Ceylon Administration Records, 1898

Trincomalee-Mr, Lushington (AGA), Feb 25 1898


Pg-F17


North Western division of Kadukulampattu;


This part of the District (Kaddukulam West) is inhabited by Sinhalese villagers of Kandyan descent forming an outlying community which is, I fear rapidly dying out or becoming effaced. This District is most interesting, being dotted over by numerous village tanks, some of which are restored and others abandoned„ The villagers retain many of the primitive customs of the Kandyans, but they are rapidly becoming ‘Tamilized’, which is a great pity. They inter- marry with Tamils and many of them speak Tamil as well as they speak Sinhalese. Even the Government School Master is Tamil and only that language is taught in the only school and unfortunately in some cases lands in Sinhalese villages have been bought out by the Tamils, who now own all the paddy lands of some villages. The Sinhalese have given up their patronymics and adopted the Tamil custom of prefixing father’s name instead of the usual patronymic and even the names of the villages are assuming a Tamil dress. This perhaps not to be wondered at when the interpreters of the court and the Kachcheri, the petition drawers and all through whom the villagers have access to Government officers, can speak nothing but Tamil.


I must say I regard this as a great misfortune.
I should like to see a strong Sinhalese headman acquainted with English appointed as chief headman of the district and I should like to see the Tamil school abolished.


However, the most important assistance which can and ought to be rendered to these villagers would be the restoration of their village tanks. This would render them Independent of the Tamils and make them less likely to abandon their villages or to sell their lands to the Tamils. They have already restored sluices but their is an issue with small size of population.