Minister for Health and Social Justice, Government of Kerala, K.K. Shailaja and Minister for Fisheries and Harbour Engineering attended the 2nd session on Day 3 of the Kerala Literature Festival. Manila C. Mohan was the moderator of the session. The discussion began on the topic 'Nipah and the floods'. The session went on as several topics, including political, social and communal issues of the state were discussed. The three disasters that shook the state in the year 2018, Nipah virus, Okhi cyclone and the floods in August, were the prime topics of the session. When asked about the rescue and relief operations following the cyclone, Okhi, Mercykutty Amma expressed her gratitude to the government, implementing various educational schemes for children of the fishermen, who had lost their lives in the disaster. “We have implemented an educational scheme to take up the education of the children, for the next 20 years, with a fixed deposit of 13.6 crores, with an aim of increasing the deposit at a 5% rate every year." She was quoted as saying.
Nipah, one of the greatest disasters of this era, was tagged as an emerging zoonosis by the Health Minister K.K. Shailaja. She also expressed her contentment for the aid she had received from the medical community and the Government of Kerala during the time. She mentioned Dr. Anoop and Dr. Jayakrishnan from BMH, Calicut, who were a great help throughout the rescue mission. She also spoke about the responsibilities that she had been which included the proper implementation of the guidelines, managing the public and the most challenging one of the lot, the burying the dead. "I was asked not to go to Changaroth," she smiled.
"People were in dire straits. The situation was too terrifying back then," she recalled. The session concluded with a live participation of the audience, who raised questions about the current issues like 'Vanitha Mathil' (Women Wall) and Sabarimala, with references to the feudal community system. Minister Shailaja admitted that she supports the current emergence of women and their renaissance.