THE MEGA PROJECT for construction of 680 new houses for poverty-ridden families who have arrived in the Jaffna peninsula for resettlement is fast nearing completion, as each Jaffna-based Army battalion has undertaken the responsibility for erection of 15 houses when the project was launched on 1st March 2010.
Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe, Commander Security Forces, Jaffna, who pioneered the project harnessed the support of the District Secretary for Jaffna, all Divisional Secretaries and Grama Seva Niladharis in the peninsula for the mega project as every battalion under command to 51, 52, 55 Divisions and Task Force - VII is expected to build 15 such houses as directed by civil authorities who have allocated land for this purpose from respective areas.
The Army providing work force, finance and raw materials for the construction is to build each house with 2 rooms, a kitchen, a sitting room plus a toilet. District Secretary Mr. K Ganesh who has extended his support for the project issues 12 galvanized roofing sheets for each house at government’s cost.
A large number of philanthropists and well-wishers in Jaffna have come forward to offer their assistance to the project by way of donating building materials, etc as the project got off the ground. Each house is expected to be handed over to its recipient before the forthcoming Sinhala and Hindu New Year.
Most of those families with no permanent dwelling places or any permanent source of income have been badly affected due to poverty, and most of them do not have proper means of livelihoods. The Army, realizing the need to have their own places of abode on a priority basis, planned the implementation of the project with the support of the government and other private donors. Army troops in each battalion are enthusiastically providing their tireless support for the project, working almost about ten or more hours a day as the deadline for the delivery is now round the corner.