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Kuchchaveli hotel projects – mixed reactions

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Kuchchavei, the densly populated Muslim majority DS division in Trincomalee district will soon have number of star class hotels. Residents express fear of reduced fishing activities and cultural invasion in the event although they welcome promotion of tourism in their coast. EP Chief Minister Chandrakanthan is also not happy with the project prepared by the UDA at the request of the Tourism Ministry as he has repeatedly argued that alienation of lands is a devolved subject under the 13th Amendment.

More than 60 prospective investors have applied to build hotels in the newly proposed 8-kilometre tourism zone on the Kuchchaveli coast, Tourism Ministry sources said. Most of the applicants are joint venture  with foreign investors, it is learnt. Secretary to Tourism ministry said a crucial meeting among all stakeholders in the proposed project, expected to inject hundreds of millions of dollars in investment into Trincomalee District will take place at the Trincomalee Kachcheri on 9th November.

Those invited, he said included the prospective investors, Chief Minister Sivanesaturai Chandrakanthan, District Secretary, Land Commissioner, Tourism Development Authority, UDA, Coast Conservation Department, Environment Ministry, RDA, CEB, the Water Supply and Drainage Board and SLT. Though, the Chief Minister is invited, the conference is likely to be chaired either by the Governor or the Tourism Ministry Secretary.

A few months ago the government halted all ad hoc state land alienations done in the Trinco disitrict amidst allegations that it was happening amidst much corruption. There is a severe demand for coastal land in the district with unspoilt beaches for tourism with the ending of the war in May.

The new tourism zone will come up on approximately 500 to 600 acres of state land. The UDA plan includes public and recreational areas and new roads. TDA, the successor to the former Tourist Board will undertake the development of public areas.

Secretary to the Chief Minister Ranjini Nadarajapillai, said they had not received any invitation to the conference. The Tourism Ministry Secretary said there was neither acquiring of anyone’s land nor anyone walking away with any land and whatever investment there would be for the benefit of the hitherto undeveloped areas and most of the jobs created would also go to the people of the region.

The central government, he said was involved inthe project only to ensure standards are maintained and approvals are done according to the rules more in a consultative approach, while the actual allocation of land for each hotel project can be done by the Provincial Council, the GA and the Land Commissioner.


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November 5, 2009 at 7:51 am

Posted in Muslim news

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