The village of Dorgala situated about 30 kilometers away from the Gampola town and about 60 kilometers away from the Kandy town is a picturesque one. However, underlying the beauty of the village is a host of problems that make the lives of its inhabitants very difficult.
The main income of most of the villagers comes from farming. Vegetables and tea are grown in this area and usually, the farmers yield a good harvest. However, the farmers find it extremely difficult to get their produce transported to towns as the roads in the village are in a very poor condition. The villagers are also deprived of the common privileges that any citizen should enjoy. The only public building situated in close reach to the villagers is the public bus stand and the nearest hospital is said to be situated at least 18 km away from the central village. The horrible condition of the roads makes it even difficult for the villagers to reach these destinations.
Having heard about the Right to Information (RTI) law, the villagers decided to use the Act to inquire about the road renovations. The residents filed an RTI application to the Road Development Authority of the Central Provincial Council. This was sent in November 2018 and in response, the villagers were informed that the renovation activities cannot be done as there is a boundary demarcation problem in the area.
The villagers who are not happy with the response are in the process of taking the case to higher authorities in the hope that RTI will assist them and be their weapon. They are thankful to the RTI law and this has sparked the interest of many other villagers about the ERTI law and has created a wave of wanting to know of RTI.
This update was prepared by participants of the Information and Communication Training Workshop conducted by the Sri Lanka Press Institute (SLPI) through a grant funded by the United States Agency for International Development through the Strengthening Democratic Governance and Accountability Project Activity.
“The contents of this post are the sole responsibility of SLPI and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.”