Ridiculing the compensation criteria for lands acquired for the extension of Southern Expressway, from Matara to Hambantota, UNP MP Buddhika Pathirana told Parliament yesterday that he, along with his sister, had been asked to come with two stamps of Rs 50 denomination to obtain a compensation of 50 cents.
He said that they had been called to receive the compensation through two registered letters sent by the Valuation Department.
He said there was another letter sent by registered post, addressed to his father ,who died several months back, to come to obtain Rs 1.50 as compensation.
The father had been asked to come with two stamps of Rs 25 denomination to receive the Rs 1.50 as compensation. MP Pathirana, raising a supplementary question, said: "Paying compensation to those who lost land because of the extension of the Southern Expressway, from Matara to Hambantota is hilarious. Recently, we received a letter asking my father to come with two Rs 25 stamps to obtain compensation of Rs 1.50. There were two other letters addressed to me and my sister asking us to come with two Rs 50 stamps to obtain 50 cents compensation. All these letters had been sent by registered post. At least Rs 20 is charged to register a letter. These jokes should be brought to an end."
Highways Minister and Leader of the House Lakshman Kiriella responded: "We do not value the lands. It is done by the Valuation Department. It belongs to the Finance Ministry."