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Archaeological Impact Assessment Surveys

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In Sri Lanka An Archaeological Impact Assessment Survey should essentially be carried out in respect of every proposed development project to be carried out in every land extent of which exceeds 0.25 hectare.

To examine whether there are or are not antiquities in he land proposed to carry out development project, if there are antiquities in the land, to find the impact of the proposed project on the antiquities and to report alternative measures to be taken; these are the steps to be taken in the archaeological impact assessment survey.

The law in force in Sri Lanka in relation to Archaeological Impact Assessment Survey Process is as follows.

Information in regard to this is found in the orders made by the Minister of Cultural and Religions Affairs under the Section 47 read with Section 43(b) of the Antiquities (Amendment) Act No. 24 of 1998 and published in the gazette No. 1152/14 dated 04.10.2000. These orders are cited as Project Procedure Orders No. 01 o 2000.

According written permission of this department should be obtained before implementation of the Development Projects of every type mentioned below.

1.
(a) For development of transport systems

  1. Construction of national and provincial high ways.
  2. Construction of Railways
  3. Construction and expansion of airports and air craft run-ways.

(b) For development of irrigational projects

  1. Construction and reconstruction or tanks
  2. Construction or reconstruction of water ways and canals.

(c) generation and transmission of electricity
(d) For development of agricultural projects
(e) Re-settlement of families
(f) Installation of industrial machinery or development of industries, estates and gardens.
(g) Development of entertainment industry.
(h) Reclamation of lands and wetlands
(i) Clearing of all lands exceeding 2 hectares on extent so that such lands and wet lands will be inundated with water.

2.
(a) Construction of housing complexes for residence.
(b) Construction of hotels and all types of commercial buildings as decided by the Urban Development Authority established under the Urban Development Authority Act. No. 41 of 1978 passed by the National State Assembly.
(c) Combined multipurpose development activities including housing, industries and commerce infrastructure facilities.
Clearing of areas exceeding one hectare in extent.

3. Internal clearing of natural caves, rock caves and caves where the natural land exceeds 25 square meters in extent .

4. Excavations exceeding 500 meters in length for laying pipes and conduits for drainage, water, gas, electricity and telephone facilities.

5. Mining or quarrying for extracting stones, gravels, minerals or soil.
(a) Discovery of reserve areas exceeding 0.25 hectors on the surface of he ground within the county and mining.
(b) All mining and mineral extracting activities carried out off share.

6. Clearing of lands and damaging sea bottom for construction or expansion of seaport and harbour.

Archaeological Impact Assessment Survey Programme is as follows;

  • Investor should inform the Department of Archaeology in writing about the proposed Development Project.
  • On receipt of such information a form designed for the Archaeological Impact Assessment Surveys will be sent to the employer (Project Proposer)
  • On receipt of the Employer’s perfected application to the departments a copy of such application will be sent to the regional office of the department and a preliminary observation report on the place will be obtained.
  • If there are no antiquities in the land according to the recommendation and observation report of the Regional Assistant Director, the said land will ve released for the project concerned. If the preliminary observation report has proposed to carry out an archaeological impact assessment survey, steps will be taken to conduct the survey.
  • Quotations will be invited from the 17 agencies which have registered in the department for conducting the archaeological impact assessment survey on the proposed development project.
  • Quotations will be opened in the presence of the Apex Body. The Apex Body comprises the following members.
  1. Director General of Archaeology
  2. Director of Post Graduate Institute of Archaeology
  3. Director General of Central Cultural Funds
  4. President of Association of Archaeologist
  • The competent agency for conducting the archaeological impact assessment will be selected by the Apex Body.
  • The employer will be requested to deposit the sum quoted by the agency selected by the Apex Body, in favour of the Director General of Archaeology.
  • The Department of Archaeology will inform the Agency concerned that its quotation has been selected.
  • When the employees deposits the amount in favour of the Director General of Archaeology, that fact will be intimated to the Agency.
  • The agency should submit its archaeological impact assessment survey before expiry of 06 weeks from the date of informing the agency. If otherwise the department has the right to stop payment and take legal action against the agency.
  • On receipt of the archaeological impact assessment survey report, to the department will release the money to the agency.
  • The next step is to send the archaeological impact assessment survey report to the Minister in charge of the subject for approval. On the recommendation of the Minister in charge of the subject, the Director General of Archaeology will make available his decision to the Project concerned.

Mentioned above are the basic steps to be taken in the archaeological impact assessment survey process. In addition it is vital to be aware of the following matters as well.

  • Even though the land cannot be released, according to the archaeological impact assessment survey report, the employer has to bear the expenses incurred in the survey.
  • Further if the agency which carries out the archaeological impact assessment survey is not satisfied with the surface inspection of the land and proposes to do some excavations, expenses on such excavations too should be met by the employer. If , after excavation Conservation becomes necessary, the employer has to bear such expanses as well.

If any amount of money is left behind from the money granted for explorations excavations and conservations on completion of such work, the department is bound to repay such money to the Project Proposer.

  • Forwarding the excavation and conservation reports to the Ministry approval is also a responsibility of the department.

Rohan Perera - Assistant Director ( Movable and immovable property)
Telephone No - +94-11-2696514, +94-11-2692840/41
Extension - 210
Fax - +94-11-2696514

Officers Who Maintain Provincial Files

Nilusha Paranagamage (Archaeological Research Assistant) - Western Province
- Central Province
Samanthi Priyanga (Archaeological Research Assistant) - North Central Province
- North Western Province
- Southern Province
Nilanthi Priyadarshani (Archaeological Research Assistant) - Eastern Province
- Uva Province
Priyadarshani Seneviratne (Archaeological Research Assistant) - Sabaragamuwa Province
 

Organization Information

Department of Archaeology

Sir Marcus Frenando Mawatha,
Colombo 07.


Mrs. W.R. J. Vasana Pramachandraa
Telephones:+94 11 2 692840 / 41
Fax Nos:+94 11 2 696514
Email:info@archaeology.gov.lk
Website: www.archaeology.gov.lk

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Last Updated On: 2009-10-29 16:57:31
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