The fishermen were displaced in 1984 because of the Sriharikota project and promised jobs several times

Displaced once in 1984 and now affected by two projects, the fishermen of Sambasu Palli Kuppam have some reason to cheer now.

They are happy 11 of their able-bodied men have been granted jobs by the State government. But that is not enough. More jobs are needed, a fisherman said on Sunday.

“The Chief Minister has revived a promise that was made by the previous government. We have 250 families here. There are at least 400 youngsters. We want jobs for 175 persons,” said Raju Chettiyar of Sambasu Palli Kuppam, one of the 15 villages in Lighthouse Kuppam area which will benefit from the Chief Minister’s announcement.

The fishermen were displaced because of the Sriharikota project in 1984. “It was during M.G. Ramachandran’s rule that we were brought here. We had asked for jobs then too,” said a resident.

Residents of Arangamkuppam, another village in the area, are also grateful to the Chief Minister. “She has helped our community immensely. Fishing has been affected severely by the private port at Kattupalli and the desalination plant in Minjur. It has been a long battle,” said Jalandran Chettiyar.

However, there are no women in the list of those who have been granted jobs.

“The officials were looking for women with knowledge of computers. But there aren’t enough jobs for men, who are heads of families. If we are offered more jobs, maybe the womenfolk too could apply for work,” said K. Gnansekar Chettiyar, a resident of Arangamkuppam.

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