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Friday, Dec 09, 2022

Kerala HC directs police to remove obstructions in front of Vizhinjam Port

The Adani Port, which moved a contempt of court petition before the court, said a shed erected by the protestors was still in place and alleged that there are obstructions in front of the entrance.

Fishers and citizens using their fishing boats lay siege to Adani port during their protest against Adani Group's port development project at Vizhinjam, in Thiruvananthapuram, Monday, Aug. 22, 2022. (PTI/FILE)

The Kerala High Court on Friday asked the state government to remove the obstructions in front of the entrance of the under-construction Vizhinjam Port put by the protestors.

Justice Anu Sivaraman asked the police to ensure there are no obstructions in front of the entrance for the vehicles to pass.

The Adani Port, which moved a contempt of court petition before the court, said a shed erected by the protestors was still in place and alleged that there are obstructions in front of the entrance.

Meanwhile, the government opposed the contempt of court plea and said vehicles to the port are not being stopped now.

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However, the court asked the government to ensure that vehicles are not stopped and directed the police to remove any hurdles in front of the entrance.

The court will hear the matter further on October 7.

Earlier on August 29, the state High Court had said that the construction at the Vizhinjam Port cannot be halted and any complaints with regard to the project can be raised at appropriate forums.

The court had said that the agitation must not affect the ongoing project.

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The Adani Ports, which is constructing the Vizhinjam port in Thiruvananthapuram had on August 25, moved the Kerala High Court seeking protection from protesters.

The Adani Group, in its plea said the ongoing agitation was a threat to the life of its employees and the police and the government were not taking any action in this regard.

The company had also told the court that even though it had approached the government seeking protection, no steps were initiated.

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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 to stop the construction work and to conduct 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.

Giving details of the purported measures being taken by the state government, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had recently told the Assembly that the government was considering providing rented accommodation to rehabilitate the displaced fisherfolk and the district Collector of Thiruvananthapuram has been entrusted with the task which includes fixation of rent.

He also claimed that the state government has launched a Rs 2,450 crore worth project to rehabilitate the fisherfolk displaced due to coastal erosion and CRZ regulations.

First published on: 30-09-2022 at 03:02:29 pm
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