Vizhinjam protest: police to slap charges including attempt to murder against agitators

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Thiruvananthapuram: A case was registered against people, including priests who blocked a truck carrying stones for the construction of Adani port in Vizhinjam here on Saturday. Sources close to police revealed that charges, including attempt to murder will be slapped against these people as the protest turned violent again.

During the clash on Saturday, the anti-port protestors pelted stones at houses in Mulloor. Observing the situation, more police personnel have been deployed in the region.

A total of 21 people including policemen suffered injuries in the clash on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Fr Eugene H Pereira alleged that the government and Adani group have been trying to crush the people who are protesting peacefully.

Violating the assurances given to the Kerala High Court, the protesters in front of the under-construction Vizhinjam seaport here on Saturday blocked the trucks carrying construction materials to the site.

The protesters, led by the Latin Catholic Church, had on November 22 assured the high court that they will not block any vehicles coming to the Vizhinjam seaport.

However, on Saturday, hundreds of protesters gathered in front of the gate of the seaport, where the agitators blocked the road by erecting a shed across the road and stopped the vehicles.

Meanwhile, a set of locals who support the project also came and took on the agitators pointing out that there was a high court direction with regard to the construction.

The protesters blocked five trucks carrying construction materials.

The port, a Kerala government initiative, is currently being developed in a landlord model with a Public Private Partnership component on a design, build, finance, operate and transfer (“DBFOT”) basis. The private partner, Adani Vizhinjam Port Private limited, commenced the construction on December 5, 2015 with a cost of Rs 7,525 crore.

The Vizhinjam International Transhipment Deepwater Multipurpose Seaport authorities had said that 70 per cent of the work has now been completed.

The protesters have been demanding that the construction of the deepwater port be stopped and a proper environmental impact study should be carried out.

(with inputs from PTI)

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