Rattota PS passes resolution to suspend Knuckles project
The Rattota Pradeshiya Sabha unanimously passed a resolution that the proposed tourism promotion project in the Knuckles Mountain Range should be suspended. They pointed out that the joint project of the Forest Conservation Dept., Ministry of Tourism and the Central Environmental Authority would cause extensive environmental damage to the highly sensitive environmental zone.
The motion was tabled by JVP Member Sisira Kumara (JVP ) and seconded by SLPP Member A.g.nishantha Bandara at the monthly meeting presided over by Chairman of the council Thennakoon Kumarasena.
PS Member Kumara pointed out that the government was planning to pass legislation in parliament to implement the proposed project under the title State Land Bank Act and that the Matale Government Agent and several officials had carried out a preliminary survey in this regard.
“The forest range would be cleared to construct roads, camps for mountaineering, restaurants, a water bottling factory, poultry farms and operate cable cars. This would destroy a vast area of the forest range,” he said.
Chairman Thennakoon Kumarasena pointed out that the government’s plan to alienate 21,000 acres of land in the knuckles range to multi-national companies was prevented by a massive campaign launched by the Pradeshiya Sabha and that a similar agitation would be launched to save the Dumbara Wanapetha” from the proposed project.
UNP Member Athula Wickremanayake and SLPP Member Nishantha Bandara also expressed their views supporting the resolution.