Cyclone Ockhi: Search and rescue ops will continue until each and every fisherman is found, says Nirmala Sitaraman

Sitharaman, who visited the grieving families in Vizhinjam and Poonthura early Monday morning, told reporters here that she would apprise the union home and agriculture ministers of the situation.

Published: 04th December 2017 01:25 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th December 2017 01:25 PM   |  A+A-

Stranded fishermen hang on to a boat which lost control after cyclone Ockhi hit off Puthiyappa coast in Kozhikode on Friday. (A Sanesh | EPS)

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced that the search and rescue operations will continue until each and every fisherman who went to sea from Kerala reaches home safely.

READ | Cyclone Ockhi UPDATES: Here is all you need to know

Sitharaman, who visited the grieving families in Vizhinjam and Poonthura early Monday morning, told reporters here that she would apprise the union home and agriculture ministers of the situation in Kerala. ''I assure all the people that the search and rescue operations will continue. We want to make sure that each and every fisherman who went from Kerala comes home safely,'' she said.

READ HERE | Unofficial death toll rises to 30 in Kerala; 92 fishermen still missing

She pointed out that the boats that had gone out well before the cyclone warning was issued had been found 15 days after their departure with the fishermen alive. ''If boats which went 15 days ago can come back with fishermen alive, we will make every attempt to get everybody back,'' she said. 

ALSO READ | Go to sea or not? Son of dead Kerala fisherman faces uncertain future

The search operations were launched on November 30. If anything, the number of ships and helicopters pressed into service to trace the missing fishermen has only increased, she said. 

Sitharaman also said that she had agreed to the fishermen's demand that they too are allowed to accompany the ships and helicopters. ''I've agreed. In fact, 11 of them are already aboard the boats and helicopters that are going out today,'' she said.

Kerala can send its recommendations for compensation through the proper channels, she said in reply to a question. On whether there was any delay in the operations, she said she had spoken about it to the fishermen in distress.

Stay up to date on all the latest Tamil Nadu news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.