Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi on Thursday said his party would strongly raise in Parliament the issue of setting up a separate ministry for fishermen.
Rahul, after giving a hearing to the woes of fishermen and farmers hit by the Ockhi cyclone in Kanyakumari district, promised on Thursday to exert ‘tremendous pressure’ on the government in his capacity as opposition leader for their quick relief and rehabilitation.
In a brief address in the premises of St Jude’s church at Chinnathurai coastal hamlet in Kanyakumari, he said, “I am sad to come here to meet you at this tragic situation.”
Rahul, who was welcomed by hundreds of residents of neighbouring fishing hamlets, promised that the Congress would raise the issue of setting up a separate fisheries ministry in Delhi.
Although this demand was raised before him in 2009 during his last visit to Kanyakumari, Rahul wondered why there was no ministry for fishermen.
DMK working president M K Stalin, meanwhile, demanded that the state government constitute a committee to ensure that relief measures reach cyclone-affected people. Attacking CM Edappadi K Palaniswami for his delay in visiting Kanyakumari, Stalin said the relief should reach those who truly need them.
Due to time constraints, Rahul Gandhi could not spend more time with the farmers as he did with the fisher-folks that irritated the farmers, who complained that the Congress leader did not even care to lend his ears to their specific grievances.