COLOMBO: The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is to meet the Indian High Commissioner to seek more funds to house the war-displaced at Sampur in Eastern Sri Lanka because the LKR 550,000 that is now given to each beneficiary family to build a house under the Indian Housing Project is not enough, given the galloping inflation since the project was initiated in 2009.
“To construct a modest house, a family needs about LKR 850,000. We will meet Indian officials and press for a higher grant. We may also have to tap other sources for additional funds,” M.A.Sumanthiran, TNA spokesman told Express.
Reports said that the 204 families which are to get houses under the Indian funded project have decided to reject the offer on the grounds that the grant is too low. But the leader of the war displaced, Kumaraswamy Nageswaran, told Express that people are not rejecting the scheme but only want more funds.
“You can’t build even a small house here for less than LKR 700,000. Many families are sending their women abroad to work as maids or are borrowing to get the extra cash,” he said.
“Some families, such as those headed by widows, cannot build a house themselves for lack of expertise and help. Such people prefer to be recipients of a built house even it is built with LKR 550,000 only,” Nageswaran said.