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All-around development in Moneragala

Moneragala is the second largest district in the island surrounded by Ampara district from the North and East, Hambantota district from the South, Badulla district from West and North,and Ratnapura district from the South East.

The district which has inherited a civilization of one hundred thousand paddy fields is also renowned as “Wellassa”. It is in this district at the place called Maligawila that one can find the world famous Avalokitheswara Buddha Statue which had been entirely sculptured from a rock and stands without any external support.

These consisth Buduruwagala, Yudanganawa shrine, Dematamal temple, Kirivehera, Maligawila Buddha Statue, ancient Temple of Galmatimandiya as the main places of worship. The Kataragama Holy Site, which is sacred to Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and Christians, has made the district well-known all over the world.

Boost for agriculture

Although the district is situated in a wet intermediate climatic zone, 70 percent of the areas in the district possess a dry zone environment. The annual rainfall amounts to 1625 mm and the annual medium temperature amounts to 26 degree centigrade.

The total population of the district amounts to 420,000 persons and majority of them live in villages. The village population amounts to 98 percent.

Estate population amounts to 2 percent and there is no signification percent of urban population as such. 94 percent of the population is Sinhalese. The population density amounts to 1:72 sq. km.

There are 11 District Development Secretarial Divisions in the District, namely Moneragala, Badalkumbura, Siyambalanduwa, Bibile, Medagama, Madulla, Buttala, Wellawaya, Thanamalvila, Sevanagala and Kataragama.

The population in the Wellawaya District Development Secretariat Division amounts to 53,659 persons, and which is the highest populated area in the district.

Over 40 percent of the people in this Secretariat Division are recipients of Samurdhi assistance. In the Sevanagala Secretariat Division 23.91 percent of the population receive Samurdhi assistance. There are 319 Grama Niladhari Divisions within the district covering 1324 villages.

In order to streamline administrative activities there are 17 Farmers Centres, 10 Pradeshiya Sabhas and 12 Police Stations within the district.

Majority of areas in the district come under forest cover. Accordingly there are 116,588.31 hectares of thick forests, 89,422.8 hectares of open forests, and 6,517.33 hectares of cultivated forests in the districts.

The area under irrigation amounts to 14,816.60 hectares. There is another extent of 5,260.70 hectares cultivated with rain water. There are 872.52 hectares of tea land, 12,579.93 hectares under coconut cultivation and 6.31 hectares cultivated with cinnamon.

Basic infrastructure in place

The first development village established under Mahinda Chintana Village Development Scheme was the Jayamini Gama. This village which was a very remote and extremely backward village in the past has become today as a village provided with maximum facilities.

Village Development

Sri Lanka Samurdhi Authority and Nation Building Ministry as the Planning Ministry provided funds for development of Jayamini Gama.

The allocation of funds covered Rs 3238,557 for educational development, Rs 1,095,271 for electricity supplies, Rs 852,710 for Road Development and Rs 8,043,455 for water supply schemes.

Further, Rs 2,857,500 was provided for housing development activities with the objective of alleviating the housing problem, Rs 723,142 for development of marketing facilities of produce accrued from the village, Rs 7,923,830 for development of irrigation facilities, Rs 256,080 for construction healthy latrines, Rs 908,650 for development of pre-schools, Rs 175,000 for construction of e-centres with the objective of introducing information technology to the village, Rs 375,000 for agricultural development, Rs 200,000 for construction of Cooperative buildings, Rs 1,850,000 for construction of the Divisional Secretariat building, Rs 750,000 for construction of a seed marketing centre, and Rs 543,700 for development of employment avenues were expended for development of this village, the Jayamini Gama.

The Gama Neguma Project has assumed a special place naturally because 98 percent of the population in the district lives in villages. The initial village development project has become one of the model village development projects with the development of several other villages throughout the district. One such project was the development of the Thenagallanda village.

This village with the provision of all necessary facilities has become upgraded to the status of sub-township. The Government spent Rs 4,365,385.95 for the development roads, Rs 3,380,000 for supply of electricity, Rs 460,000 for development of employment avenues, Rs 378,180 for agricultural development, Rs 1,400,000 for the construction of Village Secretariat Office, Rs 25,000 for development of Daham Pasals in this village.

New road construction in process

Rohanapura, Indunilpura in the Thanamalvila Divisional Secretariat Division is another village that was given life under the Gama Neguma project.

Before the launch of the Gama Neguma Scheme, this village situated in the southern corner of the Thanamalvilla division was a very remote and backward village.

The Government has spent Rs 2,431,223.74 for road development in this village, Rs 14,502,247 for electricity development, and Rs 400,000 for construction of Nena Sela of this village. A further sum of Rs 100,000 was provided under the second stage to complete shortcomings in road development.

Another village so developed was the Polgahagama village in the Madulla Divisional Secretariat Division. There are 184 families living in this village.

The Government spent Rs 200,000 for road developments in the village, Rs 9,846,540 was spent for qualitative improvement of electricity supplies, Rs 1,471,443.14 was expended for the construction of the multi-functional building, Rs 1,043,105.17 for the construction of the village Secretariat office, and Rs 94,000 for agricultural development.

Another beautiful village so developed was the Hittawelkivula in the Medagama Divisional Secretariat Division. The Government spent Rs 826,447 for road developments in this village, Rs 50,000 for water supply, Rs 448,500 for Irrigation development, and Rs 1,000,000 for construction of Jana Sabha Secretariat Office. For the second stage road improvement activities a further sum of Rs 1,983,886 was spent.

In the Bulapitiya village of the Bibile Divisional Secretariat Division Rs 588,000 was spent for road construction work, and Rs 1,090,736 was spent for the construction of the Jana Saba Secretariat office. These sums were spent for the benefit of 145 families living in this village.

Development of Schools

Moneragala district is a combination of three educational zones. The educational divisions of Bibile, Madulla and Medagama come under the Bibile educational zone.

There are 23 schools in the Bibile education division, 22 schools in the Madulla educational division and 28 schools in the Medagama educational division. Moneragala, Siyambalanduwa and Badalkumbura educational divisions come under the Moneragala educational zone. There are 31 schools in the Moneragala educational division, 33 schools in the Siyambalanduwa educational division and 38 schools in the Badalkumbura educational division.

Housing facilities shaping up

Wellawaya, Buttala, Thanamalvila, Sevanagala and Kataragama educational divisions come under the Wellawaya educational zone. Respectively there are 29,33,16, 15 and 4 schools in these educational divisions. Majority of students in the district receive their education in Siyambalanduwa, Buttala and Wellawaya educational divisions and the total student population in the district amounts to 97,684.

The teaching staff in the district amounts to 5,085. On an average the district has a teacher/student ratio of one teacher for each 20 student.

It was possible to reduce the teach/student ratio to this level because when 40,000 Graduate Teachers were recruited most of them were assigned to districts which were considered as remote and backward schools in the country.

In the provision of information technological facilities to fully-fledged schools, the Government paid a special attention to the Moneragala district.

Development of Health Facilities

Health facilities in the district cover one General/District Hospital, 9 Rural Hospitals, 1 Central Dispensary, 7 Ayurvedic Clinics, and 5 Maternity Homes.

The Government has been able to raise the health and nutrient standards of the people in the district because it has provided 32 Public Health Inspectors, 161 Family Health Service Officers to serve in the 11 District Divisional Secretariat Divisions in the District.

Courtesy: Development.lk


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