Vizhinjam town & port
PLEASE NOTE: the situation in Vizhinjam is a little politically-charged due to the Adani mega-port. Please keep your political opinion to yourself and we will discuss this as a team when on the ground in India.
Vizhinjam borders Kovalam to the south and is known primarily for its natural port area and extensive fishing activities. Beach resorts in the area are in stark contrast to the inland slums, with social issues such as alcoholism and poverty all too common amongst locals. Vizhinjam has a population estimated at around 18, 500 and has recently been the focus of a major international shipping port to be constructed on its shores by Adani. There have been mixed reviews of the port, however from our research and the lack of any proper environmental impact studies, we believe that it will have significant adverse environmental impacts. The reviews that are positive tend to be from Adani, corporations that will benefit from the development and their supporters, whilst the negative reviews seem to be from the local community who are already experiencing adverse impacts from the port.
As an overseas non-profit-organisation, we must ensure that we stay out of any local politics during our time on the ground in India. We are there to create positive change and we don't want to risk that by getting involved in local issues in which the community is divided. Over the coming years, we will do our best to work around the new port and focus on conservation-driven outcomes with the local community, businesses and local government (if they come onboard).
PLEASE refrain from discussing the port with locals and politely change the subject or plead ignorance if this matter is raised. In the long-term it will be in our best interest to do so.
To find out more on Vizhinjam and the local surrounds, including the port, please do your own research.