BJP seeks better deal for Dweep passengers

via published on June 11, 2008

KOCHI: The BJP unit of Lakshadweep and the Ernakulam district committee jointly staged a dharna in front of the Lakshadweep administration office on Willingdon Island in protest against the delay in the sailing of passenger vessel ‘MV Tipu Sultan’.

“It is not the first time that such an incident is happening. The passengers who were stranded in Kochi due to the delay in the service of the vessel are finding it difficult to meet their food and accommodation expenses,” said BJP Lakshadweep president K P Muthukoya.

He said that the BJP would launch an agitation against the apathy of the officials. The Lakshadweep administration had cancelled the sailing of mv Tipu Sultan after some defects were detected in the survey by the Marcantile Marine Department( MMD) and it was announced that sailing would be delayed for two or three days.

Adding to the islanders’ travelling woes, the administration also cancelled the sailing of ‘MV Bharat Seema’, another passenger vessel that reached Kochi from Lakshadweep on Sunday.Tipu Sultan was scheduled to leave Kochi on June 7.

With the postponement of sailing of both vessels, transportation between island and mainland at a standstill.

The demands of the BJP include food and accommodation for the passengers, alternative arrangement such as hiring of ships on lease from foreign countries, immediate takeover of the vessel `MV Kavaratti’, shifting of incompetent officers of the Department of Port and posting of a professional as director of ports and civil aviation, Lakshadweep, said Muthukoya.

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