By Wijepala Weerakoon
As a result of 86 days of continuous satyagraha of Walsapugala Farmers demanding the establishment of an elephant reserve to resolve the human-elephant conflict a gazette notification to establish an elephant reserve has been issued on Friday 9th, April. Instead of managing elephants by giving people guns, farmer leaders on the left bank of the Walawa are proposing progressive political proposal, demanding land for elephants to live in where elephant fences are not an adequate solution.
According to this gazette notification, the reserve covers an area of 23746.55 hectares belonging to the Hambantota, Sooriyawewa, Thanamalwila and Lunugamwehera Divisional Secretariats in the Hambantota and Moneragala districts. However, the farmers’ leaders who are engaged in satyagraha say that they will not give up their fight until the responsible government officials come and explain about this gazetted reserve.