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Last updated: 16 March, 2011 - Published 15:00 GMT
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IDPs may lose the opportunity to vote
Many voters displaced by decades of war in Sri Lanka will lose their right to vote on Thursday.

Over three thousand five hundred IDPs are still in Menik Farm

There will be no voting centres in Vanni for Internally Displaced People [IDP] in the local elections

"We have not organised voting centres for the displaced" Vanni district Deputy Elections Commissioner A. S. Karunanidhi told the BBC

No voting centres

"Under the local authority proceedings, there are no provisions to organise such voting facilities for displaced people. The only way they can cast their vote is by travelling to the original constituency". A.S Karunanidhi said.

Transport should be provided for them to go to their villages in order for them to take part in Thursday's local government elections.

Over three thousand

It is the responsibility of the Elections Commissioner to facilitate the transportation. If transport is provided, people in Puttlam camps can reach Mannar for voting.

There are currently over three thousand displaced people living in Menik Farm refugee camp in Vavunia will have to travel to their original dwellings if they need to vote in the local elections on Thursday.

Earlier, Minister Susil Prem Jayanth told journalists in Colombo that transportation for voters will be provided through the Sri Lanka Transport Board.

No lonber refugees

However, Deputy Elections Commissioner Bandula Kulathunga told the BBC, that, Muslim IDPs in Puttlam are no longer considered as displaced people due to the fact that they have the freedom to move back to the original villages.

In the Vanni, elections in Maritime Pattu and Pudukudiyirippu had been postponed.

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