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Violent protest over Indian tycoon’s mega port project leaves 150 injured

Violent protest over Indian tycoon’s mega port project leaves 150 injured
Fishermen community has been protesting against $900 million project in Kerala

By Shuriah Niazi

NEW DELHI (AA) - At least 150 people were injured and over 3,000 booked Monday after a violent protest against the construction of a port in the southern Indian state of Kerala by Asia’s richest man, Gautam Adani.

The incident took place in the town of Vizhinjam, where the fishermen community with the support of the Latin Catholic diocese has been protesting against the Adani Group’s $900 million port project.

The protestors allege that the construction of the port would lead to a loss of their livelihood and may cause massive soil erosion.

The protest turned violent over the weekend when the Adani Group resumed construction after the Kerala High Court ordered it to proceed. Construction work had been halted for almost 120 days.

According to media reports, the protestors attacked the Vizhinjam police station Sunday night, demanding the release of arrested protestors. The police took five people into custody on Saturday.

The secretary of the committee spearheading the protest, Fr. Theodosius D'Cruz, told Anadolu Agency that the protestors were not involved in any kind of violence.

He alleged that the police along with anti-social elements and people from the Adani Group were responsible for all of the violence that took place on Sunday.

“One hundred thirteen fishermen were brutally attacked by the police, and not a single media outlet has reported about them. The Adani Group’s permission for construction of this port expired on Dec. 3, 2019, and they have not gotten any extension. In spite of that, they are going ahead with the construction,” said D’Cruz.

He said they will continue their protest against the construction of the port.

Additional Director General of Police Ajith Kumar told local media that the protestors vandalized the police station and attacked police officers on duty.

“Thirty-six police personnel were injured in the attack,” he told the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency.

Meanwhile, the Kerala government informed the Kerala High Court on Monday that they will take steps to recover the losses suffered due to the protest by those opposed to the port’s construction.

The court asked the government to file a detailed report on the incident and the steps they have taken against the violence.

source: News Feed
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