tea pluckers   A mob consisting of around 30 villagers launched an attack on “Thondamanpura” a Tamil housing colony of Plantation workers at Alupola estate, 28 km away from Ratnapura on April 17th.

“Thondamanpura was so named after former Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) leader Saumiyamoorthy Thondaman, the grandfather of present minister and CWC leader Arumugan Thondaman,  who served as a cabinet minister in the Governments of former Presidents JR Jayewardena,Ranasinghe Premadasa and Chandrika Kumaratunga.

The Alupola attack had its origins in a musical show, held as part of the Sinhala and Tamil new year celebrations at the neighbouring Galbode estate, when Sinhalese youths had cast remarks at some of the girls returning after the musical show some. When the Tamil youths protested racist remarks were cast leading to an assault on them, with two being injured.

Later a mob of about 30 from Wewalwatte village had arrived at Alupola estate at about 2 am in the night and attacked the “Thondamanpura” housing scheme.

The arrival of the Police from the Wewalwatte Police station preventing further escalation of violence.

The attack on Alupola estate is not an isolated incident in Ratnapura district with several attacks on Tamils living in the estates by Sinhala groups from surrounding Villages.

There had been an incident at Alupola estate a few months ago when a Sinhala mob had attacked a Hindu temple in the area, there had also been an incident at Dolaswela estate in the Nivithigala division and two more incidents at Lellopitiya and Gonakumbura estates in the Pelmadulla area. In all these incidents mobs from surrounding Sinhala villages had attacked the Tamils living in the estates.

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