Kerala govt wants to protect Lakshadweep interests without undermining democracy, says minister

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Kerala leader of opposition AK Saseendran (Photo/ANI)
Kerala leader of opposition AK Saseendran (Photo/ANI)

Kochi (Kerala) [India], May 26 (ANI): The Kerala government wants to take all necessary steps to protect the interests of Lakshadweep people within the ambit of the law, in a manner that does not undermine the dignity of democracy, state forest minister AK Saseendran said on Wednesday.

He further said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had conveyed to the Centre the sentiments of the people in the state who are standing with the people of the islands.

"The Chief Minister conveyed the thinking and emotions of the people of Kerala in this issue to the Central government. The people of Kerala and the state government are with the people of Lakshadweep. The State government wants to take all necessary steps to protect their interests within the ambit of the law and in a manner that does not undermine the dignity of democracy," Saseendran said.

The minster added that the demand of an opposition MLA to pass a resolution on the Lakshadweep issue needs to be discussed by the Speaker and the Chief Minister.

"A lot of political dimensions to this issue are still to come. I can tell only say what action is going to be taken after a thorough examination only," he said.

Earlier on Tuesday, Leader of Opposition (LoP) VD Satheesan wrote to Union Home Minister Amit Shah seeking the recall of newly-appointed Administrator of Lakshadweep Praful Patel stating that the people of the island were "being subjected to his undemocratic measures."

"After the appointment of the new Administrator in the island, breaking the convention of IAS officers to the post, the people of Lakshadweep are being subjected to many undemocratic measures against which a huge resentment is growing in the island," Satheesan wrote in the letter.

He further said that the new Administrator has interfered in the powers of District Panchayat, the only representative body of the people.

"In an island where there are nominal violations of the rules, the Administrator has invoked Goonda act which we feel is to suppress the voice of the people," the leader added.

He also mentioned that the mishandling of COVID-19 pandemic has also resulted in creating a health crisis in the island. (ANI)