President Gotabaya Rajapaksa inspected the renovation of the Neluwa-Lankagama road today (29) and spoke to the stakeholders about allegations that the work is harming the Sinharaja forest.
President has insisted that the construction of the Neluwa-Lankagama road should not cause environmental damages.
Officials of the road development, wildlife, environment and other relevant ministries joined in the inspection.
On the occasion, President Rajapaksa said the long-standing requirement for a road for the villagers should be met while safeguarding the environment.
Lankagama is an ancient village that dates back to the reign of King Walagamba and the main livelihood of its inhabitants is tea cultivation.
They take their produce to Deniyaya and Neluwa via a road that is located close to the Sinharaja.
Also, patients going to hospitals and schoolchildren widely use this road.
The Army is renovating the 18 km long road under RDA supervision to make the present nearly four hour journey shortened to a mere 45 minutes.
A bus will play on the road between Neluwa and Deniyaya once work is completed within 90 days.
A suspension bridge at Lankagama will be replaced with a bridge 120-feet in length and six-feet wide.
The president also instructed that reforestation there be encouraged by providing each of the 700 families of Lankagama with three plants each free of charge.