London: There are growing tensions in northern Sri Lanka as Tamils are trying to prevent the Sinhalese-dominated army from taking over their land.
In a new development, villagers have driven out a group of surveyors sent by the authorities. Thousands others are involved in a court action trying to win back the land they were displaced from years ago.
According to the BBC, two thousand people are petitioning the Appeal Court in Colombo to get back the land, which they fled during the bloody 26-year war.
Land in post-war northern Sri Lanka is a highly contentious issue, pitting local Tamil people against the almost entirely Sinhalese army, the report said.
In a recent article Jaffna-based lawyer and activist Kumaravadivel Guruparan, and a UK-based Tamil doctor, R Sivakami, described the process as `wholesale militarised seizure` conducted through `dubious` legal means.
According to the report, human rights campaigners said that the process of seizing the land was keeping vulnerable people, displaced by the war, out of their rightful homes.
But the military spokesman, Ruwan Wanigasooriya, described such talk as `absolute rubbish`, saying that the land acquisition was for the security of the people who live there.
During the war the Tamil Tigers expelled 100,000 Muslims from the north, while several thousand Sinhalese fled Jaffna in the early years of the war, the report added.