President looks into uplifting living standards of estate community

President looks into uplifting living standards of estate community

September 29, 2020   10:33 pm


President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa have emphasized the necessity to construct residences for estate workers in close proximity to their existing line houses.

The construction of 4,000 houses for estate people commenced in 2016 with funding from the Indian government. A total of 669 houses were constructed in the last 5 years under this project. The officials claimed that practical issues in the supply of infrastructure facilities delayed the construction.

Essential infrastructure facilities have already been provided for the people living in estates. “Therefore, the construction of their new residences in close vicinity to their line houses would allow them to experience these benefits without wasting time.” President and Premier added.

President Rajapaksa has stressed that it is important to uplift the lives of the estate community without having to shift their current habitats. President also noted that the construction plans for these new houses should be supervised by the State Engineering Corporation to ensure higher standards and better quality.

President made these remarks during a meeting with the State Ministry of Estate Housing and Community Infrastructure Facilities to review their future vision at the Presidential Secretariat today (September 29).

President Rajapaksa stated that, in addition to the government measures to promote the living conditions of the estate people, private estate companies should fulfil their part of responsibilities for a remarkable outcome.

The State Ministry of Estate housing and Community Infrastructure Facilities should liaise with line Ministries including Health, Education, Agriculture, Housing, and Sports and take measure to uplift the living standards of the estate community, President added.

President stressed the necessity of developing pre-schools, primary schools and medical centres in the estate sector.

There was also a lengthy discussion on the importance of providing vocational training to estate youth so that they can obtain NVQ level certificates and guide them to find employment opportunities.

The President stated that 438 estate health centres should be taken over by the Government and quality service should be provided for the benefit of the estate community.

Plans mooted to promote tourism in Bandarawela, Hatton, Nuwara-Eliya and Ella were also taken up for discussion.

President emphasized that all development activities should be carried out without delineating the estate and the village.

State Minister Jeewan Thondaman, Secretary to the President P. B. Jayasundera, Principal Advisor to the President Lalith Weeratunga, Secretaries to Cabinet and State Ministries and heads of several line institutes were also present at the meeting.


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