KERALA

Houses handed over to tsunami victims

Staff Reporter

KOCHI: After the last year's tsunami attack, the coastal community is slowly recouping and efforts like the one made by Ernakulam Merchants' Union are welcome, said Opposition Leader V.S. Achutanandan.

He was speaking after handing over keys to houses constructed by Ernakulam Merchants' Union for rehabilitating tsunami victims at South Chellanam here on Saturday. The Union is constructing eight out of total 16 houses that were damaged in the district during the tsunami.

Mr. Achutanandan handed over the keys to District Collector A.P.M. Mohammed Hanish.

Minister for Fisheries and Sports Dominic Presentation, said that the State Government had spent Rs.4.50 lakhs for acquiring land and Rs.3.80 lakhs for improving it for building houses. Another Rs.4 lakhs will be spent for building sidewall for the land on which the houses are built, he said.

The work of constructing seawall along the coast and improving coastal roads will begin soon, he said. The funds for houses that were partially damaged are ready with the District Collector. Distribution of the same was delayed owing to disagreement regarding the beneficiaries. This has now been sorted out and funds will be disbursed from next week onwards, Mr. Presentation said.

K.V. Thomas, MLA, S. Sarma, former Minister; K.D. Prasad, Chellanam panchayat president; Antony Sheelan, Palluruthy block panchayat president; Noor Mohammed Mather K.A., president, Ernakulam Merchants' Union and V.A. Mohammed Ashraf, convener, Relief Committee of Ernakulam Merchants' Union, were present.