Saturday, May 9, 2015

#SaveWilpattu : urgent action needed

Wilpattu National Park is the largest Naional Park in Srilanka which was declared a National Park in 1938. It is 131 693 hectares in extend and home to a variety of species of flora and fauna. The unique feature of Wipattu National Park is the presence of "Willus" small natural lakes which are depressions in the top soil layer which collect rain water in the rainy season. These "Willus" are scattered all over the park and have become a major tourist attraction as well a life saving treasure trove for all the animals in the dry seasons.

Talking about flora and fauna, the park is located in north western part of sri lanks bordering the districts Puttalam and Mannar. Many species of plants native to semi arid, arid and wetlands are seen. Talking about animals, there are 31 species of mammals and endangered species like elephants, leopards, sloth bears are a common site. It is a Safari paradise.

A total of 31 species of mammals have been identified at the Wilpattu national park. Mammals threatened with extinction are also there. The elephant (Elephas maximus), Sloth bear (Melursus ursinus), leopard (Panthera pardus kotiya) and water Buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) are identified as the threatened species living within the Wilpaththu National Park.Other wetland bird species as Garganey (Anas querquedula), Pin tail (Anas acuta), Whistling teal (Dendrocygna javanica), Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia), White ibis (Threskiornis malanocephalus), Large white egret (Egretta alba modesta), Cattle egret (Bubulcus ibis) and Purple heron (Ardea purpurea) also found at the Wilpaththu National Park.

During the 30 year Civil war in srilanka, this park was closed but since the end of the war, the attraction to this park is increasing exponentially over time and thousands of tourists visit this park everday. Wilpattu has become a major tourist attraction. The full credit of that goes to non other than the flora and fauna which inhabit the park. but now sadly the fate of those are in danger...Why ?

Minister of Rehabilitation Rishad Badurdheen is conducting some rehabilitiong projects in the park area. He is literally destroying areas of the park to distribute land among muslims. His actions are totally against the law and no one is taking actions because he does this in a hidden manner, but now everthing is expose.

Badurdeen may fool the newly appointed government officials, but not Google Maps... See how it shows the destruction of the park area by this man. Rehabilitation is a must for a country, but if it is done destroying other's habitats, how come it be a  rehabilitation? It is the exact opposite of re rehabilitation.

Bathiudeen has called for an investigation, a Presidential Commission no less.  This is a good move.  He claims that he has done nothing illegal and is confident that any inquiry will clear him of wrongdoing.
Wilpattu is precious.  More precious than politicians and officials.  Actions is required.

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