For the second consecutive day on Tuesday, people at a relief camp at Chellanam, affected by cyclone Ockhi, observed day-long fast, demanding long-term solutions to their plight.
Unlike Monday when all the people fasted, it was decided that relay fast would be held. As such, four women observed fast from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Another batch will take over from them on Wednesday. Clearing the mud and sand deposited in their houses and on the premises and construction of seawalls where they are missing remain their primary demands. “They are concerned about the impending closure of the camp since the school where the camp is being run is likely to reopen on Thursday. They want to exert pressure so that their demands will be met on a war footing by the authorities concerned,” said Babu Pallipparambil, an active member of Chellanam Janakeeya Samithi, which is spearheading the protest.
Meanwhile, the district administration has reduced the number of shelters from nine to just two. The camp at St. Mary’s H.S.S, Chellanam, continues to house 170 people from 50 families and the one at Devi Vilasam U.P.S at Nayarambalam 183 people from 75 families. The district administration continues to extent facilities, including medical assistance to the affected people. Voluntary organisations have also come forward to help people at the camps.
The district administration said that life was returning to normal at the coastal panchayats of Chellanam, Vypeen, Njarakkal, and Nayarambalam. Efforts are being made to extent assistance to those who returned to their homes from the shelters.