Northern Province regains its pristine glory
The Northern Province that had borne the brunt of terrorism for
thirty long years under the clutches of the LTTE is fast returning to
its former glory as an economic nerve centre of the country, since the
implementation of the 'Vadakkin Vasantham' recovery program implemented
by the Presidential Task Force (PTF) which was appointed by President
Mahinda Rajapaksa on May 7, 2009, immediately after the military defeat
of the terrorist outfit. Several mega development projects have already
been implemented and many more are in the pipeline for the
The re-constructed Jaffna Library complex
The multi-facility complex in Jaffna
Tobacco cultivation that has re-started in the peninsula.
Booming agricultural activities
The re-constructed Murukandy bridge
in a Jaffna village
The Herculean task of re-building the entire province has virtually
been achieved through the multifarious programs for the overall
re-structure and the fast changing face of the province is authentic
testimony to this achievement, authoritative sources said. Many programs
have already been implemented successfully, more are under
implementation and some are in the pipeline.
The Government is spending a bulk of the funds obtained from the
ADB,WB and other international monetary organisations for the
development of the province mainly aimed at the socio-economic uplift of
the people and their empowerment, the sources said.
Entrepreneurs from many countries are visiting the province to
explore investment potentials.
One entrepreneur has decided to develop the island sector as a
tourist destination under a mega project which will offer direct
employment opportunities to 25,000 and indirectly to many more. He will
develop the Kayts, Mandativu and Kerativu offshore islands with golf
courses, big tourist hotels and facilities for the passenger ships to
come direct to the tourist sites.
The Mandativu offshore island which has one of the best Bird
Sanctuaries in the region will also be developed to form part of the
tourist attractions. It is a mega project to be completed at a gradual
pace in 10 years, the sources said.
There will be five industrial zones, each 25 acres or more in extent.
The Achchuvely Industrial Zone is already nearing completion and has
many industrial complexes. These will ultimately be entrusted to the
people, through their organisations. President Mahinda Rajapaksa and
Minister Basil Rajapaksa, who is in-charge of the PTF for Northern
Development, are fully committed to the recovery of the province to its
former state, the sources said.
The first phase of the Kankesanthurai harbour development project is
already completed and the second phase has started. With the completion
of the third phase, the Northern province will have an international
standard harbour and ships will come direct, contributing to the economy
of the province, the sources said.
The salient features of the different programs, based on details
provided by the Northern PC administration, on restoration of civil
administration, livelihood facilities to the resettled people
(agricultural production, irrigation, livestock and fisheries), all
other facilities including housing, education, health, drinking water,
sanitation, re-construction and infrastructure are featured here. Almost
all the displaced persons, numbering 353,400 have been resettled in
their original places of residence and have returned to their
The relief and rehabilitation assistance extended to them included
six months' dry rations, non-food relief item, sets of kitchen utensils,
shelter grant of Rs. 25,000, roofing sheets 12 numbers, cement eight
bags, agricultural tool kits, seed paddy two bushels per acre,
subsidised fertilisers, land preparation payment of Rs. 4,000 and
Rehabilitation of access roads, restoration of power supply ,
rehabilitation of major and minor tanks, rehabilitation of canals and
culverts as well as rehabilitation and recommissioning of irrigation
facilities were among the main infrastructure facilities that were
provided for the livelihood of the displaced families. Services provided
included rehabilitation of administrative officers, hospitals, maternity
homes, schools, cooperative outlets, agrarian services, post offices,
banks as well as restoration of clean drinking water facilities.
The amount invested by the line ministries under the 'Vadakkin
Vasantham' program is Rs. 8,865.33 Mn, by the then Ministry of Nation
Building and State Infrastructure is Rs. 2,222.17 Mn, and the Ministry
had also contributed a supplementary investment of Rs. 993.39 Mn from
The investment by the Northern PC Ministries is Rs. 1,215.29 Mn. The
total amount so invested was Rs. 12,296.78 Mn. Sector-wise contribution
for 'Vadakkin Vasantham' development programs for the years from 2009 -
2012 include Rs. 171,233.44 Mn which was for the resettled areas to
develop livelihood of the people and the basic infrastructure. This
investment contributed towards their day to day livelihood activities
and to fulfil their needs.
The GDP growth rate was recorded as the highest in the province at
27.1 percent in 2011. Agriculture, including fisheries and animal
husbandry, which are the mainstay of the economy has shown positive
growth after 2009. The agricultural sector contributed to 24.2 percent
of the GDP composition to the provincial economy in 2011. Paddy
cultivation in the North in the years 2011 and 2012 had recorded the
highest yield in the country. Production of crops, fisheries and other
livelihood sectors have gradually increased and the market for
agricultural products has expanded. Per capita income rose to Rs.
200,000 in 2011 as against Rs. 159,000 in 2010. This trend is
progressively on the increase.
Under the Northern Province Governor's special scheme for IDP
students returning from war zone they were allowed to continue their
studies in the universities after going through a government procedure
applicable to IDPs and ex-combatants.
The scheme was started in 2010 and out of 424 students, 189 were
selected for the scheme under which each student gets assistance for the
university academic year until completion of the course of study. Total
expenditure on implementation of the scheme was Rs. 7.98 Mn in 2010, Rs.
3.63 Mn in 2011 and Rs. 3.97 Mn in 2012.
There are 42 registered children's homes that are functioning with
monetary assistance and monitoring by the Government (Department of
Probation and Childcare). Also there are 14 unregistered homes. There
are 502 schools functioning in the Jaffna district ( 3 zones), 110
schools in the Kilinochchi District (1 zone ), 117 schools in the
Mullaitivu district (2 zones), 202 schools in the Vavuniya district (2
zones) and 129 schools in the Mannar distrcit (2 zones). An amount of
Rs. 2.80 Mn was invested to improve the educational sector in the years
2009 - 2012. About 695 school buildings were either reconstructed or
repaired. Lab facilities have been provided to 28 schools under the
Over 80,000 students received recreational kits, school bags, free
uniforms, books and meals. About 86,202 pieces of furniture for
students, 2,200 for teachers, 206 steel cabinets, 12 lab equipment, 482
computers, Rs. 100 Mn worth of library books, Rs. 20 Mn worth of sports
material and 105 musical instruments were provided to the schools.
Temporary accommodation for teachers were provided and 100 laptop
computers to selected students who performed well at the GCE (AL) were
1,642 pre-schools attended by 48,252 children are functioning with
government assistance. Of the 2890 pre-school teachers, 1,847 are
getting a monthly allowance from the government while 840 teachers have
been imparted in-house training. Infrastructure facilities have been
extended to 99 pre-schools and 447 teachers completed training as
diploma holders in pre-school education.
In the All Schools Games and Athletics competition, participants from
the Northern schools won 11 medals for games and 24 for athletics.
In the health care sector, 4 District General Hospitals, 3 Base
Hospitals (Type A), 6 Base hospitals (type B), 54 Divisional hospitals
and 34 primary hospitals are functioning.
The newly constructed medical wards, surgical wards and medical
officers' quarters at the Base Hospital, Chavakachcheri was declared
open recently. The cost was Rs. 150 Mn.
An amount of Rs. 4,814 Mn was spent during the years 2009 - 2012 to
improve the health sector. 237 major health institutions were
reconstructed or renovated at a cost of Rs. 2,250 Mn. Nearly Rs. 1,300
Mn worth of medical equipment were provided to all hospitals in the
province, including to medical institutions in the resettled areas. Most
of the quarters for medical officers, nursing officers and other staff
were reconstructed at Rs. 500 Mn.
Thirty-one ambulances, 8 single cabs, 3 mobile dental vehicles, 2
mobile spraying units, 2 mobile health vehicles, a 52-seater bus, a drug
lorry, an ambulance boat, 30 motorbikes, 150 scooters, 385 bicycles and
8 generators were also supplied to health institutions in the resettled
areas. The total cost is Rs. 450 Mn. In Mannar DGH division a special
child care unit was constructed and equipped at a cost of Rs. 25 Mn. A
paediatric ward complex in the DH area, Adampan was constructed at an
expenditure of Rs. 40 Mn. Foundation stone for the Base Hospital in
Mulankavil in Oddusuddan was laid and the initial cost is estimated at
Rs. 100 Mn. 163 Nursing Officers were appointed. Three ambulances, one
each to the Mullaitivu General Hospital, Mullaitivu Base Hospital and
the Periyapandivirichchan divisional hospital were supplied.
The new office of the Regional Director of Health Services for
Mullaitivu was constructed at Rs. 39 Mn. For reducing malnutrition among
lactating mothers, pregnant mothers and infants below two years a
program at a cost of Rs. 300 Mn has been implemented. Construction of
the four storey, 200 bedded ward at the General Hospital, Vavuniya was
started at a cost of Rs. 187 Mn. The Ministry of Economic Development
supplied CT scanners to the DHC, Vavuniya at Rs. 56 Mn. A multi-facility
building complex at the Teaching Hospital, Jaffna was recently declared
open by President Mahinda Rajapaksa at a total cost of Rs. 2600 Mn. Agro
machinery, equipments and tools were supplied to farmers in the
Over 320,603 kg of seed paddy and large quantities of subsidized
fertilisers including MOP, Urea and TSP were also supplied to the
farmers. The Regional College of Fisheries and Nautical Engineering was
established in Jaffna in October 2011.
Local services improvement program, at a cost of Rs. 3,626.44 Mn, was
implemented under funding from the Ministry of Economic Development. Of
the total 34 local government bodies (MCs, UCs and PSs), 32 elected
bodies are functioning.
The local authorities renovated rural roads, cleaned wells, provided
sanitation facilities and renovated buildings at a cost of Rs. 2,620 Mn.
Under the Pura Neguma program, roads were renovated, water supply
facilities reconstructed and market buildings were constructed at an
expenditure of Rs. 1,019.42 Mn. Under the local government improvement
project ( rehabilitation of roads, buildings and purchase of machinery)
a total amount of Rs. 463.3 was spent.
A total number of 126 mini cooperative cities and 30 main cooperative
cities were constructed in the five districts of the province and all
MPCS branches were re-established while 140 new cooperative societies
were registered. Micro credit facilities were provided to farmers and
the total amount so given was Rs. 190.3 Mn . Revolving loans to the
total amount of 190.3 Mn were given to 6563 families. Over 40,716 houses
have been completed under programs of the Government, the Government of
India and several NGOs.
Under the major program of rehabilitation and reconstruction of
infrastructure, the Mannar bridge and causeway was constructed at an
expenditure of Rs. 2460 Mn. Project-wise the amounts spent on
reconstruction of railways and roads were: Rs. 1,070 Mn on the A 9
Kandy-Jaffna Road, Rs. 700 Mn on the Murungan-Silawathurai Road and Rs.
220 Mn on the Thiruketheeswaram roads.
Under the on-going rehabilitation/reconstruction of roads projects
the estimated expenditures on completion of projects are: Rs. 676 Mn on
the Vavuniya-Horawapothana Road, Rs. 2,000 Mn ( WB funded) for the
provincial roads in Jaffna, Rs. 398 Mn on the Jaffna-Manipay-Karainagar
Road, Rs. 181 Mn on the Jaffna-Pt.Pedro Road, Rs. 1250 Mn on the A 32
Road, Rs. 2854 Mn on the Vavuniya-Mannar Road, Rs. 3600 Mn on the 100 km
provincial roads (under MCs and UCs), US $ 776.5 Mn (ADB- Chinese Govt.
funded) on national roads, US $ 79 Mn on the 250 km provincial roads and
100 km MC and UC Roads (WB, ADB funded) and Rs. 1140.00 Mn on rural
roads. The 260 km Northern railway line was reconstructed by the
Government of India.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa recently declared open the newly-built
Jetty at Nainativu off-shore island. The cost was Rs. 30 Mn. The wreck
removal project at the Kankesanthurai harbour was completed by the
Government of India on July 2011.
Under power supply projects, the Vavuniya to Jaffna 132 kV
transmission line and two grid substations (Kilinochchi and Chunnakam)
were completed at an expenditure of Rs. 6,759 Mn (ADB -JICA funded), The
'Vadakkin Vasantham' distribution development project was completed at
Rs. 5,297 Mn (ADB-JICA funded) and transmission project augmentation
(Vavuniya Substation) at Rs. 7,024 Mn.
The President officially commissioned the "Uthuru Jananee" Thermal
Plant project costing Rs. 3.5 Billion. The total estimated cost on the
implementation of the major Jaffna Peninsula Water Supply Scheme is Rs.
20,000 Mn. The Municipal Council Sewerage Scheme (ADB study) costs Rs.
4,725 Mn. The BOI has also approved several projects with foreign
investment which would offer employment opportunities to nearly 4,000
persons. Foreign investments in projects on different sectors have also
been identified for the Northern province.
In the agricultural sector, cooperative societies of the farmers are
working closely with similar societies of the South, mutually marketing
agricultural products. In the educational sector too, the Northern
province has done extremely well.The PC got Rs. 1,200 Million last year
for development work from the central government and a similar amount
this year as well. This amount is spent on development work which
include construction of buildings, reservoirs, irrigation canals and
other important development-related work.