4 June, 2023


Human Rights Commission Is Inactive: Villagers Of Panama Protest Land Grabbing

The People of Panama villages, in the Ampara District including Shasthrawela, Ragamwela, Ulla, Ulpassa and Ragamwela will demonstrate their condemnation of the inaction of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) of Sri Lanka, in defending their Right to Land and Livelihood tomorrow.

A woman cries outside the Human Right Commission office in JaffnaThe villagers will protest against the inaction of NHRC in implementing its own recommendations on behalf of the villagers of Panama, outlawing the grabbing of land, torching of houses, and violent physical attack of villagers in 2010, has now resulted in hundreds of families being destitute – Landless, Homeless, and deprived of their livelihoods.

The villagers continue to oppose the World Bank (WB) – Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) joint commissioning of the ‘Arugam Bay Special Tourism Promotion Zone’ in their area, a press release about the demonstration said.

The villagers have organized themselves as the Panam-Paththuwa Surekeeme Sangvidhanaya (Organization for the Protection of Panam-Paththuwa) and will demonstrate in front of the Head Office of the National Human Rights Commission – No.165, Kynsey Road, Borella, Colombo 08., on 14 MARCH 2014 at 10:00 a.m. The people will hold posters and banners expressing their grievances and suffering to condemn the injustice.

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  • 2

    Everybody knows that HR Commission here is a good for nothing unit, taking away tax payers money doing next to nothing on Human Right matters. Pointless wasting time and energy on toothless tigers who cannot lift even a finger against HR violators. It may work well if it comes directly under an international organization.

    • 2

      What happened to the Commonwealth of Clowns and Kamlesh Sharma;s “capacity Building of the HRC?! The Commonwealth Of Nations is a Joke that should be shut down.

  • 3

    See, thanks to CT we are informed in this way.

    This is an another example people have to take the law to their hand today because there exist no law in the country.

    Even if Mahinda Rajapakshe continues his falshe propaganda campaign intending to regain power, this is the reality.
    None of those committee have taken any tangible actions yet. They have big talks but nothing is behind that.

    • 2

      Sirimal, Did those people take a legal action in a court in SL? I never heard people in Panama took legal action about this matter at any court in SL. If you genuinely concern about those people please advice them to go and meet their DS in Lahugala or Panama.

      Because of people erect a rickety home in a government land intending to grab it someday, and after they evicted for a government project, how could you say it is a breach of Right to Land. If a person do not possess a land or unable to buy a land because of poverty, there is a proper way to obtain government land. Every DS in SL has power to held “Land Kachcheri” in their division. After received applications, DS choose geniune applicants and issue land permits.

      If Pothuvil DS can gave 5000 acres of Forest Conservation Lands in Thirankomari,Vegaman and Darampalai to 2000 applicants [Most of these applicants already have lands in somewhere else too, and DS gave these lands to muslims future generation under the instructions of Justice Minister] within a short period, I think Lahugals DS can do it even better.

  • 3

    No Lankan citizen or civil society organization should give the HRC legitimacy by taking their grievances and national issues to it. Its just another tax-payer maintained bastardized state entity, like the island’s Judiciary. Its a waste of time, money and resources.For all intents and purposes, what is being practiced by the country’s current ruling family clique today is feudalism in the garb of democracy. The Sinhalese people should find an apolitical citizen to unite the collective opposition to defeat MR, taking a cue from the Northerners, who found such a personality in RETIRED SUPREME COURT JUDGE VIGNESWARAN.

  • 0

    Key words: Human, Rights, Commission, Human Rights Commission

    Modern humans (Homo sapiens or Homo sapiens sapiens) are the only remaining species of the hominids, a branch of great apes characterized by erect posture and bipedal locomotion; manual dexterity and increased tool use; and a general trend toward larger, more complex brains and societies. (Wikipedia)

    Rights are legal, social, or ethical principles of freedom or entitlement; that is, rights are the fundamental normative rules about what is allowed of people or owed to people, according to some legal system, social convention, or ethical theory. (Wikipedia)

    Statutory commission, a government authority created by statutes of the legislature such as:
    Statutory authority
    Regulatory agency
    Public benefit corporation (Wikipedia)

    Human Rights Commission:
    A Human Rights Commission, also known as a human relations commission, is a body set up to investigate, promote or protect human rights.
    The term may refer to international, national or sub-national bodies set up for this purpose, such as national human rights institutions or (usually temporary) truth and reconciliation commissions. (Wikipedia)

    The serious issues are;
    a) what is theory and practice of human rights?
    b) can human rights commissions contribute effectively to maintain law and order at sub-national, national and international levels?
    c) what are the other alternative mechanisms?

  • 0

    So, everybody around the world is talking about land grab from the Tamils in the NE. Even the photograph here shows a Tamil women with a pottu. Who is looking after the land grab from the Sinhalese at Ampara.
    Land “grab” has to happen when a country is developing, it is inevitable. My family was personally affected when there was a land “grab” for Mahawali project. Recently there was a land “grab” from hundreds of people in the SW for the express way. Where is the “truth, justice and reconciliation” for these Sinhalese?

    • 2


      “Even the photograph here shows a Tamil women with a pottu.”

      Since you have pointed out this uncivilised behaviour of this person, the state should ban people from wearing pottu in public or private.

      I suggeat send in the armed forces to search and destroy all pottu containers, seal all shops selling pottu, send in the white van where priests distribute such stuff, stone those women to death if found them secretly wearing it in private, ………….

      May be Mervyn has other ideas.

      I suppose these actions would satisfy you.

      “Where is the “truth, justice and reconciliation” for these Sinhalese?”

      Your stupid majoritarian Sinhala/Buddhists elects the government, man the judiciary, bureaucracy, armed forces and fill the parliament with gangsters, allow saffron clad thugs to run amok, therefore it is only reasonable for you to demand justice from them, and not from this women.

      • 0

        You again! There is no substance in any of your posts.

        • 2


          “You again!”

          Yes its me again and again.

          “There is no substance in any of your posts.”

          Thanks, it was intended.

    • 0

      ” Where is the “truth, justice and reconciliation” for these Sinhalese? “

      Land grabs against Tamils is order of magnitude worse than against Sinhalese not only because of the scope but because the underlying reason is one of ethnic disenfranchisement.

      On the one hand you support land grabs, and on the other you ask where is the justice for Sinhala victims of Land grabs.

  • 1

    Noel Jones asks as to whether these people took their case to Courts.
    People have lost their confidence in Courts long ago, especially after the 17th Amendment was repealed and 18A was passed (with which Shiranee B dug her own grave) with the support of even the current Minister Of Justice, Rauf Hakeem – Or may be that is the reason why he was made the Minister of (In)Injustice. He is prepared to sell not only his community but even let down his party’s Secretary General, Hassan Ali for complaining to Navy Pillai about the attack on mosques and about other injustices meted out to his community.One could also see the schism between the money minded opportunistic non-Eastern elitist Muslim leaders and the rights oriented Eastern Muslim leaders in the SLMC.
    For thereto be a semblance of democracy in SL, 18A should be repealed and the Constitutional Council formed as per17A should appoint independent commissions including the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC). The NHRC so appointed(not all the President’s donkeys) should then be given teeth (power) to take action even against the President e.g. for wasting Government money.Look at the example set by the president of Uruguay,Jose Mujica,the world’s poorest President, no palace, no motorcade,no frills. As of now our President can take over any land of any extent just by a Gazette Notification(No:1499/25-30 May,2007) as he appropriated 10000 acres of land in Sampur

    • 2

      Radish S., Any person who has valid deed, they can go to court, before you go anywhere. Even if you don’t trust judicial system, first you must file a case in a court. If the justice not done, today anybody can go even to Geneva or hand over their case to politicians like Asaad Sally,Hassen Ali and they’ll bring it to Geneva.

      The problem with these people as follows.
      1.They don’t have valid deed or even Land permit.

      2. Most of the time these people settle down by politicians,non-governmental organisations.

      3. If not people tend to grab lands intentionally, believing that one day value of these lands go up and then they can sell or open a business there. And then the problem agravated.

  • 0

    Land grabbers now thickening the smokescreen raised first by protesting against land grabbing!

    Sinhalese holding land in Amparai is a post 1950s phenomenon.

    Shasthrawela, Ragamwela, Ulla and Ulpassa are even Tamil names Sinhalised.
    It doesn’t take too much to scratch the racist veil here.
    Protesting the World Bank my foot!

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