Fishermen issue still the main factor in Ramanathapuram | india | Hindustan Times
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Fishermen issue still the main factor in Ramanathapuram

india Updated: Apr 09, 2011 12:33 IST

While there is no dearth of talking points in campaigns for the April 13 Tamil Nadu assembly polls, with everything from 2G spectrum scam to promises of freebies thrown in, key issues discussed by people in this district are how to find permanent solutions to fishermen's problems, industrial backwardness and unemployment.

Fishermen in this district often face the problem of being "harassed" by their Sri Lankan counterparts and naval personnel of that country, while fishing in the Palk Straits.

Though the DMK government claims to have solved drinking water scarcity of the district, which shares the maritime border with Sri Lanka, the major issue of the harassment faced by fishermen continues to be unresolved and worsening by the day.

Late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Kamaraj introduced the planting of "Karuvelam" trees (Biological name Acacia Nilotica and used in charcoal making) in this water-starved backward district so that people could earn their livelihood at least from charcoal manufacturing.

The measure by Kamaraj helped improve living condition of the people, said sitting Ramanathapuram MLA and candidate for the constituency Hasan Ali.

However, he agrees that the fishermen's problem needs to be solved as several of them have been killed in alleged attacks by Sri Lankan Navy.

The government, in the past five years, had tried to improve tourism facilities in order to attract tourists and pilgrims, who throng in lakhs to the famous Ramanatha Swami temple of Rameswaram, Ali said.

The BG conversion of train track had also improved the status of the district from the most backward status to a medium level district, he said.