Despite the government promising to pay farmers whose cultivations were destroyed last season due to the drought Rs.10,000 a month for four months when farmer communities all over the island took to the streets demanding compensation of Rs.50,000 for the destruction of their cultivations, the farmers have not received the monies as promised says the National Organizer of All Ceylon Farmers’ Federation Namal Karunaratna.
He says the destruction of the crops intensified as rulers and officials failed to supply water to cultivated lands despite there was enough water in tanks and reservoirs at the beginning of the season.
He said the relief due to the farmers should be paid without any deductions and the government should extend the four month compensation to five months or else they would come with the farmer community to President’s House to demand their rights.
Making another revelation Mr. Namal Karunaratna said the 5,620,000 metric tons that were sent from India and Indonesia to be distributed among farmers who were affected by the drought was not distributed among farmers and said the government should tell the country as to what happened to these stocks of rice.
The Nataional Organizer of All Ceylon Farmers’ Federation Namal Karunaratna made these observations at a press conference held at Dambulla on the 11th.The General Secretary of the Federation T.B. Sarath, its Executive Members Wasantha Piyathissa and Sunil Ranaweera were also present.