Chennai: An embarrassing incident involving a Tamil Nadu minister has come to light during his official visit to a coastal village in Tiruvallur, 60 km north of Chennai.
Fisheries Minister Anitha Radhakrishnan, accompanied by his officials had gone to inspect the fishing hamlet known as Pazhaverkadu or Pulicat on Thursday (July 8). As he was disembarking after a boat ride, he was carried by a fisherman in barely ankle-deep water, ostensibly to keep his expensive, sparkling white sneakers and dhoti clean. As soon as he was carried back to the shore, the minister stepped back onto the ground.
The minister was in the region following complaints of boats getting damaged as they entered the water body owing to erosion. To take a tour of the area, the minister went on a boat ride along with the fishermen, but it was a disaster in the making.
The boat that is meant to carry much fewer persons carried more than 30 people. Owing to fears of capsizing or any untoward incidents, some persons were later shifted to another boat.
Many social media users were quick to lash out at the minister for his arrogance and high-handedness. Many asked why he could not just fold his dhoti and remove his shoes, rather than make another adult carry him.
Some pointed out an incident involving former Tamil Nadu Chief Ministers K Kamaraj, where he had waded into chest-deep water to get to a village and meet people.
Meeting the fishermen who were making demands and sharing their woes, the minister assured that their DMK government would fulfill all the promises pertaining to the fishing community as stated in their manifesto. He also assured the people of Pulicat that he would ensure the construction of a fishing harbor in their locality.