KAKKANAD: The public hearing on the draft report of the Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) for Kochi Corporation areas and Maradu municipalities was held at the Civil Station here on Wednesday.
The discussion met with severe criticisms from the employees in the fishing sector. They alleged that the draft report had no plans to protect the fishing families but safeguarded the corporates’ interests.
K J Antony, of the District Fishing Employees Union, said; “As per the plan there is no provision for constructing houses for the traditional fishermen. At the same time, there has been no talks about the corporates constructing illegal high-rise buildings,” he said.
The draft plan is mapped with the zones in the coastal belt prescribed by the Central legislation. According to trade union leader Charles George, the plan has been prepared without basic vision.
“A number of illegal constructions are seen on the coastal areas of Chilavannur, Vembanoor, Marine Drive and Thoppumpady, but the authorities are yet to treat it as violation.
The CITU activists staged a walk out alleging that the new draft report is pro-rich.
K V Thomas a scientist with the National Centre for Earth Science Studies who prepared the plan, pointed out certain advantages for the Corporation and Maradu municipality when the plan would come into effect.
Thomas said though the plan was published online two months ago, it was just three days ago the Corporation authorities looked into it and wanted more time for holding a discussion, he said.