A Cabinet Minister has rejected the proposed site selected for a domestic airport in Kandy on the grounds that the location was one of the country’s most fertile grounds needed for agricultural experiments.
Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena told the Sunday Times that the site selected was considered a ‘national treasure’ which had been initially selected by the British for agricultural studies.
Some 300 acres which encompasses the Agriculture School in Karandagolla, Kundasale was selected by Minister Keheliya Rambukwella after President Mahinda Rajapaksa directed the construction of a domestic airport in Kandy. Mr. Abeywardena said the location was the only place which experienced weather conditions of the dry zone as well as the wet zone enabling the carrying out of cultivations for research purposes, including the production of seed.
In addition, the agriculture school has produced a large number of agricultural experts, he said
He said that the Air Force was already in the process of carrying out the preliminary studies for the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), but as the Minister of Agriculture he will not allow the project to go ahead at that location.