Kerala HC closes contempt of court case as govt says Vizhinjam protests over

Insight Online News

Kochi, Dec 7 : A day after the hectic parleys between the state government and the protesters against the Adani Vizhinjam port, the government informed the Kerala High Court on Wednesday that protests at the port construction site have been called off.

Following this, the court closed the contempt proceedings. However, the court pointed out that the order on writ pleas would be passed on Monday.

Adani Port was selected as the concessionaire for the Vizhinjam Seaport Project and the construction of the port began on December 5, 2015.

In August this year, Adani Ports and its contracting partner, Howe Engineering Projects, approached the High Court seeking police protection in light of the ongoing protests against the construction.

The project has been opposed by the fisher folk community which, allegedly under the leadership of the Catholic Archdiocese of Trivandrum, were demanding, among other things, proper environmental impact studies, rehabilitation of families who lost their homes to coastal erosion and rectifying coastal damages.

The court had passed several orders directing the police to ensure that necessary police protection be granted to the Adani Port employees to carry out the activities permitted in accordance with the contracts entered into by them.

The court had made it clear that while the protest can continue peacefully and lawfully, it cannot extend to obstructing ingress and egress of the petitioners, its subcontractors, employees or officials to and from the project site, or obstruct the activities of the project without any authority of law.

The court had also said several times that if the state government and police were unable to see that law and order was maintained in the locality, necessary steps should be taken to seek appropriate assistance from the Central government.

Since the protests showed no signs of abating, the petitioners moved contempt of court pleas.

On Wednesday, the state counsel informed the court that the protests at the construction site of Adani Ports that were blocking ingress and egress to the site have been called off.

IANS / AGENCY

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