‘Reservoir of reconciliation’ | Daily News
Lower Malwathu Oya

‘Reservoir of reconciliation’

Minister P. Harrison opens the Lower Malwathu Oya Multipurpose Reservoir project management office.
Minister P. Harrison opens the Lower Malwathu Oya Multipurpose Reservoir project management office.

Construction work of the Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir which dragged on for nearly six decades will commence before the Sinhala and Hindu New Year, said Irrigation, Agriculture, Rural Economy, Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Minister P. Harrison.

The Minister was speaking at the recent opening of the Lower Malwathu Oya Multipurpose Reservoir project management office as a prerequisite to the construction work of the reservoir.

The government spent Rs. 280 million for the building complex.

Minister Harrison said the reservoir would be the third-largest reservoir to come under the administration of the Irrigation Department. “The proposed Malwathu Oya Reservoir could be interpreted as the reservoir of reconciliation, since the Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims in Anuradhapura, Vavuniya and Mannar district will benefit from this giant lake. Once the project is completed, 40,000 acres of paddy in the region could be irrigated both in the Yala and Maha seasons and at times, in an intermediate cultivation season too,” he said. Construction work of the nearbyYan Oya reservoir is reaching its completion.

The Yan Oya and the Malwathu Oya reservoirs will, along with the other existing tanks systems in the Anuradhapura district, usher an era of prosperity to the ancient Sri Lankan kingdom, the Minister said.

The Minister said every family deprived of their property and evacuated due to the Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir would be reasonably compensated with housing facilities and alternate land.

Anuradhapura Government Agent and the head of Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir project progress review committee R.M. Wanninayake said it was advisable to resettle evacuated families within the proximity of the reservoir.

The historic Thantirimale Raja Maha Viharadhipathi Ven. Thantirimale Chandrarathana Nayaka Thera in his anusasana said the greatest compensation awarded to the brave people of the Thantirimale region, who underwent untold hardships inconveniences during the war, was the Lower Malwathu Oya Reservoir.

The new office building complex was opened amidst religious observances by the Maha Sangha headed by Atamasthanadhipathi Ven. Dr. Pallegama Siriniwasa Nayaka Thera.

Irrigation Ministry Additional Secretary D.B. Ariyaratne, Additional Irrigation Director General Mohan Raja, Project Director Eng. T.P. Alwis, Anuradhapura Additional Government Agent Keerthi Gamage and other officials were present on the occasion. 


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