriding powers over all devolved subjects. This has resulted in a situation where, despite land, rehabilitation and reconstruction falling within the purview of the Provincial Councils, in effect, it is the central government that makes the final decision on all matters. The situation is compounded by Provincial Councils on the central government.24 The cen with the new projects that have been introduced under t where the Central Government plays a significant role, th Councils. Further, it is yet to be seen whether the newly be given land powers as provided by the Thirteenth A Central Government and agencies will exercise over land m The Appendix of the Provincial Council List establishes a N The provisions of the Constitution provide that this body Provincial Councils, will be responsible for the formulatio National Land Policy will deal with the use of state la intended to exercise those powers devolved on them in a Policy formulated by the NLC. The NLC has yet to be es Amendment becoming part of the Constitution in February 23 Appendix II, 2.5 of the Thirteenth Amendment 24 Pursuant to Article 154R of the Constitution, the central governme recommendation of the Finance Commission. The Provincial Councils have Constitution. 25 Official web portal of The Eastern Revival Programme, http://www.newe 26 In the Memorandum on Land Issues Arising From the Ethnic Conflic recommended that the NLC be established and granted the resources neces respect the principle of subsidiarity, CPA has proposed that the NLC’s ro policies within whose framework provincial and local authorities would policies and programmes responsive to local needs. 23 | P a g e Despite recons purvie effect, makes hat any alienation of state land must be done under the es that where the distribution of allotments of state land the basis of national ethnic ratios.23 Distribution of state graphic patterns of a Province, and be done in a manner ess in settlements. The Amendment further provides that er various projects, priority should be given first to those to the landless of the area in which the project is dless of the Province. ils have the matters that cil List, the ing powers s resulted in ehabilitation the purview ct, it is the s the final tion is compounded by the financial dependence of the government.24 The centralisation of powers is also seen een introduced under the Eastern Revival Programme25 ys a significant role, thereby undermining the Provincial en whether the newly constituted Eastern Province will d by the Thirteenth Amendment and what control the ill exercise over land matters. uncil List establishes a National Land Commission (NLC). provide that this body, which will include members of sible for the formulation of the National Land Policy. The ith the use of state land. The Provincial Councils are devolved on them in accordance with the National Land e NLC has yet to be established despite the Thirteenth onstitution in February 1988.26 the central government may allocate funds to the Provinces on the rovincial Councils have no revenue-raising powers of their own under the me, http://www.neweast.lk rom the Ethnic Conflict and the Tsunami Disaster, January 2005, CPA ted the resources necessary to carry out its mandate. However, in order to osed that the NLC’s role be limited to the formulation of broad national local authorities would have the flexibility to formulate and implement Despite land, rehabilitation and reconstruction falling within the purview of the Provincial Councils, in effect, it is the central government that makes the final decision on all matters.
Page 24 5. RECOMMENDATIONS FOR REDUCING THE HSZ • The HSZ needs to be re-examined. While the reduction necessity of covering 5 full G.S divisions and significan reviewed by a Committee which could include, rep elected officials from parliament and the EPC represen • Gazette exact areas covered by the HSZ and make sur available. • Land acquisition should follow established process Acquisition Act and other laws. • Ensure that as many people as possible can return to The HSZ should be time specific and tied to the continu allow people to retain their property so they could rec FOR RESETTLEMENT AND RELOCATION • The security forces must turn over civilian buildings have been opened up for resettlement. • Resettlement and relocation should be carried out rec dignity of affected persons. The process should be c ensure that affected persons be informed and consul see’ visits, which the Government has helped coor resettlement. • Provide alternative land and compensation to those People should be provided with a choice of land, takin issues so as to ensure that people can carry out sustain • Provide comprehensive assistance to persons who h including food assistance, assistance with reconstruct assistance. Infrastructure assistance that addresses th is required. 24 | P a g e IONS ed. While the reduction of the HSZ is a positive move, the divisions and significant portions of 3 others needs to be ich could include, representatives of the military and t and the EPC representing the affected persons. the HSZ and make sure that the information is publicly w established processes in accordance with the Land . possible can return to their original lands and property. c and tied to the continuation of the conflict, which would perty so they could reclaim it when the war ends. RELOCATION over civilian buildings that they occupy in villages that lement. ould be carried out recognizing the basic rights and the he process should be carried out in a manner so as to e informed and consulted by the Government. ‘Go-and- ment has helped coordinate, should continue prior to ompensation to those whose lands are being acquired. h a choice of land, taking on board livelihoods and other le can carry out sustainable livelihoods. ance to persons who have been resettled and relocated stance with reconstruction and rebuilding and livelihood tance that addresses the immediate needs of the people
Page 25 FOR ADDRESSING RELATED LEGAL ISSUES • The provision of state land and permits should b formalities and done by authorized actors. • There should be mobile clinics that address the documents including birth certificates, National ID’s an • In accordance with the Thirteenth Amendment, all p need to be devolved including land powers. The Provin exercises these powers with caution as land is a key communal tensions. • The National Land Commission should be established i FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRINCOMALEE • Make public the development plans for the Trincom public awareness and information sharing. • Development programmes in the East need to tak concerns, with regional actors taking the lead in the fo projects. While macro economic projects including m estates are important, the rights of and the needs of l basic survival needs, to be adequately addressed. This stage so that immediate local needs are addressed and subjects of projects but are included in the implem consortiums such as the Trincomalee Chamber of Com on development plans is an important step. Establish level of local community leaders and the G.S to development projects would create more confidence a 25 | P a g e LEGAL ISSUES and permits should be in accordance with the legal ized actors. ics that address the documentation issue, replacing ificates, National ID’s and land documents. enth Amendment, all powers of the Provincial Councils land powers. The Provincial Council should ensure that it aution as land is a key source of ethnic grievances and should be established immediately. F TRINCOMALEE plans for the Trincomalee district and ensure there is ion sharing. the East need to take on board regional needs and taking the lead in the formulation and implementation of ic projects including major infrastructure and industrial ts of and the needs of local communities, including their quately addressed. This needs to happen at the planning eeds are addressed and that local people are not just the ncluded in the implementation. Ensuring that the local malee Chamber of Commerce are included and consulted portant step. Establishing committees at the community aders and the G.S to inform villages about current eate more confidence and ensure more public buy in.
Page 26 4. MAP OF TRINCOMALEE HIGH SECURITY For a map of Trincomalee HSZ please visit http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa= 764.00044e368d4e0c68da6c4&ll=8.456072,81.295052&s This map is a visual representation of the HSZ based on and other indicators. 26 | P a g e LEE HIGH SECURITY ZONE se visit ?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=111081221992229558 8.456072,81.295052&spn=0.134817,0.344696&z=12. n of the HSZ based on available data with demarcations