Published on - 1/19/2005
Major General S. D Tennakoon, Commander Security Forces Headquarters, Jaffna with active support received from Sri Lanka Army Engineers and troops at Palaly Air Force Base, has launched a series of multifarious post-tsunami projects, aimed at restoring normalcy in many disaster-struck areas and fishing hamlets in the Jaffna peninsula.
Worst-affected Munai, Supermadam, Polikandi fishing hamlets and Imburuti areas in Point Pedro, considering the vital importance of livelihoods, were prioritized under that repair and rehabilitation scheme after clearing debris of damaged houses, buildings and piles of rubble of roads with the help of machinery Major General Tennekoon received from the Sri Lanka Army Engineers and the Police. Human chains formed by troops and civilians ensured that boats that were pushed on to roads and inside hinterland after they were washed away in the tsunami, were once again brought ashore for repairs and re-sailing
Interestingly enough, Army Engineers with the cooperation of leading citizens took the lead and cleared the coastal stretch from Supermadam up to Adi Kovil of any possible Anti Personnel Mines (APM) in order to ensure that no such danger existed in areas where displaced residents were expected to resettle. In the mean time, the road from Point Pedro to Velvettiturai has already been reconstructed facilitating regular traffic after the troops under the supervision of Colonel K. S Rathnayake, Commander, 524 Brigade, Point Pedro, removed heaps of scattered garbage that hindered smooth passage over two weeks after the disaster struck.
Sri Lanka Port Authority responding to efforts being launched to help resume ordinary life of the fishing communities in the peninsula came forward and lent their cranes to bring scores of affected boats back at sea from areas such as Adi Kovil and Sakkottai on 12 January 2005.
As life in affected areas inches forward after trauma of loss and excitement, troops came in for praise by members of the public who came forward to treat troops engaged in clearing work with sweetmeats and drinks.