Colombo: The All Ceylon Hindu Congress, an organisation involved in serving Tamil IDPs in the war-ravaged north Sri Lanka on Thursday appealed for assistance in its relief and rehabilitation work for thousands of people displaced as a result of three-decade old ethnic conflict.
"We appeal to all our brothers and sisters on this occasion to assist us in the projects of relief and rehabilitation," the association said in a statement.
Our brothers and sisters have been suffering in numerous ways for the last two decades. On this Thaipongal all the Hindus in this country pray that there will be salvation for them as early as possible, it said.
"Thai Pongal is an important day in the calendar of the Hindus. With the dawn of the month of Thai, Hindus hope that a new era will dawn and that it will pave the way for a better future."
The association said it has been helping the displaced people in the Wanni in numerous ways while thanking the Sri Lankan government for arranging to release Hindu priests and elders besides opening the A9 route. It also thanked the government for providing education to over 270 rehabilitated former LTTE cadres at the Colombo Hindu College.
Since February 2009, the Congress is actively involved in serving Internally Displaced People who were displaced from their native places due to recent war in the Wanni Region and now live in numerous temporary camps in Vavuniya, Cheddikulam, Trincomalee, Mannar and Jaffna. "We also helped the undergraduates of the Jaffna University and the Eastern University who came from the IDP camps by making donations for them to establish their lives."
We are thankful to London Kanaga Thurkai Amman Temple and Manitha Neyam Trust for financially assisting us in these projects, the state owned Daily News quoted the association to say in a message on the occasion.
"We also thank President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Senior Presidential Advisor Basil Rajapaksa MP, Ministers Douglas Devananda and Milinda Moragoda for readily responding to our requests in the rehabilitation and relief works," the message said.
The association said as a Federation of Hindu Religious Associations and Trusts in Sri Lanka, it has obtained the assistance of the Government and is providing "whatever relief to the displaced people”.
"We are at the same time conscious that a lot more has to be done for them," it said while appealing for assistance from the people.
“We pray on this Thaipongal Day to god to bless our people with salvation in the immediate future,” the message said.