How do we evaluate yesterday’s honeymoon meeting between Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Karan Adani?
1. During the last few days, the news that Adani would step back from Vlizhinjam and that he would go ahead with Colachel Port had given some hopes to activists in Kerala and worries for activists in Tamil Nadu. But with yesterday’s meeting, Karan Adani has stated that Colachel would be dropped and Vizhinjam Project will be completed `in time’, adding to the worries of activists in Kerala and relief for the activists in Tamil Nadu.
2. What does completion `in time mean’? The case is still going on in the Green Tribunal. The Kerala Government under UDF had given an assurance if the decision of the Green Tribunal is against the project, then the State Government would replace all the environmental damages created by the project till then, `back to normalcy’ as existed previously! Now, how is Pinarayi Vijayan going to do that?
3. Karan Adani has stated that the project will go ahead under the same agreement Adani had with the UDF Government. Has Prinaryi forgotten his criticisms on this agreement when LDF was in opposition?
4. We must welcome the appropriate stand of KSSP on both Athirappalli and Vizhinjam Transit Harbour by demanding that these projects should be dropped considering their severe negative effects on environment and people. Considering the close association of KSSP and CPI(M), what would be the action programme of KSSP on these key issues in the coming days? Will the voices of KSSP be heard more strongly on these issues?
5. We must also welcome the stand of CPI in opposing the Athirappalli project on environmental grounds. But is there a confusion within CPI on the social, economic and ecological disaster that Vizhinjam Project is threatening Kerala?
6. Before the elections, Thomas Isaac had clearly opposed the Vizhinjam Transit Harbour Project on economic grounds. Is there a difference on the stand of Thomas Isaac before elections and after elections?
7. It was a historic start for the communist movement in India to come to power in Kerala with the election promises of `Development without destroying the environment’, `Development without harming people’ and `A corruption free Kerala’. Since Vizhinjam Transit Harbour is a clear violation of all these three principles, how will LDF fulfil its election promises?
8. As per the agreement, two-third of the cost of this huge financial scam will be `donated’ by Kerala Government and Centre Government with a return of one per cent profit (if any) after fifteen years. Karan Adani appears to be sure that there will be no changes in the agreement. Will theLDF betray the trust that Kerala’s electorate had entrusted on them through this scam?
9. As per the project, two hills of the Western Ghats (one from Kerala and one from Tamil Nadu) will be removed to be dumped in a biodiversity intense region of ocean connecting Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Has the LDF discussed with the fishing communities, environmental activists and the government of Tamil Nadu on the impact of Vizhinjam Transit Harbour Project on Tamil Nadu?
10. While the above questions along with several other questions are haunting the fishing communities and the social activists in Kerala, I am wondering whether there is a common ideological ground between Pinarayi Vijayan, Oommen Chandy and Narendra Modi. It is not Marx, it is not Gandhi and it is not Golwalker. Perhaps it is Adani!
K.P Sasi is a film director. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Vizhinjam Port Project Causes Environmental Havoc