Two fishermen drowned after their boat capsized at the Muthalapozhi estuary, near Perumathura, on Friday.

The deceased were identified as Varghese, 45, and Paniyadima, 56, of Anchuthengu. The incident took place around 7 a.m. after a group of six fishermen entered the rough sea on a boat that belonged to Johnson of Anchuthengu.

The boat capsized after getting smashed by the strong waves, throwing the fishermen into the sea. While four of them were rescued by boats in the vicinity, Varghese and Paniyadima went missing.

Forums’ demand

Meanwhile, the Kerala Swathantra Matsya Thozhilali Federation and National Fishworkers Forum have urged the Central and State governments to ensure the safety of fishermen in the light of the spate of accidental deaths at the Muthalapozhi harbour.

A press note by the two organisations said Friday’s death of two fishworkers at the harbour had taken the toll to 43. The unscientific dumping of granite blocks at the location had led to accretion of sand, endangering the fishermen.

The press note said accidents were bound to recur unless the stones on the seabed at the mouth of the harbour were removed. It observed that the government had allowed the Adani group, the concessionaire for the Vizhinjam seaport project, to use the Muthalapozhi harbour on the condition that the company would clear the harbour of the stones. The organisations warned that fish workers would stage an agitation at sea and on land to press their demands.

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