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Botched Tsunami rehabilitation

Continuing with my experience with Tsunami affected people. I enquired with my friends whether the government has offered any new houses. They said the government did offer them house. However, their community decided not to take up the house offer. I was surprised and asked them why, because I have been to their houses and the living conditions are bad.

They said the rehabilitated houses are being built far away from the city and also far away from the shore. The livelihood of these people depends on fishing and it is practically not possible to have their houses far away from the shores.

Also, I was traveling with them to a place near Porur, some 20 kilometer from Besant Nagar where they live. To my surprise I found that none of the five ever seen Guindy or any place after that. For them, the life ended within the perimeter of where they lived. In their case, Besant Nagar and Adyar (an area of five square miles).

I have only heard from my known friends from one area. I don’t know the government side of the story. However, I feel that it is a basic logic when rehabilitating fisher folk one need to locate their houses near to the shore. I really don’t know how the government could miss this basic point when they are embarking on a large-scale rehabilitation project where major beneficiaries are fisher folk.

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