|Basil to personally survey
flood recovery in Batticaloa
Economic Development Minister Basil
Rajapaksa is scheduled to undertake a tour of
the east today to ascertain for himself the
progress made with regard to the flood recovery
programme, launched by his ministry immediately
after the floods.
The economic development ministry, on the
directives of Minister Rajapaksa initiated the
recovery programme soon after the floods hit the
east last month.
Basil is expected to address all the heads of
department and local politicians in Batticaloa
to review the flood recovery programme, today.
The top level meeting, considered to be a
crucial one, is to take place in Batticaloa
Kachcheri today, according to highly placed
sources from the Batticaloa Kachcheri.
The minister will launch the 2000 Minor Tanks
Development programme in the flood affected
areas in the east today. The launch of this
massive development programme will kick off at
Vellaveli in the Batticaloa district.
The minister is also expected to study the
overall assessment done in the aftermath of the
floods in the east in general and in particular
Batticaloa district which was the worst hit in
the recent floods that rendered nearly a million
people homeless in the East.
As the unprecedented natural disaster has
devastated the east, the minister is expected to
discuss with local level developers,
politicians, agriculturists and other relevant
officials to find ways and means of overcoming
this huge economic setback, sources said.
Locally based scientists who have been
responsible for carrying out an assessment of
the eastern disaster, especially in Batticaloa
district on the directive of minister Rajapaksa
himself, have identified the unprecedented
rainfall Batticaloa has received during just two
months for the unusual floods.
According to their findings, Batticaloa that
receives 1,600 mm of rain every year has
received an unprecedented 1,400 mm of rain in
December 2010 and from January to February (3rd)
2011 another 1,600 mm of rainfall.
According to them, more than 40,000 cattle have
died due the unusual floods and they warned that
the dairy industry in the east would severely be
affected due to this.
They also said 97 percent of the food production
is destroyed while also causing a huge damage to
the infrastructure in the east.
“So it is a huge economic destruction. And this
is why the minister himself is here today,” they