Written by Tharushan Fernando
18 Sep, 2016 | 8:16 pm
The indigenous community of Rathugala have been compelled to return to the jungle due to the neglect they face at the hands of authorities.
The Aadivasis or indigenous community of Rathugala, left the jungle to live in villages, seeking safety and a secure livelihood.
The most pressing issue faced by the people living in the villages of Rathugala, bordering Bibile in the Monaragala District, is housing. While the previous regime did provide housing for the community, at present these homes resemble toy houses.
Aadivasi Chieftain of Rathugala, Suda Wannila Aththo said that this was a sad situation. He said that in the past several generations were sustained by living off the leaves, yams, honey and meat.
“We were disenfranchised and we lost the right to consume our meat even once a year”, lamented the chieftain who further added that if they continue to neglect the indigenous community, they they would have to return with the children to caves.
As they contemplate the possibility of having to return to the jungle, there is a common thought that has arisen among the community.
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