THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Eight coastal police stations in the state will be strengthened with three Home Guards each and four experienced fishermen will also be attached to each station, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy told reporters here on Tuesday after the Cabinet meeting. The Home Guards will be retired hands from Navy and allied forces, he added.
The State Government has sanctioned Rs 5 lakh each as financial assistance to the families of three of the victims of ship-boat collision and Rs 25,000 each to the two others injured in the mishap. The Cabinet also decided to grant Rs 2 lakh each to the families of five Keralites died in a mishap in Oman.
Chandy said that all possible measures had been activated to retrieve the bodies of the remaining two victims of the ship-boat collision. Both the Navy and a Mumbai-based private agency are at work in this regard, he said.
The government has also decided to reopen the case wherein a Chinese vessel had hit a boat in 2008 in the Kerala coast, killing a fisherman. Chandy said that though `25 lakh was remitted as guarantee and the ship was released then, no follow-up was done. He said Additional Chief Secretary K Jayakumar and DGP Jacob Punnoose have been assigned with the task of working out modalities and locating 10 coastal police stations in the state, for which the Centre has given sanction.
Chandy denied that ‘VIP treatment’ was accorded to Italian marines, while they were in the custody of the police and now in judicial custody. “Only the facilities directed by the court have been provided,’’ he said.
He said that the Cabinet decided to take steps for the constitution of the Kerala State Finance and Development Corporation under the Housing Board. The `Saphalyam’ the project to help the poor for a shelter, will also be launched under the Board at a function to be held in Kottayam on Sunday.
The Kerala Water Authority will get `16.86 crore as dues, making it a total `36.86 crore. The amount has been released to enable the KWA to meet eventualities arising out of a drought in the summer months.
‘Cong Did Not Fare
Well in Elections’
Chandy admitted that the Congress was not able to perform as expected in the UP Assembly elections. On the role and impact of Rahul Gandhi in the wake of the poll outcome, he said that the national leadership would look into all the aspects related to the Assembly polls. To a query, he said that there were no plans for Rahul to come for campaigning at Piravom.