Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijyan said
cooperation of the local population is essential for the success of the major
developmental projects that the government is taking up like the Vizhinjam
transshipment terminal. Ninety five per cent of the land required for the
project has been acquired si far the chief minister said.
He was speaking after distributing compensation
to fish workers who have lost their livelihood due to the work related to the
Vizhinjam international seaport terminal here on Monday.
“The Vizhinjam port project is one of the most
important projects for the development of our State. It is also the biggest
building activity that the capital district has witnessed till now. The biggest
ships in the world can drop anchor here once it is completed. But for its
successful completion, the support and cooperation of the people, especially
the local population, are essential. Till now, we have got all the support from
the people there. We have been able to acquire 95% of the required land till
now,” he said.
In the current phase, compensation is being given
to 731 fish workers (those involved in Karamadi fishing based in Adimalathura
and Kottappuram. A sum of Rs 4.52 crore will be distributed to 731 fish
workers. The compensation amount, which was earlier fixed at RS 2.5 lakh, has been
increased to Rs 5.6 lakh. In the project
area, compensation amount of Rs 23.87 crore has been distributed to 433
The State government is also spending Rs 2.5
crore every three months to provide kerosene to owners of 1,734 motorized
boats, whose work has been affected due to the work on the port terminal.
Fisheries Minister J. Mercykutty Amma said that
the compensation amount was increased considering the fact that those who stand
to lose their livelihood permanently should be given more than a temporary
“The government will consider the claims of those
who have genuine concerns. The regions on the north of Vizhinjam were not
earlier considered as project-affected area. But later we found that many
fishermen there will lose their livelihood permanently due to the port project.
So the concerns from the residents in those areas will be considered. The
government does not want people from any area to lose out due to the project,”
Minister for Ports Kadannappally Ramachandran
presided over the function.The left front government had opposed the port
project initially. But when the shipping ministry threatened to set up the
project in nearby Tamil Nadu, the cpim leaders fell in line. The fact that the
LDF government extends total cooperation to the project is acknowleged by the
officials of the Adani group which is setting up the project.
The left front government has brushed aside
criticism of the project by the controller and auditor general and went ahead
While the Vizhinjam project is going ahead in
full steam, another terminal project in nearby Colachel proposed by the
shipping ministry has almost been grounded, the project site has beenshifted
thrice due to the violent agitation by the Kanyakumari fishermen, While the
fishermen in Kerala living fifteen kilometers away have accepted the Vizhinjam
project, the TN fishermen continued to be adamant and have gone all out to
sabotage the project.