Pawar urges PM Modi to withdraw controversial policy decisions in Lakshadweep
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar urged Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi to look into the concerns raised over policy decisions taken by the Lakshadweep administration recently. He also requested for re-examination and withdrawal of the decisions that would allegedly lead to destruction of traditional means of livelihood and the unique culture of the Union Territory. Lakshadweep is represented in the Lok Sabha by NCP MP Mohammad Faizal.
Pawar made the demand through a letter to the PM on Wednesday.
Lakshadweep administrator Praful Khoda Patel’s recent reforms have attracted widespread resentment among the local populace, with many believing the changes are aimed at “destroying the unique culture and tradition” of the islands. Around a dozen MPs, including Faizal, sent letters to President Ram Nath Kovind seeking immediate recall of the decisions.
Pointing out the decisions and their likely impact, Pawar said, “I fear that unwarranted and irrational decisions taken by the Lakshadweep administrator would lead to the destruction of traditional means of livelihood and the unique culture of Lakshadweep. It has already resulted in huge unrest and protest.”
“I would be happy if orders and decisions taken by the incumbent authority of Lakshadweep administration are re-examined and necessary directions are passed to the Lakshadweep administration to withdraw the unreasonable and unwarranted orders,” he added.
Lakshadweep, which has an overwhelming Muslim majority, is facing a draft regulation against cow slaughter, ignoring the fact that beef forms part of the daily diet. Locals have opposed draft regulation for the creation of Lakshadweep Development Authority, fearing this would enable outsiders to purchase land. The administration has also decided to implement Goonda Act in Lakshadweep, which has a very low crime rate.
Meanwhile, while the islands had been free from Covid-19 for almost a year, the decision to lift the stipulation for mandatory quarantine for travellers from Kochi is attributed as a key reason for a surge in cases.