The protests outside the under-construction Vizhinjam port in Kerala do not appear to be by fisherfolk alone and in some places, it looks like a pre-planned agitation, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said in the legislative assembly on Tuesday opposing an adjournment motion to discuss the issue in the House.
A motion to adjourn the House proceedings to discuss the plight and demands of the fisherfolk was moved by the Congress-led UDF opposition and was rejected by the House in view of the submission by the Chief Minister that steps were being taken to address the protesters' concerns.
In view of the motion being rejected, the opposition staged a walkout from the House. While giving details of the steps being taken by the state government to address the protesters' concerns, Vijayan said the protest at Vizhinjam port was not by the fisherfolk only as in some places it appeared to be a 'pre-planned' agitation. He also said that the fisherfolk's concerns and plight were being viewed very seriously and the government was taking active measures to resolve their issues.
A large number of coastal people have been staging an intense protest outside the main entrance of the multi-purpose seaport, located at nearby Mulloor, since last week pressing their seven-point charter of demands including stopping the construction work and conducting a coastal impact study in connection with the multi-crore project.
The protesters have been alleging that the unscientific construction of groynes, the artificial sea walls known as "pulimutt' in local parlance, as part of the upcoming Vizhinjam port was one of the reasons for the increasing coastal erosion in the district.