Cyclone Ockhi: 201 fishermen yet to return home, says Latin Archdiocese

Thiruvananthapuram: The Latin Archdiocese said Tuesday that 201 fishermen are still missing following the cyclonic storm Ockhi that hit the southern districts of Kerala.

“Among this, 108 fishermen had gone to sea in traditional fishing boats. Hence, we are very anxious about their fate,” the Diocese spokesperson said in a press conference.

According to the government estimate, 91 fishermen are yet to return home.

"Several fishermen who went to sea from Kochi and Kollam regions have been caught in the deep sea. If this number is also added, then the total number of missing fishermen will increase,” the spokesperson said.

Fr Eugene Pereira, Vicar General of Latin Archdiocese, said that the fishermen joined the rescue efforts as the government attempts to rescue the fishermen was a failure.

“It is ridiculous that the government is not able to bring back the fishermen even after six days. Fishermen who sought refuge in other states are not receiving food or other facilities. If the authorities had visited the disaster affected regions, it would have provided solace to the people,” Eugene Pereira said.

The Prime Minister should visit the place to evaluate the extent of damage caused by the Cyclone Ockhi. Apart from this, the Centre must release a Rs 1000-cr package, the Latin Archdiocese demanded.

"If the Prime Minister is not ready to announce the package, we will think about meeting the Prime Minister to submit the complaints," the Vicar General said.

KRLCC also demanded that the state government should call an all-party meet and should sent a special team to Delhi to submit a memorandum to the Prime Minister.

However, the coast guard authorities said that 72 more fishermen caught in the deep sea have been recused.

In this, 14 fishermen are Keralites and 58 are natives of Tamil Nadu, the coast guard said.

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