Thursday, May 25, 2017 04:44:10 AM

Meethotamulla: A Preventable Tragedy

By Raisa Wickrematunge - Sat Apr 15, 8:47 am

Featured image courtesy Sri Lanka Air Force 

In 2012, I visited Madampitiya to help with research for a friend’s thesis. The subject was the spread of disease in this area, situated close to a garbage dump.

The tiny lanes in between the houses were muddy and often, filled with filthy water. This happened because when it rained (as it had been shortly before we visited) the streets would flood, and spillover from the dump would wash into the streets and sometimes, people’s houses. In fact, you would often need to step off the road and balance precariously on the side of the concrete drains that had been built, and which clearly did not do enough to address the problem.

I vividly remember one of the families I interviewed, a knife grinder who took me into his house to show me his 8-year-old daughter’s hands. They were red and peeling – she had scratched her palms raw because of the mosquitoes….

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