Vaharai IDPs III

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The innocent civilians of Vaharai have started to flee for their lives. Most of them have come to Batticaloa by foot, crossing the Thattimunai river, and walked through the thick jungle for almost two days.

There are 186 families-680 persons living in Vikneswara Vidyalayam in Paalameenmadu in Batticaloa district.

Sinthuja Navaratnam (10), and her younger sister Dharshika Navaratnam (3) have lost their father in April 2006 due to violence in Kilivetti.They were displaced from Kilivetti with their mother, and moved to Vaharai.They stayed with the extended family in Vaharai.These two kids tried to flee Vaharai with their mother due to the recent violence.They missed their mother in the crowd.The mother manged to get onto to a boat without her children.But unfortunately that particular boat capsized, and the mother died in the sea in December.The two kids are being looked after by their Uncle and family in the welfare camp in Paalameenmadu-Batticaloa district

The Internally Displaced Persons are now living in schools in Batticaloa district

"I am a Hindu priest.I have abandoned my temple in Vaharai, and came to Batticaloa.I do not have any income to take care of my family" says Kandaiah Perinbathasan (36)

There is lack of space for the Internally Displaced Persons in the welfare camps

"My family life is disturbed because I am living in this camp, and my husband is living in another camp. I do not know how to go to that particular camp, where my husband is living" says Sakunthaladevi Pathmanathan (26)

Most of them want to earn an income to look after their families