One island closes for visitors, another opens
Here’s useful bit information for tourists visiting Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Tourist favourite Jolly Buoy Island has been closed for tourism activity from May 15, while Redskin Island under Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, Wandoor has been opened from May 16 for tourism. Both these islands are known for coral beauty, and they are opened alternatively to give time to corals for developing well under water.
Leak in vessel, people rescued
A passenger vessel, MV Chouldari, developed a leak at Rangat recently but the presence of a Navy ship averted impending disaster. The leak was successfully pulgged under testing conditions. A damage control team with equipment from INS Bangaram was positioned onboard MV Chauldari for any emergency. The distressed ship was escorted safely to Phoenix Bay in Port Blair. In Andaman and Nicobar Islands, vessels are main mode of transportation. The latest news has left both the public and administration worried about maintenance of ships and their safety. In 2014, a boat capsized near Port Blair city, drowning 22 people, mostly tourists, with it.
Growing demand for guest houses
Due to growing demand for Andaman guest houses in New Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata and Vishakhapatnam, the lone MP of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bishnu Pada Ray, has requested the Lt. Governor to consider construction of additional accommodation facilities near airports in Delhi, Chennai and Kolkata. Medical patients, students, on-duty government servants, sportspersons and tribals avail these facilities due to subsidised accommodation. At present, there are five Andaman guest houses at Chennai, Kolkata and Andaman but the people face serious problem in getting bookings due to limited number of rooms.
Islanders remember their heroes
Lt. Governor, Admiral (retd.) DK Joshi led the Islanders in paying rich tributes to the Great Andamanese people who laid down their lives while fighting against the oppressive and retaliatory policy of the British regime during the battle fought in 1859. At a solemn function held at the Memorial of the ‘Battle of Aberdeen’, Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex, Joshi laid wreath and paid tribute to the brave aborigines of the Islands. Representatives from the Great Andamanese tribe offered floral tribute to the brave fighters. Great Andamanese is one of the six indigenous communities living in Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The ‘Battle of Aberdeen’ is believed to be the most desperate and determined attack of the aborigines ever made on the penal settlement of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The intention of the aborigines was, to exterminate the outsiders. The impact of the battle was believed to be devastating for the Great Andamanese people. A memorial stands at the entrance of the Water Sports Complex in memory of the martyrs.
Sanjib Kumar Roy
Our correspondent in Andaman and Nicobar Islands