‘Save Lakshadweep’ campaign has been trending since May 23, 2021, with support from prominent politicians and celebrities amid the protests in the union territory of Lakshadweep over the last few days. Protests have broken out since the administrative reforms, deemed as anti-people by the protesters, were announced by the island’s administrator Praful Patel in January 2021.
Footballer C K Vineeth, actor Prithviraj, politician V T Balram have come forward in support of the ‘Save Lakshadweep’ campaign against the new reforms in the island.
What is Save Lakshadweep Campaign?
•#SaveLakshadweep campaign has been trending on social media in support of the protestors in Lakshadweep over the new reforms passed by the island’s administrator Praful Patel.
•Many prominent personalities, celebrities, sportspersons have been actively coming forward on Twitter and Facebook to support the ‘Save Lakshadweep’ campaign.
— Prithviraj Sukumaran (@PrithviOfficial)
May 24, 2021
I stand in solidarity with the people of Lakshadweep who have fallen prey to the fascistic policies enforced upon them by the New Administration and the Central Government. #SaveLakshadweep pic.twitter.com/stSLA7SqcJ
— Hansraj Meena (@HansrajMeena)
May 24, 2021
Does anyone really know about everything that’s going on in Lakshadweep now? The little island off the coast is one of the most beautiful places I have been to, but administrative injustices have served the citizens a taste of bad fortune. A thread. #SaveLakshadweep pic.twitter.com/nXwE1zZdLy
— CK Vineeth (@ckvineeth)
May 24, 2021
What are the new administrative reforms being protested?
•Praful Patel, Lakshadweep’s administrator got the additional charge of Lakshadweep in December 2020 and announced new administration reforms in January 2021 which have been deemed anti-people by the locals.
•Patel introduced Anti-social Activities Regulation Bill, 2021, also called the Goonda Act, under which police can arrest anyone for up to one year.
•Another is the Lakshadweep Development Authority Regulation 2021 (LADR) that gives the administration to relocate or remove islanders from their properties for any developmental or town-planning activity. The LADR draft bill also affords the administration the power to retain the property of islanders.
•The new reforms also introduced liquor shops on the island to boost tourism, which so far was restricted on the island in the wake of the majority Muslim population inhabiting the island.
•The reforms also state that people with more than two kids cannot contest any panchayat elections on the island.
•Non-vegetarian food from the mid-day meals has been scrapped and a beef ban has imposed.
•Regarding COVID-19 protocols, now a negative RT-PCR test would be enough to enter Lakshadweep compared to a mandatory 14-day quarantine earlier in place.
Why did protests intensify in Lakshadweep?
•The protests got a wider reach when Kerala MP Elamaram Kareem wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind alleging that several casual laborers lost their jobs in the wake of new reforms.
•Further, sheds and equipment of fishermen were demolished without any warning by the new administration on the account of violating the Coast Guard Act.
•The new administration also said that islanders should rely on Mangalore (Karnataka) rather than Beypore (Kerala) for freight transit.
•People from Lakshadweep also have been taking it to social media writing they need help. The new administration has been destroying our land, tweeted a local resident of Lakshadweep.