Thursday, July 18, 2024

Cong-led UDF demands Vizhinjam Port be named after Oommen Chandy

The Congress-led UDF in Kerala on Friday demanded that the upcoming Vizhinjam International Seaport in the capital district be named after two-time Congress Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, as it was due to his determination that the dream project of Kerala took shape.

UDF convener MM Hassan said Chandy stood firm when the decision was taken despite numerous roadblocks against the project put up by the then Opposition CPI(M)-led LDF.

“So it’s only apt to name the port after Chandy as he had strong conviction what the Vizhinjam Port, when it becomes a reality, would benefit Kerala,” said Hassan.

He went on to add that the Port Minister during Chandy’s time was K.Babu, who is a Congress legislator at present. He said that Babu also worked hard to ensure that nothing could prevent the project from going forward.

Hassan said this, a day after the first mother ship carrying massive cranes from China arrived at Vizhinjam International Seaport, the first phase of which is nearing completion.

The ship was given the traditional water salute and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Union Minister of Shipping Sarbananda Sonowal, among others, will officially receive the ship on Sunday at the deep sea port.

Incidentally Hassan’s statement comes close on the heels of a few trolls slamming the CPI(M) online for the hypocritical stand that they always take on developmental projects when they sit in the Opposition.

The troll slammed the CPI(M) saying that it vehemently opposed the project, termed it as loot and said that it would finish off the fishing sector in the state, but now it was claiming that the port project had come this far because of the vision of the Pinarayi Vijayan Government.

They also made viral a speech by Chandy on the floor of the Assembly where he took a tough stand in favour of the project and said he was willing to clear all doubts regarding the port.

The project was signed off by the Congress-led UDF government under Chandy (2011-16) and the work on the port began at the fag-end of Chandy’s tenure. After the Vijayan government took over, due to numerous reasons, the pace set by the Chandy government could not be followed.

During the commencement of the port by Adani on December 5, 2015, its founder Gautam Adani had announced that the first ship would berth here on September 1, 2018, in a record time of less than 1,000 days. But the group failed to meet the deadline due to various factors.

At the moment, more than 80 per cent of the first phase of the work at the port is over.

Now, after the arrival of the first ship, seven more ships are scheduled to arrive and the port will be opened to commercial operations in May next year.

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