Northern Province (Sri Lanka)
வட மாகாணம் (Vaṭa Mākāṇam)
උතුරු පළාත (Uturu Paḷāta)
|Area :||8884 km²|
|of which land area:||8290 km²|
|of which inland waters:||594 km²|
|Residents :||1,060,023 (2012)|
|Population density :||128 inhabitants per km²|
|Governor :||HMGS Palihakkara|
|Chief Minister :||CV Wigneswaran ( TNA )|
The Northern Province ( Tamil : வட மாகாணம் Vaṭa Mākāṇam [ ˈʋaɖə ˈmaːɡaːɳʌm ], Sinhala : උතුරු පළාත Uturu Paḷāta [ ˈut̪uru paˈlaːt̪ə ], English : Northern Province ) is one of the nine provinces of Sri Lanka . It includes the districts of Jaffna , Kilinochchi , Mullaitivu , Mannar and Vavuniya in the northern part of the island. The capital is Jaffna . The northern province has an area of 8,884 square kilometers and almost 1.1 million inhabitants, 94 percent of them Tamils . The Northern Province was one of the areas affected by the civil war in Sri Lanka from 1983 to 2009 .
Position and extent
The northern province has an area of 8,884 square kilometers. According to its name, it covers the northern part of Sri Lanka. The Northern Province borders in the south on the Northwest Province , the North Central Province and the Eastern Province . In all other directions it is bordered by the sea: In the southwest lies the Gulf of Mannar , in the northwest between Sri Lanka and India preferred Palk Strait and the east of the Bay of Bengal .
Two different natural areas belong to the northern province: the Jaffna peninsula and Vanni . The Vanni region comprises the northern part of the main island. The terrain here is flat and largely forested. The Jaffna Peninsula to the north is a flat stretch of land that is only connected to the rest of the island by the Elephant Pass . The coast of the northern province is characterized by numerous lagoons. The largest of these is the Jaffna Lagoon between the Jaffna Peninsula and the main island. To the west of the Jaffna Peninsula lies a group of islands. In addition, the island of Mannar is off the west coast of the northern province . The distance from its tip to India is less than 30 kilometers. In the strait is the so-called Adam's Bridge , a chain of small islands and sandbanks.
The Northern Province is divided into the following five districts :
|Jaffna||Jaffna||1,025 km²||583.071||628 inhabitants / km²|
|Kilinochchi||Kilinochchi||1,279 km²||112,872||94 inhabitants / km²|
|Mannar||Mannar||1,996 km²||99,063||53 people / km²|
|Mullaitivu||Mullaitivu||2,617 km²||92,228||38 people / km²|
|Vavuniya||Vavuniya||1,967 km²||172,789||93 people / km²|
The Northern Province has existed since 1833. Between 1987 and 2006, it was united with the Eastern Province as one province ( Northeast Province ). In 2006 the merger of the two provinces was declared invalid by the judiciary of Sri Lanka.
According to the 2012 census, the northern province has 1,060,023 inhabitants. This makes the Northern Province the smallest province in Sri Lanka in terms of population. The population density of 128 inhabitants per square kilometer is well below the Sri Lankan average (323 inhabitants per square kilometer). The population is very unevenly distributed: While the Jaffna Peninsula is quite densely populated, the population density in the Vanni region is extremely low. More than half of the population lives in Jaffna District , although this is only a little more than a tenth of the area of the Northern Province. The population density is correspondingly high here with 628 inhabitants per square kilometer, while in the Mullaitivu district there are only 38 people per square kilometer.
Death and displacement during the civil war decimated the population of the Northern Province. Between 1981, the year of the last census before the civil war broke out, and 2012, the province's population fell by 3.6 percent. The total population of Sri Lanka increased by 36.6 percent over the same period. Numerous residents of the northern province fled abroad during the war. There is also a considerable number of internally displaced persons: According to government statistics, there were almost 50,000 refugees in the Northern Province in 2012 and over 320,000 people who were previously displaced.
Ethnicities and religions
Together with the Eastern Province , the Northern Province forms the Tamil settlement area of Sri Lanka. The vast majority of the residents of the Northern Province are Tamils: According to the 2012 census, they make up 93.9 percent of the province's population (93.3 percent of which are Sri Lankan Tamils and 0.6 percent Indian Tamils ). There are also smaller minorities of Moors (Tamil-speaking Muslims) and Sinhalese (3.1 percent each). The numerically small but long-established Muslim minority, which in 1981 still made up 4.6 percent of the province's population, was systematically expelled from the LTTE-controlled areas of the northern province during the civil war in October 1990. Since the end of the conflict, some Muslims have returned. Most of the Muslims live in the Mannar and Vavuniya districts . The Sinhalese, on the other hand, are concentrated in the south of the Vavuniya district and the Welioya area in the Mullaitivu district. In Welioya, the government had planned to settle Sinhala new settlers in the 1980s, which developed into a serious point of contention in the Tamil-Sinhalese conflict. The Sinhalese, who were resident in Jaffna and the other Tamil majority areas of the Northern Province, almost without exception fled to the safe south of Sri Lanka during the civil war.
74.6 percent of the population of the Northern Province are Hindus . There is also a larger Christian minority of 19.3 percent (of which 15.4 percent are Catholics and 3.9 percent others) and smaller minorities of Muslims (3.2 percent) and Buddhists (2.9 percent). The Christian population is particularly well represented in the coastal areas. In the Mannar district, Christians even make up the majority of the population. While the majority of the Tamils are Hindus and a smaller number of Christians, the Moors are all Islamic and the Sinhalese are mostly Buddhism.
According to the 13th Amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution passed in 1987, the Northern Province, like all provinces of Sri Lanka, has limited self-government with its own legislature , the Northern Provincial Council , and executive , a government headed by a government elected by the Provincial Council Chief Ministers , too. During the civil war in Sri Lanka, however, the self-government was suspended: After the President of Sri Lanka had overturned the government of the then Northeast Province on March 1, 1990, the north of Sri Lanka was directly subordinate to the central government. It was not until four years after the end of the civil war that provincial elections were held in the Northern Province on September 21, 2013 for the first time in a quarter of a century.
In the elections to the Provincial Council of the Northern Province, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) won a landslide victory. The alliance of moderate Tamil parties and former rebel groups, which calls for more autonomy rights for the Tamil minority, won 30 of 38 seats in parliament with almost 80 percent of the vote. The United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA), a party alliance led by the nationwide ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party , won seven seats. The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC), the political representation of the Muslim minority, has one member of parliament . As a result of the election, TNA politician CV Wigneswaran was sworn in as Chief Minister of the Northern Province on October 7, 2013.
|Political party||Share of votes||Seats|
|Tamil National Alliance (TNA)||78.5%||30th|
|United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA)||18.4%||7th|
|Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC)||1.5%||1|
- Including inland waters. See Statistical Abstract 2010. Chapter I - Area and Climate. 1.1. Area of Sri Lanka by Province and District. ( Memento of the original from September 3, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 43 kB) Department of Census and Statistics
- Department of Census and Statistics: Census of Population and Housing 2011. Enumeration Stage February - March 2012. Population of Sri Lanka by District. (PDF; 1.7 MB)
- Based on the area without inland waterways.
- Department of Census and Statistics: Migrant population by reason for migrating according to district.
- Department of Census and Statistics: Population by ethnic group according to districts, 2012 .
- Northern Provincial Council: Statistical Information 2010, p. 31 (PDF; 28.7 MB).
- See International Crisis Group : Sri Lanka's North I: The Denial of Minority Rights (Asia Report N ° 219), March 16, 2012 ( Memento of the original from May 20, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and still Not checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 3.9 MB), pp. 26–30 and Sri Lanka's Muslims: Caught in the Crossfire (Asia Report N ° 134), May 29, 2007. ( Memento of the original from September 23, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Info : The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 689 kB)
- See the list by division (sub-district) in Department of Census and Statistics: Population by ethnic group according to Divisional Secretary's Division, 2012 .
- See International Crisis Group: Sri Lanka's North I: The Denial of Minority Rights (Asia Report N ° 219), March 16, 2012 ( Memento of the original from May 20, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and still Not checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 3.9 MB), pp. 22-25.
- Department of Census and Statistics: Population by religion according to districts, 2012 .
- The Hindu, October 7, 2013: "Wigneswaran takes oath as Northern Province CM".
- Department of Elections: Provincial Council Elections 2013. ( Memento of the original from September 22, 2013 in the web archive archive.today ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.