Sea erosion worsens the sad plight of helpless people along the beach

Published : 12:03 am  June 26, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 


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By H.M. Dharmapala and Kusal Chamath   

Sea erosion in the coastal belt in Mount Lavinia, Dehiwala and Ratmalana areas has worsened and more than 100 houses have been endangered with collapse due to the tumbling waves.They said they had been facing the threat of sea erosion that caused much havoc during the rough seas every year. They said when about 70 houses were destroyed by sea erosion last year, the authorities promised to provide land in safer locations. They said that sea erosion worsened after commencement of the port city project.

 A resident of Wedikanda, Ratmalana, P.A. Premawathi (53) said her family had been living in the area for more than 40 years, but sea erosion affected them only since the last three years. She pointed out that several houses were razed to the ground last year.   

“My husband is a fisherman and he maintains the family with his meagre income. Added to our hardship is the danger of sea erosion. Although we have been living here for more than 40 years we are considered as unauthorized settlers who are not entitled to any relief. Now the distance between the beach and the railway line is less than 12 metres. In the past the edge of the beach was more than 100 metres away. Housing projects meant for low income families are owned by wealthy individuals,” she said.  

Another resident of Ratmalana K.A. Dharshika (50) said her family of five members had been living in a small house by the beach for about 30 years amid hardship.

 She said her husband had been a fisherman, but now he was disabled and her 24-year-old son had been disabled since birth. Dharshika said that when the waves lashed against their house she would carry the two disabled men to a safer location with the help of the neighbours.   


In the past the edge of the beach was more than 100 metres away