It's been more than five months that a boat allegedly sailed off from Kerala coast carrying over 243 Indians who went missing. With no trace of them, their families are currently seeking help from the External Affairs Ministry.
Kasturi, a relative of one of the missing persons, said, "My family informed us that they are going to Kerala and later we got to hear that they are going to New Zealand in a boat sailing off from Kerala coast. We came here to seek help from the government."
Sundar Lingam, another relative, said, "We are here to meet the External Affairs Minister and appeal the government to look into our issue. My family, relatives and beloved ones are missing and there''s no trace of them yet. I am not aware of a third party who is involved in this matter."
Devendra, who couldn't go along with his wife and two children in the boat, told news agency ANI, "People were taken in a bus to the coast. By the time it was my turn, the driver informed me that I can join them later as the bus would return and take remaining people. However, when I called them after a few hours, they informed me that the boat has already boarded from Kerala coast and there's no space left."
He also alleged that a person named Ravinder lured the people of the Madangir village for a good life in New Zealand.
"Over 35 people from my family went in that boat and we have even approached the Kerala government to look into the matter. However, the government is paying no attention to our issue. Few enquiries were made by the police, but no action was taken in this regard," Ananti, another relative, said.
Many people from Madangir village had boarded the boat to New Zealand illegally in January.