Monday, June 4, 2018

I don’t know about census and statistics, but look around and say it as it is! The surreal level of cleared lands (forest cut down) but no cultivation to be seen

We are a nation that seems to believe it is fashionable to clear land of forest and brush and prepare it for SOMETHING? What I may ask?

I travel up and down the country often and I see so much land that could be cultivated but is not, so effectively is of ZERO productive use, as neither a tree is growing to give us the lungs to breathe when our lungs fail due to air pollution, no is it cultivated with any crop, cash or otherwise ( know when land is left fallow for a purpose and this is not the case here)


The owners are wealthy people, they don’t have time or the need to utilize this property for any purpose at the moment.

The owners are poor people, they don’t have the money to cultivate, as they lost everything they had in the last cultivation when the rains failed.

The owners don’t live close by, they are professionals in Colombo, and live there, and have not been able to find anyone to work the land, and they are still looking for someone who can work the land and give them something, but it is a laborers they are looking for. If they give a neighboring farmer, he will then refuse to leave the land when he is told to.

We don’t know who the owners are, and no one wants to trespass, in case the owners come and lodge a police complaint against trespassing.

It is state property, owned by the Education Department (one of 2,000 closed schools that is now infested with drug addicts) Railway Dept./ irrigation department/ pradeshiya sabha/ and numerous other government departments, that own a SUBSTANTIAL portion of the uncultivated/unutilized land.

State land which was cleared on both sides of the road to during the conflict, for safe passage of people and security forces, but no one has replanted it!


We must have a POLICY on what to do with this allowing one of two things, growing of forest and long term trees, or short term cash crops of food items. Owners must be permitted/encouraged to lease, WITHOUT fear of loss of title. State Agencies permitted to use unutilized state property for approved purposes.


Anonymous said...

The state is the biggest culprit as they own most of the land

The government is engaging in criminal activity, by building UDA gammanayas, by clearing forest land they own, when there is enough cleared land where they can do this. The people constructing always choose land with trees as they want to cut the trees and make money.

Until Sri Lanka is rid of people from the top to bottom who only think of themselves, we will be a desert that non one can live in a short time

Anonymous said...

The Mahinda Rajapakse government was the biggest destroyer of forests. They gave at least 500,000 acres to people to clear and build homes in areas there are no jobs and subsistence farming.

Immediately remove all these people and give them homes where the jobs are, and return this land to forest for a start. Unfortunately power is at the heart of this, to keep people enslaved for life, by giving them some land and keeping them enslaved to vote for you hoping for scraps from politicians, instead of giving them a home for rent in urban areas, and them contributing to employment, jobs that Chinese are doing because the those very people in the areas that got the land don't want to leave the land to take up employment.

MR Government has created more lazy people who want to live off of handouts

Anonymous said...

What do you expect when you have asses and donkeys who make the rules

Take Gampaha District, the most populous district in the Country

Just last year the wells ran dry, now we have floods. Not one donkey has implemented a plan to raise the groundwater levels of Gampaha that have been severely depleted. All they do is find out the most porous areas of Gampaha to ground water basins.

Then direct rain water there to fill up the groundwater. Instead all the water is flowing in places like Attanagalu Oya flooding low lying lands and thousands of acres of new rice fields are ruined, needing to be newly sown again, and most farmers refusing to do so! Add to all the uncultivated rice paddies, and you have a classic problem.

At least make 100 small water holding pens, in rice fields by looking at the way water flows. This will have a triple benefit - one to reduce flood damage by diverting water to these holding tanks. two to allow some water to seep into the ground water and three allow the balance to be used in paddy cultivation, where water is stored in the highest fields for later use at the lowest fields. SIMPLE solution, but with morons in power in every sphere it is simply not done

Anonymous said...

Start with at least 50 of the 100 or so army camps that have been set up in forested lands, by the government seizing this land, as no one will object if it is for the forces. The Rajapakse Government could not care too hoots about this destruction, and it was not necessary to win the war anyway, so it should be immediately closed down and re forested, another 200,000 acres here alone.

Worse than that it is the senior soldiers who demand that venison and wild boar are supplied to them, and here again no one questions them breaking the law. Another result of giving them too much power.

Sadly we suffer for the folly of our leaders, and not a dog is complaining about it, at least if the media take a stance and let the people know the facts that will be something

Anonymous said...

Yes this year, due to three successive poor harvests due to drought, the farmers are penurious and cannot cultivate, as even the basics are not available to them. It is sad as this time there was water if they had had a head start in preparing their fields.

It is a catch 22 situation in Sri Lanka. What with other farmers, who turned from paddy to vegetable cultivation depressing the prices for even traditional vegetable farmers, which made them even more destitute and so you have at least one million acres of land that farmers could not cultivate.

Tragic I agree. What is the solution? For a start these people should be moved out of their lands and sent off to work in the areas where they are desperate for workers. However it is the government duty if they yank a family out of their to provide them with basic housing near the work place, while forfeiting their village land, as you cannot possibly have both.

All land near sanctuaries must be allowed to go back into forest, and farmers if they want to own it, must be then forced to cultivate forest trees only, as cash crops have proved time and again to be useless to sustain livelihood.

Don't forget this is all government failure is bringing people and settling them in areas where they are unable to get their head above water, it is not places where these families have lived for more than two generations and with no employment their hold on the area is tenuous at best.

Serious social engineering is needed to save Sri Lanka from foolish and idiotic leaders

Anonymous said...

Sri Lanka is the world's first poor country that has a population implosion like the rich countries. SO it does not have the labor to grow, so it can only grow by being more efficient.

Answer, abandon all marginal agriculture, which is going to get more marginal as part of the global warming phenomenon of longer droughts, and heavy downpours of rain, which make long term water storage the key to future agricultural growth along with new techniques in water saving to use scarce resources wisely.

This cannot be left to poor subsistence farmers to do. Who is going to tell you that you have to move out to improve your life? that is the key to getting our development on track.

Mobility of the people and workforce