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Tsunami-hit fish vendors seek assistance

By Our Special Correspondent

CUDDALORE, JAN. 24. The first grievance day session held here today, after the December 26 tsunami strike, drew a large number people, bringing to light damage and property loss many fish vendors suffered.

M. Velu (43) of Kiliyanur, had gone to the seashore to buy fish on the fateful day. On noticing huge waves, he abandoned the bicycle and ran for life.

He appealed to the Collector for financial assistance. There are at least half a dozen similar requests from vendors in Kiliyanur.

M. Valli has had no income for the past one month. As the fish had become dearer ever since the tragedy, she could not make both ends meet.

Moreover, she has to meet the expenditure on her son's studies. C. Ravichandran of Amman Koil Street at Periakuppam, who had an STD booth, lost all the communication equipment along with household gadgets to the waves.

The place is left with no communication system. He pleaded with the Collector to restore his livelihood.

Several cases went unrepresented because of lack of knowledge.

There are also instances of "false claims" from the residents of Sellankuppam, Brookspettai and C.N.Palayam. When the tsunami struck, they vacated to safer places.

The Collector, Gagandeep Singh Bedi, said the petitions would be scrutinised case by case. A study would be conducted to find out the number of fish vendors affected, and in consultation with the Relief Commissioner, action would be taken.

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