External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna on Wednesday handed over houses built for the Internally Displaced Persons at a function organised at Ariviyal Nagar, Kilinochchi.
“The houses that you see across the school compound have been constructed in the pilot phase for 1,000 houses under our Housing Project which was launched during my visit in November 2010. I am happy to hand over these houses to beneficiaries of Ariviyal Nagar here and at Ariyalai in Jaffna later in the day. I am sure that the lessons learnt from this pilot phase will be useful in the implementation of the next phase of the project for 49,000 houses for which Minister Peiris and I signed an MOU yesterday on behalf of our two governments to ensure smooth execution,” he said at the ceremony.
Mr. Krishna also handed over of the first school under India’s project for repairs of 79 war-damaged schools in the three districts of Kilinochchi, Mulaittivu and Vavuniya in Northern Province.
The project was conceived with the objective of assisting early restoration of educational activities for children of resettled IDPs and to deliver a facelift to basic educational infrastructure of the region. “I am happy to note that as a result of this intervention families will be able to send their children to schools, and students will have a decent learning environment offering them a better future,” he said.
At a ceremony at District General Hospital, Kilinochchi, he handed over critical medical equipment to improve the standard of medical care and obviate the need to refer cases for treatment to Jaffna or Colombo via ambulances. Similar equipment has also been provided to the Mullaitivu District General Hospital. “We have supported other projects in the area of health-care, like providing emergency medical relief and organizing artificial limbs re-fitment camps immediately after the end of the war as also by donating medical equipment to the Jaffna Teaching Hospital,” he said.
The Government of India has also recently approved the proposal for construction of 200 bed ward complex at the District General Hospital, Vavunia. India has been supporting other projects for rehabilitation, resettlement and well-being of displaced persons in the Northern Province.