KOCHI: The eight education department employees who were deployed in Lakshadweep islands to supervise the Class X and Class XII examinations returned home after 54 days. As the Union Government announced a nationwide lockdown on March 24, the team, which was deployed on a 20-day duty, could not return. On April 25, the general administration department issued an order authorising the Kozhikode District Collector to undertake the evacuation operation.
The team boarded cruise vessel MV Kavarathi on Monday evening and reached Kochi at 8 am on Tuesday. The government had arranged four ambulances to transport the employees to their houses. They have been also advised a 14-day home quarantine. The team included high school assistants Bijoy Mathew, PK Suresan, Mohammed Musthafa, higher secondary assistants Jain K Mathew, Viju KS and Sajee Mathew and secretariat assistants Raiston Prakash and V Vinay Kumar.
“Though there was no difficulty in Lakshadweep, we were anxious as there was no clarity on the date of our return. Though the Lakshadweep administration offered to operate a vessel, they wanted a request from the state for this. We had been trying to convince the authorities all these days. The decision came as a big relief,” said Jain K Mathew, a native of Kurianad.