Tsunami tragedy that claimed thousands of lives marks 11 years

Tsunami tragedy that claimed thousands of lives marks 11 years

Tsunami tragedy that claimed thousands of lives marks 11 years

Written by Staff Writer

26 Dec, 2015 | 9:20 am

The Disaster Management Center requests the general public to observe 2 minutes of in honor of those who lost their lives in the Tsunami that hit the shores of Sri Lanka, 11 years ago on Saturday, December 26.

Assistant Director of the DMC Pradeep Kodippilli stated a 2 minute silence will be observed from 9:25 to 9:27 this morning.

More than 250,000 people living in 14 countries including Sri Lanka lost their lives in the Boxing Day Tsunami.

Millions were left homeless and destitute after the tragedy.

To date, we remember this as one of the darkest chapters in our collective memory.

An earthquake shook the sea bed off Sumatra at 6.58 am reaching a magnitude of 9.0 on the richter scale.

The earthquake itself devastated parts of Indonesia, but the worst was yet to come.

The monstrous waves that developed from the earthquake that took place in the Indian ocean 40 miles away from Indonesia took only 40 minutes to wreak death and destruction in Aceh, Indonesia.

168 thousand lives were lost in Indonesia as millions more were left homeless.The property damage caused by the disaster has been estimated at 9 billion US dollars.The global economy lost 14 billion US dollars. Within hours of the tragedy, foreign nations reached out helping hands.

The Tidal wave that caused destruction and loss of life in a number of countries including Thailand and India hit the coast of Sri Lanka at 9.25 am.

The deadly waves engulfed the Northern, Eastern and Southern coasts of the island, leaving a wake of death, destruction and despair. The Tsunami affected key towns including Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Trincomalee, Ampara, and Baticaloa. It took with it the lives of 35,000 Sri Lankans. The highest number of deaths were reported from Baticaloa.

Families were torn apart and the country was left facing an unforeseen and unprecedented crisis. Post Tsunami reports revealed that 979 children had lost both their parents to the waves. 3954 children lost either their mother or father in the tragedy.

In one of the darkest times in the history of our nation, the Capital Maharaja Organisation Limited, took the initiative to mobilise aid and relief for the victims.Every sector of the Organisation, came together to enforce one of the largest disaster response programs ever conceived.

Over the first two days of the Tsunami Sahana Yathra Program, the TV and radio stations of the MTV/MBC media network were mobilised to inform the people on the full scale and magnitude of the disaster, and to direct them to essential facilities.

The Capital Maharaja Organisation too made a major financial donation for this venture, and once the aid packaging was completed at the two collection points in Colombo, the convoy began its journey from the Kelani Raja Maha Viharaya.With the support of the people we were able to reach out to affected people in 5 districts with 50 containers full of relief items.

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While the President at the time was not in the country at the time of Tsunami Disaster, upon her return, our aid program was halted and while the three armed forces, the police and civil society provided support to our relief effort, some attempted to hamper it.

Overcoming all these obstacles, the Capital Maharaja Organisation was able to reach out to our own people in one of the darkest hours of our history, because of the support we received from you, the people of Sri Lanka.

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