Ferry service to Sri Lanka a blow to Lakshadweep islanders

Lakshadweep islanders felt dejected as one of the few ferries in operation there was deputed for the newly resumed services between India and Sri Lanka 

October 14, 2023 09:45 pm | Updated 10:08 pm IST - Kochi

Flag off ceremony of the ferry services between Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu and Kankesanthurai, Sri Lanka.

Flag off ceremony of the ferry services between Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu and Kankesanthurai, Sri Lanka. | Photo Credit: ANI

The launch of a new ferry service between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka has the islanders of Lakshadweep feeling short-changed as it has further worsened their transportation woes. 

The islanders had been clamouring for more passenger vessels for inter-island transport when Cheriyapani, a high-speed ferry with the capacity to carry 150 passengers, was taken out of service within the island group and launched for the ferry service connecting Sri Lanka.  

Cheriyapani,” according to Mohammed Faizal, who’s awaiting restoration of his Lok Sabha membership representing the Union Territory, “was one of the three high-speed vessels conducting inter-island ferry services besides occasionally conducting services to Kochi in the mainland. Together the three vessels had a capacity to ship 450 passengers. It’s just Valiyapani and Parali now, with a combined capacity of 300 passengers. This is sure to further aggravate the transportation crisis faced by the islanders”.  

“The high-speed ferries are the ones that would ply to the farthest island in the group, Minicoy. These apart, there are just three intra-island ferries - each capable of carrying 50 passengers - operating in the island group. But they are not cleared to operate to the mainland or to Minicoy,” said an islander on condition of anonymity.  

The islanders have been up in arms about the erratic service of the five ships linking the island group with Kochi. Two of these ships are designed to carry 250 passengers each, two others with a passenger capacity of 400 each and one, mv Kavaratti, capable of carrying 700 passengers.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.