Beypore, Vellayil harbours to remain closed till May 16

Considering harbour areas as high-risk zones, the operations of two more major harbours — Beypore and Vellayil — will be stopped in the district from Monday. The restrictions will be in place till May 16 with police surveillance.

The decision was taken in consultation with local harbour development committees, boat owners and fishermen associations after noticing an uncontrolled rush and business activities in the harbours. Moreover, the existing critical containment zone regulations along the coastal area also prompted the authorities to adopt stringent regulatory measures.

The Chombal harbour had been recently closed by the authorities following safety concerns raised by local body administrators. According to officials, there were many incidents of COVID-19 protocol violations. The closure was made subsequent to an inspection carried out by senior Revenue Department officers and the designated Incident Commander.

Though there were recommendations to shut the Beypore harbour as well last week after some of the fishers tested positive for the virus, local harbour management committee members were not in favour of the move. Instead of a sudden closure, they had called for a regulated operation by permitting the entry of only those who carry a COVID-19 negative certificate. However, it failed to work out with the unexpected turnout of fishers and allied workers.

Laders of Kerala Fishing Boat Owners and various fishermen associations said the operation of Puthiyappa and Koyilandy harbours would also be stopped as part of the already made agreements with the Fisheries Department. As it was for the safety of fishermen and other coastal families, there were no major oppositions to the proposal, they said.

“Though Puthiyappa and Koyilandy harbours are functional now, heightened regulations have almost crippled the usual business activities. We believe that a temporary closure will come to the help of the Health Department to manage the critical situation,” said Karichal Preman, vice president of All Kerala Fishing Boat Owners Association. He said Fisheries Department officials had already explained the risk factors to all stakeholders in the sector and there would not be any opposition to proceed with the total closure during the lockdown period.

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 1:34:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/beypore-vellayil-harbours-to-remain-closed-till-may-16/article34521060.ece

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