Dharga town is sleepy in the afternoon heat, especially at this time of year, the month of Ramadan.
However, three years ago, in 2014, the streets were filled with smoke. Groundviews has written extensively on the aftermath of the violence in Aluthgama, which left 3 dead and 78 injured. Muslim-owned shops and places of worship were set ablaze. Photos of the damage showed charred walls, broken roof tiles and burned furniture.
Groundviews was one of the few on social media that reported on the incident – particularly important given the lack of accurate and timely updates from mainstream media.
In 2017, those same houses are unrecognisable – having been rebuilt. Look closer, though, and it’s evident scars remain.
On June 15, 2017, many of the residents packed up their belongings, such as their jewellery and their house deeds, and left.
View the full story from our visit to Aluthgama, compiled using Microsoft Sway, here or below: