24 September, 2020

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Sambanthan Fires Salvo Against Controversial Mittal Housing Project: Writes To Maithri And Ranil

Amidst intensifying opposition over the government’s decision to award Arcellor-Mittal Construction the project to construct 65,000 houses for families in the North and East provinces, Leader of the Opposition, R. Sampanthan has demanded President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to refrain from using opportunities for political mileage, which will benefit only a powerful few, whilst disregarding the true needs of the Tamil people.

Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan

Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan

In two separate letters addressed to Sirisena and Wickremesinghe on Monday, Sampanthan who is also the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), said that the government, together with the President has been public in their commitment to bring about reconciliation. “Initiatives to help conflict affected communities’ rebuild their homes and lives are important opportunities in this regard. However, merely using such opportunities for political mileage and disregarding the true needs of the Tamil People of the North and East can only be reflective of an unwillingness to effectively honour this commitment,” he said in the letter.

According to Sampanthan, the housing needs of the North and East are indeed dire, with an estimated 137,000 houses needed following the devastation of the war. “This issue must be addressed. The TNA welcomes the Government’s recognition of this, and its resolve to initiate a project to provide housing for conflict affected families. However, the serious concerns relating to the initiative in question repeatedly raised by a wide ranging group of civil society activists, professionals, and politicians cannot be ignored. This includes the recent report of experts of the University of Moratuwa on the suitability of the abovementioned steel houses,” he said.

While highlighting that the awarding of the tender to Arcellor-Mittal happened even before the tender process commenced, Sampanthan who quoted experts claimed that the proposed prefabricated houses to be constructed by the company will not last for more than 10 years, with the model houses of the scheme which have been erected already starting to come apart.

“For the conflict affected communities in the North and East, a house is not merely a means of shelter, but an inextricable part of their culture. A house passes down from generation to generation; parents build a house with the hope of one day giving it to their children. For the Tamil People, a house is thus part of one’s culture, history and heritage, and is expected to last for several generations. Thus, these concerns relating to durability are a matter of especially great concern,” Sampanthan said.

With the proposed houses to be built out of steel instead of brick, the TNA leader also questioned the environmental suitability, as houses build on steel will be extremely unsuitable for a country like Sri Lanka, due to the rapidly rising temperature and humidity levels.

“The cost of each house is estimated to be Rs. 2.1. million. This is 2-3 times more than the more environmentally suitable, durable, permanent brick house provided under the Indian housing scheme which provided 50,000 houses in the North. This fact is of greater concern in a context where the housing need exceeds 130,000 and the Government is offering 65,000 – half of that number,” Sampanthan said in his letter.

While highlighting that unemployment is a serious concern in the North, Sampanthan called upon both Sirisena and Wickremesinghe to give serious consideration where a project of such magnitude will also provide employment opportunities for the civilians living in the area.

“In these circumstances, the TNA strongly recommends that the Government undertake a review of the initiative in question, and properly address all of the above concerns in implementing this or any other initiative to address the housing crisis in the North and East,” he said in his letter.

While reiterating that the government’s resolve to address the housing need of the North and East was commendable, Sampanthan highlighted that such efforts must take into consideration the needs and culture of the people themselves, and the long term implications the initiative will have on the community. “It is only then that such efforts can be an effective part of reconciliation. Such efforts must not, instead, fall prey to corruption and become a means of benefiting a powerful few,” he said.

“If the Government is committed to reconciliation, then its actions must reflect that. For its part, the TNA remains committed to constructively engage with both Your Excellency and the Government in order to bring about true reconciliation in this country,” the letter added.

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  • 2
    20

    Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan

    RE: Sambanthan Fires Salvo Against Controversial Mittal Housing Project: Writes To Maithri And Ranil

    “Amidst intensifying opposition over the government’s decision to award Arcellor-Mittal Construction the project to construct 65,000 houses for families in the North and East provinces, Leader of the Opposition, R. Sampanthan has demanded President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to refrain from using opportunities for political mileage, which will benefit only a powerful few, whilst disregarding the true needs of the Tamil people.”

    “Initiatives to help conflict affected communities’ rebuild their homes and lives are important opportunities in this regard. However, merely using such opportunities for political mileage and disregarding the true needs of the Tamil People of the North and East can only be reflective of an unwillingness to effectively honour this commitment,” he said in the letter

    While it has to be transparent, it has to benefit All the People, who were affected by the Separatist War and by the Ethnic Cleansing by the LTTE Tamils.

    Yes, we understand that you are ONLY concerned about the Tamil people, whereas the Government has to be concerned about ALL the people, including the Tamil people.

    All other peoplre have to be marginalized.

    Are the Low Caste Tamils, the non-Vellahalas, to be marginalized too?

    • 12
      16

      Amarasiri,

      Why has the Muslim political parties that have been closely intertwined with the governments not asked for housing for Muslims displaced from the north, if they are yet in temporary sheds? How many of these Muslims are without proper homes now? Have they been excluded from the scheme for the north and east? If they are entitled and were residents of the north, they should also receive such housing. No one will dispute that. Driving through the areas around Puttalam, I see many are well settled now and have received governmental and external assistance.

      Why is this effort to hang onto the Tamil coat tail, and retard solutions to their problems, whenever a solution emerges? This is notwithstanding the non-interference in Muslim-issues by Tamils and support from the vast majority of Tamils when the Muslims face a crisis.

      Dr.RN

      • 1
        17

        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

        “Why has the Muslim political parties that have been closely intertwined with the governments not asked for housing for Muslims displaced from the north, if they are yet in temporary sheds? How many of these Muslims are without proper homes now? Have they been excluded from the scheme for the north and east? If they are entitled and were residents of the north, they should also receive such housing. No one will dispute that.”

        This is where the Muslim politicians and many Muslim Civic Organizations are falling short. How many were evicted? How Many Returned? What is the current Status? Are their land and houses still there?

        6 Years after the war, still, in limbo. The current bottom line is that LTTE succeeded in ethnically clensing the Muslims and Sinhala from the Northern Province. If a Unitary state is the final goal, this has to be reversed.Every citizen should have the drought to love anywhere in the country, unmolested.

        If separation is the goal, that is what they all want. Separated communities in different regions. Then they might as well go for a Federal State. Then the Vellahalas can reign supreme in the Northern Federal State and exhibit theit hegemony over the non-Vellahalas.

      • 9
        1

        Dr RN

        Amarasiri is a turncoat – a Muslim is Sinhala portrayal.

        He must speak about Rishad Badiudin’s ventures including stealing scrap metal from the war zone.

        • 1
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          Nirmala N

          Gone with the Wind for the Vellahala Hegemony.

          Vellahalas squirming. Gone with the wind. A Vellahala Castism and Racism Civilization going with the wind. It has taken three Western Imperialists and Colonialists and 68 years of “Independence” to come to this point, the year of the Lord A.D. 2,016.

          When will the Vellahala give up, become Egalitarian Tamils and move on?

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mM8iNarcRc

          • 13
            1

            Amarasiri,

            you are a stupid racist If you were the president I swear you would be like Franco the Frog.

            Don’t you understand the article?
            You are bringing grannies tainted knickers¬
            When I hear the sound knickers it means Crude oil.

            Get flushed pipsqueak.

            I do know where this is going to end and what form its going be.

            You are no engineer but a street walker.

            • 1
              11

              take_that

              “you are a stupid racist If you were the president I swear you would be like Franco the Frog.”

              Amarasiri is neither stupid nor a racist. May be it is you, the agitated Vellahala, who is stupid and a racist.

              The IQ of the Tamils is bi-modally distributed. Your IQ must be closer to the origin.

              There is a traditional cure for it. Go and poison, some poor non-Vellala Tamil wells, and put some fences astound the Temples to keep them out, and getting too close to the Vellahala Gods. Now getting a better understanding of the bimodal IQ distribution of the Tamils, as published in CT.

              The Story Of Two Graphs drawn by A Tamil Man: By Mahesan Niranjan Onion Prices and Tamil IQ Distributions

              https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/the-story-of-two-graphs-drawn-by-a-tamil-man/onioniqdistributions/

              https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/the-story-of-two-graphs-drawn-by-a-tamil-man/

              • 7
                0

                “”Amarasiri is neither stupid nor a racist. May be it is you, the agitated Vellahala, who is stupid and a racist.””

                This is no vele raala of your kind.

                “The IQ of the Tamils is bi-modally distributed. Your IQ must be closer to the origin. “”

                Bell curve: you are stupidly curved not to known that ours is 120.
                booby ambude yours is 65 just a manager of a typist pool.

              • 4
                0

                If the Tamil (who are sifted through unofficial standardization procedures to enter university) at the University is below average IQ, is there a guess about the rulers with less than O/L. If that is not what Thevaaram is say is he saying is Thevaaram is saying the average of the Tamils can enter Universities? Poor Thevaaram usually does not understand his theories. It just evaluates every university student at his level. And you are just a cut and paste king.

                When one or two violent students wants a dress code to university and Thevaaram and you want it rated as average Tamils’ action, then why there is a denunciation that the freedom call of Tamils is only LTTE supporters? Because Amarasiri cannot tolerate Tamils behave equally with him? It’s all just the nature of Sinhala intellectuals’ standardization.

                There is nowhere in any Tamil area that law is separating Vellalas from others. Will Amarasiri take off his hands from NPC and leave it to implement the law to see how is it handling the provisions of Human equality? They are not ready to do so because of the fear of NPC will prove their concocted theories to divide Tamils are only their mirror reflection? Before you talk about the caste will you take off the hand from NPC? If needed, latter, governor can dissolve it.

                Further vellalas always call Brahmins, Ayya (lord), not as Brahmin. But the other castes had (and now lost the custom) calling Vellalas only Kamakaran (the cultivator). This is just like calling a doctor, Doctor and a driver, Driver, nothing of any sort of more/less unwanted respect. It is only just due politeness. Same equivalent formats were used (no longer) for all castes. Unlike Shanmugathasan who got paid by China,( just like now China paying for some writers, ) to stir the community to fish political benefits, many people’s recommendation was “Don’t ask don’t tell” until the it is forgotten. This was successfully used by American military and after sexual discrimination is better understood by civilians, now it has brought outright ban. Why this should not be tested on Tamils caste problems? Is that because Amarasiri wouldn’t have a topic to cut and paste? If Amersiri is really worried about Tamils cates problem, as the Sinhala Intellectuals government is not giving the police to NPC to implement the existing Solomon West Ridgeway Dias’ time Sri Lankans law of caste equality, will Amarasiri recommend to Tamils that they should stop telling or asking the castes to each other?

                So far, in none of the Vellalas owned temples, vellalas broke the barrier and entered into Karpakirakam. In many temples the culture is compromised and law of Human equality accepted, so Vellalas have allowed other castes to go up to the level themselves go in. In all temples opened like that for others castes, Brahmin’s Karpakirukam is closed vellalas. So far they never have overstepped their culture. That is how, so far Vellalas has proved that they do not molester the law like Sinhala Intellectuals to bring standardization or Sinhala Only to prioritize them ahead of other castes. At the same time, they have shown they still maintain the culture by controlling them from entering into Karpakirakam. Lord Amarasiri, lost his respects and lowered himself to sleep with low births like Mahindapala and Izeth Hussain to maintain equality with them and got infested with ticks. Amarasiri lowering him and trying to cut and paste un-grasped matters to equate him with Izeth and Mahindapala does not rate them as writers. Only Amarasiri’s racism openly shows off. Those dogs with ticks like to scratch each other’s back. Too sad to watch!

                Can somebody tell me why Bother Prince went to America? Doesn’t his passport have to be secured by court for the investigation going on him? Who was the Doctor in Lankawe told him that he cannot cure his disease in Lankawe and can be cured only in America? His Brother (Old King) told he made the Jaffna Hospital like that no others in the country can match it. Then, did Bother Prince go to that kind of super hospital to check before he goes out? Didn’t he and his Brother, Old King paid the GSP+ earnings back to American Lobby firms to buy the American political support and failed? Is this a game SLFP-China and UNP-America when SLFP in power, and UNP-China and SLFP-America when the UNP in power.

                We have to go alone. Amarasiri cannot use the Government’s power to split the Tamils along the caste lines to make them to stay under him and pay for the Deposits went Panama, Dubai, Swiss, Seychelles and East European Banks. We did not ask to buy Chemical bombs to throw on us and kill Eknaligoda before that come out. Before Amarasiri ask Tamils to stop asking for separate country, he has to impose a special tax on Sinhala Intellectuals like him, who brings and disposes SLFP-UNP twins, to pay for the China’s loans. We cannot pay for Swaminathan’s houses, Mahendran’s bonds, Port City and Hambantota White Elephants. They have to be paid only by Sinhala Intellectuals who vote for the UNP –SLFP twins.

                Just because Dayan has stopped coming to CT, don’t please fill up his shoes and do his job of cut and paste. Please stop that boring thing. Thanks in advance!

              • 7
                1

                Amarasiri

                You are are tip cut. Confirmed.

      • 10
        10

        Dr R N

        Every time an opportunity arises for the CM of NPC to meet the President and/or Prime Minister he becomes ill.

        I pray to the almighty Nallur Murugan to bless my dear CV to be discharged early to engage in his vindictive political campaign to malign the Eelam Tamils further.

        We are a cursed raced.

        • 1
          4

          He has also not attended cabinet meetings for which all CMs are invited.

          Dr.RN

  • 2
    12

    Hon Sampanthan,

    You say, “For the conflict affected communities in the North and East, a house is not merely a means of shelter, but an inextricable part of their culture. A house passes down from generation to generation; parents build a house with the hope of one day giving it to their children. For the Tamil People, a house is thus part of one’s culture, history and heritage, and is expected to last for several generations. Thus, these concerns relating to durability are a matter of especially great concern,”.

    I agree.

    However with due respect Hon Sampanthan,expecting a cash strapped government to build ancestral homes for the war affected is going a bit too far in demands. An ancestral home that is passed on from generation to generation takes generations to build, improve, added on and undergo constant renovations etc. It will be great if all governments in the world can build ancestral homes for all its war affected citizenry. But you need to be practical. The need of the moment is shelter and not an ancestral home. I am sure the homeless of the moment will not be as fussy as you are Sir.

    You say that 137000 houses are needed at the moment. Wouldn’t building 65000 prefabricated houses go a long way towards alleviating such a shortfall. If we build ancestral homes as suggested by you I wonder if we could even build 5000 such homes with the same funds that go to build 65000 pre fabricated homes.

    By the way if the construction rights were awarded to Mittal conglomerate prior to the usual tender consultation process, then it is called corruption. We all will have an issue with that.

  • 4
    13

    Another issue Hon Sampanthan,

    You have been somewhat non committed with regards to the 95000 muslims who were evicted by the LTTE in utterly harrowing circumstances. Many of these people are still living in harrowing conditions. Some were settled in unsettling conditions in totally alien places such as in the periphery of Wilpattu only to be subjected to intimidation and insults by saffron robed thugs. How about their ancestral homes and their cultural heritage in Jaffna. Why are they not welcomed back now that the war is over. Who is occupying their ancestral homes in the Jaffna peninsula now?

    What is culture for the goose is also culture to the gander, with all due respects Hon Sampanthan.

    • 7
      0

      BBS Response, muslim mulla,

      “What is culture for the goose is also culture to the gander, with all due respects Hon Sampanthan. “

      Muslim is religion!! You cannot have it both ways Go chop the heads of your milking mu_slime ministers at the top who have taken the top off this island.

      No wonder son of a hog!!

      Do you know the life span of brick??
      No stupid hog

      • 1
        3

        Wow, grease yakka. What bias and what racism.

        I wonder what religion you follow. Perhaps Gnanasara must be your eternal hero.

        How many Tamils and Muslims have you killed so far.

        • 5
          1

          BBS Reply,

          “I wonder what religion you follow. Perhaps Gnanasara must be your eternal hero.”

          human affairs.

          “How many Tamils and Muslims have you killed so far. “

          Frog stuck in your throat??

  • 2
    1

    Re. the earlier article on this subject, Line Minister Mr. Swaminathan
    confirmed the following in an interview with the English media (CDN).

    1. The comprehensive Tender process was duly followed at all levels and that Arcellor’s price was Rs.1.4 million per unit whereas the next lowest tenderer was at Rs.1.2 million. He took the position Arcelor’s condition/offer to supply furniture, fans, cookers and other expensive equipment made Arcelor’s price more attractive than the lowest tenderer.
    Mr. Sampanthan, on the other hand, says Arcellor’s was an astonishingly high price pf Rs.2.1million each – and adds this is 2-3 times more than what the other Indian builder is completing his houses at. No doubt, there are some complaints on the quality of these houses.

    2. The Minister also confirmed experts at the University of Moratuwa, after an extensive study of the houses, have cleared Arcelor’s houses were suitable to the Northern hot climate taking into consideration these houses were mainly steel based whereas the traditional houses in the area were built on the conventional brink and cement method.

    Mr. Sampanthan’s letter to the President makes it clear Minister Swaminathan has been deliberately economic with much of the truth. This is unacceptable. This degree of truth deficit is not expected from a Minister claiming to follow high ethical standards under the much-hyped Yahapaalanaya/Good Governance.

    One more instance of “from the frying pan to the fire” Oh! our political leaders!!!!! There was one who enriched himself on the massive funds that came in from overseas donors for the Tsunami-affected. And here we have vultures going after the misery of millions of homeless and the pitifully displaced.

    Kettikaran

    • 2
      1

      Kettikaran

      “And here we have vultures going after the misery of millions of homeless and the pitifully displaced.”

      Did Sajith Premadasa,Minister of Housing & Construction have a hand in the tender process.

      Now you see the typical central government enforcing its policies on people of the distant areas.

      The provincial councils should be empowered to deal with such matters in consultation with the local population, whom these houses are meant to benefit. This about their habitat, not about minister’s arrogance of power.

      People of the local area shouldn’t be told when to ease themselves and where it is appropriate to do so.

      • 5
        13

        NV,

        With the present NPC? An NPC that has proved incapable of spending the money it has been allocated? An NPC that has not been able to find a solution for the oil pollution in well water in the Chunnakam area? An NPC that has not found solutions to the flooding problem in its immediate neighborhood?

        I am surprised you said what you have!

        Dr.RN

        • 4
          2

          Dr.Rajasingham

          My comment observation not just based on the actions and inaction of NPC but the entire country.

          During MR dictatorship works that came under purview of Provincial Councils were controlled by the centre, Basil and the bureaucrats made sure that they basically did what was clearly a decentralized function.

          It was a question of who get the contract, commission and ultimately glory.

          If NPC is incapable of delivering quality of services to the inhabitants, then one should inquire into the functioning of the institution. Is it because of inertia usually associated with bureaucracy, lack of able administrators, resources, quality skilled workers, planners, project managers …… or complacency and arrogance of the elected representatives?

          When will the central government let the provinces to run their own affairs, from actually doing and learning? The provinces need to be nurtured not browbeaten into towing central government command.

          Why do you think the NPC is incapable of delivering services for which it was set up and elected in the first place?

          • 3
            12

            NV,
            Because of the quality of persons elected to the NPC-a crucial institution to attend to the needs of the Tamils, despite its limitations. The Wayamba Provincial Council with Gamini Jayawickrema Perera as CM did wonders in that province. The NPC is wasting it’s time on passing resolutions on various topics that are not its concern, instead of attending to the needs of the people, in areas where it has authority and the financial resources. The NPC is a burden on the Tamils now. It’s abject failure cannot be covered up or defended any longer. They are playing the fiddle while the citizens of the north are crying need for a helping hand. We have to stop blaming everyone else but us, for our woes. As I had written earlier, we have to learn to do what we can, with what we have, soon.

            Dr.RN

            • 3
              2

              Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

              “The Wayamba Provincial Council with Gamini Jayawickrema Perera as CM did wonders in that province.”

              One cannot compare NPC to Wayamba Provincial Council for various historical reasons.

              The Wayamba has been in existence for 28 years whereas NPC is not even 3 years.

              What exactly NPC needs to kick start its functions?

              The main obstacle to any progress in the NPC is the foot ball size ego of each individuals who work within the council.

              I am not sure what exactly the Councilors and bureaucrats do from Monday to Friday. Do they have a master plan, a need assessment, a budget, value for money audit, ….. do they know where exactly they want to be in 20 years time?

              It is only a journey (pilgrimage) from A to B, whether they make it or not, will they make the journey enjoyable?

            • 6
              4

              DR RN
              You keep criticizing NPC members. Everyone has their own ideas as to what should or should not be done. If you are really interested in the affairs of NPC why didn’t you stand for the elction. Was it because you were busy licking MR.

              • 6
                1

                Don’t want to be impolite. Nothing political but he is senile. when its time they must learn to move on.
                At 80 he has a typist and is trying to give prescriptions to engineers and demand trade secrets.
                His is the same class of Izeth Hussain. 80+ He never learnt what is professional etiquette at Canada and calls himself velala caste but behaves like a toddy tapper – leading to distemper.
                His period of people never learnt Personal Computing from scratch (building to operating systems so he is a slave) So the PC and web is all magic to him. there are sites that educate but one has to pay.
                i once gave a water purification technique (the one was crying :Punitham) I picked from RT knowing that i have folk at the ivy NY. He went to their web site quickly and picked up what is available (the same as on RT which had copied) but he did not print that it is patented. I spoke to my friends there got the details in full So I could not help laughing- Its their bread and butter.
                So he falls in the class of 80+– Dys-Synaptogenic – stupid

      • 2
        1

        Dear Native V

        The unfavourable stars of the Tamil people in the N-E apparently
        have not changed since Pulidevan ran the show – and, even after May/09. The suffering Tamil Nation is caught in an ego trap although India and the global community have succeeded in pressuring the obstinate Sinhalese to give the Tamils at least some of their just dues. India comes into the scene because if houses are not given in time these people are forced to cross over to go across to Tamilnadu again.

        In the matter of these 65,000 houses it is an ego battle between Wiggie – who apparently feels since he is CM/NP he should be the deciding authority. But Ranil does not stand the sight of the man and has sworn not to deal with him. Ranil, through his proxy Swaminathan, wants to have the final say and so young Premadasa, the Housing Minister, is ignored. As the late Amir would say the Tamil people are used like a ball in a football game only to be kicked around.

        Meanwhile, the country needs to be told publicly the state of how many of the other 50,000 houses the Indians built. Such details as how many were given to Tamils, the state of the houses (said to be of poor quality), the opinion of the people concerned etc.
        This should not end up like that racket Thondaman carried out in the Hill country – where the politicians made multi-millions and the poor Estate workers were left with modern kukul-kooduwas/cattle sheds in the hundreds.

        Kettikaran

      • 3
        1

        Dear NV,
        There is something fishy in this matter. It appears that someone down the line is getting benefit from this.

        A Tamil person who held a high position in Premadasa regime and made money illegally and bought properties in UK and was in self imposed exile in UK, returned to Srilanka after this government came to power.

        Could you please find out whether this gentleman had a hand in getting Mittal to be awarded this project.

        • 3
          0

          Dr. Gnana Sankaralingam

          You are right.

          He is part of UNP’s establishment.

          He was very close to Premadasa. RW sought his services in 2002 when he became prime minister. Now he is part of RW’s kitchen cabinet, supposed to be looking after upcountry Tamils, entrusted with creating alternative employment to those hard working people.

          Well I haven’t updated his recent contribution to the welfare of people of this island. Though he is not a trained accountant my Elders tell me that he is very good at cooking the books, or least destroying/losing paper trail.

          “Could you please find out whether this gentleman had a hand in getting Mittal to be awarded this project.”

          It could take some time.

          • 1
            0

            “”Elders tell me that he is very good at cooking the books, or least destroying/losing paper trail. 2

            That is national hobby for all honest sergeant Kandiah’s to keep them and family in good stead.

            ¬It could take some time.¬
            Mittal proposed with his tech and upfront funding therefore it was his (non can match pay me billion. 4 in 10 years- rest of procedure was for the sake of looking right. % goes to party man in 10 years when monetary transaction takes place or he would be idiot.
            Read a detective novel on mafia art.

          • 1
            0

            Native V

            The man was only an average Admin-Officer/CAS when Preme (the Kehelwatta kid) was looking for someone whom he can trust for all the devilry he was planning. Our friend came along and being a “yes man” by nature cottoned on to Preme. He fitted there like a glove. Thereafter to Ranil. During Preme’s time the man did a fortnightly 3-day weekend visit to Chennai. The official reason was “he was going to do a pooja for Prema”. But those who followed his movements saw a comely Brahmin damsel in the scene. The man’s hotel bills etc were met by a Colombo Tamil (Indian) millionaire in the Sugar business, who died rather prematurely a few years ago in his late 40s. He left an unpaid bill of Rs.55 million to the Peoples Bank. Both were private partners in mutual London investments.

            It is possible Mittal was brought in by this London-based ex Lankan Treasury official. How he acquired London properties is a mystery – some of which known to Kili M of the famous M Organisation. This secretive man, who avoids meeting new friends, enjoys the confidence of Ranil and the old UNP establishment. He has friends in the UK/EU Govt, the WB/IMF – all of which useful to Ranil.

            This is nothing new. You get this variety in most developing countries. They sway with the wind and eventually fade out – not necessarily gracefully or with honour.

            Kettikaran

  • 9
    2

    Mittal-Swaminathan link with cuts to big-shots is a fore-gone story and nothing to review. Only RW will reply saying that the matter will be reviewed, but nothing will happen just like in CB inquiry, Tajudeen case etc. MS will say he.he.he…

    Wait and see, your people will end up with some waste tins to live in like sardines.

  • 3
    13

    Nothing can beat Thambi’s cajan huts and trenches. Having said that Sambanthan is worried it is only Swaminathan has his hand in the cake. My advice to Samba keep away because this plum FCID stuff for the next government in waiting. Alas who cared about the Tamils anyway your support of SF at the presidential election spoke volume of your philosophy. If you want a decent face saving deal only person who can legitimately give it is MR. But your old brain is full of puss you will not get it.

  • 5
    0

    This scenario is not atypical of the national malaise.

    A proper consultation process is dismissed, ignored, avoided, abandoned to exhibit a show of power and authority of the administrator over the sense of belonging of the recipient.

    You may interpret my line of thinking to suit your palate.

  • 6
    19

    “Amidst intensifying opposition over the government’s decision to award Arcellor-Mittal Construction the project to construct 65,000 houses for families in the North and East provinces, Leader of the Opposition, R. Sampanthan has demanded President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to refrain from using opportunities for political mileage, which will benefit only a powerful few, whilst disregarding the true needs of the Tamil people.”

    Can Mr.Sambanthan specifically state,

    1. how many housing units are yet needed for the displaced and homeless in the north and east?
    2. How urgently they are needed, considering that almost seven years have elapsed since the war ended?
    3. Whether the traditional housing can be constructed quick enough to meet an urgent and overdue need?
    4. Whether, there are sufficient skilled craftsmen in the north and east to build these houses well to high standards, quickly?
    5. Whether, he is aware of the problems the construction industry faces in the north with regard to procuring sand and cradtsmen?
    6. Whether, he has seen the houses built by the Indians in iyakachchi and finds their quality and suitability acceptable?
    7. Whether he has seen the prefabricated steel houses erected in the army camps in Jaffna post-war and sought the opinion of the armed forces on them?
    8. Whether he sought information on the performance of these houses in other locations in Sri Lanka and elsewhere?
    9. Whether he is aware that these houses have a longivity of 70 years, a warranty of 30 years and require very little maintenance?
    10. Whether he is aware that steel-based prefabricated housing ( also recyclable and movable) is the trend of the future, considering the depletion of natural resources needed for house construction?
    11. Whether, he is aware that these prefab houses have better heat insulating properties than conventional concrete blocks and the cement plastering?

    It is yet politics, even on matters concerning the lives of those who have just survived the ravages of a brutal and vicious war! How far can such politics at the expense of the real victims of the war take us? What are the current needs of the Tamils other than recovering from the ravages of war and catching up with lost time on the road to progress? Who are the powerful people who will benefit at the expense of the Tamils? Any company that will build these houses will profit. But would they have the capacity to build such houses to high standards and offer the guarantees required? Please be specific without beating around the bush.

    If there are concerns of the height of the floor from the ground or the security aspects of the Windows, seek specific solutions,without inventing excuses to undermine a much and urgently needed project.

    What is the political mileage the President and Prime Minister gain, except that they will win the goodwill of a battered people who voted enmasse for them in the hope that they will do what they have come forward to do?

    Oh! Mr. Sambanthan, try to become a leader and cease being a cheap politician at least now.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

    • 10
      7

      Dr RN

      Moratuwa University Experts carried out a preliminary survey on these steel houses. Expert panel comprised of Professor, Brian Dias,Dr.Nakkiga Galwatura (Engineers) and Architect Varuna De Silva visited the North and carried out the survey.

      Their survey disclosed the following facts:
      1.These houses cannot be repaired and extended
      2.Not environmental friendly
      3.Last only for 25 to 30 years but where as cement building last for over 50 years.
      4.Cannot withstand flood.
      5.Windows can be opened only halfway.
      6.No bar in windows leading to security risk.
      7.After 10 years liable to rust erosion etc.

      • 7
        16

        Anpu,

        If I remember right,the Ministry of Rehabilitation also cited a report by the University of Moratuwa. I read extensively on such housing in recent months and do not agree with most conclusions of this report. I will agree on their observations about the need for more security concious Windows and a higher floor level. I have seen and lived in houses of this nature near the sea coast in Saudi Arabia. Some of them are over fifty years now and there are no corrosion problem. The Windows are of the sliding type and appear large enough to permit enough ventilation. These buildings have a longivity of 70 years and are guaranteed for thirty.

        I think the Tamil politicians are committing a serious crime against their people, once again.

        is the Moratuwa University the ultimate judge on all engineering matters locally? Sri Lanka has minimum experience on knowledge on such matters and if there are genuine concerns, expertise from countries with such buildings should be obtained.

        Dr.RN

        • 9
          4

          Dr.RN, You are just being a thorn in the butt, jumping out at every opportunity to put in your two cents worth. Don’t jump like a jack-in-the-box. You are not amusing.

          How are you better qualified than the panel from the UoM to run down an evaluation submitted by them?

          • 5
            1

            Narendran ,

            “The Windows are of the sliding type and appear large enough to permit enough ventilation.”

            You have piles stupid pain in the butt.

            You don’t own homes to even have an idea of what is apparent and what is real with sliding windows.

            There is a mathematical calculation for ventilation. So they confidently say its not sufficient. They have no obligation to tell anyone how they came to it- its professional practice- period

            Are you by any chance running a brothel to ask others in a profession How How how?? there is a fee pay it and learn and In assure you very few would know and even if they know its a trade secret.

            IPKF should have finished you but left it to islanders

        • 11
          4

          Rajasingham,

          You state “I read extensively on such housing in recent months and do not agree with most conclusions of this report”, and also assert “These buildings have a longivity of 70 years”

          Your obvious implication is that either
          (a) you are better qualified on the basis of your “extensive readings in the recent months” to make that assessment than the Moratuwa University academics/professionals, or

          (b) that the Moratuwa University team has conspired to lie in their report.

          Which one is it? Or is there an alternative explanation for your stand?

          Let me also ask you more specifically on your assertion ‘”These buildings have a longivity of 70 years.”

          Could you substantiate that statement by citing the source for your assertion? If you are unable to do that, I suppose it will be fair to assume that to be no different than the tuk-tuk wisdom that came up a few months ago from the Rajasinghams!

          • 9
            4

            “I read extensively on such housing in recent months and do not agree with most conclusions of this report”, and also assert “These buildings have a longivity of 70 years”

            TNA, CM Wiggy , Sumanthiran,Friday Forum, various Civil societies, leading news papers all oppose this housing scheme for various reason, durability, fit for purpose, cost of maintenance etc etc etc

            Dr.R.N thinks otherwise. May be he is ally of Swaminathan

        • 9
          4

          Dr RN
          “is the Moratuwa University the ultimate judge on all engineering matters locally?”
          Are not civil/structural engineers and architects competent to comment on the suitability of dwellings for people? Has any professional in the relevant fields disputed their observations?
          So it seems that Dr RN who is the ultimate judge on engineering matters!

          It is a panel of professionals and not people hand-picked to deliver a pre-determined verdict.
          Prof. Priyan Dias has also written extensively on matters of concern to society, and always writes responsibly.
          I doubt if another team of competent professionals will differ with them on their basic criticisms.

          Does Dr RN want foreign experts, desirably hand-picked by Mittal?
          On what grounds is he challenging the Panel? Being from Moratuwa?
          Many other issues have been raised about the project earlier and the critique of Prof. Priyan and others adds weight to those observations:
          Unduly high cost.
          Lack of prior consultation with potential occupants
          Lack of transparency and improper tender procedure (matters where the MR regime was often faulted)
          Lack of consideration of long term cost implications for occupants
          etc. etc. including major socio-economic factors.

          Thee is another matter that escapes the attention of many commentators: Why steal of all materials? There is a slump in the global steel market and ArcelorMittal is stuck with unsaleable stock.

          This is not a debate between Sampanthan, Sumanthiran and Wigneswaran on one side and Swaminathan on the other.

          If anyone has to answer anything, it is the advocates of the project. The due answers are not forthcoming.
          Swaminathan rather than responding is only flying off the handle.

          It is a lot of public money. Borrowed money that has be paid back.

          Will the MPs and members of the cabinet who back the project move with their families to the luxury of ArcelorMittal steel homes for an year or two before prescribing them to the country?

          • 9
            4

            SJ,

            I cannot agree with you more on India/Mittal strategy.

            India has already complained of “dumping” of steel by China. It is the cheap steel and lack of market that has induced this Indian generosity to the gullible neighbor!

          • 5
            5

            SJ/sekera

            “Are not civil/structural engineers and architects competent to comment on the suitability of dwellings for people?”

            No, let us bring in a few experts from China.

            “Why steal of all materials?”

            China has lot of it and dumping it wherever possible.

            Chinese engineers did a good job when they were contracted out to build Norocholai power plant and the Hambantotta harbour.

            I wonder why RW didn’t contract out this project to socialist Chinese companies.

            • 3
              0

              “”I wonder why RW didn’t contract out this project to socialist Chinese companies. “”

              Chinese are experts moving building from one location to another – 5 star hotel. because its cheaper.

              As you can imagine they would move RW’s southern buildings to the north and Hey ChiCom.

            • 1
              2

              Dear RJ
              Is Miss RTF in the same play pen as you?

              Time to jog and chant.
              Avoid the play pen for some time.

        • 5
          0

          DR NV
          you are just vomiting man.
          You say “These buildings have a longivity of 70 years” Where did you get that figure from. Your extensive reading –of what–playboy magazine??
          Experts in the field of house construction have analysed and reported the unsuitability of these houses and you are challenging it on what ground???

          • 1
            0

            PROUDMAN

            “DR NV”

            Its time for you to visit your optician.

            • 2
              0

              Hello Native Vedda
              I am sorry it should have been DR RN.
              Thank you for reminding me of the optician.
              I know I should have kept my appointment with the Spec Savers. I will go and see them straight away.
              Thanks NV.

              Hello DR RN

              DR RN
              you are just vomiting man. You say “These buildings have a longivity of 70 years” Where did you get that figure from. Your extensive reading –of what–playboy magazine?? Experts in the field of house construction have analysed and reported the unsuitability of these houses and you are challenging it on what ground???

          • 1
            2

            NV dear, calm down!
            You did not make that silly statement.
            It was Dr RN who did.
            So why are you getting excited?

            • 2
              0

              SJ/sekere

              “NV dear, calm down! You did not make that silly statement. It was Dr RN who did. So why are you getting excited?”

              Wherever I find mistakes/errors/lies/…. I have taken it upon myself to do the right thing, pointing out errors and stupidity, helping to see through lies, spins, ….

              I am excites because I see everything in black and white and not through mindset that is already been conditioned and polluted by discredited “heroes”.

              • 0
                0

                “Wherever I find mistakes/errors/lies/…. I have taken it upon myself to do the right thing, pointing out errors and stupidity, helping to see through lies, spins, ….”

                O dearie dearie NV,
                That is what a nice old girl of your mental age thinks that she does too. You may remember her in the play pen.

                Unfortunately, centuries before the pair of you, there was a man with a mission from La Mancha who made a name for himself. Great stuff. There was a movie too long ago.

                If you are really serious about your ‘honourable mission’ you should make a start at home— where charity begins they say.

                Relax amid jogging. Meditate too if you can. Chant in the play pen.
                Everything helps.

                • 0
                  0

                  SJ/TamCom,

                  Don Qey hot and dry La mancha differs from mild and humid vanni.

                  If a man comes upto you with a bayonet what would you do?

                  • 0
                    0

                    P
                    Have you read Cervantes?
                    If you have, I am surprised by your comment.

                    • 0
                      0

                      Why is Shakespeare more celebrated than Cervantes?
                      The bard had that human feeling so he did not have to define
                      watch the videos of both Cervantes for comparison please.
                      Its lovely
                      I do know the plateau (there is white wine Cuenca) and that La Mancha was filmed at Italy.
                      21 April 2016 Last updated at 00:27 BST
                      Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare died one day apart, 400 years ago.
                      BBC news asks why there’s such a huge difference in the scale of quatercentenary celebrations for the two literary giants.
                      and watch
                      cheers
                      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-36083495

                    • 0
                      0

                      P
                      I think that you should pursue this matter further with Native Vedda and, if you like the idea, Ms Fernando. (They relish talking about things that they least understand.)

                    • 0
                      0

                      SJ/TamCom,

                      “Ms Fernando. (They relish talking about things that they least understand.)”

                      Did they stop the Chaplin on his way to Diego?? I informed you 5 marines no more and it’s on their site- you must fetch it.

                      Is RTF your holdall??

                      i took the trouble to inform you of the latest `stain` la mancha- I can’t possibly offer you a bottle of wine on this mode of communication.
                      Vanni climate is better than la mancha-
                      Don Quixote is a pseudo nymph too over here on thread At Last grasp sirima
                      he has a tight butt- wants to correct every one at will (i gave him a bit of advice check it out – its at the end of thread, RSVP

                    • 0
                      0

                      P
                      Seriously, pursue this matter further with Native Vedda and Ms Fernando. They will understand you better.

                      Thanks for the trouble to educate me.
                      No entiendo griego. So I struggle

                      Oh, the wine!
                      Gracias pero no ahora.
                      Cheers!

                    • 0
                      0

                      “No entiendo griego.”

                      black and white is one two tatu…

                      all humans are 3 in one male or female.

                      Adios hombre.

        • 6
          1

          Narendra clerical jargon.
          You know when we spend several years calculating and planning we don’t need to calculate we just know the vale at sight.
          You know a donkey sickness by just seeing.
          Don’t bring your donkey into the house- it smells and folk run

          “”10. Whether he is aware that steel-based prefabricated housing ( also recyclable and movable) is the trend of the future, considering the depletion of natural resources needed for house construction?””

          Never as long as there is UK. Homes over here are in brick and over 400 years.
          It’s the antique value and london alone gats £6 billion from tourism- the Japanese are awe stuck – the largest number of single women after brits are Japanese girls.

          “”It is yet politics, even on matters concerning the lives of those who have just survived the ravages of a brutal and vicious war!””

          Its your personal Vedanta.

          Known devil better than unknown- the article above suffices in most counts.
          Initial Cost, durability, maintenance cost,

        • 3
          9

          I found an interesting, scientific, but readable article that explains the environmental concepts behind steel framed, insulated wall and roof housing. A Google search will provide many informative articles, both highly technical and in very simple terms, on the subject.

          http://www.passipedia.org/planning/thermal_protection/integrated_thermal_protection

          I will welcome awnings over the front and back doors, windows being installed in the proposed housing, to reduce direct sunlight. The houses should also have an east-west orientation length-wise to reduce the I input of heat from the sun. A longer overhang on the roof on all sides, in addition to painting the roof and walls , preferably white or with a cool color will also help reduce the heat load. The Windows and doors should be kept open on hot days for natural cross ventilation.

          Dr.RN

          • 7
            1

            So cello tape the awnings and see them spin.
            How about cyclic wind motion??
            Jaffna has high winds from seeing the water towers.

          • 6
            0

            Narendran

            “The Windows and doors should be kept open on hot days for natural cross ventilation. “”

            Oh balu dosthara getting jiggy wiggy.

            Why are you making Tea in your pyjamas. Is it the LTTE training given to you at Canada as you confirmed.

            cyclic winds can rocket your building to space if you have awnings.

            Go man go try the WWW. you JT velle rala ask your toddy tapper what is cyclic.

          • 4
            1

            Cut the crap Rajasingham!

            You accused the Civil Engineering faculty at Moratuwa as being either (a) incompetent, or (b)disingenuous in their professional responsibility and integrity.

            As a test case of your credibility, you were asked to cite the documentation that you claimed confirms the longevity of these houses at 70 years.

            Can you provide the reference to that specific assertion, without beating about the bush! If not, you just re-affirm what a scum bag you are as I have always suspected – and of the typical empty vessel persuasion, putting your mouth into affairs that you have absolutely no clue about!

            The citation for the 70 year longevity please!!

            If you don’t have it – confess, and apologize. Grow a pair, for once.

          • 1
            0

            When cornered, “of the 36 ways to escape, the best is simply to turn and run away”.
            That is what the proverb says.

            • 1
              0

              SJ,

              You are right – and that is what cowards and the frauds do. All the chest-thumping is just silly theatrics!

        • 2
          0

          It may be or may not be relevant what the MU staff is saying about the houses.
          You can read anything but you always convolute the read and attempt to confuse the common when employed by Lankawe’s Royal governments as a spin Doctor. Further, I do not think that a Mauddu Vaithiyar is a man to comment or criticize on Tamil culture, Northern Geographical climate, the long term health implication of human being by the chemical nature of the material used, Engineering and architectural design of houses, Town planning, Sinhala Government’s secret agenda of colonizing Tamils area under the name of houses for IDP, Economics of employment creations, using this kind of bribe to create inequalities to vote gathering, fooling and depriving the legal right of NPC to manage its own jurisdictional matters or using the prefabricated house stunt to divert Sinhala Modaya’s attention from handing over Port City and Hambantota.

          There are 140,000 hoses needed. The government is building 65,000 houses with the cost of 195,000. Say one TV is costing Lakshmi Niwas Mittal just only $100, If you save that money, Can you save enough to build another 65 houses?

          You are person who was employed by new royals to made deal on Jaffna water problem to divert the water cut the government wanted to implement in Colombo. After the visit of Ranil to China and following Brother Prince to America, they both are silent. They have hired you to bark.
          When 100,000 mobile homes were delivered to Katrina victims by Federal Government, it was condemned by activists not useable by people. That is it. They all were abandoned. http://clui.org/sites/default/files/ludb/ar/4377/5663128892_32cd38bafe_o.jpg.
          Then why Sinhala government cannot accept the Friday Forum’s request, MU staff’s recommendations, NPC’s request and all other Northern People and organizations recommendations? Is that because you pushing for it?

          The 30years warrantee is only for manufacturing. Not for any of the problems pointed out by NPC. If the home owner drills on a wrong place to hang his/her God’ picture, that one loses the warrantee. That is the standard limitation of the manufacturing warrantee. You should be such an idiot to cite here the unconnected Saudi Arabia homes used to accommodate temporary workers. Do agree to use water desalination plant in Jaffna which are used by Saudi Arabia by much larger scales? Without knowing whose make are these houses, you are guaranteeing 70 years for these houses. If they failed to stand up to that standards, can you be sued for false advertising and claimed compensation? Will you put you properties in line with your claim, if you are an honest Talker. Can you say “Yes a prospective owner of this house believed and accepted it because of my word can sue me for any damages caused to him/her by these houses”? Don’t play games just for your spin doctor wages. .

          The army wants to arrest Opposition Leader Sampanthan, for going to visit with Landowners to see their lands, invoking High Security zone violation. The Army occupied lands are not released for the people to use or check their property. Why are you not talking about it but rushing to collect the commission? Why are you demanding the thigh meat even before the goat is sacrificed? What the hurry for the Colombo agents of New Royals to collect the commission from Lakshmi Niwas Mittal? In Today’s meeting with New King, the Rapist Army has submitted addition 118 spots to be taken over in Vali North. Once a request is submitted by the Rapist Army, it is never withdrawn or reduced, but always added to it. The people who are protesting against these atrocities are beaten and put in hospitals by the Rapist Army. The Grama Servagas are murdered when they support people’s right to protect their properties.

          When the Old King was ousted by America and New King was appointed, additional things happened too; Karuna gone but Mahendran in; Dougie gone Swamynathan in. But you have made yourself need not to go. That is an amazing twist in your policies and your Loyalty for your masters.

        • 6
          2

          Dear Dr. Narendran,
          Instead of shedding crocodile tears for the homeless Tamil people and attacking Tamil politicians and engineering experts, why don’t you partition your Jaffna house into four and donate them to four deserving Tamil families and you go and live in one of these pre-fabricated steel houses till the end of your life.

          • 2
            7

            Dr. Sankaralingam,

            The Tamils are the victims of Tamil politicians more than those of the Sinhala kind! Read Dr.Rajan Hoole’s recent articles. This has been my opinion for a long time. I, in fact consider them a curse. The more so, with a passage of time,

            We should be ashamed of most of the politicians we have elected to various levels of governance!

            I have cited enough links on the subject of the 65,000 housing scheme to provide evidence in support of what I claim. My personal experiences support my claim. I have not seen one comment on the recent link I provided in this thread on the heat conductivity of various building materials, even from one person who comments here!

            With your background, you should be able to steer a more objective course, without joining on the bandwagon to keep the beggar’ s wound raw and bleeding, to promote a long lost perverted cause, at the expense of the long suffering victims. Sambanthan is playing to the gallery, despite knowing that the President, Prime Minister and the cabinet have been part of the decision making process. If there is evidence of corruption, provide proof for suspicion and demand they investigate and seek punishment for those involved. If not, seek remedies through the legal system. But it is a perversion to try to throw the baby with the bath water!

            Does not the fact that two sets of experts from the Moratuwa University have given contradictory scientific opinions, bother you? If there are problems with the design or the material, the alternatives should be pointed out. In this age of ISO standards and other international standards applying to almost everything we produce and do, is it difficult to discuss matters in more specific scientific terms?

            The accusation that these prefabricated houses cannot be expanded has not been questioned by anyone. As much as these houses can be assembled fast, they can also be disassembled in parts, quite fast, if there is a need for expansion. I have myself got this done in Saudi Arabia, in the housing compound of the company I have worked for. The engineering and maintenance department came under my purview.

            In general I find the attempt to abuse and call people names, instead of seeking facts and arguing with facts, in this age of the Google, disgusting.

            Dr.RN

            • 3
              0

              “”In general I find the attempt to abuse and call people names, instead of seeking facts and arguing with facts, in this age of the Google, disgusting.””

              You are on a vendetta trip.

              You have been a paid servant Vet.
              You should understand WWW or not there is something called Professional etiquette. There are folk like me Anpu is an Engg but has not practiced and there may be others which is possible for us to understand.
              Since you stupidly display your qualification and attempt to display your knowledge of engineering which does not exist. At a difficult time don’t you bring your personal vendetta – I wold have sent the dogs after you.
              I have triple barrel qualification and also family established in the USA and Canada. We are not refugees but high rank in our enterprises.
              I have always stayed anonymous I am 3rd generation professional. The greatest happiness is in the movement of the bowels.
              So you went to Ivy NY page- its patented for you and all, but I am there in the real- stupid man.

              Tickle your middle and see which end smiles. Find another thread porriki.

            • 1
              0

              Rajasingham,

              You LIED! Period!!

              You stated that from your months of reading you have evidence that the steel houses last 70 years – challenging and using the Moratua faculty’s findings.

              Now you are unable to provide evidence to your assertion that the longevity of the houses is estimated at 70 years. If you have evidence to your claim, you should cite it specifically.

              Else you just prove what a fraud and a scum bag you are, shedding crocodile tears as Dr. S. suggested, wanting to shove down the otherwise-unsellable steel houses by LYING — and you do that with absolute lack of conscience to desperate, helpless and destitute Tamils.

            • 5
              0

              PROVE ME WRONG PLEASE JUST ONCE. and

              I will follow you- Wisdom of the foolish.

              Please refer details as seen below;
              Stungun
              April 22, 2016 at 6:21

              At your age of 80 Mario still shovels snow because he never passed grade 5.
              at Canada.

          • 3
            1

            Do you have to get so personal in your comments?
            Crocodile tears are no ones’s monopoly.
            If what you say is appropriate, then it is just as appropriate to ask every advocate of Tamil Eelam in exile to return home and carry forward the cause.

            Was it not the unconditional financial support to the LTTE from the Tamil diaspora that was much responsible for the tragedy that befell he Tamils?

    • 6
      2

      There was no such problem for the last 50,000 houses, why should there be one now?

      Please read this article summarizing the findings of the experts: http://www.sundaytimes.lk/160417/news/mittals-65000-steel-houses-under-fire-from-lankan-experts-189986.html

      Unless you’re in a position to discredit the experts (which I highly doubt, knowing the profiles of two of them) you’re going to need a better article than that.

      • 4
        2

        “”Unless you’re in a position to discredit the experts (which I highly doubt, knowing the profiles of two of them) you’re going to need a better article than that.”

        I will because they are school teachers- ex-has been; spurt: splash in the mud.

        caution: just for discussion only between us 2.

        “The proposed steel houses for the war-affected have inadequate foundations, insufficient roof support, are at risk of corrosion, are poorly ventilated and have no hearth and chimney, Moratuwa Universtiy experts have found after a detailed technical study.”

        foundations can float- means slab can rest on soil- its all tested proved

        insufficient roof support,= i cant see it to answer. perhaps they are talking of hanging fan or wind pressures.

        are at risk of corrosion,- it can be anodised or pvc coated

        are poorly ventilated and have no hearth and chimney,

        all they need is a kitchen window and internal chimney which would emit clear (green) smoke with no smells- chimney has an exhaust fan.

        All this may add further costing I suppose so.

      • 0
        0

        Bagehot,
        thanks for the link kind of you.- it gives us an eyeopener.

        Known devil better than unknown- the article above suffices in most counts.
        Initial Cost, Additions and Amendments(sealed like a sealed beam bulb), durability, maintenance cost,

    • 0
      2

      [Edited out] Please write instead of posting links – CT

    • 5
      1

      RN

      When did you become spokesman for ‘Mittal’Swaminathan?

      Not just Viki,NPC, Sumanthiran MP and TNA Leader Sampanthan but a host of people and politicians from the North are opposed to this Mittal Housing Project. They have put forward sound arguments against constructing these types of houses at exorbitant rates. To top it, civil engineering experts from Moratuwa University have come out against the standard,quality and suitability of these houses.

      Are you a better expert than these guys from the Moratuwa University? When did you become a civil engineering expert? I thought you are only an Animal Doctor.

      Don’t mix up your arguments against the functioning of the NPC with this housing project issue. Functioning of the NPC has nothing to do with the quality and suitability of these Mittal houses.

      You are posing all sorts of questions to Sampanthan in relation to housing in the North when Sampanthan for the first time has opened his mouth to raise an important issue relating to the Northern Tamils. Sampanthan must be commended for joining hands with Vicki and other members of the NPC who are the elected representatives of the people of North over an important issue that concerns the Northern Tamils.

      You ask:
      ” What is the political mileage the President and Prime Minister gain, except that they will win the goodwill of a battered people who voted enmasse for them in the hope that they will do what they have come forward to do? “

      It is a good thing that the President and Prime Minister have come forward to provide these houses, but why cannot they listen to them and provide houses that are suitable and not houses that have been condemned by experts as not at all suitable to the climatic conditions in the North.

      Why is Mittal Swaminathan is such a hurry to award the contract to the company owned by this Indian tycoon amidst all kinds of opposition from the people’s representatives of the North ? Is anyone getting cuts and commissions from this contract?

      How come this guy Swaminthan who reportedly live in affluent circumstances in Colombo thrust this type of unsuitable houses at an exorbitant cost on the people of the North who deserve houses that suit them? Why is he adamant that he will go ahead with the Mittal project?

      You talk about speedy construction of these houses. These people have lived without a roof over their heads for many years now. They will not have any problem to wait a little longer if they are going to get better houses that suit their needs and are environmentally friendly.

      Sampanthan clearly says that north east people need 137,000 houses. But you are asking ” how many housing units are yet needed for the displaced and homeless in the north and east?” Are you stupid to ask this question when Sampanthan has indicated the number of houses needed?

      Now to your questions –

      3. Whether the traditional housing can be constructed quick enough to meet an urgent and overdue need? 4. Whether, there are sufficient skilled craftsmen in the north and east to build these houses well to high standards, quickly? 5. Whether, he is aware of the problems the construction industry faces in the north with regard to procuring sand and craftsmen?

      In the name of speed Swaminathan cannot thrust these pre-fabricated houses that have been declared as unsuitable by the experts and by the people’s representatives of the North.

      There may not be enough skilled craftsmen in the North East to build high standard houses. But, there are skilled craftsmen in other parts of the country, particularly in the South. I know that these days many people in Batticaloa bring down Sinhala masons and carpenters to build two storey and three storey houses. These Sinhala craftsmen do good and competent jobs within a very short time. These Sinhala craftsmen live there for a couple of months until the job is finished.

      If materials like sand are not available in the North, these could be brought from other areas. I do not see this as a big problem that requires the help of this Indian tycoon’s company.

      You also ask:
      7. Whether he has seen the prefabricated steel houses erected in the army camps in Jaffna post-war and sought the opinion of the armed forces on them?

      Armed forces are not going to live in these prefabricated steel houses for twenty years or thirty years. They will leave once their tour of duties are over may be in an year’s or two year’s time the most. These army men do not own these houses and they will not be passing them to their off springs.

      RN how stupid you are to pose these questions to Sampanthan who is only voicing his concerns on behalf of the party that represents the people of Jaffna.

      You are saying:

      “It is yet politics, even on matters concerning the lives of those who have just survived the ravages of a brutal and vicious war! How far can such politics at the expense of the real victims of the war take us?”

      What is the politics here man? No one except stupid fellows like you can attribute political reasons for Sampanthan’s intervention over this matter. What I see here is that for the first time, Vicki, NPC, Sumanthiran and Sampanthan are opposing this Mittal Swaminathan’s housing project in unison. That is a healthy sign in Northern politics. But you can’t stomach it because lately from being an MR sycophant you have now become a Sirisena-Ranil sycophant.

  • 6
    0

    Dont we have COOLECTIVE STRENGTH to do such project. I feel a bit humiliated to hear our people dont have the man power, skills and knowledge to build 65,00 homes with the amount of money allocated. couldn’t constuction firms in north and east have constructive discussion with their provincial councils to put forward an alternative proposal which clearly outline resources and time frame for completion for this project in bettr cost effective way with much more benifits to local communitinies by offering job opportunities. This could facilitate community building along with home building. Skills and resources available among diaspora can be utilised to facilitate the project and promote relationship and reconciliation. This could be our frist home grown solution. we make big noise on this regard as we are all keen in finding a home grown solution to our problems.If concerned people have genuine commitment to take up this challenge which can consolidate our better inner strength in building a nation. Shouldn’t government do this with consent of provincial council. Shouldn’t the provincial council have more responsibilitis in rehabilitation and resettlement of their war affrected people. Could it be possible at least to build the the next 65,ooo houses in this way and come to a compromise solution to existing project.

  • 6
    0

    Government listen to the people’s cry or not, it is our responsibility as professionals to give our views. In developed countries if a professional ignore some dangerous act, he can be prosecuted but in 3rd world it is acceptable. One more thing most of us ignored, most of the land in North is very close to sea and the steel in not suitable to that area. Someone mentioned about fridge, cooker etc. but not mentioned the cost and availability of electricity. If Singhalese or Tamil professionals have to advise the government but listening is down to the Government – most of the racial comments will downgrade us only not the readers.

  • 6
    0

    sajith – the most sensible comment. I like to add one more thing, the skill and labour to build these houses can be from all over srilaka and it will give opportunity to understand each other and give opportunity to meet ordinary Singhalese to those people who never been to any Singhalese places.

  • 1
    12

    Tamils talk always in terms of Tamils, muslims etc., etc.,

    then comes and talk reconcialition.

    But Sinhala people can not even pronupounce the word Sinha-Le. Anything about buddhism, Sinhala are banned words in Sri lanka.

    • 7
      2

      jim softy the dimwit

      “But Sinhala people can not even pronupounce the word Sinha-Le.”

      Why do the Sinhala people want to pronounce the word Sinha – Le?

      “Anything about buddhism, Sinhala are banned words in Sri lanka.”

      Where do you live, planet Seth?

  • 6
    12

    Tell me which project successfully completed by Tamils, but they want devolution of power or Eelam, so the foreign powers can implement their interests.

    “Citing the problem of unemployment in the North, he argued that serious consideration must be given to make use of the available local labour.”

    Mr Sampanthan doesn’t know what is happening on the ground. Young Tamils don’t want to work hard. They would like to see money under the pillow, so they can drink alcohol and move around on a motorbike, or want to go to the West as refugees. The Chinese don’t go to the West as refugees by accusing their motherland compare to South Asians. Just check how many South Asians applied for refugee status in Hong Kong recently. South Asians don’t know what is patriotism, Sri Lankan Tamils are worse compare to other South Asians.

    The leaders must understand their capabilities and tell the truth to the people. I have been to more than 25 countries, but Sri Lanka has the highest number of public holidays and has the lowest GDP rate. On top of that the home ministry has given one more public holiday last week. The Sri Lankan Airlines is going backwards and looking for others to rescue. It is very clear, the leaders don’t have the ability to manage their tasks.

    People like us can’t get a decent position to help the country, because we hold foreign citizenship. The politicians think that they are truthful and honest to the country, because they have only Sri Lankan citizenship. It is laughable, isn’t it? Can you mention one Sri Lankan politician who has suffered as me to expose the West? They West brought me to street, even stopped me from attending my mother’s funeral. You don’t know what is like being in that situation unless you go through it.

    Most of you don’t have a desire to develop knowledge, because it is a hard work. But easier for you to join with foreign powers for money and status. The enemy makes sure that you won’t have access to knowledge by joining with smart people like us, otherwise the enemy can’t use you to achieve its ulterior motives. If the West can prove that Iraq had WMD to invade Iraq, it is so easy to create stories to destroy my integrity and capabilities. I really appreciate Colombo Telegraph for publishing my comments to enlighten people. The Tamil main stream media never helped me to enlighten Tamils, Sinhalese or the world.

    I have a business degree, on top of that I spent 10,000 hours reading more than 300 books about world history, religions, languages, human development, communism, world economy and international politics. I also lived in four continents and visited more than 25 countries. Can you mention one politician who has similar knowledge and experience? In fact none of the South Asian leaders mentioned about my knowledge, struggles or hardships. The South Asian media never wrote an article about how skillfully I have been exposing the West to undermine their power in order to take Asia forward.

    Without reading the history, if you analyze the South Asian countries’ and China’s policies for the last fifty years, you would say that South Asia never fought against the West for its independence, perhaps China fought against the West. We never learned from the past history, otherwise diaspora leaders would not have trusted the West and conducted the brutal war for three decades. Current good governance leaders are they any better than diaspora leaders? I let you to answer.

    • 5
      2

      Antany Peter
      OMG, who are you. Vomitting garbage like nobodies bussiness.
      You say Chinese don’t go to west as refugees– Have you been to Sanfrancisco, for example, how many Chinese refugees are there you simply have no idea.
      Have you been to vancouver and seen the number of chinese refugees– all doing well ofcourse.
      You talk utter rubbish. Yos say young tamils don’t like to work how the hell do you know? what evidence you have NONE. :ooks like you want to write something. Boasting you have this and that what have to achieved?? Zero.
      You criticise the west for your failure in life. Get a lfe man. Go and see a psychiatric.

      • 3
        4

        Of course you ripped off the resources well in South Asia and divided them so they run to you as refugees so you could use them as your puppets. I said that Chinese don’t claim refugee status as much as South Asians. It is clear you have ruled it for centuries and screwed it. I have punished you more than any other Asian, and I will continue to do that, because I was born for that particular job. Your fall is imminent, but it may take for a while. The reality is you are falling, it will take few decades to see the effect, because you are so rich by ripping off the world, and claiming the Sun never sets on the British Empire. Time will come you will wonder “Will the Sun ever rise in the UK.” Mean time continue to support your convict Aussie brothers, before you know it, your ignorance will comeback and haunt you for generations.

      • 2
        3

        I have been living in Jaffna since May 2015. I know about the current situation in Jaffna more than you do. You are bloody wrong, if you think that you can use Tamils to rule Indian Ocean as you have been using Jews to rule Middle East. I lived in Sri Lanka for 20 years. I also lived among the Westerners for 25 years and have read about the Western history for centuries. I know you very well, I haven’t done with you yet. I will give back to you with interest, far more than you had anticipated. I know the Masters as well as their puppets. You wish you never turned against me.

        • 2
          4

          antany peter
          you contradict yourself too much.
          from your name i think you must be a christian from kerala.
          why are you living in jaffna since may 2015.
          you claim you have lived in srilanka for 20 years, where were you for 24 years? you claim you have lived in the west for 25 years.
          where in the west?
          the sun will never set on the empire at the end of the day everyone turn to the empire for justice.
          so you are going to pay us with interest at what percentage ?
          you are really a psychiatric case. i take pity on you May Allah help you.

          • 2
            1

            By mentioning Allah you thought I wouldn’t know your real identity. You are fooling yourself. You won’t be successful in Asia as you have been successful in Middle East. I advised and supported MR to eliminate the LTTE with the help of China. When you started the Arab spring, I alerted the Chinese, eventually Chinese leaders increased their police force and controlled the fools who believed in your ill democracy and fake morality. I already gave you with high interest. But expect more, because you truly deserve it. Consider yourselves already fell, because you deleted my citizenship, put me in prison for no reason and stopped me from attending my mother’s funeral.

            My mother raised me up, so I can stand on mountains;
            She raised me up to walk on stormy seas;
            I learned to be strong when I was on her shoulders;
            She raised me up to more than I can be.

            • 2
              1

              antany peter
              you are a nut case. period

              • 0
                2

                Eventually, you will come to know that you are truly mad, and blind by power. That is why you have deleted my citizenship, put me in prison for no reason and stopped me from attending my mother’s funeral. You have no remorse whatsoever, but preachers of democracy and human rights. Trust me, this world knows that you are wearing a mask. Your fake morality to occupy moral high ground has been exposed. You never thought I would sacrifice this much to expose you. Your calculation was very wrong, and costing you everything.

                • 2
                  1

                  ANTANY PETER
                  We don’t drug dealers, who are responsible for the misery of so many youngsters, to go scot-free. They are put in prison and their citizenship withdrawn that is the law of the land. It is not one of the banana republic like your country.Thank your lucky star that this didn’t happen in Thailand for example where you would have been put to death. Anyway why are you in Jaffna why don’t you go back to your home country. Are you planted by the security forces to sell drugs to the youths in Jaffna?

                  • 0
                    0

                    Look at your comments, utter nonsense. You think that the world would believe whatever you say. But the truth is, the world knows you well. You won’t be able to fool the billions of Asians as you have fooled Arabs.

  • 8
    1

    Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan,

    “”constructed by the company will not last for more than 10 years, with the model houses of the scheme which have been erected already starting to come apart.””

    if this is true. They are the beach homes we see at France Pyrenees.

    Cancel the contract because Marwadi living at London ignores that the muslim invaders of North India destroyed all Hindu and buddhist temples but could not destroy
    Hindu Iron Pillar that never rust by Marwadi King. Gupta
    Ask his family to respect that as we have technology.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iron_pillar_of_Delhi

  • 6
    1

    Leader of the Opposition R. Sampanthan,

    “”This is 2-3 times more than the more environmentally suitable, durable, permanent brick house provided under the Indian housing scheme which provided 50,000 houses in the North.””

    They won’t give you to build your own homes as the vote counts.- So the security forces stay.
    You will end up with flats and the music of living is gone.
    Tamils won’t be able to build flats as contractor.
    What are you goner do??
    Get the Indians to build it all as they have done it more than a show piece.
    They can do it because they can even ferry material right across.

  • 3
    1

    Leaving aside the concerns of structure, durability and cost, the main question is whether people can live in these houses without air condition during hot weather. According to people who worked inside such structures one cannot live in such houses without air condition.

  • 2
    8

    Interesting comments especially those put forward by Dr RN and others who lambast him.

    Leave all that aside.

    Think of the war ravaged men women and children living in hovels at the moment. Where they live now is not weather proof. Not flood proof. Not burglar proof. Just a few cadjans over the head which all so often blow away even in the slightest of winds. There is no running water instead they run hundreds of meters for water. No toilets nor privacy. They are surrounded by living sewers with unbearable smells. Just go out there and have a look.

    The politicians who sit pretty in air-conditioned comfort eating very well indeed are on an egotistical trip. The need of the moment for thousands of marginalised war ravaged people is shelter. I plead from Mr Sambanthan and all others who keep blocking these projects to stop, go see the squalor and do something quick. Not sit and block those who try to do something. If Mr Sampanthan is jealous of other people getting political mileage out of housing projects he must get off his butt and start building shelters himself.

    Is there corruption in the whole scheme? Yes, there is. Corruption is endemic in Sri Lanka whether the politicians are Sinhala, Muslim or Tamil. Fanning fears of corruption will only delay a projects.

    At the end of the day if those who live in utter squalor get any type of housing, it is good enough, even if the house will last only a couple of decades. It will be a good starting point for them. From there they can build their ancestral homes, gradually. For heavens sake give them a roof over their heads, even if it is only a tin roof and do it quickly.

    • 2
      3

      Dear BBS Rep,

      Yes, bravo! Indeed the housing need is urgent, humane and is the right thing to do!

      What is disturbing is the seeming falsehood that accompanied the support for these houses – a glaring one is of course from the Rajasingham – and hence the lambasting. I am still waiting to see Rajasingam provide the minutest of all credibility verification on his assertion.

      That aside, there may be alternate solutions to provide the housing that is urgently needed – and it need not be a Hobson’s choice.

      For instance, identify the persons entitled for housing, provide lot-entitlement papers, and extend and facilitate a long-term loan individually at very favourable terms (such as no pre-payment, 10 year interest free etc) and of course with a tightly conditioned loan-terms on how the disbursement could be spent – purchases of construction material, utilities and labour and perhaps even direct contracts with registered home-builders.

      Sri Lanka has done that in several cases, with Peoples bank and Bank of Ceylon housing loan programs. Of course keep Mittal’s steel housing as an available option.

      That way nothing gets driven down one’s throat – and every one entitled has a free choice and will take responsibility for his own choice.

      That is just one alternative, without necessarily ruling out the steel housing. I am sure there are many other alternate ways as well to handle this urgent and humane need.

      BBS Rep — sincerely your concern based on humanity and the urgency is very much appreciated and applauded!

      • 2
        2

        Kumar R.

        Mulla says: “”If Mr Sampanthan is jealous of other people getting political mileage out of housing projects he must get off his butt and start building shelters himself. “”

        When will Tamil folk learn to be cosmopolitan??

    • 8
      0

      BBS Rep

      “The politicians who sit pretty in air-conditioned comfort eating very well indeed are on an egotistical trip.”

      Good point.

      “At the end of the day if those who live in utter squalor get any type of housing, it is good enough, even if the house will last only a couple of decades.”

      Of course they need somewhere to live call it home. Of course they need baked bread to live.

      Does it mean they like to be baked in an iron oven just because they live in utter squalor? Doesn’t it amount to Auschwitz concentration camp where Nazi burnt Jews?

      You can be right or wrong in your judgement whereas I am not sure about your intention.

      • 2
        9

        Dear NV,

        “Does it mean they like to be baked in an iron oven just because they live in utter squalor? Doesn’t it amount to Auschwitz concentration camp where Nazi burnt Jews? “

        What do you mean? Aren’t you losing the rationality and reason you usually project in your comments? I am sure you understand concepts like conduction, convection and radiation of heat, insulation, ventilation- natural or artificial, reflective surfaces and evaporative cooling. I am not an Engineer, but studied environmental physiology at the postgraduate level, which involved in depth study of the above concepts and how the body reacts and adjusts to heat and cold.

        Please donot join the bandwagon that you rather humorously castigate in your comments.

        Dr.RN

        • 4
          3

          Cut the crap Rajasingham,

          Among your many assertions, as a test case of your credibility you were asked to cite the assertion that you made about the longevity of these houses, claiming that to be 70 years.

          That assertion is far longer than that made by the Moratuwa civil engineering faculty.

          To establish some fundamental credibility for you stand and your challenge to Moratuwa report, can you provide citation for your 70-year longevity assertion?

        • 6
          0

          Narendran
          ” I am not an Engineer, but studied environmental physiology at the postgraduate level, which involved in depth study of the above concepts and how the body reacts and adjusts to heat and cold.”

          If you are at Colombo and being paid by Tamil minister Swami (who took Athul to temple while Siva temple built by sewer line agent is next to St Anthony) to draw the wrath of all on this forum Considering that the world revolves around WWW that only you know at your age of 81 years.

          PROVE ME WRONG PLEASE JUST ONCE.

          I suggest you get flushed in the Colombo Sewers Constructed by Canadian
          Mario Collavino.

          He did the new Ground Zero Building Basement at New York.
          Mario does not have an e-mail account nor does he believe in the internet.
          He still uses only Fax and telephone.

          Now you figure out why the Great Americans gave this from snow shovler
          The most important part of the building costing 30% of overall cost of project.

          you have admitted you were LTTE like Karuna- if you cant then run run when you are cornered and sit under tree singing buddung sarang…

    • 5
      0

      If the government is serious about helping those who live in utter squalor, it could do a far better job at a third of the cost of the proposed steel cages.
      Desperation of a people should not be allowed to translate to unconscionable profit for a business desperate to dump its excess steel, and its agents.

      Much of the talk about hapless victims is emotional blackmail which smacks of hypocrisy.
      That corruption is endemic is no excuse to invite more of it.
      The sums involved are massive, around Rs 140 billion, which have to be paid back by future generations.

      Some advocates of the project are advancing cynical reasoning claiming that many people are interested. People will be interested in anything free. The point is to be realistic about long term benefit to the country and the victims of war.

  • 2
    0

    Antany Peter , who told you Chinese doesn’t want to move to the west- it shows your ignorance. Chinese are all over the world and each country have china town. Please spend your life savings and visit proper western country.

  • 4
    1

    Rajasingham,
    A crafty and shameless “apple polishing” attempt to woo NV (count the number of complements you want to bestow on him within just two sentences!), now that you realize that even he has not bought your canard on the suitability of steel housing for Jaffna. How low can you go, even for a “small” man as you confessed.

    You presumptions are unbelievable! Here is a partial list from following your comments in this blog alone.

    You are an expert at mind reading and was cock-sure of MR’s sincerity, having gained that divinity by following a Veterinary course at Peradeniya

    You are an expert on Buddhism affairs because you took an intro class on Buddism for beginners (designed for foreigners in particular) while at Peradeniya. And then you became an authority on the subject because you spent 10 minutes talking to a temple priest. (This reminds me of how the World Bank staff were classified – if they flew over a developing country, they become “experts” on that country. If they flew at day time, then they get upgraded to “authority”!)

    You have gained expertise in Civil Engineering having read “many books” in the recent months, such expertise that you can challenge the professional assessments of the Faculty of Civil Engineering.

    You took a course in environmental physiology, and so has become an expert of “in-depth” study on the subject. Would you know how many have undertaken years of study in that field and have conducted and continue to conduct in-depth research towards advanced degrees dedicated to the field and still would be too modest to claim in-depth expertise as you do?

    You have read enough and more that you can single handedly advise how a water diversion to the tank next to your property could help solve the oil contamination issue in Chunnagam.

    Merely talking to five tuk-tuk drivers in Kotahena provided you phenomenal insight into the political mind set of the entirety of rural population of Sri Lanka – a feat comparable to no less than that of the legendary Mervyn Silva. (Or, was this the view of the gene-sharing sibling?)

    Again, cut the crap Rajasingham – if it is not a canard you were trying to pull-off (and possibly connive to sell with pecuniary motives), and if you really have evidence of published, credible information that puts the longevity of the Mittal type steel houses at 70 years – just provide that reference! Just a simple, straight forward request. That way you can put a full-stop to these embarrassments and accusations.

    Failing that, you just prove what a con artists you are, never mind the efforts at apple-polishing!

  • 2
    6

    Kumar, Naga and others

    Please be a little more polite and respectful to Dr. Rajasingham Narendran, a regular and well informed commentator. Sometimes he appears to take unpopular positions – but that’s his right. Let us keep the debates as civil as far as possible. He certainly is not as reckless boring or paranoid as some of the regular “super experts” in these threads inflicting this, that and the other on an unwilling readership – for no earthly reason whatsoever.

    Backlash

    • 4
      0

      Backlash,

      I appreciate your concern, and more so, your compassion.

      Here is my point.

      When the likes of Sajin, Kelaniya Mervyn, Namal or even MR stoop to canards to make their living, I am willing to let them pass, for two reasons. First, uncouth and uneducated rascals they are that they do not have an alternative source to make a living, and second, only the most gullible will be influenced by their canards.

      That is not the case when well educated, well-exposed individuals stoop to such canards (even if only unintentionally) as that could influence a much larger segment of the population, primarily on the basis of the respect one has for the educational background. That includes not just the Rajasinghams, but DJ, Rajiva, GLS, etc.

      There have been several instances where the Rajasinghams have made such seemingly self-serving assertions, that can only be explained as attempts at hoodwinking the public, for those assertions have proved to be baseless.

      Take this particular incident. Rajasingham effectively called the Moratuwa Faculty of Civil Engineering incompetent and/or liers. Just to make one vivid difference between the Moratuwa claim and Rjasingham’s position, I pointed out the assertion that Rajasingmam made about the longevity that differs so drastically from that of Moratuwa report.

      That was my very first, and yes very polite, request for Rajasingham to substantiate his claim (please see my comment dated April 19, at 10:54). It should have been an open and shut case, if only Rajasingham had nothing to hide, and had been forthright as an educated, civilized, sincere professional should be.

      Instead Rajasingham decided to resort to evasive tactic, beating about the bush, and still continuing regardless on what can only be interpreted as his hoodwinking mission – That certainly, pushes my patience and politeness!

      Again, if that was Kelaniya Mervyn or Sajin, or Namal, I am very willing to let go!! Being lenient or generous because he is a “regular and well informed commentator” is counterintuitive. If stupid, yes I understand. But well informed and using that asset of intellect to hoodwink, is a no-no. That is precisely what made MR call DJ (a well informed and one-time regular commentator) a prostitute in an Al Jazeera interview. Remember?

    • 2
      0

      Bookworm Backlash,
      Voltaire is dead no one here feels well, that includes you.
      `but that’s his right.`- No it’s a privilege- read him full
      or is it a Frederick Forsyth lover..

      “super experts”

      Whom??

  • 3
    1

    Backlash
    Well said.
    There are thumbs down for that too.
    Where do we go from here?
    The best we can do is to ignore rude and personal remarks.

  • 2
    0

    SJ,

    I am not entirely sure of the scope and coverage of your insinuation.

    Nevertheless, let me point out that DJ was a well educated, well respected and a rather prolific commentator and contributor to these columns, up until his canards got exposed. He cannot publish anything in these columns anymore without getting lambasted right, left and center! Whose fault do you think that is?

    Would you say commentators inexplicably and unfairly become “rude and personal” or does DJ’s history of canards have something to do with that? Why would you think NR’s case is different.

    Case in point: having asserted that he has credible information that convinces Rajasingam to assert the longevity of the steel housing as substantially longer than and in sharp contradiction with the Moratuwa faculty, why would you think Rajasinham has no responsibility to substantiate that claim explicitly by providing reference? Does not the evasion cast a heavy shadow on Rajasinham’s claim? And, credibility?

    • 0
      0

      Kumar
      Sorry if you are offended.
      There is a lot of uncalled for insult and name calling going on.

      There is no “insinuation” in expressing disgust at rude and personal remarks.
      Such remarks will provoke responses in bad taste and are best avoided as their avoidance makes discussion beneficial.
      Mine is only a suggestion.

      An educated person criticizing another educated person can use educated language.
      Exposing someone’s hypocrisy can be done in inoffensive ways.
      People can understand what one says. If they do not, strong language achieves nothing.

      My wish is to make at least some part of this space more civil.
      Thee are people who deliberately indulge in bad language and insult. You are not one of them, and any deviation therefore could attract attention.

      I did not specifically refer to anyone.
      My comment was an endorsement in principle of what another said.

      • 0
        0

        SJ,

        No problem. Truly appreciate your clarifying it.

  • 2
    0

    Kumar R, SJ and friends

    A few of us in the State sector were targets in the early 2000s where an influential politico – now high up – tried to bulldoze these portable homes through us. Mittal was not involved then. We successfully resisted but not without making powerful political enemies. My thoughts on my friend Swaminathan and his limits are in these pages. He is a Ranil creation – mediocre in law, speaking in English/Tamil and governance. He is a faithful UNP man for decades. Ranil wasted a National List seat on him for the past few years in the mistaken belief Swaminathan has influence with Colombo Tamils and those in Jaffna. He does not. Swaminathan needs to be rewarded too for his loyalty to the Party – like his appointment as Chairman/NSB earlier. The UNPs ministerial choice should have been Charlie Mahendran – a well educated and capable senior diplomat-administrator. But as you know, Ranil is uncomfortable with excellence and is satisfied with average and mediocre men. Remember what happened to my friend Karu J?

    I know of the Rajasingham Brothers and a little bit of their background.
    Lankan Tamils in London know in depth of the Kingsbury Temple – but in fairness, Narendran does not feature there.

    That’s the world we are fated to live in, gentlemen. Wheels within wheels. Only Ambal, Murugan and our pantheon of deities may intervene to help and save the Tamil Nation of Sri Lanka. We have suffered far too much and for too long.

    Backlash

    • 2
      0

      Backlash,
      kind of you but “but in fairness, Narendran does not feature there. “
      yes I know because he only knew Canada and Saudi Arabia – balu dosthara.

      The hidden hand of Authority is the law of the land not CJ. To console the public they would have the flying fox Naren the naria who is working with a team of collectors to roast the public- its vengeance that his relatives ltte were shot by IPKF.- he is your Dracula with a pain in the butt.
      It’s time he butts off as is a danger to the island but not himself- vengence takes many forms- he can’t dream of touching India so he does north- he is no warrior by birth.
      Stungun

  • 0
    6

    The building industry in Sri Lanka has warned of the skilled and unskilled labour shortage besetting the country and the unwillingness of the unemployed to work in the industry.

    http://www.ft.lk/article/537795/Construction-industry-builds-case-for-foreign-labour

    Senthil in a comment above has suggested that workers from the south be brought into fill the gap in the north. I did respond because I was aware of the protest made by the Tamil political establishment against Sinhala workers being brought into re-build roads in the north, instead of the work being assigned to the unemployed Tamils. We cannot have it both ways!

    Further, I have referenced every number-related claim made by me in my comments on the 65,000 house project. i need not repeat them. Anyone genuinely interested can source the relevant comments through Google.

    Dr.RN

  • 5
    0

    Here you go again Rajasingham proving once again what a slime ball you are!

    Evasion – tangential reference – generality. Nothing more.

    Here is a statement you made in your list of challenges to Sampanthan

    #7: Whether he is aware that these houses have a longivity of 70 years.

    You have not substantiated that claim, a claim that is radically different from Moratuwa assessment.

    I challenge you one more time – show me where you substantiated that claim with appropriate reference. Just throwing back “goggle search”, or “see the various links I have referenced” are just red-herrings – unbecoming of an academic, a professional, or one with any sense of integrity.

    You just merely confirm any disrespect you receive in the blog is amply justified, despite Backlash’s understandable apathy!

    If DJ is to be condemned – so should you, and for the same reasons!

    Prove me wrong – show me where you have provided credible evidence to justify your claim of the 70-year longevity!

  • 0
    8

    The below is the response of the government to Sambanthan;s missive:

    http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/46278

    It answers the many concerns expressed by the many commentators. It also mentions the longivity of the houses and the warranty. The accessories and furniture provided will take 165,000 families to a new living standard and comfort. Some of the accessories provided would be a boon to the school going children.’

    I hope the government will arrange an orientation program for the new occupants on how to upgrade their house keeping skills. It is bound to be a worthwhile learning experience for the occupants. God, bless them!

    The ripple effect on the communities around would also inevitably prove beneficial.

    Dr.RN

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      Here is the link I had given in an earlier thread in CT on the subject, which categorically states the technical specifications of such houses, including logivity:

      http://vanjoin.en.alibaba.com/product/1378042186-213348908/Heat_Insulated_Prefab_Homes_for_Sri_Lanka.html

      The government reply says 60 + years for longivity, where as this lead says 70 years!

      Would some of those whose contest referenced facts in nasty and uncouth language have the courage to apologise?

      Dr.RN

      • 5
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        “”CT on the subject, which categorically states the technical specifications of such houses, including logivity:””

        English law: Landlord tenant act 1983
        Landlord has to refurbish the kitchen, toilet and electrics every 20 years.
        Don’t stretch the begging bowl- because it is technically,applied- Health is wealth- Safety first.

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        Rajasingham,

        Appreciate your finally conceding that the only way is to be forthright! If you go up the blog-chain you will see my initial request: “Let me also ask you more specifically on your assertion –These buildings have a longivity of 70 years.– Could you substantiate that statement by citing the source for your assertion?”

        There is nothing “nasty and uncouth language” in my question that would require “the courage to apologise” – Is there?

        In any case, I agree I stand corrected in assuming that you had no credible technical spec on the basis of which you were making the assertion, and that you were just fabricating it. On the other hand, if you had been forthright and provided the citation in the first instance as you finally did now now, then as I previously stated, this would have been open and shut case long ago!

        That delay or reluctance on your part nevertheless raises the concern whether you had reservations in providing the vendor’s commercial advertisement as being more credible than that of a neutral, academic institution. That is indeed a concern – right?

        I might also add that my extra caution about all you initiatives result only from the many times you have promoted such suspiciously self-serving initiatives.

        Just to give an example, when the very first BBC documentary appeared on the barbaric shooting by Sri Lanka forces MR/DR group challenged the authenticity of the BBC released video and claimed that SL’s “in-house” expertise in video-technology had adequately and convincingly proved the videos to be fake.

        The Diaspora, correctly and with due concern, insisted on “international intervention” in authenticating the videos. You, in deference to MR regime, explicitly argued that the Diaspora should refrain from such calls for any international intervention and argued that instead MR’s regime should be allowed to handle the issue as a domestic issue.

        And now, on what seems a complete right-about-turn, when the Moratuwa Civil engineering faculty (not an LTTE or Diaspora front!) provides such a negative report on this engineering issue, you ask “Is the Civil Engineering faculty in Sri Lanka the final authority – should we not seek foreign expertise?” Why such incongruence in your thoughts and attitude? Who should apologize for that? Was your statement not disrespectful of the Moratuwa faculty? Was that not “nasty and uncouth” on your part to discredit and disgrace the Civil Engineering faculty?

        Further, consider this. Even if the Government seeks foreign expertise, who do you think would be the most qualified to verify, validate and sign off on an approval on behalf of the country, if and when it comes to the approval process? Do you really think the Kelaniya Mervyn’s counterpart in the Ministry of Housing or the Moratuwa Faculty? So, would that not make the Moratuwa Engineering faculty indeed the rightful and legitimate final “authority and the ultimate judge on all engineering matters locally?”

        Remember DJ who was reprimanded by no less than his old pal the then-President as prostituting his recognizable talent and education. Guess what happened to the respect DJ had in these columns where he used to be a prolific contributor. Hope that serves well to enlighten if not warn you in continuing self-driven initiatives, as you seem to relentlessly pursue.

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      “I hope the government will arrange an orientation program for the new occupants on how to upgrade their house keeping skills. “

      Your own kitchen and toilet & kitchen speaks of the mess. When did you last refurbish it? The whole world is your urinal- you did say on CT `the army does pay the tamil call girls but the Tamils don’t pay. When asked you make tea in your Pyjamas the stench hit you. You ran into GA’s skirt. Don’t deny toddy tapper.
      There is a challenge placed you are coward. What have you won for the island single handed? My dad has and I have beaten not just Malabari but the Indians single handed in their own turf- all the read is detective and cheat but that has a limit.Your may be god to you folk he is one 2 tattu vaddukottai- so Malaysia says kotte buggers from the day sjv started his poop like mathir.
      take the challenge shameless meat or jump in the coffin.

    • 2
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      Dr RN
      One cannot readily fall for slogans like “new living standard and comfort”.
      We are talking about a people struggling to make ends meet.
      The government cannot be taken seriously, given its failure to ensure a people their right to a decent life with dignity and access to means of livelihood of many.

      The houses are far too costly. It is borrowed money which has to be paid back with interest. Baiting people with the offer of free houses is morally wrong.
      The cost of maintaining the houses will be a burden of an already desolate population.
      Now you talk of people being trained how to live in these houses. You may have heard of teaching old dogs new tricks. We need to learn from the experiences of people moved from ‘old fashioned’ housed to ‘modern’ housing colonies in our part of the world.

      What makes people smell a rat is firstly the lack of dialogue in advance with potential occupants; lack of transparency in the tender procedure; and lack of a professional assessment of cost-benefit and sustainability.

      You challenged the competence of a UoM team comprising structural engineers and an architect, despite UoM being the only university with that combination of expertise. I am not a worshipper of experts or expertise. But before I challenge a conclusion, I do some research.

      I am sorry to say that you are not the most qualified to make a learned comment on the subject.
      Your right to an opinion is as good as mine. But your views have failed to address reality.
      Many of the arguments thus far against the project remain valid, and I need not repeat them. You have no fresh arguments to offer.
      And a certain minister who is even less qualified than you to comment is showing fury rather than reason in response.

      That the project is designed to prop up Mittal’s flagging steel business cannot be dismissed lightly.
      I wonder if India has 85,000 suckers to take these steel cages.
      Money talks. A lot of money talks loud. 130 billion rupees is lots and lots of money.

      Sadly, the impression that you have given thus far is that you are almost as desperate as Mittal and the minister, whose intentions I now doubt, based on recent actions.

      I do not know you well enough to comment on your integrity, and even if I do this space should not be for personal comments.
      But I dare say that your arguments tend to lack intellectual honesty.

      There is more to life than winning an argument.

      This is a matter that concerns the lives of many people and future generations who have to carry the burden of debt imposed on them by corrupt regimes.

      Let us be responsible.

      • 3
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        SJ/sekara

        “But I dare say that your arguments tend to lack intellectual honesty.”

        The pot calling the kettle black.

        • 3
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          Let the kettle answer it.
          Are you once again Dr RN’s proxy?

          No fresh comments on the “1974 massacre”?

        • 0
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          Enter Vitalstatistix,

          year of the monkey sensitivity wins.

          black is black and white is white-

          its mild and humid.:)

          Obelix

          • 1
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            Vitalstatistix,

            The power of rin poche Vajra/Dorji need not drop it on you; there is enough of golden water to feed the whole of china.

            I observe carry on good luck.

            Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue.:))))

      • 1
        13

        Sekera,

        Your comment lacks objectivity. I am not qualified to comment! An unqualified Minister making a statement! Have you read the introduction to this statement, which lists the procedures followed and mentions the input of a technical committee. Are you against the proletariat living in modern housing? I did not talk about maintenance, because I know by experience that such houses require little or no maintenance. I talk about training because the people who will ultimately live in these houses have had no previous experiebce living in such houses and with such furniture and fittings. Have you talked to those who live in such housing now? If you did, please let us know what they said.

        I have also provided technical information citations in my comments. Did you read them?

        Dr.RN

        • 5
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          Narendran,

          “Your comment lacks objectivity. I am not qualified to comment! An unqualified Minister making a statement”
          “Are you against the proletariat living in modern housing?”

          You wrote `If` on CT from the original a serenade as if you were a bird- but you have never observed a bird in south east china that is never attacked by any other bird because it is humble in everything it does.

          If I give you a banana at table you will eat it like a monkey but if I show you how to eat it at table you won’t repeat it.

          If I give a lama a mango he would eat it like a monkey because he spends the whole day in meditation and prefers it that way.

          If I invite a casual labourer over there to my home and offer him an apple and knife he would not peel it but would like to eat it like a monkey and would never visit my home again and say sir I am happy.

          If only the casual workers get a decent wage can they better their life- but they are paid peanuts and the work is not regular.

          The only if you know is to chain animals and inject them because you drank the portion at Saudi for the money and you like to change how people like live.- Don Quixote La Mancha `stain` the man who tried to correct the world of how to live.

          Yours is vengeance against the Tamils like Fatima Fukushima.

          CT newsroom has so many threads you are into every thread- Now move your butt and feed the animals than showing humans how to live like Astronauts as the rich Chinese, Taiwanese, Japanese do at Canada.

  • 2
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    This housing project somehow reminds me of Lewis Carrol’s “Walrus and the Carpenter”.
    I cannot give the whole poem here, but rather prophetic stuff.

    “O Oysters, come and walk with us!”/The Walrus did beseech.
    “A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk,/Along the briny beach:
    We cannot do with more than four,/To give a hand to each.”

    The eldest Oyster looked at him,/But never a word he said:
    The eldest Oyster winked his eye,/And shook his heavy head–
    Meaning to say he did not choose/To leave the oyster-bed.

    But four young Oysters hurried up,/All eager for the treat:
    ….
    ….
    “…Now if you’re ready, Oysters dear,/ We can begin to feed.”

    “But not on us!” the Oysters cried,/Turning a little blue.
    “After such kindness, that would be/A dismal thing to do!”
    “The night is fine,” the Walrus said./”Do you admire the view?
    ….
    “O Oysters,” said the Carpenter,/”You’ve had a pleasant run!
    Shall we be trotting home again?’/But answer came there none–
    And this was scarcely odd, because/They’d eaten every one.

    (from “Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There” 1872)

    • 0
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      A snail without a home is a slug.
      A slug carries his home on his shoulders.

    • 3
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      Dr RN
      There is all manner of technical information on the Internet, much of which is sales talk.
      I have seen much of it and did a comparative study.
      I do not claim expertise like you do, but discussed with a few up-to-date structural engineer friends (not from Moratuwa) before writing.

      A house is more than a structure.
      The issue is not just the structure, but more about suitability.
      There are other factors, especially the cost and the preferences of the people that were never considered.
      There are other factors like extension of the house etc that have been raised.

      The points raised by the UoM panel are about the reality and, you— being the objective person that you are —promptly dismissed the report by challenging its competence. So much for objectivity.

      “Are you against the proletariat living in modern housing?”– This is for comic relief I suppose.
      Whether something is modern or not is not the issue. What is offered should be appropriate and adequate. That could have been achieved at much less cost and to suit the wishes of the occupants.

      Those posing to shed tears for the hapless are really shedding tears for Mittal if not those queuing up to collect their cut.

      It is a shame that the very lot who protested against MR regime’s abuses in the name of development, are doing it themselves in the name of caring for war victims.

      One cannot stop the thieves who are running the country from robbing it blind beyond bankruptcy.
      One tries nevertheless.

      I think that I have said enough.

  • 7
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    “”because I know by `experience` that such houses require little or no maintenance.””

    doesn’t your culture and you wet the toilet??
    even Anodized Aluminium needs maintenance-
    Drill one hole and the system drops in factor of safety.

    At best its fit for well manicured heeled city folk garden shed – even you and kalla swami can never live without the stench and being electrocuted – you have a bloody pain in the bum.

  • 6
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    “”I talk about training because the people who will ultimately live in these houses have had no previous experiebce living in such houses and with such furniture and fittings.””

    you might need a nurse when you hear this- to stop you sobbing.

    Lets put it simply Your stay at canada may have been on a government assisted scholarship.
    But you could not find suitable employment in the first world Canada.
    Therefore you lived in a rented apartment – asian folk Canada who live in rented apartments don’t even how to maintain a manicured lawn- they are rich cluless Gujarati’s

    you went to hot and sticky Saudi because you had no money like most Dr of Lanka.

    now with this vengeance you are claiming to be a manicured heeled moron.- bourgeois
    stupid villager come to town.
    I call a spade a spade because you are hurting the poor and voiceless.

  • 1
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    Dr,Narendran should mind his language. He falsely charges that Sampanthan is playing to gallery. Why should he? It is not only Sampanthan, almost all other MPs, the Chief Minister of NPC and civil society members have condemned the prefabricated houses to be built by the government at a cost of Rs.2,000,000 per unit. Dr. ZNarendran is a denationalized Tamil who has nothing in common with the ordinary Tamils. This steel house is not suitable for a terrain like the North which is extremely hot during the best part of the year. The BIG question is why did Minister Swaminathan consult the MPs and the NPC before awarding the contract. The 65,000 houses cost a whopping $1 billion. He is acting like another Rajapaksa being insensitive and cold to public opinion.

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