The Mullaitivu District, newly created in 1979, was earlier covered by the Mannar, Trincomalee and Vavuniya Districts. This District occupies the Eastern mainland part of the Northern Province.
The Mullaitivu District has the Kilinochchi District to the North, the Trincomalee and Vavuniya Districts ot the South, the Manner Distirct to the South West and the sea to the East. It covers a land area of approximately 2516.9 square km., including forest area and excluding inland water. This district accounts for 3.8% of the country’s total land.
Administratively, this district constitutes part of Vanni Electoral District. It has five administrative divisions, 127 Grama Nilandhari Divisions and 624 villages.
This district had a population of 77,515 according to the 1981 census. Due to the war, no census was taken in 1991 and 2001. The district’s population was estimated at 180, 401 in December 2001, accounting for 1% of the total population of the island. The estimated population on December 2005 was 157, 775.
This district consists of different ecosystems, including forest, shrub land, coconut plant at ions, cultivated land and inland bodies of water. The total land area including forest and excluding inland water bodies is 251,690 hectares. Forest covers 64% of the total land area, cultivated land covers nearly another 16.9%, range land accounts for only 5.1% and residential areas account for 5.1%
The district has 15 ,6 62 hectares of land suitable for paddy cultivation. Additionally , there are 3 large tanks, 15 medium tanks and 178 minor tanks that combine to feed the majority of the paddy land.
The Mullaitivu District is in the dry zone, having a bi-modal rainfall pattern. The average annual rainfall varies from 626mm to 3276mm per year and the district receives most of the rain during the North-East monsoonal sea son from early October to late January. The average temperature is low during the period of October to January. Thereafter, significant fluctuations between the daily low and high temperatures are typically experienced, ranging from 23 to 39.3 degrees Celsius.
The 28,099 students attend 102 schools as supported by 1,139 teachers. Not all the schools in the district are fully staffed and equipped with necessary education materials. Not a single school has pipe borne water or electricity and most schools suffer from poor infrastructure due to the ongoing disturbances.
This district has a coastal belt of 70 km and four lagoons, namely Mathalan, Nathikadal, Nayaru and Kokulai. All of the lagoons are famous for crab and prawn cultivation and are suitable for further inland fishing development. There are also possibilities for inland fishing development in the major tanks. While the fishing sector takes an important place in generating employment opportunities, deep sea fishing is not allowed due to security reasons.